Andy Peloquin

I am an artist – words are my palette

Month: July 2015 (Page 1 of 2)

Is There Such a Thing as a “Key” to Success?

As I go into the final stages of my book launch, I find myself wondering, “Is this book going to succeed, or will all my time and effort be wasted?”

You always hear people talk about the “key” to success, but is there any such thing? Can success be distilled into a simple formula?

Famous people have said all kinds of things about the magical key to the fictional creature called success:

“Success is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm.” — Winston Churchill

“Success means doing the best we can with what we have. Success is the doing, not the getting; in the trying, not the triumph. Success is a personal standard, reaching for the highest that is in us, becoming all that we can be.” — Zig Ziglar

“Success is doing ordinary things extraordinarily well.” — Jim Rohn

“Success is focusing the full power of all you are on what you have a burning desire to achieve.” — Wilfred Peterson

“Success:  To laugh often and much, to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children, to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends, to appreciate beauty, to find the best in others, to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived.  This is to have succeeded!” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Success means having the courage, the determination, and the will to become the person you believe you were meant to be.” — George Sheehan

(Quotes courtesy of IncomeDiary)

So everyone has their own definition of success, meaning that there is no single “road” to success. Well, that makes things a lot harder for me!

How can I make this book launch “successful”? Truth be told, I have no idea! I’m not sure what will make my book sell all the copies I’d like it to, or how I’ll put my book in front of as many people as I need to in order to make it a “success”.

All I can do is what I can do. What does that mean?

Writing as many author interviews and guest posts as I can.

Interacting with as many people (now and on launch day) as I can.

Submitting the book to as many review sites as possible.

Getting as many people to help me with my launch as I can.

Other than that, I don’t know what more I can do!

It’s tough for a book to truly succeed in the world today. Unless you have a fortune to spend on marketing and hours in the day to promote yourself and your works, it basically comes down to the hard work and daily grind.

So that’s what I’ll be doing from now until August 21, the day the book officially launches. I’ll keep doing it even after that, as I’ll need to find ways to keep the momentum going. I may not know what the “key” to success is or if it even exists, but I’m not going to worry about it. I’ll do everything I can, and hope that my efforts pay off.

 

If you want to help with my book launch in some way, drop a comment below, message me on Facebook, or send me an email! I need all the help I can get!

Got any interesting ideas of how I can expand my reach and get my book in front of more people? I’m all ears!

 

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Book Review: The Legacy by Luke Romyn

It’s my favorite day of the week: the day I get to share with you a brand new book I’ve read. For today’s Book Review Wednesday, I’m thrilled to talk about a book I was given by renowned best-selling Australian author Luke Romyn (a swell chap, to say the least!).

 

The Legacy (Formerly titled Corpus Christi)

Haunted by the toxic memories of a torturous foster-father, Jacob Hope yearns to make a difference in a world gone awry, trying to accomplish some small scrap of good in an ocean of wrong. Tumbling through life with no true direction, Jake unwittingly reveals a nightmare.

The gates of Hell have been unlocked, and something long imprisoned has broken loose from its shackles to roam free upon the Earth. It cannot be bargained with, it cannot be defeated, and it exists with only desolation in its heart….

Longing to confront such evil but not knowing how, Jake must embark upon a journey not only of destination, but of self-discovery. In his attempts to thwart a fallen angel, Jake must also come to grips with his own part in this almighty drama.

For above it all haunts the inheritance he alone must bear, a legacy which will save or doom all of mankind.

 

 

My Review: 5 Stars

From Chapter 1, I was intrigued by the premise of the book. It’s all about a normal guy who finds out that (tiny spoiler alert!) he’s the Christ reborn. Now, this may sound a bit sacrilegious, but understand this: he’s not JESUS Christ reborn. “Christ” is used more as a title than as a last name (sort of like “King”), so it’s more of a mantle or a legacy (hence the name) than the actual reincarnation of Christ. An original twist on the “Second Coming”–loved it!

