Writer Wednesday


Last week I wrote only 5K but I was busy editing and formatting and uploading and all that other stuff soooo interesting! Not. My yearly total is still 392K, so I’m doing fine, right? 😉 I wrote one last Star Minds Lone Wolves story, an extra scene for Kristine and that’s more or less it.

Ahem, well, anyway, after a weekend of struggles with KDPprint, I think I mastered it and can now do a few more paperbacks with less hassle than the first. I also figured out the difference between proof copy and author copy. So I’m not giving the paperback links until I checked that the paperbacks are okay, LOL!

But, the e-book links are fine! In case you missed it, Star Minds Lone Wolves’ Thief is out! Please meet Mr. H, thief, chameleon and my favorite character although I couldn’t use the actual person I had in mind. I had to settle with this sexy vampire hunter by Ravven instead.

And if you want a sneak peek of the other two coves, go to the Star Minds page and scroll down… Cherry will come out at the end of the month and Elsa on Oct.15th or White Cane Safety Day.

Now I shall move away from the Star Minds universe to write the next Post-Apocalypse Chronicle… and get ready for the October Business Masterclass! 🙂

That’s all for today! Have a great week!

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Happiness is…


Random Friday


Words of wisdom, writers on writing, whatever you want to call it, enjoy these writers’ quotes and have a great weekend! 🙂

Do not make escaping your day job a goal for your writing.

I hear this all the time, but the pressure is too much on the writing because the day job, the “real job,” is what makes everything tick.

But don’t worry, if you keep the writing fun, keep your family supporting you, keep learning, eventually the money from the business side will overwhelm the day job money. And by then you will have gotten help to deal with it all mentally, right?
Just don’t make the writing so important, so special, that it threatens the “real job.” If it does, you will grind to a halt fairly quickly because how we were all raised doesn’t allow threats to what pays the bills.

Dean Wesley Smith

 

You don’t start out writing good stuff. You start out writing crap and thinking it’s good stuff, and then gradually you get better at it. That’s why I say one of the most valuable traits is persistence.

– Octavia E. Butler

 

I think it’s fairly common for writers to be afflicted with two simultaneous yet contradictory delusions – the burning certainty that we’re unique geniuses and the constant fear that we’re witless frauds who are speeding toward epic failure.

– Scott Lynch

 

So, what am I telling you, exactly? Am I telling you not to seek help?
No, of course not.
But I am telling you to trust yourself and your instincts as a writer. Your voice is what makes you who you are.
Sometimes your voice isn’t suited to a particular subgenre of fiction. That’s okay. Genres and subgenres are >marketing categories, nothing more.
Write what you love, and you’ll always do better.
You do need to learn your craft. You need to learn the rules of grammar before you can break them. The same with the rules of storytelling—whatever your culture. (Not every culture appreciates the same storytelling rhythms. Accept that, too.)
You need to keep learning and growing and improving—which is precisely the instinct that caught both of these stupendous indie writers. Because in continuing to learn, they forgot that they already have mastered a certain level of craft.
They also both asked the wrong questions.
Kris Rusch

 

Don’t screw around with history. The study of history isn’t just an exercise in saying where we came from – it is an examination of who we are now. We all of us will see the past through the lens of the present, and if you decide that your past is a shiny one in which busty maidens loved to flirt with sword-wielding kings of justice while happy peasants enjoyed a humble life of shovelling cow-dung, then your world is… in need of a bit of a kick in the nethers, pardon my saying so. Because if you cannot see the past, and cannot see that the act of seeing expresses something about yourself, then you will never know your present.
Screw around with history! I know you put a lot of effort in finding out exactly what kind of throne Suleyman the Magnificent sat upon while holding his divan… however if it doesn’t have a bomb hidden under it, or the secret of eternal youth hand-stitched into the upholstery, it is dull. Atmosphere is not the same as pastsplaining. You’re here to create fun stories full of sound, colour and soul. History is full of stories that can be the starting point for something else – and if it teaches us to see ourselves differently, then permit yourself to see it through the prism of wonder and imagination too.’

Claire North, “Hurrem and the Djinn”

Writer Wednesday


I’m definitely more prolific when I’m on a deadline, LOL! Last week I wrote 17K, almost a full novella, and then came up with another story of the Star Minds Lone Wolves. So the Elders will have one novel and two novellas with two short stories. This week I’ll be busy checking Mighty Editor’s comments and formatting the first ebook for a mid-month release.

I also have to compose the three covers. I have downloaded the images I need, but I still need to put them together. I will be using 3D rendering models instead of pictures this time, because it was the only way to find Cherry and Elsa, so I adapted and found something for Hariel too, since the original isn’t available, LOL! (Yes, Hariel is Da Muse, and even if I did a mock cover with him, I didn’t dare ask the photographer, Dabboo Ratnani, for the rights to that picture, haha!)

This brings the yearly total to 387K and next week I hope to start working on Post-Apocalypse Chronicles book 2, that will have to be done by Oct.18. I might not write 10 novels in 100 days, but I’m sure I can pour out 40-50K in four weeks. Probably less unless I need to stop for research.

Last weekend I did my first book on KDPprint… allow me to bemoan the demise of CreateSpace. Proofs from Amazon come with a banner “Not for Resale” on the cover. If I even want to do a private project, I’ll have to go back to Lulu. Sigh. I did take everything down on Lulu, but I didn’t close the account – I probably knew something like that would happen, eventually.

Anyhow, next weekend I’ll try to set up the paperback for the Star Minds Lone Wolves – The Youngsters as well as uploading the eBook of the first Elder. Mighty Editor has been swamped these two weeks and I had to book an extra week for the last Vampires Through the Centuries novel, LOL!

