Scribblersquest (A Writer’s Journey) – Weekly Update 6/12

Welcome to my weekly update of what is going on with Karen Carnahan’s life as a writer. Each week I share with my readers so they can have a chance to get to know me, personally and professionally. As I go through the learning process, I share my experiences as an Author/Blogger, plus informative things I’ve found on this journey.

Personal Things

It has been a sad beginning of the week for me. On Sunday, my dad let me know that my Uncle (his bother) died, may he rest in peace. I’ve been in a blah mood all for three days.

I tried hard to focus on my work; however, my granddaughter has had other plans such as tea parties. The good thing is I have figured out how to have a tea party while I type. I can imagine what it will be like when I go to edit. 😊

The internet keeps going down to make matters worse. Amazing the power of the internet can shut you down faster than anything. I move onto the next thing on the list that doesn’t require the internet, like cleaning my house.

Or I go somewhere else to do an essential part of writing, which is observing people noting how people interact with themselves as well as others—logging it into a notebook for future reference with a character. One of the places I like to observe people is on the beach. I have seen people be sweet as pie to one another, while others can be as mean as an alley cat. Kids can lead the world in making friends; they have no fear. Adults should take lessons from them. I have to say I enjoyed the beach. The only problem with the beach is the sun. Once I’ve been in the sun for an hour or so, I’m looking for shade. Grateful, there is a restaurant close by, with a shaded porch.

Coronavirus Update

Well, now that good old Texas has reopened about 50%, the case of Coronavirus is on the rise. Three days straight, Houston has had a rise in case we are at level two, which means wear your protective gear, be careful don’t go anywhere unless necessary. I don’t know if we will get back to level one. I hope not, I know, for a fact, we can’t survive another stay at home. Yes, my hubby got a job; however, he’s making half of what he made before the stay at home order. It will be a while before we climb out of the hole financially. I am pretty sure we are not alone in this situation. It has been hard for many people. As you go out to do your errands, please be safe.

New Book Cover

On a more positive note, I selected the mock-up for the Dragon Squad – Book Two of The Elite Series, which is being done by Andrea Fodor, CReya-tive. She does fantastic work. If you need a book cover, please check her out; her covers sell like hotcakes. They sell within minutes of her posting them.

You’ll have to stick around to find out the reveal date of Book Two’s cover. I am excited; I can’t wait to share it with you all. Oh, anyone who has signed up, to join my adventure, will get received puzzle piece of the book cover reveal a week earlier than all others.

Blog Recommendations

I chose taglines for this week’s blog recommendations, seeing I had to come up with the tagline for the Dragon Squad book cover. I figured I would share what I have found out about taglines:

Thoughtsonfantasy.com What Makes a Good Book Tagline? By Nicola. This post has a list of taglines that worked, even ones that didn’t work. Also, a list to let you know what to include when making your tagline. You want a catchy tagline for people to remember.

Writershelpingwriters.com How to Write a Tagline for Your Book (And Why You Need To) by Angela Ackerman. This post gives you the description/example of a Logline as well as a Tagline. Both are good to know how to use.

Personally, I took the info from both of these blog posts when coming up with the tagline for the second book. I have to say I learned a lot from these posts.

Thank You

I hope you enjoyed what you read within this post. If there is anything you would like to hear, see or improve, please let me know within the comment section.

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Scribblersquest – Planning Is Everything

 

 

I have enjoyed this week has been relatively relaxing. As I told you last week, I have been researching doing an online book launch due to everything being closed. Well, I have been planning the launch. You would think it would be easy to plan a party. In-person I can knock it out with no problem; however, doing it online is a bit different—more details on this in Sundays Post (June 7th).

 

Have you ever made a list, then wondered how you were going to get it all done?

 

This was me this week. I made a list so I could put it on my calendar. Only to realize there wasn’t enough space in my calendar for everything. I am going to have to rethink my calendar for next year. I have to say running your own business, whether it be an Author to Construction you have to organize. Plan things out; otherwise, you would get lost in the wind tunnel of things to remember in your head.

