Time Flies By

Hey all, I apologize for not posting at all last week. I was insanely busy.

I was just realizing how fast time goes by. My niece turns five in just two months. But I guess that wasn’t the main focus on my thoughts about how fast time is going.

I have wanted to get published pretty much all of my life. But you know what? I used to wait for inspiration to come and then I just wrote all night. Big mistake, I know. Especially since I was in high school at the time and would sometimes write on a school night!

I would love to say that worked. Not surprisingly, it didn’t. After high school, I started listening to a writing podcast and really started wanting to write seriously. I really started in May of 2014. It’s crazy to think how fast time has gone by. I don’t feel like I’ve been writing for over a year, and now I’m just waiting on the money to be able to get the manuscript edited one last time!

It’s been almost a year since I first finished that manuscript… It’s crazy to think about.

I don’t know how time slips by us all, but it sure does. I’d be willing to bet that all of you think so, too!

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The Money is Coming

I’m so sorry for not posting for over a month, everyone! I’ve been swamped with school things and getting ready for vacation. And then, of course, there was the actual vacation… Anyway, I’m back to the real world and hopefully, back to posting regularly.

If you’ve been following me for any length of time, you know that I’ve been saving up money for an editor. It’s been a slow, tedious process, but it’s finally getting close. After all these months, I may be able to finally change what I say on Wednesday’s about Days of the Kill.

I was on vacation for two weeks. I missed an entire pay period, and I don’t get paid time off. But you know what? I was looking at the bank the other day, and as it turns out, I got paid for my vacation time anyway. Say what? Mind you, I’m not complaining. It was a nice surprise.

I’m so excited. I’m just over $300 short of what I need for the editor. One or two more paychecks should cover that. I’ll finally be able to say that Days of the Kill is with the editor instead of it being on hold! I’m so glad that I’m able to do that. I’m sure everyone is tiring of seeing the same thing over and over again.

Guys, maybe you’re like me and you’ve been saving up for an editor for months and months at a time. I know, it gets really tiring. But don’t despair: I know from experience that the money does come. Just keep looking toward your goal.

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Algebra the Evil

I don’t know about you, but I’ve always struggled with any kind of math. It can be Geometry, it can be Algebra…it can be anything.

My struggle really started when I was in seventh grade (right after I got my wisdom teeth pulled…I always joke about it not being a coincidence!). Ever since then, I’ve struggled to pass, and it was a long road, let me tell you.

In my junior year of high school, we were studying the quadratic formula in Algebra 2. I didn’t understand it at all. So, of course, someone thought it would be a good idea for me to do practice problems…during Christmas break. Um…say what?

So, I did them, even though that was the last thing I wanted to do. I remember it was the day before I had to go back. I kept getting them wrong, and eventually I became so frustrated, that I just shut down completely for several hours. Nobody could get a single word out of me. It was my phone getting taken away that caused me to break…yeah, I don’t understand that part either.

I ended up dropping out of high school for a semester. Well, I say “dropped out,” but I was doing some schooling. It was online, so I didn’t have to deal with everyone in high school.

I graduated on time…just so we’re clear.

Now, I’m studying the quadratic formula again in college, and let me tell you, memories are flooding back. It was my undoing in high school…it may be my undoing in college, but I’m going to try to not let that happen.

Luckily, I do have some people that can help me now. I have an Algebra tutor that I meet with on Saturdays (well…sometimes. When I’m not doing anything else). He does Algebra for fun…the freak. I also have a friend that unfortunately lives all the way on the other side of the world. He says it’s a good refresher…so I may just have to bombard him (even though I promised to try to not!).

Algebra is evil, just pure and simple. I’ll be glad when I’m done with it for good.

Okay, I’m done ranting for now. Until Wednesday…stay tuned!

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Money Struggles

Being a writer can be absolutely crippling to your bank account. As someone who is currently struggling to get enough money to get an editor, I would know. It’s more than horrific to think about.

I guess all authors struggle before they get their first book out. Heck, most authors probably struggle even after they get their first book out. Unless, you know, you’re JK Rowling or someone with her kind of money.

I recently got in contact with an editor that I think could do a really good job with my manuscript and undo all the damage that the first editor seems to have done. I know, I said the first editor did a really good job. Well, after looking at the sample edit that the second editor did, I’m afraid I have to take that back, as much as I didn’t want to.

I look at the money that I spent on the first editor. It’s not a bad deal. I spent just over $500 on her services. Not bad when you think about what most editors cost, right? Well, I guess you get what you pay for, which in this case, I’m afraid wasn’t much.