Now I better go back to my editing, formatting and cover designing… Have a great week! 🙂

Happiness is…


Random Friday


On a bout of total randomness, I shall go down memory lane! 😀 My very first and totally private blog was on Yahoo 360. I probably put some of it here, at the dawn of this blog, when I was still talking about my attempted conquest of Hollywood. It had a nice little Yahoo Avatar that I have saved on some printed version of that blog, but not on my computer.

Since I’m stuck with the last Yahoo Avatar on my Yahoo account that doesn’t represent me anymore (like the older Happiness is… vignettes that show a brunette, haven’t been a brunette since 2013), I went online to check if and how I could change it. Nope… sigh. I should have changed my Yahoo Avatar when I changed my look!

Anyhow, I tried the suggested alternatives to online avatars (of course for the blog I already had chosen WordPress, and this blog is now almost nine year old, see that widget on the sidebar? Yeah, blogoversary coming soon!) and ended up doing a couple of attempts with Avatar Maker – although for the hair… sigh. I guess I’ll stick to Chibi Barb and Da Muses for the time being.

I shall leave you with my two “new” avatars and Da Muses avatars, just for fun! Have a great weekend! 😀

Writer Wednesday


I’ll have to admit September took me by surprise. In spite of celebrating Da Muse’s birthday last Sunday, the whole weekend didn’t feel like a new month. I almost missed the Happiness is post last Monday… maybe I need a vacation? I was off only four days last summer… well, the summer is not officially over yet, so this summer!

Anyhow! Another 10K written and books sent to the proofreader. I’ll have to finish the last novella before the end of the week or possibly the start of the next, then I’ll probably have two weekends busy with editing… and paperbacks. I actually even managed to link D2D and Findaway, but I can’t find the courage to start on audio books yet. Cause I hate them so much and can’t be bothered to listen to them. Maybe next year…

For sudden changes in DayJob schedule, I also started the translation of Brainwaves, so that as soon as I finish with the Star Minds Lone Wolves, I can get back to the Post-Apocalypse Chronicles and write book 2. And then the other books coming after that, probably. Writing the mini-series at the same time is actually better, especially if they’re either closely intertwined like Star Minds Lone Wolves or squential like Post-Apocalypse Chronicles.

Besides the online workshop, even Chuck Wendig says so!

Write all the books first. Write the series first. If it’s a trilogy, write the trilogy before trying to publish. If it’s a longer series, write the first three books, at least. Or, bare minimum, plot the books robustly, so that when the contract comes in you’re not rushing to figure out the story beats on a longer series.

And since the Silvery Earth Heroines are standalone, I can write them next year, even though I already have the covers by wonderful Federica Manfredi (she still has to draw the last one, but there is really no rush!). I’m also having fun doing covers with stock photos and rendering, so I might redo some of mine (meaning the ones I drew myself). I did an attempt for Firebird (one of the books I wanted to try in audio), but I still have to work on my skills, LOL!

In case you missed the announcement or are not subscribed to my newsletter, Otherside is out! Although D2D initially rejected it for Apple for links to competitors. I have no idea where they saw links to competitors, since I don’t put them anywhere in the books anymore. Only the publisher page, this blog and the newsletter subscription link. What will they do when I mention the competition in the text (with no links whatsoever) in Kristine the Youngest? Maybe Apple doesn’t want my books. Shame on them.

I downloaded all the reports from CreateSpace (50 paperbacks and the payments of the past four years) just in case they get lost in the move. Then I’ll probably just wait until they do it. My last paperback sale was a few months ago anyway. Not going to do it myself (it didn’t prompt me when I logged in, so I assume they’re already overworked by people moving before the closing).

Now I better go back to writing! The newsletter went out, the new title is up, I better get back to work! 🙂 Have a great week!

 

 

Happiness is…


Sunday Surprise


New release! Touting my own horn! Only 2.99$! Check it out! 😀 (the above is the DTF announcement but it’s available at the usual suspects – although a couple may be lagging behind. Go to the publisher’s book page for more! 🙂 ) Happy Sunday!

Random Friday


AUTHOR Barbara G.Tarn (self-interview for Curated Anthologies)

1. What is it about starships that draws you to it?

Stars! I mean, Star Wars, Star Trek, Star Minds… er… that was a self-citation, sorry.

2. What is your story in the anthology about?

A starship pilot and owner who takes people around the Milky Way. Shanell’s story continues in Pilot (Star Minds Lone Wolves).

3. What inspired your story?

Originally it was an exercise for an online workshop about someone stuck in traffic. I had a female taxi driver and turned it into a female starship pilot trying to get on a planet with her customer – and that’s the opening.

4. Do you always write about starships? If not, what do you write about?

The Star Minds series is science fantasy all over, so it has starships, space opera, everything the other Star Thingies have. Then there’s Silvery Earth, secondary world fantasy. Then there’s Future Earth, a more scientific SF (hopefully) on the future of our planet. Then there’s Vampires through the Centuries. Then… just go to www.unicornproductionsbooks.com and check it out!

5. What should readers know about you?

I’m a prolific writer who prefers dabbling in sci-fi and fantasy because she doesn’t like the current situation on this planet much.

6. Is there anything else you’d like to tell us?

After four anthologies, I think I’m going to do a fifth because it’s my favorite number, then I’ll just lay low and wait for invitations into other people’s anthologies. It was wonderful working with all the authors of all the anthologies and I will probably miss it and get back to it in a year or three!

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