Have a Piece of Chocolate and Move On

By Ellen Leventhal
rejection

I know I’ve written about rejection before. But see, that’s the thing. It’s not something you think about once, get over, and move on to a field of daisies and puppies to write happily ever after.  Yes, after a rejection, eat chocolate, have some wine, and move on.  Definitely move on. Just don’t delude yourself into thinking that once you move on, you’ll never get that punch in the gut feeling again.

For traditionally published authors, and those attempting to be one, the rejection letter is sometimes a literary form of “It’s not you, it’s me.” It usually reads something like this: “Although you have a wonderful way of telling a story, it’s just not right for our list. We hope your manuscript finds a home.”  (That always makes me think of hundreds of poor manuscripts huddled together under a street light; homeless and cold.) Sometimes that’s true. Different agents and editors are looking for different things. And sometimes it’s timing. I once got a beautiful rejection telling me that they liked my writing, but they just published a book with a very similar theme, and they are a small press….blah, blah, blah. You know, it’s not you, it’s us. But then there are also the ones that pretty much tell you that you are a fool to have submitted because your work is way below their standards, and you might as well throw your computer away because you are a hopeless hack. OK, I may have overreacted and read that into my last rejection, but you get the idea.

So how about if you indie publish? No rejections? Right and wrong.  Although there may not be actual rejections, you still need a thick skin. Most critique groups have caring, diplomatic members who will point out issues in your manuscript without making you cringe. Critique groups are wonderful for finding things you missed because you are too close to the project. But sometimes an editor may not be as diplomatic. And what about when you pay someone to critique your work and then get a less than stellar review? You may take their criticisms as a form of rejection. Again, drink wine, eat chocolate, and fix the manuscript. You still may feel like you have been punched in the gut, but at least you have a chance to revise. So do it.

Now, what about the indie writer who doesn’t get his work critiqued or edited? Well, maybe they won’t face the same type of rejection, but most likely, their book won’t do well. But those writers are for a whole different blog post. Indie writers need to go through all the same steps as traditionally published writers. When they don’t, they make the rest of us look bad. More on that another day.

We all face some type of rejection. It’s not just about writing.  How do you handle it? I’d love to hear because I’m running low on chocolate and wine.

 

 

Advertisements

Happy Leap Day/ List Day

time management threeBy Ellen Leventhal

The writer’s life and time management. Unfortunately, these two don’t always go together well. At least not for me. I’m sure I’m not alone in my wish for more hours in the day. Does anyone else end their days staring at the ceiling, ticking off all the tasks you did NOT get done that day? Please tell me it’s not just me!

So how happy am I that there is a full extra day this month? VERY happy. Surely, I will use this day to check things off my list. There aren’t that many things, right? I can do this! Here we go:

  1. Send poetry to that magazine.
  2. Dig out the email that tells me the name of the magazine.
  3. Type out texts of picture books to work on pacing.
  4. Go to the library and check-out said picture books.
  5. Begin work on that new website I’ve been talking about for years.
  6. Find someone to help me do that.
  7. Walk around the block. Sitting all day is bad for you.
  8. Finish three critiques.
  9. Call Comcast so I can get online to pull up the stories to critique.
  10. Re-write that short story in picture book format.
  11. Re-write that picture book manuscript into short story format.
  12. Have lunch!
  13. Stop at the Galleria after lunch to pick up those cute clothes for grandkids.
  14. Text daughters-in-law and double check sizes.
  15. Reply to store’s request for more books. Yes, the reissue of that book will be out by summer.
  16. Nag anyone who is responsible for getting the new book out.
  17. Have dinner.
  18. Climb into bed and tick off every item I did not accomplish. Sigh….

Sometimes it’s time management issues. Sometimes it’s computer issues. And sometimes life interferes with the best laid plans. But I will take this extra day for something. Even if it means counting my blessings because, although the book deals aren’t rolling in, a lot of other great things are.

Happy Leap Day, everyone! Use it to do what makes your happy.

 

 

Truly Bad Date? Share It and Win!

by Monica Shaughnessy

broken-heart-1316091“Love them or hate them, we’ve all had first dates…”

That’s the opening line of our blurb for First Last Forever: A Collection of First Date Disasters, and I think it’s one most people can identify with, no matter the culture or country. Even arranged marriages begin with a “date” – the wedding date! As we near the most romantic day of the year – Valentine’s Day – this is the perfect time to discuss such matters of the heart. Do you, dear reader, anticipate first dates with dry palms and nerves of steel? Or do you look forward to “getting them over with” so that the second date can begin, the date where you can relax and be YOU, the YOU that wears Converse high tops with dresses and puts Sriracha on pizza and sings off-key to “Ex’s and Oh’s.” (that’s not ME, I swear).

