Insecure Writer’s Support Group: Raising the (Nearly) Dead

Insecure Writer's Support GroupToday is March’s instalment of Insecure Writer’s Support Group, which sees hundreds of writers and bloggers worldwide post about their insecurities, support others with theirs, and offer up advice for overcoming them. If you want to visit the other IWSG member blogs, or sign up yourself, you can do so here.

I completely forgot about posting in February as I was absolutely swamped with writing, editing, and publishing, so I have a good excuse!

This month we’re being asked Have you ever pulled out a really old story and reworked it? Did it work out?

As it happens, my very first release as an indie author was exactly that.

Cutting the BloodlineCutting the Bloodline started life as a stage play way back in 2010, and was stashed in a draw for years before I reworked it and released it as a novella five years later.

I knew the story wasn’t entirely dead; the characters and the idea kept bugging me, kept whispering in my ear, and kept pushing me to release the story. How could I say no?

So Cutting the Bloodline became my debut release. It was the book that taught me how to format an ebook, how to use KDP, how to market a book, how to handle a book launch, pretty much everything about the indie publishing world. Of course, I’ve learnt so much more since, and there’s always new things to learn, but this book will always be special because it was my first. The characters too, of course, and I couldn’t say for definite that I’m finished with them either.

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She’s Out, and She’s Not Playing Nice…

It’s release day!

The Visionary“You’re just as weak minded as everyone else. Just as easy to control.”

After generations of freedom from the administration’s rule, the slum women find themselves facing a census. But as officers try to list and tag them, their efforts are met with violent resistance.

Maeve needs to keep Faith safe, and hidden, but she has another demon to battle. Powerful psychic Corinn, the girl nobody wants, is playing deadly games, and no one’s safe from her influence.

Maeve’s learning to fight back, but her powers aren’t the only thing being unlocked, and she doesn’t have long to decide who to trust.

You can continue the Paper Duchess series by buying your copy at Amazon, iTunes, Nook, and Kobo, and adding it on Goodreads.

Check out the love it’s getting already:

The Visionary Reviews

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Got Goals? Third Time’s the Charm

Big Goals BloghopWell, February has been something of a whirlwind, and, thankfully, really, really productive.

The Visionary, the third book in my Paper Duchess series is all ready to go for its release on February 28th. It’s been a heck of a journey to get there, a journey that, at times, I didn’t think I would ever finish. But February came with a renewed determination, and it’s been absolutely fantastic.

So the series continues, and The Visionary is available at Amazon, iTunes, Nook, and Kobo. What a relief. Normally, I would take a well-deserved break now, but I have After‘s release on March 6th. Here we go again!

How’s your February been?

How has January been for you goals? If you want to visit the other blogs in this blog hop, or fancy signing up yourself, check out the linky list here: sylmion.blogspot.co.uk/p/do-you-have-goal.html

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Got Goals? Implementing Deadlines

Big Goals BloghopI’d love to say that January has been a big month of working hard, high word counts, and continuing progress. In actual fact, the first three weeks were filled with procrastination, avoidance, and constant excuses. This past week, on the other hand, has been amazing.

It took me a while, but I’ve definitely found my mojo.

The Visionary, the third book of my Paper Duchess series, is now available to preorder. I work well when I have a deadline, and imposing one has definitely spurred me on. And talking of deadlines, my story collection, After, is also on preorder.

I’ve also been busy with Instafreebie and other promos, with more scheduled next month, including the first one that I’m hosting, and my mailing list is a healthy 2,000+ now.

So I’m looking forward to a very productive and exciting February. Long may the momentum continue!

How has January been for you goals? If you want to visit the other blogs in this blog hop, or fancy signing up yourself, check out the linky list here: sylmion.blogspot.co.uk/p/do-you-have-goal.html

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Insecure Writer’s Support Group: I am Not a Serious Writer

Insecure Writer's Support GroupToday is 2017’s first instalment of Insecure Writer’s Support Group, which sees hundreds of writers and bloggers worldwide post about their insecurities, support others with theirs, and offer up advice for overcoming them. If you want to visit the other IWSG member blogs, or sign up yourself, you can do so here.

