Friday, May 26, 2017

Update Day, May 2017

Hey all! I decided I'm going to try something different today. As you know, I have been vlogging for a while, but I also realized that not everyone can watch the video whenever they visit my blog. 

So today, I decided to put the video up top, and then follow it with the script from which the video is based. Please let me know what you think of this format!


Gosh, I can’t believe how much time has been flying by lately. It seemed like a few days ago that I last posted a vlog update, so I was quite shocked to see that it was three months ago. But there you go. Sometimes life and time get in the way, and the next thing you know, it’s the end of May. Ugh. Untentional rhyme.

But because we’re now on the last Friday of May, it’s time for me to share an update for my GotGoals bloghop. In case you’re wondering what the hell I’m talking about…

I’m co-hosting a bloghop with Jen and Brittney, where we set some crazy, big or just really important writerly goals. Then on the last Friday of the month, we post updates on the progress we’ve made.

I also find it useful to set smaller monthly goals, which I then use as stepping stones toward my bigger goals.



So how did I do? 

Well, for the fact that I somehow completely let time get away from me this month, surprisingly well. Okay so I have to say that I didn’t set the bar particularly high, because I was trying to find my feet after quite a lot of crap. But I did say I wanted to write an average of five minutes per day.

And you know what? I hit that average on day two. It’s funny how averages work that way.

That said, the one thing that did take a hit this month was my freelancing. I’ve basically been endlessly working on some job or the other for the past three months, then got a big job at the end of last month and then… crickets. The frustrating thing is that I got that job and it was supposed to take two weeks, but my client hit a snag with the content I’m supposed to format. It’s really not her fault or anything like that, but the net effect is that I’m stuck waiting for her to get back to me. I know eventually that’ll get done, though, so it’s nice to know the money is still hanging around somewhere, waiting for me.

Then I went from nothing to having three jobs to do, but they all only came in over this past weekend, so I will only be able to record the income in June.

So things are really not going badly, but the sudden three week silence really got to me, because I’ve let everything else fall by the way-side over the past few months. It’s really annoying when I wish I could say I spent my empty days writing, but no, they were all spent catching up on a huge admin backlog.

I just realized that if I want to make any progress to the next level, and… you know, actually have more than five minutes a day to write, I need to get some help in. Luckily for me, I have an awesome brother who wants some flexible part time hours while he studies, et voila. I now have an assistant who’s going to help me keep everything rolling on schedule.

Which means that I’ll be able to regularly update as well. Eh…hopefully.

So with that in mind, next month’s goals: 


1) Write an average of 10 minutes every day.
2) Earn $1000 of writing or publishing related income.
3) Weekly updates to my vlog.
4) Sort out the snarling mess that is my social networks as a whole.

That’s it from me for this month. Please do leave me a comment about today's post structure. And how did your month go? Got any crazy writing goals that you’re chasing down? If you'd like to join the bloghop, you can find more information here

Monday, May 22, 2017

Putting Your Memories into the Story by Yolanda Renée

Hey everyone! Today I want to welcome Yolanda Renée to the Five Year Project as part of her blog tour for her new book, The Snowman. Take it away, Yolanda!

Putting Your Memories into the Story


Write what you know, we’ve all been told to do this, and I do it consistently. No, I don’t know anything about killing a person, or catching the culprit, at least personally, but I have studied and researched the topic. However, I do know a little about Alaska since I’ve lived there, and thanks to Google maps I can explore new and interesting places that I haven’t visited. I described 4th Avenue, written as Fourth Avenue, in my story because I could see it from my bedroom window when I lived in Anchorage, and yes it held some very risqué establishments. I’ve also purchased Alaskan Pottery that’s featured in the Reincarnation Chapter. I’ve visited several of the parks, Stowy’s favorite body dumping sites, such as Earthquake Park, a park created after the 1964, 9.4 earthquake that caused a residential neighborhood to slid into the ocean.

One of my first introduction to the state was the immense size of the bears that greet you as you walk through the Anchorage airport. Polar Bears, Kodiak’s, and grizzlies all skillfully preserved by taxidermists, (Stowy’s chosen hobby) all very intimidating.

I do that with all my stories, put a little of my memories into the mix, even statements once made to me by unsuspecting friends, or co-workers. Like when I first told folks that I was visiting Alaska during vacation. “Why would you want to visit that forsaken iceberg?” A former boss asked. I couldn’t believe his ignorance about our 49th state, but I never forgot his statement and allowed Fern Jenkins to use it when describing where she’d rather spend Thanksgiving.

