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Posts Tagged ‘pen name’

Discouragement

I’ve been struggling for a long time with writing (actually lack of), and I’ve tried some of the things that have been suggested. I’ve tried to get enthusiastic about it again. I actually sat down and wrote a little bit on my WIP (it’s been in “P” for a long time now!), the other day, but I didn’t get much done. Every little bit is important, though, right?

Anyway, I’m beginning to realize that the main problem with me is lack of sales. See, here’s the thing. Everyone says to just write for myself. To forget about the publishing part and just write. But here’s why that doesn’t work for me. I’m a businesswoman. My writing is a business. Yes, it’s something I love, but it’s also how I would like to make a living. And that’s not happening anymore. It WAS happening back when I only had a few books out. Now that I have more, and much better ones at that, I can’t sell worth a flip. I’ve had a lot of other authors tell me this same thing the last few years.

So why can’t I just write for fun for awhile? Because I don’t have time. If I can’t make it with writing, then I need to find something else to spend my time doing that I CAN make it with. Editing is a little more profitable, so I’m not giving that up. I love editing. The problem is with editing is I’m not getting enough jobs. If I didn’t have my main client, I would probably give that up, too. One of my other clients decided to stop writing with one of her pen names, so that cut her work in half.

I’ve been trying to follow the Dave Ramsey plan to get out of debt then start saving money. He always says if you aren’t making enough at the job you’re doing, then you need to find something else. This isn’t really feasible for my full time job because I’ve been here 35 years and am just a few years away from retiring. But I need a good part time job that brings in a steady income. I have readers who beg me not to stop writing. But all of these readers aren’t out pimping my books (although I have a few that are so good about that).

Another option I have is to focus almost entirely on my other pen name. I’m actually selling a little more on Amazon with that pen name. And I have some ideas in genres that sell well. Genres I can’t really write under the Lauralynn name since Lauralynn books are too dark.

I’m almost tempted to try NaNoWriMo again. Almost. I said I would never do that again. My husband never wants me to do that again. And, honestly, I just don’t think I have that much time. But I remember the excitement of the two times I did it (and finished it!). I want that excitement back so badly!

So maybe I should just forget this little pity party and just DO IT. Anyone willing to kick me in the behind and tell me to stop whining? 🙂

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This wasn’t the best week until yesterday when I kicked butt. 🙂 I wrote 2379 words on my WIP under my other pen name (for an anthology). I had a sudden epiphany concerning the plot. I realized the why of the conflict between the hero and shero, so I was fired up. Now you might not think 2379 words is a lot in one sitting, but it is for me. I might have gotten more in, but I started getting antsy about the time because I knew I had to go to a funeral later. (Not anyone close.) That’s why I like to write when I know I have nothing else going on later in the day.

I’m getting ready to plot the second novella in my new mystery series under my other pen name. A co-worker suggested a great murder weapon that would leave no clues, so that’s going to make it more interesting. 🙂

I’m going to try to work on three different WIPs at a time this round, so that’s totally different for me. I don’t know if I can pull it off, but we’ll see. The anthology story will be my first priority, but I want to work on the other two from time to time, maybe just a few words at a time. I love a challenge, and this will definitely be one!

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Duke - 8 or 9 months old

Duke – 8 or 9 months old

Since Facebook no longer seems to pick up pictures from WordPress blogs unless it’s in that post, I thought I would provide a picture so it would show up. And what better picture than a happy dog, right? This was taken a couple of years ago, I think. The caption was already on there when I found it on my computer.

Where did January go???

There’s been progress. I got the manuscript written with my other pen name off to the publisher. I’m beta reading right now for a friend, and I have a couple of small things to proofread. I plan on picking back up on a mystery I started awhile back before I stopped to do this last novella. I should be able to get that done by the end of March. Then it’s on to a story for another anthology.

I have another Lauralynn book I need to get done before the end of the year. I’m probably going to write a sequel to Soul of a Vampire. It will revolve around a different character, the best friend of the “shero” in SoaV.

I’m really trying to be more productive this year. So far, it’s going well. I have a goal of 150,000 words this year. I made my January goal. I’m using my nifty Supernatural spreadsheet to keep up with my monthly and yearly words. 🙂

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My name is Lauralynn Elliott, and it’s been 11 days since my last check-in….

I can’t believe I’ve missed that many check-ins! Well, two, I guess. I’m feeling a little overwhelmed by all the stuff on my plate right now, and when that happens, the blog is the first thing to be neglected. I need to do better.

