July 20, 2013

All sorts of things going on

Posted in Books, Editing, Freelance Career, Personal, Publishing, Reading, Writing tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 3:56 pm by Christine Rice

Hi, all. I just want to provide a quick update. I’ve been working on my memoir, Freedom from Fat, and editing my other memoir, Chronicles of a Troubled Girl. Both are far along but still have a bit to go. The first draft of Freedom from Fat is not complete yet. It’s currently up to 46,000 words, but until I’ve reached my weight loss goals, I’ll still be working on it, because it chronicles my weight loss journey. I’m anticipating that I’ll be done with the first draft within one year. But sooner would be great, in more ways than one!

I’m currently on page 59 out of 230 in the editing/proofreading stage of Chronicles of a Troubled Girl, so I’m just about 1/4 through it. I only plan on doing one round of editing, since it is a compilation of journal entries and I want them to be as close to the original writing as possible. The entire memoir is 71,000 words.

Besides working on my books, I also have a freelance career during the week, and I focus on my health and fitness every day. I spend part-time hours working on all three aspects of my life. I like the variety, and they’re all important to me, so I have to manage my time to include them all in my life. I truly love writing books and connecting with my readers, working with my clients to help them with their publishing goals, and working out and eating healthy to have a healthy balance in my life. My weekends are spent relaxing, having fun, and doing housework. It’s quite challenging trying to fit everything in, but it’s the best way to live.

I have some book reviews I’ll be posting this week. One is How to Write an Essay, and the other is Wake up Successful – How to Increase your Energy and Achieve any Goal with a Morning Routine. Both are excellent nonfiction books that I’m looking forward to sharing with you.

So tell me how your life is going. What do you do for a career? What are your favorite things to do? What is your passion? I’d love to learn more about you. And let me know if you need help with writing or publishing, or if you’d like to be interviewed on my blog.

Above all, have a wondrous rest of your weekend!

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May 29, 2013

Review of “Top Life Coaching Tips”

Posted in Book Reviews tagged , , , , , , , , , at 7:00 am by Christine Rice

Top Life Coaching TipsTop Life Coaching Tips is a self-help book that offers multiple ways to live life with more peace, passion, energy, and joy. It is a book that everyone could benefit from, because any one of us could use more of those traits in our lives.

The book has 31 tips on how to live a better life. It is perfect for perfectionists, pessimists, and people who could use more happiness and less stress in their lives. And, as the author explains, we have the power to make it happen; we have control over our happiness and our level of stress.

If you are under a lot of stress – you might not even be aware you are – or feel depressed about your life, this book will give you hope that your life can change, and it all begins with you. If you change your thoughts, you’ll change your perspective, and since life is based on perspective, your life will change.

The author’s writing instills peace in your heart when you read it. Her positive words calm you and give you the idea that your life doesn’t have to be so bad. She shares poems, quotes, and affirmations in the book. The variety those features bring to the book, and the fact that it’s broken up into a series of different tips, makes the book a breeze to read.

The tips the author provides are on the topics of thoughts, generosity, time, passion, awareness, goals, trust, inspiration, collaboration, song, support, disappointment, intuition, play, love, celebration, fear, success, and many more. As you can see, there is a wide variety of topics the author discusses and they are helpful to many facets of a person’s life.

Each tip is followed by a quote or affirmation, making it a nice way to start each day – by reading a tip that will get you started in the right direction. The entire book is uplifting.

I recommend this book to all readers. It is a very easy and quick read, but it’s full of helpful advice on how to live a positive life.

You can get your copy of Top Life Coaching Tips here. I know you’ll enjoy it!

December 23, 2012

Review of “Secrets to Ebook Publishing Success”

Posted in Book Reviews tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 5:28 pm by Christine Rice

Secrets to Ebook Publishing SuccessSecrets to Ebook Publishing Success by Mark Coker is a thorough self-help manual about how to succeed as an ebook author. It is a good book for a soon-to-be-published author, but it is also helpful for an author who has already published a book, or several books for that matter.

