“Artistic and Engaging” Rabid Readers Review PERMANENT SPRING SHOWERS

5983525905_c15314cd0b_oRabid Readers was one of the first book review sites to take on my last novel A Jane Austen Daydream. Today I was thrilled to discover that they reviewed my latest novel, Permanent Spring Showers.  My new book is definitely not in the same time period as my last one. I’m incredibly happy they enjoyed it as well.

Here is my favorite bit from this great review:

Southard exposes the sometimes illogical nature of human interactions while questioning many of the concepts that are considered absolutes in our daily lives. When is the cost of the choices we make too high? Is that a consuming feeling love or attraction? Southard’s writing style is smooth and lyrical so that a subject that might be incomprehensibly difficult becomes plausible. Southard writes men and women and their motivations with an equally light hand.

You can read the entire review here. Check it out!Permanent Spring Showers

This is a great time to grab a copy of my latest work. The eBook is only $3.99! You can find it on Amazon herePermanent Spring Showers is published by 5 Prince Books. You can also find out more about it (and read an excerpt) on this page on my site.

 

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Permanent Spring Showers by Scott D. Southard

Permanent Spring Showers

by Scott D. Southard

Giveaway ends October 28, 2015.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/widget/155531

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FREE For Valentine’s Day weekend! A Jane Austen Daydream is free for Kindle!

A Jane Austen Daydream“I consider this novel one of the best not only in regency era literature, but also in mainstream fiction.” -NovelTravelist.com

I’m excited to announce, that for a limited time (February 13 through 17), my novel A Jane Austen Daydream will be FREE for Kindle! You can grab your copy here (http://amzn.com/B00CH3HQUU).

“Scott Southard’s Jane is a delightful creature.” -Austenprose.com

Published by Madison Street Publishing, A Jane Austen Daydream imagines new possibilities for Ms. Austen, giving her the literary, witty, surprising, and romantic adventure she might have dreamed for one of her characters. Here is the back cover description:

All her heroines find love in the end–but is there love waiting for Jane?

Jane Austen spends her days writing and matchmaking in the small countryside village of Steventon, until a ball at Godmersham Park propels her into a new world where she yearns for a romance of her own. But whether her heart will settle on a young lawyer, a clever Reverend, a wealthy childhood friend, or a mysterious stranger is anyone’s guess.

Written in the style of Jane herself, this novel ponders the question faced by many devoted readers over the years–did she ever find love? Weaving fact with fiction, it re-imagines her life, using her own stories to fill in the gaps left by history and showing that all of us–to a greater or lesser degree–are head over heels for Jane.

You can grab your copy here (http://amzn.com/B00CH3HQUU).

AND…

Permanent Spring ShowersIf you grab a free copy, why not say thank you by picking up my BRAND NEW novel, Permanent Spring Showers?

Recently published by 5 Prince Books, Permanent Spring Showers is the story of affairs, love triangles, betrayal and the most important painting of this century. You can find it in print and eBook on amazon here (http://amzn.com/B00T74HH0Q) and many other online retailers.

Here is the back cover description:

Professor Rebecca Stanley-Wilson is having a very bad season. Her husband has just admitted to having an affair. And it was with one of her students.

Blame it on a desire for revenge (or way too much alcohol), she then has had one of her own. Unfortunately for her, her affair was with one of the great upcoming painters of his generation. The ramifications of that one torrid evening will not only be felt across her life but over the entire art world.

Sexy, funny, and very surprising, Permanent Spring Showers is the tale of one very memorable springtime and how it impacts a group of unique artists and dreamers. From the writer who is creating a new literary movement (through outright manipulation), to the hopeful Olympian with the failing marriage, to the romantic wondering what he did wrong to drive his love from him, each tale walks the line between reality and fantasy. And waiting at the end of the line is a very important painting… and possibly the revolver used in the Lincoln Assassination.

I hope you enjoy my books! Have a great Valentine’s Day!

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Permanent Spring Showers by Scott D. Southard

Permanent Spring Showers

by Scott D. Southard

Giveaway ends February 26, 2015.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

My Online Literary Experiment: Time to Catch Up!

Feeling the ShowerPermanent Spring Showers is a new novel, but it is also an experiment… an experiment around creation, instinct, and a heck of a lot of literary luck.

To begin with, I grew up a fan of Charles Dickens, and one of the things he is well known for is how he wrote many of his novels, sharing them via his papers one chapter at a time; many times while still creating them. So to start, I wondered if I could do the same thing. That was the basis right there for my challenge.