“Don’t be foolish. Home is where Thanksgiving happens. Here. Not some forsaken iceberg.”

Another interesting side note might be the story as to how Stowy Jenkins got his name, Stone. I took that from a story my father told me about his father. How he’d taken my dad out to learn how to swim in an old coal mining quarry and threw him in. It was sink or swim! He swam, of course, but Stowy claims to have sunk like a rock – hence his nickname, Stone. This is a family story that I allowed Stowy to appropriate. He needed a good lie, and I’m sure way back when, that learning to swim in West Virginia happened this way more than once. Yes, my family is originally from West Virginia, and the name Stowy, is a family name. Another of my writing habits, using family names. . .

Writing what you know isn’t that difficult and I think it makes fiction writing all the more real! What do you think? Do you use your life in your stories? Please share a story or two in the comments.

Thanks, Misha, for hosting The Snowman Tour!

About Yolanda Renée



At one time Alaska called to me, and I answered. I learned to sleep under the midnight sun, survive in below zero temperatures, and hike the Mountain Ranges. I've traveled from Prudhoe Bay to Valdez, and the memories are some of my most valued. The wonders, mysteries and incredible beauty that is Alaska has never left me and thus now influence my writing.

Despite my adventurous spirit, I achieved my educational goals, married, and I have two handsome sons. Writing is now my focus, my newest adventure!

You can connect with me here:

Blog    *     Facebook     *     Twitter     *     Pinterest     *     Email


It takes a true artist to pursue his victims in the art of seduction, and Stowy Jenkins is no exception, especially with blood as his medium.

Stowy Jenkins, aka, Stone, and as Alaskans refer to him, the Snowman, is a true artist. His muse, Gigi, is the ultimate inspiration for his painting. Her rejection inspires him to use a very unusual medium…blood.

While art may be his passion, the taste for blood is his obsession, and multiple murders, the result.

Rookie, Detective Steven Quaid, is no fan of the Snowman’s murderous exhibitions. A twisted and deadly relationship bond the two men and neither knows who will come out of it alive.

Buy on Amazon

Thanks for visiting, Yolanda! It's always nice to have you stop by. :-) 

What about you, awesome readers? Do you include your memories in your writing?

Monday, May 15, 2017

Back, and I've brought back-up.

Hey lovely people.

So as I mentioned before, things are going better here, but I've still been quiet.

The reason for this is rather silly and kind of good, but annoying all the same.

The truth is, I've been so busy with freelancing jobs that I haven't been able to even so much as look at any of my social networks for almost two months. The only exception being my monthly update posts, and even that one I almost missed in April because I was so busy and exhausted.

In fact, it's come to the point where I didn't know how to get ahead again. I already had my first inkling back when I first hit my $500 goal.

I'd made it and that's *AMAZING*, but I only just made it. As in, I hardly had any time left after doing the work. But for the past few months, I've been doing month after month at around a $300 level, but unable to break through the barrier simply because I'm not ready to raise my rates to make more money per job, but I don't have more time to work either. And the worst is, it's not actually the work that's killing me. It's all the admin that comes with it.

But then I had a bright idea.

My brother was talking about how he wants a really nice and flexible part-time job while he studies, and I realized I could really offer him that. In exchange for a fixed percentage of my writing/editing income, he's going to start working for me for a month to see if we can make things work.

If it does work out and we can streamline the work, I might finally be able to do more, and finish my book, and actually have time to visit blogs etc. etc. And if that's the case, he can actually make a really nice income right along with me, all while studying at the same time.

I'm really excited about this, because it might be an excellent way to expand the overall publishing business that is me.

How are you guys doing?


Saturday, April 29, 2017

Update Day: DOH!

Sigh.

It's finally happened. After three years, I finally managed to forget my own bloghop. >_<

I remembered on Thursday and then yesterday, I had to clean out the garage (it was a public holiday in South Africa) and I was so exhausted by the end of it (huge garage... looooooooooots of stuff) that I completely forgot about literally everything I was supposed to do.

Sorry!

But I have to at least give a bit of an update, so here's my Update Day post anyhow. For those of you wondering what all this is about, a bunch of us have set some huge or just super important goals. On the last Friday of every month, we post updates on how we're doing. The accountability and encouragement just does wonders.

