For The Writer Who Loves-or Needs!- to be Organized

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I don’t know about you, but as a writer I have everything EVERYWHERE. Random pieces of paper fill my desk, purse, and even pockets. When I have an idea and can’t get to a notebook I grab whatever I can.

I also have all my notes scattered. A variety of notebooks have ideas, blog posts, things to do etc…I can’t keep everything in one spot.

For the last little while, planners have become an addiction for some people. There are all sorts of templates, print outs, and even Youtube videos about how to make your planners functional and pretty.

I have looked at all sorts of planners but I haven’t found one for writers. And on the rare time I do, they are lacking something. I wanted a set/planner that covered all the basics of writing life.

I gave up on finding such a thing until yesterday. My friend announced her most recent secret project, and it makes my little writing heart happy.

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The Writer’s Complete Planner All sorts of pages for the writer who needs to get orgainzed!

Sherry started a new Etsy shop called Writers Corner Shop, and is selling the planner pages she has created.

The pages cover many of the basics, from story boarding, blog posts, goal list, self publishing tracker as well as traditional planner must haves like a calendar and bonus: beautiful divider pages with inspirational quotes. The kit contains 35 different pages to help you sort out your writing life.

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The pages are beautiful!

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You have your choice of grey scale or colored pages. You can print these off without it being an ink guzzler! 

The full set, which is available as an instant download, is just $12! If you’re interested in grabbing these up for yourself or checking out the store, you can check out The Writer’s Corner shop and see what’s what!

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How I am Prepping My Life For Nanowrimo

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There is more to Nano prep then just writing outlines and character sketches. Right now I am doing the most important Nano prep I can do: sorting out life in general. If I can do that, then I will set myself up for a good chance at success.

Cleaning House: There isn’t much time in November to take care of the house like you’d usually do. I know if I sit down on November 1st and my house isn’t sorted out it will be a major distraction. I will want to finish cleaning and organizing which is wasted time. This week I started my fall cleaning: the upstairs bedrooms are freshened up, swept and mopped. Most of the downstairs is sorted. For me, as long as my kitchen and bathroom are clean I’m a happy camper. Having any big cleaning done for November helps prevent junk, dishes and laundry from piling up. Nobody wants to deal with that come December.

My office: Not only will a messy house distract me but so will a messy office. I did that room first. My desk is tidy and I can keep notes, snacks and drinks near me. I have a big comfy blanket on the floor so Foxy, our greyhound, can come in and keep me company while I write. Whatever writing space you are using, make sure it is tidy and organized.

Writing Fuel: With Halloween coming I’ll be picking up some extra goodies, especially if they are on sale. You can’t sit and write a novel without chocolate or another form of fuel. If you vise is coffee, pick up some of your fave flavors before November.

Food prep: This one will be easy for me since hubby is leaving for work. Since I will be only cooking for one, leftovers and easy meals will be my best friend in November. I do plan to make a few bigger meals so I can have leftovers for a few days. The last thing I want to do when I come home after work is spending a lot of time cooking and on clean up. I will want to get to my laptop ASAP.

Warning Friends it’s Nano time: Not that I have a super busy social life, but come November I will be posting on FB that it’s Nano, which means hibernation mode. Partly, at least. Pen pal letters will have to wait until December, some coffee dates will have to wait. People who care about you and support you don’t mind waiting a little while for your time.

So, how do you prep for Nano? What other non-writing ways is there to get ready?

Writing Life: That Old Impostor Feeling

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Impostor Syndrome.

Something my writing friends and I sometimes talk about. And more recently, something I have felt for the first time.

As I posted not long ago, I recently self published my e-book Blood Bonds: Stories from the Lily and Quinn Collection. I was pretty excited about it. I took short stories I had previously published in other anthologies plus a new story I wrote this year and put it into my book. Two of my friends really encouraged me to do so and helped me with the process. I couldn’t have done it without them.

I was feeling pretty good about it all. (Still am, I should add). But last week I felt something as a writer I had never felt before: feeling like an impostor. Like I was a fake in a world with real writers. Trying to pass myself as something I wasn’t.

