Friday, October 28, 2011

Another top 3 Blogs of Mine


Hippocampus: An area buried deep in the forebrain that helps regulate emotion and memory. Functionally, the hippocampus is part of the olfactory cortex, that part of the cerebral cortex essential to the sense of smell. Or:
This word caught my eye in the Webste'rs dictionary where it's defined as: a sea horse of Greek myth having two forefeet and a body ending in the tail of a dolphin or fish. Then it goes into the medical definition. I thought it was neat.

Top three blogs for today:
(For writers sending out queries, pay attention to the first one.)

1. Confessions of a wandering heart:  Suzie Townsend, a literary agent is celebrating her move to Nancy Coffey Literary Agency with a contest on Nov 1st. She will respond to queries with complete honesty. Can you handle the truth? Click above for details.

2. Zoe Winters: If you like Paranormal Romance, you will love Zoe. She's an indie author and I love her voice in the novels.

3. Janet Reid:  Janet is a cool and knowledgeable literary agent! Love her posts. Honest, quirky, funny, informative. Cannot say enough!

That's it for this Friday. I'm hoping to have some exciting news next week regarding Two Halves, including a definite pub date.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Hopping Friday


Wistful: (adj) 1. characterized by melancholy; longing; yearning

In the spirit of Blogfest which took place one week ago, I am posting three very interesting blogs I follow. All three are approximately one year old (plus or minus a few months). I chose them all to be review blogs, because it's something I will be seeking soon. Have a look at the great job these bloggers are doing. In no particular order:

1. A Booklover's Dream: A one stop blog where you can find a wide variety of genres reviews.

2. As the Spine Breaks: Review Blog

3.Bookin'it Reviews: Where readers and authors come together.

Have a great day everyone! Today I am wistfully finishing my edits for Two Halves (all the red marks to be transcribed to the screen - see last post). Formatting for publication is next.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011


earnest: (adj) 1. Marked by or showing deep sincerity or seriousness.

The past weekend and couple of days had been busy. For one, I tried to visit as many blogs as possible from the Pay it Forward Blogfest, which took a bit of time, but met some cool people and saw great blogs. I think when I get a chance I'll sit down and try to create a custom background for my own blog- something that will incorporate the essence of Two Halves. I have some ideas, but executing them, well, let's just say it will take some patience, because I have no clue where to start.

Just when I thought my editing was done for Two Halves, I was wrong. Really, deep inside I knew I'd have to give it one more sitting, read it out loud and make sure everything is perfect for the readers (which I know it will never be, but I sure will try to get it to be the best quality it can be). As I read, the pages got redder and redder from my pen. The masochist in me sort of enjoyed it, I think it comes from playing school when I was a kid, marking my own work.  I think this was the first time I liked editing, so I guess my secret is a red pen.

Bottom line: I cut out a lot. Repetition, parts that slowed the story too much and didn't move it forward etc. I'm talking thousands of words, which really, is not a lot when the novel is 104K. I'll have the final word count when I transfer the red markings to the computer and this time I'm certain, that this is it. :)  I'm curious to hear some of your stories about your own editing.

While doing that, I worked on the novella (see sidebar) which sort of happened out of nowhere. It's a prequel to Two Halves, but it's meant to be read after the book (I know it sounds weird, but it makes sense). So, in order for the novella to fit in perfectly with the novel, I had to make a few tweaks in the novel itself. Just some hints and touches that make you go 'Ohhh, that's what it was about' once you get to it. I love those kinds of stories. This novella will ROCK.

Still on track though with Two Halves. Waiting for my cover which I think should be available any day now. Depending how everything goes this weekend with formatting and how busy real life will keep me, still shooting for November. Ok, I can't really fit earnest into the blog, or I'll screw up.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Pay it Forward!

Denizen: (noun) 1. an inhabitant; resident  2. a person who regularly frequents a place

Before we get to today's exciting business, click on the new page above TWO HALVES for a small teaser.

Big Day Today! Let's PAY IT FORWARD everyone! For Details, click on the side button.