I think what pains me most is the fact that I had no reason to not trust this editor. My publicist actually got me in touch with her, and said that she could do a really good job. As much as I love what my publicist is doing, I had a really good feeling about her.

While talking about this, I guess what could have happened was, she really did do an amazing job with it, but the second editor has a completely different view. I happen to trust the second editor… She’s getting to be fairly well-known.

I’ve gotten off-track. Anyway. The point is, being an unpublished writer can be hard, and extremely frustrating when you need services, but you don’t have the funds for it. I think paying the editor will be the hardest part. When that’s over with, I can move on to the cover art while I’m working on the edits.

I guess that’s about it for this week. I may or may not be able to post next Monday. I’ll be getting back in town on Sunday, so I should be able to, but we will see. So until then…stay tuned!

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Budget, Budget, Budget!

I’m pretty much broke. Like, flat broke. Well, I have a couple hundred in the bank (at least), but when I need to make payments to an editor…well, you get the picture.

I think all writers struggle with that. At least at first. Then some of us hit it big and never have to worry about money again. Others…well, not so much. Personally, I’m hoping to make it big, but we’ll see how that goes. Don’t we all? I do always say, “When I’m rich and famous…” Never hurts to think positive. 😉

So, what do you do when you’re on a budget? I’m just limiting the amount of time I spend on Amazon (Amazon addict, especially when it’s almost my youngest niece’s second birthday…look out, bank account!!!) and living paycheck to paycheck. Life of a writer, am I right?

I’m personally a big fan of Thumbtack right now. Over the next 24 hours, I’ll be getting emails from editors so I can get an idea of who would be a good fit for me and who I can afford. Yes, I realize there’s such things as payments, but even those have their limits.

Now, for those of you who have been reading my posts for any length of time might be questioning: didn’t I have an editor already?

Quite simply: yes. I did. I still do for future projects.

While she did an amazing job on my manuscript, she wanted me to get one more editor. Mostly, she wanted me to get a content editor, but I can’t do that! My manuscript defies all normal murder mysteries… But, I will get another editor.

Now, I did have one in mind, but apparently, that one isn’t much good…and is unprofessional. Beware of those, writers. I’m so glad I found that post about her.

Well, I guess that’s about it for this week. Wednesday, we’ll look to see how far along I’ve come again. Until then…stay tuned!

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Being Productive With a Child

I don’t have children. However, I have a four-year-old niece. Well, I also have another niece and a nephew, but the four-year-old is the only one that comes to visit for the weekend. The other’s can wait until they’re two. My youngest niece is almost two.  My nephew is only a month and a half old. I forgot where I was going with this.

OH YEAH.

This past weekend, my four-year-old niece came to visit. Now, I always struggle to find time to write when she’s here. She’s extremely active, and it takes both my parents and I to reign her in sometimes. So, as a result, I didn’t get Saturday to write like I wanted to. Such a pain.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my niece, but sometimes, it’s frustrating when I don’t get things done that I would like to get done. I admire parents… Especially single parents.

Usually, I end up getting absolutely no writing done when my niece is here. It seems like there’s never any time. Well, this weekend, I found time, like I’ve been so big on ranting about lately. It was time to shape up and take my own damn advice.

So, I found time to write. In the middle of the night.

Now, I know what you’re thinking. I’m crazy to write in the middle of the night like that, right? I know you’re thinking that… Don’t deny it.

Let me guess. You’re too tired late at night. You need to get up early. Your kid wore you out. So what? You want to get that book published, don’t you? Well, the middle of the night or during nap time it is.

Okay, so I’m more talking about what belongs on my other site, but still. It’s annoying when people make excuses.

I can’t say that writing in the middle of the night is the best idea in the world, but sometimes, it’s necessary. I like sleep as much as the next person, but when you’re under a self-imposed deadline (or an actual deadline!) like I am, it’s kind of important to make some time for yourself…

So, when is the best time to write for you? Let me know in the comments!

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The Concert Experience

Last night, I went to a Third Day concert. For those of you that don’t know who Third Day is, they’re a Christian rock group. Look them up. They’re awesome. I may or may not have a little bit of a celebrity crush on the lead singer, Mac Powell…

This wasn’t my first concert to go to, but it was definitely the best. With the lights going everywhere and the fact that they were everywhere on stage, it was a fun night. I was rocking out right there!

Regretfully, I didn’t take any pictures. I thought about it briefly, but if I’m being honest, I was too busy enjoying myself to be worried about taking pictures. Oh, well. Next time, maybe.

