Sunday, December 18, 2011

Ending Your Writing Year



We are very close to the end of the year. As a writer, I am looking at what I need to tie together, and how I need to tie it together. One project I needed to let go of, and I did. It was my first mystery book, and started during NaNoWriMo 2010. After many false starts, much editing, and a complete change of theme, I made the decision to scrap it, keep the main characters, move the location and revise the crime. January will see me starting anew, using the new online Hiveword novel writing software (Hiveword Novel Writing Software).

I am well into my second Tarot book, so there is nothing to "tie up" there. It is an ongoing project. The same goes for the promotion of my first Tarot book, "Tarot, Birth Cards, and You".

I have been all over the place this past year with schedules, projects, and deadlines. It is beyond trying to keep everything (or anything!) straight in my mind. I will be using Karyn Easton's "Tarot Lover's Diary" again, as it is small, and can be kept right next to my laptop.Karyn's calendar can be found here - Paranormality.com.

The other thing that I did was to go back to using my Google calendar. I have the rest of December and the month of January 2012 programmed into it. As projects and deadlines come up, they will go into the calendar, which sends me reminders via e-mail.I also found out that I could add a background to my calendar ... so I did! Go me! (And thanks to the lovely Catherine Chapman for getting me to start using the Google calendar in the first place!)

How is your new writing year shaping up?

(c) December 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Saturday, December 3, 2011

'Tis The Season



I love this time of year - the music, the decorations, baking ... the whole nine yards! With three young cats, the decorations are minimal this year - only things that they can't trash! They are cute, but their three little minds can come up with all kinds of stuff to do! (Like the time I looked up from my laptop to see one of them hanging from my curtain rod!) With not too many people around, the baking is being cut way back too. A couple of things that will be gifts to neighbors, sugar cookies, and that is about it. But I am happy with this, and that is what matters. :)

I am bringing things together as far as end of year goes - looking at what works for me, at what I need to release, and what I need to bring in. I was following a conversation on setting up a doc for the #FF for Twitter. There is actually a site that will send them for you automatically! That will certainly save time! You can check it out here - LazyShoutOut.com.

Here are some links that I am going to be checking out to help me get my books out there in good form:

Pricing Strategies For e-Books

Goal Setting For Writers

How To Prep Before Interviewing

Have Passion For Your Writing

Generating Ideas For Blog Posts

How And Why To Write With Power

Re-Finding Inspiration

4 Ways To End Your Writing Year Right

Thank you to Elizabeth Spann Craig of Mystery Writing Is Murder, for sharing an amazing list of resources for writers!

The new year is starting to look really, really good!

(c) December 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Monday, November 28, 2011

Multiple Use Of Material




I got an interesting e-mail today from a friend. She was talking about a three-part class that she was going to offer as a series of webinars,with the handout in workbook format. She was going to encourage her students to place the handouts in a three-ring binder, to keep the work for future reference. She went on to chat about taking the webinars and turning them into CD's for sale. I was impressed - she already has three products here from one source - the webinar itself, the workbook that her students will complete during the webinar, and the CD that can be purchased. This is certainly best use of time, energy and resources!

I have always read that story ideas should be treated the same way - that they should be able to be used at least three different ways to be truly useful. The material could go into a short story, a full length book, or even an article or two. If we get all that we can from our material, from our research, then we are making best use of our primary resources - our time, and our ability to write.

I am looking forward within the new year taking the material from my book "Tarot, Birth Cards, and You" and presenting it in different formats, so that readers will be able to use it in a manner that is comfortable for them. I may have the Fool chatting with each of the Birth Card pairs, I may have the Birth Card pairs themselves ruminating on the theme of their lifetime, I may even have a panel discussion with each of the Birth Card pairs contributing. What would you like to know about your Birth Cards?

(c) November 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Tidying Up Life



For writers, November is NaNoWriMo - the one month out of the year when we try to write 50,000 words in one month. Many people accomplish this, some do not. I tried it last year, and it was a disaster! I opted out this year - we have to know when we need to walk away from something. I spent this whole year trying to decide what to do with the material that I wrote last year. I tried using it as is,and simply "finishing" it. That did not work. I decided to change the local, and tweak the characters. That did not work. I finally made the decision that I should have probably made in the first place - let it go and start over. After the first of the year I will begin anew on my cozy mystery - with a good chance of finishing it this time.

In the meantime, I am trying to keep my book that was published this year - "Tarot, Birth Cards, and You" fresh through my Face Book page for the book. At the same time, I am steadily working on my second Tarot book, due out, hopefully, in the spring of 2013. To keep myself fresh, I am doing webinars on several different esoteric (and not so esoteric) subjects with Mary Nale. (The schedule can be seen here. Mary is giving a series of three classes herself that I highly recommend - they are all about setting up a personal blog, and what you can do with it. Her link can be seen here.

I am certainly feeling the affects of the conference that I attended with my sister last weekend - the Millionaire Mind Intensive. How we feel about ourselves has a lot to do with how we feel about our money. The conference sent us away with a myriad of tools of empowerment, and I for one am very happy that I attended! It will help me in every area of my life, for which I am very grateful.

One last thought - and I am going to continue to harp on this - please click on the 1+ icon when you are Googling a site, and please use the 1+, "like" and "share" buttons on the sites and articles that you visit. It will benefit that site, it will benefit your followers, and it will benefit you in that if you put out that energy for someone else, they will do the same for you. If you want to get really excited about life, you might even want to leave a comment!

(c) November 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Millionaire Mind Intensive



The picture above is of my sister, Becky Lundin, standing in the outdoor seating area of the restaurant in the hotel that we stayed at last weekend (the Hilton Vancouver Metrotown, in Burnaby, Canada). Why were we in Canada? We were attending the Millionaire Mind Intensive, given by Peak Potentials.Why were we doing that? To reset our financial mind-set, and free ourselves so that would be open to financial success. And why is this on my author's blog? Because my goal is to open myself to multiple streams of income,with my writing being only one of them..

