Monday, April 30, 2012

Reboot

If you read my post last Monday, you saw I planned on starting a 100 Days project.  Well, due to some unforeseen family things and appointments that went completely out the window so...

I'm doing a reboot.  I will be starting my 100 Days project beginning tomorrow, May 1st.  Why not today?  Well I have another appointment after work which will make it next to impossible to get any writing done.

Here's a brief summary of the 100 Days project:

It is part of South Korean culture that if you do the same thing every day for 100 days, it means you have put a great deal of significance into whatever you are doing, and therefore it is believed to bring a good result.

I recently read the above in a newspaper article in my local paper and it struck a chord.  How many of us want to achieve something in particular but don’t put in the effort required to actually achieve the level of success we aspire to?  I know I’m guilty of it. 
 
There are two things I want to achieve, but for one reason or another don’t put my all into.  So I’ve decided to do my own 100 days.  For the next 100 days, starting May 1st,  I will write every day even if I only have time to write 1 page that day.  I’ll be updating my progress weekly here and on my Facebook page as a way to hold myself accountable.

Friday, April 27, 2012

This I Know For Sure...

It seems whenever I'm having trouble with my manuscript, I'll find any reason under the sun to do something, anything other than write.  I'm about 3 chapters away from finishing my current work in progress and I find my self doing things during my designated writing time that don't need to be done, at least not at that time. 

I think my problem with this manuscript is that I know it's going to need major, major revisions so I would rather do anything else than finish it.  But finish it I will. 

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

What I'm Reading Wednesday

I haven't had a lot of free time to read lately, okay in a few months, so I've decided to try reading short stories or novellas so I'm not struggling to find time to read a 350 or 400 page book when I don't have the time to sit down and read for a long period of time.




Yesterday I started reading Seal of My Dreams.  This anthology contains 18 stories from various authors.  All of the proceeds from the sale of this book goes to a non-profit for veterans medical research.


Monday, April 23, 2012

100 Days


It is part of South Korean culture that if you do the same thing every day for 100 days, it means you have put a great deal of significance into whatever you are doing, and therefore it is believed to bring a good result.

I recently read the above in a newspaper article in my local paper and it struck a chord.  How many of us want to achieve something in particular but don’t put in the effort required to actually achieve the level of success we aspire to?  I know I’m guilty of it. 
 
There are two things I want to achieve, but for one reason or another don’t put my all into.  The first is I’d like to lose weight. (Okay, I’m a female so it’s a given that I’d want to lose weight.  What woman on the planet is happy with what she weighs?)  I don’t want to lose weight to wear a smaller size, though that would be nice, but to be healthier and to take stress off my knees.  My knees are in such bad shape, my orthopedist has told me that they are in the condition of a person twice my age.  I’ve had 4 knee surgeries in 4 years and the next one will be knee replacement.  Since I want the next surgery to years off in the future, I need to lose 25 pounds and be more active than I am.

The second thing I want to achieve is to be able to make enough money from my writing to support myself without needing a job outside the home.  While I have a novel in progress and am promoting the novel I do have on the market, I don’t write every day.  I try to do as much promoting as I can and am starting to wonder if I’m putting too much time into promotion and not enough time into writing new material.  I set a goal for myself at the beginning of 2012 to write 3 novels by December 31st.  So far I’ve written one novel and the first chapter of what I think will end up being a novella.  If I’m not writing every day or turning out a decent number of pages per day, I will not meet this goal.

So I’ve decided to do my own 100 days.  For the next 100 days, starting today, I will write every day even if I only have time to write 1 page that day and I will do some form of physical activity for at least 20 minutes per day.  I’ll be updating my progress weekly here and on my Facebook page as a way to hold myself accountable.

Friday, April 20, 2012

This I Know For Sure...

I have no idea what I'm doing with Twitter.  I finally stopped dragging my feet and opened an account.  (Is that even the right term?  I'm not sure about that either.)  I'm following 16 people and have 8 followers.  I know those are pathetic numbers but I haven't put it out that I'm now on Twitter. Since I had to choose 10 people to follow to set up the account, I've really only added 6 new people and those are mainly fellow writers I don't know who somehow found me to follow and I followed them back.

When I go into my Twitter account, there is the tweet list -- tons and tons of tweets and I'm only following 16 people! Okay some of the tweets are from people I don't follow but have been retweeted by those I do.  How do those people who follow hundreds or more people keep up with it all?

I'm not sure how I'm supposed to keep up with these, reading and sometimes, retweeting items.  I received a copy of Twitter For Dummies for Christmas and am still at a loss.

