Monday, September 17, 2012


In one week from today, I will have landed in New Hampshire—hopefully without incident! This means that until then, I’m going to be running around like—well, like when I’m hopped up on caffeine and sugar doughnuts. Actually, I wish I could sustain that sort of crazed energy, but I’m sure most of my time will consist of wandering from box to box in a daze—starting today. Fortunately, my good friend Anne Gallagher, over at Piedmont Writer, is picking up the slack for me, blog-wise.  Yeah, it’s an interview of sorts, but it contains a story that I once posted here and then took down because it was really embarrassing and I was afraid of who might read it. I’m over the embarrassment now and it’s kind of a funny story. Go have a peek if you are inclined!

And be warned, Anne has also written a lovely review for Uncharted: Story for a Shipwright that you'll have to wade through to get to my amusing anecdote.

Monday, September 10, 2012

An Uncharted Break

In the middle of all this pre-release date stuff for Uncharted: Story for a Shipwright, I thought it would be nice to take a little break and talk about the story I’m working on—the one I mentioned a while back. The coming of age story set primarily in 1969. It started out as SPILLED COFFEE, changed to WHISPERING NARROWS, but now I think I’m back at  SPILLED COFFEE WHISPERING NARROWS  seems too romancey and sounds too much like a mystery (yes there is some romance and a bit of mystery, but it’s more literary fiction with a commercial bent, like Uncharted).

The first draft is complete at 80k words and now it’s revision time. My trusted beta readers have provided helpful feedback and now I need to address the problems with the story. It’s always a challenge to know what to alter and what suggestions to veto, but when certain issues gain a consensus, there’s probably something to it. So, for the past few months, it has been sitting in the corner like a problem child—a source of vexation. I think the biggest fault with this novel is that I simply didn’t know the main character, Benjamin Hughes, well enough. I knew him quite well as an adolescent—his early teen summer of 1969 is the primary part of the story. But I hadn’t developed enough of his adult life to flesh him out as a thirty-five-ish year old character my reader can relate to in the early 1990s, when the story opens and to where it returns at the beginning of each chapter. (The switching back and forth is a trick in itself!)

So, I’ve been taking long walks lately, bringing Benjamin along. I asked him, “So what exactly did happen to you and your sister between 1970 and 1992?”

And guess what! He’s been very cooperative! In fact, he introduced me to a new character, Christopher, and cleared up some details on other players in the story. The challenge will be writing Christopher in a realistic and sympathetic way. He’s a complicated character whose idiosyncrasies will require a ton of research. I will need to handle him delicately.

Since this story is written in a male, first person POV (as is Uncharted) and deals a lot with family dysfunction (like Uncharted) it seems that it would be a good follow-up novel to publish after Uncharted, as opposed to my GIRL RUNNING novels, which have a very different feel.

A while back, I even came up with a cover idea—it may be a bit busy and I might have to scratch it, but it at least provides a pretty picture for this post! I'm also hoping that the title brings to mind the old saying,  No use crying over ....   

Monday, September 3, 2012

Yeah, Shameless Self-Promotion

Well, I guess things are beginning to happen with Uncharted: Story for a Shipwright, even though its official release is still four weeks away. Although the e-Book versions won't be available until October 1st, the beautiful softcover edition is now up on several online retail sites, including Amazon and Barnes & Noble. (Even better, order it from your local small independent book store!) Uncharted retails for $14.99, but if you'd like a nice discount, head over to Rhemalda Publishing and order it there!

Uncharted is also up on Goodreads and Shelfari—ready for reviews. I have very ambivalent feelings about reviews. I guess most authors do. I've promised myself not to check and see when they come in, and especially not to read them! If they're good—and of course they'll be good, right?—they'll just make me all big-headed, and if they're not good...well, it doesn't take much imagination to know how I'll feel about that.

That said, I have received one review already! It's from the author who has written the blurb for my cover. It is the one review I have printed and will reread whenever I'm tempted to to peek at incoming online reviews! Many of you know how awkward I feel about shameless self-promotion—that necessary discomfort of publishing—but I can't resist sharing this:
Uncharted tells a story within a story. Readers will be forced to skate along the edge of suspended belief, eagerly turning the pages, hoping it all turns out to be true. A great read that will appeal to armchair sailors, romantics, and real adventurers.”
~Carol Newman Cronin, author of Cape Cod Surprise
Carol continues:
"There aren’t too many books that combine shipwrights, shipwrecks, sailing, Maine, the tropics, Kansas, and peculiarly strong women into a page-turning love story. In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever before read anything like Uncharted, J.B. (“call me Bridget”) Chicoine’s debut novel, which will be brought out by Rhemalda Publishing on October 1. Rhemalda’s tag line is “crossing the divide between imagination and reality,” and Uncharted certainly accomplishes that—without ever requiring the truly conscious suspension of belief that would distract from the story.
"I was lucky enough to read an advance copy, and as usual I started off with a slight tinge of dread. What if I had to slog my way through it, and then try to find something positive to say? In the end I was met with a completely different challenge: how to keep my writer’s jealousy at bay while I write the glowing review the book deserves."
To read the rest of Carol Newman Cronin's review (you really must! It's pretty great), head on over to her blog, Where Books Meet Boats.

Oh yeah, and one more thing—I don't really understand what Amazon algorithms are or how they work, but apparently if you tag my book or even at least 'like' it, that boosts Uncharted up alongside popular books and gives it more visibility. So, if you feel like doing it, that'd be great! Here's the Amazon link.