Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year

Another year finished and a new one to look forward to! 2013 was a pretty good year for me, I have to say. Lots of great things happened and I'm looking forward to 2014 being even better!

First, of course, our launch of Fable. What an exciting event for us! After working for over 4 years this was a major accomplishment. Next, our wonderful launch party. We had such a great time and the support for us was over the top!

Right after that fun filled day, our family got together in Buena Vista and rented a 3 bedroom cabin up there. We had a blast and the hot springs water was fantastic! During this weekend excursion we also said good-bye to our father, John L. Wright. We spread his ashes along a mountain spring off Cottonwood pass. 

Our dad loved Colorado and he was a free spirited person. I hope he would have liked our send off and appreciated becoming part of nature. We miss him terribly.

After that, we jumped in with both feet and managed to get Fated published before the end of the year. Even though I wanted it to be out by November, I was happy that we at least made it possible. So far it has been a slow launch but our party is coming up in the next few weeks and we look forward to that!

One of the events that came in the middle of our writing vigorously was the marriage of Toni and Scotte's daughter, and my niece, Sonia. She married a great guy, Paul! We love him and are glad he's officially one of the family!

Lots of great events happened this last year! I look forward now to 2014 being even better.

Hopefully the sales for Fated will pick up and now we are working on Lore the second book in The Lorn Prophecy series. My hope is we can finish it by the end of the year, but we will see, lots to write.

We plan to launch our web-site this new year, too. I'm looking forward to seeing the paintings Mikey will do for our cover page and any extras! 

And my daughter will tie the knot this year. She is getting married to an awesome guy, too! Jon is a wonderful asset to this crazy family and he loves my daughter and grandkids with all his heart. 

So you see we have plenty to look forward to!

I hope all of you had a great 2013 and that your 2014 is even better! I would love to know what the highlights of this last year was for you! Leave me a comment and fill me in! Don't forget to let me know your New Years Resolutions and plans for the coming year!

Have a wonderful time tonight and stay safe!

Love, Lisa

Friday, December 20, 2013

It's Just A Fantasy

This time of year brings out magical hopes for a lot of people. Christmas is a fantasy for some. Santa Claus and his world at the north pole is a fantasy fiction story. 

I find it amazing how the world, together, have created this wonderful fable of a jolly fat elf, who makes toys all year long with the help of his little elves and on Christmas eve he loads them up on his red sleigh, pulled by flying reindeer, to all the boys and girls. Once he arrives he magically touches the side of his nose and down the chimney he goes. He can do this all in one night and enjoy milk and cookies from all the grateful children. 

Now if that isn't a fantasy fiction story I don't know what one is.

Whether your favorite is stories of dragons flying through the sky, with riders who fight against the evil doers, or elves who live in the trees and go on epic journeys to fulfill a quest to save the kingdom, fantasy can take you away to a world where the problems aren't the usual mundane or even the serious situations like not having a job, or a place to call home.

Fantasy is usually a favorite of most for new worlds. I'm sure you like The Lord of the Rings, or Harry Potter, maybe even The Game of Thrones, but which ever it is, or maybe all the above, these magical worlds can give you a wonderful escape.

So the next time you pick up a Fantasy fiction novel, and you think this is not what I usually read, stop and remind yourself of the epic worlds you love to go see at the movies and how much more fulfilling they would be in the book. 

Reading the stories first adds to the movies and you'll find the books are better. 

I think if you gave our series, The Lorn Prophecy, a chance, you will love the story as well and look forward to the next book coming out. 

Toni and I would love for the world of the Djen to become a household name just like the stories I mentioned. I do believe you will fall in love with the magical world we've created and the characters. 

I hope all of you have a magical Christmas. I believe the lights, dressed up tree, yummy cookies with sprinkles and candy, and delicious meals shared with your family and friends, will bring out the joy and magic in you. 

