Monday, May 2, 2016

It's Take My Readers to Work Day

I'm back, I'm back, I'm back!

There are no words to express how much I've missed all of you.

Thanks to all who visited while I've been typing my fingers to the bone. Special thanks to those who visited every month and those who commented. You're all some kind of awesome!

I know I said I was going to start work on refreshing this blog. Hasn't happened yet, but it will. I could chat for a while, but I don't know where to start.

So I'm going to show you where I've been.

Almost every single day. For hours.

And I'm still there, working diligently. But I can now see the light at the end of the tunnel, and I'm beyond grateful. I embarked on this trilogy journey without having a clue. It's been the most amazing writing adventure yet, and I've loved every second. Even when I was pulling out my hair, strand by strand.

I'm also sharing space today with the wonderful C. Lee McKenzie

Thanks again for stopping by.

I'll be around to visit you over the next week or so. For real!

So this has been my journey every day.

First the long, harrowing commute:

Then the traffic jams:

A stop for coffee:

And then straight to work, through the dining room:

You'll notice there's no door from this way or this way:

Which means the two loud-mouthed hair-shedding canines sweet little furbabies have unfettered access to the windows only a step away from my desk. And every delivery truck, bike rider, jogger, squirrel, bird, and cat that comes along.

I hardly notice them barking anymore, except when I'm deep in the story, and they make me jump.

I do love them. Who could resist these sweet faces:

Next month I'll show you my desk. And my trilogy notebooks. And maybe more. I'll see you back here on Monday, June 6.

Now that I'm finally done, I get to participate in the cover reveal for C. Lee McKenzie's new book, SIGN OF THE GREEN DRAGON.

When a wall of their cave hideout crumbles, three boys discover a skeleton, clutching a treasure map. They set off to trace the story of an old murder, but stumble into a modern crime, and confront ancient Chinese dragons.

Want to Read Link: 

C. Lee McKenzie is a 4 & 5 star reviewed author. Her greatest passion is writing for young readers. Sign of the Green Dragon is her third Middle Grade novel. Alligators Overhead and the sequel, The Great Time Lock Disaster were her first two. She has traditionally published four young adult novels: Sliding on the Edge, The Princess of Las Pulgas, Double Negative and Sudden Secrets.

Monday, March 7, 2016

Tales from the Lonesome Blogger

Once again, this month is just a check-in and update post, so you know I didn't fall in a hole someplace. I won't be visiting you, and let me tell you . . . I'm getting lonesome!

Book Two is with my critique partner, and I'm working on Book Three. Feels really good to finally write those words. I'm hopeful that this book will come together relatively quickly, as books go, since it's the ending of the story.

Any positive vibes you care to send my way for this fast finish actually happening will be most appreciated.

My Letter to the Editor is done, and I'm in the process of sending sample pages to a few. Fingers crossed!

All in all, February was quite productive, especially when you also include real life. A lot of action there, which I'm not ready to talk about just yet. But all good.

Thanks to all of you for hanging with me during this halfway blogging time.

I'm taking April off. Just from blogging - not writing or anything else - because y'all will be all wrapped up in A-Z. If you're participating in the A-Z Challenge, have fun! It's hard work but rewarding and beneficial. If you haven't done it before, give it a try. You'll be glad you did.

I'll be back here on Monday, May 2. With a Real Blog - and I'll be visiting yours in May, too.


Monday, February 1, 2016

Let's Have a Fantabulous February!

January passed me faster than a bullet train on steroids.

I don't yet have Book 2 to my critique partner. I need another couple of weeks. To be fair, we had company for a few days and had so much fun I didn't make myself crawl in the cave and work. Not only would that have been rude, but since one of my goals was to have a real life, I don't feel (too) guilty.

My editor list is now updated and sorted. During February - and possibly into March and April, too - I want to contact each one before I make a decision. Thanks to those of you who supplied me with names. I now have many more possibilities. Hugs!

I'm reading almost every day, and that's a wonderful thing. So far, I'm also more dedicated to exercise than I was for much of last year. Also good. I haven't touched the blog yet, however.

Once again, I'll only be responding here at the Tiki Hut and not visiting your blogs. So comment at your own risk, LOL. I just wanted to give you a heads up on where I am.