I didn’t like the main character as much as I loved the supporting characters. The angelic players are about what you’d expect from “paragons of virtue”, and the demons are sufficiently villainous. No, it’s the human supporting characters that I liked best.

In most “good vs. evil” books, there are a team of good people helping the main character defeat the villains. Instead, most of the supporting characters are neither good nor evil, but all firmly in the “grey moral” zone. A few of them are actually downright bastardy (such as the assassin Vain), and I loved it.

I’m not going to spoil the ending, but I have to say that it came as a pleasant surprise. I was not expecting it, and that made me love the book all the more.

The writing style had a few flaws (overheavy sentences, perhaps a bit too much introspection), but overall it was a great book. Best of all, I got a signed copy from the author himself!

What a handsome devil!

About the Author:

Luke Romyn (born 1975) is an Amazon.com and USA Today bestselling Australian author of action thriller novels published in America and author of the highly acclaimed bestselling novel The Dark Path. Luke has since completed several more books with Blacklisted,Beyond HadesSlaves of ValhallaCorpus ChristiSins of the FatherRise of the Fallen, and Power of Hope also available. He has since gone on to become a top 100 bestseller on Amazon, a #1 bestselling author in action and adventure on Amazon, and a USA Today bestselling author.

A former bodyguard and nightclub bouncer,[4] Romyn’s writing contains high levels of action and depth of insight into the criminal mind, derived from many years dealing and working with society’s lower levels.

Find the book on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Legacy-Chronicles-Book-ebook/dp/B00BM5C8O8/

Connect with him on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/luke.romyn

Tweet at him: https://twitter.com/lukeromyn

 

Writing Has Taught Me to Search for the New

I’ve developed a new motto when it comes to trying new things: “I’ll do anything once.”

If you knew me a few years ago, you’d know that this is totally out of character for me. I’ve always been the guy who likes the “known” and “familiar”–things that are well within my comfort zone.

But over the last years of being a writer, I’ve had to make changes and do things a whole new way. I’ve had to be open to new experiences.

Why would new experiences matter to a writer?

Think about it: let’s say you are a man (like me). In your books, you can’t have all-male characters who think and act just like you. Your men have to be different–good, bad, short, tall, strong, weak, and so on. Then you have to write women, which adds a whole new layer of complexity to your writing. If you have to write children, old people, monsters, and creatures, you’re way out of your comfort zone!

In my “secret side project“, I’m writing about a female thief who climbs to the top of the tallest tower in the city. She is stunned when she looks down and sees the city laid out below. Do you know where that experience comes from? From the time I went bungee jumping at the age of 15. I can feel that same rush of excitement, the same knot in my stomach, and the same thrill of being up high as my character is feeling. That helps me to make the character’s experience that much more authentic, and that’s what I transmit to the reader.

As a writer, it’s all about trying to fill as many shoes as possible. You have to try to think, act, and speak like each of the characters you are writing. If you don’t, your characters come off as inconsistent or–even worse–bland and generic.

But how can you fill those shoes properly? After all, you’re just one man! What can one man do? (I know that’s a reference to something, I just can’t figure out what…)

Well, there’s where “the new” comes into play. The more you experience, the more you talk to people, the more points of view you can understand, the easier it will be to put yourself in the shoes of the characters you’re writing. You will have an easier time seeing from behind the eyes of your men, women, children, old people, monsters, and myths because you can relate to them in a way.

The broader your base of experience, the broader your store of knowledge. The more experience you have, the more you have to draw from. That will fuel your creativity and expand your creative horizons, making it easier for you to write broader, deeper, and more varied characters and stories.

If you want to be a better writer, you have to try new things! It’s just one small way to gain more experience, which will help you have an easier time putting yourself in your characters’ shoes.

Bucelarii - Copy

The Final Countdown

Yes, I am absolutely referring to this song:

(My kids and I love it!)

