Books I’m Reading #5

Another round of Books I’m Reading! Haven’t done one since January. Lately I’ve been on a romance kick, but still enjoy a horror story now and then. With fall around the corner I will probably read more horror/thriller.  These are just a few that stood out to me. Let me know if you’ve read any of these and what you’re reading.

Tarryn Fisher is an author I’ve recently discovered. So far I love her books and writing style. The characters draw me in, and when I pick up a Fisher novel I can’t put it down. I’ve read Atheists Who Kneel and Pray and F*ck Love. Both I recommend.

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The Unrequited by Saffron A. Kent. This book is different; the main character has a lot of issues and the sex scenes are pretty explicit, not saying it’s a bad thing. This one also sucked me in until the end.

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I read this series out of order without realizing it. Robert Dugoni, The Trapped Girl. This book drew me in because it takes place in Washington state. I do enjoy crime/mystery novels. This book shows the view of the victim and the detective solving the case. There are a lot of twists and character development.

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Karina Halle, one of my favorite authors…the first book in her new North Ridge series Wild Card. I’d been waiting on this book for months. Great story, memorable characters and I can’t wait to meet the rest of the Nelson brothers. This book made me want to drink whiskey and live on a farm. Even if you’re not into Western’s you should give this book a shot. I wouldn’t consider it a Western.

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I always post what I’ve read on Goodreads and it’s on the right side of my blog.

 

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WIP Update

A lot’s been happening in my writing life which makes me nervous but excited all at once. My manuscript has been sent to an editor for her to copy edit. I’m not expecting to get my novel back until the end of September. I understand that won’t be the end of the editing process. I’m sure changes will follow and then a final proofread.

On a fun note, I hired a cover artist whose work I’m in love with and can’t wait to see what the outcome is. I’m not artistic whatsoever, drawing a stick figure is the extent of my artistic ability.  Trying to picture what kind of cover I want is difficult but I have an idea in mind. I’m hoping once it’s done it’ll give me some extra motivation!

There’s so much to self publishing it’s overwhelming, but I’m trying to take it one step at a time. I hear formatting the paperback is a pain and there’s no way around it.

I don’t have a specific date when my book will be available. With this being my debut novel, I need to make sure it’s the best it can be. This consists of a lot of time, effort and money. Self publishing isn’t cheap but I hope it’ll be worth it. Holding my own book in my hands is the end goal and I want to be proud of it.

For now I’m going to celebrate the small victories and see how far I’ve come. A glass of wine is in my future.

If anyone has tips or advice feel free to share!

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I Wrote Another Novel

Since picking up writing again, I revisited a romance novel I’ve been working on and threw myself into it. I’m a writer who can get work done fast when I need to. One day I wrote 10,000 words. That’s a huge achievement for me.

There is only one way to become a better writer and that’s butt in chair typing away. Some nights I couldn’t sleep. I’d get up at 1 AM and type, edit, add chapters, delete chapters, drink more coffee, write down ideas. My fiancé thought I was crazy at times.

It’s a novel I’m proud of and I hope to make something of it. I have a lot of work to do and have hired an editor to help me with the process. This is a big commitment and pricey but I have to go the distance. I’m really trying to make my dream come to life and I’m doing it because I want to.

Last week, I sent that manuscript to the editor so I won’t hear anything for a few weeks. I’m anxious and excited to see what she recommends.

Since then, I’m already starting another novel and trying to aim for 1000 words a day. I also want to try plotting. I’m usually a person who goes by the seat of my pants but would like to try it for once. I plan to do a blog post about that soon.

Hope everyone had a great weekend!

 

Pen Name or No?

This is a question I’ve been asking myself for months, do I choose a pen name? So far this has been a tough subject for a few reasons.

  • My first and last name are another authors name
  • My first and middle name are taken from another author
  • I don’t hate my last name, but it doesn’t excite me either
  • I’ve had a few different ideas for pen names and been told they don’t fit
  • When I get married next June, I will be officially changing my last name anyway

So you can see my dilemma! For now, I’m using the name JR Wallace but it doesn’t excite me. I personally don’t like the way it sounds but maybe I’m being too harsh. Since I have nothing published, this isn’t official and I could change it.

From what I’ve read, pen names aren’t copyrighted but obviously it’s a poor choice to chose a name someone else has. The last thing I’d want is to be accused of ripping off another author.

I’d really love to hear your thoughts on this and your experiences. Do you use a pen name or your real name? How did you come up with your pen name? Any thoughts for creating one?

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Reading Bad Reviews

This post doesn’t relate to bad reviews based off anything I’ve written, I don’t have anything published yet. This is about reviews from other readers that I’ve found on Goodreads or Amazon.

Sometimes if there is a book I’m interested in, I’ll look at the overall rating but typically don’t read reviews. I’d rather see something for myself and make my own judgement. I also don’t want spoilers. I’ve read several books that had a poor rating but I enjoyed it.

Most people talk about what they hate and sometimes dwell on that only. We often forget to write about something because we enjoyed it. I’ve read book reviews because the reader didn’t agree with who the main character chose for a love interest in the end. Another reader left a poor review because they didn’t agree with actions a character did because it wasn’t realistic. It’s fiction! It’s not supposed to be realistic! That’s a joy of being a writer, it’s your ball court and anything can happen.

I rate a book on the overall story, even if I don’t like the ending. Here are a few items I consider.

  • Did the book entertain me?
  • Could I not put the book down?
  • Did I enjoy the characters?
  • Did the story compel me?

Let me know your thoughts in the comments and your experiences.

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