Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Shying Away in Your Writing

Happy Wednesday, good people of the blogosphere! Wow! It's hump day. We're halfway to the weekend and have a ton of awesome stuff done already, right? Well, you have just two more days until you get a couple off to lounge around and soak up some sun (don't forget your sunscreen!). Today, I'm gonna be talking about those hard to write scenes and why you should write what you feel; not what you think your readers want to read. Ready? Grab those pens and notebooks and let's get going.

As you probably know, I review a good number of books here on the blog (at least twelve a year by Indies, and that number tends to go up as my favorite authors - both Indie and Traditionals - release new works). One thing I notice in the books I read is the author holding themselves back from writing a scene that may seem too graphic for their audience. No, I'm not talking about sex. I'm talking about violence, gore, and death.

If you're writing Young Adult, you do have to keep it toned down. That's not the genre I'm talking about here. However, you may reconsider your target audience if you come upon a scene you know will launch your story into a whole other realm. You feel me?

Most writers I know see the story take shape in their head as they put the words on the page. Things happen, characters act in their own way, and unexpected situations arise. Remember: A book isn't prime-time television, and you can write what you're seeing in the moment.

Let your fingers communicate what's in your head. If you see it on your inner-movie reel, put it on the page.

I can't stress this enough.

Here's some examples of lead-ups to scenes that you may shy away from writing:
Tiffany spun around the dark room; her eyes searching in the inky blackness for a visual to accompany the sounds her ears were picking up. Shuffling, grunts, and heavy breathing assaulted her most active sense. Arms out, she waves her hands through the air like she's swimming. Her heart is pounding, and she can smell metal. Something hard, cold, and rough is found. A wall. It must be a wall. Feeling her way along, she finds what she hoped for and pushes the switch to the on position. As the light fills the space, and her eyes adjust, her hands fly up to cover her mouth and muffle the scream building behind her lips.

Now, this can be a myriad of things:
  • People being eaten
  • A group of men ready to attack her
  • A group of women ready to attack her
  • Zombies
  • Vampires
  • Rats
  • Giant spiders
  • Clowns
I think you get the idea. Whatever happens next, you've built up that tension for a reason. Readers are waiting for what Tiffany is surprised by. Give it to them, and don't be shy. Go into detail about what she sees, smells, hears, feels, and tastes. If she's murdered, go into how. Torture? Give it raw. Write it exactly as you see it in your head.

Clark walked through the flower field, letting his hands graze the soft tops of the tall blooms. A breeze tickled the back of his neck and caused the tiny hairs there to stand on end. He's lost with thoughts of Delia to pay too much attention to the fact that the sun is setting, but the clearing is getting brighter by the moment. His ears pick up a whisper on the wind, and he freezes in place. Delia fades from his mind as a beautiful woman steps from the treeline and holds out her arms to him. Icy puffs of breath come from his mouth as it falls open. Heat spreads through his body as he takes in her form, and his fingers twitch to touch her alabaster skin--around which long, black hair twists and flows like a silk sheet in the breeze. Red lips that need no lipstick, blue eyes the color of the clear sky, and a Romanesque nose sized to perfection all beckon to him with promises of fantasies come true. If only he'll step into those open arms.

Again, you can take this in a million directions:
  • Death by haunting vixen
  • A quest
  • Ghostly encounters
  • Witches
  • Vampires
  • Myth and Lore
You get the picture, eh? Again, this is a tense scene. You've told your reader something big is coming because you've painted with your words. Bring it on. Don't leave them hanging and frustrated. Go where the wind takes you (hey, there's another idea!).

What I'm trying to get across here is: Don't let the audience dictate what you put on the page. If you end up with a novel geared toward an older, more mature audience, let it go. However, if you think Clark will end up whisked away to a land of fantasy and the story is supposed to start there, let it be so. But if another idea strikes you, let it come out. Write it two ways if you must and choose your favorite.

Whatever you do, don't shy away from the gore, death, or violence if the story calls for it. I'd be willing to bet that your YA brain already went with a quest (if that's what you write). Listen to your inner writer.

Have you ever ended up with a book totally different from the idea you began writing?

Well, that's all for today, folks! Until next time, WRITE ON!


Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Author Interview - C. A. Kunz

Happy Tuesday, good people of the blogosphere! I’m so excited to be bringing you another unofficial UtopYA Con author interview. If you missed any of the past interviews, please go catch up here. I know we’re all hoping to have a ton of people visit us at the con. So, if you don’t have tickets yet, you can get them here. Get on it before the spaces are all full! Let’s get this party started! Everyone grab something to make noise with and welcome authors Carol and Adam Kunz, part of the writing duo C. A. Kunz, to the fun!

Jo: Hey, hey! Welcome to the blog, Carol and Adam. It’s a pleasure to have you both here. Since there are two of you, I’m gonna ask a few questions of you both, then break off and ask you questions individually. I do a lot of digging around, and I hope you aren’t too scared of what’s coming. My readers like the juicy stuff, and I try to feed them on a regular basis. *wink* Ready?
C&A: We’re sooooo ready! Oh, and also super excited to be here. Thanks for having us!

Jo: Yup. That's what they all say (at first). *evil laugh* I’ve read that you guys are in need of a virtual assistant to help you keep up with everything social media wise. Have you thought any more about that? Who have you looked into (and have you considered just making a schedule)?
C&A: Yeah, we could definitely use an assistant with social media. We’re getting a little better at organizing ourselves, but not as much as we’d like to be, hahaha! We’d love to have someone to just help us keep all our ‘selves’ straight. But seriously, we spend so much time on social media. Keeping up with four Facebook Pages (Adam Kunz, C.A. Kunz, Amanda Jason, and our street team), two Twitter accounts (C.A. Kunz and Amanda Jason), three E-mail Accounts (two gmail accounts and one AOL account), a Blog (which we kind of avoid like the plague now), and a website (soon to be two, one for Amanda Jason and one for Adam Kunz). We have trouble keeping track of everything to say the least. Plus, we have to find time to write on top of all this. We feel there are people out there that think we ignore them, but that’s not the case at all. Adam has a full-time job outside of writing (which keeps him busy) and I take care of my parents (which is also a time investment) so it would be awesome to have an assistant so we wouldn’t miss anyone, because everyone is important to us. We have taken a step toward getting help though. We hired a publicist who helps A LOT with promoting our books and he comes up with unique ideas of how to pimp our books and ourselves. Rick Miles from Red Coat PR is an AWESOME publicist, and though not an assistant, he’s the next best thing, seriously!

Jo: I hear a street team can help with your Facebook pages sometimes. You just ask a fan to run the page for you or just keep up with posts and marketing stuff. *shrugs* I dunno. I know of Rick and Red Coat PR. They pop up everywhere! Glad you found some help. Moving on! I poked around and read a lot of your blog entries (as you can probably tell). But your blog went quiet around July 2013. Care to share with my readers why?
C&A: We have Blog? Adam must have forgotten to tell me. Okay so we know we have a blog, but all it has in it are crickets and cobwebs. At first it was a novelty for us to have one, but we found traffic to our blog was spotty at best no matter how we advertised it. Not to mention, keeping up with a blog while writing and doing social media just seemed like too much for us. So, we spent more time on Twitter and Facebook in order to push our brand. When people ask us to post on our blog (like cover reveals or release day posts for them) we tell them the truth, that if they want exposure, our Blog is not the place to post.

Jo: Kudos to you for being honest. It takes a long time to build a following and sometimes it's really not the thing you need. I know you guys live in Florida, and are friends with some of my most favorite people in the world. Would you mind sharing the details of a public event you do with authors from your area (and who they are)?
C&A: OMG, yes, we have so much fun with our author friends here! We love going to schools, local book fairs, and signing events as a group. We hope we don’t leave anyone out, but here’s our list of AWESOME author friends we do things with here in Florida: Raine Thomas, Sarah Ross-Abernathy, Tiffany King, Michelle Madow, Heather Dencker, Tawdra Kandle, Kristina Circelli, Toni Sinns, Rachael Wade, Heather Allen, and Kaitlyn Ballenger. We’re always open to others joining, because the more the merrier.

