My cat passed away this morning.
This was going to be a promo post about the smashwords thing, but I’ll do that later, don’t have the heart to do it right now, though I need to.
RIP Anubis, my pretty kitty. We will miss you.
I started writing this post, then got sidetracked with the whole unpacking thing. We are moved, life is beginning to resume a somewhat normal pace. I need to sit down and rethink my goals and what projects are going to be worked on when. That post will be later. Right now, I’ve printed out the zombiething and will be red-penning it this evening. I think it needs to go up for sale, sooner than later.
Starting on March 4th (tomorrow), Smashwords is going to be doing a Read an EBook Week which will go until March 10th. My stories will be part of that promo. More info as soon as I have it.
In other news;
Tornados, in feb. My heart goes out to the families and communities who have been affected by these storms.
Now it is time to get back to unpacking. **waves**
I have been battling rl stuff (move preparation and kids with the flu) so my writing and editing, as I suspected it would this month, has ground to a halt. This morning, in between sanitizing my house post some upset stomachs, and making some mad dashes to the bathroom (yes, I know my life is soooo glamorous) I went over to Dean Wesley Smith’s* site to see what posts he has done since my last check in (about a week ago I think). His post was short, but linked to Kristine Rusch’s post on Bestseller Lists, and Joe Konrath’s post The Myth of the Bestseller.
Now I’ve heard, for quite some time actually, that the bestseller lists were not entirely accurate portrayals of who/what is selling well. Kris breaks it down very well (IMO) and the commentors are as informative as her post itself.
I’m not too familiar with Konrath’s blog, I’ve found his manner a bit brusque at times in the past, and the swearing does make me cringe (which is weird because I am worse than a sailor when it comes to swearing) but he’s very informative and well worth taking a read through his posts if you don’t already. I don’t totally agree with his delivery ;), but that’s personal preference. That said, his post was exactly what I needed to read and I suggest you read it too.
Any writer who puts food on the table with their writing is successful. It doesn’t matter if it is a box of mac and cheese, or caviar and champagne. Taking your career into your own hands, giving it your best shot, striving to do better… that’s the American Dream, baby.
Are the bestseller lists important? I can’t answer that. For the brownie points, for the thrill of saying “I made it! Looksee!”, well if that what geeks you out then sure, they’re important. I can’t comment on the money side of it as I, personally, do not know authors who are on bestsellers lists and are willing to discuss their finances with me. I have however read about bestsellers who are still struggling to pay the bills.
Are the lists important to me?
I don’t honestly know how to answer that question. In the past I wanted to see one of my stories on the NYT Bestseller’s list. Why? Because I erroneously thought that would show that I was a success. But lately it doesn’t seem to matter because those lists rarely contain books I actually would want to read. Now? It would certainly feed my ego to say “I was #____ on the NYT Bestseller List”, I won’t lie, that sort of thing would have me grinning for a month. But I don’t need that list to validate me being a success.
I AM a success. I have written and I continue to write, and I have published my work. It is up, available. And people seem to like it, I’m selling a bit. And what is really cool is it will be available to readers. For as long as I choose it to be. If I don’t sell a huge amount in the first week of putting it up, I won’t have to worry about my publisher not picking up my next story. I’m not going to fire me. 😛
I’m putting mac n cheese on the table man! 😀
As always, your thoughts and opinions are welcome. And thanks to Dean Wesley Smith, Kristine Rusch and Joe Konrath for sharing their experiences in publishing with the rest of us. Have a great day peoples!
ooo Bonus link: 25 Things Writers Should Know About Agents.
I am packing. OMG we have so much stuff! Well I just found notes from a project idea dating 2005. I thought I would share, I have no idea where I was going with this.
The paper says:
3 Major gangs
2 arch enemies
1 thief with a case of bad luck
and the world is the gameboard…
Nadine* knows something. Something so damaging she could change the course of the future.
And Everybody wants to know what it is…
Imprisoned for years
Driven by revenge
One hundred thousand men standing between him and his goal.
What the hell was I thinking? This is the only paper written on in this note book… o.O it sounds like a kickass idea (if not a bit over-dramatic), or maybe it is 3 ideas on one page, but I have no memory of writing it down.
Paper is going to get packed, but pondered over…
Time to finish clearing this stuff off the table and get myself moving for the day. Have a great day folks!
There are many things I could say, but it is being said elseware.
This is the entire speech “I have a dream”. We listened to it this morning, my children and I, and discussed the changes in our world since this man gave that speech. The irony of the current political situation and the protests around the world*. To understand the reasons for the “I have a dream” statement you have to hear the entire speech. To gain deeper understanding of what came before, listen to the whole thing then dust off your history books. Though, warning, history books often feed my plotbunnies, they may do the same with yours!
Dr. King did not just hop up one day and march up on Washington to give that one speech, he had others as powerful and potent as his “I have a Dream” speech. Here are other quotes of his.