Any suggestions for a complete Twitter newbie?  I'd love to hear them.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

What I'm Reading Wednesday...Or Not

No news on what I'm reading because I'm visiting Cherie Marks blog today.  I'm talking about modeling characters after people you know.  I hope you'll pop in and check it out.  http://www.cheriemarks.blogspot.com

Katherine


Monday, April 16, 2012

No Post

Sorry, no post today.  I hope you all have a happy Monday.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

What I'm Reading Wednesday

Actually, I'm not reading anything at the moment.  I just finished Lethal by Sandra Brown which I would highly recommend to anyone who likes a good suspenseful read.  I hope to start a new book tomorrow. I just need to decide which one to pick from my towering "to be read" pile.

Any suggestions you want to share?  I'm always on the lookout for a good book.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Drowning In Email


I recently was offline for about three days.  When I signed on the evening of the 4th day and opened the first of my three email accounts I breathed a sigh of relief.  Only 3 emails waiting to be read.  I’m sure you’re thinking if I had fewer accounts I wouldn’t have so many to keep up with.  I have three for a very good reason: one is for my personal email – family and friends, one for junk mail – you know when you shop online and have to put an email address, this is for that.  Most of it I delete unread which allows me to weed through these pretty quickly.  The last one is for emails from the various loops/writing groups I belong to.

The second one (the junk mail account) had 185 emails but again these were easy to wade through as I deleted 95% of them without even opening them.  The writing related email account had 110 emails.  I’m on digest on nearly every loop/group I belong to so this seemed overwhelming. I never delete these unread because I never know if they will contain information on marketing, promotion, etc that I might not know about.  (Believe there is a lot I don’t know about those two subjects. LOL.)  I do admit to skimming some of the older emails but always try to send either a group congratulations, kudos, or written high five to members who’ve received a great review, had a new release, signed a new contract, or any other good news or to send them a private email offering my congratulations.  Writing can be an isolating profession so it’s fun to share in the good news of my fellow writers. 

Unfortunately I have the bad habit of saving those emails that have information I might want to refer back to sometime in the future.  When I first joined various loops, I printed out the pertinent emails and filed them in an accordion file by subject.  I did pretty well at keeping up on this until I had knee surgery last August.  Since then I’ve been just saving the emails in my inbox with the good intention of printing them when I had time.  Well, you know what they say about the road to Hell being paved with.  I never seem to have the time to go back and look at those saved emails and decide if I really need or want the information and to print it off, much less file it.   I have over 300 emails saved in my inbox not including the new ones that arrive daily. 

So how do I find the time to go through those saved emails?  Should I even bother?  I’d love to take a couple of days off from work and just devote those days to going through them, but I started a new job a little over 6 months ago and don’t have any vacation time to speak of that I can fritter away on emails.  Weekends are pretty much out as well.  Saturdays are my errand day. I’m usually out of the house by 9:15-9:30am and don’t get back home until 2:30-3:00pm.  Then it’s time for the housecleaning I only do once a week (cleaning the bathroom, moping the kitchen floor etc) I try to squeeze in a few hours of writing/promotion time then watch a couple of shows I’ve taped during the week then off to bed.  Sundays, I try to stay off the computer and dedicate it to family time and really don’t want to give that up. 



So, how do you handle your email?  Do you have any suggestions for me on how to get a handle on mine?

Friday, April 6, 2012

This I Know For Sure...

Mind your words. You never know how they may effect someone or who is listening.  Even if you think you're alone with a couple of people and it's safe to speak your mind, there may be other people listening in on your conversation while you are unaware of it.

And if you do become aware that your private conversations weren't as private as you thought, always, always have the courage and convictions to stand behind your words.  And apologize if necessary.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Please welcome my guest, Isabella Macotte

Please welcome Romance Author Isabella Macotte.  


Isabella Macotte grew up in Chicago and now lives in the Midwest. Ever since she can remember, she was reading. Not just fiction but everything she could get her hands on. Science, romance, history and paranormal. Especially paranormal...anything scary, creepy, or gory, she loves it. From light paranormal elements to terrifying monsters, she'll make up a story to amaze or scare you.

Isabella Macotte writes the kind of romance she loves to read: a story with delicious dialogue, seductive encounters, a dash of the paranormal, and an irresistible hero you will never forget.

Passionate about books, Isabella keeps busy reading, writing and working in a library. But if a few moments remain at the end of the day, she spends them with a wonderful family and sweet bichon pup named Daisy. 