What am I talking about? That’s right, I’m talking about the countdown until the launch of The Last Bucelarii (Book 1): Blade of the Destroyer(available for pre-order now)

In exactly 30 days, on August 21st, the first installation in my brand new dark fantasy series is going to be launched. I’m so excited I can hardly wait!

In case I haven’t already talked your ear off about it and you don’t know what it’s about, here’s everything you need to know:

Bucelarii - Copy

A faceless, nameless assassin. A forgotten past.  The Hunter of Voramis–a killer devoid of morals, or something else altogether? (Blade of the Destroyer–dark fantasy with a look at the underside of human nature)

The Last Bucelarii (Book 1): Blade of the Destroyer

The Hunter of Voramis is the perfect assassin: ruthless, unrelenting, immortal. Yet he is haunted by lost memories, bonded to a cursed dagger that feeds him power yet denies him peace of mind. Within him rages an unquenchable need for blood and death.

When he accepts a contract to avenge the stolen innocence of a girl, the Hunter becomes the prey. The death of a seemingly random target sends him hurtling toward destruction, yet could his path also lead to the truth of his buried past?

Reviews:

“Creative, gritty, and beautifully dark…fantasy addicts will love it!” — Peter Story, author of Things Grak Hates — http://peterjstory.com/

“The fantasy world has a compelling new antihero…the Hunter will terrify and captivate you.” – Eve A Floriste, author of Fresh Cut

 

If you are a fan of Brent Weeks, Brandon Sanderson, Joe Abercrombie, Scott Lynch, or Michael Moorcock, this is definitely the book for you!

It’s going to be AWESOME!

 

Want to be kept up to date on the book launch news? Take a moment to sign up for my email newsletter, and you’ll be notified the very MINUTE the book is available online.

Bonus: You’ll get a free copy of my debut novel In the Days: A Tale of the Forgotten Continent…

What are you waiting for?

DragonflyBuckskin for Kindle

Book Review: Dragonfly by Resa Nelson

It’s Book Review Wednesday, my favorite day of the week! Today, we’re headed back to the world of fantasy…

 

Dragonfly

Greeta doesn’t remember the Northlands because her father and aunt escaped its collapse, sailing across the great ocean soon after Greeta’s birth.  So why does this place she can’t remember haunt her?  And why does her family tell her so little about her missing mother?

Greeta knows she shouldn’t complain.  Her family lives in peace in the Great Turtle Lands with native villagers, people who look nothing like Greeta and her Northlander family.  Although she longs to be married and have children, her sweetheart is balking.  Something is wrong, and Greeta suspects it’s because she looks nothing like any of the young women in her village.  Instead of being petite and dark like them, Greeta is tall and pale.

DragonflyBuckskin for Kindle

For the first time in her life, Greeta realizes she has nowhere to fit in.  And she could be facing a lonely life without love or a family of her own.

The appearance of a shaman in her village changes everything.  The shaman insists Greeta must learn to walk in the Dreamtime because dark days approach and a key to the survival of all people in the Great Turtle Lands will be a gift that Greeta doesn’t yet know she has.  Convinced she no longer belongs in her own village, Greeta leaves with the shaman.

But the travels beyond the village Greeta has always known and loved soon become perilous.  Separated from her shaman guide, Greeta is captured and delivered to a powerful leader, Finehurst, a Northlander like herself.  Attracted to him, Greeta wonders if he could be the love of her life.  At the same time, she has heard others gossip about Finehurst’s desire to find other Northlanders and bring them under his control.  She worries about protecting the family she left behind.  Greeta must find a way to uncover Finehurst’s true nature and mission while at the same time keeping her last hope for love alive.

My Review: 3 Stars

I was looking forward to reading this book after the author sent me a copy, but I was a bit disappointed when I opened it.

I have no complaints about the story. A girl who feels like an outsider among her own people, trying to find a way to fit in. It’s a classic tale that we can all relate to.

