What studying literature teaches us about writing novels — Uninspired Writers

As I focus on my third novel in the “Blue Star Series” I find that I am curating more blog posts than I am writing. This is because there are so many posts out there. For me, there are few posts better than those which help you find inspiration, or dig deeper into the world around us. In this post by M.L. Davis, we find how turning to literature is a great way find your writing style, or develop your abilities.

Please click on the link below to read the entire article at Uninspired Writers.

If this is the type of curated content you’d like to see on my site, please like, share, and follow. I’d love to hear more about your inspiration or how you develop yourself into becoming a better writer.

Learning is important to all writers. And the exciting thing is that we learn all the time. Every word we write, every word we read, brings us more understanding and knowledge and skill. It is a game of practice and discovery, being a writer. I’m a uni student, and in studying English Literature and Creative […]

What studying literature teaches us about writing novels — Uninspired Writers

Writing: How to keep distractions aside

Right now I am sitting here writing. The sky is dark. The grass outside my sunroom office is curiously green, a brightness I’d expect upon following the yellow brick road into the emerald city. Lightning bursts shatter the monotony of an overwhelmingly humid afternoon. And I’m distracted.

There are several behaviors that create a great writer. But, more, there are exceptional behaviors and practices that manage the difference between a good and great writer. Great writers have the ability to move past personal obstacles such as procrastination and put aside distractions so they can continue and complete books.

Did you know, that when asked, “What has prevented you from writing a book?” the most common response is, “having the motivation to finish it.” There is a difference in writing between adequate, good, and great writers. But, more, there is a difference in the ability to complete. Great writers are great because they continue to plug away. When others give up, great writers persevere.

Today, I’d like to share a simple, yet effective tool to help you focus on your writing and avoid distractions. Admitedly, I don’t use this tool consistently. I pull it out – my big guns – only when needed. That means I pull this tool out when I can’t focus, when I am jumping down the rabbit hole of Google, or when the thought suddenly arises, how do I build a grass tennis court?

So, how do I manage my distraction? With a notebook and pen.

Yep, you read that right. My only tool to manage distraction is a writer’s go to. In my early twenties I realized that my mind was everywhere. I couldn’t focus on anything. Some people call it multi-tasking. I called it multi-tasking. But, then, I was reading a book and the author mentioned that there is no such thing as multi-tasking. You may be able to move different parts of your body at the same time, but the reality is that you are never multi-tasking. You can only do one thing at a time. What people call multi-tasking is doing many things, one at a time, in a short period of time. For example: Writing your book, you answer a ringing phone and talk for a minute, then your kids walk in and ask you to make a snack, then you sit back down to write, then you text your friend. That is six things, but not multi-tasking. For each of those things you started, stopped, and started something else. This is what most people mistakenly call multi-tasking and its highly inefficient.

My worktime is important to me. If I am not working then I am not making money. I don’t have a company who will pay me regardless of what I’m doing. So, when I sit down for four hours, I better be working during those four hours. That’s where my distraction notebook comes in.

As I’m writing, anytime I feel distracted, want to look up a random fact, or are thinking about a conversation I flubbed, I turn to my notebook and write a quick note down to come back to that thought when I am done writing. Then, when I am done with work, sitting in front of the TV, or just putsing around the house I go through my notebook to see what I want to look up. More often than not, those overwhelming questions I had don’t matter in the least. I have no interest in looking up the answers when I’m done writing.

This is a simple, yet effective tool to keep yourself focused on the task at hand. It’s not rocket science, but it does work.

How do you keep yourself focused when writing? I’d love to hear it in the comments below. And please follow my blog, like and comment. If you are a lover of fantasy, please check out the books below and don’t forget to leave a review!

Dissecting Shakja: Servitude to the most powerful Drajeen

Fall of the Drjeen

When I began writing Fall of the Drjeen I had considered a single novel. However, as the stories evolved it became clear that Fall of the Drjeen was only the first book of the series. As characters come and go, one stability is that of Shakja. In servitude of the lower settlement, slaving in farm fields and raising the daken, Shakja was beautiful, strong-willed, and intelligent. However, she was also victim of her birth being born of the lowest class.

