Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Publishing Your First Book

This particular subject has been on my mind lately, primarily because I am constantly taking in new clients who are anxious to publish their first book.

I love that they are anxious because publishing a book is no easy feat. That is why many readers out there who think 'they can do it' often - don't .

But writing your first book can present some difficulties and more than a couple of questions. Here are four I hear the most:



How long will my book take to be published once you have the manuscript?

Traditional publishers usually give you a year, but even with Idea Creations Press, you're looking at from 3-6 months depending on where you manuscript is sitting when we receive it.

Have you had beta readers read your book and give you some constructive criticism? Have you done as much editing as reasonably possible? That is, without destroying the heart and soul, your unique voice?

We receive manuscripts at all levels of the continuum, from those that need multiple edits, to those somewhere in the middle, to those as squeaky clean as a baby's bottom - the latter, those that can go through the process that much faster are rare, though honestly, every manuscript I've ever received from a writer has needed some editing.

How many books will I sell?

That all depends on you. And that all depends on how many more books you're going to write. Currently, the fantasy genre is popular, but that will not always be the case. Write what you love, not what's popular, and you'll find yourself that much more eager to write another book. Your book will sell as you promote it online and in person. (Check out my book, Marketing Your Book on a Budget, to learn more). As you publish more books and your name gets out there - you will get a following - you will illicit even more sales. But you have to put yourself out there, and you will not - I repeat - will not be a best seller overnight. Of course there are writers that sneak through the cracks, but this is the exception and not the rule.

Should I put my book in book stores?

I don't, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't. You need to remember that placing your book in a bookstore does not guarantee more sales, what it does give you is placement in a store. If certain employees like your book they may sell it, but it will sit on the shelf like the others, and most books are shelved spine out. That means if someone isn't looking for your book they probably won't pick it up. Early on, after my first book was published (and it was in Barnes and Noble) I decided that perhaps selling in bookstores wasn't all it was cracked up to be - at least for me, and at least not for now. When I decided to back up and take a look, I realized that my greatest success was from readers purchasing my book online, and those times I spoke to groups or did a book signing away from a book store. When I was the most creative, and did something unexpected (like a book signing at a boutique) that's when I gleaned the most interest.

When should I write my second book?

Once your first book is out, or even before it is out, if you have an idea for a second book, get started on it. Some writers produce a book a year, I usually do two - along with the update of my marketing book. Decide on a timeline that works for you. Especially if you have a series, readers will want to get their hands on the second book as soon as possible.



Writing your first book is a little like buying your first home. There are many things you don't have, things you want, but the money may not be there. It's okay that you learn as you go, that you discover how best to market with little or no money. That you spend time talking with other writers to learn what they do to connect with their readers. In time, as in that first home, the rooms will fill with precious and life long treasures.


Tuesday, September 29, 2015

AUTHOR INTERVIEW and Book Tour: Kimberly Rogers

Today, I'm a part of Kimberly Rogers' book tour. Since I love doing interviews, I decided that this was the best way I could help Kimberly to get the word out.

If you're a writer, you know all about getting the word out. It's tough work! But it's also a needed avenue in finding readers for your book. 

So here goes...


Why do you write?

I write for a number of reasons. The first and foremost is that I can’t not write. I have stories in my head and I need to get them down on paper. Second, I firmly believe I’ve been given a talent for crafting stories and as such I need to use it. Writing is part of my good stewardship. Third, I write because I have stories to tell. Oh, and the characters won’t leave me alone until I give them their proper story time.  


How do you come up with your characters?

They tend to introduce themselves. Baran, the protagonist in Tiger’s Paw, showed up growling and menacing when I was idly contemplating a story contest. He was almost fully formed in his present character when he showed up, although as I continue his story across the books, I am finding he has even more layers to what makes him the rather grumpy and very stoic warrior he is in Tiger’s Paw. Raina, his main secondary character, has been very elusive. She sprang into the scene unexpectedly and then she refused to leave. Fortunately, they play off each other well. She’s pretty much Baran’s opposite in every way when it comes to how their personalities and mannerisms react to the situations I throw them into. She finally starts opening up in my upcoming book, Leopard’s Heart, although she and Baran are still at loggerheads with each other.  

Get the Book at Amazon

Have you ever had anyone criticize you for any element of your work, whether that be plot, characters, setting, grammar? If so, how did you deal with it?

