Tag Archives: writer

7 Things You Need To Know to Master Your Genre's Book Cover

Book coverI’m not shallow…But I definitely judge a book by its cover.

Shit. That makes me shallow doesn’t it?

Ah well, fuck it. At least I can admit it.

I’ve been thinking about marketing a LOT recently. Minus a total meltdown last week and a decision to bin (and subsequently re-write the last 30K of my book), I am still on track to send my book-baby to beta readers on 30th September.

Being the incessant 5 steps-a-head planner that I am, it means my mind is on marketing, book covers and that big ol’ scare-the-shitsicles-out-of-you decision: Do I run the poison, trap-infested gauntlet to a publishers door? Or drown in the overly saturated ‘Amazon’ rainforest of books as an indie? As it happens, I’ve finally made my mind up, but I’ll leave that for another post.

Book covers are without doubt, THE most important marketing decision you’ll make. Fuck it up, and you can watch your readers Foxtrot Oscar into the sunset, never to return to your bookshelf! So, I’m sharing my research and the lessons I’ve learnt in preparing to have my book cover designed. Continue reading

3 Tactics To Make You A More Productive Writer

productivityDo you ever sit down at your desk/sofa/perch with the full intention of having an awesome writing session, only to look up at the clock, see it’s 11pm and realise you’ve written the sum total of, fuck all?

Well, me too.

But I’m trying to change that. After a catastrophic May, in which I managed approximately 3 WIP words, I decided June had to change.

I got books to write people. Wasting a month, no matter how many of those hours were spent on Bash stuff, just ain’t good enough.

But I don’t just want to write faster. I know what me writing faster looks like – a garbled shitstorm of gobbledycrap. And that ain’t helpful to anybody’s novel.

Instead, I approached this tactically. Here are 3 tactics I’ve employed to write quality words, faster. Continue reading

7 Lessons I Wish Someone Had Taught Me Before I Started Writing

lessons learntWhen I first started writing, I was worse than a kid in a toy store. I wanted it ALL…NOW. I was desperate to be ‘good’ at writing. I didn’t want to just ‘be’ a writer, I wanted to Stephen King that shit.

I was deluded. Not because of my dream, but because I was unconsciously incompetent!

I didn’t know what I didn’t know. Which frankly, at that point, was less than fuck all. So I set about rampaging my way through everything that had even the faintest whiff of ‘writing tips’ attached to it.

The problem was, I got overwhelmed, saturated with conflicting advice and utterly bewildered as to which direction to go in. I didn’t know what to learn or how to learn it.

I realised there was no avoiding the fact it really does just take time to develop your writing muscle. However… along the way, I also picked up some pretty nifty tricks that helped me speed up the process. Tricks I wish I’d known earlier.

Continue reading

Impossibly Connected – Auras, Energy and Universal Life Forces

AurasI’ve had more than one of those jaw dropping moments. The excuse me while I demonstrate my gormless look and allow my brain to crap itself.

I’m talking about when you meet someone for the first time and are so overwhelmed by the ‘we must have been separated at birth‘ feeling that your soul has an orgasm over this impossible, unearthly connection.

I’m not sure I even have the word to describe?! But I’m better you know what I mean.

It’s not always positive either, have you ever met someone, or seen someone from across a room, and taken an instant dislike to them? A dislike so deep-seated you’d make Professor Umbridge look like child’s play?

           I have. Continue reading

8 Ways to Maximise Your Book Series

8 maximiseThere’s this trend… I’ll try not to be skeptical, actually who am I kidding I’m always skeptical. This trend involves finishing your novel series, whether its a trilogy or ten book epic and then promptly…unfinishing them… to make money because there’s more story to tell.

Take Veronica Roth and the Divergent series. She finished her books and then did a whole spin off series based on the character Four. She wrote shorts, novels and all kinds of other crazy empire expanding nonsense and of course the fans all loved it.

I hadn’t even considered writing more than my planned number of books for my Fallon series as an option. But then I read James Howell’s latest book, Guinea Pigsand realised I’m half way there anyway and I haven’t even published the first book.

So here’s some tricks on maximising your book series empire inspired by Howell’s latest book. Continue reading

Nominations for Bloggers Bash Awards Are Now OPEN!

Who Nominate?

We are finally on the count down to the bash, peeps.

I am so excited I really ought to be wearing a sports bra what with all the bouncing up and down.

So far we have announced the totally-off-the-chart-gorgeous venue here. Then we announced our blogger extraordinaire and guest speaker Luca here.

