Saturday, September 26, 2015

Top Writing Books of 2015 - 9 Day Novel Series

The 9 Day Novel Series by Steve Windsor is a must read for beginning and even seasoned writers. The methods gave me the boost to start my first adult book series. Mr. Windsor's books are fun, informative guides with solid, practical, and ultra-usable advice.

For my needs, I read series out of order, focusing on the topic that I needed first, rather than the number of the book in the series.

The first book that I read in the 9 Day Novel Series was Auhorphobia - Laugh at Your Fear of Writing: Suck Less for Author Success, which is a humor-filled take on addressing writing fears.

The second one was the 9 Day Novel - Writing: How to Structure and Write Your Novel Faster. To solidify the structuring concepts and to improve my grasp of the outlining concepts, I dove into 9 Day Novel - Outlining Your Novel: Plotting Your Way to Success. (The book gives the most straight-forward, easy-to-understand, relatable explanation of story outlining EVER.)

Currently, I am reading 9 Day Novel - Self-Editing for Fiction Writers: Write Better and Edit Faster. Again, another incredibly helpful writing resource.

Thanks, Steve Windsor, for a most fun and informative writing resource series. Highly recommend!


Thursday, September 24, 2015

Notezilla - Sticky Notes for Windows

Notezilla Sticky Notes offers a 30-day, full-functioning trial of their sticky note software. As an author, to keep track of tasks, and then on top of that, those real-life paper sticky notes, I welcomed the trial period of the software.

Digital sticky notes for which you can add check list features, reminders, etc., with the ease of a click of the mouse...a most welcome tool!

On different notes, in different colors and in even in different styles (skins), I keep track of my To Do Lists. On one, I track my household tasks, while on another, I list grocery items and cleaning supplies.

With a busy schedule, I welcome tools that help me maintain focus, assist me with staying on target, and that provide a satisfying record of completion.

The non-cloud version of Notezilla for Windows is sold at a reasonable price and has been more than worth cost in helping me stay on task. It's a simple, visual method that mimics an old school reminder method in a new, elegantly digital way.

Monday, July 27, 2015

A Lighthouse in the Sea of Delay and Uncertainty

My third year of writing full-time turned out to be one of delay and uncertainty. Mired by health issues, the year dragged and did not bring me much closer to making a living via writing. Yet one long-awaited surgery and recovery time later, I am thrilled to be well and writing full-time again.

The inability to write the way I wanted, in the time I wanted, or to meet the production goals I intended weighed heavily into weeks that dragged into months, then to a year and beyond.

Day in and day out, an inability to concentrate led to a great deal of frustration and disappointment in myself. Finally, after caringly listening to my whinefest, a dear friend asked, "You're doing the best you can, right?" When I answered a tearful yes, she assured me, "Then that's all you can do." Then she graciously promised that in due time, I would be back to doing what I truly loved.

And months later, once again, I am gratefully able to focus, create, and write. (Thank you for your caring, friend!)

Though I feel as if I am back to square one, I am taking one day at a time and setting goals for that day. If Tuesday doesn't go well writing-wise, then I'm back at it with a fresh outlook on Wednesday. So beginning anew, for my writing-for-a-living writing goal and with each day as it opens before me, serves as my lighthouse and my gateway to making a living through writing books.

So far, my new YA series is in progress, and I am also developing a second brand for a second pseudonym for adult fiction.

And you know what? With feeling better and physically being able to do what I need to and want to do, I have discovered the fun in writing again. The turn of a phrase, a dialogue twist I didn't expect, or a character and setting coming alive on the page makes me smile and fills my heart.

I am grateful and blessed that I am well and able to do what I truly love... And have fun with it along the way.

After all, isn't that what life's really about?

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

I wish I may... I wrote a book!

A small-town, grade-school library gifted me with access to Old Yeller, Black Beauty, and Beautiful Joe. All I wanted to do was read... and from that enjoyment came the desire to write... If only I might be a storyteller and write books.

While lightning bugs brought stars to earth, as a little girl, I stood outside, and wished with every bit of me, as I whispered into the night: 

Star light, star bright,
First star I see tonight,
I wish I may, I wish I might,
Have this wish I wish tonight.
Please, let me learn to write a book.
Let me tell stories and bring those stories to life.

As far as back as I can remember, that's all I've ever wanted to do. Write books.

After working jobs most of my adult life that required extensive overtime, with some writing eked out along the way, jumping into writing full-time, while taking writing craft classes on line, was one exciting, scary, hot mess.

I fumbled and stumbled my way through one book, which turned out to be the skeleton of a five-book series. The series, a story of fantasy and adventure, turned out better than I had hoped. The story is fact-paced, with lots of twists and turns to entertain and fun characters that will touch a reader's heart.

Since I intend to write in other genres as well, I wanted to write under a name specifically set aside for Young Adult fiction.

Also, I have an adult fiction venture planned as well.

2015. Exciting times!