Wednesday, July 31, 2013

07/31/2013 Writing Wednesday!

Hi everyone and welcome back! I'm glad you were able to make it by today. I hope the week is treating you well. So far mine has been busy and super tiring, but I'm pushing through as much as I can. Right now I'm just trying to remember if there are any federal holidays in August. Let's hope because I'd really like an extra day off thrown in somewhere this coming month.

I've been talking lately about writing what you do or don't know and have been mostly focusing on what you don't know, and how to use it to your advantage. Today I wanted to take a little step back and look at what it means to actually write what you do know, and how to make sure not to get yourself too ahead of yourself at the same time.

I don't want to make it seem that way, but sometimes writing what you do know is dangerous. Not in the rabid wolverine style of dangerous, but more in that sometimes you will find yourself going into unnecessary detail without realizing it levels of dangerous. Now having detail about something you know/like isn't a problem, but you need to make sure you don't put in so much that your readership gets lost in it, and this can happen without you realizing it, so you need to be careful.

For example, I really liked reading Jurassic Park and the Lost World, so I thought I'd give something else Michael Crichton wrote. I went for Airframe, and while the idea of it was interesting there was a point where I just didn't care about how the in-flight pamphlets were written or all of the specifics of airplane construction, or all that stuff that I started not to care anymore and started having to force myself to try and remember what the plot was. Admittedly they were trying to figure out why a plane hit such massive turbulence at the altitude and speed it was at, but the problem came when it felt like I was reading more of a jetliner construction manual than I was a book. I came away from it understanding that Michael Crichton is incredibly technical and detail oriented, but also that maybe sometimes highly technical stuff can be explained via exposition and not what felt like a Power Point presentation.

This is a risk you take when writing about something you know super well. Yes, there's a good chance that your readers won't know the subjects nearly as much as you do, but also keep in mind that it might not be due to lack of exposure, but more lack of deciding not to study that subject because they just aren't interested.

On the other side of things, you have the risk of not putting in nearly enough detail about the subject. This like the other piece, generally happen by accident, and are incredibly difficult to catch. You know the subject so you just gloss over some of the details and keep going, but the problem is that the readers aren't getting nearly as many details from that one tiny piece of information as you think they are, so once it gets to the 'big reveal' they are left confused and feeling like they were hit over the head with a cold iron brick.

The best way to handle this potential issues is to make sure you have two or more good beta-readers for your stories. One of them should be at least a little bit outside your normal demographic so that you get an idea for where people are potentially going to get confused. I'm not saying you have to listen to each and every piece of advice your beta-readers give you, but at least take them into consideration because they are going to be the ones to tell you where to put more or less explanation that you likely didn't notice.  There is a delicate balance you must find, and I'm sure with an open mind and patience you'll be able to do it.

Thanks everyone for stopping by today. Please remember if there are any topics you want me to look at feel free to send me a message or leave a comment. I would love for conversations to start here. Also, today is the LAST DAY to get 'The Light Rises' for free, so please tell everyone about it as we do one last push for the sale. I'll be back here on Friday, so I hope the rest of the week is nice to you!

Monday, July 29, 2013

07/29/2013 Magnificent Monday!

Hello everyone and welcome back on this very much existing Monday. Right now my brain is still adjusting to the fact I have to be awake right now, and also the fact that once again, another month is almost completely over. We've come over halfway through the year already and that seems a tad ridiculous. I look at my plan/goals for the rest of the year, and as quickly as the months go by it makes me nervous that I won't get to accomplish them. We'll see though, and if I don't, it'll at least be early 2014, which is also kind of ridiculous.

Luckily I have managed to get slightly more sleep than I was getting throughout the week, still feel like I need to catch up some, but actually having my heart burn medicine has helped a lot. Friday was a victorious day where I got the prescription issue taken care of as well as my ebay problems, so yay for all that!

Editing is continuing as smoothly as it can. So far I am in the 50s for page, which doesn't seem that bad to me for a couple weeks of work. That tells me I should, in theory, be finished with this part around late August early September. At that point I will need to throw the story at someone so that I can a) not look at it for a little bit and b) get an outside perspective on some things because at that point I won't know what I'm looking at any longer. Depending on who gets it means I will have time to get some other things put together before November, so December is going to be spent trying to get some kind of final-ish product put together for 'Rending the Seal' which is kind of exciting.