I put together a new cover for Muse Interrupted yesterday, which has me chortling as much as I was when writing the story;
This is cute, I don’t care what you say it made me giggle. Still does. 😛 However for some reason Amazon, though I have changed the cover, isn’t showing the new cover. I need to go see what’s up with that and maybe re-upload it.
Since I had the program open anyways I went ahead and fiddled with a cover concept idea for the still unnamed zombie thing, though the more I think about it the more I lean towards the title “Help never came“
I like the creepy of the first one but not the colors, white bear didn’t fit in that color scheme at all. When I put brown bear in the setting with the house it didn’t look right, i didn’t even try to render it. The white bear stands out more in this. Still fiddling with it while I try to get rid of the plague I seem to have caught. I need more sinister in this I think, though every one seems to think the eyes are still freaky.
What about you, interwebs? Which of the two seem to work better? Or is there another background I ought to try. The teddy and the gun are going to stay… hmmm I do need grass….
What is your agenda for the day?
**putters back to the digi art**
It is looking up on my end, what about yours?
so I sat down a couple days ago to look over the goals I made and **sigh** decided that they need to be adjusted. I am very tuned to RL right now, not writing so much, and until we get ourselves moved I don’t know that my writing will be successful. So you know what? Not gonna stress about it.
I’ve been playing with another zombie idea, the Christmas story. I realized I needed to do research to get Bastard Prince right. So when I am not fiddling with the zombie thing I think I’ll play with the outline for Crossroads and the rest of the series. Perhaps Bastard Prince will end up as a prequel…
We shall see.
In other news, a dear friend of mine has a new ebook out, a christmas story entitled Snow;
It’s Christmas. The Solstice Covenant is in full effect. So when the StarChild sends her to the North Pole to investigate the disappearance of an Earth Lord, Nikki Jeffries has to rely on something other than her normal habit of killing anyone who crosses her. Luckily, a sexy Jack Frost is there to help her out.
Check it out! 😀 **waves at val** Now the cover was done by an awesome Starla who is offering a limited time discount on covers. From her twitter: For a LIMITED time, I will do ebook covers for $75, and printed book covers for $100.
Up there is an example of her breathtaking work, I really think this is a good deal folks.
Now to go figure out if I am going to pack or write or read….
Really I am.
The Zombie Christmas thing is shelved till next fall. I have Bastard Prince to finish before we move. But for now, through the 1st, I am on vacation.
This year has been a tough and amazing one. I am published, by my own means and it feels damn good. I have plans for next year writing and other. But for now I am going to unwind, maybe poke at BP. And read. Yes that thing called reading, I amso behind on it…
Happy Holidays, hope yours are wonderful.
W00t! It is done, it needs so much work. I have a Zombie Christmas story to write before certain people hit me over the head with frozen seafood…
So close to the next year and I am close to flailing. I have lots of stuff I wanted to have done but it didn’t happen. Real life just kicked my arse.
So. On the list;
Happy Holidays, whatever holiday you celebrate, or if you don’t celebrate any I hope you have a calm weekend.
In 2003 I discovered the internet and the fact that there were other writers as crazy about story-telling as I am. One thing led to another and I landed at Forward Motion, a writer forum which has, over the years, helped me oh so much! There are many things I love about the site, though tbh I am not as active as I was (RL can be a pain at times) but I have made friends there who have helped me grow, helped me learn, helped me improve.
I found a community of people whom I feel comfortable.
I saw this just a little bit ago, and it made me think about everything I have done writing wise over the past 8 years (OMG 8 YEARS?!?) and I can pin it down to one site, the one place that was my learning center. where I continue to find great info and get to talk and interact with other writerly types as crazy as I am. Forward Motion.
So Zette, if you read this I would just like to say, Thanks. Thanks for keeping it going. Thanks for having a place where I’ve been able togo, for setting up the chat where I have made dear friends whom I am blessed to have had the opportunity to get to know. Thank you for taking your time and funds to make this slice of internet calm available to us writers.
Take care, stay warm and don’t let the cats hide your outlines!
See you on the flip side!
I did that yesterday, taking a break from writing. Sometimes it is good to just take a breather, I’ve been going at a crazy pace since October. With the new year right around the corner it is time to evaluate what next year’s plan is. Put together a publishing schedule and figure out what my writing goals are.
Next year is going to be a bit crazy, at least the first part of the year will be. We are planning a cross-country move within the first three months or so of 2012, and for that time frame I will be offline while we get settled. How long will that take? I do not know. So much of it is in the air it is making me quite frustrated because I simply don’t know.
That said, in the last half of THIS year I have written a tremendous amount. I have pubbed 5 things, and if I can get a handle on this Zombie thing I may have a 6th story published by the 1st or shortly after. So I think I’ll do goals in short quarterly steps. The rest of this year will be to finish the zombie thing and Bastard Prince and possibly work on the outline for Crossroads
Ok Time to get to work. Take care all.
