Donn Taylor
Sarah Sundin

Sarah Sundin

Greetings from Sarah Sundin from California, where we’re rejoicing in the smidgen of rain we’ve received. Today I have the honor of interviewing multi-published novelist Donn Taylor, who has put his careers in the military and in academia to use in his stories!

Donn, tell us about your book, Murder in Disguise.

Donn Taylor

Donn Taylor

Official verdict: Suicide. But why would that vigorous department chairman kill himself? When visiting professor Preston Barclay asks questions, he receives threats. The more things don’t add up, the more the threats increase, leading Press and his colleague Mara Thorn increasingly into danger.

Why did you write this book?

The main focus of the novel is the murder mystery. But as a long-time member of the National Association of Scholars, I have closely followed universities’ all-too-common violations of students’ constitutional rights, especially violations involving censorship of religious activities. Without burdening the main plot, I wanted to dramatize some of the more common types of violations that I have studied. Read More →

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Marti Pieper_HeadshotA warm hello from Marti Pieper, writing from beautiful (and equally warm) Mount Dora, Florida. In this month of Thanksgiving, many of us are taking time to count our blessings.One of the blessings in my writing life is my friendship via social media and email with author Donn Taylor. We’ve never met in person but have enjoyed mutual support and encouragement over the past few years. I’m both grateful and delighted to share my friend with our CAN readers today.

Greetings, Donn! I’m glad to welcome you to your encore interview with CAN. Let’s get started. How many books do you have published?                                          Donn Taylor portraits 12/7/07                 

Five.

That’s great. What are a few of your latest titles?                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

I have two suspense novels, The Lazarus File and Deadly Additive; a mystery, Rhapsody in Red; and now a historical, Lightning on a Quiet Night. I also self-published a book of poetry because I wanted to make a point about writing poetry of a kind different from current fads.

And I appreciate your poetry, too. You were last featured on the CAN blog in 2010. What are the chief lessons you’ve learned about the writing life since then?

I can summarize that in one sentence: Learn marketing or die. Read More →

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DonnBusPhotos-007a2x3Hello, I’m Donn Taylor, back again after several months of alligators up to the ears. I’m still talking about ways to achieve the “higher voltage” that distinguishes poetry from most prose. We’re still looking at ways to make your poems different from many that editors will see. Most of the new poems I’m seeing are written in the poet’s own voice, with the poet as speaker (persona) of the poem and the poet’s self as the subject. It’s safe to assume that editors will see more of that kind of poem than any other. Previously we illustrated making your poem different by MAKING THE SPEAKER OF THE POEM SOMEONE BESIDES THE POET and WRITING ABOUT A SUBJECT OTHER THAN THE SELF.

My basic idea in both is that I doubt that many readers would be interested in me, so the safest procedure is to write about something else.

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DonnBusPhotos-007a2x3Hello, I’m Donn Taylor, here again to talk about poetry and ways to achieve the “higher voltage” that distinguishes poetry from most prose. In my last few posts, I spoke of several basic ways to organize a poem. Now we turn to several ways of making your poem different than many, perhaps most, that editors will see. The vast majority of new poems I’m seeing are written in the poet’s own voice, with the poet as the speaker (persona) of the poem and one or more aspects of the poet’s self as the subject. It’s safe to assume that editors will see more of that kind of poem than any other. So I will suggest several techniques of making your poems different.

 

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DonnBusPhotos-007a2x3

Hello. I'm Donn Taylor, here again to talk about poetry writing and ways to achieve the "higher voltage" that distinguishes poetry from most prose. We've talked about putting strong words in emphatic places, use of images, and a little bit about figurative language. On my last blog we began talking about ways to organize a poem. Those ways are infinite, of course, so we'll confine ourselves to some of the most common, and we'll deal only with lyric poetry (poetry that expresses the poet's thoughts or emotions). As before, I compare a short poem to a paragraph: it has a main idea that may be stated or unstated, and everything in the poem points to or develops that one idea.

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