I am not going to go step by step through each of the three days - they were looooooong days, and you wouldn't want that! What I will say is that we met some very nice people, heard some amazing stories, and were introduced to a company (Peak Potentials) that is very family oriented (we had three ten year old children that attended the Intensive with their parents).

We got to examine our beliefs surrounding money, and went through exercises that helped us to let them go. My sister and I are both implementing the "jar" system for resetting how we deal with money. Monthly finances are divided into several different categories, with a jar (or container of some kind)for each category. What a great way to use the remaining glasses that I have from a set that I bought when I was twenty-one years old!

I brought home some very interesting business cards from this event. I would like to share the following links with you:

The Authentic Adventure
Sites By Zenith
Cards Made Fun

While this Intensive may not be for you, thin k ab out what you want to do to expand your business, and allow yourself to live the lifestyle that you imagine!

The link below is to my sister's "Peak Potential" page. No, I get no money from this referral, it is simply something that I want to share with you!

Millionaire Mind Intensive

(c) November 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Sunday, November 6, 2011

New Laptop - I Am Getting Too Old For This!




I just got a new laptop - as in it hit my doorstep last Thursday! I had been using my mother's laptop for a few weeks - mine was acting too badly to try and use for an extended period of time. Sounds easy, yes? Pay the people, they format and send the laptop, you plug it in, and you are good to go. Let's just say that isn't even close to reality!

Now, there is nothing wrong with my new laptop - it works beautifully, including the "Z" key. (That key died a while back on my old computer.) I made the mistake of not ordering Word to be installed ... thought I was saving myself a few bucks. I did - I saved a few bucks. Got excited when I saw that the laptop came with a basic version of word - then found that it was hard for me to work with. Got done what I had to get done that day, then the next day I downloaded OpenOffice.org 3.3. That works wonderfully, and will be fine until I can get a "proper" version of Word installed.

Also downloaded Skype, and installed my scanner and printer. Not hard, but time consuming. Downloaded Google Chrome - the Google browser was already there! Next came all of the sites that I visit every day, including Twitter, both of my Face Book pages, My Space, and Live Journal. Had to enter user and password info into all of them. That's done. Then there were my bank and credit card sites that I needed to reassure that I was who I was, even though they did not recognize my laptop.

Thanks go to Anna Burroughs Cook for nudging me towards using the Google image feature. How quick was that!

The upside - I have a built in web cam and mic, and they work perfectly! I had my first webinar using this laptop Saturday am, and it went perfectly!

Soooo ... How has your week been going?

(c) November 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Happy Halloween!



I am very much looking forward to Halloween (Samhain). I will be carving my pumpkin today - just a small one this year. I have absolutely loved having the Halloween decorations up all month - it is such a happy month!

I have a webinar coming up on Saturday November 4th - Journeying With Your Birth Cards. Information can be found here - Journeying With Your Birth Cards. I hope that you will join us!

I ran across quite an interesting post that I would like to share - it is a project done by an African American ballerina - The Black Swan Diaries.

Of interest to writers - the Wall Street Journal is going to debut e-book best seller lists! I was riveted by this because I want to present my work in e-book format. More information can be seen here - WSJ - E-Book Best Seller Lists.

Thanks to Joanne Mathews, I am going to be taking my four part Flash Fiction series "The Night Has Eyes" and presenting it as a whole. I will do this after people have had a chance to read Part IV, so stay tuned next week for that link!

Last, but not least, a link to the Writer's Knowledge Base, an Internet resource for writers: Writer's Knowledge Base.

(c) October 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Upcoming News

It's October - I could not resist the cat and the pumpkins! I have a small pumpkin sitting on a table outside my front door - I will carve it on All Hallow's Eve morning. I have to have at least one carved pumpkin to burn a candle in. The Halloween decorations have been out since the last day of September - I love them so much!

I got my EDL (Enhanced Driver's License) in the mail, so I am definitely going to Canada for the seminar on money management with my sister. Definitely looking forward to that! In the process I ordered my birth certificate, which got here in record time, so I can now also start the process of applying for a passport.

I will have some very exciting news Monday - stay tuned!

Having a great deal of fun with Flash Fiction. I did a pseudo scary dark side oriented story that is turning into a series (that you to all those that encouraged me to do so!). The series can be found here - "The Night Has Eyes" . Right now I am looking at four parts, with the final story going up on All Hallows Eve.

I have several webinars set up with the incredible Mary Nale! I hope that you will all join us - the more the merrier! Here are the dates:

November 5th - Journeying With Tarot Birth Cards
December 10th - Guided Meditations
December 24 - Communication With Spirit Guides
January 7th - Shamanic Journeys
January 21st - Creative Writing
February 11th - How To Get Your Book Published
February 25th - Writing Reviews

To sign up for the webinars, stay tuned to Attune Magazine!

(c) October 2011 Bonnie Cehovet


Friday, October 21, 2011

A Conversation Overheard


A Conversation Overheard -

The Devil and The Lovers


I have been trying to think of ways in which I could make the Birth Card pairs come to life. I thought that it might be fun to have a Birth Card pair chatting over coffee or drinks. I was going to work with the gentlest Birth Card pair that I could find, just so the conversation would be, shall we say, a “nice, quiet one” Best laid plans, and all of that. The two individuals that choose to speak were the ones that were the hardest for me to write about – The Devil and The Lovers. They choose to speak over drinks … fair warning!


Scene: Elegant private lounge, with soft jazz playing in the background. Subdued lighting, and service so good that it blends into the woodwork – they are there and gone before you know it, but back at your elbow in a flash if you need something. Two well dressed individuals are seated in leather chairs, with a small table between them. The individual representing the Devil is a dark haired man, dressed in a dark suit, with a cream colored, French cuffed, bespoke shirt, and a conservative tie. He wears a large gold ring on his left hand. Seated opposite him is a stunning blond, with long flowing hair and dark brown eyes. Rings flash on her hands, and she wears pearls in her ears and at her throat. Her dress is from a well known designer, and suits her well.


“Antoine, it is so nice to be able to sit down and chat for a moment. Life can get so hectic!”, Kaitlin said, as she crossed her long legs and took a sip from the snifter in front of her.