I have received criticism. Because every reader is different, I’ve had some people who love my characters and the plot and I’ve had people love Baran more than Raina or love Raina more than Baran. I’ve also had criticism for not having enough world-building (i.e. info dumps) in Tiger’s Paw. I dealt with the criticisms first by looking at what the reader DID like then by looking at whether their criticisms were particular to that reader’s personal tastes or if they indicated something that needed to be changed in my writing. For the characters, it was fairly obvious that it was personal taste at play. For the world-building, it’s both personal and a reflection of my decision as an author.Tiger’s Paw is a novella-length prequel and I chose not to bog down the plot’s tight pace with a lot of world-building. The readers who wanted more in-depth information will have most of the questions mentioned answered in Leopard’s Heart and in future novel entries in the series. I also have one final safety measure to keep me from reacting poorly to criticisms. I go to one of my most trusted writing friends and first ask if they think the critic was pointing out anything that truly needs changing then I indulge in a little “why do readers have to give really different feedback” whining until it’s time to stop that and get back to work on the next book.

Where do you market your work? What have you found to be the most successful marketing tool?

I am still working on expanding my marketing. However, I stick to Facebook reader/writer groups such as Christian Indie Authors/Christian Indie Books, Indie Christian Authors, and Clean Indie Reads for free marketing as well as Twitter and then blog tours. So far, I’ve found the Facebook groups to be the most useful tool in my arsenal. As I gain traction among readers, I hope to experiment with other marketing tools such as paid advertisements.

What would you tell a beginning writer who believes he/she doesn't have enough talent to publish?

I wouldn’t define it as having enough “talent” to publish. Talent is an innate skill, so I would more readily speak of having a talent to write. It's not whether you have talent to publish, it's whether you are willing to put in the work to gain the experience needed for your best foot forward in publishing. You can have talent in writing and still fail miserably at publishing because you lack the necessary experience and refinement.

There is no magic talent for publishing. The case can be made for a perfect formula for being ready to publish. If you are willing to put in the work to better your skills and refine your talent. If you are willing to learn and to accept criticism from more experienced writers. If you are tenacious enough to keep writing even when you produced horrid first drafts, get bad reviews on your book (earned or otherwise), when you don’t sell a bunch of copies even though you’re doing everything right. It also takes the courage to stop seeking perfection and jump into the publishing pond. Tip – Use trusted critics who aren’t afraid to be brutally honest to help you reach that jumping in point.

Far too many talented writers don’t have the courage or tenacity or willingness to put in the work needed to gain a foothold in the publishing world. And, far too many hacks publish just for the sake of being published. What is your goal? Do you want to be a published writer to share your stories with whoever cares to buy your book even if they never leave a review? Do you want to be a published writer even though people will undoubtedly criticize some element of your book or give you conflicting feedback? Do you want to write the next book even though your first book bombed?

If you said yes, then the question isn’t one of talent. The question you need to ask yourself is how hard are you willing to work to learn how to write the best story possible and then work to be published. And, once you are published, don’t give up on writing. Keep at it.

***
Thank you, Kimberly!



Author Website:
 
https://kimberlyrogerscfwriter.wordpress.com/



Book Description: 

What if history didn’t quite play out the way we know it? What would
stay the same? What would change? Even in a world where Elves and
Humans coexist, there are secrets. Not all the old legends are
accurate, but neither are they false. Hidden among the Humans are the
Therians, those gifted with the ability to shift into beasts. How long
they will remain unseen by Human eyes depends on how well they adhere
to their code of life and honor – The Therian Way.

When secrecy is vital to survive among Humans and Elves, the Therian
Way offers balance. The Fringe, a militant group of discontented
Therians, threaten to expose their race to Mankind. It falls to
General Baran to track down and remove the Fringe Nest before time
runs out. Who can he trust when the fate of his people lies in the
Tiger’s paw?

This Novella Prequel is a Clean Urban Fantasy written from a Christian
worldview.


Monday, September 28, 2015

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Vernita Simmons

      Tell me a about yourself. What got you started in writing?

