NaNoWriMo – If it were easy everyone would do it

It’s November 1st, the day we writers look forward to all year because it’s the beginning of the month when we’re allowed to howl in misery, tear at our hair, beat our faces on our keyboards, and in all other ways get to act like a total artiste torturé.  Lolz, just kidding…that’s reserved for November 30th!

No, seriously, I kid…NaNoWriMo is something that we should enjoy, in the same way a runner keeps going through every step of a marathon.  It hurts like hell, we think we won’t make it, but ultimately we do and it’s the sweetest feeling in the world.  Crossing that finish line, that sense of accomplishment…HELLS YES IT’S HARD!!!


(That’s good advice…)

Anyway, we don’t always finish every marathon, we don’t always complete every challenge.  Just as a runner may have to sit out a race due to a broken ankle, you may need to assess if finishing NaNoWriMo is possible in any given year.  The past two years, I started off with a bang, but because of life events beyond my control (including illness), had to give myself permission not to finish.  Is anyone going to make fun of a runner for not tackling a marathon with a broken ankle?  Of course not!  In the same vein, you may have to assess whether or not you CAN finish 50,000 words in 30 days.

If you genuinely CAN’T FINISH, give yourself permission to ease out, it’ll be back next year.  Take care of yourself and come back stronger.  If you’re just not sure if you WILL FINISH, then reorganize some priorities, give some some stuff up and FIND A WAY TO WRITE 50-FRICKIN-THOUSAND WORDS!!!

Just write.  Don’t edit as you go.  Just write.  Even if it’s the crappiest prose you’ve ever coughed up, keep writing.  If you have writers’ block, skip ahead to something fun that you’re looking forward to writing and see how many words pour out of your fingers then!  The actual rules for NaNoWriMo are stinkingly simple…WRITE 50,000 WORDS!!!!  Don’t kneecap yourself by deciding that stupid things like fact-checking, grammar, spelling, or even common sense matter!  JUST WRITE!

If you’re participating in NaNoWriMo this year, let me know in the comments…THEN GET BACK TO WRITING!!!!


Rochester Writers’ Conference Roundup!

Saturday was the Rochester Writers’ Conference, and I surprised even myself by keeping up with updating the IG Stories and live Tweeting (the film screenings and premieres must be honing my skills!).  I saved my IG Story as a Highlight, so hop over to Instagram and check that out (although I did include a few of my favorites below)…there are also still pics on my Twitter.

I normally participate in online conferences and webinars verses in-person ones.  So what did I learn all day up at Oakland University?

Continuing Education for Authors

debby-hudson-544369-unsplashI’m one of those rare people who does NOT enjoy autumn, and it’s for one very specific reason: it means summer is over, and I’m a child of the summer.  You can ask my mom…I was born during a hot humid Kentucky July, and ever since then, I’ve loved those days the best.  So for me, autumn means that WINTER IS COMING (I’m refraining from inserting any GoT memes here), and I’ll take 100% humidity and 95-degree days over snow any time.

One thing I do like about autumn, though, is that delicious anticipation of going back to school.  Even as an adult, I feel an overwhelming urge to go shop the Back to School sections at Staples, and there’s a sense of a new year, a new beginning.  You have an excuse to buy more lovely blank notebooks.  And fancy pens.  And if the fates align, maybe you’ll have some reasons to go back to school as a writer.

Autographs &

This weekend I have been a busy little bee getting all-things-autographs finished and ready to go!  Free autographed bookplates and bookmarks have always been a thing, and will continue to be so, but now I’m working on a storefront that will allow you to purchase the paperbacks with the personalization/autograph written on the actual title page, instead of using a bookplate…I’ve found that these are super-popular as gifts!  It’s a work-in-progress for the weekend, but my goal is for it to be fully-stocked by Monday, and you can check it out here!  (Evil sneaky hint: if you are an OG fan of Julip Bags, there will be crossover.  MWAH-HA-HA!!!)

Release Date for Thistles!

