Falling Into Place

Today was an exciting day!  I went to the post office and reserved my first PO Box!  Wind Trail Publishing finally has a mailing address!  That means that I have all the information for the copyright page in the book!  

The official address is:

Wind Trail Publishing 

PO Box 830851

Richardson, TX 75083-0851

I also got an email from my graphic designer.  He sent me the almost-finished copy of the cover, but I’m not allowed to share it until it is “officially” done.  I CAN tell you, however, that it looks FANTASTIC!  I am so excited and I can’t wait to show everyone!!  Seriously, I am thrilled with how it turned out!    

Well, that’s all for now, folks! 

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Interview

We have seven weeks until Cemetery Tours hits Amazon!  In the spirit of shameless self-promotion, I decided to interview myself!

What inspired you to write Cemetery Tours?

There were a lot of ideas that went into creating Cemetery Tours.  I’ve been a fan of ghost stories all my life.  After I wrote my first manuscript (currently under serious revision), I decided that I wanted to write a ghost story.  

It took me a while to figure out how I was going to go about doing that.  I knew I wanted a guy who could see and talk to spirits.  I knew I wanted there to be romance, but I didn’t want it to be with a ghost.  I knew I wanted there to be a ghost best friend.  I knew I wanted there to be some sort of twist.  The real challenge was figuring out how to do all of that in a new way that would make people want to read and keep them interested.         

Can you tell me a little bit about the main characters?

The main character is a young man named Michael Sinclair, who has spent his entire life to keep his ability to see and communicate with the dead a secret.  The female protagonist is Kate Avery, Michael’s new neighbor, whose brother, Gavin, is haunted by a malevolent spirit.  Finally, there’s Luke Rainer, the lead paranormal investigator of the popular television series, Cemetery Tours.  

What was your favorite thing about writing the book?

There are so many things I love about writing.  I love creating dialogue.  I love all my characters.  I love that I can go back and read what I’ve written and think, “Man, I really want people to read this!” and not, “Oh my gosh… this sucks… I can’t believe I wrote this crap.”  I loved writing the creepy scenes.  I loved writing the relationships between the characters.  I always love making up soundtracks and imagining what the movie would look like.    

What was the hardest part of the process?  

Basically everything that wasn’t writing.  It’s all hard.  But looking back, it really wasn’t all that bad.  I think the worst part was formatting the manuscript, figuring out page numbers, and writing the stupid summary on the back of the book were the absolute hardest parts of the entire process.  I also didn’t like having to ride the train downtown to the court house to get the business certified.  

What do you want people to take away from the book?  

Most of all, I want people to read the book and think, “Wow, that was a fun read!  It scared me, it surprised me.  I couldn’t put it down.  I love the characters.  I want to share this book with my friends, and I’d totally read another book that she wrote!”  Basically, I just want people to like it.  I didn’t write it because I wanted to prove a point or make some sort of religious or political or philosophical statement.  I want people to read it and enjoy reading it.  I want it to be fun.   

What do you hope to accomplish through your writing and publishing endeavors?

My own castle in Scotland would be nice, but since that’s sort of a lofty goal, I’d have to say that I’d consider even one book sold an accomplishment.  Seriously, it’s a huge deal to work on something for so long and to finally see all that hard work pay off. I’m not there yet, but I’m close! 

Honestly, though, I would love to be able to make my living as an author.  I have a lot of books in my head, several of which are in the early stages of being written.  Writing is what I want to do with my life.  Well, write, travel, take pictures, and save marine life.    

Will there be a sequel? 

Yes!  In fact, I just finished Chapter 5 of the first draft.  It will hopefully be released sometime next year!  

Do you believe in ghosts?  

Absolutely! 

Are you going to write any other books besides Cemetery Tours?

Oh yeah.  I have a trilogy, my first manuscript, a fairy tale collection, and at least three other ideas for stand-alone novels all in the works.  I plan to be writing for a long time.

https://www.facebook.com/CemeteryTours

Support

So, something that I really want to do as I get closer to September 17 is to support other independent artists, especially authors.  They do all the work that traditionally published authors get done for them and yet they get almost no credit for it.  That being said, if you have a Facebook page or a book to download on Kindle (I can’t promise I can buy all of them yet because I need to save money), please let me know!  I’d love to support you in any way that I can!

I’d also love to show my support for the paranormal community, as that is what inspired me to write Cemetery Tours in the first place.  So again, if you or anyone you know has a Facebook page or a Twitter page or anything else I can support, please let me know!

Okay, I am going to go try to be productive now, but I’m feeling rather lazy today, so we’ll see how that goes.  I will hopefully be updating more frequently now as we get into the final few weeks!

So excited!!!

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CemeteryTours

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Cemetery_Tours

Creative Business

I’m running out of titles, guys.

Anyway, today was a very big day.  Today is the day I went downtown to the County Courthouse Records Building and registered Wind Trail Publishing as a genuine, real, bona fide business!  I have a certificate and everything!  It’s a pretty cool feeling.

