Blogs / Life

New Year, New Blogging Schedule

Hello Everyone!

Can you believe that we have officially left 2018 behind and are no fully drawn into 2019?

Now I’m not the kind of person who looks at the New Year as something magical. Nothing really changes at the stroke of midnight. We don’t magically become better people who will hit the gym more and the carbs less. We don’t automatically become best selling authors over night. Our problems don’t just vanish into thin air. Sometimes people look at the New Years Eve/New Year’s midnight as some mystical power to start over. The truth is, it isn’t.

That’s because we can start over at any time. Which is partly the reason why I am posting this on January 2nd instead of January 1st (even though to most my New Year post would make more logical sense to come on New Years Day). New Years Day is not physically magical, it is a mental reminder and that’s what I love about New Years. Perhaps this year will be just as wonderful or as devastating as the last, we can’t know for certain. But what we do know is this:

New Year’s Day represents a fresh start.

For the most part anyway. After all, we are still the same people as we were forty-eight hours ago with the same hopes, dreams, fears, and sins. But we always have a chance to start doing better, to start improving ourselves. This, of course, leads to the idea of New Year’s resolutions.

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Don’t we all, Kirk?

Most of you know all about New Year’s resolutions, I’m sure. And I’m not here to down on them, there’s nothing wrong with setting yourself a goal. The problem with New Year’s resolutions comes when we set impossible goals and then feel like failures when we cannot meet them. So this year, be kinder to yourself and set realistic resolutions.

Here are some of my resolutions for 2019:

  • Be a better, kinder, and more patient professor (and person in general)
  • Finish Planning and Celebrate my Wedding without worrying if it’s “perfect”
  • Finish my book with the same excitement with which I began
    • Sell 100 copies! (Hey, it could happen :D)
  • Visit my Papa and remind him what he means to me.
  • Take advantage of the moments I have with the people I love.
  • Be kinder to myself and stop demanding more than I can give.

I am going to address that last resolution immediately by reducing the amount of blog posts that I demand from myself every week.

Currently, I publish a post every weekday (Monday-Friday), which is five times a week. Beginning immediately, I will be posting every Monday/Wednesday/Friday, which is three times a week.

I believe that by reducing the amount of times I am posting, I will not feel the need to put up sub par work. Instead, this will give me ample time to create posts with detailed content.

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Don’t worry though, I’m not going anywhere! While I plan to only be posting on Monday/Wednesday/Friday, that does not mean that I will only be active on those days. I still plan to pop in and check out as many of your blogs as possible.

Thanks for checking in and reading this blog update, I hope that you all will continue to stop by and check out the new blog posts.

So, what about you? Do you have any New Year Resolutions?

Happy Writing Everyone!

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Blogs / Life

Please Pardon . . .

Please Pardon my temporary absences for the next two Tuesdays.

As you all know, it was my intention to challenge myself with maintaining my five posts per week goal. However, as I have been working two jobs every day this month and I recently heard back from the publishers, I’ve decided I that I need to take off one day a week.

On this day off, I will be:

  • Catching up with my grading,
  • Creating lesson plans, and
  • (More importantly) Revising my book, The Agency Games, which is due back to the publishers at the end of the month.

Please wish me luck as I take the next next two weeks by the horns!

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Blogs / Life

You Won’t Believe What I Did This Weekend

Well everyone, I did it. I made a Twitter.

But before I go anything further, let me just take a moment and thank all of my guests who popped in and out of my Weekend Blog Party. You guys were amazing guests, so kind, thoughtful, and engaging with one another! So many of you were able to promote your own work and support one another’s. I had so much fun hosting that I am considering making it a monthly or bi-monthly occurrence. However, I’ll leave that up to you guys. Let me know if I should host another Blog Party and how often!

Back to Twitter: I kept seeing on multiple author/blogger sites that every author/blogger should use Twitter. In fact, I’ve heard that Twitter is the “most” successful at engaging followers, and although I’m not sure if that’s true, I figured I would expand my horizons and try it out.

However, now that I’ve dived into this new form of social media, I find myself at a bit of a loss. Therefore, I implore my followers (particularly those with a Twitter account) to leave a comment with a link to their Twitter accounts (so I can follow) and their #1 Twitter Tip!

Here is mine!

Find me on Twitter and let’s tweet!

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blogging tips

Blogging Tip: Schedule Ahead of Time

One of the biggest obstacles to blogging (I think) is consistently pushing through posts on a regular basis that contain great content. What I mean by this: it is hard to post every day, or even every other day, and on top of that, it is harder to post great blogs every time.

Let’s be honest, some days we just don’t feel very creative. We’re tired either physically or mentally or both and we just don’t have anything to say. We sit down at this blank screen and think, “wow I literally have nothing to say.” Indeed, there will be days when you simply cannot write, you can’t think, and you definitely cannot create a blog post. That will happen, so prepare for it and plan ahead!

