Monday, July 18, 2016

Should You Self-Edit Your Own Book?

I'm going to keep the answer short and sweet:

No. No, you should not self-edit your own book.

There you go. You're welcome. :P

But if you don't believe me, check out this video interview with my darling BFF, Lynda Dietz, who actually knows about this particular subject because she's an editor. 

And don't worry it's only 12 minutes long. Well, 6 minutes long once you laugh through all the shenanigans. 

For those who followed the coffee chat series and may have wondered what happened to us, well busy-ness happened. Besides, we found it cooler to hang out in person for real-life coffee. The first time was for about 12 hours . . . and the second time, we decided one day wasn't enough, so we spent 5 days together. Well, us and our other author buddy, Raymond Esposito a.k.a. my Writers After Dark co-host. 

And since we were all together, it seemed crazy not to take advantage and interview her for the Writers After Dark show . . . umm, even though, we recorded in the middle of a 3-day hangover. #TrueStory

So there! Please go check her out and give her some love. Our editors are hard workers and without them, our books just wouldn't survive!!!! ;) 

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Barnes and Noble to Sell Self-Published Books In-Store!!!!

What is it?
Self-published authors will soon have the opportunity to see their books on the shelves of Barnes and Noble.
Why is it game-changing?
This decision, not only opens doors for indie authors everywhere, but it’s also the first move to offer real competition to Amazon. How is one Amazon bookstore to compete against 640 Barnes and Noble stores? The answer may surprise you!

Long Story Short
Amazon has been the leading supporter of Indie Authors for many years, and with the news of its upcoming bookstores, it was sure to knock Barnes and Noble off its own shelves. B&N, however, isn’t going down without a fight. They’ll be offering indie authors the chance to sell their self-published books in-store.

Before you start doing the happy dance, you need to understand the catch. To qualify for this program, you would need to say goodbye to Amazon’s KDP Select. This is only for NOOK Press authors  whose e-book sales (per title) have reached 1,000 units in the past year. So this “opportunity” isn’t as simple as it sounds. Still, it may very well be the first of many changes that will help knock down the gates holding back talented self-published authors.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

When In Doubt, Trust Your Gut — IWSG (33)

Isn't the internet awesome? It's full of information and provides many how-tos for anyone and everyone. It can guide us when we're trying to figure out the ins and outs of writing our books. 

Not sure what genre your book falls under? Need to know if you captured a scene or conflict in a realistic way? Have to find the proper dialogue rules? Wonder which Critique Partner/Beta is on the money? Well, look no further than our darling Mr. Google.

The problem is . . . can you even trust what you read when everything has a conflicting counterpart? And if they all seem to make sense, how do you decide what's right and what's wrong? Well, the answer is as simple as it is complicated: we have to trust our gut. 

Right now, my gut has no idea what to do. All it wants is for me to stuff my face with lots and lots of carbs. In all its complex simplicity, that little thing we call fear is making me question everything. But I'm reminding myself that yes, I need to do my third book the justice it deserves, so second guessing every move is lethal. Not to mention, plain stupid.

Still, it's not all bad. The questions and doubts can keep us grounded and can stop us from falling off the rails. The main thing to remember at all times is that no matter what, this is YOUR story. YOUR characters. YOUR world. No one else knows what would be unnatural. So if you want to write notes for two different directions, I say: do it. That's what I did. And I learned real quick that one of those paths made me question whose book this was. It certainly was not mine.

The kicker is I knew the other way was the way to go . . . but I didn't trust my instinct. Rookie move? Nah, it helped me remember to keep following my gut from this point forward. Until of course, it goes out to CP's, and they say I made some terrible mistakes . . . then I'll revisit my instincts and probably ask for a donor gut that *might* know better than mine. :P

What about you?
Do you also need a reminder, every now and then,
 that YOU hold the answers?
No? Just me? O_O Umm . . . carry on! ;) 

And in case you need extra reinforcement in writing "how-tos" visit this page for an ever-growing list of resources! 

This post is part of the Insecure Writer's Support Group hop.
Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!  Posting is first Wednesday of every month. Click here for more info.

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Ever Received a Misguided Review?

Recently, I uploaded my third book's, Chaotic (The Luminaries, Book 3)synopsis to Goodreads. I'm still in the writing phase, but I thought it was a good motivation to keep up with the writing. 

But imagine my surprise when I received a 3-star review on it. This book hasn't been published yet because it's not finished. And it hasn't been shared with anyone. At all.

It was a decent one too, except for the rating. The person said she loved it; the characters were great, but the other two books were better. Now, I don't believe in contacting reviewers, but I wanted to ask if maybe she meant to review the second book in the series, Static, but she said no. Then I explained why I reached out and the review disappeared with no reply from her. All good, it was a great chuckle, I mean . . .

It's not every day you get a review on a book that is still mostly in your head. 

Which brings me to the newest episode in the Writers After Dark video series! 

Some of our favorite followers were kind enough to send us their most awful, misguided book reviews! In return, we’ve responded to the readers on their behalf. 

So take a quick 13-minute break, 
sit back, and enjoy!

Special thanks to our lovely participants:

Feel free to visit our website:

www. WritersAfterDark.Net

Thanks for watching!!!!