Jo: I've interviewed a couple of those ladies. They're so awesome (and knowledgeable!). How many conferences do you guys attend in a year and which ones are they?
C&A: This year we’re attending a lot more conventions than we have in the last three years. In January we were in Daytona Beach, FL for Coastal Magic Con and in March we went to Wicked Book Weekend in Ft. Lauderdale, FL.
  • May: We’re going to the RT Booklovers Convention in New Orleans.
  • June: We’re going to UtopYA (of course) in Nashville.
  • August: We’re going to the Indie Book Fest in Orlando.
  • August: We’re going to the Believe, Hope, and Live Con in Maine.
  • September: We’re going to Penned Con in St Louis.
  • September: We’re going to the Chapter by Chapter con in New York.
  • October: We’re going to the Queen’s City Author con in Cincinnati, but only as fans.
Jo: Wow. You guys are busy! UtopYA will be fun. I have a very good friend, Tia Bach, who wrote a book with her mother (and survived… with battle scars). What’s your writing process like? Does it ever cause arguments between the two of you?
C&A: Our first book was tough, but we worked though the trials and tribulations and were finally able to finish up The Childe in about nine months. Our 2nd and 3rd books were easier since we had learned so much from working on the first and were able to avoid making the same mistakes. Before we begin writing a book, we have to make a very strong and detailed outline. Then Adam typically tackles the first two chapters, me the next two, and so on until we have the first rough draft. Then we spend hours in my office editing until we feel it’s ready to go out to beta readers.

Jo: It must be lovely bonding time when editing. Time for the alien question of the interview! Do you ever think about the Bermuda Triangle and wonder if there might actually be something else “out there” for us to discover?
C&A: We both feel that there are so many things in this life that we can’t explain. Carol saw her first ghost at age 8, and has been curious about all aspects of the ‘paranormal’ since then. Adam has had some strange occurrences happen to him as well that he can’t explain. We most definitely don’t believe we’re the only ‘beings’ in this vast universe, and wouldn’t be shocked if proof was found. The Bermuda Triangle is one of Carol’s favorites and she’s read many books and watched many documentaries and believes there’s so much more to discover out there.

Jo: I couldn't agree more. I've always said you must believe in what you can't or haven't seen. Time to break away and ask you individual questions (don’t worry, the other won’t see your answers, so you can be open and honest). *giggles* I’ll start with Carol. I have to have an answer to this, because it cracked me up when I saw it. I read in one of your interviews that Adam was the best stomach flu you ever had. Care to explain that comment?
Carol: Before I knew I was pregnant with Adam, I was working in a neurologist’s office, and everyone in the office was coming down with the stomach flu. I thought when I became ill that I was just getting what was being passed around the office, but little did I know, I was pregnant. After being sick for a while (a lot longer than anyone in the office) my husband Bob decided that maybe it was time we should name my little stomach flu.

Jo: That's hilarious. I've had many bouts of the stomach flu (five kids). *grin* What do you feel was your biggest struggle in writing with your son?
Carol: Getting used to being writing peers, not just mom and son.

Jo: That would be hard. My mom is great, but I don't think I could see her as anything but my mom. Kudos to you guys for making it work! You were born across the pond in New Ferry, England. In your best writer-ly voice, share with us an experience there (and help us visualize where you’re from).
Carol: At the age of 8, I saw my first ghost outside my bedroom. We lived in a little village called Raunds in a house that was part of a new development. I was sitting in our living room with my best friend, Sandra, and we were having a tea party. My American dad, who was in the Air Force, was sitting on the couch reading the newspaper and my younger brother was playing outside. To make a long story short, the door to the living room kept opening by itself, the door handle would go down, then up and fly open. It did it three times. My dad said it was because I hadn’t shut it properly. Then when he left to pick up my English mum at the hairdressers, the door opened again by itself and Sandra and I climbed out the living room window, grabbed my brother, and ran to her house. Her brother laughed at us and led us back to the house. Sandra and my brother stayed outside, while her brother and I searched the house. My bedroom was the only room upstairs and we climbed up and when we turned the corner we saw it. A tall, broad shadowed shape coming our way. We half fell, half slid down the stairs, locked the front door, and ran back to their house. Of course, my parents didn’t believe me, which when I became an adult and heard my English, maternal great-grandmother was a spiritualist and used to chat with spirits constantly, baffled me. My mum now admits that I could have seen it.

Jo: Holy Moly, Batman! I would never have slept again. Super creep factor! Well told. Now, tell me about a book you’ve written alone, why you decided to write it, and how you came up with the idea for it.
Carol: Well, when I decided to write my own novel I wanted it to be a light New Adult romantic comedy that would make the reader smile and laugh while falling in love with the characters. It’s the story of Pandora Phillips and how she finds herself in a pickle with her current living arrangements and ends up reluctantly having to move in with three hot models. Of course my imagination went into overdrive because I never had such luck in real life … I mean experience. I went from my parent’s home to living with my husband. I had to use a pen name since I didn’t want my NA to be associated with our YA books. Amanda and Jason were my twins who only lived for a short while after being born, and I felt it was a perfect way to honor them by making my pen name Amanda Jason.

