Showing posts with label General. Show all posts
Showing posts with label General. Show all posts

Friday, 15 June 2018

The Lesson I Learned About Lost Ideas

A couple of days ago I came across a great idea about writing.

The information was pure gold so I decided there and then to turn it into a blog post so that I could share the joy with my new knowledge.

In my head I planned out exactly what I was going to write and I even had a brilliant idea for an intriguing heading.

Yep, it was going to be great.

But I wasn't at my desk so I made a solid mental plan.

Then later, when I eagerly sat down at my desk, my mind was blank.

What was that great thing I was going to blog about?

I sat and thought for a few minutes, but nothing came.

So I replayed in my mind what I was doing when I had the idea and where it had come from.

I remembered that I was in the garden pulling up loads of big weeds and thinking about how much better it looked without them.

And I was listening to an audio as I worked and it was a podcast about...

Damn! I'd totally forgot what I was listening to.

I thought some more and remembered what it was but I still couldn't remember that golden piece of information was that I wanted to share.

Gone was every thought about it, even my brilliant headline.

I thought some more, but nope...it was gone.

So frustrating.

Even more so because I have a golden rule about writing ideas down as soon as I think of them because I know that no matter how much I tell myself that I'll remember them, I never do.

So this is the advice I'm going to pass onto you instead of whatever that piece of other gold was that I've forgotten.

And that is to never EVER fail to write down a great idea.

Get yourself an ideas book, keep it handy and write down every single idea you ever have in as much detail as you can at the time. Even if the only thing handy to write on is a napkin. Write it down!

And who knows, even if you don't use it straight away, you may find yourself without any ideas in the future and you can look at all your previous ideas for instant inspiration and motivation and most importantly, for great ideas that you DIDN'T forget.


--------------------------

Goodbye Writer's Block
How to Be a Creative Genius and Have an Abundance of Ideas Plus the Inspiration and Motivation to Write
http://www.cheritonhousepublishing.com/books/WB.html



Monday, 4 June 2018

Have You Seen My New Website Design?

Yesterday I uploaded my new website design for Cheriton House Publishing.

I've had someone working on it over the last couple of weeks after my ebook cover designer, Buddy, over at http://www.coverscorp.com created the new look for it, and then someone else updated all the pages.

If you haven't seen the new design yet you can take a quick peek at http://www.cheritonhousepublishing.com.

Or stay on the site a while and download and read a free ebook or two.

The reasons for the new design are because the site needed updating and also because I have a lot of new books (free and paid) to be added soon.

I'll let you know more as it becomes available.

My next site to be updated will be https://ruthiswriting.com.

That site is really out of date and needs a fresh, modern, new look.

I've already picked out the design I want and once it's updated I'll start adding more content, writing resources and special offers.

How long it will take to get the new design done, I have no idea. But hopefully it will be completed this month.

That's the problem with getting others to do the work for me, is that I don't have as much control over it as I'd like.

Unlike my writing which I have complete control over.

Isn't that one of the great things about being a writer?

-----------------

How to Write a Nonfiction eBook in 21 Days - That Readers LOVE!
https://viewbook.at/21dayebook




Wednesday, 30 May 2018

Bad Times Turning Out Good

As you know, I've had a lot of trouble over the past few months with a very strange man who bought the domain name of my old site two years ago and somehow seemed to think that he owned me and that he had the right to tell me what I could and could not publish on my new website.

He bought my old domain name, Writeaholics and I started my new site Ruthiswriting.com.

He's sent me several threatening letters recently AND issued a false DMCA takedown notice, claiming that he owned the copyright of all my old articles, a few of which I published on my new website, and other articles on my site written by other authors.

He doesn't own the copyright of any of my articles (although I did give him the legal right to republish them) and he definitely doesn't own the copyright of other authors' articles yet he still lied about it in the legal DMCA notice, but I removed the articles anyway just to shut him up and to try and get him to leave me alone.

At the time it seemed like a bad thing was happening, but as it turns out, it's all for the good.

I was looking over everything lately, mainly because of my new website design that is happening soon, and decided that it's actually better if I don't have any of my old articles on my new site because otherwise it would be duplicate content, and the search engines don't like indexing sites that have the same content.

So what I've started doing is completely rewriting my old articles and it will be better for several reasons:

1. Duplicate content. As I already said, it's better to have freshly written content on my site rather than use the old outdated articles like he's doing.

2. Updating. Many of the articles need to have the information they contain updated, so while he still has the outdated stuff on his site, mine will all be freshly written and updated content.