“For now, dear Kaitlin, we are in balance. There are no fires to put out, and we can enjoy ourselves.” Antoine sat back, quietly viewing the room and its occupants. The stories these walls could tell! He smiled softly to himself.


Kaitlin's subdued laughter showed that she knew exactly where Antoine was coming from. “I know what you are thinking.” she teased.


“And exactly what might I be thinking?”


“You might be thinking that these elegant walls have some not so elegant stories to tell.”


“Kaitlin, you read me well.”


“It is not by chance that the theme of the lifetimes that we are Gatekeepers for revolves around relationships of all types. How they are handled, and the repercussions from them.”


“LOL I search for structure, while you, dear Kaitlin, simply want to bring opposing qualities into balance. My focus is on the physical/material world, while yours is on the Seeker's internal world,”


“Most people have no clue that we operate together. They run from you, and towards me. Most of the time they do, anyway.”


“I know, but that has a lot to do with the fact that when faced with me, people need to be accountable to and for themselves. If they don't want to do that, if they insist on being mired in the material world, then I need to find new and innovative ways to get them to pay attention. The current technological state of their world does bring these lessons on faster and faster. They have the tools to learn, they just don't use them.”

“Now, you are just a tad bit irritated that the last time you were presenting a major lesson, the individual was smart enough to know that they can call on the lesser energies, if you will. It's all good in the end, Antoine.”


“That individual could have worked through that lesson if they tried. Well, okay, they did try, but they were flexing relatively unused muscles when they brought in the Empress.”


“Well, she handled the whole situation with her usual aplomb. I worked with her a bit, but I let her take the lead. This individual, after all, is one that is meant to lead others. They need to not only be aware of their own strengths and abilities, but they need to be able to use them for the betterment of others”


“With our help, the individuals that we are Gatekeepers for establish solid boundaries, They strengthen the skills and abilities that they came into this lifetime with, and they find their authentic voice. For our part, we have to sometimes call on our darker, hidden skills and abilities to take them where they need to go. Not an easy task, but we learn as they learn.”


“Well said, Antoine, well said. Almost time to go. Paris the next time we meet?”


Antoine smiled. “Yes, Kaitlin, Paris the next time we meet.”


© October 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Loving October!




I dearly love October! I love the colors, the sharpness to the air in the morning, even the need to wear a sweater or jacket. It is a great time to go walking, and it has dried out enough here that I can get a bit more of the autumn cutting back done in the yard. I look forward to getting it finished, so that I have a few months sans yard work, before the cycle starts again.

My Halloween decorations are up, and I am thoroughly enjoying them! This year I have three young kittens (around four months old), sharing my house and porch. They are so much fun to watch, but a bit of a pain when they start up in the house, which they do every night! They are all feral cats - one of them, a Gray Tabby that I named Gray, has wanted to be a pet since he showed up! The Orange Tabby, Pumpkin, is just now letting me pet him. Their pure black brother, Midnight, wants nothing to do with me. Having said that, they are all three convinced that they own the house, and now sleep on my bed at night! When I move, only Gray is going with me. The remaining two will be fine - all of our neighbors feed the feline population, and there are plenty of places to sleep. They are neutered, so they won't be adding to the population!

My sister asked me to go to a conference in Vancouver, BC, with her. It's called the "Millionaire Mind Intensive", and is all about how we view money, and the place it has in our life. I told her that I would go, and I am refally excited about doing so. The only problem is that I have delayed getting either a passport, or an Enhanced Driver's License! So, I took what I thought was a copy of my birth certificate in to the DMV (30 minutes away - the local DMV office does not do EDL's). It wasn't what they required, but they were nice enough to put it in the system and start the process. I went home, and asked my mother if she had my birth certificate. She did, but she had to get it out of her safety deposit box. I took that in Saturday. You guessed it - it was from the hospital, and not the state, so was "A cute piece of paper to put in a baby book.", according to the clerk at the DMV. Sooooo happy I did not have her the day before, or I wouldn't be in the system! Bit the bullet, signed on the the ND licensing site, and ordered a certified copy of my birth certificate - to be delivered post haste! I certainly hope that things fall together so that I can go to Canada!

There was some good news this week, though. I have a book up at Lulu (Tarot In Review). I just got notification that they have converted the e-book version into ePub format, and that they will be submitting it to iBookstore and Barnes and Noble e-Books .

I am pleased to see that Google + is working out so well. Many thanks to those that remember to click on the little + sign! It helps us all to do this.

Stay tuned in the near future for what I hope will be quite an interesting conversation between one of the twelve Birth Card pairs - I haven't decided which one yet! My book, "Tarot, Birth Cards, and You", offers insight into each of the pairs, and how you can work with them. Check it out!

Wishing you all a fabulous week!

(c) October 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Monday, October 10, 2011

My Week -



I am writing this while listening to “Palladio”, by eScala (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bBwa8nqtris) Incredible music! And what an incredible week this has been! A lot of review work done, the DVD's of my webinar with Linda Marson (http://globalspiritualstudies.com/shop/presentations/tarot/bonnie-cehovet-tarot-birth-cards-and-you/ ) arrived, I am putting together a webinar on journeying that will be presented this November 5th with Mary Nale, and Mary and I are in discussions about doing a webinar on the Shadow aspects of the Birth Cards.


I put together an Animoto video promoting my DVD's that I think turned out fairly well, considering that I am not a techie. Animoto just made some changes in their system, so I was flying by the seat of my pants again. The video can be seen here - .http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LvZc6uof5rs&feature=channel_video_title .


Today I will be putting up the last of the twelve Birth Card pairs on Face Book and Google +. I know that you can do this on Twitter – put a pic up – but I haven't figured out how to do it yet!


It is interesting to me how the world is opening up as far as using other types of media to promote my book, This will certainly be useful experience in promoting future work!


Last, but not least, I took a signed copy of my book to a friend who was doing readings at a local psychic fair. I also managed to buy a lovely piece of rose quartz with a gold snake etched into it, and a rock with a Reiki healing symbol painted on it. Also managed to lose them “somewhere”. I think I may have left them at the shop, while I was leaving a laminated copy of my book cover, along with a cover letter. Yes, Bonnie is finally getting those book covers out!


