#BlogBreakThursday and a #ThankYou

A Quick Reminder and a Thank You!

I won’t be around much today, folks, since it’s my scheduled Blog Break day for this week, but I wanted to thank EVERYONE who commented so beautifully on Debby’s #TenThings post yesterday. I was not able to respond individually, as Long COVID fatigue wiped me OUT. I slept most of the day. (Something that’s unheard of for me during normal times.) I do feel better this morning, but still not quite back, so I’ll be taking it easy today, too, and hoping to be FULLY back to normal tomorrow! Fingers crossed.

In the meantime, here’s wishing each of you a SUPER day today, and Granny and I will see you tomorrow. 

#TenThingsYouMayNotKnowAbout – #D.G.Kaye

I’m sure today’s author needs no introduction for most of you, but just in case there are some new folks reading along, I’m delighted to say that author D. G. Kaye is with us today. Debby is widely known in the blogging/writing world as a memoirist and a writer who generously spreads humor wherever she goes. Please help me give Debby a big welcome this morning. Debby? You’re on!


Thank you so much Marcia, for inviting me to share some of myself here today in your wonderful series – #TenThingsYouMayNotKnowAboutMe.

1.
In high school, I always managed to maintain an over 80 average – despite my one year failing art and gym! Yes, art and gym! How do you fail art and gym? Well, I did. I was the girl in the Janis Ian song – At Seventeen – when choosing sides of basketball, I’d be last pick. I was nowhere near athletic, nor was I interested in sports. My only saving grace was dance segment and health classes which helped bring up my saggy average in that class. I remember getting booted for a class or two when I was caught cutting across the track field instead of running the length of it, hoping I wouldn’t be discovered doing so, to no avail. And don’t even get me started with those ugly blue rompers, sack-like outfits we had to wear. Art was a whole ‘nother thing. I still cannot color in the lines! Even when it comes to my book covers, I have the vision of what I want, but cannot express with drawing anything with my own hands – okay, maybe stick people.

2.
Ambidextrous, I am, sort of. A weird mixture of one who writes with her right hand yet does most other things with the left. I also sucked at baseball because I have to wear a glove on my left hand for catching, and must take it off to throw the ball back with my same left, leaving a runner too much time before I could throw back the ball. I have no sports coordination with my right hand. When I attempted in my younger years, to play guitar, that was also strumming with the left hand. It’s complicated.

3.
Before I met my husband, I was in an abusive relationship with someone for seven years. I realized it after the first year of living together, but by then I was trapped. I have written much on the subject, but to this day am still petrified of publishing anything about those years, for fears of being sued by my vindictive stalker and abuser.

4.
I had many jobs and careers in my younger years. I was never fired, always left on my own volition. My earlier days were working in the fashion industry – selling clothes and doing the buying for some of those stores. I did a lot of temp secretarial in between jobs, and I was an executive secretary to the general manager of one of our downtown hotels for a few years. Before that, I worked for a photography company doing company sales for family portraits. My job took me all over the province of Ontario – with me as the driver. Those were my fearless days. I also became a certified travel agent, not because I wanted to work in an agency, but I’d struck a deal with an agency owner, I’d bring him clients on the side so I could keep my regular job and get my travel perks, commissions and benefits from the agency. I became office manager for an architectural firm, and later for a construction company, and then a real estate company. In my 30s, I went to ‘dealer’ school and became a certified casino dealer for blackjack and poker, then ultimately, became a pit boss. After a few years doing that, I got scouted out to work for a private company doing private parties. I only worked two or three nights a week and made more money (in tips) than I did all week working in a casino. I ultimately met my husband who was a guest of someone I knew at one of those parties. Once my husband moved in with me, he didn’t want me to work anymore. I must admit, it felt weird not working when I’d worked since a teenager.

