Wow, the last Wednesday of 2020. That’s crazy. It’s hard to believe this year is almost over. So, what’s my tidbit of wisdom that I’d like to give to you before the year ends.
This one is for writer’s, but you can use it in anything you do. And it’s really simple…
JUST BE TRUE TO YOURSELF!
When writing, always write what makes you happy. If you are trying to please someone else, then your heart won’t be in it. It’s the same in life. If you’re just going about life trying to make someone else happy and never thinking of yourself, then you’re missing out of life.
So, be true to yourself. Write what makes you happy and you’ll see a big difference in your writing. Have fun, enjoy life, and love with all of your heart.
It’s the first Monday after Christmas and all through the house… Nope, not going there. My house is somewhat back to order, but still not back to normal.
Does anyone else struggle with what day it is after a long weekend? And this weekend will be another four day weekend, so the struggle is real. Although these two long weekends will be awesome since tax season starts next week, so I’ll need the time off to charge my batteries.
Now, on to writing thoughts. As I shared earlier, I have a new series coming in 2021. It’s a Christian Suspense Romance Series called In Harms Way. This is a step out of my comfort zone, but I’m excited for this new turn in my writing. And the covers are nothing short of amazing. Yes, all five books have covers already. I’ve got a short blurb ready for each one as well, which I’ll share a little bit along.
The first book, Safe, is set to release in March. This book has been on my mind for quite a while, so to be able to put it on paper is such a wonderful feeling. The main two characters each have their own issues. Hadley is a dedicated introvert. She is a homebody, only leaving to go to Church, the store, and when her agent requires it, to a book signing. As you may have guessed, she’s a writer. Her books have made her a nice, comfortable living, and have allowed her to stay in her shell. But her life is about to get a jolt of reality that she’s not prepared for.
Drew is a broody, partially retired Navy Seal, turned Wyoming rancher. He’s struggled to get out of the dark hole that war put him in, but ranching and fresh air have brought him a long way from his former self. Then he takes a trip to his hometown and ends up in the middle of a nightmare. When he tries to help, he only gets himself in deeper and the darkness threatens to swallow him back up. The moment he meets Hadley, he knows that he has to do everything in his power to save her, but she isn’t so sure.
This book will take you on a rollercoaster of emotions as these two struggle with their own demons. But once they figure out that the only way out is together, they have to get past the things in their lives that make them who they are. It will have you cringing, gasping, sighing, then smiling and back to cringing. It’s a thriller that will have you guessing right up to the end.
So, let’s get this Monday started with a pot of coffee laced with cinnamon and a cool coffee mug. Did I tell you I’m obsessed with coffee mugs? Now you know…
Good morning! Writing… Writers block… Publishing… The life of a writer. It’s a roller coaster and not for the faint of heart. Here are the top 5 things every author needs to know about starting to write and publish…
It’s not as easy as it looks. Let me be very clear about this, writing isn’t easy. There’s more to it than simply writing words. You’ve got to make sure to plot, plan, and organize those words to where the reader can get lost in the world you’ve created. If you don’t do it with an ebb and flow, then the reader will lose interest and move on. So, don’t think it’s just putting words on paper. There’s so much more to the process.
Writer’s block is real! Every author has experienced writer’s block at one time or the other. It’s a helpless feeling and only perseverance gets you through it. You can get past it, just have confidence. Keep writing and working on other projects.
Editor’s are essential. Alright, let’s all say this and put on repeat! Editors are essential. Even the most savvy writer can’t find all of the mistakes or bad wording in a manuscript. To be honest, editors miss some too. But let’s be honest, when we’re reading our own work, it’s hard to be completely harsh. An editor can help to reword things so that the story flows better. And some changes, even though they can hurt, are necessary.
Read everyday… It may sound crazy, but reading actually helps you as a writer. But read in the genre that you write in. I’ve been reading books that the author wrote with such clear, precise wording that I was inspired. And I’ve read books that lost me from the first page. When I read things like this, it helps me to look at my work differently. Try it.