A girl I had known since elementary works for the local newspaper. She’s on my Facebook and noticed my posts about my book She reached out to me, asking if I wanted to do an interview about it. After my initial shock and calling one of my friends, I replied to her and said yes, I would love to.

But as I waited for her to call me for the interview, seeds of doubt started to kick in.

Why was she interviewing me? I’m not worthy of this. She should be talking to Sherry. She’s a real writer after all. It’s just a little ebook, nothing crazy like an epic novel about to be turned into a movie. Seriously though why me? I’m not worthy of this attention, am I?

It isn’t a good feeling when you’re happy about something and negative thoughts crowd your head. But, I worked through it. I had the phone interview and felt really good afterwards. And those negative thoughts were gone. I am a real writer, she wanted to do a piece on my book because she thought it was interesting and I deserved it. I wrote the stories, nobody else. And bonus: my book will get some free advertising. 😉

She came the next day for my photo, and I think in the next day or two my interview will be in the paper. I will be sure to cut it out and save it, something else to add to my writer scrapbook.

When have you felt like an impostor? How have you handled it?

If you’re interested in grabbing your copy and diving into the world of Lily and Quinn, you can get your copy of Blood Bonds over here.

 

 

Preptober: NaNo is Coming

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Hello all! And happy turkey weekend!

I am pretty happy as we are now in my favorite month of the year! Cooler weather means my brain now functions better too! Sweet! 😉 I love summer but there is something about that heat and humidity that throws me for a loop.

October is time for good food, fall splendor, Halloween and Preptober…time to get ready for November and the writing madness!

Up until a few weeks ago, I wasn’t sure if I was going to do NaNoWriMo this year. But then I decided, why not, let’s do this!

With my release of my ebook this month, I decided to stay in the same world as those characters. I have a couple of Lily and Quinn novel attempts, but I *think* I have something more solid now for this project.

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During the rest of this month I hope to pop in with some writing prep updates, maybe some tips and I want to hear from you! Are you taking part? And what is your Nano prep?

I will also be introducing some of my characters from Blood Bonds. In the meantime if you would like to meet them for yourself you can get the ebook at:

Amazon.ca , 

Amazon.com

Kobo

Barnes & Noble

Camp Nano: The Road So Far

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I decided to set my sights at being more writing focused this month. Not just writing new projects, but editing old ones, being on top of my blog, reading more articles on writing, etc…

I also set my camp goal for 35 hours, which I thought was a reasonable goal. My husband comes home soon and I know writing and writing related things will go to the side just a bit.

So far, things are going along great. As of writing this, I have put in 16 out of 35 hours so far. But by the time you read this, I will have logged in a bit more at the very least.

I have been writing and scheduling blog posts, edited my last short story, started a new project (not sure yet if it will be a novel or not), read a number of articles on writing that I was putting off and have made pages and pages of notes, for new stories and unfinished projects.

I am really happy with how things are going so far and I will do the same goals for next camp.

How is your writing life going? How is Camp Nano going for those of you taking part?

10 Minute Con-Guest Blogger

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I am very pleased to welcome my very first guest blogger, Pam Humphrey! Pam is a part of 10 Minute Novelists, a group on Facebook for writers of all genres. I joined the group late last year, and I am really enjoying it! Pam, welcome to my little corner of the universe, and thank you for being here!

By Pam Humphrey
As writers, some days we struggle to find ten minutes in a day to dedicate to our writing. We scrape together small snippets of time each day, adding words to our work-in-progress. Those words add up.Our small things, brought together, can make something great.
The writers of the Facebook group 10 Minute Novelists believe that this is true. Started by Katharine Grubb, who wrote the book, Write A Novel in Ten Minutes A Day, the Facebook group offers tips,encouragement, and community for time-crunched writers worldwide.

