My Attempt to be a Good Blogger

I have a friend who just began working a job in social media and marketing and advertising.  Tonight, she told me that the best way to get a lot of hits on your blog is to post every day.

I guess a good writer/author/blogger would never admit that she has nothing significant to write about at the moment, but that’s what I’m going to do.  I’ve written a couple of deep blog posts this week, and right now, I’m a bit tapped out, so I’m basically just writing the first things I think of that are even mildly interesting.

1) Sherlock is on TV.  I love Sherlock.  I’m trying not to watch it though, because I really want to make some good progress on the book annnnd if I watch Sherlock, I literally will not do anything else.

Seriously, who can NOT watch this show?!  Or pretty much anything when Benedict Cumberbatch is on screen?

Okay sorry, my Inner Fangirl is beginning to emerge.  I’ll try to reel her back out.  Honestly though, this series is so good and all the actors are simply brilliant.  And of course, there are so many Smaug and Bilbo jokes to be made (if you’re also a Tolkien nerd, which I am).

2) I’m really trying to connect with more authors and aspiring writers, so if you have written a book or want to write a book, please follow me here or on GoodReads or anywhere else.  I love helping other writers.

3) I’m also really hoping to get more reviews on Cemetery Tours.  Of course, I’d love it if you bought the book and read it and gave it a review, but if you have some free time and you like reviewing books, I’d be happy to email you a manuscript in exchange for good and honest reviews on Amazon and GoodReads.  Barnes and Noble would be awesome too, but I think Amazon and GoodReads are key.

4)  I got another really great review from another fellow blogger.  Thank you so much,!


5) Apparently used copies of Cemetery Tours are really valuable in the UK.


I hope everyone has a super spectacular weekend!  I’m off to work on my book.

And watch Sherlock.

Just Keep Writing

One of my main objectives in attending last weekend’s Indievengeance Day book-signing at Half-Price Books was that I wanted to see what I could learn from independent authors who had once been where I am now and who have made it.  Of course, I ended up spending more time talking with them about what all authors tend to end up talking about: books.  I did get some advice, however.

Just keep writing.

While marketing and advertising and getting the word out there is a HUGE part of being an independent author, every one of the authors I met told me the same thing.

“You have to keep writing.”

It’s a good thing to remember.  It’s so easy to get caught up in how many people are (or are not) buying and reviewing your book.  You want to tell the world your book.  You want to fall to your knees and beg everyone who’s read it to write a glowing review that will inspire other readers to buy it.  You want to market and advertise until your limbs fall off.

But here’s the thing.  Independent authors are so much more likely to be successful if they have more than one book out, especially if those books are in a series together.  The only way you’re going to get more books out is if you sit your butt down and write them.

I’m finally making some real progress on the Cemetery Tours sequel.  I’d love to have the first draft finished by the end of NaNoWriMo (November for those who’ve never heard of National Novel Writing Month).  I’ve always wanted to participate, and I hope it’s not cheating that I’m already nine chapters in (and will hopefully be at least halfway through by the time November actually gets here).  The funny thing is I’ve known what would happen in the sequel much longer than I knew how I would even begin Cemetery Tours, so theoretically, this book should be a lot easier to write.  Unfortunately, sometimes when you’ve built something up in your head for so long, when the time finally comes around to write it, you’re afraid that you won’t be able to do it justice.  I’m pretty happy with the first nine chapters though, and I’m looking forward to what happens next, so I think I’m doing okay.

Something else I’ve learned after having just published my own book exactly one month ago is that while writers will always want to write (it is what we do, after all), we also really like to take time to kick back, relax, celebrate a little, bask in our accomplishments, drink wine, and so on.  However, when it comes to being an independent author, you are doing all the work yourself.  You do ten times the amount of work as an author who signed on with a fancy publishing agency and guess what?  You’re barely making any money for it.  What I’m trying to say is it’s good to celebrate and feel good about yourself.  An accomplishment like a published book is something worth celebrating!  But amidst the fun, keep one foot on the ground.  Stay focused.

I usually do most of my writing at night.  I’ve always been a night owl, and even though I wake up early every morning for work, I’m always up until at least 1 or 2 working on my books (or my blog).  Most of the marketing and advertising I’ve done so far has been online.  That’s a little tricky, however, because of how many distractions there are online.  You can use Pinterest to plan out your next book or to plan out your wedding to that guy you haven’t actually met yet.  You can use Facebook to get people to “like” your book, or you can use it to creep on the all the drama-mongerers whom you haven’t talked to in years but whom you secretly like to keep tabs on for entertainment purposes.

You get the idea.