Know your audience. If you write sweet romance, then don’t go too heavy on the love scenes. Advertising a book as one genre, but the book actually leaning more in another direction can make readers not trust you. So, know who you’re pushing this book to. The same with mysteries turning into nothing more than a romance with nothing to solve. I’ve read books like this and it is disheartening. Also, make sure if the book is erotic, let the reader know.
I could keep going, but you need to get back to writing and so do I. But I hope this helped you a little.
Happy Thanksgiving week! It’s Monday, so forgive me if I ramble a bit. After a busy weekend, I need multiple cups of coffee just to get my eyes open. But, for now, let’s talk writing.
Do you have to do things in the right order? Well, it’s according to what you’re doing. You can’t bake a cake before you make the batter. You can’t ice a cake before you bake it.
With writing, you can write the ending before you write the beginning. How? For some writers, they have to get the last scene written in order to get a grip on the first three fourths.
I’ve posted several things on outlines and writing technique. And I’ve always said, put your ideas together, so that you know where you’re headed. Before you ask, yes, I’ve written the last scene of a book first. Of course, when I did, the ending changed slightly as the first parts were written and put in place.
Since I write in Scrivener, sometimes I go ahead and put in the Chapter heads that go with my outline first. That way I can write different scenes ahead of time. If I get stuck on a certain part, sometimes skipping ahead helps to beat writers block.
The goal of the post is to let you know, it’s alright to write your book in the wrong order. Just make sure that it fits together like a puzzle. The pieces need to fit, but not forced.
Yes, you heard me right. I took the Podcast plunge. The Coffee & A Good Book podcast will be up and going soon. I’ll keep all of you updated. I’m excited and nervous, all at the same time. Being in front of the camera is out of my comfort zone, way out of it. But in front of the microphone, I feel a little less intimidated. We’ll see how it goes.
The podcast will feature author interviews, book reviews, lots of coffee talk, NO POLITICS, romance talks, writing talk, and more book talk than you can get through a short podcast… If you’ve followed my blog for very long, you know how much I love writing, books and coffee. So, this made me want to keep the talk going, but this time in a different format.
Keep watching for the release date. I can’t wait to connect with everyone.
Can you believe it’s a week until Thanksgiving? This year is flying by and in my opinion, that could be a good thing. It’s been a crazy year!
Just Let It Go…
It’s the same with writing. If you have a story line that keeps bugging you, then let it go. As in, let it go where it needs to. Most writers will tell you that if a story starts in your brain, it will drive you crazy until you do something with it.
Now, it’s not to say that some of the ideas that come through your head are publish worthy. If I had a dollar for every story idea I had that flopped before the first chapter was done, well, let’s just say, I’d be in a good position. Sometimes though, it’s hard to Just Let It Go…
Don’t waste your time on stories that don’t go far. You need to focus on those stories that can go the distance. As I said in an earlier post, make sure that your story can make it through plotting and scene set up. Then, you’ll have a story to publish.
It’s mighty cold here in Georgia on this Tuesday morning. As I write this post, the fire is crackling and popping in the fireplace, keeping me toasty warm. Do you enjoy a good fire on a cold morning?
For me, sitting by a warm fire inspires me to write more. Why is that? I love to come down the hall on cold mornings and hear the crackling fire. As soon as I have a cup of coffee in my hands, I stand in front of the fire, letting it warm me to my soul. It’s a wonderful feeling.
Not to mention I’m finishing up the last of my Christmas romance, which comes through easier with a cozy fire. Now just to get up my Christmas tree and decorations. But that will have to wait until after the upcoming busy weekend.
Enjoy every moment… Listen to the crackle of a fire… Give yourself a moment every day to just be…
Good Thursday morning. Monday, we took a day trip to the North Georgia mountains. It was a much needed trip to getaway and reboot. I love the mountains. It’s one of my favorite places.