Friday, June 24, 2016

Because Who Doesn't Love Writers' Resources?

Okay, so the answer to that question is probably non-writers, but whatever, eh? This is for us awesome writerly creative maniacs! 

Because seriously: who doesn't doesn't love writers' resources?

We thrive when we put our butts on our chairs, and our fingers meet the click-click of our keyboards. Ahhh what a beautiful symphony they make . . . 

But sometimes we have to take a break from our creative cages to learn more about our writing world. Oh, you know the questions: Why can't I understand Scrivener? Am I a grammar butcherer? What apps and softwares can make my writing life easier? What is going on with Amazon?

And that's where my addiction to researching comes in handy. Well, mine and my Writers After Dark's partner in crime, Raymond Esposito's. So we decided to combine our resources and form an ever-growing large library of information, which includes: tips, templates, video how-tos, storytelling articles, common grammarly mistakes, and keeping our peers on top of industry news. 

Check out our quick 6 minutes video to learn more:
(I have no idea what was up with my makeup—somebody is getting fired!)

So come on over to WritersAfterDark.Net, and at the very least read our Welcome post ;) 

[insider secret: that picture of us was taken in a club while celebrating Ray's 50th Birthday bash . . . but umm, neither of us remember taking it. Perhaps too many "cheers"? o_O ]

 Thanks for watching!!! And for visiting us!

What would you like to see or have access to as a writer?
We would love to help simplify your writing life, 
so please, let us know! 

Feel free to subscribe to our YouTube channel: Writers After Dark

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Cover Reveal: AT FIRST BLUSH by Beth Ellyn Summer

At First Blush Cover

Sweetheart author, Beth Ellyn Summer, is celebrating her cover reveal today!

As a kinda girly girl myself, I love makeup and playing dress up.
And one of the things I'm certainly guilty of is spending hours researching 
makeup tutorials on YouTube . . . so needless to say, this novel is right up my alley ;)

Check out this adorable cover:

At First Blush


Beth Ellyn Summer


Lacey Robbins has one goal for the summer: hit one million subscribers on her YouTube beauty channel. Working as an On Trend magazine video blogger is just the platform she needs to get there, but falling for the cover boy, rock star Tyler Lance, was not part of her plan--especially since his dating history is longer than her Sephora wishlist.

She can't avoid him for long though, not when it's her job to film vlogs with him. As Lacey and Tyler grow closer on and off camera, her channel becomes popular for all the wrong reasons, and the two YouTubers she's working with officially hate her. Lacey's only solace is spending time with Kendall Wynn, On Trend's resident makeup artist. Kendall's scattered, carefree approach to makeup reminds Lacey why she ever picked up a tube of lipstick in the first place.

Nothing about this summer is going according to Lacey's perfect plan, and pretty soon she learns that filming makeup tutorials is easy. It's real life that could use some editing.

Beth Ellyn Summer

Beth Ellyn Summer writes contemporary young adult fiction that somehow always includes the following elements: fame, makeup, and television. She graduated from Long Island University with a degree in Print and Electronic Journalism. Interning for Conan O'Brien and Jimmy Fallon was the highlight of her college years. When she's not writing, Beth can be found swatching eyeshadows, solving Wheel of Fortune puzzles, and playing with her adorable cat, Penny Belle. Beth lives on Long Island in a cookie cutter town that, in an ironic twist of fate, doesn't have a single decent bakery.

Find her here:

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Too Many Projects??? — IWSG (32)

If you are a creative person—or just a person in general—I'm willing to bet you have a long list of things you need to do. Things that *must* get done. But an even longer list? Well, I'm sure that would be all the projects you WANT to do.

As writers, we have to tackle the gazillion ideas we come up with every day. By tackle, I mean we first have to write them down so we don't forget, then decide which ones to prioritize. Which speaks to us? Which story needs to be told first?

We also have the ones waiting to be completed, revised, and edited. Right along with the published work that needs promotion. And speaking of, that means keeping up with your public persona: social media, blogging, newsletters, etc. All, while figuring out what your next step should be in order to improve your career and/or writing. This is where I'm at. 

I'm freaking out because I have many AMAZING things coming up. And that's great, because I mean . . . amazing things are great and all o_O But but but, that does also mean that some things suffer and take a bit of a back seat. At the moment, that happens to be my writing. Well, sort of. I'm definitely still writing, but it's taking longer than I wanted. 

So my insecurity this month is: as a creative person, is there such a thing as too many projects? Sure, they each have their own deadline. They're all important—and no, I'm not willing to give any of them up. But is it also something we cannot turn off? Like, I imagine we have to keep our "browsers" opened at all times, because otherwise, we simply cannot breathe. Is it a matter of balancing your "at home" life or rearranging your projects? 

As you can tell, I have no answers for anything. I'm just going about my life working on those that speak to my passion on a daily basis. They're all creative, and that's what matters to me. As long as I still fit my writing in there, I'm good. But how do you do it?

How do you prioritize your various projects and still have a life? lol

This post is part of the Insecure Writer's Support Group hop.
Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!  Posting is first Wednesday of every month. Click here for more info.