Resolutions for the New Year

This time of year, people tend to have one last hurrah before committing to another set of resolutions. My resolutions for 2020 don’t quite fit that scenario. 2019 was a great year. The Moon Hunters was published, and I started Marie Kondoing my house because I discovered that I wrote better when I didn’t have tons of clutter to distract me. I also have just under 70k words of the sequel to The Moon Hunters written. I’m happy with that progress.

So, what are my resolutions for 2020? For one thing, I’m going to make sure I keep up the writing momentum. I will finish revising the sequel in the early months of the new year and also want to get the first draft of the prequel written by the end of the summer. These are doable goals. What I do need to work on, however, is keeping up with my blog. This is where I’ve slacked off.

What to do? First, I need to create a reasonable goal, which for me is 2-4 blog posts per month. I don’t want to write fluff, so I need to think creatively about what to post. I aim to think of that as a fun challenge instead of a burden.

Another goal? Keep my house free of clutter.

I wish everyone a very happy New Year. Now, go and enjoy your last hurrahs 🙂destin 1

Two Weeks Post Launch :)

Two weeks after the book’s launch, I know that the final product is so much better than what I submitted to Kindle Scout about a year and a half ago. Books take work, and I was too close to my writing to transform the story the way it needed to be transformed. Thanks, Chandra Press!

An author’s work doesn’t end when the book hits Amazon, though. I’ve been typing away at the sequel, making connections with people on Twitter, and supporting other writers however I can.

I also signed up with Instagram. I never thought I’d do it, but I’m really liking all the artsy posts. It took me a few tries to get something semi-decent. Here’s an example. I took it at my BFF’s full moon party. I like the results.

Well, back to writing now 🙂

 

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Lady Samilla Ani: Character Expose

I won’t drop any spoilers from The Moon Hunters here, but one important supporting character in the book is Lady Samilla Ani, the protagonist’s grandmother. One thing Samilla does is give Leilani some money, coins she secreted away from household funds over the years. Women in the Village of Lehom aren’t usually allowed to keep money for themselves because that would make them too independent. Controlling societies often keep people marginalized by isolating them and restricting their economic means.

This event was inspired by my maternal grandmother. When I was about six, my grandmother told me she’d bought diamond necklaces for me and my younger sister. She also told me she’d skimmed money from her household money and personal shopping allowance to buy them. I didn’t know what to make of it at that young age, but I do remember she told me not to tell my grandfather.

I never told, and after she died, my parents kept those necklaces for us. I still have it. It’s a little necklace, nothing gaudy, but I remember her every time I see it. My grandmother gave me that necklace, and perhaps my story shows some remembrance of her in the character of Samilla. Maybe.

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When the Cone of Uncertainty Brings Clarity (or musings on gratitude on the day before my book launch).

I thought I’d be nervous about The Moon Hunters launch, but I’m not. This time of year, anxiety is my brain’s unwelcome bedfellow. It seems that as soon as Sept. 1st rolls around, hurricanes multiply like the bothersome tribbles from Star Trek. I usually stalk the National Hurricane Center website like a creepy fool and hope my city stays out of the ominous-sounding “cone of uncertainty.” When you’re in the cone, that means there’s a chance you’ll get hit by a storm. How I hate that stupid cone. For reference, it looks like this.

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What does this have to do with my book launch? Well, I’m grateful for everything that I have in my life and that I’m not in Hurricane Dorian’s cone. People in the Bahamas weren’t so lucky, and whether or not my book’s a smashing success, my family is safe. I still have a house. My community is intact. These are the important things.

With all that I have to be grateful for, I’m not about to impose a new “cone of uncertainty” onto a book release and feel angst over it. I wrote the best story I could, and I have confidence that some people will enjoy The Moon Hunters. Beyond that, what will be will be. I’ll post tomorrow when the book’s up 🙂

Launch date=September 5th!

The Moon Hunters, formerly called The Children of Lehom, will be launching on September 5th! We changed the title to make it less ambiguous. The new title also echoes some major themes in the book, making it an excellent fit for Leilani’s story.

I’m so excited to make this announcement! The book’s come a long way since Kindle Scout 🙂 Here’s a pic!moon hunters 3d cover

 

 

 

The value of humor.

I haven’t posted in a while because I’ve been busy editing my first novel for my publisher and editing my second (different universe than the first), all while writing a sequel to the first. It’s been busy but awesome. My editor said the first round of edits went well, so yea!!! The book should be released this summer. It’s still hard to believe sometimes. Last year, I’d had my first rejection from the Kindle Scout program, and I felt gutted at first. Since then, there’s been more rejection and then, amazingly, acceptance.

People told me to keep working and not to give up. That’s turned out to be good advice. I don’t want to turn this blog into something a motivation speaker would write, but I think writers need to hear positive things. It can’t hurt. That said, I also have a warped sense of humor sometimes. That also helps. See the demotivational poster below. If you’re feeling down, read positive stuff but also laugh at the wonderfully ridiculous, especially if it involves robots. That’s today’s advice.

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