Author

Good-bye, Facebook. I’m Hitting The Road!

I’ve pinned down what it is that bothers me most about Facebook, and it’s this: the lack of context. As a novelist, I work to build a reader’s interest one layer at a time, using a combination of actions (story) and context (backstory). Indeed, context frames every event and every character that finds its way onto an author’s page. It can be slow going, building that framework, but I think of the process as being along the same lines as building friendships. Most often, a friendship naturally evolves over time as knowledge is gained about one another through shared new adventures, or through the retelling of past ones. Is it all that different, coming to know a fictional character as one might a friend? I think of a novel series as being the equivalent of a television series, a way o...

A Writer’s Joy: Meeting a New Fan

Even as an adult I sometimes feel as if I am back in high school. Usually, this is a good feeling (I loved high school), if a little bit bizarre, considering that I’ve long since left my school days behind and moved into the working world. But, as I’ve come to understand, life is a series of overlapping cycles, of beginnings and endings, and what’s old is often new again. For example, deciding to write professionally, choosing Novelist as my new career category, was a decision that came upon me slowly. I loved my adventures in the business world and had planned a long and healthy future turning simple ideas into tangible products and services. As I suspect most of us have experienced, even the most carefully plotted plans have a tendency to be uprooted when stormy weather sets in. For me, ...

The Summer of Curveballs

It’s…September? I keep looking at the calendar to confirm that the summer is really over. I guess the gentle fall of the first leaves, the shorter days, and the perfect weather (by D.C. standards) should be proof enough, but neither my eyes nor my mind wants to believe it. Where did summer go? I ask myself as I sit at my desk, my fingers aching from a lack of keyboard exercise. The best analogy I can think of for the place in which I find myself is this: Have you ever carefully plotted a novel, analyzed the characters, the settings, the conflict and resolution, only to find, when your fingers hit the keys, that the characters had other ideas? And what had been a great idea for a new story had morphed – at lightning speed –  into something you had never considered as the right path to creat...

Remembering (How To) Love

  When I decided to write a novel, a love story was the natural choice. It seems that anything I write, including short stories and poems, ends up being about love. So why fight it? I often wonder if the act of loving is an ability, an inclination, a talent, or a Heaven-sent gift. Maybe it’s a combination. I also wonder why some people excel at love – at the process of growing and nurturing love – while others fail, miserably. Yes, I do believe love is a process. It has steps, sequences, and a risk of failure. And, whether you honor them or break them, love has rules and boundaries. If it weren’t for these things, love couldn’t be the central plot in a novel, because plots are based on a series of actions that take us from one place, location, or extreme to another. I do enjoy love st...

Prepping For My New Blog

Today has been interesting. I think I’ve turned a corner and finally conquered a major task that has eluded completion since I first realized it needed to be done. For the past few months, I’ve been working myself into a frenzy of concern and trepidation at the thought of upgrading my “starter” blog to a beautiful and modern new format. After weeks of searching hundreds of WordPress sites, analyzing them, envisioning my own version, deciding to move forward with an idea, then scrapping that idea, I’ve finally done it. I’ve selected a new structure for my blog. I chose a WordPress theme, one already designed and ready for installation and customization. This new blog of mine will change the way I both communicate with and support the community of writers, authors, and publishing vendors tha...

CreateSpace or Lightning Source?

My first novel, Ava, will be coming out in print in a matter of days. While I’m excited to finally have this option for readers who do not use e-readers, it has taken more time than I had originally anticipated to make a paperback version of the book available. On this blog, I’ve been candid about the highs and lows of my journey from occasional writer to self-published author. Even as I write this post, a certain part of me still hopes that a literary agent, one skilled in navigating the release and promotion of print books, will discover my novel and insist on representing it, and me. There is real value in having an educated, experienced guide when traveling to new areas of business, and personal growth. I can’t help but wonder if making the choice to move forward on my own ...

2013, The Year of Action

It is New Year’s Day, the year 2013, and I’m excited. Really excited. This morning, I went back and read my first January post from last year and, looking back, I am a bit startled to recognize how much we self-published authors have collectively accomplished, and how different the landscape looks to me a year later. For starters, self-publishing, as a business strategy, is no longer looked down upon by the biggest names in the publishing world. In fact, most have taken headliner steps to incorporate this method into their own product portfolios. Good, good, and more good. I hope the year ahead brings new and mutually profitable ways for the traditional publishing industry to partner with both established and emerging self-published authors. In February, it will be two years since I decide...

Author Interview: Carolyn Brown

"If you don’t write, you ain’t going to sell. Plain and simple as that!"

Author Interview: Carmen DeSousa

Bio: Carmen DeSousa is a Florida native and currently lives in South West Florida. Her first published novel, “She Belongs to Me” achieved bestseller status in “paid” romantic-suspense right next to Nicholas Sparks and J.D. Robb. Look for “Land of the Noonday Sun” spring of 2012, “Difficult Decisions” fall of 2012, and “Split Decisions” December 2012. Her novels are sensual but not erotic, gripping but not graphic, and filled with romance, mystery, and suspense. Author Website Twitter Amazon Facebook Goodreads Q: Welcome, Carmen! Thanks for being here today. What is your genre? Why did you choose it? Carmen DeSousa: Romantic-suspense and I guess the easiest explanation is because it is what I like to read. Q: How many books, short...

Twitter, My Darling

A year ago, I knew nothing about you, Twitter. And now you are the darling of my social media world. At first I was a little scared of you. Your reputation is one of unpredictable power, and I was worried, quite reasonably, that I would be lost in your endless seas. And then there are those hash tags – your courtiers – proving to us, time and again, the reach of your reign. “The other kids are doing it” is a phrase that has never worked with me, and I resisted learning anything about for you for a long, long time. Finally, the Godfather talked me through my fears and I gathered the courage to set my first footfall in your kingdom. A handful of steps later, it was love. A business extraction of the emotion, naturally, but when a person enjoys his or her work, I do believe an element of love...

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