This book covers a lot of information, which is pleasing since it is free. You usually can’t go wrong with free, and this book is no exception. It emphasizes the importance of writing a well-written and edited book with a great title and cover design. It talks about the value of connecting well with your readers, distributing your ebook to as many online retailers as you can, giving your book away for free, developing your author platform, maximizing “virality,” and studying bestsellers in your genre. It covers the most popular cycles or trends of ebook sales, how to deal with negative reviews, and how to set an appropriate ebook price. It goes into adequate detail about twenty-eight “secrets” to having a successful ebook; plus, there are additional chapters of other helpful information.

I have published four ebooks myself, and even though I have heard of most of the tips Coker provides – because of my five years of publishing experience – it is a well-written book with lots of insights that would help aspiring authors, new authors, and authors who don’t have much experience with editing, formatting, publishing, marketing, and networking, and anyone who is looking to learn a new tip or two to improve their ebook’s sales.

To get your own free ebook copy of Mark Coker’s Secrets to Ebook Publishing Success, check out the following links at Amazon and Smashwords. Cheers to being a successful author!

October 20, 2012

The Next Big Thing Blog Hop!

Posted in Books tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 3:16 pm by Christine Rice

Okay, it’s time to take a break from working to get back to blogging :) I have been tagged by Katie S. Pendergrass for The Next Big Thing Blog Hop. The “rules” are to answer 10 questions about my work-in-progress. I have two work-in-progresses, so I will choose Chronicles of a Troubled Girl for this blog hop.

1. What is the working title of your book?
Chronicles of a Troubled Girl: A Collection of Journal Entries

2. Where did the idea come from?
I got the initial idea – to type up all of my journal entries – from my friend and colleague, Katrina Rychling. She said she was planning on typing up her journals, and that gave me the idea to type up and publish mine.

3. What genre does your work-in-progress fall under?
Memoir or compilation.

4. Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
I would want to be the main character, which is myself :) There are a lot of other people in my book and it would be wonderful if all the original people could play the parts. I’m sure that won’t happen, but I can dream, right? ;)

5. What is a one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Chronicles of a Troubled Girl is a compilation of the author’s journal entries from age nine to age thirty that demonstrates her struggles during childhood, adolescence, and adulthood.

6. Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
I will likely be self-publishing it.

7. How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
I started writing the manuscript at the end of January and I am still working on it. I am 4/5 finished with it. I took a few months off due to publishing and marketing my other book and because of other work responsibilities.

8. What other books would you compare this story to within its genre?
Anne Frank’s The Diary of a Young Girl.

9. Who or what inspired you to write this book?
Katrina Rychling. Thanks, Katrina!

10. What else about your book might pique reader’s interest?
There are journal entries about my experiences in a mental hospital and with being homeless.

Those are all of the questions. Now I will choose some people who I’d like to hear about their work-in-progress: Charlene Truxler, Dew Pellucid, Russ Meyer, Theresa Leschmann, and Karen Elizabeth Brown. The “rules” are to answer the same questions, but about your own work-in-progress, and to tag people you know who are authors or writers and possibly working on a manuscript. Have fun!

October 4, 2012

How You Can Organize and Run Your Own Blog Tour – Part 1

Posted in Blog Tours tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 1:31 pm by Christine Rice

As most of you know, I recently finished up a month-long blog tour for my book, Freelance Writing Guide. I feel the blog tour was a success, because all of the bloggers posted on the correct days, there was effective communication between me and the bloggers, I made some valuable connections for the future, and it generally went smoothly and was easy to keep up with. Below I will share with you my tips on organizing and running your own blog tour.

For a month-long blog tour, you will need to start organizing it one month in advance.

