Gasping for Air Cover Reveal

In three weeks, my new book will be released on Amazon. I’m getting really excited about it as I believe this is my best written book thus far. And yet I’m quite nervous about it as it contains a lot of myself in it. It’s terrifying to open myself up to possible criticism but I’m still excited about it if for no other reason than I completed it. I started it two years ago and it’s finally finished after many stops and starts, doubts and fears.

As a bonus and maybe something to get you excited as well, I’m sharing the cover for the new book. Let me know what you think!

My attempt to market and an update on the new book

I was reminded recently of how little I talk about my writing. Most people in my life currently have no idea that I’ve self-published three books because I often purposely don’t bring it up and the last book I wrote, I finished about four years ago.

However, that’s about to change – at least the writing part. I’m still not that comfortable with talking about it. I still plan to release my new book in about a month and a half. I’m in the finishing stages and hope I can keep to the timeline I set for myself a year ago.

But as you’re waiting, here are the links to the Amazon.ca links to the books I’ve published so far, if you want to buy a copy.


Quietly Making an Impact

Learn about Calvin Dueck’s life and his impact on people through this memoir filled with quotes, images, and stories. His life was cut short at the age of 19 on August 9, 2014 and it became evident just how big his sphere of influence was. Contains color photographs.

Get it in Colour or Black & White


Breaking Free

Johnny Cardinal grows up detesting white people. They condemn him because of his skin color. He succumbs to the circumstances he has no control over and becomes what they thought he was. His only regret – the disappointment in his mother’s eyes and missing his siblings’ lives. Eric Thompson grows up affluent but desires the love his parents fail to give him. He makes mistakes trying to get it and entraps himself with his mistakes. His lackluster marriage is on the brink of death and it’s all his fault. Their lives entwine when one man’s survival becomes another man’s charity case. But who is the one needing the charity?

Get it here.


Love Unrealized

Alexa doesn’t feel loved. She feels like she will always be alone. Angelo enters her life and he gives her an escape from her feelings of loneliness. He seems like the perfect man for her. But she keeps a secret from him. She’s a princess! Can she keep both her family and Angelo? Will she finally feel loved?

Get it here.

Breaking Free Released!

Breaking Free CoverBreaking Free is now released!

It is released on the Amazon sites in paperback and kindle format. As most of my readers are in the U.S. and Canada I have included the links to the respective Amazon sites but Breaking Free can be found on other Amazon sites as well.

Amazon.com

Amazon.ca


Johnny Cardinal grows up detesting white people. They condemn him because of his skin color. He succumbs to the circumstances he has no control over and becomes what they thought he was. His only regret – the disappointment in his mother’s eyes and missing his siblings’ lives.

Eric Thompson grows up affluent but desires the love his parents fail to give him. He makes mistakes trying to get it and entraps himself with his mistakes. His lackluster marriage is on the brink of death and it’s all his fault.

Their lives entwine when one man’s survival becomes another man’s charity case. But who is the one needing the charity?


Here is an excerpt from the book. Breaking Free Excerpt

I also plan to do a Goodreads giveaway soon and will keep you posted on that.

I would greatly appreciate your support. Go out and buy my novel!

Breaking Free Close to Release

It’s been a while since I updated you all on my writing. My novel Breaking Free is now in the final stages before being released. As a self-published author, I have the freedom to publish my books when I want and I am setting the release date for Breaking Free as July 1st.

Breaking Free will be released July 1, 2014

To hopefully get you excited about the release, here is the description from the back cover:

Johnny Cardinal grows up detesting white people. They condemn him because of his skin color. He succumbs to the circumstances he has no control over and becomes what they thought he was. His only regret – the disappointment in his mother’s eyes and missing his siblings’ lives.

Eric Thompson grows up affluent but desires the love his parents fail to give him. He makes mistakes trying to get it and entraps himself with his mistakes. His lackluster marriage is on the brink of death and it’s all his fault.

Their lives entwine when one man’s survival becomes another man’s charity case. But who is the one needing the charity?

Writing Update

I have been slack in my writing these past two months of the year, after finishing the first draft of my new novel on the first day of the year. I could say it’s because the start of the second semester of my library technician program. Or it’s because I’m waiting for feedback on my manuscript from a couple of people. These play into why I haven’t done a lot of work on editing my manuscript but the main reason is I don’t like editing.

