Actually if you’ve read this far, you’re actually really interested, so I’ll tell you the news: the draft manuscript is complete as of today! :) Now comes the grueling process of editing before I submit! I’m hoping this sequel will be out by the end of 2015, but it depends on many factors. Stay tuned!
Thought you might enjoy seeing a few of the landscape photos I’ve taken this week during my holiday to visit family out west in British Columbia. Tomorrow is my first book signing in BC for Strangely, Incredibly Good. Can’t wait! See you there! (details can be found here on the page Upcoming Events)
The photos were taken in Maple Ridge, at English Bay in Vancouver, and Canada Place, Vancouver.
The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for my blog. I am so pleased with the 12,000 views, because I was extremely busy doing the Strangely, Incredibly Good book launch, readings, and book signings, and was not such a busy blogger this year! I’m thrilled you stopped by Where the Butterflies Go. Thanks to all who followed me and made comments. You made me remember how much I love blogging, and that I should focus more energy on it in 2015.
Here’s an excerpt:
The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 12,000 times in 2014. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 4 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.
Hi! Hope everyone is enjoying the holidays. I’m in British Columbia visiting family, and very much looking forward to my first event in the province soon – a book signing for Strangely, Incredibly Goodat Black Bond Books in Maple Ridge on Saturday, January 3 from 1-3 p.m. I can’t wait to meet readers who live in the area soon.
Until then, enjoy eating and shopping and resting, and Happy New Year!
As the holidays draw nearer, I’m feeling grateful for so many people in my life. I’ve had the chance to thank some in person already at festive gatherings, but have not yet thanked you readers.
So (raising a glass) thank you so much for purchasing and reading my poetry and Strangely, Incredibly Good this year, and for helping SIG reach #10 in humorous fiction on Kobo! and helping it make the Best New Contemporary Fiction list on Kindle back in June! I KNOW we can do it again! Please tell your friends about this book if you enjoyed the read.
My most fun book-selling-related day so far this year was in October, when I sold 24 at Chapters in Pointe Claire QC in a couple hours to total strangers. Signing & shipping books for 50 family and friends was also a highlight, as was appearing at Shopper’s Drug Mart and the local library for a reading.
Thanks so much to those who have taken a minute to review the book. So far there are 11 USA reviews, 10 Canadian reviews, and 4 UK reviews on Kindle, and a few others on Goodreads. Please do leave a brief review if you have a minute – did you know that even one short sentence is enough to help get more people to discover this book? It doesn’t take much time to leave a review and a star rating, and it makes a big difference to me.
It’s not easy finding new readers as a first-time novelist, but I have to believe patience is key…and writing more. So yes, the sequel is on its way. I do want more people to find and enjoy Strangely, Incredibly Good first, so I’m not sure when that next one will be released, but I’ve been working hard on it and am more than 3/4 done the first draft.
I’ll be signing books over the holidays (Jan. 3) at Black Bond Books in Maple Ridge, British Columbia! Hope to meet some of you there! Check my Upcoming Events for details.
If you are a writer, you’ve likely heard these suggestions often:
“Write every day.”
I’ve taken the NIKE Ad a little farther, and often say to myself and other writers, “Just Write It.”
Okay, in theory, these are excellent suggestions. If you want to be a writer, you have to actually put in the time and stay disciplined. But what if you’ve got a day job? What if you’re a single parent? What if you share living space with other noisy students, and have no where quiet to write?
Yup, it’s never easy, but if you want to write a book, you have to remove all the obstacles, make a plan that works for your particular situation, and then stick to that plan. If you have a day job, you’ll have to get up an hour earlier every day for a few months to write. Or possibly stay up later, if you’re a night owl. If you’re a single parent, come up with creative games to occupy your children for an hour or two every night. I’m not a single parent, but if I were, I’d raid the Dollar Store nearest me and create a special “Quiet Time Craft Bag.” I’d tell my kids to use the Quiet Time Bag so I can get my book done, and remind them it’s only for a few months, and you’ll make it up to them. I’d also rely a lot on the flickering babysitter and DVD movies. This is not the time to be Parent of the Year! Let that go for a while and allow yourself your dream of writing a book. You could create a special rewards system for when the kids give you a good, peaceful half hour. I suspect my books would take a lot longer to write if I were a single parent, and my solutions may not work well for someone whose kids demand a lot of attention. You know your kids and your situation best. If I had kids under five, I’d beg a family member or good friend to watch the kids a few times a week (and then I’d owe them big time).
Parenting and writing don’t often work well together, but you can always come up with a plan that works well for you for a while, and then modify that plan as you get deeper into your writing sessions. As for finding a quiet space in your shared apartment: libraries and cafés with headphones on (so no one speaks to you!) have worked well for me in the past. It’s not fun lugging your laptop to a library every night, but if the end result is your first novel, you may decide it’s more than worth the extra trouble.
There’s a country song performed by my favorite country singer Tim McGraw that goes, “How bad do you want it?” I sing it often. I think its theme is the key to writing and finishing a book. There are always obstacles to staying disciplined as a writer, but there are always ways to remove those obstacles – if only temporarily, for a few months – if you want the end result badly enough.
So, what are your obstacles? What might be your solutions? Could you implement those for a few weeks, just to give it a try? Is your finished book worth it?