Category Archives: Out in the World

Reflections: New Year, Here I Come!

So, yeah, missed a #summarySunday AND ran late on writing my Obligatory New Year’s post, but better late than never, right?

So, 2019, huh? What’s happened there? Lots of laughs and smiles and hugs and togetherness. But also lots of tears and pain and loss and senseless violence.

Then again, that’s every year nowadays, right?

So, I’m reflecting on my personal 2019, with my outlook now that we’re back in the “Roaring 20s” era. Here’s some key parts of my life from 2019, as I reflect on the previous year:

Smoky Writers Retreat – February-March 2019

I accomplished so many words this year. The biggest goal I achieved both broke me and gave me most of the closure I needed. I FINISHED KINETICS. At least, the first drafts. Obviously, Books One (“KINETIC REBIRTH”) and Two (“KINETIC MEMORY”) are already out in the world. And Book Three… Well, let’s just say there will be a blog post tomorrow or Sunday giving some exciting news about that one. But, the full main series was a total of 5 novels. I finished Book Five’s first draft on March 1st, 2019. My uncle – the man who inspired me to follow my dreams and who helped give me that push toward writing – died March 1st, 2004, exactly fifteen years after his death. I’ve joked about the timing as Jessi and my Uncle Dave plotting the timing of this finale from the beginning. The best part was that I told my husband (fiance at the time) that it would be so cool to finish Book Five at Smoky, because this series started at the 2017 Smoky retreat. Ironic it actually happened that way, and I’m so glad it happened then! My fellow Smokies were there to comfort me, give plenty of hugs, encourage me to still join in on the fun activities of the retreat, and talk to me through my panic attacks and depression crashes as closure attempted to settle down in my body. Couldn’t ask for a better writer’s family.

Ravencon 14 – April 2019

I was so blessed and lucky that I was selected as an Author Guest panelist again for Ravencon 14 out in Williamsburg, Virginia. I’ve been attending since 2009, so this one marked 10 years of attendance. Ravencon is like a home away from home, where I can be with my like-minded creatives.
I met some really cool people, made professional contacts by networking over similar interests, and gave the best advice I could muster to help out the other authors in the audience of each of my panels. As usual, JV Jr accompanied me and kept wanting food. That doll has the “nom noms” to the max, even when she was actually a living person on this earth.

Engagement Photo Shoot – April 2019

If going to Williamsburg for Ravencon 14 wasn’t enough, I invited one of my close friends, Allison, to provide her with lodgings for the whole weekend for free, so she could attend Ravencon the whole weekend: something she hadn’t been able to do in a long time. In return, she spent our last day in Williamburg by taking me and my husband’s engagement photos. The photo shoot landed EXACTLY one year from the day B-Roc (my husband) proposed. Here’s a sampling::

 

Wedding Day – September 2019

This day was magical. I was marrying my soulmate, my rock, my perfect match. I can’t even come up with the words to describe how amazing that day was, aside from one event that occurred before the actual ceremony. The Bride-to-be and father of the Bride get a horse and carriage ride down to the ceremony location at the base of a waterfall. While passing regular visitors to the park, most of the kids were in awe of the horses. But, there was this one little girl, maybe 2-3 years old, whose Dad had picked her up and moved aside for my carriage to get by. The girl’s eyes widened, and she said excitedly to her dad, “Daddy, look, look! A princess!” Then, she looked at me and waved frantically and yells, “HI, PRINCESS!”

One of the most memorable moments of my life.

 

Conclusion and Looking Ahead

By the end of 2019, I’d had so many memorable moments, most of them once in a lifetime. However, my life has not slowed down since my wedding. Maybe even before that, thanks to the planning and prepping chaos that happens for every bride when getting ready to devote their life to their perfect match. But, I’ve had family in and out of hospitals, getting surgeries, getting sicker quicker. My baby sister moved out of town before I even returned from my and B-Roc’s honeymoon (Vegas, baby!). My debt is a key issue that I’ve struggled with for years now (shopping addictions suck, man…), and planning how to pay it off and stop spending covered the latter quarter on my year. And, just within the last week, me and B-Roc have started our search for our perfect house to start a new chapter of our joint life together.

I’m going to be entirely honest here, a decade ago, if you told me everything I’ve accomplished, the high school me would’ve scoffed, rolled her eyes, and dismissed it. I wouldn’t have ever believed all the milestones, all the love of two families, all the moments I’d never forget, all the hospital trips. Going to college. Graduating a semester early, get a salaried job three months out of college, still at same job five years later. My first and only boyfriend, an engagement, a wedding, and the loss of an amazing, genuine best friend… I never could’ve imagined it.

But, you know what?

I survived.

And I’ve had a good feeling for the last two months that life was going to be great in 2020. I have this gut feeling that our lives will change in more ways than one. Good and bad, likely, but the anticipation of that gut feeling keeps me motivated, eager to see what changes and news and events are awaiting down this yellow brick road of 2020.

2020?

Bring it on.

This is gonna be a fun year!

