300 Followers!! This is SPARTA!

Okay so that was the only 300 reference I could think of haha 🙂

I wanna say a MASSIVE thank you to everyone who has followed me and I (of course!) always endeavour to follow back as you lot are such a bunch of interesting people and I’ve met (cyber-met?) so many amazing people that way and found some brilliant blogs!

And in honour of this I’ve created my own award! That’s right! It might not catch on but so what!? It’ll be fun while it lasts haha!

So you might not be suprised to hear what I’ve called this award…..drumroll….

The Sparkling Unicorn Award!

  
This award is designed to celebrate your individuality as a person and fellow blogger. If you think about it a unicorn is just a horse with a horn and YOU are just a person with a blog and yet both equate to something special and unique!

So as part of this award I challenge you to write a four hundred word maximum blurb about your life as if it were a novel on the shelf in a bookstore!

As example… 

Here’s mine:

After a stint at university, aspiring author Caroline Peckham discovers her passion as a writer and longs to fulfill her dreams. But, when summer hits, her fulltime job begins to consume her time and she struggles to juggle her passions with everyday life. And things are about to get a lot more crazy when a trip to the other side of the planet literally turns her world upside down…
And finally! Nominate five bloggers for the award. So to get started here’s mine! Go for it blogging friends! Share this award far and wide!

1) Hope to Read

2) PhantomWriter143

3) The Fiction Fairy

4) Shannon Noel Brady

5) KasimsKorner
I highly recommend you check out these blogs they are fantastico!

Maybe one day farrrrr in the future someone will nominate me for The Sparkling Unicorn Award and I’ll be sitting in my rocking chair puffing on a pipe and I’ll say “Hm! Well, well…how the tables have turned….”(I’ll be super senile by the way but it’ll be totally worth it!)

Conveying your Characters – Third Person Tips

So you have a fantastic character with all the flaws, traits and layers of an actual human being BUT (particularly when you’re writing third person) how do you get across who they really are?

When I started writing I knew I had a tendancy to write third person but, in comparison to first person, it isn’t so easy to convey their inner emotions and who they are as a person. Some people choose to add the thoughts and feelings of their characters in italics which is one way of approaching this but this isn’t a technique I personally use.

If, like me, you’re a bit of a googler then you may have tried searching this problem to get advice but what you get is a whole long list of ways to develop your character like character profiling etc. but this isn’t what I’m talking about (so if this is your problem – read no more!)

So what did I do? 

I read a whole lot of third person books and noted the techniques they used in terms of sentence structure to convey who the characters are.

And here’s my list for your persual. I hope you find it helpful!

(I use ‘he’ in my examples but this is obviously interchangeable with she/I/they etc. etc. Also all actions, thoughts and feelings distinguished by ‘/’ can be interchanged with whatever takes your fancy!)

  • He usually / His usual / He was used to being…
  • He supposed/wondered…
  • He hadn’t felt/behaved/acted that way for a while…not since (insert past event)
  • He felt embarressed/distressed/upset/hurt but wouldn’t let (so and so) know that
  • He had once been (insert description) but now he was (insert opposing description)
  • It was nice/unusual to meet someone like himself in that (describe how they are similar/disimilar)
  • It wasn’t how he personally would have acted but…
  • He wouldn’t be embarrassed/hurt/goaded so easily not since (insert past event that changed him) 
  • He frowned at himself/ his sister / friend / his clothes (shows how proud he is or isn’t)
  • He ignored the surge of emotions that arose because of…
  • Had he been able to/ willing to/ had the guts to/ bold enough to/ not under the watchful gaze of/ quicker off the mark/ he would have (insert action)
  • He (insert action) for effect
  • He tried to look/ tried not to look…
  • He was always/often/never/occasionally the one to (insert behaviour)
  • He generally avoided (insert situation/behaviour)

You get the idea!

