September Update

News

First up, the Grimbold Books Kickstarter project “From Dream to Team” surpassed its target and, I believe, reached its stretch goal. Thank you so much to everyone who backed it.

The fact is that not all of us authors are ready to self-publish right out of the gate, but neither may we be prepared to sign our lives over to a large publisher. But good small publishers are hard to find and be confident in. Oh yes, they’re out there, but you just never know.

I took a punt on Kristell Ink, just as they took a chance on me. They were new, I was new, but both sides felt each had a future.

It’s hard to get a brand new book from a brand new author noticed. It’s not a lot easier when it’s pushed by a brand new publisher. Kristell Ink, and Grimbold Books as a whole, have done their darnedest to give each of their books a good shot, but it’s been a slow road for us all (well, except for the success of February’s HT BookBub promo). Sammy and Zoë have funded the book productions themselves, so far, with, I imagine, little reward to date. This Kickstarter will help them fund the next round of books, and get them under the kinds of noses that other people listen to. Yes, this may mean that WARRIOR’S TOUCH will have something of a delay in coming out (it takes time to get books onto NetGalley and the like, but that’s what the big players do, to help their authors make a big splash come release day). If WARRIOR’S TOUCH is as good a book as I think it is (and, in my opinion, it is significantly better than HEALER’S TOUCH), then I want to make sure it has the best chance of being noticed by the many when it launches onto the world’s stage. I want to please my already keen readers and get it to them as soon as possible. But my “career” (she says with a day job still to go to) is still very much a fledgling. I’d love to see it make inroads to taking off.

So we wait.

Writing Progress

About a week after my August Update I penned a new opening to MAGICIAN’S TOUCH that I feel is a keeper… for now. It’s enough

Read more…September Update

Green Spider Logo

July Update

Hey, hey…

So, I have been thinking about the way life works and how it’s really tricky trying to fit regular blogging into life, but also how regular blogging can be a good thing. And so I have come up with a plan… a monthly recap blog post, interspersed with the occasional “I gotta share this” blog post…

Also, down the track I’m looking to redesign my website so it has a better landing page and the blog is more of a side project — and I’d probably separate out the different topics I like to touch on.

Writing Progress

Early July saw a few more Beta reader comments come in for WARRIOR’S TOUCH which I worked to address. I also still had a few of my own niggles about the ending, but I thought to wait until I received feedback from

Read more…July Update

And so it begins… again

The blank page.

That dreaded blank page. It’s horrible!

Why do we do this to ourselves?

I think, largely, it is because writers are gluttons for punishment. We’re never happy, and if we should be then we will find something to keep us down. And what better way than to start a new project?

Read a 1-star review of our work, you suggest? Yes, that is a good plan, too… Unless you get the kind of 1-stars you’re proud of (and I have been, lately… I’ve really liked them).

I am lucky this time around in that I’ve written two previous books in the same series I’m continuing on, so I have a decent string of events I already know I need to cover to tie off the loose ends. But

Read more…And so it begins… again

Welcome New & Faithful Few

Well, hello there.

So, about ten days ago, my publisher advised me there had been some 37,000 free downloads of HEALER’S TOUCH. Now, this is where I have to remind myself that these are downloads that would not have happened had it not been free… because, well, I still have a student loan sitting there… looking at me… and I’m looking at it… yeah. Maybe next time.

Anyway, that was a highly successful promotion we had there… and we didn’t expect it. I guess it just goes to show what a decent cover, blurb and the few kind reviews I already had can do…

Over the course of the month, I’ve gone from having just 22 reviews on Amazon US to over 90. That’s amazing. 22 in a year… another 70 in a month. Goodreads has seen a jump, and I even got my first review on Smashwords. B&N also got some action.

It has been an amazing time

Read more…Welcome New & Faithful Few

Stories have a tendency to write themselves…

… no matter how much you think you know better… you probably don’t. The story knows.

So, I’m still writing. Yes, yes, I know, I haven’t kept you updated… been too busy writing, or thinking up marketing strategies for HEALER’S TOUCH – often having to remind myself that the best marketing strategy for HT is to get WARRIOR’S TOUCH out there…

But I just felt like sharing something…

This may not be true for everyone, but for me, it really is: my stories write themselves, and if I try to go against them, I get stifled.

I’ve been reminded of this fact a couple of times recenty.

A few weeks ago I had an idea for WT. I thought “That’ll be really cool, and according to well-established story beats, a good time for that to happen would be… later in the story.” Cool, I thought. I have something to work towards.

