Monday, November 29, 2010

Free Paranormal Novella

Quick post.  I've uploaded my paranormal / urban fantasy novella to Amazon and Smashwords.  *So nervous right now*  While it's still going through the publishing process for Kindle, I thought I would generate a code for a free Smashwords copy. 

If you would like a free copy of Thirst then click on the link, add to cart and use the code: CT22B.

Reviews are not required but, of course, honest ones are always appreciated.  This particular code is valid until the 7th of December and anyone can use it, pass it around if you like.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Hell to the Yeah

I beat NaNo - oh, yeah, uh-huh.  I know, who cares?  Me, that's who!  I spend my days in a house full with seven people, two dogs and a cat.  Yours truly is bottom of the pile so when I get online I'm all about me.  ;)

I is well chuffed.  I didn't think I'd manage 50k this year.  Partly because I've been dying of a chest infection.  Okay, maybe not dying but it's definitely worse than man-flu.  But something happened this week - I stopped hating my WIP, stopped eyeing up my delicious little novella and just got to work.  I didn't just get past the wall, I kicked it down, ninja styl-ee.

I am beyond relieved that it's over.  I still have a bit of tidying up to do ending wise but the pressure is off and I can get to work on my December release.  I was feeling really confident about it thanks to the critiquing services of the lurvely T.L. Haddix but now I'm doubting myself again for no other reason than that's just what I do. Once it gets out there and somebody mocks it, I'll be fine - it's the anticipation that kills me.  :D

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

A Round of Words in 80 Days

PnR writer Kait Nolan is organising a new (and quite sensible) writing challenge called A Round of Words in 80 Days.  Sick of NaNoWriMo styled events that require total dedication for a short amount of time, Kait thought it would be better to have long term goals that fit into real life and could be based on your individual goals. 

You can work on an already partly-written manuscript, start a new one, plot, edit, etc.  You can basically customise it in any way to suit yourself but still be part of a community of writers encouraging each other to keep on keeping on.  All you have to do is state your goals, keep track and stay in touch.  On the blogs and even on Twitter if you have an account.  There are four rounds of 80 days with breaks in between so pretty much everyone can get involved in some way. 

Kait is still looking for authors to help out and is encouraging people to sign up their interest - although you have a while to start thinking of your goals.  First round starts on Jan 3rd 2011 so check it out and gear up.  :)

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Calling All Dog Lovers

There is an author on Kindleboards who rescued a Saint Bernard who now needs a major operation on his front legs.  It's pretty expensive and if he doesn't get it, he won't be able to walk.  Not good.  The reason she's selling her book is to raise funds for this operation so why not purchase Cries in the Dark and help a puppy out.  It's definitely written about a subject close to an animal-lover's heart.  It's also available on Smashwords but right now it's cheaper on Amazon.

Here is the product description:

Two prostitutes vanish.

Chimps are mysteriously missing from a primate sign lab. Is there a possible link to a biomedical research facility?
While premed student Alex Buchanan confronts her new-found ability to communicate telepathically with animals, the body toll mounts.
When her boyfriend disappears with a dangerous secret, Alex knows a serial killer is stalking her.
Can she solve this dilemma before becoming the next victim?

Another author offered to donate proceeds from their own book sales (how nice is that?) if a fund was set  up.  If that happens, I'll update this post and link to the information in case anyone else wants to donate something. 

My pets were all unwanted and I know it can be expensive to take them on but a $12,000 operation is huge, a lot of people would rather put the dog down than pay that so it would be great if people could tweet/facebook/blog about the book and maybe give it a wee boost.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

NaNo Day 5: Sleep-Writing

Total Word Count: 16,165

My OH has this incredibly annoying habit of falling asleep during conversations.  Can sit up all night playing WoW but talk?  ZZzzzz.  Even more annoying is his ability to carry on these conversations . . . while asleep.  We'll be chatting and he'll say something completely off the wall and I'll know that's it, I've lost him.  He's no Sleep Talkin' Man but it is amusing to watch him wake up wondering what the hell he was saying - he always looks so guilty.  :D

I've been known to answer phones and reply to text messages while asleep.  I was really tired, okay?  I've a tendency to sleep-walk so it makes sense that I'll answer a phone ringing by my ear, right?  Luckily, nobody rings me anymore and I rarely use a mobile anyway.  But recently, I've been finding myself working on my WIP in my sleep.  I'm writing away, then my eyes close but my fingers keep moving.  Then I wake up with a start, see I've written an extra paragraph and spend the next ten minutes trying  to work out -

a) what the hell I was trying to say
b) where the hell I left off
c) when the hell it stopped making sense

Sometimes it isn't half bad.  LOL.  I can see where I was going with it and it makes sense, I just don't remember where I got the idea from. 