Sadly, there is no real “hook” to make me interested in Greeta. The opening was slow, with nothing gripping to pull me into the world.

The world–that’s another thing I found hard to enjoy. It feels like it’s set in a Native American village before the first colonials, with the main character being half-Viking (Leif Ericson discovered the New World). But it was just too vague and ill-defined for me to get a real sense of the world.

I loved the way the author approached the “magic” of the world in the same way the Native Americans believed it. There is a lot of interaction with nature, and the characters’ reverence for nature provided them with a rudimentary magic system.

The writing style was a bit amateur, with a lot of run-on sentences, iffy sentence structure, lacking punctuation, etc. Not a bad book, just one that failed to hit the mark–in my opinion, of course!

 

Here’s a Taste:

For as long as she could remember, Papa had told her the story of how they came to the Great Turtle Lands with Auntie Peppa in a beautiful wooden ship shaped like a fearsome sea dragon.  They described its long and wide overlapping planks, curving gracefully to shape the dragon’s curled head and matching tail raised high and ready to strike while slicing through the icy waters of the great, wide ocean.  Her father claimed they’d sailed from the opposite side of the ocean where he and her mother had been blacksmiths in a land full of dragons and brigands and ghosts.  He’d been separated from Auntie Peppa for many years because she’d run away to seek safety in the Boglands, a place in the farthest North where she’d worked gathering iron to be smelted.

The way Papa told the story, when they’d landed here on this beach, Killing Crow waited in the tall grasses, ready to kill them because he believed they came to threaten the people of the Shining Star Nation.  Papa said Greeta saved all of their lives that day because she ran on her toddler legs to Killing Crow and won his heart.

Of course, Killing Crow told the story differently.  He admitted he’d witnessed signs that danger would come, and he prepared himself to defend his people.  But he would look at Greeta with a reverence she didn’t understand.  He’d then say he saw how remarkable and special Greeta was, claiming that she would someday hold a unique place in the hearts of the Shining Star people.  Killing Crow would then wink and say what truly melted his heart was the moment he saw Auntie Peppa and knew he’d found the love of his life.

Greeta thought they all exaggerated her importance.  After all, she’d been a little girl at the time.  What could she have done that was so special?

Out of habit she touched the pendant she wore on a slim leather thong around her neck.  All people in the Shining Star Nation wore a token representing their name.  All tokens were carved from stone, but Greeta’s was a combination of stone and silver.  Papa had made a tiny sword from one of his silver rings he’d brought from the old country, half the length of her littlest finger.  Uncle Killing Crow had fashioned and attached wings of stone to the sword, which served as the body of a dragonfly.

 

About the Author:

Resa Nelson is the author of seven novels including her newest book, Dragonfly, Book 1 in her new Dragonfly series. She is also the author of the Dragonslayer series: The Dragonslayer’s Sword (EPPIE Award finalist), The Iron Maiden, The Stone of Darkness, and The Dragon’s Egg. Our Lady of the Absolute is a stand-alone fantasy/mystery about a modern-day society based on ancient Egypt. Her other stand-alone novel, All Of Us Were Sophie, is a science fiction mystery about a woman who duplicates herself in an effort to escape being murdered.  Her short fiction has been published in Women of Darkness II, Jane Yolen’s 2041 anthology, Future Boston, Marion Zimmer Bradley’s Sword and Sorceress XXIII (Waters, ed.), Science Fiction Age, Fantasy, and many other magazines and anthologies.  Nelson is a member of Science Fiction Writers of America (SFWA) and is a 1985 Clarion graduate.

Find the book on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Dragonfly-Book-One-Resa-Nelson-ebook/dp/B00SZDIGYG/

Read her thoughts on her website: resanelson.com

Tweet at her:@ResaNelson

 

 

Writing Has Taught Me to Prioritize

How many things are left undone during your day?