Before writing my own stories for the anthology, I didn’t give much thought to my past. I already had some plot ideas involving situations I’d never been in, like speed dating. No “plumbing the depths” necessary. But then this post arose, forcing me to catalog all of the firsts I could remember, starting with (eeek!) high school. After rummaging through the dusty filing cabinet in my brain, I came up with some truly awkward moments.

Take a look at my top four dating fiascos. I bet you’ve been in a few yourself:

  1. The Set-Up – “Oh, honey, he’s a nice boy, and we like his parents. You only have to go out with him once.” Oy. The small talk on this date was excruciating. Spanish inquisition-type stuff. But the joke was on me, because years later this frog turned into a prince.
  2. The Stand-Up – “Where could he be? Let me check my dial tone. Maybe he tried to call and couldn’t.” Mmm hmm. Bad connection. Gotta be. For anyone under the age of thirty, “checking your dial tone” equates to pinging your BFF with a desperate text asking if she’s receiving because he just. isn’t. answering.
  3. The Sit Down and Shut-Up – “Who is this guy? Certainly not the guy who asked me out. Because the guy who asked me out stopped talking long enough for me to to say yes.” This date was the OPPOSITE of the Set-Up. Too much talking. So much that I hardly got a word in edge-wise. By the end of the evening, I knew every possible thing about him…and he barely knew my name.
  4. The I Give-Up – “We should just be friends. No? Well, we should try. Really. Friends. You’re not getting the hint. Will you stop? Sigh. I guess one date couldn’t hurt.” Sadly, I have been on more than one of these. I am clearly a sloooow learner.

I’m sharing these to get the ball rolling, dear reader. Between now and February 10th, we’re hosting a contest to give away a copy of First Last Forever. We’ll select one winner randomly from the comments below. And I’m expecting my fellow Space City Scribes to stop by and share their embarrassing stories as well. You will, won’t you, ladies?

YOUR TURN: Tell us about your truly awful first date or funny first date or romantic first date, and you’re automatically entered to win a copy of our book. Thanks for reading! And good luck!

 

Acing Unlikeable Protagonists

by Monica Shaughnessy

evil-eye-1475705

Tell My Story. I Dare You.

When I look back at some of the short stories I’ve written, many, many of them feature unlikeable main characters. I find deeply flawed people fascinating, and it’s easy to “get away with” telling their secrets in short form. Readers might not stick with them for an entire novel, but they’ll definitely stick with them over, say, ten pages.

Here are just a few of the evil/pathetic/bigoted main characters I’ve cast over the years:

Lydia Strichter (“The Trash Collector”) – A bigot with a big mouth who loves prying into other people’s business. Perma-free on Amazon.

Josie Kreneck (“Date From Hell,” First Last Forever) –  A fickle thirty-something who’s dumped more men than Madonna.

The Professor (“Hell Cent,” Lethal Lore) – An academician with a giant ego and a yen for strangling women.

Lydia Strichter, by far, has hit the most home runs with readers. Reviews mention her by name, either calling her out for bigotry or praising her journey. (I won’t spoil the ending!) The Professor comes in a distant second, but only because “Hell Cent” is part of a recently released collection and “The Trash Collector” is perma-free (and more widely distributed). We’ll see about Josie Kreneck. But I think her story will resonate with readers as well.

So how do you write an unlikeable character that people will tolerate, maybe even secretly like or identify with? Here are my top tips:

  1. Give them a past tragedy that evokes sympathy and let it drive the story. Lydia is a grieving widow. Josie is afraid of entering middle age alone. The Professor is out of a job. Even readers who haven’t gone through one of these major life events can at least imagine what it’s like to lose a husband, their youth, or their career. This evokes a sympathetic response from the start. It’s harder to hate (truly hate) someone when you know they’ve had a rough past.
  2. Give them a least one likable or admirable quality. Perhaps it’s a sterling work ethic (The Professor) or sentimentality (Lydia) or even bravery (Josie). Your unlikeable main character must have at least one winning quality. Why? Because that’s real life. And people love characters that read like real life. No one is ever “all bad” or “all good.” If you write them like that, you’re creating cardboard characters (which is WORSE than writing unlikeable characters!) Plus, it gives readers something to root for when things turn ugly.
  3. Give them a foible that is very, very common. If a reader has that foible, too, or at least knows someone with it, chances are, they will receive your protagonist more kindly. In the case of my characters, Lydia is uncomfortable with anything too “different.” Josie is desperate for companionship. The Professor is superstitious. I don’t know about you, but these traits resonate with me because I’ve displayed them at one time or another in my life. Luckily not all at once!