As a reminder, since we are getting close to the end of the month, 'The Light Rises' is still free for 3 more days. We've gone over 50 mark, and now I'm just curious to see where we land on Aug 1st. I wanted to give a bit of an explanation as to why I'm so excited that a book that's been out for 2 years has hit 50 sales. The first is that I like round numbers, they always seem impressive. The second is that it is a strong sense of accomplishment for me. It might not be the highest sales number in the world, by far, and I know there are people better than I am, however this is something I can say I've done and it is a step toward my overall goal of getting the series done. The fact that I am working on editing a prequel and the sequel should, in theory be finished with the first draft at the end of November is starting to put things into perspective for me. Especially since the first two stories of the second half are finished in notebooks and one is almost done being transposed into my computer. It makes me wonder just how much longer I really have before this is all finished, and what I'm going to do with my time afterward. So 50 might not seem like a very impressive number since 2011 to most people, but to me it's a sign of things to come and it's very exciting. I couldn't have gotten this far without any of you and I thank you for that very much.

For now I will take my leave though. I'll be back on Wednesday like I normally am, barring any kind of disaster or something of that nature. I hope to see you all there, and remember if there's every a topic or something you'd like for me to bring up just leave a comment or send me an e-mail and I'll get right back to you. Have a great day!

Friday, July 26, 2013

07/26/2013 Fantastic Friday!

Hello everyone! I hope this week has been nice to you. It's been...a week for me, but hopefully that means the weekend will be better, even if I have to work tomorrow. I really wanted to say a big thank you to everyone who's helped 'The Light Rises' get to 50 sales. I know that isn't very high for a book that's been out since 2011, but it's a big deal to me, and I wanted to say how much I appreciated everyone who picked it up. I hope you liked it.

Today I bring you a short story called 'Assisted Suicide' by Adam Moon. The story itself is about as twisted as you'd think. The whole idea is that a man found himself on the edge and decided to finally end it all. However, he's awake at his own funeral and he gets an idea first-hand of what he's done to his family and those that loved him. The question question he has is whether or not he's really dead.

Brett had hid the alcoholism from everyone, and now that he was laying in his own coffin, listening to the words his brother was telling the world he realized just what it had done to everyone. He felt like a coward, but he still felt like he was alive. The only problem is that no matter how hard he tried he couldn't move or wake up. Most of all he wanted to know what happened to Sarah, the woman he deeply loved and knew he'd hurt the most. The only problem is there's a chance she might not show up before the funeral's over, and at that point, Brett needs to worry about what it would be like to be buried alive.

I picked this story because sometimes I just like to read weird things. It doesn't happen very often, but once in a while it's nice to open the genre-doors a little and try something different. This story most definitely fills that requirement. So if you are interested in reading something completely different during your lunch, break, or whatever time you may have, I suggest looking into this one.

'Assisted Suicide' is available for free at Smashwords. The formatting looks good to me, so it is only a matter of time before it will also be available at the other distribution locations as well. Please check out this story and support the author as much as you can, I'm sure he'd appreciate it.

Thanks everyone for stopping by today. Again, I wanted to say thanks for helping me get 'The Light Rises' to so many people. I couldn't have done it without your help. Now it'll be a matter of seeing how high it can go before (and after) the sale ends. At this time though, enjoy your Friday and the upcoming weekend as much as you possibly can! I'll see you all Monday!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

07/24/2013 Writing Wednesday!

Good morning everyone and welcome back. I hope this week has been nice to everyone so far. After giving up on Monday, Tuesday was much better. I'm hoping that means today will bring all of the good news I could possibly ever ask for, and then tomorrow...piles of money? I don't know, but we'll see.

Last week I talked about writing what you know and what you don't know. I mostly used the knowledge route as my primary example, but something else that's really fun to do sometimes is also change up genres. Like with most things, if you do the same thing over and over again, at some point you're going to get tired of it. You might not realize that's what happening, but something in your brain is going to click that 'it's so easy' or 'I can do this in my sleep' and while there's still the creative process the excitement isn't really there anymore. It's times like that when you force yourself to change things up!

