Friday, May 29, 2015

Five Year Goals

Last Friday of the Month
This is the last Friday of the month, which makes it Five Year Goal time. Thanks to Misha Gericke for hosting this. Basically we pick a goal we want to work towards over the next five years and report on it once a month. My goal is to have a world-class publishing company. How is it going? Slow. I'm still only working on my own books, which is the plan right now, but it feels like not much else is happening. I've got five years right? I have a feeling it will take all of it and then some. How are your goals coming?

Thursday, May 21, 2015


Normally I post on Wednesday, but this is a bit of an off week with that hilarious blogfest on Monday--Blood, Boobs, and Carnage. I had no idea there were so many bad movies out there! Thanks again to Alex and Heather for hosting that. And speaking of thanks, I'd like to give a shout out to Konstanz Silverbow at No thought too Small for featuring my first book, The Newstead Project, on her blog today. You can find it here . Just one more thanks on my list for today: Kat Writer. If you don't know Kat, she has a lovely blog at: 

The reason for my thanks is this: Normally, I have no idea what to post on this mid-month week. And Kat's response for my Indie Life post has given me inspiration.  If you missed that one, I wrote about Vanity Presses and that they need to be avoided like the plagues they are. I also wrote that I had a list of reputable editors, cover designers, etc. and Kat asked for me to share that list.

I personally use: Emily White as my editor, Alex Moran (His website is under construction right now, when it's up again, I'll post it) as my copy editor, Alan Waite as my illustrator (He has no web site. But, he's an amazing artist. If you'd like contact info, please let me know and I'll forward his cell number). He also assists with my cover designs, which you'll be seeing in a few weeks. We've redone all the covers of my Newstead books after a wonderful publicist pointed out that while he loved the covers, there was nothing that tied them together as a series. I get my photos from, an amazing royalty free photo site.  I purchased Creative Cloud and do the formatting myself. I use my local Small Business Development Center for marketing. They're an amazing free resource. I'm sure there is one near you. Just search for Small Business Development Center and your area and it will come up. It's a free program provided by the government to help small business flourish. They provide information on business plans, funding, kickstarter, and like I said above, marketing, which would normally cost thousands. It's been a great resource.

That's my list. The one I give to others includes that and the ones listed in Susan Kaye Quinn's Indie Author Survival Guide. I highly recommend picking it up. It has a huge list of online resources like the ones I named above, not to mention it's extremely helpful with the process as a whole. Hope that helps!


Monday, May 18, 2015

Blood, Boobs, and Carnage Blogfest

It's time for Blood, Boobs, and Carnage hosted by Alex J. Cavanaugh and Heather Gardner . Thanks for putting this on!


Okay. This is officially the worse movie I have ever seen, but when I thought about this blogfest, it was the first to come to mind.

Snakes on a Plane
There is actually a point in this movie where two snakes latch themselves onto a busty woman's nipples. Of course they do. I'm ashamed to say I sat through the whole thing. Never again.
Ever seen this one?

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Indie Life

Back to the swing of things...


On the second Wednesday of the month I always participate in Indie Life, a group dedicated to sharing/discussing all things Indie. I'm truly amazed at how many options there are out there for the Indie writer today; from freelance editors to formatters, cover designers, and on and on it goes. We in the indie world literally have access to the same tools that the big houses do, but for us we have the freedom for creativity. Does it get any better?

I don't think so.

But for some of us, this indie road has been a nightmare. I want to take a minute today to vent about one of my major gripes: Vanity Presses. Every time I go to a book signing, every time, someone comes up to me and goes on and on about how they've written a book too, and they've had it published. It only cost fill in the number. I cannot believe how many people out there are ready to cash in on someone else's dreams. Now, I'm not talking about the contracted professionals listed in the paragraph above. I'm talking about those bottom dwellers who are sucking up people's retirement accounts in order to sell them boxes of their books that will line their garage walls for the rest of their lives. Shame on them. When those poor souls come up to me, with stars still in their puffed-up eyes, despite their drained accounts, I tell them about Amazon, and Kobo. I tell them about Ibooks, and give them a list of the professionals listed above. I invite them to my writing club. I hope and pray they tell as many people as possible. That's what I plan on doing. Even so, it's probably inevitable. Where people are willing to spend money, there will always be someone there to take it.

Have you ever had a run-in with an Vanity Press?

Thursday, May 7, 2015

A to Z: Reflection

This was my fourth year doing the challenge, second as an assistant to a co-host. I always love doing A to Z; it helps me connect with blogs I might never have known about, and does the same thing for my blog. It’s a wonderful, full, exciting month. That being said, I noticed I didn’t get a lot done in the writing department. And I didn’t visit as many new blogs this year as I would’ve liked. Maybe I stretched myself too thin, or maybe it’s because I already have a large base of blogs I visit and I made them my first priority. And that list. Sometimes my eyes crossed just looking at it. In past years I promised myself I’d go back and visit all the blogs on the list that I’d missed during the challenge. This year I hope I do. That’s probably my biggest regret over this past challenge, even more than completely ignoring my WIP: I didn’t get to find as many new blogging friends as I have in years past.  

And I probably shouldn’t have put off writing my flash pieces until right before the challenge started. That made the whole thing much more stressful than in needed to be. So maybe I’ll do that, too: Start writing pieces of flash this summer/fall in prep for next year.

Yeah, I can’t see myself doing that, either. But it’s a nice thought, isn’t it?

Wednesday, May 6, 2015


First Wednesday of the Month
Today is the first Wednesday of the month, making it IWSG time. Thanks to Alex J. Cavanaugh for hosting this, and thanks to all the fellow co-hosts who help this thing function month after month. Today I get to be one of them, which means I get to visit a chunk of the group, which I’m really looking forward to.

But enough about that.

Today what I’m feeling insecure about is so basic it’s stupid. I’ve gotten out of the habit of writing. With A to Z and all the outside work that April brings, I've had all kinds of excuses not to sit down and write. I thought about writing, I talked about writing, but I didn’t actually done the work. Today that stops. I’m locking myself into a local Panera and not letting myself leave until I get some real writing done. No distractions. No excuses.

That’s my insecurity; what’s yours?