But now, now after months of waiting I can officially say, that nominations for the bloggers bash awards are

NOW CLOSED

PLEASE NOTE THIS IS NOMINATIONS ONLY. VOTING DOES NOT OPEN UNTIL 19th May Continue reading

Ancient Flyer – The Mystery of Ancient Aircraft

ancient flyer

Photo of my necklace and the Ancient Flyer sculpture

I often find myself wondering about my eyesight and the quality of my perception. I mean, how much of what I see is actually ‘real’ versus an illusion. Technically we have blind spots in our vision where our optic nerve joins the back of our eye, yet our brains interpret and fill that space so we don’t actually have a blind spot in our vision. We monkeys are easily tricked by even the simplest of illusions.

Yet there is one visual mystery  I just can’t believe is a trick. The ancient flyer.

The Ancient Flyer is a sculpture and carving that has been found all over the world. Said to be  thousands of years old and yet, upon looking at it, appears to be an aircraft. No, really!

This post has been on my list for some time, but it wasn’t until my son poked my necklace  and said ‘plane,’ that I remembered. That reaction, the ‘point and plane’ is exactly why I  wanted to write this post in the first place. Continue reading

Understanding YA, NA and MG – A Writers Bible

YA NA MGOne of the most salient memories I have from childhood, was the desire to grow up. I was like the opposite of Peter Pan. I couldn’t get old fast enough.

Sixteen was this magical creature where suddenly I would be grown up and allowed to do lots of things. I’d be a ‘real’ teenager. Sixteen came and went, and then eighteen arrived and before I blinked I was twenty-one. By the time I was twenty-five, I realised I’d made a heinous fucking mistake.

Adulthood is the equivalent of being slapped daily with a decomposing Kipper infested with rabies. My life was filled with a suburban nightmare, bills, a work monotony that could make paint drying seem like the Oscars and a side order of fuck my life.

Peter Pan syndrome rapidly kicked in. I wanted to be a child forever. I rebelled against the rules, had a bit of a break down, got very fucking drunk, had my skin inked and then bitch slapped the sense back in. I had to tell myself:

That magical envelope was not going to fly down my chimney and whisk me off to wizarding school, neither would Edward Cullen fall in love with me and make me immortal, and sadly, I had neither angel nor demon blood, so I wasn’t a shadow hunter either.

I spiralled into an intensely primal binge fest of YA fiction and TV series and then I had an epiphany. If I wrote it, I could live it.

But understanding the differences between Middle Grade (MG), Young Adult (YA) and New Adult (NA) fiction is easier said than done. Continue reading

Writespiration #82 Nostalgia That Hurts

NostalgiaThere’s always one. Even when you fall so bone achingly in love that you’d happily tear your ribs open and carve pieces of your heart into a shrine dedicated to your true love…there’s still that one.

They got away. Left. Broke you in a way no time or superglue can ever fix. They are the ones that changed you. Forever. And they’re never coming back. That’s why no matter how much time lapses, no matter how many wrinkles you gather, it will still hurt. It failed and tore everything you knew to pieces.

Maybe it wasn’t a lover, maybe it was a job you lost, or a friend that parted ways, perhaps a parent, or aunt or maybe your first home. Whatever it was, we all have that one thing.

But isn’t there a kind of sick satisfaction in thinking about it? Like picking a scab, it hurts a bit, but its satisfying when you take the head off.

So here’s this weeks challenge:

Write about a nostalgia that hurts in less than 200 words.

This is dedicated to my friend, who hurt, but is now I’m pleased to say, smashing life again.

Continue reading

7 Tips to Create Your Perfect Author Newsletter

Author NewsletterI hear parrots squawking the same mantra constantly: “Hear Ye! Hear Ye! The best way to drive book sales is through a subscriber list.”

Its that thing where you: create a newsletter, do book updates, bonus content and give your hard work away for free.

If you got books to sell, you need that list.

This made me do one of those gut busting groans. Seriously? I spend enough time writing posts instead of my novel, do I actually have to add something else to my seven hundred and forty-eight page to do list?

Apparently I do, and that means you do too.

I heard that message loud and clear, especially as I’ll be releasing books this year. So I made a subscriber list one of my goals and I’ve been busy rolling up my ‘bonus content’ sleeves. Finally I’ve created one and it’s ready and chock full of just that: bonus content, round ups, writers tools, recommendations, writing inspiration and book updates. If you want to sign up for it, you can here. And actually, once I did create it, I got kind of excited. The customising tools and fancy schmancy things you can do are quite exciting.

Here’s what I learnt in the process: Continue reading