I’ve found that I have SO MANY things to deal with in these final days leading up to my book launch. Yes, I’m a month away, but there’s a lot to do in that month:

Write all the author interviews and guest posts

Contact all the people who have agreed to review a copy of the book

Find new venues for book signings, channels of distributions, etc.

Solicit more reviews and posts for the blog tour

Set up the book launch party–including the Rafflecopter book giveaway

Fix up my website–including all the difficult back-end stuff

And that’s ASIDE from all of my regular work! I still have my day job to keep up with, plus spending time with the missus and kids, trying to relax a bit, hit the gym every day, continue the work on the TWO books I’m currently in the middle of writing, and more.

So how do I get it all done?

Sadly, I can’t! I can’t do everything every day. I can only do some of what needs to be done, so I am forced to decide what that “some” will be.

First off, regular work. Have to pay the bills, so that’s the first thing I get out of the way every morning. I don’t do ANYTHING else until I’ve finished my writing work for the day.

Next, I have to make progress on the Book 2 of my new series, The Last Bucelarii. I can’t rest on my laurels just because Book 1 is coming out. (August 21st, by the way. Mark it on your calendars!)

After that, it’s off to the gym and cooking lunch–two important tasks that have nothing to do with my professional career, but have everything to do with staying healthy and productive.

A quick shower and nap later, and it’s back to work at my desk. I prepare all of my work for the next day, so it’s easy to start writing first thing in the morning.

Then I’ve got to keep plugging away at the book I’m writing for the Writers’ Bootcamp I’m attending. Great stuff, but more work.

Finally, and by now it’s evening, I have to decide what I’m going to do for the book launch. Thankfully, I’ve got the author interviews/guest posts all dated, so if I write two per day, I’ll have the 30 to 40 posts done well before the post date.

A bit more time working on my website, sending out emails, and doing all the other things, and it’s off to dinner and a relaxing evening with the family.

Sure, stressful days, but it’s the only way to get things done! The fact that I’ve prioritized everything is how I continue to pay the bills while working at my book launch, make progress in TWO separate novels, and actually launch the book in one month’s time.

It’s all about putting the important tasks first, and fitting the other “less” important tasks in around them!

 

Why You Need to Ask

How many sales have you missed out on because you didn’t ask people to “Buy my book, please”? How many times have you failed to make a friend simply because you didn’t ask them if they wanted to hang out or chat? How many job opportunities have passed you by because you didn’t put yourself forward?

Most people want to avoid being “pushy” or going the “hard sell” route, especially when it comes to marketing themselves as authors. The “soft sell” route of marketing or promoting your work is definitely the better choice. After all, that’s how you make friends and get people to like YOU, which will in turn encourage them to like your product.

But a wise woman once said:  “If you don’t go after what you want, you’ll never have it. If you don’t ask, the answer is always no. If you don’t step forward, you’re always in the same place.” ― Nora Roberts

It’s tough to find the middle ground between the “soft sell” and just plain “wussing out”. There comes a time when you just have to ask, regardless of how you think people will perceive you. You’ll often find that people will have no problem doing what you’re asking, and the only reason they haven’t done it so far is because they didn’t know you wanted them to.

For example, look at email marketing. If you never ask your blog readers or followers for their emails, how are you going to get them? You may worry that your regular emails will annoy them, but for the most part, they’re willing to give you their emails because they like what you have to say. It’s a very small thing to them, much smaller than it may seem to you.

Or how about selling your books? You may be talking about the book to all of your friends, social media contacts, and coworkers, but if you never say, “Hey, why not go and buy my book?”, few of them ever will. You need to ask, and it may not be as big a deal or as terrifying as you might imagine.

So here’s my advice: ask someone to do something today. It doesn’t matter what it is, but step out of your comfort zone and ask your friends to “Like” your Facebook author Page, “Follow” you on Twitter, or input their email address into your list. It’s going to feel odd, but once you get used to it, it will be a lot easier and feel more natural. Eventually, you’ll find fun and clever ways to do it, and it won’t be a “big” thing any longer.