Keep your eyes on this blog, Vikans. Big news this weekend, as well as (hopefully) some helpful things I may have for y’all!

Keep Faith, everyone.

And, as said in KINETICS – a phrase perfectly aimed at the anticipation for the new year of 2020:: “Assume Nothing.”

– Chrissy

 

Guidance from a Newbie: Fiverr Freelancing

Howdy, Vikans!

*gasp* a Blog Post that’s NOT on a SUNDAY?!

Yeah, I’m stunned and excited at the same time.

Isn’t this December so much fun?

*sarcasm*

*slightly*

So, onto the subject of this blog post.

So I recently dove into the mysterious realm of Fiverr as a way to keep my creative brain agile and my logical brain focused for as long of periods as I can. My gigs are mainly creative/editing/brainstorming focused, because that’s the fun stuff, with 1 Gig geared toward IT/Excel. If you are a creative individual, continue on, as I list all my current Fiverr Gigs below. Since I’m starting out, I could use a good number of customers to both help me get noticed, as well as keep my ADHD under control and stop my life-long severe anxiety preoccupied enough to not torment me inside my mind constantly.

Problem is, now that Fiverr is so saturated, getting your first customers is mainly luck. You need to figure out what skills you have that people could need help with, then determine what to offer for each of the 3 package levels, strategize price points for them, decide how fast your turn around time would be for each level, figure out if you can offer additional add-ons, describe your Gig in a paragraph or two, form questions for your customer that encompasses everything you need to do the job (or at least get the order started), and then FINALLY let it loose to the public!

*sigh of relief*

Yeah, sounds complicated, right? Once you get the hang of it, though, it will be smooth sailing (mostly…) to add more services to your Seller Portfolio.

Now what you might be thinking is that at this point, you should be swimming with orders now, right? After all, you’ve put up a good number of options that you’re good at. But days go by, and most of the messages you receive are scammers from other countries (I gotta say, though, that Fiverr has their game up on spammers; they lock the messages for those people before I can even open the app to read it. Props to Fiverr on that front!).

You’ve got your Gigs set up, you look at the Analytics for your Gigs via the website and see plenty of impressions are being made, yet you still haven’t gotten many, if any, customers. And, if you have had someone reach out to you, it’s a 50/50 chance it will lead to an actual job order.

 

So, what might be the problem?

For me, it’s one of two reasons:
(1) The way you designed your Gig
(2) Luck.

 

(1) – Set-Up / Design

For (1), this is error on your end. Doesn’t mean you’ve messed up royally, it just means that your set-up wasn’t optimized enough to grab someone’s attention. Now, Issue (1) has a few sub points of interest::

(1a) — The thumbnail photo. This, along with your subject/title of the gig, are the first 2 things potential customers see when scrolling through the HUGE directory of all kinds of sellers you are now competing for attention with. I’d suggest 2 ways to go with the photo, and 1 way to NOT go with for a photo:

The DOs::
#1:: Content you’ve already created that is related (even slightly) to this particular Gig. The thumbnail should be the one best quality that is closest to what service your Gig is offering. Fiverr laso allows you to put a couple more files and/or pictures as a portfolio for each Gig when you build it. Starting out, you might not have much portfolio to upload. No worries; I’m in the same boat. So, option #2 could be better, if you are handy with Paint or Photoshop —

#2:: Create your own thumbnail. Get creative. Add quotes, a backdrop of some kind, the actual title and/or brief byline of your service directly into the picture. Just get creative and have fun with it! (Take note, though, that there is a pixel limit when it comes to size. Keep that in mind when designing. DO YOUR HOMEWORK!)

The Do NOTs::

— DO NOT STEAL SOMEONE ELSE’S HARD WORK. This means fan art, covers or documentation you did not do yourself, etc, etc.

I myself have crappy thumbnails for my current Gigs, mainly stock designs and basic, non-copyrighted cover images, but they are just as temporary placeholders. The holidays wiped me out, so had to postpone updating my thumbnails. However, I plan of making better ones myself within the next week or two.

 

(1b) — When you design a Gig, the title needs to be condensed, but unique; meaning using the characters you’re allowed to both tell the potential buyer what service it is, while tailoring the words to catch their eye toward you in the first place. Don’t use big or complicated words, though. We’re talking primary/elementary school level here: simple, but unique.

 

(1c) — I hate to be the one to break this to y’all, but when your level 1 Gig Package costs $20 and you have 2 to no reviews or orders, you’re kidding yourselves. You need to get a reputation. You need eyes on your thumbnail enticing enough for them to click through (see points (1a) and (1b)). But, if they finally click through to your details, and see the cheapest option is decently high, and you hardly have any ratings or reviews, they’ll very swiftly move on to another candidate. I know some of you are saying, “My quality and experience is worth more than that $20 Gig anyway, so they are getting a good deal from an expert!”

Guess what? THEY DON’T KNOW THAT. At least not yet.

