Tuesday, August 8, 2017

I'm Stumped (25 Blog Post Ideas for Authors)

As a writer, vlogger, and blogger I know all too well how difficult it can be sometimes to come up with something to say. Choosing a topic to blog about is occasionally very easy. There are days when I know exactly what I want to say. And then there are days when I don't have a clue and I scour the internet for ideas and still come up empty-handed.

I'm sure there are plenty of other writers who blog who have faced this dilemma time and time again. In honor of them, I'm going to create a list of possible blog topics, both as a reference for myself and for everyone else out there who doesn't have a clue what to blog about! :)

This list is definitely going to be geared toward authors, because writing is what my blog is all about.


MISC.

-writing update (what have you been working on recently?)

-book review (what have you been reading?)

-describe your writing space (and include pictures!)

-describe your ideal writing space

-your inspiration juice when writing? (most writer's tend to say coffee, but mine is definitely tea!)

-post a chapter of your current manuscript

-how do you beat writer's block?

-how do you feel about NaNoWriMo?

-your biggest distraction when writing?

-interview a fellow author

-interview one of your readers

-quarterly writing goals

-your story as a writer (where did it all begin? How far have you come? Who influenced you the most?)

-the biggest mistakes you've made as an author

-did you self-publish or go traditional? Why?

-your favorite book of all time?


Polls (get your audience involved)

-for naming characters

-for naming books

-for what to write next


How-To

-edit

-outline

-character mapping

-research

-choosing a story

-marketing


There you go...that's my little list! If you're still stumped, I would recommend checking out this list! http://selfpublishingteam.com/105-author-blog-prompts/   It's one I use a lot!

Hope that helps! :)

Happy writing, everybody!


Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Elyon's Strength

When I was in high school, practically everyone I knew was reading the same books. They spread like wildfire through our ranks. Everywhere I turned, there they were. Black. Red. White.

I never read them though. 

Everyone seemed completely obsessed, but I never did pick them up.

Well, now I have.

The Circle Trilogy by Ted Dekker are the books I'm talking about. Black. Red. White.

And now I understand what all the hype was about. These books are absolutely riveting!

The characters are believable and relatable. The story is thought-provoking, intense, suspenseful. I've been on the edge of my seat, furiously turning pages, since I picked up Black and I haven't settled down yet. I am nearly done with book 3, White, and all I can say is that these books are a must read.

The story is about a young man who gets caught between two realities. A little like Narnia...although mostly not like that at all. At any rate, both realities are facing the end of the world, basically, and he's got to save them both...somehow. In the midst of it all is the Great Romance. Elyon's wooing of his bride. I love the way that Ted Dekker has portrayed God's love (Elyon's love) of his people through these stories. It's captivating and emotional for me as a follower of Jesus myself to watch the Great Romance unfold within the confines of this trilogy. It's glorious. I really can't say enough about these books.

So if you want to be challenged in your faith, captivated by your Creator's lavishing love, and spell-bound by an intense, suspenseful story...what are you waiting for? Go read!

Elyon's strength.

I'll probably be saying that all year now. I just can't get over these books. :)


Saturday, July 15, 2017

CAMP

I just spent a wonderful week at church camp counseling 7th grade girls. I had an absolute blast and am so sad it's over! I cannot wait until next year!

Obviously I got zero done in the writing department all week because I was incredibly busy from sun-up to sun-down keeping track of seven girls, leading devotions, playing games, trying to find time for personal Bible study and maybe some sleep (please) too. Despite no writing getting done, this has been the greatest week of my summer so far. :)

I thought you all might like to see a little bit of how my week went, so I'll give you a few pictures to enjoy. :)


Rebekah, preparing her half of the devotions for our girls. (we counseled together this week, which was a blast)




Our girls!




Rebekah got very dirty during the counselor hunt. (I did too, but I didn't get a picture of that)




Devotions




And a random photo with three of our girls. (Not exactly random, it had a purpose...we had a Picture Scavenger Hunt and one of the things to find was something red, hence the picture with my red shirt)


So anyway, that's a small glimpse into the insane and spectacular week that I just had. I had fun with the girls, and I felt stretched by the Lord while counseling throughout the week. (I've been a "counselor" at camp before, but never had to actually do a counseling session til this week, and it was amazing and scary and wonderful all at once)

Now that I'm home I'm going to be diving back into the world of writing. At this point, it's mostly going to be a lot of editing rather than story crafting until I dwindle down my stack of finished but unpublished manuscripts.

Have a lovely day, everyone!


Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Quarterly Writing Goals #3 [2017]

It's a new month! It's also a new quarter of the year, so it's time to take a quick look at last quarter's goals and make some new ones! :)

I make myself a list of goals related to writing/marketing and such like every quarter of the year to help me stay focused and get everything done that needs doing. And I post it online for accountability and just so I have a place to reference my list.

I actually did remarkably well last quarter, and not only accomplished all my goals, but got ahead on writing as well. My goals were to 1) publish Courageous Heart which I did in fact do. 2) Brainstorm and outline book #3 in my Finding Hope series, which I also did (and more than that, I actually wrote the whole book...so...got a little ahead of myself there). 3) Finish The Tragedy of the Traitor, which I did accomplish. 4) Edit The Tragedy of the Traitor. This one isn't "done" per se, because it's still with my editors, but I got my part done. I gave it to the editors. And 5/6) stay on top of author social media and post weekly author vlogs on YouTube. Both of these started out not so great but by the end of the quarter I was doing great. :)

So that was last quarter. And now for my new goals!

-Edit The Tragedy of the Traitor This will mostly just require patience as I wait for my editors to work through the book and send me their edits.