I recommend a calendar with an area to have a checklist. I would write down on a separate sheet of paper all the things you need to get done I would do a monthly, weekly, then by day. Prioritize them before putting them into your calendar. I know a lot of people like to do it either on their phone or computer. However, I like it written down in front of me. I want to see what I have to get done, especially since I am busy on the computer all the time or my phone. I don’t want to have to switch over to my calendar to see what’s next or if it time to switch to the next project.

Time can be of the essence; as a writer, you have to break things up throughout the day so you can keep yourself on task to allow the work to flow. An example would be; take 30 minutes to do a sprint writing on your current book. Then move onto editing a chapter. Next, you write a blog, then do another sprint writing. Moving on to check emails, social media, eat lunch, and exercise. I think you get the idea. It can be nerve-racking to keep track of everything, plus add in your normal daily life things like laundry, to cook dinner, kids, and meetings or phone calls. You got it craziness.

The cool thing, which is the part I love, is placing a checkmark next to the item on my list, showing it’s completed. Also, it gives me a reference to show me everything I have done for the week. It a sense of accomplishment when I look at the list of things I have done. Yeah, it puts a smile on my face.

 

woman girl silhouette jogger
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Exercise

 

I have started this week to incorporate exercise into my daily routine. One thing about us writers is we sit so much we sometimes forget to consider our health. I have to say. After some of my exercises, I was able to come up with some great idea that allowed the words to follow, as I wrote.

So, the next time you get writer’s block, go out for a good long walk. Take a friend to talk to or listen to music, leave the writing at home. You might be amazed at how easy things come to you after you’ve cleared your mind.

 

close up of human hand
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com1

Writing

 

As for my writing this week, I worked on the back blur for Dragon Squad Book Two of The Elite Series; plus, the tagline. Yes, this means I will be getting the book cover done soon.

I will let you know at a later date when the book cover will be revealed. Anyone that has signed up for my newsletter will get to see the reveal a week earlier than everyone else as a thank you for being a loyal fan.

 

Blog Recommendations

 

I only have one for you this week. I want to focus on blogging. As a writer, you have to find a way to drive traffic to your website or newsletter to get your fans to follow you.

I have chosen to write a blog with a newsletter, which of course, you know for you are now reading it, and thank you for doing so.

This week I checked out the following:

           Chasing Foxes – Grace has some great ideas to help you with your blogs, from content, planning, freebies, and Pinterest templates. To help you build your audience, to have a fantastic blogging platform.

Don’t miss out, cool things to come to include sneak peeks of covers reveals, giveaways, and much more. Join the adventure by clicking below:

Scribblersquest – Memorial Day Weekend

Well, another week has come to an end. I don’t know about you, but the days seem to be flying by with my family being at home—Binge-watching Black Lightning on Netflix. Yeah, we are now on season three. Texas is working on phase III of reopening; however, my husband’s work is still down. Hopefully, they will be back in swing come the end of this month. Then my work schedule will get back on track.

In Writing

Scheduling/Calendar

One of the most important things I have learned with my writing is to make a schedule. I get so wrapped up with editing or writing I forget to do other things like eat or to clean the house. A schedule is in order; I set up a blocked timeframe during the day. You will want to make sure that you remember to schedule a time for exercise, even if it is to go for a walk. You may think you don’t have time, but you can dictate your writing into your phone using MS Word or Google Docs while you walk. Yes, it will make for a bit more editing on the back end, but it will allow you to conquer two things at once.

I suggest you make a schedule. I have watched Sarra Cannon at Heartbreathing, on YouTube, she has journals for everything. Personally, I don’t know how she keeps up with them.

I am a one calendar type of gal. I will use different ink to make it easier to see the different things I have scheduled throughout the day. I will even change it up, so I’m not doing the same thing daily. I don’t want to get into a rut. I like being in charge of my schedule; that was one thing I hated when I had to work a 9 to 5 job. It was up to someone else as to what I would be doing during the day.

