Monday, April 4, 2011

Laurie's Journal

Last time I hinted that I may have a ~*~ surprise! ~*~ for you this week. I do! But you’ll have to read on.

*waves plate of warm cookies in front of readers’ noses*

My theme for the week is “Thisssssss Close.”

Actions I've taken as a writer. Where am I? What am I doing?

As an author who had both hands and one foot already onboard a sleek little shuttle called Self-Publishing, the call(s) last Friday made me to hop back from the airlock so I could re-evaluate my options and reconfigure my trajectory plan. Nothing like pouring on the reverse thrusters in a hurry!

Since last Friday, I’ve been swept up in the force field called Golden Heartdom. I’ve been drafted into the ranks of the GH Class of 2011 (we who are yet unnamed, but hope to find a moniker at least half as good as the 2010 Unsinkables or the 2009 Ruby-Slippered Sisterhood.) I’ve also been inducted into The Golden Network, a membership of past and present Golden Heart nominees and alumni that have formed their own RWA chapter. Now I’m rubbing elbows with some of the people who used to be my writing idols. (*blink, blink* Is this really happening?)

My education in the last week alone could fill volumes. So what’s next? I have two concurrent tasks:

1. Finish the revisions to The Outer Planets at Warp 11
2. Begin querying agents on P2PC

One of my fellow GH class just sent her first query and nabbed an almost immediate offer of representation from a big name agent! Yes, all that happened in the last week. I need to get busy!

The Squeeze
Writers are sponges when it comes to soaking up writing tips and tricks. Here's where we squeeze out our sponges for the week.

For anyone who is considering self-publishing, I’ve discovered there’s an easy shortcut around the baffling and intimidating process of getting your document ready to self-publish. This secret is called “document formatters.” I was just about to send my work to L.K. Campbell (remember, I was “thisssss close”) who has formatted over 400 e-books for both self-published authors and e-publishers, as well as small print publishers. Her rates are very reasonable and her turnaround time is somewhere in the "instantaneous" range. (Remember, document formatters are not editors. They correctly format your document to submit for self-publishing. Be sure your document has been fully edited and is ready to publish before submitting to a document formatter.) She will also format short stories. Definitely worth checking out to save yourself from a first-time self-publishing nightmare.

The latest buzz. Submission calls. New publishers. Industry changes. Inspirational sayings or quotes for writers. And our take on them.

The Is Your Blog Easy to Love? article from The Bookshelf Muse is worth its weight in...well,'s worth a lot! YES! We’ve followed their advice and turned off the word verification and other stumbling blocks for the benefit and enjoyment of our readers.

Let us know you appreciate the gesture by chiming in with a comment. Really! We love hearing from you. We know you’re out there, you’re showing up on our scanners. :)

Great Quotes for Writers:

“A success isn’t someone who didn’t fail, it’s someone who didn’t quit.” -- Anonymous

Success is not final, failure is not fatal; it is the courage to continue that counts. -- Winston Churchill

Books we're reading and mini-reviews. Writers must read voraciously. Sometimes we find gems in the literary universe or sometimes certain elements of a book really speak to us (and our muses). Do we know about book giveaways? A big debut? We'll dish on those.

Here’s my surprise. As I mentioned above, I came ohhhh soooo close to self-publishing.

Audience chants back: “How close were you?”

Thisssss close.

This fabulous cover for The Outer Planets was created by the enormously talented Amanda Kelsey of Razzle Dazzle Design. It was actually based on a spec cover, and when I saw it on Razzle Dazzle’s website , I sucked in my breath and whispered, “That’s Mitch and Lissa!”

I emailed Amanda to ask if she could do a couple of changes to the design. A few emails back and forth and I had this amazing end product. Of course, this may or may not be the “real” cover of The Outer Planets, depending what happens in the future, but I’m so proud of it that I wanted to share it with the world. Okay, the galaxy! 

It definitely says SF and R in bold letters, don't ya think? How do you like it?  Let me know in our (unmoderated, un-word verified) comments below.

Events, conferences, cons as well as Facebook, Twitter and blog events.

We may have just witnessed the dawn of Mittenpunk on last week’s Six Sentence Sunday round. What’s Mittenpunk? It’s Steampunk that takes place in the winter. Has a new sub-subgenre just been born? Here’s the link to the original Mittenpunk Six Sentence Sunday post on Aislinn Kerry’s blog:

Ping Pong
We'll comment back to our co-bloggers on things they've posted on their journals.

@Donna Loved your article on SF(R) in film. It does get the mental main power drive on line, doesn’t it? Best of luck with your entry in the Fool For Love. I gave this one a hard look, but decided things were too crazy last week to try to pull together an entry, too.

@Sharon  Special thanks for all the tips, tricks and feedback you've given over the last week.  It sure helps to have someone who's been through this craziness a couple of times before.  :)


  1. Oh, my God!! What a cover! Almost worth putting the thrusters back in drive just to see that one! Wowsers!

  2. Gorgeous! Where can I find a hero like that?

    Oh, wait ... he's out of this world! ;)

  3. Thanks, Donna! Yeah, I've done a few fly-bys myself. heh heh

    Didn't it turn out great?

  4. Hey, Arlene, fellow GH inductee! Well, Mitch's home base is Earth so check your local Army base. :)

    That's what's so cool about Near Future romance. The characters are close to contemporaries.

    Thanks for stopping by. :)

  5. Awesome job on that cover. It really stands out, Laurie, and yes, not only calls out sci-fi romance, but come on--read me!

  6. What a beautiful cover. I love it, Laurie.
    Yup, your local Army base is sure to have a few like that...
    Oh, those were the days.

  7. Thanks so much!

    @Arlene Yes, I'm lovin' this cover and its appeal.

    @Dawn LOL Brings back memories, does it?

  8. Mittenpunk? Has this crazy nuts concept seriously made sub-genre status?

    But... but... but we were just messing about! ("We" being me and Lori Gallagher Witt) Pardon the pun, but I can't quite believe a ditzy conversation has snowballed in this manner

  9. @Misa LOL That's how subgenres get coined. You know the saying, "From the smallest beeze, hurricanes are born."

  10. Oh wow, that's a beautiful cover, Laurie!

  11. Thanks, Sara! :) I was so pleased with it.

  12. It's gorgeous, Laurie! Very inviting. :D

  13. It's a beautiful cover Laurie! :)

  14. @laynap and @Pippajay

    Thanks for stopping by to take a peek. :)

  15. Wow is that cover beautiful. Wow.

  16. Thanks, Anna! I love it, too. :)


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