Author Advice, Book Reviews

Today I’m reviewing Motivation Matters by Wendy H. Jones @WendyHJones @LoveBooksGroup #WritingCommunity #AmEditing #AmWriting

I have something a little different for you today, folks.

I’m reviewing Motivation Matters by Wendy H. Jones.

Jones is an award-winning author with two crime series under her belt, along with several author advice books. Motivation Matters is her latest offering for her fellow authors.

Here’s the blurb … 

Has your motivation to write flown out of the window? Do feelings of self-doubt creep in and haunt your writing day? Looking for a way to beat the doubts into submission?

Award winning author and writing coach Wendy H. Jones shows you how, with 366 glorious exercises you can use to boost creativity and change the way you think and feel about your writing. Techniques that can easily be incorporated into your day, becoming part of your writing routine.

It’s time to change the way you think and feel, in order to set your creativity free.

Has your motivation to write flown out of the window? Do feelings of self-doubt creep in and haunt your writing day? Looking for a way to beat the doubts into submission?

Award winning author and writing coach Wendy H. Jones shows you how, with 366 glorious exercises you can use to boost creativity and change the way you think and feel about your writing. Techniques that can easily be incorporated into your day, becoming part of your writing routine.

It’s time to change the way you think and feel in order to set your creativity free.

My thoughts …

I LOVE this book and strongly recommend you all just skip straight to the buying link and get your copy NOW!

First of all, it isn’t a deep and detailed book in the sense of long, rambling paragraphs. It’s perfectly easy to dip in and out of the advice, without having to sit for hours and hours reading.

Jones covers all sorts of motivational tips, from the more obvious write down your goals and look at them every day type, to some that I think are absolute genius but which I’m not going to share … you’ll have to get the book!

This book is great for when you’re having those moments of self-doubt. For when writer’s block kicks in. For when you’ve been sat staring at your WIP for sixteen hours and haven’t written or edited a single word. For when you have the end in sight but there’s something stopping you getting there.

The ideas Jones shares are wonderful, easy to do, and, more importantly, they work.

No, I’m not an author, but I spend all my time working on manuscripts and the methods Jones shares work just as well for when I’m in need of a kick up the backside to keep going!

Please, go and get your copy now.

Hugest of thanks to the author for my copy and to Kelly at Love Books Group for inviting me on to the blog tour.

About the author …

Wendy H. Jones

Award Winning Author Wendy H. Jones lives in Scotland, and her police procedural series featuring Detective Inspector Shona McKenzie, is set in the beautiful city of Dundee, Scotland. Wendy has led a varied and adventurous life. Her love for adventure led to her joining the Royal Navy to undertake nurse training. After six years in the Navy she joined the Army where she served as an Officer for a further 17 years. This took her all over the world including Europe, the Middle East and the Far East. Much of her spare time is now spent travelling around the UK, and lands much further afield. As well as nursing Wendy also worked for many years in Academia. This led to publication in academic textbooks and journals. Killer’s Countdown is her first novel and the first book in the Shona McKenzie Mystery series. Killer’s Crew won the Books Go Social Book of the Year 2107. There are now six books in this series with Killer’s Crypt being released in August, 2017. The Dagger’s Curse is the first book in The Fergus and Flora Mysteries for Young Adults. This book is currently shortlisted for the Woman Alive Magazine Readers Choice Award Book of the Year. She is also a highly successful marketer and she shares her methods in the book, Power Packed Book Marketing.

She is currently writing a new series called, Cass Claymore Investigates. The first book. Antiques and Alibis will be released in January

Book Reviews

Today I’m sharing my thoughts on Lucy V Hay’s #HowNotToWriteFemaleCharacters @LucyVHayAuthor @Bang2write @gilbster1000 @rararesources

I have something a little different for you all today, a review of Lucy V Hay’s How not to Write Female Characters. Lucy is not only an amazing author – here are my reviews of her psychological thrillers Do No Harm and The Other Twin – she also writes wonderful writing advice books and runs the brilliant site, Bang2Write … If you’ve yet to discover this website, go there now!

It is a fantastic resource for authors and Lucy’s advice will blow your mind, seriously. I can, and have, spent whole days reading through her articles!

Now, her latest book is all about writing female characters, here’s the blurb …

Female characters. When fifty per cent of your potential target audience is female, if you’re not writing them in your screenplay or novel? You’re making a BIG mistake!

But how should you approach your female characters? That’s the million dollar question … After all, women in real life are complex, varied and flawed. Knowing where to start in creating three dimensional female characters for your story is extremely difficult.

So … perhaps it’s easier to figure out how NOT to write female characters?

