Box Set-Read non-stop

What do you feel like when you grab book 1 of a series and have to wait for the next one?

I”m usually sad because I personally have no–let me see what does my husband call it? Oh yeah, lack of impulse control and patience. I don’t want to wait I want it now like a 2 year old.

I don’t throw tantrums I promise. I just want it and don’t want to wait.

Here’s some good news! All of these books are on sale and they are series! Yes! Books 1-3 or sometimes more are packaged together for those of you like me that really wants to know what happens in the next story!

These are all Christian Romance! I’m super excited to pick up some I haven’t read. My set A Time to Love is also in the $2.99 sale. Usually book one is $2.99. It’s a great deal! Go shop!

How big are satisfying rewards?

How big do rewards need to be to give you satisfaction?

Do you ever finish a project that takes forever and think, now what?

That’s me.

A Bride’s Journey to the Colorado Territory is done… at least the first round of edits are finished. There are many more times to go through it. I had a big plan for when the book was ready to purchase and that looks like it will be on July 30th. At this time, I’m not sure if my plan will be possible with traveling or finances.

I have been thinking it was hard to get to the end of that book. I was working part time at the preschool and then being at home has taken an emotional toll I didn’t expect. After all, I am an introvert and love being home. That took me by surprise, and I had to adjust. Then an extended family member came down with Covid-19 and was on a ventilator for a long time and didn’t make it.

Big rewards didn’t seem as fulfilling any more.  

So what’s a writer to do?

Do it anyway.

First, let me say that small celebrations when you complete a difficult task are important. The thing is they don’t have to be giant expensive rewards. One thing I have always known but have come to understand well these past few months is the importance of what I have.

Sure, I’d like a new laptop. That would be an amazing reward, or maybe a keyboard that doesn’t stick on the letter zzzzzzz—even though I haven’t pushed it. Or someone to clean my house—like deep clean it, outside and inside windows, and baseboards that I never seem to get to.

I took a step back and thought about the small things I could reward myself with that I could use and enjoy. A teacher appreciation gift I received contained an envelope of zinnia seeds. I love flowers! All I needed was a warm day to plant them and we had frost last week.

Today I planted them! I can’t wait to see them grow!

The other thing I’ve been wanting for quite some time but didn’t get was a set of measuring spoons with the ‘donk’ spoon. That’s 1/32! I’ve been using pure stevia instead of sugar for a long time. It came from Trim Healthy Mama with a tiny plastic spoon. The handle broke, and I’ve kept on using it. I decided it was time for a reward. I ordered the spoons. They were under $10.

But why would you care what I choose to reward myself with or that I did?

Because I want you to do the same.

You might be homeschooling like my daughter-in-law who is doing an amazing job even though it’s not what she loves. She is a numbers person and an engineer. Every Friday she should honor her work, even if it is with a book and a soak in her tub. I don’t know if she does that, but she should.

Maybe you started a garden and you have no idea what you are doing, but you did it anyway. Reward yourself! Get a glass of tea and sit outside and admire the beautiful work you did.

Or perhaps you great at sewing and now you’re making masks. Not something you love, but you are putting your skills to work. Reward yourself! Spend some time sewing something you love—if your shoulders and back can take it! I have a friend who has made over 85 masks in one week. I hope she does something to make her smile.

Not every reward has to cost a lot of money. Think about it. What can you do for yourself that would give you a feeling of satisfaction? An ice cream cone? That’s my husband’s favorite reward. A bike ride? A walk in the park? What about phoning a friend?

Tell me your ideas in the comments. We can all benefit from growing our reward list along with our to-do lists. Because life is difficult and no one else can pat us on the back right now for a job well done.

Possible new Christian book for you in all genres.

This one is great if you have Kindle Unlimited as the books listed are all available with the KU subscription.

https://books.bookfunnel.com/christianfictioninku/rne006n9jo

Let the Children Be Little

Can your appearance make someone’s day better?

I know! Don’t judge a person by the way they look has been my motto since my mother instilled it in me at a very young age. It was traumatic, please don’t ask me to share that horrifying memory…but to be fair I was  3 and curious about someone’s size.

