Friday, July 29, 2016

Making The Most of Your Time as a Writer

I admit.  I haven't blogged in quite a bit.  It took me a few attempts to relearn which account I used and to reset my password just to get into my blog.  I'm a writer; not a computer genius.  Okay.  So, now that I got that disclaimer out of the way, we're going to talk about time.  Yes, it seems like there is a lot of it floating around during the day, but somehow it gets sucked up by lots of different things.  Is it just me or do this also happen to you?  So, then you're a writer.  You want to write.  When I have any spare time, I want to sequester myself away from the world so I can see what my characters are up to.  I want to move their story along.  I admittedly get so caught up in my book, that I forget about blogging, marketing, helping other authors or pretty much doing anything except writing.  Now, I want you to step back for a minute and ask yourself, "Is that such a bad thing?"  Or the more important question of all, "Why do I write?"  If you're an aspiring writer, you will want to have that answer on lock down.  And whatever that answer is, use your time and align it with the reason you write.  For me, it is simple.  I write because I enjoy it.  I write for me.  Would I like to sell lots of books?  Sure.  Would I like to have writing be my primary career?  Eventually.  But none of these are the reasons I write.  What is your main reason for writing?  Are you honoring that reason with how you spend your time?  I challenge you to do that and I guarantee your writing will improve dramatically!  Now, go write.  :)

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Writers Website: Wattpad

Are you a writer?  Do you enjoy dabbling in the written word: poetry, fiction, articles.  Whether you have or haven't been published, but you would like some feedback on your work.  There is a great website just for you.  It is called Wattpad.  It is a free site where you can publish your writing no matter if it is 1 page or 500 pages.  People will read your work and provide comments.  As with all websites, it will take you a little time to set up your profile.  It isn't complicated, but it takes time.  You will want a profile picture.  There are communities you can join and talk to other fellow writers.  Warning: I found myself getting a little lost in the communities because there are so many fun posts to read.

A few things you will want to keep in mind.  The site generally has a younger audience; however, there are communities for 'older' writers.  (Older is anyone over 30).  lol.  It is fun to read a younger audience's writing.  Don't let this deter you.  It is just good to know.  Of course, people will read your work for free.  You won't make any money on this site, but it does provide some feedback.  I have also enjoyed talking to people that want to become published.  I enjoy providing them with tips and encouragement.  It is also neat to read a variety of works.  Some are really good and inspiring.  It is all generally a ton of fun.

The website is  Enjoy!

Monday, May 6, 2013

Writing: Keeping the Momentum

I am currently working on my third book in my 47 Destinies series.  It has an incredible plot.  The main character is edgy and blunt.  I've been working up to this story even as I wrote the last two books.  I even placed clues and background in the other two books to make this story work.  (And let me tell you, I am so glad I did!)  It is a really fun book to write.

However, my life outside of writing has been chaotic to say the least.  My bread-and-butter job wears me out during the week so when I get to my bed, I can barely keep my eyes open let alone write.  My weekends have been jammed pack to where I may have one hour each weekend to write, if that!  Why am I telling you all of this?  BECAUSE, you have to keep your momentum going when you are on a project.  If you let too much time slip, the story has a possibility of slipping as well.  I've heard that you should write everyday.  It isn't possible for me, but I do write at least once a week.  I set aside 1-2 solid hours.

 often get asked, "how do you find time to write?"  It is an easy answer, "I love writing!"  Nevertheless, when things get busy, I still have to carve out time.  Anything worth doing is going to take time.  There will be some level of sacrifice involved.  But when you are working in your passion, it won't feel like a sacrifice.  It will feel like you are exactly where you should be.  And that is how you keep the momentum going!  Happy writing!

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Free Marketing Websites

You have a book.  You love it!  Your mom loves it!  (If your mom doesn't love your book, you may want to consider a revision.  Your mom is your #1 fan.  If your #1 fan doesn't love your book, you may have a problem.  Anyway, my mom loves both of my books so I am good.)

How in the world do you get the word out about your incredible book?  By no means do I have all the answers to this mystical question.  In fact, I only have a vague idea on how to market a book.  To top it off, I have an ebook and a paperback version to market.  Great!  Now I have two markets.  :)  Both of these markets are radically shifting and changing daily so hang on for a wild ride.

My main advice is to dabble in everything.  See what works.  I personally like Goodreads.  They have a great author program and I have found their giveaways to be helpful.  If you do a giveaway, just start with one book and do a month long time period.  You won't get a ton of response at first, but a few days toward the end of the giveaway, your book gets featured toward the top.  It is the most visible then and people enter to win it.  I also like the author dashboard.  It is interesting to view over time.

Bublish is also fun to use.  I am not sure of the results from Bublish, but it is free and enjoyable.  You can re-post the bubbles so be sure to use that option.  Bublish also publishes new bubbles every Sunday.

One of my author friends sent me this great link that I want to share on this topic.  It has some great advice.  It is

Did you like it?   (Notice Goodreads is the first on the list.)

Keep in mind that marketing takes time.  What?  I know.  Time.  Does it pay off?  I will let you know in a few years.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

10 Questions About My Book: A Next Big Thing Blog Hop Posting

A fellow author, Jo Chandler, tagged me in the in the “Next Big Thing Blog Hop” interview series. The point of the series is to give you readers an insight into an upcoming book or a work-in-progress. I thought it would be a fun way to connect with other authors while also sharing about the third book in my 47 Destinies series.

