Writing

The Writer’s Tag

Huge thanks to J.W. Martin for this tag! If you do anything after reading this post it should be checking out his!

https://www.jwmartin.com/the-writers-tag/

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What genres, styles, and topics do you write about?

I write primarily adult contemporary romance and dark erotic thrillers, but there are elements of romance, suspense, mystery, paranormal phenomenon, unhealthy paranoia, love, and drama in all my stories. They are written for ages 18+ and each touches on a variety of important topics.

How long have you been writing?

A long time. Haha. I co-wrote my first novel in grade four. It was a fantasy-thriller. But seriously, writing has been a life-long passion of mine. I’ve always had a diary, journal or book of poetry that I added to when I was growing up. After a brief period of “life experience” (going off to college, falling in love, marriage and the birth of two little aliens that have a striking resemblance to my husband and I), I starting writing my first series. It was in 2011 when I started considering posting my fictional works for publication.

Why do you write?

To keep my sanity. It has always been my emotional release. It’s a cost-effective form of therapy for me. It’s a way to express happiness, release sadness, direct anger, exact revenge without harming any one (except perhaps your fictional characters). You should really try it sometime. It can help you come to terms with your feelings, among other things. Who knew you could rework all that energy into fictional stories that people might actually like to read? I certainly didn’t, or I would have tried it much earlier in life!

When is the best time to write?

For years it was at night after the kids went to bed. Now they stay up until all hours of the night, so I try to squeeze in half an hour every day over my lunch hour and a couple nights a week, if I’m lucky. Saturday used to be my go-to day for writing, but my daughter’s competitive dance team practices are out of town every Saturday. From September to December she danced from 9-5. Yes, that’s 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. She also dances two other nights of the week. At least now that the Nutcracker performance has ended, I will find some reprieve. Plus, I do have a car pool partner. That still means I’m stuck in Windsor for the better part of every other Saturday… sometimes more.

What parts of writing do you love and hate?

I love…

  • Brainstorming;
  • Writing first drafts;
  • World Building; and
  • Blurb writing. (“Back cover book blurb writing???” you ask. Yes! I love it!)

I hate…

Hate is such a harsh and unnecessary word in my vocabulary, but for the sake of answering this question…

  • Self-editing;
  • Researching;
  • How little time I can dedicate to writing; and
  • My uninspiring shared work space. (I need to work on this one the most. It’s an inspiration killer!)

How do you overcome writer’s block?

I don’t get writer’s block because I currently feel like I don’t write near enough. I only write when I’m inspired by events, ideas, or sprinting over lunch. Now that I outline my stories, it’s become easier to stay on track when I do finally sit down to write.

Like J.W. said, distraction blocks are another animal entirely–like You-tube, Netflix, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, needy children, my husband, his toys, my mother… I could go on. Lol.

Are you working on something at the moment?

Yes. At the moment, I’m finishing the last chapters of my NaNoWriMo project, titled Perfectly Ruined, which happens to be the third and final book in the Destiny Series. It’s set in a fictional town in Northern Ontario where a country boy has returned to his hometown after a failed relationship only to find himself unexpectedly wrapped right up with a new girl. A firefighter, a city girl, and a country road. It’s a small town romance with a hint of heat… contemporary romance at its finest.

What are your writing goals this year?

For 2018 my goals include:

  • Being true to myself and respecting the entire industry and readers everywhere… I’m publishing my books wide again (Although Amazon pulled a fast one on me, and of all books for them to auto-renew in Kindle Unlimited, re-enlisted Twisted for another 90 days. So, yeah. My January 1 perma-free plans went out the window real fast. Back to the drawing board for me!);
  • Publish 3 novels (one is written, one is almost complete in rough draft, and the other is up in the air until I sit down and hammer out my entire year (scheduled around my family priorities).
  • To complete number two above, I think I just decided which series should come next. To finish and submit a book to a certain publishing company. My ultimate goal has always been to be published by a certain renowned company and get into bookstores worldwide. I’ve started the perfect three book series that I expect is just what they’re looking for. It’s three Canadian romances with alpha heros and quiet, misunderstood heroines. Book two is more complete than book one, but I have a feeling this series will practically write itself once I lay out my plan with this amazing strategy I’ve discovered. It works for me like a charm EVERY time.