I am Vernita but I’m known to many by either Nita or Neat. I am a mother of one beautiful daughter and the grandmother of three adorable grandchildren who keep me vibrate and exuberant. I’m a worshiper at heart and love to express my love for God as an illustrative Majestic Dance Worshiper using Streamers, Flags and Veils. God’s words are My Voice in writing as an avenue to reveal to others that they are valuable and precious. God placed greatness inside and He has a specific design for their life. I apply these collective gifts and skills when I teach at conferences, workshops, seminars and various church or community functions.



I was raised by my grandmother, who was blind. As I listened to her dictate letters to my cousin, I was both intrigued and captivated thru her eloquent and classy way of expressing her thoughts. In addition to this, we were trusted companions at the monthly Mother’s Board Meetings at Antioch Baptist; the church we attended; and sometimes, I was given the opportunity to make a comment on the Bible lessons these powerful Church Mothers would expound upon. Little did I know this would propel me into the plan and purpose God had orchestrated for my life. I later realized my grandmother had inspired me to become a writer, thus, I wrote my first play at the tender age of nine. This, and speaking/teaching has become a passionate gift.

     How do you schedule your writing time? When do you write?

Most of my writing is done during the early morning hours. However; I write throughout the day as I am in the market for a paid position and this provides me with more time to write.

How and where do you write? Do you prefer a lap top or some other method of getting your words down?

Most of my writing is done at the kitchen table, when I’m alone, listening to my music. I love that sweet, quiet serene time with Jesus and I coming together to create these inspirational writings. I always keep a pad and pencil handy when I go to the park, etc; or at night because many ideas flow during the wee hours of the morning and I can either jot them down or record them on my android. I love to actually write out my draft and in between writing, transfer them onto my word document using my tablet.

What's your favorite part about writing? Your least favorite part about writing?

The wisdom from life experiences igniting into a story is my favorite part. As I visualize bringing the events of my life to a book format, I get excited at the thought of being able to share my unshakable faith in God in a positive way to encourage, inspire and edify people of all walks. It’s a great way to reveal Jesus’ Amazing Love and Forgiving Grace.

My least favorite part is what Authors call “writer’s block” as I sit to write and only a few words or a paragraph come and nothing else may come for a couple of days. This can be frustrating. Now, on those days that the inspiration flows, I’ve find out what is known to get “writer’s cramps” because I’ll go for hours upon hours pouring out those God breathed words.

How did you come up with your book idea? How long did it take you to write your book?

My book; “CAPTURING The Spirit Of God’s Word with Vernita” is from life experience which I use in my writings to empower the lives of others to see themselves as God see them ~ A One Of A Kind Person marked by God to do what they thought they never could and use such to make a significant difference in the world.

Get Vernita's book at Amazon

You see….My friend, Lisa Castracane, who I connected with on LinkedIn was inspired by my writings and had suggested to put them as a collection of inspirational readings. Thus, this is how the name of my book was birthed. Though, as I think back, several years ago, upon the urging of the Holy Spirit, I began to compile my sermons to create a book. I published my first Devotional on November 26, 2014 on LinkedIn Pulse as a means to instruct professionals across the nation to apply these inspirational principles within their work culture. Then, I ventured out to InCourage Community Christian Service Workers and Faith Filled Family Magazine. With the assistance of my brilliant Editor, Lynn, it took me a little over one month to form several articles into an actual book.

Here’s what you can expect from my book: No one plans to be unemployed for more than two years and without income for more than 18 months. Nevertheless, that’s my story. In my book I invite you to travel with me and discover how Tough times don’t last but Tough people do.  See how God transited me from a single parent on welfare to becoming an aspiring Author, be encouraged to hold on during your darkest times and learn that God will never leave nor forsake you. He will always love you no matter what you do. Learn a valuable lesson about GOD’S Forgiving Grace and much more.  Only God can restore what’s been shattered and heal you to move forward to a Progressive Life of Wholeness and Victory.

What types of marketing do you do to promote your writing?

I use my social media outlet as a means to advertise and promote my book. I created my Facebook Page and website specifically to open a channel thru which to engage my readers and for them to have access to either purchasing my book or discovering where to purchase it. In addition to this, being a Featured Writer for Faith Filled Family Magazine has afford me the opportunity to have advertising space in their magazine which has international followings of 150,000 readers. Also, I've been interviewed on Ravens Price’s “Author Talk Show” and Carol Graham’s “Never Give Up Hope” radio broadcast. Now, being interviewed by you, Kathryn Jones, these experiences have been a tremendous help. I am grateful to God for each of you for the exposure.