Let's say you are a literature writer and you go for the dramatic, emotional, really kind of existential stuff. Everything you write is really cerebral and complicated, but not to you anymore. Sure there are points when you get frustrated and take a break, but for the most part you know every ounce of what needs to be done in order to make your story everything it could be. Writing isn't so much of a fun hobby/second full-time job anymore as it is a part of your day that happens to involve a lot of writing. So, in an attempt to change things up and reignite that creative spark, I say write a young adult or even a children's story. It doesn't really matter what kind at that point, because there are just some topics you don't bring up in those genres or they are glossed over so lightly they are pretty much non-existent. Make your main character a happy little girl who just wants to go on adventures and make friends, and she makes the world around her one of bright colors and imagination. I mean sure, you can make that depressing if you really wanted to, but this is a story little girls just like her in school will read, so let's give her a bunch of friends and a not sad ending, alright?

The reason why it's important to change genres once in a while is because it forces your brain to remember how the creative process works again. It makes you have to think in a completely different way, especially if your protagonist is something that you also aren't used to (like the little girl) because suddenly you have to remember what it's like to think like a child in the way you see things. Like, to do the kitchen is where the pantry is, where the groceries go, maybe certain things that don't go in the medicine cabinet, the appliances work, and where the phone book (people still have those, right?) is somewhere next to the can of pens that may or may not work with you need them. To a little kid, depending on the exact age of course, the kitchen is where food is made and snacks are potentially hidden everywhere.

There are a lot of other ways to get those creative brainwaves going that I could go into, but I simply don't have that kind of time. Though, Robert Brockway at has a wonderful article up today that has a bunch of other options you can look at too, so I do recommend checking it out as well. What do you think of the tips he gives?

Thanks everyone for stopping by. I hope the week is nice to everyone now. I'm still waiting to hear back from my insurance company, so if anything in this post didn't make a whole lot of sense I'm sorry, but constant heart burn means I haven't been sleeping as much as I would like to. Also though, in better news, we are so very close to my sales goal for 'The Light Rises', so please keep telling everyone about it! It would be awesome! For now though, have a great rest of your week and I'll be back on Friday!

Monday, July 22, 2013

07/22/2013 Magnificent Monday!

Hello everyone, I hope your weekend saw you well. Mine was spent relaxing and relatively quiet. I think I needed it after the week I had, though we'll see how this week goes to make up for it. Currently I am just trying to stay awake, as during that relaxing time my brain decided that sleep was an optional event, and it didn't seem to happen much.

I have also, finally, been able to start Shin Megami Tensei 4, and I am really enjoying it so far. I'm only about 4 hours in and I like the concept and how it's being executed. I'm really about about this seeing as I have heard not-great things about game play from previous non-Persona and non-Devil Survivor titles. It's also nice to be able to obsess over a video game again that I don't have to share with that guy I live with (still say I'm the better X-Com player...) so that's a bonus too.

I'd also like to take a moment and (once again) beg for every to please pass on that 'The Light Rises' is free until the end of July. I'm trying really hard to get the word out as much as possible, mostly because I am so close to actually having 50 sales, and I like numbers like that. Now, as I keep saying, I am aware that having 50 sales for a book that's been out since 2011 doesn't seem like that big of a deal, but to me it is. I'm not a social expert nor am I super rich, so advertising has been difficult and rather limited, and so yes my book has been out for a couple years, but sometimes getting people to pay $2.99 isn't the easiest, which is why I'm using the fact it's currently free to boost up the word of mouth.

So again, please tell everyone know you that 'The Light Rises' is free until the end of July. I would appreciate it so very much and it would make my day if I got enough notifications today to get it up to 50 sales. Also, if anyone who has read it, and liked it, could leave a review either on Smashwords or on Barnes & Noble (or wherever you actually got it) that would be great too. I always like to read happy things when I'm super sleepy.

Thanks everyone for stopping by again today. I will be back on Wednesday, hopefully slightly more awake than I am right now. In the meantime, I also hope the start of the week is nice to you, and that on Wednesday everyone is happy and my insurance stopped being jerks and let me get my acid reflux medicine. See you then!

Friday, July 19, 2013

07/19/2013 Fantastic Friday!

Hello everyone. I hope the week has treated you all nicer than it has me. Dealing with insurance being a jerk means only having over the counter medicine to take, and while the bottle may say 24 hours, it actually lasts for more like 4. That being said my ability to concentrate is very limited, so what I decided to do was throw out a few happy reminders!

