I’m Not An #Expert on Anything – I’m a #Writer – No Rules Required

For my blog stop, I’ve chosen a previous blog which I felt is timeless and that expresses who I am as a writer, completely. 

I hope you enjoy it!

quote-advice-to-a-new-writer-there-are-no-rules-in-this-profession-do-what-is-good-for-you-anne-rice-122-70-88

And that’s good enough for me.

I tell stories. I have a few awards so I suppose that means I don’t suck at writing. However, even with six novels and a novella to my credit, as well as hundreds of blog posts, I do not nor would I ever call myself an expert in anything. Nor would I dare to offer advice on the best way to do this or that, simply based on my own experience. I worked hard and I wrote from my heart, soul and gut. I was published. I went from being a writer to an author in the span of less than a year. How did I do it?

I wrote. I focused on my goals and did it my own way. That’s exactly how you should do it too; regardless of what your own way is. Just please, the only rule I stand by 100% is EDITING. If you are transitioning from writer to author and actually publishing a novel, pay someone to edit for you. Please, for all our sake’s.

Every situation is different. I’ve made mistakes but I’ve learned from each and every one; some bigger lessons than others. Regardless of what writing technique you use or formula you choose to follow, if you don’t approach that formula with a positive attitude and maintain the ground rules firmly at the heart of it with honesty and humility, you can really end up unhappy with the results of your work. Try it your own way first! Experiment! You may be creating a formula that only works for you and that’s perfect!

Every time I begin a new project that will hopefully evolve into a novel, my knees knock, my mouth waters, my heart races and hands tremble. That my friends is fear – fear I’ll write fifty thousand words and suddenly decide I’m unhappy with the story. Fear that my loyal readers will not like the behavior of my characters and even my main character. Fear that a beloved character may die a horrible death and my readers will wish the same for me…figuratively of course.

NEWS FLASH: Readers will love your story and readers will hate your story and it really has nothing to do with you. How they feel is about their own taste and that’s fine. 🙂 That’s how it should be! 

  • Do you outline your book?
  • What kind outline? Detailed or more like a guideline? 
  • Do you just let your characters lead the way and pray they aren’t taking you down the rabbit hole?

I would never presume to tell anyone what is right and what is wrong with how they approach a project. Doing what you are comfortable with and what you see as a plan and system you can live with and work well with is to me, far more important than following some text book guideline laid down by someone or someones who think they are the expert.

I’m not an expert on anything – I’m a writer. I ONLY want to be a writer when I write. I don’t want to offer you advice, let you cry on my shoulder and most importantly, I won’t tell you how you should do anything. My experience is mine. Go get yours. Don’t be be afraid to spread your wings and fly!

“On giving writers advice, offering “rules.” I’m asked a lot about this, and people bring great lists of rules for writers to the page all the time. What do I think? I can’t say it loud enough. There are NO RULES for all writers! And never let anyone tell you that there are. Writers are individuals; we each do it in our own way. Don’t ever let anyone tell you that you’re not a “real” writer because you don’t follow their rules! I can’t tell you how much harm was done to me early in life by others judging me in that way. I was told in college I wasn’t a “real” writer because I composed on a typewriter; I was condemned later on in damn near apocalyptic terms for “not writing every day.” “Real writers” are those who become “real writers.” That’s all there is to it. And again, we each do it in our own way. For me, stubbornness has been as important as any talent I might possess. I ultimately ignored the people who condemned me, ridiculed me and sought to discourage me. I laughed or cried over it in secret; and went right on writing what I wanted to write, the way I wanted to write it. I knew of no other way to become the writer of my dreams. If you want to be a writer, go for it. Critics are a dime a dozen, and people who would love to see you fail are everywhere. Just keep on going; keep doing what works for you. Keep believing in yourself.” ANNE RICE

I’d listen to this woman before I’d listen to anyone else. She’s 100% right.

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Readers’ Favorite Gives AMBER WAKE #FIVESTARS!

Five Stars Amber Wake

I’m sure I speak for both Ronovan and myself when I say we are incredibly proud of this novel. The reviews we’ve been getting are like icing on the cake. Thank you Readers’ Favorite Book Reviews!

Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers’ Favorite

Amber Wake: Gabriel Falling, The Razor’s Adventures Pirate Tales is an historical adventure novel written by P.S. Bartlett and Ronovan Hester. Captain Gabriel Wallace had no idea that his presence in a tavern filled with Royal Navy men and sailors relaxing with their companions would lead to his court martial and expulsion from the Royal Navy. When his lieutenant and good friend, Miles Jacobs, mentioned that there was a problem in the upper level of the tavern involving Admiral Hawthorne’s wife, Wallace had no choice but to intervene. The outraged Admiral was ready to shoot the miscreant who had been with his wife right then and there, and he was oblivious to any attempts made to reason with him. In the fray, the Admiral was stabbed and later died, and Wallace was charged with interfering with the Admiral’s attempts to defend himself. While Wallace escaped imprisonment or the noose, his enemies, particularly the corrupt Admiral Chambers were not through with their vendetta. However, Wallace did not sit idle during the month he spent awaiting trial. He had been busy following the trail of evidence against those who had long wished his family harm, and he had made a few plans of his own.

P.S. Bartlett and Ronovan Hester’s historical adventure novel, Amber Wake: Gabriel Falling, The Razor’s Adventures Pirate Tales, is an exciting and fast-paced story set in the early eighteenth century. As I read of Captain Wallace’s trial and expulsion from the Royal Navy and his decision to turn to piracy, I was reminded of Sabatini’s classic pirate adventure tale, Captain Blood. The action scenes in this novel are vivid and filled with sounds and images, and the plot is compelling and complex. The authors’ characters are marvelously portrayed, especially that of Miles Jacobs, whose loyalty and concern for his friend prompts him to put everything at risk. Amber Wake is well-written and the plot is a delight. Anyone who’s ever enjoyed a good pirate movie (and who hasn’t?) or found themselves wrapped up in a classic adventure novel will have a grand time reading this authentic and suspenseful tale. It’s highly recommended.

10 Things I Wish I Knew About Being an Author

Owl

  1. Unless you’re already famous for something else; rock star, movie actor, professional athlete—you most likely will not sell a million copies of your book—your first book let’s say. For Joe Shmo and P.S. Bartlett and many other authors, being successful takes a good deal of time, good marketing and a great support base. If you’re hoping to get rich quick by being a writer, you may want to get that record deal or Lakers contract first.

  2. You have to have either a very good memory or be incredibly organized. Between scheduling writing time, writing your blog, tweeting, running contests, Facebook pages, email addresses, writing your book and not to mention holding down a full time job, keeping house, cooking, cleaning and keeping your significant other from leaving you due to you forgetting not only their birthday but their name, you may have time to pee and walk the cat—I mean dog.

  3. It can be a very lonely career. Writers need a lot of solitary time to write. I’ll admit, I’ve been writing and someone will come into the room and most often they will ask that all too important question, “Are you writing?” but occasionally the matter is important to them. Forgive them because they don’t realize you’re right in the middle of taking down an army of giant trolls and when you read back over what you wrote later, try not to get upset with them when your troll has forgotten to do their homework and needs an excuse note for their teacher or they’ve set the kitchen on fire.

  4. People want your swag. If you’re not an author and you’re reading this, no, they do not want your lovely new curtains, they want goodies that show off your books. There is a bit of an investment involved but it’s oh so worth when your fans want something special to go with their books. Bookmarks, buttons, charms and t-shirts make great swag but always remember your fans love your books and they are going to want some swag so you better have it ready.

  5. Getting published is as easy as 1, 2, 3 (and other fairy tales). There are literally millions of books on Amazon alone—go look if you don’t believe me. Looks pretty simple doesn’t it? (I’ll be right back I’m rolling on the floor laughing). Even if you become frustrated with the process of querying agents and publishers and decide to self-publish your book, there are plenty of really nice and friendly people waiting in line to take your money and help you do just that—choose wisely. Do background checks if you have to but please be careful.

  6. Depending on which genre you write in, you must do your research. Nero didn’t smoke cigars—neither did pirates. I’ll bet you didn’t know that did you? Okay well even if you claim you did, do you have to be 100% historically accurate? Well yes, you should. Of course you can use your imagination to create new scenarios, for instance Abraham Lincoln as a vampire hunter but if old Abe whips out his iPod or says, “Hey, pass the Grey Poupon,” I’m sorry but your more experienced reader is gonna close the book on you.

  7. I didn’t know authors were zombies. I’ve learned to accomplish more things while half asleep than some people do wide awake—I think. Well I try.Okay I thought I did those things!

