Emerald Musings

Welcome to my writing blog:  Emerald Musings!

Grab a comfortable chair, a cup of your favorite beverage, and enjoy while I explore one of my great passions- storytelling. At Emerald Musings, I focus on writing and art of storytelling. I do reviews, rant about the business, and rave about gems of the fiction and non-fiction worlds. We also regularly feature guest posts, interviews, and conversations with some of the most engaging authors and artists that we can find.

If you are interested in me reviewing your book, please check out my post about reviewing books. Also, because I want to support my fellow authors as much as I can, please note that I will review only copies I pay for from now on. If your book isn’t published yet, that’s fine, just let me know the price you’re intending on selling it, and we can possibly make arrangements.

So, as always, please enjoy, and happy reading!

 

 

Why Fact Checking is Critical to Your Business

In a world where any form of a news story is the largest attention grabber for consumers, fact checking is very important when writing pieces on any topic. It seems like everywhere you look, there is some type of news headline, a story being covered

Hailey Popovich

Hailey is a vibrant writer based out of the Colorado area.  She is currently going to school and studying to become an English Teacher while helping out The Writers Thread from time to time with her dynamic and conversational writing style.  To learn more about her, be sure to check out her portfolio page.

Crime and Place

The global success of Jane Harper’s The Dry signals that great writing will always win out, but it also reminds us that for many readers the setting, the place is as much a character as the protagonist and others. While her “place” is out in rural

Brian Stoddart

Brian Stoddart is now based in Queenstown, New Zealand, having lived and worked in eleven different countries around the world and traveled through many others. He writes the Superintendent Chris le Fanu historical crime novels set in 1920s India and has also written seventeen non-fiction works. Those include A House in Damascus that was an Amazon No 1 in Middle Eastern Travel; Saturday Afternoon Fever that remains a definitive text on the role of sport in Australian culture and other works on Caribbean cricket, biography and academic works on India. He is also a serious photographer and delivers lectures on cruise ships.

Balancing Between Good & Evil

by Dawn J. Stevens There is nothing that ruins a good book more than a horrific scene that seems all wrong for the character or a setting. On the contrary, a book can seem slow and boring if nothing bad ever happens to anyone in the book. You may have

Dawn J. Stevens

Quoted from The Website of Dawn J. Stevens
"Dawn Juniper Stevens is the fiction pen name for Kara Kelso. She has been writing short stories and poetry for nearly 30 years, with the past 15 years spent writing an assortment of business, hobby, and nonfiction articles for a variety of businesses, websites, and projects. There aren’t too many types of writing she hasn’t dabbled in at least once, but fantasy fiction remains her favorite. “Kira’s Tale: Descend into Darkness” was released in 2013 and is currently available on Amazon.
In her spare time, she enjoys mostly non-fiction books for their source of education and learning from another’s beautiful experience, as well as spending time with family and children. She also enjoys sustainable gardening, music with soul, real-life magic, and simply being surrounded by nature."

Guest Post by Steven Levi

Curse you, William Shakespeare! Curse you, Albert Broccoli! Curse you, Agatha Christie! You made the villains of the world cookie-cutter characters, literary evil behind a mask of normality. Be it Claudius, Dr. No or any of the initially-innocuous characters

Steven Levi

quoted from The Alaska Writers Directory:
"Steven C. Levi is an Alaskan historian and writer.  A 40-year resident of Anchorage, he has written 80 books. His nonfiction books on Alaska history include Boom to Bust in the Alaska Gold Fields, a historical forensic investigation into the sinking of Alaska’s ghost ship, the Clara Nevada, as well as a history of Alaska’s bush pilot heritage, Cowboys of The Sky. He is also dedicated to making history interesting to young readers.  His Making History Interesting to Students series on Kindle is a collection of eight books specifically written to teach middle and high school students what they are supposed to be learning in their history classes."