So if I ever post a weird ass (weirder than usual) item on my blog, chances are I was asleep doing it.

That's my excuse sorted.  ;)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

NaNo Day 4: Konrath Helping Indie Authors

Total Word Count to date: 12,013 (Oh, yeah, uh-huh)

Recently, JA Konrath and Blake Crouch asked for help.  They came to Kindleboards (the place to be-ee) and asked us to buy their book, Draculas.  In return, Blake would buy one of our books and Konrath would link to us on his blog.  Did they do it?

Yes, and uh, hell yes.  In his latest blog post (there's even detailed descriptions), Konrath links to all of the indies who took up the offer.  This isn't the first time Konrath's done this and it's always cool to see a community effort.  The great thing about Kindleboards is the way people help it each other, we may be independent but we can move mountains together.  ;)

NaNo Day 3: To Tweak or Not to Tweak

Total Word Count:  6887
Results of procrastination efforts today:  6 ginormous scones and one mildly (okay, maybe not mildly) burned loaf of fruit bread.

Yesterday, I finished a round of edits, converted the file to a pdf, copied it to my ereader and took a quick look.  I found a mistake on the first page.  *Bangs head on keyboard*  Worst part is I'm almost certain I red-flagged that mistake two edits ago. 

Aside from that, and even though I still detest editing, I think I've learned a lot about self-editing this year.  I've always written short stories in as few words as possible but my novels tend to end up bloated and repetitive.  I can see this a lot more clearly than I used to so yeah, learning.  The problem is the temptation to go back to old work and see what I can do with it. 

Many writers have mentioned this, particularly with how insanely quick it is to alter an ebook, but when do you stop?  You put your heart and soul into a book - then you edit it right back out.  Done.  But no matter how many times you look at it again, there's going to be something you'd change for the better.  I could edit stuff I've shelved, no problem, but then in a year, I could probably improve on it again.  In five years, ten years.  Time brings more skills, we could improve on a novel until the end of time.

I'm not good at telling when something is ready, hence the mildly/not so mildly burned loaf.  Hopefully that's another skill one learns, somehow.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

NaNoWriMo Day 2: Any Beta Readers Out There?

End of Day 2 and current word count is . . . over 5k.  I've actually gotten a lot done today but not all that much in the way of NaNo writing.  I'm still doing okay time wise but I'm starting to think the story won't make it to 50,000 words.  It seems to be sprinting along.  

By the way, if anyone can beta read a (paranormal) novella for me this month *looks hopeful* then send me an email.  I'm kind of in a hurry on it, it is still rough, 40k words and there are (so not sexy) vampires in it. 

I'm not going to get much reading done this month.  I should have kept all of the short stories I read in October for NaNo breaks.

Recent reads include:

Space Junque
Dating my Vibrator
Day of Sacrifice
Lessons (& Other Morbid Drabbles)
Down the Drain
Not What She Seems
Closing My Eyes Helps Me See Clearly

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

NaNoWriMo - Day One

It's just midnight here, marking the end of day one of NaNoWriMo.  I started late but managed to hit the daily target and then some.  I had hoped to hit at least 4k but I slacked off.  I got some editing done though.  I've already started spending less time online which is good because I've been wasting so much time lately.  But that's what NaNo is great for, getting you focused and into a writing routine - something I've been seriously lacking.

In Other News:

My two eldest kids went trick or treating last night and brought home two full bags of goodies each.  Pink Witch is not sharing with anyone.  Darth Vader lost a tooth while making the rounds (Awwww) - it's only the second tooth loss in our little family so still a big deal.

Lots of people are having success on PubIt (what were they thinking with that name!) but they still aren't allowing us poor peoples with no US bank account and credit card.  >:(

I've applied for a letter on headed paper from Smashwords which will allow me to take the first step on the long arse road towards getting a US tax number.  It might not be worth it, the process is actually longer and more costly than I previously thought.  Still doing it though.  :/