Wednesday, December 6, 2023

December #IWSG: It's the Most Chaotic Time of the Year

                                                


                                                First Wed of Every Month

                                         Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!

Our Twitter handle is @TheIWSG and hashtag is #IWSG.
 
The awesome co-hosts for the December 6 posting of the IWSG are C. Lee McKenzie, JQ Rose, Jennifer Lane, and Jacqui Murray!

Every month, we announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say. 

Remember, the question is optional
December 6 question: Book reviews are for the readers. When you leave a book reviews do you review for the Reader or the Author? Is it about what you liked and enjoyed about your reading experience, or do you critique the author?



I don't leave reviews anymore on Goodreads or other sites. It's painful to read ones that belittle the author or their books. An honest review is one thing, but just bashing them to hear yourself talk or make yourself appear better is so high school. If I do praise an author, I will by giving a shout-out to them on my blog or Instagram or I will tell others in person how much I loved a book or series. If a book is really that poorly written, I feel like others will already know. They don't need my two cents. 

How is everyone this time of year? Writing, editing, reading, or all three? Wrapping packages? Just now starting to shop? All finished with your list? Ready for some time off? I hope you have a wonderful season of rest and relaxation. 
Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, October 4, 2023

October #IWSG: The Rise of the Pumpkin-Head Bots

  


                                              First Wed of Every Month

Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!
Our Twitter handle is @TheIWSG and hashtag is #IWSG.
The awesome co-hosts for the October 4 posting of the IWSG are Natalie Aguirre, Kim Lajevardi, Debs Carey, Gwen Gardner, Patricia Josephine, and Rebecca Douglass!

Every month, we announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say. 


Remember, the question is optional!

October 4 question: The topic of AI writing has been heavily debated across the world. According to various sources, generative AI will assist writers, not replace them. What are your thoughts?


I honestly don't know much about AI except for the robot movies we all love to watch. Never have I attempted to use one to clean my floor or to write my books. I do find the reels where AI bots attend football games and concerts a bit disturbing. In fact, they totally creep me out. It's been debated whether or not someone is just wearing a costume and pretending to be an actual robot or if it really is the rise of the machines. I'd like to slap them just to see what happens. No, just me? Anyway, moving right along.

I do have a beef with an automated floor cleaning bot at Sam's Club. That thing terrifies me, and at the same time, annoys me. On two different visits, the floor-cleaning-bot with no one at the helm picks me out of a crowd and follows me around. I parked my cart last time and decided to stand my ground. I had some choice words to say to the stupid floor cleaner who kept bumping into my cart. This time the driver's seat wasn't empty. A pumpkin head on top of a skeleton sat steering the huge machine right at me. 

Yeah, I'm not real big on this whole AI thing. But I do love October! It's my favorite time of the year. Happy writing, happy hunting, and happy fending off the bots.
 

Wednesday, September 6, 2023

September #IWSG: Time to Celebrate!

 



The awesome co-hosts for the September 6 posting of the IWSG are Sonia Dogra, J Lenni Dorner, Pat Garcia, Sarah - The Faux Fountain Pen, and Meka James!



Today’s question: The IWSG celebrates 12 years today! When did you discover the IWSG, how do you connect, and how has it helped you?



Twelve years already? I seriously can't remember how I first connected with IWSG. It's been a great journey getting to know many different writers from all over the globe. For me, I think I joined about ten years ago. It's hard to believe it has been that long. What a great place for writers to vent, to applaud others, to enter contests, to see what everyone is working on or what they are doing to publish their words. We've looked at trends, writing habits, and resources to see what works and what tanks.  A big shout-out and round of applause to our founder, Alex, who started it all!

What are you working on this month of September? As the weather cools off, it brings out the writer in me. I'm done editing for awhile. Time to reopen an old manuscript and totally rework it with a new outline and some fresh, new words. Anyone prepping for NANO next month? Happy writing!

 





Wednesday, August 2, 2023

AUGUST #IWSG:

  

                                                 First Wed of Every Month

Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!
Our Twitter handle is @TheIWSG and hashtag is #IWSG.
The awesome co-hosts for the August 2 posting of the IWSG are Kate Larkinsdale, Diane Burton, Janet Alcorn, and Shannon Lawrence!

