Wednesday, July 7, 2021

July IWSG Post, My First Video Interview and Switching to follow.it

   

6 months of 2021 have flown by. From July 5th my city has opened up. Fingers crossed that the cases which have drastically decreased, will remain low. Though hearing about the crowds and seeing few pictures in the newspaper, I’m quite apprehensive.

With the arrival of the first Wednesday of the month, its time for IWSG (Insecure Writers Support Group) post. IWSG is an online group of writers started by Ninja Captain Alex J Cavanaugh. Alex is the author of Amazon Bestsellers: CassaStar, CassaStorm, CassaFire and Dragon of the Stars, with several more on the way. Do visit the IWSG website for more information on this amazing group and some writing related posts.

 July 7 question – What would make you quit writing?

The awesome co-hosts for the July 7 posting of IWSG are Pat Garcia, Victoria Marie Lees, Chemist Ken and Louise Fundy Blue.

To be honest, I’ve never given this thought. Writing is my way of expressing my feelings. If I stopped writing, I would probably burst. I just can’t imagine not writing. Even if I stopped sending my books to publishers, I would still be writing. 

I also want to share with you all my first video interview that went live last month. It was for a book library and a book club called ‘House of Books and Tales.’

After dilly-dallying for a few months, I finally shot the videos in February, answering each question separately. But then the long lockdown happened. Finally, the video was posted on 18th June.

Here is the YouTube link.

 Please do let me know what you think of my interview, if possible do leave a comment on YouTube.

 I also made the switch from Feedburner (which will stop email services sometime in July) to follow.it, which is a Feedburner Alternative.

The follow.it team was super helpful and efficient. They helped a techno dinosaur like me to navigate the shift so well. Really grateful to them. I was shocked to see so many bots following me. Now it’s all cleared up, thanks to the follow.it team. I have added the follow.it widget on the top right of my blog, for those who want to subscribe to my posts.

I read a bit about follow.it. They have created retention tools that make visitors to our site/blogs come back for more visits. That’s such a good thing. Most visitors don’t bother returning.

They have not just added subscription tools for us bloggers, but also for our subscribers which is actually a good thing. The subscribers are spoilt for choice.

For those sitting on the fence, you can read all about follow.it here. I’m sure it will answer all your questions. I'll be reading more about their free pop-ups services for follow.it users during the weekend. 

Have a nice July everyone.

 

 

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

June IWSG Post and Re-drafting my Books

 

From 27th April night, we have been in a lockdown, which has now been extended till 7th June. This lockdown is longer than the one we had last year, when Covid19 was declared a pandemic. We are still in the second wave and the doctors are talking of a third wave that will happen in October-November. I’m counting out this year too. I very much doubt that normalcy will return anytime soon. I was just telling a friend that I may become a senior citizen by the time Covid fizzles out.

This time round with the spate of bad news coming at me from all directions, my writing has gone for a toss. My attention span has been reduced to just editing my previous stories. No energy to work on something new.

As IWSG rolled into view, I realized that we are five months into 2021. IWSG (Insecure Writers Support Group) is an online group of writers with members from all over the world. IWSG members post on the first Wednesday of the month, building their posts on the question of the month, some members post about other aspects of their writing. Do visit the IWSG website, you will thank me for the wonderful and informative articles on writing that you will see there.

IWSG was started by Ninja Captain Alex J Cavanaugh author of Amazon Bestsellers: CassaStar, CassaStorm, CassaFire and Dragon of the Stars, with many, many more on the way. IWSG is the wonderful place all because of Mr Nice, Mr Generous and Mr Helpful, aka Alex. Ever ready to help other writers find their place in the sun.

My awesome co-hosts for the June 2 posting of the IWSG are J Lenni Dorner, Sarah Foster, Natalie Aguirre and Lee Lowery.

June 2 question - For how long do you shelve your first draft, before reading it and re-drafting? Is this dependent on your writing experience and the number of stories/books under your belt?

For my fantasy novels I usually shelve the first draft for several days (atleast a week, many times more than that) before re-drafting, so that when I read it again, I view it with a fresh perspective and with a better insight. But for the last three books I worked on (all were commissioned by publishers and had a strict deadline), I had no time whatsoever to leave the first draft aside for a few days. Infact for one of the books, the second draft started the moment I completed the first draft. For the other two books, the gap was very much reduced due to time constraints.

What about you all? How long is your gap between drafts? Hope all of you have got vaccinated? I got both my shots.

 


Wednesday, May 5, 2021

My May IWSG Post and Readers’ Reaction to my Books

 

I don’t know about Covid in your countries at this point, but it seems to have caught India in its deadly grip. The cases are rising everywhere, so many people are falling prey to Covid. To break the transmission chain, we are in a 14 day lockdown. The second wave has been really devastating, all around me I’m hearing sad news. The spate of bad news has made me anxious and fearful. I’m unable to concentrate on anything. I just pray to God to get us out of this and keep everyone safe.

And before I realized it, April slipped into May. It’s time for another IWSG (Insecure Writers Support Group) post. IWSG is an online group of writers posting on the first Wednesday of the month. Our posts are mostly writing related. Do visit the IWSG website for some amazing writing and publishing resources and tips.

IWSG is the brainchild of Ninja Captain Alex J Cavanaugh, author of Amazon Bestsellers: CassaStar, CassaStorm, CassaFire and Dragon of the Stars, with several more on the way.

May 5 question - Has any of your readers ever responded to your writing in a way that you didn't expect? If so, did it surprise you?

Yes, I’ve often been surprised by readers’ reaction to my books. Many readers told me that they cried after reading my feature on Father's Day in the newspaper. The feature was a dedication to my father. One middle aged lady after reading my book ‘The Lion Who Wanted To Sing’ told me that she was so motivated by the lion and his passion for singing, that in her forties she started pursuing her dreams, saying that if the lion could do it, so could she. A school principal mentioned my book in her graduation speech to motivate the tenth graders to reach out for their dreams. Both these incidents surprised me. I had no plans of writing an inspirational book, but my singing lion ended up inspiring people. Many people, especially children have told me during school visits, that my book ‘Festival Stories Through The Year’ has inspired them to celebrate festivals in a different way, the way the characters in my books celebrate.

I’m eager to read about what reaction from your readers has surprised you all?

P.S. Please pray for us. We need all your prayers to see us safely out of the pandemic that is now a raging like a tsunami.