Which brings me to the reason for the post. We are all wearing masks of some kind in public now. Some of you have been wearing them much longer than we have in the US so you’ve probably figured this stuff out.

We are new at this game. I’m seeing some fun possibilities here—saving money on lipstick and liner, who cares about those drooping jowls, or those marionette lines on the side of the face? And in the winter, how nice it will be not to have a frozen face before I get inside a store.it

While that is a positive there is a negative side.

I’ve seen some creative masks (mostly on Facebook because I don’t get out much) and many of them are scary—monster faces and skeletons. Right now, it’s not a big deal. Most parents are keeping their small children home.

Don’t do this please.

This week many of the states are relaxing some of the stay-at-home mandates. Parents will be taking their children out in public. Older children are used to video games and tv shows that have scary parts.

A small child will not know what to do with those feelings because none of us—parents, grandparents, teachers had the experience to teach them about the safety of masks. Consider the fact that in October in the US, we have fire safety week to teach the little ones not to be afraid of firefighters, fire alarms, and the sounds the fire trucks make.

Small children are always trying to make sense of what is happening around them. The 2’s, 3’s, and 4-year-olds have been in preschool or home where they have learned to read and understand facial cues and expressions. The first few times they go to a public place there will be no normal faces. Nothing will look the same to them as before.

In the preschool where I work, the children are asked to look at another child’s face after a toy is taken from them, someone knocks over a block tower or is hurt. This is how they learn what facial expressions mean. (We do make sure the child who is wronged is first asked if they are okay to validate their feelings of being hurt or wronged.)

Remember how you felt the first few times you went to the store with a mask and the shelves were empty of toilet paper? Unsettling, wasn’t it? For me, my anxiety rose to a level I have never experienced and I’m still fighting against it.

When they go into a family-friendly environment in the next few months what will they see on your face?

You have a choice to make them a little more comfortable or to increase their confusion and fear. I hope you choose to make them comfortable because there is going to be a lot of adults with issues when this is over. If we can let’s protect the children from having them too.

Too much winter

It’s the time of year when the lack of sunshine starts to bother me. I long for the days of heat and sun, the more the better.

I’m combating the blues with reading and looking back on photos from the summer. My daughter-in-law has made that easier. She is a talented photographer and has started a blog featuring photos of places in the Midwest. http://www.midwestnomads.com 

Now I can look back at the places we’ve been because they have been gracious enough to take us with them. We didn’t make it to Utah with them this time but I love traveling through the Arches National park through the photos on her blog. Here’s one of her photographs

Look at that view! And the sun and all the colors! It does my creative soul good.

When the weather is gloomy I read a lot. Then I discovered one of my books, A Time to Heal is on sale now through the end of February. Instead of $3.99 it’s $2.99. Too bad I know how it ends. But maybe you haven’t read it? 🙂

Planning for 2020

Planning is not my favorite word but I am learning to like it a lot. Turns out I didn’t have the right planner for the work that I do.

Looking back at 2019 I realized as many of us do that the year sailed by too fast. Many of the things I wanted to do didn’t happen, like writing book 2 a Bride’s Will.
Now by using this planner I have a solid plan on how to get it done and possibly a second book.

I took the photo of both planners with my postage scale to remind me that every activity I choose has weight. I have to decide if that ‘weight’ is right for me or will it pull me to the ground and keep me there?

Blocking out the times I know it will be impossible for me to work on my writing like working at the preschool allows me to see what white space is left. Once that’s done I can then fill them with what’s the next important thing on my list.

This planner doesn’t just give you pages to fill out there are quotes and instructions on how to make it work for you.

This year I’m using the coil-bound version. Last year I bought the bound version and decided before I even opened it I didn’t need to plan. So wrong. Bad choice or as my grandkids say RED CHOICE!

If you aren’t a writer, this is probably not the planner for you but find one that does work. Don’t let 2020 disappear without you accomplishing your dreams.

Scroll down for an inside video peek of my planner from The Write Services.

