Me Time

I’m about to do something I haven’t done before. I’m calling it quits, giving it a rest, taking a little me time, in the summertime. Time for some fun time, in the sun time, working time, writing time, family time, precious time.

This break from blogging has been something I’ve been thinking about for some time. To those of you who faithfully check in, I love you all heaps! Your comments often help brighten my day. You’re all so witty and smart and I love it when you make me laugh.

 

Not sure how long this will be. Could be a few weeks, could be longer. Just know I’ve got some serious writing I want to get done, and I need to focus on that. Feel free to follow along on my Facebook author page if you wish. Just hit the “like” button to the right, and if I have any writing news to share you’ll be the first to know.

I’ll leave you with this quote I shared on facebook a few months back.

Time is the coin of your life. It is the only coin you have, and only you can determine how it will be spent. Be careful lest you let other people spend it for you.~~ Carl Sandburg

Weekend Plans

You might remember me mentioning that I don’t make lists. Okay, so once in a dog’s age I’ll scribble a few lame lines down on paper and call it good. I’ll admit, it’s been helpful in the past, but I quickly lose interest.

But guess what? Just to show the exciting life of a writer, I decided to make a list of things I hope to accomplish this weekend. Must be the mood I’m in.

1. Have a beer. (I shouldn’t need to put this on the list to remember, but it seemed important after the week I had.)

2. Make a potato salad and hamburger dish for the church’s annual strawberry supper. Mmmmm

3. Have God smile on me while I’m making the strawberry shortcakes for said church supper. I mean volunteer work is good for us all, right? Just call me the strawberry lady.

4.Weed my flower garden. My flowers are crying out for attention. The day they invent weedless gardens is the day I dance naked in the rain.. (Naked in the rain? Where the heck did that come from?)

5.Work on edits for a story I wrote long ago but stopped submitting. (Edits are going quite well, thank you for asking..Yes folks, I know exactly where I’m going with these edits and it feels most excellent.)

6. Read. I’m presently reading a YA book,” Greener Grass.”

7. Housework.Okay, so I threw that one in as a joke..

8. Try *cough* and get caught up on reading all your blogs, or as many as I can..

So there you go. I decided to stop my list at eight because everyone seems to list things to five or ten. I wanted to be different.

Lastly, I’ll leave you with a photo of my honeysuckle vine. It’s gorgeous this year.

What are your weekend plans?

Surviving a Bad Review

So you’ve written a book, and you’re published. You’re on cloud nine dancing barefoot with the pixies. I mean, you should be, it’s a big accomplishment. Your book receives glowing reviews. Friends stop you on the street to tell you how amazing they think your book is. Some thank you for being the awesome writer you are. Everyone is happy, they’re up on that cloud with you bouncing around to “Oh happy day,” and it’s a glorious feeling. They love you… I mean your book. Those months of sweat and toil were worth it. You’re going to be all right.

 

But then the unthinkable happens. You’re googling your book one evening, stroking that ego a bit more, trying to uncover even more people who love you…I mean your book. You see your book mentioned and you click the link.  Bam! You’re hit with a hard blow to the ego. Someone you don’t know has written a review. They hate you…I mean your book. This can’t be. Surely they didn’t understand the deeper meanings, or appreciate all the intricate plot threads. They couldn’t have. Just look at that! While summarizing the book, they wrote the facts wrong. Were they even paying attention? What the heck, your main character was a boy, not a girl, they lived in the city, not the freaking country. I mean, how credible can this reviewer be? Did they skim over the most amazing parts? If only you had them here. Let them tell you to your face they don’t like you…I mean your book.

 

I don’t care who you, if you’ve written a book and sold any amount of copies, someone  out there is going to be less than enthusiastic about it. While having everyone rave about your book is absolutely divine,if you think everyone who reads it is going to love it you need to get in the real world. I know, I know, you already know that. And if you’re lucky those who don’t like it won’t rate it on Goodreads or write a review. While all that may sound good in theory it’s not all that practical unless you don’t venture out onto the Internet.  Eventually, a book you write is going to get a one or two star rating, or an unfavourable review. That’s when you’re faced with the reality of it all, it’s right before your eyes. No denying it. Someone doesn’t like you…I mean your book. Worst of all they told the whole world.

 

So how’s an author to get past a bad rating or review, you might ask? Here are a few suggestions I have.

 

 

  1. Accept the fact that this is bound to happen. I’m not talking about accepting it on an intellectual level, but accept it in your heart. Hoping and wishing everyone will love your book won’t change the facts. People have different tastes. You do. Why wouldn’t someone else?
  2. Learn not to take these things personally. The person rating your book probably doesn’t know you from Adam. They’ve got nothing vested in you. You’re a name. That’s it. Remember, they aren’t saying they don’t like you. They’re saying they don’t like what you’ve written. There is a difference.
  3. Spend time on Goodreads. Check out your favourite authors. Read the reviews of books you absolutely love. What you’ll find is your favourite authors all wrote books that someone didn’t like. You might think these reviewers are nuts, but it doesn’t change the facts…or the rating.
  4. Be the first to write a bad review for your book. Don’t let someone else beat you to it. Print it out and post it where you can see it during the early days of publication. This will help absorb the shock when the real thing comes along. Remember not to be too nasty or obnoxious.
  5. Weigh the good reviews with the bad. Which one outweighs the other? If you receive 100 poor reviews or ratings and only three good ones (all from close friends) maybe this is telling you something. Otherwise, blow it off. One bad review, or two or three isn’t the end of the world.

 

Hopefully, these suggestions will help cushion the blow of that first bad review. I say, take comfort in knowing that you’re in good company.

 

Has a bad review ever set you in a tailspin? How did you deal with it? If you’re on Goodreads have you ever given a bad rating or review? If so, did you give any thought as to whether the author would read your review or see the rating?

 

 

Two Books and a Video

Revenge of the Lobster LoverDuring the four hour drive to New Brunswick this weekend I took full advantage of the time Hubby spent driving to finish reading, Revenge of the Lobster Loverby Hilary McLeod. I don’t mind telling you I really enjoyed this book. It’s a mystery set in Prince Edward Island. Hilary’s books also include, “Mind Over Muscle,” and her next one due out is titled, “All is Clam.” Quite the witty titles, don’t you think?

 

Emily for RealSince I was nearing the end of Hilary’s book, I also brought along Sylvia Gunnery’s YA novel, “Emily for Real.” Sylvia’s a local author I met a few weeks back at a library reading. I’d been looking forward to reading it since picking it up. If you enjoy YA fiction, I’m sure you’ll enjoy this one. I certainly did.

 

While in New Brunswick, we were watching a few You Tube Videos from  the New Ross area. Here’s one filmed at the Ross Farm, not far from where I live. It’s quite long (12 minutes) but I found it interesting. It’s about the use of herbs, a subject I’m interested in. Mona Reeves, featured in the video, is quite knowledgeable and grew up with some of this information around her. I’d gone to a talk a few years back that Mona gave and even ended up winning some basil plants as a door prize..If it’s a subject you’re interested in, I think you’ll find it worth your time.

What books have you read lately? Do you ever take along a book on a long drive to help pass the time?