The coming week gets to be a writing week for me, focusing on my second Tarot book. Life is good!


© October 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Best Use Of Resources


This pic was taken in my mother's back yard - journal, pen, cup for coffee/tea, and red candle for energy. I would love to say that I have gotten better at setting pics up ... but I haven't! The intention and effort is there, so that will have to suffice. ;-)

I have been sitting here thinking about where I want to go from here. I already know that I want to focus on my writing. First step is down - I actually have a book out there with a brick and mortar publisher! Next steps include moving into the fiction genre, focusing on e-books, and promoting them.

Promoting - I am a little lagging with that! Thank heavens I have friends like Linda Marson, Mary Nale and Anna Burroughs Cook that can help me get my work out there! Non-techie that I am, I had one heck of a time finding a way to get this post up! What I didn't realize was that this lovely site had an ad over my account information! Way to go, Blogger!

Thanks to Catherine (Kate) Chapman from www.tarotelements.com, I do know a little about SEO. She knows a lot, she tried to teach me a lot, but, me being me, only a bit of it stuck! I am trying, Kate, I really am! I make sure to do what she told me to do on my site and on all of my blogs. Now I need to seriously work with Google to get my ranking up for my site and for my blogs! I have a giftie from my host company that I need to use in that regard. Have to check and make sure the darn thing doesn't have an outdate!

I still have to put my review links from my blog to my site - I put off doing that for so long that it becomes a chore. I know - I should do that every time I put a review or interview up. Point taken!

There are so many wonderful resources out there - and I do know about a lot of them. I will always pick and choose what I use, so that some poeple will think that I am really not making best use of what is available. I look at it this way - the level of what I do has to fit the level of life that I want. I want my writing to fit into the other things that I am interested in.

It will all work out! The good thing ... I am well on my way to accomplishing this years goals!

(c) October 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Monday, September 26, 2011

Blogs, Social Venues ... Do the Twain Meet?




I read an article this morning on blogs and social media venues.The gist of it was that your blog needs to be your hub, and that social media sites serve as spokes coming off of that hub. The general tone of the article was that too much time is being spent on Face Book, Google + and Twitter, and that they should serve to promote the blog, and not take on an entity of their own.

Struggling to deal with time issues myself (I work a 9-5, as well as writing and reviewing), I can see the need to prioritize. We can all see that. I have two blogs and a professional site. One blog is (supposed to be) an author's blog, while the other blog site has to do with Tarot, flash fiction, review, interviews, and a music site that I work with. I say blog site, because on that site I maintain separate blogs for the music site, my Tarot work, and my flash fiction. My professional site serves both my writing and my Tarot interests. Content is always being added to my blogs, then shared on Twitter, Face Book, and Google +. (At time, if appropriate, I will share a music blog on my My Space page, because for me that site is all music and musicians, not personal friends.) Lately I have been getting a fair amount of LinkedIn requests, and Branched Out is starting to have a life of its own.

My feeling is this - decide what is important to you personally, and to your work. On all of the social media venues (Twitter, Face Book, and Google +) I chat. I share what is going on in my life, and comment on others posts. To me, this is the best part of networking - getting to know people. Then when I post a request for help, that help appears. There are people that I network with that know more than I do about almost everything. If we know a bit about each other, and have interacted before, they will be there to head me over to the information that I need to have.

While our blogs (and our sites) arfe where our content goes, and that is where we want to drive traffic to, I think we need to take the time to socialize a bit ... at least, I do!

(c) September 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Fading Into Autumn




I am so glad that the cooler weather is here - not that we had a hot summer, but because I like the cooler weather, and I love autumn! I am in the final rounds of cutting back in the yard for this year, which is also a good thing. I do NOT like yard work. I put one of my table top fans back in storage, but kept the other one out, along with the floor fan in the living room. Probably another two weeks, and I can put the other fans into storage too.

I was pleased to receive my latest order from Schiffer Publications - of course, the books are already accounted for! One to a gentleman that I did a radio interview with, one to a friend of my sister's and mine that I admire greatly, the other two will go out in contests.

I still have to make a list of local bookstores, and send my laminated book covers, along with a cover letter, to their buyers.

I have two webinars this week, and I hope that man of you will join me at one or the other - or both! My webinar with Linda Marson on September 21st is a general over-view of my book, "Tarot, Birth Cards, and You". My webinar with Mary Nale on September 24th will be covering Birth Cards and Affirmations.

October looks to be a pivotal month for me. May the Gods and Goddeses be in a very good mood, and my path be well lit and well traveled!

(c) September 2011 Bonnie Cehovet


Saturday, September 10, 2011

The Beat Goes On


I am still trying to catch my breath over the release of my new book, "Tarot, Birth Cards, and You". Life does not happen a vacuum - I still have to work the "9-5", I am still doing reviews of other peoples work, attending incredible webinars of other peoples work, and getting ready to do a basic webinar on my book (with Linda Marson), and a focused webinar on my book (the affirmations aspect) with Mary Nale.

In a drawer in the kitchen I have the laminated copies of my cover that my publisher (Schiffer Publishing) sent me. I need to start making some calls to local bookstores and getting the name of their purchasing agent, so I have a "real name" to address the query letter that will accompany my lovely cover. "To Whom It May Concern" does not seem to get it when I want to gently encourage these people to carry my book in their store.

I am running a contest for the month of September, giving away a signed copy of my book. The contest is a simple one, but I have had no response to date. I am trying to see how I can present this in a better way, rather than taking things too personally. ;-)

To balance things out, I have the honor of reviewing the new deck out from Christine Payne-Towler and Michael Dowers (The Tarot of the Holy light). It is outstanding for so many reasons - its place as a Continental deck, the incredible artwork, the in-depth (but not overwhelming) esoteric symbolism, the beautiful, intense colors ... the list goes on!

Life is good ... may it remain so!

