Sunday, September 30, 2012

The Ramen Girl and Writing With Emotion Guest Blog and Giveaway with JA Howell

One of my favorite actresses is and always will be, Brittany Murphy. 

I suppose I connect to the goofy, fun characters she often portrays, as well as the darker ones. One of my favorite of her films is a lesser known one called "The Ramen Girl". It's a movie about a girl named Abby that moves to Tokyo to be with her boyfriend, who shortly after she arrives, dumps her and ditches her. She decides to stay in Tokyo and learns the art of making Ramen. By the way, I don't mean the cheap $0.60 ramen you get when you are in college or severely lacking funds. 

She finds this Ramen Shop while she is crying over the stupid boyfriend and they give her a bowl and it soothes her. The next day she comes back, has another bowl but this time she breaks out in a fit of giggles, as does another patron. After begging the owner to teach her, he agrees but every time she makes Ramen, something is missing. It's too bland, it has no soul. No heart to it. The owner's wife then tells Abby that because she has no love to share, being heartbroken over her boyfriend, that she needs to share her tears.

So what does Abby do? She makes a batch of Ramen as she is crying her eyes out. Almost immediately after tasting her Ramen, each of her friends at the Ramen shop end up completely melancholy and crying as they sit and eat. 

Aside from this being one of my favorite movies, what does it have to do with writing? 

Plenty. When it comes to writing a story, one of the biggest things that keeps me reading is the emotion. When the emotion in the story feels real, you are pulled into it, you are feeling those feelings along with the main character. 

If they are giggling, so are you, and if they are heartbroken, your heart breaks for them as well. When you are writing with emotion, people will feel it. Many times when I write, I sit there and really think about how my character is feeling in that moment, and then I let myself feel it. If they are annoyed, I might think about the person that cut me off in traffic and nearly caused me to wreck. 

Suddenly, I'm grinding my teeth, my pulse is jumping. If they were devestated, I might think about the last time a loved one died, or how it would feel to lose the ones I have now, and maybe even get a bit misty-eyed. 

 It's the heart-pumping, fist-clenching, tear-jerking emotions that every story needs to keep the reader enthralled. If you feel like your story might be lacking emotion, then maybe you too, should cry into the Ramen.


J.A. Howell

Genre: General/Mainstream Fiction/Suspense

ISBN: 1477456368 

Number of pages:198
Word Count: 61,448

Cover Artist: J.A. Howell

Purchase Links:

Book Description:

One year ago, two bullets from a .45 caliber pistol ripped away any hopes Dillan had of a future with her fiancé, Jamie. On the anniversary of Jamie’s death, the appearance of his estranged twin brother, Trey, leaves Dillan wondering what other secrets her prefect fiancé was hiding. When Trey learns of his brother’s death, Dillan takes pity on him and gives him a place to stay.

Trey’s erratic behavior and a series of suspicious phone calls lead Dillan to believe that Trey knows more about the circumstances surrounding Jamie’s death than he’s letting on. With all leads exhausted and Jamie’s murderer still on the loose, Trey is Dillan’s last hope for finding the truth.

Sometimes the truth hurts… but in Dillan’s case it could kill her.

Author Bio:

J.A Howell is an office drone by day, and a writer by night. Her love of writing took off when she was eleven years old and decided to fill a composition notebook with stories to read to her friends. Many years (and notebooks) later, not much has changed. She still loves writing and sharing her works with others. When she isn’t writing, she can often be found trying her hand at whatever artistic pursuit strikes her fancy. J.A. Howell resides in Apopka, FL with her husband and their menagerie of animal children.

5 Prize Packs which include Signed Trade Paperback with deluxe Mistaken bookmarks, magnet and Mistaken charm necklace.  Open to US, Canada and UK shipping

And $10 Amazon Gift Card 

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