Fighting the Demons

Is May the month of struggle for anyone else? Or maybe it is the Friday the Thirteenth thing, plus a full moon. I never believed in that kind of thing before, but this week has been a rough week of Mondays. In fact, I missed Tuesday altogether.

I need help. No, really. I need it. I struggle with the demands of life from kids, to cleaning, to working, to wanting to read a book. Where exactly is writing happening? It’s not. It’s fighting with some demons that say ‘this is never going to go 2016-05-11 23.43.37anywhere” and “no one actually reads what you write anyway.”

It’s hard when reviews are so daunting to pull out of readers. It’s hard to sit and write when entire stories play out in my head a million times better than I write it.

So, there you have it. That little doubt monster is back.

Pushing it all aside, I am doing as Taylor Swift does. “Shake it off.” I am going to start the synopsis. I feel like I need something to remind me where I was going. I don’t do outlines – too many rules to follow or change. A synopsis though is a great highlight of all the big parts of your book. I hope this will focus my energy and make me stop doubting. Besides, I love writing. Who cares if no one writes it, other than I would love someone to come visit me in my made up worlds.

 

 

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Finding a Friend – or Willing Victims -IWSG

 

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It’s that time again. (Actually I am a little late) A post for the Insecure Writers Support Group.

Finding a friend or willing victims. It sounds morbid, and it’s not. I promise.  Well not too morbid.  Anyone else hear about these networks called street teams?  They help promote a specific author and in return you get free books and prizes.  Sometimes. Other street teams are more of a social circle. Some are closed to external jabber. Others are open to helping anyone who is willing to help the administrator.  I think I am somewhere in between.  I don’t want someone joining my group and getting nothing out of it.  The issue is that when you only have a couple of people, the group can’t really be just about me anyway, and not seem very self serving. For the time being I am approaching a “street team” more like a way to meet other authors and book lovers. This is all in hopes of developing a network that will eventually love to promote me.

So now. How do I get members?  Good question. Lots of authors gain users through giveaways.  My issues is, do these pan out? I haven’t see it.  I don’t want people entering who have no intention of being active. I mean commenting, laughing, and maybe sharing promotional information. I want people who want to be involved, even just once in a blue moon.

I am learning so much about networking from bigger name authors, but I don’t have the name or the networks to succeed as quickly. Yes. I said as quickly. I think we all eventually succeed. The glass is always half full.

Tips or pointers if you have a successful network?  Otherwise, are you interested in joining my little group?

 

MVW

 

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Visit other bloggers in the Insecure Writers Support Group !  (A blog hop that posts the first Wednesday of every month, founded by Head Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh.)  Thanks to his co-hosts this month too!

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer – aim for a dozen new people each time.

 

Peak My Interest – IWSG Post

 

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It’s that time again.  A post for the Insecure Writers Support Group.

How do you peak the interest of a new reader? Word of mouth is awesome. Really, really awesome, but you can’t always reach everyone this way. In fact, when you are a new author, sometimes people want a sneak peek.  So how do you feel about teasers? Do you like quote from the book, lines from the book, one line summaries? I’ve been experimenting with teasers and would love to know what works for you.

I feel like these small bits of advertisement are my only key way to keep sales generating after something has been released for awhile.

So as a reader what do you prefer?

As an author, what has worked for you?

 

ftlom-promo2 WSK-Promo1 Anyotherwayteaser1

 

 

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Visit other bloggers in the Insecure Writers Support Group !  (A blog hop that posts the first Wednesday of every month, founded by Head Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh.)  Thanks to his co-hosts this month too!

http://charitywrites.blogspot.com/ Charity Bradford

http://salarsenbooks.com/ S.A. Larsen

http://www.ajlauer.net/ AJ

http://tamaranarayan.com/ Tamara Narayan

http://eclecticali.wordpress.com/ Allison Gammons

http://tanyamiranda.com/ Tanya Miranda

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer – aim for a dozen new people each time.

 

What To Write Next -IWSG

 

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It’s that time again. (Actually I am a little late) A post for the Insecure Writers Support Group.

I had the best idea for a post – no I really did.  I figured if I wrote the post asap I wouldn’t forget.  That was the plan, anyway.  Than life happened and I forgot.  Now I can’t remember what I thought was the next awesome idea!

Isn’t that how writing goes? You make the commitment to write.  You sit down and BAM! Nothing.  Or what about the fact you have too many ideas.  So which do you write next?  Is there one that might get you an agent, or maybe one that will get picked up as the next best seller?

Do you find yourself second guessing what was the best next choice? Or maybe you know what is the right choice, but your heart is calling for something else. What then?

I don’t have any answers. I simply know that I want to write something else. A story that isn’t in my current genre published and I worry it won’t be publishable because of market trends. Or perhaps the current fans I might have wouldn’t like it.  MY Halloween story, which was paranormal and not typical to my writing, didn’t get much notice.  Maybe it was because the story was themed for Halloween? I can’t say.

What about you? Do you know what the market trends are and do you write to them? Do you write whatever you want and have multiple WIPs? Or do you find yourself frustrated?