The leaves were still pretty, even though they most had already turned. The picture above was from the side of the road. We’d been driving on winding roads and found this lookout. When we got out of the car, the temperature had dropped over 10 degrees from the previous stop at the orchard. There was no sound other than the wind drifting through the leaves. It was breathtaking.
This little waterfall was at our next stop. Just the sound of the water trickling over the rocks had such a calming effect. I could have camped out beside this waterfall for days. There is nothing quite as reflective as a day spent in nature. The beauty of God’s creation can take you by surprise and leave you with so much hope and belief that everything is alright.
This valley was beautiful. We were headed out of the high mountains and started through this green pastureland in the valley. There were old barns and fences that made the writer in me want to know more. Who had lived there? What had life been living here in the valley of the mountains? Did they have horses, cows, chickens, and other animals? Did the beauty of the mountains make them smile every morning when they walked out to see the beauty around them? Just a few thoughts I had as we drove through this little valley.
As you can see, we had a wonderful day trip. It only took us two and a half hours to get to this beautiful place where land meets sky. And it was worth the drive. To get there, we had to go through downtown Atlanta. It always amazes me how much the city has changed since I was a young girl traveling with my parents to the mountains every fall. I still get that little girl feeling as we pass by the tall buildings.
So, hope you enjoyed the small look into our wonderful trip. I shared all of the photos that were taken over on my Facebook page. It only takes a moment away from normal life to get a treat. Take every chance you get to get away for a while. It was just a day trip, but it did so much to refresh my mind and get me back on track. Don’t let life pass you by. Find joy in the little things.
It’s hard to believe that I’m finishing the last book of the Wishful Harbor Series. I’ve enjoyed every moment of writing this series. The characters will always hold a special place in my heart. And the town of Wishful Harbor will draw me in and send me on a journey where the scent of sea air and the sound of sea gulls overhead fill the air.
Saying goodbye to anything isn’t easy. In life, there’s so many things we have to say goodbye to. But with a book series, even though the series has come to a close, the books will be there to read over and over. The memories will be there too.
Over the years of my writing career, I’ve said goodbye to many series. The Five Oaks Ranch Series is still one of my bestselling series and it continues to gain momentum. I’ve had so many people write to me about adding more books to that series. Maybe one day, but for now, it’s just a dream…
In January I’ll publish the last Mistletoe Ranch book. And I just published the last book from The Journal Series. With each new series, there has to be an end. New things need to start and life goes on. But the memories will forever be there along with the laughter, tears and thought that went into each word.
Starting in 2021 I’ll be starting a whole new series, one that will pull everything out of me. I’m so excited about it. I’ve not spoken much about it, but in the coming weeks, I’ll post some snippets and info on it. But for now, let’s just say, 2021 will be filled with mystery, intrigue, and romance.
For now, I’ll go back to my writing and the cup of coffee that’s growing cool. But I’ll ask one question, how do you handle saying goodbye?
Hit a wall with your current project? At a loss for words, literally? Yep, I’ve been there and other writers have too. The words stop… The creative juices reach a dam and stop… It’s like your internal hard drive crashes…
Push past that wall…
Everyone hits a wall, it’s only human. It’s how you react to that sudden wall standing in front of you that counts. So, here’s a couple of things I do when that wall jumps out and blocks my path.
1: Step back… Yes, step back. If you’re at a wall, then you need to clear your head, and redirect back to the project. When this happens to me, I’ll put that project aside and bring out an upcoming project to outline or even create some ads to inspire me.
2: Go back and read from the beginning of the project. Reintroduce yourself to the characters… Fall back in love with the story…
3: Don’t give up! Even though it seems like you’ve lost the battle, you haven’t. You’ve hit a wall that all writers hit. Push past it! Don’t let it control you. You’ve got this.
Now, get to writing and know that there will be obstacles, but you have the power to push through them. You’re a writer and that’s what you do. So write!
As always, good writing and May God Bless You…
P.S.: Don’t forget that Marina’s Story is coming out on Saturday.