Using an old screenplay I wrote years and years ago as the starting point, I first created 25 chapter titles. Those chapter titles now are the only direction I really have in the writing. See, the book is nothing like the screenplay, only a few scant remnants remain. (I can’t even remember the last time I have even opened up the screenplay file!) If having to guess, I would say only two plotlines remain, and only that many of the original characters are still like their former selves. Everything else is so sparkly new, and many times when I start a chapter, I have no idea where the characters are going to take me next. Thrilling and terrifying.

When I started it felt so wonderfully easy, with the first chapter oddly being the shortest one in the book. It was a lie! When the third chapter reached over 25 pages I realized I might be in a little bit of trouble. I wasn’t drowning, but I was enjoying the deep end of the pool a little too much, let me say that.

To help you, the readers, feel part of the process, I’ve also been creating occasional editorial updates on the experience. I like to think of them as fun little glimpses into the mind of a writer at work. They are full of contradictions, conflicting goals, and seem to carry through them the one underlining thought, “I don’t know what I am doing or where I am going, but this is strangely fun.”

And it has been a fun experience for me.

In 2013 I will be creating the last three chapters (plus one very short epilogue) for the novel. With the end so close I thought this might be a good time for readers to consider catching up or maybe starting for the first time. You can find all of the chapters here. I hope you will consider checking it out. Below, is a brief introduction to the book and the characters in it: Continue reading

My Online Literary Experiment: Holiday Break!

One of my heroes!Sometimes like a coach, a writer has to make the right call for the team or athlete, no matter how unpopular the decision might be. (I am assuming this, I know nothing about sports.)

See, I realized today that it would be impossible to really create a first-rate chapter in time for this friday because of the holiday.

I have two little kids, and family to visit, etc., and the fact is I will be losing too many evenings writing. (Seriously, almost all of my evenings! It would’ve been hell and stressful. Not Christmas-y at all.) So I have decided that it would be best for the book that I delay the release of Chapter 23 by one week.

Yup, Chapter 23 will not be released now until January 4.

For those that might be worried that somehow the book/writing experiment might be in trouble so near the end, let me say loudly: NO WORRIES. I have a good first draft of the chapter ready, and if it was a normal week ahead there would have been no problem at all.

And also, do I want to be stressing this week about a chapter, writing until the wee hours, or instead waiting for Santa by the window with my kids? Sorry, readers the answer was obvious to me.  I’m a believer in the man in the red suit and the white beard.

Anyway, I hope everyone has a nice holiday. Rebecca, Jenn, Vince, Marty, Mary, Viv, Gordon, Steve, Ralph, Lilly, and even Bob will be back in the new year to end my new novel, Permanent Spring Showers.

(… Oh, and buy my new book A Jane Austen Daydream. It is quite lovely and filled with writing surprises [and only 99 cents on amazon right now!];  and will help you as you wait for the return of my little/massive experiment.)

My Online Literary Experiment: Riding the Train

The Approaching trainOn this Friday I will be sharing Chapter 21 and I am, honestly, feeling more stress and pressure now around the writing of the book than I have ever before.

Wait… have I said that before? Whatever the case, I am on the train and we are flying down the tracks. Little animals beware!

Part of the stress might just be because I have to keep up this blog at the same time… and there is the matter of my new little book being released last week!

A Jane Austen Daydream(Oh didn’t you know? Here is a link for my info- https://sdsouthard.com/2012/12/07/a-jane-austen-daydream-my-latest-novel-is-out-only-4-99/.)

Yes, there is a lot going on and I feel it in my writing bones…

The Struggles

As I noted in my last update I am no longer ahead a week in my writing, which means Chapter 21 is still a work in process even today, but that is not my big problem. My big problem is that as I get near the end there is so much I want to do which means my chapters are getting long.

When I first began the experiment, I thought the chapters would always be between 10 and 15 pages, in the most. Well, that was thrown to the wind with the first 20+ page chapter emerged (Chapter 3).

Ah, Chapter 3… What did you do to me!?!

Continue reading

My Online Literary Experiment: Okay, Am I Stupid?

Deep breath…

So a few weeks ago I got called out by a writer/editor/publishing professional on Twitter questioning my goals and my thoughts behind this experiment of mine, Permanent Spring Showers. My little book inspired by Dickens.