When I start my scheduling on my calendar, I start with my bills, I put them in red, so I know they need to be a priority. Next are birthdays and holidays, which are done in pink and highlighted with a small picture. Then I make any appointments I will do in blue. Any income which is due to coming in, I like to keep track of this, which I put in green. Then I schedule a blog post which is in gold. Any editing or writing to be done will be in purple. Dinner is in light blue, which I will schedule out a week at a time, this cuts down on time for I take the meat that I will be using for the week put in the refrigerator, which means its thawed when I pull it out to cook. I don’t have to worry about forgetting to pull out first thing in the morning or it not being thawed enough to cook come dinner time.

If you are looking for another way to set up a calendar, I recommend checking out Sarra either on Youtube(Heartbeathing) or on her website www.heartbreathing.com. She has an in-depth video on schedule for her calendar.

Indie Author

As an Indie Author, we have to wear many hats. At times it can be overwhelming. Authors who go through a traditional publisher have a team of people to help them. We get to do it all on our own, which means a lot of research to learn the ends and outs of what you need to do to get your book ready.

Once your book is ready to be sold, the next task is Marketing, which has been a challenge for me. I recommend to all set aside a sizable budget for Marketing. It seems everything that can help sell your book costs. Plus, you have to remember the rule of selling, which is your customers need to see your product at least seven times before they’ll buy it.

If you are on a tight budget, you can do a lot of posting adding different hashtags to get it in front of other people besides your friends that are on your newsfeed page. You will want to post to more than one platform to see which one gets the most activity. I post to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, and Linkedin.

Current Work

Well, this week I have worked roughly half the week. I set out to edit the first half of Dragon Squad – Book Two in The Elite Series.

You know it sucks when you start a writing project, then you go back to continue to work on that project; it is no longer there. Yes, I save my work to my cloud drive, but somehow I still lost the first six chapters of Dragon Mage – Book Three in The Elite Series. The good thing is I pretty much remember what I had written, so it’s just a matter of retyping the contents. This time I will ensure I have saved it with a backup. I won’t make the same mistake of losing it again. I guess at some point in a writer’s career, we all go through issues like this one.

I’m not too upset. I was going to rewrite the beginning of this book anyways. It makes it easier for now; I won’t get caught up with what I had already written the first time.

Blog Recommendations

I checked these Blogs out this week, they both have great advice:
20 Things I Wish I Knew Before I Started a Blog by The Blonde Abroad. This article is great if you want to start a blog or you already have, just want some direction. She even offers a Blogging Master Class.

Lifesfinewhine by Pooja covers Lifestyle, Food, Travel, Beauty, Mental Health, and Blogging Advice with all this information you can’t go wrong.

Memorial Day Celebration

Memorial Day is Monday. As you barbecue, spend time with your family and friends take a special moment to remember all those who gave their lives while serving in the United States Armed Forces. Yeah made this world a better place in which we live today.

Did you know that Memorial Day used to be Declaration Day the first year it was observed on the last Monday in May 1868, to May 1970? In 1971, it became a federal holiday of the United States renamed to Memorial Day.
Please fly your flag proud for all who served; they gave the ultimate sacrifice to the land they loved for the freedom they cherish. So others may have a better future.

One more thing, don’t complain too much about all the war movies that will be on all day long on this day. It is a reminder to all of what the servicemen and women when through while serving.

 

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Scribblersquest – Has your writing ever been derailed?

 

Starting as of this week and every week afterward, I will be doing a weekly blog from Scribblersquest (means a writers journey) which is basically my adventures for the week. I will have other blog post through out the week on occasion. I hope you’ll enjoy this post. You will recognize it via the feature picture.

Well, it is the end of another week. I have to be honest with you I haven’t gotten much writing or editing done this week. I will probably work this weekend. Yes, my writing got derailed, for a short period of time.

However, there was a reason for this delay. We had a bit of concern this week. A man in a black pickup truck stopped in front of our home. He started talking with our seven-year-old granddaughter, who was playing in the yard. He asked her if she was the one who liked crawfish. I was outside, not sure if he saw me or not until I told the man no, she doesn’t, but my husband does. My husband heard me speaking with a man he came out to see who I was speaking too. He walked over talked with the man. He wasn’t selling any crawfish, which gave us concern.