Okay, to show you all of these tips in action (and to prove they work), I’m going to give you some characteristics of a real person (now deceased) who has made a great unlikeable main character in both fiction and non-fiction in the past. And by the way, all of the bullet points below are factual. Can you guess who I’m talking about?

Our Protagonist was:

  • An aspiring artist and cartoonist
  • A student with unfilled dreams
  • A grieving brother
  • A decorated veteran with multiple war wounds
  • A vegetarian against the slaughter of animals
  • A loving husband
  • An electrifying speaker

I don’t know about you, but I can either identify with or root for many of these qualities, even admire them. Except, they all belong to…

>

>

>

Adolph Hitler.

Yeah, no kidding.

Which leads me to the very last tip:

4. Don’t make your main character so freaking bad that no tragic past/admirable quality/common foible can overcome their evil. In other words, it’s possible to wade too far into the deep end and create a character that prompts readers to shut the book on page one and curse your name. Er, like Hitler.

So don’t be afraid of casting bad guys in protagonist roles. Just do it with thought and planning and a little sympathy.

————>

How about you, dear reader? Ever cast a bad guy as your protagonist? Ever made your hero an anti-hero? Let’s discuss!

Indie Blow-Out at the Indiepalooza Conference

by Monica Shaughnessy

chairs-1442847If you’re an indie author (or thinking about becoming one) and live in the Greater Houston Area, then you should definitely go to Houston Writers Guild’s Indiepalooza on September 26th at the Crown Plaza (Galleria area). I will be speaking during the first break-out session on “Adding Art to Your Words.” I’ll talk about spicing up your indie works with illustration and building digital picture books and bonus books (for adults) using the Kindle Kid’s Book Creator.

Here’s a summary of my talk:

Images, whether photos or sketches, take your project to a professional level. During this workshop, learn how to jazz up your novel’s interior with illustrations and graphics. You’ll also discover how to work with programs like Kindle Kids’ Book Creator to take your picture book from idea to digital reality. Then we’ll dive into graphic “bonus books” that push creative limits and package extra content for your fans. Lastly, you’ll get an overview of the tools you’ll need to make it happen. Find out why indie publishing doesn’t have to be black and white anymore.

If art isn’t your thing, there are lots of other break-out sessions to choose from. Take a look:

8ee42882-35d2-4cb2-93f4-b2e0411a1605

For those wanting an extra networking opportunity, there’s also a kick-off cocktail party the night before with the Pulpwood Queen’s founder, Kathy L. Murphy. She’ll offer insight on the relationship between book clubs and authors.

If you’re on the fence about coming, don’t be. I went to a HWG conference last year, and it was a great opportunity to meet fellow Houston writers. And I learned a few things to boot! What are you waiting for? Sign up now!

How to Create Your Own Anthology (without losing your mind)

by Monica Shaughnessy

FINAL Cover_no sixOn October 8th, the Space City Scribes released an anthology. In case we haven’t talked about it quite enough, here are the particulars. It’s a loose collection of stories about Houston, ranging from literary fiction to sci-fi to fantasy. The ebook sells for $2.99 at Amazon and other major etailers.

Okay? Okay.

Now on to the “how to” portion of my post…

How To Create Your Own Anthology

There are a lot of reasons to create an anthology. Chief among them is exposure. If someone already loves, say, Mandy Broughton and buys the anthology to read her story, then that same person may read my story, like it just as much, and go on to buy one of my books. It’s also a way to build excitement for local events – signings are always more fun and “busy” when you have a group of authors. Lastly, my friend Artemis Greenleaf likened the anthology to a super-deluxe business card, and she’s right. It’s a great way to get our content “sampled” by as many people possible, especially since we’re pricing it low. Visibility is an author’s greatest challenge, whether indie or trad published, and the more people who’ve heard of us, the better.

What follows below are my tips for creating a homegrown anthology with a group of friends – not the kind of anthology where you welcome submissions from strangers and pay them. Those are good, too, but outside the scope of my discussion.

