Killing Malmon

 

In the last month, I read “Killing Malmon” featuring 30 Authors…One Victim. The book is edited by Dan and Kate Malmon and benefits MS. This was my bedtime story book, and I enjoyed reading the short stories on how to kill Dan. I’m sure Kate was fascinated too –  she’s Dan’s wife!

Killing Malmon

Killing Malmon

Kate has MS and this is their way of helping the MS Society by donating the royalties earned from their book to the cause. The stories are pretty creative and it’s amazing how many different ways you can kill one person! There’s a mix of humor, drama, jealousy, and total crime. If you have a chance, check out the book. Great stories and a great cause!

Advertisements

Lessons Learned: Weather

In a matter of two days – I went from tropical…

IMG_1251

To a winter storm…

IMG_1749

I think I like tropical better.

Beth M James – Novels based on strong characters and elements of romance.  http://www.bethmjames.com

Lessons Learned: To Do List

Yesterday I had a lot that I wanted to get done. I really wanted to work on my book edits, but I also knew that I had quite a few writing and household tasks that had (or I wanted) to do as well. And when I get overloaded, bringing on superwoman and do everything in a single day, I end up being less productive. I do the famous start one thing and then move on to the next without finishing the first.

Yesterday I decided to create a list to make sure that I gave myself time to edit and do other tasks. I know this sounds nerdy, but my list started like this:

  1. Edit 1-2 pages
  2. Get ready for the day
  3. Menu plan
  4. Edit 1-2 pages
  5. Eat breakfast
  6. Start laundry
  7. Edit 1-2 pages
  8. Sort out bills, pay charge cards
  9. Record pile of receipts into the check register
  10. Edit 1-2 pages
  11. Bank reconciliation for both banks
  12. Edit 1-2 pages

This is only the beginning. The above took me through the morning. What was nice about the list is that I didn’t have to think about what I should do next. I just followed it line by line. However, I do like this one as well:

Image result for image of a to do list

I didn’t get through all my tasks yesterday, but I’m now working on it again tonight. I filed papers, waited for my computer to update (grrr), went through emails, and wrote blog. Now that I’m done with the blog, guess what I get to do next! Yep, edit one to two pages.

Have a great week!

Beth M James

Novels based on strong characters and elements of romance.

http://www.bethmjames.com

Happy New Year

Happy new year to all. For me, this is the official start of the year. I give myself the first day of the year to reflect, transition, and then open the door into the new year.

Last year was rough. Not long into the year, my mom went into hospice care. She steadily declined, becoming weaker in mind and body due to breaking her leg/hip, dementia, and the stroke she had six years previous. It’s not easy seeing someone you love become so lifeless. She died at the end of October and passed peacefully. I still quietly mourn her.

Yesterday was spent at home. Mike and I enjoyed waking up with our grandson’s bright smile and playing dinosaurs and Legos with him. We did small things around the house, spent time together, and watched a movie. No big fanfare, which was nice. We had time to think and simply enjoy the day.

Today is about starting the year with recharged energy. I’m looking forward to what each day brings. My challenges this year will be balancing life and work. I’m ready to take both on, spending quality time with family, friends, and co-workers/writers. I’ve also been editing the second book in The Calling trilogy, which I’m geared to publish this spring.

Let’s make this a great year.

Beth M James

The Calling

Gitana – Life Plan

Connections

The world is a busy place with the instant connectivity we have at our fingertips. Social media is a big time hog that can suck you into its vortex.

Facebook: I’ll go out to Facebook to review happenings and the next thing I know is that an hour has past. Really? An hour? I thought I was only on the site for five minutes.

Twitter: Fun way to send tidbits but also a constant eye catcher, wanting to send and review comments. Boom. Boom. Boom. Let’s see what’s trending.

Pinterest: This site is another place that I know I’ll need to visit. Great place to promote. I have an account, but I’m scared I’ll get hooked. I’ve seen it happen with friends and family.

I have only named three of the top places. There are others like Instagram and Tumblr.

And of course there is Email. I get quite a lot of emails per day. I have more than one account. Today I’m going to try getting through all the unopened emails waiting to be read.

I’m not saying that it’s bad. I love catching up on events going on and staying connected. My only request…can we have a few more hours in a day? Please?

Beth M James, Author

Available Books: The Calling (Book One), Gitana – Life Plan

 

Lesson Learned: Snow Day!

Saturday night was the start of a huge snowstorm that swept the Midwest. The storm ended this morning and produced 10 to 12 inches of snow in the Hudson area. The bad news is that I had somewhere to go on Sunday, my writer group’s meeting and holiday party. Driving over fifty miles in snow and on slick roads is not a favorite of mine. The good news is that I wasn’t the only one who thought the same. We cancelled the meeting and rescheduled the party to our January meeting. I now had a full day with no commitments. A snow day!!

I thought about all the things I could knock off my list, like clean off my desk, go through my emails, and wrap the presents I had bought. I wanted to get started right away, but my mind spun in every direction. I froze for a bit (not literally) and then took on the first chore of watering my plants. I went upstairs with my water pitcher and thought of something else to do. I tried working on that, was distracted, and then remembered I had to finish watering the plants. How frustrating!

At that point, I stopped and looked out my bedroom windows. I have three high windows on one wall. Inside, I decorated the sills with candles, snowmen, and white leaves. Outside, the backdrop was snow and ice clinging to the window, almost as if Jack Frost had come to visit. I smiled as I admired my windows in this new winter scene.

I then went to the dining room window and looked out to the park. I watched the white flakes swirl down to the ground. A dog jumped across the blanket of snow with his tongue hanging out and ears flapping. Snow flew up as he bounced around and circled the marshmallow- coated pine trees.

I did get to my list. I prioritized and dug into the tasks I knew had to get done. In between work, I took a few moments to look outside and watch the beauty around me. What a great day.

Even Small, It’s Still Exciting.

Last spring, I attended the RT Booklovers Convention to learn more about ePublishing. I had a conversation with Jim A. from Smashwords when I visited their booth. He asked if I would be interested in talking to someone who was writing an article on ePublishing. Of course, I agreed. After exchanging email addresses and correspondence, I received an email from Andrew Rice who writes for Time Magazine. He asked if he could interview me, but he couldn’t guarantee that he’d use the information for his article. I was fine either way. We set up a time for the one-hour interview.

During the interview, we talked about why I was at the convention, what I wrote, what my story was about, and how I felt about the ePublishing process versus going the traditional agent/publisher route. We talked a lot during the interview, and when our time was up, he had to state once again that he wasn’t sure if my information would be used or not. For me, I was just excited about the experience!

Mr. Rice thought that the article may come out sometime in June. June came and went. I didn’t think too much about the interview after that. I figured the timing wasn’t right for the story, or that the story may have been completely dropped.

Two days ago, I received an email from Mr. Rice stating that the ePublishing article he wrote should be in stores soon. The issue would have Egypt’s leader on the cover (the December 10th Issue). In the email, he included a PDF version of the article.

My little fingers clicked open that PDF in no time. I scanned the document for my name, and there it was near the beginning. My name in Time Magazine! I was okay with the one sentence blurb – a sliver of the article. From our conversation to what he wrote, I understood the reason why he said what he did.

Thank you, Andrew, for including me in the article. You made my day!