You're more than welcome to sign up. All you have to do is click here.


Last month, I decided to be a bit more kind to myself than I was lately, so I haven't really set much in the way of writing and money goals. 

It's just hard to chase down goals (impossible, even) if you're barely able to keep going because it feels like you're drowning. 

To give you an idea of where I was this past month, you can check out my previous post. It wasn't pretty. 

But then you guys reminded me that sometimes, it's just necessary to step back. So I decided to go quiet. To stop pushing and prodding myself. 

I picked up my needlework again because the repetition of stitch after stitch just soothes me. And good thing, because there's about 250,000 stitches to my current project.

And slowly, without me really realizing it, I started to feel better. 

So for this month, I'm going to see if I can maintain what I've been managing lately, plus a few minutes of writing every day. Let's say five minutes.

Just a simple addition, to see if I can ease myself in as simply and as painfully as possible. 

How are you doing?  

Monday, April 17, 2017

Paralysis

I want to write a blog post today, because I know it's good for me. The thing is, I'm struggling. Maybe I'm burned out, but it feels like my words have become a hopelessly tangled heap of strings, and every string I pull brings out a whole host of strings I didn't want to see.

So I guess the words are there (which is new for me.) It's just that there are too many of them. Too many emotions. But hey, it's April so it's unlikely that a lot of you will read this post anyway. So I get to just air some words and see what comes out. 

The truth is, I feel stuck. I've mentioned that my life by and large sucks at the moment, which is fair enough, but until recently, I've always had writing to give me a sense of movement. As long as I made progress on my work in progress, that was okay, because then I was actually working toward something. 

But that also meant that I have been flirting on the edge of burning out for a long time. And by a long time, I mean basically from March 2014. Maybe even earlier. 

The thing is, that thing I mentioned before with my family member who spectacularly fucked us over... It gave me a good old shove into the abyss, and now I'm here with no idea about how to get out. 

And if I'm honest, I might actually be self-sabotaging. 

See in the aftermath, I tried to sit down and write, because I know it's good for me. Because I need to feel like at least something is moving in the wrong direction and.... Nothing. Like... even the notes I'd left for myself to guide me toward the end of the story feel like some other parson wrote them. When I think about writing right now, I just feel... numb. 

And I hate it. So instead of writing, I spent the most of the past month doing nothing. It's not that I'm lazy per se. I'm still working, editing for people, formatting for people...that sort of thing. But when it comes to doing something for myself, something that could actually get me climbing out of the abyss again, I basically stare at the ladder out and do nothing. 

Maybe I've been knocked down one time too many. And although things are starting to go a bit better, I don't feel better. I feel like life is right there, dancing around and waiting for me to get onto my feet so it can hit me in the face again. And honestly, I don't see the attraction of it. 

Three years. 

Three whole fucking years of this shit. 

Two weeks ago was the third anniversary of getting my rights back from Etopia Press. So yes, it's almost exactly three years since everything went to hell, because the crap with Etopia was the start. And man, I fought. I fought like a lion. Things went bad and I wrote more. 

But here I am now, and I don't know if I have anything left. Because everything I do feels like I'm just setting myself up for more harm. 

So I do nothing. 

I stare without blinking and fill my hours with nonsense. Not reaching for the ladder out of the abyss because I don't want to face whatever is waiting for me up there. 

Because that's one thing I can say about being down here. If I don't think about it too much, the paralysis is at least peaceful.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Update Day at Last

Hey guys,

So I promised to post my update on Monday, but my headache only started to fade yesterday (and I also had yesterday as a deadline for an editing job that. would. not. get. done.)

For those of you wondering what I'm talking about, me, Jen and Brittney host a bloghop where everyone sets some crazy or crazy important goals. Then on the last Friday of every month, we post updates on how we're doing.

If you'd like to see who's taking part or to sign up, please click here.


So how I did...

In a word... crap. 

I think last month counted as one of the worst in my entire life, due to some personal reasons, which made it almost impossible for me to work efficiently, which in turn made it impossible for me to write, 

So. None of my goals reached. 

And if my personal life wasn't bad enough, my country's president literally fucked us all over by sacking most of his cabinet for a bunch of yes-men, thereby dumping our country in junk status. 

On Friday, it's looking like the whole country might be shutting down in protest as the ruling party has seen it fit to protect the president instead of our democracy. 

So... Fun times. 