Villainy Emerald Musings Guest Post

A hero is only as good as their enemy. One of the criticisms levelled at the Marvel Cinematic Universe, is its lack of decent villains. We’re yet to see how Thanos will turn out, but over the previous decade of movies that have been released, seemingly

Paul Heatley

Paul Heatley lives in the north east of England. His short stories have appeared online and in print for publications such as Thuglit, Horror Sleaze Trash, Spelk, Near to the Knuckle, Shotgun Honey,the Pink Factory, and the Flash Fiction Offensive, among others. He also contributes music reviews to R2 magazine, sometimes.
His fiction is dark and bleak, populated with misfits and losers on a hellbound descent, often eschewing genre and geography to create a nightmarish vision of a harsh and uncaring world.

Noir Fiction: Where the Nature of Evil Unravels

by Matt Phillips As a writer of noir and crime fiction, I spend a lot of time and creative energy conjuring evil. I contemplate evil in my stories, in my characters, and in the nature of causation and denouement. Look across the media landscape and you’ll

Matt Phillips

(quoted from biography on mattphillipswriter.com)


Matt Phillips was born in Palm Springs, California and raised in the Coachella Valley and nearby Mojave High Desert. He has worked as a busboy, pool attendant, waiter, bartender, halfway-decent restaurant manager, film festival administrator, newspaper reporter, and editor.



His books are Accidental OutlawsThree Kinds of FoolBad Luck City, and Redbone. Short fiction has appeared in Shotgun Honey, Flash Fiction Offensive, Tough Crime, Near to the Knuckle, Powder Burn Flash, Pulp Metal Magazine, Manslaughter Review, and Fried Chicken and Coffee.



Matt lives in San Diego. He earned an MFA in creative writing from the University of Texas at El Paso.

Villains Should be Teddy Bears with Knives as Hearts

I want to hurt for the villain. I want to see the good in them. I want a villain to be approachable and affable. I want a villain who I can take an afternoon tea and share my secrets with. Of course, they’ll turn around and rip my heart out and leave

Jeannette Spohn

Jeannette is the owner and lead editor for Polar Bear Editing. Read more about her point of view on writing here http://www.polarbearediting.com

The Two Voices of God

Richard Godwin. © ‘It is there always there deep inside me, my companion, my host, my parasite, my lover more demon than mistress, and then the dark dark conjurings. For what manner of love is there betwixt a man and a woman? Is it love is it that

Richard Godwin

Richard Godwin is the critically acclaimed author of Apostle Rising, Mr. Glamour, One Lost Summer, Noir City, Meaningful Conversations, Confessions Of A Hit Man, Paranoia And The Destiny Programme, Wrong Crowd, Savage Highway, Ersatz World, The Pure And The Hated, Disembodied, Buffalo And Sour Mash, Locked In Cages, Crystal On Electric Acetate, The Glass House, Android Love, Human Skin, and Insincerity. His stories have been published in numerous paying magazines and over 34 anthologies, among them an anthology of his stories, Piquant: Tales Of The Mustard Man, and The Mammoth Book Of Best British Crime and The Mammoth Book Of Best British Mystery, alongside Lee Child. He was born in London and lectured in English and American literature at the University of London. He also teaches creative writing at University and workshops. You can find out more about him at his website www.richardgodwin.net , where you can read a full list of his works, and where you can also read his Chin Wags At The Slaughterhouse, his highly popular and unusual interviews with other authors.

Villain Guest Post

The trigger happy, mentally ill Army veteran that leaves bodies on several continents. The housewife that goes berserk on her family with a kitchen knife – and revels in it. Chris Roy Or, the Idea: The old kindergarten teacher taken by the fervor

Chris Roy

Chris Roy was raised in a south Mississippi trailerhood in the midst of ugly Gulf Coast beaches and spectacular muddy bayous, roaming the towns and wilds of the rich and poor, thieving and thinking without a curfew.
Until 1999, Chris lived comfortably with the modest criminal ventures of his youth. But a fistfight ended tragically, his opponent died, resulting in a life sentence for Chris, which he started serving in the Mississippi Department of Corrections from January 2000.
Hard knocks are the best teachers - the author learned this almost too late, though he did rid himself of drugs and violence. Chris' institutional record hasn't been marred by a single fight or involvement in drugs - an incredible feat, considering the brutally challenging prison environment he lives in.
Nowadays he lives his life of crime vicariously, through the edgy characters and fast-paced stories he pens, hoping to entertain readers. When he isn't writing, he's reading, drawing or looking for prospects to train in boxing.