Thanks for reading 🙂

I’ve been nominated for the Versatile Blogging Award (I can’t believe it!)

the-versatile-blogger-award

Thank you so much to Christine.B for nominating me. Check out her blog here – you won’t regret it! Her musings are passionate, funny, inspiring and quirky and you might even catch a glimpse of her gorgeoussss dog in a photo or two!

So! What’s this versatile blogging malarkey all about? Telling you seven things about myself of course – what? Wasn’t it obvious? (It really wasn’t…)

So here are seven things about me you probably didn’t know (and if you did you must be psychic or a mindreading stalker – ooo a mindreading stalker that’s a scary thought!)

Just for the hell of it I’m gonna number each one in spanish (don’t ask me why…)

Numero Uno – I love to run! I run 4 miles at least three times a week! It’s my favourite exercise because I can get up into the hills, run off road through the fields and just be completely alone with my thoughts. It’s a fantastic way to work out kinks in my book and also time to just escape from the world for a while. #bliss

Dos – I was brought up as a vegetarian and have never eaten meat! I bet that one made you pause haha. I get a lot of questions about this one because many people simply can’t believe I’ve gone my whole life without tasting the meatyness of meat but oh well! Doesn’t bother me XD

Tres – I live in the most quaint, quintessentially English town you could ever imagine! It’s famous for being the home of Winston Churchill and tourists flock here all year round! The town hosts all kinds of old fashioned events on the green from wartime fairs with a real life warhorse descendent called Hercules who pulls his own carriage (including bringing santa to town at christmas!)

The view from my window
The view from my window

Cuatro – I’m an adventurer and thrill seeker at heart. Every year I jet set off on my own to a foreign land and pack as much sightseeing, hiking, and adrenalin activities in as I physically can. I aim to see the world one holiday at a time!

So far I’ve trekked the great wall of china, skydived, scuba dived, bungy jumped and rode an elephant bareback in Thailand, crossed the southern states of the USA from LA to New York camping all the along the way from winning in Vegas, trying my hand at a shooting range in Texas (apparently I’m a natural!), riding in a helicopter over the Grand Canyon, horse riding on a ranch in Utah, dining with the native americans in Monument Valley, lived it up in New Orleans, cycling around Washington DC in a desperate plight to visit every museum, white house and monument in town, running up the Rocky steps in Philadelphia and sightseeing in New York. This year I’m flying to Australia where I will be travelling alll the way round woohooo! Adventure is in my soul! And that’s why I love to write it too!

Me on the Great Wall of China
Me on the Great Wall of China

Cinco – I drive a Mini Cooper (I know, I know I’m the most english person that ever lived right?) I love driving and have actually been congratulated on my parallel parking by several onlookers on various occassions! ( If you saw where I have to park every day and seen the pubload of afternoon drinkers in front of me while I do it, I think you’d agree I cope pretty damn well under pressure!)

Seis – I’ve been single for four solid years! *gasp* – No, seriously! And I’ve loved every minute of it! I’ve learnt to become independent, live on my own, travel alone and be comfortable with just being alone. One of my favourite quotes that sums up a period of singledom is this:

“Appreciate being single because that’s when you grow the most. And with that growth, you come to know what you’re looking for.”  – Daniel Goddard

This just says it all...
This just says it all…

Siete – And last but not least I’m a bit of a zombie fantatic! I often have intense dreams (nightmares???)  about surviving a zombie apocalypse! My favourite tv show is The Walking Dead and I recently bought tickets to the first ever walkerstalker convention coming to London and the cast are all gonna be there! (For fans of TWD – Norman Reedus just signed up and I’m peeing my pants with excitement!) and to give you an idea of how crazy I and those I’m going with are….we are dressing up – oh yes! I have literally seen every zombie film and tv show ever made and like to think I have a pretty good idea of what to do if zombies come to town…

So there you are! I may have put you off me for life or (hopefully) given you a bit of reasonably interesting info about me that momentarily distracted you from that paint drying on the wall!