Jo: I've seen the Facebook buzz surrounding that book. I'm gonna be checking it out. For those readers that don't know about Amanda Jason's book, it's titled Lucky Number Four and is $4.99 on Amazon for Kindle. What an awesome way to honor your babies. I interviewed Ms. Kristina Circelli and asked her for a good interview question (I know, my deviousness knows no bounds!). She told me to ask you what you did with your very first paperback proof of The Childe. I’m seriously intrigued. Mind sharing? *grin*
Carol: Devious you are, my friend. I slept with the proof on my pillow the night I received it.

Jo: Oh my... Totally sounds like something I would do. Haha! I’m gonna move on to Adam now. I read that you’re a Harry Potter fan. Right on! Which book in the series is your favorite and why?
Adam: I’d have to say that my favorite book (and movie) from the series would have to be The Prisoner of Azkaban, simply because it A. had professor Lupin in it who was a werewolf (I love me some paranormal creatures) and B. this book introduced us to one of my favorite characters, Sirius Black. Plus, I just LOVED all the plot twists that J.K. Rowling threw into this one.

Jo: That one was my favorite, too. Though I hated the way they butchered the movie. *frowns* What’s your birthplace of Newport New, Virginia, like?
Adam: Well, considering we left when I was two or three, I don’t really remember what it was like. I haven’t even had a chance to go back and visit, but I do plan on it one day.

Jo: Here's hoping your experience is a great one when you do visit! I’m positive I could never write anything with my mother, so I totally commend those who can. Not that I don’t love my mom, but she has some pretty strong opinions. *grin* What was the hardest thing about working with your mom on a book?
Adam: I have to agree with my mom on her answer of having to remember that though we are Mom and Son, we’re also writing peers, and have to be able to take criticism as such instead of taking it personal.

Jo: *gasp!* You weren't supposed to read her answer! Kidding... Sort of. Moving on! I read somewhere that your book, The Childe, won a gold medal (First Place) in the 2011 Readers Favorite Award Contest - Young Adult Fantasy Category. When you got the news, how did it make you feel?
Adam: It pretty much floored both of to be honest. We were up against some stiff competition, and to see our little book do so well had both of us in tears on the phone with each other and squeeing like little school girls, hahaha!

Jo: Was it anything like the time you landed the four star book review from RT Book Reviews? What was different?
Adam: This actually happened a week or so after we found out that we won the gold medal from Reader’s Favorite, so we were still coming down off of that. It floored us as well, and we were shocked by the news since we had no idea that RT even reviewed independently published books. To say that these two things made out year is a huge understatement.

Jo: I can't imagine. Hurrah for you both! Tell me about a book you’ve written alone. Where did the idea come from, what’s the title, and how long did it take you to write it?
Adam: The first novel I wrote by myself was a crossover mature Young Adult/New Adult thriller entitled One Tiny Secret. I was inspired to write OTS by my love for horror/thriller films and R.L. Stine books. I was a huge fan of the Fear Street series and the Goosebumps series when I was younger, so I knew that my first novel would have to be a book like those. It took me about two and a half months to write the first draft of the novel, but then a month more after that to get all the edits and beta reader feedback incorporated.

Jo: Sounds very King-like. *grin* I adore a good thriller and will have to check that one out. For my readers, you can find it on Amazon for $0.99. It was lovely having you both on the blog. I can’t wait to meet y’all at UtopYA Con in June! It’s right around the corner now. Thanks so much for stopping by and putting up with my questioning. *grins*
C&A: Thank you so much for having us Jo, we can’t wait to meet you too. P.S. we’re HUGGERS, just a little warning :)

Jo: It should be a good time! That’s all the time we have for today. Read on to find out about C. A. Kunz’s featured book of the week!

Title: The Modified
Author: C. A. Kunz
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian/Sci-Fi
Length (print): 303 pages
Buy links: Amazon Kindle $2.99  ~  B&N $2.99  ~  Kobo $2.99

Synopsis: What would you sacrifice to save the ones you love? To save the one who holds your heart? To save the world?

Kenley Grayson is all too familiar with these questions.