5.
I am an empath and very spiritual and sense when spirits are around me. As of yet, I have not directly sensed my own husband directly around me, but, I have definitely received many signs. I am an empath who can sense spirit by smell and touch and an inner knowing, this makes me clairsentient, clairalient, and claircognizant. I also read souls through looking into eyes, sort of like a human lie and empathy detector. This has never failed to be an alert system for me. Except when I was younger and dismissed what I thought I saw. I rely on my instincts to guide me. My father and my dear aunt come to visit me sometimes. I know when they are around, my body starts to shiver, and I can smell my aunt’s perfume or my father’s cigarette smoke when they appear.

6.
Some sensitives are greatly familiar with astral planing. I know I must have gone to other realms while sleeping, many times over, but my only recollection of physically leaving my body, then plunking back into it, was about six months after my father died when I went to visit him in heaven. I still remember standing on the threshold between heaven and earth. I remember it so vividly to this day 32 years later.

7.
I’m like a mixed genre book. I don’t fit into any one type of box. I’m a Gemini, always troubled making up my two minds. I am soft, I am loud. I’m an extrovert, yet an introvert in other ways. When I was in my dating years, men told me I was an enigma. I liked that. My unpredictability kept them on their toes. My husband was a man of action and liked action. I was a great challenge for him, and certainly different than the doormats and looser women he was used to in his post first marriage playboy days. The spark never left us, and I attribute the ‘keeping him on his toes’ with me, a good part of why we had such a loving and dynamic marriage.

8.
I love to travel and have many places to travel to still, on my bucket list. I always follow my instincts. If I get an inner warning, or obstacles that keep appearing to stop me from something I’m wanting to do, I pay attention. For example, for years I haven’t been back to Europe because my husband had no interest in leaving North America, and I had no interest in leaving him behind. Since I lost him spring of 2021, I had hoped to run for refuge to one of my two best friend’s house in the U.K. later in the year. Sadly, Covid travel restrictions wouldn’t be lifted until late October, and by then, my girlfriend came here to visit me. She stayed for a month, which was almost till late November, and by then, it was getting too close to the new year, when I was geared up to travel down south to Mexico for a few months escape. Now in 2022, my friend is in midst of building a new house, living in a small rental, and Covid is picking up again. the AIRLINES here and there are a godawful mess, and our dollar is crap. So, it’s quite likely I won’t be getting to the other side of the pond this year either. In fact, I’ll be lucky to get back to Mexico next winter.

9.
I have zero tolerance of social injustice, bullying, inequality, and violations of people’s personal rights, and I will always stand up for the underdog. I also try to keep myself out of getting caught in those situations, because it is difficult for me to stay silent. And, in this day and age we are living in, calling out those who are wrong doers, can have serious repercussions. But I won’t hesitate to write about something unjust I come across. Sometimes, the pen is indeed, mightier than the sword.

10.
About my husband. I lost the love of my life last year. I have lost quite a few loved ones in my life and grieved them all, but there is no grief like losing the other half of ourselves. I blame Covid for the system not getting him into hospital, despite my daily efforts and rapports with doctors, for almost a year! By then, it was too late. It’s bad enough grieving a loss, but especially during Covid when I couldn’t have real people contact when I needed it, not to mention, the huge funeral my husband got ripped off of. I spent a lot of time searching for (useless) online grief groups, and reading many books, hoping to self-medicate. And I learned from reading many of those books, unfulfilled from what I was searching for, that there is a market for kinship and real talk on the subject. So, I decided to, and have been writing episodes to start a podcast to talk about the things that don’t get mentioned enough of on the subject of grief. Naturally, I’m titling it – Grief – The Real Talk. Stay tuned!
      ©DGKaye2022


You Can Buy D. G.’s Books HERE


Author D. G. Kaye

D.G. Kaye is a Canadian nonfiction/ memoir writer who writes about life, matters of the heart and women’s issues. She writes to inspire others by sharing her stories about events she’s encountered, and the lessons that came along with them. D.G. loves to laugh and self-medicate with a daily dose of humor. When not writing intimate memoirs, you’ll find D.G. writing with humor in some of her other works and blog posts, ranting about injustice, dabbling in poetry, and sharing a book review Sundays on her blog.