I'll leave you with a photo - perfect for Valentine's Day. I posted this to my Facebook a week or two ago, along with the caption. So I'm sharing here, too.

So this morning I was slicing strawberries for cereal.
And now I'm sharing a slice of my heart with you.

Wishing you the most Fantabulous February ever.

I'll be back here on Monday, March 7. See you then!

Monday, January 4, 2016

My Big Fat Untitled Post

Happy 2016!

You know everything you didn't get done in December? It's all still hanging around.

How well did you do at meeting your goals for last year?

I did fair--I give myself a C.

I accomplished all my small goals, and by a bug's breath, I read the number of books I'd goaled for the year. This number is embarrassingly tiny for a writer, so I'm not sharing. I'm still way behind, so my TBR list isn't shrinking any time soon.

I could've done better with my walking/exercising goal, but I'm ahead of where I was last year, so I'm happy.

I did not get a newsletter going.

Nor did I complete the drafting of my trilogy project. Two books are done, so only the third one remains to complete.

I did get a better grip on restoring some balance to my life. Not much, but every bit helps.

In 2016 I have fewer small goals, but my large goals are just as intense and more immediate:

 1. Find my Forever Editor.
For reasons beyond my control, none of my previous editors have edited more than one of my books. I need and want to find my Forever Editor. During the last year, I've collected about a dozen names, some of whom I'm pretty sure I can't afford. 
If you know of or have used a really awesome developmental and line editor who is familiar with trilogies and the broad mystery and romance genres, and you would like to share his or her name with me, I would be most appreciative. You may do so in the comments, by email at tikihuttimeATgmailDOTcom, or by messaging me on Facebook or Twitter.
 2. Get Book #2 to my critique partner, which involves reading and making changes I know are needed for it to make sense.

 3. Draft Book #3

 4. Create a marketing and promotion plan for the trilogy.

 5. Start a newsletter.

 6. Publish Book #1. Those of you who are writers, traditionally published or indie, know all the steps this involves.

 7. Read a minimum of [BLANK] books. Still not telling you this pitiful number because it's the same as 2015.

 8. Blog

 9. Walk and/or exercise daily for a minimum of 30 minutes.

10. Have a Real Life. This includes taking off one day a week.

That's it. Ten little items. Doesn't sound like much. But for me it is. I'll have to stay focused. Think Windex will help?

What are some of your goals for 2016?

Wonder why I'm sharing my goals here? Publicly? Writing them down makes them real. Sharing them makes me accountable. I may need that extra push come the fall. Or maybe even next week! Sad, but true.

There's another reason, too.

For the first few months of the year, my blogging routine is changing again. Here's my plan.

January: I will respond to your comments here on the blog, but I won't be around to visit your blog. I know how selfish that is, and I apologize. I have to get a running start on Book #3.

February: Will likely be a repeat of January with probably only an update post from me as to where I am. Or something else entirely.

March: I hope to be back to a real blog and visiting yours in March. As long as I'm at the middle or more of the third book by this point, I will be. Otherwise, no.

Since I won't be reciprocating with a visit and a comment on your blog, do not feel compelled to leave a comment on this post or the one in February. I debated with myself about turning comments off, but decided to leave them on. I'm crossing my fingers that you'll leave me some fantastic editor recommendations.

April: You'll all be busy with A-Z. April at the Tiki Hut will be a blog-free zone.

May: In the words of Arnold--I'll be back. We're gonna rock 'n roll!

There you have it. All my writerly angst hanging out to dry.

Also during this time, I'm going to clean up around here. I'll start by a long-overdue scrubbing of the blog rolls. If I haven't heard from you here or on other social media in the last year or so, your blog link will be deleted. If you lurk, that's fine - I'm happy you still drop by and read. It's just that I don't know you've been here. Contact me by any method outlined above, and I'll leave your link on.

I'll be making a few other changes during the year, but the scrubbing is probably the only thing I'll get done before I'm back in the spring.

I feel as if I've forgotten to tell you something, but I'm not sure what. Don't be surprised to see updates here or in my February post.

Wishing all of you a fun and productive year.

If you want to know what kind of progress I'm making, check back on Monday, February 1.

Hugs to all!