Croglin Grange in Cumberland, United Kingdom, was a single story house near a churchyard and accompanying church. Although the legend is not clearly documented, it seems it belonged to a family called the “Fishers” for centuries. In the 1800s, the Fishers moved on and the Cranswells moved in. Three siblings, the Cranswells meant to have a happy life in the house on a hill.
As the story goes, the first encounter with a vampire came when the weather was humid and hot. Amelia went to bed early, feeling unwell. She closed her bedroom window and climbed into bed. Lying on her side, watching out of the window, she saw two bright lights in the churchyard. The lights then moved from the graveyard and started to approach the house. Scared and feeling unwell, Amelia ran to secure her bedroom door and checked the window. She then calmed herself, turned over and tried to go to sleep.
Amelia then heard scratching noises from the other side of her bedroom window. She turned and was horrified to see a shrivelled brown face with glowing eyes. The beast, desperate to enter the property, broke a pane of glass and unlocked the window. It climbed into her room and pounced upon her, biting into her throat. Amelia cried out, and her brothers rushed to her room. They had to break down the secured door to get to her, which gave the “beast” time to escape. One brother attended to Amelia while the other watched in dismay and horror as he watched something race toward the graveyard.
Amelia survived the attack, and once she had recovered enough to travel, her brothers took her to Switzerland to regain her strength. The brothers decided to get revenge on the evil beast that had stalked their sister. When Amelia found out they intended to get revenge, she convinced her brothers to allow her to help by acting as the bait.
The family returned to Croglin, and that evening Amelia took her place in her room. The figure of the beast soon appeared at the window and gained entry to the bedroom. Her brothers were hiding in the shadows, and as the beast stepped forward they both shot at it. A piercing howl erupted from the beast as it turned and fled out of the window and back towards the graveyard. The brothers decided to wait until the following day before going to the graveyard in search of its body.
The following morning, they rounded up all the citizens who lived in the area and together they all searched the graveyard for signs of the beast. Soon they noticed that a crypt door was wide open. Entering the crypt, they found the scattered remains of coffins and gnawed bones. One coffin had been left untouched. The citizens opened it, and to their horror the beast was lying there. The body was long dead and the clothes were moldy, but yet, there was a fresh gunshot wound in it’s leg. The citizens dragged the coffin into the churchyard and burned the body of the beast in the coffin.
It was unknown where the beast had come from or why it had never shown itself to the Fishers. It was never seen again.
A poll stated that a huge amount of American’s want to start writing their own books. It seems rather simple, doesn’t it? You get your laptop, open Word and off you go. A few pages in, you start to question your story. “It’s not very good, is it?” you say. You start to wander away from the story, and suddenly you’re on Google, reading about the 2005 election. You have lost the vitality you need to keep to write a book. This is the fourth of a five-part series on publishing a book. We are going to go over a few goals, a few settings and a few ideas that will help you get that book finished. This week we will be looking at pacing yourself and your writing, which seems to be one of the biggest problems writers have.
There are many tools you can use to hasten your story. Some of them are better for micro-pacing, which is line-by-line, and some are more useful for macro-pacing, which increases the speed of your book as a whole.
Action scenes are where you actually show what happens in the story. When written in short (or slightly longer) sentences, move your story along. Action scenes have no, or very few, distractions, and are short on description and transitions. These scenes have limited character thoughts and normally concentrate on survival.
When a scene or a chapter ends with a cliff-hanger, the pace naturally picks up because the reader will become absorbed in the book and will start to flip pages, trying to find out what happens next. Readers have a love/hate relationship with cliff-hangers, and writers would be wise to use their cliff-hangers carefully. One simple tip to create a good cliff-hanger: Have your characters talking and end that conversation suddenly with a threat. That’s a cliff-hanger, but beware! Do it too many times and readers will get sick of it. Do it just enough and readers won’t be able to stop reading your book. It’s a science.
Rapid-fire dialogue with little information is a good way to invigorate scenes in your book. It is rather like the volleying of a tennis ball. Short, snappy, real life conversations draw your readers into the story. You can allow your characters to confront, engage, argue or ponder in these situations.
These cuts move the story to a new location and assume the reader can still follow the story without need of explanation of why the story went from London to Manhattan in one easy page turn. The reason for doing this is to move the story forward. You can introduce new characters, new ideas and take your story to the next level. Just don’t let it get confusing.
Shorter Scenes and Chapters
These are easy to digest and interesting to write. Short scenes and chapters allow the reader to pass through quickly, while you allow the story to continue forward in an abbreviated way.
