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The Best Part of Being a Writer

I have to admit, being a writer is pretty darn cool. I get to make things up for a living. If you upset me I put you in one of my books and kill you off. If I think that your cool you may very well end up in one of my books. Any dream I have is fodder for my muse, I people watch like its my job. And did I mention I get to make stuff up for a living?

Now don’t get me wrong, I never said being a writer was easy because it can be extremely difficult. But through all the difficulties: working with an editor, getting bad reviews 🙁 , trying to finish a book on time, writers block. I still love actually being a writer, I get a thrill everytime I sell a book, even if I’ve sold my fair share of books, however, I am grateful and feel blessed each and every time some buys one of my books because with out the readers out there I would be nowhere. So just know when you buy one of my books I an so vey thankful.

But through all of that being a writer is so cool. Here are my top 3 reasons for being a writer.

  1. I get to work in my pajamas. Some people might wonder why this is my number one reason but seriously, I get to work in my pajamas.
  2. Did I mention I get to make stuff up for a living? lol Cause that is just AWESOME.
  3. I can drink. Don’t get me wrong I’m not taking shots between each well crafted sentence, but I nice glass of wine while I compose the well crafted sentence doesn’t hurt.

Seriously, if you aren’t a writer, have I made you want to become one?

What are your favorite parts of your job? I would love to know.

 

Treating your Writing like a Career

So this last summer I had the amazing opportunity to attend RWA (Romance Writers of America) Annual Conference. And I learned so much, and met a host of other authors who were in the same boat as I was. Trying to make our writing stand out from the pack and make a living with our writing.

One session I attended said the following: ‘If you don’t treat your writing like a serious business, how do you expect anyone else to take is seriously.’

This struck a deep cord within me, and I realized I had been treating my writing like a hobby. Even with 4 books published I still haven’t been treating my writing as the business it should be.

So after I heard that I took a couple of months (I’m not kidding but I wish I were), to understand what that meant to me and my writing. I really believe this means something different to everyone. But for me I know without a shadow of a doubt that I have been treating my writing as a hobby because when I didn’t feel like doing any writing I just wouldn’t. If I felt boxed in with anything that had to do with writing I just walked away. Maybe that’s why I haven’t written anything in over a year….

But now what? Just recognizing that I am treating my writing like a hobby wasn’t enough, I needed to make some important changes in order to move from hobby to living.

CHANGE 1: creating a business mindset. I don’t know about you but when I am writing the last thing on my mind is business.

CHANGE 2: Carve out time during the week to deal with the business of my writing. Marketing, list building, social media, blogging. I have failed mightily in these areas in the last several years.

CHANGE 3: My writing has been mish mash for the last year, and if I want to make it a business I have to write. So I am carving time out of every day to write. Some day’s that means I am only writing for 15 min but at least I am getting words on a page.

CHANGE 4: Setting appropriate goals. ie: when I want my next book finished, how I will grow my email list, building a tribe a like minded writers. I know this one is tough because writing is such a solitary process but having like minded authors and readers will increase my reading base and accountability

CHANGE 5: Taking classes, and learning how to make my writing better. It’s always good to increase your knowledge base.

Wow reading through these kinda makes my head swim, but if I want to make my writing my business I have to treat it like it is.

Hope this helped out, if you are struggling with making your writing a business you are not alone. Let me know in the comments.

 

 

 

 

3rd Annual Readers Luncheon

So this past weekend I was privileged to participate in RWA of Utah’s annual readers luncheon. I have been lucky enough to attend all 3 events. And this event gets better and better every year.

The point of this luncheon is to focus on the reader! Show the reader some love and gratitude. Because without readers where exactly would we be after all. Readers get a ton of swag from the authors participating, and they do a ton of baskets and giveaways. You get to sit at a table and have lunch with the author of your choosing (you have to sign up early to reserve your seat with the author you want to have lunch with).

Being an author is a very solitary type of work, so getting the chance to get out and meet and mingle with my readers just means the world to me. Plus writers, I think, are some of the biggest fans out there. And getting to rub elbows with other authors is just too much fun.

This year we were lucky enough to have ReaAnne Thayne, and Jill Shalvis speak and they both gave amazing and wonderfully inspiring presentations about being a writer, and more importantly the love of reading. They are both New York Times best selling authors.

So overall if you ever get the chance to attend a readers luncheon grab that opportunity with both hands. I know if you come to the Utah luncheon that we hold every Oct. you won’t be disappointed.

