Twice Cursed and an #IWSG post

If you follow me on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, you’ve seen the cover reveal for Twice Cursed. If not, here it is again:

Mock Up 1

Release date is June 21st and pre-orders are live on Amazon for ebooks. I’ll announce when I have print versions. Speaking of, my proof copy should be in some time this week. I may be found staring out the window of my office watching the delivery drivers go by.

I’m always unsure about how a book will be received. This one so far is my favorite, though #4 is gaining ground there as I actually finish the story. It’s a little weird for me not to have the whole first draft written by this point, but I also remember Shattered Illusions got a major overhaul to its end about this time.

Part of me is worried each time that I won’t be able to release on time. I have concepts jotted down for the next few books in this series. I know where the thread that continues through each book is going. I just need to get there. Though lately, my characters have made things a little harder to figure out how to get there. If only they’d stop getting ahead of themselves…

IWSG Question of the Day: It’s spring! Does this season inspire you to write more than others, or not?

No, though I do like picking seasons/holidays to write in for a particular book. Twisted Magics lead up the the Winter Solstice. Shattered Illusions lead up to (and through) the Summer Solstice. Twice Cursed is in the fall (mid to late October) and #4…I’m not sharing yet. No idea where #5 is going to land, but it’s too early to be putting much planning into that one (hi, next NaNoWriMo project).

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Celebration? #IWSG

IWSG Question of the Day: How do you celebrate when you achieve a writing goal / finish a story?

As much as I would like to, I’m usually neck deep in the next book when one releases. And my track record for post NaNoWriMo has been horrid. Something always goes wrong in life and then I’m dealing with that as the challenge ends. Don’t exactly feel like celebrating after that.

Besides, I’m already reading through my word vomit to see what came out.

I really do want to have some type of little “hey, it’s done” type of celebration, but besides the fact that things have not worked out in my favor, I don’t know what. Go for a nice meal? Take a day trip somewhere? Treat myself to something nice?

It’s like with the meet this weekend (that I’m kind of being dragged kicking and screaming to). My anxiety levels for this are at an all time high, and if I make it through I’d love to celebrate with my teammates. However, I’m traveling to Southern New England at the end of the month so it’s questionable if it’s feasible between saving up and work I need to get done. That and the child has a game soon after I’m done.

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Scheduling Chaos? #IWSG

IWSG Question of the Day: What steps have you taken to put a schedule in place for your writing and publishing?

Oh gosh, do you want to see my nice neat table in OneNote? Thankfully I had someone up my tail pretty early on about setting a schedule and sticking to it. Granted, he just wanted to see me get Twisted Magics to publication.

I kind of took it from there and currently have through the end of 2019 planned out. And here I’m certain I’m about to hear people remind me that I claim to not be a planner. In the books themselves, I’m not. What I need to be doing with said book each month, I am. Am I drafting? Editing? Is it out to beta readers? Formatting? That kind of stuff.

To the point that I know I have roughly a year and eight months to get it from first word to available for purchase. And while that math sounds weird because I’m trying to stick to releasing one per year at about the same time, I have two books overlap for a bit.

Which means I need to stop toying with book 4 and get on the final edits for Twice Cursed. June will be here before I know it.

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The other side of writing #IWSG

Oops, almost forgot to put up something for today.

Lately I’ve been focusing more on the other side of writing, or rather, the business side. Lining up events, marketing, sending off whatever information someone needs… It’s been a bit of a whirlwind month and it’s only going to pick up from here.

Which means I’m not getting a whole lot done on the writing/editing side.

I look at my schedule with trepidation as events get closer. Facebook takeover – how do I do that? The without sounding boring part. I got some awesome advice at Library Comic Con for when I’m doing those types of events, but what about that panel coming up?

While all of that is enough to scare this introvert, I think I might be more concerned that I’m falling behind on my schedule of getting editing done on Twice Cursed. And to think, I was ahead. I’ve already pushed aside a side project that I like to work on in these couple of months leading up to NaNoWriMo while whatever book I’m working on is out to beta readers.