If you haven't checked it out yet, please do. There are books being added every day, and I'm sure all of the participating authors would really appreciate everyone taking a look. This is my distributor and they only do two sales a year that are site-wide. There's this one, and then one in the winter right around Christmas time, so that means a lot of these books won't be on sale again for months.

I know I keep beating people over the head with this, but that's only because it's true. I'm hoping to reach a total sales number of 50 by the end of the month. Now, that may not sound like an impressive number, to to me it is a milestone and I would really like to get there. I don't have many to go, so I am throwing the link out to everyone on Facebook and Twitter multiple times a day. If you've read it and liked it, please tell someone else so they can do the same, or just put up a nice little review on there too. 

Thanks for everyone's patience today. Hopefully I'll be told the insurance company gave the ok to fill my prescription sooner rather than later. If that's the case then my ability to concentrate should be back at as close to 100% as it usually is. For now, please enjoy your Friday, your weekend, and all that good stuff. I'm going to work, go to a M:tG launch party and play video games!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

07/17/2013 Writing Wednesday!

Hello everyone! I hope you are all doing well this week. I am not nearly as angry as I was yesterday, at least right now, though I am pretty tired. Lots of fun lightning storms last night, so I don't exactly regret being tired. If you are one of the lucky ones heading to San Diego Comic-Con this week I have something very important to tell you; jealousy fills my veins and please buy me stuff, and also if I give you a list of names can you go say hello to famous people for me? I always wish I could go, but passes selling out in an hour and a half and how much I'd have to spend to go down there always stop me.

For now let's get to the real reason why you're here. I read a couple articles on Cracked recently and it got me thinking about the different things people write about. I constantly hear the saying 'write what you know' and I do that very much, but I also realized how important it is to write about stuff you don't know 100% about too. The reason why this is important is because of the fact that writing is a constantly evolving and growing art; I guarantee that you don't write the same way you did when you were ten. You learn new stuff and incorporate that into your work, which is awesome, but if you only write about what you know there are going to be certain aspects that fall flat.

Let's say you decided that you were going to study a subject and learn everything you could possible shove into your brain about it. You know everything now, right? Awesome, let's put that into a book. Not a non-fiction one, I mean one with dialogue, characters, plot, and all that good stuff. Oh, so you feel you are somewhat socially inept and are worried the character interactions are going to seem uncomfortable and awkward because that's how you feel about them each and every day? Well see what happens and then we can revisit that once it's done. Now in this situation if you went to write your book and it was full of awesome suspense, drama, and delightful plot twists however anything that happens between two people just feels wrong, and you went to publish it anyway (and it works) then congratulations you've made M. Night Shyamalan's The Village (or the Happening, or Signs, or Devil, or everything that wasn't the Sixth Sense and Unbreakable), and if that's what you were going for, then great. My point is that he makes movies about what he knows, and doesn't seem to want to work on things he doesn't. (I'm trying to say M. Night Shyamalan doesn't know how people communicate and or interact normally.)

You don't need to fall into the same trap as him though. If you write about what you don't know if gives you the chance to grow and learn about it. If you want to write a book about horse racing, but don't know what happens besides they run around the track and always look really happy to be running in the mud, that means you get to experience horse racing first hand. I'm not saying become a jockey, but just go to a horse race. Visit a stable and see how the horses are cared for, maybe take riding lessons, and obsess over the Triple Crown (on the off chance you may not know, it's the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes, and the Belmont Stakes for American Horse racing) like people do during the summer.

I used horse racing as my early morning example, but this can be applied to pretty much everything you want to write about but don't feel very confident in. No matter what you are writing about, it's impossible to know everything about anything that's going into your book, mostly because it's literally impossible to know everything. That's why writing is so awesome; you can do research and apply it and also make improvements over time as a testament to your own experiences. So as much fun and easier that writing what you know is, take that extra time to write about what you don't, because it will help you in the long run and you also might find something interesting in the meantime.

Thanks everyone for stopping by today. As a reminder, 'The Light Rises' is available until the end of the month for absolutely free. Please tell people about it and/or pick up a copy for yourself. I would really appreciate it, and it always makes me happy to see an e-mail saying someone's picked up a copy. For now though, I will be off and I hope everyone has a great rest of the week. If there are suggestions, questions, comments or what have you feel free to post them below or contact me. I always like hearing from people. Thanks again and see you Friday!