Fiverr’s customers look for decent details, packages that suit what they need, AND the cheapest option for the quality they want. That means that YOUR discount, which you see as fair… Chop it down even more. Dangerously low. If it’s a Gig you can perform with a quick turnaround time, then start the initial level package at 5$, and add additional Gig features for extra options for customers to choose from, should they desire. When you start on Fiverr, your goal shouldn’t be to roll around in your earnings like Scrooge McDuck! You need to get eyes on your Gigs. You need to accept and deliver orders. You need to reel in reviews.

YOU. NEED. TO. PLAY. ON. THEIR. GREEN.

Until you get a good amount of orders, ratings, and reviews, then you will have proved your professional ability, and then, ONLY THEN, you could raise your prices. But, be sure to raise them to a reasonable level. You might have 200 reviews for your editing capabilities or quick turnarounds for verbal transcriptions or get 20 orders in a given month, but rarely will you find someone on Fiverr who will purchase your Level 3 package at $500, or even a Level 1 package higher than $50. So, as a tip, flick away that little ego demon on your shoulder telling you to gyp customers, and, starting out, Level 1 should be at the base $5, until you feel like you can rope them in for a higher price.

 

(2) – LUCK

Unfortunately, sometimes you have to pray, or wish, or summon a genie or demon of some kind and make a deal to get your first customers, and just wait.

And wait.

And wait.

Yep, you guessed it: a Waiting Game. Lots of freelancers can relate, am I right?

That’s how I got my first customer. I just kept tweaking parts of my Gig details: everything from prices, additional extras, descriptions – In hopes of roping in my first customer. When I did, I put my initial turnaround would take 6 days, knowing I could accomplish this order sooner than that.

My turn around was only 2 days, and my buyer gave a decent tip as well, along with a comment that they would definitely want me to help them in the near future.

*****

So, that’s a “small”, “basic” explanation on tackling Fiverr yourself, if you want to give it a go.

Which leads into shameless self promotion…

I am on Fiverr myself (if you couldn’t figure that out already o.o ), and looking to build my portfolio and help out anyone who could use my help in their creative endeavors. If you want to browse my Fiverr offerings, go to the “FIVERR” tab above, or click [here].

My Fiverr Seller Username is @angelslite

Here’s a brief list of what I currently offer (as of 12/26/2019)::

Creative Outlets
(1) – “Beta read your fantasy or scifi or ya fiction
(2) – “Brainstorm and suggest ideas for any creative medium
(3) – “Create book layout for ebook, kindle, AMZ, print interior
(4) – “Write short fiction story based around a single phrase
(5) – “Create promotional materials for your book, business, or event
(6) – “Craft fiction character profiles with information you supply

Analytical/Organization-related Outlets
(1) – “Create excel spreadsheet for your collection based on photos

 

Hope this post helps some of you aspiring freelancers like me. I also hope some of you all might want to order my Gig services, because just like the newbie to Fiverr I described in this post, I’m starting out, and some of you readers could be a few of the customers I get from PURE LUCK.

 

For those of you considering going this route, it’s a wild ride, believe me.

I think one of my usual sign off lines perfectly relates to this post….

“Assume Nothing.”

Until the weekend, guys. Big news this weekend. Stay tuned.

– Chrissy

Diving into Uncharted Territory – FREELANCING!

So, I’ve added a new tab to this website, if you didn’t already notice. It’s up there… Somewhere in the middle… Yeah, says “Layout Design” or sumthin’? Yeah, that one!

So, yep, I’ve been a closeted layout designer for a few years now, doing the interiors for a lot of my print and eBooks, along with a few others who put their trust in me with their babies.

If you might be interested in giving me a spin with your books, my (minimal) details on my rates are located on that above tab, ofr you can just click [[HERE]].

Oh, and as an FYI, my #Productivity2020 is off to a good start. Four out of Five days had writing in them so far! Yippee!

One more thing…

A New Release announcement this coming weekend! Stay tuned, because I am BEYOND thrilled and excited to FINALLY be publishing new content once again. I’m back in the game, baby!!

Anyway, that’s for my quick update for y’all.

Keep Faith!

And remember, “Assume Nothing”.

– C

Wow, New Year already?

What happened? 2018, gone just like that? Where’d the year go?

When I realized what that meant, I felt like I’d barely accomplished anything of value in my life. Had I written stuff? Yes, I had.

However, the kicker for me was this…

I hadn’t published much of anything.

Granted, three works got published, but without really any noticeable success, either reader-wise or sales-wise. “Account of Secrets” and “KINETIC MEMORY” both were released in January 2018, with the 5th CHAOS ACCOUNTS story (“Account of Risks“) released in July 2018. Yes, these are published works, but my mind believes that even with those releases, there is a lack of accomplishment or fulfillment. Especially because the last two months, as 2018 started coming to a close, my inspiration and motivation to write weakened, due to anxiety of holidays, day job, and prepping for my wedding in Fall 2019. (Getting engaged was one of few high points in 2018, let me tell you.)

I feel a bit weird about all of that in general. Think about it for a second. 2017, after I lost JV, was my most productive and active year of my writing career thus far. I wrote the first 4 CHAOS ACCOUNTS stories and published 3 of them. I also published a prequel ebook (“KINETIC TRAGEDY“; only available on Instafreebie) and the first KINETICS book (“KINETIC REBIRTH“), as well as written that whole first book, its sequel, and the fifth CHAOS story, rounding out that series’s first Arc.

