Wednesday, May 17, 2017

How to Stay Underwhelmed in an Overwhelming Author World.

I haven’t been able to write steady for about six months. Too many author voices are in my head and bogging me down. It’s not that they are telling me I can’t measure up; it’s just that everything seems too much. Social media has added demands to my author life that I never thought possible. How do I get back to writing and not letting the world overwhelm me?

I’ve considered quitting Facebook and Twitter altogether, but don’t want to abandon them. I don’t mind retweeting. I’m in a Facebook book club, so I want enjoy that. But suddenly I’m finding my beta-reading group and other writing groups too exhausting. My Facebook feed and Twitter feed will never stop. I’m also in charge of setting up blog posts for an up-and-coming LDS beta reader group, so I have to stay connected for that.

Here’s what I’ve been doing, other than taking a break from the world and hiding in a corner.

I’ve unfollowed many friends and family on Facebook. I follow those who don’t share every. single. thing. I stay away from people who post recipes. I follow those who offer great interaction and posts that help me as an author. What’s great about FB is that you don’t have to unfriend people. Just unfollow them for a time. You can always hop over to their profile if you want to catch up.

I don’t scroll my Twitter feed. Often porn pops up, despite my attempts to block it. I created lists of people who I want to engage with and who I want to retweet and scroll those. I click on followers to see who else I want to follow, and I post maybe once a day.

I just don’t have time for anything else in the social media world.

About the author voices in my head. Every author I’ve engaged with seems to have their own opinion about how to do things as an author, and they seem to think they are right. I just stopped listening for a while. Yes, I surface for critiques and feedback, but when I start scrolling posts about other authors and what they are doing, I get overwhelmed, thinking I have to do what they are doing now or learn what they are learning now. I had to stop and tell myself I’m in a different place. And that’s ok.

There’s a time for engagement and a time to work things out on your own. When I’m drafting, I have to turn everything off. I can’t focus if someone is spouting story structure over here and character arcs over there. Write the story first, without the other voices. Revisions are the time to get opinions.


As always, write for yourself, and only write the parts people want to read. That is the best writing advice above all.

Friday, May 5, 2017

Being Steadfast and Immovable

I’m a firm believer in being able to find a lesson or reason for every chapter of scripture in the Book of Mormon, even the war chapters. It’s the same with fiction; only write the parts people want to read, so there must be a reason God wanted some parts included in the scriptures, even if we think they are boring. If we prayerfully seek, we can find hidden meanings.

I had to look carefully to find the meaning for me in Alma 1. The chapter is about Nehor, who goes about teaching false doctrine. His teachings led many in the church astray, and they started persecuting their own brethren of the gospel because of their pride. The hearts of many saints hardened, and they withdrew from the church. 

Did the trial of their persecution cause their hearts to harden because they were unable to bear their afflictions? What could have been done to prevent this?

Many saints remained steadfast in the faith. How?

Alma 1:25 says, “They were steadfast and immovable in keeping the commandments of God, and they bore with patience the persecution which was heaped upon them.” The rest of the chapter goes on to tell how the saints were blessed for their selflessness and obedience.

We can have peace, despite persecution. Our steadfastness will lead to blessings and prosperity, but our persecutions can harden our hearts if we are not careful and don’t humble ourselves.

The key is being steadfast and immovable in keeping the commandments. The saints also worked hard, laboring to have the necessities of life. And through their efforts, they were blessed.

I feel comfort in knowing that, though trials in life may come, my determination and diligence in keeping the commandments of the Lord gives me peace. Everything I do is an extra buffer of protection; my heart is less likely to harden when faced with overwhelming adversity. And patience with persecution is not something to frown upon. It is a blessing beyond measure.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Christ Arose Blog Tour



Faith Blum has a new book! She wrote, edited, and published a short story in just three short days and you can now get it for free! Read on to learn more about it and to read my review.

About the Book



And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it. His countenance was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow: And for fear of him the keepers did shake, and became as dead men.