Canopy Project

Project Canopy

My husband came up with the idea to make a canopy for our trailer. Project canopy was underway. It was reasonably easy to do, not to mention didn’t inexpensive. We hit the local hardware store selected some 1-inch PVC pipe along with some 90s and a few tees. A bag of zip ties later, we headed out the door of the store.

Connecting the pipes, we didn’t glue them together. That way, if we need to move, we can take it apart to take with us. He cut two of the 10-foot pipes to make legs so the canopy could be at an angle to allow rain to run off. We pulled a tarp we had across the frame, zip-tied it to the frame. Leaving one side hanging down for the sun hits this side the most. We connected it to the trailer using S-hooks we already had. We then tied off the post. Unfortunately, living close to the beach, we get strong winds, which was lifting the canopy off the S-hooks. My husband used a rope tied it to the canopy top and a 4 x 4 on the ground to hold it in place, plus he put the poles in cinder blocks we had and filled them with gravel. Now it doesn’t lift when the wind blows.

It turned out better than I had hoped. It does the job keeps the sun from beating down on us while we sit outside. Plus, I can see my computer screen, which is a big help.

Now, I can do two things at once watch granddaughter while she plays in the yard and still be able to get my writing, editing, social media, and check the amazingly long list emails I get during the day.

Please watch your kids/grandkids closely. Times have changed since my kids were young. I could watch them from the kitchen window; unfortunately, you can’t do that these days.

 

In Writing

This week I was able to find a couple of great blogs. I want to share them with you. If you are still learning like me or you want to freshen up, you might like these, through The Writers Life.

Patreon (Writer’s Path Writers Club

I joined this week, the cost was $1 a month. On this site, you get discounted services, free services, a list of book review bloggers, and book promotion swap page. I will let you know if this is beneficial in my writing.

I did some scrolling through the Book Reviews. It seems a lot of the people listed to do reviews are currently in a backlogged status at this time. You may need to go through several until you find one that is accepting submissions.

 

Internet Radio

Ian, Station Manager with Chat and Spin Internet Radio, which covers UK Local, National, and International, posted in a writing group asking for Authors who wanted free publicity.

Having an opportunity like this kick-started me into learning how to write a Media Press Release. For anyone new in writing, I googled Media Press Release images. I looked through them until I found one which caught my eye. Which I turned into my Media Press Release form, I prayed; I had everything needed as I sent it off. Several sites have templets you can purchase. I am on a strict budget; there are no funds for extra expenses such as this.

Well, I submitted my book information. I double-checked with Ian to ensure he received the email I sent. He confirmed he would be getting back with me in a couple of days. When I find out all the juicy information, I will pass along the info as soon as I have the details.

 

My Book

I am excited to announce come launch date of July 7, 2020, Dragon Fusion has been approved and will be available on Google Play Books as well as Amazon Kindle.

Reminder: It still is currently available for pre-order at the following: Barnes & Noble (Nook), Apple Store, Rakuen Kobo click here for your preferred store.

 

Family Loss

We had a loss in our family. It wasn’t related to the Coronavirus as far as we know. We were told by a family member, he had the test done, which came back negative. He was having trouble breathing by the time he got to the hospital he died. May you rest in peace, John Gassaway.

 

Coronavirus Update

Texas has had quite a few more new cases in the Coronavirus. Also, the highest number of deaths in one day since the pandemic began.
Stores are slowly reopening. I have noticed some people are wearing a mask, and some are choosing not too.
Some fast-food restaurants are stilling to only doing drive-thru, which is making for rather long lines. Restaurants that have opened for people to come in to eat, such as the Mexican Restaurant in Freeport, have marked tables as unavailable to ensure they only use the percentage allowed to maintain social distancing.
Several of the city offices haven’t opened in our area. My daughter went to renew her State ID only to find the office was closed.
It will be interesting to see if Governor Gregg Abbott allowed the state to continue with the reopening after the report of so many deaths.

 

Bottom Line

Life sometimes life throughs us a curveball. The key is to not allow whatever happened to keep you down. Pick yourself backup dust off the dirt to continue where you left off. Happy writing!

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