Move onto 2018. I wrote as much as I could, but the inspiration and motivation started to wane and weaken. I ended up transferring to a merger company that my day job joined with, a company that started business early 2018. Since I had to learn a completely new system and way of doing day-to-day activities, plus having to interact with people of lots of different personalities and work ethics. That was a HUGE learning curve, and I think that stress and elevated anxiety was probably a root cause for lack of activity.

Now, like I said above, I got a LOT of writing done in 2018, at least in the first half or so. Highlights:

— Finished writing AND personally editing first drafts to the third AND fourth KINETICS books, as well as written 1/3 of the fifth and final installment

— Wrote a couple thousand words for CHAOS ACCOUNTS #6, as well as began formatting for the first CHAOS ACCOUNTS collection, for Accounts #1-5 (Aiming for physical copies of this as well)

— Worked on editing old WIP projects

— Started writing new WIPs – one that I’m presently working on in hopes of traditional publishing (hopefully)

However, still hardly any publishing credits for most of 2018. I have a good amount of finished projects, as well as dozens of WIPs. You want proof?

Image may contain: screen and laptop

Yeah, looking at that makes my head spin too.

The above and below screenshots are a spreadsheet that catalogs progress on any projects I’ve written for as far back as New Year’s 2011. That means today marks eight years of consistent writing, and hopefully useful words and maybe eventually books / ebooks. I created this Spreadsheet around 2014/2015-ish, and any projects I’ve made progress on since then actually keeps track of my word count each day for whatever project I wrote for. I’m OCD to the max, I already know this. 😉 But, the above is almost all my projects, either WIPs, completed novels, or spin-offs/sequels to earlier projects in the first two categories. Any project since 2011. ANY.

Now, the top right of this spreadsheet made me feel at least slightly accomplished when I did my end of the year WC check:

No automatic alt text available.

Yes, you are seeing correctly. Eight years of monitoring my word counts, and in the year 2018, I reached over 1.1 million words written, either in completed works or the word counts in my present WIPs, since 2011.

Then, looking through my project tabs, I mentally remembered plot lines to the WIPs I hadn’t touched in years, smiled slightly. Those 1.1 million words created so many great ideas and so many happy memories. Hopefully one day, I’ll be able to share them with you.

I replacement of a New Year’s resolution (as no one keeps those anyway), I will be even more meticulous when it comes to my writing schedule. I’ve added tabs to that massive spreadsheet, where I will also record each day’s word counts. I’ve added a reference tab as well, where I outline the minimum word count I’d like to achieve each month, and even broke that minimum to how many words per day I’d need to reach the monthly goal. I chose different minimums for each month, varying depending on what activities I know will be going on that month, outside of author-dom existence. Hopefully I can stick to this OCD recording better than I have my blog in recent years.

I will also attempt to save money to eventually roll out KINETICS #3 and #4 in the coming years (as self-pubbing costs money, and I really don’t have a huge fanbase. Actually, to be honest, might only have a handful of them. Wish I was more visible…).

And, as always, I will write. I write for my readers. I write for myself. And, I write for my future, as well as the futures of anyone that cares to grab digital and / or print copies of my books and stories. As an author, the best part about getting your stories out there is to have people take a leap of faith and join your characters on their journeys. And, even with the minimal readers I have now, I will always write stories. Because, maybe one day, I’ll look back and be happy that I took a leap of faith too, hoping people might enjoy my stories. And, hopefully, that dream might become a reality.

Here’s to an exciting and unpredictable year!

2019, bring it on!

Have Faith,

– C.

 

 

Post-Smoky and Reality Revelations

So, another Smoky retreat come and gone. A total of 37,000 words over 7 days filled with food, fun, and family. My week I spend with my writerly family out in Tennessee every February is my safe place, my home away from home, where I’m supported, encouraged, and motivated to get those words done. I laughed more this retreat than any other time in my life, and I am so grateful to have them in my life. Thanks for another great Smoky, guys. Is it 2019 yet? 😉

As far as productivity is concerned, I not only completed the first draft of KINETICS #3, but am almost halfway done with Book #4. Hoping to have Book 4 AND Book 5 done by year’s end. However, something hit me hard as I was traveling for countless hours back home

I. Am. In. Debt.

To be honest, I have known for years that I have a spending problem, and now that’s coming to bite me in the butt. I barely have enough to buy my proof copies of updated books, much less author copies, and especially not editing, covers, and all the amazing stuff that makes my published book PERFECT!! I wouldn’t give up my freelancers for the world, but as it stands right now, I may not be able to publish KINETICS #3 in the year 2018 at all. And that goes for a lot of the projects I’d hoped to get into the hands of y’all: my readers. Don’t get me wrong, CHAOS ACCOUNTS #5 will come out this Spring, along with the Accounts 1-5 box set in eBook AND Print, but that’s mainly because it won’t cost much money for those as of right now.

