On Blogging

On Blogging | Where To Promote Your Blog Posts


Hello everyone! I’m back at it yet again to deliver you a, hopefully, helpful post On Blogging. Today I’m going to share with you my favorite places to promote on and which sites I get results from, as well as what sites I tend not to target as much.

The sites I don’t really use:

Facebook

I don’t like Facebook very much, and I haven’t bothered with it to be honest. So, I really can’t give you any info on whether it’s worth your time.

However I do receive the occasional visitor from Facebook via posts of mine that other people have shared. It’s not a significant source of traffic for me.

Instagram 

I’ve tried it and to be honest it didn’t do much for me. Like at all.

I would say that if you are a DIY or beauty blogger it may be more beneficial to you.
The sites that I do use:

Twitter

Twitter is my main performer. Most of my monthly page views come from this platform.

I find that using blogger retweet accounts help loads, as well as using the appropriate hash tags.

Some of the retweet accounts I use are

@FemaleBloggerRT and @BloggersBlast

Those two have worked for me when it comes to getting my posts some traction on Twitter. There are loads of them though, so dig around and see which ones work the best for you.

I also schedule my tweets with an app called Buffer. It is amazing and definitely helps me keep my posts out there. I would highly recommend using it.
Bloglovin

This one works quite well, but it’s a steady climb. When I first signed up it was like crickets, but now I see maybe one or two views a week.

It’s a platform where you have to be quite active, and I think if I was it would bring more views than it currently does.

WordPress Reader

I know this is exclusive to WordPress based bloggers, but I think it often gets over looked. It also is something you have to work at in order to gain traction, but it is well worth doing so. Liking fellow blogger’s posts or commenting is another good way to get your name out there.

Pinterest

I know that bloggers rave about Pinterest bringing loads of traffic to their blogs, but I just don’t see it. I am diligently on Pinterest and I might get one view a day if I’m lucky.

I believe that if you have a auto pinning app then maybe it might be worth it, but other wise I wouldn’t put all my eggs in one basket.
There you go! I hope this help you in some way. Whether you’re new and just trying to figure things out or you’re trying to see what has worked for someone else, I hope you were able to find this helpful. I am someone who struggles at times to gain traffic and these sites have helped me considerably.

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Yes I have a newsletter now! It would really mean a lot to me if you would take the time to sign up. It’s not spam I promise, just helpful tips on writing and blogging. You can sign up by clicking here. Once I get to at least 10 subscribers I’m going to start sending out content!

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Book Reviews · Mystery

Book Review | Miranda Warning (A Murder In The Mountains #1) by Heather Day Gilbert

Miranda Warning by Heather Day Gilbert

Published by WoodHaven Press in 2014

Genre: Mystery

Format: EBook

Source: Amazon

Buy on Amazon

Goodreads

Synopsis 

Child of the Appalachian mountains, Tess Spencer has experienced more than her share of heartache. The Glock-wielding, knife-carrying housewife knows how to survive whatever life throws at her.

But when an anonymous warning note shows up in her best friend Miranda’s mailbox—a note written in a dead woman’s handwriting—Tess quickly discovers that ghosts are alive and well in Buckneck, West Virginia. Hot on a cold trail, she must use limited clues and her keen insight into human nature to unmask the killer…or the next victim might be Tess herself.

Tinged with the supernatural and overshadowed by the mountains’ lush, protective presence, this twisting psychological mystery is the first in A Murder in the Mountains series.
This novel is written from a Christian worldview.

Review

This is yet another book that I wish I had picked up a long time ago. It had been sitting on my kindle shelf for the longest time, and I have no idea why I hadn’t read it already. It was just that good.

Throughout this Miranda Warning you’re following Tess Spencer on her journey to uncover the mystery surrounding a strange note that her elderly friend Miranda had received. But that’s not even the half of it.

From the beginning the book is gripping. It grabs you and pulls you in for the ride ahead. There are unexpected twists and turns all the way til the end that will keep you guessing.

Yes there is a several romantic elements throughout, but it’s not over powering the mystery side of Miranda Warning.

I think that something I really enjoyed about this book was the characters. They weren’t flat. They felt like real people that I could relate to, and they make me want to pick up the next book just to see what happens next in their lives. Saying that, it wasn’t just the main characters that were of high quality, but the supporting ones as well.

This is one of this rare cases where I have nothing bad or negative to say regarding a book. The plot was great, the pacing was great, the characters were amazing, and the book made me feel. That’s how I always know it’s good, when the book evokes emotion from the reader.