Monday, July 15, 2013

07/15/2013 Magnificent Monday!

Hi everyone, I hope the weekend treated you all very kindly. It was nice to have one that finally felt relaxing after having 2 weeks of running around/working. Now we'll see how today wants to treat me, since I'm not feeling quite to 100% yet, but there is still hope because the day is very young. For now I'll just trying to keep waking up.

I feel like I should have a lot more to say, but I can't seem to find the right words. I have started working on Phase 2 of editing, which of course is always a new challenge seeing as my handwriting isn't the best in the world and I need to try and figure out what the scribbles I put in that binder mean. So far so good though, I'm just trying to figure out if I'm going to do another round of it before throwing it at a beta-reader for a bit.

Currently my tasks at hand are to the 'get as much as I can done before November' point, which is interesting to do since I know that logically I have several months before that happens. The thing is there is another craft fair in November and I know I won't have any time to work on anything for it starting November 1st, and since I have no idea how long anything will take to make, I need to start on it now. It's still a really weird experience being told people will buy things I make, but I need to work on certain social things, so it's a test that's good for me overall. Still strange to me though. Also, craft supplies are stupidly expensive for how quickly I go through them, so that's also a reason I'm starting early as I can stretch things out over multiple paychecks.

I've also started realizing that other hobbies have started being put on the back-burner and that makes me sad. I want to play video games, and there's even one coming out tomorrow that I want to make all of the time for, and I don't know where I'm going to fit it in. If the day was 25 hours long instead of 24 I think I'd be good though. I know it's just a matter of basically scheduling everything and sticking to it, I just wish everything would fall neatly into place so that I didn't have to do that.

Also, I wanted to send out a bunch of thanks to everyone that has purchased 'The Light Rises' though the Smashwords Summer Sale. It's always nice to get the e-mail notification that someone has picked it up. I hope everyone likes it, and for those who have already gotten it, read it, and have liked it, if you could please leave a rating/something to say about it on the page for it, that would also be appreciated. I'm not a viking at advertising and really anything helps. Please tell everyone that it's still free until the end of the month, it would be fantastic if you could.

Thanks everyone for stopping by and reading my ramblings today. As always, if there's a question, discussion, comments, or anything else you'd like to say, I would love to hear from you either down below or by e-mail at My goal is to help writers as much as I can, and if there's a topic I have missed or you would like more detail on please don't hesitate to ask. I'll be back on Wednesday though, so I hope you all have a great start to your week!

Friday, July 12, 2013

07/12/2013 Fantastic Friday!

Hello everyone and welcome back! I'm so happy you were able to make it here today. This week feels like it's been forever, so the fact it's Friday makes me incredibly happy. I never thought it would get here! For now let's get right to the reasons you're all here.

Today I bring you 'Incident in a Tomb' by Rik Hunik, and it tells the story of Joe and his supposed cousin Ward. They had done research into their family history and got the idea to try and raise one of their ancestors from the dead. A specific one that, according to the dates, lived a life that couldn't have been possible. However, things don't go nearly as well as either of them expected as they soon learn there are consequences for every action.

Joe didn't know Ward until very recently, so the fact he claimed to be his cousin wasn't something he'd had time to verify and research, especially since he said it was very distant. Besides, finding the old tomb had been far more interesting. They managed to sneak inside and when they finally find what they're looking for, he quickly realizes that not only does the spell work, but that there is an entire world he doesn't fully understand. However he'll need to play his cards right if he's going to get a chance to see that world again.

I enjoyed this story today mostly because I have always liked the idea of magic in our modern world. Think about how much more interesting everything would be if aside from all the marvels of science and technology, we also had magic to go along with it. I think it would be pretty sweet, especially if you go for standard magics like necromancy like the author did here. Nothing New Age-y or stuff like that, straight up dead-raising.

'Incident in a Tomb' is available for Smashwords for free. Unless my browser wasn't working right, which is always a possibility, I believe it is only available for online viewing though. It's a short story however, so looking at your computer for a little bit to read it shouldn't be too bad.

Thanks everyone for stopping by today. I really appreciate it. Also as a reminder, 'The Light Rises' is available for free still as part of the Smashwords Summer Sale, so please check that out too, I would really appreciate it. For now, I hope everyone has a great weekend!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

07/10/2013 Writing Wednesday!