I started announcing my blog tour around July 23rd (my blog tour started August 29th). I posted my announcement and my request for bloggers to participate on Facebook, Twitter, Writer’s Digest Community, LinkedIn, and here on my blog. Doing those posts was a good means of self-promotion, but it did not draw the interest of many bloggers who would participate in my blog tour. So I checked all of the blogs I had followed on WordPress by looking at my “reader” on the main WordPress page. I also checked the Blogger blogs I followed through Google Friend Connect (GFC) by going to a Google blog that I knew I followed and clicking on my profile picture in the list of followers; that brought up my GFC profile, which had a list of all the blogs I followed.

I checked out each of the blogs that seemed to be for writers or readers, to see if the blog owner was a book reviewer or an author interviewer. These types of bloggers usually have a page on their blogs that explains what types of books they review and/or their book review policy, what types of authors they host on their blog, and their contact information. If they reviewed nonfiction books or hosted nonfiction authors, I contacted them by sending them a message from their blog’s contact form (located on a page of their blog), or by emailing them if the email address was provided. I rarely came across bloggers that provided no means of contact. But if that was the case, I posted a comment on their “about me” page or on their most recent blog post.

I had not followed enough blogs in the past to acquire enough bloggers to host me, so I had to look at additional methods. In a comment to my blog post on here, Patty Apostolides kindly suggested I check out Book Blogs. I had never heard of the term “book blog” before, but I quickly learned what it meant. A book blog is a blog where the blog owner posts book reviews on their blog, and sometimes author interviews and giveaways. Book Blogs was where I found most of the bloggers for my blog tour. I will tell you how. After joining Book Blogs, the first thing I did was scroll through every one of their interest groups (currently there are 490) to find the ones that related to my purpose of acquiring bloggers who’d be interested in hosting me. Every time I saw a possible group to join, I wrote the name of the group down on a notepad. After I had gone through all of the groups, I separately typed the name of each of the groups I had on my notepad into the search bar on the group listing page to bring the group up. I reviewed each group a second time and joined the ones that were most compatible with my needs (to save time from joining groups that would not be very effective for my purpose). Some of the groups I joined were: Authors Needing Reviews and Interviews, Self-Published Book Reviews, Network Your Blog, Advertise Your Work, and Promote Your Books!. Network Your Blog was the most helpful, because it had the most members.

For the groups I joined, I looked through the forum posts, and used the search bar for the forums that had an overabundance of posts where it would take too long to look through them all. I commented on bloggers’ posts, who were looking to review books and host author interviews on their blogs, telling them about my book and asking if they would like to host me. I also provided my email address – since I did not follow all of the forum posts I commented on, because I ended up with a large amount of emails in my inbox from other people’s comments – because I would not get notifications for their posts. I clicked “stop following,” a link that is just below the main post on each forum post, if I did not want to get notified of followup comments.

Next, and this was the most proficient way to get in touch with bloggers, I went through every comment on the Network Your Blog forum post entitled “Bloggers Seeking Authors, Guest Posts, Giveaways, Or?”. That post was 27 pages long when I got to it, but it was more efficient to look through that one post with hundreds of bloggers on it, than to search for bloggers on individual posts. So I started from the last page that had the most recent dates and worked my way to page one, by reading each comment and looking into the bloggers’ blogs to see if they were compatible with me and my book (indie author of nonfiction book). Then I contacted them – not by replying to their comment on the forum post, because they probably unfollowed the post like I did, but by finding their email address on their blog (sometimes it was in their forum post comment) or (second best) by using their blog’s contact form.

In part 2, I will talk about what to write in emails to bloggers, how to maintain an effective “contacts” list in your email program, how to maintain an effective exchange with bloggers, what to do when bloggers don’t respond to your emails, and how to schedule the bloggers’ posting dates for the blog tour.

September 23, 2012

I’m sad to see you go…

Posted in Blog Tours tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 10:58 am by Christine Rice

My month-long blog tour is nearing its end. I feel like I’m losing a friend. It’s been fun seeing all the posts about Freelance Writing Guide and keeping in touch with the blog tour participants. It took me one month to organize the tour and one month for the tour itself, and now, it’s coming to a close. I will miss all of the fun I’ve had. I hope you’ve had fun too – learning readers’ opinions about my book, getting to read an excerpt from the book, learning more about me, and reading some guest posts I wrote of tips for freelance writers. I really appreciate your participation in my blog tour. I know some of you are following along and reading the posts. My husband is too!

