Monday, March 02, 2015

Handling Novel Interruptus


NOW ON SALE


It was the coldest of times. It was the darkest of times. It was the snowiest of times.
So naturally, I picked up a cold. Also with a lot of drama in our family, I found myself in Novel Interruptus. A writer does not cope well in Novel Interruptus as the stream of consistent story creativity is constantly interrupted. If you haven't read my thoughts on Novel Interruptus, they are big and important, because we do have to cope with life issues.

So, as a productive person who needs some creative project, I’m learning how to crochet. I started with dishcloths, a simple stitch. Then moved up to beanies courtesy of YouTube. I only want the simple projects, something to sit by the fire on really cold winter days/nights and stay busy.

How did all this start? you ask. It started with a crochet hook someone forgot in a waiting room. My mother was a crochet artist and it brought back memories. Then while visiting Goodwill thrift store, I found a giant bag of yarn and needles of all kinds. Some of these are Tunisian crochet hooks, and I learned a couple stitches using them. So one trail leads to another, just as in writing a story.

What you see are some beanies for grandkids. I don’t know if they will fit or not, as I am only estimating and going by YouTube instructions. They have many mistakes. The large green circle is my first beret. It’s going to be for a giant. But I learned how to decrease stitches, use markers of yarn and I also found out it’s taking a tremendous amount of yarn. From this first one, whenever it is finished (need to do stage 3, the headband), I’ll have more of an idea size, etc. Berets are so classy, don’t you think?

The yellow cap is my first attempt at chunky yarn. I learned how to decrease to make that cap hold closer to the face.

Sometimes creative people have to switch modes from what they would rather be doing.  And they can always use the information in the story, which I will do. I'm heading back to story land now, if this coldest of Midwest Winter times lets me. (I do enjoy a warm fire while watching snowfall. :)

Sunday, February 08, 2015

Valentines Day .99 Sale


ALL .99 FOR A LIMITED TIME... (That's US. Not a clue the cost in other currencies)

SHEER ROMANCE:
The Pendragon Virus: Kindle / Nook / iBooks / Kobo
Miracles and Mistletoe: Kindle / Nook / iBooks / Kobo*
*Gotta love Psychics who love.
The Loving Season (MacLeans No. 1): Kindle / Nook / iBooks / Kobo

NOVELLAS:
Lady Desperado: A Western Novella*: Kindle / Nook 
*I think you'll enjoy the sly humor on this one. The lady is a gunsmith.
Death by Coupon: Novelette (Sue Kowalski Mystery No. 1) Kindle / Nook / iBooks / Kobo
Death by Salsa Dancing: Novelette (Sue Kowalski Mystery No. 2): Kindle / Nook / iBooks / Kobo
(I absolutely love the word, "Novelette", but not the word, "Linoleum". It's just a weird word. :))

CLASSICS:
Lady on the Line Caseys no. 1: Kindle
A Lady’s Desire Caseys no. 2: Kindle / Nook
Gambler’s Lady: Kindle / Nook

If you haven't seen My Valentines Day e-Newsletter, you might want to sign up. :)  I do very few e-Newsletters, so you won't be overrun with my info. BTW, if there is anything you'd like incorporated into my blog or e-Newsletter, please write to me?

Saturday, February 07, 2015

Speaking Out: Storytelling


VALENTINE'S DAY .99 SALE:
 ~Meet Sue Kowalski, a Kansas City suburb homicide detective. Recently divorced, Sue holds her own in the all-male force. As the smallest, most agile, Sue has been been hefted up, lowered down, and scrunched into places no woman should enter. She craves good bear-claw pastry, coffee, and Jose Morales, a co-worker. Her chances for the first two are good.

 ~Death by Coupon: Novelette (1): Nook: iBooks: Kobo: Kindle:
~Death by Salsa Dancing: Novelette (2) Nook: iBooks: Kobo: Kindle:

Writers don't talk much about storytelling these days, so I may as well. :) Instead, writers speak more about promotion and sales, not stories. Story crafting can be taught, but a real storyteller just happens. They are born with the ability to use or not use, as life chooses or they choose.

Please don't think that I am putting down the art of story crafting. I am not. I was first purchased for the stories in me, and then taught story crafting by the purchasing editor. We went through my first book one chapter at a time. Ah, the good old days when editors didn't have as much of the business size of publishing and worked more with their writers. Editors do not have that time now.

A real storyteller cannot be manufactured. But through story-crafting, a natural storyteller can be shaped and fine-tuned and packaged into a real find. Repeat: Either that "spark" is there. Or it isn't.

Having said that, not all storytellers are equal. Some have more ability than others, like a glass half full or really full. And there are writers who are truly "full of it", talent-wise.

Miracles and Mistletoe Sale .99: Nook: iBooks: Kobo: Kindle
 When a Montana rancher's dog starts mind-communicating with him, he's in trouble. But she's more trouble, a cupid-tossing female invading his life.
***

You've heard natural storytellers verbally enchant. Some storytellers can spin stories verbally or on paper. But they cannot be manufactured.

I believe that everyone has a story to tell. But it might not be the story they WANT to tell. They may want to write block busters, but they create best in short form. (BTW, short form is extremely difficult when done well and should be highly recognized/appreciated as a real art form.)