Although Christmas is the time of year that we celebrate Jesus' birth, the sentiment is the same. It's about love, family time, sharing, and giving. It is a reminder of a man who gave to us the love and kindness of himself and his father. We learned how taking care of each other is what it's all about.

So even if you aren't religious, or even Christian per-say, this time of year is a magical, Fantasy, time of year!

Merry Christmas everyone!

I won't be posting next week. I need to relax and enjoy my family and friends. See you back here On December 31st. And don't forget to mark your calendar for January 18th and come celebrate with us our new release of Fated - Book 1 of The Djenrye Chronicles!

Love, Lisa

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

The Holiday's

Life is slowly getting back to normal now for me. Our mom is doing much better and I managed to take her to her house yesterday to collect some things she would need for the next week and a half. 

Christmas is getting worked out, too. Rick and I are going to the Hot Springs in Idaho Springs over night on Christmas eve and spending a much needed and relaxing night in the mountains. 

Fated is now on Amazon and Goodreads I'm happy to report and we have had one sale so far. Hey, one's better than none! I am looking forward to our launch party in January! I will post pictures. 

I'm starting to calm down and know that it's okay that we won't be here Christmas eve and can enjoy the holiday quietly together. The "Bah Humbug" is now leaving me!

I am also happy to report that I've been asked to be a guest on Alon Shalev's blog. I've sent him my article and picture of Fable and look forward to the post. I will let you know when it is and maybe you'll stop by and leave a comment and look over his fantasy fiction series. I love his books! If you don't know who he is, he is the author of The Accidental Activist. Maybe you've heard of it.

Things are coming together and even though I'm still playing catch up from last week I'm sure this holiday will be a nice one. I will get to have my grandkids the night after Christmas and will enjoy watching them open their gifts from us and then cuddle up and watch a Christmas movie together. 

Life is good!

Leave me a comment and let me know how your holiday is turning out and maybe even some traditions you and your family have. Don't forget I live vicariously through you since I'm usually in my office on the computer. Sounds exciting huh?!

Have a wonderful week all and I look forward to any of your comments! 

Love, Lisa

Friday, December 13, 2013

Christmas Overwhelm

Well, hear we are, almost Christmas and I haven't bought any gifts yet. It seems like I have no time any more. My mother had surgery last week and is now staying with me and believe me when I say this, she loves being waited on! 

I was getting ready to take my son, Travis, to the grocery store this morning and asked her if she wanted breakfast now or could wait until I got back. Right in the middle of putting on my coat she decides I need to make her oatmeal now. Well, after cleaning up the mess and getting half her original bowl to her, (the other half boiled out into the microwave) I managed to get out the door.

I think it's going to be a long two weeks! 

Normally I don't mind, but I am so far behind on everything that I don't know when I will catch up. I have threatened my husband to make him go Christmas shopping tonight. I have very little time to do it over the weekend. 

We have a book signing at Barnes and Noble on Saturday and Sunday I have my class. My poor husband has been working 6 day weeks and on Sunday he's too tired to drag to the mall. So, I guess we have to go tonight.

I know this blog post is later than I usually post, but I haven't been able to sit down until now, sorry about that. I also have two people's chapters I need to critique and somewhere in there I need to write myself. I do have to clean around here though. My house is getting cluttered with mom's stuff everywhere.

I'm trying hard not to be all "HumBug" but I feel it coming on. I need some cheering up and a maid wouldn't hurt!

Next week is getting busy, too. My calendar is filling up. We decided this year we are going to do something nice for ourselves. We are going to the mountains over night on Christmas eve. I am so looking forward to soaking in the mineral springs water and we have a jacuzzi in our room. Plus with our package deal, we get our choice of 5 different restaurants for dinner. 

Not bad, and we get to see each other without one of us busy doing something else. I know we need it, badly!

Well, I hope all of you have a wonderful weekend. Don't forget to drop me a line. Oh before I forget, Fated is now out on Amazon. Just the paperback, the ebook is coming! I will leave you with the link and hope you decide to give it as a gift! Fated

Thanks for all you do to support us in our writing endeavors and I will see you next week!