August 9-11, 10 Minute Novelists will be hosting their first ever conference in Cincinnati, Ohio. The theme is fitting: Small Things Brought Together. The conference hopes to bring this online community of hard-working writers together for learning, support, and fun. Through the speakers and learning opportunities, they hope writers can make connections, amplify writing energy, and add tools to their writing toolbelt.
Their speakers include:
James Scott Bell, bestselling author of Plot & Structure, and award-winning thrillers like Final Witness,Romeo’s Rules, Don’t Leave Me, Blind Justice, Deceived, Try Dying, Watch Your Back, and One More Lie,will give the keynote.
Donald Maass, founder of the Donald Maass Literary Agency and author of The Career Novelist (1996),Writing the Breakout Novel (2001), Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook (2004), The Fire in Fiction(2009), The Breakout Novelist (2011) and Writing 21st Century Fiction (2012), will speak on The Fire InFiction. This hands-on presentation will reveal how master contemporary novelists make every book great—and how participants can use the techniques of greatness in their current manuscripts.
Janice Hardy, founder and owner of FICTION UNIVERSITY, is the award-winning author of The Healing Wars trilogy, including The Shifter, Blue Fire, Darkfall from Balzer+Bray/Harper Collins, and of multiple books on writing, including the bestselling,Understanding Show, Don’t Tell (And Really Getting It). She’ll be speaking twice on Saturday: Planning Your Novel in Ten Easy Steps: 10 Surefire Steps to Planning a
Bestseller! and (later that day) on Revision Readiness: How to Revise.

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For more information go to http://www.10MinCon.com The conference price is $329, but will go up to $379 after March 1, 2018. Price does not include travel, airfare, or hotel accommodation. Price does include lunch for Friday, August 10 and Saturday, August 11. Hotel accommodation information is also available at http://www.10MinCon.com.

Make time for your writing this summer. Join us at 10MinCon!

Pamela Humphrey, author of Finding Claire and Finding Kate, has been a member of 10 Minute Novelists since March 2016. She lives in San Antonio, Texas, with her husband, sons, black cats, and a leopard gecko.

Writing: Getting Back In The Game

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It’s been a while since I sat down to work on a new piece of fiction or edit or finish an old piece. I could list a dozen or two reasons why I haven’t, but they would sound like excuses. Some of my reasons are valid. For example, when I’m in a deep depression, my creative brain is turned off for awhile.

My current problem: I need to shock it back to life.

While I feel a lot better than I have in…well, all year, that creative side of me is still kind of numb and shut off. And doesn’t that just suck?

Some writers have writers block. Others put writing off for one reason or another. And some writers sit every damn day and create something. (If you are that person, I think you are awesome and I hate you, just a tad. But mostly I think you are awesome).

I have been coming up with a game plan. One that will hopefully get the creative juices flowing. Maybe my game plan will help you get through your own writing slump or help you keep the wheels good and greased.

Get Crafty. Or garden. Or paint. Whatever works for you. Luckily for me, with the wedding next year I have a lot to do. I have always loved being creative, and when I am active in one area, it helps me in another.

Get Rid of Clutter. Cleaning your desk or creating your own little writing space can help you focus. No clutter means no distractions. My desk has a lot of distractions that need to be purged.

Be Realistic. If I sit down and decide to write 3000 words a day, I am going to fail. Like, crash and burn. Then I will feel like shit and like I can’t do anything. Boo. With anything, you need to be realistic with your goals. Start small and build on from there.

Remind Yourself Why You Write.  I need to start fresh. I need to do what I did when I was ten years old. Creating odd and wonderful worlds and not caring what anyone thought because this was MY creation. Because I LOVED doing it.

Talk To Your Writing Buddies. Maybe you have one friend who lives in another part of the country that writes. Maybe there is a local writers group nearby. If you have someone,  go for coffee or send them a message. Fellow writers are a great way to gain inspiration. My writers group is fab at giving me a kick in the pants. If you don’t know any writers, then check out online writers groups or ask your local library. (That’s where I found out about The Story Forge, the group I have been going to for the last twelve years).

It might not sound like much of a game plan, but the idea is to keep it simple. Have you ever been in a writing slump? What helped you to get past it?