I think I’m pretty close to getting Facebook “Like” pages set up for both the company and Cemetery Tours.  I’ll be sure to share those as soon as they’re up.  I’m considering setting myself a page as an author, but I might wait on that.  I don’t want to bombard people with page requests.  I’ll probably really campaign for the Cemetery Tours page, since, at this point in time, I’m hoping to get people to buy the book, not get clients for the company.  That’s not saying I won’t take on clients in the future, however.

Another exciting update is that I saw the cover design last night.  It looks awesome, guys.  I am really, really excited about it.  Benjamin Durham, my graphic designer, has also helped design covers for Sandra Brown, so that is really cool.  He also asked me if I’d considered doing a book trailer to upload to YouTube.  I had thought about it, but I wasn’t sure we’d be able to do one.  We talked about it, however, and we are both really enthusiastic about the idea.  I can’t wait!

Finally, I received another shining review, this time from my friend who also happens to be one of the smartest women I know.  She has her doctorate, and is incredibly, incredibly intelligent.  She called it “Engrossing and exciting with an unexpected ending.”  She also said it was very hard to put down.  Absolutely made my day!

Hope everyone has a splendid weekend!

8 Weeks!

Hi y’all!

It’s Tuesday, which means we have exactly 8 weeks until Cemetery Tours is released, which means I am blogging and trying to think of new and interesting things to say about my book!

I think it’s awesome, but of course, I am really, really biased.

For this week’s, for lack of a better word, “promo,” I’ve decided to share a little more about the book.  Whenever I tell someone that I wrote a book, their very first question is, “What is it about?”  And for some reason, whenever I try to tell them, it sounds really dumb.  I always tell them it’s a ghost story, but in truth, it’s a lot more than that.  There’s romance, there’s suspense, there’s a little bit of mystery.  I tried to make it a story that people of all ages, both men and women, can enjoy.

Anyway, here are a few bit of Cemetery Tours trivia.

1) I’ve wanted to write a ghost story for ages.  I’ve always believed in ghosts, I enjoy watching all sorts of haunted and ghostly reality shows (My Ghost Story: Caught on CameraLong Island Medium, and my very favorite, Ghost Adventures), and I find the whole concept of an afterlife absolutely fascinating.  However, I also knew that there were already so many ghosts stories out there, that I really needed to come up with something new and original.  After four years of brainstorming, writing, and re-writing, I believe I’ve done that with Cemetery Tours.

2) My dad actually came up with the title Cemetery Tours before I ever considered becoming an author.  We were on a road-trip and we stopped at a little small-town Dairy Queen right across the street from an old cemetery.  He said, “You know what would be a cool title for a book?  Cemetery Tours.”  It stuck.

3) I’m terrible at coming up with names for my characters, so I typically name them after celebrities I like or I will look up name meanings online.  The lead female character in Cemetery Tours, Kate Avery, was named after Kate Middleton.  She is smart, beautiful, and classy, and I have a lot of respect for her.  A female character in another book that I’m working on is named Madeleine after one of my favorite authors, Madeleine L’Engle.  However, just because these characters share a name with Ms. Middleton and Ms. L’Engle, they are in no way based off of them.  Names are pretty much the only thing they have in common.   

4) I love writing dialogue.  It’s so much fun for me, and it comes very naturally.  Writing out descriptions and action is more my sister’s thing.  She is masterful.

5) My least favorite plot device is miscommunication.  I absolutely hate it.  Someone gets their feelings hurt because of something the other person said and the other person doesn’t know it and then the first person doesn’t even bother talking to them about it…  Ugh!  It’s just a big mess!  In this day in age, with all the social media and text messaging and what not, I understand that miscommunication is very easy.  However, it is also very easy to have a face to face conversation.  That is why you will not find any of that mess in Cemetery Tours.

6) Something I am really hoping for out of Cemetery Tours is for at least one person to tell me that it scared them.  Or at least creeped them out a little bit.

Well, I probably need to get going.  I have a few errands to run.  I’ll update if I think of any more trivia.

Enjoy your Tuesday!

Funny Story for the Day

My sister and I were out and about, so we decided to run by Barnes and Noble just to walk around, browse the books, you know. Well, we get there and there is this crowd of people getting wristbands. It turned out there was a book signing going on.  As a future author, I’m always interested in book signings, so we decided to check it out.  There was a big poster of the book and the author, but we didn’t recognize either, so we asked who it was. It turned out to be Justin Bieber’s mother!

We didn’t get to meet her or anything, but an employee told us she was very nice and that some people had been following her from city to city (a little creepy), but that she was very happy to sign everyone’s book… even those who didn’t have a wristband.  Good for her! 

Soundtrack

As of today, there are nine weeks until Cemetery Tours is released.  I’ve been thinking about things I can do to kind of spread the word, generate some interest, etc…

To mark the nine-week point, I thought I’d share my Cemetery Tours soundtrack.  Every time I start a new project, one of the first things I do is create a playlist full of songs that inspire that particular story.  One of my writing teachers in grad school told me that creating a soundtrack was stupid and that sharing it with people was a guaranteed way to get them to not take me seriously.  I hated his class and would love nothing more than to spite him in any way that I can.