I'm very excited and have been thinking about the three blogs to post. There are so many to choose from. Today I will share with you the more popular ones out there that I enjoy. Next Friday, we'll switch to newer bloggers, but also very interesting and informative. I'll alternate each Friday between those that have been out there for a while, and newbies (less than a year old).

So, in no particular order:

1. JA Konrath: Joe Konrath is a great writer with multitude of experience in both the traditional and indie publishing. If you ever get a chance to read his short story pointing out the common mistakes of short story writers, you will pee your pants. It's available on his website under the FREE Newbies Guide to Publishing. Joe has been extremely generous throughout his career to help others with his knowledge. Very honest about his publishing experiences.

2. Pub Rants: Agent Kristin is a literary agent who shares her knowledge of the Publishing World. Her blog includes inside scoop on query letters, how to pitch queries, agency contracts and what all writers seeing representation should know. Very smart and informative.

3.Amanda Hocking: An indie author whose hard work and determination can be heard all over the internet. Way to go girl! The rate at which Amanda writes her novels blows my mind.

That's it! Those are my three for this Friday. I'm curious to see what you think about them and how many of you chose the same ones. I can safely say I am a denizen of these blogs and hope you find them as helpful as I have.

Happy Hopping!

Monday, October 10, 2011

JA Konrath hiatus

Apprehensive : (adj) 1. uneasy or fearful about something that might happen: apprehensive for the safety of the mountain climbers.

I like the word for this post because I remember the day I learned what it means. I was watching "Full House". To me, the sound of the word defines its meaning. If this is weird, I agree, because I cannot think of another word that to me would be defined by its own sound.

So, JA Konrath is on hiatus. First, it's a well deserved hiatus.. Second - I will miss his posts. If you've never heard of him, visit his blog, his webpage and you'll see what I mean,. So much great advise for all kinds of writers - especially self published ones. Having said that, they will be accepting articles to compile an ebook of over 100 ebook authors writing about their personal publishing journey. What a great marketing idea. Joe Konrath is a wealth of information. I applaud him for committing himself to helping others, when he could be sitting on his behind, twirling his thumbs for a long, long time. Great inspiration with an understanding of a true writer.

I've started my writing, but because of the nature of the article, it cannot be finished until end of October, otherwise it would not be what I want it to be. A true journey. As soon as I have it, ready on October 31st, I'll send it in. I'm not even apprehensive about it. Wow, how far we've come! We'll see what happens. I'll keep you posted. Perhaps if I'm lucky my journey will be printed in an ebook. If I'm lucky. (yes the "lucky" is intended here for those who have read Joe's blogs)

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Pay it Forward!

Surreptitious 1. obtained, done, made, etc., by stealth; secret or unauthorized; clandestine: a surreptitious glance
Check out the new page at the top bar or click on the button on the sidebar.

This is a great event where you can get to know many people and many wonderful blogs from all around the word! Tune in on October 14th to see my top three. It will be a hard pick because there are so many that have helped me!

The most awesome thing about the internet is the way we can all share information. The post should be up early in the morning that day, so click away! I surreptitiously noted that the more you network, the more people you meet. (ok, it was hard to use that one in the post!)

This is a Blog Hope, so sign up at the top and Happy Hopping!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011


nebulous (adj) 1. hazy, vague, indistinct, or confused: a nebulous recollection of the meeting; a nebulous distinction between pride and conceit.
It's the first Wednesday of the month everyone; and it's my first 'insecurity' post.  Where do I start?  Number one: learning the ins and outs of blogger and making sure it's liked by those who view it and that I don't make errors when posting and adding pages to this site and making sure it fits well on other computer screens - need I go on.... BUT this is a smaller issue compared to my actual writing. So here it goes.

I don't want my first review to be a bad one.

I know I've let go of TWO HALVES - my first ya fiction/fantasy novel. Not many have read it, but I have gone through it way too much. So, after having promised myself to put it aside, I read it again. Now, I don't know if it's because I read it so many times, or perhaps of the ongoing learning, I am afraid others will not like the story (isn't this the most fearful thought any writer has), although I don't think my writing is nebulous.

To add to that, I'm resenting sending it in for a review, prior the release in November. What if the review is a bad one? I'm sure everyone gets bad reviews, but FIRST one? I have not received bad comments from anyone who has read it - yes constructive criticism which was great because after the correction it made the novel so much better - but not a review. So for now, that's my biggest insecurity - getting a bad review.