No longer could I say I was lonely. But oh, how I wish I could! Who could have done such a thing to the Creator of the world? Who had so much hatred for Him?

Available for free on all eBook vendor: http://books2read.com/christ-arose

Review of Christ Arose: A Tomb’s Tale

What I like about this short story was that it was a unique perspective on such a historical and sacred moment, the resurrection of Christ. I was a little mystified during the first paragraph, but as soon as the second paragraph explained that the narration was coming from the perspective of the tomb, everything made sense.

This short story demonstrates and emphasizes the author’s faith. She’s passionate about her faith in Christ and wishes to share it with her readers, and I commend her for that.

Although the story is an intriguing idea and concept, as a Christian, I didn’t quite connect with the emotion and spirit of the story. But nonetheless, it is written with beautiful emotion, care, and sacredness. It was just hard for me to put myself in the place of an inanimate object.

I recommend this story to other Christians who would like an uplifting fictional point of view of the Savior’s resurrection. The story is creative writing in a way that’s meant to uplift, and I believe readers will find enjoyment in its merit and perhaps be able to share the simple truths of the resurrection with others because of the way a story can open the heart of the reader.

About the Author

Faith Blum is a 20-something author of multiple books in various genres. She loves to write, read, play piano, knit, crochet, sew, watch movies, and play games with her family. She lives in Wisconsin with her family on a small family farm where they raise goats, chickens, turkeys, ducks, and have 2 dogs and a varying number of cats.

Faith’s goal in her writing is to encourage Christians in their walk with Christ. If you enjoyed this book, go to her website to sign up for her Monthly Newsletter so you can get an email with fun facts, giveaways, and so much more every month. You will also find links to her other Social Media sites on her website. She loves to hear from her readers, so feel free to contact her. 

Giveaway




Faith is offering a really neat giveaway for this tour. The ParLaGrace etsy seller has an April special right now for a really beautifully made block that says He Lives. Isn’t it pretty? You can enter the giveaway here:
 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule 



April 22
Written Rest-Book Spotlight and Review

April 24
Leila Tualla-Book Spotlight

April 25
With a Joyful Noise-Book Spotlight and Review

April 26
Frances Hoelsma-Book Spotlight
Perpetual Indie Perspective-Book Spotlight and Review

April 27
Bookish Orchestrations-Giveaway Winner

Sunday, April 23, 2017

A Day in the Life of an Indie Author

An ideal writing day is one where I sit at home and tackle my WIP, and I’m not interrupted by errands or life. I try to set aside the hours between ten a.m. and two p.m. to write a rough draft, revise, or edit.

So what about the rest of my life?

I wake in the wee hours of the mornin’. I have two and a half hours from the time I wake until the time I send the last nugget off to school. In those hours, I accomplish amazing things.

I eat. Wow. I pack lunches and wake kids. I either load or unload the dishwasher. Counters and floors are wiped down (everyday). Within those bustling minutes, I make time to stretch and tone and time to read spiritually uplifting material, often a religious magazine or book. Somehow I get dressed and ready for the day.

I slink back to the house after carpool and give myself an hour of electronic housekeeping. This is updating my blog and the two other blogs I post on. I clean out files and make memes or graphic images. Emails are dealt with.

It’s ten o’clock. Lunchtime. I’ve been awake for four hours. Need to fuel up.

Now I dive into my works in progress. I set a timer for forty-two minutes. In the middle of wherever I might be, when that screaming bomb goes off, I jump up and hightail it to my kitchen. “Not to eat again?” you ask. Nope. To dance. I crank up the music in the room that has the most open floor space and shake out the stiffness in my body. This is great and energizing before I get back to the grind.

My dance-a-thon happens three more times.

Then the best part of my day happens. A steaming hot shower followed by an hour-long nap.

Crunch time has arrived. If I haven’t thought of what to make for dinner, I palm through the frozen foods in my freezer and invent something. I usually preheat my oven and prep before running off to scoop kids up from school.