That being said, here is the soundtrack to Cemetery Tours.  Enjoy!

1. “Superman (It’s Not Easy)” by Five For Fighting

2.  “Cemetery” by Good Charlotte

3.  “Mad World” by Gary Jules (Originally by Tears for Fears)

4.  “Can’t Let it Go” by the Goo Goo Dolls

5.  “Terrified” by Katharine McPhee, featuring Zachary Levi

6.  “Blink of an Eye” by Hodges

7.  “Hello” by Evanescence

8.  “Colors” by Amos Lee

9.  “Winter” by Joshua Radin

10.  “My Side of the Story” by Hodges

11.  “Paul’s Song” by Bullet

12. “Run” by Snow Patrol

13.  “Broken” by Lifehouse

14.  “Haunted” by Taylor Swift

BONUS TRACK

15.  “Ghostbusters” by Ray Parker Jr.

Because of course, you can’t have a soundtrack to a ghost story without “Ghostbusters!”  By the way, this might be the best music video I’ve ever seen in my life.  It is so beautifully 80s, it makes me want to cry.  In a good way.

Just a Quick Update

It’s gray, it’s rainy, and worst of all, it’s Monday. To make this blah day a little better, I watched like, a hundred YouTube videos of killer whales (my favorite animal in the world) swimming along to inspirational music, like Phil Collins and Michael Jackson and string ensembles.  That did the trick.  It’s pretty impossible to be sad while watching killer whales (unless they’re eating a sea lion or a dolphin… but that’s nature).  

Anyway, I am really suppose to be A) working on the little paragraph that goes on the back of the book so I can send it to my graphic designer like I’ve been saying I was going to do for about oh, two weeks now and B) writing out that little copyright page that goes on the back of the title page.  I’m actually kind of looking forward to that, but at the same time I’m really intimidated by it.  It’s so official and so la-de-da, you know?  And I’m… I don’t know… sort of a Fruit Loop.  I’m not sure that makes any sense at all, but in my head it does, so I’m just gonna go with it.  The point is writing the book was the fun and easy part because I could make it however I wanted it to be.  I can’t screw this up.  It’s really, really important.  Don’t get me wrong; I am fully capable of accomplishing things and being serious and, not to brag or anything, but I basically sailed through grad school with only one annoyingly difficult class at the very end.  I can do stuff like this.  It’s still intimidating though. 

Tomorrow, it will be exactly nine weeks until Cemetery Tours debuts!  I am so excited and I could not be more ready to finally share my book with the world.  Then again, there is still so much I have to get done!  I can not start being complacent now.  I’ve been doing a lot of semi-marketing stuff like creating a CT board on Pinterest and being a lot more active on seeking followers on Twitter, but I haven’t been as good keeping up with the actual process of creating a book.  Marketing and getting the name out there is important, but if I don’t have a product to give them, then it’s all for nothing.  The good news is, I still have those nine weeks.  The bad news is nine weeks flies when you have a deadline.  Of course, this isn’t like writing a term paper.  It’s something I want and something I love, so I don’t think it will be bad at all.  

Happy Monday, y’all.   

This Week

So, I was really lazy this week.  By “lazy,” I do not mean “inactive.”  Quite the contrary.  I went back up to the lake, swam and hung out with my best friend, and took a trip to a water park!  When I say I’ve been lazy, I mean that I haven’t done one bit of work that I should have done.  I mean, I got the Library of Congress number all sorted and my graphic designer and I have an official cover deadline, but other than that, I haven’t been a very good publisher.

Oh, I did get my first piece of mail addressed to Wind Trail Publishing though!  That was pretty cool!  

I have also received two shining reviews from people who finished reading “Cemetery Tours” this week.  One was my friend from high school, a fellow author, and one of the smartest guys I know.  He called it “suspenseful” and said that it always kept him wondering.  Good!  The second was from my high school English teacher.  You know how in movies, there’s always that one teacher who really makes an impact on students’ lives?  The kind of teacher that everyone hopes they’ll have in real life?  That’s who this guy was to basically our entire school.  I’m not going to lie, I was nervous about sending him my manuscript.  I mean, sending it to friends and family members is fine, but he was my writing mentor.  He inspired years upon years of students to love opera and Mozart and Shakespeare and mythology and Chaucer and other great works of classic music and literature… and here I was sending him my manuscript!  Hardly a classic!  But he sent me the nicest email telling me how much he enjoyed it.  Coming from the master who taught me how to write a paper, that meant a lot!  

Well, as always I will keep you all updated on this crazy road to becoming a published author.  Next week, I plan to do a little more research on eBook publishing and go back to putting the finishing touches on formatting my manuscript.  I think that’s been my least favorite part of the process.  Seriously, it’s worse than editing ten million times over.