Finding a Friend – or Willing Victims -IWSG

 

InsecureWritersSupportGroup

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.

 

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Peak My Interest – IWSG Post

 

InsecureWritersSupportGroup

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

 

InsecureWritersSupportGroup

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.

 

The Failure Bug -IWSG

 

InsecureWritersSupportGroup

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

 

InsecureWritersSupportGroup

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

 

InsecureWritersSupportGroup

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.

 

Enough Hours in the Day -IWSG

InsecureWritersSupportGroup

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.

 

2014-11-30 12.43.54

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.

 

Sharing Your Opinion -IWSG

 

InsecureWritersSupportGroup

 

I’ve been pulling out my hair for a year now.  What is the best way to get a review?  I have become better and better about leaving them myself, because I now realize just how hard it is to get them.  I scratch my head and wonder, why is it that so many people are ready to give their opinions, yet book reviews are scarce?

My policy, although I am not a book reviewer and blogger, is for my own personal benefit.  I will only review books that have a 4 and 5 star rating in my mind.  I don’t want to destroy someone’s online presence just because their book didn’t work for me. If I truly feel like a book is a three star, but I have positive things to say, then I might leave a review.  I don’t normally care about grammar either.  Did the book capture me or not?

I suppose my point is, leaving a review is the easiest and cheapest way to thank an author for what they do.  It will help other customers in their search too. What makes you leave a review and what holds you back?

Lets get out there and show some love to indie and small published authors.  Even some of the big guys could use the help.

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

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.

 

Laurel Heights-Review

laurel heights

I was fortunate to review Laural Heights by Denise Moncrief.  Being this close to Halloween I can’t get enough spooky reads!

From Amazon:

Book One of an exciting new series filled with paranormal activity, delicious romance, and plenty of suspense.

A dark cloud of deceit hovers over her family tree…

Left an estate by an aunt she’s never met, Laurel Standridge takes possession of Laurel Heights, hoping it will be the safe haven she needs to recuperate from her ill-fated relationship with Rand Peterson. Secrets long buried rise to the surface when her cousin James is murdered and dumped on the highway just outside the gates of Laurel Heights.
Her past trails her to the mountains of Arkansas…
Caught in an obligation Chase Peterson feels he cannot ignore, he agrees to help his brother Rand take back the property he believes Laurel stole from him, but Chase remains at Laurel Heights after he discovers Laurel took nothing of Rand’s away with her except nightmares, fading bruises, and a broken rib.
Unexplained disturbances shatter her hopes of a normal life…
Are the strange bumps, thumps, and bangs reverberating through the night caused by the murderer of Laurel’s cousin James, someone Rand has sent to exact his revenge, or a disturbed soul existing in another dimension, trying to communicate with the living? Drawn together by the intrigue surrounding Laurel Heights, Chase and Laurel become hopelessly entangled in a relationship that goes deeper than mere physical attraction. Can their love survive the haunting of Laurel Heights?

My review:

I give this 4 stars

This story is about Laurel escaping an abusive and dangerous past through a somewhat mysterious inheritance.

There is a lot going on in this story.  The opening scene captured my attention.  Although I’ve never been in a similar situation, you feel the pain Laurel is being subjected to.  I was hooked in the first few chapters.  Fast forward to Laurel Heights.  Creepy.  Very creepy.  You never know when the ghost will strike.  In the end the plot twists were not something I saw coming.  That’s a good thing.  The budding romance was sweet and secondary to poor Laurel’s life.  This is a great read for the upcoming holidays, Halloween that is.  The mystery behind Laurel Heights will keep your turning the pages.

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