Tag Archives: goodreads

A Very Merry Bookiversary!

*peaks out from under rock*

Oh, hai.

Well, I’m not dead! Just been busy working, writing, worry about working, worrying about writing, struggling to make ends meet, making big life decisions – you know, all that adult-related nonsense we have to put up with. So I just stopped by to check in with y’all and bring you a giveaway! That’s right folks. To celebrate the 6 month-ish bookiversary of Stones and Finger Bones, I’m giving away two signed copies over on Goodreads! Sincerest apologies to all my out-of-country peeps, but this author is on a budget so I could only open the giveaway to the US.

*hides in shame*

Anyway, if you’re currently residing in the states and want to get in on the action, head on over to the giveaway now!

Since we’re about half-way done with the year (how’d did that happen?!?) I thought this would be a good post to do a goal check-in and see where I’m at. In the spirit of brevity and clarity, I’m just going to copy/paste my 2015 goals and make notations about where I’m at. This was actually a good refresher for me, because I actually forgot about some of these – especially the writing ones. Oops.

Overall Heath & Wellness:

  • Continue making better food choices (Successful and ongoing! I’m actually doing a good job at tracking what I eat and making conscious better choices.)
  • Choose and start taking a vitamin D supplement (Sporadic. I forgot this was a goal.)
  • Stop tolerating sucky people (Doing pretty well here! I don’t voluntarily hang out with toxic people anymore and my social life drama is very minimal.)
  • Stop vehemently loathing work (yes, it takes away valuable time that could be used for writing or trolling the internet, but I have a mortgage to pay) (Still working on this one…)

Home Improvements:

  • Paint master bedroom and bath (Done and done!)
  • Find a bookshelf for room (Does pinning ideas count?)
  • Bring all books from home to new home (Not done, not started.)

Reading, Writing, & Publishing:

  • Finish 25 books. I know this might seem like a low number to some, but I’ve been really slacking on my reading habits. I don’t think I even finished 10 this year, which is terrible! (Very much on track to complete this goal!)
  • Do a better job of tracking these books, probably utilizing Goodreads (Success!)
  • Choose these books from the collection I already own and make list (Eh, not so much. A lot of the books I’ve read this year have been on my Kindle.)
  • Write at least 5,000 new words per month. I think this goal will complement my writing style better than daily or weekly goals, since I tend to write in fits and starts, and some days are more productive than others. (Nope…)
  • Outline book 2 of the Black Towers sequence (I think I need to be more diligent with outlining this one to make sure threads are being resolved, tangled, or cut as appropriate) (Double nope…)
  • Draft a Black Towers novella (Triple nope…)
  • Participate in bloggy activities. Blog more in general. Let’s aim for at least twice a month! (Hahahahahaha, nope.)

Well, I apparently still have some work to do before the year ends!

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WIPpet Wednesday: I’ve Got Nothin’

wippetwednesdayI think the title of this post is pretty self-explanatory. I have nothing new for WIPpet Wednesday because I have written nothing new on any of my WIPs.

Haha.

I’m so productive.

Anywho, in keeping with the spirit of one of my 2015 goals (be more bloggy) I figured I’d use this space for some updating.

I spent the weekend in editing hell.

What do I mean by editing hell, you ask?

Editing hell is agonizing over sentences and word choices and comma placement and action beats. Editing hell is searching the document for repeated phrases. Editing hell is searching the document for dashes, so you can make sure your spacing is consistent for all dashes (that was fun). Editing hell is running a spell check and finding no less than 5 misspelled words! One of them was sovereignty, so I guess I can forgive that, since we’re only human, after all. 😉

Revision Tip: FOR THE LOVE OF FLUFFY UNICORNS RUN A FINAL SPELL CHECK.

You see, that was the last time I could touch it before I sent it away to be formatted. And then I freaked out. And then I saw the Kindle preview and got excited again. Shew. It’s been an emotional whirlwind of a week.

So that’s where things stand, presently. Tonight, I approved the final e-book versions, with all the fun graphics added, and so now we’re on to the print version! And there was much rejoicing! Huzzah.

I’m still freaking out, by the way…just doing a better job of hiding my emotions!

Oh, before I forget, you can now add Stones on Goodreads. Almost 30 people — and I don’t personally know all of them! — have already added it to their To Read shelf. I’m having mini-panic attacks over this as well, because that means these people might actually read it, and then what if it suuuuuuuuccccckkkkkkkkkkkssssss.

I could probably ramble on and on about my nerves and over-excitable emotions and bore y’all to death…but instead I’m going to take deep breaths, eat chocolate, and remember this: “Trust your dreams. Trust your heart, and trust your story.”

*fingers crossed*

Alright, enough about me; let’s get on to the good stuff! You should definitely check out the other contributors to WIPpet Wednesday because I hear there’s a sexy pillow fight involved. Get on it! 😀

As always, a big thanks to K.L.Schwengel for babysitting us!

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On Writers and Reviews

As the release date for Stones creeps ever closer, I find myself growing ever more anxious. The cover is out in the world, with my name on it and guys…I’m kind of freaking out.

I think I’ve officially entered the “What in the name of fluffy unicorns have I done?” phase of publishing. Has anyone else been there?

If you were reading my other blog, you might know that I started writing this book at seventeen. Do you know how long that is? Nine years. Nine! That’s almost a decade, and now I’m just going to throw my baby out into the world and let her be judged and dissected and poked and prodded??

(Maybe no one will notice. But, my mother has been telling every living person she knows, so maybe not.)

Insanity. Madness, I tell you.

I know there’s very little left of the story 17-year-old Jessica envisioned; I don’t think there’s an original sentence left, but these characters have been with me since the beginning (most of them, anyway. The telepathic cat got cut).

Needless to say, I feel very affectionately towards Aurelia & Co. and it distresses me that someone out in the world – or the internet – might not feel the same way.

Which brings me to the other point of this post: reviews.

I’m supposed to be working on writing a scene that fleshes out some character development, but in the name of procrastination, I’ve been reading negative reviews of popular books on Goodreads.

Is this productive and/or healthy? I don’t know.

But I’m rationalizing this frenzied research by saying I’m preparing myself for the worst. How bad can it get?

Hahahahahahahahahaha.

Now, I like to think that I’m pretty thick-skinned. My writing has been taking punches since my first Intro to Creative Writing class in college, which I handled very gracefully, with only minimal griping behind the professor’s back. But these were very supportive environments, and mediated so things could never get too nasty.

Ever sorted the reviews of a book you liked by the users who gave 1 star? Yeah.

Most of the time these reviews are well-structured, eloquent, constructive, and sometimes amusing. And sometimes I agree with them. I’ll admit it; I don’t like every book I read, even though I know the author invested a lot of time and energy into the writing of it. I know they probably feel the same way I do about their “babies”.

I’m sure a “What the hell is this shit?” still stings, even for the most established authors.

But, here’s the kicker: established authors with popular, traditionally published books have 15,000 positive reviews, glowing with praise, to balance out the 800-1000 negative reviews.

As a soon-to-be indie author, like all the awesome indie authors before me, my work is going to live or die by reviews and recommendations. And one “What the hell is this shit?” review could dissuade many a potential buyer or new fan.

By no means do I have a perfect book (does anyone?) and I’m sure there will a typo or two (hopefully just two) that evaded the many eyes that looked over Stones.

Writers and editors are still human, people! 😉

But, I think I’ve crafted an entertaining read, at the very least, and no one will feel the urge to “hurl this book across the room with disgust”.

What about you, fellow indies? How do you feel about reviews and how do you handle them?

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