Sceptical about freebies?
My grandmother had a saying, 'if you can't be free, at least be cheap'. Sigh. I've come to appreciate free a little more recently.
In my last post I talked about Les Edgerton's book, Hooked, on writing perfect openings. Did you know Amazon offer samples of the first chapters for most of their Kindle books? You can download the sample chapters to your PC, Mac, iPhone, Blackberry or Kindle via the free program on Amazon's site.
I'm downloading free samples of first chapters from novels in a similar genre to the one I'm writing. This gives me plenty of examples of openings, introducing characters and setting up inciting incidents (the chain of events that lead to the story-worthy problem as detailed in Hooked). You can study as many first chapters as you want to get a feel for the type of opening that would suit your story.
I'm writing a novel set in rural Australia in 1939 with a 13yr. old protagonist that discovers a body (The Warracknabeal Kids). The type of books I'm reading for first chapters are mysteries, Australian outback tales and teen boy stories.
If you would like to try the Kindle books application for any device click on the link below for instructions:
Sometimes one chapter is not enough. I just finished reading Spade and Archer by Joe Gore. This book has been written as a prequel to the famous mystery by Dashiell Hammett, The Maltese Falcon. Gore captured Samuel Spade's character perfectly and the book slips easily into place telling the detective's tales and adventures before he stumbled onto the mystery of The Maltese Falcon. I could actually picture Humphrey Bogart in the role. If you love traditional, gritty mysteries, then this is for you. I liked it a lot, but did find myself skimming occasionally and think I belong more to the cosy mystery club that includes Agatha Christie tales (and young girls entering dog shows while solving mysteries).
I know one particular Bogart fan that is going to flip for this book. So, I'm posting it up to Brisbane so my dear ol' dad can read it :-)