That’s all, folks. I’ve not tagged any writing buddies, because I don’t want to pester any one, but I’d love to hear your answers. Answer away and leave the link to your post in the comments or PM me privately if you don’t want everyone to know all your business. Me, I’m an open book. Any questions, ask away!

Fun fact about this post: I started writing it while sitting in the dentist office waiting room while my daughter got her teeth cleaned. I didn’t know how else I would find the time! My house is undergoing serious renovations right now and my writing space has been compromised. My family is practically living out of our hallway. Lol. The floors in my dining room, living room and kitchen are in the process of being ripped out and refinished. That probably doesn’t sound like much, but when your house is as old as mine there are a lot of layers to be removed, and nails in cement are always fun. Oh yes, removing baseboard heaters, even more fun.

It only took me three weeks to finally find a quiet 5 minutes to wind up this post. 🙂

Again, in case you missed it, here’s J.W.’s post: https://www.jwmartin.com/the-writers-tag 

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NaNoWriMo 2015?

I wanted to do NaNoWriMo this year.

Pretty Young Lady Reading A Book On BedI was so pumped after reading a few posts about people getting ready for NaNoWriMo 2015 that I started to layout my style sheet for the new story idea that popped up just in time for the challenge, but here’s the cold hard truth…

I can’t do NaNoWriMo this year.
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How To Find Your Kindle.com Address on Amazon

Amazon author central profile for Christa SimpsonI can’t tell you how many times readers have told me they don’t have a Kindle.com address. I’m here to tell you now:

If you read on the Kindle app, you have a Kindle.com address.

Here are directions to help you find your kindle.com address on Amazon and show you how to receive an e-book directly onto your Kindle reading device, or any other device with the Kindle app. There is one exception, and you can scroll to the bottom to see what that is. Okay! Let’s get to it, shall we?

First off, you need to log in to your Amazon account where you buy all your books. I’m in Canada, so I typed “Amazon.ca” in the address bar of Internet Explorer and then logged in on Amazon as usual.

In the upper right corner, point your cursor over the spot where mine reads, “Hello Christa. Your Account” and select “Manage Your Content and Devices“.

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A Blog Post About Blogging and Becoming an Author

When I first started blogging, while I was writing my debut novel, I was so uncensored. I had very few followers and so I posted to my blog regularly (LIKE THREE TIMES A WEEK, EASILY!) without fretting too hard over grammatical and typographical errors. I didn’t own licences to any stock photography and I didn’t understand how to use the free feature on WordPress to add images, so my posts had very few photos, if any at all. Life was simple. The people who followed me, joined my blog on their own accord, by no request, force or pressure to do so. I knew, if they were following me it was because they actually cared about what I had to say. I didn’t blow time hanging out on Facebook and Twitter (as much), although I did really enjoy Twitter before the auto-bots ruined it over there. I spent time writing my book, learning about publishing, and sharing my results. And you know what? PEOPLE LOVED IT!

Fashionable Happy Couple Holding White Board

So, what changed?

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What happened to Amazon?!

This post is my refection on how the e-book market has been changing, based on my own experiences and those of my fellow authors—both new and established.

Warning: I’m going to be straight with you.

IT’S A JUNGLE OUT THERE!

It’s no surprise that the book market has become saturated with new titles within the last few years. It seems like writing has become a contagious disease and the act of self-publishing is the antidote. Now, not only do I have to compete with the big guys—by big guys, I mean traditionally published authors with a full support staff: editors, designers, public relations, advertising, extended distribution, street teams, Goodreads groups, dedicated bloggers and other authors in the company, who all show a preference to sharing each other within their imprint, but I have to stand up against a throng of my fellow indies just to maintain my fan base.

Beautiful Lady With Abyssinian Cat
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Romantic or perverted?

