#IWSG: F. Stone AWOL

Hello IWSG. Yes, F. Stone is going AWOL. Have you ever had a day when you feel so numb, physically and emotionally that it’s difficult to think clearly. That’s me for the past few months. It has been a struggle writing meaningful guest posts, entertaining responses to interviews.  I have been putting on my author face and charging up an engaging personality. That’s what followers and readers want to see / hear. This week, F. Stone ran out of gas.

Seclusion. I need to retreat. Both as a widow and author, I am going to take time to heal. So many of you have been especially supportive. I am grateful.

Wishing everyone much success and joy.

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#IWSG: Standing in the Storm

http://www.insecurewriterssupportgroup.com/

Insecure Writer’s Support Group: My favorite group of authors.

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!
Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer – aim for a dozen new people each time – and return comments. This group is all about connecting!
Co-Hosts:

JH Moncrieff
Madeline Mora-Summonte
Jen Chandler
Megan Morgan
Heather Gardner 

Since the death of my dear husband exactly three months ago, I have been standing in an unrelenting storm. To bank managers, government officials, lawyers, I create a facsimile of strength and tolerance for change. Day by day, meeting after meeting, legal documents and sympathy cards, have driven home the message that I will have to change or the storm will wear me down to become a fragile and incompetent old woman.

In some respects, the storm is still raging. My center is gone. Making decisions has been terrifying. Sometimes, I can’t decide on anything. I wonder, how can I write again. Do I want to write?

Then miracles, those ‘oh my god’ events, gave me hope. Last month I asked for help in getting one hundred reviews for Forbidden. Many of you requested a copy of Forbidden and then posted incredible reviews. Thank you so very much. You made my heart sing.

Recently, Cheryl Masciarelli (CMash Reads), because she loved Forbidden so much, asked if I would agree to being the Author of the Month on her blog. Forbidden will be front and center, avec interviews and guest posts each June 1st, 8th, 15th, 22nd, and June 29th.

And, she encouraged me to feature Forbidden on the Partners in Crime blog starting June 19th to July 7th. Watch this blog for dates and location of interviews, guest posts, giveaways. Doing the happy chicken dance.

 

I think the main challenge for me is to accept I am going to be different in the months ahead. It is frightening. Most days, I feel like I’m still standing in the storm. And yet, there’s a hint of exhilaration.  There may be damage and turmoil, but also a possibility of resurgence of energy and freshness.

Blessings, everyone.

 

#IWSG: What is the weirdest/coolest thing you ever had to research for your story?

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

The awesome co-hosts for the May 3 posting of the IWSG will be Nancy Gideon, Tamara Narayan, Liesbet @ Roaming About, Michelle Wallace,and Feather Stone!

May 3 Question: What is the weirdest/coolest thing you ever had to research for your story?  I have to chuckled when thinking about this question. While writing Forbidden, I had to write a scene about a helicopter battle scene. Now understand that I’ve been in a medivac chopper, but I know nothing about flying them. To make the battle scene sound authentic, I read up on how to fly a helicopter, all the maneuvers pilots do in battle, and what action will cause a chopper to crash. I sent a draft of that scene to a beta reader who was quite impressed. It was cool!

I’m truly honored to be one of IWSG’s hosts this month. I hope to visit as many blogs as possible to say hello and share. I’m pretty excited about a promo coming up in June. Forbidden will be featured for an entire month at CMash Reads . I’ll be doing interviews, feature Forbidden’s characters (maybe even the real nasty culprits), setting development, etc. There will be giveaways, and Forbidden ebook will be FREE during the last five days of June. It’s going to be crazy fun.

I’m still very busy with promoting my second novel, Forbidden, since its launch in January with Amazon KDP.  My goal this year is to obtain 100 reviews. Yes, I know, you’re shaking your head and saying, “Good luck, Chickypoo.”

It’s like pulling hen’s teeth finding reviewers who are in the right genre and available. So far, I have 20 reviews, the average rating is 4.6. Pretty darn good but I need a lot more.