Guys... I'm tired.

Just when I think I've dealt with my burn-out, some asshat comes up with a match and some kerosene. 

Maybe I'm pulling this thing on way too much, but I don't know what's scaring me more: everyone complaining and doing nothing while the president destroys our constitution or everyone rising up to the point where everything else but the constitution gets destroyed. Because as it is right now, I'm kinda feeling like it could go either way.

But yeah, thoughts and prayers could go a long way.

Friday, March 31, 2017

Hi guys.

I haven't forgotten about my own bloghop, but I've been hit with a migraine this morning that's basically thrown my whole schedule out. As such, I'm going to postpone my post to Monday.

Sorry!

Misha

Friday, March 17, 2017

Getting Back to Basics

I briefly considered writing this post for my other blog (you know, the one that actually is supposed to contain musings about my life), but I put that one on hiatus more than a year ago, and I feel bad to take it off hiatus for what could potentially be only one post.

So here we are.

I've been really quiet. Mostly I just needed a break. The events of the past two weeks just really brought me to a brink I didn't like being on. A kind of mute terror that nothing would ever be okay again.

And no, I'm not being dramatic.

One day, I might actually write about this time here, but if you'd like to know exactly what's going on, I have a post about it on my Patreon feed, which you can get to (as well as some awesome rewards) for a $1 subscription pledge. Eek. That looks like a plug. It's really not. I don't like keeping secrets from you guys, but what's going on right now is so ugly that I can't just post it out in public. Patreon is a balance of both, offering easy access to those who really want to know while keeping it relatively private so it can't just come up whenever someone searches my name.

For those of you who'd rather like to skip to the current point I'm making: The shit situation continues, but I'm picking myself up (again) and dusting myself off (again) and getting on with getting on (again.)

Sometimes, it's really hard, almost impossible to do that. Especially when I've been knocked down and back so many times that I'm about a hair's breadth away from losing all faith in humanity. Because the most frustrating thing about all this is that I didn't put myself here. 

But I have to get out somehow and I can't do that if I keep wallowing in the rage I feel toward the growing list of people who've wronged me and those I love. I can't get out if I don't have hope that one day, something I or someone in my family did will pan out. I also can't do it if I'm snowing myself under with a laundry list of expectations when some days, just the act of getting up for the day feels like a chore.

So now I'm going back to basics. If I feel like I'm too burned out to write, I don't write. I've scrapped my publishing deadline for Book 3 because it's already too close and I really don't need the extra pressure. I'm putting in more time with my freelance work which, while still not quite in the "it's taken off" category, still is doing well enough to give me hope that it will take off in the near future. I'm cutting out as much negativity as I can.

This means willing myself not to dwell on the past, and particularly not this most recent thing. I let myself feel them, but then I remind myself I have to move on and do that instead. But also, I've found that the Trump election has turned a lot of people in my social networks (on all sides of the political divide) into toxic people to have contact with.

So I'm culling them out of my feed.

It's nothing personal, but for the sake of my own well-being, I'm doing what I must in order to keep myself in as good an emotional shape as I can.

Because I can still move for as long as I can function on some level.

And if being ruthless with my culling and stingy with my time is what it takes to just get anything done, so be it.

It's already helped too. Because here I am, writing when on IWSG day I could barely even type out a sentence without crying.

There is hope. There is progress.

Onward.

How about you? How do you deal when life gets really difficult? 

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

The Writer's Life for Me Tag

Hey everyone.

Still somehow alive and kicking, although part of me doesn't feel like that. But... you know... keeping on keeping on.

As part of that, I decided to take part in the Writer's Life for Me Tag, and since I got tagged on YouTube, I thought I'd do it as a vlog.

Enjoy!



What are your three best pieces of writing advice?

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Holy Crap I Forgot It's IWSG

I wish I was kidding, but sadly, I'm not. The first of the month always catches me for some reason, because my brain seems to believe that the first Wednesday for the month must be the third or later. *facepalm*

No idea what I'm talking about?

The Insecure Writer's Support Group is a monthly bloghop taking place on the first Wednesday of every month. About two hundred writers are part of the IWSG, sharing our doubt, fears, insecurities and encouragement to let everyone else know that actually, they're not all that alone after all.

You're more than welcome to join, if you'd like. Click here for more information or to sign up.


So. 