Now on to the show…

1. Find Your Writers: If you’re in an author collective like me, then your circle is already formed. If not, you might be in a critique group or a professional writers’ organization. Ask around to see if anyone’s interested in putting an anthology together, but I strongly caution you to pick writers you know and trust. If you want to work with people you don’t know as well, be prepared to draft legal documents to protect yourself. Another reason to pick people you know: you can choose writers whose work you admire and whose publishing skills compliment and/or supplement your own. This becomes very important when the “easy” work of writing is done and the hard work of “book creation” begins.

2. Decide on a Cost/Payment Structure: Our anthology was a no-pay structure where individual writers submitted freely without expectation of royalty or advance. This is a little harder to pull off with “strangers.” We also decided to keep overhead low by designing the cover ourselves, formatting ourselves, etc. We are lucky enough to have two educators in our group who have a meticulous command of the English language (thanks, Ellen Leventhal and Ellen Rothberg!). They did all the proofreading for the project. As for payment, we decided to funnel any profits from group signings back to Space City Scribes. We’ll use the money to sign up for festival booths, book advertisements, etc. If, however, we buy and sell the books as individuals, then the profits are ours to keep.

3. Put Someone in Charge: Things run more smoothly when you have someone keeping the schedule, checking on work, and sending update emails. For this project, I acted as editor. I won’t lie. The anthology was a lot of work. But I’m really proud of it.

4. Decide on a Theme: Since we’re a diverse group of writers, we found a common core in our hometown: Houston. Using this as a starting point, we all wrote stories set in Space City, hence the title of the anthology. If you’ve assembled a genre-based group, then you’ve got a built in theme already, say, horror or middle grade. But go further… Do you want to do a middle-grade collection of holiday stories? A science fiction anthology of space opera? There are a lot of ways to segment your content.

5. Assign the Work Fairly: Some of our members are very tech-savvy. They took the project pieces that required certain skills, like ebook formatting and paperback creation. Some members are awesome editors and proofers, so they took these pieces. Or some, like K.C. Maguire, happened to have experience with certain kinds of blogging and promotion. That’s the beauty of working with a diverse team – we all bring something to the table. When you’re choosing writers, be thinking not just about the stories you’ll need but the skills you’ll need after the words are on paper.

6. Get ready for a ton of email. Just deciding on our cover? I think we sent and replied to around fifty or more emails. No joke. And this was just one small piece of the project.

7. Remember That Friendships Come Before Business: If things get a little crazy or if there are disagreements (think there won’t be? ha!), take a step back and remember that this is supposed to be FUN or, at the very least, a good use of your time. Not the gateway to an ulcer. With so many cooks in the kitchen, the final recipe may not turn out like the one in the cookbook – do they ever? – but you’ll end up with something new and exciting if you give in to the process.

8. Enjoy the Fruits of Your Labor: When it’s all done, and your glorious new book is for sale, it will stand as a testament to your hard work and friendship. This, really, is what makes your anthology worthwhile.

You can also go a second route: assemble your friends and acquaintances, offer them exposure, do all the work yourself (ask nothing of anyone, except for a little social media at the end), and reap all the profits yourself. This would be a good choice if you have the skills you need to produce a book or if you’ve got a particular vision you want to see through (and like to be the only cook in the kitchen). But I would recommend drafting a content release form that gives you first printing rights and having your authors sign it. When money is involved, people get funny. And I don’t mean “funny ha, ha.” I mean “funny stark raving mad.”

However you decide to do it, creating an anthology is definitely time-consuming. But it’s also worthwhile. If you want to take a look at how ours turned out, visit the anthology page on this blog and read more about the book.

——————->

How about you, dear authors? Every contemplated an anthology? I’d be happy to answer questions. And readers, what’s your opinion of anthologies? Do you enjoy reading them? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Collaboration, Craziness, and Completion: Steps to an Awesome Anthology

 

MASTER Cover

 

by Ellen Leventhal

Introducing Space City 6: Houston Stories from the Weird to the Wonderful

According to Merriam-Webster, to collaborate means to work together with another person or group in order to achieve or do something. People have asked me how I can stand such a solitary endeavor as writing. The answer is that writing, and more specifically the production of a book, is not always solitary. It’s often collaborative.

Collaboration in writing takes many forms. It can mean actually writing a piece with someone else, it can mean working with an illustrator, or it can even mean taking part in critique groups where members help each other hone their stories. I’ve done it all.