Thanks for reading!

Here are my seven nominees:

1) Phantomwriter

2) Candice

3) S.W.Lothian

4) Jacobmet

5) Tasha

6) DileepSankhla

7) Miss Benison

A quote for you!

“Today I’d like to sit and read,

Forget I have a job I need,

Ignore the things I have to do,

And just enjoy a book or two”

-Oscar Wilde
Don’t we all feel this way like….always?!

I’ve been Nominated for the 777 Challenge (Yay!)

Thank you to Marjma for nominating me! 

Her blog is fantastic you should check it out. Click here to visit her page.

The idea of the 777 challenge is to share a snippet from a WIP (Work in progress) then nominate others to do the same! 

Here are the rules:



– Go to page 7 of your WIP (Or an older work that you have done and just love.)

– Scroll down to line 7

– Share the next 7 sentences in a blog post.

– After the excerpt tag 7 other writers to continue the challenge.

BUT I’ve recently shared the seventh page within the prologue to my fantasy YA novel Creeping Shadow so I’ve decided to share line 7 of the seventh page counting from chapter one (I hope that’s not breaking the rules too much! – try calling 777 if you’d like to complain hehe)

So here’s my excerpt:

 “Should we go in?” May asked, peeking under his arm.

 Oliver nodded and crept into the room. He brushed his fingers across a box on the bed and found a layer of dust deposited on it. A tingle ran up his spine as he got the distinct feeling that the room was somehow sacred, left untouched for years. He pushed his fingers under the lip of the closed box and lifted it slowly. The cardboard resisted, unmoving. He frowned and tugged at it harder but the box wouldn’t open.

And here’s my nominations:

1) Phantomwriter143 http://phantomwriter143.wordpress.com/

2) Isabellesudron http://sudrobelle.wordpress.com/

3) Rachelloon http://racheliliffe.wordpress.com/

4) C.S Wilde http://www.cswilde.wordpress.com/

5) Jacobemet http://jacobemet.wordpress.com/

6) Rlsharp http://rlsharpe.wordpress.com/

7) Dileepsankhla https://dileepsankhla.wordpress.com

Cover Reveal for Creeping Shadow

The moment has arrived!

I’m extremely excited and proud to present to you the cover for Creeping Shadow (Book One in The Rise of Isaac Series)

For those of you who don’t know…
The Rise of Isaac is a five part series following the story of Oliver Knight on his quest through the seven worlds to save his sister from a lethal curse.

Book One, Creeping Shadow Synopsis:
Sixteen year old Oliver Knight discovers the existence of six other worlds after his adopted sister, May, falls ill to a lethal curse. The curse links her to the famous animageti-Gateway terrorist, Isaac Rimori, who murdered Oliver’s father in cold blood to gain access to the seventh world.

The only way to save May is by travelling to the next world, but entering each one requires the completion of a challenge and time is running out…

Coming to Amazon Kindle in December 2015

© Caroline Peckham and http://www.carolinepeckham.com, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Caroline Peckham and http://www.carolinepeckham.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Cover Reveal Countdown!

You may have noticed the fancy countdown timer on my home page and (if you’re that observant!) you may also have noticed that it is set to just ONE HOUR

That’s right people! It’s now less than one hour to go before I share the cover of Creeping Shadow with you…hold onto your socks…because they’re about to get knocked off…

Here it is (*drumroll*)…the Prologue to Creeping Shadow (Book One in The Rise of Isaac Series)

It’s the moment you’ve been waiting for (actually it’s the moment I’ve been fretting about and preparing for all day!) here is the prologue to Creeping Shadow. It’s 2261 words in length so grab a biscuit or a mcmuffin (or something of the equivalent) and pleeeeasseeee have a read! Everyone who does will win the unicorn award (though this may not be an actual, physical award you’ll know deep down that you’re a beautiful unicorn and that’s surely award enough?) It also has it’s very own page on my website so you can also find it here. Enjoy!