Because I already eloquently explained myself last week by vlog, I'm going to re-post here. I did try to keep a brave face on everything, but by the end of the first third or so, I'm basically going into where I really am in my life at the moment. 

Spoiler alert, it's not pretty. (Also, this isn't family rated. Just so you know. And yes, the f-bombs I dropped actually did make me feel better. My mom always asks me that. No idea why.)



Since I'm just going to let that do the talking for me instead of writing again (because I've *just* managed to not burst into tears at the thought and writing about it again would open the scab, so to speak), I figured I'd answer this month's question for those of you who'd rather not see/hear me.

Have you ever pulled out a really old story and reworked it? Did it work out?

Yes, I have. A long long time ago, I finished a rewrite to a book shortly after I finished rewriting Doorways. For those of you who weren't visiting my blog at that time, The Vanished Knight + The Heir's Choice = Doorways. 

It wrote like a dream. I backed up. 

I was backing up the file for the last time when something (and don't ask me what) went wrong. The entire file disappeared, replaced with an empty one of the same name. 

I was heartbroken. So much so that I decided to just shelf the whole project until I could look at it without mourning the project I'd had. 

It took about five years before I decided to look at that thing again, and by then, I'd grown so much as a writer that I ended up redrafting the whole thing from scratch, keeping only the characters and about half of the concept. 

Any you know what? I love it even more than I loved it before. I've started editing it and working on it with critique partners and they've enjoyed it too. 

But... it's still a to be continued when it comes to knowing if it worked out. It's not shelved per se, but because of my lack of time and the abundance of crap in my life as is mentioned in the vlog above, I just haven't been able to get to it when I'm supposed to be finishing the sequel to The Heir's Choice. But one day... Hopefully in this year... 

What about you? Did you ever rework an old story? Any good news to share? Really in need of some good news. 

One update I should mention: the business plan is in with the possible investor, so prayers would be appreciated. 

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Update Day: February Edition

Sigh. I really hate being late for my own bloghop, but technical difficulties made it impossible for me to post yesterday.

But here I am.

I decided to do a vlog post for the update. So I hope you enjoy it. :-)

For those of you who would like more information on the Got Goals? Bloghop and to sign up, please click here.







How did your February go? What are your plans for March?

Monday, February 13, 2017

Got a new vlog post up...

Hey everyone! I'm still getting used to the whole vlogging thing, and since I'm still new on YouTube, I thought I'd do more of an about-me kind of post.

So I shared a bit of information about me, my writing, as well as what I'm planning to read soon.

Enjoy!



What are you reading at the moment?

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

I'm at Untethered Realms Today.

Hey everyone!

Just a heads-up that I'm at Untethered Realms, talking about how I deal with empty pages. See you there!

Misha

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Insecure Writer's Support Group

For those of you unfamiliar with the Insecure Writer's Support Group... A couple of hundred writers from around the blogosphere have signed up to this bloghop, which is hosted by Alex J. Cavanaugh. Then, on the first Wednesday of every month, we share our insecurities and/or encouragements.

This month, I'm co-hosting the IWSG Bloghop along with LK Hill, Juneta Key, Christy, and Joylene Butler

Before I get into my post, though, I just have two more spots of admin to get through. 

First, I'm also visiting Ronel Janesen van Vuuren today, sharing some of my thoughts on Patreon

Then, if you'd rather read this exact same post on Wordpress, please click here

Right. Now that's done, let's get into it, shall we? 



As you may or may not know, I've recently started taking this being-a-writer thing seriously. Like... really really seriously. 

Like... I'm-being-a-writer-for-90%-of-my-time-and-using-my-writing-skills-to-earn-99%-of-my-income seriously. 

And how's it going? 

Surprisingly well, money wise. I basically started from scratch in September. And in January, I've made my country's minimum wage for the first time. 

Which is AMAZE-BALLS. You guys can't imagine how happy I am with that. 

Except. 

Most of that money's coming from me freelancing as an editor/formatter/cover designer (which I totally see as writing skills, because all of the above are needed for me to make it as a writer.) 

Not so much from selling books. 

But that's okay, because I always knew I should start of making money as I can and spending money on marketing etc for my books in order to grow my readership. 

Here's the thing, though... Growing my readership will actually happen when I have my next book out. Which I can't get to when my freelance list fills up out of nowhere. 

And I can't market my old books until I have them updated. Which some of you might now be chortling about, because I've been saying I'll update the books since May last year. And the cause of the delay? 