In addition to enjoying the experience, I’ve learned a lot. A blog tour is a fun time and helpful for promoting one’s book, but it is A LOT of work. First, I had to find bloggers who would be willing to participate in my tour. During that time I also finished the edits of my book and published it. Then I sent out the ebook copies to the bloggers. Then I was answering interview questions for a bunch of different interviews. Then the tour started. I answered more interview questions and wrote some guest posts. Almost every day, I promoted each of the bloggers’ posts in up to 10 places on the Web. I also published a few blog posts here to keep you all included in the tour.

I will be publishing a blog post this week with tips on how authors can successfully run their own blog tours, so keep an eye out for that if you are an author who is interested in having a blog tour someday. Now, I will share with you where the tour has been during the last few days and where it is going to be in the next, and last, two days. Boohoo :(

Last Wednesday – September 19th – Chris Eboch published my guest post on “Tips for Writing for Content Websites.” If you are interested in writing for Yahoo, Suite101, Helium, or other sites, you should check out this post! On Thursday, Ansuyo reviewed Freelance Writing Guide on her blog: Writing with Both Sides of my Brain. Her review is detailed, honest, and well-balanced. If you’re interested in writing professional book reviews, you should check out my guest post from Friday, “Professional Book Reviewing Tips,” on YaminaToday.com. Yesterday, my guest post, “Three Important Tips for Freelance Writers,” was posted on Literary Lunes Publications.

Today, there is an interview with me and Sandra of JeanzBookReadNReview. The interview questions are pretty unique, so check it out for new information about me and my books! Tomorrow – Monday, September 24th – I will be interviewed by Chris at TheWriteChris. Check out that interview to learn my takes on publishing, promotion, and writing groups, and my advice for new writers and what I’ve learned as a freelance writer. Tuesday – the last day of the tour – will bring you back here where there will be a special surprise!

Have fun at the next stops of the tour and please come back here Tuesday! Have a great day!

July 1, 2012

A Busy Month – June 2012

Posted in Books, Publishing, Writing tagged , , , , , , , , , at 12:04 am by Christine Rice

Since the beginning of the year, June was my busiest month. I went through a couple of months where my activity declined, but now it is in top speed. I’ve been reviewing books and networking a lot, but I’ve also been working on my manuscripts a lot too. And don’t forget about blog posts! This is what I accomplished last month:

  • Published 16 blog posts (between two blogs).
  • Published 10 book reviews.
  • Edited twice for a colleague.
  • Sold some books.
  • Completed the first draft of Freelance Writing Guide.
  • Unburied Freedom from Fat from 2010.
  • Wrote a total of 40,600 words in three manuscripts.

I am doing it all for my readers and for my pure enjoyment of writing. I hope you each find your passion and follow where it leads. Mine leads to happiness :)

June 23, 2012

Review of “Chasing Superwoman”

Posted in Book Reviews tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 1:48 am by Christine Rice

Chasing Superwoman by Susan M. DiMickele is a fun, lighthearted book about the author’s life as a working – and religious – mom. Even though it is an easy-going read, she does uncover deep issues in an honest manner.

The book begins with an introduction and a first chapter that introduce the author to her readers, and covers what it means for her to try to be superwoman. Following are chapters on working as a lawyer, life as a mother, daily duties, involvement with school, participation in church, shopping experiences, family role models, and food. Then she discusses more deeper issues, such as: lack of relaxation, contentment, and time, as well as her role as a good mother, and what chasing superwoman is like.

I recommend this book to moms, working women, and readers who wish for a cheerful and realistic read that will make them laugh and think. DiMickele does a wonderful job at capturing her readers’ attentions by moving at a quick pace and providing lots of action. You will be happy you took the time to read this book.

You can get your own copy here. I hope you enjoy the book!

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