Plus, I’m nearing my Post-Smoky slump, so words are harder to find.

As a result, I have revamped my Patreon page!

I have tweaked reward tiers and my goals for pledge levels. I have added in something special for ALL my Patrons, starting at only $1 a month: I’m going to send snippets or chunks of books I hope to publish full-length someday. ALL my Patrons will get to read these chunks YEARS in advance! AWESOME, RIGHT?

If you want to check it out, [here] is the link to my Patreon Page. Browse around, because the larger reward tiers have some amazing perks on top of the years-ahead serials. 🙂

Maybe if I can get a few more Patrons, it’ll motivate me to keep going. To keep writing and doing what you love, even when back in the monotony of regular adulting. -_-

Hopefully I’ll see some of y’all get added to my Patron list. That’d be pretty sweet. J

Stay tuned, Vikans!

And, as always, Keep Faith!

 

(My Patreon Link: https://www.patreon.com/discoverywritin )

New Year’s 2018 – Looking to the Year ahead

Hey there, Vikans!

So, we’re about a day or so away from the end of 2017. Looking back at the events the rest of the world dealt with, from losing friends over politics, shootings, some people scared to even cross the street. We lost pop culture icons, some very tragically. So, in the public eye, 2017, in general, sucked.

I look back on my 2017, my personal 2017, and, on the surface and at first, seemed just as sucky and tragic. My regular day job is going through major changes that might have me out of work some time this year. My books, stories, and Patreon supporters had drastically, exponentially less impact on the reading community than I had hoped for. And, biggest hit of all, I lost JV on January 31st. There’s rarely been a day since she passed that I haven’t cried or at least gotten choked up. She was my coauthor, my co-conspirator, my Youtube vlogging partner, my best friend, and, post-mortem, my biggest source of inspiration.

Which leads into the next, and more important, part of this post. I have very strong GAD and depression, which means trying to find things to be happy about is very VERY difficult. However, at the end of every year, I organize my thoughts, reflecting on the year as a whole, both good things and bad. Here’s a bit of happy things I am grateful for:

  • Went to Smoky retreat again. It was only 3 weeks after JV’s passing, so I was in a dark spot. My fellow Somkies supported me lie I’ve rarely had before, and I cranked out 30+k on my first KINETICS novel.
  • I finished my Smoky project within a month (End of Feb to end of March), and sent it out for professional editing a week or two later.
  • I got to kick two bands off my bucket lists of concerts I wanted to see live before I die. AND got to take my sister. Sister bonding time rocks. 🙂
  • I wrote three short stories that became my CHAOS ACCOUNTS serial saga. Fourth one, “Account of Secrets” is due at the stroke of New Year 2018.
  • I wrote and completed both KINETICS #1 and #2, titled “Kinetic Rebirth” and “Kinetic Memory” respectively. First one went live in September/October 2017, and the second coming late Winter 2018
  • I started two new novel projects. One was KINETICS #3, title TDB. Second is the first in my CASTERS series, which essentially is recycling characters from my first series I wrote in high school and creating a story so drastically different than their original one.
  • I rebranded my short stories, that now all have bad-ass covers. 🙂
  • I linked all my series into a connected, interlocking universe (KNU), where each one relates to another, so my readers can find Easter eggs and connections and freak out as much as I was when making those very links.

And that’s just the major stuff. This year was my most productive writing year since I started my writing journey in 2007. … Wow, ten years? Hard to believe. But, that’ll be a reflection I tackle in my blog at a later date.

I’ve finished two full-length novel manuscripts, started 2 others, and cranked out 4 short stories. And that’s just the writing bit. I’ve come so far in my day job career, learned so many new things. Plus, the year has rounded out with rebranding both of my short story saga’s. I’ll provide links to everything I’ve published to date, including the New Year’s preorder link to “Account of Secrets“, my 4th CHAOS ACCOUNTS story.

Looking toward 2018, I’m determined to be just as productive as I was in 2017, maybe more so. In addition to CHAOS ACCOUNTS #4 on New Year’s Day, KINETIC MEMORY is due out in a month or so (still working on last minute proof checking), CHAOS ACCOUNTS  #5 is slated to release in Spring/Summer 2018, and I’ve got a plan to hopefully have another book released in Summer/Fall 2018 as well, but depends on editing and cover delays. This book will take us back to where my publishing journey started. Hint: it’s a world that I’ve already written stories for. It’s also the namesake for this website. 😉

Now, here’s the covers and links to all of my writing that I’ve published. Some are free permanently, some free only until the New Year (on Smashwords only), and some that cost a little bit.

eBooks Only:

TALES OF TERRARA VIKOS:

***ALL PERMAFREE EBOOKS!!!***

Cross of Faith (#1): [Amazon] / [Smashwords]
Trees In The Storm (#2): [Amazon] / [Smashwords]
Blood on a Broken Hand (#3): [Amazon] / [Smashwords]
Warped Destinies (#4): [Amazon] / [Smashwords]

 

THE CHAOS ACCOUNTS::

 

Account of Anxiety (#1): [Amazon] / [Smashwords]
Account of Unrest (#2): [Amazon] / [Smashwords]
Account of Friendship (#3): [Amazon] / [Smashwords]
Account of Secrets (#4): [Amazon] / [Smashwords] (Preorder until January 1st, 2018)
Account of Risks (#5): COMING SPRING 2018!!