Newsletters. Website. I have no money to pay someone to design either, and because people are hiring me for a ton of stuff they don't have time for, I don't have the time to do either of those two myself. 

And I can't link to them unless I have them set up. So I can't update my books to include the links. 

See? One giant bowl of I-really-have-no-time spaghetti. 

So now, I'm trying to make writing time, which is making me feel bad, because the whole reason why I decided to go full-time was that I WANTED TO HAVE TIME TO WRITE! 

*gasp gasp gasp*

How do you deal with everything trying to steal your writing time? Any advice for me? 

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Update Day: January is Over

Today is the last Friday of the month, which means it's time for another Big Goals Update. For those of you wondering, fifteen of us have set some crazy or crazy important goals, and we update once a month on the last Friday, sharing our progress and encouragements.

You're welcome to sign up, if you want. Just fill in what you would like to achieve, and then write a post today, or the next last Friday of the month. 


So how did I do? 



My goals for January were mostly loose-form. I basically wanted to write every day, finish overhauling my published books, do regular social network updates, and make $500. 

I didn't achieve four of those goals. 

Mainly, though, because the one I did reach was a doozy. 

To illustrate:

The line graph is my monthly income goal. The bar graph beneath is the amount I've generated in a given month. 


To put that into perspective, each bar corresponds to the amount of income I've generated in every month since September. And in January, I more than doubled my previous record. And I basically did that in fourteen days. 

Which is why my writing graph looks like this: 


Womp womp womp. 

Started off very well, with me actually breaking my daily writing record by writing 10k words. In fact, I started off so well that I was convinced that I could write 100k words in But that was before the jobs started coming in. 

I hadn't expected my work-load to grow like it did, so I didn't plan accordingly, and in the end, my writing went stagnant. 

That said, I think I can get more done with proper planning. 

Which brings me to my next point. 

Goals for February

I have various goals that need to get done this year, but for this coming month, at least, I want to continue with my writing and income goals. 

So. 

I'm going to share first priority between writing 100k words (or close to it) and earning $1000 in income in a month. 

I realize that both of these are actually crazy big goals, but that's why I'm picking them. They make me reach. 

More than that, I actually think I can make it. 

It's all in my planning. 

So the short term plan for now is to figure out a structure that will actually help me get both done. 

How are you doing? Did you set goals? 

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

The Remnant Blog Tour

Hey everyone! Today, I'm welcoming William Michael Davidson to the Five Year Project as part of his blog tour.

William Michael Davidson lives in Long Beach, California with his wife and two daughters. A believer that "good living produces good writing," Davidson writes early in the morning so he can get outside, exercise, spend time with people, and experience as much as possible.

A writer of speculative fiction, he enjoys stories that deal with humanity's inherent need for redemption.

For more on Davidson and his writing, connect with him on Goodreads, Twitter, Facebook, and Amazon Author’s Page.


Welcome to the Five Year Project, William. Since I'm all about goals on this blog, I was wondering about five-year goal. Tell me about it? 

My five year-goal is fairly simple.  Assuming The Remnant does well, I would like to finish the trilogy.  I have finished the first draft of the next novel, Mass Exodus, which is the sequel to The Remnant.  It’s going to take me several months to edit it and clean it up.  I would also like to write the third book in the trilogy.  In addition to finishing this series, I would like to publish another novel I recently finished, Storm Taken, and write an additional novel I have an idea for that is a bit larger (maybe 120,000 words or so).  So all in all, lots of writing and publishing in the next five years.


Colton Pierce apprehends Abberants—those who display symptoms of faith—and quarantines them on a remote island to ensure public safety.  Years prior, the government released a genetically-engineered super flu that destroyed the genes believed to be the biological source of spiritual experience in an effort to rid the world of terrorism. As an extractor with the Center for Theological Control, Colton is dedicated to the cause.

But Colton's steadfast commitment is challenged when he learns his own son has been targeted for extraction. An underground militia, the Remnant, agrees to help Colton save his son in exchange for his assistance with their plan to free the Aberrants on the island.

Colton is faced with the most important decision of his life. Remain faithful to the CTC? Or give up everything to save his son?


THE REMNANT is available to order in eBook form at the following sites:


The print format of the book is available at these sites:


Thanks for stopping by, William! What do you guys think of the cover? Cool, isn't it? 

