The Power of Tiktok Compels You! (And Community)

In June I held a Sword and Shield giveaway from my Tiktok account that included a signed copy of my book and various goodies. I’ve found that, by advertising the contest, and by extension advertising the book, I am able to attract new readers even if there is only one winner. And I was exceptionally fortunate in the winner of this giveaway as they also made an Instagram post advertising my book!

Another unexpected windfall of the contest was someone who purchased my ebook and then messaged me stating that he very much enjoyed it and recommended it to various book clubs online. I told him if he ever wanted a signed copy I would waive shipping as a thank you for marketing on my behalf. He took me up on that offer a mere qeek later.

The final marketing move I made was by accepting my agent’s invite to join a community of Scifi/fantasy authors she represents. One such author wrote the above review for my book and asked to interview me for her monthly web show which will livestream July 11th at 7PM EST.

Marketing can be tiresome and work intensive but if you do it right, you’ll get more out of it than you put in.

Bye for now!

What Is Your ‘Why’?

People don’t do anything without a reason. Even if that reason is ‘I was bored’ or ‘I didn’t want to do [Insert Unpleasant Task Here] so I did this instead’.

However, this post isn’t about apathetic non-decisions, but rather, about the decisions that make us who we are. And so I ask again, “What is your ‘Why'”?

Mine are numerous:

Friends. Family. Fur babies. Personal Happiness. Success.

These are the things that drive me. The iron chains anchoring me to this plane of existence.

One of my whys when it comes to writing is community. I can hardly fangirl with others over the worlds I’ve created if they don’t have access to those worlds! So what’s a poor creative mind to do? Gotta write that shit down and disseminate it among as many like minded weirdos as possible so I have as many people as possible to fangirl about my stories with!

Motor City Comic Con (MC3) 2023

Catherine Tate’s autograph now proudly resides next to Christopher Eccleston’s!

10 years ago I went to my first MC3 with my Dad and met Stan Lee! Now, in 2023 I’ve been to several Motor City Comic Cons and each one has been full of amazing memories.

I went May 20th to meet a hero of mine, the genius actress Catherine Tate who embodied one of my favorite Doctor Who characters, and got her autograph. If the picture above looks familiar, that’s because I got Christopher Eccleston’s autograph last year at this same convention on that very canvas!

As I continue to wait for feedback on my manuscript from my agent, I do my best to put aside that anxiety in favor of more productive things, like my next manuscript!

That’s right folks! If you haven’t read previous posts then you wouldn’t know that Ezra’s story continues! I wrote The Sword & Shield and then wrote a YA Fantasy tentatively called Seer and NOW I’m working on my debut novel’s sequel: The Sea & Storm.

Oh I do love my alliteration.

In other news, I recently did a giveaway on my Tiktok of a signed copy of my book and will be mailing out the lucky winner’s box of adventure tomorrow!

Have a safe and wonderful Memorial Day Weekend and

bye for now!

Not Quite Like Riding A Bike

It will be, I’m sure, a surprise to no one, that the saying ‘it’s just like riding a bike’ does not ring true for me. Unless I am speaking of something I’m struggling to re-learn. The reason being, dear reader, that I am not great when it comes to riding a bike.

This was not always the case. As a kid I would ride my bike to school and around the neighborhood but, as I grew older, the skill faded in a way not-unlike the way childlike wonderment fades from too many too early.

Have I ridden a bike recently? No, thank goodness. My last foray was on a rented bicycle in Florida. I crashed into a sign. No I don’t know how but I’m fine, thanks for asking.

The reason for my ramble is because, unlike my inability to ride a bike, thank goodness, my writing skills came back to me like they’d only been gone a moment, rather than nearly two years.

I forgot how naturally the words flow, how effortless it can be when you seize the threads of a new idea and suddenly your fingers can’t keep pace on the keyboard with the story flowing through you.

All this to say, the edits of my work in progress tentatively titled Seer are done.

For the second draft, at least.

I’m sure many more will come but for now, until my agent Amy has had a chance to look over the new draft, I turn my thoughts to Ezra and his next adventure.

If you’ve read and loved The Sword & Shield as much as I, now is the time to get excited.

There’s more to come.

Bye for now!