I guess my insecurity for the month is if I can stay on task and keep up with all the new things happening. And that’s not even counting all the personal changes that have happened lately either.

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Snowball effect #IWSG

Since I totally forgot about today’s post until now and it has some relevance for me, I’m stealing Loni’s idea.

I posted previously about Crossfit. I try not to speak too much of it because I know the stigma it carries. And truthfully, from an outside observer before I started it looked like pure chaos.

I promise I’ll get to the writing part soon.

A few weeks ago there was a team workout and I got partnered up with two other women who had just started (I was not quite at my first month yet I think). They were friends who decided to do this together. Cool because my husband dragged me into this. So we’re getting set up and going since there’s different movements and it’s supposed to be one person working at a time so the other two can rest. About halfway through they’re not following the pattern anymore. Suddenly I find myself on my own for the rest of the workout because they decided I wasn’t moving fast enough for them (by the way, this is not normal behavior for people at my box – the others are very helpful and inclusive no matter their level).

I’m big and slow. I have a hard time doing stuff. I scale everything. Those simple facts began to snowball into directly negative thoughts (I can’t do this. I’ll never get anywhere. What was I thinking? Who am I kidding?) and it went beyond Crossfit. I began second guessing myself on everything, which is really bad at this time as I’m wrapping up book 2 and editing book 3. Had a panic attack about another team workout and had to sit that day out.

Lack of a decent night’s rest for who knows how long wasn’t helping either.

It became my turn at one of my critique groups and I prayed I could take people’s opinions without breaking down. I knew I had problems with the first chapter of book 3, but I couldn’t figure out what.

Managed to make it through that and start Camp NaNoWriMo (I use Camps for revisions and maybe some small side projects if I have time). I haven’t touched the first chapter yet since I decided to go through the rest of the book before I made an major changes. Need to see what I have because I know I set up a lot in the beginning that comes back.

I’m also torn a bit on a few things because readers vs critique partners again.

So I’m still on shaky ground with pretty much everything, but I’m trying to move forward.

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Habits

In going through the editing process, part of it is making sure my characters maintain their particular habits such as Silver toying with his braid. It’s something he does and doesn’t necessarily realize he’s doing it.

And then I start to laugh at one of my own: having my sunglasses on my head whenever I’m out. Either on my face or up on top of my head. I just grab them with my keys on my way out the door and don’t really ever think anything of it.

Until now of course.

What are some habits you have? Or habits of characters you like?

I’ve been rather quiet

First, for those who follow me, I want to apologize for my long periods of silence. Things have been going on in my life that have kept me quiet. I won’t go into most of them, but especially for the past few weeks it seems to be one thing after another. Much of which makes me want to scream in frustration.

So in my silence I’ve been working my way through editing book 3. What’s up with Shattered Illusions? It’s still out to my beta readers until the end of the month and right now book 3 amuses me. We’ll see if it entertains my alpha reader when I release it to him.

I’ve also been playing FFXIV and have become almost obsessed with getting all the relics maxed out. I already had all of the 2.0 ones at least to Zenith (now Atma) when I started picking it up again – 2 were Zetas already turned in for 3.0 relics (I’m only at 3 Zetas now, but I’ve been lazy on those). I also had 4 or 5 of the 3.0 relics started and am up to 6 (I’m using the 2.0 Zeta relics to buy the stuff for the 3.0 relics because crystal farming is mind numbing and retainer space is limited). My main is now fully upgraded and I’ve got 3 more at i230.

And now that I’ve lost most of you…

I’ve been doing some sales lately on my book for the holidays. The ebook is again on sale at $0.99 now on Amazon, B&N, iBooks, Kobo, and Smashwords. I have the print version available through my online store for 20% off with the coupon code HOLIDAYS.

Other than that, just trudging along.

