Using the holidays to improve yourself

Arbol_Navidad_03

Happy Holidays! Those two words are even more powerful than you think. Most associate it with fussy shopping and unwanted stress in meeting those pesky relatives you’d rather not see, but the holidays can be so much more than that.
Really!

If you’re stressed out in your work life, or just at life in general, the holidays can be an excellent outlet. How? By realizing that life is full of letdowns and that stressing about it only makes it worse.

This attitude can help you rediscover your love affair with that dreaded word. Work. That’s right. Are you in an occupation you love? Great! If not, now may be the time to make that change.

The Holidays are a perfect time to use what spare moments you have to work on hobbies and special projects. These tend to give us that extra lift in life. Instead of worrying about what gift you need to get for Aunt Betsy or Cousin Ralphie, you can channel your attention into a hobby you’ve been neglecting.

For me it’s writing. For you it could be rock-climbing or volunteering to help those in need. These types of activities can also translate into win-win scenarios into your professional lives, as it adds richness to your life. It may be cliche, but helping others always translates into positive results for yourself.

So when you find yourself with some extra time during the Holidays, and need to recharge yourself, engage yourself in your hobby or giving back to society, and watch your confidence soar!

Advertisements

Quote of the day: 11/17/17

IMG_20130725_102148.jpg

“The beauty of art is that it comes from the heart.”
T.A. Uner

Summer Writing Advice for Writers

Just came back from my Summer Trip to Ocean City, MD and it did a world of good. Why? Because taking a trip from home to a different locale is always good for your writing.

Why?

See Below.

BurleyOak
Ale is proven to help writing. Just make sure you drink responsibly.

Ok the ale tasted great but that’s not what I meant. Taking trips to recharge the battery we call the brain is helpful. It helps release clogged up creativity which otherwise would not make it into our manuscripts.

Seacrets
While at the pier, I thought about becoming a pirate. No seriously! There was a huge sea battle I was working on before I decided to take my summer trip.

It also helps if you can find a writing spot at the hotel you stay at. Someplace where you won’t get bothered much. It’s alright if there is some noise. It helps train your mind to block out noises when you’re writing and focus on the task at hand.

FenwickInnView
As I looked out from my writing spot, I dreamed of words to come.

Where do you like to go write? And if so, why do you like going there. Chances are you don’t have to take a 3 hour drive like I did to find one. But, if you do, make the most of it.

 

 

The Road of life

cropped-blog-header-ver3-tuvan-uner.jpg

As many of you know I recently signed a 2-book deal with Kensington Gore, a publisher in the UK. But what was my writing life like before that? How did I arrive there?

Well it started back in 5th grade. 1985 was the year. It began with a story about a character named Jet-thrust. He was a robot that traveled the universe looking for adventures and fighting all kinds of evil doers. I then added a brother for Jet-thrust, calling him Fighter, and then we had a duo of do-gooders.

Then. For whatever reason. I stopped writing. I went through life without writing another word, that is until 2003 rolled along. I was looking for a hobby that would take up a lot of time and was relatively inexpensive. At first I didn’t know what to write about so I wrote a bunch of novels as a learning experience. None of those got published. But I learned a lot about myself and my writing. I read more books, and read books about writing. Then I wrote some more.

Finally I decided to self-publish. That was in 2013. I learned the value of having a good cover, and hiring a good editor. And I always made sure that each book was the best I could make it. Editing was a thankless job so I settled on a great editor named Amanda Horan. Later she recommended my writing to a publisher in UK called Kensington Gore. After waiting a few months they decided to acquire the publishing rights to two of my books.

So that’s been the road map to my writing life. And I’m sure there’s still more to come.

What about you? Think about your life in perspective. Your journey, wherever you are right now. Where do you want to go? And what great things do you want to achieve?

How to honor your Editor

lilo2

Now that November is here, I figured I’d write a post on editing. Let me tell you, when I first began my publishing odyssey, I knew nothing about editing. Sure, I’d edit my own books, but that was it. I felt that spending money on editing was a waste.

How wrong I was.

Editors and beta-readers are a key component to the writing process. They act as a safety net, and find everything you miss when you self-edit. But finding an editor that is best for you isn’t easy. But it’s a journey worth embarking on. Let me explain.

I went through many editors. Some were mediocre, but most were subpar. Then I finally settled on one. An Irish Lady named Amanda, who lives with a mischievous little African Grey Parrot called Lilo. There were times when we argued, and I felt our working relationship wouldn’t last. Perhaps it was my fault. Who knows? I can be difficult sometimes when it comes to my work. But in the end, Amanda was the one, the best editor a writer could ask for. After all, how many editors end up becoming your friends?

And then there’s Lilo, who could ever forget Lilo? The repetitive little talking birdie who won my heart, and often serves as an example to me not to take myself too seriously.

So, the morale of this story is simple. If you find an editor that just feels right, by all means, grab onto them like dear life. Make sure to value them like a life preserver, because they’ll save your writing, trust me I know.

And if they own a talking birdie, well that just a bonus!

What does writing mean to you?

Writing

Well. Here we are again my friends. So let me ask you this: what does writing mean to you?

To me it’s the obvious cliched reason. Because I want to write, because I choose to express myself. Because it’s a hobby I love.

But there is more, much more. The truth is, it’s therapeutic, it’s good for the soul. Yes. For example, when everyone on this site asked me to write a book from a genre they voted on, I answered the call.  Not for personal gain, not for fame, but for the sake of giving back.

In the end a writer needs to write what is interesting to them. But they also have to listen to the people who visit their blog, who take the time to read their posts and leave precious comments. Because every voice counts.

So here we are. Just two days before Guns And Dogs is released. A book that was really about my own struggles as a person, but written for all of you. There is a lot of me in this book. Just like all the others before. But as I mentioned earlier, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

The greatest joy in life is to give something back to society. To leave your mark so you know you lived a productive life. Not for personal gain, or fame, but because it’s the right thing to do. I’m going to indulge in a cliche here but it truly is better to give than receive.

So now we come to the end of another blog post. Guys, it’s been fun outlining and writing Guns And Dogs. And I couldn’t of done it without you.  Thank you for coming here, thank you for leaving comments, but most of all, thank you for reminding me what writing truly means to me.

Giving back.