Sunshine: My oldest daughter took her Summer Job money and took us all to Panama City beach for a four night "get-a-way" to celebrate Zander's birthday. We left Wednesday and got back Sunday. The Ocean was full of seaweed. There were red flags posted on the beach. The wind was blowing. It was cloudy. It rained several times.
We had one of the best times ever!
That might sound odd, but we stayed at a place where we had the pool all to ourselves. It was like living in a private resort and owning a pool. We had great family time playing "freeze tag" in the water. Yes, you read it here. We played freeze tag.
We also went to "Wonder Works!" It was awesome. Plus, for the price of one ticket, you could return ALL DAY LONG as many times as you wished. We went early and stayed maybe 2 1/2 hours, left and ate lunch, went to the pool, returned to Wonder Works, and then left there to go eat Dinner. I layed on a bed of nails, rode the bicycles that flip you upside down, and tried out the virtual roller coaster. It was awesome. The main thing that I did not do was the "ropes course." I hate high places and I was not going to get up there and have to wait for someone to come and talk me down. No sir!
MoonShine: There was a beautiful full moon, while we were at the beach. It was incredible. If you thought that I was going to say something about alcohol, I wasn't except...When I was growing up, there was a guy who had a "still" in the woods near my house. We were always told to stay out of the woods and to never go near the still. That man died in a house fire years later. Someone said that all that was left was his heart. I think that is a old "wives-tale." I was always told that when someone burns in a fire that all is left is the heart. I think that my grandmother told me that.
Dine: If you love cheeseburgers, you have to try Buffalo Wild Wings. Oh my goodness gracious great balls of fire...DELICIOUS!!! In the words of RR, "Yummo!" The onion rings are awesome. I got the cheeseburger with swiss. Just thinking about it makes my mouth water. Hmmmm...I am going to the Decatur Book Fair this weekend. We will pass by a Buffalo Wild Wings. I will need to stop and eat. Awesome...Friday evening will be BWW time!
Keep writing! I hope to hear from you! Laterz.
You have an almost "sure-fire" way to sell more books, if you teach a class, speak at a special event, or get involved in a writer group.
First, when you teach a class on some aspect of writing, people view you as someone who has something good to say. They also get to know you and you no longer become "just a name" on the cover of a book. When you teach, you become more credible to those who attend your workshop. Look for ways to teach and share with others. Go to your local Junior College and offer to be part of their continuing education program.
Second, Accept any and all opportunities to speak at special events. Again, you move from stranger to someone that people connect with in some way. Make it enjoyable. Share humorous stories. Be careful and DO NOT make it a sell, sell sell session. You want people to listen to your heart. You want them to feel inspired by you. Then, they feel like they know you as a friend and friends buy friend's books.
Lastly, join a writer's group, or start one in your town. Networking goes a long way. You and your group all push and lift up each other. Everyone shares and gives and spreads the word. When you have news, they all post it on their sites and they talk about it. When someone in the group has it, you do, too. Get together and have your own group book signing.
Would any of you blog readers be interested in joining a "Critique Group?"
I am not talking about publishing, or making a promise to publish with SP. I am talking about a small group of writers and readers that would like to form a "Critique Group," and be available to read and comment on writing and offer suggestions.
In my mind, I invision someone submitting something to the group and having it read and commented on. Then, readers could also comment and offer suggestions and direction to the writer. This would be a "say something good" and "say something that needs changing."
The critique group would have its own page. An item would be listed for maybe a week and then removed. What do you think? Would any of you like to get something going? I need to hear from you.
Email me at email@example.com
and let me know that you would like to get involved.
I have enjoyed writing most of my life. When I was growing up, people actually wrote on pieces of paper and mailed them to family and friends. Stamps did not require a "small loan."
My aunt, in Florida, loved to get letters from me. She said that they were always filled with interesting observations about the things in my life. I did not write one page letters. They always went on for several pages. I always wrote like I talked. She loved it.
This might seem weird, but some of you will fully understand. I am "basically shy." I cover up being shy by being outgoing. I can be happy being left alone, but I never meet a stranger. I talk in elevators. I speak to total strangers that I do not know. Once, I was in an elevator and it shook a guy up so badly by talking to him that he got off on the wrong floor.
Okay, I know what you might be thinking. Did the guy get off on the wrong floor, or did he escape? LOL It was funny. He, like Elvis, was "all shook up."
Okay, I dropped this note in to tell you that I just signed up for a writing course. It is titled "Writing for Magazines." I have never explored that area of writing and decided to take a course from someone who has had many years experience writing for magazines. The class is very affordable and it does count as college credit.
Once I get my materials, I will keep you posted on how well it goes. I might be able to share something that helps you, too.
Have a great Monday!
I am working on a Historical Fiction Short Story. Why? Glad you asked. I decided to try something different that had a new challenge to me. I want to make it something that is meant for someone around age 12. Actually, I had this great idea come into my head and I wrote it down before I forgot what I have been thinking about. You never know when something else will come along and steal the idea away.
