Ten annoying things successful people do before breakfast

Apparently the one writing the list doesn’t have kids… Or if he does he leaves his wife to tend to them. Just saying.

Idle blogs of an idle fellow

Did anyone see the recent article outlining 10 things successful people do before breakfast? You can probably guess it wasn’t sleep like normal people. It was the sort of thing that exposes your own grappling with the morning gloom, having overslept again, as less than satisfactory. As if you needed reminding.

The main thrust was ‘do you aspire to have the pizzazz (whatever that is) of Heidi Klum? The inventive streak of Martha Stewart? The $US3.1 billion net worth of Starbucks head honcho Howard Schultz?’ Well, it turns out that waking up a few hours earlier could be the secret. To be honest I’d rather have another hour’s sleep, but that isn’t what thrusted the western world from darkness into the industrial age.

The thing is, it’s about the pursuit of wealth, and pizzazz of course. But what’s wealth if it can’t buy an extra hour in bed? Everyone is obsessed with money…

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10 Steps to Overcome Writer’s Block

Good advice for overcoming writer’s block.

Carly Watters, Literary Agent Blog

writing top 10 by Brian ClarkFind yourself looking at a blank screen a lot lately? It happens to all of us. (I have to write proposals, catalog copy, and pitches too!)

So what do you do when you’re stuck? Here are some great tips for overcoming the dreaded writer’s block.

Join the club that knows how to defeat those obstacles and has learned to look forward, not back:

1. Acknowledge the feelings and try to get to the root of them: Are you nervous, anxious or unsure about your story? Are you scared that it won’t live up to reader’s expectations? Are you looking at the clock and–knowing you have limited time–watching the hands move around? If you’re truthful about your reservations you can recognize and move past them.

2. Forgive yourself a perfect draft: No one writes a clean first draft. It’s called a “Shitty First Draft” for a reason. Read some Anne…

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The Casual Rule is FREE for a limited time. One-click while you can!

I totally loved The Casual Rule! So excited to read The New Rule. Yay!

AC Netzel

The Casual Rule is FREE for a very limited time.  If you don’t own it yet..now’s your chance!  Tell your friends!  This book can be read as a standalone. SHARING IS CARING!

L@@K at the reviews!

This book totally worked! From the very first page to the last it was pure gold. Adorable, witty, heartwarming, sweet, sexy …. I had such a fun time reading.-@Love Between the Sheets

If you are looking for a fun, witty, sweet story that will make you laugh then The Casual Rule is the book for you. I loved this story. It is funny and sexy with a bit of drama all in one. @ Three Chicks and Their Books Blog

If you’re looking for a book with a little bit of smut, a little comedy and a ride on an emotional roller coaster, then pick up this book today. You will love Julia. She…

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Life on Purpose—What to Do When Dreams & Goals Fizzle

So many points ring a bell in this post by Kristen Lamb. Especially when I’ve been my own worst enemy the last month or two and I’ve let apathy take over my creativity. I acknowledge it, and I can and will change it. I refuse to let this funk become the status quo. Get ready keyboard, I’m going to be writing today.

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Original image via Lucy Downey from Flickr Creative Commons Original image via Lucy Downey from Flickr Creative Commons

We’re a few weeks out from the New Year and many of us are struggling. I don’t think I am saying anything crazy when I assert that most of us would LIKE to improve. We want to learn and grow and be better over time. No one dreams about being broke, stressed, overweight and unhappy. That’s a given and you might even laugh at that notion.

Yet, nature abhors a vacuum.

I dream of a floor I can’t find because I’m SO behind on laundry it’s more of an archaeological project than housework.

Yeah…NO.

Screen Shot 2014-07-25 at 10.33.50 AM

But I need to ask the hard question: If we aren’t dreaming of all that bad stuff? What are we dreaming about?

I’ve consulted countless business people and writers. Conversations are VERY telling. Some people are so afraid of failing that they never make a decision. Yet…

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No NaNoWriMo… Will I ever get there?

