#writerslife Working on My Ship

There are so many moments in life where we lose ourselves in the world’s chaos. Moments where our roles overlap so much that we lose sight of how valuable it is to give each responsibility their necessary nurturing.

That has happened to me over, and over, and over again. And, I understand that will continue to happen again and again if I don’t openly receive the messages, signs, or green lights that God has put so masterfully in front of me.
Where is this thought coming from or going? Let me share…

I’m in editing mode of my next book. The book that I want to pitch to agents and publishing houses. A book that I know tells a story that is new, sexy and introspective. Hence, my due diligence to get it right.

But trying to get it right has been muddled with so many other existing priorities that I’m trying to juggle at the same time; each losing steam because honestly, my brain is exhausted.

So, I come into work today, thinking solely about how to prioritize my work for the day, and notice a uniquely shaped purple package on my desk.

Befuddled by this object, I open it before sitting down to find out that it’s a card, pens and an angel.

Two pens exclaim the message “Tell Your Story” and “Writing Is My Happy Place”. Then tears began to fill up my eyes because it is true. Writing IS my happy place because it lets me tell my story.

The Angel has “Joy” etched in her robe, with an open embrace to the sky.
The card, well the card says more than I want to share in this post because of its personal message and now its home in my heart. However, I’ll sum it up like this:

Sometimes, we don’t know how our actions or words influence the world that we live in. Sometimes we only notice how chaotic it truly is and how we just need to stay afloat. But sometimes, we need a reminder that our purpose is not to “just stay afloat” but to build a ship that helps the world around us, guiding it in a direction we have been entrusted to go.

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The mom of one of my close friends reminded me of that. She gave me words and gifts that woke my spirit back up to complete this book, and the others that will soon follow, to keep blogging and sharing these moments because they are truths in many ways, and can empower those who may not feel that they can also “build a ship”.

 

“…empower those who may not feel that they can also ‘build a ship’.”

Have you started working on your “ship” yet? You definitely should. I’ll continue to work on mine too.

Stay passionate!
DNC

Drafting Woes: Confusion on Where I’m Going

Forgive me readers. I know some of you are invested in my literary journey and may be wondering why you haven’t heard from me. Why my blog has been slow, or why you haven’t received my month newsletter.

That answer lies in both my unbelievably busy personal life, but also in the tug of war that is continuously happening in my current W.I.P.

On the personal front, my children’s lives are moving so fast, I’m just trying to keep up.

But on the writing front, there are so many ideas and edits that I want to make to the first draft of this new piece (check out the teaser), that I’m all over the place–jumping from chapter to chapter.

I’m starting to realize that my drafting “lifestyle” is mimicking my personal lifestyle; Jumping from one scene to another at lighting speed. Trying to mold character fast to finally get to the end. That has to stop, IMMEDIATELY!

So I’m rearranging my schedule again to get some dedicated hours in a week, at least one day. It will more than likely have to fall on just one day, unlike my daily writing six months ago. But that’s what happens when you’re a passionate writer who is also a passionate life player (mom, wife, sister, friend, colleague, etc.).

Sometimes change is necessary to keep your spirits high and love flowing. My love for writing continues.

So here’s a promise: I’m posting once a week on this here blog (yes a little gangsta talk means I’m serious).  And I’m actually going to start story boarding, which initially I hated thinking about doing since it seems so structured and I’m such a free writing spirit (or at least I try to be) but now I get…I get it guys. Then I’m also going to continue connecting with you wonderful people in dis here writing community.

Matter of fact, I am ecstatic to have the opportunity to join New Roots Living for their October workshop, Publishing Demystified: A Coaching Workshop for Writers. This is a great event for writer’s who not only want an insider’s look on my and another writer’s journey, Eryn Donnalley, but also hands-on coaching about your own literary journey.

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See, I understand that sometimes when things seems chaotic, seemingly pushing you into a corner, slowing or even stopping your drive all together, God reminds you that this all included on your journey. It’s not a corner, but just a moment of reflection; like timeout. And not a dead-end, but a left turn.

Stay passionate people!

P.S. Look out for my short story series. Since my drafting process is taking a lot longer than I was hoping (but it’s definitely necessary for this piece), I’m inviting you to indulge in some passion-fy stories along the way. Stay tuned.

 

3 Ways to Practice What You Preach

As a mother, wife, author, sister, daughter and so on, it can be hard to “practice what I preach” but here are a few tips I shared on HERCrisis.com that have helped me to do exactly that. Check out “3 Ways to Practice What You Preach”.

Make a Revelation - Seek a Revival - Join the Revolution

One of the reasons I started Monday Motivational posts—previously Monday #Mid-WYFEMotivation—was to share positive insights from my own plight. My goal was to push us all past those “bad” moments to refocus on the greatness ahead, which has been a lot easier to do than I ever thoughts.

THEN one day, just a few weeks back, I was actually invited to give a motivational speech to a group of women…say what?!

Yep. God said, “now go practice what you preach.” I’m not going to lie, I thought He was nuts. You mean, you want me to go say what I write about? I only give this advice verbally to my close friends, and I don’t even know if they use it!

I definitely had a moment of doubt, honestly, several hours of doubt. Then I used three ways to get back on track. Three tricks that may also help you…

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Reviews aren’t just for writer’s egos…we promise!

One of the hardest things to do as a writer, is to get honest feedback. A lot of times, we are dying to hear what a complete stranger would think about our plot, tone or structure of our story. Do people really get our words or are we just sounding or writing in a bunch of jumbled words like Boomhauer of King of the Hill.

Enter Reviews.

A fellow author, and muse from a far, CP Patrick drop some knowledge on how we really are looking to get honest feedback through reviews to help understand our writing styles, promote our book and hopefully attract new readers. We promise that reviews are not to stroke our egos–ok it may help our egos some if it’s amazing feedback we never thought we would ever hear from a stranger…but that’s not a bad thing right?

Check out an excerpt from her post, A Word on Reviews, which shines some much needed light on why your thoughts are vital for us newbies. And after you’ve read the “why”, help a sister out with a review on one of my books currently on #SpringReading sale on Amazon.

Authors often ask readers to leave reviews, especially new authors. But it’s not for the reasons some people might think. It has less to do with ego and more to do with receiving honest feedback, marketing opportunities and attracting new readers….

Honest Feedback
Publishing a book is an exciting and nerve-wracking experience. There’s the joy of “I did it!” Which is quickly followed by “Oh my God! People are going to read my book!” And we all know how cruel the Internet can be. Certainly, every author receives negative reviews. Go look at some of your favorite books or current best-sellers. There are rave reviews and soul-crushing reviews. Because that’s reality – not everyone is going to like everything…

Marketing Opportunities
What many readers may not know is that reviews are often tied to marketing opportunities for authors. And not just favorable reviews – the number of reviews help too. This is particularly true for ebook subscription marketing opportunities as well as Amazon book pairings. One of the reasons The Truth About Awiti has done well is because of the number of reviews that the book has received…

Attracting New Readers
Another benefit of leaving a review for an author is that reviews help attract new readers. Don’t you enjoy reading book reviews before making a purchase? If you really enjoyed reading a book, one of the most helpful things you can do is leave a review on Goodreads and the site where you purchased the book, such as Amazon, B&N, or even your favorite indie bookstore. Your review just might be the one that influences readers to purchase the book…

Second shameless, but honest plug: I would love for you to review my two books! Untraditional: A Collection of Passion-Fy Short Stories and Like. Love. Lust. A Collection of Passion-Fy Prose and Poetry are both on sale on Kindle for only $0.99–this week only!

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