Editing, Novel Writing

#YouKnowYouAreAWriterWhen you can flip your own switches. #VotB

Original manuscript of a revision of "Spi...
Even Poe had to revise his work! | Original manuscript of a revision of “Spirits of the Dead” in Poe’s handwriting. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

At various crossroads on my writing journey, I have often happened upon “road signs” that let me know that I am heading in the right direction. These signs make me think, “Wow, I really AM a writer.” One example was when I completed my very first novel manuscript draft seven years ago. You know how it is. It feels like you will never finish. You often wonder if you are even capable of writing a complete novel. And then, one day, you find yourself typing, “THE END,” and you think, “Wow, I really AM a writer.”

At that moment, it feels like you have accomplished everything you need to do. You have reached the end of your writing journey. You wrote a novel! Woohoo! That’s a MAJOR accomplishment. And you are, rightfully, proud of that accomplishment.

But then, you realize that you need to edit that first draft. You realize that you still have a lot of work to do before you can call it, “done.” (Or, at least I hope you do!) You don’t rush out and self-publish that first draft because you take your writing seriously, and you want to offer your readers the best possible reading experience. Continue reading “#YouKnowYouAreAWriterWhen you can flip your own switches. #VotB”

Blogging, Book Reviews, Valley of the Bees

Valley of the Bees Book Blog Tour: Stop #1

Author T. S. Dickerson
Author T. S. Dickerson

The With Envy Stung: Valley of the Bees #1 book blog tour has officially begun! My first stop is taking place today (right now!) over at author T. S. Dickerson’s blog, where she has posted a book review of my latest novel, which will release on September 1, 2016.

Go check out this book review now, and then check back here later to find out where the With Envy Stung: Valley of the Bees #1 book blog tour will be stopping next.

Do you want to be a part of this blog tour? Contact Me for details!

Buy The Book

For a limited time, With Envy Stung: Valley of the Bees #1 is available for only 99 cents. Pre-order your copy today before the book returns to its regular price of $3.99!

Continue reading “Valley of the Bees Book Blog Tour: Stop #1”

eBooks, Publishing

How to expand your audience with Smashwords

Like many indie publishers, I began my publishing journey with Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP). Since learning to publish an eBook was more than enough knowledge to digest on its own without learning to publish on multiple platforms at once, I decided to stick with KDP for a while until I had a better idea of what I was doing. However, with the launch of my latest book project, I decided it was time to finally expand beyond Kindle and Nook and learn how to use Smashwords.

Capture

The leap from Kindle to Nook eBook publishing was a no-brainer. I wanted my print books to be available in brick and mortar bookstores like Barnes and Noble, and I wanted my B&N customers to also be able to access my books on their eReaders. But I knew there was still a vast audience that had no access to my books. Continue reading “How to expand your audience with Smashwords”

Short Story

Now available on Kindle: Rain at Three (with a bonus free download!)

Rain at three, short story
“Rain at Three” is now available on Kindle for 99 cents.

My short story, Rain at Three, is now available on Kindle for 99 cents! Here’s a brief description:

Can you ever really know the man you’re marrying until you’ve really gotten to know him? Vicki is beginning to learn just what kind of man she has married. Is the honeymoon over so quickly? It may be 73 degrees and sunny in Hawaii, but it always rains at 3 p.m.

Download your copy of Rain at Three today! If you like my story, please do me a favor and review it on Amazon.

As an added bonus, for today only, you can also get a free download of my son’s book, Avery Moves. Avery was eight years old when he wrote and illustrated this book for a school project. He had so much fun with it, we decided to take the fun one step further and publish the book on Kindle! He would love to see that people are downloading his story. If you have any words of encouragement for him to keep writing, please post them to the review section on Amazon.  Continue reading “Now available on Kindle: Rain at Three (with a bonus free download!)”

eBooks, Novel Writing

Publishing thoughts tumbling around in my mind     

I’ve been thinking a lot about my fantasy novel WIP lately. The story has grown far beyond the scope of a single book. In fact, I’m pretty sure at this point that it has grown beyond the scope of a trilogy. It has reached such epic proportions, I feel I should stop searching for the end of the journey and instead start looking for a wayside stop with a magnificent view to share with my readers. In short, I am thinking about serializing my story and releasing the first part at some point in the next month or two.

