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Digital Books During Isolated Times #AuthorToolBoxBlogHop

Author Toolbox Blog Hop

The Author Toolbox Blog Hop is “a monthly blog hop on the theme of resources/learning for authors: posts related to the craft of writing, editing, querying, marketing, publishing, blogging tips for authors, reviews of author-related products, anything that an author would find helpful.” Want to jump into the writing tool box? Search #AuthorToolboxBlogHop or to join via blog, click here.

"If the book is true, it will find an audience that is meant to read it." By Wally Lamb

Currently, my entire town has been asked to quarantine until April 6. City offices are closed, events with over 10 people are closed, which means the local libraries have extended due dates on books until their doors reopen in April. This date may change.

We’ll make it. I believe we will eventually conquer and thrive again 🙂

Considering all of these surreal events, this month I’m thinking about the importance of eBooks and what it means to author and writers. Do audiences find e-books as easily? Do covers matter as much? Will the publishing industry change again, completely focused on them?  I’m not %100 sure, but I have been cruising around the internet reviewing different articles on the dos and dont’s. So far, I like the list of dont’s because I’ve learned a great deal. I am also happy we have eBooks during these isolated times to escape our walls in our own homes.

A list of favorite eBook tips:

From Owlcation by author Jennifer Wilber on 10 Reasons Why eBooks are Better Than Print, I got a couple of great reasons to consider eBooks over print:

  • They can be read in the dark
  • New releases are usually cheaper
  • Viewers have multiple font options
  • eBooks have no late fees from libraries (my favorite one)
  • My own added tip: eBooks are sanitary as long as your screen is clean and your fingers are too 🙂

From Publish Green on The Important of a Professional eBook Cover, I got:

  • With all the eBooks on the market today, it is important as an author that your eBook cover makes a lasting first impression. 
  • The cover makes your eBook stand out on similar topics with other authors. I know I’ve drawn to the beauty of a cover first. Publish Green also offers eBook cover designs.

My favorite thorough article on both benefits and drawbacks of eBooks came from Investopedia:

  • E-readers may cause eye strain, and some screens are not easy to read in sunlight.
  • I also learned the expenses to consider when making eBooks such as the added technology cost of formatting the eBook for multiple reading platforms as well as the conversion cost of print formats to electronic files.

What about you? What number one tip do you have about what has gone well or what you might change regarding eBooks?

Happy Hop Day.

Trust the Process #IWSG #AMWRITING

[I wrote this post as a member of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group where we share our worries and also offer support and encouragement to each other on the first Wednesday of every month. If you’re a writer like me and you’re looking for a bit of support, you can click the link and sign up here

Thank you to our awesome co-hosts this month: Jacqui Murray, Lisa Buie-Collard, Sarah Foster, Natalie Aguirre, and Shannon Lawrence!

Check out our IWSG homepage for recent news and events.  And as always, thank you to founder Alex J. Cavaugh 🙂 

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Trust in the process

This month, I’ve decided to go my own way with my own insecurity–trust in a new fluid writing process.

When I write, I always have a plan from the beginning, middle to end, and all the details in between. I use excel and plot out the moon patterns in a month, the days of the week and where every character is in the story during a certain point in the plot. I define the plot points, and then finally, I start to write.

Not this new draft. Now, I’m biting my nails totally insecure. This new draft is more of an organic process. I still have the end in mind, but my outlining techniques have changed. I did create the first 6 chapters with my editors approval. Then something interesting happened. She told me to stop. She told me to write. I admit, my energy was there. I was hearing the dialogue, seeing the scenes. Plus, one of my writing friend’s who connected  me with my editor, mentioned I should always listen to the editor’s every word of advice. So I have. But now that I’m well past these 6 chapters, my initial excitement has morphed into creative release mixed with a gripping fear all at once. A true sense of the experience of a roller coaster? That pretty much sums it up. I guess since this is the second/sort of third draft, and I do have a great sense of my characters, maybe it will be okay? *scrunching up face and clenching hands *

I know my editor believes. I believe in her. I just hope I can believe in me, and continue to allow the process to lead.

Any thoughts on how you begin a second draft revision process?  I’d love to hear it.

A Consequential Brainstorm #IWSG #amwriting

[I wrote this post as a member of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group where we share our worries and also offer support and encouragement to each other on the first Wednesday of every month. If you’re a writer like me and you’re looking for a bit of support, you can click the link and sign up here]

This month’s awesome Co-Hosts feature other fabulous writing friends with me:

C. Lee McKenzie, Lisa Buie-Collard , Sadira Stone, and Patricia Josephine.  

Check out our IWSG homepage for recent news and events.  And as always, thank you to founder Alex J. Cavaugh 🙂 

***

"The beginning of knowledge is the discovery of something we do not understand." Frank Herbert.