What are you currently working on? Do you have a new book out?

I have written four other books and working on two more. The next two books which will be published are: A Collection of prayers I’ve written which are biblical based - how prayer turns fear into faith and despair into joy. And Forgiveness ~ Road To Recovery - reveals three scriptural cases which overrules ones need to avenge the offender. Each book will contain a set of Inspirational Readings For The Heart ~ Mind ~ Soul!

Do you have a project on the back burner? Tell me about it.

Yes, indeed I do! ~ The Essence Of A consecrated Ministry ~ Though any ministry within a church will be enlighten, this book is specifically geared for the praise and worship team, choirs and dance ministry; informing them that worship is a lifestyle which needs to permeate every aspect of their life while bringing the nation into an awesome encounter with God.

You’re Worth More Than That ~ My story of overcoming being raped while in an abusive relationship from whom I thought was a good man which I meet at church.

What would you tell a beginning writer who wants to publish but doesn't believe he/she has enough talent?

Firstly, always keep pencils and pad handy because you never know when the inspiration to write will move upon you. Never give up writing. Whether you write poetry, articles/blogs, books, sermons, interviews,  etc; keep moving forward in your writings; simply because, you are a writer ~ you are an Author.  Just because it’s not published, doesn’t change the fact that you already are an Author.

Despite the fact that there may be rejections of your writings, God yet has a plan and purpose for your life. The Lord breathed greatness inside of you not to become complacent and immobile. He desires you to utilize your gifts, talents, skills and potential to do what you thought you never could.  You see, your words in writings can penetrate the hearts and minds of others and motivate and encourage them to do what God destined them to be.

You may have to take a leap of faith, as I did. I encourage you to connect with someone who will motivate you and give you that support you need to aide you in your journey. Be open minded if they give you constructive criticisms because it’s aim to help you to do your absolute best. Moreover, when someone attempts to dissuade you, remember this is what God has ordained you to do. Allow their negativity to be a source not to debate or argue but, taking a stand against all odds, maintain an enthusiastic Jesus and I can do this attitude.

***

My question to you is: For a new Author of his/her first published book, how to go about setting the best price to charge for the purchase of the book?

My overall purpose for writing isn’t merely about making money. Yes, I do want to receive satisfactory monetary rewards from my books. However, I write to use as an avenue to inspire, encourage and empower others through my books. Additionally, I desire my readers the ability to afford to actually buy the book. Therefore, if I have to charge a lower price which could probably increase sales, I would do that rather than charge a high price and not have my books to make enough sales.

I'm right in line with your thoughts. That's why my marketing book, "Marketing Your Book on a Budget," is under $10 and the rest of my books are under $13. When I do speaking engagements, author presentations, etc., I mark down at least one or two of my books for those attending the event. 

Writing any book should never be just about making some money. It should be about sharing your talents, giving someone an opportunity to learn from what you've experienced, maybe even to take a load off for awhile and just sit, read and relax. 

I set my prices from the heart.

***
Thank you, Vernita!





Friday, September 25, 2015

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Hay Fever? Cold? Your Guess is as good as mine

A couple of days ago I felt a bit - sneezy. And then, quite frankly, my head hurt some, but I felt I could still maneuver my regular day. That was until yesterday. What I thought was merely - hay fever

- was something else, a cold.

Maybe you've been through this very same scenario, thinking one thing when in fact it was another. I have gravitated to much more sneezing and coughing and feeling miserable since then, but I'm not telling you this to complain.

Seems to me, even in writing, we aren't quite sure what we're writing at times, but we go will the flow (pardon my pun) simply because the words are coming and we are on a roll. I had this happen with my first book, A River of Stones. I thought, quite frankly, that I was merely recording my thoughts about how it felt to have parents divorce, when in fact I had begun to outline, even to write sections, of my first book.

I have thought the same thing as I've begun writing prompts in writing classes, thought about those Nancy Drew mystery books I read as a teenager (weren't they great, and wouldn't a mystery be a fine thing to write?) I have begun one thing, only to realize it was really another - even a publishable other.

When it comes to hay fever, I can live through that, though my eyes may drip and my throat my fog up. I can even live with a full blown cold - especially if it takes me somewhere else, because that somewhere else is exactly where I want to be.

Happy Writing!