Friday, January 20, 2017

I Survived! Blogfest

Hey everyone! Today I'm taking part in the I Survived Blogfest in honor of Chrys Fey's newest book. 



This is Chrys Fey reporting for Disaster 5 News. I am in Cape Town, South Africa where a tsunami hit yesterday morning. I have Misha with me, a survivor of the tsunami. Misha, can you tell our viewers what happened, and how you survived?


[Wiping away tears, clinging to the emergency blanket around her shoulders.] 

It was terrible. Just... Just water everywhere. One moment I was shopping for groceries-- [Sniffles, chin wobbling as she wipes away tears with the heel of her hand]

I'd just come out of the shop and talking to my mom on the phone when I heard screams. It just didn't make sense. [Clears throat, tears welling in her eyes.] People shouldn't scream on Fridays. I looked in the screams' direction and there was just this...this roar and-- [Breaths shallowing as she tries not to break down] Water. Water everywhere. 

It pushed me back before it even hit me, and when it did, I knew I was going to die. [Breaks down crying, shoulders shaking with the force of her sobs.]

[Manages to look up again. Speaking through tears] I woke up on the roof of a bus stop. The wave must have put me there. I... I can't believe... I don't know how I survived. 

The street below me was empty of people. 






Title: Tsunami Crimes
Series: Disaster Crimes #3
Author: Chrys Fey
Genre: Romantic-Suspense
Page Count: 272

BLURB: Beth and Donovan have come a long way from Hurricane Sabrina and the San Francisco earthquake. Now they are approaching their wedding day and anxiously waiting to promise each other a lifetime of love. The journey down the aisle isn’t smooth, though, as they receive threats from the followers of the notorious criminal, Jackson Storm. They think they’ll be safe in Hawaii, but distance can’t stop these killers. Not even a tsunami can.

This monstrous wave is the most devastating disaster Beth has ever faced. It leaves her beaten, frightened. Is she a widow on her honeymoon? As she struggles to hold herself together and find Donovan, she’s kidnapped by Jackson's men.

Fearing her dead, Donovan searches the rubble and shelters with no luck. The thought of her being swept out to sea is almost too much for him to bear, but the reality is much worse. She’s being used as bait to get him to fall into a deadly trap.


If they live through this disaster, they may never be the same again. 


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Monday, January 16, 2017

Balancing

I'm stealing a few moments to check in. It's really busy here on my side, since I'm trying to write 100k words this month and I got three editing and formatting jobs to do.

Not sure what I'm doing right to get all those jobs, but I'm not going to argue with it. I have to say, I'm really glad that I decided to augment my publishing income this way, because I'm actually enjoying it a lot. More than that, spending most of my working hours on this means that I'm really getting paid (and incentivized) to sharpen skills that I can use on my own publishing efforts later.

My major thing this week is to get these jobs done by Friday, because then I have enough money to pay out my Payoneer account, which means my cash flows at least until next month again. Yeah yeah. I know. Business. Bleh.

I realize the need for balance, though. I can't keep writing so much that I don't actually check in on my social networks. (I know. I'm TERRIBLE.) I can't freelance so much that I can't actually write. There has to be a way to make everything fit in.

So now I'm giving myself regular breaks on editing gigs. Usually, I have a tendency to sit down and power through the entire manuscripts in as close to one sitting as possible. I just get lost in what I'm doing, so I don't realize that I haven't moved in four straight hours.

Which is a terrible thing. Very bad for my health. So.

Now I have a timer running. I set it for 30 minutes to an hour, and stop, move around, blog, check in on twitter etc for a short while before starting again.

That way, I also get to refresh my mind, which I imagine will only serve me even better for getting frequent rests than it does without them.

I'm also hoping that giving myself frequent short breaks will keep me from being too tired once I get around to writing. I don't like pushing through exhaustion too much. It's too risky, because if I burn out, it'll be months before I can write, and I've given myself an official(ish) deadline for Book 3.

Luckily for me, writing is feeling like fun at the moment, which means my brain isn't picking up that it's actually a hell of a lot of work. Unless I'm tired.

So it's much better not to tire myself out. I'm way more productive that way.

How are you doing? Any tips for me to stay balanced?


Monday, January 9, 2017

So... looks like this is happening...

Well. I've been wanting to put my social networking stuff into a regular schedule, starting on 1 January and keeping to it as consistently as possible.

I lasted until 5 January.

Terrible, I know.

I have a really good excuse, though.

