Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Happy Three Year Authorversary!

Hi Everyone!

I’m doing a special blog post today because it’s my three year authorversary! Three years ago today, I woke up to see my first book, Little Samantha’s Choice published on Amazon. I can’t believe it’s been this long. Heck, I still can’t believe that I’m an author. No matter how many books I publish, I’m still shocked that people want to read MY stories. I wonder if that feeling will ever go away? I kind of hope it doesn’t. I think it keeps authors humble. 

I’d like to give a shout out to Stormy Night Publications for publishing my first story. Looking back at the original story I submitted to you has me covering my eyes in embarrassment. It was awful, but somehow, they saw the awesomeness of it and gave me a chance. So, thank you. :-) 

I’d also like to give a shout out to our author community. I absolutely love how supportive, encouraging, and happy for each other we all are. Seriously. I would have had to given up being an author on like day one if I didn’t have the support and encouragement that I receive on a daily basis from our community. It always makes me so touched when I know that I can go to any author and they’ll be willing to help me out with something I don’t understand or encourage me to keep going when I’m having a difficult time. It’s awesome! This community is what really makes being an author so much fun! :-) 

Of course, a huge shout out to my readers! None of this would be possible without y’all! <3 

Since it’s been three years since my first story came out, I thought I would share three pieces of advice that I’ve learned. 

The first (and most important, in my opinion) is: you are your only competition. It makes me so upset when I hear about authors fighting because one person’s book did better than the other one’s. Or, when I hear that one author is jealous of another author for the same reason as above. Each of us has our own strengths and weaknesses. Our writing styles are all very different, even though we write in the same genre. We all have different likes and dislikes when it comes to kinks. So, for an author to compare themselves to another author is like trying to compare an apple to an orange. Sure, they’re both fruits, but that’s the extent of it. So authors, don’t waste your time looking at how another author is doing and feel bad because your book doesn’t do as well. Just focus on your writing and keep at it because with each book you put out, the better author you’ll become. 

The second piece of advice is: don’t let bad reviews or pirated books upset you. This is kind of a two parter. No matter what, every author is going to get a bad review on their books. Lets be honest, bad reviews suck! As writers, we put so much time and effort into our stories, getting any criticism on them can be super tough. The thing to remember is everyone gets bad reviews, so it’s not like you’re alone in this. After you settle from getting the 1-2star rating, go back and read what the reviewer wrote. Most likely, you could learn something from it and better your writing for it! If the review is simply something like, “Gross” or “Eww” then no, obviously you can’t learn anything from that. But, if the reviewer took time to write down why they didn’t like your story and what you could have done differently, I’d consider remembering that for future books. 

When it comes to pirated books, there’s nothing good about them. They’re lost royalties to authors. However, there are a few things to remember about them. More than likely, the people who read pirated books, weren’t going to be paying for our books on Amazon or another website in the first place. I’m not excusing these people for their actions, but it’s something to remember. Secondly, pirated websites are filled with horrible viruses and malware, so people *might* be getting a free copy of one of our stories (most times, websites that pirate books, don’t actually have our books. It may look like they do, but they don’t), but they’re also likely to be getting a nasty virus with it. Lastly, an author can spend an entire day combing through the Internet and getting one hundred websites to remove their pirated books, but the next day, I bet one hundred different websites will be pirating your book. Unfortunately, this is another reality that authors have to face. Our books are going to be pirated and instead of fighting the websites, it’s best to just ignore them and continue to write. 

My last piece of advice is: never give up on your writing career. I know, circumstances come along and they can make it very hard for authors to write. For instance, if your family is low on money and you’re working a twelve-hour day, then have to come home to your kids and husband; it’d be a bit hard to write then. Or, if you’re going to school full time and can only write five hundred words a week, that’s perfectly fine! It’s okay to write slowly or even take a break from writing to take care of more important matters. A time will come when things settle down and you’ll be able to devote more time to writing. No matter what, while you’re waiting for that time to come, don’t give up on your dream! When the time comes and you can write as much as you want, you’ll be grateful that you didn’t walk away! 

Those are my three pieces of wisdom! Well, really four pieces. The second point was a twofer. This is why I write, I’m horrible at math. I can’t even count correctly. ;-) 

Thank you all again for making these past three years incredible! I truly wouldn’t be here without my readers, the encouragement, support, and positive vibes from our author community and my publisher, Stormy Night Publications. :-) Here’s to another year of fun! <3 

Monday, July 24, 2017

Meredith's Monday Musings: Cooking

Hey Everyone!