Hi everyone and welcome back! I'm glad you are all here and I hope that this week has been nice to you so far. Mine has been interesting and hopefully the rest of this week will be full of some form of fun. Today is looking like it will be an easy-ish day at work, my only hope is that it involves cake of some sort.

I've talked previously about expanding your target audience, but I don't know if I've ever talked about finding your actual target audience. This is a deceiving idea in that since you know the genre you're writing, technically you should know who your audience is, however what I'm talking about is actually finding them. They are be anywhere, in places you wouldn't even suggest, possibly within your own family, and you'll never know it unless you look and/or ask.

Now that whole thing may have sounded like one of those paranoid propaganda films (find the commie! They could be anywhere!) but that doesn't make it any less true. Think about it; you're writing something and you have to tell a bunch of people, you may avoid your family because you are convinced you know what they like, so you just mention it offhandedly and suddenly you discover that they are all really interested and want to read it. This may surprise you, but at the very least it should be make you happy.

A good place to try poking around for potential readership is your place of work. You have a literal melting pot of potential since everyone is coming from different backgrounds, different likes and dislikes, and all those wonderful things. You can start off by mentioning you're writing a book and while this can be a really weird way to start a conversation, you can always bring it up as your 'interesting fact' in one of those ice breaker sessions. This will get people's attention and then they'll come to you with questions, which does help make the awkward feeling about talking to people about something they don't really care about almost go away. I also will ask people if they have an ereader, but that's mostly because my books are only in epub format, which means that someone who doesn't have it won't likely read it, however, they can tell others who do have them.

I bring all this up because while working on 'Daughter of the Shackled King' I came to the realization that my standard beta-reader might not be a good person for it, due to the amount of mythological and metaphysics involved and their lack of understanding regarding those topics. Now I'll probably will still have them read it just to use them as a control group to see where I may actually need more explaining, but that will be an uphill battle for me on a mental level because there are certain things that I won't feel actually need them (like the specifics of Thor and Loki and all that good stuff), but I'm sure there will be others that will. It will just be a test of patience.

That is why it's important to find your target audience along with using the shotgun approach to advertising. You want to expand who you get your work to, but also make sure that you are getting it to the right people, especially initially. They will be the ones to tell everyone else about it, and will be able to truly appreciate some of the more subtle things you've put into your story. I can't tell you how many times I've read or watched something and sat up excitedly and pointed 'That's absolutely right! That's awesome!' it always makes me happy.

For now I hope you all have a great rest of your week. I'll be back on Friday, hopefully with a book to review, if Smashwords' servers aren't on fire somewhere due to the continued heavy traffic through their site. Also, please remember my book, 'The Light Rises' is still free as part of that same sale, so please brave whatever slowness their site may have and take a look and also tell everyone. I would really appreciate it. I'll be back in a couple days though, have a great week!

Monday, July 8, 2013

07/08/2013 Magnificent Monday!

We all made it through the weekend! Welcome everyone and I hope your weekend was nice to you. I am very tired, but that's normal for coming off a weekend I ended up working. My brain is convinced it didn't get a real break, which I suppose it didn't. I'll just need to suck it up though because today is when the work actually begins!

I finished Phase 1! It just took forever, or at least it seemed like it took forever. My binder is full of pink markings that if I squint enough I'll be able to discover are actually words and I'm ready to start Phase 2. I wish I could take more of a weekend-long break before jumping into that, but it needs to be done right away or else I'll find something to distract myself with, and then it'll never get done. Also, I'd like to have that part done or at least mostly done before August, and if I jump right into it that can happen, and luckily this part tends to go a big quicker than the first. I think it's because I'm not so much reading through everything and scrutinizing it, I'm mostly just looking for places where there's pink markings and fixing those.

I really hope I can be finished with everything before the end of the year. My thinking is that during NaNoWriMo when I'll have a 3rd party look it over for me, that way I'm still technically working on it while working on something else. Now granted that means that December will be spent Christmas shopping plus editing, but that should be fine. Hopefully I'll be able to do it as a holiday special or New Years thing. We'll see, even if I don't meet that particular deadline when it comes time to hit the 'publish' button I'll still be really excited and hopefully, if things go well enough during NaNoWriMo, I'll be able to hop right into editing 'Through the Broken Mirror' too. We'll see, that's still months away!