So, what is Historical Fiction? It is exactly what it says. It is History and Fiction together. It is very important that the history part be correct. Yes, you can have fictional characters in a story with factual ones, but you have to stick with the History. There are a lot of writers that consider Historical Fiction one of the hardest areas because of all the research involved.
I would really enjoy hearing from some of you who have written Historical Fiction. Tell me about your journey.
What Historical Period am I thinking of witing about? At this point, I am leaning toward The Great Depression. Hmmmm...that is, if I do not change my mind this weekend.
Hey guys! I am going to close the Creative Writing Clas this Wednesday. If you would like to have your mind stretched and have some interesting writing assignmesnt, please sign up. Go to the Creative Writing Page and fill out the form.
We will close the class and start Wednesday Evening.
Have fun thinking outside the box.
Hey, guys! Well, the Summer Break is over for me. Today is the first day for me to report back to school. As you know, I work in a high school as a collaborative teacher in Math. I actually would rather be in those classes over any others. Well, I do enjoy English. I did 12th grade English last year. I was needed more in other areas this year.
I am sitting in an Algebra 1B Class watching students work on problems that assess last year's work. it is to see how much they remember before we jump into a chapter. A and B both use the same book. One class does the first half and the other takes the second half. So, here I am.
I will not be checking the firstname.lastname@example.org
email until I get home, after 3:00PM. They have Yahoo Mail blocked here. They do not want students checking mail during Computer Class. I hate it, but we all have to suffer for the "sins" of the few...sorta.
Feel free to email submissions. I have two authors who will be coming "on-board" Sleeptytown Press, one at the end of August and the other in September. I also have another author who is working on her humorous essays. She should be joining us within a month or two.
Sleepytown Press will be going, as you know, to the Decatur, Georgia Book Fair in early September. I am looking forward to the two days that I will be there. I hope we get a break from the heat. If not, I will be drinking plenty of water and fanning myself with a piece of paper.
Have a great day!
The Sleepytown Press web site is getting a lot of consistent hits. On average, we have around 100 "unique" hits per day. That is over two thousand and five hundred hits a month. To our authors, it means that a lot of people are seeing your books and we hope that it translates into sales for you and visits to your web site. No, it is not in the thousands a month, but it is growing every week.
Statistics say that of all manuscripts sent out each year to traditional publishers, around 1% of those manuscripts are selected for publication. If selected, a book does not officially see the book shelf for 6 months to a possible 2 years. Also, most authors do not get big "budgets" for promotion. I have talked with plenty of authors who have been published traditionally, and they still have to self-promote.
It is a "Jungle" out there and so many people get caught in the vines as they try to swing through the "publishing jungle." I know how you feel and I have been there, too.
To me, rejections hurt so deeply. I feel that writing is very personal. I have not talked to an author/writer yet who did not feel that their writing was from the heart. When someone rejects someone on the basis of their work, it rips the heart. I will never forget the rejection that I got once on a letter. I had a publisher "rubber stamp" the word REJECTED on a return envelope. I gasped! That meant that everyone who handled that letter saw those HORRID WORDS.
In my mind's eye, I pictured a whole nation of people standing shoulder to shoulder as they passed my rejection letter from one to the other as it made its way from a publishing house in some far away city to my house. My postman knows me. He saw my rejection letter. He sees my bills and my communication. Now, he was seeing my heart crushed by a rubber stamp on the cover of an envelope.
The EARTH still turns and moves across the sky. The Sun rises and sets and I have a choice. I can keep going on or stop. Then I remember, "A man is judged by what it takes to stop him." I am better than this. We are all better than this. So, we keep writing. We will be okay.
I might not have taken off and flown, when I wanted to, but I am flapping my arms and checking the wind direction today. Hopefully, in the future, someone will look back and say, WOW...Look how they flew! Wow...look how they are still flying.
So, I nivite you to run along side of me. Let's make this one incredible journey. If Sleepytown Press fits you and you fit it, get on board and let's make this one incredible ride.
WOW! I have been so busy at Sleepytown Press. That is a good thing! There a lot of things going on that will make this web site even better.
I just moved my web account to the PRO Account at Weebly. This means that I have a lot of new features.
1. I can now have music on my site.
2. I can also make and show videos on my site. This opens the door for Book Talks, Book Reviews, and anything else that would work well as a video.
3. I can include YouTube Video, if I have that need.
4. I can embed documents and also have PDFs on my site to download. You can see this on the Newsletter Page.
5. There are just a whole bucket load of new features that I can use on the web site.
6. I can also have "10" Web Sites on Weebly that also include the PRO Features. That opens the door to having links to NEW pages that display books and authors by category. It is going to be amazing.
Check back often and see the many things that are happening with Sleepytown Press.