OKC Event Debrief, NaNoWriMo Decisions, and Hashtag Adventures.

About Last Night…

A big thank you to everyone who came out the Bricktown Freaky Book Bang in OKC!  We had a great time.  I signed and sold a book, and I was able to meet and introduce some new people to my work.  I call that a success.  Also it was fun to be a supermodel for a day. lol OCKpic

NaNoWriMo 2018

November is National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo).  This year, for the first time, I have decided to do the NaNoWriMo challenge.  I’m still feeling my way around the site and trying to get the gist of this phenomenon, but I already have a couple of writing buddies. So yay! The challenge for me now is deciding which work in progress (WIP) to focus on for the challenge.  Also I think I am supposed to set a word goal.  I guess that will depend on which WIP I choose.  Here are my choices:

God or Mammon

Originally, I was going to choose the second book in the Life Choices series,God or Mammon (Life Choices Book B). It’s a medical thriller.  This one will be fun to write, and I am very excited about it.

Patches

The first draft of Patches is already finished.  It is a supernatural thriller with angels and demons, and all kinds of wonderful spiritual warfare.  It’s about an interracial couple that moves to a small town called Purblind.  Christopher White is an architect and his wife, a black woman, is  his lawyer.  After doing a remodeling project in Purblind, AL, Christopher falls in love with the quiet little town, and purchases a house and some land there.  Purblind only allows certain families to own land, so imagine their surprise when not only has an outsider purchased their land, but he also shows up with a mixed family.  I still have a few beta readers who are reading it, and I recently got it back from my editor.  So if I choose it, I will be mostly correcting and rewriting.  Which can be fun as well, but I want to hear from more of my Beta Readers before I get started on this one.  And some of them are still reading.

Wrong Number

I started working on this novel a few years ago, and lately it has been calling me back to it.  Here’s the blurb:  Billions of digits randomly collated into systematic sequences of ten, doled out according to nation, state, and area have linked our society in an intricately woven tapestry of communication. For Jason Gord, one systematic sequence became a lethal obsession, and for Cardigan DuPree the same phone number started a life altering nightmare. It is a thriller suspense novel. I am seriously itching to work on this one again. So I think I will choose it for NaNoWriMo.

#LiveTweetANovel

So I have started to do this new thing on twitter.  You know how people live tweet their favorite shows and such?  Well I thought it might be a fun thing to do with novels as well.  So I started #LiveTweetANovel.  Basically I am giving my reactions to what I am reading as I go along.  Not for every page of course, but ever so often when I have a comment or thought about what I am reading.  I am hoping this catches on, as I think it could be kind of fun.  I am currently reading Miranda Warning by Heather Day Gilbert.  Follow me on Twitter @Rozkai to find out what I am thinking about the novel so far.

 

 

Join me in OKC! Win a Glam Box!

It’s a Costume Book Signing Event!

On October 27, I will be signing copies of The Wages or the Gift at the Bricktown Freaky Book Bang in OKC.  I know it may seem a bit weird for a Christian Fiction author to be signing books at a Halloween event, but there will be a great variety of authors there, and I feel like its a chance to be a light.  Also to have some fun.  There will be games, free massages, food, and a costume contest. My costume will be Ebony Reynold (the supermodel) from The Wages or the Gift.  I will also have a few glam boxes to give away.  If you are in Oklahoma City or near it, please come and see me.  Tickets are on sale now, and I would love to meet you.  For those of you who would like to preorder your signed copy, or at least reserve one (there are a limited number), you can fill out the this form.

Glam! Glam! Glam!

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You automatically get two entries into the Glam Box drawings for getting your book in advance! If you choose to reserve and pay at the event, you get 1 entry.  Of course there will be plenty of opportunities to get additional entries at the event.  (The treasures inside are a surprise.)

September to Remember Giveaway Extravaganza!

Today I noticed that I finally made it to ten reviews!  Granted I need about 50 before Amazon starts to pay more attention to my novel, but ten is a really good start.  So a big thank you to everyone who has left a review so far.  If you have read the book and have not left a review, you could be among the forty others that I need to reach my goal of fifty. 🙂  At any rate, the enthusiasm of number 10 really blessed me. Here it is:

Latest 5 Star Review

A big thank you to the reader who left this review!  I am so glad you enjoyed the book! To celebrate the first ten reviews, I am running a giveaway.  Enter for a chance to win a signed copy of The Wages or the Gift.

Talent, Research, and Betas! Oh, My!

