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Messages - CaraS.

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Writers' Cafe / Re: What do YOU do during writing breaks?
« on: March 30, 2018, 10:01:48 AM »
I sometimes do a bit of knitting or family history research, which if I'm not careful can last the whole rest of the day.

I don't knit, but recently discovered a distant ancestor (early-to-mid 1800s) that was quite a woman for her times: a midwife/nurse that helped throughout several counties, sometimes following animal trails to get to neighbors; had 19  kids of her own, and more. I'm toying with the "idea" of turning her into a protagonist, and writing a novel about her (though it would be fiction, just loosely based on her life). Regarding that "idea"...when I take a writing break, other ideas often preoccupy my mind -- so, I don't know if I'm ever truly on a "break."  ;D

Writers' Cafe / Re: For heaven's sake, people, you're authors.
« on: February 11, 2018, 09:46:11 AM »
Recently read a romance/thriller with almost every other character "snorting" middle of book, was ready to toss it against the wall. And let me say, this was not an indie-author.

He snorted.

She snorted.

They all snorted.   :-X

Writers' Cafe / Re: At least a hundred books published?
« on: February 10, 2018, 06:23:01 AM »
According to Book Report I have 235. That does not include preorders, of which I probably have ten titles on preorder right now). Also, that includes a good thirty to forty old erotica shorts that are no more, a good 50 or so omnibuses, 15 30,000-word shorts (which I do not consider in my total because they're not full novels), and about 10 temporary samplers that have come and gone. I have published more than 100 full novels, though. I passed that mark between my two names in September. And, yes, notjohn. They're all total crap.

Amanda is a lean, mean writing machine!  ;D I think there are peaks and valleys in writing and at some point in your career, you hit a high point: the work just flows almost flawlessly, and the more you write, the better and faster you get. I was at that point in my late 30s, early 40s. Now I'm 65+, and work goes slower, have to be much more careful, not to mention laboring over the rewrite/edits.

Oddly enough though, one of my novels has made most of my money at 5 figures. The others sell, but somehow that one is a lasting and continuing seller. If I could repeat it, I would. But I can't, and still don't know exactly why that novel is so popular. 

Writers' Cafe / Re: Kindle Create
« on: November 17, 2017, 10:06:06 AM »
I used Kindle Create for my latest novel, as well as updated two others using that program. I personally like it -- with the exception of being unable to edit text while formatting. You have to correct any errors in Word, start all over with the KC formatting. Just my two cents.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Premade Covers - types that are hard to find
« on: November 09, 2017, 09:02:07 AM »
Red hair for women, especially romance and pre-made.

Writers' Cafe / New KDP formatting program
« on: November 03, 2017, 10:16:22 AM »
I found the link to the download of this new program in the latest KDP newsletter. I used it for the first time on my latest novel, and so far, very happy with it. You can use drop cap, as well as have chapters/subtitles formatted easily. Impressed with the ease of use, and the final version. Basically you just import MS word docx and go from there. There's also four different themes that you can choose from. The output file can be directly uploaded to publish at Amazon.

Anyone else used it? Opinions?

You can find it at KDP by searching for "Kindle Create."

I decided on the 3-book, $45.00 deal. First manuscript came back several days ahead of schedule. Very satisfied with the proofed work!

Writers' Cafe / Re: Boil Down Your 2017 Writing Into One Word
« on: October 22, 2017, 10:17:14 AM »
Lackluster. ???

Writers' Cafe / Co-author deceased -- copyright question
« on: October 08, 2017, 06:20:02 AM »
I co-authored a book of short stories with a friend, and he is now deceased. I have no idea about the legal/copyright issues. Granted, the book doesn't sell very well. Still, does anyone know how this works? Thanks for any info. (I will unpublish if necessary)

Writers' Cafe / Re: What drives you to write?
« on: August 23, 2017, 10:37:40 AM »
For me, it's the only activity that completely obliterates time. Eckhart Tolle refers to this phenomenon as being in "The Now." Others refer to it as living your passion or finding your bliss. It isn't done for money (clearly in my case) but if it pays, great. Any opportunity to write, even a postcard, is enough to tap into that stream.


Plus, I get a little nuts when I'm not involved in a story. Believe me, I tried NOT writing, and that didn't work out. Sigh.

Fire Talk / Re: Unwanted audio books being bought with free ebooks
« on: May 30, 2017, 10:07:22 AM »
I wondered if I accidentally "bought" the audio books. I DID get a billing via email from audio/Amazon, and they addressed the issue quickly. Said they would look into if it was a technical glitch.

I have been downloading ebooks for ages, just never had that happen. Will be very careful next time, make sure I don't click for audio-book.

Fire Talk / Unwanted audio books being bought with free ebooks
« on: May 30, 2017, 05:59:59 AM »
Hi All,
I noticed in the past couple days that when I got a free ebook (via Bookbub usually), the audio book was charged. Fortunately, I realized this after it happened twice, and Amazon refunded the cost ($16.00!)...but I am still not clear how that is happening. Never has before.

I was wondering if it has something to do with the integrating of audiobooks and ebooks? Has this happened to anyone else? I'm almost afraid to get free ebooks now!