Things are actually going pretty well. I finished the novella I’m doing with the other pen name. I’m going to be in another anthology with that pen name, and I have a mystery started that I decided to do under that pen name. I haven’t started the next book under Lauralynn, but I think I know the story I’m going to do. I have two more ideas for Lauralynn, but I don’t know how much I’m going to get done this year. We’ll see. For an actual goal, I only have one Lauralynn book planned, but I’ve been more productive this year, so you just never know. 🙂

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nola1

I’m in New Orleans on a business trip this week. This picture is the view standing in the doorway of the French doors of my hotel room. Win! I wanted to go out there to write, but it’s SO cold.

I still got almost 2000 words in this morning, so I’m right on track to get my project for my other pen name done by or before my deadline. When that’s wrapped up, I’m going on to finish my mystery, which I’ve decided to publish under the new pen name, so I’ll have at least two books for that name. Then, I’m still planning on a Lauralynn book this year. I think all my projects are still on track.

I’m going on a ghost tour tonight after our welcome reception. I did that last year in San Antonio, so NOLA should be even better, given the history of Voodoo and such in this area. I need to bundle up, though. The temps will be in the 40’s by then.

Happy writing to everyone!

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Sometimes I feel like if I hear the word “genre” one more time, my head will explode. I know it’s a legitimate word about a legitimate thing, but it’s so frustrating sometimes to try to figure out where my book fits. I’ve worked on my latest book for many months. During that time, I’ve tried my best to figure out what genre to put it in. Because, you know, you HAVE to. It has to go somewhere. So, is it… Horror? Paranormal? Paranormal romance? Thriller? Murder mystery? Supernatural thriller? Ack! I really hope my beta readers will be able to help me with this, because this is the first time I’ve never had a clue.

So now we segue into pen names and new directions…which also involves genre. I can’t get away from this word! Anyway, almost two years ago, I started what I was going to call a Christian Romance. And I was going to write this book under my real name instead of my pen name. I wanted something I could actually let my church friends read. I abandoned that idea after only writing about 15% of it because I was afraid it would take time away from my Lauralynn Elliott books. Today, I was thinking about a couple of things. First, I wonder if I should abandon the idea of writing Christian Romance and write “Sweet Romance”. I think there might be a bigger readership if that’s how I market it. I could get the Christian romance readers because they know there won’t be graphic sex in it, but also maybe get readers that don’t necessarily want to read books with the word Christian in them. I would have to rework a little bit in this book so it won’t sound so “judgy” in places. The second issue is the fact that it could push back publication of my other books. I’ve never been able to write two books at the same time. But I know others that do it, so it CAN be done. If I set aside certain times or certain days for each of the books, maybe I could pull it off. And it might be helpful if I’m stuck on one to be able to work on the other.

So what do you all think? How do you feel about genres? Have you ever had problems figuring out where your books fit? Do you write in different genres? Do you use more than one pen name?

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This is a post that I’ve been thinking about for a long time. I wasn’t really sure how to say what I wanted to say, but someone recently made a remark to me, or rather asked me a question, that brought this whole thing to a head. The question was this: “How can you be a Christian and write about vampires?”

So…a little background on me. Yes, I’m a Christian, and I consider myself a religious person. I’m not aggressive about it because I don’t feel like that’s the way to be. I don’t force my beliefs on others, but am glad to tell you about them if you want to hear it. That’s how I’m able to get along with my friends who are Jewish, Pagan, agnostic, and atheist. I don’t push my religion on them. Everyone has a choice as to what they want to hear and do. Do I wish everyone believed the same way I do? Sure. But that’s not the way the world works.

Anyway, back to the topic, which is basically how one can be both religious and still write paranormal stories. My question in return would be…why not? The way I answered the person that asked me about how I could be a Christian and write about vampires was “It’s fiction!” I don’t understand why people don’t get that. I don’t believe in vampires, ghosts, wizards, fairies, or anything like that. I’m way too skeptical to believe in them. And that’s what makes this whole thing fun to me. I get to step into this great fantasy world and make up whatever I want to. A reviewer recently mentioned that I didn’t “explain how the vampire could eat real food and walk in the daylight”. (Hey, Spike ate real food!) Why do I have to explain that? Vampires aren’t real; therefore, I don’t have to adhere to any rule (although I don’t want to be totally stupid about it). People give Meyer a hard time because her vampires sparkle. Yeah, that’s kind of weird, but it was her book, her rules. I love the world of fantasy and see no reason why a Christian can’t write about it!

So now you know the biggest reason I write under a pen name. This just kills my mom because she wants to tell everyone that her daughter writes books. And she has told quite a few people. I just hope the ones that she tells don’t spread the word so that it gets around to the people who wouldn’t understand. Because I have friends who believe it’s wrong to write about this stuff. So I have to live two different lives and keep them separate. I don’t understand why people can’t understand that it’s fiction, and that’s all.

So what do you all think? Do you see anything wrong with a Christian writing about the paranormal???

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