(c) September 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Saturday, September 3, 2011

My Journey As An Author

My book, "Tarot, Birth Cards, and You" is out. Each step of the way I think I am fine, then when I get there I am nervous! It is incredible to have it in my hands, it is incredible to be able to actually sign copies and send them to friends! It is incredible that my friends are doing reviews of my book - which they do not have to do. I would have sent them the book anyway!

It is very strange to be on the other side of the interview table - answering the questions, rather than asking them. The questions have been very good ones, too! Including the one ab out whether I had another Tarot book in process, which I do. Subject dwelling in the mists, for now. Proposal is out to my editor, I will have to see what she thinks. If it is accepted, I am sure that she knows she won't be seeing the panicked little person that she saw the first time around. I know what questions to ask, this time, and I know a bit about the process.

Interesting things have been happening - did you realize that a package will get to Sweden before it gets to Western Canada? (They were sent on the same day.) I think I also have it down that I have to fill out customs paperwork to send anything out of country. (I grabbed a fistful the last time I was at the post office - it beats filling them out at the post office!)

I have to ask my editor about books from brick and mortar publishers going into e-book format. I am not sure how they handle that. I do suggest that people click the "Do You Want To See This On Kindle" button on Amazon.com - that might help.

Speaking of clicking buttons - many of us are now using Google +1. When you see this on someone's site, blog, or article - please take the time to click on it. Unless you don't like the site, blog, or article - then just be polite and move on.

Focus for this coming week - edit my Power Point for my webinar with Linda Marson. Thank you Linda for setting the files up for me - I would not have had a clue!

(c) September Bonnie Cehovet

Monday, August 29, 2011

The Art of Promoting




What a weekend I had! On Saturday I did my first webinar with Mary Nale - and it went very well! Deep sigh of relief here! Many thanks to the wonderful people that attended this webinar - I appreciate each and every one of you taking the time to be there! I also appreciate the fact that Mary took the time to go over the "room" with me beforehand, so that I could bring up pages and move my little cursor around with some semblance of knowing what I was doing! I think that Mary chose an excellent site to work with, and wish her much success with future webinars. Two of those webinars will be mine - one will focus on Tarot, Birth Cards, and Affirmations, while the other will focus on Tarot, Birth Cards, and Journeying.

On Sunday morning I joined Dax Carlisle, Mark Reed, and Mary Nale on Tarot Today. I am listening to the show in archives as I write this blog, hoping that I don't sound too bad. I want to thank all of the people in the chat room - I appreciate your dropping by to listen! I also appreciate all of the people that will be listening to the show in the archives! The chat about my book was wonderful, I chatted with the people in the room a bit, and had a wonderful chat with Colin, who called in from the UK! Many thanks to Colin for calling in. He is a marvelous individual, and just an incredible artist!

Following Tarot Today I attended a two-hour seminar with Stephanie Arwen Lynch (Tarot By Arwen). The seminar was for writers, and addressed character definition and plot development. If you want to work with Tarot and writing, please check out the services/seminars that Arwen offers. She is an incredible reader, author, and teacher/mentor.

I have a webinar coming up on the 21st of Sepember with Linda Marson of Global Spiritual Studies. I highly recommend working with Linda if you want to do a webinar. Like Mary Nale, Linda works with her presenters to get the Power Point pages set up (note: Mary's pages are not Power Point), and to make sure that the presenter knows how to work witht he pages, and work with the pointer. I will be chatting with Linda this Wednesday night to get a better idea of my next step. I have my pages together, and my graphics for the cards ... and I thought this was "good to go". Not! The first thing that Linda told me when she saw my pages was that I needed to add visuals to retain the interest of my audience. I dragged my feet on that one. However, when I did my webinar with Mary, the same thing came up when I beat people over the head for feedback. So, I am taking the work that Linda did re my pages, and looking for good visuals to go with them. I have to redo the text that I gave Linda into bullet points (Linda did this for me, but I want to change them a bit). I consider myself incredibly lucky that I connected with two very professional ladies that are making my presentations look very good! :)

I have one more thing that I need to do on promotions, and that is to send the laminated book covers that Schiffer Publishing sent me to local bookstores. I have to write a quick promotional letter to go with them, and they will be off!

I am learning the art of promotion slowly but surely. It is very much easier for me to promote other people through my reviews and interviews. Promoting myself ... that is a whole other ballgame!

(c) August 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Multiple Streams Of Income




Multiple streams of income - not only a "nice thought", but in this time of uncertainty, perhaps a necessary one. As a writer, what are my multiple streams of income going to be? My first brick and mortar book came out this year (hopefully it is shipping by the time that I publish this post!). I am at work on writing the proposal for my second one, and there will be one more in this field.

I am working on a mystery novel, hopefully the first in a series. Looking closely at both Create Space and Smashwords to publish this book, as I have a strong feeling that I would be getting close to leaving this lifetime by the time a brick and mortar publisher picked it up. Goal is to get this one out by the end of the year.

Under consideration are self-help books. At this point in time I am not sure if they will be self-published or brick and mortar. Or if they will be full length books, or shorter material that might be best published in e-format. The thing that I like about e-format is that it can be updated with ease.

In a totally unrelated thought, I am thinking about entering writing contests - specifically for mysteries. Not doing the NaNoWriMo again - too much stress, and it takes place in the lead up to the holidays, neither of which is in its favor. While it works well for some people, I am going to take a pass.

I love that there are options, and that we are not limited in any way as to how many options we accept. My one thought is that once I accept an option, I do my best to follow through, and don't opt out half-way, unless that looks like the high road!

(c) August 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Software For Writer's




Today I thought that I would talk a bit about software for writer's. There is one program that I keep hearing about, and that I am seriously considering - that is the Scrivener software. I was very surprised to read that it originated as a Mac program, and was developed "after the fact" for Windows. More information, and a free download, can be accessed here - Scrivener. One little phrase struck me - that the main focus of the program is structuring writing! The beta download is now on my laptop! Woo hoo! Okay, I read the fine print. The beta version expires after 30 days of use, or on September 30th, whichever comes first. ;-) I will have to test drive this one quickly and soon!