Love, Lisa

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Ah...Christmas Time

Wow! It has been a crazy week and It's only Wednesday, whew, I hope it calms down now! Yes, I know this was supposed to be posted yesterday but I will admit I completely forgot and now I'm forced to catch up with my life.

Between my mother having surgery on Monday, finding out she will be staying with us for two weeks, trying to get the book uploaded, (with all fixes in place) onto Amazon and books ordered, it has been busy. Oh, and I almost forgot, our furnace went out and the HVAC guy was here until 1:00 a.m. fixing it Monday night.

When you find out you have a loved one staying at your home after surgery you want to clean your house, go to their house and gather what they need, including the pets, (Sunny boy will be glad to see his mom!) and set up a room for them. Oh, not to mention, go to the store and buy what they need or prefer. 

My mom still doesn't know if they will allow her to leave today so we are keeping our fingers crossed that all her vitals are now back to normal. She's pretty tough though and I'm sure she will be glad to be out of there.

The book is now loaded to Createspace with 99% of fixes. We combed the book and cover and hope that the majority was caught. We have had to cancel our launch date and rescheduled for the 18th of January. It really bummed us out but there is nothing we can do about it. They cannot get us the order in time for the party. Kind of pointless to have a book signing party without books!

My poor sister, who had surgery right before Thanksgiving, has been over each night, too, trying to get this book ready for publishing. She has been healing, which we all know can be painful, and then add the stress of publishing and Mom, and her life's little woes, can make it a harder process. But she takes after our mom and is hanging in there.

I've cancelled my dentist appointment 3 times now, (they are probably getting a little mad) but that's life. At least I will be able to keep my doctor appointment this morning before I head to the hospital. 

Well anyway, things will get back to normal, I hope. These next few days will still be a little crazy, but we will get though it. I am dragging my husband to go Christmas shopping Friday night. He will probably be taking little naps in between stores knowing him, but we get our sleep when we can!

So as you can see, life's little mishaps have been busy within this household. We have a spare room for "Murphy" who stays with us quite often, but I think it's time to kick him out! (You know, Murphy's law) It's a family inside joke.

I hope your start to December is better for you. Be sure to drop me a comment and let me know your hectic holiday time. I'll be sure to nod my head and give you my sympathies as we muddle through yet another December!

Take care all! See you back here on Friday!

Love, Lisa

Friday, December 6, 2013

Muses Of The Holiday Season

Christmas is almost upon us and I'm trying to do good this year and get everything done on time. I did get my house decorated and my Christmas cards written. Amazing feat for me, let me tell you, but with my sister still recovering from her surgery, and the cold weather we are having, I am forced inside and are getting caught up.

Next, is the cookies and the shopping. We are starting our shopping tomorrow afternoon. I actually don't like shopping that much. I would rather do it on line, but I seem to always get the packages and are none too pleased with what I ordered. So, off to the mall. 

In between all of this I need to write, which I haven't been doing much lately, I must confess. I will try to change that today and work on Lore and maybe the outline. For some reason, I can't get into it without my sister here with me. I have no idea why.

We are sending the first chapter (prologue) to our critique partners today.

That makes it official. We are starting Lore! I do miss my sister though and wish she was healed and ready for writing. It has been a tough year.

On a good note, I should receive the proof for Fated in the mail today and maybe we can get the books ordered this weekend. I'm looking forward to seeing it in print and holding it in my hot little hands!

Hopefully by this time next week, Fated will be on Amazon and available for purchase! I'm very excited about that! If you are in the Denver area you should come out to our launch party on December 20th at 6:30 at Bean Fosters in Golden. It would be great to see you!

Back to the task at hand, Christmas. Are you getting everything done for your holiday celebration? Or are you behind since Thanksgiving was late and we lost a week?

Leave me a comment and share your holiday blues, or thoughts with me. I would love to know your traditions and if you have any great cookie recipes, pass them on. I'm always looking for new ideas!

