Wednesday, September 7, 2016

IWSG #4: Performance Anxiety


It's that time again for sharing with the Insecure Writer's Support Group.
What is that you may ask, well their mission statement is this:

The Insecure Writer’s Support Group is a home for writers in all stages; from unpublished to bestsellers. Our goal is to offer assistance and guidance. We want to help writers overcome their insecurities, and by offering encouragement we are creating a community of support.

The first Wednesday of each month, we blog about our fears, insecurities, or even an accomplishment we had.

My previous posts have all been about some insecurity I've had but this month's post was inspired by an email I got from a reader (I don't get many LOL).

Like other messages I have gotten from readers, this one was asking when the long over due follow-up to Fiendish would be released. My previous posts have all related in someway to the many reasons that book is still sitting as an unfinished WIP. However, this message stood out to me because of the reason they were asking, she wanted to find out how my character coped and possibly healed from the toxic relationship in book 1. 

As a writer, my goal is to hopefully entertain my readers on some level. When I wrote the first book, I wasn't thinking that someone might be able to relate to it on such a personal level due to things that happened in their own lives.  While the message I received was a welcomed surprise, it also added to my growing anxiety for book 2.

Book 1 was not by any means some major success, but I was happy with the reception it has received. At the same time I didn't go into writing it with the same thought process I've had with book 2 because of its origins. I started this journey as a blogger, that's where the story began. I would get feedback/encouragement with the direction the story was taking with each chapter that was released. Doing book 2 blind scares me. I got so used to that instant feedback that not having it sorta freezes me up from continuing. Knowing that there are some waiting on this book makes feel like I've already let them down by taking so long to write it, and then I worry they will be so disappointed in the final product whenever I get it finished.

Getting that email made me really wonder if there were other readers out there waiting to see the same thing, how to heal from that sort of experience. That is a lot of responsibility I took on, on top of my other worries to make sure I produce the best possible follow-up, then instantly thinking I'm going to fail spectacularly. I opened my WIP for the first time in months, stared at the words on the screen, then closed it without making a single change. This book won't write itself, not matter how much I wish it would, but it would seem that I also can't write it. 

**Question of the month: How do you find time to write in your busy day?**

Well, if I didn't have the issues I've posted about, I'd actually have plenty of time to write. I am mainly a stay at home mom that works and evening part-time job. That leaves me pretty much most of the day to do all the writing I want while my children are at school. During the summer is different. When I did attempt to write it was after my husband had gotten home from work. The kids were fed and having their time with daddy since they'd been with me all day. I'd take my laptop and close myself up in my bedroom to get away from the noise as much as I could. 

Thanks for stopping by
~Meka

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

IWSG #3: Social Media


It's that time again for sharing with the Insecure Writer's Support Group.
What is that you may ask, well their mission statement is this:

The Insecure Writer’s Support Group is a home for writers in all stages; from unpublished to bestsellers. Our goal is to offer assistance and guidance. We want to help writers overcome their insecurities, and by offering encouragement we are creating a community of support.

The first Wednesday of each month, we blog about our fears, insecurities, or even an accomplishment we had.

This month I'm tackling the scary beast known as social media. When I started my self-publishing journey, some of the 'advice' found on other help groups was be active on social media. This is something I've not done. Honestly it's a matter of 1) where to do I find the time and 2) do I really have anything to say that people want to read about.

If you read my last post, it was about my issue with procrastination. I feel like if I'm spending time on social media then I'm feeding into my procrastinating ways and not writing. How to find a balance? 

Also what to talk about? I know it's not all supposed to be about your book or current work-in-progress because you don't want to feel like you are always marketing yourself, but really getting involved sounds easier than it is. At least for me. I don't understand Twitter, or how you even get anything worthwhile across in 140 characters or less. I don't Snapchat or Instragram, so all of these things make me feel like a fish out of water. Trying to get involved, and be active in groups is a scary thing. Makes me feel like an interloper when a group is already established and I'm trying to just push my way in (in a friendly way of course) to be part of the 'in' crowd. 

Social media is a scary thing. Outside of blogging and a little Facebook interactions, I don't know what would my best fit or even how to get started. It's something I know I need to add to my list of to-dos on figuring out as I continue my journey.

~Meka 

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

IWSG #2: Keeping Focus


It's that time again for sharing with the Insecure Writer's Support Group.
What is that you may ask, well their mission statement is this:

The Insecure Writer’s Support Group is a home for writers in all stages; from unpublished to bestsellers. Our goal is to offer assistance and guidance. We want to help writers overcome their insecurities, and by offering encouragement we are creating a community of support.

The first Wednesday of each month, we blog about our fears, insecurities, or even an accomplishment we had.