I wanted to drop in to let you know I’ve been working on something totally new, crazy and amazing. I’m not ready to spill the beans just yet, until the entire story is outlined, but I believe it already sits at 12,000 words and I’ve only just begun!

I’ll give you a hint: I’m world building right now!!

Let’s just say, what started out as a Young Adult idea has quickly turned into a unique book for adults only! I’ve already apologized to my daughter for cancelling her out of the readership. 😀

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7 Things You Need to Give up this year!

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I may be talking about myself and I may be talking about others…you know who you are. One thing is for sure: we could all handle giving up these seven things this year!

My biggest challenge???

Procrastination is sitting at the number one spot for a reason!

As an author, social media is my number one no noTwitter, Facebook, Google Plus, Pinterest, Goodreads and now Instagram, OH MY!! Hours can fly by and I can chat with fabulous people, learn incredible things and have a good old laugh, but nothing more is had but a good time. Productivity is minimal, while my list of things to do grows infinitely.

Speaking of which…I have to go finish preparing my post for my Beautifully Broken cover reveal next Saturday! 😉

Which of the above are you guilty of? Come on, don’t be shy. 🙂

My Non-Resolution

I don’t even know if my title makes sense and I don’t feel like Googling it right now, so I won’t. To clear up any confusion, let me tell you what I mean. 🙂 🙂

It’s the time of year when everyone seems to be setting goals and striving to meet them. Many of us are thinking up some fantastic New Year’s Resolutions to boost our spirits and light a fire under our asses. Lucky for me, I started my goal of eating healthier last month and so I can strike that from my list of unsuccessful New Year’s Resolutions.

Pop is the Devil. << no really, it is.

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Writing your first draft is a labor of love.

I’ve suffered a horrible loss of my WIP, Beautifully Broken (Book 2 in the Destiny Series), yesterday. The file is corrupt. I’ve gone from 32,500 words to 15,000 words – and this is after I’ve recovered bits and pieces from emails, backups of my electronic notes and scraps of paper from the past three weeks that had yet to make it into the shredder. Maybe I should have renamed the story while I still had the chance. Would it have made a difference?

A nightmare is what it is.

Welcome to my world

I’m sharing part of my Prologue with you now, so you can see why I’m so devastated for losing over 17,000 raw words from my first draft. That’s a lot to lose at this stage of the game! Following is 1,355 of Matty’s words that I thought I’d lost forever.

Excerpt from Prologue

Even with my snow gear on, it’s frosty. The snow starts to rain from the heavens, covering the road with a wave of white blankets. Even with the hood of the truck blocking the wind, a blast of snow whips around it and slices across my face.

Felicia rolls down the driver side window and peeks her head outside. “Need any help under there? Whatever you’re doing, it’s not working.”

“I can always use your hands, doll. But not this time. I think I’ve got it. Give it another try.” I catch a look at her smile before she escapes from the blistery weather and reefs on the handle to roll up the window in the truck.

Romantic young beauty as an angel

I’m still smiling, as she revs the engine in the aged truck. I knew it. I am the man. I hear a resounding wail of the horn and imagine that Felicia is celebrating, but then I jump from the loud crackle in the air. A resounding screech echoes through my ears and deafens me, as the hood seems to turn into the mouth of a crocodile and clamps down onto me like vicious jaws. The twisted wreckage wraps around me, and sandwiches my body precariously against my own truck.

Pain sears through my side and bolts right to my foot, as I gasp for air that can’t seem to reach my lungs. Starved for oxygen, dizziness settles in, but it doesn’t even numb the pain screaming across every inch of my lower extremities.

I’m moaning now. It hurts so bad. I don’t know if one can handle a pain like this. I think I’m going to die. That doesn’t sound like such a bad idea right about now. It feels like a waterfall of blood is spilling down my body and I’m suddenly very tired. I’m afraid to close my eyes though. I’m fighting for a breath as it is. If I fall asleep, I’m afraid I might forget to try and breathe at all.
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