Thanks for any reponses.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Anyone 'choose' to write in different locations?
« on: April 01, 2017, 09:56:37 AM »
I need to be at my desk, whether using desktop or laptop. I started writing way before computers, and my usual method is to have a bulletin board filled with characters/names/quirks, hand-drawn maps of the location, including shops/streets, etc. (even plot points sometimes). I've never been able to make the leap to using Scrivener for those things, even though I have the program and did try. It's just easy to have the lists right in front of me, quicker to keep things like direction, location, characters/relationships etc consistent.

I can write short scenes away from those notes, but not entire novels. Sometimes I even have photos of characters as well, though I do make Pinterest boards with pictures of characters/setting, etc. And always link those at the end of the novel, for anyone interested.

I also need background noise, though music serves that purpose. I worked in busy newsrooms, and developed the habit of blocking everything out to write.

Interesting thread!

Writers' Cafe / Re: Awesome $10 eBook Cover Sale
« on: December 23, 2016, 10:15:24 AM »
Got a great cover from this sale. Highly recommend for those on a budget who want a quality cover.

I like the Faulkner method, and google a fictional name just to be sure there isn't a real town/place in the state with that name. You'd be surprised how many times I find actual places for a name I've made up.

I also like to draw maps, just so I can keep streets/avenues, businesses, etc straight. Also do that with pen/paper and hang above my computer so I can glance at it to orient myself in the setting. Occasionally I will draw the layout of the living area, house, or place. And too, I have a pinterest board with pictures of my protagonist/characters, or similar setting.

Sometimes if it is a region I've not visited (though all my stories are usually set in the American South, where I live) I get on google street view, and drive around the general region, learn about the landscape, flat/mountains, etc. I enjoy that, and have discovered some google cam drivers pass on double yellow lines/take risky chances sometimes. LOL

Writers' Cafe / Re: Do you become less creative as you age?
« on: July 24, 2016, 09:52:21 AM »
Mid-sixties here, been writing all my life. Journalism, then fiction. Went through a bad patch in my fifties, burned out. But started writing fiction again three years ago, and though sometimes I have a bit of trouble with very long novels (consistency), still don't lack imagination and creativity. The internet is truly remarkable, a great tool for easy research. I used to spend half my time in the library, doing research.

I actually think writing is an activity that improves brain function, since it requires deep concentration and vocabulary skills. Much better than those word games. Even the researching provides mental stimulation and can spark imagination; using google street view is not only interesting but somewhat of a vicarious adventure (albeit one that is transformed via a character's viewpoint).

I will say this: I don't push myself on quotas of words or output like I did in my forties. Instead I tend to take my time, enjoying the process itself. My paternal grandmother lived to age 92, and was sharp as a tack right up to the end. Kinda hoping I inherited her genes!  :D

Writers' Cafe / Re: Thousand Words A Day Club 2016
« on: July 05, 2016, 07:48:55 PM »
1,200 today. First chapter of novel; never gets  any easier.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Payments
« on: May 29, 2016, 07:57:51 AM »
The funds from UK and Canada are the ones saying "pending confirmation" on mine. I am in USA, and never seen that before.. Already paid all other foreign and USA funds, in bank as of Friday. At least I know others are having similar issue.

Let's Talk Kindle! / Re: KBoards Kindle Oasis Giveaway!!!
« on: April 22, 2016, 09:35:45 AM »
I appreciate how much in-depth information is available regarding marketing indie books. I learned more by reading this forum than any other source. And it's a great community of writers helping writers!

My memoir about growing up in a dysfunctional home with an alcoholic and co-dependent. Took years, since I would have to quit due to emotional distress. It turned out to be rather short, not much over 100 pages. But I felt obligated to share how I coped and survived, even thrived as an adult so others in similar circumstances could know they can survive too.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Top 20 list of promo sites that actually work?
« on: March 20, 2016, 11:19:46 AM »
That would be a very useful list!

To your list of worthwhile sites, I'd add: (this one boosted sales beyond the promo period)


How did Book Promoter perform for you? I'm thinking of using it. I actually prefer promos with sites that list your book for a couple days up to a couple weeks. I get far better results than the one-day promo sites. Some even put your book online at their website for browsing permanently, huge advantage.

I think it is amazing we have so many choices in TV and streaming series and movies. When I was young there were only three networks for TV, and yes, it was as bad and limited as you can imagine. I got hooked on "The Killing" on A&E , but last season it got very dark. So Netflix picked it up and did a smashing final season with excellent resolution. Lately I have marveled at Bates Motel, though it jumped the shark last season and surprised A&E did keep it going this season.  So much to enjoy, whether in indie novels or cutting-edge streaming entertainment.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Thousand Words A Day Club 2016
« on: March 15, 2016, 08:54:11 PM »
Sunday I went nuts and blew through the last three chapters of my rough draft, finishing.  Yesterday and today I did rewrites and editing. Whew, tired.

Writers' Cafe / Re: As an author what's your greatest desire
« on: March 09, 2016, 03:30:58 PM »
For many, many people to read and enjoy my work. Money would be a nice side-effect, but really just want readers to enjoy a good, page-turning story I've written. But. I've been writing for 30+ years and had no audience (no publication till late 1990s) so, obviously, I would write whether I have an audience or not.  ;D

Writers' Cafe / Re: Thousand Words A Day Club 2016
« on: March 03, 2016, 06:55:44 PM »
1506 today on my next supernatural suspense. I am on Chapter 8 tomorrow. Will be 20 chapters. I usually write every day, between 1500 and 2000 words, till first draft is finished.

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