 

Both eBook and Print::

Terrara Vikos-related:

The Vikan Quartet (Tales of Terrara Vikos collection, stories #1-4): [Kindle] / [Amazon Print] / [Smashwords]

The Protektor’s Reality: [Kindle] / [Amazon Print] / [Smashwords]

 

KINETICS:

 

**eBook only**: Kinetic Tragedy (a Kinetics prequel): [Instafreebie]
Kinetic Rebirth (#1): [Kindle] / [Amazon Print]
Kinetic Memory (#2): COMING JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2018!!

 

Until 2018, Vikans. Have a Happy New Year, and see you on the other side!
YOU GOT DIS. 😉

phil_modern_family1

COVER REVEAL: Kinetic Memory

As of now, in preparation for Book Two discussed below, Book One, KINETIC REBIRTH, is now discounted for Kindle! A cheaper deal to prepare you for the fast-paced adventure to Hyndon in Book Two. Read below for details on Book Two, and get Kindle version [here].

***********

Hey, Vikans! What’s up?

So, this with either be my second-to-last post of 2017, or third-to-last. But, as close as we are to the year’s end, this post has GREAT, long-awaited news.

TADA!!

 

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Yep, that’s right, we now have a tentative release for the second book in my [KINETICS] series, KINETIC MEMORY! If everything finishes as planned, expect an early January 2018 release. 🙂

Exciting, right?

Summary:::

“The Past is a complicate place…

After bringing Kiran and Jessi back from the dead, Jaden assumed things would get better for her. Even with worries lingering on the horizon, her immediate frustration was dealing with the twins’ deceased father and his arrogant demon who developed a strange fascination with her.

When their friend and companion Shalbriri falls ill, the annoying demon has a plan that might just save the Fifth Kingdom heir’s life. However, it requires returning to the twins’ birthplace, a town outside of the Five Kingdoms. With her sister-mother Dove in tow, Jaden, Lukas, and the twins all venture to the run-down village of Hyndon. The longer they stick around, the more Jaden realizes there’s more to the place than meets the eye, and those shadows offer no comfort.

The answers they seek lead them to the most unexpected place. There is truth hidden in their parents’ past… but it all leads to a man she wishes was merely an ancient myth.”

 

Curious about where Jaden and crew’s adventure takes them next yet?

Goodie!

But, this book is more of a dedication to JV than the previous one. See, JV and I met through mutual friends and a virtual forum-based roleplaying site said mutual friends created. For more details on that, check out me and JV’s first Coauthoring vlog on my Youtube channel [here]. Anyway, the name of the fictional town the RP was set in was a town called Hyndon. Without Hyndon’s roleplay, I never would’ve even known JV, much less become best friends. Actually, Kiran, Jessica’s twin brother in KINETICS, and his parents originated from this roleplaying adventure.

Book Two is the biggest ode I could muster to honor the reason I got to be in JV’s bight, happy, too-short life, as 2/3 of the book take place in my twisted version of Hyndon. I took some of our friends’ characters as well, but changed their names and tweaked their details a bit per the friend’s request. For those of our friends that shared this adventure in college, there are a LOT of references to our adventures, along with a twist to the biggest adventure we all participated in.

(*cough*smokedragon*coughcough*)

Anyway, this book was a great trip down Memory lane for me (pun intended), as it involves Jaden and crew trying to solve the mysteries of their parents’ origins in the small, charred town of Hyndon.

Part Two to this blog post is an announcement. I am in the process of rebranding my covers for TALES OF [TERRARA VIKOS] and [THE CHAOS ACCOUNTS]. I realized a while ago that the covers I had made, both first round and second, don’t convey YA Fantasy like they should to draw in readers. So, I am enlisting a few helpers, and hopefully will have all eight of those covers done by year’s end.

Here’s a sneak peek. This is my new cover for ACCOUNT OF ANXIETY, Chaos Accounts #1:

 

C_McDonnell

 

So, a lot to look forward to in the New Year! I’ll hopefully have one more, year round-up post closer to the 31st, so stay tuned.

Keep Faith, Vikans.

And, as always, “Assume Nothing.”

Been a While, Vikans

WOW, been a while, Vikans!

Lots been happening lately, both in personal and professional life. With things shifting around at day job, prepping Book #2, and trying to catch back up on NaNoWriMo targets, I am wiped.

Okay, I’ll touch on some of that a bit more.