Check out All of D. G.’s work on her Author Page, here:
Author Page

You can reach D. G. on Social Media here:
Website
Goodreads
Twitter
Linkedin
Facebook 
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#QuestionOfTheDay – #InquiringMindsWannaKnow

I think I’ll start off the new month with a brand new series,  just for fun. Nothing necessarily serious or deeply thought provoking, but instead, little mini-surveys from time to time that might prove entertaining. I’ll make this first one really easy:

Coffee or Tea? 

I, myself, am a confirmed tea drinker and have been since my early 20s. That’s more than fifty years now, but who’s counting, right? I do like the taste of coffee, though only if it’s full of enough cream and sugar to make it the caloric equal of a very rich milkshake. But being a true Southerner, I was raised drinking iced tea at supper every night, and just went on from there.  I also learned years ago that 3 cups of black (as opposed to green or white or herbal) tea a day reduces your chances of osteoporosis by over 30%! And given my bad fall a little while back, I honestly think it may have saved me from a fractured skull and possible brain bleed. (My doctor says I have the densest bones of anyone my age she’s ever seen.)

Bottom line, I love hot tea and iced tea, and drink both straight and unadulterated. My favorites are Earl Grey and Scottish Breakfast Tea, though I have a shelf filled with many others, just in case I want something different for my second and third cups of the morning.

Now It’s Your Turn!
(Feel free to expound on your answer, or not, as the mood strikes you.)

COFFEE OR TEA?

 

 

#BlogBreakFriday

Just a quick reminder that I won’t be around much today, if at all. Yep, it’s #BlogBreakFriday for me, and I’ve got a whole bunch of stuff I need to work on today. The good news is, I’m having more and more pretty good days, while the Long Covid/Fatigue/BrainFog days are easing up a bit. I’m still having several each week, but they seem to start later in the day and go away earlier than they were. I’m going to take that as a sign they’ll soon disappear altogether. For now, however, they do cause me to fall a bit farther behind on all my projects, both written and here in the house and yard. 

Therefore, if I’m lucky today, I’ll feel good enough to get a whole bunch of stuff done, and another step closer to “normal” life again. (Well, what passes for normal for  me, anyway. 😉)


You guys have a wonderful Freya’s Day, and I’ll see you soon! 

#GuestDayTuesday – Featuring #SueRovens

 

I am very happy to welcome Sue Rovens back to The Write Stuff as our special guest today! Please join me in making her feel right at home! Sue, the stage is yours! 🤗


A big, juicy THANK YOU to Marcia for allowing me the opportunity to visit with you today! While I don’t have a brand-new book to promote, I do have one that came out last year which might be of interest. (More on that shortly.)

            I am a suspense/thriller writer from Normal, Illinois. I used to say I write strictly horror, but over the years, I discovered two important things.

One, I actually don’t write exclusively “horror” per se, but rather a mix/mash-up of suspense with some horrifying elements woven into the story. Lately, when asked, folks who have read my books told me that the stories are more weird than scary, which I find to be a compliment. 😊 So, I dropped the HORROR label (except in relation to some of the short stories), and now promote my work under the banner of suspense/thriller.

The second thing I learned came directly from interacting with people at events and seeing how their demeanor changed when I said that I wrote “horror”. While a few folks were intrigued, the majority cringed, backed away, or refused to engage at all. They wouldn’t even pick up one of my books and read the back. Something about the very word was off-putting. It didn’t matter how much I tried to explain that my stories weren’t hardcore horror or gore-heavy. Just the fact that I used “that word” turned them off completely.

