#MarketingMonday – Get started!

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#MarketingMonday – Get Started!

Welcome to my Freebie Marketing Tips! As a marketer, I know the importance of having a presence

Are you just getting started with your career? Or needing to reboot your current one? Don’t worry. It’s never too late to begin or start over. So how do you get started? I will take you step-by-step with some simple steps to help you along your way.

Here’s a video of what I strongly believe should be your first step to creating your brand:

I hope this helps you begin your journey of creating a brand that you love and can be trusted. Remember to make you YOU-nique!  😀

Until next time…
Happy Writing!
~t

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HaPpY 2017!

newyear

~ WeLcOmE 2017 ~

The clock has struck midnight and a new year has begun. I like the beginning of the year. You get a fresh start. A new chapter. Another chance.

As most of you know I’m against making resolutions. *heehee* I don’t like to  set myself up for disaster. Instead, I like to reflect on the year that’s just passed and focus on the positive. To build upon that and to lift my spirits in a positive movement.

So here’s my challenge to you all for 2017…

Make a list of FIVE things that were positive for you this year and one dream you would like to see happen. ONLY five? Yeppers, that’s it. Five. Seems easy, right? For some it will be. For others, it will be a stretch. Let’s face it, 2016 was a pretty rough year for most. Honestly, I’m glad it over. BUT I know there were some memorable moments hidden in there. Let’s go find them! Here’s mine:

  1. My ear surgery was more than successful! Not only was the doctor able relieve the pain and pressure, but I can hear now. It’s the first time in my life I’ve ever been able to hear properly out of my right ear.
  2. I signed with an agent! I’m still amazed and smiling. It’s wonderful to know you have someone in your corner. Rooting you on. Making you better. Wanting you to succeed as much as you want to.
  3. I debuted as illustrator! Bubble Gum, Bubble Gum was my first picture book where I was an author AND illustrator!!!
  4. I  kicked off my Marketing Business in 2016! I have three clients right now. This year I plan to take on a few more. I also was hired at a local business part-time. I really am enjoying it too. My boss and I get along (which is important… some of you know my horror story), I get to meet new people, and I’m constantly learning.  🙂
  5. I’m writing my first YA. While it doesn’t seem like a milestone to some. It is a mountain for this picture book writer! I’m really learning how to delve deeper and try different approaches to my writing. And guess what!???! It is helping my pb writing too! Imagine that!!!  🙂

Now my dream…

I have two really.

  1. Personally, I want to be medically better by the end of the year. I’ve already started on that road this past year, but there are some other things on the horizon that need to be cleared up.
  2. Business-wise, Make a sale. Of course, I know there are so many variables with this one, but I can produce the best work I can and give it my best shot. 😀

Okay, whew, yes, that last five-one was harder than I wanted it to be. hahahhaha. So what are your five things? It doesn’t have to be huge, just what is important to you. What is your dream? Let’s bring 2017 in on a positive note. Here’s to a wonderful year full of love, laughter, peace, & books!

Until next time…
Happy Writing!
~t

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Books Love & Taters Book Festival is TOMORROW! (#BLTBF)

sm-bltbf

Books Love & Taters Book Festival is TOMORROW!

*big production music*

red-head   The festival is tomorrow.
Bet your bottom dollar that tomorrow
Will be fun.

Just thinking about tomorrow
Brings a broad smile that tomorrow
There will be sun.sun

 

Tomorrow!
Tomorrow!
#BLTBF is TOMORROW!

It’s only a daaaaaaaaaaay
A
Waaaaaaaaaaaaaay!

 

How’s that for a production number? *LOL*

I wanted to give a shout out before tomorrow to everyone who is helping to make this year’s #BLTBF possible:

Platinum Sponsor:

  • The Portier Agency

Gold Sponsors:

  • OnStage Publishing
  • South Georgia Lube Center
  • Dixie Peanuts

Silver Sponsor:

  • L’s of Ocilla
  • Irwin County State Bank   *member FDIC

Bronze Sponsors:

  • Esparaza’s
  • Ameris Bank   *member FDIC

PLUS:

  • THREE anonymous donors!!!

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

Because of each of you, the 5th Annual Books Love & Taters Book Festival will be another great success. If you are local, please visit these businesses and let them know how much you appreciate their help in supporting literacy in South Georgia!