For those of you unaware, November is NaNoWriMo, or National Novel Writing Month. It’s a month-long challenge to writers and authors of all types, all chasing after the coveted 50,000 word mark in the thirty days of November. Some start brand new projects, others work on a previously-started WiP, but only count new words (the latter is me). Essentially, we have 30 days to write a brand new 50,000 words on a project. To break it down, that’s approximately 1,667 words a day. And, when you have a day job, it can be hard to find time for words. Thank God for notebooks and wireless Bluetooth headsets. As of today, I’ve fallen a bit behind. I’m at just over 12k as of last night, and yesterday’s goal was over 13k. By tonight, the goal is a solid 15k. I might not reach it, but I’m gonna try to get there. If not, I’ll have the weekend to play catch-up, and maybe created that ‘buffer’ I wanted to make last weekend.

My project?

KINETCS, Book 3.

I know what you’re thinking, so give me a second, alright.

You’re thinking: “Book 3? What happened to Book 2?”

Well, as I hinted above, there is some progress on Book #2 in my KINETICS series. You hear this first here on my blog, as I probably won’t announce on my newsletter list until I get more final products. I got my edits back a little while ago, completely my edits based on her comments, and it is now in process of proofreading. Then, in December, I will hopefully be getting a cover created by the ever-AMAZING Designed By Starla. Starla did my covers for KINETIC REBIRTH, KINETIC TRAGEDY prequel short on Instafreebie, and even as far back as THE PRTOEKTOR’S REALITY. Always amazing, always professional, and always fun to know and talk and coordinate with. To other aspiring authors out there, check her out if you want a cover done. Because she will take your hazy ideas and make it into a cover-come-true.

So, based on timing for cover, layouts, and proofreading, we’re looking at an early 2018 release. January sometime, if everything in life flows like it should.

JANUARY, GUYS.

OMG.

Keep in mind, Book #1 (KINETIC REBIRTH) just released earlier this fall (2017). To be honest, I promoted my buns off, and still didn’t do as well as I’d hoped, not gonna lie. It was better than THE PROTEKTOR’S REALITY’s release back in 2014, and I’m glad I put that series on hold for a while. But, even though I’ve watched my eBook’s ranking fluctuate (a sign people in the Kindle Unlimited subscription program are downloading it), haven’t have more than two people read it from KU, one an old peer at college, who finished it (If that person is reading this, THANK YOU!!), and another unknown reader on KU who’s only read about a third of it so far. I haven’t made any eBook sales since three days after digital release, and have yet to make any print book sales in the month of November. My print sales in October were pretty depressing too. But, as I said above, the launch was more successful internet-wise than TPR, just not as many hand-to-hand sales with family and old friends who wanted signed copies.

So, here’s what I’m going to do. To anyone reading this (and come this far down, I applaud you dedicated readers), comment below what your favorite paranormal ability and/or superpower is, and why. I will pick a favorite after two weeks from this blog posting (around 11/23/17, which is Thanksgiving for my fellow Americans), and I will connect with that winner to send them a signed copy of KINETIC REBIRTH, along with a printed booklet for KINETIC TRAGEDY, a story that is currently only available as an Instafreebie short, and is in print NOWHERE ELSE. You’ve got two weeks to comment, and get creative. Jokes and humor around topic will get brownie points toward picking the winner as well.

Well, hopefully I can pick up my weekly blogging routine again.

 

This is my goal schedule for the next 3 weeks of NaNo:

Weekdays – Day Job, notebook writing, lunch with notebook writing, travel 30 mins home, transcribing with music blasting, extra writing to reach goal, dinner, possible proofreading, sleep

 

Weekends:

Before finished proofreading – Wake up as early as my brain will function (probably between 7-9 AM), write, caffeine, video editing, writing, video editing, writing, break for lunch w/ Boyfriend, write, possible proofreading, free time, writing, dinner, more possible proofreading, sleep

Post-Proofreading – Wake up as early as my brain will function (probably between 7-9 AM), write, caffeine, video editing, writing, video editing, writing, break for lunch w/ Boyfriend, write, layout, free time, writing, dinner, more layout, sleep

 

Wish me luck, Vikans. Hopefully more news and advice next week!

Keep Faith, and Assume Nothing.

Wild New Wed (2017-08-30) – Coping and Updates

I… I just can’t, right now.

This week is only halfway over, but my heart aches. The thoughts of disbelief still swirl in my head, but the unfortunate truth is that she’s gone, and I can’t fix that.

If this is your first venture into my slice of the internet called Terrara Vikos, go through some of my previous posts to catch up, like [this one] or maybe [this one]. The long story short: my best friend, my co-author, and my co-Youtube vlogger JV died unexpectedly in a car crash on January 31,2017. She was my age, low 20s, and she and her husband of just over a year were expecting a child.

A child that was due tomorrow.

August 31st, 2017.

Exactly seven months after her death.

You know, the last seven months without her have been extremely difficult. I received the same message every weekday night, “Heading Home Now”, which was my cue to call her and talk with her during her 45-50 minute drive home.  It’s hard to wrap my mind around the fact that it’s been seven months since I got one of those messages. I can still hear her voice, her laugh, her hyperactive shouts of joy. She had a bright future ahead of her, one that was destroyed in a second because someone ran a red light and T-boned her.

