Monday, November 20, 2017

GOT MONEY???

You have submitted that manuscript. You waited months for an answer on whether your writing stood out. You were elated when they said YES! You received an advance! 

Now you are awaiting for your 'baby' to be delivered.

It went through edits, rewrites, more edits and now it's in cover design. You rejected the first one but the second one is spot on! Then you had to write a synopsis AND short bio.


Your novel is now in the finishing stages of book production.


But wait! You look at your desk and see it.

There's that check you received! You were scared to cash it because you didn't know if it was actually happening! You didn't want to jink it so you left it there, in the envelope until now.

You are published! 

You got an advance and now you have money!

But what will you do with that sudden 'extra' money that you have.


Here's an idea: Use it for marketing! Buy your business cards, buy a domain name or invest in going to a conference and getting on a panel to promote that novel!

See, getting money is great and getting money as an author is greater! 

However most authors look at it like 'extra' cash to spend on things NOT related to being an author. 

You have to invest that money back into your business. 

Remember, I keep telling you that you are now a SMALL BUSINESS and your business is writing. 

Buy that new laptop, Ipad, or desktop computer you've been eyeing for some time. Buy a printer or portable hard drive. Buy flash drives to keep your novels on. Buy that outfit that will become your 'author wear' when you travel and sit on panels to discuss your novel. Buy that carrying case, messenger bag or duffel bag to carry your manuscript when you travel. Buy a nice pen to sign your books with. Pay for some professional photos of yourself and your novel. There are endless possibilities.

Remember, you can write it all off come April so invest it now; you will get it back later.

So what are YOU going to do with that advance for your novel? 

Make sure you choose wisely.

Monday, November 13, 2017

HAPPY NEW YEAR....ALMOST

With the end of the year fast approaching, you need to begin making plans now.

Make plans to get your writing schedule set for the new year. 

Make plans to attend some conferences.

Make plans to connect with authors outside of your genre.

Make time to treat yourself to that new book that you have been wanting to read.

Make time to research and visit some of the locations that you reference in your novels.

Make time to get a new desktop or laptop. (You do know that most laptops are built to last only 3 years.)

Make time to get your books in order and receipts ready for tax season. (You did keep your receipts for mileage when you drove to that conference didn't you?)

See, now is the time to make plans. 

After all; there are only 48 more days until 2018!

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

REFRESHED, RENEWED, REJUVANATED

That is how I feel when I spend time with other authors. 

In the past few weeks, different writer and fan conferences concluded.

MDC3Con (Creatures, Crimes and Creativity) and BoucherCon are two of my favorites. Thrillerfest is another.

This is the time of year for the three R's. 

Refreshing your desire to write. Renewing your goals and rejuvenating that manuscript that has been in your desk for months without seeing the light of day. 

This is also the time of year for the fourth R.

Reflection.

Reflect on what you have done for the last 10 months. Reflect on how your writing has improved. Reflect on what it is to be an author. 

This is the time that the leaves change, your wardrobe gets warmer and your writing should become easier as the day passes. 

This is also the time of year that authors gather to talk and share ideas. They share what they have learned with each other. They share their ups and downs. They share their successes and their failures. 

They also share what they plan on doing differently in the coming year. 

If you don't have a support group to talk to; you really need to join one. 

Better yet....create one. 

Create what you need. After all; writing is a solitary thing. But the benefits of being an author is that you get to meet some amazing people to reflect, refresh, renew and be rejuvenated with.

Are you ready for your new season? 

I am.


Monday, October 30, 2017

CHANGE IS GOOD...

Change is hard for people and change for me is always hard.

I've been working on this manuscript for almost a year and didn't want to change a thing.

That was until Regina (character in the novel) kept telling me that I was writing her part all wrong.

Like, what? Really?

But after stepping away from it and re-reading it. She was right.

Her part should have been much bigger. I had been making her twin sister the main character; while all along it should have been Regina.

See I thought that Regina just wanted the limelight for herself. Turns our she actually is the one driving the story. Who knew? 

So, after bidding a farewell to over 50 pages of the story; I'm back on track. 

Regina is happy. Her twin is much more rounded and I'm on a roll with my murder mystery.

See, in this case; change WAS good.

I'm just glad that the change came BEFORE I wrote; THE END

Thursday, October 12, 2017

WHERE DID THE TIME GO?

I blinked my eyes and summer was over and now the fall has begun.

Where did all of my time go?

Well, I spent a lot of it,  recuperating from various illnesses and trying to find my drive to write again.

I'm not ashamed to say that I have been occupy my time with relationships and travel and tiny house plans but now is the time for me to sit my butt back at my computer and get these novels done.

Yes, I said novels.

Since August, I have been working on three novels, at the same time. 

Trying to finish up, The Stiletto Stalker. Working on The Teacher's Lounge and also working on a new romance; not yet titled.

See; while it may "seem" that I have become a slacker; I really haven't. 

Life got in the way but so did I. You see, I got in the way of my own writing. Every time I wanted to sit down and write; something would pull my attention away from it. Grand kids ( I have a new set of twins grandchildren, which makes 11 for me!) Work...trying to retire so that I can write all the time. Friends...yes, I love hanging out with my friends.

So you see, my life took on a life of it's own and now I'm ready to slow myself back down and get back to my first love. 

Writing.

So, where did your time go? How did you spend it and was it worth it? 

I can say...Absolutely!

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

SUMMER IS ALMOST OVER

What have you done in your writing life?

Did you go to any conferences? Did you sign up to attend some conferences? 

Did you complete that manuscript? Did you submit your completed manuscript to a publisher?

Did you set up a dedicated writing space? Do you use that writing space at least once a day?

These are questions that you should be asking yourself. Remember, this was supposed to be the summer of embracing your author life.

What? You didn't answer yes to any of those questions? Why? What is the hold up? Why didn't you take the Summer of 2017 to be the summer of you embracing being an author? 

I haven't done much in my writing life except purge some old manuscripts that haven't seen sunlight since they were first conceived. However, what I did do was that I began to prepare myself for the fall conference and writing workshops. 

Being an author is never ending. Being an author is not as easy as just sitting down at a computer and typing out a great story. It involves marketing, being a business person and being your own biggest fan.

Being an author means that you are attending conferences, that you are writing at least once a day and that you are finishing up the manuscript and submitting it to a publisher. It also means that you are prepared for the criticism that comes with being an author.

So, summer is almost over. What are you going to do to prepare for the fall?

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

TRUST YOUR INSTINCTS

Writing is one of those things that can come easy for some.

But for others, it comes a little harder.

Your instincts are built into your psyche to let you know when something isn't quite right.

Use those same instincts in your writing.

Writing is done by feeling your way through your story. Some use outlines to keep them on track but when you are writing, have you ever found yourself talking out loud or acting out a scene?

This is your instinct telling you that maybe it might not work out that way. Maybe someone wouldn't say a certain sentence or phrase that way or maybe a violent scene needs to acted out so as to be realistic.  

In writing, don't fall so in love with your characters that you can't erase or delete them before your novel is completed.

Trust your instincts in this as well. 

Even that scene that you loved writing might need to go. Ask yourself the following questions if your 'instinct' is telling you that something is not right.

1. Did this event slow down the scene?
2. Can this scene be told in a flashback or memory?
3. Why do I need this scene in the novel?

If you answer yes to any of those questions, your instinct knows what needs to happen. 

Writing is about following your heart but also following your instinct. 

What is your instinct telling you right now about what you are currently working on?