Using Mythology in Current Writing

Using Mythology in Current Writing
Have you ever taken a writing class? I have, I’ve taken several, and besides the course’s where they give me writing prompts and critique’s, and grammar help. There always seems to be a prevailing tone that comes from the. “Write what you know?” if you are an author or an author want to be, you’ve heard this phrase. Now I’m a paranormal/sci-fi/fantasy/urban-fantasy author. And I like to think I’ve been around the block a couple of times but to be honest I haven’t run into many vampires, werewolves, reapers, or trackers, or anything else all that paranormal/sci-fi/fantasy. Although a couple of my past bosses could have passed for dragons, that’s a different blog post.
Anyway… what I’m getting at is writing what I know would probably bore my readers to tears. And it certainly wouldn’t sell any books. So that little bit of advice… honestly left me sitting on my hands for my twenties and most of my thirties.  Then I realized something. Write what you know? Is relative.
When writing fiction, you need to build a story on some type of foundation. That is where for me writing from Mythology comes in. I like to pull in an aspect of reality by threads of different types of Mythology.
How do I do this?
First of all, what is Mythology? Mythology is defined as collection of myths, especially one belonging to a particular religious or cultural tradition. So really what is a myth? A myth is a tradition or a story concerning the early history of a people or explaining some natural phenomenon, and typically involving supernatural beings or events. Can also be known as folk tales or folklore, fables, and or lore. Broken down within regions and tribes. This opens up so many different avenues for writers because the threads for plots are limitless. The only thing holding you back is your own imagination.

Mythology is by its own definition a collection of stories. Taking those stories and dissecting them and then retelling them is the ultimate in storytelling.
For my books, I have taken several myths from Greek Mythology, Atlantis Mythology, Biblical Mythology, and the storytelling and mythology of Dante’s Inferno. The greatest part of being an author and a storyteller is being able to combine the mythologies and stories to fit around my characters and imagination. I believe that is the muse of the modern day paranormal/sci-fi/fantasy author.
So when I am told: “Write what you know.” I go within and say. “What if?” and “How about?” and “Maybe if.” Because it’s not always about what you know, sometimes it’s about what you make-be-leave.



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Friday ReWind — How I New I wanted to be a Writer


When I knew I wanted to be a writer…

originally published: Sept. 24, 2014


  After writing for so long you would think it would be hard to pin-point exactly when I knew I wanted to be a writer. I didn’t always want to be writer, in fact I had a reading disability when I was young. Going back and asking a young Christie if being a writer is something I would have wanted to be it wouldn’t have been on my radar until—I was in my teens and I read a certain trilogy. A trilogy I didn’t like — I loved, and twenty years later I still love this trilogy. 

  But here is the thing I might have loved the trilogy, but I detested the ending.
  How can you love a set of three books but detest the finally? Ohh, it’s so easy look at the books on the market today. Twenty years ago it was a very rare, but today not so much.
  Anyway back to my story, hated the ending. So at fourteen I sat down and put pencil to paper (no really, pencil and paper no computer, no pen) and I wrote a new story. About how the hero and the heroin found each other and had a happy ever after. Because dammit that is how it’s supposed to end up!!!
  And that is how it started. That was how the seed was planted, my imagination door in my mind sprung open and I haven’t ever been able to close it. And frankly I never wanted to close it.
  Every once in a while I will pull that story out and read it, I do have several collector versions of that trilogy and it will always be one of my favorites. For starting something inside of me, and for just being a damn good story.

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Where you can find me

How I new I wanted to be a Writer


When I knew I wanted to be a writer…


  After writing for so long you would think it would be hard to pin-point exactly when I knew I wanted to be a writer. I didn’t always want to be writer, in fact I had a reading disability when I was young. Going back and asking a young Christie if being a writer is something I would have wanted to be it wouldn’t have been on my radar until—I was in my teens and I read a certain trilogy. A trilogy I didn’t like — I loved, and twenty years later I still love this trilogy. 

  But here is the thing I might have loved the trilogy, but I detested the ending.
  How can you love a set of three books but detest the finally? Ohh, it’s so easy look at the books on the market today. Twenty years ago it was a very rare, but today not so much.
  Anyway back to my story, hated the ending. So at fourteen I sat down and put pencil to paper (no really, pencil and paper no computer, no pen) and I wrote a new story. About how the hero and the heroin found each other and had a happy ever after. Because dammit that is how it’s supposed to end up!!!
  And that is how it started. That was how the seed was planted, my imagination door in my mind sprung open and I haven’t ever been able to close it. And frankly I never wanted to close it.
  Every once in a while I will pull that story out and read it, I do have several collector versions of that trilogy and it will always be one of my favorites. For starting something inside of me, and for just being a damn good story.

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Why the Alpha Hero?!?!


That’s why I’m attracted to him…


  Why the alpha hero?
  First let’s define the alpha, in the dictionary it is defined as: having the most power in a group of animals or people.
  Hero is defined as a person who is admired for great or brave acts or fine qualities.
  So the male alpha hero is a male in the group who is admired for his power and great brave acts and fine qualities.
  Now that we have defined the alpha hero, we need to take a little trip back in time to when we were cave men. And women were looking for a mate, we would look for the strongest more powerful male. The one who would be able to protect us from predators and other males. According to the definition above we were looking for an ‘alpha’ male.
  Fast forward…
  Now do you understand…? HOLY CRAP its genetics! We are drawn to these men because of genetics, we are looking for the men that will protect us from predators and give us the best course of survival. I knew it wasn’t just because they were hot.
  So read up ladies and don’t feel bad when you are attracted to that alpha hero, you are genetically programed to be attracted to him.

  Genetics are awesome even when reading a book!!!!