So back a couple of weeks ago I was super-psyched to share the cover reveal for Thistles, today I’m even more excited to share the Official Launch Date: next Friday, July 13th!

I vote that we open our own detective agency. You_re the brains, I_m obviously the beauty, and Gran is our hired muscle

There are three reasons for me picking that date:

  1. It’s my birthday so I’m celebrating with a book launch, woot!
  2. It’s Friday the 13th, I was born on a Friday the 13th and it’s always been a very very lucky date for me (it’s actually the only occasion I EVER buy lottery tickets, thirteen tickets each time my birthday falls on a Friday the 13th)
  3. I’m already working on the next book in the series for July’s Camp Nano, so I want to get this one out to you stat!

It’s an introductory novella, so it’s going to essentially give you the rundown on how both Pistils (the flower shop) and P&V, Inc. (the PI company) came to be…it starts with Vivian coming back to Charleston and the girls taking their destinies into their own hands.  Oh, and Gran, of course!

you two girls are the only family I have left in this world. If you think I_m going to let you take off and leave me here, then you_ve both got another think coming

The e-book will be available FREE across all platforms (Amazon, B&N, iBooks, Kobo, Smashwords, etc.), and the paperback (because I’m right up there with all of you who love a paperback copy) will be available at the lowest price I’m allowed to set.  They have to cover the costs of printing, and I completely respect that…but being that it’s a novella, it will cost significantly less than a full-fledged novel.

Patient Zero.

After Thistles is launched and out there, my next two goals are full-speed ahead:

  1. Little Goal: Get paperbacks of all the books available for purchase through this website, so you can order personalized/autographed copies, bundles, gifts, gift-wrapped, whatever you like!  (Bookplates and bookmarks are already available!)
  2. BIG Goal: Finish the next book in the Pistils series.  I can tell you two things about it that aren’t secrets (because my awesome Camp Nano Scribbler Cabin bunkmates are already privy to this information): it picks up almost immediately after Pistils, and it’s called Nightshade.

Ships in bottles, mobsters in prison…are they really that different? One good smash and there_s going to be hell to pay, not to mention a big mess.

Finally, if you’re wondering about the pics in this post, they’re all quotes from Thistles, and I post a new photo-quote from one of the Pistils series books almost every single day over on the Twintype Books Instagram page.  I hope you’ll follow the account, I always follow back any active author/writing-type accounts, as long as you’re not obviously a follow-unfollow chump.  If you have a private account or an account that you keep just for following others (aka no pics of your own), just comment on one of my posts that you came over from the blog, and I’m happy to follow/request to follow private accounts!

(Pssst…I’ve already started to post photo-quotes from Nightshade.  Talk about sneak-peeks!)

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!!!!


We'll help you

Writer Tool Review! Outlining Your Novel Workbook

outlining your novel workbookHappy Camp Nano July-eve, all!  I’m chomping at the bit to get started, I’m going to send up a little prayer to my writer-muse to let me hit the ground running and be on a roll tomorrow, and I’ve even rooted out what will be my official Writing Candle to light when I sit down to crank out my (planned minimum) 1000 words per day.

In preparation for the upcoming month, I wanted to review a book that I genuinely didn’t think that I wanted or needed: Outlining Your Novel Workbook: Step-by-Step Exercises for Planning Your Best Book.  Read on to find out if it would be of help to you!

I am what is known in very technical author-y terms as a “Pantser,” that is, someone who writes by the seat of their pants.  To be honest, the terms rubs me the wrong way, as it implies recklessness, a lack of forethought, or leaving your book up to chance, whereas being a Planner implies that one is responsible, thoughtful, and pays more attention to detail.

Let’s face it: would you rather your financial adviser be a Pantser or a Planner?  Uh-huh.

Cover Reveal for Thistles

Thistles Cover JPEG

Thistles is the perma-free novella that introduces the Pistils romantic thriller series AND, as a closing bonus, includes the first three chapters of the next book in the series!

Want to be notified as soon as the e-copy of Thistles is available FREE for download on your favorite platform??  Sign up for the new and improved mailing list and you’ll be the first to know!