The Banality of Crime Fiction

by Michael Zimecki In a series of articles about the trial of Adolph Eichmann written for The New Yorker in 1961, and later turned into a book, Eichmann in Jerusalem, the political philosopher Hannah Arendt addressed the nature of evil. Arendt argued

Michael W. Zimecki

Michael Zimecki is the author of Death Sentences, a crime novel based on a true-life shootout between a gunman and police in the Stanton Heights section of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  He is the recipient of a 2018 Golden Fedora Prize for crime poetry from Noir Nation.  His novel in progress, The Migration of Birds, about a soldier lost overseas, was a finalist in the 2017 William Faulkner-William Wisdom Creative Writing Contest of the Pirate's Alley Faulkner Society.  A novella, The History of My final Illness, about the last five days in the life of Joseph Stalin, appeared in the Jan/Feb 2011 issue of Eclectica Magazine.  Mr. Zimecki's nonfiction work has appeared in The National Law Journal, Harper's Magazine, College English and Pittsburgh City Paper, among other publications.  He lives in Pittsburgh with his wife, Susan, and their black cat, Mr. White.

Crafting a Good Villian?

By C. Hope Clark C. Hope Clark, author of the Carolina Slade mystery series We spend tremendous time sculpting our protagonist, and I tend to lean toward enjoying the sidekicks and secondary characters the most. We carefully refine the romantic interest

C. Hope Clark

Hope Clark has written two mystery series, with her eighth novel, Newberry Sin, coming out the end of April 2018. Hope is also founder of FundsforWriters.com, an online resource reaching 35,000 readers in each Friday’s newsletter. www.chopeclark.com

The Inspiration Behind A White Belt in Art by John Vorhaus

John Vorhaus In the spring of 2016, I had come to the end of a certain road. After forty years of a productive and reasonably successful writing life, I had to admit that my enduring passion for writing books was not being matched in any meaningful way

John Vorhaus

John Vorhaus is the author of seven novels, ten books on poker, and the world-renowned Comic Toolbox. He travels and teaches writing all over the world – 35 countries on five continents at last count. He tweets for no apparent reason @TrueFactBarFact and secretly controls the world from www.johnvorhaus.com. Oh, and he did the cover design for this book.

The Inspiration Behind Dead Deal by W.J. Evans

“What inspired your latest WIP or work?” wj eveans dead deal The financial crash of 2008 not only affected those in the financial sector, it was exponential on so many levels. I experienced first hand, the destruction of so many businesses in the

John Vorhaus

John Vorhaus is the author of seven novels, ten books on poker, and the world-renowned Comic Toolbox. He travels and teaches writing all over the world – 35 countries on five continents at last count. He tweets for no apparent reason @TrueFactBarFact and secretly controls the world from www.johnvorhaus.com. Oh, and he did the cover design for this book.

The Inspirations Behind Psi-Tech: An Interview with Jacey Bedford

Question #1: What (or possibly who, if any) inspired the character of Ben Benjamin in your Psi-Tech Universe? Psi-Tech trilogy: EMPIRE OF DUST / CROSSWAYS / NIMBUS There are three books in the Psi-Tech trilogy: EMPIRE OF DUST / CROSSWAYS / NIMBUS. With

Jacey Bedford

Jacey Bedford is a British writer, published by DAW in the USA. She writes both science fiction and fantasy and her novels are published by DAW in the USA. Her short stories have been published on both sides of the Atlantic in anthologies and magazines, and some have been translated into an odd assortment of languages including Estonian, Galician and Polish. She's a great advocate of critique groups and is the secretary of the Milford SF Writers' Conference, an intensive peer-to-peer week of critique and discussion held every September in North Wales. (http://www.milfordSF.co.uk) She lives in an old stone house on the edge of Yorkshire's Pennine Hills with her songwriter husband and a long-haired, black German Shepherd (a dog not an actual shepherd from Germany). She's been a librarian, a postmistress, a rag-doll maker and a folk singer with the vocal harmony trio, Artisan. Her claim to fame is that she once sang live on BBC Radio 4 accompanied by the Doctor (Who?) playing spoons.

 

 

 

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