The more I think about what's going to happen once I'm actually finished with 'Rending the Seal' is really exciting, because I can really see progress being made as a whole. 'Through the Broken Mirror' is about half-way done being put into first draft form and 'Daughter of the Shackled King' is almost finished being put into the computer, and while I know it will need ALL of the editing in the universe, 'Feathers of the Dead' will be right behind it ready to be transposed. It might take a special part of forever, but everything is coming together nicely and that is really exciting.

Thanks everyone for stopping by today, as a reminder, which I'm sure you're all getting sick of by now, 'The Light Rises' is available on Smashwords for free all month as part of the Summer sale. Please go check it out, I would really appreciate it and for those who already have, I really hope you like it. For now though I hope you all have a great start to your week and I'll see you back here on Wednesday!

Friday, July 5, 2013

07/05/2013 Fantastic Friday!

Hello everyone! I hope the holiday was nice to you, if you celebrated, if not then I hope the rest of the week has been good as well. Mine has been entertaining, and the only problem I'm currently having is that my mind has convinced me that the weekend should have already come and gone. I know it hasn't even started yet, and that is just weird.

I did a bunch of looking to try and find one particular book to talk about today, and right now since Smashwords is having a sale, their servers are kind of bogged down, which made it difficult to get pages to load at a decent speed. I kept looking and wasn't able to find anything that stood out, except for something that wasn't available for online reading, and could only be read on an iDevice...which I don't have...Anyway! I did some thinking and figured out what to do!

If you go there, you'll be able to find dozens, though it's more like hundreds, of books that are all on sale between some percentage off and absolute free! Ranging from short-stories to epics, it's a great chance to pick up a new book at a really low price. The authors participating will really appreciate it, and I think everyone here will too. Please go take a look and go support the independent author!

There are so many books to choose from there, and all of them will have a coupon code on their page letting you know how much the discount will be for those participating. I'm not kidding though, a lot of them will be absolutely free, so please take a look and see for yourself. This is not going to be something you regret later. Smashwords only has two sales a year, so it's not like there's going to be a big one again any time soon. 

Thanks everyone for stopping by today. I know today's post was a bit different than normal, but this was the only way I could figure out how to help out as many authors as I could with the limited amount of time I have in the morning. If I had more, maybe I would have put up with a slower system for a bit longer, but unfortunately that wasn't an option. Please have a great weekend and remember to check out the sale. I'm sure it'll be a great decision!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

07/03/2013 Writing Wednesday!

Hello everyone and welcome back! I hope this week has been nice to you so far. Things have been calming down for me, which is kind of nice. Now I'm in the waiting portion of everything I was dealing with, but that's better than panicked and looking for something. For now everything can go back to being normal and I can return to being happy I only work 2 more days this week after today.

Yesterday was a product day for me, in that I made a new pile of jewelry to add to the someone small-ish pile of stuff I'd already done. I'm hoping to have enough so that when the next craft fair comes around in November I won't have to divide up my time between NaNoWriMo and that. Also I just realized that it'll be in November, and the whole lack of time I'll have to do anything else. I feel so smart...Anyway, it got me thinking about all of the stuff I've been doing lately and how hard it is to find time for all of it. I've mentioned good work/life balance before, but what happens with the things in the middle that are kind of work, but are also kind of fun? That's what I'm going to try and talk about today.

Everything needs balance, I keep mentioning that, and I've probably made some of you absolutely sick of it, but I keep saying it because it's so true. You can't function for very long on the schedule of wake up, eat, go to work, come home, sleep, and then wake up and start the cycle over again. Soon you get burned out and then all sorts of other bad things start happening. So you cram in some kind of hobby in there to break things up, but it's hard finding time to do it. Eventually let's say that hobby becomes more than just a hobby, like a passion or something. You are so focused on this that it eventually becomes like a second job, except you enjoy it. Everything is good and fun until you want to do something else too, then somewhere your brain decides that you have to make a choice; work and do the thing you like that's also kind of work, or work and do this completely new thing.