WriteWayPro is another writer's program that looks good to me. It takes a writer from concept to character development, to completed manuscript! The little phrase that caught my eye here made my heart stop - this puppy will format for Kindle and Nook! Yes! WriteWayPro can be accessed here. There is a video tour on this site also, but I was not able to access it.

Under story development software, I found StoryCraftPro (there is an online demo at this link) and Power Structure (which also has an online demo). To tell you the truth, I don't know that I would put out money for something like this. I may be naive, but should I not be able to get my own story going, once I have a plot and characters? I mean - what am I here for, if not to write the story! Not being a published author yet with fiction work, I may be eating those words!

Now, StyleWriter does seem like a great idea, and well worth it's cost! What this software does is check language style and usage. The most difficult thing for me is to recognise my own grammatical errors, so some type of software like this will undoubtedly find its way into my life.

I also came across Life Journal For Writer's - journaling software that helps organise and keep track of daily writing and writing activities. This one will be on a back burner for me, but I am thinking about it.

So much software out there - so little time! ;-)

(c) August 2011 Bonnie Cehovet




Sunday, August 7, 2011

Defining Characters




I am about to start the "redemption" of my 2010 NaNoWriMo mystery. I thought that I was going to be able to go back, make a few changes, and move things forward. Then I realised a couple of things - (1) this book has to be as tight as it can be, because I want it to be the first in a series of mysteries based on these characters, and (2) I had defined a major player - the partner of my main character - based solely on what I thought that I needed him to do in this book. He ended up in a very specialised vocation, which could/would be a hinderence in future stories - or he would have to be killed off and a new partner brought in. Back to the bible - this character is going to be recreated, as someone that works well with the main character, and could plausibly be her partner.

I already had to redefine the crime element, as, again, I had gone into too specialised an area, where nothing was going to sound authentic. Major rewrite time here, but better now than after the first person to read it says "Ummm I don't think that I can really connect with this story. It is well written though! Have to go ... talk to you later!"

I think that I am going to change where the characters live also. I am, yet again, writing about an area that I know nothing about. I can easily move the characters one state over, and still have the crime in the intended state and city. The city that I am moving them to has much more appeal ... and I lived there for seventeen years!

Dream the big dreams, follow those dreams, and act on them. But make them real, make them doable. Manifesting them will then be oh so much easier! ;-)

I really do think it is time for a nice glass of wine!

(c) August 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Monday, August 1, 2011

Promoting, Promoting, Promoting!


Within the next two weeks my new book, "Tarot, Birth Cards, and You: Keys to Empowerment" is due to be available from Schiffer Books. I am in the process of setting up webinars with Linda Marson , and Mary Nale & Company. I have the graphics ready, the handout and outline done, and just need to get the text together. I am really looking forward to working with both of these ladies!

On Sunday, August the 28th, I will be doing an Internet radio show with Dax Carlisle, Mark Reed and Mary Nale. All of the material is ready for this show.

This morning I placed my personal order for my books with Schiffer Books. These are books that I will be signing and sending out to friends that have helped me along the way. I am very happy to be able to do this.

I am continuing with my blog (one Birth Card pair a month) on the Birth Card pairs, and recently started doing a little Animoto video with the basic information on each Birth Card pair. I have nine out of twelve videos completed.

I need to research local book stores to send the lovely book covers that Schiffer sent with my author's copy out to (along with a cover letter, of course!). With any luck, one or more of these contacts may lead to an in-store lecture or book signing (or both!).

My little Cappie self is overjoyed with things to do to get my work out there! I hope that you all enjoy what I have to offer!

(c) August 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Playing Nice



I love the fire and energy of the dragon! I grew up in Seattle, WA, where there is a large Chinese community. At all of the major parades, the community brings out a beautiful dragon. They run quickly along the parade route, moving the dragon up and down, and from side to side. It is absolutely fascinating to watch the runners move in and out as they relieve each other at their stations. This is done on the run, of course, so one person is timing themselves in as the one carrying the pole is timing their way out. Focus, attention ... and a huge amount of caring is going on here!

I think that we need to place this same focus and intent into all that we do. Many of us blog, Tweet, have pages on Face Book, personal and/or business sites, and are generally putting ourselves out there. We know at least a little bit about SEO, can upload photo's, and perhaps even play around with video's (at least at the Animoto level). Then we sit back and wait for life to happen.

People, we have to interact to make life happen! So we have a (usually expanding) RSS feed. We actually even read the posts. Good, yes? Good, to a point. Read the blogs, then (if you have something to say) comment on the blog. This is polite ... it shows respect. And ... if you comment on someone else's blog, they may even become inclined to comment on yours! Also ... look for the Google Plus One button, the Face Book "Like" button, and any share buttons that might be there. If the post is a good one, please help promote it. Put that energy out there, and someone will be there to do the same for you.

One last thought here. Please comment on the content ... that should be your focus. Commenting on blogs is not the place to promote your own work.

I have made a commitment to watching for all of the above on any blogs/sites that I visit. The Internet is a bold new territory, and we are being gifted with some awesome tools for navigation! May we each have the common sense to educate ourselves about these tools, and use them wisely.

(c) July 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Google Plus, Google Plus One, Webinars & More

Most people that I know are putting out work in more than one venue. They need to maintain a network of contacts in more than one world, as well as promote their work in the best manner possible. The new Google Plus app appears to be a very good way to go. People are taking to it very well ... it is easy to sign up for, and there is the availability of creating "circles" ... i.e. putting people with the same interests in the same circle. You are notified when someone puts you in a circle - but not which circle you are being placed in. IMHO, this is a benefit - no one feels left out, and the information t hat you want to get out goes out to the people that it is meant to get out to. The issue that is coming up is that people are signed up for it, but not yet conversing much. My thought on this is that we want to view it in the same manner that we view Twitter - there needs to be a sense of sharing, so that a connection is made with other people within our circles. In that way, when we send out promotional posts, they are part of the overall picture, and not just promotion. If that were the case - why bother with Google Plus?

Google Plus One is a big part of the promotional picture, in that when people click on your Plus One icon you move yourself into a better place in the Google ranking. IOW, you have a better chance of being seen.