There are a dozen secret rivers flowing beneath London. One, the Effra travels under the Oval cricket ground.
The actual City of London is only 1 square mile. All other major road such as Oxford Street, Piccadilly and Regent Street actually come under “The City of Westminster”
Some 80,000 umbrellas are lost annually on the London Underground.
In 1945, a flock of starlings landed on the minute hand of Big Ben and put the time back by five minutes.
The statue of Handel in Westminster Abbey has someone else’s ear. The sculptor, Louis Francois Roubillac, thought that Handel’s ear, though without doubt musical, was rather ugly. So he used as a model the ear of a certain Miss Rich, which, though not at all musical, was sculpturally perfect.
London’s first traffic island was put in St. James’s Street in 1864 at the personal expense of a Colonel Pierpoint, who was afraid of being run over on his way to his Pall Mall club. When it was finished, he dashed across the road to admire his creation and was knocked down by a cab.
A huge Gothic edifice erected to the memory of Prince Albert, the consort of Queen Victoria, is decorated with sculptures which reveal an extraordinary but quite unintentional set of coincidences. There are 61 human figures (Albert died in 1861); there are 19 men (Albert was born in 1819); there are 42 women (Albert died at age 42); and there are 9 animals (Albert had 9 children).
Christ Church, Lambeth, has a spire decorated with stars and stripes. Half the cost of the church was borne by Americans, and the tower commemorates President Lincoln’s abolition of slavery.
When New Scotland Yard was being built in 1888, the torso of a woman, headless and without arms, was discovered in the foundations. All the resources of the Criminal Investigation Dept. failed to find the murderer or the identity of the victim. And so Scotland Yard was built on the site of an unsolved murder.
In the floor of Westminster Abbey is a tiny stone marking the burial place of the poet Ben Jonson. He was too poor to pay for the normal grave space, so he is buried standing up.
A Pilot without a Plane
Experienced Pilot Peter Gibbs took a late night flight in his plane and never returned on Christmas Eve of 1975. Months later his body was discovered half way up a hill and over a mile from the Isle of Mull airfield, where he had taken off from. Nobody could find his plane and nobody could find any injuries.
Ever since the discovery of his body there have been many speculations as to what happened to him. From gun running to aliens—why was he flying that plane and where did that plane go?
Spinning in the Case
A media sensation was caused in 2013 when the 4,000 year old statue of ancient Egyptian Neb-Senu was caught rotating on camera. The statue housed at a museum turned 180 degrees while locked inside it’s glass museum case. There are those who believe the curse of the Pharaohs is to blame. What actually caused the ancient relic to spin— is a mystery.
The Giant Bodmin Beast
First spotted in 1995 the huge black panther was seen roaming Bodmin Moor. By the time the media covered the story—reports of mutilated livestock were rife and many believed in the wild phantom cat. Hundreds of sightings later—nobody has ever discovered where the giant cat came from and nobody wanders the Moor at night…
We All Fall Down
An annual marching band show was taking place in Kirkby-in-Ashfield, Nottinghamshire on July 13 1980. 500 children were taking part in the show—but at 10:30am they all started to collapse. A huge majority of the kids suffered fainting attacks, nausea, sore eyes and throats and nobody knows what caused this unanticipated event. Was it fertilizer? Was it mass hysteria? Who knows… and more than likely nobody ever will.
It’s Raining Seaweed
Residents of Berkeley, Gloucestershire were shocked to see seaweed falling from the sky during a storm in 2012. But they soon forgot about the strange occurrence and went back to their daily lives. A year later, on exactly the same day, it happened again. What caused seaweed to fall on the town with such precision? It’s a mystery.
People often believe that other people hold power over their lives, and this can be true. If you are in prison, in school or on a bus—someone holds power over your life and your time. But you have to admit that you are the only one who truly holds power over the direction of your life. when it comes to writing… You have the power to pick up the pen.
Who Has the Power?
It all starts with the realization that you have the power to pen a book. You hold all the ideas, and those ideas can be activated just by the realization that you can do whatever you want. You are the only thing stopping yourself from creating your own world, your own characters and turning out your own book.
The In-Crowd Doesn’t Dictate Your Book
Yes, we all like to be popular—but what your friends do doesn’t have to be the same as you do. Try being a little different, a little controversial, maintain control of your book and feel free to experiment, create new characters and entertain your readers.
Give Me the Reason
There’s a reason for everything. If you want to really be in control of your book, you have to have a reason to do so. A plot idea. Once you have a plot, a purpose, you will start to find that taking control is natural and that it means something. Take control for a purpose—even if that purpose is just to make you happy. Write the book you want to write.