Happy Monday! How’s everyone’s week going so far? Mine is pretty good. I’ve been very busy writing lately. :-) 

Today’s Meredith’s Monday Musing is all about: Cooking!

Who here loves to cook? I definitely do! There is just something so fun about getting to start off with several ingredients, putting them all together, stirring them, and then get a delicious final product! Also, the smells of that final product can be mouth watering…literally. I cannot tell you all how many times I’ve made banana bread and as it’s baking in the oven, I’m watching it with my mouth pooling with saliva. 

Besides the fact that cooking turns me into a salivating mess, I love the feeling of accomplishment I get from doing it. I have a sister who cannot cook to save her life. I’m not joking, she can’t even make toast. So, getting to cook and knowing that I have a skill that not everyone has, it does make me feel proud. It makes me feel even more proud when I can share the food I make with others and know that they’re enjoying it too. If you ask anyone, there’s a very good chance that I’ll send you cookies if I find out what your favorite cookie is. 

There’s another part that I love about cooking too, that I doubt many people share with me…doing the dishes afterwards. I know, I’m weird. However, I enjoy doing dishes and when one loves to cook, there are always ample amounts of dishes to do. I find getting to stand by the sink washing away the crumbs and oils from the pans relaxing. It’s a great time to zone out and relax. 

That’s all I have for now. Happy Monday, everyone!

Monday, July 17, 2017

Meredith's Monday Musings: Summer Dresses

Hi All!

How’s your Monday going? Mine is going pretty good, except for this heat. It’s been so hot where I live, I can’t stand it. The humidity too! UGH! My hair looks like it’s longer horizontally, than it is vertically.

The one good thing about this heat is that I get to wear my summer dresses! That’s the topic for this week’s Meredith’s Monday Musings: Summer Dresses!

I love summer dresses. I’m seriously addicted to them. They’re so soft and there’s something awesome about not having your legs constricted by pants. I can wiggle them around, no problem. To be honest, my favorite part about wearing summer dresses is the decrease amount of laundry I have to do! Instead of having to wash, shorts and a shirt, I only have to wash a dress! When it’s out of the dryer, there’s no folding! Just stick it on a hanger and call it a day.

Another bonus to summer dresses is how cute they are. Who can resist the beauty of a flower-ey dress? This girl sure can’t!

Tell me, do you like wearing summer dresses or not?

Well, that’s all I have for now. Happy Monday!

Monday, July 10, 2017

Meredith's Monday Musing: Bullying

Hi Guys and Gals!

Happy Monday! How was your weekend? Mine was good. I just polished off the last of the leftovers from the fourth of July, so, I’m ready to start cooking up some new recipes.

Today’s topic for Meredith’s Monday Musing is: Bullying in the Author Community.

I have to be honest, I think it’s absolutely, downright horrible that this topic has crossed my mind as much as it has these past few months. Bullying is never right, ever. I don’t care what any person says in defense of it, it’s wrong. 

One thing I’ve never understood about bullying is why bullies want to hurt someone else? Is it because the person they’re picking on hurt them first? Is the bully jealous of the person? Are they angry at the person? Or does bullying make a person feel big, strong, like their the top dog? I don’t know.

If it were me and I was bullying another person because they had hurt me before or I was angry at them for something they did, I’d go and talk to them about it. Nine times out of ten, if you talk it out with them, you’ll probably resolve the issue that was bugging you and you’ll feel better. 

If you’re jealous of the person you’re bullying, improve yourself then. The person who you’re picking on, they haven’t done anything wrong. They’re just doing what they do. The best thing that will make you feel better is to better yourself. Once you feel happier about yourself and improve your writing, you probably won’t feel jealous about that person anymore.

If you’re picking on someone because it makes you feel better, well, I don’t know what to say to that. I will never be able to understand how causing another person pain or making them feel like  a small person can make a person feel good. Why would anyone want to cause another person pain, whether physical or emotional? For real, I have no idea why. However, if a bully is reading this post and this is why you enjoy bullying others, go to a therapist. Get some help. Sorry to be blunt, but that’s all I can say.

As for the people in this community who have/are being bullied, know that the entire community stands behind you. We will not tolerate any bullying here. Just reach out to one of us to know that you are not alone.

On that note, that’s all I have for today.

Happy Monday, Folks!