Last month my IWSG post was about growing a thick skin. This week I'm admitting to my deep issue of procrastination.

I have terrible focus. I believe it was Ellen DeGeneres that said: "Why do today what you can put off til tomorrow." That's really how I am sometimes sadly with my writing. I'll have all these good ideas, things that flow through my head, but when I sit to write, any and everything distracts me. I've tried closing internet tabs to keep myself from being tempted to surf the net, but then I just reopen them. Part of my lack of focus is due to my bad habit of second guessing myself and what I'm writing. I need to find a way to actually write when I set aside time to do so instead of finding every reason not to.

Thanks for stopping by and happy writing.

~Meka

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

IWSG #1: Growing That Thick Skin



So this is my first blog post for the IWSG. It's a group I stumbled upon on Facebook. Their mission statement:

The Insecure Writer’s Support Group is a home for writers in all stages; from unpublished to bestsellers. Our goal is to offer assistance and guidance. We want to help writers overcome their insecurities, and by offering encouragement we are creating a community of support.

Made it seem like a place that would be a perfect fit for me.

The first Wednesday of each month, we blog about our fears, insecurities, or even an accomplishment we had.

For my first post I'm tackling the idea of reviews. Before I became a writer I would read reviews of books I was interested in and I always went to the 1 and 2 star reviews first. Why? Well books get praise, I wanted to know what people didn't like about a book.

When I started my journey into self-publishing, the one thing I saw across all forums was don't respond to reviews. Good or bad. DON'T DO IT. Reading the negative reviews of other books, some were good in that they gave good feedback on why the story didn't work for them. Others...well they made me wonder if the reviewer was having a bad day when they let loose their 'frustration' on why they 'hated' the book.

Feedback is great for an author and I think that's especially true for Indie authors. We don't have the backing of a big publisher behind us, instead we need to know what the public feels and thinks about our work. However, for me, it's a double edged sword. No matter how many times I remind myself not everyone will like my book, it still hurts like hell to get that not so positive review. I could have 20 glowing reviews, but that 1 that is sorta meh, well that one would bother me. People say you have to grow a thick skin, don't let them get you down, well it's really easier said than done.

While I attempt to finally finish my second book, I've stopped reading reviews. If I happen to pop on to Goodreads, I make sure to block the top of my screen initially so I won't see if I got a new rating or review. I know me and if I see the number has changed, I'd be tempted to see what I got. I don't want that messing with my head, so I'm trying the out of sight out of mind approach for now. At least until I can get through book 2 that's taken me longer to write, partially because of the self-doubt I got after reading the meh reviews.

My journey as a writer is still in it's infancy. Hopefully with each new book, a new layer will grow to help shield me from the 'bad'.

~Meka

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Musical Inspiration

So, it's been a while since I've updated here. Mostly because there's been nothing to update. When I finished Fiendish was really hit with a need/desire to give Calida what she didn't get in that story. Not Broken was born. I cranked out the first couple of chapters and was like "Yeah, I can do this." Then I stalled.

I tried a few times to pick things back up, and I'd type a little, then get distracted by any and everything. Malcolm, as much as I love him, he's been the biggest struggle for me. Trying to figure out his motivations and role in the story.

Music helps me. I listen to it, I get inspired by it, in general I'm always writing with some music playing in the background. Most times it's random, whatever shuffles on through Pandora, other times I know of a song that would help set the mood for what I'm trying to do. Fiendish has a playlist and Not Broken has one in progress, but Seth nor Calida had a theme song. Malcolm does.

As I sat and tried to figure him out. As I complained to anyone that would listen that he just felt flat to me, I hoped for some sort of inspiration or connection to his character. Then I heard this song:


This song completely embodies Malcolm's role and purpose in the story. While I do write in dual POV, I am coming to realize that the journey in this book is more about Calida and Malcolm's role is to help her get to the point where she can let him love her.

Now let's hope I can keep remembering this little fact and power through finishing this long overdue book.

~Happy Reading

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Book Chat!



I had a great time last night chatting with Tracie and LaShell on Book Chat. The ladies were lots of fun as we sat and discussed Fiendish! THANK YOU Tracie and LaShell for having me on. :)

If you missed it, you can watch the segment HERE.

~Meka

Monday, July 13, 2015

First Web Interview


LaShell Collins and Tracie Puckett have joined forces and now host a web series titled Book Chat. They interview authors, give writing tips, and generally have a good time. These two wonderful ladies have asked to interview me this month! HOW EXCITING!!! I feel so grown up.

My interview will be live on air July 31, 2015 @8pm EST.

Mark your calendars so you can join in to watch as they pick my brain so they can get to know me and my characters just a little bit better.

Take care
~Meka