You know, I’d been telling her for years that someday she’d make a great mother. She just had that personality and temperament that would have raised an amazingly kind child.

If you have been reading my blog posts and are up-to-date, you would know that I’m releasing my first book in my KINETICS series, titled KINETIC REBIRTH. If you didn’t know that, check out my cover reveal post [here]. If you did, and you read on a Kindle, click [here] to preorder your eBook copy. The eBook releases September 19th, a full month before the Print version goes live on October 19th.

KineticRebirth_promo

This series is special to me, as every character was one that JV and I came up with to roleplay together since 2011. Except one, which is JV herself. I have written her as accurate to the real JV as I could. She is also in my prequel short for the series, available on Instafreebie only [here]. KineticTragedycoverThis series is my ultimate dedication to her, and the friendship with her I so cherished.

If you are a print reader, and want a reminder closer to the release date and/or on the release date, sign up for my newsletter [here].

Also, you can LIKE me on FB [here] to stay up-to-date on all my doings: https://www.facebook.com/cmcdonnellauthor/

Also, some surprising news.

I’ve picked The Chaos Accounts up again!

Yep, working on Account #4 right now, alongside working on KINETICS #2 as well. If you haven’t read my CHAOS ACCOUNTS series, click [here] to be taken to my page with links to the first three stories, which will be updated with each subsequent release.

Anyway, guys, as always, Keep Faith.

And, also…

“Assume nothing.”

#KineticsReference 🙂

KINETIC REBIRTH Cover Reveal!!!

Here you guys go; today as promised! Here’s the cover to KINETIC REBIRTH::

KineticRebirth_promo

AWESOME, RIGHT! I owe this beautifully perfect cover, and the matching one for the KINETIC TRAGEDY prequel eBook short, to Designed By Starla. She is always a joy to work with, and it’s almost like she can read your mind sometimes!

Alright, so, I know I promised a surprise along with this cover reveal. Here it is::

[Kindle Preorder]

Yep, you read the hyperlinked-text correctly! KINETIC REBIRTH is now available as an eBook preorder on Amazon! And, if you venture over to that page, you’ll notice the release date says “September 19th, 2017”. No, that’s not a typo. Yes, I am serious. The Kindle version of this, the first book in my KINETICS series, will release a month before the print. Print copies still won’t be available until October 19th, as I have advertised before, as that day is so important for my life and my friendship with JV.

20883020_10212703497198936_6822857052902535667_nSpeaking of which, a few hours ago, my wonderful Boyfriend drove me 30 minutes to the cemetery to visit JV. This will have been the first time I’d been to see her since the day she was buried there. We bought some yellow flowers, as they are the symbol of life-long friendship. As it rained last night, we brought a trash bag to lay under my towel, so I could sit and talk to her, like old times. Boyfriend even just wandered around the cemetery to give me and JV some alone time. I played some new Peter Hollens music for her, showed her my new re-branded covers, and introduced her to JV Jr. I told her that I would give up anything, even my skill and ability to write stories – my passion and life – if it meant I could bring her back. I kinda felt her wanting to slap me for that, because she knows how important my writing is to me, and would never want me to give that up. L20915445_10212703496518919_842195955544002829_n.jpgots of tears were shed, but I felt her right there with me. When I headed to the car, Boyfriend (he told me this later) went to her resting place, put a hand on the stone, and said to her, “I know I’m not as great a listener as you are, but I promise I’ll take care of Christine for you. She’ll be looked after, I promise.” Then, he followed me to the car, hugged me, and I proceeded to sob like a baby. I had never felt so close to JV before, but it finally hit me that she wasn’t coming back.

This new series, this new universe of KINETICS and magic, has made me feel so much closer to JV. I’ve gotten a handful of compliments from my select ARC readers, some of them who knew JV, and said she was the best character, and the ones that knew her said my portrayal of her was spot on and perfect. Every compliment I get on JV’s character brings me closer to tears of happiness. Every. Single. Time.

If you are even remotely interested in how special JV was to me and everyone she interacted with, go preorder a digital copy of KINETIC REBIRTH, and, in the meantime, head on over to Instafreebie for the short eBook prequel story (KINETIC TRAGEDY) to tide you over until the Kindle release in September.

If you are a physical copy kind of person, follow me on Twitter, or Like my Author Page on FB, so you can see my posts and be reminded when the print book comes out. Trust me, I know a lot can happen in two months, and I wouldn’t want you to forget about this ultimate dedication to my best friend.

I know she’s still near. I can feel her.

And, the only thing I can say to her, is summed up perfectly in my last words at her grave site today:

“Jessi, you were my best friend, my coauthor, pretty much a sister to me. You made me a better friend, a better writer, a better person. I am so lucky you were a part of my life, no matter how few years our friendship was. I am so grateful God put you in my life, and I will make sure your energy, your personality, your passion, and your life will remain immortal within the pages of my books. And, for everything you’ve done for me, I cannot explain in few enough words. So, simply put, Thank you, Jess. For everything.”

Keep Faith, everyone. And keep love in your hearts, because that is the sole thing that beats despair. Love will always win.