I’ve never liked editing. I often don’t edit my assignments because at that point I wanted to just be done with the assignment. It’s somewhat similar with my books but I want to take more time so they are at a better quality. My readers deserve it. But it doesn’t make me like editing and revising any better.

I can tell you that it will be a slow process because I want to do it right but I have started. I hope to get the book released sometime during the summer.

Update You may have noticed some of the book reviews I’ve done on here. This year, I signed up for NetGalley where I request and receive advance copies of books from publishers in exchange for reviews. So occasionally, I will be posting book reviews on here. You can sign up for NetGalley as well by visiting the site at netgalley.com.

Which Book Description?

Readers, I need your help! I’ve been working on my book description and I have two so far. I want to know what you think of them. Which description would sooner make you want to read a book? Also if you have any other comments about them, please comment below. Any comments are welcomed.

Book Description #1

Johnny Cardinal grows up detesting white people. They condemn him because of his skin color. He succumbs to the circumstances he has no control over and becomes what they thought he was. His only regret – the disappointment in his mother’s eyes and missing his siblings’ lives.

Eric Thompson grows affluent but desires the love his parents fail to give him. He makes mistakes trying to get it and entraps himself with his mistakes. His lackluster marriage is on the brink of death and it’s all his fault.

Both men need to be set free from the bitterness and guilt that entangles them but are too stubborn to see it for themselves. They are both about to make grave mistakes. Can they get over their prejudices to help each other and finally be set free?

Book Description #2

Johnny Cardinal grows up with hard times but changes his life and starts on the path to success. His brother is shot in a drug deal gone wrong. He grows up without a father and is the man of the house. Living in the inner-city of Winnipeg doesn’t give him many options to succeed and he starts taking drugs while in junior high.

Eric Thompson grows up with everything but is on the path to destruction. His lackluster marriage is falling apart of his own doing. His son, born out-of-wedlock, is questioning his love for him just like he used to do for his own parents.

Their lives entwine when one man’s survival becomes another man’s charity case. But who is the one needing the charity?

Manuscript Complete! Any Critics?

I am happy to announce that I have finally finished my first draft of my manuscript! 🙂

These past few weeks I’ve been on break from college for the holidays and I took the time to work on my book which I started a little over a year ago. I would spend most of my mornings and a lot of my afternoons working on it. I made it my goal to finish the first draft before I had to go back to college for the second semester. I made that goal by a few days as I go back on Monday.

Yesterday was the first day of 2014 and I spent a good portion of it finishing up my first draft. Because I have problems sleeping, I still woke up at 8:30 a.m. despite going to bed at 3:00 a.m. I took that time in the morning to write and took a few breaks. I took a longer break for lunch and at that point, I think I was still 2,000 words short of my word count goal for the book. I’ve found mornings are my most productive so I figured it would probably end up being today when I would finish the book. After lunch I wrote and wrote and wrote. I spent all afternoon writing with a few breaks in between and I was able to finish the manuscript.

Now comes the hardest part. At least for me. Editing. I dislike editing and always have. I will push through it but doesn’t mean I have to like it.

I would love to have more sets of eyes look at my manuscript. If anyone is willing to critique my novel, contact me via email, Facebook, Twitter or commentating on this post. I would appreciate it, greatly.

November, I Wish I Hadn’t Known Thee

November

November (Photo credit: Joana Roja – work and migraines – coming back..)

It’s been a while since I’ve written on here. Truthfully, it had been a while since I’d written anything. Prior to this week, I hadn’t really written in my book since October 10. There were a couple of days where I wrote less than ten words. That’s a long time when writing a novel. No wonder it’s been over a year since I started writing the novel I’m working on. When I finally sat down to start working on it, I had to read over what I had already written before I could write anything new.

I’d like to blame my lack of writing on all the things I was dealing with the past month, but I know excuses will get me nowhere and it will not get my book written.

A Tough November

Considering Dropping Out

My November was tough. It started before November actually started, with me being frustrated with the college program I’m in. I kept hearing stories of people who had graduated from the program years before still not having jobs in the field and I felt like the program wasn’t challenging me enough. I felt like I either knew all the stuff they were teaching or I could learn it all while on the job. There were times where I felt like I could be teaching some of the classes because people would often ask me questions instead of asking the professor. I was considering dropping out of the program. I even applied for a job in the field I am planning to go into.