After Earth is thrust into its first intergalactic war with an unknown race called the Bringers, our military forces begin to suffer heavy losses. Desperate for a solution, the Allied Federation issues a worldwide draft for every able seventeen year old to enlist. As Kenley turns seventeen, she finds herself thrown into the very war that took her older brother's life.

This year's draft is a little different than in the past though. A new program, known as the Magnus Project, has been introduced, and only the best and brightest qualify. Kenley is amongst a select few whom are chosen to join this elite group of soldiers, and as a part of this project, undergoes a modification procedure that leaves her and her peers endowed with powers beyond their wildest dreams.

As Earth continues in its struggle against the Bringers, Kenley is transported to a high-tech training facility, the Magnus Academy, to prepare for the major battle that lies ahead. It's here that she meets the California heartthrob, and son of a legendary war hero, Landon Shaw. As unexpected feelings toward Landon begin to develop, Kenley wonders if this is the right time or place for romance to bloom, especially when those feelings start to interfere with her training.

With the weight of the world on her shoulders, Kenley is constantly reminded of how important she and the rest of the Magnus cadets are to the fate of humanity. She is one of the Modified, Earth's last line of defense against utter destruction.

While your fingers are in the clicking mode, why not give Mr. and Ms. Kunz a follow on social media?

Facebook: C.A. Kunz
Twitter: @AuthorCAKunz
Blog: C.A. Kunz

I hope you all enjoyed this interview.

Well, that’s all for today, folks! Until next time, WRITE ON!


Monday, April 14, 2014

Spotty Blog Posts

Happy Monday, good people of the blogosphere! Well, it's another week and another chance to get things accomplished before the weekend rolls around again. We have five days to go. Hang in there. So, today I'm gonna give you all a heads up about something I know is gonna happen soon. Grab your coffee and let's get going.

Besides the Unofficial Interviews with the Ladies of UtopYA series I have running here on the blog, you all know I strive to bring you excellent writing tips, advice on self-publishing, book reviews, and other awesome tidbits I run across on the web. Well, all but the interviews and guest post might be spotty until after that awesome con.


Because we're getting ready to move. Not the blog (don't worry!). But physically, in real life, my family is relocating. I'm telling you all this so if my blog posts are spotty around that time (it's just before UtopYA), you'll know it's not because I'm slacking or that I abandoned you.

Speaking of UtopYA: Be sure you're checking out the interviews and guest posts by some of the authors attending that event. You can find the special links page here that has dates the posts will go up. C. A. Kunz will be joining me here on the blog tomorrow for an awesome interview (difficult to interview two people in one).

I dislike having missed posts here on the blog, and strive to keep things running smoothly even when I'm away. I'll do my best to keep the great information flowing seamlessly during this difficult transition.

Bear with me, please.

Well, that's all for today, folks! Until next time, WRITE ON!


Friday, April 11, 2014

Scrivener Output to EPub and Mobi

Happy Friday, good people of the blogosphere! Well, I'm back (as promised) with a little more information about Scrivener and one of the cool features that program has. I've run across a number of authors lately that didn't know you could upload your book to KDP and then download the .mobi version from the book publishing page. This really neat tool in Scrivener allows you to skip that step and publish your book right out to a .mobi or .epub file. Let me be perfectly frank with you all: I've never tried it. Why? Well, because the learning curve in that program is one I haven't quite hit yet.

But that's not going to stop me from sharing this awesome little video with you all:

Exporting your e-book with Scrivener

In design school, we were taught there's a specific program a designer uses for creation of different things. For example: Photoshop is an image editing program, Illustrator is for logo creation, and InDesign is for layouts of printed material.

Perhaps it's the same for writers. When you have a tool that's as powerful as Scrivener, it's something you should learn, right?

From the comments on my last post Word Processors for Writers - MS Word vs Scrivener, I gather many people gave up on the complexity of Scrivener because of the learning curve. I'm one of those writers. It's not because I don't see the potential of the program; but because I can't seem to carve out the time in my day to sit down and learn how to use it.

Out of curiosity, I popped over to the blog on to find out what the folks behind the scenes are doing to propel the software forward. I found this post, published in April of 2013. It seems that's the last post published on their blog and promises an iOS version of Scrivener soon.

Maybe I'm crazy, but I love streamlined. If I can open a program on my computer, work on a document, save it, close it, head to the DMV to sit for three hours with my iPad in tow, open the same program, and continue my work with no loss of data (because it's in the cloud) or time, that seems like a no-brainer to me. Productivity is everything in this business.