3. Some need removing. There are a few articles that are so out of date it's better to remove them altogether. These articles are not only of no use to anyone, but could also be of harm to others if they try and follow the outdated advice. So he can continue to publish outdated advice on my old domain,  name, with my old outdated website design, but I won't do it on my website.

So as it turns out, he actually did me a favour because I now have plenty of content to add to my website. In fact, there are several years of fresh and updated content that I'll be adding.

And no one can lie and say I'm infringing their copyright because it will all be brand new content.

Well, actually there is one person who can lie, and I know he can because he's already done it - on a legal document no less. But surely he's not stupid enough to do it again.

Is he...?

------------------------

How To Write an Article in 15 Minutes
Find out how I made $4,000 writing articles in just one day.
http://www.cheritonhousepublishing.com/books/15.html


Tuesday, 22 May 2018

My Website Was Hacked

I had a bit of trouble last week after someone hacked my website, added content to every page (probably malware) and sent out spam from my email address.

My hosting company took the action of taking my website offline immediately and contacted me about the spam issue which I put a stop to straight away.

This all came about at a most inconvenient time because my daughter has just bought her first house and my husband and I spent several days last week helping her to get the house cleaned and ready and buy necessary furniture and appliances.

I also spent an entire day measuring, pinning and taking up curtains.

And then at the weekend we hired a van and helped her to move.

And while all this was going on, and I was physically exhausted, someone hacked one of my websites, RuthIsWriting.

So then I had to spend hours on the phone talking to the staff at my hosting company trying to figure out what to do about the spam and how to do it.

Then I had to remove whatever had been added to my site.

Luckily I use Adobe Dreamweaver so it was easy to get the software to check if any of the online website files were different from the backup files stored on my computer.

It checked, and apparently every single file had been altered. Also, a file I didn't recognise had been added as well.

So I deleted the rogue file and all the other files and did a complete upload of all the backup files stored on my computer.

Then to make sure it didn't happen again, I bought and added a security certificate to my site so that now instead of starting with the usual http:// it now begins with https:// to show that the site is secure.

I've been thinking for a while about adding security to all my sites because I've been reading recently how it's getting easier and easier for hackers to get into unsecured websites and that soon Google won't index sites that don't have a security certificate.

I had no idea how to buy a certificate or how to attach it to my site, so it took me most of the day to research it and find out. It seems that there are different levels of security but I only needed a simpler one because I don't take credit card payments on my site. I use eJunkie, Amazon and PayPal to process all my website payments.

So if you've noticed recently that my website was offline for 3 days, that is why.

But now it's not only sorted out, but it's secure and can't be hacked again.

And all the while I was dealing with this whole issue, I smiled to myself and thought how being a writer used to mean just writing, but now it seems I have to be a bit of a technical wizard as well.

I guess times really do change.

But if you have a website and something like this happens to you, the simplest way I found to get a security certificate was to purchase it from my hosting company and then I used the SSL/security app in my control panel of the website to add the certificate, which was straight forward and easy to do.

So if you want to visit my extremely secure website you can do so at https://ruthiswriting.com.

And I've currently got someone working on the redesign of the whole site so soon it will look all modern because at the moment it's looking a bit dated.

I'm looking forward to the new design and the added peace of mind from the security update.


Thursday, 10 May 2018

Does a Writer Need a Virtual Office Address?

The subject of virtual office addresses came up in some correspondence last week.

A virtual office is simply an address that makes it look like you actually have an office that you work from. These addresses can be usually be rented on a monthly or yearly basis.

You just pay the fee and you can use the virtual office address which would be something like "Suite 100, Impressive Road. UpMarket Town." The company that provides the address also passes on all your mail to you, plus can provide other services too like answering the phone and taking messages.

I know that there are some writers who do actually have an office that they work from but most of us work from home.

And as a writer, it's not really necessary to have a "pretend" office address because we don't have any clients that we need to see in person.

But it is necessary to protect your private address online so you can (if you want) rent a virtual office address or use a PO BOX address. I use a PO BOX address as well as use my accountant's address for my business. That way, even though I mostly work from home, I never have to divulge my private address to anyone.

On the other hand, if you're a lawyer or an accountant, or anyone else who has to meet with clients face to face, then having a virtual office address will make you look cheap or make it look like your business is failing because clearly, you can't be meeting with clients at your office if you don't have one. And it's easy to find out if an office address is real or not.

But for writers, having a virtual office address is fine if you want to have one, but IMHO, somewhat unnecessary as a simple PO BOX address will suffice AND it's much cheaper.

Unlike lawyers and accountants, we have no need to pretend that we have an office when we don't.

It doesn't matter where you do your writing, as long as you do it.