The Next Big Thing in my writing life is THIS:

1. What is the working title of your book or story?

47 Destinies: The Matriarch

2. What is a one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Leslie Locke, a wealthy snob, crumbles when her haunting past of lies and heartache smacks her straight across the face.

3. Where did the idea for the book come from?

While writing the first two books in my 47 Destinies series, I thoroughly enjoyed writing about the character Leslie. She is direct, sharp, rude and the master of manipulation. I found myself looking forward to writing her dialog and scenes. The more time I spent with her, the more I wondered, why is Leslie so terrible? What experiences in Leslie's past influenced her behavior?

My readers can't stand Leslie so it is my goal for them to help understand her a little. I don't expect them to like her at the end, but I think they will gain a new appreciation for her.

4. What genre does your book fall under?

Contemporary Romance

5. Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

Leslie: Angelina Jolie (aged about 15 years)

Cora: Sandra Bullock

Brent: George Clooney (about 10 years younger)

6. Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

My publisher is Silverlake eBooks (

7. How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

47 Destinies (Book One) 6 months

47 Destinies: Discovering Grace (Book Two) 4-5 months

47 Destinies: The Matriarch (Book Three) I just started. It is set to release in the Fall of 2013

8. What other books would you compare this story to, within your genre?

My novels are a blend of romance, humor and traveling. I would compare them to some of Nora Roberts novels.

9. Who or what inspired you to write this book?

The main setting for this book is New Orleans. The main character, Leslie, inspired me to tell her story.

10. What else about your book might pique the reader's interest?

There will be several twists and turns in Book Three. Be prepared to be surprised when Leslie goes back in time to relive parts of her past. I cannot reveal too much for fear of giving it all away!

Now I've tagged authors to take on these “Next Big Thing” questions themselves. Please check out their blogs.

Jo Chandler has published two young adult fiction novels titled This Side of Forever and Street Girl. She is also releasing another fantastic title soon. Check out her blog at

Rick Nicholson published a book in January 2013. Bobby’s Song is the poignant tale of two friends determined to not let death separate them as they slowly learn that true friendship has the power to cross every dimension. Rich's blog

Geraldine Birch's YA historical novel “The Swastika Tattoo” is about life of German POWs held in a camp in Arizona. Her blog is full of incredible information and blog posts about this fascinating time period.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Writing a Book: I'm done. Now what?

Your masterpiece is done.  Your edit phase is done.  (As done as any writer can be.  It is challenging to know when to say enough is enough).  You have a cover.  You should be thrilled.  Part of you is thrilled.  Another larger part of you says, "now what?"  You know you should begin looking for a publisher.  Or if you have a publisher, you should begin marketing your work.  You should want to market your work, right?  Not necessarily.  I was rather shocked about the reality of how much of the marketing falls on the author.  I was under the impression that all I had to do was write incredible books, sit back and bask in the moment.  Well, that is not the case in this age of publishing.  Gone are the large bookstores.  The large publishing houses are dwindling.  At first, this bummed me out a little, but then I saw the opportunity in it.  The publishing world is going through a huge transformation.  I will get into that in a different publishing/marketing post. 

I want to come back to the, "now what?" question.  Here is my advice, celebrate.  Take some time and let it sink in.  Stare at your book.  Pat yourself on the back.  Smile.  Enjoy the moment.  It is a huge accomplishment.  I have heard statistics that for every 200 people that want to write a book, only one person writes a book.  There is plenty of work ahead for you so take a set amount of time and relax.  For me, it is about 2-4 weeks where I just don't write.  I think a lot about my next book, but I don't write.  I want the process to stay fun.  I don't want to get caught up in the, "I have to do this or that."  Maybe if it was my only income, I might be harder on myself.  :)

I just published my second book.  It dawned on me that I may be writing books for the rest of my life.  I am in no hurry to get them all done.  In fact, I will likely never be done.  As a writer, that is a very good thing.  So, now what?  Who knows!!!  I sure don't and that fact makes me very happy.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Writing: Finding the Time

One of the most frequent questions I receive since I have become a publisher author is, "when do you have time to write?"  I must admit, this question brings me several mixed emotions.  At times, I feel it is an authentic question and people want to learn how to make more time in their lives to write.  At other times, I feel it what they are really asking is, "what are you ignoring in your life in order to write?"  So, after much thought, I have come up with two great responses:

1.  When you do something you love, you make the time.  I mainly write late at night.  I occasionally will write during the day on the weekend between all of my other activities.  I have a laptop my dad gave me and my intent was to write during lunch at my day job.  Unfortunately, it is difficult for me to take a lunch at my job so this has yet to pan out.  It seems like a great idea, but just doesn't happen.  I don't have a writing schedule and I don't write everyday.  I am in no hurry to get my books done.  I just let it flow.  I don't put any pressure on myself because then it wouldn't be fun.

2. I gave up reading and watching television.  People don't seem to like this response as much.  I didn't realize exactly how much time I spent watching television in the evenings.  On average, I watched 1-2 hours a night.  Instead of watching television, I usually spend that time writing or promoting my book.  The reward is far greater than what I received from the television.  Please don't get me wrong, I am not advocating for anyone to give up television.  It just worked for me.  I also stopped reading.  I did this mainly so I won't be influenced by another writer's style.  I want my works to reflect me 100%.  This includes my jargon and own version of slang.

There you have it!  There is no magical potion or extra time given to authors (wouldn't that be fabulous).  We are all given the same amount of time in life.  If you want to find more time, look at how you are spending your current allotment and challenge yourself to try something different.  I guarantee that you will be pleased with the results!