Friday, October 9, 2015

Guest Post: Dairy of a Single Wedding Planner by Violet Howe

Wedding planner Tyler Warren left heartbreak behind when she ran away from her small Southern hometown and started a new life in a big city. Years later, she wants to believe in the fairy-tale endings her job promotes, but the clients she meets day after day seem to be more “Crazily Ever After” than “Happily Ever After.”
Meanwhile, her own attempts at romance play out as bizarre comedies rather than love stories, and she’s starting to think Prince Charming either fell off his horse or got eaten by a dragon. When unresolved issues from Tyler’s past complicate things even further, she discovers she may yet have some things to figure out before she can find her own happy ending.
This delightful first book in the Tales Behind the Veils series chronicles Tyler’s wacky misadventures, both personal and professional. Whether she’s getting insane requests from brides or outlandish requests on dates, you’re sure to be charmed and entertained by the Diary of a Single Wedding Planner.

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                                                   Guest Post:
Writing in a diary is probably one of the easiest ways to write. You don’t have to use complete sentences or proper grammar. There’s no set structure or outline to follow. No rules on how it must be done.
Since a diary is intended to be private, you don’t have to worry if your writing makes sense, or if it sounds absurd. You don’t have to censor what you say or worry about how it will be perceived.
However, if you choose to publish a novel and you write in diary format, all that goes out the window.
When I first started pulling together the scenes of my story about wedding planner Tyler Warren, everything came to me in the main character’s voice. The story in my head was from her point of view. So I made a fateful decision to write as though the reader had access to Tyler’s diary.
In some ways, it was great. Tyler could give everyone insight into her thoughts and feelings, her fears and insecurities, and her hopes and dreams. The diary structure also gave me an easy way to track time and events, especially during busy wedding weekends and holiday seasons that occurred in the story.
I soon found that the format posed a few challenges, however.  After all, you don’t write out all the details in your diary. You already know who the characters are in your life, so you wouldn’t explain how you met your best friend, or what happened when your dad died years ago, or what led you to leave your hometown.  And you certainly wouldn’t write out dialogue between you and your friends with quotation marks or recount every line of a telephone conversation word for word.
Tyler had no choice, though. In order for the reader to know the backstory and move through the plot line, Tyler had to go into details that no one in real life would ever take the time to record. I struggled to convey the backstory and character interactions without making her diary completely unrealistic.
As with any first person point of view, the diary limited the story to only what Tyler knew. Several times I wished I could let the reader in on what another character was thinking or feeling, but unless it was obvious to Tyler or discussed with her, she wouldn’t know. So neither would her diary.
It definitely pushed me to find ways to reveal information without letting Tyler in on the secret, and to convey her journal entries in such a way that the reader could be engaged in the whole story rather than feel they only knew one character.
I don’t know if I would write another series in a diary format, but it’s given me something to think about. In real life, we tend to see things from our own point of view, only understanding where other people stand when it’s made obvious to us or explicitly told to us in no uncertain terms. We make decisions based on our own thoughts and feelings. Sometimes we assume things because of what we think we already know.
Perhaps we could all benefit from expanding our point of view to include the thoughts and feelings of those around us. After all, life isn’t lived in a diary.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for hosting a stop on my blog tour! I appreciate your time and effort, and I love the colors of your site!