 

Until next time…
~t

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REVISIT the Featured Author Posts:

  1. Amanda H. Williams
  2. Amy O’Quinn
  3. Beth Hallman
  4. E. M. Knowles
  5. Jamie Dodson
  6. Janie Hopwood
  7. Jeff Newberry
  8. Kristofer M. Hanson
  9. Raven H. Price
  10. Tracey M. Cox

#BLTBF meet Tracey M. Cox!

bltbf-meet-tracey-m-cox

#BLTBF meet…
Tracey M. Cox!

It’s Fall ‘all! And that means it time for the Books Love & Taters Book Festival! This will be the 5th Annual Books Love & Taters Book Festival and we are super excited! Not only is it a great birthday, we are getting bigger! This year the #BLTBF will feature TEN AUTHORS. Most from South Georgia! What better way to support and meet your local authors?

Today I want to introduce you to…

Tracey M. Cox

author-tracey_m_cox

Tracey M. Cox has been telling stories since she could babble. Her love of stories turned into a career in 2000 when she decided to pursue writing professionally. She hasn’t looked back. Since that day, she has been published in newspapers, magazines, an anthology, and ultimately seen her name on the covers of books. Tracey believes in never growing up and writes for children.

She is a PAL member in the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators (SCBWI). In SCBWI, she is active in the Southern Breeze Region where she volunteers as Local Liaison for South Georgia and is the chapter’s Webmaster and PR Coordinator. She is also a KidLit TV team member and a founding member of the South Georgia Writer’s Guild. To help promote literacy in her local area, Tracey founded and directs the Books Love & Taters Book Festival, which is held in Ocilla, Georgia on the last Saturday in October during the Georgia Sweet Potato Festival.

Check out Tracey’s titles…

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LINKY LOVE

website   /   facebook   /   twitter

Please visit our authors website and pages. Like and follow them! Let them know what you think of their work. Feel free to comment and share their content. Show them some social media love!  🙂

BLT-logo

Thanks for visiting and reading about the authors who will be attending the Books Love & Taters Book Festival! Don’t forget to come to Ocilla, Georgia on October 29th. We will have the Georgia Sweet Potato Festival going. Within the Arts & Crafts vendors you will find the 5th Annual Books Love & Taters Book Festival! Stop by our booth. Say hello. Ask your questions. Buy some books. Don’t forget to get them autographed! And as always Have Fun Reading!

Until next time…
~t

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Almost time for the 5th Annual #BLTBF!

sm-bltbfAlmost Time for the 5th Annual #BLTBF!

It’s Fall, Y’all! And that means it time for the Georgia Sweet Potato Festival in Ocilla, Georgia! This will be our 56th annual event and the theme this year is…

County Fair with a Flair

56gspftheme

The Books Love & Taters Book Festival will be at the Arts & Crafts Venue on October 29th.

bltbf1

This year I’ll have TEN AUTHORS! Yes, we are growing.  😀   The list of authors is:

  1. Amanda H. Williams
  2. Amy O’Quinn
  3. Beth Hallman
  4. E.M. Knowles
  5. Jamie Dodson
  6. Janie Hopwood
  7. Jeff Newberry
  8. Kris Hanson
  9. Raven H. Price
  10. Tracey M. Cox

STAY TUNE TO THIS BLOG!

I’ll have posts featuring each author starting this weekend!
Come out to the festival! Stop in at our both. Say HI! Buy some books! Ask your questions. AND have fun reading!

Until next time…
~t

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#NeverForget #September11 #15SeptembersLater

maryalice-color#NeverForget #September11 #15SeptembersLater

Today is a somber one for me. To reflect. To listen. To learn. To remember.

Never Forget

I can remember dropping Son#1 & Son#2 off at school, and heading home. I had the radio on, but on the back southern roads, the signal would go in and out. I remember hearing the morning radio host saying something about NYC… [static]… Plane… [static]… Towers… [static]….

As I neared home, the radio station came back in and I was updated that a plane had hit one of the towers. I rushed into my house and turned on the TV. I fixed Son#3 (who had just turned 2) his breakfast and he ate while I watched the news. The second plane hit and I knew it wasn’t an accident. I knew we were under attack.

Then I watched in horror as those towers fell. I remember falling with them. I sat on the floor where I had been standing only moments before and cried. Son#3 came and sat in my lap. We rocked and hugged. Him consoling me. Telling me it was okay and I didn’t have to cry.

