P. H. Solomon

SPOTLIGHT Blog Tour – Bethany Turner

Today, I welcome Bethany Turner on her Rave Reviews Book Club SPOTLIGHT Blog Tour. Bethany is sharing her first book in her Abigail Phelps Series – I’ve Loved These Days. Take it away Bethany!

I've_Loved_These_Day_Cover_for_Kindle (2)When I began writing the Abigail Phelps Series, I chose the name Abigail because a) I like it, and b) it could be shortened to Abby, which I also like. I chose the name Phelps because a) my son had a teacher with the surname Phelps, and we loved her, and b) because it sounded okay with both Abigail and Abby. That was it. That was literally the extent to which I put serious thought into my lead character’s name. And my Abigail lived in Simsbury, Connecticut because figure skating plays a major role in her story, and Simsbury has an international training facility. Abigail. Phelps. Simsbury. That’s the entire origin story.

So imagine my surprise when my husband stumbled across the real Abigail Phelps, by way of the Abigail Phelps Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution…in Simsbury, CT. There was an entire history which I hadn’t known existed. The real Abigail Phelps had been the mother of three men who fought in the American Revolution, and was a part of the family which had essentially founded the town of Simsbury. The Phelps Tavern, Phelps Homestead, Abigail’s Bar & Grille, Phelps Road…Simsbury’s history is eternally intertwined with that of the Phelps family.

And I’d had no idea.

Once I did know, there was no turning back. My fictional Abigail’s story was forever changed with the knowledge of the real Abigail’s legacy. My novels, which had already been formed with the intent of blurring reality, took on the story of the real Abigail Phelps of Simsbury, CT. Last year I was asked to speak in Simsbury, and I had the opportunity to witness the historic Phelps landmarks for myself. My Abigail is her descendent, and her journey has been shaped by that legacy. As has mine.

Excerpt from I’ve Loved These Days, Book One in the Abigail Phelps Series

March 17, 1994

Dear Mrs. Onassis,

It was such a lovely gift to receive your letter. I did receive some advance notice that it was on its way, of course, but I can’t tell you how touched I was when it showed up in my mailbox. I’m so very sorry that your health is as it is and, as is often the case in life, I wish we didn’t wait for dire circumstances to force us into conversations which should have taken place years ago. And I want to apologize for my share of that blame.

The twelve years since you and I last spoke have not been without their challenges, have they? I’m not certain, however, that I can agree with your assertion that all of the difficulties between John and myself stem from that day. Truthfully, they go back further, and I shoulder the responsibility. Be that as it may, he and I are in a good place now, and I can’t ask for more than the friendship we have developed. It’s the most important of my life.

And then there are your other assertions, which I wish I could deny. I wish I could laugh about how far off-track you are, but of course I can’t. You’re absolutely right. He knows it and I know it, though I really had no idea that you knew it as well. I shouldn’t be surprised, I suppose. He always said you knew from the very first day – which is why you gave him the ring. That very first time you met me you knew that he would never be the same again, didn’t you?

For the record, I was never the same again either. And while times have changed and opportunities have been lost, I still know in my heart of hearts that I never will be. But we can’t go back, and we can’t undo. What’s more, I don’t really want to. While my life is not perfect, it is uniquely, ridiculously mine, and I would not trade it.

So, put away the regret. I have. It didn’t take me long to discover that it didn’t do me any good, and it didn’t do him any good. But thank you. Thank you for acknowledging that you wish it had gone a different way – there’s nothing wrong with that, is there? And while I don’t regret, I’m not too proud to admit that yes, I wish some things had gone a different way as well.

Please take care of yourself. Relish these days, surrounded by your friends and your family and your books, and the people and things that you love. And please know that my affection for you remains strong. You never said an unkind word to me, and I thank you for that.

And yes, don’t worry – I promise to take care of him for you.

With sincere affection,

Abby Phelps


Author PhotoFind Bethany Online!!

Twitter: @BTLiteraryStuff

Facebook: www.facebook.com/seebethanywrite; www.facebook.com/abigailphelpsseries

Website: www.seebethanywrite.com; www.abbyphelps.com

Pinterest – www.pinterest.com/seebethanywrite 

Book Info:

I’ve Loved These Days – Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00LSWE6U4

Scenes From Highland Falls – Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00LSX6HD2

Two Thousand Years – Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00LSYL5UQ

  Scenes_From_Highland_Cover_for_Kindle (2) Two_Thousand_Years_Cover_for_Kindle (2)

Thanks to Rave Reviews Book Club for sponsoring the tour for Bethany. Please take a few minutes and investigate more about her Abigail Phelps Series. For more information about RRBC and these SPOTLIGHT blog tours see the website and if you join, tell them P. H. Solomon sent you.


Please share your thoughts and ideas in the comments section. I’d also love to connect with you over social media so check my Contact page for that information. See the News page for announcements and remember to sign-up to receive news and posts by email. I’ve added a new sign-up tab on my FaceBook page to simplify the process. New followers can download The Black Bag via free coupon today! Also, the cover of my book, The Bow of Destiny, was revealed recently so take a look.

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Untangle Your Fingers & Try Scrivener’s Auto-Complete List

Scrivener is a powerful writing tool. I write about it weekly with tips and usage ideas. To read more of my posts click the Scrivener tag or category at the end of the page.