Every month, we announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say. 

Remember, the question is optional!

August 2 question: Have you ever written something that afterwards you felt conflicted about? If so, did you let it stay how it was, take it out, or rewrite it?


The last two months have been a roller coaster of happenings. After fifteen years in our current home, we bought our dream house in the country! The packing and purging and organizing and hauling made me realize I'm not a spring chicken anymore. We managed to go through a decade and a half of stuff and still live to tell about it. Such great memories surround our old house. But it was time to move on. We bought a spacious new build with three acres, a pond, and a creek at a terrific price. 

So, I'm choosing to not answer the question this month, because my brain is...well, wait, what question? What are we talking about? I need a break this next month!  

Hope your August is as productive as my July has been. Happy writing!

Wednesday, June 7, 2023

#IWSG JUNE: WRITING IS LIFE

                                                


                                               First Wed of Every Month


                                                 Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!

Our Twitter handle is @TheIWSG and hashtag is #IWSG.
The awesome co-hosts for the June 7 posting of the IWSG are Patrcia Josephine, Diedre Knight, Olga Godim, J. Lenni Dorner, and Cathrina Constantine!
Every month, we announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say. 

Remember, the question is optional!

June 7 question - If you ever did stop writing, what would you replace it with?


If I ever stopped writing, I would replace it with a hole in my heart, a void of darkness, or a grief-stricken, brokenhearted, life of insanity. 

NOT writing would be NOT good for me. Writing is my life, my passion, my motivation.
Not a day goes by that I don't think about words. Words fill my head from my own stories or from the books I'm reading. I get equally excited about sitting down to both forms of entertainment. Remember, the more you read, the better you write. 
(Says the former librarian!) So, don't stop writing, or reading.

How about you? What would you be doing if you weren't writing? 

  
 

Wednesday, May 3, 2023

#IWSG: MAY THE INSPIRATION BE WITH YOU

  



                                                 First Wed of Every Month


Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!
Our Twitter handle is @TheIWSG and hashtag is #IWSG.
The awesome co-hosts for the May 3 posting of the IWSG are Joylene Nowell Butler, Ronel Janse van Vuuren, Meka James, Diane Burton, Victoria Marie Lees, and M Louise Barbour!

Every month, we announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say. 

Remember, the question is optional!

May 3 question - When you are working on a story, what inspires you?


During my years as an elementary school librarian, I've discovered a simple, yet proven way to gain inspiration for your writing. Are you ready for this mind-blowing trick?

    READ GOOD BOOKS.


There's nothing like the thrill of a page-turner that leaves you hungry for the next chapter. When we read A LOT of good writing, we subconsciously pick up the cadence and rhythm of sentence structure, the push and pull of the story arc, and the dynamics between awesome, yet flawed characters. 

Reading everything helps us discover what works and what flops. We understand why some books are meh and others reach deep into your soul, unleashing suppressed emotions we never knew existed.

I read fast and I read often. I try new books, but I'm always drawn to my favorite ones, rereading them sometimes four or five times. Crazy, right? But when I discover an amazing author, I can't help but fall in love with their writing, which will without a doubt lead to inspiration.

Hope you are enjoying springtime and reading all the books. Or writing all the books. Or both. May the inspiration be with you. 

Wednesday, April 5, 2023

APRIL #IWSG: Enjoy the Journey



                                                 First Wed of Every Month

The awesome co-hosts for the April 5 posting of the IWSG are Jemima Pett, Nancy Gideon, and Natalie Aguirre!


Every month, we announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say. 

Remember, the question is optional!

April 5 question - Do you remember writing your first book? What were your thoughts about a career path on writing? Where are you now and how is it working out for you? If you're at the start of the journey, what are your goals?
 


You ready?
Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!




My first book seems like yesterday and it seems like years ago because it was. I knew little about book marketing and the fine-tuned details that go into a publishing contract back then. Since that time, I've written many books, but I'm taking my time, plotting my moves, and securing the best resources for my future.  

The past few months I've been working with an amazing editor out of London. She is absolutely the best with a sharp eye for detail and plot. Her encouraging words point out my many strengths and has given me confidence.

