Eclectic Cycle
17Jun/13Off

Red Carnival Mask

Oh, here we are again, my lovelies. It is Monday, which means it is time for me to update ye old blog. Not too much craziness happening this week other than the first stage of the cover is complete. I thought you guys might want to see the mask design I am using for the book cover, so here goes:

red carnival mask

red carnival mask

It's in 'raw form,' which is to say it has not been 'prettied up' with graphic design tweaks yet. But I think you get the idea of where this is heading.

The next order of business is the rules of writing, which I have been posting about for the last three weeks. The fourth 'rule' is that you must put your work on the market in order to succeed as a writer. Once again, I know that sounds really 'duh' but aspiring writers will go to amazing lengths of denial and avoidance so that no one else may view their works. The excuses range from 'one more polish' to 'I don't know how to submit a manuscript' or 'I don't know how to format an ebook.'

So why do aspiring writers not put their work out there? Fear, of course. Fear of rejection, fear of ridicule, fear of this and fear of that, fear that grandma will read your stories and be appalled with the cursing...

So let me tell you a little secret. Gather close, now. The secret is this: Someone, or quite possibly several someones, will hate your work. They will loathe it. They will dump a heap of one star reviews on you, say it is the worst book ever, so on and so forth. They will curse the day your mother birthed you into this world. You know what I say to that?

Let the haters hate. Let 'em. Meanwhile, you have moved past the fear and put your very best work on the market, and you keep writing and keep honing your craft and business skills. And that is the secret-acknowledge that no matter how good your work is, someone is going to hate it. Deal with that reality, know the one stars are coming, and move on.  It's just part of creating something and presenting it to the public. But you know what? Someone else is going to love it. And for further moral boosting, go look at the reviews of your favorite book. It almost certainly has loads of bad reviews.

I would like to make a special note, though. Many low star reviews are valid, and are giving you valuable feedback. If you keep getting reviews saying your grammar/editing is poor, or that your plot does not make sense, then you really need to take a hard look at the problems being mentioned, preferably with a person in your life you can trust. If you cannot afford a freelance editor's charges, then find someone to help you. Another set of eyeballs can catch loads of problems that you never saw. I know this is not the first time I have mentioned this, but a trusted person who can objectively look over your work is priceless. Cherish this person, because it is a very hard thing to tell someone the work they created and loved has flaws.

Well, enough preaching at you guys. Go on, get off this rambling blog and write or read. No more to see here!

 

Check out my coloring books at Becca Paige’s Author Page on Amazon. And don’t forget to follow me on Instagram and Pinterest. If you are here for the fantasy book goodness, the R. Moses Author Page is where you can find my writing. Thanks for stopping by!

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2Jun/13Off

Zentangle Frog

Hello all! This week I am featuring a little frog prince, doodled while contemplating some plot points in my new fantasy book series. He's a bit glum because the silly little princess with the golden ball has yet to arrive at his home in the dark forest!

zentangle frog

zentangle frog

 

And I do believe I said I would discuss 'my advice for new writers part two' this week, so here goes. I am actually giving you the classic "Heinlein" rules for becoming a writer. He was successful back when there was quite a bit more work involved in getting your stuff out to potential readers, so he knows what he is talking about. So what is his second rule for writing?

You MUST finish what you write.

Yep, I know, sounds like another 'duh' bit of advice. But once again, so so true-and so rarely followed out by aspiring writers. Granted, I have quite a few half-finished manuscripts and short stories around here somewhere, all done before I decided to get serious about writing, but I wished I had finished them (and who knows, maybe I will one day!) Because only by actually finishing stuff do you learn how to wrap up plot, start new ones,  plus create a beginning, middle, and end. Once you have a rough first draft,  you can see what works and what does not, and you can more comfortably decide whether to scrap the project or set it aside or start a new project. Note that I am not suggesting you plug on though a second draft if  you hate it. Not at all. I am just suggesting you finish the first draft before deciding if it is hopeless. I have written first drafts several times and set them aside because they were not very good. Another good thing about finishing what you write is that you do have a direction. Nothing is more dreadful to creative types than a lack of ideas. A blank page will haunt you! When you have a first draft, no matter how good or bad you perceive it to be, at least you have a rough map through the wilderness of your vivid imagination. You have a path to follow, so get those ratty running shoes on and go!

 

 

Check out my coloring books at Becca Paige’s Author Page on Amazon. And don’t forget to follow me on Instagram and Pinterest. If you are here for the fantasy book goodness, the R. Moses Author Page is where you can find my writing. Thanks for stopping by!