For many of us there is someone in our life that so strongly influences us that we change the direction we are going in because of that person. For me it was Anne McCaffery. I never got to meet her. Never got to tell her “thank you” for her stories. I wanted too, oh man i wanted to see the Lady herself. But it never seemed to work out. Something always came up.
You see, when I was about 7, I “borrowed” a book off of my dad. It was a big hardback edition of Dragonflight, Dragonquest, and The White Dragon. I read it in a week and from that point on I was hooked. Anne McCaffery was my hero. I played dragons in the backyard. Pretending i had somehow made Earth into Pern. I don’t remember the logistics of the game but it involved a lot of running around the backyard with the dogs (big firelizards) and playing on the swing (fighting thread).
I read everything from her I could find. And i joined a pern fan club. Back before the internet when everything was snail mail. I wrote fanfic, and that is what got me started. You could, I suppose, say that Anne was responsible for me deciding to write. I discovered the world of reading, of writing, all because I crawled behind my couch with a flashlight and that big white book and was transported to another world.
She was my escape during High School. She was my hero. I wanted to be a writer. Just Like Anne.
My world is richer because of her writing.
I am thankful for having the opportunity to read her work, I am thankful for her stories. I am thankful she chose the path she did.
Good-bye Anne, thank you for your dragons. Thank you for your worlds.
Also could be called writer fail, or maybe tech fail. Last night, as I was working on the outline, I gripped the corner of my laptop to scoot it up my legs. It blue screened. I threw my handsup, reading the warning wondering wtf I did, then it restarted. I was a bit pissed a bit upset and all the while wondering if I squeezed the computer too hard and cause a hardware malfunction.
It is at this point this conversation between me and my amused hubby occured:
Him: What did you do to it?
Me: I swear I don’t know!
Him: You are hard on computers!
Me: **explains the moving and squeezing the corner theory as the computer boots up normal**
Him: You go through computers like everyone else goes through toilet paper.
at which point I got the giggles, because it isn’t far off the mark. I assured myself that the outline file worked and that I hadn’t lost stuff then headed to bed. Still giggling.
As a writer I am constantly on the computer, I am always making backups. I AM hard on the computers I own.
Today I plan on working on the outline. If I can rally the kids to clean.
Oh, and for those wondering, here is the link to the BBC program Lost Kingdoms of Africa. It is offered trough Netflix streaming and you can purchase it at Amazon.com for about $50.00 here. I am going to invest in this one, I think it is totally worth having.
About a week or so I had a computer malfunction issue. I had to reset my computer to factory settings.
Luckily I have everything backed up, didn’t lose any writing, but it along with other RL issues have made me have to re-evaluate my deadlines. Oh the joys of self pubbing! 😀
That said, I am trying to re-organize my time and get myself back into a routine. I have a story almost ready to publish but there is something not right about it and I haven’t had the time to sit down and figure out WHY.
It is probably going to be something silly and obvious and when I finally **see** I will facepalm mightily, but until then…
Anyways. Deadline changes:
Elemental Truth was originally slated for release in Nov. However it is not going to be ready. I won’t release it prematurely. There are plot issues, characterization issues and I am certain some grammar things to fix before I can release it in good conscious.
Elemental Storm has been moved in the overall timeline (and is now E5) and Elemental Flame (this year’s NaNo project) has been dubbed E2. As if anyone besides me was keeping track of that!
Anyways, I am outlining CoB and E2 which are my double nano projects and doing the mom/housewife thing.
Hope you are all doing well.
I apologize, I have been very caught up with RL. Haven’t had a chance to really get over here to post.
Writing ground to a temporary halt while I deal with some very real, very urgent issues in RL. Today, as I tried to get my brain to refocus, i started skimming through some of my links. One of which is a great tutorial for using .html to format your ebooks. I got to thinking and pulled up my files to look over my stories in the various formats. And decided to re-format my files.
Here is the link to the tutorial. The comments are as educational as the tutorial itself, I highly recommend taking the time to learn it. http://guidohenkel.com/2010/12/take-pride-in-your-ebook-formatting/
NaNo is right around the corner and I am excited and thrilled to say that I am, yet again, going to hop on the crazy train. Naysayers go away. My participating in NaNo isn’t going to damage your delicate little tail-feathers. Here Is Lazette Gifford’s take on NaNo. I have to say I agree.
You don’t like it, don’t do it. Stop wasting YOUR time bitching about us who ARE going to do it; and go slave away at your own WIPs.
After all, if you spent all that energy on writing instead of bitching, you might just get somewhere with your own work. I sometimes wonder if the naysayers are so because of jealousy. After all there is a lot of motivation and movement and people progress writing wise. Perhaps the bitterness is because those who are bitter have no forward motion in their writing… 😉 Something to ponder, eh?
speaking of work, time to get back to it.
Take care all.