Kathryn

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: S A Molteni

Tell me a about yourself. What got you started in writing?

After working in the information technology field for over thirty years, I am now a retired systems engineer. But, I work more today than I did when I was employed full-time in Corporate America …

Which brings me to how I became a writer.  After leaving a wonderful career in Seattle, my husband and I purchased a farm in Florida.  Yes, I know, that is quite the extreme going from a city-slicker to a farmer, but we absolutely love it. And this is where I get most of my ideas for writing. 



How do you schedule your writing time? When do you write?

I normally write about the events on the farm in a journal type format every day. From these stories, both fiction and non-fiction pieces come from that.  I write at every opportunity. It may be an hour here or an hour there during the day when the farm animals and other duties are completed.  I also have a few hours every night that I dedicate to writing.

How and where do you write? Do you prefer a lap top or some other method of getting your words down?

I love the feel of pen on paper and would prefer to write this way.  But,  typing is so much faster.  I have a laptop and a home office that I use for writing.  When an idea pops into my head when I am away from the computer, I try to write it down before it is forgotten.

What's your favorite part about writing? Your least favorite part about writing?

My favorite part of writing is developing the plot and the characters in the story. The part I really do not like is the editing and marketing.

How did you come up with your book idea? How long did it take you to write your book?

I started out writing personal non-fiction essays about the life on the farm and how it differed from normal life in suburbia.  After five years on the farm, I decided to compile many of those personal essays into a mini-memoir, which was published earlier this year. The book is called - I.T. Geek to Farm Girl Freak: Leaving High Tech for Greener Pastures.
Get the Book at Amazon

What types of marketing do you do to promote your writing?

In the beginning, I did not promote my writing except to friends and family on Facebook.  As time went on and I learned from other authors  about the necessity of marketing, I started promoting on Twitter and other author's blogs.

Over the past year, I have submitted my titles to free and paid book marketing websites and have had great visibility with that.  My book reached #1 on Amazon's Bestseller list for Rural Sociology just a few weeks after it was published in April 2015.

What are you currently working on? Do you have a new book out?

I am currently working on the second installment of the I.T. Geek to Farm Girl Freak series.  This book is in the editing stage and should be out in January.  

Do you have a project on the back burner? Tell me about it.

I have way too many writing projects on the back burner. LOL. I have a draft of a fictional novel that I wrote back in 2014 that needs a lot of editing. I would love to finish that particular one this year.  I want it to be perfect when it is released ... so I might not ever release it.

What would you tell a beginning writer who wants to publish but doesn't believe he/she has enough talent?

Honestly, I was not sure that I had the talent when I started, but wrote  and published anyway.  At first, I wrote for myself without the intention of anyone else seeing it.  When I did decide to share my writing with the world, I was amazed at the wonderful reception I received from complete strangers. I was absolutely humbled by it.

My advice to those just starting out is to write what you know, write what you are passionate about and write until you are satisfied with the end result.  Then get a great book cover and a good editor before you publish.

***

I get this question all of the time from other authors, so, my question for you, Kathryn, is what keeps you interested in writing?  How do you keep yourself motivated and not let other things distract you from writing? 

Love this question. It is so easy to get distracted but I have found through the years as I make my writing a priority and treat it as a business - because it is - I stay motivated to continue. If I had a full-time job away from home I would never think to just - not show up - at work because "I didn't feel like it." Writing is the same way. You show up. You write.

 Thank you!

***



Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Simple Treasures Thank You!

Just a little thank you to all those who came to visit me during my signing at the Simple Treasures Boutique in Farmington.



I had a great time, sold quite a few books, and spent some time with great writers and readers. 

For all those who wanted to come but couldn't, remember there's another Simple Treasures event scheduled for November 11-14. I will also be at the Kearns Senior Center, 4850 W. 4715 S.

on December 3 and 4!


Before you know it, it will be Halloween and then Thanksgiving and then Christmas! I can hardly wait!

Kathryn

Monday, September 21, 2015

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Carole Brown

Tell me a about yourself. What got you started in writing?

I began writing in grade school and since I’ve always loved being read to and then reading myself, it was a natural instinct to move on into writing. My first recollection of a written piece was when one of my elementary teachers assigned us the project of creating a week long journal of a caveman’s family. Wish I still had that. I can almost imagine how horrified I would be now reading it! Much better to look back and remember it in my faded memory.


