Tag: fiction writing

Fiction Writing & Editing

Do You Have a Love-Hate Relationship With Your Characters?

Is it possible for an author to have a love-hate relationship with her fictional characters? Merriam-Webster defines a love-hate relationship as “strong feelings of both love and hatred for someone.” The website Love Bondings takes that a step further, stating that the strong feelings can occur in any time of relationship – romantic, familial or […]

Fiction Nonfiction the Writing Process Writing & Editing

Establishing a Writing Routine: My Best Tips

Establishing a writing routine can be a challenge for many newer writers.  There’s plenty of advice out there on how to establish a routine, so I decided to compile a list of the strategies that worked for me. Make Writing a Priority:  If being published is your goal, then you must make writing a priority.  […]

Melina's Books the Writing Process Writer's Life Writing & Editing

My Writing Strength: Snappy Dialogue

Writers often are asked, “What is your strength?  Narrative or dialogue?”  That’s an easy question for me to answer.  My writing strength is dialogue. My characters’ dialogue rarely changes between the rough draft and the published version. My narrative passages, on the other hand, will go through five or more drafts.  I blame my journalism […]

Melina's Books Writer's Life Writing & Editing

Author’s Life: Unboxing My First Fiction Manuscripts

Angel of Mercy is the first novel I published, but it is not my first novel.  I’ve been writing since I was 10 years old.  Because I began writing before I had a home computer, until very recently, all my stories were written longhand in a series of notebooks.  I kept these notebooks over the […]

Melina's Books Writing & Editing

Six Methods I Use For Naming Fiction Characters

Naming fiction characters is like naming a baby.  The person you’re naming will be stuck with that name for life.  Or, in the case of fictional characters, potentially for centuries. In fact, a quick web search shows that some writers take naming fiction characters more seriously than naming children.  I say this because I found […]

Melina's Books the Writing Process Writing & Editing

Origins of Angel Surnames: Accuracy in Historical Fiction Writing

In the course of writing Angel of Mercy, I did some research into the origin of the family’s surnames. This is what I found out: Bartlette – English with some pockets in Scotland Steward – Scottish-English Goodwin – English Grey – Anglo-Saxon Taylor – English with French origins Winthrop – from Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire Appleton […]

Canada History Melina's Books

A Family Church: St. Andrew’s, Barrie

The Steward family’s church in Angel of Mercy is St. Andrew’s in Barrie, Ontario. Why St. Andrew’s? The church is Presbyterian, which kept with the family’s Scottish roots.  I also used it because Presbyterian was a very large denomination at the turn of the 20th century. History of St. Andrew’s St. Andrew’s began in 1843. […]

Canada History Melina's Books

The Inspiration Behind an Angel’s Hometown

The hometown of my main character in Angel of Mercy, Henrietta Steward, is Barrie, Ontario. Many real-life buildings were the inspiration for her family and friends’ homes and workplaces. Without leaving many spoilers, here are a sampling of photos that inspired places in the novel: These houses were the model for the Steward home which […]

Edwardian era Hettie's World History Lucretia's World Melina's Books Victorian era Women's history

Toronto Normal School: Establishing Standardized Teaching Practices

Hettie Steward, in my novel Angel of Mercy, is not the only woman in her family to have a profession. Her mother blazed the trail, becoming a professional teacher after attending the Toronto Normal School in the 1880s. What is a “normal school”? It is what today we call a teaching college. The purpose of these […]

Canada Edwardian era Hettie's World History Medicine Melina's Books

A Brief History of Royal Victoria Hospital — Barrie, Ontario

My fictional character Hettie Steward worked at her hometown hospital, Royal Victoria, in the year between finishing nursing school and joining the Canadian Army Medical Corps, Even though the hospital plays a very small role in Angel of Mercy, its history gives us an interesting glimpse into medical care during the first part of the […]

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