  8. Social networking is very important but don’t beg. If you’re a new author, currently writing your first novel or even thinking about it, you better have a Facebook, a Twitter, a Google+ and a blog at the very least or you are already way behind. The irony of all of this is under point number 3. I compare this lifestyle to living like a gopher. In the hole, out of the hole. In the hole, out of the hole. We hide and write and in the next breath, we stick our head out, make a bunch of really cool new friends, say hello to our fans and then run back in our holes. Please, just don’t bombard people with “Over here! Look at me! PLEASE look at me! WILL YOU FREAKING LOOK OVER HERE!!!” Build relationships. Support your fellow writers and above all, don’t steal their golf balls.

  9. Not everyone likes you and once you’re published, they may like you even less. As we strive to write that perfect, wonderful book that of course everyone wants to read and it miraculously gets published and we’re deliriously happy and sharing our happiness with anyone who will listen on every social media site and at every cocktail party or barbeque we attend, there is someone or someones lurking and guess what—they don’t like you, never did and they’ll be mean to you. They’ll give you anonymous bad reviews or say not so nice things about your book—since it is of course the source of your happiness. The answer to this is very simple. Write them into your next novel and kill them. Done.

  10. People will like you and they’ll love your book. The most incredible feeling you get when your book is published and you start receiving feedback from complete strangers as to how good or even great it is will blow you away. Besides the birth of my children and grandchildren, giving birth to my first novel and holding it in my hands for the first time was nothing short of euphoria. Within its pages or gigabytes lies your blood, sweat and tears. It’s an asexual reproduction of your deepest thoughts and your wildest dreams, and you don’t need an epidural or puff puff blow to bring it into the world—however, a little shot of tequila or in my case RumChata to welcome its arrival never hurt anybody.

DEMONS & PEARLS On #Thunderclap! Can You Help Me Hoist the Colors?

https://www.thunderclap.it/projects/24769-hoist-the-colors-mates

Hey everyone,

Sorry to interrupt your day…well okay, no I’m not because I really need your help with something.

I have a new book launching on April 14, 2015 and I’m trying something new this time called Thunderclap.

First of all, it’s FREE and EASY. You just click on the link and sign up to take part in my book launch. Thunderclap will do the rest.

What will happen is on the date and time I specify, which will be 4/21/15, #Thunderclap will share my post about the book via your Facebook, Tumbler or Twitter pages ALL AT THE EXACT SAME TIME! How cool is that?

My book message will be shared over several social networks and I am hoping for it to be sent out to over 100,000 people all at once!

Here’s the catch, I need at least 100 people to sign up for Thunderclap to share my message. There’s no limit to how many sharers I can have but I have to have at least 100 or the campaign is a failure. 😦

So if you don’t mind sharing my book on your Twitter or FB page on 4/21/15, please sign up. 🙂

THANK YOU!!!P.S. Bartlett Demons and Pearls Cover

Weekend Update – Book Signing Success – No Rest for the Weary

Yesterday I was blessed to finally have my book signing / pirate party / meet and greet for The Blue Diamond – The Razor’s Edge.

I didn’t expect a huge turnout so I only brought 20 books…I sold and signed them all. 🙂

Here are a few pics from the event. I’ll admit it was fun to dress up and play Ivory for the afternoon and I brought along my crew of cousins to lend a hand…fast forward the fabulous foursome about twenty years..lol

 

Yours Truly

Yours Truly

Pirate Party3

Setting up the Room Pirate Style

Pirate Party4

The Crew’s eatin’ good today!

Pirate Party6

All gone. 🙂

Pirate Party7

Major Booty up for grabs!

Pirate Party8

This basket was HUGE! Filled with more treasure than you could shake a dagger at!

Pirate Party9

Another happy winner!

 

My amazingly supportive family and friends. These women are the definition of soul-mates. Can you figure out who’s who of the crew?

These are what you call FRIENDS.

These are what you call FRIENDS.

If I were ever to run away and become a pirate, these are the first three women I’d sign on as crew members. They are amazing beta readers. They organized this book signing down to the decorations and door prizes. They did set up and clean up and worked as cashiers, sold raffle tickets and handled the security…well, they made me feel secure in knowing they always have my back and support my goals 100%.

After the signing, we let the good times keep on rolling and a few of us headed out for the rest of the evening to hear my brother-in-law’s band, Shaky Magoo. I ran into so many old friends I couldn’t keep up with trying to speak to each one individually but I found myself wrapped up in the arms of so many of my old pals I was warm and fuzzy from head to toe all night. Sorry for the fuzzy pics though. I guess how I was feeling spilled over into my iPhone.