Is the functionality of a program important to me? Yes. So is convenience.

Since I cut my teeth on MS Word, like many of you, I tend to reach for what I know to accomplish my goals. Is that the right thing to do? Hmmm...

I'm not telling you I hate Scrivener or for you not to use it. Quite the opposite, actually. If you know how to use that program and love it, keep going. It's a powerful writer tool.

But, if you use MS Word, don't feel like you're less than those who've taken the plunge. Some of the comments on that other post give you ways to work within MS Word just like you do with Scrivener.

Just like those who love Scrivener for writing because they know it so well, I have a deep love for InDesign for book layout. Can you do most of the same things in Word? Yup. With every program, there's good and bad, like yin and yang.

What's the answer? Only you can decide what's best for your process. Either or, it's always about producing a great book. That's the bottom line.

I hope you enjoyed this post and I hope I answered the question my commenter had a while ago about outputting to .epub and .mobi from Scrivener.

Did you know the program could do that?

Well, that's all for today, folks! Until next time, WRITE ON!


Thursday, April 10, 2014

Back and Playing Catchup

Happy Thursday, everyone! I know it seems like I've been around, but I've been on vacation since last Wednesday. I'm stunned at the response my post on MS Word and Scrivener got last week. I can see how passionate you all are about the topic. As you probably know, I had a guest post slated to go live today, but it never appeared in my inbox so I'm having to skip it.

That being said, since I've been out for a week, my inbox is overflowing. I'm planning to spend today playing catchup and I'll be back with awesomeness for you all tomorrow. There were some great questions raised on that post last week, and I'm gonna do my best to get them answered tomorrow.

Until then, I'm taking a moment to give you all a huge shout out and a thank you for sharing and discussing my post.

You guys rock!

I'll be back tomorrow with that post and responses to the comments that were left on the last one.

Until next time, WRITE ON!


Monday, April 7, 2014

Monday Morning Musings

Happy Monday, everyone! I hope you all had as fabulous a weekend as I did (though I doubt that's possible). Anyway, moving on! Today, I'd like to talk with you all a little bit about writing; as I so often do here on the blog. It's time for a bit of Monday Morning Musings. What are Monday Morning Musings? Well, it's time to reflect on your weekend and consider new avenues to take your work to the next level of publishing, sales, and other such fun stuff. Ready? Grab your pens and notebooks and let's get going!

As you're all very aware, I'm a meticulous scheduler. I like to plan my writing day down to the minute. This helps me stay focused (and off Facebook), and allows me to know when I need to call upon the most awesome muse in the world (mine). With that being said, I'm considering changing things up a little. I dominate Google searches for my name now, but that's not enough for me. I want to dominate the world.

Okay, that's going a little far, but you see where I'm headed with this, right?

My social media schedule needs tweaking. I need to drop focus on some things and use the time to aim my dastardly glare in another direction. Let's look at where I was putting my time, shall we?

Monday - 20-30 minutes for a blog post. You should have something integrated so your posts are automatically sent to your social networks when you click publish. I have the buffer button and all I have to do is click it after I post. 20 minutes to schedule posts across all media for the next two days. 10 minutes browsing Twitter and re-tweeting things you find interesting.

Tuesday - 20-30 minutes for a blog post. 10 minutes to answer a single question over on Quora. 10 minutes to share interesting things others post on Facebook. 10 minutes to visit and update your GoodReads page. Make sure you're clicking like on any reviews you've gotten.

Wednesday - 20-30 minutes for a blog post. 20 minutes to schedule posts across all media for the next two days and make sure it's all running smoothly. 10 minutes to record a video you'll use later.

Thursday - 10 minutes to upload video to YouTube. 20-30 minutes for a blog post incorporating said video. 15 minutes to create a Squidoo lens (can be about and incorporate your video as well!). 5 minutes to pin a couple of things over on Pinterest.

Friday - 20-30 minutes for a blog post. 30 minutes scheduling everything to update until Monday and coming up with blog post ideas for the next week and make sure everything is running smoothly.

Saturday - 20 minutes sharing on Facebook. 20 minutes re-tweeting on Twitter. 20 minutes to visit other blogs and pop in a comment or two.

Sunday - 30 minutes sharing on Facebook, 30 minutes re-tweeting on Twitter.