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10Mar/13Off

Podiobooks Vs. Audiobooks for The Last Savior Trilogy

Dilemmas, dilemmas. I have run into what can best be described as a 'grey legal matter' with the production of the audiobook of "The Last Savior Trilogy." Let me explain lest there is any confusion. I would very much like to have an audiobook through all the major distribution channels. BUT-and to me, this is  a huge BUT- I cannot set the price. The distribution company has the final say on that matter. One of the many joys of being an indie writer is the right to set the price of your work. Based on their calculations, I am thinking that to purchase the entire trilogy as audiobooks could cost anywhere from $24-74 depending on format.

Yeah, no. Heck no! Heck no with fudge sauce and a cherry on top! If I could set the price, I would have the first audiobook free since anyone kind enough to give up their spare time to check out my work should get a no-obligation audiobook. And the subsequent audiobooks? $7.95 apiece for a grand total of $15.90 for the digital file. So as you can see, I am at extreme odds with the pricing structure of the major distributors.

But wait, all is not yet lost! I am currently working with a voice actor to produce podiobooks. They are a little different because they are episodic instead of one long production. Each chapter will be an episode. And this is the awesome part-they work on a donation method. You can donate as little or as much as you want. The podio episodes are free to download, and you make a donation if you are happy with the content. You set the price, which is better to me than some giant corporation telling me how much to charge my awesome fans. The site is www.podiobooks.com and you will see my work up there soon. The short story I wrote, "Demon Draw" is in production and should be released by the end of the month. Oh, yeah, I almost forgot! Another cool thing about podiobooks are the sound effects and music. Traditional audiobooks do not have such sweet upgrades.

So, yeah, this is my tiny resistance against the powers that be. I refuse to be told how much to charge for my work under a seven year contract-and that is the most lenient contract I could find. I really have my fingers crossed that A Shadow of Lilies will be in podio by the end of May 2013. They do take a lot of technical expertise, professional voicework, and time to produce, but I think we will all find it worth it...

Oh, and how could I forget to mention this? I am still writing A Fury of Angels every day, so it should have a spring release as planned. Thank you for your patience, my dark fantasy fiends!

Check out my coloring books at Becca Paige’s Author Page on Amazon. And don’t forget to follow me on Instagram and Pinterest. If you are here for the fantasy book goodness, the R. Moses Author Page is where you can find my writing. Thanks for stopping by!

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25May/11Off

Bearly There, I do declare

Today's fresh art offering is a bear

With a lot of hair

I cannot even compare

The greatness of my bear

Yes, well, I never said I was a poet, although for some strange reason I keep trying. I am trying to write an article about arts marketing and I am trying to be all serious and business like with it. That is difficult for me, as you can well imagine! Also we finally finished up the free download section of the site, so that is pretty awesome! We have one whole print up right now-whoo hoo!

As always, sign up for our newsletter for news on new art, new downloadable prints, and articles!

Check out my coloring books at Becca Paige’s Author Page on Amazon. And don’t forget to follow me on Instagram and Pinterest. If you are here for the fantasy book goodness, the R. Moses Author Page is where you can find my writing. Thanks for stopping by!

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9May/11Off

Oh, yes, and what a deer you are

My latest, most glorious masterpiece that I am sure MOMA will want to display in their hallowed halls of art greatness is a little deer. A fawn, if you please. All bright eyed and blinky and curious about the world. I am thinking that perhaps this piece is a little more geared to tots. I really enjoy drawing things for children as they are a very appreciative audience. I had a little cousin that passed away in a car wreck, she was so young, only 22, and it breaks your heart to think of it. She loved when I drew her little things when we I was a teenager babysitting her. Even though my art still had a long way to go, she always really liked anything I drew for her because it was just for her. Ever since then, I thought a great deal about having a lot of my work being whimsical illustrative type work for children. I even went to college for illustration, not that I listened to my professors at the time, even if I should have!

I am hoping to post more information this week as this weekend was beyond busy and hectic. Family emergencies tend to distract one away from the studio. Oh, and how could I forget...hope you enjoyed your mother's day!

Check out my coloring books at Becca Paige’s Author Page on Amazon. And don’t forget to follow me on Instagram and Pinterest. If you are here for the fantasy book goodness, the R. Moses Author Page is where you can find my writing. Thanks for stopping by!