Part of blogging is spontaneous creativity, the other part is planned posts.

You heard me, Planned Posts.

When you have great days where creativity is flowing, don’t stop after one post and do not (I repeat, do not) post multiple times a day. Instead keep creating and schedule them for in advance. For instance, this is the 7th blog post I have written today on May 31st (even though this post is not scheduled to publish until later in June). I now have my next week or so of blogging post planned out ahead of time so that I am not struggling the night before.

How do I come up with all these blog posts ideas?

Here is my strategy. Whenever I am out and about, or even when I am home, and I have an idea for a blog post, but I don’t have time to write it, I save that idea in my draft section. At times, I have up to 30 drafts just sitting there filled with ideas. So, on my good days, I go through those ideas. Some are no longer good (and never were), some need adjustment, and some I save for later.

Write in advance on your good days so that you don’t need to worry on your bad days.

*If you enjoyed today’s Writing Tip be sure to check out additional tips under the “Writing Tips” category on my home menu!

Happy Writing & Blogging Everyone!

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©KaylaAnnAuthor

© KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com, 2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Blogs / Life

Mail Time

Let me just begin today’s blog post by stating that I am a total dork sometimes who gets excited by the little things and today is one of those days.

Today is the second time that I have received mail from one of my followers. It’s not a big deal, it’s not a “fan” letter or anything like that. In fact, it’s his book that I plan to review and blog about in September.

I’ve had other books emailed over via PDF. I’ve even had a manuscript in unbound pages mailed to me. But this is the very first book, solid and complete, that has been mailed to me for a review. Now, while I love all of the books that I have been sent, all bibliophiles know that there is something simply wondrous about the physicality of a book itself.

Also, (beyond gaining a new book for my library) this was a super amazing incident for me because it shows that my hard work is really paying off. When I began blogging, I really hoped that I would reach out to this community and gain, not only followers, but friends. Well, I have definitely gained friends (you guys are awesome)!

Also, call me a dork, but receiving that book in my mailbox was a huge deal for me because I truly feel immersed in this writing community! I am engaging with so many different writers and it’s been great.

If you are interested in having me read, review, and blog about your book, please leave a comment below or message me. You can also check out the original post here: Now Offering: Book Reviews.

Blogs / Life

Not Him Again…

Whether it’s working on my non-fiction scholarly response to The Hunger Games series, writing poetry, or even when I revised my Master’s thesis, I repeatedly come across that brutal and calloused villain known to all writers: Writer’s Block!

*Dramatic music*

I am bent over my desk, pen in hand, words are sprawling across the page. Yes, I think, this is wonderful. I am getting so much done!

Then, the door is thrown open. Wind fills the room, sweeping up my papers and scattering them across the floor. In he walks, his trenchcoat dripping with rain as the cliché lightening bolt strikes behind his silhouette.

Not this guy again, I think.

I try to hide my writing utensils, but it’s too late. He’s already crossed the room and snaps my pencils in half, removes the ink from my pens, and just for good measure, slaps duct tape across my mouth. With a gleeful laugh, he handcuffs my wrists to the arms of my office chair and then leaves the same way he came.

I stare around in dismay at the mess he caused and look down at the blank page he left on my desk just to mock me.

Writer’s Block strikes again.

 

What does Writer’s Block look like to you?

©KaylaAnnAuthor

© KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com, 2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Blogs / Life

KaylaAnn featured in Summer Lane’s magazine “Writing Belle: The Art of Storytelling”

Today, I am being featured in Writing Belle Magazine, which is pretty awesome! Writing Belle Magazine is run by Summer Lane, author of 20 bestselling books.

In the Magazine, Lane features my upcoming book The Agency Games (working title) and a little bit about me. I even got to submit a guest article in which I discuss why “Consistency is Crucial.”

Be sure to CLICK HERE to read the full article!

Blogs / Life, Book Reviews, Review, Reviews

Now Offering: Book Reviews

After getting some wonderful and insightful feedback from you amazing bloggers, I have decided to go forward with offering book reviews for up-and-coming authors.

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Do You Want a Book Review of Your Debut Novel?

  • If you are a first-time author or beginning author, I would love to read your published works and give an honest review.
  • This offer is primarily available for your DEBUT novel, even if it was written a year ago.
    • Not a new author? Shoot me an email anyway and if my load is light, I’ll still consider reviewing your book!
  • This offer is only available for published works (sorry, but I’m not currently offering a BETA reader services).
    • Your book can be self-published or traditionally published.
  • I am more likely to select a book that is a print version as opposed to PDF or files (sorry, but my eyes can’t read a whole book on a screen guys, it hurts.)
  • I am interested in all types of genres except for horror, gore, and erotica.