The weirdest google discovery I ever made was the existence of bizarre planets held in a tidal lock to their star. One side always faces their star and the other side is permanently without that light and heat. These planets look exactly like their names—Eyeball planets.

Twilight areas truly exist. Ice and perpetual night are at 180 degrees of the planet, darkening the backside of the eyeball appearance while clouds and vapor create light and white uncertainty like an eye.

And there are tons of them.

My favorite discovery is how some of the hotter planets may fade toward the center, some sort of midpoint area, cooling with the mix of night on the other side of the world, which, may resort in water through the midline. Water aids life. Could potential life exist in this mid ring? Scientists aren’t sure, but the idea of life on these strange planets is very intriguing.

And just to remind you, I’m no scientist, so this post is all my interpretation of the Youtube surfing I’ve done.

This month, the IWSG question of the month asked: “What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever googled in researching a story?”

I hope my answer was a little interesting to you too.

Other news?


My busy home and career life haven’t changed. I have little time to market or think outside of my writing, but I’m writing, a little each day. I’m also working with an exceptional writing coach.  I’ve slowed down my manuscript and am working with her, thrilled with our once a month correspondence. It’s been the most fantastic experience. I’m growing in ways I never imagined.

So what am I reading?

I just finished one of the best trilogies I’ve come across in a long time. A page turner series I couldn’t put down: The Chemical Trilogy by Lauren DeStefano. If you like YA and untraditional futuristic possibility, you’ll like this one.

So Happy IWSG Day everyone 🙂 Keep Dreaming. Keep Plotting. Just don’t stop because of the struggle 🙂

Imaginative Potential in Useless Academic Requirements #IWSG #amwriting #WednesdayMotivation

[I wrote this post as a member of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group where we share our worries and also offer support and encouragement to each other on the first Wednesday of every month. If you’re a writer like me and you’re looking for a bit of support, you can click the link and sign up here]

This month’s awesome Co-Hosts:    Raimey Gallant, Natalie Aguirre, CV Grehan, and Michelle Wallace!

Check out our IWSG homepage.  And as always, thank you to founder Alex J. Cavaugh 🙂 

***

Galileo Quote

This past Monday while I was getting ready for work, while the pups wove in and out of my legs in the bathroom, the 6 a.m. news caught my attention. A survey of post high school students listed four top useless required learning items:

  • The Pythagorean Theorem
  • The Periodic Table
  • Protons and Electrons
  • The sum of Pi = 3.14 and then some.

Post high school students cited they not once used these formulas or learning points in school since they were required to memorize them, so why not take more classes in managing college student loans, learning how to do taxes, and how to budget money once out of high school?

Do I agree?

I’d have to say no, and maybe a little yes?

Math and Physics were not my friends. I’m a picture person. I don’t memorize lengthy jumbles of words and numbers without seeing a bigger application. However, just because I struggle to understand certain concepts, doesn’t mean these concepts shouldn’t be required learning. In fact, I believe in Plato when he said, “Geometry will draw the soul toward truth and create the spirit of philosophy.”

So where am I going with this conversation of science and math?

This month’s IWSG question asks, “Besides writing, what other creative outlets do you have?”

I find creative outlets in everything. From the way I cook, to the way I work on the computer as a graphic designer in Public Relations, to the way I write my notes on a page at work when my print and cursive swirl together, and my bullets become flaming falling stars (which aren’t really stars by the way). In fact, my whole note page may become one giant doodle.

Creativity never leaves us. We always find our own ways of self expression.

And what do math and physics have to do with creativity? Lately, they’ve been the source of my creative inspiration. My second draft in  my YA Urban Fantasy/Sci-Fi manuscript has challenged me to merge science and magic. I’ve had to revisit the topics I once dreaded, and am now doing it on my own terms. No horrid college textbooks. No over the head lectures where professors talk to the chalk board more than to my face. I don’t have that kind of time anymore, so I invest it wisely in YouTube PBS mini lessons in astronomy and physics. I’ve covered everything from magnetic fields, to electron charges, to neutron stars, magnetars, galaxy formations, and the importance of tides and how they shift with the new and full moons.

And required subjects in high school? Sure I would have loved to have taken accounting or a business class instead of Chemistry. I don’t think skipping Chemistry would have done me an ounce of good. Why? Required academics exposes our minds to unfathomable possibility. I now have a greater imagination, and it’s one mixed with science, hypotheses, and magical potential.

What about you? Would you agree with the post high school graduates? What was your least favorite subject in high school? Was any subject or formula useless to you? I’d love to hear it.