Hey everyone! This is my first book tour and I am super excited to be part of it! I want to thank everyone who is involved in the planning and for including me and now without further wait I would like to introduce to you:
Heather Topham Wood
Heather Topham Wood graduated from the College of New Jersey in 2005 and holds a
bachelor’s degree in English. Working full-time as a freelance writer for publications such as
USA Today, Livestrong.com, Outlook by the Bay and Step in Style magazine, she writes fiction
novels in her spare time. She resides in Trenton, New Jersey with her husband and two sons.
First Visions is the first novel in the Second Sight Series.
Date Published: May 1, 2012
Two years ago, 21-year-old Kate Edwards became deathly ill and slipped into a coma. While unconscious, she crept into the mind of a missing boy and awoke with the knowledge of his location. Friends and family were skeptical and wary of her new ability to see into the minds of others. Their fears prompted Kate to keep her psychic powers a secret. Feeling alienated, she dropped out of college and spent most of her days holed up at her mother’s home.
Now another child has been abducted. Police detective Jared Corbett seeks out Kate for her help in solving the case. Reluctantly, Kate agrees and they must work together to bring 8-year-old Cori Preston home to her family. Although attracted to one another, Jared has a girlfriend with ties to the abduction case and Kate is sarcastic and guarded since her coma. With visions she can’t control and an uncontrollable attraction to the detective, she wonders if she can leave the past behind and finally stop hiding from the world. Otherwise, Cori may be lost forever.
I really liked Kate because she's snarky. She's not afraid to throw out an insult. She's not afraid to tell Jared to back off - "because she's not psychic" - even though she is. I also liked Kate because she is gaurded against all the non-believers in the world. And who can blame her? But when it comes to an 8 year old, a terrifying dream, and a pushy mom - Kate has to tell someone. How do you not protect a little girl. It would make you a monster and Kate knows this.
Kate's lucky that Jared is one of the "good guys." He is hopeful she can help. He is hopeful that his feelings for Kate will go away when he find his GIRLFRIEND'S little sister. He is sure that he can keep her secret.
But like any good love plot, character a and character b cannot stay away from each other, which is exactly as I like it. Does anyone see any bumps in the "love road?" I do! er, did? Can I call both on this?
I was sad because of the situation, a kidnapping, the book had to move fast over a short amount of time - a few day - because that's realistic. It didn't give me enough time to really get to know the characters, which is why I am looking forward to book 2! Now while, I like to get to know my characters, I completely agree with Heather's choice in sticking with a believable time and plot lines, as opposed taking two or three weeks for Kate and Jared to build up with one another. It wouldn't happen in real life. Again - it's why I am looking forward to book 2.
Heather also gave me a guest post which I find to be very useful as a writer - so all of you who want to work on being a better writer - take heed!
10 Tips to Becoming the Best Writer You Can Be
Here are a few tips that really helped me as I wrote First Visions. Some of the tips you may have heard time and time again, but they really do work.
Tune Out Everyone’s Voice in Your Head
I unfortunately put way too much thought in what other people think. This can really make your story suffer if you’re constantly wondering over other’s reactions. Don’t be afraid to take risks. Even if it doesn’t work out, at least you know you put yourself out there.
Whether you’re old school and use a notebook for organizational purposes or rely on a program like Scrivener, staying organized while writing can be extremely helpful. As an example, I keep both an outline and character descriptions close at hand while I write for quick reference.
If you obsess over every single word you put on paper, you may end up sacrificing some of your creative energy. This is where free writing exercises can be very helpful. Browse writer’s blogs and you’re bound to come upon some free writing topics and exercises you can tackle.
Don’t Be Afraid to Hit the Delete Button
Getting rid of stuff that just isn’t working is a must. Don’t be afraid to cut huge chunks out of your novel. Save each previous draft and if end up having use for the scenes down the road, so be it.
Walk Away for Awhile
I once heard a reference that writers have a tendency to have beer goggles on while writing. You may love every single word you write one night, but then wake up the morning and wonder what the hell you were thinking. Fresh perspective can definitely help you become the best writer possible.
Don’t Lose Yourself in the Editing Process
Feedback can be very helpful in the writing process, but opinions are subjective. What works for one reader may not for another. Although you may be inclined to change certain aspects based on a single opinion, wait until you get more input. As an example, an editor I spoke with wanted me to make my main character in First Visions “nicer” and gave me examples of what a “good” woman would and would not do. I think if I followed her advice, I would’ve ended up with a dreadfully boring story.
Show Don’t Tell
This is probably one of the helpful pieces of advice I received during the editorial process. Use dialogue and the character’s actions keep the story moving. Wordy descriptions can end up hurting the pace of your novel.
Read Everything You Can Possibly Get Your Hands On
My husband will laugh at me when he sees me reading a trashy magazine or book and I tell him I’m working. Being well read can enhance your vocabulary, improve your grammar and help you find inspiration for your work.
Stick to a Routine
I have two boys under five which makes finding the time to write exceedingly difficult. Each night after they go to bed, even if I’m not in the mood, I’ll write at least something.
Get Rid of the Distractions
I’ll be in the middle of writing a pivotal scene when all of a sudden my phone will ring or my inbox will chime. Or I’ll receive a text from my sister stating I have to go on Facebook right now and look at this raunchy picture posted by so and so. A good piece of advice I heard before is to write on a computer without internet access. (OUCH HEATHER! I can't do that!)
Thank you so much for the advice! I wish you the very best in your book sales. I am sure they will be all you hoped for. Thanks for stopping by everyone!
DISCLOSURE – Please place somewhere in the post for all reviews!
*Disclosure of Material Connection: I am a member of Reading Addiction Blog Tours and a copy of this book was provided to me by the author. Although payment may have been received by Reading Addiction Blog Tours, no payment was received by me in exchange for this review. There was no obligation to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are entirely my own and may not necessarily agree with those of the author, publisher, publicist, or readers of this review. This disclosure is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commision’s 16 CFR, Part 255, Guides Concerning Use of Endorcements and Testimonials in Advertising*