If you’d like to order the planner you can find it here.
Lulu

Amazon

Etsy (PDF) if you like to print and organize your way

Planning 2020 as an Author

Writing a book is a lot of fun for me and maybe for you too. But planning out how to write, market, keep track of finances and oh yes, just life has always been a huge problem for me.

For 2020 I’ve decided to change up how I do things. Instead of letting things happen to me I was going to show up prepared.

This planner may not be for you if you aren’t an author but you are alive so planning is still a good thing. 🙂

One of the features I love about this planner from Audrey Hughey is its size. The pages are big enough to write what I need to remember. If you are planning your year make sure the one you choose has writing space, not just pretty pictures.

I’ve tried bullet journals, calendars, online calenders–I do still put critical personal and business dates in my online calendar so I have it with me at all times.

This year I’m using The 2020 Author planner because there isn’t another one like it that has a place for everything I need to do in my business. It was put together by an author for an author.

Have you ever decided to make a social media calendar and then think I should do this every month but wait I have to recreate that table? No need with this planner there is one for every month.

Here are some of the features:

  • Track daily and weekly word counts– yes, please
  • Map out writing and publishing plans for an entire year–not as scary as it sounds
  • Manage and track monthly expenses–you know you need to do it
  • Develop an editing checklist –ugh did I use the word so that many times?
  • Plan social media marketing, book promotions, and advertising–when was the last time I applied for BookBub? Posted a photo of one of my books?
  • Sketch out ideas for author newsletter and track open and click-through rates– What should I write this month to my newsletter?
  • Have space and flexibility to plan your days and weeks according to your own unique lifestyle and schedule.–Self-care? Yes, you need to schedule it or you won’t do it.

Where can you get one of these? Glad you asked because it means you’re one step closer toward an amazing year as an author.

LuLu (coil-bound) – typewriter cover

LuLu (coil-bound) – pens and watch cover This one is my favorite!

Amazon (perfect-bound)

Etsy (PDF):

Look at all that space!

Thankful for Readers OH MY

It’s so wonderful to wake up and discover the book you have listed for a free prom has done well. A group of Christian authors who love their fans decided to give back this holiday.

We put many of our books at free and 99 cents. And you all have blessed us with picking them up.

Here is the link to find out what is available. CLICK HERE

Here were my rankings this morning. It made me tear up! By the time you read this, I’m sure they will have dropped. Things happen fast on Amazon.

Thank you readers!

Fall Reading

The calendar has flipped and it’s fall even though it doesn’t feel anything like that where I live. But I know the cooler weather is coming and soon that will fade and winter will be here.

I’ve partnered with other authors for a sale on books to fill your e-readers for such a time. Reading, hot drinks and comfy blankets are my favorite way to spend my evenings. I’m thinking you might feel the same?

You can find two of my books in this sale A Time to Bake and A Bride’s Dilemma. https://books.bookfunnel.com/fallforfiction/70cjhc109f Head on over and see what grabs your interest.

It’s no longer mine

It’s true once I see a book published it no longer belongs to me or rather my mind. It belongs to the reader.

Maybe that’s the true meaning of release day, not just that a book is for sale but that it is out there ready to be discovered by a reader.

Maybe that reader is already reading the series and can’t wait to get into the next book. Or maybe it’s a new reader just discovering my work.

Either way, it’s no longer mine. Today A Time to Heal belongs to you the reader.

THE BIGGEST DISASTER IN HER LIFE PROTECTS HER HEART FROM LOVE

Do you like cats or dogs?

Today A Time to Dance is on a Kindle Countdown! Starting at 99 cents!

But what does that have to do with liking a cat or a dog?

This book has both! A cat and a chocolate lab! Add that to romance and a bit of mystery.

I have a cat, we used to have four. Here’s a photo of Oliver. He rules the house.

And my son has a dog so I get my dog fix since we don’t have one right now. His name is Patton.

phot by Angela Murphy

Here’s the link to a Time to Dance https://readerlinks.com/l/409453

Tell me do you like cats or dogs the best or do you have a different kind of pet?