October is a month where I have a lot to celebrate. October 1st marks the anniversary of “Under A Hunter’s Moon” first appearing in print, and takes place on Halloween Eve itself.
This year the story turns three years old, so I decided to create a huge Halloween event, celebrating the work of my fellow indie authors. Everyone involved has submitted a Book Spotlight, Author Spotlight, Story, or Guest Post.
So What’s Happening? [updated @ 11:10 pm (AKST) 10.20.17]
Here is a full listing of posts and events that are happening throughout the month.
The links in the Author column will take you to the individual author’s websites.
The links in the Topic column will take you to the posts, once they are live. Please note that posts will not be live until around 8am EST on the date of release. (This post will be updated as more authors join the event).
Three days ago, I pitched a request for authors to send me their requests for blog slots, and things are shaping up very nicely. Here’s a few of the things that will be coming up. I’ll be linking the individual authors and posts, and adding dates as things continue to develop.
Angela B. Chrysler
Book Spotlight – “Broken”
Event Spotlight – TBA
Book Spotlight – TBA
Book Spotlight – “Horror Haiku Pas De Deux”
Book Spotlight – “Hell Bent Arc 1”
Ami Lutkus Pjhillips
Book Spotlight – TBA
Book Spotlight – TBA
Story – “The Iconic Face”
Book Spotlight – TBA
Readers: If you have a Halloween experience you’d like to share, please email me at email@example.com . I love collecting stories, and I’d love to hear from those of you who follow the blog. Alternatively, you can leave comments on individual posts, especially if you read a post and loved it.
Writers: I’m looking to gather 30 individual posts for this event. I’m looking for Author Spotlights, Book Spotlights, Poetry, and Guests Posts themed around Halloween. There are forms to fill out for the book and author spotlights, but for anything else, click the “Pitch A Guest Post” image, and email the information.
Deadlines: I need to get all the guest posts and spotlight information as soon as possible. If you would like the post to release on a give date, let me know in your email (or in the “Additional Notes” on the forms)
I looked at the calendar this morning and realized that we’re almost at the end of the first week of September. Eight months have gone by, and we’ll soon be heading into the holiday season.
Halloween Is Almost Here…
The Alaska State Fair ended on Labor Day (Monday), and it seems like Halloween is just around the corner.
This is the time of year I always get excited because Halloween marks the anniversary of my first appearance in print. It also means that NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) is about to start, and I always get a new energy for writing from taking part.
What That Means For My Writing Projects…
This year I’m hoping to finish “Of Wolves and Men”, the first full-length novel in the “Shadows Over Seattle” series. I’m about to embark on a full read-through and assessment of what I have already written so I can get my mind back on this particular project.
I’m also hoping to have completed the full re-edit of “Evaline Transcendent” in time to post the updates around Halloween, or shortly before.
So, Why Is This Halloween So Special?
Well, I’ve decided to run a huge promotion this year. “Under A Hunter’s Moon” will be three years old, and I want to do something special.
I don’t want to say too much about my plans at this point, except to say… Stay Tuned!
Do you have any special plans for Halloween? If so, drop a note in the comments below…
The Writer’s Channel Hop, Vol 2 – Hosted By Shane Wilson
Tune in for the online author event of September! Join the regular cast of writers from Joe’s Bar and the Brain to Books Cyber Convention as they discuss everything writing and everything not writing. Hosted by Shane Wilson.
Find out a little about what makes us tick, why pizza is so important to the writing process, how gnomes go from lawn ornaments to mobile art, and which of us are/aren’t wearing pants… Some or all of those might be relevant…
Mark your calendar:Saturday, September 9 at 7 PM – 10 PM EDT
I’m going to open this post with an apology for being late getting this written. I actually forgot to create this post ahead of time. Then this morning, I found out that I was one of several authors who’d been quoted in a blog post by fellow author & blogger, Mercedes Prunty.
If you’re a writer, feel free to add your thoughts to the comments in Mercedes’ post. I know that she’s looking to help as many people as possible, and we’ve all got things we wish we knew when we started our writer journeys.
I’m proud to announce that “Ramblings of an Author” now has OVER 400 posts.
I’d like to give a HUGE thank you to everyone who’s visited, and taken the time to read my posts. Also to all the authors who’ve contributed to this milestone, by allowing me to interview them for Author Spotlights, and letting me share their books in the Book Spotlights. (See below the infographic for some exciting news for authors).
In honor of the occasion, I rounded up some statistics from the WordPress.com servers.
And Here’s Where Things Get Interesting For Authors
There’s a little something I’ve been working on behind-the-scenes of this blog, and I’ve had a couple of author friends test it out.