Health Issues

Then there was my aunt’s health. She was diagnosed with her metastasized breast cancer last fall, which was her fourth bout with cancer since 1996. In October, she regressed quite quickly and passed away on November 2, which also happened to be the exact day my uncle had passed away eleven years ago. That side of my family is a lot closer than my other side so it was tough. I often didn’t know how to feel either, because I was sad that she was gone but I was also happy that she didn’t have to suffer anymore and she could finally be whole again, living with Jesus, her savior.

A blood test and examination - NARA - 513715

A blood test and examination – NARA – 513715 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

All the while, I was dealing with my own health issues. In November, I hadn’t menstruated since August and I knew there was no way I was pregnant. So I knew there was something wrong with me. With the fear of possibly not being able to have children, I finally forced myself to go to the doctor about midway through November. Once I went, it seemed like everything was moving along quickly. At the end of the week, I had a blood test to check my hormones and I thought I was finally going to get my hormones balanced because I’ve believed they’ve been out of whack for a while because of multiple reasons. A week later, I hadn’t heard anything from the clinic, so I phoned there to see if my results had come in. They told me they had but my doctor hadn’t looked at them yet and I should hear from her sometime that evening if there was some concern with my results. It’s been about a month since I had my blood test and I never heard from them.

After not hearing from them, I was very frustrated and down, and even possibly depressed. My dream since I was little was to be a mother and even more so since I spent time in Mexico around children a lot of the time. This would occupy my mind a lot of the time during most of November and I would even tell myself I would never be able to have children. It is very difficult for me to accept that and still is, although I guess I don’t know if that’s completely accurate. One thing I do know, is that it will be even more difficult to get myself to go to the doctor now because of them not finding anything when I know there is something wrong.

Jobless

I mentioned earlier in this post that I had applied for a job in the field I plan to go in to. The application deadline was mid-November and after the deadline came and went, I was wondering if I would get a call from them for an interview. I had people in my family telling me that I was a shoo-in to get an interview. There was no doubt in their minds but there was in mine.

After a while, I questioned whether they even got my email because that was how they wanted applications and there are times when my emails don’t go through but it shows that they did on my email. For two weeks, I had my family asking me if I had heard from the job and I had to consistently tell them no. I got really annoyed with the questions and it added to my frustration during the month of November.

Last week, I found out that they had hired someone already but I still don’t know if they even got my email. But that doesn’t matter at this point.


November was a tough month for me for all the reasons stated above plus a few other ones, such as buses being 20+ minutes late, not showing up, or even driving past me causing me to be late for class, and various body parts causing me pain. Sometimes I wondered if I was being punished for something because it sure felt like it. Since November has ended, some things have alleviated but I’m still trying to put others behind me or deal with another issue that has brought itself closer to the forefront, which is money.

With Christmas holidays upon me, I’m going to try to work a lot on my book because I may not be motivated once the next semester starts. There’s an update in my life and I hope all of your lives aren’t as frustrating as mine has been the past month or so.

 

Insecurity Monster Feeds on Writing Self-Doubts

Stricken with Self-doubt

Stricken with Self-doubt (Photo credit: just.Luc)

The monster that tries to eat me alive is threatening to overtake me again. It is that dreaded thing called insecurities. I have too many of them. I know I do. But the insecurity monster doesn’t want to leave me alone. I was doing well at ignoring the monster but in the last while it has started to rear its ugly head again. Only this time, the monster is focused on my writing.

In the past few weeks, I have promoted my book more and more and more people are buying it and reading it. I also did a book giveaway on goodreads.com and gave away three copies of my book. I had my rural municipality put up an article about my book and I on their webpage and a local newspaper contacted me to do a feature on my book as well. I’ve corresponded with someone who may critique my newest book. I also re-read my book, Love Unrealized because it had come to my attention that there were a few typos in it.

I probably shouldn’t have re-read it. Fixing the few typos was a good thing but reading my book again fed my insecurity monster. I was becoming very critical of my book as I was reading it and finding everything that was wrong with it. I started doubting whether my book was good and whether people would even want to read it.