How do you schedule your writing time? When do you write?

Once I have my normal morning “chores” completed, I take care of important email, give face book and/or twitter a look at (unless I’m promoting, then, of course, that takes a bit longer).  I might do a guest post or two, work on my own blog, etc. After that, I’m free to edit or write. I can finish the morning and on into the afternoon progressing on whatever writing tasks I’ve planned for the day. I seldom write in the evenings unless I’m on a deadline. I like to take that time to spend with my hubby. 

How and where do you write? Do you prefer a lap top or some other method of getting your words down?

I have a huge desk that my hubby refurbished for me. Large enough to hold my two laptops plus a variety of useful items--like resource books--and quite a few things that I enjoy: candles, baskets, favorite books, pictures of my grandsons, etc. This is my favorite place to write. I have a nice window beside me to stare at nature when I need a minute or two to ponder.
But since we travel a good bit, I find myself writing in our vehicle many times. On vacations, I prop my faithful laptop wherever, to get in a few minutes of writing time. I’m not a set-in-stone time writer, but when the urge hits--and I always want it to every day!--then I like to capture that bit of inspiration.

What's your favorite part about writing? Your least favorite part about writing?

Not sure I have a “least favorite” part. I do have “hindrances” and sometimes “mental blocks” but for the most part, I enjoy it all: from the moment I have the inspiration for a new novel, to the research, deciding on how to write the first chapter, to developing the plot and subplots, to getting the final chapter just right. I enjoy the marketing--although I don’t like it that it takes so much time! I love my readers comments and the happy feeling when they clamor for more. It’s a never-ending cycle for me. Being a writer is me. A part of who I am.

How did you come up with your book idea? How long did it take you to write your book?

Bat Crazy is the second book in my Denton and Alex Davies mystery series. The first book--HOG INSANE--was initially a short story, but later I decided to develop it into a first novel for a series. When I did, I wanted to play on “insanity” type words. Book Three is called Daffy’s Duck and will release sometime late 2016.

Bat Crazy was also the hardest book for me to write, so it naturally took me way too long to finish. Not that it was the book’s fault. It was a difficult year for me, with five deaths in as many months. Thankfully, with God, my editor and hubby’s encouragement, I plowed through, and now see the warm results of my steady efforts. Because of that difficulty I have a particular happiness with this novel.

I like to give myself plenty of time to write, but I know that authors must put out books in a fairly constant stream to keep and gain readers. I’m working on that, and should have one more book out in November: the first book in another lighthearted mystery series, called Sabotaged Christmas.

What types of marketing do you do to promote your writing?

I’ve tried many methods of marketing; some expensive and some free. Some worked and some haven’t. I like to use blog guest posting and interviews, which are awesome to put your name “out there.” I also use a limited amount of Facebook and fairly inexpensive ads at reputable sites. I believe that each person must research, examine, and experiment to make a healthy decision of what works for them. Word of mouth is still a powerful avenue. Gain readers by giving away copies as you’re able. Hold fun contests. Be generous by reviewing for others, promoting and sharing others good news and books. Remember the old adage: What comes around, goes around. If you’re caring for others, they will care for you.

What are you currently working on? Do you have a new book out?

BAT CRAZY just released, and I couldn’t be happier! I love this book (but always say that! Lol) It’s the second book in my Denton and Alex Davies Mystery series.
Get the book here
Here’s the blurb:

Red-eyed Monster Bats that attack humans?
Denton doesn’t think so and Alex hopes not, but who are they to quibble with the local gossip?
Transmission problems and a blown tire land Denton and Alex Davies right in the middle of a dilapidated, unfriendly town that’s welcoming no strangers, least of all nosy ones with a bent toward solving mysteries.

But with support from the town detective--an admirer of the Davies--and their own tenacious personalities, Denton and Alex aren’t easily scared off. Not when warnings in the form of painted bats show up on the porch of their rented cabin, not when the mayor threatens to run them out of town and not even when Denton finds the bones . . .

An ancient story, a bit of a map, a lost jewel and even a bat clan serve to provide the Davies and their sidekick, Taffy, the dog, their hardest case so far.

