Tag Archives: Self-Publishing

An Update, Some Insight, Plus An Important Reminder…

Yesterday I reached 40,050 words on novel number 3! (Insert thumbs up here) — For context, that’s roughly 160-ish actual book pages. I’m halfway there! (Give or take a few thousand words.)

One of my least favorite things about starting new books, is that for me, it takes hitting a stride, which is somewhere close to the halfway point, where I really click with my characters and everything starts flowing smoothly. Until then, getting the words down is a little more difficult. There are more big edits that happen in the first half of my books verses the back half, for that reason.

It takes a bit for me to get to know the characters well enough to do them justice. I miss small details about who they are, which I learn as I spend more time with them. Once I get to that point, or when I’ve finished the first draft entirely, I’ll notice instances where a character says something in the beginning that doesn’t line up with their personality at all. They’d never actually say it. So it has to go. Usually to be replaced with something more fitting.

We’ve now reached the point in book 3 where the words are flying and everything is just peachy. The back half should go much more quickly than the first. And I’m really excited!

Justin and Lynsey, the hero and heroine of this novel, are turning out to be one of my favorite couples. (Granted, for all I know they’ll all be my favorites before this series is over!) I think, really, my heart just goes out to Lynsey, and I love seeing Justin peel back all her layers and show her what love can be. Not what she’s always known it to be. So I’m loving this one.

Quick update on Edits. — Novel 1, still working on in between writing. I edit for a few days, write for a few. I like to give myself a break from the monotony of editing. It really drains so much out of me, and it’s not nearly as fun. Edits also go better the fresher my eyes are upon the pages. So the little breaks help not only me, but the book itself. Plus, I’m still getting something valuable accomplished in the meantime. It’s a win-win.

I’m kind of amazed, really. I had about 7,000 words when I picked up writing book 1 in September 2018. Now, here we are in February 2020, and I’ve written two full length novels, with a million rounds of edits in between, and I’m halfway through book 3. So by the time the two year mark rolls around in September, I’ll have written three full-length novels, and if not a fourth, I’ll be knee deep in writing it. Three, possibly four novels in two years, the first of which should be published by late Spring/early Summer, if all goes well.

I honestly never thought I’d see the day. Ya know, you go to school, you graduate, they tell you get out there now, make something of yourself, get a job, a career, go to college, make it all happen. And some of us, we flounder a bit. We’re still learning so much about ourselves, how in the world are we supposed to have it all figured out already? Some do well, others do not. I used to look at other people and feel like a failure. Why couldn’t I get my feet off the ground? Why was I going nowhere? Ya know? — But none of that mattered. I see that clearly now. But back then, it was a little soul-crushing.

I’m much more self-aware and a lot more self-confident than I was back then. And if I’ve leaned anything from all this, it’s never, ever compare yourself to anyone else. Fight for yourself, move at your own pace, and ignore anyone who might belittle you for being at the back of the pack. That’s not how this works. In a lot of cases, timing is everything. Don’t lose sight of yourself, because all you can see is someone else. That’s more heartache than it’s worth.

Heather!

Book Updates! Sweetgum Valley Series

I think I’m going to try and finish making my book cover this week. I think.

I’ve also been contemplating a title change for the first book. I haven’t found anything else that fits though, so we’ll see how that goes. Maybe. It’s a maybe.

This past week I worked on an out of order edit, (still working on it ) meaning I’m jumping around randomly, editing chapters out of order. It helps because I tend to stay focused on just the chapter in front of me, rather than the book as a whole. A line by line, paragraph by paragraph look at it.

Book 2. It’s hanging out in ‘haven’t touched it in weeks, still requires multiple edits’ land. It’s only had one so far, and that’s not nearly enough.

In between stuff for the other books, I’m writing book 3. It’s at 30,000 words, roughly 1/3 of the way there.

I have a million other things to do as well, but my primary goals for the moment are to completely finish edits on book 1, format it, finish the cover, and write book 3.

I plan to publish the first book around late spring, early summer. And the second around late fall, early winter. We will see if I manage to keep this timeline. I’m sure going to try though. 😊

— Somewhere in there before I publish, I’ll start working on sending out monthly newsletters. It’s not as high up on the priority chain as getting book 1 complete. It’s coming though! —

Just thought I’d share a quick update.

Heather! ❤️

I Made This Bed, Now I Must Lie In It…

Good Afternoon, Ladies & Gents. (Don’t ask. I don’t know. I’m weird.)

I committed to writing a blog post a day in 2020, and I’m suddenly realizing I have no idea what I’m going to talk about day in and day out. That’s 365 days worth of me chattering on about something or other. Brilliant idea, Heather. Brilliant idea.