But wait, there’s more! (Cue announcer on late night infomercial.) My newest collaboration has been one of the most difficult, yet rewarding ones for me. As part of the Space City Scribes, I had the opportunity to work with five other women in order to achieve something of which we’d be proud. Although we wrote individually, it was still a team effort. Working towards producing the best anthology possible, we read, critiqued, and re-read each other’s pieces. We doled out advice that we felt would strengthen the stories without diluting the writer’s unique voice. We were each other’s cheerleaders, pushing towards a common goal. All summer long emails flew through cyberspace to places as varied as Texas, Vermont, and Vienna, Austria. Yes, it definitely got a little crazy. However, often the craziness of collaboration is the magic. People throwing out ideas, other people piggy backing on those ideas, and lots of discussion…that’s collaboration. After much revision, the stories were done. Whew. And then it got really hard. And crazier. It was time for us, as a writing collaborative, to decide on a cover, a title, and a way to sell the book. Every decision was made as a group. More emails, more discussion, more hard work, and ok, a little more crazy thrown in for good measure. But the good kind of crazy! The kind that makes you proud. The kind that you look back on and say, “We did it.”

So now here we are. We’ve reached the final C…COMPLETION. We are proud to announce that our collaborative effort, Space City 6: Houston Stories from the Weird to the Wonderful is now available on Amazon. We hope you check us out and let us know what you think. Feel free to do it alone or get a friend to look at it with you. After all, sometimes collaborations yield the best results.

 

 

 

In Praise of Mistakes: Confessions of Recovering Perfectionist

by Monica Shaughnessy

pink-eraser-174736-mAs my daughter flipped through my sketch book the other day, she chided me for having so many “mess-ups.” “I’m not putting any scratchy doodles in my book,” she said. “I’m only putting in the stuff that’s perfect. The stuff you could frame.” I got all Yoda on her, and (gently) told her that it’s okay to make mistakes every now and then, because if you don’t, how will you ever arrive at the perfect stuff?

As a recovering perfectionist, that was an extremely hard thing for me to say, much less believe. But it’s advice that holds true for just about everyone but surgeons, nuclear engineers, and brake repairmen. In fact, I’d go so far as to say that anyone undertaking a creative endeavor, be it painting, composing music, or writing a book, should make mistakes. If you don’t, you’re not leaving the door open to true genius. But creative wisdom comes from knowing when your crazy, messy projects are ready for public consumptions and when they should be locked away.

During my years as a writer, I’ve seen two extremes: people who rush to show the world something that’s not ready and people who hang on to their projects for way too long. Usually, the dabblers and the hobbyists can’t wait to show everyone what they’ve done. (Look! Look! I just wrote a book on how to dye Easter eggs with onion skins and antifreeze! It’s three pages long and only $5.99!) One cursory glance at Smashwords* will tell you that. But the writers who are in it for the long-haul are the ones that tend to wait for perfection. Why? Because they care about the words and the story more than the fleeting thrill of the upload or submission. Yet perfectionism is counterproductive to growth.

I have a book in my published collection (I won’t tell you which one), that I rewrote for FIVE years. I added characters. I took them out. I revised the plot at least three times. I upped the age of the protagonist. I lowered it. Everyone I asked had an opinion, and they all got incorporated into my story. It never got published. Finally, I called B.S. on everything, got a clear vision of how the story should really go, and rewrote the darn thing one. last. time. I learned and re-learned on that manuscript. But it was only when I stopped intellectualizing the story and approached it with a gut feel that I arrived at that confident conclusion: I’m done. Had I not finished it–and I mean really finished it–I might still be stuck in neutral, chasing that unattainable goal of perfection.

If, like me, you struggle occasionally with perfectionism, here’s a checklist for how to know when to stop working on your project:

1. Each successive round of feedback doesn’t make your project better, it just makes it different.

2. Your peers are absolutely sick of this particular story/song/work of art and can no longer tell you what to change. (hint: because nothing needs to change)

3. When you look at your work, your gut reaction is pride or, at a minimum, a sense of completion. (I didn’t say your intellectual reaction)

4. Your mind has begun to drift to other things you could be working on because your subconscious has already worked out all the issues it could on your current WIP.

You’ll notice I didn’t say that your work is ready to sell or display. Because at the end of the creative process, you may still have something that’s altogether “messy” and unacceptable. And you may need to set it aside and work on something else. But understand that your effort was not wasted. The next project you undertake will be with a better sense of what works and what doesn’t, of which skills and competencies you possess and which ones you don’t. That’s growth.