The Way it Works:

If you are hoping that I will review your work, please go through my Contact page and send me:

  • Your name (author pen-name is also fine)
  • The title of your book, when it was published, the length of your book in word count, and what format (traditional, self, print, electronic, etc.)
  • A short blurb about your book
  • It is the author’s responsibility to send the book to me
    • The author assumes all shipping costs
  • I will do my best to review one new book per month. Depending on the volume of requests, you may have to wait a few months.
  • Please be aware, I will be giving an HONEST REVIEW. This means that I may not love your book. However, I will always do my best to be professional and courteous in my comments!
  • Whether or not I am interested in reviewing your book, I will respond to your inquiry. Please be patient with me 😀

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I reserve the right to refuse any author and/or book based on personal preference. Please do not spam me with requests, it will only ensure that your emails get moved to my spam folder. It may take me a little while to get back to you, but I will get back to you.

If you intend to email me with a book request, feel free to drop me a comment below!

Happy Writing Everyone!

blogging tips

Blogging Tip: Re-Use Old Content

Now, before you get all…

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Take a second to hear me out.

It is completely OKAY to re-use old content. You might have noticed lately that I have been re-sharing writing and blogging advice that I posted in the past.

Here’s why:

  • My Blog is Growing! (Which is awesome by the way) And that means that I have new followers.
  • New followers means that I have people currently following my blog and reading my posts who have not seen the old posts.
  • So, I share the old posts for two primary reasons:
    • So that my new followers will have access to writing and blogging tips previously published
    • And that my old followers will be reminded of writing and blogging tips they have previously read.

Not only is this beneficial for my followers, new or vintage, but it is helpful for me as well because it helps fill up my blogging schedule.

Now, don’t get me wrong. You should not, definitely not, spam your blog with old content. Do not repost the same blogs every week or every month in a never ending cycle. Your blog should consist primarily of new content with some old content thrown in.

Here is what I consider the golden ration when I post 10 times every two weeks:

8 new vs. 2 old

(In every two week span I normally re-share 1-2 posts per 10 blogs)

80% of my blogs are new, fresh, and exciting content while 20% is resharing previously published content for those who have not seen it or need the reminder.

Also, I hardly ever re-share movie reviews, contest results, etc. because no one needs to hear that twice. I only ever re-share writing tips, blogging tips, and maybe the occasional short story or poem.

What do you think about re-sharing previously posted content?

What is your golden ratio?

©KaylaAnnAuthor

© KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com, 2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

blogging tips, Writing Tips

Social Media & Authors

Hey Everyone!

Today, I’m going to talk a little bit about social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram, and WordPress (my primary author-outlets). There are other sites such as Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr, and Snapchat that can also be used for an author’s page but because I am not as familiar with them, I will only be talking about the first three today.

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Social media can be a huge help to promoting one’s own platform but it can also be very time-consuming. An author’s platform can be a confusing term to throw out there so if you need some background information check out Jane Friedman’s explanation of the phrase: author’s platform.

Social media can be helpful in promoting your platform in two primary ways, increasing your visibility and discovering your target audience. Jane Friedman explains each here:

  • “Visibility means: Where do you or your work regularly appear? How many people see it? How does it spread? Where does it spread? What communities are you a part of? Who do you influence? It’s typically not enough to say you have visibility. You have to show how and where you make an impact and give proof of engagement. This could be quantitative evidence (e.g., size of your e-mail newsletter list, website traffic, blog comments) or qualitative evidence (high-profile reviews, testimonials from A-listers in your genre).
  • Target audience means: You should be visible to the most receptive or appropriate audience for the work you’re trying to sell. For instance: If you have visibility, authority, and proven reach to orthodontists, that probably won’t be helpful if you’re writing a book meant to target to Fortune 500 companies.”

In my experience, WordPress has proven to be the best social media site for up-and-coming authors working to establish themselves in the world of writing. Your blog is the perfect place for you to develop your personality as a blogger and writer. It also helps you determine who is listening and what people want to hear. It is a great place to interact on a real level.

I believe that Facebook will prove to become more useful after an author is already established. Now, I’m not saying that if you are not an established author that you should not have an author’s page on facebook. I have one, even though I am still a year out from my first book’s, The Agency Games, publication date. I think it’s good to have and let it grow slowly. However, once my book is published, facebook will prove more useful for setting up Events like Book Releases and Signings. If you haven’t visited my facebook page and you would like to be kept up-to-date with my future events, please check it out here!

Lastly, Instagram is a great place for visibility. While I don’t expect to have any in-depth conversations like I do on WordPress on Instagram, it is a fun place to post visual interactions. I consider Instagram to show the every-day-life moments of an author. It helps to show the audience who this author is as a person. For me, Instagram displays my more whimsical side with photos of my various tea mugs alongside my Writing Tips. You can find my author’s Instagram on my home page or by searching @KaylaAnnAuthor.

Instagram is also great for taking polls! Speaking of, stop by my Instagram and take the polls if you have the time as I try to determine what social media sites authors find most helpful!

What do you guys use for social media? Which do you think is the most productive and which is the least? Should I be incorporating additional social media sites?

Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!

Happy Writing!