The Girl in the Road

Ten Years Ago

Alison gripped the steering wheel tightly, her wedding band pinching her skin as it caught on the

leather. A stream of headlights briefly illuminated the beaded droplets hitting the windscreen and

the view beyond was momentarily distorted before a squeal of wiper blades cleared the glass.

Heavy clouds curtained the sky, casting the world into dismal tones of blue and grey. The

traffic trundled along at a painfully slow rate and the glaring red of brake lights intermittently

punctuated the gloom. Alison leant her cheek against the window to see how far she was from the

turning.

Thump.

She ignored the noise and squinted in an attempt to improve her vision.

Thump.

She gritted her teeth in concentration and slowed to a halt as the car in front of her stopped

dead.

Thump.

Oliver, that’s enough,” she said, resting a hand firmly on her son’s knee as his dirty

wellington boot kicked out towards the glove compartment once more.

He grinned and she raised an eyebrow at him before releasing his leg.

Alison turned her attention back to the road, digging her nails into the soft material of the steering wheel. Sirens cut through the monotonous hum of idiling engines and flashing red and blue lights caught her eye in the rearview mirror.

A fire engine blared its horn as it passed on their left and Oliver sat bolt upright in his seat,

watching it go by. An ambulance followed it closely and stopped a few hundred feet up ahead of

them.

Alison edged forward as the traffic began to move once more. She spotted the turning and

keenly pressed her foot down on the accelerator.

The car in front swerved onto the other side of the road, revealing a chaotic scene beyond it.

An overturned vehicle lay in the middle of the tarmac surrounded by the emergency services. A

police officer was guiding the traffic around the devastation.

“What happened to that car Mummy?” Oliver asked quietly.

“Someone’s had an accident,” Alison said softly, catching a glimpse of a man on a stretcher.

A sick feeling stirred inside her stomach as she indicated and quickly turned the car down a

narrow lane.

Trees crowded over the road, casting the lane in darkness so she flicked on the headlights to

banish the shadows. They drifted along the winding lane until the sound of sirens faded into the

distance and they left the main road far behind.

The rain suddenly gave way to a heavy fog and Alison braked, causing the wheels to skid on

the mess of dead leaves that littered the ground.

Her heart fluttered and she took a shaky breath to calm herself.

“You okay?” she asked, glancing at Oliver but he was distracted by something ahead of

them.

“There’s someone out there,” he whispered, leaning forward in his seat and narrowing his

eyes.

Alison snapped her head back to face the front. She watched as the fog lifted, revealing a

solitary figure beneath the bowing trees that encaged the road. The woodland swayed and leaned

from a blustery wind but the person remained perfectly still, watching, waiting.

“Who’d be out in this weather?” she mumbled as she manoeuvred the car away from the

roadside to give them a wide berth.

The mist descended once more so that a swirling cloud of white swallowed the road and the

figure disappeared behind it.

“I think he’s waiting for us,” Oliver said in a quiet voice.

Alison went to respond but was silenced by a flash of purple light. It radiated throughout the

mist, momentarily illuminating the curling tendrils of the fog as they moved across the road.

She slowed the car to a halt with a low squeal of the brakes, thumbing her wedding ring

instinctively. She swallowed in an attempt to dislodge the lump that had risen in her throat.

“Mum, what is it?” Oliver asked in a hushed voice, a look of fright registering in his eyes.

Alison worried at her bottom lip with her teeth and didn’t answer.

“Perhaps we should go back,” she whispered after a moment, not removing her eyes from

the road.

Just as she pressed her foot to the clutch, the fog swirled and the figure emerged. The man

strode toward them; he was tall, dark and shrouded by shadow. The headlights cast an eerie glow in the

mist around him but his face remained obscured beneath a hood. He raised his hands towards the

car and purple fire ignited within his palms, flaring at them threateningly.