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2May/11Off

Editing and marketing and more editing and more marketing

Whew. Just...whew. So this weekends adventure for our art print business has been quite a learning curve and ride. I made a couple of decisions that had to be implemented, and I am really glad I did this stuff before we put up any more art for sale. For one thing, I am sad to report, the original archival paper we chose for our prints is very finicky and difficult to work with. Cotton rag paper throws up a fine dust when it prints and the printer keeps jamming no matter how much I clean it out. So I decided to switch to a archival matte photography paper and have been very pleased with the results. Of course, the paper does not have the thickness of the rag paper, but it is still archival, high quality, and suits the nature of my art very well. The velvet rag is reknown for creating vibrant colorful art prints but since I rarely use it for color, that point is moot. I am now charging about $5 less per print because of the paper switch, as it is not as expensive as the cotton rag paper, nor does it take so much time to get it to print....and time is money!

The next adventure was editing all of the artwork I had backed up. Nine pieces were drawn, nine pieces were edited, and hopefully will create nine sales soon! Of course you also have to reconfigure the art for Etsy and Zazzle, so that editing is not complete, but we shall struggle on until the great work has been wrought!

As for marketing, I really had to update and redo tags. Tags are so important for people to find you. SEO is highly dependent upon a great number of factors and tags are one of the biggies. I had not tagged my Etsy listings properly, nor my Zazzle, nor this blog! You are only going to build traffic if people can find you. Art is a tough sell, and you need every tool availiable. Artists are often considered to not have good business sense, and I am trying to buck that trend.

In personal news, Little Princess Mittencuffs is now running all around the house just to run. She really loves just walking from room to room for no reason other than to walk. Her enthusiam for life is so encouraging. If I brought half that energy and joy to my efforts, I should be a millionaire in a week or two. Well, that about sums up this weekened round up!

Check out my coloring books at Becca Paige’s Author Page on Amazon. And don’t forget to follow me on Instagram and Pinterest. If you are here for the fantasy book goodness, the R. Moses Author Page is where you can find my writing. Thanks for stopping by!

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13Apr/11Off

I Told You I Would Show My Turtle

This friendly little shelled art piece will be on Etsy soon...

Check out my coloring books at Becca Paige’s Author Page on Amazon. And don’t forget to follow me on Instagram and Pinterest. If you are here for the fantasy book goodness, the R. Moses Author Page is where you can find my writing. Thanks for stopping by!

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12Apr/11Off

Wow, already in a treasury?

Hey, I guess the world is watching more than I thought. I got into a treasury already and I only have one whole print up for sale. That is pretty nifty and flattering and I am really suprised. From what I have gathered about marketing and promoting yourself on Etsy, it takes time to get noticed. A lot of time. I was thinking 3-4 months and maybe like 30+ prints for sale before any notice and possibly sales. It would appear that I am receiving notice right off the bat. That is really encouraging. It looks like I just have not done much at all when you look at my shop and only see one item for sale, but the setup is waaaayyyyy harder than the maintenance is going to be. Once I get more established and can steadily introduce new prints, then the hectic stage will hopefully be over. Then after that hurdle, the tax overlord shall unleash his fiery multi-headed beast upon my delicate wisp of an art business. I shall sacrifice the appropriate amount of cash to appease the overlord and hurdle onward into new adventures! Yes, in case you are wondering, I do enjoy fantasy novels a great deal more than I should. In fact, instead of drawing tonight, I am going to go read. Shame on me...

Check out my coloring books at Becca Paige’s Author Page on Amazon. And don’t forget to follow me on Instagram and Pinterest. If you are here for the fantasy book goodness, the R. Moses Author Page is where you can find my writing. Thanks for stopping by!

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12Apr/11Off

Owls, turtles, circles, and exhaustion

Man, oh man. Who would have thought throwing some prints up on Etsy would be so much work? The hardest part really is getting started and putting your work out there. When you are a delicate, sensitive flower of an artist like myself, opening yourself up to praise and criticism and even worse than both, indifference, is really hard. I am hoping for the best, editing a turtle, and blinking in my typical insomniac daze. I am afraid I cannot even think of all the wonderful to do's tommorrow not! even accounting for chasing my toddler around. You know what? This is all really exciting and I like to sound all complainy pants, but I am happy and excited about all the challenges and fun that lie ahead. I would upload the turtle for the world to see, but technical difficulties have arisen and my tech support has not. He is still slumbering peacefully this warm spring night. So cheers until next time, and perhaps I shall bless you with Turtle...

Check out my coloring books at Becca Paige’s Author Page on Amazon. And don’t forget to follow me on Instagram and Pinterest. If you are here for the fantasy book goodness, the R. Moses Author Page is where you can find my writing. Thanks for stopping by!

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