Script editor, novelist and owner of the UK’s top screenwriting blog, Lucy V Hay has spent the last fifteen years reading the slush pile. She has learned to spot the patterns, pitfalls and general mistakes writers make when writing female characters – and why.

In How Not To Write Female Characters, Lucy outlines:

•WHO your character is & how to avoid “classic” traps and pitfalls
•WHAT mistakes writers typically make with female characters
•WHERE you can find great female characters in produced and published content
•WHEN to let go of gender politics and agendas
•WHY female characters are more important than ever

Lucy is on a mission to improve your writing, as well as enable diverse voices and characters to rise to the top of the spec pile.

My thoughts … 

Once again, Lucy brings her wealth of experience to the masses. How Not to Write Female Characters is one of her best yet and is an absolute must-read for anyone wanting to get their characters right.

Just shy of 50 pages, the advice she manages to get inside is brilliant. Drawing examples from movies, books, and TV shows over the last 30 years, Hay shows us how the female character has, and hasn’t in some cases, developed over the ages, and shows us how to get it right.

How Not to Write Female Characters is full of information which will help authors at any stage in their career, whether just starting out or about to publish their 50th novel, all will take something from this and I strongly recommend you download it!

I’d also recommend you look at her other advice books, Writing and Selling Drama Screenplays may have screenplay in the title but it’s not just for script writers, the advice Lucy shares will prove invaluable to anyone who writes anything!

Go and check her out, now!

About the author …

Lucy Hay

Lucy V. Hay is a novelist, script editor and blogger who helps writers via her Bang2write consultancy. Lucy is the producer of two Brit Thrillers, DEVIATION (2012) and ASSASSIN (2015), as well as the script editor and advisor on numerous other features and shorts. Lucy’s the author of WRITING AND SELLING THRILLER SCREENPLAYS for Kamera Books’ “Creative Essentials” range, as well as its follow ups on DRAMA SCREENPLAYS and DIVERSE CHARACTERS for fiction as well as screenwriting. Her debut crime novel, THE OTHER TWIN, is now out with Orenda Books and has been featured in The Sun and Sunday Express Newspapers, plus Heatworld and Closer Magazine.

Author Advice, Blog Post, Book Bloggers, Book Reviews

#Authors are you struggling to find #bookbloggers to #review your book? Read on for help reaching out … #amreading #amblogging #amediting #authoradvice

Well, this is my first post of 2019 so Happy New Year! 

I hope it’s gotten off to a great start for you all.

I’ve noticed over the last few weeks in some of the Facebook groups I’m in that authors are struggling to find bloggers to read and review their books. And not ‘just’ indie authors either. When I’ve asked what methods the authors are using, some of them are going about it the wrong way because yes, there is some etiquette required here and not everyone knows or appreciates this.

It’s with this in mind I’m writing this post. 

I want to help. I want to make sure every author out there has the best chance of getting those all-important reviews and the exposure that comes from working with the amazing bloggers out there.

Book bloggers are a group of the most wonderful people I have the pleasure of knowing. I have made some connections who will remain friends for life and not just with other bloggers, with authors too. And not just those whose books I read; some write in genres that aren’t my thing but I still feature them on my blog and shout about their work, as do many other bloggers, because bloggers are ace! 

If you get it right with us that is. 

Back to the Facebook conversations, when discussing the methods the authors were using, I discovered some were sending tweets, some were tagging bloggers in groups, some were sending their Amazon/website links via Direct/Private Messenger … I was cringing reading some of the comments. I was also upset to see that lots of indie authors assume bloggers won’t read their work, this is so far from the truth it’s unreal! But after a little more probing, they were assuming that as they weren’t getting responses to their Twitter DMs and that made me realise people don’t always know how to make that first contact. They have no idea what to say or how to say it.

My first piece of advice is to join in with group conversations on social media. I’m more likely to respond to a name I recognise than one I don’t. And don’t just join groups and immediately ask for reviews, get to know people first, comment about things other than your work, talk about books you love, authors you admire, your writing process, then, when your book is ready to make its way out into the world, you will have a team of friends ready and willing to help you.

I’ve come to realise lots of authors hate selling themselves, they hate the publicity side of things, and to be fair, you don’t know something until you know, so I’ve decided to share this page again.

Book Bloggers & How to Approach Them

This details the most effective way of putting together a review request; it won’t work 100% of the time but trust me, it will work 100% better than a tweet or private message with your Amazon link! 

There’s also a list of over fifty bloggers for you to make a start. Now, they might not all be the right fit for your book, but remember, bloggers love sharing the book love so they may still be able to feature you with a guest post or interview. The possibilities are endless when you get that first contact right.

Do let me know your thoughts in the comments and make sure you spread this one far and wide to help your author friends.

Have a great evening and keep writing. 

Much love,

Emma 🙂