Write Your Next Ebook in 10 Days
AND Earn $1,000 a Month
Guaranteed or your money back.
http://ruthiswriting.com/links/10dayebook.html



Wednesday, 4 April 2018

What to do if an article editor buys your article but doesn't publish it.

This was an interesting question asked by a freelance writer: “Someone wants to buy reprint rights to my article…but the first buyer hasn’t yet published it!”

And it is such a legitimate dilemma but I'd never thought about it before.

What happened was that the writer had written an article and sold it to a magazine.

Months later, another magazine asked if they could buy the reprint rights to publish the article, but because the first magazine hadn't yet published it, she couldn't sell the reprint rights to anyone.

This is something I've never thought of before because I've sold a lot of articles and stories to magazines and they always tell me when they plan to publish it and they do.  But I have never stressed in a contract that they must publish it by a certain date. It's an open option I've always given them and trusted them to publish it when they said the would.

But this poor author did the same thing but because the magazine had bought the first publishing rights to her article, she couldn't use it again until they publish it.

I read about this at http://writersweekly.com/ask-the-expert/reprint-rights.

You can read about it there too and the solution, which is a warning to every writer who wants to get published in a magazine that they've never worked with before.

It's definitely food for thought.



Friday, 30 March 2018

Should You Write on Public Holidays?

Today is Good Friday, and I'm religious at all (not one bit), but it is a public holiday, for whatever reason.

And public holidays do come up a lot.

To the "normal" working population, these are days to not work.

But as a writer, it isn't so much a day off work, but a day to decide whether or not you should write, whether you need to write, or maybe (like many of us) you feel guilty for taking a day off from writing.

We get paid by how much we write, so the more we write the more we can earn.

So the question is, should you write on public holidays?

Well, the answer depends on many factors and I've listed 3 of them below.

1. Are you behind schedule or do you have a big workload? There are many writers who work jobs and use public holidays as extra time to get their writing done. There are also writers who use these days as 'catch-up' time. And naturally, if you're way behind with your writing, or you've taken on a lot of work, a quiet day like a public holiday, is the perfect time to really get stuck into what you need to do to lighten your load.

2. Do you have small children or other family commitments? If you have young children who are at home with you on the holidays, then it's impossible to get extra writing done, except that perhaps you can write later at night because you don't have to get up as early in the morning to get them to school. Or maybe you're obligated to spend time with other family members so your days off have to be spent doing other things.

3. Do you just want to take a day off for a change? You may have set up your writing business so that you can relax and do nothing on public holidays. Or maybe you haven't but you just want a day off without feeling guilty about all the writing you 'should' be doing. I know how that feels because I go there often. In fact, it's Good Friday and I'm writing this blog post. So there you go. But after I've finished I'm taking the rest of the day off - without guilt.

So if you're thinking about taking the day off or about writing on public holidays, it's entirely up to you whether you do it or not depending on things like your other commitments, how much writing you have to do, or whether you simply want to use it as a chill-out day, which is also fine because we all need to take some downtime now and again, and what better time than when everyone has the same day off.

It all depends on what you're currently writing and how you structure your time.

You might even want to take a big leap and make a start on writing your next book.

And why not? You've got 3 more days to spare to get it done this Easter weekend.

Just make sure you have a good one.


-----------------

Write Any Book in 28 Days or Less
Laid out in an easy to follow style and suitable for writing fiction and non-fiction. Just follow the advice as you go through the course, just one hour a day, and by the end, you’ll have your manuscript written.
http://ruthiswriting.com/links/writequickly.html



Wednesday, 21 March 2018

Which Books Sell More, Fiction or Non-Fiction?

Last time we looked at which is easiest to write, fiction or non-fiction.

And today I we'll look at which books sell more, fiction or non-fiction?

And as previously, I can only speak from my own experience.

My fiction novels have been selling for years, both my horror novel, Playing for Real (http://www.cheritonhousepublishing.com/books/PFR.html) and my romance book, Stand By Me http://www.cheritonhousepublishing.com/books/SBM.html). My third novel, Two Weeks in Corfu, is still in draft mode and going through the editing stage.

Of my two published novels, they both sell a few dozen copies each week. I'm not sure of the exact amount because I rarely, if ever, check my online accounts (I have a bookkeeper for that).

As to my non-fiction books, I make fewer sales, maybe even half the amount of my fiction book sales. In the beginning, my non-fiction books start with high sales but soon settle down after a few weeks/months into regular lower sales.