Google is doing something that I am not sure about - not sure what it is connected to. The Google Plus One icon is appearing on the right hand side of the pages that comes up when you run a Google search. Now there is also an icon that brings up (in most cases) a view of the page that is being linked to. It seems good, but it also seems a bit "Big Brother" to me.

With all of this running in the background, I am about to start setting up Internet time to promote my upcoming book, "Tarot, Birth Cards, and You: Keys To Empowerment". There will be a webinar this coming October with Linda Marson (http://www.tarotjourney.com.au/), where I introduce the concept of using the Birth Card pairs as a counseling and meditation tool.

Another avenue of promotion will be Internet seminars with Mary Nale (http://naleandcompany.blogspot.com/). The focus here will be how to place the Tarot Birth Cards in day to day life - whether you are reading for yourself, or reading for someone else.

My site page is quasi "set up" ( http://www.bonniecehovet.com/?page_id=125), and I have a preliminary Animoto video out on You Tube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8kk_CsBezoA). I am doing a short write up of one Birth Card pair each month on my Tarot blog, and plan to do a short Animoto video for each of the Birth Card Pairs. I will also be setting up a Face Book page - once I get those logistics figured out! Oh ... I have a contest to figure out for my Tarot book. Talking archetypes? Sherlock Holmes take on the archetypes?

Other directions for me? My mystery novel in process, and my work on a friends music site. There will be some interesting promotions coming up there, you can be assured!

(c) July 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Sunday, July 10, 2011

The Road To Promotion




What a day this has been! It started out very nicely - I started adding friends to my Google + circles, and did a fairly good job. Next stop - add Google +1 to my blogs and site. Easier said than done. Hours later I finally had it up on my Wordpress.org site ((patting self on back, and sending kudos to Theresa Reed and Abela Arthur.), but I still need to figure out how to add it to my blog sites (Blogspot.com and Wordpress.com).

Being the social network maven that I am, my next foray into surrealism was to attempt to add Twitter and Facebook follow buttons to my site, and to both blogs. I did manage to get both on my site - although there is a link-back to the button creator. I cannot seem to "adjust" a plugin for those buttons on my site. I am dangerous with coding ... I really am! ;-) Note to self: Please start a fund to get a real webmaster in to dust off your site and blogs!

I am a Cappie - I will go back and work on the Wordpress.com apps. There has to be a way to do this! LOL

I also edited the page that I had set up on my site for my upcoming book (Tarot, Birth Cards, and You: Keys To Empowering Yourself). I had put some examples of content on the page, but was not comfortable with it - the text was too long. So I took most of the sample text out - it reads much better, and my site visitors will not be bored out of their minds!

Once I get all of the above taken care of, I am going to follow the advice of my good friend Mary Nale, and put an audio message on my book page. I may also put an audio message on my landing page for my site. Things are definitely starting to open up here!

Now ... off to write an outline of the material that I will be presenting in my webinar with Linda Marson!

(c) July 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Sunday, July 3, 2011

One Day At A Time

I am taking this promotion thing one day at a time! I have a book entitled "Tarot, Birth Cards and You: Empowering Yourself" due out from Schiffer Books this coming September. I contacted a friend that conducts webinars this am, to see when I can schedule time with her. My initial webinar will be discussing what Birth Cards are, and how they can be used for personal empowerment. If that goes well, I will do one or more follow-up webinars that discuss specific birth card pairs,their themes, and how to work with them.

I also put a page up on my site this am promoting my book. Please take a look at this page, and let me know what you think. Tarot, Birth Cards, and You: Keys To Empowering Yourself. Do I need to add information? Take information away? What would you like to see there? I took away the option to comment on the page - do you think that it would be useful to activate that option?

My next foray - when I have recovered sufficiently from this one - will be to set up a page on Face Book. For you authors out there - how far ahead of publication did you set up your Face Book pages? Is there anything that you would like to share about the process of setting up a page on Face Book? As you can probably tell, I am not a techie! Any and all info will be helpful!

I will be sending my book out for review, to reviewers that I know and respect. They don't have to like the book, but I know they will give it a fair shot. There is also a genre specific media company that I would like to get my book in with. Crossing fingers there! And I will be planning a book giveaway. I really don't like contests, but I will have to invent a fun one to give a book or two away! Then I need to think up a really good promotion for the holidays.

I have arrived! At least ... I am pretty sure that I have arrived. ;-)

(c) July 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Is Digital Self-Publishing Viable?

I have one book up on lulu.com , and another up on Amazon.com - both books are self-published. I am in the process of writing a mystery book, which I will also self-publish (most likely through Smashwords). One of the biggest benefits in getting my work out there in this manner, IMHO, is that I don't need a publisher. I can self-publish in the digital market and distribute on my own.

I am evidently joining a very impressive group of people! Author J. K. Rowling (author of the Harry Potter series) is at this moment bringing up a new site called "Pottermore". This is a literal Harry Potter universe, and will be the only place that she will market e-book versions of her Harry Potter works. Will other big name authors follow her lead?

I am not only excited about self-publishing, but I am excited about the "Pottermore" site! We don't need to copy exactly what she has done, but it does show us what can be done. We can create a place for our work that consists of more than a book cover and a "Buy Now" button!

Off to join the world of J.K. Rowling!

(c) June 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Monday, June 20, 2011

Time - A Precious Commodity


Time is a precious commodity – especially for writers. It is not very often that we can support ourselves from our writing, which means that we are working a 9-5 “somewhere”, taking care of life’s little necessities (like grocery shopping, doing laundry, cleaning house and paying bills), and trying to fit writing into the “odd moments”.

I am lucky in one respect – I live alone (with my cat, Roger), so no one but Roger has dibs on my time and attention. The problem is that I can seldom say no to a writing opportunity, so I invariably have multiple projects going on: my author’s blog on Monday, flash fiction when I remember, keeping up my Tarot blog, keeping up with Social Media sites (Twitter, Face Book and Linked In), taming my RSS feed , writing deck and book reviews … the list is endless.