I've put my heart and soul into this novel. I want it to sell, I want it to do well, I want it to be loved! Yes I want that - why? So I can continue writing, because I need to write. When TWO HALVES began I wanted to write, but now, I need to write. I'm afraid a bad review (first one) would crush my little heart.

I think my only way to get over it is to set a goal: I will send TWO HALVES out for a review by October 11, 2011. I'll let you know how that went.... ... in the meantime, back to re-reading.

Happy Hopping!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

BLOG HOP for Insecure Writer's Work Group

Alex, thanks for the comment. I'm so happy you did, because your blog rocks! I've joined the Blog Hop so tomorrow, first Wednesday of the month I will spill some writing insecurities. For all other bloggers, check out his link below as well as the list on the bottom right of blog hoppers :) Happy Hopping
Alex J. Cavanaugh

Marketing Plans...

Since I don't post daily, WORD OF THE DAY will now be changed to: WORD FOR THIS POST - just makes more sense...  ... and to make it more fun, I will try to use the word within the post.

goad (n): 1. a stick with a pointed or electrically charged end, for driving cattle, oxen, etc.; prod 2. anything that pricks, wounds, or urges on like such a stick; stimulus.

This is straight out of the Webster's Dictionary. It's funny, because I opened the dictionary, pointed to a word and there it was! Just the item my characters in TWO HALVES use, except I didn't call it a goad, I called it a stick with an orange glowing end. Learning every day.

Back to the post, I found a very interesting site yesterday which discusses the importance of a marketing plan to promote a book. Figures, for the life of me I cannot find the site right now, but got the message. Plan, plan and plan. Know what's next and how you will promote your book. Whether you have an agent, or go the indie route (that's self-publishing, or individual publishing), you need a marketing plan!

Found it!   Amazing what few sips of coffee can do! This is a great site for anyone who plans to publish anything.

So, step one for me, get my cover done for TWO HALVES. I know I've sent out my queries, but if all fails and I get rejected by everyone (the author featured on another site got 175 rejections before deciding to self-publish AND was successful- extremely successful) I have to have a plan B and self-publishing is it!

Following the cover I need to get my novel reviewed and have some ideas for that as well. Create the buzz! (which hopefully is not a hum) Before the end of the week I'll post my blurb I'd like to put on the back cover of TWO HALVES.

I'll keep you posted, but my goal so far is to have the e-book version up and running by beginning of November. That should be enough time for those I queried to respond. Sorry, can't commit to a firm date because this month is looking pretty busy in my full-time job (which is a good thing too).

Saturday, October 1, 2011

I let go...


Incredulous: (adj) not disposed or willing to believe; unbelieving

I just noticed reading through my last blog I called myself a writer. Wow! I didn't think I would do that for a while, or until I was published, but I really do feel now like a writer. After all, I write. Right? (chuckle)

So, I finally sent out my query letters. Yay - I let go. How does it feel? Honestly, before I sent the first one, I thought I'd throw up. After I sent it, there was relief as if I'd swallowed a packet of gravol (I did not do that so do not worry!). The butterfly sensation you get in your stomach turned into an elephant stampede (I used that in my new novel).  It's a good feeling letting go. Now I'm happy (yes, the nerves are still there) but if you don't try, you won't know. I'm sure I'm not the first nor the last to be in this situation. I truly believe that someone will fall in love with TWO HALVES - there's just no other way.

Having said that, there's a possibility I'll get a request for my manuscript (picture me on my knees). Yes, I know my odds, but I did work hard, so maybe my slim odds are a little better, by a fraction. My gut says yes. Which means, I'm back at re-reading the manuscript, looking for any other typos, errors. I'm second guessing. I'm halfway through - have not found anything yet. So perhaps, that gut feeling is a good feeling after all.

Now it's time to wait... and wait... and wait...

That will be me for the next four to six weeks as I start receiving the replies. Some may be sooner...

In the meantime, I'm going through the manuscript for the last time. Then back to writing. No, I'm not crazy, just in love with writing...