The problem that I've seen is that people will get to this stage and somehow go back to just working and doing nothing else. Yes there are some that literally have no other time, but we are going to be looking at a health issue at that point. Unless you are one of the lucky few who get to work their dream job and honestly love what they're doing, chances are your job isn't the best place in the world. You may even like your job, but eventually you get to the point where you think you should be doing something else too. For me my job is not one people generally enjoy (collections), but I've had a lot worse so I don't mind it. My "job" is my writing, because I want to get that series done and I enjoy doing  it, but I don't really get paid for it, and my hobbies include drawing, gaming, and (apparently) jewelry making. The last one is relatively new, and while I do like it, I couldn't do it every day. I get these bursts of inspiration and will sit and do that for a few hours at a time, but then not do it again for weeks.

The thing you need to do is balance your hobbies with your "job" in order to not go crazy. This may seem incredibly difficult, but there ways that you can do it. The easiest is to just designate a day for each thing. The brain likes schedules, so this might be a lot easier to do for some people than others. You can also set it up so that there are things you only do at certain times of the day. For me, at least currently, editing happens on my lunch break, drawing happens throughout the day (so I don't go crazy), and my time at home is to relax and do nothing unless I have a specific video game or want to make something. For the most part my drawing doesn't happen at home (mostly because there's just no comfortable way to do it), and the writing happens at work, at least editing does, since it's something I can do while on lunch fairly easily and I don't necessarily have to worry about being stuck somewhere. Now when it comes to the actual writing portion of my stories that will happen pretty much anywhere I am, especially in November, but that has been cut down significantly due to wrist issues that I don't want to risk making worse.

The way that I have things 'organized' now make it a lot easier to handle with work/life balance and it still leaves some room for just deciding I don't want to do anything that day. I don't feel bad about it, and there's no reason to feel bad. I've seen what only working does to people and it makes me really sad that they don't feel like it's something they can get out of. There really is hope, and it may take some work, and your brain will tell you the break in pattern is scary, but it is being a jerk and you will be so much happier once you do that. So please, while you're doing all of the work ever, and then all of the writing ever, remember to give yourself some time just to relax and let your brain unwind even if that means just playing Tetris for a few hours.

Thanks everyone for stopping by today! I'll be back on Friday with my normal review. For now please enjoy the rest of your week, if you're in the US, please have lots of fun and be safe tomorrow! Also, as a reminder 'The Light Rises' is available this month as part of Smashwords' Summer Promotion and is FREE all month! So please go check it out and tell everyone about it!

Monday, July 1, 2013

07/1/2013 Magnificent Monday!

Hello everyone and I hope you all had a really fun weekend. Mine was...a mixed bag in terms of stressful, which is one reason why there wasn't a post on Friday. It was like things would calm down in one place then pop up in another. My hope is that this week will go smoothly, since there's a holiday in the mix, and I won't have to worry much.

To give a little background, I put money toward the Kickstarter for the Rifftrax guys  to do a newer movie. The original plan was to try and get the rights to Twilight for one night so they can rip into it and make it hilarious, however they weren't able to get it. Instead they were able to get Starship Troopers. For those who participated in the Kickstarter, we were supposed to get tickets via presale, however AMC theaters weren't given the information, and therefore weren't participating. I missed the presale, but tickets went on sale to the general public on Friday, AMC theaters still didn't have any working links even though Fathom Events had them all listed. I talked with AMC via Twitter Friday, and after telling me tickets weren't on sale yet, they stopped replying. I also attempted to contact my local theater until Saturday, at which point I had to go down in person and show them the problem. I was able to buy the tickets closer to 4pm, however the fact that I had to go through all that to get tickets for something I helped make happen was incredibly frustrating. Right now I'm just trying to tell other people that were part of the Kickstarter what I did so they can get their tickets too.

That was incredibly long, and I'm really sorry about that. In happier news, Sunday was my mom's birthday and we all got together for food and family time since my family from Arizona is in town. That was a lot of fun, even if there were some awkward pauses in conversation. Also, the cheesecake I made went over well, so that was a nice added bonus.

Right now I'm trying not to die from the heat. It's not nearly as bad as it was during my time in Vegas those weeks ago, however there is a bit of humidity that is making it just awful at times. Now admittedly I don't live in the deep south, so I know nothing of humidity coupled with ridiculous heat, however I am super not used to this and am hoping the temperature starts going down a bit soon.

I appreciate everyone stopping by today. It was a good weekend overall, just lots of stress on top of everything. I will be back on Wednesday hopefully refreshed and ready to face the day! I hope you all have a great start to your week!