I admit, there is one thing that bothers me. The opening act was signing autographs after, but not the main act. Ellie Holcomb (who I’m not as familiar with, but enjoy anyway) was signing autographs and not Third Day. I didn’t bother getting her autograph because I’m not that familiar with her work.

This happened another time, too. I went to a Casting Crowns concert, and yet, Sidewalk Prophets was signing autographs. I actually got to hold a conversation lead singer, David Frey, though… It was amazing.

Anyway, back to the topic at hand. It was a great concert, and had everything you could ask for, even encores! Everyone was demanding more, and they BROUGHT IT ON! This group does not disappoint.

So, what groups do you want to see, or have you seen recently and really enjoyed? Feel free to let me know!

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Beta Reader Day

Today’s the day. The day I’ve been dreading. The day I’ve been looking forward to. The day…wait, where was I going with this?

Oh, yes, today is the day that I’m supposed to get feedback from the beta readers. Key words: Supposed to. I’ve only heard from the two currently, so I have no idea how far along I’m going to be able to get with that. They’ve both said the beginning is a little heavy, so I’ll be fixing that. I also feel like I can work that out. I’ll give everyone a week before I totally freak out. Because if I have to, I will freak out and demand feedback. I’m surprised one beta reader in particular hasn’t gotten back to me…

I love my beta readers to death, but I can’t revise if I don’t have feedback. I mean, really. What’s up with that? Well, I guess I could always go off the feedback I have already and then revise the rest myself.  I suppose I could do that if I needed to before sending it off to the editor. We’ll see.

I know, I’m not going to get feedback from every single beta reader. Nobody does. Still, I did expect more than two. I guess that’s what I get for only getting eight beta readers. Oh, well.

In other news, I hired a publicist today. Or yesterday. Or really, she hired herself. I don’t really know. Point is, I have one. Because she came across my Facebook author page and messaged me. I’m so excited!

Well, I guess that’s all I really have for today. You guys, I’m really excited about how far this could go. As long as those gosh darn beta readers get back to me, the possibilities are endless!

That’s all for today. Wednesday will be another update. Until then…stay tuned!

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My Rise to Fame (I Hope!)

Less than a week ago, I started a Facebook author page. Type in Author S. Courtney Killian, and you’ll find it. I’ll put it in the contacts page…eventually… Someone remind me to do that later pretty please. 🙂

In the time that I’ve had the page (five days), I’ve received 150 likes. That’s right, 150. Most of them aren’t even friends on Facebook. I invited a few friends, I admit, but most of the people that have liked the page have never even heard of me.

It’s safe to say that I’m in shock.

I’ve gotten the likes (and comments, and likes on statuses, and posts on the timeline…) with minimal marketing and no books published, so who knows what it will be like when I’m actually published? Hopefully the people on my Facebook page will actually want to buy the book as well. I’ve received so much encouragement already from people I don’t even know!

Not everyone has this success, and honestly, I don’t know how I do. I’ve always just been a small-town girl with a crazy big dream. As well as this is going, I may just end up having that dream come true. Just think, if even just most of the people that have liked my page buy my book, I could go up a few places in ranking. I’m getting quite a few likes each day and I’m planning on publishing in November, so we’ll see.

I’m still average on Twitter, and less than average on G+, but let’s just hope that I can keep up the fame on Facebook. I know, I’m not really famous, but it never hurts to dream. 🙂

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Updates…Again

I know, I know, I said I would get back to Wednesday posting. I also said unless something earth-shattering happens. Believe it or not, something earth-shattering did happen. The little girl that I take care of that I have mentioned many times before went to the hospital. I couldn’t write and be happy after that. I just couldn’t.

I can’t give many details as to why she was in the hospital, but I can say that she was released Friday afternoon and it’s back to work for me on Tuesday. I have never been so happy to hear those words in my life.

Hopefully, I will be getting back to writing a Road to Being Published on Wednesday. I hope it really happens this time. I don’t like promising things and then missing it… That gets old. Really fast.

I can tell you that I’m on the fourth draft now of Days of the Kill. It’s about time I got there, too. I hated moving so slow on the third draft. I got tired of being on the same draft for over a month. Gosh darn computer problems!

Well, I will hopefully get back to that on Wednesday. I’ve missed doing that. Wednesday has turned into my favorite time of the week because I get to update you on how close I am to getting published. I’m ready. I’m willing. I can do it.

Until Wednesday…stay tuned!

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