What I learned from July CampNaNoWriMo

As promised I want to give you an update on how my Camp NaNoWriMo went. This year I tracked my hours instead of my words because I had a project that I was editing, one that I was drafting, and a good amount of administrative work to get done.

What I learned while keeping track of my hours is that I don’t spend as much time during the weekday writing as I thought I did. I was spending an average of 30 minutes on a weekday morning writing/editing and that’s it. Now part of this reason is because of the pandemic going on and my struggle to get into a routine. Once I realized this, I started my five am wake up time again. This helped me tremendously with getting back on track. I also realized I spend more time than I thought I did on the weekends writing.

The second thing I realized is just how much time I need to spend on administrative tasks. I often have this mentality that if I’m not writing or editing, then I’m not working and that is simply not true. I found that I kept having to remind myself that I’m not only a writer but also a publisher which means it’s perfectly okay to spend a lot of time working on the publishing business. Which means most of my time is spent doing the marketing, accounting, and other administrative tasks.

I figured out that I spend a lot of time on social media and listening to podcast about writing and it makes me feel like I’m getting work done…when I’m really not. I often listen to podcast at my day job and it’s been a great way to stay updated about changes in the industry. At the same time it kind of feels like work…even though it’s really not. Spending an hour a week listening to Sell More Books Show is enough to stay updated. Spending hours upon hours listening to other authors’ publishing journey…not so much. By keeping track of my hours, I was able to cut out these podcasts that weren’t really adding anything to my business.

Keeping track of my hours really helped me see where I was spending my time and ways I can improve.

Struggling to write in 2020? You aren’t alone.

As 2020 continues to get stranger and stranger so does my ability to write. I’m in several author facebook groups and communities and this is a common issue right now. I’ve never dealt with writers block but the last couple weeks I just can’t get excited about my stories. Does this sound familiar? If this is something you are also struggling with I encourage you to be kind to yourself. We are all dealing with this pandemic in a different way.

When this pandemic started I really was able to embrace the slower pace of life. I actually wrote more words than I normally would. I was able to get two books finished and one book first drafted. But, as everything in my state starts to open up and I have to go back into the office day I’ve really been struggling to finish books I’ve started. Instead of forcing myself to work on my books I’ve taken up writing on this blog. It seems that for some reason I’m able to get words out on a blog post but I struggle to follow a story. If this is true for you try to write something else. Maybe even try journaling. Whatever is in your head get it down on paper. You don’t have to share it anywhere but sometimes any kind of writing can help. Don’t try to force yourself to only work on one project if you are having difficulties with it. Amazon is allowing authors to push back pre-order dates. Editors have been very understanding because its a difficult time and it is okay to just do what you can. Big name authors have halted their publishing. Just know that you aren’t alone.

July Camp NaNoWriMo 2020

Hi there!

It’s camp NaNoWriMo time and I’m excited to be announcing my project for this year. If you aren’t familiar with Camp NaNoWriMo I will quickly sum it up by saying that you pick a writing project and a goal and you work hard on it for the month of July.

I’ve participated in Camp NaNoWriMo before and it can be a fun way to hold yourself accountable if you really want to finish a book. This year I’m doing things a little bit differently. I’m working on a big overall project that will be releasing in 2021 and I’m in different stages of the writing process. I have a book that I need to edit, I have a book that I’m drafting, and I’m releasing a book in August(King of The Bronx). So instead of focusing on word count like I usually would my goal is to spend 3,600 minutes this month working on my author business. I like the idea of tracking my time better because I’m not tied down to one project. If I decide to work on edits one day I can. If I want to work on administrative task one day I can and it all counts towards my goal. This will also help me see how much time I’m actually spending on my business. I have a feeling it’s probably over 3,600 minutes a month but we’ll see.

The benefit of keeping track of how much time I spend on my author business is that I can see how much I’m paying myself if that makes sense.

So what project am I working on?