A breath caught in Alison’s throat and she lifted a trembling hand to her mouth, her fingers

brushing her parted lips. He closed his right hand, extinguishing the flames that flickered in his

palm, and beckoned for her to exit the car.

Alison tentatively reached for the door handle.

“Where are you going?” Oliver asked in alarm.

“Just lock the car when I get out,” Alison said, her voice shaking as she undid her seatbelt.

Every fibre in her body advised against it, but she was drawn toward the man with a

desperate and hopeful longing that she couldn’t ignore.

She fumbled to tuck her long, blonde hair into the hood of her raincoat and exited the

vehicle.

“Mummy don’t leave me!” Oliver cried, scrambling after her across the driver’s seat.

Alison shut the door firmly and pressed the button on her key before he could follow. A click

sounded as the car locked and she fumbled the keys into her pocket.

The mist clung to her skin as she turned towards the road and a gust of wind flung her hood

back so that her hair whipped around her face in a flutter of blonde strands. The rain drummed

against the tarmac and the trees creaked and groaned as the wind bent them to their limits.

She blinked out into the darkness, her eyes falling on the figure. The man turned and walked

away causing the mist to snake around his body as he cut a path through it.

Wait,” she called urgently, hurrying forwards.

She glanced back, not wanting to stray far from Oliver but the man’s presence drew her

onwards. He stopped at the side of the road and waited, his stance hauntingly familiar to her.

Her heart hammered as she approached him. “William?” she asked quietly, her bottom lip quivering.

She could sense his gaze on hers, though his features were still concealed beneath the

shadow of his hood. The man turned abruptly and strode into the trees. He pressed his palms

together to smother the last of the flames and was instantly swallowed by darkness.

“No,” Alison breathed then bolted after him.

She stumbled as her foot caught on something. She looked down and a gasp escaped her

throat.

It was a child. She must have been around six years old, the same age as her son.

Alison dropped to her knees beside the girl and pushed a mop of blonde hair away from her

pale face. Her eyes were heavy with dark circles and her lips were a worrying shade of blue. She

wore only a thin, summer dress that was soaked through to the skin.

Alison pressed two fingers to the girl’s neck and found the steady beat of a pulse. She

glanced back to the road, hoping to see the pinpricks of headlights heading towards them. She

cursed when she saw none and rummaged in her pocket for her phone. It was dead, though she was

certain that it had been fully charged.

“Dammit,” she hissed, staring at the girl as she decided what to do.

Alison gritted her teeth and lifted the child into her arms, sparing a last, hopeful glance back

toward the trees as she turned to her car.

She hurried over, awkwardly retrieving the keys from her pocket and opening it with a click.

She wrenched the back door open and laid the girl across the seat. The child groaned and Alison

relaxed marginally. She was still alive.

Oliver was craning over the passenger seat to look at her. “Is she okay?” he asked, his eyes

wide in alarm.

“I think so, but we need to get her to a hospital,” Alison said, keeping her voice as calm and

level as she could manage.

Alison shut the back door and returned to the driver’s seat. Oliver was still looking around at

the girl.

“Get your seatbelt back on,” she instructed, pulling him around to face the front.

He strapped himself in and she accelerated down the road.

***

Alison sped into the hospital car park and stopped outside Accident and Emergency,

throwing Oliver a quick smile.

“Here we are. Let’s go. Put your raincoat on,” she said.

Alison scooped the girl off of the back seat and rushed towards the entrance whilst Oliver

splashed his way across puddles behind her. She sprinted through the hospital doors, nudging

people aside as she went. She skidded to a halt at the front desk, her wet shoes squeaking on the

floor.

The receptionist sprang to her feet and pressed a button on the console in front of her. “What

happened?” she asked as a shrill buzzing sounded in the ward behind her.

“I found her in the road. I don’t know if she was hit by a car o-or,” she stuttered, thinking of

the man who had led her to the child. “She’s unconscious!” Alison blurted, adjusting her hold on the

girl.

