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Grand Opening

It is with GREAT pleasure and much excitement that I announce my new business endeavor with my dear friend/fellow editor pal AJ Nuest. Today is the first day of our Grand Opening celebration and this is the announcement we’re lucky enough to post as guests on several upcoming blogs:

September 1-15th marks the official
Grand Opening of Mystical Press Services!!!

This means 50% Off all our classes
and services through September 15th!

http://mysticalpress.com 

In case you haven’t yet heard about our website, allow me to introduce you to a place where you just might find the fulfillment of your dreams. That’s right! The talented folks at Mystical Press want to help you reach your publishing goals!

How do we do that? I’m glad you asked!

Mystical Press is the culmination of an idea that came from two authors and professionally trained editors—AJ Nuest and Arial Burnz—where we help authors bridge the gap between the form-letter rejection and publication. In fact, we believe in this venture so passionately, our tagline is “Helping authors achieve their dreams.

At Mystical Press our primary goal is to help writers. As authors, we understand the frustration of not receiving constructive and useful feedback, the aggravation of navigating the murky depths of the publishing industry and that, sometimes, authors just need a place to vent. Well, we’re here to tell you, the insanity can end! Continue reading

Fantasy Fiction Author Finds a New Home

Welcome to My New Fantasy Home!

Ahhh! A warm fire crackles beside me. The cushy chair craddles me as I sit before the hearth and absorb the warmth from the flames. I put my book down upon the table to my right and smile at the faeries flitting around the room, decorating my new home with sparkling dust. My spirit guide and friend, MaeDawn the unicorn, curls before the fire. Raja the dragon swoops by my window and I enjoy the overcast sky. A perfect day for writing. Broderick MacDougal saunters into the room and sits in the adjacent chair, his roguish smile setting my insides to fluttering. Would you like to join us?

I welcome you to my new home. I haven’t moved physically…just in cyberspace and in genres. In realizing my clarified role as a fantasy fiction author instead of a romance novelist, I thought it fitting to surround myself with the images and atmosphere of the genre…the things I love. Unicorns. Mystical places. Dragons. Vampires. Werewolves. *sigh* I believe I’ve finally found my home. Yes. It feels right now.

I struggled with being a romance novelist, as I was told my romance stories were more about the layers and the details I’d woven into the plot versus the romance. The final resolution of my stories was NOT the relationship, but the journey the chacters traveled with each other. No matter what story I penned or planned, romance was not the center of the story even though there were strong romantic elements and I tried to hard to fit into that mold. I felt lost. Homeless, if you will.

As such, I could not live up to the expectations of my audience, which influences my sales and by which I gain more readers. Though the romance community never shunned me, I did feel out of place, like walking into a Regency ball, unsure of how to behave under the social scrutiny. I don’t blame them at all. It wasn’t their fault I went to the wrong party. In directing my attention to the fantasy fiction community, however, I was welcomed with open arms. It was as if I’d walked into the Prancing Pony. A mug of ale was shoved into my hand, I pulled a chair up to a table surrounded by hobbits, dwarves, wizards and elves. We laughed and spun tales and I felt the freedom to be myself. How refreshing! Pass the brew!

Now that I’ve accepted the idea and settled into my new home, I look back on my old place, surprised I thought I belonged there. I write fantasy fiction with strong romantic elements. It’s as simple as that. I welcome you to my new home and invite you to sit awhile and explore. You’ll find, as I did, it’s not that much different. Just a little more magical.

Qualities of a Good Critique Partner

I’ve heard a lot of comments by many in the publishing industry that the occupation of a writer is a lonely one. You sit at the computer (typewriter or yellow legal pad, for you nostalgic types), alone with your thoughts and the voices you hear, crafting your tales. Though that part of the process may be a solitary experience, there’s a bigger picture. I’ve been writing for many years and along the journey, there are many people a writer needs to further their career along: beta readers, critique partners, editors, publishers, cheering section, readers and more. The journey to getting published is rarely done without others and they all have their place and importance. Since I recently found my critique partner, that’s the one I’ll focus on today. (Click on the links above if you’re interested in learning more about the other people that contribute to a writer’s journey.) Continue reading

Making Money With My Writing

My latest heroine is Amanda Hocking. You may or may not have heard of her, so for those who are unfamiliar with her name and what the hype is all about, I’ll give you a very brief description: She’s making thousands of dollars (close to being a millionaire, if not already) self-publishing her YA (Young Adult) vampire romance novels through Amazon.com for the Kindle. She started last April 2010 with her blog (click on her picture here to visit said blog) and since then she has sold about 900,000 copies of her books (<–In this link, she addresses this fact and others, such as how much she is charging, etc.). She’ll tell you all the details on her blog, but in short, she’s charging anywhere from $0.99-2.99 per eBook (more for the paperback versions). Do the math, she’s making a lot of money.

If you want to know more about her, her point of view and what she’s doing, I highly recommend visiting her blog.

So, on to my post. Why is she my latest heroine? Because… Continue reading

10 Ways a Writer Can Take Advantage of Today’s Technology

I LOVE technology! It’s made my life so much easier as a writer…among other things. I remember the days of writing my novels on yellow, lined legal pads or typewriter (yes, I know, I’m dating myself) and then came the awesome personal computer: My first being a Tandy 1000. Sure, it was DOS based and monochrome, but HOLY COW, no more white-out or retyping a page!

Then the development of the Internet and WHAM! the world of writing exploded in so many ways. The best part about the Internet, as far as I’m concerned with writing, is E-MAIL SUBMISSIONS!! The days of packaging up that 250+ page manuscript are over! YAY! The latest technologies of tablets and eBook readers just makes my head spin when I think of all the possibilities! Apple announced it’s two newest features for the iPad, and it inspired me to write this blog entry to chat about ten things writers can do to take advantage of today’s technology to either write or promote their writing. E-mail, computers, and the Internet in general are givens, so I’ve thrown out some options that incorporate those. Here they are (in no particular order): Continue reading

Eliminating Writer’s Block

In honor of National Margarita Day, I’m celebrating being liberated from writer’s block!!!

Writer’s block…first there is the debate on whether or not it exists. Debate ended: It does. If it didn’t, it wouldn’t be the dreaded disease that plagues every writer on the planet. Those who have experienced it knows it prevents your creativity from flowing and brings your writing to a grinding halt. It’s not being lazy, it’s just misunderstanding what it really is. As writers, we all experience it at one time or another and we all know it’s the downside of being an author…or is it? Believe it or not, I believe I have found the cure for Writer’s Block! Continue reading

“Lay vs. Lie (vs. Laid)” – GREAT Question!!

I love to share a good thing! As a subscriber to Writer’s Digest magazine and their blog/articles, I glean a lot of useful information about how to improve my craft as a writer…as all us writers should do! This particular article had my heart pumping with excitement and elation over a solved mystery! (Of course, had I taken the time and got off my proverbial butt, I could have done the research and found the proper answer myself. With that being said, however, Brian does a GREAT job explaining it AND making me laugh!) Continue reading