September 11

Every year passes. Every year I think back to that day. As a writer I wanted to write. Words took a new meaning in those days for me. I wrote a poem a few days later. You all know I’m not a poet, but this is how the words flowed and I would like to share it with you…

9-11ribbon

I wear this ribbon upon  my chest
Close to my heart to show the rest
That I won’t forget the ones who were lost
They paid with their lives, the ultimate cost
It’s for the cries of thousands without a sound
And for the cries of a country when the buildings came down
To show that when the dust settled and cleared
A faint song is what you could hear
As the days pass the song does grow
You can see it, hear it where ever you go
The bells around the world for freedom ring
Voices can be heard for freedom they sing
For once America is a country united we stand
The song rings out from a freedom land
So for the people from the tragedy of a Tuesday morn
You didn’t die in vain, our country was reborn.

15 Septembers Later

My heart still breaks. But today it breaks in a different way. We are a nation divided. There is so much hurt. So much hate coming in from all different directions.

I want September 12, 2001 back!

Where people didn’t see race.
Where people didn’t care what religion you belonged to.
Where people didn’t care  what your sexual preference was.
Where people only cared that you were another human being who had survived the day before.

Please don’t make it take another day like that day.
Please see your fellow man and truly see them as one belonging to the HUMAN RACE.
We all bleed red. If you cut me and I cut you, no one will be able to just look at out blood and tell which one it came from which.

I ask my country to remember 9/11 and remember those who lost the lives. Remember the heroes… ordinary men and woman who did extraordinary things that day. And to remember the unity of America coming together in a time of need.

Never forget.

All my love,
`t

Tuesday Tip: 91 Weedy Weak Words to YANK from Your Story

weedyweakwords (1)

91 Weedy Weak Words to
YANK from Your Story

We’ve all heard the advice to SHOW not TELL with our writing.  BUT… How can you do it? What do you look for? Why does it really matter?

I like to use the example of  SHOWING to that of GARDENING.

weed.01WHY DOES IT REALLY MATTER?weed.01

Have you ever started gardening. You stake out a space and prepare the earth. You make sure everything is just so. We do this with our writing too. We have our laptops/notepads handy. We have read books, taken classes, attended conferences, joined critique groups… everything to get our space ready to write.

Then we plant. But do you stop there? NO. You water. You fertilize. You talk to your budding little sprouts. Same for our writing. We continue to learn and write and grow. And yes, I talk to my characters too. :p

Do you stop there though? I hope not. The grass will grow up. Weeds will also pop through the soil. If you’re not careful, it will begin to choke out the plants you have so tenderly grown. With our writing we can become lazy too. We can fall on words that say what mean, but don’t convey what we want to our readers. These are our weedy, weak words. They will choke out our story line, making our reader’s minds wander and potentially leave the story.

We do all this to have a beautiful flower bed. Or delicious fruits and veggies. OR to have a great story that one day will be published.

weed.02WHAT DO YOU LOOK FOR?weed.02

Weeds can be tricky. Vines will creep and wind around a plant. Stickers will blend in with a plant’s leaf shape. SHOOT! Some weeds are actually pretty. You have to keep a sharp eye out, move some leaves around, and look in between spaces. With our writing those weedy words can be tricky too. They can hide behind well thought out sentences and characters. They can act like they are helping a verb, but they are really dragging down the text, giving your readers a vague description of what is really happening.

HINT:   A lot of weedy words end in “-ly”. You know… quickly, softly, hardly.   😉

weed.04HOW CAN YOU DO IT?weed.04

So what to do? What to do? If you have a garden, mow the grass. Get on your hands and knees and pull those dang weeds. Yes, get down in the dirt. Get dirty. Get sweaty. Yank and pull those over-grown nuisances out! Same with our writing. Really dissect your story, every paragraph, each sentence. Once again, we have to get down and dirty. Really dig into our writing and wrestle those buggers out!

But never fear. You CAN do this! Think of really wanting your reader to see how your character is acting. Here’s a great example:

He slowly walked to the door.
vs
He trudged to the door.
He crept to the door.

He quickly ran to the door.
vs
He zipped to the door.
He flew to the door.

See? The bottom two sentences give clear, crisp details of what your character is doing. Whereas the first sentences… well, who knows? To help you out, I’m attaching a word doc you can download that has 91 weedy words/phrases that you can almost always eliminate from your story and make it more vibrant for your readers minds.

WEEDY WEAK WORDS LIST

Here’s to no more weedy words!

:::LEAVE ME A COMMENT:::
What do you do to help improve your writing?
Do you know of any more weedy words to add to the list?

Until next time…

Happy Writing!
~t

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