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Monday, 14 December 2015

NBTM TOUR & #GIVEAWAY - Fire by Belle Manuel


YA (Fantasy & Magic)



Chelsea and Chad are twin fire and water elementals, humans born with the ability to control the elements. Chelsea struggles to control her flames, while Chad finds himself under the control of dangerous people. War draws near, and brother and sister must choose a side, even if it’s against each other.


I watched as West sized me up, and I tried to do the same. Maybe his bulk could be his weakness, I told myself. With as much muscle as he had, there was no way he could run as fast as I could. I kept that in the back of my mind as I lit myself light up entirely. West laughed and lit up, too, but he burned hot, bright blue-white flames while I stood in cooler yellows and oranges. I didn’t let it shake me.

He charged, ready to tackle me. I looked quickly and saw an opening for me to run past him. I did, and as I passed him, our flames brushed together, and I pushed my fire through his. He groaned loudly and growled, pushing his flames out further. This time, I charged at him, taking advantage of his anger. He tried to grab at me, but I was too quick as I slipped through his opened arms. I had to leap up and back, fitting right up through the gap of his closing arms and beyond. As I was in the air, flying away from West, a knife thin tendril of fire lashed at my side. I hit the ground hard, but immediately shot a continuous stream of fire up at him. His flames may have been hotter, but mine were easier to control.

I didn’t let up as he ran at me and finally a breach in his flames appeared. I rolled over and kicked him with a fireball to increase the chances of doing damage. A cracking sound echoed as my foot met his rib cage and then West let out a horrible yell. He fell to his knees on the ground in front of me, his pained eyes shooting over to Blaze. I pushed myself away from him, worried that he was somehow faking the pain.

Blaze whistled loudly, signaling the end of the first round.

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How to Make Your Characters Believable

Ok, sure we've all read about/as someone who seems so much better than us, so much smarter or stronger, maybe more attractive. But those characters were still believable because of just a few things that every writer needs to use!

Everyone has a virtue, that thing that makes them good on some level, or redeemable if they're a 'bad guy.' Your character should, too! If your lead female is strong and confident in her abilities in the workplace or maybe her skill that makes the story worth reading, you make her lack the confidence elsewhere. maybe she's always felt that she's not truly good enough, and that's why she strives so hard. If that's her fault, you dig deeper. Her mother was always rude, condescending and reminding her that she was worthless, so now she focuses hard to be better than everyone out there. It will strike a chord with some, and make others think about how horrible it would be to have that struggle.

Everyone also has a vice, something that makes them fallible in the face of adversity. Say your lead male is super cocky about how good looking he is, so he's constantly turned down. He isn't ugly, but his cockiness ruins him to people, so he finds himself constantly in meaningless relationships, not understanding why he can't have what his friends are beginning to find in their SOs. Even something that small makes him relatable. We've gotten a little too cocky, or a little too comfortable in a situation, and it's led to something we want fading away fast. Every single person has a vice, whether big or small, so your character should, too.

Something else to add to believability is letting your character fail a few times! Yes, i know it sounds like it makes no sense, but can you honestly say that you have succeeded at everything you've ever tried? If so, you're not human. Even Bill Gates failed many times! Your character has to save the world because she's the only one immune to a toxin that the government is using to kill people. After she's fought, learned and gained support, she gets to the finish line to be side swiped by the bad guys! She feels like a failure, she thinks she's ruined everything, but then she journeys back and sees the support she never knew she had. She has millions who have joined her, so that when round tow comes: she's ready to fight to the death.

Lastly, the character needs to have someone hate them for no apparent reason. This creates a small conflict that everyone can relate to. We've all encountered someone who just didn't like us, no matter what we did. When your character deals with that, it helps them become so much more than a two dimensional person written on paper, it gives them depth and the opportunity to question themselves - as we all do.

The main thing to remember is to always think about whether this person could exist in the real world. Ignore the scenarios, ignore the environment, on the character's baser level, would they ever be real? That will always help to guide your story along. I hope this helps you build your own stories and characters, i know these things have helped me multiple times!

Belle will be awarding $50 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Follow the tour and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning. The tour dates can be found here

Born in Louisiana, Belle Manuel spent her early years learning to be a good Cajun girl before moving to Texas. She visits Louisiana often, enjoying the quiet break from the active Texas life. When not writing, Belle enjoys crochet and crossword puzzles. Her debut novel, Fire, was released July 1st of this year.

Belle first began writing in middle school, where her first writing job was getting paid by other students to write stories for them. She enjoyed turning their random requests into interesting stories, and the money she made helped fund her reading habit.

Fire began with an idea, but quickly took on a life of its own and changed as Belle wrote it. With all the adjustments and improvements, it eventually evolved into The Elemental Series.


Tour Organised By: 

Goddess Fish Promotions


  1. Where do the your ideas come from?

    1. Music. Moods. You name it. The original idea for this novel came from a friend paying me for stories in high school. And I made it different when I hit college.

  2. Happy to be a part of this tour, thank you for sharing!

  3. Wow, what an exciting and unique excerpt.

  4. Enjoyed the post and excerpt,sounds like a great read, thanks for sharing!

  5. I liked the excerpt, sounds intriguing.

  6. Thank you all for your responses! I'm always on my Instagram, and answer emails. @belle_manuel

  7. Great post, sounds like an excellent book! Thanks for sharing :)

  8. I enjoyed the excerpt, thanks for sharing!

  9. I loved this excerpt! Thank you for it and the How to Make Your Characters Believable post.