Sunday, 12 January 2020

How To Be A Writer Panel Discussion

It's only the 12th January, and I already have some incredible dates in the diary!*

And this is one of the exciting things happening for me this year! The event is on Thursday 6th February 2020 at 7.30pm.

I'm going to be on a panel with three other wonderful authors discussing how to be a writer. We'll be covering our writing routines, dealing with publishers, getting agents etc.

It is a ticketed event, so, if you live in the Weston-super-Mare area and would like to come along, you need to purchase your ticket here.

If you want to find out more about the four of us, click here.

I'm really looking forward to this night, and it should be a lot of fun! Hope to see you there!

Teresa x 

*(I don't have time to date date - which is a good job, because I'm not even going there right now. That's another blog post!) 

Wednesday, 8 January 2020

Be Proactive Not Reactive

Happy New Year, friends, family, followers and readers!

I'm not very good at New Year's resolutions. Although I have set myself a goal of some sort this year. I signed up to the Writer's Bureau Proofreading and Copy Editing course. And my goal is to complete this before May half-term.

You can take two years to do it, but I was told it can be completed in four months. And let's face it, the sooner I complete it the sooner I benefit from it. I'm hoping it will help with my own writing and editing, the editing part being a weakness of mine, and who knows, I may even get to work freelance as a proofreader/copy editor.

With the kids back to school, yesterday was my full day at home and I cracked on. I am still writing my positives into a diary every evening, two years on. It really does help you focus on the good things in life rather than the bad things. I don't have exciting things to put in every day. Yesterday's three positives were; I started and finished module one of my course, I did some writing and I worked out. But I felt so positive that I'd achieved a lot and ticked some jobs off my to-do list that last night, I wrote at the front of the diary, "Be Proactive Not Reactive."

Another of my resolutions. Not very successful at it though.
So I suppose that's going to be my New Year's resolution. To try to get jobs done - rather than put them off - and concentrate a little harder on me and my self development, whether it's career, health or even things around the home. (I have rooms that I would really like to get decorated!)

I could just do with earning some more money so that I could have that holiday abroad I keep dreaming about....

Wednesday, 4 December 2019

Proud Owner of a Fifteen Year Old

As I write this, (yesterday) fifteen years ago, I would have been in labour... I went into labour on the 2nd of December, around 11pm after a day of being on my feet (wanting to bring the baby on), thinking I'd have my bundle of joy on my sister's birthday (3rd of December).

Oh, no... thirty-three hours later...

Ben entered the world as he meant to go on in life... taking his sweet time about it. He's not really in a rush now, at fifteen! He arrived at 6.36am on the 4th December.

He might drive me potty at times, away with the fairies, leaving doors open, lights on but he makes me incredibly proud as he does put a 110% into everything he does.

He loves school, he loves learning and he loves sport! He is like a sponge, always absorbing information and facts.

I'm lucky to have a boy who is academically bright as well as sporty. He is an allrounder. He might not be the best at everything, but he's pretty good at it all... and like I said, he puts the effort in. The school have praised him on his attitude to learning.

Ben is growing up to be a thoughtful. intelligent, easy going young man, even a little profound and mature in his thinking. He is very logical. He may be laid back but I know, through his lack of caring of image and what others think, he shouldn't succumb to peer pressure.

He takes after me, liking posh chocolates and coffee. (I haven't encouraged wine just yet - obviously!) The worrying thing is he is as tall as me now. And I reckon by Christmas, he may even be taller!

Happy birthday, Ben! I love you so much x x x

Thursday, 24 October 2019

How To Help An Author Friend

Not all authors are like J K Rowling (although her struggle was real in the beginning). They actually have a part-time or even a full-time job as they need a reliable monthly income. They hope one day, when they "make it" - like J K Rowling - they can give up the day job.

However, for most of us, it's a reality that we can't ever give up work and become a full-time writer, and having recently talked about this, a friend suggested I put a blog post together to help guild those wanting to support their author friends but aren't sure how.

Firstly, I've found myself explaining how royalties work and that some don't understand the process.

To clarify, the days of advances are long gone for most writers. Authors only get paid if you buy their books. And then it could be something as little as 10p per copy sold depending on the RRP of the book.

Where you buy their books is important, too.

Ebay, for example, is possibly selling used books. Yes, the author would have been paid at some point for that copy, but when you buy a second-hand book, the money is going to the seller and not the author. (And the irony is they'll make more out of the sale of the book than the author ever did).

I will argue at least with a charity shop the money is going to charity. And I would much rather a book exchanged or re-sold than burned! It can be a good way to gain new readers, too. However, we're not talking about your Stephen King's of the world. We're talking about your author friend with the other job to bring in a reliable income...

And by buying second hand, without sounding ungrateful - because it is great a new reader is trying you out - it hasn't helped boost rankings like it would have done if you'd bought the book/ebook new from Amazon. And some ebooks are cheaper than buying the paperback second-hand!

Actually, all other good ebook sellers will have rankings, so whether you've bought from Amazon, Nook, Google Play, iTunes, it would have boosted the books visibility. Authors are just obsessed with Amazon and getting into the top 100 of something!

So if you can, please buy new!

Or borrow from the library! (The author gets paid lending rights and it's not cost you a penny.)

These are the best things you can do for free to support your author friend:

  • Comment on/Like/Share their Facebook posts about their books. This increases visibility and is free advertising for your friend.
  • Tell people how much you've loved your author friend's books (if you've read them - if not, why not?) and recommend they buy one.
  • Leave reviews on Amazon and wherever you purchased the book. Again, this increases "traffic" to your friend's book and helps others decide whether to buy the book or not. It also gives the author something to share and shout about over their social media accounts.
  • Tag them on Facebook and share a photo of you reading their book. Authors like to see the exotic places their books have travelled to, even if  they've not left their front room, let alone the UK in a while... 
  • Support your author friend with local book signings, help spread the word. Bring new friends along to introduce them to your author friend... or be there to drag people in off the street. Either way, your friend will be grateful. 
  • If you want to avoid Amazon and prefer to support local bookshops, order the book from there. Although depending on the publisher, Amazon maybe your only go-to for paperbacks. But if you can order from a local bookshop, and you want to keep them in business too, order your books from them! But if you can't afford to buy, remember, check out your local library. 

Your author friend is not going to suddenly get rich and forget you by these small tokens of goodwill. They're more likely to hug you till you ask them politely to put you down. But if they do become the next J K Rowling, they'll remember the friends who got them there. 😉

Saturday, 12 October 2019

12th Day of Birthday

On the twelfth day of my birthday, I would like sent to me...

A Coffee Machine 

I really, really, really want a bean to cup coffee machine, with milk frother and everything. My old machine gave up the ghost, and deciding pods weren't exactly environmentally friendly, I didn't replace it. Bean to cup machines are far more expensive, so I'm saving up. I keep saying the next book sold, I'm buying a machine with the royalties.

To be honest, I love opening presents! And now my boys are old enough to let me open them, so it's more exciting! Before, when they were much younger, they would open them for me.

Yes, imagine my angry face. But how do you tell a four-year-old you don't need help opening presents!?

Today is my birthday, so I'm hoping to have dinner out with the kids and my best friend, and her children. I have more plans for my birthday month, which I'm sure you'll hear about if you follow my Twitter and Facebook accounts!