The reason for the high sales in the beginning is probably because I find it easier to market them and often my marketing begins long before the books are published so that by the time each one is available for sale, I have people waiting to buy copies. I also sell them at an early discount for my subscribers which also helps to boost sales.

But even though I sell more fiction books than non-fiction books, it doesn't necessarily mean that I make less money from non-fiction sales. Far from it.

This is because my non-fiction books sell for much higher prices than my fiction books. Sometimes over 10-times more. The reason for this is because the non-fiction subjects are worth more because the reader can use the information to make money, so the book is really an investment.

So in my experience, I currently make more sales from my fiction books, but more money from my non-fiction books. Perhaps it would be different if I'd written many more fiction books.

What I do know is that to be able to write a lot of fiction, you must be an avid reader of fiction.

I myself read more non-fiction books than fiction, which probably explains why I prefer to write non-fiction.

So write whichever you prefer.

Just write a lot of books.

------------

Write Your Next Ebook in 10 Days
AND Earn $1,000 a Month
Guaranteed or your money back.
http://ruthiswriting.com/links/10dayebook.html


Monday, 19 March 2018

Fiction or Non-Fiction: Which is Easiest to Write?

As you know, I've recently finished writing a first draft manuscript of my latest novel.

It's only my third attempt at writing fiction as I'm usually a non-fiction writer.  And I have to say that writing fiction is a lot different to writing non-fiction and in so many ways.

So I was thinking; which is the easiest to write? Fiction or non-fiction?

And these are my thoughts from my own experience:

To write fiction isn't as easy as most people think.

Before I even attempt to begin writing, I first have to plan out my characters, including their backgrounds, their appearance (including the way they dress and present themselves), their fears and their wants. The main character usually has to have a flaw or two that they have to overcome in some way.

As well and the main characters, I also have to plan out all the minor characters who have small, but significant parts to play in the story. So I need to know them well including their looks and personalities.

And then I have to figure out the main plot and the subplots which all has to lead to a satisfactory ending. To begin with, I don't need to know exactly how it will all lead to the end, only that it will.

I then have to pull it all together in a timeline of events, making sure that it all runs smoothly and avoid things like characters knowing about something before they should, and figuring out how they get to know things and when. Creating a good outline and blueprint is where my imagination really kicks in to help the story unfold.

For non-fiction, most of what I write is what I already know about, but it still takes quite a bit of figuring out because knowing something, and explaining it in writing, are two completely different things.

I also need to do some research to make sure of my facts, and to find out anything I don't already know, and to find other people's view on the subject just to make sure I'm not missing something.

Then I plan out the chapters I need to include and the correct order to write them in plus break them down into different topics within those chapters too.

So, for me, writing non-fiction is easier, but mainly because I'm writing about subjects I already know a lot about. No doubt it would be different if I had to write about a completely new subject, although I'd still handle it in the same way except that I'd need to do much more research.

Which means that whether fiction or non-fiction is easier to write, depends on the author.

And we all know what kind of books we like to write.

It's really down to having to discipline to sit down and do it.

The next question is which books sell more, fiction or non-fiction?

Which is what we'll look at next.

----------

Write Any Book in 28 Days or Less. 
Laid out in an easy to follow style and suitable for writing fiction and non-fiction. Just follow the advice as you go through the course and by the end, you’ll have your manuscript written.
http://ruthiswriting.com/links/writequickly.html


Sunday, 14 January 2018

Give Yourself Time To Write

“Never give up on a dream just because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway.” ~ E.Nightingale

We all have dreams. And the ones that are worthwhile take a long time to happen.

For instance, if someone wants to be a top-class barrister, it takes years of study and even longer to practice law and prepare to become a barrister.

Athletes take years to train and be the best. They have to get up early every day and spend hours training and perfecting their bodies and their abilities.

Doctors spend years studying, working as interns and work long hours to get to the top of their profession.

For some, this type of dedication comes easy. The work is tough, but the mental attitude is strong.

Yet for others, they start out wanting to be the best, but when they realise that they'll have to get up early every day, work long hours and really push themselves, they quickly change their mind and think that it seems too much like hard work.

And many writers have this same defeatist attitude when they realise that writing isn't as easy as they first thought it was going to be. That there's a lot to learn, that part of it will be about building a blog or website and that getting their work published isn't easy either. And self-publishing is something else they need to know about.

I hear from so many writers who have no patience when it comes to long writing projects like books.

I tell them that the more they write, the easy and faster they'll get, but they still don't want to do it and they soon give up trying, if they ever actually start in the first place.

They give up and say that they really don't have the time to write.

But what they don't realise is that the time is there.

There is always time.

The only difference is what you do with it.

