Friday, January 31, 2014

114 Books this year? Probably not

Yes, I am an avid reader. I love to read, and in fact it's one of my favorite things to do!

Because I am active on the Goodreads site (where members can post books they've read, want to read, and reviews, as well as find new books that interest them) I have happily accepted their reading challenges for the last three years.

How many books will you read this year? I was asked, each January. For 2011, since I was living in a rainy state which kept me inside for days at a time, I read a LOT. So I decided I could read 111 books.

And I did!

For 2012 - I similarly read 112 books, and for 2013, I chose 113 books!

Completed, and completed.

But I have to admit, last year I struggled. We had moved to an area with better weather, and I was outside hiking and gardening a lot, not to mention starting a new series of my own writing. So, instead of 113 actual novels, I filled in with lots of picture books from the library. (No this is not cheating, I decided. A book is a book.)

So this year, when Goodreads put the challenge up there for me to again accept, my first reaction was to go for 114 books.

But then, I decided I didn't really want the pressure (even though I was only competing with myself - lol.) I wanted to feel like I could dawdle over a book, cherishing it or reading slowly. Maybe I'd even take an entire month to finish something.

And I'm also busy writing more this year. My story The Winter Kitten is doing well on Amazon, and I am putting the finishing touches on a brand new one in the series, called The Springtime Cat.

So, no reading challenges for me this year. If I read 114 books, then so be it. But I hope to enjoy every single book that I do finish! And garden more. And hike more. And write more!

If you want to see what I'm reading on Goodreads, feel free to friend me there:

And stay tuned for details about my upcoming title: The Springtime Cat.

How Many Books do you usually read in a year?

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Rebranding Myself

Eeek, that sounds a little scary. But actually, that's what I'm doing right now.

For most of my career, I've thought of myself as a MG (middle-grade) and YA (young adult) author.

But things are changing rapidly in the publishing world, as well as in the reading world. My last three books (and my latest short story) have come out as eBooks first. (I do have some paper copies available of some - email me if you'd like one!)

But my readership has changed also. Although it's true that most of my novels are entirely suitable for ages 9-10 and up - many, if not most, of my readers are adults. Especially adults who love animals. Because (no surprise here) animals (dogs, cats, horses, goats, and even yes, peacocks) have not only snuck in, but are a big part of the storyline of all of my books.

People that love animals tend to love my books! It's true!

So I am hereby rebranding, or remarketing myself, as an author for people who love animals (no matter the age.) I think I have a good chance of attracting my actual readership this way. So you may see some changes on my blog and on my website as I go through this process. Such as the new tag line in the header above: FICTION FOR ANIMAL LOVERS.

I'm still writing, and in fact I hope to have a second eBook out soon, to follow The Winter Kitten, in my series about cats and kittens. And my fiction is still good human drama, with realistic characters, many of whom just happen to be animals.

So what do you think, everyone? A Good Move?

The best part of this is that I am getting excited about my career again, knowing that I might reach new readers this way. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Dear Blog

Gah! I haven't seen you for so long! Like, Last Year!

What have I been doing, Dear Blog? Well, let me catch you up . . .

First, there were "The Holidays." Which somehow seem to morph into taking up all of one's time.

And in the middle of these festivities (actually as I was getting ready for a holiday party) I, ahem, broke a tooth! Which segued into several trips to the dentist, a root canal which is still bothering me, much tooth pain, and learning more about the numbers for teeth (bad #12 tooth!) than I really want to know. *sigh*

I want a smile like this.

But then, I was surprised by Santa at Christmas with a new iPad! Egads! Woo Hoo!

An Apple product, which I knew nothing about, but which everyone assured me was a "piece of cake." But where was the Help Menu? So (thank God for libraries) I immediately checked out some books from our local library on how to work an iPad. (Which some people told me was the epitome of "Old School.") But there you have it.

Very soon, I was downloading things, (like the Kindle App, so now I can read everyone's Kindle book) and I was playing online, and oh yes, learning to take videos!

Of ducks.
And chickens.
Yes, I know this isn't a video. (If it was, it would be too cute for words.) But I am learning, and hopefully soon will post cute animal videos, so that you, too, will get nothing done. Ha, ha!

Anyway, Happy New Year, everyone. I am writing, and hopefully soon will publish another (not yet titled) cat story. I am enjoying writing some shorter fiction, and plan to make these a series, but with different characters (and cats.)

And I promise you, Dear Blog, I will be a more regular contributor this year. Just as soon as I . . . oh wait, the chickens are taking a dust bath in the flower bed. Must get that on video. Where is my iPad???