Thursday, 13 November 2014

NaNoWriMo - my own version

If you are a writer, you might be doing NanoWriMo (National Novel Write Month), where people are writing, or attempting, to write 50,000 words during November. Me? I am doing my own version. With lots of other commitments and health issues, I know there is no way I could write that amount of words in a month, so I am doing my own version of it. I am aiming to write something new every day. So far, I have managed to do this. Here is how:

In the mornings, when I'm not out, I will work on my current ebook, 'A friend in need' which means highlighting and deleting words. If I am out in the morning, I will do this after lunch.

In the afternoons, if I've not been out in the morning, I will write something new. So far, I have rewritten nearly a whole short story, am almost at the end of another story. If I am out in the morning, I will work on my ebook after lunch, and later in the afternoon after a nap, will work on the new writing. Yesterday, I didn't work on a short story, but I did write a synopsis for the serial I have in mind for Woman's Weekly. That I will type up later and read during the weekend, so I can email it to the Fiction Editor next week.

So, are you doing NaNoWriMo? Or are you doing your own version like me? If you are, let me know how you are getting on. I will blog here about the word count, once I have typed up the stories, which will be next month.

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Another major writing decision

Following attending both the short story and serial writing workshops by Woman's Weekly the last week or so, I have made another major writing decision - I want to become a writer for Woman's Weekly and concentrate on those when I write in the afternoons. This is my time for writing projects I want to get published and not being an indie author.

Here is why I have decided this:

I had gone to a workshop last year by Woman's Weekly and got great ideas for stories but didn't think much about it afterwards. I went to a fiction short story workshop on Monday 27 October this year, and had a breakthrough, thanks to Della Galton telling us her formula for writing a story. One of the things she said was that the character had to have a big enough problem to be solved. I realised that this was why I had got stuck with the story I'd been rewriting for the magazine. I also came up with the beginning of another story and the plot for it, also to send to them. I came away so charged up with what I'd learnt that I wanted to write stories for them. I have since changed the story again and just rewritten the beginning of the story I have been working on because yesterday I realised that it had nothing to do with the rest of the story.

Then yesterday I went to Serial Writing and had such good lessons by Suzanne Ahern who writes serials for them regularly. I already had in my head an idea for a serial. I wrote the start of it, developed the characters and plot for it, all things that had been going around in my brain. I was so pleased to get them on to paper. I enjoyed it so much that I now want to write serials. I think one of the reasons is the money you get for each instalment. You can get £500 per episode. So if you wrote a 3-parter serial you would get £1500. So I am going to think of it as a business side from now on and write in the means to be paid, which I hadn't until now. 

Another reason why I want to write for Woman's Weekly is that I've now met the Fiction Editor, Gaynor Davies, a few times and she is such a warm, friendly and encouraging editor to us writers. She said that she would come up with the titles, so don't worry about that. And she works with the writers on their stories and serials. That is the type of editor I want to work with. So watch this space to see what happens. I plan to email Gaynor later this week with a brief outline to my serial I have planned.

Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Why I'm pleased I set up my new marketing website

Last Saturday I went to a panel talk held by the RNA on genre writing. Janet Gover asked most of the questions to the panel who were: Alison Morton, author of the Roma Nova novels about alternate history; Christina Courtney who writes historical, time-slip and YA for Choc Lit, and Monica Fairview who self-publishes books inspired by Jane Austen. I enjoyed listening to how they write what they do and why, but a couple of things happened that made me smile a lot. Christina (real name Pia) said that she is now going to self-publish her YA books because her publisher is not going to publish that genre anymore. Also, another author said in her introduction that she is going to press the 'print' button shortly with her first self-published book. That was number one that made me smile. People are still wanting to self-publish their books.

The second thing happened after the talk. Pia wanted to ask me a question. Me? Yay. Unfortunately, I couldn't answer it because she wanted to know about formatting with headings, which I have yet to do. Alison suggested to hire someone to do it for her. The following morning I messaged Pia on Facebook with other suggestions, which she said she'd look in to.

The third thing was shortly before I was about to leave, the other author, Linda Chamberlain, who said she is going to become an indie author, asked me for the link to my new website. I wrote it on the back of a postcard she had picked up at the talk. I do hope that the website matches people's expectations. The website is all about helping new authors get discovered with blog posts about marketing tips and strategies and guides about marketing. It can be found at www.hopewithjulie.wordpress.com.