You can use the time to write your next book or go back to drinking coffee in cafes, eating in restaurants, and sitting on the couch watching TV and saying that you don't have the time to write.

It's your time.

Choose wisely how you use it.


7 Day Ebook Writing & Publishing System
How to write and publish an ebook and start getting sales in just one week.
http://cheritonhousepublishing.com/books/7day.html



Monday, 4 December 2017

Writing Resolutions for 2018

I was trying to find my resolutions from last year and I don’t seem to be able to find them anywhere.

Did I actually make some?

I don’t know.

But the reason I was wanting to look back at last year was to see if I’d achieved what I set out to do.

I do remember though, that one of the things I was wanting this time last year, was to rent an office so that I had somewhere to go and work every day.

But I never ended up not doing that because my daughter moved out and so I took over her room as my office, which is an annexe room (or sleep out, as some people call it). 

It’s a completely separate room from the rest of the house and is about 26 feet long and about 14 feet wide. Plus it’s fully carpeted which feels like a bit of luxury.

So now I work in my separate office which works out really well for me. 

So what are my plans for next year?

I’m not sure yet.

But I am sure that I want to achieve far more than I did this year because, over the last 12 months, I’ve done far less writing than I usually do. But that was mostly due to emergency family matters and house renovations, which are still on-going but most of my work here is done.

But it has also been a year of learning because I’ve been studying a lot about marketing and so far it’s been quite useful. But it also has taken up a lot of my time as well. And I’m in the middle of rewriting the sales pages for all my books.

I am also in the middle of updating all my ebooks and today I just finished uploading the updated and expanded (by over 10 pages) edition of Living The Laptop Lifestyle at http://cheritonhousepublishing.com/books/LLS.html.

It’s a huge PDF ebook that has 118 full pages of information to help you start and grow your own online business.

I earn all my income from my online writing and self publishing, and in this ebook, I explain how I do it and how anyone can do it to. It takes you all the way through from idea (even finding one if you don’t have one) to online business.

And if you already have a website/blog but aren’t happy with your income, Living The Laptop Lifestyle shows you how easy it is to quickly turn it into a profitable online business.

I know that this ebook can help anyone who wants to work as an online writer the same way I do.

I’ve also update The 7 Day Ebook Writing and Publishing System, and as I was going through it, I realised that I’d forgotten what a great ebook it is. 

Plus the bonus ebook about how to write short reports in 2 hours, really turns it into must-have item for anyone who wants to write and publish books for a living, because when you can do it this quickly AND make sales within a week, what more do you need to get your writing and self publishing business up and running?


I’ll let you know when I do more updates.

And in the meantime, I’ll also make a plan of what I want to be working on next year.

I hope you have plenty of big writing plans for next year. And I hope they’re so big, that if you achieved them, it would blow your mind. Or should I say, WHEN you achieve them it WILL blow your mind? 


That is much more positive.


Thursday, 16 November 2017

My Problem With Jessica Fletcher

One of my favourite TV shows is Murder She Wrote.

It’s an old show that keeps getting repeated and I often watch it while I’m doing the things because it’s easy to watch (or just listen to) and takes no great thought on my part.

Murder She Wrote is all about the novelist, Jessica Fletcher, who is a best-selling crime writer who travels the world and gets caught up in murders and uses her crime-solving skills to figure out 'who-dunnit.'

My only peeve with this show is how Jessica writes her novels.

It often shows her sitting at her kitchen table typing her latest book manuscript.

My problem with that is two-fold.

First, her house is huge and she lives alone,  yet she still sits in her kitchen to write, and strangely enough, prefers writing on an old, manual typewriter to using a computer.

Secondly, and this is the big one; she writes straight to final draft.

I mean, who even DOES that?

She often says things like, “I really have to get my book finished. I still have three chapters to write and it’s due at my publisher’s in less than a week, and I don’t even know how it’s going to end yet.”

Really? Idea to final draft in one go?

Unbelievable.

AND, if all that isn’t enough, her novels are all best sellers, without even so much as a rewrite.

Real writing means doing at least 4 stages of a manuscript - first draft, edit, second draft, proof, final draft.

Naturally, it is possible to write a book quickly if you have a great writing system (unlike old Jessy Fletcher who seems to have none).

But getting fast at writing, even with a system that you follow, still takes practice.

But the more you write, the easier it seems and the quicker you get.

So write, write, write, and then write some more.

Because when it comes to writing, practice really does make perfect.

