Here's how Ernest Hemingway described his writing routine:

"When I am working on a book or a story I write every morning as soon after first light as possible. There is no one to disturb you and it is cool or cold and you come to your work and warm as you write. You read what you have written and, as you always stop when you know what is going to happen next, you go on from there. You write until you come to a place where you still have your juice and know what will happen next and you stop and try to live through until the next day when you hit it again."

Peter Zumthor’s Home Studio

Do you have a writing routine?

If you don't have a writing routine, why not?

Your comments are welcome.

- Raum


There are (at least) four reasons why we are sure you'll love Surviving Raine.

What's this novel about?

As the captain of a schooner catering to the elite on the Caribbean Seas, Sebastian Stark does his best to avoid any human encounters. Interacting with people isn’t his thing, and he prefers the company of a bottle of vodka, a shot glass, and maybe a whore. There’s no doubt he’s hiding from a checkered past, but he does well keeping everything to himself…

…until the night his schooner capsizes, and he’s stuck on a life raft with one of the passengers.

Raine’s young, she’s cute, and Bastian would probably be into her if he wasn’t suffering from alcohol withdrawal. As the days pass, DTs, starvation, and dehydration become the norm. Even the most closed person starts to open up when he thinks he’s going to die, but when she realizes their traumatic pasts are connected, it’s no longer the elements that have Bastian concerned.

He has no idea how he’s going to Survive Raine.


REDEMPTION: Shay Savage has a background in psychology, and it shows in all her stories. In Surviving Raine it shows even more; there are two main characters who have all the author's attention for almost the whole book. It gives the author the opportunity to develop each character with great depth. Every step of Bastian's redemption captures the reader's attention; at first, when he's still a jerk who avoid human encounters and drowns his sorrows in a bottle of vodka, you want to punch him in the face. Then you find yourself empathizing with him, to the point that you hope with all your strength that he'll get a well-deserved HEA.

REALISM: Big changes don't happen overnight. We appreciate that in Savage's stories characters are never devils or angels. They're human beings who carry the weight of their flaws and their past; they struggle to achieve the fulfilment of their dreams, and sometimes even admitting what they truly desire requires a great courage.

ROMANCE: Bastian is well-aware of the heavy baggage his traumatic past put on him, and opening up will be a very long process for him. The romance between Bastian and Raine develops with a slow burn that will have you hooked page by page. We appreciate very much that the love scenes are never mere smut, but they have always a meaning in the development of the relationship between the main characters.

RESEARCH: Shay Savage crafted a very well researched novel. She chose an original subject and developed it with many details about survival techniques. The setting is so well described that, while reading, we really felt like we were with the characters, struggling with them day by day on the life raft. It's the ideal story for the upcoming summer, especially if you're going to read it with hot weather and, if possible, close to the sea.

Raum and Camilla

Get a teaser of Surviving Raine or purchase the book.

Meet the author of Surviving Raine: http://www.shaysavage.com


What's Julius Caesar doing in this story? Chapter 10 is ready: http://www.fanfiction.net/s/8955111/10/

Camilla's short poem (SatinCoveredSteel helped to translate it):

Or che Edward l'ha salvato,
l'assistente è tormentato
e al profiler mette un tarlo:
saria giusto liberarlo

After being saved by Edward,
the assistant feels tortured.
In the profiler’s mind he plants a seed:
shall the vampire be freed?

Julius Caesar's Cypher is used in the chapter: "a Caesar cipher, also known as Caesar's cipher, the shift cipher, Caesar's code or Caesar shift, is one of the simplest and most widely known encryption techniques. It is a type of substitution cipher in which each letter in the plaintext is replaced by a letter some fixed number of positions down the alphabet."

The method is named after Julius Caesar, who used it in his private correspondence." (Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caesar_cipher)

The new chapter is due to be posted in two weeks.
Reviewers get a little gift.


If you're reading this post (thank you!) I guess you already know how a blog works. Chances are you have your own blog (in this case, you're in good company -- in 2011 there were over 156 million blogs in the world), or you're considering the possibility to open your own online diary.

According to WikiHow, there are good reasons against becoming a blogger. On the same page, Helen South (About.com) explains why she believes artists shouldn't write a blog.

Both those articles stress that blogs are time-consuming, and on this I agree. But when they say you risk your voice will be "a tiny peep against the massive wave of tripe out there", I'd like to remind that even the most important blogs began with a single post and a few visitors.

If you still want to run your own blog, there are many ideas to start one and to improve.

According to Andrew Rondeau, a blog helps you to create a "network of people who you have a lot in common with, and gain mutual support and interaction much more quickly than you ever could, offline." I agree: the Writing Lab in MyReadingLounge exists thanks to all those kind writers who accepted to share their writing tips with fellow writers and readers.

The article 10 Reasons Why You Need a Blog is a good introduction to become a blogger.

What if you're already an expert? Don't miss Seventeen Ways to Improve Your Blog.

Your comments are welcome!