I believe it's best for the individual storyteller to test every nitche possible. Not only to go where they have sales success, but to stretch and see if there is more. And if that writer is a genuine storyteller, there will be plenty of "more" because the stories never stop churning--one story leads to another and another.
~Death by Coupon: Novelette (1): Nook: iBooks: Kobo: Kindle:
~Death by Salsa Dancing: Novelette (2): Nook: iBooks: Kobo: Kindle:

A real storyteller can look at anything--a windmill, a ribbon, a gun--and rummage up some story about it. The more they push, the more the stories roll, and then the trouble begins of sorting through just how many stories, or books can one writer create in one lifetime.

But a real storyteller either is, or isn't, whatever the form that emerges and wraps around the individual.

Storyteller Road Blocks: Time/Energy devoted to Promotion; Publishers wanting the same old again and keeping in a trough; Life, of course. Money can block a storyteller, going where the money is, rather than where natural storytelling takes the writer. That last one, ye olde $, can run a storyteller exhausted and dry.

Writing to please one's self, following that muse-trail, is maximum important. A real storyteller--in this case, a writer--is going to write no matter the sales or the darkness in life. In fact, writing stories can temporarily aleviate life's darkness.

Miracles and Mistletoe Sale .99: Nook: iBooks: Kobo: Kindle:

As a summation, I believe if a writer is a true storyteller writer, that indivual will continue writing, no matter what. Let's talk more about storytelling? Input, anyone?

Monday, February 02, 2015

Mondays Aren't 4 Everyone

THE BASKET MAKER'S WIFE

NOTE: I'm writing the 2nd book of this series and all of my books incorporate some of my experiences, like learning how to crochet, etc. Here's what happened today...
***

It's a true Monday. We should exchange that word for Murphy's Law Day...

1. My coffeemaker died at 4a this morning. I dug out this old stovetop dude, but I don't like to use it. I try to use automatic stuff, like slow cookers, because I get into writing and the first thing... Well, you know--stuff boils over and there is a mess. I do not like this stovetop thing because you have to know how long to perk it or you get yuck.
2. My HP Laserjet wants to die, too. They're companions, I guess, mated for life. It's the old box type, and this time, I may not be able to unclog it. IMHO, laserjets are the way to go, so far as B&W pure print.

To me, all this is illogical when we're approaching Valentine's Day. We should be cruising into smoothness, not the Love Boat or anything, but things should just Work! However, that is where writers get those Twists, so I guess it's okay.

BTW, I crocheted the mat beneath the perker. I'm just learning basics. It was an experiment to see how far two balls of dishcloth Sugar and Cream balls would go.  (More yuck coffee.) I actually use a lot of whatever I'm doing in my books, and I have that experience. BTW, have you ever seen a movie where the actress does not know how to knead dough?? Shudder.

The cap was on my list for the coming fall/winter, but somehow I decided to try it. (I'm a list-maker, goal-setter.) My friend, Caro, tells me "Stories" about how to do certain stitches, etc. I'm up to 2 stitches now. :) Caro is a real crochet guru. She thinks I can put ears on this, or change the yarn to make a border, or put a bow on it, or...

This is a man's size cap, but I tried it on and I have a lot of hair to fill it, so it fits me. Or I just have a big man's head. Edit that to read: man's big head. See how critical editing is? :)

Note to Self: Oh, please get a good coffeepot today. It's winter and you have plenty of TP and coffee, writer's essentials, and food, of course. When it snows, you should be holding a good tasting cup of coffee while you're looking out the window.

Back to the Cap, of which I am most proud. Caro gave me many Good Job pats. :) I used a YouTube video which also has the same cap, done in children's and women's sizes.

What I do not like about crocheting is that you have to count. This was my first counting experience. I am learning to read crochet lingo like SC=single chain etc. If you've ever tried to read a pattern, you'll know why I resorted to YouTube and an iPad that pauses for me to catch up. (Caro uses patterns. I must drive her nuts, but she is very patient.)

NOTE: DO NOT EVER, ever try that Magic Circle crochet deal if you are a novice like me. Ever. No Way.

So expect to see crocheting pop up in one of my books, like the one I'm writing now :)

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Precious Links

THE BRIDE SAYS NO

(At Kindle now, others later; Perfect for Valentine's Day!)
I'm updating... We learn from our first attempts, don't we? Currently, I'm redoing some covers and adding more links at the end of my Indy books (alias "back matter"). From those who know, Book Links are essential for good sales. Here's a sample, first done using Word and then ye olde Copy/Paste:
***(Starts From the Last Chapter)
The End
~**~
From Cait London:
I hope you enjoyed Miracles and Mistletoe and will review it. For more information/more books, please visit my website. It is stuffed with material about how I get my ideas and background to different stories, plus writer advice. Please do join my newsletter for the very latest, available for subscription.
If you’d like to write to me, I’d love to hear from you.
My partial Amazon Kindle list/links follows: Enjoy!
~Women’s: The Basket Maker’s Wife (a little psychic)
~~The Aisling Psychic Triplets Series (!!Read in Order): At the Edge; A Stranger’s Touch; For Her Eyes Only;
~Novellas: Lady Desperado (Western)
***
And that's it! It's much easier to create in Word. I found that out the hard way. :)