-------------------------------------

7 Day Ebook Writing And Publishing System

Do You Want To Work From Home Writing And Selling Ebooks?
Have You Always Dreamed Of Having This Type Of Lifestyle?
Do You Envy Others Who Are Already Living Your Dream?
Well, what if I told you that you could start living your dream within the next 7 days?
Think that’s impossible? Well it’s not.

PLUS

When you buy the 7 Day Ebook Writing And Publishing System You also get

2 Hour Short Report Writing:

How To Write A Short Report Or Ebook In Just 2 Hours.

http://cheritonhousepublishing.com/books/7day.html


Thursday, 3 August 2017

My Latest Writing and Publishing Exertions

“Jumping 3d Character Showing Excitement And Joy” by Stuart Miles
If you're a subscriber of mine, then you probably already know that I have recently reinstated my monthly newsletter for subscribers.

I used to do a monthly writing newsletter for many years but for reasons that I cannot remember, I stopped doing it a few years ago.

But now it's back so if you haven't already subscribed to my emails for writers, then now would be a good time.

I am also currently working on a new free ebook for all subscribers. It will be available to anyone who subscribes as well as to existing subscribers.

The ebook is called "Writing For Cash" and will be filled with lots of opportunities for earning money as a freelance writer, from small projects that are only a sentence or two and pay up to $100, all the way to writing feature-length articles that can earn you several hundred dollars.

I'm still working on this ebook, so please be patient.




Also, I'm currently adding a newsletter archive to my website over at http://ruthiswriting.com/newsletters. At the moment there are only a couple listed, but I plan to add more real soon. It is a huge task.

I also still have my website over at http://selfpublishworldwide.com. Until now it has only been a sales page to sell my book/ebook about self-publishing.

But I'm about to change it into a huge website full of free information about self-publishing books and ebooks. I'll let you know once it progresses.

And, of course, I have several new books, ebooks and a new writing course in the pipeline as well.

Phew!

A writer's work is never done.

I hope you're getting plenty of writing done too.



The Wealthy Writer: How To Make $100K+ A Year Writing For The Internet








Friday, 26 May 2017

Why I Got Rid of My Facebook "Friends"

“Social Media” by jscreationzs
I've been a bit slack lately at blogging and emailing but the reason for this is because I was spending time looking at my daily routine, particularly with a view to eliminating things that are a waste of time.

And what I realised was that it's all to easy to waste a lot of time on Facebook.

I also realised the reason that Facebook is a waste of time is because I really don't care what other people are doing or saying. The only reason I joined a few years ago is because I thought I SHOULD. People told me it could help me sell more books and earn more money, but so far it hasn't

Among my so-called Facebook "friends" were family members, friends, neighbours and other people who I've never actually met, but they requested to "friend" me so I did.

And what it all added up to was wasting time every day looking at what they were doing and saying and most of it was garbage that I didn't want/need to know.

Also, whenever I posted my opinion about something or said what I was doing, I got so many hateful comments about whether or not people agreed with my view. I posted  a lot about animals (because I can't stand animal cruelty) and the backlash was not only instant, but it was from people who clearly had no idea what they were talking about but certainly had a lot of negative opinions.

I even thought I was safe joining a couple of vegan groups, but it seemed they were worse than anyone else in their efforts to "out vegan" each other. Someone would post about what they ate and others would immediately tell them they were wrong. "You eat chocolate? I never eat that I prefer only organic health food." "You wear leather shoes???? Vegans NEVER do that." "You put dressing on your salad???? How unhealthy!" Blah, blah, blah...on and on it went.

Even a local group were really scornful of each other: "My child had money stolen from them at school." "Well you shouldn't allow them to carry a lot of cash." "It's not the child's fault, blame the thieves." "It's hard to blame the thieves when your kid made it so easy for them." Honestly! I couldn't believe the negativity coming from everywhere.

Then I had an epiphany a few days ago. It suddenly hit me that I don't really care about what others are saying. I don't care one bit what they think so why was I wasting my time checking my Facebook feed every day?

So I un-friended everyone (which it turns out you have to do one person at a time - what a drag), even my family members, and then I set my account to not allow anyone else to "friend" me. I did that by setting it so that only friends of friends can request to "friend" me. It seems you can't just set it to let no one "friend" you.

I also unjoined most of the groups I was a part of except a Buddhist group and a couple of writing groups, and I joined more writing groups that offered daily prompts, writing news, etc. In other words, I'm only interested in groups that can help me by offering something I need, not just a load of people voicing their opinions.

There were some writing groups that offered to critique each other's work, and I thought "Nope. No way." I just need information not more opinions from people who know nothing or very little.

And once I sorted out my account I could check it every day and only see useful things. Plus it has freed up a lot of my time every week.