It took a blue asteroid to change all of that as hierarchy became irrelevant in her new world. Despite spending her time under the will of others, when she became second only to the queen, she exposed something most Drjeen had never seen before – humility.

The humility that Shakja displays through the first two books, Fall of the Drjeen and Rise of the Drajeen, is what makes her my favorite character. She has the natural abilities, the strength, and even the mystical powers of the Ancients, yet she uses them for good rather than evil.

While Shakja may not go down as the most powerful Drajeen to use her skills for good, she will certainly go down in history as the most beloved and first. She showed an entire race how to use their abilities for good, the arching all for one and one for all approach to a successful civilization. And that is exactly what is happening in the third book (to be released later this year), but will the success of the Drajeen last? It’s unknown, really, I have no idea.

Shakja has created a utopian society. But, is she strong enough to survive it?

You tell me!

I’d love to hear your thoughts on Shakja and the Blue Star book series. I’d love to see your Amazon reviews, and like and follow if you want to see more about the planet of Jeen.

About me

I am a fantasy writer who spends much of my daydreaming up worlds of nefarious dragons. I would love if you take the time to read my novels which you can find below. I love reviews, so please take a moment to leave a review. 


Fall of the Drjeen
Birth of the Drajeen

Anne McCaffery – my inspiration

I can’t yet say I am at the level of writing as pioneer female fantasy writer Anne McCaffery, but she certainly sparked my interest in dragon lore. Anne may be best known for her Pern novels and they’ve fully gripped me. I dreamt of writing a single novel decades ago, but as I worked and my mind wouldn’t release me from my interest, I found that a single novel is now three, with Rise of the Daejeen being released later in 2020. But, the story of Shakja, Shook, Queen Amanna, and Aput doesn’t end there. In each novel I find myself creating and falling in love with new characters, such as the young Indra, which propel new story-lines forward and new novels being summarized in my fodler of ideas.

To think, this all started with a pioneer in the fantasy writing industry and someone I aspire to be. Thank you Anne McCaffery.

If you would like to learn more about Anne check out this interview I found with Anne McCaffery nearly 20 years ago.

And for a list of Anne McCaffery books you can go here.

About me

I am a fantasy writer who spends much of my daydreaming up worlds of nefarious dragons. I would love if you take the time to read my novels which you can find below. I love reviews, so please take a moment to leave a review. 


Fall of the Drjeen
Birth of the Drajeen

5 reasons I love writing about dragons

In my Blue Star series, it becomes evident early on that I enjoy writing about humanoid dragons who are the main inhabitants of the three-mooned planet Jeen.

But, what is it about dragons that I love so much? Well, first off, while I am no longer a flight instructor, I still can’t help but feel a love for flight, being thousands of feet above the world. Perhaps it’s the solitude, or maybe even the heavy shuffling wind as it rocks my Cessna gently, providing a doldrum of sound, similar, yet thicker than sitting next to a floor fan.

Undeniably this is a feeling that I will always hold close to me.

But, whether I am writing or reading an Anne McCaffery novel, I find that my excitement grows and my obsession lingers. So, why do I love writing about dragons? Here are five reasons:

They’re cruel

I want to preface this by saying I am not cruel. But much like an erotica novelist lives vicariously through her characters I do with mine. To be fair, most dragons, whether Drjeen, Drajeen, or Daejeen (especially the Drajeen) are not cruel at all. However, the elites tend to be nefarious, and in the third book, Rise of the Daejeen, slated to come out midyear-2020, you will have the opportunity to see the full length of their malicious behavior. Backstabbing twists in the Daejeen ranks leaves no one safe, especially their own. Jeen is a “dragon eat dragon” world – quite literally.

Dragons can also be enlightening

In the Fall of the Drjeen we find a world that is on the brink of extinction as a “star” is plummeting toward the planet of Jeen. What happens is an organic split of good and evil, where rank and hierarchy no longer exists. But, the enlightened ones seemingly prevail or at least survive to create a new race of dragon called the Drajeen. As in the second book Birth of the Drajeen, they discover new abilities and the curious experience of one for all and all for one (thank you Alexandre Dumas), they find that a path together is an enlightened one. An enlightened race of dragons may not be as dramatic as a nefarious race, but in the Blue Star series, I have the benefit of pitting one against the other.