It’s Been A Minute

And by ‘a minute’ I mean five-ish months. Between you, me, and the internet, 2023 had a bit of a bumpy start and I had to take a beat to do some clearing of the emotional and mental cobwebs and course correct.

During that time, I’m ashamed to say, all writing projects have come to a screeching halt. Not really even screeching because there wasn’t much momentum leading up to this hiatus.

I was living, I now realize, in an illusion.

I was living in a world where writing is something I do when inspiration strikes and when I have the motivation. And it had worked for me in the past so I wasn’t wrong to think that’s what I should be doing now. I’m not sure how or why my writing brain changed but now writing is a lot like going to the gym. 90% of the work is getting in your exercise clothes, driving to the gym, and actually walking through the doors. Once inside, the actual exercise is the easy part. And when you’re walking out you’re probably sore, but also high off the endorphins that come from putting your body through its paces.

Am I happy about this mental shift from easy writing to feeling like I’m Sisyphus?

Hell to the no.

But do I feel better in the knowledge that there is a clear and vibrant path I can walk to get back to what I love? Begrudgingly, yes.

I’m sorry for being gone so long but, barring any cataclysmic events beyond what has become normal, I plan to resume a regular blogging schedule. We’ll see if that comes to pass.

Pray for me, lol.

Bye for now!

2023: Be Vewy Vewy Quiet

I see posts on Facebook and Twitter and Instagram claiming 2023 as their year. That they’re manifesting good things and positive change after what feels like decades of global trauma.

Not me, though. I’m approaching 2023 as Steve Irwin would approach a crocodile. With cautious optimism and a healthy dose of respect. Granted, Steve Irwin died on one such escapade so the metaphor is somewhat flawed. But we’re going to ignore that and focus on my point, which is that we will enter the new year as though it is a minefield that we are confident enough to navigate so long as we don’t get cocky.

The only thing I’m ‘claiming’ for 2023 is the spirit of maintenance. I’ve gotten to a solid place in my mental health. Maintaining it. I’ve gotten to the best place I’ve been with my weight in over a decade. Maintaining it. I have a great relationship with an amazing guy. Maintaining it. I’ve been paying off debt at a steady rate. Maintaining it.

That’s the energy I’m putting into the universe for the upcoming circuit around the sun and I am hoping that energy is rewarded with what I’m asking for – homeostasis.

bye for now!

It’s Like A Reward

Well, it’s here. Almost. Six days from today, many fortunate people around the world roll out of bed to presents and silly Christmas outfits and love. For me, as the year comes to a close, Christmas has been a bit of a finish line. A goal post, if you will.

This year has, as has consistently been the trend lately, been a bit of a ride on the struggle bus. There were highs, absolutely there were highs! Triumphs and core memories and victories hard won but won all the same. I made new friends and found new people to include in the favorites section of my phone’s contacts. And as is part of life, there were failures and attempts that didn’t come to fruition, disappointments and set-backs.

I had a conversation with a co-worker last week where we discussed spiritual wellness. She said that when she is depressed, it is often because she is not doing the things that fulfill her. In this case, she takes some time, makes herself a cup of tea, and engages in self-reflection to find out what part of her is not being nourished.

November 21st I posted that I was getting ‘Back on Track’. That I was renewing my pursuit of my passion – writing – to further my career as an author. Ten days later, I was admitted to the hospital for four days and then on bedrest until the twelfth. I’m back to work but still recuperating and, as you may imagine, my lofty writing goals for the rest of the year were a bit derailed.

My agent, in her infinite kindness and patience, has never rushed me or pressured me. I’ve done that enough for both of us, truth be told. But in 2023 I plan to exercise kindness, forgiveness, and understanding. The reason I started putting my ideas down and creating characters and worlds was not to publish books or make stupid amounts of money – though you wouldn’t have to twist my arm to accept either of those things should they come to be. I started storytelling for the simple fact that I love it. It brings me joy. I need to get back to that core idea. While an end goal is never a bad thing to keep in the back of one’s mind, it shouldn’t be the primary focus, and I lost sight of that.

I have a lot of hope and optimistic dreams going into 2023.

It’s up to me to live up to them.

See you in 2023 and

bye for now!