What I found works for me is if I have a daily to-do list written out, so that I can check things of as I go along. I do my main writing at night (if I am not too tired after working on the phone line), or during the day, before I go on the phone line. Set time (i.e. 2 am – 4 am Tarot blog) don’t work for me. I know what is due, and when, and I have to keep things mixed up, as in a beautiful tossed salad, so that I don’t get bored.

As of June, I cut back on my outside writing. I loved doing the writing, but I needed to place my focus elsewhere. It was a hard decision, but it is done. I now have the time to map out a plan for promoting my book that is due out in September, write my second Tarot book and finish the mystery book that I started during NaNoWriMo 2010, and have it edited.

Things that I do to help me make best use of my time are:

  1. Write out my projects and project goals a week in advance.
  2. At the beginning of each day, look at what I want to get done, and prioritise it.
  3. If something doesn’t get done, I don’t automatically bump it into the next day. I look at how important it is, at what else I am doing, and at where I will reasonably have the time to finish it.
  4. I do small amounts of research between projects – or in the middle of a project, so that it acts as a break. (Cappie here – work is my normal mode of being!)
  5. When I am writing, and it is flowing, I allow it to extend to a normal breaking point. Then I look at what I have left to do on that day, and what I may have to move to another time, or remove entirely.
  6. I may use a quick drop in on one of my social media site as a form of break – but I consciously limit that break time to no more than 10-15 minutes.
  7. I check in on how I am feeling. If I am feeling stressed, I stand up and move around. At the end of the day I may reward myself with a piece of chocolate and a glass of one. One each – I don’t need to go crazy here!
  8. I try to be understanding – sometimes my schedule goes completely out the window due to one of life’s little occurrences. Believe it or not – I am beginning to flow with this!
  9. At the end of each day, I glance over my to-do list for the next day. This is one way that I keep my so called sanity.
  10. I try to control as much as I can, in as graceful and responsible way as I can. So far, so good!

© June 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Lost Before I Am Started

I don't write on this blog very often - the joke here being that this blog is the one that is devoted to my writing! In fact when I went to add a new blog earlier this year, I found that I had been away for so long that my account had been deleted! I am trying to do one post a week - at least, that is my goal. I log in today, and something looks different. I can't even find the links for editing old blogs, or adding new blogs. I am about to panic when I realise there is a pop-up add over that section of my sign on page. Whew! Take that off and the page as I know it reappears, as if by magic!

I am beginning to realise that how I promote my Tarot related work will be different from how I promote my fiction writing. And how I promote my fiction writing will be different from how others promote their fiction writing. In the Tarot world we chat things up in forums, do reviews and interviews, chat on the social networking sites, write blogs, attend conferences, do webinars and teleclasses ... with a bit of Blog Talk Radio through in for good measure. It's all good, and we are all comfortable with that.

I have a wealth of writing blogs on my RSS feed, and with fiction writing they are all promoting the concept of "guest blogging". It is getting so bad that sometimes I think that the person who's blog I signed up for never writes for their own blog! To follow this route I am advised to find blogs written by people writing in the same genre (mystery fiction), and post to their blogs. IOW - Make myself known, so that I don't look like an idiot asking to do a guest blog for them.

I started out skeptical of how this would work for me - I would have to get material to the person who runs the blog in good time, write in the format they want things written in, respond to people who leave comments ... do all the polite things. Now, I am a polite person, but my to do lists would have multiple to do lists of their own were I to keep up with all of this. End result - I have made the decision to not do guest blogging. (You may all breathe freely now! ;-) )

I will have a page on my site for each of my books, a free chapter or two, lots of chatter on Twitter and Face Book, free copies sent to reputable reviewers ... and from there I wing it! I am sure there is more that I can do, but it must be in line with what I am comfortable doing.

We may now all wish me luck!

(c) June 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

Saturday, May 28, 2011

The Process Of Goal Setting In Writing

What I am going to talk about today is not my idea, and I cannot remember the link to the blog where I encountered it. If anyone reading this knows the link to the blog with the original idea, please let me know so I can credit them. The basic premise was that we can do a better job of setting goals – writing or otherwise – by asking ourselves something referred to as “small questions”.

Essentially, when we start asking ourselves questions we are setting up a “mindmap” for the article, book or project that we are working on. We are attempting to see clearly what is important from our personal point of view, and how that will progress in our project. For me, this method is much easier than just setting down goals, and trying to keep them in perspective, and in a “doable” order.

I see more success when doing this, I think, because I am not focused on each goal per se, but on the bigger picture – what I want to accomplish, and how I want to accomplish it. As I was reading the article that I mentioned above, I realized that this is something that I already do, but that it is in the background of setting up a plan for my projects. Now that I am conscious of this I will move it into the foreground – give it more importance.

What kind of questions do we want to ask ourselves? It depends on the project(s) we are working on. I am almost always working on multiple projects, of varying importance, with varying deadlines. Here I might ask myself the following questions:

1. What projects do I have on board at this moment?

2. Where am I on each project?

3. What are the deadlines for each project?

4. What is the next step for each project?

5. What does my total schedule look like? Where am I going to be able to fit writing time in?

6. Am I getting burned out on one or more projects? If so, what can I do to bring that project back into alignment with my total life, and put some fun back into it?

7. Is it time to ask for help on a project? Is it time to let a project go?

In asking questions about a specific writing project, I might ask myself the following questions:

1. How do I feel about what I have written to date?

2. Will what I have written so far stand on its own legs, or do I need to do some rewriting?

3. Is the storyline hanging together?

4. Are my characters portrayed in a manner that defines each of them clearly?

5. Are my characters interacting in a consistent manner?

6. Am I allowing my characters to evolve?

7. Where do I want the story to go?

8. Where do my characters want the story to go?

9. Is there enough tension in the storyline?

10. How can I best move the storyline forward?

These are small questions that will allow me to move my projects forward in a manner that is consistent, cohesive, and will draw and keep the attention of my readers. Your projects will differ, your questions will differ. Make use of the process, and the questions will begin to flow naturally, as will you projects!

© May 2011 Bonnie Cehovet

The Legend of Justice and Diamonds - Second Printing

"The Legend of Justice and Diamonds" was originally published through Xulon Press in 2010. It is now available through Crea...