I’ve read hardcore horror (body horror, splatter, etc – not my bag, but I’m familiar). My books are NOT that. I was mistaken to ever label the novels “horror” and thus changed how I promote myself and my work. When I was a new writer (back in 2012), I pegged myself as a horror writer because I wanted to be in that camp – with the Stephen Kings and Jack Ketchums of the world. While I enjoy reading some select horror (good stories and not just killing for killing’s sake), I had to realize that my own books simply didn’t fit that moniker. They’re related in a very distant way, but they are what they are: suspense/thrillers.      



Rage is Available on Amazon HERE 

Author Sue Rovens

Sue Rovens is an indie suspense/horror author who hails from Normal, Illinois. She has written four novels and two books of short horror stories. She is currently working on her fifth novel, Sanctum, which should be out sometime in 2023.

Track 9, her second novel, snagged a starred review in Publisher’s Weekly (May 2018), her short story, “Coming Over,” from her book, In a Corner, Darkly (Volume 1) was turned into a screenplay and short student indie film by the theater department of Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, and another short story, “When the Earth Bled,” won 2nd place in the Support Indie Authors short story contest in 2021. Her two most recent books (Buried and Rage) are under Plump Toad Press.

Sue owns a blog (suerovens.com) which includes interviews with authors, musicians, podcasters, and artists. She is an Executive Producer for an indie (short) horror film which is currently in production called “Let’s Do Things that Make Us Happy.”

Sue is a member of The Chicago Writers Association and the Alliance for Independent Authors (ALLi).

***Special Note!***

I, too, interview authors (as well as musicians and artists) on my blog. If you are interested, please shoot a quick email to me. ALL are welcome on the blog regardless of professional level or genre. Email me at srovens@yahoo.com. Thanks! 😊


You can reach Sue on Social Media here:

Email: srovens@yahoo.com
Author Page
Blog
Twitter
Instagram

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#Let’sTalk – #MarketingIdeas – #WhatWorksAndWhatDoesn’t

Am I the only one who thinks that marketing is the most difficult, frustrating, and downright annoying part of writing that could possibly exist? (Somehow I doubt I am.) But whether that’s really true or not, marketing still needs to be done, and I’ve sworn for YEARS I was going to get better at it. *sigh* I haven’t. In fact, I’m so awful at it that I woke up today inspired to start a new series of posts where we can all share our thoughts on marketing and lots of other subjects from time to time. I’ve found this writing /blogging community to be among the most generous, supportive, and helpful group of folks I’ve ever met, so I’m hoping many of you will be willing to weigh in on all sorts of topics coming up in the weeks ahead.

With that in mind, here’s what I’m wondering today:

What is your favorite way to market your books?
Which paid forms of marketing have you had the most success with?
Are there any types of marketing writers should be avoiding?

I’ll start by saying I’ve never marketed my books anywhere other than  through blogging, and local sales. For several years, I sold quite a few books at every wildlife talk I gave and really enjoyed signing them after the talks. Trouble is, many in my audiences now have all of my books, so that market has been “saturated.” I need to branch out. (And to have this brain fog lift enough to enable me to finish my WIP, because I understand new books are a great way to sell OLD ones.)

NOTE: Jan Sikes has been running a series of very detailed posts on Story Empire, going into the pros and cons of various types of marketing.  It’s an excellent series, and you can check out the first post HERE. Thanks for reminding me of this series, Jan! LOTS of great info!

Now I’m going to turn the discussion over to you guys. Please feel free to share any marketing or promotional questions, ideas, and worries you might have. And we’d especially love to hear about some things that have worked … or NOT worked … for you. 

Thanks for joining the conversation!

LET’S TALK!

#BlogBreakThursday – #Weeding – #HaveAGreatDay!

It’s Blog Break Thursday today, so I’m off to do something productive around the house. I’m actually going to try to do some weeding, but in this heat, I’ll need a wet rag on my head under my sun hat, plus my neckfan blowing on my face, and a beach umbrella. With all of the above, I might make it ten or fifteen minutes before I give up. Guess I’ll weed FAST!

You guys have a great day, and I’ll see you tomorrow for Granny Says!