I’m going to live my own words today:

Please take a moment to sign up for my email list, “Like” my Facebook Page, and “Follow” me on Twitter. With my upcoming book launch, I’ll need it! Thanks, and have a great day!

Catch and Release - Damian Roache

Book Review: Catch and Release by Damian Roache

It’s Book Review Wednesday, and our book for the days is definitely an odd one…

 

Catch and Release

Detective Jackson Carter is only trying to do his job. When he meets an alien walking the streets of Vale, he’s forced to make a quick decision. Carter arrests the otherworldly visitor after he discovers a strange object hidden inside one of his pockets.

Catch and Release - Damian Roache

What is this being doing on Earth? Where did he come from?

Carter soon learns that this might be his last arrest. There are people who will do anything to keep his suspect a secret. With time running out, Carter must decide what to believe and who to trust.

The Aldirnföld Cycle begins here.

 

My Review: 3.5 Stars

I can’t fault this story for the writing. Grammar, punctuation, writing style–it was all fine. Certainly nothing next-level to make me sit up and take notice, but no visible mistakes or amateur writing. Kudos to the author for that!

However, I didn’t get the point of the story. In my opinion, this could have been shortened to a single novel chapter and used as the intro to a longer story. Had there been more story about what happens after he meets the alien, it would have been a great LONGER book. As it was, it was too short and felt incomplete.

Also, I felt the flashback in the middle didn’t really add to the story. It touched on the element of racism in Vale, but perhaps only Vale residents would feel the “sting” of that criticism. The relationship between the Chief and Detective Carter could have been summed it more succinctly, and it might have helped the story flow a bit better.

That being said, I am kind of curious to know what comes next. There was a good hook to make me want to read the next part, though hopefully I get more “story” than I got from this one.

 

Here’s a Taste:

“Nice hat,” I said. An old thing, but clean and well-maintained. The material was smooth under my fingertips, and the hat still held its original fitted shape. “Did you steal this?” Why am I even asking him that?

“Not quite,” he said, reaching into one of the coat’s inner pockets. “The previous owner, poor old gentleman, suffered a fatal heart attack upon finding me in his driveway late at night. I was sifting through his garbage, not trying to attract notice, and he dropped at the mere sight of me. Once he was dead, I didn’t see much difference between looting his corpse and his trashcan. A victimless crime, no? I couldn’t let it go to waste.”

The longer he kept talking, and the more he varied the length of his words and sentences, the more bizarre of a light show I was treated to within the depths of his pitch-colored eyes. I pictured the scene as he described it, imagining the sick look of trembling terror on an old man’s face as he fell helpless to the ground to die in the shadow of a grinning, lantern-eyed demon.

The hat didn’t feel so good in my hands anymore.

He pulled out a little cup, sealed with a top and labeled “Specimen 26.” The bottom of the cup held a small amount of what appeared to be semen. When he tried to hand that one to me, I held up my free hand and told him to put it away. “I don’t need to see that up close.”

Was it enough to take him in? Did it even make a difference whether I had evidence of a crime or not?

I took an oath. That was the cop-voice in my head, reminding me of my job as though I’d somehow forget it. I have to do something.

“You’re under arrest,” I said. “You have the right to remai—”

“Detective,” he said, cutting me off in the same quiet voice he’d been using the whole time, “I will go with you. However, I ask that you spare me your police rituals. Think for a moment, and you will realize what I have already determined to be true: your Miranda rights will not apply to one of my kind. By going with you, I am essentially giving myself up to the whims of your authorities. I am alone here, whether you believe this or not, and far from my people and my world.”

 

About the Author:

Damian Roache is a work in progress. He’s part writer, part landscaper, and a whole lot of strange. His interests are all over the place, but if it has magic, monsters, or myths then sign him up. Fantasy, science-fiction, and horror are the staples of his worlds—because he rarely comes up with a story that could be contained by our bland reality. When he’s not writing, or mowing your lawn, he lurks in Abington, MA with a book in one hand and coffee in the other.