Shaky3 Shaky4 Shaky2 Shaky1

Shaky5

My favorite dentist with her arm in the air. It was fun seeing her out of the office. She’s a blast!

Then it was up early this morning for breakfast with this cutie and back to the usual grind of grocery shopping and laundry.

Breakfast

Then, later, a couple of hours with these two cherubs of love and joy.

Twinnies

Not to sound like a whiner but after my usual week of work, babysitting and daily writer dream pursuits…it’s fair to say I’ve had no rest what-so-ever this weekend and there isn’t any in sight.

Nothing new here!

Thanks for stopping by…see you next time!

Tata

Thanks to my friend Bobby Duncan for taking this very nice photo of me last weekend while I was helping my husband DJ a wedding.

 

 

The Rave Reviews Book Club #RRBC Has Me Like…

Get on down to the Rave Reviews Book Club tonight!
This could be YOU!!!

Don’t forget to tell them I sent you!
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Hello Wonderful RRBC Member!!

Today’s #PUSHTUESDAY Lucky Winner is P.S. BARTLETT!! Her Twitter handle is @PSBartlett. She is the author of HOPE FROM THE OCEAN, http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00O885IY8/.

Please support her on Twitter, Facebook and any other social media forums you use. Be sure and pick up a copy of her book today as well! Let’s show the world that we can #PUSH our members and propel them to unimaginable heights!!

GOOD LUCK TO YOU as you could be the next #PUSHTUESDAY Winner! For more details on #PUSHTUESDAY, visit our online Newsletter or on the sidebar on any page of the Rave Reviews site.

Two #RaveReviews for The Blue Diamond – The Razor’s Edge!

Of course they won’t all be this wonderful but it sure feels good tonight!

Customer Reviews
This review is from: The Blue Diamond (The Razor’s Edge Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
The Blue Diamond was a surprise of a read. I didn’t really know what to expect when reading a Historical Adventure Romance. The balance of adventure to romance was just right to keep me interested. As a writer and a historian, I was a History Teacher, I felt the period touches given were just enough for the story and not so much to get in the way of the read. Very nicely done. I am very glad I gave this book a chance.

Ivory Shepard and Maddox Carbonale, the conflicting romantic pirate leads of this novel reminded me a bit of Scarlett and Rhett’s relationship in Gone with the Wind. Both strong willed and leaders of their own particular worlds. When a large bounty brings to the two pirate captains clashing together the tension is believable and undeniable.

PS Bartlett brings historical pirate elements to the story without the corny stereotypes I was afraid I would find. With a change of setting, this story could translate into modern day, albeit with a touch of language update. The words and phrasings used made for an easy read.

The author does a very good job of setting atmosphere but there a very few times I wanted to get to the next part and be done with a few passages that seemed to get in my way. This may have just been my wanting to get onto the next part that told me something I really wanted to know.

There are no wasted scenes in the book as each one builds to an understanding of characters and leaves you wanting just a touch more knowledge. I was very impressed with the handling of back story in flashback scenes, very few, and a nice scene explaining a detail of Ivory’s past.

Also I liked the surprises at times but really Bartlett leads you along so that at times you do expect certain things, sometimes you are disappointed but sometimes you get what you want. I will say this, even though at times I knew what must happen, I didn’t know it would happen the way it did.

I connected with Carbonale in how his approach to his feelings and reactions to Ivory and her words and actions.

The reason I liked the book is because it gave a balance of both Ivory and Maddox and a few other characters and made me want to know what happens, and I was never allowed to be comfortable in what was occurring because I learned quickly anything was bound to happen to mess up what I thought would happen.

Bartlett left us wanting more at the end. I am hoping for a follow up to The Blue Diamond. She has created a world with a lot of possibilities for further adventure with various characters created.

I give it 5 out of 5 stars for writing, readability, character development, and the environment one is made to feel.

This review is from: The Blue Diamond (The Razor’s Edge Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
This is a great story of love, loss, and redemption. It is not your ordinary bodice-ripper. Ivory Shepard is a strong, yet flawed, character whose greatest struggle is taking care of her beloved cousins while keeping her vulnerability in check. Female pirates such as these are a rarity in romantic fiction, and P.S. Bartlett deftly handles the feminine psyche while providing her characters with a core of steel will and determination. This is a fun and satisfying read for those looking for love, adventure, and great female characters.