Scrivener LogoI love using tools in real life. I have all kinds having been raised to do a variety of fix-it jobs around the house. It’s great to find that Scrivener has a variety of tools that can be used to assist us writers and make us more efficient.

One of these features is the Auto-Complete List. This can be used to make typing faster by adding words that you commonly use in a specific project. This allows you to add custom words to a list that are automatically completed so that you proceed with fewer typos and less typing.

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Before discussing the tool further, let’s first turn it on and get a feel for using it this simple – but powerful – tool. Click on Project and choose Auto-Complete List from the menu (that’s CTRL + Shift + 4 for those who like using keyboard commands as I sometimes do).

Scriv Auto_Complete Menu

The Auto-Complete List will be turned on so that it can be managed.

Scriv Auto_Complete Window

To add click the + button and type in your common word. Make sure that it’s correct and hit enter. The minus button allows you to remove a word for any reason, misspelled or otherwise. Since this is a feature located on the Project menu then this list is available only for the project in which you are working.

As indicated above, the Auto-Complete List is both simple and powerful. It’s very easy to add words that you commonly use to avoid completely typing them repeatedly in your project. It also reduces the number of misspelled words that you’ll need to correct later as well as backspacing so much. Fewer words to complete typing means less effort. That’s what makes the Auto-Complete List so powerful.

However, I can see one caveat to this tool – too many words that are alike. Just think if you add lots of words that begin with the same letter sequence you may find you have to stop too much to choose which word fits. In this case, the tool will reduce your efficiency. For this reason, avoid adding too many words, especially words that are spelled similarly.

As a fantasy writer, I see this tool being very helpful with the use of lots of unique names common to a story or book. Since these are unique words I can spend a lot of time trying to make sure I’ve spelled them correctly. With the Auto-Complete List I can start typing these names so they complete without risking misspellings and reducing my editing time later. Of course, the same holds true for any words that are specialized to a writing project in any genre, fiction or non-fiction.

I haven’t used the Auto-Complete List at all. But I plan to use heavily in the coming month while I complete a rough draft of An Arrow Against the Wind and maybe one or two short stories – as well as for my blogs, newsletters, etc.

Book Cover Green Top & Bottom Cover - CopyHave you used the Auto-Complete List in Scrivener? If so, have you found it helpful? Please share your thoughts and ideas in the comments section. I’d also love to connect with you over social media so check my Contact page for that information. See the News page for announcements and remember to sign-up to receive news and posts by email. I’ve added a new sign-up tab on my FaceBook page to simplify the process. New followers can download The Black Bag via free coupon today! Also, the cover of my book, The Bow of Destiny, was revealed recently so take a look.

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Just as a note: I am not affiliated with Scrivener in any official capacity. For support questions, pricing and other concerns please contact the vendor.

 

Scrivener Tips Pt. 7: Elements For Your Document Template

A few weeks ago, I shared about using the document template feature of Scrivener. It allows you to create a template internal to your project with differing features and content so you can start writing more quickly without forgetting your commonly used elements for your documents. It makes the process of writing approachable.

But what should you include in a document template? How much should you include? What’s the benefit of this bit of work? Let’s take the last two questions first.

Scrivener Set As Template Folder

As to how much you should put into a document template, this depends on your needs. If you need a simple template with all the common formatting for your project then it’s a straightforward process. If the nature of your project requires more information then you should include that. For instance, with a blog or newsletter project (assuming you are using a year-long project for these), you can use the document template to include common content that appears in all your posts or newsletters.

As to the benefits, it’s a time-saver. You won’t waste time re-creating the same document conditions every time you start a new chapter, blog, newsletter, etc. Also, this template usage eliminates forgetting to include common content such as those used on blog posts and newsletters.

But what should you include in your Scrivener document template? Here are a some suggestions:

Scriv Tip 7 Doc temps1. You may want to create several templates depending on what your project is. As an example, I’m using a year-long project for my blog posts and newsletters so I may need multiple templates for these. This is especially true of my blog project where I develop different kinds of posts. I can make different templates for Scrivener posts, interview posts, serial posts and general category posts.

2. Include your ending content for blog posts. Again, these may differ based on the type of post.

3. Include introductory content. Again this may differ depending on usage but it sure helps you jump into writing without much worry with getting everything correct.

4. Regarding formatting, do you have special formatting that will be used in your project several times? Then you should consider creating a template that incorporates this formatting. There’s nothing so time consuming than trying to re-create formatting to match earlier content. With the document template you can re-create that formatting by choosing to use the template.

Scrivener New From Template Cork

The main take-away is to include as much as necessary to simplify your writing process rather than get bogged down with unnecessary details. As I run across a repetition of form in projects I’m creating a new document template or adding necessities to existing ones. That way I will spend less time on continuity and complete my writing faster.

Book Cover Green Top & Bottom Cover - CopyHow can you use document templates in your Scrivener projects to streamline your writing? If you’re already using this feature, what elements of your writing do you include in your document templates? Please share your thoughts and ideas in the comments section. I’d also love to connect with you over social media so check my Contact page for that information. See the News page for announcements and remember to sign-up to receive news and posts by email. I’ve added a new sign-up tab on my FaceBook page to simplify the process. New followers can download The Black Bag via free coupon today! Also, the cover of my book, The Bow of Destiny, was revealed recently so take a look.

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Screenshots from my blog project

Just as a note: I am not affliated with Scrivener in any official capacity. For support questions, pricing and other concerns please contact the vendor.