Find the book on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00VGOCSG8

Read Damian’s thoughts on his website: http://damianroache.com

Connect with him via Facebook: www.facebook.com/damianroacheauthor

Or Tweet at him:  https://twitter.com/RoacheWriter

Writing Has Taught Me to Be Social

Most people consider writing to be a fairly anti-social activity–which, in most cases, it really is. You spend most of your time hunched over a computer screen or a notebook, scribbling or typing away. Countless hours are spent alone, editing, writing, or re-drafting.

But there is an inherent need to socialize as well. After all, a majority of your customers are going to buy your book not only because they like the look of it, but also because of YOU.

I spent the weekend at San Diego Comic Con (a totally epic weekend, by the way), and I noticed an interesting phenomenon: the most popular people were the ones who were kind, friendly, and outgoing.

For example, I sat near a fairly well-known comic book artist. He greeted every single one of his customers by name, gave hugs, took pictures, and interacted. In the four days of the convention, he ALWAYS had people by his table.

Compare that to other artists who were sitting and either drawing or just waiting, and their sales were probably much lower. Their clients were far fewer, and the interactions were much less pleasant.

I also met amazing Australian thriller author Luke Romyn. He was one of the friendliest people I met at the entire con, and I know his personality is a huge part of what has made him incredibly successful in a highly competitive industry.

The same goes for the Winner Twins, authors of the epic science fiction series The Strand Prophecy. They talked with EVERYONE, and they were so nice about interacting both with their die-hard fans and their new recruits.

Remember, everyone is trying to sell something. As an author, you’re trying to market yourself to people who have never heard of you. You can’t expect them just to like your product, but you have to “sell yourself”.

You know how I got people interested in what I was selling? I offered “free” high fives all day long. It put a smile on people’s faces, and when I started talking to them, they were much more interested in what I had to say.

If you want to succeed, you have to be social, friendly, polite, and outgoing. It’s the only way you’ll make it in this highly competitive industry–or in ANY industry!

How Much of Writing is “Fun”?

When I started writing, I believed it was a fairly glamorous life.

In my head, I pictured that scene from Love Actually where Colin Firth is writing in a gorgeous little house in the French countryside. I also saw my life as the sort of rockstar lifestyle led by Richard Castle in the Castle TV show. I could sit and hammer out glorious stories at my leisure, take a day off to galavant around the world, and do glamorous things.

I’m sure all writers have that sort of daydream of what they think like will be like as they write. Of course, very soon, you come to realize that real life is ABSOLUTELY nothing like your daydream! In fact, it’s usually quite the opposite.

Let me tell you the truth of what life is like for many writers:

Sitting at a desk for 5 hours straight, trying to make the final rounds of edits just so the book will be ready by the deadline you have set for yourself, or to have it published before that author event you’ve signed up for.

Spending hours writing blog posts and author interviews so that there will be traction for your book when it is finally launched.

Putting in two or three hours every day, come Hell or high water, just to keep making slow progress on that book you’re trying to complete.

Skipping vacations or rarely getting a full day to rest because that “time off” is really the only time you get to write. If your friends and family come to visit, the best you can do it LIMIT the time you spend writing–you can never afford to stop altogether.

Staring at the computer screen and re-reading that same passagefor the fifteenth time! Over the course of rough draft, first draft, second draft, and multiple rounds of editing before the final draft, you’ve read the same words far too many times.

And that’s just a fraction of what we, as authors, have to put up with! How much of that actually sounds like fun?

Yes, there is DEFINITELY an element of “fun” to writing. After all, you get to see a creation spring forth from your mind and slowly come to life. It’s like watching a child grow into a man or woman. But how many times did that child make you weep or want to pull out your hair in frustration?

That, my friends, is the true life of a writer. And by God, I wouldn’t give it up for anything!

 

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