Until last month, if an author wanted to book an Author Spotlight, or Book Spotlight slot on this blog, they had:
Approach me on social media, or email me a request
Wait for me to respond with the criteria and list of questions, required images, and links
Give me enough lead time to format the post
Then I had to check the post for errors, email the author and confirm any new images/changes
Finalize the post schedule, and then email the author the posting date, time, and links
Well, I just removed MOST of the first three steps of that process… How?
Announcing The Author & Book Spotlight Application Forms…
Starting about a month ago I decided that I wanted to make things easier for my fellow authors to apply for a slot on this blog. To that end, I’ve put together two forms, which both serve the same functions:
They walk you through the entire list of things I need to know
They allow you to upload images directly into the form
I receive an email to let me know that you’ve applied for a blog spot
All the information goes into a database, which I can refer to at any time
A draft blog post is AUTOMATICALLY created, and formatted with the information you provided
From there the following things happen:
Once I get the email notification, I check the draft post, and make any changes that are immediately obvious (like removing text for links that aren’t provided).
If it’s a Book Spotlight, I create the advertising poster, and insert it into the post.
I then touch base with the author, by email, with any questions, requests for further information, (and approval on Book Spotlight posters), as well as confirm any preferences on posting dates.
Once any changes are finalized, I email the author the date and time the post will go live, as well as the links to that post (which only work once the post is live).
My Preferred Genres to Feature:
However, just because your book doesn’t fall into one of those categories, that doesn’t mean I won’t feature it if something about it catches m interest.
Apply For A Slot Today… Or Bookmark These Links For Later…
This is one of those blog posts that is going to enter very weird territory before it’s finished… But then that’s what happens when people have conversations when neither one of them is entirely awake.
On the subject of bomb warnings…
If you grew up in England during a particular time, you might have lived with the potential threat of bombs going off in some of the big cities. If that’s the case, then you may have seen posters similar to this one in any number of places.
I remember seeing any number of posters reminding people to keep their eyes open for packages, suitcases, bags, or other unattended. They were a constant reminder that there was always the potential for one of those items to be a bomb. Some went so far as to remind you not to approach the item, but contact the police instead.
Warnings turn to humor…
After a while, I started seeing graffiti that took the warning, and added humor. But not before I’d already had the conversation with some friends in the early hours of the morning…
Now this was before the internet had become an invasive part of our lives. It was also way before people turned such things into viral memes, that would spread like wildfire.
And then turn into the unexpectedly bizarre…
Now my wife is very much aware of these conversations, and just how strange my mind is at times. But last night, we were talking about something (I can’t for the life of me remember what), but I turned to her and said “Be alert”, and she came back with a reply that left me speechless and laughing, because it was so unexpected.
I jumped out of bed, wrote it down in my journal, with the lights off, in the dark, and could still somehow read it this morning. So I couldn’t help but turn it into a poster. And for what it’s worth “I’m sorry” and “You’re Welcome”
Do you have any bizzare late night (or any other time) conversations you want to share?
Feel free to drop them in the comments below and I’ll share the best responses in a future post!
Before I answer that question, I should answer another one:
What IS Bullet Journal?
Simply put, it’s a process for getting thoughts out of your head and onto paper through a system called rapid logging. It was developed by Ryder Carroll back in 2013, has been the subject of 900,000+ Instagram tags and 680,000+ YouTube videos, and has a following of over 92,000 on Facebook.
And if that wasn’t enough:
the Quick Guide for this system has been translated into 25 languages
There is a dedicated app to help Bullet Journal users
and a journal format specifically designed for this system.
Topics allow you to utilize individual pages for particular uses. In my case, that’s my:
my daily to-do/notes lists
lists of websites I need to keep handy
notes on things I’ve read/watched that I need to reference from time-to-time
story writing/editing/promotion plans
Page numbers are used to index all of those topics, so you can find them easily.
Short sentences make it quicker and easier to get your thoughts on paper, and prevent the entire process from becoming a chore. They’re intended to act as a quick reminder, more than a detailed description. But if you need to provide more details, just start a new page, give it a topic header, and put a reference to that page alongside the short sentence, and your index.
Bullets encourage you to keep sentences short, since that’s exactly what bullets are intended for, and it’s pretty instinctive to use. Different bullets represent tasks, events, appointments, and notes. Add a signifier alongside that bullet and you can mark it as urgent, a deadline, something you want to investigate more later, and so on…
Bullet Journal 101
Go check out the other resources out there, but if you’re easily distracted don’t spend too long looking. There is a vast number of Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, blog entries, and more waiting for the unwary.
I’ve been using this system since January, and my personal advice, is to stick to the basics while you learn the system. Then start customizing your bullet journals to fit your needs, as you discover them. I’ve developed a customer weekly layout that tracks my work hours, my household chores, writing/editing, blogging and book promotion tasks, which I’ve included in the pictures below.