I’m also putting the final touches on book one of a NEW Mystery series, coming out in November 2015. The series is called: The Appleton, West Virginia Mysteries, and the first book is called Sabotaged Christmas. I’m excited to begin sharing about this series and hope everyone will check it out! My agent is also shopping the first book of a romantic suspense Nursery Rhyme Suspense trilogy. I’m working to finish the second book in my WWII Trilogy and several others I’m
researching. So far, I’ve never run out of ideas and don’t expect to any time soon.

Do you have a project on the back burner? Tell me about it.

More than one! Here’s a glimpse (or two): I’ve begun, but had to put on a back burner because of other book obligations, a historical romantic suspense set in the 1800s. I’d love to find time to finish this one. I have an injured soldier book that I haven’t had time to begin. I would love to finish a standalone that features an unlikely duo who work/own at a mystery weekend bed and breakfast. And I have a romantic suspense set in Mexico of an idealistic young missionary captured between the glow of a hacienda-owning drug lord (unknown to her) and his sweet sister and a steady, hard-working young man who labors beside his father in a missionary setting which is anything but glamorous.

What would you tell a beginning writer who wants to publish but doesn't believe he/she has enough talent?

Never quit writing. I’ve mentored a young woman for several years now and have read either parts or all of her many novels she’s written. This summer she developed a wonderful idea for a series of novellas, and I must say her talent is nothing to be ashamed of! She’ll be able to fit right in with the best of authors. Most authors feel at times they can’t write, but never compare yourself to another author. You must write as you feel called. That’s not to say, you can’t improve or learn more. That’s a good thing, but never doubt the talent you’ve been given. You must find out what you are to write: nonfiction? Articles? Novels? Novellas? What genre suits you? My friend, Jamin (see above comment about my mentee), writes clean historical romance. She tried to write a contemporary and hated it. Back to historical she went, and hasn’t looked back.What time you have. Don’t expect to quit your job, if it’s a main source of income for you or your family. Accept that and work to find out what time you can devote to writing. Have young children? Then you’ll have to pick and choose when you can get in that hour, half hour, or ten minutes to write. Caregiver? Traveler? Co-owner of another business? Whatever the circumstance, you must accept whatever time works for you to write. If you can’t write full time, then be the best part time writer you can be. 

No, don’t quit. Keep writing those ideas and plots on paper. Learn. Listen. Practice. Never, never give up your dream.

***

A Question for me:
What do you do when you feel you’ve “gone stale” or “lost the inspiration”?

Great question. I do a couple of things. Because I am always working on at least two projects at a time, I shift gears for awhile and work on something else. 

I also have a great book I've put together with magazine pictures. I just pull that out, choose a random picture, and begin writing about it. It's amazing what comes out.

***
Thank you, Carole, for joining me today!


Brown not only has her award winning (Winner of the 2015 Christian Small Publisher Award in General Fiction, nominated for an Epic Award, RWA International Digital Awards finalist in Inspiration, Laurel Award finalist, Selah finalist; Genesis semi-finalist) debut novel, The Redemption of Caralynne Hayman, available for purchase now, but a companion book called West Virginia Scrapbook: From the Life of Caralynne Hayman, filled with tidbits of information about West Virginia.

A fun, lighthearted mystery series began with the first book: Hog Insane, introducing Denton and Alex Davies and now her second book in this series, Bat Crazy. Her WWII romantic suspense Spies series began with With Music In Their Hearts, featuring three red-headed sisters, three spies, and three stories. Late 2015, she will release the first book, Sabotaged Christmas in a series called, The Appleton, West Virginia Mysteries.

Besides being a member and active participant of many writing groups, Carole Brown enjoys mentoring beginning writers. She loves to weave suspense and tough topics into her books, along with a touch of romance and whimsy, and is always on the lookout for outstanding titles and catchy ideas. She and her husband reside in SE Ohio but have ministered and counseled nationally and internationally. Together, they enjoy their grandsons, traveling, gardening, good food, the simple life, and did she mention their grandsons?

Barn Door Book Loft: http://www.barndoorbookloft.net/



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Saturday, September 19, 2015

LAST DAY! Get the eBook Free! Simple Treasures Boutique!

Today is the last day for two things!

First, my FREE eBook of The Gift: A Parable of the Key ends today! Here's the link to get that:


Second, this is the last day of the Simple Treasures Boutique. I will be there from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. signing books. If you can't make it, don't worry! I will be at the show again in November.