My Short Story

First off, I’d like to thank those of you who recently started following my blog. It means a lot to me. I promise to write more often and publish posts that are hopefully helpful to you.

It’s been a while since I’ve written a post, and I apologize for that. I’ve been busy writing and editing a short story.

A few months ago, I decided to read through some old drafts of short stories I had written a few years ago. One in particular pulled me in, and I’ve spent the last few weeks writing and editing it. I’m pleased about this piece—actually, I’m quite in love with it. My short story is called, Paper Airplane. I’ll be posting the synopsis and the book cover soon. I look forward to releasing the book in a few weeks. I hope you check it out.

As some of you may know, I had originally scheduled to publish my second novel this June, but because I was too inspired to write and finish Paper Airplane, I was unable to meet that deadline. The new release date for Hearts and Errors (my second novel) will now be September of this year.

More posts to come. Stay tuned. 🙂

What are your plans this summer?

Author Interview with Sarah Solmonson

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I am thrilled to have the talented author of Taking Flight, Sarah Solmonson, as my guest author for today. I’ve been following Sarah’s blog for a while now, and I’ve been a fan of her writing. I recently picked up her memoir, Taking Flight, and I must say—it has made me into an even bigger fan.

I hope you enjoy this interview, and don’t forget to pick up Sarah’s book, Taking Flight.

What was the first thing you ever wrote, and how old were you when you wrote it?

SS: A group of high school kids came to my elementary school to help us write and illustrate books made of construction paper. I wrote quite a few hits, including “My Dog Maggie” and “I Like Ice Cream”. Ironically, I also wrote one called “My Daddies Airplane”. I fondly refer to this as my first draft of Taking Flight.

When did you know you wanted to write Taking Flight?

SS: I have always known I wanted to be a writer. I knew, probably a year after my dad passed away, that I wanted to write a book that was truthful to what grief is really like. It isn’t packaged neatly in a two week funeral and burial, write thank-you notes and move on way as society wants us to believe. I also knew that I wanted to write down the memories I had of my dad and the plane before they were lost to time. Those combined efforts and desires turned into Taking Flight.

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If you had to describe your book in one sentence, what would it be?

SS: Taking Flight is about the unbreakable bonds between a father and daughter who believe dreams are worth chasing, no matter what the cost.

What made you decide to self-publish?

SS: As I dipped my toe into the blogosphere I was incredibly impressed with the community of self-publishers. I loved that, for the most part, writers wanted to succeed and help their fellow authors succeed. Like many self-publishers, I liked the freedom that comes with owning all the rights to your work.

Who helped you edit your book? Did you hire an editor and/or a proofreader?

SS: I’m lucky – I have a good friend who is also an editor. But if I hadn’t had this perk available to me, I would have certainly hired an editor. Any reader can tell the difference between an unedited book and one that has been put through the ringer.

Do you think beta readers are helpful?

SS: Absolutely! But, they need to be the right beta readers. I believe there should be three: one who will love anything and everything you write, one that is the most avid reader of your genre that you know, and the third a complete stranger who has no ties or obligations to you. Get more opinions than that and you’ll likely have more opinions than you can reasonably handle.

What have you learned from writing your first book?

SS: This is still what I want to do with my life. Writing takes longer than you think. Do not write with the television on (no matter how uninterested you are in what your husband is watching, it will end up being more interesting than you writing). Take time out to read. Don’t read your Amazon reviews. Don’t spam people – build authentic relationships in your journey.

Describe your writing style.

SS: I write better when I have a 2-4 block of time available. This is why it is important to know yourself and what works for you. A lot of very good craft books say you have to write every day to get a book written, but because I write more and better in longer blocks of time, I don’t feel bad if I don’t touch my manuscript for a couple of days. If I can’t commit the time, I’d rather skip it than write half-heartedly.

Aside from memoirs, are you also interested in writing fiction?

SS: Yes! I have notebooks full of ideas, or potential ideas. I’m just waiting for one to hit me over the head and demand my attention.

Who is your favorite author, and why?

SS: There’s so many, so for now, I will answer with Ann M. Martin. “The Babysitter’s Little Sister’s Karen’s Little Witch” was the first book I bought with my own money, and I still have it sitting on my bookshelf.

What is your favorite book, and why?

SS: Fried Green Tomatoes At The Whistle Stop Café. My cousin and I watched the movie at my grandma’s house the summer I was 9 and I loved the character of Idgie Threadgoode. For my 10th birthday my grandma gave me a copy of the book, which I have read at least 3 times per year for the last 19 years. It is my comfort food.

Define a good book.

SS: See above! When a book is your comfort food, or keeps you up at night, or is the thing you have to tell every single person you know to go read…those are qualities of a good book!

Are you currently working on your second book?

SS: I am – and I’m so very close to finishing it! “There Is No Why Here” is a travel journal/memoir based on the study abroad trip I took to Germany and Poland studying WWII History and Literature. To say that trip and the things I learned saved my life is an understatement. I hope to publish June/July 2013 – stay tuned!

Where can readers purchase Taking Flight?

SS: Paperback and eBook are available on Amazon.

 

Promoting Your Book on a Budget

Since I am in the process of doing my HIGH Blog Tour, I have been spending a lot of time researching on how to promote my book. Recently, I came across a great article on how to market your book—on a budget.

Click here to check out the article.

Do you have a marketing tip you’d like to share?

Birthdays, Books, and Blogging

A few years ago, I wrote a book. A few months ago, I edited it. A few weeks ago, it was published.

Today is my birthday. And since today is my birthday, I’d like to make a wish. I wish for my book to someday end up in your hands. 🙂

WARNING: My novel may cause smiling, chuckling, continuous page flipping, and sudden caffeine cravings. Falling in love and crying were also reported in some cases.

Cheers to another wonderful year! To old and new dreams, to love, and to life!

For the Kindle version of HIGH, click here.

Get HIGH today!

Hi! Just wanted to let you know that my first novel, HIGH, is now available on Kindle!

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The paperback has been available on amazon.com for a few weeks now, but I haven’t really advertised because I was waiting for the Kindle version to be ready. Now that they’re both available for purchase, it’s time to spread the word!

If you’d like to get HIGH on paperback, click here.
If you’d like to get HIGH on Kindle, click here.
If you’d like me to do a guest blog about my book on your blog, click here.

Have a great week!

Paper

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Isn’t it lovely when you find loose sheets of paper with your words written all over it? Words you’ve written a long time ago when your thoughts wandered off, had left reality, and ventured out into an imaginary world. Your words sometimes amaze you, other times intrigue you, maybe even baffle you. But they’re perfect nonetheless. You wrote them down because at that moment in time, you were inspired and driven to express how you felt, what you thought, and it meant something to you. You had to do it, or else you would forget. And so you did, and now that you’ve found them again—days later, weeks later, or years later—you’re glad you had written them down.

Most of the time they are dialogues, or descriptions of places, or people, or feelings. Sometimes all you’ll find is a scribble of a word, or a phrase, or a sentence, or a paragraph. Whatever they may be, they make up an incomplete story. A story that reminds you that this was something you once wanted to write, and said you would write, and possibly will write someday.

If picked up by a stranger, these sheets of paper would mean nothing at all. But to you, they are precious little things.

They are your treasures.

By the way, excuse the chicken scratches on the image above. Thanks to the computer, my penmanship has suffered through the years. 😉