Sunday, November 4, 2012

Giveaway and guest post with David Beers author of Dead Religion

To say that I’ve been a horrible writer for most of my life would be a fairly accurate representation, I believe.

Also, you should definitely buy my book, Dead Religion. You’ll love it.

I believe that most writers are born with some kind of genetic defect which makes us toil away in front of an illuminated screen and keyboard. I certainly was, but I missed out on the gene that would make me an Ernest Hemingway from birth. Seems unfair, right?

So, at the age of nineteen I found myself in front of a Dell computer (wishing it was a Mac, because that’s all I needed to make it big), hammering out scary stories. I couldn’t pull myself away, even on Friday nights when the rest of my crew were slamming shots of Tequila and I was losing my eye site staring at the computer screen.

The problem? I was putting out words that should probably have been printed on toilet paper.

Yet here I am, seven long years later and telling you that Dead Religion is going to scare your socks off and make your hair stand on end—the audacity of this guy, right?

It took me a long time to learn how to write, although I’ve always loved the craft. From my experience and research, there are primarily two types of writers. Those that vomit onto the page and then meticulously edit, and those that agonizingly choose each word before it comes out onto the paper. I am of the first group, sans the editing. My first novel was a 140,000 word behemoth—how many drafts did I feel were necessary before this thing was ready for the masses? A mere two. Thank God I had some decent friends who told me it wasn’t even ready for them to read it, let alone publication.

I shelved it and wrote another novel. How many drafts before that one was ready to make me a millionaire? A grand three.

Once again, enter: friends, exit: David’s ego. Same thing: Man, the story is good, but this writing…I mean, are you trying to be James Patterson? You’re better than this.

That might be the worst compliment a person can ever receive.

So I began Dead Religion, knowing with complete certainty that I was about to write the third worst novel ever. Something magical happened though, and after six years of writing nearly every day, I began to learn how to do it. I began studying other authors: Joe Hill, Dean Koontz, Kurt Vonnegut, Cormac McCarthy. I understood what I had to do if I was going to do this right: SLOW DOWN.

The process I developed involves me only moving on from a chapter once five drafts of that chapter have been completed: 1) I write the chapter, 2) I rewrite each word in the chapter by hand, 3) I enter the chapter back in, making edits as necessary, 4) I print the chapter and make edits on hard copy, 5) I read the chapter aloud. Writing all that out shows me how absolutely ridiculous that process must look to anyone else, but it allowed me to put out something I’m extremely proud of—something people are telling me actually gives them nightmares and that they read in one complete sitting.

I’m always curious to hear how other authors spend their time crafting their stories, if you want to share, I’d love to hear it.

A psychological thriller unlike anything you've ever read.

A hotel explodes in Mexico City, killing thousands.

All evidence points to one American citizen, Alex Valdez.

The FBI wants him, or at the least, to understand what happened in Mexico before the government down there can.

Agent James Allison travels to Mexico to find Valdez, or find out about him. What he can't know, what the FBI doesn't understand, is Valdez's past.

Alex Valdez's parents gave him a blood-rite to unleash an ancient Aztec 'God'--this rite led a small boy to a haunted man. One that doesn't know whether this 'God' exists, and if It does, is It a demon? A man that cannot tell reality from dreams with a wife who has seen her husband commit atrocities to his own body.

Dead Religion follows both Alex Valdez in the last days before the hotel's collapse and James Allison as he searches for the truth behind the fall. Valdez believes he knows how to stop the Demon, and James only understands he wants to make it home alive to see his brother.

In a world where miracles and Gods have been pushed to a past age, Dead Religion walks the fine line between insanity and reality, in which Agent Allison must uncover the facts of the terrific loss of life in Mexico City before the same torments find their way into his own life.

Print edition open only to people in the US, ebook prize available internationally.  Prizes provided by the author.  Good luck to everyone.  Please be sure to fill out the right form for either print or ebook prizes.
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  1. I would like to thank you for a fantastic blog post and a brilliant book giveaway, that i would love to have the oportunity of reading.
    I am a 'plotter' the kind of writer who has to outline everything to the tiny detail, before writing the first few words on the page. I have to know the title of the book, the chapters and characters and roughly what is happening within each chapter. When i settle down to write though, even though i do use the outline what actually happens is that the story writes itself. The characters tell me how they get from A to B, or how he kills someone ect.
    Thank you once again for such an insightful and interesting post, that i found facinating! x

    Email: lfountain1(at)hotmail(dot)co(dot)uk

  2. I write for fun... mostly I just starting writing about a weird dream I had and turn it into a story.. I have the weirdest dreams. My favorite authors at the moment is Collins, Suzanne and Oliver, Lauren.
    thanks for the giveaway

  3. I don't write. As for my favorite author, it is very hard to choose just one author.

    Thank you for the giveaway.


  4. Ms. Fountain: I wish I could write like that! I cannot outline outside of my own head or it just feels like the story dies flat. Have you always been like that or did you have to learn it?

    Mars: I think I used to write for fun more than I do now. Now, it's fun, but I look at it as a job, and that changes things I think.

    Mackenzie: No problem on the giveaway!