Now go out there and make a huge mess of things. You’ll be doing yourself a favor.

*I love Smashwords, okay? I think it’s a great platform and its publishing tools are superior, in many ways, to Amazon. And scads of serious writers use them as a sales outlet. But have you seen some of the stuff for sale on that site? I mean, come on.

———————————>

Your turn. Are you a perfectionist? Do you have any trusted methods for figuring out when to stop working on a project? Do you go with your head? Or your gut?

 

 

Meet the Space City Scribes!

by Monica Shaughnessy

Hello and welcome to our new author collective, Space City Scribes. We’re six Houston area writers who’ve banded together to navigate the indie/small press publishing waters. Through this blog, we’ll be sharing marketing and promotion tips for writers, fiction posts for readers, information about upcoming appearances, and probably a few ridiculous posts that don’t mean much of anything but will make you laugh or give you something to think about. We’re a varied group, so you never know what you might find here, but it will always be interesting and informative – unless I’m writing it without benefit of a second cup of coffee. Then all bets are off.

Since this is our very first post, I’d like to unashamedly brag on each of our members and talk about what they bring to our collective. It’s also a way for you to get to know six really cool authors.

Mandy Broughton, AKA “The Risk Taker” – If there’s some aspect of indie publishing or promotion you want to know about, Mandy has probably tried it. Or has thought about trying it. Or has looked into it enough to know she doesn’t want to try it. In other words, she’s not afraid to experiment, and this is Mandy’s greatest strength. I shouldn’t be surprised by this. She is a Girl Scout, after all. She started her indie journey with a trio of kids’ mysteries, but has since moved into the adult mystery market. Her latest challenge was running the Ingram Spark gauntlet to get her kid mystery in hard copy.

Ellen Leventhal, AKA “The Entertainer” – Ellen has done more school presentations than I can count. And she’s given them for YEARS to audiences who are still learning how to read! If you want to know how to present your book in person and entertain at the same time, she’s your gal. She’s been on TV, radio programs…you name it. She and co-author, Ellen Rothberg, have three darling books in the “South Pasture” series through E(2) Books. They sell consistently well, year after year, because 1) they’re great and 2) Ellen is a pretty darn good speaker. She also participates in Writers in the Schools (WITS).

Ellen Rothberg, AKA “The Level Head” – Mild mannered school counselor by day, the other half of the E(2) dynamic duo by night, Ellen provides us with the guidance to see our projects through. Whether it’s helping someone decide whether to pursue an MFA or getting them to assess their personal goals, she stands at the ready, shovel in hand, to dig deep into the problem. One utterance of her catchphrase, “But is that really what you want?”, usually sends us in the right direction. These sensibilities are apparent in her many books.

Artemis Greenleaf, AKA “The Guru” – Artemis was Indie before Indie was cool, and she’s got the stripes to prove it. She “been there, done that,” with print books, audio (yes, audio!), tax IDs, DBAs, ISBNs, and other alphabet soup problems indies face every day. Chance are, if you can’t figure out your print margins or you’re having a hard time with file conversion, she’ll know what to do. She’s got a slew of books out and specializes in paranormal fiction. But unlike the ghosts in her books, she’s physically there to lend a hand.

K C Maguire, AKA “The Artist” – When the rest of us are run through with the minutia of self-promotion, K C is there to remind us that it’s all about the writing. And isn’t it? She’s probably one of the most well-read members of Space City Scribes, has several shorts published through a small press, and will soon begin work on an MFA. It’s easy to lose sight of why we started writing in the first place–because we enjoyed it–and K C helps remind us of this by bringing the soul of the artist to every meeting.

And then there’s me. I’m not really sure what to say about myself. I thought about several aliases, including: “The Glue” – the one who holds everything together; “The Big Idea” – the one who consistently comes up with the most hair-brained ideas; and “The Coffee Swiller” – the one who drinks the most coffee at our monthly meetings. All of them are right and somehow not right at the same time. So for now, I’m just me, a hair-brained, coffee-swilling scribe who’s desperately trying to hold things together. In other words, I’m your typical indie writer.

———————————–>

If you want to know more about any of my fellow authors (or me), click on our individual links in the header.

If you want to talk more about Marketing Collectives, I’ll be posting something on my personal blog this week. Stay tuned.

Your turn. Anyone else form a marketing/writing collective? If so, what are kinds of things are you doing together? Any tips? Hints? We’d love the feedback!