Wrong.

I stagnated.

I kept pushing on, telling myself “Come on, write, there’s good stuff coming.” Not that I thought what I was writing at the time was terrible, or even bad. I was just struggling to find momentum in my writing.

Then I had an epiphany. That idea that I thought would work best coming later in the story could easily

Read more…Stories have a tendency to write themselves…

Happy New Year!

… and I believe it really will be!

Anyway, without further ado, here is my New Year gift to you… the eBook Cover for Healer’s Touch!

Cover art for Healer's Touch
Healer’s Touch is growing up into a REAL book

So, now seems to be the time to think back on 2012 and look forward to 2013. I think it’s pretty obvious what 2013 will bring for me. The release of

Read more…Happy New Year!

Dusting the cobwebs away…

Things are a little quiet around here. That’s because I have decided that THE most important thing I do right now is write Book 2 (well, after “be a mother to my son”, oh, and, you know, “be a wife”).

Some work on Healer’s Touch is taking away from my writing of new stuff — I have to make decisions on cover design and the like. But that is coming to a close now, and I am very lucky to have my publisher to do a lot of that work for me (like the back cover copy!). Sure, I put in my two cents here and there, and then I leave most of it to them.

Yes, a big part of me wanted to self-publish so that I could have all this control over the whole process. But the reality

Read more…Dusting the cobwebs away…

Welcome to the Team…

I would like to welcome to the Healer’s Touch team…. dun dun duuuun… Matt Donnici.

Matt is working (like, right now!) feverishly on a cover illustration for Healer’s Touch! How mega exciting is that? Yeah! Mega MEGA exciting! We’ve been discussing concepts and finer details the last couple of days, and Matt has done amazing work shaping his initial sketch into something that looks really promising. Really promising. I’m excited. Can you tell?

Read more…Welcome to the Team…

Starting over …

I have got to say, starting a whole new novel is scary stuff!

Structuring the telling
Structuring the telling (Photo credit: bgblogging)

I’ve learned so much through writing Healer’s Touch that I’d love to think I can apply to this new book earlier on, with the intention of completing and publishing in a shorter time than I have HT. The good ol’ “Easier said than done” comes to mind right about now. When I think about story structure and outlining, I find myself a little bit paralysed. There is no doubt about it, I applied tried-and-true story structure theory I learned from Larry Brooks, and outlining techniques I learned from all over the show (seriously, too many references to even list any … if you search it, you’ll come across many influences I used), to complete HT. But, the simple fact remains, I started out pantsing it. I started with a couple or three characters and a vague idea of where I wanted them to end up. The story grew around them, and they within it.

Read more…Starting over …

[Writing] Plotting’s hard work!

Hello, my peeps!

So, I thought I’d keep you up to date with the goings on … well, somewhat, anyway.

First up, I’m looking forward to finding out the outcome of the Contest I entered at the end of July. In all honesty, I don’t expect to have come anywhere, but the results being out means I can move on with things.

My son and our dog at the park
It’s good to get away from the computer now and then – these guys certainly appreciate it.

It’s been a strangely tough time of late. Of course, first up, I rushed my manuscript finished for that contest. I put it away for a few days and set to work on the next book. But, working on that book got me thinking of things that could do with being tweaked in the first book, so, of course, I couldn’t leave it alone … So, I tweaked, and then I went on to editing.

And then there was this Cover Contest on offer, too. Of course, I figured that since a publishing contract was a very slim possibility from the Manuscript Contest that I may as well enter this so that, if I were lucky enough to win it, I’d have a cover lined up for when I go Indie.

And then there were the AMP Scholarships opening up. I did it last year, but I know that application was a bit wishy-washy. This year I have more of an idea of what I needed and why, so I filled in an application and even submitted it. The closing date was Friday (NZ Time).

It’s an odd feeling to me, to be putting all these things out there … I mean, the most likely outcome is that I’d get nothing from from any of them, and that would be OK. But, because I did enter, there is that small chance that something in my manuscript happens to grab the judge (even if I have since improved it … oops) and I win a critique. That would be cool. That’s the one prize I don’t see interfering with anything else. But, what if he offered publication and I won a free cover? I’d feel bad, when someone else could have won that prize. And, if I win a free cover–a fee which I’ve built into my Scholarship application–would I feel OK if I then got money from that scholarship that I no longer needed

Read more…[Writing] Plotting’s hard work!