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Visit other bloggers in the Insecure Writers Support Group !  (A blog hop that posts the first Wednesday of every month, founded by Head Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh.)  Thanks to his co-hosts this month too!

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer – aim for a dozen new people each time.

 

Happy Memorial DAY

4thIn the US, it is Memorial Day. A day to remember the fallen men and woman who gave their life in service to our country.  I feel like people sometimes forget why they have freedoms. One is a strong military that will fight for the people. My country, for those overseas, isn’t perfect and my government is run by humans. Whenever humans are involved you will have a flawed society, a flawed government.

The thing is, most service member enter the military hoping to make a difference. They have ideas that they will be fighting for a cause, but in the end answer any and all calls of service. Sometimes the war or cause isn’t what they would personally support either. The point is, they serve so you don’t have to. They give up their freedom to choose so that you can.

Remember that today is about all those that never came home.  For the families affected, I thank you for standing behind your soldier and I pray for your peace. I hope that someday it gets easier to wake up each day knowing that your solider is watching over you.

And for those that say “I don’t support the troops.” Is it over one negative soldier you saw in the news? Perhaps it’s from an imposter on the street that you didn’t know was an imposter. I am not judging you because most humans stink, don’t judge all soldiers because there was one bad egg or your hate of our commander and chief.

To those that paid the ultimate price US service members and members of military in other countries, we remember you.

Sorry for the morbid post. So now onto positive information.  If you want to help or know of some great organizations to help those who service post in the comments. International organizations are welcome, but please make sure you note the country that organization supports.

These are all US support:

Adopt a Platoon

Tangible goods donations

Authors that have some books featuring service members – because I can’t not blog about books!

Vonnie Davis

Joanne Stewart

The Failure Bug -IWSG

 

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It’s that time again.  A post for the Insecure Writers Support Group.

Getting past the fear and failure bug. That is my issue.  I am not overly confident. I don’t assume anyone likes me. I defiantly take criticism to heart. I am my own worst enemy!

Lately I have had a whole lot of new. New jobs, new clients, new books, etc. I hate the idea that nothing is guaranteed. There is no promise that everyone, or well anyone, will like what I have said or do.  It’s sad that I let the fear of failure get to me.  The good news is that I push through it these days. I still have that awful gnawing in the pit of my stomach, but I’ve realized that what is the worst to happen? I fail and move on.

That being said, it is one of the hardest things I have to battle. I have to push and force myself to just do it without letting the fear make me fail before I even tried.

So everyone – PUSH ON! Don’t let yourself not try.  I wouldn’t have 3 anthologies under my belt and the ability to obtain work from home if I’d quit.

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Visit other bloggers in the Insecure Writers Support Group !  (A blog hop that posts the first Wednesday of every month, founded by Head Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh.)  Thanks to his co-hosts this month too!

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer – aim for a dozen new people each time.

 

The Color Green -IWSG

 

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It’s that time again. (Actually I am a little late) A post for the Insecure Writers Support Group.

The color green as in “you are green with envy” isn’t a good color for most. Don’t get me wrong, green and red are great for Christmas.  Green makes grass look healthy.  But jealousy isn’t a good look on anyone.

I try as I might to fight off the green monster of envy.  I try not to be jealous that someone is successfully selling their books, or has a lot of reviews.  I try not to be angry because a friend of my promotes someone’s business or compliments someone’s hobby and never mine.

I think the problem for me is that the jealousy is laced with hurt.  Why wasn’t I good enough?  Are we not friends?  Did I not do enough for you?  So I step back.  I work hard to make my friends and family know they are all important.  I try to review all the authors out there and do so kindly.  I try and promote authors and friends equally (well except during a release week-special treatment is deserved for that author.)  I do what I can and in the end if I am not noticed or not important enough to someone, than I suppose I step back and remember that I am not helping or being kind for anything in return.  I do so, because I don’t want anyone to feel like they aren’t awesome or aren’t special.  It’s just that sometimes that is easier said than done.

So I am not posting this because I want something in return. I am posting this so that people know. If I do something for you it’s because I care.  I want you to know one person out there thinks you were worth the time to review or worth the happy birthday shout out.  If you have hundreds of followers, two thumbs up.  If you have one follower?  Well I am your biggest fan.  Just don’t forget to share the love with others. I guess they call it pay it forward.  Share the happy feeling I gave you with someone else who needs a happy feeling too. It doesn’t cost anything to make someone smile.

 

So how many of you fight jealousy? I hope I’m not alone.  I think everyone envies someone, even the New York Times best seller sees something they have yet to be or achieve.  Human nature is complex, don’t you think?

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Visit other bloggers in the Insecure Writers Support Group !  (A blog hop that posts the first Wednesday of every month, founded by Head Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh.)  Thanks to his co-hosts this month too!

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer – aim for a dozen new people each time.

 

Support Networks/Platform Building -IWSG

 

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It’s that time again.  A post for the Insecure Writers Support Group.  How fitting that I am doing a post on support systems.  I’ve sold a few books, mostly to key people in my family.  The surprise to me is that I have heard a few of my college sorority sisters have bought at least one of my book too.  I hope they liked it and are spreading the word.

