December 21, 2015

Happy Holidays! Have a Lovely Rest of the Year!

I am genuinely having trouble believing it, but another year has almost come to an end. As per usual, I'll be taking a couple of weeks off from posting, so I can focus on wrapping up my year and spending time with family. How about you—fun plans for the end of the year?

Before I leave you all, just a quick reminder that signups continue to be available for the Mending Heartstrings blog tour. I'd really appreciate your help in spreading the word about the signups and with the release itself!

And otherwise, all that's left to say is: thank you. Thank you to those who continue to read and to those who take the time to comment or share! I write for you, so I hope you find my posts either interesting or helpful or possibly even both. If you have comments or suggestions to help that happen next year, please let me know.

And now that I've said those words—"next year"—I guess we're at an end. So I hope you have an absolutely wonderful rest of your year! Grab a glass, and here's to 2016!!

Photo credit: ::: M @ X ::: via / CC BY-NC-ND

December 14, 2015

7 Tips for Authors Gearing Up for a Book's Release

The release of the second edition of Mending Heartstrings (coming February 9th!) is my third book launch, which is kind of a crazy thought. So I've decided to share some tips for gearing up for a release! Some of which, I should listen to myself (especially #2).
  1. Set up your Amazon author page & author central account.
    • Author central allows you to keep track of your books, your rankings, both as an author and for each individual book (see point 2!), and the details of your author page.
    • Setting up your author page means that when people click on your name, right under your book title, they can see a page dedicated to and controlled by you—you can include a photo and your bio, of course, but also your Twitter feed and even a blog feed if you'd like. This also consolidates all your Amazon books in one place for readers. And it adds your photo & bio to the "more about the author" section of your book page, which will help engage readers.

December 11, 2015

Flash! Friday: The Final Flashversary

Well, it's here. The three-year anniversary of Flash! Friday and also its final hurrah—a last goodbye. Prizes galore await entrants, from books to commemorative posters and more. And there's still time to enter!

Rebekah challenged us today with a prompt unlike any for which I've written, myself: 

100 word-story (exactly), starting with the sentence: "On Friday, everything changed."

She also offered this photo, for inspiration:

And since we're allowed two entries, I decided to take advantage and for the first time, write two stories. As always, I'm looking forward to your thoughts!

December 7, 2015

Happy Hannukah & A Gift for You!

Sunset last night kicked off the winter holidays with the first night of Hannukah! A generally upbeat holiday, Hannukah reminds us of the importance of faith in the face of hopelessness, and of our ability to find a way in the face of oppression. (Did you know that's where the dreidel comes from? They were used to fool officials when studying the Torah was outlawed.)

Nowadays, the holiday is known most for its eight days of light, and among some families, its eight days of gifts—not to mention oily, fried food like latkes, and chocolate gelt. (Or sometimes, real gelt, aka money.)

    And in the spirit of giving—because who doesn't love presents?—I have 
    a special gift for all of you:

    For the duration of Hannukah* (that's eight days!), you can download 
    a FREE e-copy of Mortal Musings!

    Don't forget to tell your friends & spread the holiday cheer!

    Get your free copy through:

    * For those of you who may not know, that's through Dec 14th.

    December 4, 2015

    Flash! Friday: Prompt #3-52

    Here we are at the final regular Flash! Friday prompt. Ever.

    The time passing, this coming to end, brings to mind that image of sand slipping through our fingers, flitting by into the part of the hourglass we cannot reach. Though the three-year anniversary celebration is yet to come, I cannot believe this weekly contest is at an end. Somehow, when it started, and when I served as a judge, and when the business side of writing and the realities of life kept me away, I still expected it to remain, always, in wait—a stalwart weekly prompt and reminder to return to my writing.

    The one thing I'm grateful for is that I discovered the contest fairly early on, giving me over two and a half years with it in my life. Check out my first ever Flash! Friday story here.

    This week, Rebekah brought back the dragon's bidding, requiring this element:
    in a 150-word (+/- 10) story based on this photo: