Author Spotlight- DECEMBER 26, 2017- Posted by historythrutheages

Today I’m happy to welcome author Joan Ramirez for an author spotlight.

— What is your writing process?
I strongly believe in outlines. This book, which I’m now crafting, will be a labor of love. My uncle, a WWII medal winning medic, left me his memorabilia. With all of the historical facts to sort through, I have composed a detailed outline, noting significant dates regarding Italian Front. He was meticulous in his correspondence, which makes my task a lot easier. However, I still have to do a lot of research regarding the war facts.

— Tell us about the book.

I’m hoping to turn it into a series as my uncle’s life was filled with meaty characters. As I write, sometimes I cry because I worshiped my uncle, a man for all seasons, beloved by all. I choose my character’s names by their personalities.

–Do you have some advice for a beginning author?

Learn the craft, read, read, and read in your genre, and when you’ve finished the book, edit by reading out loud to hear how the dialogue sounds. Is it accurately representing your characters?

— What genre(s) do you write in and why?

I write in suspense with touches of romance because I find it challenging and exciting.

— What is your favorite part of writing?

My favorite part of writing is the editing. It gives me an opportunity to stop and think and rephrase and mold and shape my book much as I’m doing with my photography portfolio. This is the creative part for me.

— How has being published changed your life?

Being published (I’ve done three nonfiction and my first contemporary romance) has made me realize how much I love books. I have many stories to tell. As I grow in my writing process, I’ve learned to more patient with myself. Nothing good comes of rushing creativity.

ABOUT THE BOOK: Willie’s Test

In my World War II historical romantic suspense as war rages on the Italian Front, medic/pharmacist Willie C works to save his Army buddy’s leg but can’t save another soldier, Saul, from limping. To show his gratitude, Mario F invites Willie to spend his three-day leave with his relatives. One look at Mario’s younger sister, and Willie knows he wants to spend the rest of his life with her. At war’s end, the young lovers vow to find a way to be together as Saul seeks revenge on Will.

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WRITING FAST DOESN’T PAY

by Joan Ramirez (Romance Writers of America November 2017 newsletter)

1. Read out loud–This was told to me by a dear friend when I started writing children’s books. It makes sense because it gives you an insight into the key areas: Character voices, Plot, Tone and Pacing.

2. I know we live in a technical world but creativity can’t be rushed. If you have the ability to edit online, great. I have to sit with a red pen and mark up my paper copy. Again, whatever works for you.

3. The only way to write better is to get a handle on your plot. Outlining, to the depth that fits your plot and comfort level allows you to see the action. I’m visual. I need this to follow my characters in the story regarding goal and motivation.

4. Put the manuscript away. Most of us don’t have the luxury of writing full-time so we have to take our writing moments as they come. The tendency is to get something down and for the sake of our sanity, especially if you’re a weekend writer, get something out. If you’re one hundred percent sure that what you’re composing is polished like a diamond (and diamonds are a girl’s best friend, though with me, it’s my husband), then go for it. In speaking to many established authors, I’ve found this isn’t the case. They put their work away for at least a month before giving it a second go round.

5. To write faster, you need to edit slower. Take the time to do as someone very successful once said to me, “be in error and correct by editing the heck out of your draft.”

There you have it. The rest is up to you.

Joan Ramirez is an elementary school teacher, has published three nonfiction books, and is currently crafting her first in what she hopes will be a historical romantic suspense series.

Joan is now a published member of the SWAT team ( A web site for thriller authors)

 

An international thriller writer has published my photo on her website.

I’m so proud.

This beautiful photo was submitted by SWAT Team member Joan Ramirez. This is a Vietnam Orchid taken when Joan taught in a school outside of Hanoi. In addition to being a published author, Joan is also a photojournalist and English as a Second Language teacher—all grades. She was privileged to teach students in this magical country. Thank you for sharing this very pretty flower, Joan!

 

Orchid

GET IT WRITE AND SAY IT EFFECTIVELY WITH JOAN’S HELP!

Picture these scenarios:

  1. I own a small company and need to hire staff. How do I know that I’m going about the hiring process in the most effective way?

Joan has 25 years of expertise working for a wide range of industries. She’s been there and seen the pitfalls of hiring a title instead of a qualified person.