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

A major writing decision

I have previously posted that I want to stay as an indie author, publishing my own ebooks, and still get to be a full member of the Romantic Novelists' Association. To be a full member, you need to have had a contract from a publisher for a novel of 35,000 words. I still want to do this but have now come to a big decision on how to go about this. Here is my decision:

1. I want to continue being an indie author for both adult and children's ebooks, so I am going to carry on doing this as I love having the control and freedom to writing what I want, deciding my own cover, my own pricing and when I want to publish.

2. To get into the RNA as a full member, I am not going to try to have a novel published by a traditional publisher as I believe that method of publishing is getting more and more broken. Also, I feel that with most print publishers, contracts wouldn't allow for authors to self-publish other books, which is not what I want. So here is what I plan to do. I want to get published with My Weekly Pocket Novels instead. I see this is a way still to be traditionally published as they come out fortnightly in print, and after that is published you can try to get it into large print with a large print publisher. So, once I have finished the short story I am working on and sent it to Woman's Weekly magazine, I am going to work on revisions of a novel, and that will be sent as a pocket novel.

3. As pocket novels are up to 50,000 words, any novels that I write that go over that amount I will publish as an ebook myself, or any novels that I believe don't match with My Weekly's subjects, such as romantic suspense, then I will also publish as an ebook myself.

So there you have my new major decision about writing. I have been reading ebooks about being an indie author, and the more I read about being one, the more I am certain that is the path I want to stick to.

Monday, 13 October 2014

My new marketing website is now live

Yay, my new marketing website, which I've called 'Get discovered with Julie Day' is now live. I have blogged about why I have set up the website as its launch. You can find the website at www.hopewithjulie.wordpress.com. There are a few pages that have already been done and they are: About; Gift Shop; My Talks and Contact Form. In due course all the pages will have something on them, and that will be marketing guides for direct sale to you.

Now that I have let you know about its launch, the rest of the week I will be promoting it on social media platforms, and will be putting the finishing touches to my first guide about writing letters and tips to magazines.

Happy reading.

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

How to write letters and tips talk - how it went

Last Saturday I gave a talk at Sydenham Community Library on how to write letters and tips to magazines and get paid for them. As I have had numerous successes with these myself, I thought I'd teach others to do the same and pass on my knowledge. After getting there later than I planned due to a delayed mini-cab arriving 25 minutes later, I still had time to settle down before people arrived. It was raining, so I didn't expect many to come. I was right. I only had 2 people arrive, both of whom had come to my last talk. I gave the talk. Throughout the talk, I answered questions and we chatted about writing. One of the men said that it gave him a wake-up call as he didn't realise that people wrote to magazines and got paid for them. He was going to try a filler himself. We chatted about writing and ebooks after that for a while.

While that man was finding out about what else the library did, I chatted to the other man, his friend. I also found out when the library's Xmas fayre was going to be and booked myself to have a stall for that. I will be selling my books, badges and organic products there.

So, although the weather was bad and I only had 2 people turn up, I deem the talk a success because I got them thinking about having a go themselves at writing a letter to a magazine, and I taught them something they didn't know.

This talk I am planning to sell on my new marketing website soon to be launched. If you wish to be one of the first people to know when the website goes live and when these guides are available to buy, why not sign up for my newsletter at

Sunday, 28 September 2014

Coming soon from me....

A new marketing website with guides on how authors and marketers can get discovered. Here is what I have planned for it:

Writing magazine fillers - letters and tip to magazines, and how to get paid for them

How to get leads on-line; how to get reader lists for your books; autoresponders

Finding your brand

Planning and goal setting

Social media: blogs, websites, social network sites. What to do and not to do on Google

Publishing ebooks - my library talk series

My library talks

Gift shop - promoting a few items you can get from my Zazzle store

and more.

This is all that I have learnt from being an indie author and within the last year as being an affiliate marketer.

I have yet to set up the website, which will be a blog, too, so I can blog marketing tips for you all now and then.

To be one of the first to find out when it goes live, why not sign up for my newsletter at