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

How To Get Characters To Interact

You have your plot worked out, and you have defined your  characters . The next step is getting your characters to play nice and interact...