Best decision ever. Her advice on my next publishing moves has also proven invaluable. I'm still working on edits, but hoping to get my middle grade mystery into the right hands soon. 

My goals took a detour for a time, but I'm back on track. My new job allows me to work from home, enjoy the journey,  and have time to finish my manuscript. 

BEST JOB EVER!

Wednesday, March 1, 2023

March #IWSG: PLOT TWIST!

 

                                          First Wed of Every Month

The awesome co-hosts for the March 1 posting of the IWSG are Diedre Knight, Tonya Drecker, Bish Denham, Olga Godim, and JQ Rose!


Every month, we announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say. 

                                            Remember, the question is optional!

March 1 question - Have you ever read a line in novel or a clever plot twist that caused you to have author envy?

                                                  You ready?
                            Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!

As a writer, I'm always on the hunt for great plot twists. I live for finding unforgettable lines in a novel or a great new series to watch. In order to qualify as a timeless and unique plot twist, it must have the element of surprise. If I'm genuinely shocked, then you know it's a clever turn of events. 

I believe one of the greatest examples of a plot twist that I've ever read is in the book Hunger Games. When Katniss' arrow sinks into an unexpected target other than President Snow, I literally threw my Kindle across the room. Such a great surprise! In order for this one to take full effect, you had to read it first in the book. 

I know there are countless other examples of being genuinely surprised in a book or movie. I can't wait to read yours!
Happy spring!

Wednesday, February 1, 2023

February #IWSG: DO OR DON'T JUDGE A BOOK BY ITS COVER

 



                                               First Wed of Every Month


The awesome co-hosts for the February 1 posting of the IWSG are Jacqui Murray, Ronel Janse van Vuuren, Pat Garcia, and Gwen Gardner!


Every month, we announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say. 

Remember, the question is optional!

February 1 question - If you are an Indie author, do you make your own covers or purchase them? If you publish trad, how much input do you have about what goes on your cover?


You ready?
Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!


Do judge a book by its cover. But don't take my word for it. Ask the millions of kids that pick up and put down books based on the cover design. 

I've delved into creating my own. But I have yet to start that journey. As a former librarian, there were many times I shook my head in disbelief at poorly executed book covers. You have one job and you better get it right! 

Sometimes I just want to buy books based on the artwork staring back at me. I wince when a cover design is done unprofessionally. My hope is to have a lot of input when it comes to my new-ish (newly redesigned) middle-grade murder mystery. I've always studied kid lit book covers both MG and YA to see the latest styles and trends. 

You don't have to judge a book by its cover. But I do every single time. 

Wednesday, January 4, 2023

January #IWSG: You've Got This!



                                               First Wed of Every Month


 The awesome co-hosts for the January 4 posting of the IWSG are Jemima Pett, Debs Carey, Kim Lajevardi, Sarah Foster, Natalie Aguirre, and T. Powell Coltrin!


Every month, we announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say. 

                                            Remember, the question is optional!

January 4 question - Do you have a word of the year? Is there one word that sums up what you need to work on or change in the coming year? For instance, in 2021 my word of the year was Finish. I was determined to finish my first draft by the end of the year. In 2022, my word of the year was Ease. I want to get my process, systems, finances, and routines where life flows with ease and less chaos. What is your word for 2023? 

                                                You ready?
                        Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!

I love one-word titles in books. Being a librarian for many years, my eye was always drawn to novels with a single word on the cover. However, having a one-word motivational phrase for an entire year never crossed my mind.

For a few years, I think the word rookie would've covered my life as a writer. Then hopeful. Then determined. Then Nailed...it (two-words:). Then rewind (or back to square one). I think the word survivalist covered my time as a full-time librarian.

This past year as I worked from home, I will claim the word renewal, which according to the Oxford Dictionary means, an instance of resuming an activity or state after an interruption. 

My editor in London is taking my middle-grade mystery under her wing in March, and I couldn't be more excited. Only three days into this year, and it already feels different--in a good way!

How is everyone feeling about this year as a writer? I'm pumped, which according to the Collins English Dictionary means, full of confidence, enthusiasm. 

Happy New Year!



February #IWSG: Just Do It

                  Come join Alex J. Cavanaugh and the Insecure Writer's Support Group. We discuss our fears, insecurities, ups and downs...