I guess I’m writing this post for myself more so than anyone.  I’ve been trying to figure out recently how to get (and keep) people interested in Cemetery Tours.  It’s easy to get discouraged, but the thing that every independent author needs to remember is that you have to keep going.  You’ve been swimming against the tide for this long.  You might as well keep going.  The journey doesn’t end with your first publication.  That first book is just a stepping stone.  A pretty awesome stepping stone, but a stepping stone nevertheless.  The only way to succeed in this business is simply to keep writing and keep trying.  Never give up.

I’m pretty sleepy now, because I just got back from a Bon Jovi concert.  For the record,  Jon Bon Jovi is an awesome guy.  Great performer, very charismatic, and fun to watch.  However, I would like to add just one more image so I can actually use the phrase “Superwholock” in the tag section below.

Goodnight, all!

Things I Now Know About Star Trek

As I mentioned in my last entry, I saw my first Star Trek movie today.  In fact, it was my first Star Trek anything, unless you count references in shows such as Frasier and The Big Bang Theory.  I am delighted to report that I genuinely enjoyed the movie (and no, not just because Chris Pine and Benedict Cumberbatch are the hottest men to ever don space suits).  There are also several things I learned, not only about the world of Star Trek, but also (pause for dramatic emphasis) myself.  I’d like to share my new vast knowledge of the universe with you.

Note #1: I am a nerd, but I am a different kind of nerd.  I like Harry Potter and Tolkien and Disney and Sherlock.  Basically, I like nerdy things on Earth.  I am not a sci-fi/outer space nerd at all, so this was a pretty new experience for me.  I am also a girl, and I experience the world around me from a very estrogen-fueled perspective (Read: I went to Star Trek and fawned over hot guys).

Note #2: This should not contain spoilers.  I’m pretty sure it’s all common knowledge.  If you are wary, however, continue with caution.

1) Earth still exists in the Star Trek universe.

2) Zachary Quinto’s voice is like warm, melted chocolate to the ears.  I could listen to him and Benedict talk all day.

3) Klingon is not, as I had previously thought, the universal language in Star Trek.  It’s actually a race of creepy aliens.  But they do speak Klingon.  Apparently, they are also the bad guys, so I’m not sure why the guys on The Big Bang Theory were playing Klingon Boggle.  But oh well.  It was hilarious.

4) Thanks to shows like Frasier and The Big Bang Theory I simply cannot take Klingon seriously.  I giggled every single time anyone mentioned or spoke in Klingon.

5) Spock and Uhura are the cutest couple in the galaxy.  When my sister first told me that Spock had a girlfriend, I had a really hard time believing it, but they are seriously adorable.  I kind of wish the movie had been more them and less space fighting stuff.  Maybe they can write a Star Trek for girls where it’s just Spock and Uhura being cute and Kirk (the Chris Pine Kirk, not the William Shatner Kirk) running around being hot with his blue eyes and sexy smirk.

6) Alcatraz apparently still exists in however far into the future this movie is set.

7) Part of the reason I’ve never been a fan of space/sci-fi movies is because the setting makes me uncomfortable.  Not space, per se, but the high-tech space city type things.  Thanks to Star Trek, I finally figured out why I always feel uneasy when I watch them.  It’s because there is no ground!  I don’t trust any building or city or establishment where I can’t see the ground!  What happens if you fall off the sidewalk?  You die!

8) Another reason I tend to avoid space movies is because of all the creepy aliens.  I really enjoy alien invasion movies, but for some reason, aliens walking around, dressed, and conversing with people like it’s an everyday occurrence really freaks me out.  It’s the same reason I’ve never made it all the way through the original Star Wars trilogy.

9) Young Spock talking to Old Spock is, for some reason, genuinely hilarious.

10) Seeing chaos on the Enterprise reminded me of Titanic.

11) I now know where the phrase, “Beam me up, Scotty” comes from.  I don’t know where I thought it came from, but for some reason, it never registered with me that it came from Star Trek.

12) I liked all the minor characters a lot.

13) I thought it was funny that Sulu was Harold from Harold and Kumar.  I thought it was even funnier when my sister told me that he grows up to be George Takei.  But that’s probably because I’ve only ever seen him in The Big Bang Theory and he was freakin’ hilarious in that.

14) I’m pretty sure that Jim Parsons based his performance of Sheldon Cooper on Spock.

15) I thought I would laugh when Spock made his little Vulcan hand sign, but it was actually during a very sweet, sentimental moment and it was very touching.

All in all, this was a very good movie.  I understood and enjoyed it, even without having seen the first movie or any of the television series.  Though I think being a huge Big Bang Theory fanatic may have helped.