The most amazing thing is that not only has it given me more time, but I feel so much happier. I didn't realise it before, but everyday, logging into Facebook made me cringe. I didn't want to see what others were complaining about.

Facebook is full of trolls. Completely full. But I've found a way to avoid them and at the same time, use Facebook to help my writing career. I've also started posting lots of things about writing, so others can follow me if they want to learn more, but they can't be my Facebook "friend."

I know that they call it social media, but there is really not much "social" about it.

It's probably why I'm a writer. It means I work alone.

And currently I'm working on some more writing courses to help others make more money from their writing than ever before.

So stay tuned.

:) :) :)


Thursday, 12 January 2017

The Perfect Pet For A Writer

Banjo sitting on bean bagsWhile it’s nice to have a pet, being a writer is boring for animals as you sit and write for hours. 

And there are enough distractions in life so having a pet to distract you as well is something that will also help kill your productivity.

But fortunately I have the perfect pet.

His name is Banjo and he is an ex-racing greyhound.

People usually think that greyhounds are not only active dogs but they are also aggressive.

This idea comes from seeing them at the race track, running while wearing a wire muzzle over their face.

But this idea of energetic, angry dogs is the complete opposite of their real nature.

And Banjo is completely compatible with my writing life.

Home - At home he sits quietly for hours. Greyhounds are one of the most inactive breeds of dog and are complete couch potatoes. Banjo quietly sits by my side every day while I write.

Out - Although he sit quietly, he also loves his daily walk. When he knows it’s getting near his walk time he paces up and down wagging his tail so I know I have to go out. And the exercise does us both good and helps me clear my head and get even better ideas for my writing.

Quiet - Greyhounds are well-known for their lack of barking and rarely make a noise. Even if someone knocks at the door, Banjo won’t make a sound, so no one knows I’m at home which is the way I like it.

This is why I love having a greyhound. He sits quietly all day, he makes sure I get a walk every day and he’s well trained to walk calmly on a leash. Plus he doesn’t bark, no matter what noise he hears or who comes to the door.

He is so quiet and still most of the time that I can get plenty of writing done.

He’s also cute and affectionate.

What more could I ask from my four-legged companion.

We adopted Banjo from Friends of the Hound. https://www.friendsofthehound.org.au

If you're looking for a quiet, un-disruptive pet, a greyhound could be just what you're looking for.

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Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Many Distractions = No Writing

Half-completed ceiling plus builders' rubbish on the deck and ugly scaffolding around the house
The last 3 weeks has been full of distractions so I’ve haven’t done much writing.

Usually I have no time for weak excuses like this for not writing, but these distractions were huge.

You see, our house is having a new roof put on. And not only is the roof being replaced over the house, but it’s being extended out to cover our huge deck too, because previously only part of it was covered.

But this has meant putting in extra supporting posts in the ground and more roof trusses over the deck, plus installing insulation and an outdoor ceiling.

So much work.

So much noise.

So many builders.

So much filth.

This also meant that me, my husband, and our greyhound, have had to leave the house all day every day.

Last week we even went the whole hog and moved out and stayed at Coroy Country Cottages, which was a superb place to stay on 97 acres with miles of walking tracks. Poor Banjo’s paws have been worn down a lot. :)

Anyway, it didn’t leave me with much time to write.

This week is better because although they’re still here, the builders are outside on the deck and not on the roof so no dirt is raining down inside the house (did I mention how sick & tired I am of cleaning up the mess every night?)

But my time wasn’t completely wasted because I used some of it to make a few writing plans. It’s amazing what you can do with time to think.

At first I kept trying to get some writing done every day, but with two others in tow it wasn’t possible.

Nor was I really in the mood.

So if you find yourself in a non-writing mood, don’t fight it. It’s not worth it.

Instead do what I did.

Get out your journal and start writing about what’s happening, what you wish was happening, and what you’ll do once you’re able to write again.

And hopefully, like me, you’ll be so happy to be back sitting at your writing desk, and that it feels like you’re on holiday because writing is such fun, especially when you haven’t done it for a while.

Now all I need is to get a proper writing desk


Thursday, 15 September 2016

Thrown Out Of My Own Home Office


My temporary home office
I write mostly at home.

I also write mostly in my home office.

But now my husband has given up his job and has taken over the office.

He trades on the stock market and now runs the financial side of my business for me so that I can get on with more writing.

It's great that he's helping me, but I have had to find somewhere else to sit and write on cold days (It's only just turned Spring where I live but the temperatures aren't great yet).

So I've set up camp in the annex room at home.

This is a big room that sits separately behind the house.