I do all of this between the hours of 8 and 9 am.

But it's just not working for me. So, I give you a new schedule that I think will help me reach more readers alongside the authors I try so hard to help:

Monday - 20-30 minutes for a blog post with an author interview. 10 minutes to schedule posts across all media for the rest of the day. 20 minutes browsing Twitter and re-tweeting things I find interesting.

Tuesday - 20-30 minutes for a blog post. 10 minutes to schedule new posts for the rest of the day. 10 minutes to share interesting things others post on Facebook. 10 minutes to visit and update my Goodreads page if needed.

Wednesday - 20-30 minutes for a blog post with a book review. 20 minutes to schedule posts for the day and post the review to relevant sites. 10 minutes to dink around on Facebook and "like" some status updates, answer people, and share stuff.

Thursday -  20-30 minutes for a blog post with something for another author. 10 minutes to schedule posts for the day and include at least one shoutout for one of my books. 20 minutes to pin a couple of book-related things over on Pinterest.

Friday - 20-30 minutes for a blog post. 10 minutes scheduling everything to update until Monday, coming up with blog post ideas for the next week and make sure everything is running smoothly. 20 minutes to update my Book Reviews magazine on Flipboard (I'm finally up to over 1k readers, yay!).

Saturday - Is my day off. I'll use this day to come up with new story ideas and spend time with my family.

Sunday - Is my day off. I'll use this day to connect on Facebook and Twitter if I want to.

So, this is where I think my time will be better spent now that I'm where I want to be regarding a Google search for my name.

If you don't dominate Google, consider using the first social media schedule for a little while before moving on to the second. Trust me, it works.

What do you think? Do you Google yourself often?

I won't be around tomorrow. Lots to do in my personal life and not a lot of time to do it in. See you all on Wednesday!

Well, that's all for today, folks! Until next time, WRITE ON!


Saturday, April 5, 2014

Cover Reveal - Absolution

Happy Saturday, everyone! Today, time for another cover reveal. Seems there are a lot of really awesome books coming out soon, eh? Well, pretty ones, anyway. I invite you to strap in and take a gander at this one!


Confessions of a clone
is book one in The Broken Diaries series of novellas.
Can be read as a stand alone or as a companion novella to 

Expected release date: October 2014
Genre: Upper YA Science Fiction


So my secret is out you say? That  would depend witch secret you are referring to. That I am a clone? Everyone knows that by now. Or that I have a dark disease pulsating through my veins,
one I am quite fond of? Big deal. It’s exciting, never to have to hold back, unpredictability is a drug. We all crave it.  So what possible secret could I hold that is worth keeping? Imagine me
giving you a sly smirk right now because I have not the misfortune of compassion that will cause me to spill my secrets. Without them there is no hand to be dealt.

Will my secret keep him close? Perhaps. But here is my confession, I have something better than secrecy. I have absolution. With me, he is not bound, it will be out of choice. With me, he never has to hold back. And I would love him for the good and especially in the bad. When I gave my word that I’d stop my tricks – I lied. That’s the thing with obsession. I does not care. It only wants, and it is so fixated on want, that it becomes need, and it shall have all it wants and needs.  And while I have no time to ponder who I am, clone–what a stupid word, I am already on my way to loving him forever. That’s how I play it, because I just don’t care.  Everyone knows I am nothing like my pathetic prime. That with me, it’s all bad intentions and violent, narcissistic adoration. That is not who I am. I am but one thing - in absolution. 

About The Author 

Carlyle Labuschagne is a South African award wining author working her way into the hearts of international readers with her first two books in the Broken Trilogy. Her first young adult dystopian novel "The Broken Destiny" reached top 3 in its YA debut Category. The Sequel Evanescent won YATR literary award for best Sci-Fi book 2013. 
Carlyle loves to swim, fights for the trees, and is a food lover who is driven by her passion for life. Carlyle also writes for IU e-magazine India, an inspirational non-profit magazine that aims at inspiring the world through words. The drive behind her author career is healing through words. Carlyle is also the founder of the first annual book drive – Help Build A Library in Africa Project. And hopes to launch her very own Indie book festival in Johannesburg March 2015.
“My goal as an author is to touch people’s lives, and help others love their differences and one another.

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 Thank you for stopping by! 

Carlyle's covers are just stunning. I love this one :)

Well, that's all for today, folks! Until next time, WRITE ON!