Author Spotlight: The Thesaurus Duo Angela Ackerman & Becca Puglisi

Can I just tell you how much I love these ladies?! The Thesaurus Duo of Angela Ackerman & Becca Puglisi donated an eBook choice for the winner from two of their latest books The Urban Setting Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to City Spaces or The Rural Setting Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Personal and Natural Places. These books just became available in mid-June. I wish I could win one of the giveaways!

I love reading about how Becca and Angela first met in this blog post. They have taken writing resources for writers to a whole new level. Their books have been translated into several languages so far. You can find them on many top 10 lists for both the amazing blog they provide and their books. If you don’t have a copy of one of their books don’t wait!

Genre: Writing Skills/Reference
Description of Urban Setting: Making readers care and feel like they’re part of the story should be the number one goal for all writers. Ironically, many storytellers fail to maximize one of fiction’s most powerful elements to achieve this: the setting. Not only can the right location become a conduit for emotion, it can also provide conflict, characterize the story’s cast, reveal significant backstory, and trigger the reader’s own emotional memories through sensory details and deep point of view.

Inside The Urban Thesaurus, you’ll find:

  • A list of the sights, smells, tastes, textures, and sounds for over 120 urban settings
  • Possible sources of conflict for each location to help you brainstorm ways to naturally complicate matters for your characters
  • Advice on how to make every piece of description count so you can maintain the right pace and keep readers engaged
  • Tips on utilizing the five senses to encourage readers to more fully experience each moment by triggering their own emotional memories
  • Information on how to use the setting to characterize a story’s cast through personalization and emotional values while using emotional triggers to steer their decisions
  • A review of specific challenges that arise when writing urban locations, along with common descriptive pitfalls that should be avoided
  • Downloadable tools to help you plan each setting so you can choose the right one for a scene, providing the biggest storytelling punch

The Urban Setting Thesaurus helps you tailor each setting to your characters while creating a realistic, textured world readers will long to return to, even after the book closes.

Description of Rural Setting: Within the pages of a book exists a world drawn from a writer’s deepest imaginings, one that has the ability to pull readers in on a visceral level. But the audience’s fascination will only last if the writer can describe this vibrant realm and its inhabitants well. The setting achieves this by offering readers a unique sensory experience. So much more than stage dressing, the setting can build mood, convey meaning through symbolism, drive the plot by creating challenges that force the hero to fight for what he wants, and trigger his emotions to reveal his most intimate feelings, fears, and desires.

Inside The Rural Setting Thesaurus, you’ll find:

  • A list of the sights, smells, tastes, textures, and sounds for over 100 settings revolving around school, home, and nature
  • Possible sources of conflict for each location to help you brainstorm ways to naturally complicate matters for your characters
  • Advice on the many effective ways to build mood, helping you steer both the character’s and readers’ emotions in every scene
  • Information on how the setting directly influences the plot by acting as a tuning fork for what a character needs most and by testing his dedication to his goals
  • A tutorial on figurative language and how different descriptive techniques can bring settings alive for readers while conveying a symbolic message or deeper meaning
  • A review of the challenges that arise when writing description, as well as special considerations that apply specifically to rural and personal settings

The Rural Setting Thesaurus takes “show-don’t-tell” to new heights. It offers writers a roadmap to creating fresh setting imagery that impacts the story on multiple levels while keeping readers engaged from the first page to the last.

Angela AckermanAuthor Bio: Angela is Canadian, and loves her home near Calgary, Alberta, nestled close to the Rockies. She enjoys traveling with her family, exploring new and unusual places, and is constantly amazed at how the universe seems to bring along the people she needs at just the right time. Because of this, she tries her best to be part of the chain, paying-it-forward in whatever way she is able to.

The author of several bestselling resource books printed in 5 different languages, Angela enjoys building communities and sharing her passion for writing craft. She is a writing coach, international speaker, and a firm believer that writers succeed best together.

In the fiction realm, Angela often writes about mythology in the real world, but twists everything so that it’s much darker and interesting. She’s also drawn to thriller elements, apocalyptic scenarios, and characters who are able to find the strength to face their deepest fears and most painful emotional wounds. Her audience of preference is middle grade and young adult, and this is no surprise as kids are often a beacon of internal strength that represents one of the best facets humanity has to offer.

Angela’s agent is the ever-tenacious Jill Corcoran of the Jill Corcoran Literary Agency. Angela’s mentor & comrade-in-arms is the incredibly talented Becca Puglisi, whose bio follows.

Becca puglisiAuthor Bio: In her former life, Becca Puglisi was a teacher—elementary, because six-year-olds are easy to push around and the math isn’t too hard. She read roughly a gajillion picture books to her students, and it was her love for these books that originally motivated her to become an author, though she’s since moved on to young adult novels, since they’re much easier to write.

Now, Becca is a YA fantasy/historical fiction writer and co-author of a number of descriptive resources for writers, including the bestselling The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Character Expression. Becca is an international speaker who enjoys teaching workshops and presenting various writerly topics.

When not writing, Becca’s life revolves around her husband and two adorable little blessings. Al is wonderfully supportive of his wife’s writing career. He is also a comfortable kind of husband who doesn’t complain when the kids get nutritious leftovers while he has to scrounge some kind of meal out of stale Cheerios, yogurt, and Velveeta. Becca’s little ones, a girl and a boy, keep her intimately acquainted with the children’s section of the library, the park, and any Chick-fil-A with a playground. She has given up wearing lipstick because she can’t stop kissing her kids.

During her free time (ha), Becca enjoys playing video games, watching movies, teaching Bible studies, baking, and adding to her stash of emergency supplies. She has always enjoyed contemplating the What if? scenario, which served her well when she lived in south Florida and will help her survive the winter now that she’s moved to New York.

Links for Angela: Writers Helping Writers | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads
Links for Becca: Writers Helping Writers | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

Don’t forget to enter to win a one of Angela and Becca’s latest reference books on writing. You get your choice between the Urban Setting or the Rural Setting. Good luck!

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