Happy Friday all!  As my title might suggest, many exciting things are happening with regard to Author Roz.  I would like to share some of them with you today.

Before I get into today’s blog, I want to let everyone know that I finally finished reformatting the e-book.  For everyone who had a previous version, you should receive an update.  Now back to our regularly scheduled program.

Talent

First of all, I am looking for the right male voice talent for The Wages or the Gift.  Yes, that’s right, my next step for the novel is to make it into an audio book.  I am super excited to get started, but first I need to find the right guy for the job.  I have invited numerous voice actors to audition, but the auditions are trickling in slowly.  At this point, I have no clear trajectory as to when audio book enthusiasts can expect to listen to The Wages or the Gift, but as soon as the voice has been chosen, I will update.

Research

I have started working on the next book in my Life Choices series: God or Mammon.  I am super excited because this book is going to be a medical thriller.  This is a fun genre that will require a lot of research.  I am studying everything from medical terminology to hospital administration.  Fun stuff!

Betas

Right now my second novel (completely unrelated to The Wages or the Gift) is with a wonderful group of people called Beta Readers!  My Beta readers include my publicist (Jen Thomas), my editor (Martha Lowe) and a group of around 7 or 8 random lovers/readers of Christian Fiction.  Most of them are still in the process of reading the book, but I have gotten a few of the results.  So far, the general consensus is that I am on the right track (ie. they already really like/love the book), which is good.  After I hear back from everyone, I will start working on draft two.

Oh, My!

I am super excited to draw your attention to  The Voice of Literature Ezine at www.voxlit.co.uk. It’s a great publication out of the United Kingdom that features book reviews, excerpts from novels, author articles, and a section called Writer’s Notes. I am excited to share that an article I wrote on the technique of zooming is featured in this month’s Writer’s Notes section! It’s the first one you’ll see.  Check it out!  If you are a writer, or a person who loves literature, this is a great e-zine to follow.

 

 

 

Why the Cover Change? Glad you asked.

Or maybe you didn’t, but I am excited to talk about it anyway.  First of all a quick announcement:  The Wages or the Gift is now available in print with a new cover and a new lower price!  Blurb / Barnes and Noble / Amazon.

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So why’d I do it?  Well, I have a couple of quick stories to tell about that.  My first hint that my original cover design (which I really liked, btw) was not the most successful choice I could make came when someone made a comment on Julia Wilson’s wonderful review  that said the book  looked like a non-fiction book to her.  I did not put too much stock in the comment, since it was the first one I had heard.  Most people were telling me they liked the cover. Still I would occasionally notice little things like people looking at the cover and saying, “Oh the Wage or the Gif” or something similar.  I would then explain that the it’s Wages and Gift, and the dollar sign and the present  (which I later discovered some people thought  was a cross with a bow on it)…you get the drift.

I guess these little isolated incidents were starting to get my attention because after the conversation I had with Delilah Cordova about the cover, I started to really question it.  A friend of mine came into town, and I asked her what she thought of the cover.  She was like, well I can tell it’s a religious book.  (Not necessarily a bad thing, I mean it is Christian Fiction)  She went on to say that it was a little confusing, etc. So I started working on changing it.  This time I posted it in a couple of Christian Fiction Readers/Writers groups to find out what kind of book people thought it might be.  Most of them said suspense or thriller.  A few said horror, but no one said non-fiction. And thus I had my new cover.

After I changed the cover, I got a lot more feedback on the first cover that definitely confirmed the necessity for the change.  My publicist, who liked the cover, but agreed that it could seem a bit “non-fiction adjacent” told me this story:  “I was reading your book in Missouri, and a girl looked at me and asked if I was trying to build a better financial future.”  That pretty much says it all.

One more thing, the new cover is up for cover of the month on Allauthor.com.  Please vote.

 

A Flashback Friday Video Review

Okay, granted Flashback Friday may not be an official thing, but it is for me on this particular Friday.  The following video review was one of my very first reviews.  When I offered a review copy to this lady, I had no idea what kind of books she read/published (she owns a small press as well as writes).  To both of our surprises, she writes erotica while I write Christian Fiction.  Still, she was very gracious and did the review anyway.  So I am posting it here today.  #FlashbackFriday #MayNotBeAThing #CreativeLicenseIsMySuperpower

 

 

Fun Interview Share (And other items…)

Checkout this interview that I did with www.ilikeebooks.com! It’s been a couple of weeks since the interview, but I have been trying to decide the best way to approach announcing it.  I think in addition to making an announcement on my blog of interviews, live talks, author chats, and the like, I am going to add a media section to this blog to archive all such instances.