To write books and become published though, you need a bigger support system them family.  Anyone else not trust your nearest and dearest when they say you’re the next big thing?  Most writers don’t have a high profile author or public figure in the family to make your name a household icon.  So where do you go for support to get the knowledge of business, get your book info out past your tiny support circle,  maybe even find an agent, and lastly build an audience, a platform?

The internet.

Today’s author has to master the internet, unless you are a lucky member of the big publishers.  Even then though, they don’t always market you.  So here is where I started.

1. Find blogs of indie authors. They are hungry to share knowledge as much as they are to sell a book or two. Obviously, if they aren’t that author, they might be fun to follow still.  Interact with these authors.  They might tell you about a writing group, or where they started out.  Writing groups that could be awesome to shift through and fine a few writing pales like http://www.scribophile.com.

2. Blog.  I don’t mean that you have to share the best knowledge of stuff you don’t know or even to blog every day.  I mean start a blog about whatever you do know.  Ask questions and expect no answers.  This is a slow process.  People will find you and you will form some new friendships with people who have similar interests.

3. FACEBOOK or now Tsu, even Twitter.  Interact, like pages, and follow those authors that give advice.  You can actually bond with other people this way.

4. Local writing groups, conferences, and library events.  Not always in that order.  I rarely think a conference is worth the money for my writing career.  I do however think it can be wonderful to meet other authors.  Other authors can get you a submission to their agents.

5.  Well – I am not sure what 5 really is yet.  Once you are published a few more avenues open up.  That isn’t what this post is about though.

For everyone out there, published or not.  Go fourth and network. Make friends.  Join blog hops. Do you have suggestions to add to this list for the unknown writer or new author?

 

giveaway

For those looking for my giveaway, click here.

Giveaway~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Visit other bloggers in the Insecure Writers Support Group !  (A blog hop that posts the first Wednesday of every month, founded by Head Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh.)  Thanks to his co-hosts this month too!

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer – aim for a dozen new people each time.

 

The Four Letter Word – Fun Fact or Not on Friday

There are a lot of four letter words.  remove your mind from going down the dark tunnel-or the gutter.  Seriously stop it!  Okay.  Back on track now.  I find it interesting that several very important words that shape our lives are 4 letters.  Love and fear are two that I think can shape people and how they handle life.

As a child I knew a lot of fear.  Fear of failure, fear of getting lost, fear of change, fear of being 10379858_883353919832_7604146096195761269_ounwanted, fear, fear, fear. I was afraid of everything.  I actually went to a teacher in the sixth grade and requested to have a separate role in the class so that I was never be put on the spot during class.  I was so afraid of ridicule.

Well as an adult those fears stayed and grew worse until my life could be boiled down to one problem-I wasn’t living, I was hiding.  Writing has become my outlet.  In away I still hide behind my words, but at the same time my fear gives me plots and imperfect heroines and heroes.

Why do I share a huge flaw in my character so openly in my blog and in my writing?  I hope it shows someone, anyone, that sometimes our worst bits of humanity are what make life interesting.  No one wants to read about a perfect person.

Good news for my readers. I haven’t outgrown all my fears.  Some are soul deep, so I guess that means more reading material for you 🙂

Words to live by though-learn to control your fear so that it never controls you.

Enough Hours in the Day -IWSG

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Anyone else feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day?  Like maybe you are stretching yourself too thin?  Well let me just say, if you don’t can you please share your secret?

I’m pulled between so many things.  Sometimes it’s necessity.  Sometimes, it’s want.  Writing falls in that want and sometimes the necessity category.  It’s my sanity.  The necessity category keeps changing.

I’m trying to find my way.  Partially that means job finding.  I am trying to start a small line of products for author promotion.  I have a store on etsy that will soon house my handmade items.  I am also selling bows, because my three year old has an obsession.  Next to that I have my webdesign.  That is more of a challenge.  I still have to look for full time employment, raise my kids, and oh right, I am writing resumes for an online company.  I think I am supposed to clean somewhere in there too.  Ha, that’s a joke.  I think I attempting to lose weight, or at least get more healthy.  Let’s see if It Works, really works-so far so good.  There’s the challenge to help promote other authors, follow blogs and posts too.  So when do you write?

That’s the hard part. Some days I write a lot (okay 1000 words isn’t a lot.) Some days I don’t do 2014-11-29 13.53.21anything except try and market.  Marketing is a time suck.  I think you saw my post on trying to get reviews?  That’s a pain too. Some days I feel overwhelmed. Those are the days that i do only the basics.  Kids, food, and write.  My sanity depends on living someone’s life, that I make up.

So how do you make things work?  Life doesn’t stop, unless you are fortunate enough to be a full time author-granted life still doesn’t stop.

 

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In case you didn’t know I have a free read out there too.  Sometimes helping out an author doesn’t have to cost a thing.

 

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Visit other bloggers in the Insecure Writers Support Group !  (A blog hop that posts the first Wednesday of every month, founded by Head Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh.)  Thanks to his co-hosts this month too! Heather Gardner, T. Drecker from Kidbits, Eva E. Solar at Lilicasplace, and Patsy Collins!

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer – aim for a dozen new people each time.