Posts Tagged ‘novels’

I present to you, Olan Rogers

I present to you, Olan Rogers (Photo credit: ryan.nagelmann)

How to Know You’re a Writer (In GIF Form) | Nathan Bransford, Author.

You know when someone is pretty darn awesome when they also think that Olan Rogers is hilarious.  I just loved this blog post by Nathan.  He made me laugh and wonder how the heck did he know the websites I visit all the time.  So funny and true!

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In John Grisham‘s novel “The Litigators” he takes the dark world of lawyers and brings some light to it.  While reading other Grisham novels, they all feel the same, but this one stands above the rest.
It starts with the main character, David Zinc who finds himself suffocating at the law firm he works for.  He arrives at work one day and immediately leaves.   David discovers himself drunk at a bar when he hears a wreck down the road.  He notices some lawyers running to the scene and then fighting over the victim.  This somehow gives him the inspiration to switch to a small boutique of ambulance chasers.
At Finley and Figg, David sees that Oscar Finley is ready to retire and just counting the days and Wally Figg seems to find the most unlikely cases.  They handle everything from divorces to estate settlements.  The two lawyers “fight like a married couple” or two drama queens.  The secretary they have in the office and the dog, who barks when an ambulance is coming, add humor at all the right moments.
David left a huge law firm where they made millions.  But he worked more than 70 hours a week.  With no time for his new wife and a job where he was drowning he felt that F&F was the answer he was looking for.
Money is running low and now all three lawyers are feeling the pinch.  Until Figg discovers a class-act against a drug company.  He talks his partners into signing up and taking on cases in the Chicago area.  The drug company they are up against doesn’t play nice though.  The other class acts in Florida and other areas drop out when they hear about stipulations against the lawyers.  Now with Finley in the hospital and Figg on a bender it is all left up to David. When some say they have a hero most people think of superheroes not lawyers.  David Zinc was a hero that day.  He opened a door which led him to present evidence that the defense could not dispute.  Even though they lost the case, David had made a name for himself.  With their first litigation case behind them and Finley saying he is retiring now, David announces that he has another litigation case against a toy manufacturer.  The toy company though doesn’t want the publicity of the damage the toy caused to a young boy.  So they settled out of court with David and the family.  The heartbreaking thing was that the boy died days before the papers were filed.  The President of the toy company amazingly said he didn’t want anything to change and would still give them the money.  It is nice to see in a novel the bad guy do the right thing for once.  This small family went through so much and David had promised them that even if they didn’t win he would still help them with medical bills.  David and his wife later had a baby and named him after the boy who died.  David expanded his law firm and has no problem litigating cases.

Grisham uses a lot of lawyer jargon but doesn’t dumb it down to help you understand.  Readers of all levels can read this novel without feeling that they were talked down to.  The story is believable enough to be a non-fiction novel.  Something that could be seen in the news or read about is drugs that have class-act law suits against them.  Grisham’s characters were not over the top or too dramatic either.  At first I thought there was no way a lawyer would leave a big law firm where there are company perks like cars, vacation pay and a fixed salary.  After reading David’s problems about working more than 70 hours a week and having no time with his wife you start to understand why he snapped one day.

This novel brought tears and laughter, which makes it to the top of my list.


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Goodreads | Jessica Wilson’s review of The Horn of Moran.

A Moral to the Story.

I would have given this book five stars but again I had a problem with the main character Alex.  He talks way too good for his age.  Unless I misunderstand the time era Alex is from, he defintely doesn’t talk like someone from this era.  I love everything in this book.  The trials they have to overcome, the inner turmoil, and pride are such key parts in this novel.  Most writers don’t even touch on these standards.  I am glad Forman writes about a character so unlike what we see today.  Where did manners, courtesy, and kindness to each other even go? I hope a lot more youth read this book and see that honor is worth more than gold.

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Mission Impossible

Have you ever felt that what you are trying to achieve is impossible?  Well you are not alone.  I was recently listening to an author who gave his bio and it was very depressing.  He was first self-published and then after years of trying he finally landed an agent.  Which of course led  him to becoming traditionally published.  Not everyone is that lucky though.

I read an article by Writers Digest called “Why Am I Getting Rejected?” and it made some interesting points.  One question said, “How many rejections slips do you consider the cutoff point- where I should give up completely?”  I don’t know how many times I have asked this same question to friends and family members.  Here was the answer given in the article:

If you put a lot of time and effort into a project, don’t abandon it too quickly.  Look at the rejection slips as bits of advice for improvement, or as patters of criticism.  Rejections, if used properly, can be a lesson to improve your writing.

If you’ve been sending the same magazine query (or book) around for many months, your idea may have grown stale for you to keep circulating it.  If you’ve been attempting to sell a book manuscript, and have had some near misses, then your timing or your luck may be off; some books circulate for many years before finding the right agent or editor.  As long as you feel passionate about the work, you shouldn’t give up on it – even if it means returning to the manuscript a few years down the road.  Some ideas and manuscripts have to be set aside because the market isn’t ready for them.

When I feel down and out about my pile of rejection notes I turn to authors who know my pain.  I love reading Nathan Bransford blogs  and here is one of my favorites:


Of course he has many more insights on how to format your manuscript, write a query, edit your novel and so on.  There are many great blogs out there and lots of good advice.  Just go sample the variety of flavors and stick with a favorite.

The one thing I just have to keep reminding myself is to write, write and write.

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