In the mean time, have a great weekend. For me, it will be a celebrated one since my birthday is Sunday. My daughter has arranged for the family to get together and have brunch at a local restaurant, so that should be fun!

Love, Lisa

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Uploading A Book On Createspace

Good day everyone! I hope you had a wonderful weekend. Did you get a lot of shopping done? I didn't buy one gift, I was too busy getting Fated ready for publishing and our launch party set up for December 20th. I did give a writing class on Sunday, too. 

Before I get into how to upload a book for print on Createspace, I thought I would announce to two winners of Fable and Fated, as soon as I get Fated that is. Susan Uttendorfsky and Johnny Padilla are our winners! I need your addresses so I will send you both an email requesting them! Congratulations and I hope you enjoy the books!

I do have one more contest on Goodreads going so if you haven't had a chance to go on there and sign up, you have until Saturday. The contest ends on my birthday, December 8th.

Well, I had a request to post information on how to ready your book and download it to Createspace for distribution. This task is not as bad as it seems but there are a lot of steps to making sure your book is up to snuff and will look great for the reader.

First things first. If you want your book to look like a traditionally published book, go grab one off your shelf and see how they set it up.

You'll notice that the first page is blank, and the back as well. Then the next is just the name of your book, and the back blank, then the next the title and you name, and the publishers name on the bottom. (this is based on most, not all) On the back of that one, will be your copyright info and library of congress number. Also your barcode number. Next page is usually your acknowledgements, and then dedication, not necessarily in that order. You could do the dedication first. 

You don't need a chapter list unless your chapters are named, instead of numbered. If you have a map, that would be next. All of these, except for the copyright page, should be on the right. People look to the right of a book first.

Next, the beginning of each chapter should start about ten tabs down. After that, you need a header for each page except for the first page in the chapter. Leave that blank. Your name should be at the top of the left hand pages and the name of your book on the right. Then you set up your lines for 1.2 to 1.5 apart. 

The next step is adjusting the text to justify. You want all of your pages square. No long sentences and short ones. Then at the back of the book, you would add your dictionary, if you have one, or glossary. And last but not least, your "About the Author" page. Your page numbers are typically on the bottom middle, but we found they work better on the top right hand corner for the right page, and left hand corner for the left page. 

That is the inside of your book. The outside, your cover, is usually set up by the artist, in our case, Mikey. If your doing the cover yourself, then you need to have the dimensions correct for the size of the book and spine. Most books are 6 by 9 now. You want to pick the cream colored pages for the inside, too. It looks nicer than the black and white.

In createspace they give you the correct math dimensions to figure out your spine. The back needs your blurb, in present tense. Also justify the text. You need a place for your barcode space in the right hand bottom corner, 2 inches by one inch. (I'm sure Ryan will correct this one for me!)

And on the left, your info, such as the title again, contact info, publisher. also, on your spine you need your name, title and publisher on the bottom corner. 

One thing that's great about Createspace is they will adjust anything for your cover if wrong on the dimensions. You can call them anytime and they will help you!

After all these steps are done, you can do a trial download as many times as you need to. They have a program for you to see anything you need to fix. Once there are no more errors, they will check everything themselves and give you the okay to order your "proof' to check out the look of the book before downloading to the book sites and ordering books yourself.

It's mainly a step by step process, and a trial and error frustration sometimes, but you will get the hang of it. Having Microsoft word as my program, I've had no major problems doing all of this. But make sure if your using microsoft you have the Pro version, otherwise they will get you for copyright infringement. You cannot publish on the smaller programs such as "office and home use". Another thing, is make sure your fonts are not copyrighted. We had to pay for the use of one of our fonts. 

Well, I guess that's about it. Any questions, I'm hear for you. And If I can't answer them, then I know people who can! I will post on here a picture of our cover, front, back, and spine so you can see how it's set up.

Have a wonderful week all! See you on Friday!

Love, Lisa