Twitter, in its limited word span, can make things seem harsher than the writer may actually have meant it to sound (I did feel like he was condescending) but it threw me a curve.

Was I jarred? Yeah, I was jarred. I still am jarred.

I also like the word “jarred,” but let’s continue.

Basically, his argument was broken down into this point:

What publisher would publish or consider a book that people were getting for free?

Before other bloggers and writers take to my twitter site (@sdsouthard) to find the guy and twitter attack, let me say that about two-years ago I would have agreed with him. Yeah, I was in that camp then because I was trained in writing grad school to think of the publishing world in that black-and-white way. Heck, every book on writing and publishing would agree with him!

But the fact is that while this argument once made sense to me, it is not that way today. The world has changed, I have changed. Continue reading

My Online Literary Experiment: Half of the Writing Hurdles

This Friday, when I post chapter 13, I will pass the halfway mark in my book. With that publication I will exceed 175 pages in the book, mapping out a book that will roughly be about 350 pages in length.

Those are the numbers, but they hardly express the emotional and wear and tear of the process to get to this point.

Recently, I had someone on Twitter ask me how many drafts I create of a chapter before I post it. It’s a great question and in a typical book, I would have numerous drafts of a book. There is the initial draft of a first draft when I do what I basically need to do; the other drafts are as it is updated to fit the rest of the book that is coming together; and finally the master drafts as the book is melded together into one beautiful whole.

Yet in Permanent Spring Showers that is not how it works out. I move forward, because the book moves forward. So I can only hope that the work when completed as a whole will feel like a complete whole by the end. Right now, I’m feeling really confident. That is probably the main gift reaching the halfway mark has given me. Continue reading

My Online Literary Experiment: Emotions Run Amuck

I’m an emotional writer.

What that means is I “feel” a book into existence. That’s not to say logic doesn’t have a place at the table (I wouldn’t have realistic motives, character sketches, or even an outline without Mr. Logic), it’s just that he is not at the front of the table. He is somewhere in the back of the room and if he raises his hand he might not be seen.

Yes, logic has to shout to get my attention a lot when I write.

It’s just for me to accomplish writing something I consider “true” I have to experience it emotionally as the reader will, maybe even more. If you read something that makes you cry, chances are I wailed before you. If I make you laugh, chances are I laughed as well (maybe even out loud with a slight loss of breath).

However, there is one important problem with being an emotional writer, it is that a work while in progress is more than simply words on paper, it is emotional dynamite for me, and it can affect my mood and my perception while working in the book or even while thinking of it outside of it. It is always there, like a powder keg ready to be lit. Continue reading

My Online Literary Experiment: Permanent Spring Showers, the story so far…

This Friday, I will be sharing the tenth chapter in my (possibly maddening) online literary creation/experiment/novel Permanent Spring Showers.

A new book that can be read in two very different ways.

Permanent Spring Showers is the story of a half-dozen different relationships and how they interact with each other (good and bad) over the course of two to three months. The relationships are romantic, funny, serious, sad, hard, lost, falling, rising, and passionate… basically the same as a rainstorm in that turbulent season.

Each of the earlier nine chapters in this literary experiment (I will discuss more how this is an experiment for those that don’t know below) can be found on the Permanent Spring Showers page here. (Minor spoilers below after the jump.) So how can this book be read two different ways? Continue reading

My Online Literary Experiment: Literary Dating Regrets

I can never look back as a writer. It’s not in my literary makeup.

I don’t end a book when I am writing, I divorce it. Yes, I have a literary breakup. “I’m sorry, it was a great run, and I really enjoyed our time together. I will always cherish it, but I need to move on.”

Dating, in my opinion, is a great way to describe the writing of a book. There is the initial first crush, the hint of interest that drives the beginning; the first date, learning about each other; and there is even that moment of pure writing ecstasy when things all come together in a magical union of bliss…. Yes, I just compared writing to sex, let’s move on before all of us feel more uncomfortable.

And also, sometimes like in dating,  things don’t work out and you realize after the “first date” or “second date” that you and the book are just two different and won’t “mesh” well.

Taking it a step further, if I didn’t wipe my hands of even a completed work, and walk away, I would be forever working on a novel, rewriting passages, rethinking plots. I have never experienced the “Ah ha! Eureka! It’s done moment” and I probably won’t. It’s not in my literary makeup as well. So, for me as a writer, I simply need to know when to say when. This part of my writing brain is one of the reasons I cannot go back and read my old work easily. Continue reading