Contemplating the latest plot…

Posted in Writing Posts on September 17, 2012 by alexraetyler

I have been working on another idea lately. One which is a sort of cross between time travel and a song that I really don’t like (insert ironic laugh here.) The reason I don’t like the song is because there is a line in it which insinuates that the protagonist is trapped and without hope of ever escaping (you can check out any time you like but you can never leave.) I never liked the idea of that song for some reason but I thought the idea would be a good feature of a plot line. This is not a kidnap story, in fact quite the opposite. It is not set in a sinister background and it contains no blood and gore (sorry, horror fans.) However, the story is hopefully a clever one at least and one which I will carry off to the best of my abilities.

I often wonder how other writers come up with such uniquely written plots, given how there is almost nothing new under the sun. Yet, still people manage to put a new twist on an old idea. JK Rowling is a fine example. There have been many stories of wizards and magic over the last few hundred years, but for some reason her captivation of the market seemed as though it was the only story of its ilk ever written. Ok, not everyone is a Harry Potter fan, but let’s face it, there are more fans than haters or abstainers put together. It’s the way an author grabs their audience isn’t it? somehow their verbalization of the idea is transcribed beautifully onto their computer (shouldn’t say pen and paper anymore because there are only a handful of authors who probably use it now) and the pages roll out the plot, the story, the characters, the depth of the subplots and every other aspect of the story is set out for the reader to lose themselves in.

I have always been a huge John Grisham fan. I read The Litigators recently and was terribly disappointed. It failed to captivate me, there were no clever and ingenious twists that I had come to expect from him and the storyline was thin and weak.  It made me wonder why his publisher thought it was ok to put it out there when really, his editor should have questioned the entire story. Yes, there were a few clever parts and some humor but compared to every single other novel by Grisham it paled into insignificance and I felt bad for my partner who had gone to the expense of purchasing the hard back copy for me for Christmas. It was certainly a page turner but only in that I was confused a lot of the time and sort of waiting for the story to kick off. By the time I got the end and the story had barely warmed up it felt extremely anti-climatic. I read The Brethren, The Testament and all of Grisham’s other books and loved each one. Makes me wonder whether his next offering will be worth the money or whether I should wait and get it from a secondhand bookstore.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch…..I have re-read my own latest offering and yes, to some degree I need more practice. The reason I mentioned Grisham’s latest book was that it seemed flat and that is exactly how I sometimes feel my stories are. Yes there is a good idea behind most of them but surely bringing them to the written page and being effective as excellent works is all about the execution. I am not yet close to perfecting the art of execution.  I think I am more of an orator rather than a story-teller. I have often thought about the idea of writing a story in first person and yet I seem to trip over when it comes to putting it down on-screen. It is a limited form of story telling unless it is told by a first person relaying the story from a third person point of view. I will still consider that, I think, but in the meantime I have to get on with the task in hand…..

Hopefully it will be on Amazon soon and I will post to confirm.


Further Musings…

Posted in Writing Posts on September 12, 2012 by alexraetyler

I love writing. I always analyze my writing and can easily criticize it from an objective perspective (oh look, that rhymes lol.) When I do think about the way I write I realize it has improved over the years. It’s moved forward in the last couple of years as I continue my personal journey and gone from being more like a technical manual to actually conveying feelings. Thing is, from an ultra-oober-critical point of view I can step outside of my writing and read it from the perspective of a third person. That’s when I start to doubt my own abilities. My girlfriend can write stories far better than I ever could or will. She has a talent for creating the movie image in the reader’s mind and just taking them places the way a good story should do. I know I can’t do that. I have improved, as I said, but in practice it’s her that really should be getting published, not me. Although I didn’t actually get published. I used Amazon self publishing and yes I have had far more success than I ever expected to get.

Falling Rock Ranch as been my biggest seller to date and I am so pleased about that. It’s only a short story and I wrote it with a competition in mind but then decided to go ahead and bravely put it up for public scrutiny.  When it started to sell I was gobsmacked to say the least. Every month since it was published it has had a steady stream of buyers, despite 6 other stories being published.  I think the idea was a clever one and the twist at the end was cool but in reality I sometimes wish I could have extended it in length and actually made it more of a short novelette.  I kind of regret not doing that sometimes, but on the other hand if I had would it have sold as many? Maybe it would have sold more….I am never gonna know…..I did like the humor and teasing between the two characters and the interaction. It was also my first foray into that style of writing. I was trying to be as expressive as possible without falling back into my old habit of writing a how-to book. That was exactly what I wanted to steer away from and I think I managed it to the point where it didn’t sound as though it had been written by a 16 year old.

I think that writing is something that needs constant practice and vigilance. It requires a large vocabulary and the means to construct a sentence that will keep the reader wanting to carry on to the end. I have written a couple of longer stories (between 20,000 and 32,000 words) and they have also been based on interesting plots. Trouble is I find it hard sometimes to think about the ending. Endings (or rather ‘life continuations’–let’s say that they live happily every after….where do they go from there?) are always an issue for me. I don’t want to write cheesy endings like ‘and they all laughed heartily’ or ‘their eyes met and they knew they would spend the rest of their lives together’ I mean please……how corny…..but then, how does one end a story well? What does one say to wrap up the loose ends and tie it all up into a perfect little bow and give the reader a happy smile to carry on their day with? It’s all so cliche!

On the subject of my writing, I really would appreciate some feedback too from people who have bought and read my work. The only way to progress and improve my work is to have people tell me what is bad about it. Yes, I would also love to hear what is good too! An equal balance of critique is a wonderfully creative thing. Don’t get me wrong, rejection is not pretty but then if a person gives up on every rejection where would people like JK Rowling be? Ok, so I don’t plan on being the next JK and my fan base (if I ever have one) would certainly be on a far smaller scale but if people who have read my stuff would like to leave any constructive ideas I would always be glad to read them and make any adjustments. Writing is a learning curve as we all know and in order to get better at it one must take the rough with the smooth.


Blind Date Fate now available

Posted in Writing Posts on September 4, 2012 by alexraetyler

My new addition to the Kindle store is called Blind Date Fate. Two strangers are set up on a double blind date and the consequences are such that no one could have foreseen the outcome. Give it a go and please feel free to leave feedback or comments. My writing is still ‘young’ so any positive help is always appareciated.

In All the Wrong Places – Now Available

Posted in Writing Posts on July 6, 2012 by alexraetyler

In All the Wrong Places – Now Available.

In All the Wrong Places – Now Available

Posted in Writing Posts on July 6, 2012 by alexraetyler

My latest story is a shorty which focuses on Lindsay, a serial dater looking for the right woman and Angelica, the cafe owner and waitress who admires Lindsay from a distance. As she watches the constant stream of prospective girlfriends come into her cafe to meet with Lindsay Angelica grows more uncertain as to whether her favorite customer will ever notice her.

View and purchase at Amazon

New Novellette Completed

Posted in Writing Posts on July 6, 2012 by alexraetyler

I have finished my novellette and it is now available on Kindle at and The title is ” A Fare of the Heart’ which is based on true events and charts the coming out of Frankie, a cab driver and her blossoming relationship with Dominique. Some of the content is edgy with a close look at how people self-harm and Dominique, who has been in therapy for a while opens up to Frankie about her experiences and mental state. The hard hitting story may touch some chords with readers who have experienced similar issues but the underlying thread illustrates how it is very possible to come through the black tunnel and find sime light in life. Have a read at

I also have other stories which are available by clicking on my own search link to Amazon at

Look me Straight in the Eyes

Posted in Writing Posts on June 19, 2012 by alexraetyler

Look me Straight in the Eyes