Here’s the deal, my lovely fellow authors and readers. I will send an ebook to you for FREE in exchange for an honest review posted on Amazon and Goodreads. If that’s not your gig, please post this offer on your blog and/or facebook.

Or, you could copy/paste this tweet:  FREE Forbidden ebook for #review top Middle East suspense thriller send request to featherstone.author@gmail.com https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01N2TNTS5/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1481736741&sr=1-1&keywords=9780995150911

and the book cover:  

#IWSG: Do Men Write Book Reviews?

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INSECURE WRITERS SUPPORT GROUP, IWSG

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

March 1 Question: Have you ever pulled out a really old story and reworked it? Did it work out?

I did a couple of short, short stories many years ago. Then after a couple of computer changes, those documents were lost. I’ve always wanted to redo them but hesitate. It would feel like trying to copy an original. I’ve never liked singers who try to redo the original masterpiece. It’s never the same, not as good as the first piece. But, those two do haunt me. Perhaps …..

The awesome co-hosts for the March 1 posting of the IWSG are

Tamara Narayan, Patsy Collins, M.J. Fifield, and Nicohle Christopherson!

During Forbidden’s recent book launch, I noted that the majority of the people who responded to my ads were men. Their location was largely in the Middle East region so I assumed I had attracted the attention of US military personnel. I was pleased – at first. One of my goals was to entice both men and women to be Forbidden’s target audience. And, of course, given the popularity of Forbidden during the Amazon FREE promo, all those happy readers would write a review. Double good.

Please Write a Review.
Please Write a Review.

Well, then a second thought dashed those hopes. Do men write reviews? If so, are their opinions valued equal to women?

Here’s an article by VIDA: Women read more than men—by a particularly wide margin when it comes to fiction. So why is it that male voices, both as authors and as critics, continue to be given way more authority in the world of book reviewing? A new study out by VIDA, a group dedicated to improving women’s representation in the literary world, shows that while things are improving slowly, men are still way overrepresented when it comes to book reviewing. Hannah Ellis-Petersen at the Guardian reports:

Apparently, according to VIDA, men’s reviews are taken more seriously then reviews written by women (rolling my eyes). But if a man reads a book , I’m thinking they are probably less inclined to write reviews than women. What is your experience with respect to men writing book reviews?

 

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If  you would like to write an article about writing, authors, books for OPAL magazine, they’ll be very pleased to work with you – no charge for articles. And they have very reasonable rates to place an ad in their monthly editions.

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#IWSG: When do you say, “Hit the road, Jack,” to the manuscript?

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Insecure Writer’s Support Group

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day.

The awesome co-hosts for the August 3 posting of the IWSG will be Tamara Narayan, Tonja Drecker, Ellen @ The Cynical Sailor, Lauren @ Pensuasion, Stephen Tremp, and Julie Flanders!

AUGUST 3RD QUESTION

What was your very first piece of writing as an aspiring writer? Where is it now? Collecting dust or has it been published? My first, The Guardian’s Wildchild, was published in 2011. After only three rejections and a bit of advice from my mentor, Candas Jane Dorsey, Omnific Publishing accepted my manuscript. What a ride!

Hit The Road Jack

1-mosqueOkay, I’ve got a question for you, my lovely authors. After you published your novel (self or traditional), did you wish you had spent more time editing, and/or building characters and scenes?

I’m going over each piece of Forbidden in detail, D – E – T – A – I – L!!!

A thought hit me the other day. If I spend another month on massaging Forbidden, will it make any real difference to the reader, get me better reviews? Maybe. Or, am I just avoiding the hard work of writing the next novel?

An embryo of a sequel, Forgotten, is demanding nurturing. I’m not the sort who can write more than one book at a time. I can’t even read more than one at a time. Did you know when your manuscript was as good as you can make it? When is it time to tell the manuscript, “Hit the road, Jack.”?