- Raum


Before being the author of LASH–her debut novel and the first instalment of a trilogy–LG Castillo spent a long time as an active member of International writing communities. She's a member of the world's largest communities of derivative fiction, where she's posted some supernatural stories and received awards from fellow fanfiction writers and readers.

With LASH, LG Castillo is entering the world of original fiction, but she's doing it keeping in mind how important the feedback you get from people is for every writer. LASH comes from an extraordinary challenge for those people who spend their time giving voice to the characters who live in their mind: the National Novel Writing Month. The last edition had more than 250,000 participants and over 30,000 winners, and among them there was LG Castillo. LASH is now one of the books written during the NaNoWriMo that have been published; some of them achieved a great success, and this is our wish for this author!

Who is Lash? He's an angel–a seraph–who has the mission to protect a young woman, Naomi. But he made a mistake and was severely punished for it. Trapped in human form, he survives debasing his body and his soul. This is, until he meets a very special girl, Naomi.

The novel deals with redemption, not just due to the beliefs of the human main character, but because while Naomi experiences the sorrow that comes from having lost her faith, Lash is facing the terrible risk of losing Heaven for good, because of his disobedience. Overlooking his mission, he saved a little girl, Jane, who was destined to die. The girl afterward will embark in a shining political career, but this, apparently, was not in God’s plan.

In all the times, he’d gotten in trouble before, he’d never been anxious. Something was different.
“Don’t sweat it, Raphael. I’ve got this covered,” Lash said.
What’s the worst they could do to him?

When Lash realizes how his feelings toward Naomi are growing, and dangers surround them, everything he cares for will be at stake–his redemption, his love, even his own faith.

“You’re afraid that if you show a woman who you really are, she won’t love you. So, you choose to hide your true self behind a mask of arrogance.”
Lash jolted his head up and looked at Dantan wide-eyed. His eyes flicked to Naomi and locked with hers for a second. One second was all she needed. One look at the raw emotion on his face, and she melted.

Dantan leaned forward. “Tell me Lash. Who are you really?”

The alarm went off and everyone jumped.

As a member of writing communities, LG Castillo has distinguished herself because she's always been willing to give support, encouragement, and feedback to her fellow writers. When you choose to post a story, you expose yourself to other people's comments, and the relationship you establish with your readers is fundamental. We hope LG Castillo will get feedback from many, many readers! For instance, what do you think of her Angels and Archangels, who surely deviate from the way they are usually portrayed?

She's very kind, and you can contact her through her website: http://www.lgcastillo.com
Don't forget to visit the website to enjoy LASH's extras! Aren't you curious to listen to the playlist of a broken angel?

Camilla and Raum


About the book

Lash by L.G. Castillo
Series: Broken Angel #1 
Publication date: May 6th, 2013
Genre: New Adult Paranormal Romance

Synopsis: Decades after being banished from Heaven for saving a life he shouldn’t have, Lash is given a chance to redeem himself. His mission: protect Naomi Duran, a young woman who has lost her faith. The assignment proves to be anything but simple when his superiors, the Archangels, withhold key information about Naomi and refuse to restore Lash’s powers. When an unexpected source reveals centuries-old secrets, his trust is shaken to the core, and he begins to doubt those whom he had once considered to be his greatest allies.

Determined to avoid anything that would risk his chances of returning to Heaven, Lash struggles with the greatest obstacle of all—his growing feelings for Naomi. But when her life is threatened by an unknown source, Lash questions the wisdom of the Archangels and his ability to keep her safe.

Soon, Lash will have to choose where to place his faith—in the home he has fought so hard to regain or in the forbidden love he can’t bear to lose.

Purchase the book

L.G. (Linda) Castillo wrote her first story when she was ten and has been writing ever since. She took a break from writing fiction and poetry to focus on obtaining her Ph.D. in counseling psychology. She is now a licensed psychologist and currently works as a professor at a Texas university. Although she has published her psychological research in several professional journals and books, her dream is to publish a novel. 
It wasn’t until she found the world of fanfiction that she became inspired to write stories again. She uploaded her first fanfiction novel under the pen name Lacrimosa Moon. With the support and encouragement of her readers (and lots and lots of caffeine), she wrote the first book of the Broken Angel trilogy, Lash, during National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo 2012).
When she’s not writing, she scours the Internet collecting frequent flyer miles and uses them to travel with her husband.

Find the author on:  Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

Read an excerpt!


Edward plays a very important (and positive) role in Snare's last chapter. Chapter 9 is now available: http://www.fanfiction.net/s/8955111/9/

Camilla's short poem (SatinCoveredSteel helped to translate it):

L'assistente ha un'allergia
che lo sta portando via.
Ma il vampiro, che è dottore,
si improvvisa guaritore.

The assistant has an allergy
that puts his life in jeopardy.
But the vampire, who’s a doctor,
suddenly acts as a healer.

Yale School of Medicine is mentioned in the chapter:

The new chapter is due to be posted in two weeks.
Reviewers get a little gift.

I guess you noticed My Reading Lounge's new look. Your thoughts? ;-)
Follow me on Twitter!