Monday, July 24, 2017

Beauty's Thief is ON SALE for 99¢!!

~ Beauty’s Thief (Finding Gold, Book Four) ~ YA Fantasy Romance ~

Not every monster has claws—not every beauty is kind.

Born a princess, raised to be queen, but living as a servant, Avalyn never realized she would pay the price for her father’s mistakes. Now Avalyn is living in a castle not her own, a slave to an evil witch who wants revenge on the man who betrayed her trust and ruined her.

For Avalyn, her real punishment has yet to begin.

She will be cursed to work for the witch for the next one hundred years unless true love can find its way into the castle and into her heart.

Now the princess’s freedom rests in the hands of a lowly thief who cares only for himself.

*Each book in the Finding Gold Series can be read as a stand-alone*

~ Amazon

Friday, July 7, 2017

How to write 40k words in a single day!

I started writing in 2006 at the age of 13. My first book took seven years to write. The story it started as is not what it ended up becoming. The title changed, the setting changed, the plot changed, and basically it morphed from a single thought into a full world containing a series of stories (now known as the Finding Gold Series). 

Upon finishing that final version I submitted the book to a publisher already 99% sure it would be rejected, but knowing if I didn't do something with it  I would never move on.  

With notebooks filled with ideas, I moved onto something new; the book now published as Only Half Alive. It took me 13 days to write. 

First book = 7 Years. Second book = 13 days. 

What changed? Well, first of all, I didn't really care what that second book turned into. I just wanted to have fun. I let the story take me where it wanted to go, no questions asked. Whereas the first book was my baby! My precious first story that had to be perfect!

After seven years of writing, I was already good at typing fast. Whether I'm sprinting online or at a writer's retreat, my typing speed is constantly questioned. "How can you write so fast?", "Did you really write that much?", "It's not even possible." But the truth of the matter is, YES, I can write that fast, I do write that much, and yes, it's possible.

After my first book was published I was introduced to the world of sprinting. No, authors are not meeting up to go for a jog. Writing sprints! And I quickly learned I was a bit competitive. I finally found a sport I could win at. 

The sprint group I joined welcomed me and I found a new way to write books faster. Most sprints were 30 minutes to an hour long. This worked for the first little while. But the more I did it, the faster I learned that I would only write for a short period of time and then get distracted the rest of my writing time. 

Introducing the new schedule!

First, one thing you have to know is I'm a bit odd. Some people joke that I have OCD. I don't  know if that's true or not but I like things to have order. So joining sprints (that most often started at random times and ended just the same) was a bit stressful for me. 

I created my own sprinting schedule. I start the sprint at *8pm and write for twenty-five minutes (until 8:25pm). I give myself a five-minute break. And then I start again at 8:30. I go for twenty-five minutes (until 8:55pm), take a five-minute break, and start up again at 9pm. 

*Times are just examples. 

This schedule took my writing from 500-1000 words every thirty minutes to roughly 1000-5000 words every twenty-five minutes (on average). 

Life changing! 

The questions kept coming ...

The sprinting made a huge difference. But that's not the sole reason I can write as fast as I do. And after being asked "How do you write so fast?" so many times, I decided to put together an actual list of ways I accomplish it. 

  • 1.      DO NOT EDIT. I know you are tempted to stop and agonize over every single word while writing them. DON’T DO IT! IT’S A TRAP (read that in Ackbar’s voice).
  • 2.      Write with your eyes closed. This helps in many ways. The first of which is you won’t be able to see the things you want to fix, and therefore will listen to the number one tip.
  • 3.      Envision what you are writing. This is another reason to write with your eyes closed. Picture the scene, the moment, the characters. Put yourself in that situation.
  • 4.      Speak out loud. You will sound like a crazy raving lunatic to anyone nearby. This is why I write in the comforts of home, where no one will walk by, hear me talking to myself, and question my sanity (although my sanity is still questioned … often). But really, if you’re struggling (or even if you’re not) with dialogue, a great way to fix this is to have the conversation with yourself out loud, so you can hear how it sounds. Is it realistic? Would your character really speak that way?
  • 5.      Act it out. Again, I don’t recommend this if you’re in public. But acting out a scene can be a great way to figure out if it would work, how it would work, and if it conveys the right emotion for the scene. Don’t be afraid to get up in the middle of a sprint and quickly act out a scene you can’t get on the paper.
  • 6.      Skip around. If you can’t write the current scene in your book, don’t be afraid to skip to the next scene, or chapter, or end. Just keep writing!
  • 7.      Wear headphones. Make sure what you’re listening to matches the tone of the scene you’re currently working on. Don’t listen to something romantic while writing an epic battle scene. That will (most likely) NOT help.
  • 8.      Don’t get distracted by Facebook and other social media sites. Once you get pulled in there is no getting pulled out. I say this from experience. If you’re sprinting with people on Facebook just keep that conversation/post up, but do not go to any other page. And even at that, I recommend you find a less distracting place to sprint.
  • 9.      When you reach a scene where you don’t know how to describe something or you know you’re using the wrong word to convey something, put the word/description in parenthesis and move on. Once in the editing stages search for the parenthesis and fix those spots. This right here is probably the tip that saves me the most. 
Through these things, I managed to write just over 40,000 words in a single day. 

   I hope this is helpful! 
As I discover more secrets to writing faster I will share them!
 Feel free to post questions in the comments! 

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Lazy Days of Summer $250 GIVEAWAY!

Lazy Days of Summer $250 Giveaway July 6th to 26th

  Thanks to this fabulous group on bloggers and authors for joining me to bring you this awesome giveaway. Enter for your chance to win $250 in Paypal Cash or a $250 Amazon Gift Card.  

Sponsor List I Am A Reader Helen Smith Rainy Days and Pajamas Aubrey Wynne: Timeless Love Julie Coulter Bellon Rebecca Talley Simple Wyrdings The Lovely Books Karmack by JC Whyte More Than a Review Heather Gray, Author of Inspirational Romance Jennifer Faye ~ Romance Author Dawn Malone, Author Krysten Lindsay Hager Jo Noelle Sweet & Sassy Books B. Kristin McMichael Caroline Clemmons AJourneyWithoutMap Glistering: B's Blog BookHounds Hooked to Books - Book and Reading Gadget Reviews Lori's Reading Corner Author Alecia Stone Laurie Here - Cont Fiction and More K.N. Lee Huithiang! Geybie's Book Blog Author Crystal Marcos Author Felicia Starr Everly Frost, YA Author Donna K. Weaver Terry Deighton - Children's Author Anna del C. Dye Inger Iversen Rachelle J. Christensen magicalcoolcatmystery Konstanz Silverbow Living Simply

Giveaway Details

$250 in Paypal Cash or a $250 eGift Card Ends 7/26/17 Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use money sent via Paypal or gift codes via Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the authors, bloggers and publishers on the sponsor list. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.   a Rafflecopter giveaway