"There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate's loot on Treasure Island." - Walt Disney

Wednesday, February 1, 2023

IWSG: Cover Designs

It’s time for another group posting of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group! founded by Alex J. Cavanaugh. Time to release our fears to the world – or offer encouragement to those who are feeling neurotic. If you’d like to join us, click on the tab above and sign up. We post the first Wednesday of every month. Your words might be the encouragement someone needs. You can also join us on twitter using the hashtag #IWSG, or on the Facebook page.

Now, IWSG hosts have changed up the format in an effort to make it more fun and interactive. Every month, they will announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG Day post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say. 

Don’t forget to visit others that day to see their answers. Want to join, or learn more? Visit our - Sign-up List.


FEBRUARY QUESTION - 
If you are an Indie author, do you make your own covers or purchase them? If you publish trad, how much input do you have about what goes on your cover?


MY ANSWER - The only two experiences I've had with self-publishing included my short story "Broken Angel" in 2016 and an anthology called Fly Away in 2022. "Broken Angel" had previously been published in Rope and Wire magazine. In 2016 self-publishing was becoming a craze and I was simply curious about the process, so I used Amazon's Createspace, uploaded a photograph I had recently taken, and then used their suggested formatting for the cover. Fly Away is an anthology put together by the high school writers' group I sponsor. We held an art contest where students submitted potential cover designs. Once we had a winning entry, we again used Amazon's suggested formatting for the cover. Everything else I have published has been through an established press that had their own designers to create the cover.

How about you? If you are an Indie author, do you make your own covers or purchase them? If you publish trad, how much input do you have about what goes on your cover?

Tuesday, January 24, 2023

16 More Conferences and Literary Festivals


February 16 - 19 San Francisco Writers Conference

February 20 - 23 - American Book Sellers Association

March 13 - 15 - Social Media Marketing Conference

March 16 - 19 - Left Coast Crime

April 29 - The Pre-Quill Conference

June 7 - 10 - Reader Author Get Together

June 9 - 11 - Inkerscon

June 22-25 - Space Coast Book Lovers

July 14 and 15 -  Once Upon a Book Author Signing 

August 30 - September 3 - Bouchercon

September 20 - 24 - NINC Conference

October 7 - 9 - InD'Scribe Conference/

October 27 - 29 - LoveNVegas

November 6 - 10  20booksvegas


Other to check back with:

Romance Author Mastermind

Hampton Roads Writers


Please feel free to comment with any you would like to see added to this list - even if it's not happening in the USA.  You never know when an opportunity will arise. Right? :-)

HAPPY WRITING!

Tuesday, January 17, 2023

IWSG: Twitter Pitch

#IWSGPit is coming!

The next #IWSGPit will be January 25
9:00 am - 8:00 pm Eastern Standard Time

Create a Twitter-length pitch for your completed and polished manuscript and leave room for genre, age, and the hashtag. 

On January 25, 2023, Tweet your pitch. If your pitch receives a favorite/heart from a publisher/agent check their submission guidelines and send your requested query.

Many writers have seen their books published from a Twitter pitch - it’s a quick and easy way to put your manuscript in front of publishers and agents.

Get the full details here.

Will you be participating? Do you know anyone who has received a request/deal from a Twitter pitch? 

Tuesday, January 10, 2023

2023 Conferences, Workshops, and Literary Festivals

This list mostly focuses on Texas and Louisiana (where I am). However, there are some others listed here for you. Also, keep in mind, many are virtual now, so your own location may not matter. Please let me know if you would like to recommend any others to be added to the list.

Since the pandemic, many events have either been cancelled, or moved to virtual. The list below is what I know of as of today.

First, please let me recommend MASTERCLASS. This is an online set of instructional and motivational videos given by some of the industry's top professionals and gathered together in one location. These are very reasonably priced, and you can read about my personal experiences with it by clicking on the link in the labels below. There are other genres besides just writing that are extremely beneficial and interesting as well. They just added quite a few more options this past month.

Any Time: More than a dozen authors - https://www.masterclass.com/homepage

2/25 - Houston Writer's Guild Conference - Virtual NY- Virtual Winter Conference 2023

3/9-11 - New Orleans Book Festival - New Orleans Book Festival

3/10-19 - SXSW Film and writers festival in Austin - http://www.sxsw.com/

3/22-26 - New Orleans Literary Festival -  http://www.tennesseewilliams.net/

4/29-30 (Tentative) - Austin Writer's and Illustrators Conference - https://austin.scbwi.org/events/austin-2022-writers-illustrators-working-conference/

5/13-14 - Lone Star Book Festival of Seguin, Texas - Lone Star Festival

6/8-10 - Historical Novel Society - HNS Conference 2023

8/30 - 9/3 - Murder at the Marina - San Diego, Ca. - http://www.bouchercon.com/

10/21-22 - Unconfirmed, so check back: Dallas Writer's Conference - http://dfwcon.org/

10/26- 11/2 - Austin Film Festival -  https://austinfilmfestival.com/

11/4-5 Unconfirmed, so check back: Austin Book Festival - https://www.texasbookfestival.org/

Year Round - Interested in a more expansive list of national and international options? Checkout this list: Insecure Writer's Support Group: Conferences, Workshops, etc. / Publications (insecurewriterssupportgroup.com)

Please feel free to comment with any you would like to see added to this list - even if it's not happening in the USA.  You never know when an opportunity will arise. Right? :-)

Also, if you are looking for a writer's group in Texas, check out: Writers' Groups | Lone Star Literary Life

HAPPY WRITING!

Wednesday, January 4, 2023

IWSG: 2023 Words and Visions

It’s time for another group posting of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group! founded by Alex J. Cavanaugh. Time to release our fears to the world – or offer encouragement to those who are feeling neurotic. If you’d like to join us, click on the tab above and sign up. We post the first Wednesday of every month. Your words might be the encouragement someone needs. You can also join us on twitter using the hashtag #IWSG, or on the Facebook page.

Now, IWSG hosts have changed up the format in an effort to make it more fun and interactive. Every month, they will announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG Day post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say. 

Don’t forget to visit others that day to see their answers. Want to join, or learn more? Visit our - Sign-up List.


JANUARY QUESTION - 
Do you have a word of the year? Is there one word that sums up what you need to work on or change in the coming year? 

MY ANSWER - I have three. My words for the year are JOY, PEACE, and ACCOMPLISHMENT. 2022 was full of many major life changes for me - multiple family deaths, estranged and/or difficult friend and work relationships, and a lasting sense of being overwhelmed in work, relationships, and creativity. My goals for this year are to focus more on the positives, accept what I cannot control, and to be content with what I am able to accomplish.

How about you? Do you have one or more words for the year? How about a Vision Board? If you've never made one check out this link: Vision Board

Tuesday, December 27, 2022

New Year...

Happy New Year Wishes - praying 2023 is a year of happiness, peace, and love for all - stay safe. See you in January!

Monday, December 19, 2022

Merry Christmas 2022!



This picture was taken in the front yard of my old house some years ago. The figures were inherited from my grandmother. The manger was built by my husband and oldest daughter.

So far this year, we haven't had any freezes or snow since February. I'm sure we are due some.

Wherever you are, whatever your situation, I pray you all enjoy a beautiful holiday season full of your favorite traditions. May your best wishes come true.

Merry Christmas!