I’ve been chasing this idea around in circles for months. Maybe it’s just wishful thinking, but there’s this part of me that wonders if the added pressure of a potential readership anxiously awaiting the next installment will push me to get part two ready to publish. I have proven that I am at my most productive when I have hard and fast deadlines to meet. I haven’t missed a deadline yet. Continue reading “Publishing thoughts tumbling around in my mind     “

Publishing

Publishing 101: Honey, that’s not how it works

This gave me a chuckle. I recently saw this comment on a promotional post on the HarperCollins Facebook page.

Publishing - That's not how it works

Do people really believe that getting a novel published is as easy as commenting on a publisher’s Facebook post and asking how much they charge? Continue reading “Publishing 101: Honey, that’s not how it works”

Publishing

KDP publishing lesson: Convert your Word document to a webpage prior to publishing

Word document to web page conversion
Here’s a screen shot of me converting my Word document to a “web page.” Click the image to “enlargen.” (Yes, this is me making up new words again. I’m a writer. It’s what I do.)

They say you learn something new every day, and I tend to agree. Today, I learned something new that is worth sharing with anyone who is considering publishing their own work via Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP).

If you have ever published an eBook via KDP, you are probably familiar with that moment of frustration you experience when you realize that the Word document you so carefully edited and formatted has not rendered properly in Kindle format.

When I published my poetry collection last year, I spent hours flipping back and forth between my original Word document and the converted Kindle file, fixing one formatting error after another. I then had to re-publish the book with the new, updated version of my Word document. I am still not happy with the results, but I eventually just got sick of messing with it! Continue reading “KDP publishing lesson: Convert your Word document to a webpage prior to publishing”

eBooks, Mount Mary College, Publishing

The self-publishing bug is back

English: A Picture of a eBook Español: Foto de...
English: A Picture of a eBook Español: Foto de eBook Беларуская: Фотаздымак электроннай кнігі Русский: Фотография электронной книги (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Since I published my very first ebook last year, I kind of have the self-publishing bug. I can’t wait to finish my first novel and get it out there where people can read it! The only problem is, each of my novel projects are months (at minimum) from being publishable. I suppose that’s what happens when you allow yourself to start multiple projects rather than finishing one before starting the next.

One of my writing goals for 2014 was to begin to publish at least one ebook every year. My goal for 2015 is to focus on one writing project and finish it so I can publish it in 2016. But that doesn’t help me meet my 2014 goal, does it? I can’t really say I’ve met that goal if I only did it one year in a row, now can I? Continue reading “The self-publishing bug is back”

Writers on Writing

What’s the worst writing advice you’ve ever received?

Writer's Block 1
What’s the worst thing someone could say to you when you’re suffering from writer’s block? | Writer’s Block 1 (Photo credit: NathanGunter)

As writers, we know how rare it is for our friends and relatives to really “get” what we do and why we do it. We know they love us and want to support us, but sometimes they make thoughtless comments that make us want to wring their necks. I recently asked my online writer’s group what was the worst “advice” they have received from well-meaning friends and family members. Here are some of the responses I received:

Editing

What to do with your first developmental edit from a real editor

Brendan Raven Hill Dustbin - Black
If you’re like most writers, your first draft likely belongs in a trash bin. But don’t despair. A professional editor can help you turn your garbage into a work of art. | Brendan Raven Hill Dustbin – Black (Photo credits: West Elm)

Picture this. You’ve just completed your first novel and are ready to hire an editor to give it a swift once-over before you publish it. You call an editor who comes highly recommended, and she asks you what kind of edit you are looking for. Do you want a developmental edit? A copy edit? Something in between?

You’re not quite sure, so she asks you if this will be your first edit. You inform her that you have edited it at least five times yourself. Plus, a couple of your friends read it and thought it was pretty cool. Your mom, especially, loved it. Based on this info, your new editor recommends that you put your novel through a developmental edit first. The following is a list of 27 long and crazy steps that many first-timers go through when their first novel manuscript reaches this phase in the writing process: Continue reading “What to do with your first developmental edit from a real editor”