Tag Archives: writer

Interview at Ellenbooks

There’s an elite group . . . and I don’t say that lightly . . . of authors who manage to balance life on the road with writing. I was honored when Ellen Behrens, an outstanding author and fellow RVer, asked to interview me for her blog. Please click the link below and stop by to say “howdy”. While you’re there, check out Ellen’s delightful series, Rollin’ RV Mystery series!

Fellow RV Novelists: Deb Sanders

She’s A Maniac . . .

That’s me. A maniac. Trying to catch up with my writing after a busy, and at times, stressful summer. Phew! So now it’s back to business and my insides are wracked with guilt. I have to ignore something if I’m to ever finish the Works in Progress glaring at me from the corner of my desk . . . but what shall it be? Facebook? Twitter? My blog? Will everyone forget me if I continue to maintain distance from social media? Aaargh!

I’m not only a maniac but an anxiety-riddled indecisive mother, wife, sister, grandmother, friend, author, chief cook and bottle washer. At the moment, I don’t feel I’m wearing any those hats with much success.

What is the one piece of advice all writers tell each other? The one constant? The compass for when life tugs at our shirt tails? Write. Above all else, write. Even if it’s only five minutes here, ten minutes there . . . write. It feeds the momentum and keeps us trudging forward during the gloomy times of writer’s block, family needs, day job stresses and overall confusion.

I finally followed my long time motto to BICHOK. Butt in chair, hands on keyboard. It works! So here’s what to expect from my newly  energized self. The Warrior – Book Two in the Clans of Tagus series – is set to publish September 1st in all digital formats. (Sorry, Nook and Apple fans. I will never publish exclusively with Amazon again. My bad. I heard your complaints and my already published titles are currently on other venues or soon will be. Now can you please return that piece of my ass that was so thoroughly chewed on? Not that I need it. Last time I looked in the mirror, there was plenty more where that came from!)

I’m being interviewed August 27th by the incredibly talented and multi-published Fantasy Romance author, Rachel Carrington. Check out her site because it’s chock full of great news, and then be sure to re-visit on the 27th when I’ll be her guest. It’s going to be fun, fun, fun! http://dawnrachel.com/

I plan to publish a rather spicy contemporary in October tentatively titled, Nice Girls . . . Do! I’ll keep you posted on the progress.

And I promise to return to my regular blogging schedule.

That’s a lot of promises. But hey, it’s an election year and I’m just trying to keep pace with the politicians. Let’s hope my fulfillment ratio is better than theirs! 😉

Shit Happens, and Other Strange Phenomena

I received my first one star review today. I knew it would happen eventually. I was prepared mentally and emotionally. Yet, when I saw it, I said, “Huh?”

My first reaction ran along the lines of conspiracy theory. Who put this person up to writing such a mean, hateful review? This is a book, not some political campaign. Was it someone in the top twenty of romantic suspense trying to knock me out? Or perhaps an old critique partner who deleted my email attempt at patching up an argument because she was angry with me? (I think she still is. Great minds sometimes disagree.)

A consistent reader would never  write such spiteful, horrible things . . . would they? I mean, why? Seriously. I read books all the time (print published included) that leave me wondering what the author was thinking when they wrote the darned thing. And curious about whether anyone edited it.  Even when I was a regular reviewer for a popular site, I never gave anyone a one star simply because they completed a project about which many people boast “I can write better than that” but never do. It’s a major feat to write a full blown novel of 60k+  words. Not just for me but for any writer. I think the fact someone completed such a task is worthy of at least two stars, no matter how bad it is.

Nevertheless, I appreciate the time and effort this reader took to write their review. Even though it’s blatantly stated they’ve not completed the book but felt they “had to” so it could be deleted from their Kindle, I am amazed my written words generated  such repulsion. (Note to reader: I’ve deleted unfinished books without guilt.) This reader stopped in the middle of their day to ensure others did not fall for prey to the “hype”. I guess the hype is the other reviewers who ALL gave it five stars. Contrary to popular belief, I have no idea who these people are. I did not solicit reviews. I did not solicit the private emails assuring me Blood Storm was a great delight. I’m the kind of person who just puts her work out there and lets the public decide whether it’s good or bad.

That being said, I’m still kinda stoked about the fact this anti-fan found my story so “torturous”, they were compelled to write such scathing comments. I mean, how cool is that? To be able to evoke reaction, love or hate, is a  power trip. I would rather have ten reviews on opposite ends of the spectrum than the same number in three star reviews. (Okay, admittedly I would prefer the majority to be on the 5 star side.) Why? Because I created action. Positive, negative…it doesn’t matter. There is power in words and I created a maelstrom of emotion.

So thank you, anonymous reader, whoever you are. You truly made my day. I don’t think my book is as bad as you seem to believe, but it’s all good. I wish you Karma and may all your actions return tenfold with residual blessings.

In other news, and memorable phenomena, I will be releasing my sexy urban paranormal, The Gatekeeper, on Valentine’s Day. Perhaps my number one hater would like to present it to their ex with a bouquet of black roses. Black roses and a sick paranormal. Hate doesn’t get much better than that.

And just in case the book and roses don’t transmit the message, include a bottle of Coconut Water, which my husband assures me tastes like camel piss. I’ve declined to personally test his assessment but he seems like a pretty up front guy who wouldn’t pull my leg. Who knows? Love is blind. And without taste.

How I Became a Best-Selling Author – Yahoo! Finance

How I Became a Best-Selling Author – Yahoo! Finance.

Success stories still happen. Read this. Be motivated. Follow your dream.

The Final Frontier – Critique Partner or Beta Reader?

It’s almost time. Time to submit my most recent completed manuscript for a final review.

I’m of the firm opinion revisions never end until the book is on the shelf. A writer will always find something to “tweak” when they go back to page one and read forward. But at some point you have to exercise self-discipline, fold your hands primly in your lap and say, “Finished”.

I’m close to reaching that moment with one caveat…instead of folding my hands primly, they’ll be wrapped around a champagne flute. This has been a tough one with many incarnations.

I’ve lost count how many completed works I’ve penned over the years.  The confusion lies with the fact I’ve made extensive plot changes to several manuscripts – to the point that it’s not even the same story. I don’t know if that counts as an additional book or a .5 on the writer’s scale.

I’m excited about this particular completion because I’ve learned so much in the past year through workshops, books and networking. It represents a work incorporating cumulative avenues of knowledge. And possibly the best novel I’ve submitted to date.

So as I approach “The End”, I ask myself, “Self…who should read the finished product from beginning to end? My critique partners or a Beta reader?”

And Self replied, “A Beta reader. You’ve exhausted all your critique partners. You need a fresh pair of eyes who can read your manuscript without remembering the five versions you wrote prior to completion.”

Ah, ha. Self has moments of amazing insight and wisdom.

So I’ve found a Beta reader who has graciously agreed to review my finished product. While she’s doing that, I’ll be working furiously on my synopsis. Provided there are no extensive revisions, the next step is submitting to the publishing house I’ve targeted.

And after that….I’ll be waiting. Not idly, I might add. I’ll also be working feverishly on my current WIP, a gritty futuristic paranormal.

A writer’s work is never done.