3/26/14

Can You Write a Novel using Flash Fiction?

Join me in welcoming guest blogger Siobhan Muir back to my blog for a post on using Flash Fiction to inspire and improve your writing. 



Can you write a novel using flash fiction?
Yes, I say you can. My friend Goran Zidar is writing his tale eight sentences at a time each Sunday and putting it up on his blog as a serial. My muse would kill me if I stopped after eight sentences, but it works for him.
Flash fiction is great for tightening writing, whether you write short or long. Three of my novels out have pieces of flash fiction in them, snippets written for flash fiction challenges to help me prod my muse when she was stuck or even continue a scene I’d been working on with help of a prompt. Even now when reading them I’ll see the prompts and remember writing the snippets to them.
My writing has dramatically improved since I’ve started writing in flash fiction challenges. I’ve had to learn how to pick the right words to convey the emotion when I had a limited word count. And it has carried over into my longer prose. It made me remove lazy verbs and passive voice. I’ve learned how to remove “was” and “that” from my vocabulary, using them only when absolutely necessary.
I don’t always win the challenges, but I don’t really write in them for the badge or prize. For me it’s the opportunity to get to the essence of the story I’m writing using the fewest words to convey what I want. Most of my current novels have flash fiction snippets in them, including my newest release, Bronco’s Rough Ride.
In fact, Bronco’s Rough Ride started as a flash fiction snippet when I got just the right prompt and the muse ran with it. Now, some forty thousand words later, I have a tale with several flash fiction pieces in it and novel-length work. Here’s the blurb:

What happens in Vegas, stays in the heart…

Chief Petty Officer John "Bronco" Andrews only meant to stay one night in Vegas for a little R&R before resuming his duties as a US Navy SEAL in Coronado. But someone slips him a mickey in the bar and he finds himself in Madame LeBeau's sex trade. As the product. Doped up on ketamine to keep him docile, Bronco has no choice but to let it ride.

Detective Lindsey Jarvis has been undercover in LeBeau's sex slave racket for two years and she almost has enough evidence to take it down. Between abduction, prostitution, and murder, she has LeBeau by the short hairs. All she needs is a "product". John is the perfect witness if she can get him out before the drugs shut down his heart. Then she'll be free to start a normal life.

Lindsey doesn't count on her overwhelming attraction for Bronco or her need to see him through detox. But she's a cop in Vegas and he's a Navy SEAL, two lifestyles with too much unpredictability to maintain a relationship. Neither have time for more than one wild rough ride, and what happens in Vegas, stays. Forever.

So there you have it. If you like to write flash fiction, be sure to stop by my blog on Thursdays for #ThursThreads, and just maybe you’ll start your next novel. Happy reading!



Excerpt of Bronco’s Rough Ride
Copyright © 2014 Siobhan Muir
All rights reserved.

She swallowed against revulsion as she readied the needle. She could face down a jacked-up junkie with a loaded weapon, but one little needle entering skin made her want to run screaming for the hills. Just push it in and be done, Jarvis.
Lindsey pressed the plunger to let out the air and inserted the needle into his vein. She kept her mind on the feel of his warm skin in her hands to push off the threatening nausea. Focus. At last the plunger hit bottom and she pulled the syringe out.
“There. That should do it.” She glanced at his eyes. “At least get it started.” She deposited the used syringe back into her purse. “Let me get you a towel.” She selected one of the fluffy burgundy towels from her bath and returned to the bedroom. “This will be like a swanky massage, right?” She gave him a half smile as she laid the towel over his lap and tucked it around his hips. When done, she sat down beside him, certain to keep in his line of sight.
“I guess we have a little time to get to know each other.”
She paused, resisting the urge to run her hands over the taut muscles of his legs. She’d learned the softness of his hair and ached to touch it again. You get no liberties now, Jarvis. “So I did some checking and I found out you’re in the Navy headed to Coronado Naval Base on a Permanent Change of Station. Is that right?”
Lindsey met his gaze and he blinked twice. “I know the Naval SpecOps trains there.” She scanned his body. “And no tattoos, which is unusual. Most military guys get tats, but not you.”
The scars stood out against his tanned skin, but no ink. “Unless you’ve removed them, which leaves bad scars and hurts like hell, so I’m told. Did you once have a tat, John?”

Excerpt #2 of Bronco’s Rough Ride
Copyright © 2014 Siobhan Muir
All rights reserved.