In my first book, Fall of the Drjeen, I begin in an early stage of dragon evolution. In fact, many live in wooden huts in the lower kingdom without the ability to fly. However, they are still powerful. From thunderous wing bursts to the daken riders, I love the strength of dragons.

Ancient wisdom exists

In the Fall of the Drjeen the ill are moved to the Cavern of the Ancients. Little does anyone know, the cavern would be a host of mysticism only spoken of in seemingly forgotten – or destroyed – history. The Cavern of the Ancients opens the reader up to a split between good and evil and how ancient wisdom will play a role in future books.

Epic stories

I like to keep my stories short, focusing on multiple plotlines that evolve into something powerful and forward-looking in the end. The stories end with a thought of promise, though much like the Star Wars Saga you never know if good or evil will pull through in the end. That is why hope is necessary. Where many stories I read, or movies I watch with dragons have a single dragon or even a small weyr or thunder of dragons I don’t find many books pitting entire races of dragons against each other. So, rather than a single dragon destroying a human or troll army, the Drajeen, and Daejeen must destroy each other because they cannot exist together.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on dragons, your fantasy writing, or my books. You can find links to my books above or on my books page. As always, subscribers to Kindle Unlimited can read my books for free.

Best wishes and keep reading and writing.

*Sarah Cathey is the author of the fantasy novel Blue Star series which takes place on the three-mooned planet of Jeen. Her first two books released in 2019 have quickly garnered a following of devote readers and Sarah hopes that book three, Rise of the Daejeen, to be released mid-2020, will solidify herself in the fantasy realm of dragon novelists.

About me

I am a fantasy writer who spends much of my daydreaming up worlds of nefarious dragons. I would love if you take the time to read my novels which you can find below. I love reviews, so please take a moment to leave a review. 


Fall of the Drjeen
Birth of the Drajeen

Birth of the Drajeen, fantasy novel, Free on Kindle April 7 – April 11

birth-of-the-drajeen-cover-kindleLovers of fantasy join us on a journey into the Blue Star Series my second book of the series, Birth of the Drajeen.

I am excited to join our free book campaign. Birth of the Drajeen will be available free on Kindle from April 7 to April 11, 2020. As with all of my books, I also offer my books free for Kindle Unlimited subscribers.

“An asteroid has forced an exodus of ill-stricken Drjeen into quarantine within the Cavern of the Ancients. Amidst descension in ranks, deceit, and survival these Drjeen emerge from the cavern more peaceful, yet bound with more strength than ever before. But, as they escape the Cavern of the Ancients are their new beliefs and powers strong enough to survive on a fractured surface-world now alien to them? Follow Shakja, Shook, Princess Amanna, and Aput as they try to keep their ranks united while fending off an old enemy.”

As with all books offered for free (or even paid for) author’s love reviews. So, after reading Birth of the Drajeen please take the time to leave an Amazon review. If you would like to purchase, Fall of the Drjeen, the first book in the series, you can purchase it here!

If you have questions for me or would like a signed copy of one of my books you can contact Sarah Cathey here.

Fall of the Drjeen, fantasy book free on Kindle April 1-4.

Lovers of fantasy join us on a journey into a new fantasy novel series and the book, Fall of the Drjeen.

I’m excited to join the Cafe Legacy free book campaign and in the next couple weeks will offer both series books – Fall of the Drjeen and Birth of the Drajeen – free of charge for Kindle. Fall of the Drjeen will be available free on Kindle from April 1 to April 4, 2020. As with all of my books, I also offers books free for Kindle Unlimited subscribers.

“A blue star emerged over the planet of Jeen tossing chaos into a hierarchical world of castes. The Drjeen royalty are torn: flee, or stay… Or, does life no longer matter? How long will the lower settlement stay subservient as the royals follow ancient and secretive traditions of betrayal, assassination, and ego. Can a low-caste Drjeen and the most lauded warrior of the daken riders save the remnants of a civilization destined to be changed forever?Join Shakja and Shook as they journey into the Fall of the Drjeen.”