We’re all home. Dinner ensues. Now it’s me time. I either catch up on my shows or curl up with a good book while interspersing time with the kids and homework.

But this is a best-scenario day. Often anything flies.

What does your writing day look like?

Friday, March 31, 2017

Series Revamp!

My series is evolving.

It's a good thing. 

It's exciting. 

To keep up with future novels that are in the works, I've changed the Chronicles of the Half-Emrys to The Emrys Chronicles. All your favorite characters are as they were, but the book covers and names have changed slightly. You can still find them on Amazon.

Check out my new covers!

Half-Emrys: Master of Lies



Lost to the lies. Consumed by revenge.


Unaware of her immortal heritage, the truth concealed from her, Ahnalyn learns she’s a child of two worlds—a half-emrys with the ability to wield the light and the dark power. When Ahnalyn is taken captive by evil tyrant Lord Caedryn, Aneirin, a Son of Light, defies law and risks exile to come to her rescue.

As Aneirin’s life becomes entwined with Ahnalyn’s, he is certain she belongs with the immortal emrys. But doubt and fear shroud Ahnalyn as the painful truths of her past unfold. Ahnalyn is thrown on a journey beyond her control, and she must sift through the lies Caedryn throws at her to uncover her true self and true potential, before the darkness consumes her.

Half-Emrys: Master of Lies, a romantic fantasy, is the first book in The Emrys Chronicles.

Half-Emrys: The Two Masters



Choose the light or choose the darkness, but you cannot have both.


As a half-emrys, Einion can wield the powers of light and darkness in the mortal world. But having known only the light’s purity in the immortal realm, Einion fears the dark power that leads to corruption. Despairs over his heart increase his uncertainty, and Einion is thrust on a path where he must face his worst fears to save the one he truly loves.

Rhianu, a ruthless Dark Emrys, stumbles into Einion’s life only to be challenged by her versions of good and evil. Her heart is torn between power and love, between the past and the future. Familiar with betrayal, Rhianu must follow through with her master’s deceptive plan—no matter what the consequences or what her heart tells her.

Half-Emrys: The Two Masters, a romantic fantasy, is the second book in the The Emrys Chronicles.

Half-Emrys: Master of Time



Time is only one enemy.


A malicious shadow trails Catrin and Meuric after they find themselves shoved backward through time. As a wielder of darkness, only Meuric knows the enormity of the evil that wants to claim Catrin, a pure Daughter of Light. Though they are two immortal enemies thrown together, Meuric and Catrin band together, searching for the way home.

As time forces Meuric to relive a tortured past and face his fears, Catrin’s health rapidly declines from a prior injury. Meuric confronts reality—his long-ignored light could save her, but using it will diminish his dark power, hindering his ability to pass through the ether to their own time. Returning home has become the least of his problems . . . if there’s a way home at all.

Half-Emrys: Master of Time, a romantic fantasy, is the third book in the The Emrys Chronicles.


Fallen Emrys: Niawen’s Story



Even the purest can fall.


In a peaceful world of seemingly perfect people, Niawen defends the dragons’ paradise from the evils outside their realm. Throughout her life, she was taught that humans would corrupt her inner light and that entering the mortal world means exile.

Mortified when her chosen life mate doesn’t return her feelings, she flees to the mortal realms, despite all the warnings. Her growing affections for the humans are crushed by a new enemy—death, and Niawen willingly defiles her pure light in battle to avenge her friends.

As she fights to overcome her corruption, she faces a sobering truth—the humans she loves will die. Niawen must find the one emrys who came into the mortal world thousands of years ago or risk facing eternity alone.

Fallen Emrys: Niawen’s Story, a romantic fantasy, is the prequel to The Emrys Chronicles.

The Emrys Chronicles boxed set


The Emrys Chronicles boxed set contains Half-Emrys: Master of Lies, Half-Emrys: The Two Masters, and Half-Emrys: Master of Time. Follow the stories of the half-emrys, immortal children who harness the powers of light and darkness. The Emrys Chronicles are romantic fantasy.