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Diggin' out of a Rut!

Well, folks, I'm stuck in a rut. And it pains me to admit it. But like with most writers, it happens... Call it writer's block... call it a momentary lapse in creative juices... call it what you will, but I will say this much - IT SUCKS! I am attempting to start a new idea and I think I have rewritten it about twenty  a thousand times! I'm going to buckle down today, dab on some attention assist essential oil, and get to work.

So, what does this little rant have to do with the picture posted above? It really paints a picture on what authors go through. I've been a writer since I was biting ankles, and only within the past six years have I developed the courage to publish and share my work. So much more comes with writing than just getting a manuscript finished - re-writes (as stated above), editing (the worst part of finishing a book for me), and not to mention the marketing! It is definitely a piece of our soul, a small glimpse into our minds, and it is nerve wracking opening it up for criticism to all of the world. Some days it feels extremely rewarding, and some days I wonder why the heck I keep doing it.

I continue to do what I do for readers, even if I only have a few at the moment. I try not to harp too much on the sales numbers - but believe me, it's like looking at a bad car wreck. You know it's bad, but you STILL have to look out of curiosity. I think the numbers are partly what has attributed to the deep rut that I'm stuck in. I feel like I'm writing to an empty room sometimes.

What I need to do is get back to basics - when I first started writing, it was Fanfiction for various TV shows. I did it for the FUN of it, since no money could be made off of it. Even back then, I thrived off of feedback and reviews. I need to remember how much of a blast it was. I didn't pull in a paycheck, but I loved every second of it. What is different with my original fiction? I still need feedback in reviews, but why am I focusing so much on sales numbers? I wish I knew the answer, but it is in my control. I need to migrate away from the reports and numbers. I need to only check them a few times a week, if any....

Long story short, it's time to dig out of this deep hole and get back to doing what I love. To those faithful fans who have stuck around, thank you! To those who have recently discovered me, thank you! And to those who randomly stumble across this blog and have not yet read one of my books, thank you! You are all why I continue to write. For the FUN of it. For the escape from real life. For the stress relief of forming a character in my head and watching him evolve into a huge force in my writing world.

Today I dig out of my rut! Today I start a new idea. Today I stop harping on sales numbers and move forward!

Have a wonderful Sunday!

The Importance of Feedback

I've had a few people ask me how they can help me with my books. One of the easiest and best ways to give a shout out is to leave a review. Even if you didn't enjoy the book, constructive feedback is always welcomed and appreciated. Notice I say constructive... slamming an author and being hateful isn't useful for us, but constructive criticism helps us grow as a writer.

I know a lot of people who cringe when they are asked to leave a review. I'm not asking for a ten page book report! :) It can be one or two sentences pointing out what you liked, what you didn't like, etc. Quick and to the point is just as great as someone who writes several paragraphs.

It's a catch 22. On Amazon, the more reviews a book has, the more exposed it gets. At least, that's what I've heard. It's a vicious circle - if I don't have many reviews, how can I get my book out there to get those reviews? Writing a book doesn't stop at finishing the manuscript. The marketing side is probably the most challenging to me, and reviews are a big factor in exposure. It also goes hand in hand with word of mouth. If you liked a book, tell someone. If someone asks for book recommendations, tell them about the books you read and liked. If you recommend to enough people, it spreads like wildfire.

So, if you ever wonder how you can help an author, start with leaving a review! If you thoroughly enjoyed a book, the simple gesture can go a long way. And even if you didn't care for the book, leaving something constructive is helpful so the writer can take the advice and try to improve.

If we don't hear anything from readers, we aren't quite sure how we're doing. After all, you readers are the reason we do what we do! Hearing from you is appreciated!

Happy reading! Here's to another week!

Updates and Randomness

Yet another long break from updating my blog... yet another stupid excuse (I have no excuse).

With that being said... how's it going? (Taps on computer screen) Anyone out there? How's life treating you? How you getting through winter time (Ultimately my LEAST favorite season). I'm getting by.

I guess while I'm here, I'll announce my new release:

The Search for Skylar: A Charlie Wright Thriller (Book One)

Yes... that says book one. I have every intention of writing a second book about Charlie Wright and his shenanigans and have already started the idea. But first, you must go grab a copy of this one! It's in Kindle Unlimited for those of you who chuck out the $10 a month for unlimited reading. (The Netflix of Amazon)

I guess you need the link, right?

Click here to purchase The Search for Skylar (Book One)

Charlie Wright's life is plummeting into chaos. A recent divorce renders him helpless in an attempt to hold his family together. A weekend with his children is just what he needs to prove to his ex-wife Cassie that joint custody is the best option for everyone.

Tragedy strikes one Friday afternoon after school. Charlie's daughter Skylar goes missing. Every second that passes is a second wasted, and Charlie falls into a world of desperation and panic. Skylar has vanished into thin air - the only evidence that she was at his house is her shattered cell phone found in the alley.

With nothing to go on, the police label Charlie as a person of interest in the case. They harass and question him, basing their investigation around hearsay. His reputation quickly becomes tarnished, and he learns that the only way he'll find his daughter is if he takes matters into his own hands. With the help of his best friend Mary, he searches for Skylar, keeping hope that she is still alive.

The guilt Charlie feels for not protecting Skylar is his driving force, and he will stop at nothing to find out what happened to her.

Also, I've been busy putting several of my books into audio. Right now, Through Smoke is the only one available for purchase, but the others are in production and will hopefully be ready by this summer. 

So, busy times from me, and sadly, I've neglected my blog. For those who consistently read it, you know this is habitual. For those who have suddenly meandered here, strap in for a roller coaster ride.

60 days until spring. You know you're counting with me!

Happy Reading,