I've started working on Book 3 of The War of Six Crowns again, and boy did I hit my stride. I even wrote a whopping 10k words on January 5th. Which means for the first time in my life, I really feel like I can make and cross 100k words in one month. (Less, actually, given that I've only started writing on the 5th.)

Crazy, I know, but I really want to see if I can do it. Preferably without burning out.

My strategy was to write as much as I could for the past few days, and see if I could catch up to par for 50k (since I started late.)

It went so well that I'm on par for 75k words. In fact, I'm a day ahead. Which means I only need 6k words to get on par for 100k.

After that, it's 5k a day. Which I might actually make quite easily, given how the words just keep coming at the moment.

That said, I don't want to crash either.

So I'm going to write today's 6k words in 30 minute sprints, followed by 15 minute rest periods, to see how that goes.

Hopefully it works out. Cause it'll be awesome to have Book 3 done.

How are you doing? Anyone want to sprint with me? I'm using #100kchase on Twitter to call my sprints, if you want to keep me company. 

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Insecure Writer's Support Group: It's Never as Good as You Remember

It's the first Wednesday of the month, which means it's time for the Insecure Writer's Support Group. The brainchild of Alex J. Cavanaugh, IWSG is a monthly bloghop where writers can share their doubts, fears and insecurities. In supporting each other, we can then see that we're really not alone. 

You're welcome to join. All you have to do is click here for more info and to sign up.

If you'd like to rather read this post on Wordpress, please click here



As I've been mentioning lately, I'm busy updating (and in a lot of ways, upgrading) my first two books in The War of Six Crowns. Since I'm a bit of a perfectionist, I couldn't leave things at changing the covers and fonts. Oh no, I decided to give the books another proofreading pass. 

After all, it's a well-known fact that mistakes slip through the finest of nets. So it couldn't hurt, right? 

Well. 

I finished reading through The Vanished Knight yesterday with a growing sense of insecurity. Not because it was bad, but because it was good. The characters' voices sing in this story. There's a sort of poetry to the way it's written. 

It's just... amazing. 

Almost to the point where it's shocking to think that I wrote it. 

And Book 3... just isn't on that level. 

And that got me down. 

But then I gave myself a mental slap. 

See, I first published The Vanished Knight in 2013. And before that, I spent two years struggling to get through writing it and the sequel. In fact, it was such a pain in my ass that I almost quit writing altogether. Gasp! I know it's hard to think that I'd seriously contemplate quitting. 

But The Vanished Knight and The Heir's Choice were so hard to write that it damn near convinced me I couldn't write for shit. 

Fortunately, I had a lot of awesome blogging buddies (including you guys in the IWSG) who could talk me down, and I didn't give up. 

After that, The Vanished Knight alone when through over 30 (count them. THIRTY) revision and editing rounds to get it into the shape it's in now. 

And I guess I forgot about all that because one doesn't remember pain. 

But the history is there. 

The struggle was there. 

And expecting myself to draft out the sequel to the books that almost made me quit while expecting it to look like The Vanished Knight looks now is lunacy. 

So this is a reminder.

Don't ever compare your drafts to books that have been published. (Be they your own or someone else's.) 

Those books look so good because of a huge amount of work that went into polishing them. Work that you still need to do, but that you can't do if you're crippled by the idea that you're a bad writer. 

So. 

Stop moping because a book is soooooo much better than yours, and just write yours. Who knows? The book you're working on right now might just be good enough to send someone else moping later. 

Do you get down when comparing the quality of your writing to published works? 

Before you go, the Mni Wiconi Bloghop in support of Standing Rock has been extended to 7 January, if you'd still like to sign up. There are prizes to be won too, so check it out. :-)


Monday, January 2, 2017

Update Day: New Year, New Goals

Hey everyone!

This is my Update Day post for the Got Goals? Bloghop. Same bloghop as the one you've been seeing on the last Friday of every month, but now with a new (extra) name and button. For those of you wondering what this is about, a bunch of us set some crazy, huge or crazy important goals, and to keep ourselves motivated, we post monthly updates and encourage each other.

As I mentioned, we usually post the updates on the last Friday of the month, but we made an exception for December's post in order to give everyone time.


I'm doing things a little differently, by recording a vlog with my goals, and not really looking at my progress for December. (Sensible, because there was very little progress made after I decided to give myself a break.) 




Do you set goals in January? How did your goals go last year?