Fall of the Drjeen is my first novel and combines my two career experiences of veternary technician and flight instructor to step into the world of novelist. This series has been on my mind for decades and in 2019 began it’s own epic journey.

As with all books offered for free (or even paid for) author’s love reviews. So, after reading Fall of the Drjeen please take the time to leave an Amazon review.

If you have questions or would like a signed copy of one of my books you can contact Sarah Cathey here.

Why Everything Matters in a Novel – Guest Post by Jody Mabry

For a new writer, this can be a punch to the gut. What do you mean people don’t want to know the Ozark Mountains are the third oldest mountain range in the world? A quick, unnecessary fact: the one about the Ozarks was mine 15 years ago. Trimming down is easily one of the most difficult tasks any writer faces. However, with a few clues on what you should keep and what you shouldn’t, you should be on your way to trimming that 300,000-word epic about a little girl and her dog into something more readable.

Description is good, as long as it continues to move the story forward. Fun facts are not always in this category. In fact, I’ll go as far as saying, no fun facts should be in your book—ever. Show us what the person looks like through narrative and dialogue. And guess what? You do not have to vomit description all over the readers. Some of the best descriptors are those that go unnoticed like gently dropped bread crumbs along the journey.

Your character should not pick up a book, to simply pick it up and then put it down. Your character should have an explicit meaning in everything they do. For example, if your character picks up a book, they sure better be using that book for something in the short future. Is your character going to knock someone over the head with it to escape from a tower? Will they write their phone number in it, and hand the book to a lover? Will they pen a secret code on page 201 that unlocks a safe? If your character is not doing something to move the story forward, then they should not do it.

If your character has a flashback, the flashback should make sense to the story, and be used in the story. If you are talking about your grandfather and use a flashback to say how he always turns the TV off every time someone in the room talks, then that should have meaning in the story. While it may be a good description of your grandfather’s dislike of people talking during the Cubs game, unless he does this in your story, and it is a big part of your grandfather’s role in the story, it would be best to leave it out.

Don’t allude to things and think you are mysterious. A mystery has well-placed clues, often placed well enough that you didn’t even know the clue was there. Leaving the reader with a statement such as, “My buddy Richie left town without speaking a word…I wouldn’t find out until many years later why he did.” If you say this, you better mention why Richie left town pretty darn quick. If you don’t your reader will start to try and figure it out, and what they imagine will likely be crazier than what you have happen, which will lead to disappointment. The other problem with these statements is that there is potential you, your editor, and publisher miss the fact that you never actually did tell the reader why Richie left town. That’s alright, readers will catch it for you, they always do… and after your book is published.

Just remember, even the smallest detail has to push that story forward. Don’t try to show off how many facts you memorized in college, or how good you are at Trivial Pursuit. The reader just wants a good story.

The Blue Star Series

The Blue Star Series was not intended to be a series at all. Rather it evolved, much like the Drjeen from a single species into something much more.

I first began thinking of the planet Jeen when I was in middle school and as I got older I would sketch and scribble the occasional note. Though it wasn’t until I was in my late thirties that the story really began to come to life.

Like many writers we pull from our own experiences to develop fascinating stories. For me, and my early career as a veterinarian as well as my latter career as a flight instructor it seemed only natural that I created a world of creatures that could fly. Or, perhaps it was this world I’d been dreaming of for decades that led me to my careers.

However it came, I find myself no longer jotting notes, but rather putting story to paper. The Blue Star Series follows the lives of a humanoid-dragon type creature on the planet Jeen. There are of course similarities between the human race and that of the Jeen, however where they have significant advances in the sciences, they still follow a caste-like system and are ruled by archaic governance.

When a “blue star,” an asteroid comes close to striking the planet fear envelopes all Drjeen forcing a massive forced migration into the cavern of the ancients. Those who exist outside the caverns and those who live inside the caverns evolve over time. This culminates into a clash of a new age of Jeen and one that will forever change their world.