Recent Events

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Indie Author Day: sharing a table with the amazing Loni Townsend

Here you’ve heard me talk quite a bit about Indie Author Day and those who follow me on Facebook have gotten to hear me go on about Boise Book Fest. With the two events running back-to-back weekends, it was hard not to be super excited about both.

I didn’t get the chance to escape my table for Indie Author Day so I missed out on the panels, but had a great time talking to everyone who stopped by. This was the first year this event ran and I can’t wait to see what they decide to do next year. I shared a table with Loni Townsend as you can see in the picture and just had fun.

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Boise Book Fest 2016

Now onto Boise Book Fest. This was simply so much fun and I can’t wait for next year (September 16th, 2017 – mark your calendars). I went as an attendee and managed to drop in on a number of panels. Got some great ideas from people, picked up a few books, and most importantly, made new friends.

Where Indie Author Day was, as expected, all indie and hybrid authors, Boise Book Fest had a mix and it was just so incredibly interesting to listen to the different points of view. Both events also pointed out at how bad I am in talking about my book. I  go into ultra-shy mode unless I’m trying to help sell someone else’s books. I guess I’m just weird like that.

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I came home from Boise Book Fest with even more, but not as many books as I would have liked.

A few people have inquired when I plan to release Shattered Illusions. I’m aiming for next summer just to give myself some breathing room. I’m drafting out book 3 next month during NaNoWriMo and I recently dug an old short story out of my archives to rewrite while Shattered Illusions is out to my beta readers. I have no planned release yet for the short story as it’s going to be part of a set. Yay, something new!

I learned so much just by listening and observing at both of these events. I’m so glad I attended both and look forward to seeing what the future holds for both these and other upcoming events.

Is it ready yet? #IWSG

This month’s question is: When do you know your story is ready?

Um… I don’t? Looking back at Twisted Magics, I’m sure I could have spent more time on it. I could have driven myself even more mad and kept working on it. But then I’d never move on.

The truth is I had someone else tell me it was time to let it go. With Shattered Illusions, I’ve set my deadlines and I need to meet them. While writing is fun for me, I also treat it like a job. Since I’m my own boss it would be easy to simply push off those deadlines or not even make them at all.

But I won’t. Part of it is my small audience looking for more. As much as I continue to doubt anyone actually likes my work, the occasional comment keeps me going.

The rest is likely insanity. I’m still working out this faster paced schedule, but it seems to be okay so far. Though I know I drive my husband mad sometimes with how obsessed I get with needing to get work done so I can meet my self-imposed deadlines.

Now I have to rely on myself to schedule when I’m done (pending massive issues of course).  Unfortunately I still haven’t figured out how to do it with my shorter stuff. Mostly because I dabble with those stories in between everything else.

And I think I’ve come to accept the phrase about how it is never finished, just paused. Or something like that. Honestly, I’ve forgotten the actual quote.

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Muse Monday: Why?

Today’s post is going to be a bit different. Yesterday while I worked on edits so I can get Shattered Illusions out to my beta readers, part of my mind decided to wander. I shared the questions on Facebook and got a couple of responses. They were very similar, but off enough I could see the different mindsets between an indie author and one who is trying to get traditionally published.

Now, the questions have no context. They were idle thoughts while I worked. I found myself wondering: Why are some things considered lazy or amateurish? How did those rules come about?

Pure curiosity on how these things came about. And after reading the responses, I wondered why these two chose the paths they did: one indie and another trying to break into traditional publishing.

And with Indie Author Day coming up in less than a month I know this is a question I will likely be asked among others. The short answer is I had a story I wanted to share. I have longer, more in-depth reasons which would bore most people. I did consider both paths, but found indie a better fit for me.

In other news, I totally found a location I want to use in book 3. *squeal* Nope, not sharing until I at least get the rough draft down during NaNoWriMo in November.

Oh, and I’ll be attending the Indie Author Day events at the Boise location. I’ll post more on it once I get details.