Thanks for joining me, Isabella.

Katherine, thank you so much for hosting me today!
You're welcome.  Let's get right to the interview.

 Tell us something about yourself both writing and not writing related.
       I’ve always been a big reader, but I’ve been serious about writing for around three years. I think after you read a lot of books, you naturally start telling stories in your head. Eventually they want to come out!
     Hobbies? Well…reading and writing. I also love science and reality TV. Over the past few years, I’ve joined an outdoors group. We’ve built shelters, fires, learned which plants are safe to eat, and how to filter water. Don’t know if I’d be able to live off the land but learning these skills has been fun.

     Why do you write in the genre/sub-genre that you do? 
     I love romance novels with a paranormal twist. I’ll read everything but especially enjoy a lighter tone. We all need to escape from our everyday world and what better way than a romantic fantasy world filled with a hunky hero and a strong heroine?

     Tell us about your current release in a couple of sentences.
     The Heart Gem is my current release. A historical romance novel set in England, the story incorporates paranormal elements, a heroine who plans to be a businesswoman, and a sexy hero who needs to wed to leave the Fae world behind.

Sounds great, Isabella.   Can you tell us a little about your next project?
     I’m keeping very busy writing Book 2 of The Artifacts of Love series, The Heart Compass. I’ve also completed a young adult novel, The Monster.
     
Anything else you’d like to share with us?
      Please stop by my website at www.isabellamacotte.com 
      I’d love to hear from you!

 Now on to the blurb and excerpt for The Heart Gem.

 Blurb:
In 1885, a proper Victorian woman's place was in the home. Convention never appealed to Hallie Pinefoy.

But plans for financial independence through a successful doll-making venture have one impediment. She's inherited a curiosity shop and a handsome business partner who's proving to be a delicious distraction.

When Bremen Tyler inherits a shop in coastal England, he breaks from the mystical Ancestral clan to live a normal life. The only way to guarantee a permanent break is to marry his Heart Match, a perfect soul mate. Bremen recognizes the captivating Hallie as his true love, but she isn't cooperating with his courtship.

If he can retrieve the stolen Heart Gem, an Artifact of Love, he can use it to prove their match. The surface of the Gem reflects the essence of a couple's future life, but the risks are great. More importantly, will Hallie realize true love doesn't need proof?


EXCERPT:
Hallie’s bottom shifted from Bremen’s lap onto the cold stone garden bench. Why was he stopping just when the moment was getting interesting? Then she heard the footsteps in the distance, rustling along the garden path. Her head still blissfully dazed, Bremen’s possessive hands moved to straighten the aquamarine gown’s bodice, which had drawn away completely from her breasts.

Clay’s face was an angry red, even in the dark night. She jumped at the intrusion and attempted to yank her hand out of Bremen’s, but his firm palm held on without releasing.

“Bremen Tyler, how dare you encroach on our relationship? Hallie and I have a long-established agreement among our families. You must honor this arrangement and withdraw your presence.” The shrillness of Clay’s voice reverberated through the grounds.

“I haven’t been informed of a promise or understanding. In fact, I have heard from the lady she is uncommitted. A state I’m determined to reverse.” Bremen’s deep voice was low and controlled.

“She would be committed to me if it were not for you. You are confusing her; she loves me but you are filling her head with promises and nonsense.”

“I have given Hallie neither false promises nor nonsense. She knows my true feelings.”

“She also knows my feelings and has said she will consider my offer.”

“If Hallie tells me it is you she wants, I’ll say no other word.”

“Hallie, tell him you will marry me. I believe my request was clear at supper,” Clay demanded.

“My love, make your wishes known, and we will visit the reverend directly,” Bremen countered.

Both men stared, waiting for a decision.
  
Wow, great blurb and excerpt.  Now that we are all intrigued here are the buy links:
     Thanks again for being my guest, Isabella.  :o)

 





 
 

Monday, April 2, 2012

Under Construction


Where I live people say we only have 3 seasons: the winter season, pothole season, and construction season.  Since we've had a wonderfully mild winter, it seems there aren't too many potholes so we'll probably skip pothole season all together unless I've been lucky because I haven't across any.

Since it will soon be construction season, I thought it'd be the perfect time to make changes to my blog.  I'd like to add a few things and change a few things.  This will be an ongoing process as I'm able to institute the changes between writing, promoting, and of course, working the day job.



So if things seem a little odd or out of place when you stop by, please be patient and know that my blog is "currently under construction."  I'd love any suggestions or comments as you notice the changes too.