This year I have a lot to be thankful for. My family, friends, agent, career, health and so much more. Has it been bumpy at times? Of course. But I’m a Michigander and bumpy roads are nothing new.
I’m also thankful for the muse which I had briefly thought abandoned me but she was just taking a vacation. Now she’s back and waking me up at 3AM with new books. Last Tuesday I was woken from a dead sleep at 3AM-ish with a scene from a new book still fresh in my head down to the costumes and intricate hairstyles.
The goal is to have the character profiles for the key players as well as an overall plot outline for the story by the end of this week so that when I shelf it to finish edits on Seer I will still remember the important aspects by the time I can return to it.
I’m not going to give any details regarding this new project but I will say it has re-lit the spark that keeps my writing alive!
So don’t get me wrong, I love writing. I love being an author and nothing could convince me to quit pursuing it as a life’s passion. But one of the aspects of life as an author is…marketing.
But, miracle of miracles, for once, in pursuit of promoting myself, I actually managed to have a little fun. I heard about a new place at my local mall called The Detroit Selfie Museum. So me, my bestie Amanda, a box of books, and a bunch of outfits made our way to the mall and spent the following 90 minutes having a blast.
Like all people, authors appreciate…well…appreciation. Validation that the work they put into the world enriched the lives of those around them in some small way. Sometimes I wish I was the kind of author who was fine writing just for myself. Keeping my worlds to myself in Word docs and overflowing notebooks.
But my love language is gift giving. What does that mean? It means I derive joy from bringing joy to others. And as much as I would love to buy presents for all the cool people in the world that has some seriously cost prohibitive factors. So sharing my stories is the next best thing.
This message was in my Facebook Messenger inbox and it was the first thing I saw this morning. It was the best start to my day that I’ve had in a while!
If you’re asking yourself how you can appreciate a beloved author (doesn’t have to be me) there are numerous ways! My personal favorite is by going to Goodreads and Amazon and leaving reviews! That feedback doesn’t just make the author’s day, it also helps promote them with some positive advertising. In addition, Amazon’s algorithm looks at products that have numerous positive reviews and bring those to the forefront of a buyer’s search results.
So if you haven’t already, please please PLEASE take a few minutes to leave a review on The Sword & Shield!
If I’m editing I’ll listen to something familiar on repeat. Currently I’m editing Seer while playing the new Ed Sheeran Album entitled ‘=’ on repeat. And for cosmetic edits where I’m just taking notes someone else gave me and removing commas and correcting spelling mistakes I’ll listen to something upbeat.
How about you? What’s your go-to music when you need to get stuff done?
I was struggling for a topic this week. This past month has put me to the test in a number of ways and I am drained. Even now I’m powering through to the weekend as I am very excited for Halloween.
Working on keeping myself busy on things that bring me joy and to keep me occupied so I don’t dwell or overthink anything. Also working on focusing on the positives. Like the fact that I have all the tools I need to bring Seer up to snuff to present my agent Seer: The Second Draft.
I also signed up to sell my book in Grand Rapids at an event on December 4th (mark your calendars!) and am working towards prepping for that by making keychains and earrings to sell along with my book.
Operation: Keep Busy Till You Get Through This Tunnel is in effect!
Over the past several months (though mostly this last several weeks in a time crunched panic) I have been working on my latest Halloween costume. For anyone who has seen The Mandalorian, you are familiar with the fact that they are a people who wear armor and live by a code of honor. So while I’m not going to be the Mandalorian, I will be a Mandalorian.
You might ask, “Emma, why the rush? You have two weeks till Halloween!” And you would be right. But this past weekend was Motor City Comic Con at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi, MI and it was my intention to dress to impress.
I went alone so there are no good selfies of me as selfies are difficult enough to take when full armor isn’t involved but I’ll have some for my halloween post!
Finally, this is my TWO HUNDREDTH blog post, guys! I’m stunned that I’ve managed to keep this going as long as I have to be perfectly honest but I’m proud of myself for sticking with it.
For my OG fans who read The Sword & Shield in the past year and a half you are familiar with the rough around the edges first attempt at a debut novel. Recently I re-released it with a few updated tidbits, edits, and an all around better version. But because I’m not Scrooge McDuck, I’m not going to ask people who paid for the original to pay for it again.
Therefore, I will be providing a link to a free copy of the e-book! It will be based entirely on the honor system since there’s really no way for me to verify a previous purchase without employing Orwellian tactics. So if you did buy the original version (e-book/audio/physical) then that link is for you!
For those who haven’t purchased it but just want a free book, I can’t stop you but I do ask that, if you enjoyed it that you purchase it afterwards. This is the result of years of work on my part and the blood (papercuts), sweat and tears that I put into it.
In addition, I have a giveaway that any and all purchasers of my book (the new and old versions) are eligible for!
Take a selfie with my book or your tablet/ipad/kindle open to a page of my book. Post that to Instagram or Tiktok (bonus entry if you do both) with the hashtag #catladyEzraToth along with your favorite part of the book. That will enter you to win a limited edition, signed, HARDCOVER edition of The Sword & Shield.
Why limited edition? Because I’m special ordering them and am only going to order five.
So if that’s something that interests you then sign up! Contest runs till the end of October and the winner will be announced November 1st!
If you’ve been on a plane you’re familiar with the pre-flight spiel. Life vest under your seat, lights will illuminate the aisle directing you to the nearest emergency exit, and oxygen masks may drop from the ceiling.
Without fail, during this one man show put on by the flight attendant, they will instruct you to put on your own mask before assisting others. The reason for this is that, if due to cabin pressure the oxygen is low and you pass out while helping someone else then you’re kind of SOL. The lesson to take away from this is that you can’t be of help to others if you don’t first help yourself.
It took – and is still taking me – a lot of work to even begin to grasp that concept. As contradictory as it sounds, taking care of yourself before you take care of anyone else will allow you to better help others.
Selfish is the word that first came to mind when that concept was introduced to me.
A lot of new interpersonal concepts have been introduced to me as of late and I just do my best to process the new information and when I stumble I remind myself it will be good fodder for my books.