Friday, April 22, 2011

Hobbies or Addictions?

My newest hobbie is Cityville. I hate to admit to the addiction but I have it. I love it. I tell myself playing the game is a waste of time. I also tell others when I'm trying to justify sitting in front of the computer and doing something other than writing that it helps me relax. Don't know if that one is true.

Cittyville—definitely an addiction.

Now stepping back a little I love to knit. Knitting gives me something to do at night when I'm too tired to write and all I want to do is sit in front of the TV. Do I knit when I have other things I should be doing. Not usually. I knit nine scarves last year three for each of my favorite girls, my two daughters and my one daughter-in-law. Now I'm starting the next knitting project for Christmas.

Knitting—a hobby.

When I first started writing, it seemed to take over my life. I wrote every day of the week, receiving countless rejections letters. If I had wanted to, I could have papered a room with them. In the end my habit of sitting in the chair every day, setting goals and studying everything about writing that came my way paid off. I published with Kennsington first, Kate Duffy being the wonderful editor who bought my book. I can no longer sit down every day and write. I work full time, publish, edit, and create covers for books.

Writing is neither a hobby or an addiction. It is my life. It is hard to have a myriad of stories in my head and not be able to put them to paper.

I have taken on stitcheries as a hobby and drawing portraits of my children. All of these were hobbies I could put aside.

What about you? Any Addictions or Hobbies in your life?

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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Goal Setting

I have always been an avid goal setter. Yet in setting my goal each day, I would strive not to meet it but to do more. I am highly successful with this method. Even today, when I am editing a book, I will strive to read X number of pages and then will try to edit one more then again one more. Most of the time I finish ahead of schedule.

I welcome this month of goal setting and focusing. I have been mulling over in my head thoughts of writing once again. An April Fools shorty looms in my head. I have pondered what gimmick to use for this intrepid story. What joke? What ploy? How can I make this interesting without a cliché? So how many words a week do I want to write? Hmmm…. I think I will go with a mini outline first. What you say? Chris is outlining? Yes, I have begun outlining each scene. And my characters—who will they turn out to be. I must begin…

Thank you MVRWA for helping me find my way back to my beloved writing. I had pretty much written it all off, at least until this summer. But why wait? Why enable? I can make excuses forever but when I have time to play Cityville, I must have time to write.


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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Write your passion!

As authors we here this phrase in many different contexts.

“If you want to sell, write what you are passionate about.”

“I love this book because I wrote from my heart. It is my passion.”

Have you ever had a memory or an irrational fear, which made no sense?

Have you ever felt as if you have lived in another time period because you are drawn to certain events in history?

As a competitive swimmer I have always enjoyed a love of water. The ebb and flow of it is soothing and comforting, yet I have a strong fear of drowning. I refused to see the movie Titanic with my husband on his birthday several years ago. Yet somehow he managed to get me there. I hated the movie, no I loathed it and I don’t believe I have forgiven him. How old is the movie. Sometime I wonder if I was on that ill-fated ship.

I have other phobias—perhaps I am just strange. Back to topic. I have found myself drawn to many genres. I have a love of the old west, the Sioux the pioneers as well as the cavalry. I have a passion for the War Between the States as well as the Revolutionary War. And strangely I also find myself drawn to the Vikings.

I have written one short Civil War story, one story about Vikings several Scottish Highland books and a few from the Regency period. I do love history. Perhaps there is nothing strange about me other than my love of the past.

What is your favorite time in history and do you feel a strong pull to a historical event?

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Sunday, April 17, 2011

Marketing Your Work

What are the best ways to use social networking and blogging to promote your book? I don't want to be an in your face author who is constantly beckoning people to buy my books. But I do want to sell books!

I have run contests on my blog but have only had a few who have entered the contest. I have found that most people do not want to receive an ebook copy. I have lots of entries when I offer a paperback copy. But paperback copies are expensive and require a trip to the post office. So, is it worth the time, effort and money to offer a paper copy to the winner of the contest? I have found that it is not. I have seen contests where the author offers free kindles or a $50.00 gift certificate and sometimes more. I would love to know if this brought in $139.00 in sales. Or more.

How does one use facebook to promote? I'm not sure I want to see promotions on my page. Yes, it is a social network and I'm sure my friends want to know what I am doing, but most of my friends are family and they all ready know what I'm doing.

I read recently in the RWR about E-zines. What the heck is that? Is it the same thing as e-mail? And does one need a twitter account. I'm not really electronically smart and I think I have a twitter account but I've never used it.

What do you do to promote your book? If you are not promoting what kinds of contests do you enter? Or are you a person who goes to blogs, reads them but rarely if ever leave a comment?

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Saturday, April 16, 2011

Book Parties!

A way to sell books? Or just a lot of work?

For some time now I've wanted to host a book party. I heard about them a couple of years ago as a way to promote and sell books. I've never had the time to organize such a party. But now as retirement looms, I'm seriously thinking about this as a possibility. I've been to Tupperware parties, Mary Kay parties, designer jean parties and more.

Why not a book party with cheese, crackers and maybe wine. Perhaps as we do with bridal and baby showers there could be games. The reading of excerpts from the books being promoted could be a selling point as well as being fun. The party could bring more parties if the incentives were right.

Have any of you out there hosted a book party? If so, do you have any ideas about making something like this a success? What would be good incentives for someone else to host a party?