Ya know, when I finally committed to writing books, giving it a real go, I had no idea what actually lay ahead of me. Once upon a time, long, long ago, I thought writing would be the hard part. (Can you hear me laughing from over here?) Little did I know, until I’d finished writing the first one, that the writing was the easy part.

What came next was the daunting realization that I’d only just scratched the surface. I had an 85,000 word, roughly 320 page novel, that I had to do something with. And not just do something, but a lot of somethings. Editing. (Which, really is never ending.) Formatting. Networking. Marketing. Book covers. Learning how to use a multitude of new computer programs. Managing a website and social media accounts across various platforms. Self-publishing. Copyright. More writing in between all this. Newsletters and mailing lists. Finding beta readers for feedback. The horror that is waiting on that feedback. Blogging. Maintaining the connections I’ve already made, as well as making new ones. And even with everything I just mentioned, guarantee you I forgot some stuff. There’s more, I’m sure. Not to mention, I’m still unpublished at the moment, which will open up a whole new world of things once I’ve reached that step.

I tell my husband sometimes, usually when I come up against something I don’t want to deal with, I’m like, can I just quit already? — He always says no. You’ll get it. You can do it. — Personally, I think he’s a perpetual optimist when it’s other people, and the next time his boss asks him to make a public speech at a company party, I’m going to say, Oh baby, you’ve got this. You can do it. (I mean I say that anyway, but I’m going to relish it a little more now. 😉 )

But since I can’t quit, and really I don’t want to, I’m going to keep on keeping on.

Which just means you’re going to continue to get a blog a day. And a bunch of books, too.

Much Love,
Heather.

In Case You’re Interested In An Update…

Hey Everyone! 😀

It’s Saturday night, well, technically it’s early Sunday morning… but, that’s really neither here nor there.

Exercised a few hours ago, fresh out of the shower, and now I am sprawled on my couch watching Elementary on Hulu. — I am living the life, let me tell ya! 😉

Quick update! — Also. I haven’t blogged in a while & as my fingers are flying across this keyboard I can’t tell y’all how much I’ve missed it. Of course, I spend a great deal of time typing, but still, this is different. It feels different. Novel writing & blogging are two different beasts.

Let me tell y’all where I’m at!

Book 1: Forgiving Annaleigh! — Completed. Although I am currently reading back through it & looking for any errors that may have escaped mine or any of my lovely beta reader’s notice. — It happens, y’all. It happens. — The book cover. Much closer to being completed. Hang tight, I’ll start marketing for Forgiving Annaleigh very soon. Every day is a day closer to publication, although I don’t have an exact date for that yet… there are a lot of ducks to get in a row… I’m wrangling them, bear with me. 🙂

Book 2: Chasing Charley! — Is roughly 55,000 words along! Whoo-hoo! 😀 We are over half way there, just 30,000 words or so to go… which won’t take as long as you may think. I’m steadily working on this book week in and week out, amidst all the other things I’m doing. — Side note about this one. — It’s special. Near & dear to my heart, as Charley’s story is the closest thing to my very own story that will ever be put to paper. She’s not me & her story isn’t exactly the same as mine, but she’s a lot like me, and it’s very, very similar. — As soon as it’s complete… I’ll jump into editing & that book cover comes next. — Hopefully, it won’t be long after book 1 comes out, that you’ll be seeing book 2!

Book 3: Loving Lynsey! — Stay tuned! I have several scenes mapped out & I’m super excited to get started with this one! I won’t start it until book 2 is complete though, but it is in the early planning stages. I’ll dive in much deeper once I’ve finished writing Chasing Charley.

As for this Sweetgum Valley Series, there are a lot of books to come! This is just the beginning. I have big plans for this small little world that I’ve created and all these characters that I’ve grown to love.

I cannot wait to share them with you! Hang tight, they’re coming. 😀

Now that you’ve been sufficiently updated, I’m going to focus on Sherlock over here solving crimes on my tv. 😀

Much love,
Heather! 🙂

I’m Still Here!

I’m still here, y’all. 😀

I’m super busy editing. Yes. Still editing. It’s a very in depth edit & the biggest one yet. But it’s the last.

Well. Mostly. I’ll run through one last time and check for small technical things I may have missed. But this weekend I plan to hand it back off to some readers & get a little more feedback & such.

& I can’t wait! Mostly because I wanna get back to writing book 2 & I’m itching to start book 3, but this one is taking up all my time. For good reason though! – Gotta get this bad boy ready for publishing. 😉❤

Alright. I’m gonna get back to it. Will talk to you guys soon!

Heather! 😀