I’m trodging along in a sunless, dark existance… That’s basically the Finnish winter until the snow comes. When I say it’s dark, I mean, sunrise is after I’ve gone to work, and sunset is before I leave work. Sigh. This added to the fact that I’m basically exhausted because the autumn has been crazy busy. And my poor writings are gathering dust somewhere behind the million other things to do. I played with the idea of doing NaNoWriMo, but didn’t even try. What would’ve been the point? When I’m having a hard time getting 5k words in a month at the moment… Last year at this time 5k words per week was no issue, but I have no idea what the duck is going on now? My confidence as a writer has taken a nosedive with the lack of practise. I’ve sabotaged myself, I guess. I have atleast three WIPs, and they are all very far apart from each other. I should concentrate on one story and get it done, but then one of my worst qualities kicks in… Finishing stuff. It’s hard. It’s much easier to start things, and even to keep them going than to actually finishing. But the stress would become less if I’d get something done, right? Oh, man. I’ve got to get my head back on track. Make a gameplan. Finish one story first, then the second. Maybe write a one shot or two to get in to the zone. But before that, I think I’ll post my crazy Fifty Shades Halloween story over here too. If you have any ideas how to overcome winter depression, please leave a note. Stuffing myself with chocolate hasn’t worked.

Winning myself

I want to share this as I’m sure everyone struggles with themselves sometime. I did, and I conquered! I can’t remember when I’d struggled this much and won.

Background… During the weekend we drove to my folks’ cabin, where they had cut down a few large-ish trees. As the good daughter *shameless bragging*, I took my men (husband and kids) and set up to help my dad aka grandpa to get the trees cut and moved to the vicinity of the shed.

chainsaw_woman1[1]

Feeling strong, empowered by my new bright coral nailpolish, I took charge of the chainsawing. Quite a few hours later, the tree is in pieces and carried/rolled away. Somewhere half way, I start feeling the strain in my legs, back and arms. Pain is good. At least I know I’ve done something, right? Way ergonomic btw to be cutting a tree lying on the ground, not!

Way after sunset, we drive back home (1,5 hours) just to shower and sleep, as following morning I have to be at work 8am. You can guess it, right? Morning comes, and I’m crushed. Every-ffffffin-thing hurts. But that doesn’t matter, off to work I go.

More or less everything aches, and atleast my back was becoming worse as I was sitting most of the day. Tried standing for an hour, but came to the realization that my legs hurt too.

By Monday evening I just want to crawl into bed with a box of chocolates and a book and feel sorry for myself.

Dog tired.

But.

Monday is my official evening off from the kids sleeping hassle as I have a reggaeton class. I change into my gymgear, all the time (internally) whining that I don’t want to go. I fill my waterbottle, the bad is almost winning over the good.

Good vs. Evil

I get to the car, realize that I’m probably already late. I can still go back home, right? But then I’d lose the class. I start the car and drive. At this point I’m STILL fighting myself. Make a U turn in the next crossing, or the one after. If I’m late, I’ll just drive home. The lazy in me keeps whispering and doesn’t shut up until I arrive at the school and park, on time. I leave the lazycrazy in the car and make my way to class.

Winner!

Victory! The class was good, ok, PAINFUL and I was by far not giving it 100%, but I still. I’m very proud of myself, because lord knows how many times I’ve just succumbed to the lazy/bad voice telling me to just stay at home and sugarrush.

This post might win The most useless post of the year-award, but that’s fine.

4 Ways To Edit Your Book Back on Track

Think big. Big picture. Remember this.

Carly Watters, Literary Agent Blog

530973.stock.xchngWhen you go back to edit, do you ever find your book has lost its way? Not sure what it is anymore? Too close to it to see it clearly?

This happens with many manuscripts I see. Writers query these novels still unsure of what it is and how they got there.

Here are my tips for the editing process.

How to get your book back on track:

1. Focus on the big picture

It’s so easy to get scrambled about the little details, but remember, the plot has to work as a whole first. Editing a full-length novel is no small feat. So develop a plan that keeps you editing in stages: big picture, small picture, then line editing. I recommend not to start with the small things, always start with the big picture and work your way down to line level.

2. Remember why you connected with the premise

Premise…

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How to Intensify Conflict & Deepen Characters—The Wound

Definitely need to think more about the wound… This post was an eye opener, I have definitely not paid attention to that part of the character, not intentionally anyway.
I need to do that from now on.

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Screen Shot 2012-12-20 at 10.17.54 AM Hmmm, what’s the story behind THIS?

There are all kinds of arguments about which area of craft is the most important for creating great fiction. Plot? Character? Voice? Theme? My opinion. They’re all organs in one body. Our brains will still work if our lungs have bronchitis, but maybe not at an optimal level. Similarly, there are people with brain injuries who have a strong heart. A body can “live” without everything operating in concert, and so can any story.

It’s ideal to hone our skills in all areas, and our goal is to be skilled at all of them. Can we be equally skilled? That’s another debate for another post.

I will say that plot (skeleton/brain) is very important. Our characters (heart) are only as strong as the crucible. Ultimately, all stories are about people. We might not recall every detail of a plot, but we DO remember characters…

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