With all the attention I’ve got about my book and having more and more people read it, the more and more my insecurity monster grows. It asks me why anyone would want to read something I’ve written. What makes me think I could write something in such a way that people would actually pay for it and spend their time reading it? What if they don’t like it? What if they do? Would people even tell me if they don’t like it? Am I fooling myself that I can even write well?

If you hear a voice within you say "you c...

If you hear a voice within you say “you cannot paint,” then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced. (Photo credit: symphony of love)

My insecurity monster is the main reason I haven’t tried getting my book published by a real publisher. I doubt they would like my ideas. I doubt they would want to publish anything I write. I doubt I could even write well enough they would even consider publishing my books. I doubt if I could do the marketing thing. I doubt I could meet their deadlines. I just doubt a lot of things when it comes to me and my abilities.

I sometimes wonder if I doubt myself so much because of my provincial ELA exam in grade 12. For the writing piece at the end of the exam, I wrote a story. I thought it had been okay. It wasn’t my best piece but I didn’t think it was that bad. When I got my marks back from the exam, it was my story that had brought my mark down. The worst part was I had received a 2 out of 5 on my ideas. I was crushed. My ideas had failed. I became depressed because of that exam and sometimes wonder if I did so bad on my story, why I even bother writing anymore. If my ideas fail, why do I even try?

I am an overachiever filled with self-doubts. Right now, those self-doubts are feeding my insecurity monster and he is growing. I hope one day my insecurity monster will leave me alone for good but now it is filling me with doubts about my writing.

Getting Caught Up in My Life

I haven’t written in a while or at least it feels like a while since I was writing three times a week until a couple of weeks ago. I thought I’d give you a little insight into what is currently going on in my life and will be happening in the near future (as in the next couple of weeks).

These past couple of weeks, I have been working on my wip (work-in-progress a.k.a. my new book). I had been procrastinating all summer working on it and was never seemingly motivated to write even though I wanted to. I made excuses until one day, I finally decided to make word count goals and came up with punishments and rewards if I made or didn’t make my goals. I also made a chart to keep track of my word counts. Since making those goals, I have been writing everyday and have only had to punish myself once. I hope to get my first draft of my wip by Christmas.

In about a week and a half, I will be going back to college to start a 2 year program so I have been getting ready for that. Today, before work, I went to the campus where I will be studying to get my student photo id card, pay my first semester fees, as well as buy my textbooks for the first semester. There are some things I will have to get used to going to this college as opposed to the Bible College I went to before. I will be taking city transit which I have never done before and have been trying to figure out routes and timetables. I will be staying with my aunt throughout the school year so I will have to get used to living in a new place again and get used to different routines. I am excited but also nervous about this new adventure in my life.

Another thing that I have been busy with is work. I have been working 35 hour weeks spread out over six days with my workday never starting before 11 am but there are times when it also ends at 8 pm so it kind of splits up my days. I have been running a Summer Reading Program at the library where I’m working which is wrapping up. Next Tuesday, I will be having a wind-up party for those who participated in the program so I have been busy planning and getting everything ready for that.

About two weeks ago, I “donated” my book Love Unrealized to the public library where I work. Although they insisted on paying so I let them. I also donated my book to my church’s library but I didn’t tell them I had written it. I still feel kind of weird letting other people read my books but I’ll get used to it. Someone has already even taken out my book, read it and brought it back. I don’t think they knew I wrote it as I go by Angela Suzanne when writing when Suzanne is actually my middle name and I didn’t ask them what they thought because I was scared of what they might say but, once again, I’ll get used to it and become more bold.

Yesterday, the woman who writes my cheques, told me the Library Board had decided to buy another copy of my book so they could set up a display.

For Labour Day weekend, my family and I are going away for the weekend but I haven’t been thinking about it much even though it is only a little over two weeks away. I’ve had other things on my mind and by that time I will have had a week of college under my belt. However, I hope to get a lot of writing done then but it all depends on what all my family decides to do on that trip.

So that is a brief summary of the past few weeks as well as what is coming up for me. Hope you all have a fabulous week! I don’t know when I’ll post again as my blogging schedule has been messed up since daily working on my wip.