In other news, I got a new review that truly touched my heart.  This is review is from a friend of mine who is not a Christian, and does not at all care for the message of my novel.  However, she still enjoyed the story, and she said a lot of nice things about my writing.  Hats off to Kathleen, for being able to put aside her personal preference and still appreciate the book.  I think that’s awesome, but that is not what touched my heart. Keep in mind that I did not tell Kathleen anything about my writing process, so what I am about to point out is a major compliment.

She recognized my research!

That made me so happy.  As a person who reads a lot of reviews.  (Okay, I just let you in a little secret about me.  I occasionally go onto Amazon and read book reviews.  Lots of times I read reviews from books that I really liked, or books that are currently on the bestseller’s list.  Often times I read five stars and the one stars to two star reviews. And see what naysayers are saying about otherwise renowned works of fiction.)   Even with most five star reviews, I don’t see many reviewers noticing the research that went into creating the novel.  I did so much research for The Wages or the Gift.  (Not my favorite pass time.  I do it when necessary.) It was so cool that someone noticed my hard work. 🙂 I am impressed, thankful, and humbled that someone actually noticed that aspect of my story.

 

Going Live Tonight…

I am going live again tonight at 7:00 PM Central.  I was invited to speak on my love of bringing stories to life for a group called WNL Virtual Author Promotions.  I think I will be able to share the video after I am done, but I am not sure.  I also am not sure if the group is public enough that anyone can watch the live feed.  We shall see.

Every Single Word…

One day, a long time ago, I was talking to my best friend about reading.  Yes, I am that nerdy.  I love reading and talking about reading and reading some more.  Anyway, I was talking to her, and I confessed that I have skipped portions of books on occasion.  Not large portions, mind you, just a paragraph or two.  She told me she never did that because she knows that the author agonized over every single word as they were writing the book. That thought had never crossed my mind.  I’m not positive, but I think I had already started writing The Wages or the Gift when we had this conversation.  I was somewhere close the beginning of the first draft.  I remember thinking that I am not sure that I “agonized” over words.  I mean there is always the desire to make sure my writing is engaging, vivid and tells the best version of the character’s story that I can possibly tell; however, I was not agonizing over every single word.

That was then.

It took me five months, writing every day to finish that first draft.  It was an incredibly fun process for me: my first novel.  Allow me to provide a bit of insight into my writing process.  I am not the kind of writer who outlines her novels. I literally get an idea, start writing and let the story flow until it’s completion.  This became a great issue in college when I was learning about the play writing process, but that is another story.  (One that I will be writing about in the near future most likely.) Anyway, the benefit of writing like that is the story unfolds before your eyes just like it would to the reader.

After I finished the first draft, I did what comes next.  I printed several copies, and gave it people to read.  My first editor, aka Jen, got a copy.  My mother got a copy.  And I think a couple more people got a copy.  But I used mostly, Jen’s and my mother’s copies for the second draft of the book.  That took me more than five months, of course, and I made corrections, additions, and subtractions based on their notes and my own reread.  However, I still did not agonize over each word.  So then I start sending the book out to publishers. My book was accepted to The Writer’s Edge, a company that Christian publishers use to find new Christian fiction manuscripts.  Which was super exciting, and I got a few noteworthy nibbles, even one from Bethany House, but I did not get any bites.

Fast forward a bit to finally getting a publisher.  When I got my manuscript back from my editor, a professional editor this time, I had to go through it again and make the changes needed.  So there I was revising the book again.  Still I did not agonize over every word.  After I finished it, it took another couple of months to get the book back again from my publishers.  This time, I noticed a few layout discrepancies.  So I went through it with a fine tooth comb, making sure any errors were discovered and corrected.  The agonizing began around that time.  Unfortunately, during this process, my publisher went out of business.  Sad day.  Honestly, at that point, I decided instead of looking for another publisher, I would just do it myself.

This is now.

Doing it myself meant I could not use the layout my publisher designed, so I had to completely redesign my book and my book cover.  As I redesigned the book and cover, that’s when I really started agonizing over every single word. I thought back to what my best friend had said to me all those years ago and laughed.  She was indeed correct; it just took me a while to get to that point.

Now that The Wages or the Gift is published, it’s time to start “agonizing” (possibly) over the second draft of my second novel.  I guess the cycle never ends.   More next time.  Thanks for stopping by my blog!