The Russian Mafia! I’m so excited that I’m starting a new series that will begin to release next year and it’s surrounding the Bratva. I have one book that is drafted and I’m slowly drafting book two. I want to make sure I have a good grasp on the entire series before I start releasing anything but I think you all are really going to love these characters. I already have my covers picked out and they are pretty dark and steamy! I will continue to blog and keep you updated on my progress. Happy Writing! 🙂

My new writing schedule 2020

Since I found my passion for writing I’ve been pretty strict about setting aside time every single day to work on writing. It has worked well for me I’ve published eight books I’ve written more than that. Writing every day has help me build up a routine and take my career seriously. So why am I changing up my schedule? The short answer is I’m tired. I’ve been writing every single morning since 2017 when I started my first book; Merciless Queen. I started by getting up at five am and writing before work and I’ve pretty much kept that routine. But, for some reason starting at the end of last year waking up at 5 am became nearly impossible. Its almost like my body was rebelling against me. No matter what time I went to sleep I could not get myself up at 5 am. So I changed my wake up time to six. I could still get my words in but I only had 30 or so minutes in the morning and many times I’d finish up my word count on my lunch break or when I got home from lunch. With quarantine this schedule hasn’t really changed except the fact that I’ve also been writing at night. Quarantine has been really good for my writing and my creativity, my fast-pace world has slowed down and I’ve been able to hear my ideas and I have the time to get them on paper. But, I’ve realized in order for me to write the best I can and not feel like I’m sprinting to a finish line I need to have quiet. And as my state comes out of quarantine I’ve analyzed how I can create that quietness in my every day life.

My solution is to make changes to schedule that I’ve been following for the last 3+ years. Starting this week I’m only writing three days a week; Saturday, Sunday, and Tuesday. In order to keep my word count up I’ll have to get about 3,000 words per session. When I’m writing every day that kind of word count would be a struggle but when I’m only writing three days a week I’m spending the entire rest of the week filling up my creative well.

This is scary for me I won’t lie. It makes me anxious thinking about it but I know that I perform better at my day job when I haven’t been up staring at a computer for a hour already and I know I can concentrate more on my writing when I don’t have a time limit/ place to rush off to.

I was worried about using my weekends for writing because in my mind I should take those days off but then I realized I’ve been writing on weekends for a long time. I always tell myself that I’m not going to do any writing but every single weekend I find myself in front of my laptop typing away.

I believe this new schedule will be good for a few reasons.

  1. More time to explore our creative passions such as this blog that I want to start working on again.
  2. Less rushed writing time.
  3. More time to focus on administrative and advertising work for the publishing side of the business.

I will keep you all updated on my progress!

It’s Release Day!

Dirty Empire is now live!

Are you ready to read Maverick and Hazel’s epic love story?
Have you ever heard of a dark beach read? Me neither that’s why I wrote one. Dirty Empire takes place in Hawaii, Tahaiti and Mexico all beautiful tropical places with all the grittiness of a dark romance. It’s the perfect escape story. This book has been so much fun to write and I can’t wait for you to read it!

“Lucky for you, I’m not a man to apologize, even if I accidentally took another man’s wife.”

He lets his shoe fall to the floor with a thud before untying the other and dropping that one too. It takes a while for me to process what he’s saying.

“So you’ll drop me off? At the next island?” I ask, hope filling my chest for the first time today.

Maverick shakes his head before standing up and unbuttoning his dress shirt. A slight grin coats his lips. “Oh no, Pumpkin. Miles is going to come after me, and without you, I have no leverage.”

He takes off his shirt and leaves it in the middle of the floor. His washboard abs are on display, each one perfectly sculpted in a way that could only be achieved by hours spent at the gym. “I’m not a knight in shining armor, Pumpkin. I’m a villain.”

I married a monster.

Years ago my husband was the perfect man, until I was faced with his abusive side. I thought my husband would kill me but Maverick saved me. He seemed like my knight in shining armor. However, Maverick comes with his own set of baggage.

How will this tangled web of destruction and lust unravel? Dirty Empire will thrill, anger, push, and prod you to the edges of your imagination!