The Not Glamorous Part

Lest you think the latest developments have been all fun and games, let me assure you it’s not. Actually, my years with the USAF prepared me for this. It’s a fair amount of hurry up and wait. We’ve had two more rounds of editing and are currently waiting for the cover artist to work his magic. 

So it’s mostly more of the same–editing, writing, trying (in vain) to catch up on housework, gardening, and keeping this wee beastie fed. It’s not as easy as you might think.

Back From The Abyss

Hello again! If you’re confused about why this has landed in your inbox, this is the blog formerly known as Shining The Light. I’m updating and cleaning out the cobwebs.

Last month, I turned 50, and it dawned on me that if I don’t get serious about writing in general and marketing specifically I was never going to get anywhere. Hence the rebrand.

I’ve been working on a few different projects lately. The first started out as a fantasy short story called Dragon Rescue, which was published in Blackbirds Second Flight. It was followed by Mage Hunt in Blackbirds Third Flight, and has morphed into a full-blown series. The world is called Balphrahn and features dragons and dragon riders, magic, and intrigue.

The other two are still in development. One is a satirical collection of stories based on my experience in customer service fields, tentatively titled How To Get Crappy Service. The other isn’t even titled yet and may end up being a series of articles about parenting and dealing with the empty nest.

I’ve also started a newsletter and plan to share insider information there that won’t be here so I hope you’ll sign up for that.

That’s the excitement here! Well, not all of it, but you don’t want to know everything in the first post, do you?

Blackbirds Second Flight live chat

Some of the authors of Blackbirds Second Flight are getting together on Google+ this Thursday evening from 5-7 to answer questions about the Blackbirds books. You can watch it here. I’ve had several questions about one story in particular. I’m happy to have seen them ahead of time because I’ve had to consult scientists about it. They’re very busy, so I hated to bother them with this.

No, I didn’t. It’s payback. They’re my kids. I birthed scientists, to my continual surprise, and I would be a terrible mother if I didn’t take advantage of their gifts, especially since the primary ones they got from me were the sarcasm and smart-ass genes. Having grown children is truly delightful!

The other positive thing about seeing the questions in advance is it’s inspired me to do some world-building. A few people have already said they want to know more of the story, and to do that effectively, I need to compile what I know so I can research (dream up) what I don’t know yet. It’s a bit daunting. I’ll need more coffee.

Curious about the story yet? Join us Thursday evening* and order your copy of Blackbirds Second Flight. You can let me know which story you want to see more of!


*If, for some strange reason, you’re not available to watch Thursday, I believe it will be archived on YouTube. I’ll edit with the link when I get one.


Authorprenuership 3-d cover

Are you a seasoned author looking to up your game? How about a new writer with stars in your eyes and a day job resignation in your hand? “Authorprenuership” by Sharon Jenkins is for you.

Let me admit up-front that I’ve only read it once. It will take a couple more readings to fully glean the good stuff. Some of it is logical: Marketing, social media, team building, branding, perfecting your craft–things you’ll hear about at any writer’s conference, but more in-depth and with a unique twist.

There were some surprises. I’d never heard of the Four Temperaments personality test mentioned in this book, but a quick Google search brought me up to speed. She uses those personality types to tell you the best branch of publishing for your temperament. She also included a questionnaire on time management that was quite enlightening. That’s never been my strong area, but at least according to her test, I’m better than I thought I was. She also went into greater detail on team building than I’d ever considered, and there are a lot of resources I still need to explore.

This book is essentially a whole writers’ conference you can hold in your hand. It covers the not only the high points but also some of the lower ones. It’s basic enough for beginners and meaty enough to provide a new perspective for those who have been around the block a few times. Although it’s geared specifically toward writers, much of what’s covered will apply to other artists as well. Off the top of my head, I can’t think of an entrepreneurial field that wouldn’t benefit from it in some way.

This is one for the keeper shelf, tattered and highlighted, with notes in the margins.

One week, 3 hours, 10 minutes

before I start the first of two book signings.  On Friday I will be at The Bookshelf in Lapeer, MI from 2-6.  Saturday, from 9-3, I will be at the Lapeer Farmers Market on Nepessing St. in front of the courthouse.  The is the the one for “Sword And Scabbard,” although I will also have copies of “The Dragon’s Lady” and “Rogue Pawn” available.   I’m doing prize drawings this time, and anyone who buys a book gets their name tossed in the hat.

In an interesting twist, my class reunion is next Saturday night, so I am hoping to run into some of my old classmates in town.  Yes, I will most likely be at the reunion, unless I’m exhausted from all the signing and mingling with fans.  😉

Marketing: Step 1

I rallied enough brain cells last night to start my Facebook fan site. Please click here and join my group so that when I get ready to pitch a book this fall I can say I have a following. Thanks!

Oh, I guess I should probably ‘out’ myself here and let anyone here who doesn’t already know (maybe there are one or two of you) that Wendy Blanton and Elizabeth Joy are the same person. Turns out the pen name created a marketing nightmare, so the Dragons Roost books will be the only books published under that name.