For this month’s post, IWSG members are talking about the writing advice they wish they’d never heard. There’s so much advice out there about how to write, what to write, where to write, when to write, even what to wear, eat, or listen to while you write. It’s confusing, to say the least.

There is good advice. There is bad advice. And then there is good advice that’s not necessarily good for you. It can be hard to tell the difference, and the only way to do so is by experience.

I’ve always been an advocate of trying something once, but, in the early days, as a new writer, I took the advice of experienced writers as gospel. Worse still, advice from writers I admired became my mantra.

It was such a piece of advice that I wish I’d never heard. It stated that anyone who didn’t write every single day, writing in hours similar to 9-5, treating it like a day job, would never, ever be a serious writer. I fretted for several years over this advice, berating myself for not committing regular and laborious hours to my craft.

I can laugh at such naivety now, but, much like maturing into adulthood, it took me years to realise the most important thing. Everyone works differently. It doesn’t matter if I skip a day or two, or a week, or a month. It doesn’t matter if I write during the day, or at night, or in the short snippets of peace and quiet my young children allow me. It doesn’t matter if I write while hanging upside down from a trapeze. It doesn’t matter, because everyone has to find their own way.

There is good advice. There is bad advice. And then there is good advice that’s not necessarily good for you. Find your own path, and don’t feel guilty because your methods are different to someone else’s. Don’t try to fit in their shoes. Do what works for you.

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Resolutions for 2017

I’ve made a lot of resolutions over the years, and I’ve broken almost as many. I’m a quitter. I always have been, and I resigned myself to the fact that I always would be. Or maybe I just used that as an excuse. Over the past three months, something has happened, no, I’ve done something, to prove that this is no longer the case.

On October 13th 2016, I walked into my very first Slimming World meeting with hope and optimism. That optimism wasn’t misplaced. I’m beginning 2017 more than three stone lighter. I plan to end the year at my target weight. As a slim woman. Something I’ve never been before. I am not a quitter, and I’ve proved that. (If you’re interested in this, I post a lot about Slimming World on Instagram)

In the light of that, I feel, for the first time probably ever, that I can make a long list of resolutions for the year. And I feel that, for the first time, I am capable of seeing them through. So here goes…

  • I will reach my target weight of 10 stone, and I will maintain that weightloss, and enjoy a healthier, fitter, slimmer life.
  • I will give more of myself to my boys; I will give them more time, energy, and focus, and be less distracted.
  • I will declutter and tidy the house.
  • I will make lasting, happy memories with those I love.
  • I will stop wasting time simply mooching around the internet or watching the TV just because it’s on.
  • I will focus more on building my writing career, with less distractions, and more organisation. I will create action plans, and I will follow them through. I will stop using a lack of time as an excuse. I will make time. I will manage time.
  • I will allow more time for reading. I will turn off the TV more, and I will read in bed instead of playing pointless app games.
  • I will be kind and generous to both myself and others. I will not feel guilty for occassionally treating myself, and I will open myself to more experiences and opportunities. I will say yes more.
  • But I won’t be afraid to say no. I won’t feel guilty for putting myself first sometimes. I will not spread myself too thin or burn myself out simply because I feel obliged to others.
  • I will look for, and document, the good things in life. I will avoid futile arguments and debates. I will hope, I will be optimistic, and I will see the good in people for as long as they deserve it.
  • I will stick to things, and not look for easy or quick ways out. I will finish what I start.

And no excuses now. I know that I can be stubborn and resolute if I want to be. I know that I can be determined and self disciplined. But I won’t abandon the wishy-washy, spontaneous, unprepared side of me either. I can be both things. Because you never know when a wind might come to blow you onto another path, or when that other path might be exactly where you’re meant to walk.

What are your resolutions and hopes for 2017?

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