The woman gave a sharp nod and turned expectantly at the sound of a squeaking wheel. A

short man appeared, hurrying towards them with a hospital trolley.

“Lay her down here,” the man instructed.

Alison gently placed the girl on the mattress. She leant over her, brushing the wet mop of

hair out of the girl’s face. She stepped aside as the man pushed the trolley back into the ward.

Alison gripped Oliver’s shoulder firmly and gave him a half smile. She felt tears spring to

her eyes and wiped them away with the back of her damp sleeve.

“Are you alright, Mummy?” Oliver looked up at her.

“I’m fine, Olly.” She sniffed then lifted Oliver into her arms, kissing his cold, wet cheek.

“Where can we wait?” she asked the receptionist.

“Down the hall and to the left.” She gave them a sympathetic smile as Alison nodded and

walked away.

***

Alison hadn’t had to wait long before police had shown up to question her. At first they

seemed suspicious but, once she had taken a breathalyser test and answered their questions, their

attitude had softened towards her. She had neglected to mention the figure in the road. In hindsight,

she wasn’t sure whether it was right to protect a man on the assumption that he was her husband.

Just over an hour had passed and they had heard nothing.

She was unable to keep Oliver occupied any longer and his boredom was beginning to show.

His damp clothes were sticking to him which was only contributing further to his already

aggravated state.

Muuum, when are they going to let us see her?” he moaned.

“Not much longer, Olly,” she said with a sigh, running her fingers through his hair.

“We’ve been waiting for hours.”

“Don’t exaggerate. I’m sure we’ll hear something soon,” she said. “Why don’t you draw a

nice picture for her?”

“Mmm, okay!” he said with renewed enthusiasm and returned to the table in front of him,

reaching for a pencil.

Alison sat back in her chair and anxiously picked at the pink nail varnish on her fingernails.

The once-busy waiting room had diminished to a sparse few who were slowly called away until

only one remained. She picked the last stubborn flake of varnish from the tip of her index finger and

brushed the remnants from her knees absentmindedly.

“Would you like to see her now?” a voice spoke.

Alison looked up to see the receptionist smiling at her kindly.

“Yes,” she said, jumping to her feet.

Oliver grabbed his picture and hurried to keep up as the receptionist led them down a

corridor.

When Alison opened the door, the girl was lying in bed. Her eyes flickered open as they

entered the room and Alison’s gaze locked with the child’s bright green irises. Something instinctive

stirred inside her and she sensed an attachment to the girl that she couldn’t explain.

“Hello, sweetie. I’m Alison, how are you feeling?” she asked.

She moved to the chair beside the bed and took the girl’s small hand in her own. She

blinked at Alison but didn’t answer.

Oliver climbed up onto the bed, knelt next to the girl, and offered her the picture he had

drawn. She sat up, reached for it and unfolded the page then a smile pulled at the corner of her

mouth. Alison stifled a laugh as she caught sight of the drawing; it was a pink unicorn with a machine gun

for a horn.

“I’m Oliver. What’s your name?” her son asked the girl.

“May,” she said quietly.

“Is that your name? May?” Oliver asked excitedly.

“May,” she repeated, looking up at Alison with a wide-eyed gaze.

She smiled and the little girl smiled shyly back at her.

“What else do you remember?” Alison asked gently.

May shook her head. “Nothing.”

“What about your parents?” Alison tried.

May shook her head, tears gathering in her eyes.

“That’s okay.” She squeezed her hand reassuringly.

“Where’s your family?” Oliver asked.

“I don’t know,” May whispered. “I can’t remember anything.”

 

Thanks for reading! Let me know what you think (I’m dying to know!) If you like my writing maybe you would like to subscribe to my mailing list? You will be the first to receive updates on my series as well as cover reveals, blog tours, publishing dates, tips, tricks and much more! Click here to subscribe

© Caroline Peckham and http://www.carolinepeckham.com, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Caroline Peckham and www.carolinepeckham.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.