“How are you doing? Can you get in on your own?” Her breath brushed his cheek and his cock hardened again. At least that part of me still works.
“Yeah.” He reached for the car as she pulled the door open.
“Good. Let me recline the seat. When I drive out of here I don’t want you too visible.” She pushed the leather bucket seat flat. He admired the sleek lines of her dress against her ass and closed his eyes, remembering the softness of it on his lap.
“John, are you okay?”
He snapped his eyes open and nodded, swaying a little.
“Get in and we’ll get out of here.”
John sat in the seat with exaggerated movements. Nothing sat where he expected and he banged his knees and forehead twice before he settled into the seat and lay back. God it felt good to relax after trying to walk all that way fighting the ketamine. But they’d made it to the car. All they had to do was get out of the parking lot.
Lindsey settled into the driver’s seat and started the engine, the rumble adding to the tremors rippling through his body. Fuck, I hate coming down off drugs. The car moved and his sense of orientation shifted, the glow of the Strip’s lights washing across the windshield in a kaleidoscope of color.
“Wow. It looks like it’s moving. Day and night, always moving.”
“Sorry? What’s moving?”
“The lights. In Sin City. Did we sin yet?”
Lindsey shot him an incredulous look. “Yep. Plenty of times.”
“Good.” She looked like a woman good at sinning.

Excerpt #3 of Bronco’s Rough Ride
Copyright © 2014 Siobhan Muir
All rights reserved.

“Come on. Can you still walk?”
“Yes, ma’am.” He was a SEAL, dammit. He could damn well do anything.
But his body failed him when he tried to shift it and his legs wobbled like Jell-O in a three-year-old’s grip. What the fuck’s wrong with me?
“Lean on me, John. I’ve got you.” Lindsey worked her shoulder under his armpit and pulled him.
He tipped precariously forward and stared at her feet as she stabilized his weight. Where are her shoes? She’ll ruin her nylons. Except she hadn’t worn them. He remembered an unencumbered access to her sweet pussy and the satisfaction he’d found there. Warmth ran through his body and hardened his shaft.
“Come on, John. In you go.”
She helped him stagger up some rough-hewn plank steps into a clean and homey cabin with wood floors and thread-bare furniture. The walls had been stained golden and glowed in the few lights she’d turned on. The air held the smell of stale air and cool mountain forest. This place didn’t seem like something near the Strip in Vegas. Where the hell had she taken him?
Lindsey deposited him on a worn plush couch and made a move away from him. Unreasoning panic exploded in his chest and he grabbed her arm.
“Don’t leave me.”
“Easy, John. I’m just going to the kitchen to make some coffee. But I won’t—”
“Go alone?”
“Be gone long.” She patted his arm. “It’ll be okay.”
He gritted his teeth and nodded. “Just watch your back. They could be anywhere.”
“They?”
“The tangos. They can look like anyone. Bartenders, hookers. Hell, that valet you got the car from. Anyone.” He had to make her understand. Shadows hid all manner of evils.



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BLURB
What happens in Vegas, stays in the heart...

Chief Petty Officer John "Bronco" Andrews only meant to stay one night in Vegas for a little R&R before resuming his duties as a US Navy SEAL in Coronado. But someone slips him a mickey in the bar and he finds himself in Madame LeBeau's sex trade. As the product. Doped up on ketamine to keep him docile, Bronco has no choice but to let it ride.

Detective Lindsey Jarvis has been undercover in LeBeau's sex slave racket for two years and she almost has enough evidence to take it down. Between abduction, prostitution, and murder, she has LeBeau by the short hairs. All she needs is a "product". John is the perfect witness if she can get him out before the drugs shut down his heart. Then she'll be free to start a normal life.

Lindsey doesn't count on her overwhelming attraction for Bronco or her need to see him through detox. But she's a cop in Vegas and he's a Navy SEAL, two lifestyles with too much unpredictability to maintain a relationship. Neither have time for more than one wild rough ride, and what happens in Vegas, stays. Forever.

BIO
Siobhan Muir lives in Las Vegas, Nevada, with her husband, two daughters, and a vegetarian cat she swears is a shape-shifter, though he's never shifted when she can see him. When not writing, she can be found looking down a microscope at fossil fox teeth, pursuing her other love, paleontology. An avid reader of science fiction/fantasy, her husband gave her a paranormal romance for Christmas one year, and she was hooked for good.

In previous lives, Siobhan has been an actor at the Colorado Renaissance Festival, a field geologist in the Aleutian Islands, and restored inter-planetary imagery at the USGS. She’s hiked to the top of Mount St. Helens and to the bottom of Meteor Crater.

Siobhan writes kick-ass adventure with hot sex for men and women to enjoy. She believes in happily ever after, redemption, and communication, all of which you will find in her paranormal romance stories.

Siobhan’s latest release, Bronco's Rough Ride, is a prequel to The Navy's Ghost in the Bad Boys of Beta Squad series. She has published A Hell Hound’s Fire (a free read) and The Beltane Witch in the Cloudburst Colorado series. Siobhan has also published Not a Dragon’s Standard Virgin and Queen Bitch of the Callowwood Pack through Siren Publishing, and Her Devoted Vampire through Evernight Publishing.
 

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