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Do you To-Do, Because You Should To-Do…


Do you To-Do? Because You Should To-Do…



  I know it’s strange, but this is important to staying organized. I date and To-Do first thing every morning.
  Why this is important to my business.
  First I need to explain why I consider being an author a business. Because a business brings in money. Not always the same thing just being an author.

  Being author is in its basic form an art and be an artist doesn’t always been getting paid, in fact it comes with the saying ‘the starving artist’ right? I have to admit, I love food and the nice (expensive) things of life. So being a non-paid artist (or a starving artist) isn’t going to work for me.
  So I had a decision to make, I could continue to be an ‘artist’ or I could make being an author a business and turn it into something that made money.
  Guess which one I chose?
  Yeah, I chose the business. Does that mean I am no longer an artist? No, but it does mean I am no longer a starving artist but I don’t think I am a traditional artist any longer either. So I don’t know if I like to call myself a full on artist any longer. But a business owner, a business woman, hell yes. A published author? Hell yes. That all makes it a business a authorship business. Kind of a hybrid, like the indie revolution that has rocked through the publishing world in the last several years. This artist/authorship partnership business that makes money is what matters to me know.
  And that is where my daily To-Dos come in.


  So back to why To-Do’s are so important to your day to day business processes. Because knowing what you’re doing and why you’re doing it every single day with purpose and intent makes sure your business moves forward successfully every single day.
  Ahhh that is the important part moving forward with a successful business every single day. Who would have that a To-Do list would help move your business forward? So the question is why…
  Knowing what you’re doing with INTENT every day.
  With PURPOUS every day.
  All of these equal one thing SUCCESS.
  So it comes back to… Why? Why you ask.
  This is why? Here is an example of my To-Do list.
08.03.2014

    08.03.14  

  • Email
  •   

  • Clicky
  •   

  • Rignite
  •   

  • Blogs for the Week
  •   

  • Check Book Sales
  •   

  • Site5 Website Updates
  •   

  • Facebook Marketing reveiws
  •   

  • Book 4 — Deadline Sept. 30th
  •   

  • Goodreads – Street Team Blog Request
  •   

  • Edits – Check in

  My INTENT is knowing exactly what is going on in my business/authorship my To-Dos keep me focused on what is important. With the PURPOSE of knowing every aspect of my business/authorship all the time.
  Knowing the INTENT and the PURPOSE equals SUCCESS.
  Who would have thought a To-Do list could have accomplished so much?

So what’s on your To-Do 
list?

Where you can find me

My Website
Where Fantasy Meets Reality Blog
Email me
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Twitter: @christieauthor
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My Bestselling bottle of Champagne…


A while ago I bought a bottle of champagne and put it up on the wall. If you walk into my house you would walk past it and not think anything of it. It looks like any other bottle of champagne in a wall hanging. But to me it’s different.
It’s my bottle… my special ‘bestseller’ bottle of champagne when I hit the ‘list’ the unheard of list. The almost unspoken of ‘list. The almost ‘list that should not be named’ list. But I am telling you know, it’s that list the bestseller list. When I hit that list, this special bottle is coming off the wall and I am breaking that bitch open. It’s my bottle, and I can’t wait to do it, I walk by that bottle every day and when I see I have a secret smile because I know. It’s my secret bestseller bottle, and one day, one day… It doesn’t have to be soon (please let it be in the next five years).
That bottle has my name on it, and I will break it open and drink it. Okay not the whole thing myself, I’ll share it with my loved ones (maybe).

Do all authors have something like this? Do you have some secret thing you will do when you reach a milestone in your writing career? Let me know what it is? 
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Where you can find me

My Website
Where Fantasy Meets Reality Blog
Email me
Facebook
Twitter: @christieauthor
Goodreads
Youtube Channel

Sex Ed and the Modern Day Romance Writer


Sex Ed and the Modern Day Romance Writer


  Knowing the human body before you write about it is paramount. Trust me you need to stay current on your education even when writing love stories.
  It doesn’t matter if you don’t write erotica, or explicit sex scenes understanding the working parts can mean the difference between how a man holds a woman in a loving embrace to a choke hold.
  Even if you write sweet romance understanding the fundamentals of a heated look and how it will make someone feel in a biological way instead of a physical. Making your writing JUMP off the page, make your readers feel it, believe it, fundamentally understand it.
  Confession Time…In a former life I sold adult toys and products. Doing this; I was taught and learned more about the human body and sex then any one person ever needed to know. But in doing so I learned and changed and boosted my sexual writing to a different level.
  My characters, and readers benefited immensely, I don’t write erotica (and not because I can’t haha), because I knew exactly what was going on with everything not only below the waist but above the waist as in the mind as well.
  The human body is an amazing thing ladies and gentleman and staying current and learning something new about the human body every single year will keep your writing fresh and modern plus it will bring your readers coming back for more.






  How do you keep your sex scenes current and fresh? Leave a comment below.





(Christie teaches Sex Ed and the Modern Day Romance Writer at conferences and writers workshops it’s a funny and interactive workshop, if you’re interested please contact her.) 


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Where you can find me

My Website
Where Fantasy Meets Reality Blog
Email me
Facebook
Twitter: @christieauthor
Goodreads
Youtube Channel