Publish The Tragedy of the Traitor As soon as I get my edits, this will be done! I'm looking at September 10th being my publication date! *fingers crossed* Hopefully editing won't take too long for that to be true.

-Write Kaelyn this one is already outlined, because again, I got ahead on writing last quarter and got all sorts of things done. So now I'm going to be writing this book this quarter instead of brainstorming/outlining.

-Second Editions I am hoping to go through my previously published works, especially the earliest ones, and fix them up. Some of them have mistakes within the story that I've found, and some of them are missing copyright pages and/or title pages and things of that nature. So I am planning on fixing them all and publishing the second editions this year. Whether that happens this quarter or next I don't care, but I'm putting it down for this quarter. I got so far ahead last quarter that I'm pretty sure I can get most if not all of them done.

Stay on top of author social media  I'm still not quite as consistent with my blog or my author Facebook page as I want to be. So I'll work on it.

Post weekly vlogs I've actually gotten really regular with this! I'm very proud of myself.

So there you go. Those are my goals for July, August, and September! We'll see how much I actually get done. Though judging by last quarter, I'm sure it will be all of them!


Tuesday, June 27, 2017

His Plans Are Always Good

It's a Tuesday, and here I am blogging! I am quite proud of myself, actually. :) Let's see how long I can keep this up.

On a more serious note...

Today I just wanted to share what's on my heart these days. Mainly, just this: God has a plan.

I don't always understand His plans. Sometimes I get impatient with His plans, sometimes I get frustrated and discouraged, and sometimes I am overjoyed and thrilled and excited by His plans. Regardless of how I feel, however, He does have a plan and it is a good one. Even when I am discouraged or I can't see where He is taking me, I can always trust that His plans for me are good. He is a good and loving Father and whatever is in store for me in the months and years to come, it will be good. And more to the point, it will be for His glory.

I'm at a bit of an odd place right now. On the one hand, everything about my life seems perfectly in place. My genuine love for children is fulfilled in my nanny job. My passion for writing is taking me wonderful places in the books that I am writing. Everything seems to be exactly as it should be. On the other hand, my books aren't selling the way I'd want them to, certainly not enough to live on or pay any bills I might have. I've been struggling lately because of that.

I've always felt that this was what I was meant to do. Write stories, use them to brighten people's lives and point to Jesus. That feeling hasn't gone away. I do still strongly feel that writing is something I should be doing. But lately I've discouraged by the fact that my books aren't selling. It's almost like the devil is whispering to me, "How can your stories be a witness for the Lord if no one is even reading them?"

Learning to trust His plans, whether that be writing or doing something else entirely with my life, is not always easy. But the peace I have when I do let go and let Him have control is amazing. It's beyond words.

For now, I'll continue writing the stories that I know He is putting on my heart. What the future will hold, who can say? Whatever happens, I will rest in my Father's safe embrace and simply let Him carry me wherever it is He wants me to go. :)

Have a lovely day, dear readers. And trust Him. He knows what He's doing. :)


Tuesday, June 20, 2017

My Newest Novel//Kaelyn

So, in the world of writing, I have news.

In my last post, I talked about schedules, mostly about how I am now using one to keep me motivated and on track with posting on my blog and other social media. I also have a schedule, more of a two-year plan really, with books I plan on writing and when I will outline, write, edit, and publish them. Well, because of said two-year plan...I've been writing more than ever before. And it's amazing!

The Tragedy of the Traitor is with my editors and will be coming out in September!! The last Robin Hood book, The Story of Gisbourne, is written and in the waiting pile now. My third Finding Hope book, Queen of Caradale is finished and is now waiting for my editors as well (I don't think it would be fair to overwhelm them with more than one book at a time). I've never written a book as fast as I wrote Queen of Caradale...which could be an indicator that editing will be a nightmare. Now that I have the Finding Hope trilogy completely finished, and the Robin Hood series done as well, I'm moving on to new things. This is a bit scary and also thrilling! I've been writing the Robin Hood series for four years, so it will be strange to be doing something different now, but I'm excited!!

The next book that I want to tackle is my own. I'm going to be writing a work of fiction based off of my own life experiences. (Although my character is NOT going to be named Amanda...that's just an awful character name). I've mentioned this book before, and the story behind it, so I won't go in too much detail. The book I'm going to be diving into now is about a girl called Kaelyn who was sexually abused as a child and addicted to porn as a teenager. She's going to overcome these things through the saving power of Jesus Christ. My hope and prayer is that my story will be able to minister to other girls who have gone through similar situations.

I have a feeling writing this book is going to be more than a little emotional for me...but it will be good. Therapeutic, at the very least.

So anyway, that's what's new in my writing world!

Have a lovely Tuesday, everybody! :)


Saturday, June 17, 2017

Schedules (Face-Palm)

So...remember when I said I wasn't going to be blogging regularly?

Okay, so I finally had a face-palm moment and decided that instead of constantly apologizing/complaining that I have too much going on to blog consistently I will simply make myself a schedule.

Yes. This should have been my first approach to the problem. It wasn't. Still, better late than never, right? 😉

I already had a schedule for my author vlogs on YouTube, which is likely the only reason I've been consistent with that. So now I'm scheduling everything. Why didn't I think of this before? Silly me.

I'm going to be blogging on Tuesdays and on Saturdays. However, Saturdays will be touch-and-go depending on what my days look like each weekend. So really, expect Tuesdays and then sometimes I'll give you a Saturday gift. 😇

You learn something new everyday, folks. I'm learning that schedules are brilliant, absolutely brilliant. 😏 (also I found the emoji button....)

Happy Writing, everybody!