I don't have a desk in here and instead sit on a small pink chair at a small folding table.

And I sit in front of the patio door to get as much light as I can because the walls are dark in here.

Eventually this room will be renovated and get freshly painted walls, built in desks and a comfortable, big, office chair.

But for now I have to make do.

I will also go out and write at the library and in the park when it gets warmer and less windy.

I just have to keep telling myself that I am a professional and so I can write anywhere.

But I find that once I start writing I forget where I am anyway.

Lucky for me.










Tuesday, 13 September 2016

Why I Fire My Email Subscribers

Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net
I love having a list of subscribers that I can keep in touch with.

But sometimes I have to fire them and unsubscribe them from my list. And if they're really persistent and try to re-subscribe, I block them too.

But why would I do this? Isn't having thousands of subscribers the way that writers make money?

Yes...but...

Using an email marketing service isn't cheap. And I get charged for how many subscribers I have.

So to protect myself and keep costs down, I sometimes (regrettably) have to fire subscribers.

And below are 3 types of subscribers that I fire.

1. Bad Customers. These are people who buy my products but don't even know how to download them, so they repeatedly email me about it, and not in a polite way either. Sometimes they send several abusive emails in less than an hour, while I'm asleep (different time zones). 

2. Too Friendly. Sometimes I get subscribers who think they're my friend and every time they receive an email or blog post, they reply to it as though I sent them a personal message, and they tell me all their private family business. They also get annoyed if I don't become email buddies with them.

3. Clickless. Now and again I check my email stats and look at anyone who hasn't clicked on a link in one of my emails in over a year. This usually happens because the someone is deleting all my emails unread, or they're not interested in anything I provide a link to, not even the free ebooks, audios and other freebies. Either way, they don't want my emails so I unsubscribe them.

But like I said earlier, I love having subscribers that I can keep in touch with, but it comes at a high price and I don't want to pay for verbal abuse, email pen pals I don't want or those who have no interest in hearing from me.

Thankfully, 99.9% of my subscribers are decent intelligent, hard-working writers.

And THEY are why I don't mind paying a yearly fee to my email service provider.

And if you have an email list and some of the people on it don't really want to hear from you, but for whatever reason they don't unsubscribe, don't be afraid to remove them from your list. Because not doing so is costly.

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Thursday, 25 August 2016

Someone Stole My Entire Website - And What I Did About It

“Criminal In Online Business” by bplanet
The best thing about the internet is that whatever you publish online can go viral.

The worst thing about the internet is also that whatever you publish on the internet can go viral.

That’s why it’s important to be an ethical writer, because people won’t always remember the great things you did, but they will ALWAYS remember (and share online) all the lousy or unethical things you did.

I had a great “for instance” about this subject when I recently sold the domain name of my old website, writeaholics.net, along with the rights of the new owner to keep my writing articles (for SEO reasons, they said).

But they not only published my writing articles, but they stole all my website content AND they stole my website design too.

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

How Much I'm Enjoying Writing Fiction & What I've Been Doing

Our beautiful old greyhound, Daisy
A couple of weeks ago I told you about my epiphany when I realised that I wanted to start writing fiction more than non fiction.

I've always enjoyed fiction writing but I've spent most of my career writing non-fiction.

When I realised that my writing output (and enthusiasm) had slowed a lot, I eventually realised that it was because I was no longer enjoying what I was writing and that I'd rather write fiction.

So I stopped writing to my other sites and instead concentrated on what I'd rather be doing.

My Fiction Writing Progress

I thought that I'd be able to jump straight into writing fiction, but first I had to figure out what I was going to write and how I was going to earn money from my writing.

So I got out all my fiction writing ideas notebooks, some of which I hadn't looked at in years.

I sat for 2 full days reading through it all and taking notes about what I was going to start work on first.

In the end I decided to start with short fiction and submit it to magazines.

So I wrote up three short story ideas (the longest of them was 4,000 words) and submitted them to three different magazines.

And I still have dozens of story ideas left.

I've also started work on my next novel which is currently in the outlining stages.

I had hoped to have more done by now but unfortunately I came down with a virus (or maybe a bit of flu?) just after my epiphany and then last week one of our dogs got sick and after 3 trips to the vet it seems that her kidneys are failing.

She is an old-ish dog, nine years, and has been ill since we got her 2 years ago (she's an ex-racing, ex-breeding greyhound), but it's still breaking my heart. For now though, it's a 'wait & see' situation with her.

And in the meantime, now that I'm feeling well again, I'll sit and write every day with my dogs by my side which is where they always want to be.

If you have goals for your writing I'd love to hear about them as well as your successes.