Resource: Joan published a motivation handbook that is being used by high school students in Europe. You’re asking: HIGH SCHOOL? Think about it. They’re going to college and will soon be part of the work force. You need to ensure that they have the right stuff for your company.

  1. I am the communications manager in a large company. I hired several newly-minted graduates to do my social media and marketing. They’re not getting the message across about my product/service to my target audience.

Joan wrote a handbook that was used by a staff of over 1,000 in a multi-billion dollar company. If your staff doesn’t know the basics of clear, concise communications, your revenue will go down instead of upstream.

  1. I’m a sole practitioner. How can I position my service so that I rise above my writing handcompetitors?

Joan published a book on leadership that has empowered many. In addition, she has her own communications consulting business that helps clients here and abroad.

Joan’s credentials to teach workshops: M.S. in Technical, Financial, and Business Writing, M.S. in English as a Second Language

Fortified by twenty five years of expertise in journalism, corporate writing, and entrepreneurial training.

For free consultation, contact Joan at her website:   Joansbookshelf.com

INSPIRING SETTINGS FOR SUSPENSEFUL NOVELS by Joan Ramirez, author/photographer

An adventure, a step back in time, and an experience of a lifetime. These are the phrases that best describe a visit to Petra. This former center of trade, a royal jewel in the country of Jordan, has defied age.
As my horse-drawn carriage navigated through the Siq, a narrow gorge that leads visitors into Petra, my guide made me close my eyes.
When I opened them, his first words were, “BEHOLD, history awaits.”
I’ve circled the globe, but this view, even from a distance, of Al Khazna, the Treasury, is spectacular. Crowned by a funerary urn, local legend has it that a pharaoh’s treasure sits inside of its belly. I’d watched the Raiders movie featuring the fearless Indiana Jones, but to be up close and personal was incredible. Almost 40 meters high and adorned with Corinthian capitals, friezes, and figures, I closed my eyes once more and stepped into Indiana’s shoes to take his place on my own literary adventure.
From the Royal Tombs to the Governor’s Palace (shown above), the city is a feast for the eyes.
Petra has been a UNESCO world heritage site since 1985, but windblown sand and growing salt crystals are a threat to precious monuments.
In fact, during an event held on July 7, 2007 in Lisbon, Portugal, Petra was designated one of the new Seven Wonders of the World.
If I had available funds, I’d provide them in a heartbeat to preserve structures steeped in a country rich in history. In Petra nature, culture, and archaeology/geology blend together to form a magnificent whole.
While plot and character have a major role in all novels, setting is often the muse that fires our imagination.
I have circled the globe. It is my pleasure to launch the first in a series of travel photos and articles.  These photos and those to follow are for sale.  For further details contact me via the email on my web site at:
joansbookshelf.com or at writerjr1044@gmail.com

How to Stay Focused When Writing by Joan Ramirez

It has been said that everyone loves a lover. Coming from journalism and academic backgrounds, it was quite a transition for me to write romance. It sounded easy. Take one hero and heroine and blend in trials and tribulations, a black moment when the lovers part, and end with the lovers living happily ever after. I did my homework, reading some of the greats in the genre. I told myself that I didn’t become an award-winning journalist or elementary school teacher overnight. I could do this. So I put pen to paper and did character sketches and an outline and started to type.
Here are my observations: 1. Writing is not for the frail of heart. It takes work to make those love scenes and conflicts work. 2. It takes a lot of molding and shaping to make characters that resonate with the reader come alive on the page. 3. It takes imagination to design an eye-catching cover. 4. It takes time, energy, the right attitude, and tons of effort to pursue a career as a novelist while still working on a day job. 5. It’s worth it when you have your own hero, which I do in my husband, to encourage you, no matter how many times he has to listen to the same scene.
 I’ve done one through five. Now, I push ahead to find the right editor/agent for my romantic suspense and the series that I envision will follow. As I do so, I take courage from someone I admired who left this earth too soon. Her first book in an award-winning series was published when she was sixty five. I quote, “I woke up in a cold sweat the day after I got the contract from my agent, thinking of how many times I wanted to give up. I’m glad I didn’t.”
 Joan Ramirez,  Relatively new member of LIRW but not to publishing with three nonfiction and one fiction novel of her own plus mystery short stories online.

Source: October 2017 Long Island Romance Writers Shorelines Newsletter