If you enjoy a great mystery with amazing and relatable characters that always keep you on your toes, then you will most certainly love Miranda Warning by Heather Day Gilbert. I just can’t help but give this book 5 out of 5 stars.
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On Writing · Writing tips

On Writing | 6 Reasons Why Reading Is Essential For Writers


I’m sure you all have heard that in order to progress as a writer you must read. You might think that it isn’t as nessecary as everyone makes it out to be, but I can assure you that it one of the best things you can do to improve your craft. 

Why reading is such an important part of being a writer goes much further than you might think. Here are some key point to keep in mind of why it is so important. 

  • You are exposed to many different genres
  • You are exposed to many different styles of writing
  • Say you wanted to write a book but didn’t know exactly how, you can get ideas from the way other authors have written similar topics
  • Reading can inspire you
  • Reading can widen your vocabulary 
  • You can find popular tropes within your niche

Those are just six examples of why reading is important to us writers, but the list goes on and on. There are so many benefits to it. 

Speaking from experience I feel like reading has genuinely helped me better my writing skills. If you follow me on here quite regularly then you know I read a lot of different books. I think that’s another key factor. If you read “easy” books, or those within your comfort zone, it is harder for you to grow. 

I hope that some of you found that this post helped you in some way. If it has let me know! I love connecting with fellow writers. 

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Book Reviews · Erotica/Erotic Romance · Paranormal · romance · suspense · Thriller · Werewolves

Book Review: Wicked Desires (The Kategan Alphas #3) by T.A. Grey

Where To Find It

Amazon // Nook // Goodreads // Apple // Kobo

Genre: Erotic Romance // Thriller // Suspense

Series: Yes this is the third book in The Kategan Alpha series. However, all books in this series can be read independently. If you would like to read my reviews on the first book in this series, The Mating Cycle, you can click here, and if you would like to read my review of the second book, Dark Awakening, you can here.

Synopsis

The sight of her happily mated brothers has Vera biting her nails in frustration. When the opportunity arises for her to get away from it all she takes it—with one catch—Jackson Marsh. Jackson Marsh has been a pain in her butt from the moment she laid eyes on him. And now to repair his broken trust with her brother Rome, Jackson has agreed to protect Vera as she goes into enemy territory to negotiate with the vampires.

However the change of scenery doesn’t do anything to help Vera’s mood for there was one thing she didn’t think about when she came up with her brilliant plan—seeing her ex vampire lover. Now with her ex vying for her affections again and Jackson sending her body and heart through a loop, Vera must decide what to do with her heart, which has never fully healed itself from the past. In the midst of all the chaos, a vampire clan is threatening to take Kategan land. Together Vera and Jackson must fight to save Kategan land while trying to save each other from falling in love.

Review

It’s really rare for me to find a series that I can continue this far with, and I’m glad to say that this is one of them. After reading Dark Awakening I had thought I had found my new favorite book, but I’m wrong again. This is totally my new favorite, for now at least.

Wicked Desires really stole my heart and made me realize why I love T.A. Grey’s writing. Grey never fails to create relatable characters that feel so real even when they aren’t.

In The Mating Cycle I first met Vera. She was the spunky, outspoken, sister of Vane, and I really didn’t care for her too much to be honest. However, my opinion of her has now changed completely. Upon reading you really get to know her. She’s controlling and guarded, but that’s only because that she had been hurt.

When I found out that Vera’s love interest was Jackson Marsh I have to say I was a little surprised. I mean there weren’t any other original characters to choose from, but I was still surprised. In a good way though. Jackson is different being that he is human and not a werewolf, however he and Vera share common issues. Which is why I think that they are perfect for each other.

Another thing I really liked was the newly introduced supernatural creatures. There are vampires now! Not to mention the fact that Vera’s previous lover was a vampire. I love the integration of new types of characters.

All in all I can say Im very happy with this book. I feel like with each book they get more and more immersive. Yeah there were a few typos, but I think those are going to be fixed across all books. T.A. Grey seems to have been revamping all of her books lately. I definitely plan on continuing this series, because I’m emotionally invested in it at this point. I give this book a 4 out of 5 stars.

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2017 Writing Updates

Camp NaNoWriMo April 2017 Results


This is probably going to be a fairly short post, because things did not go as planned during the month of April. I started out so strong, but it didn’t end that way. 

As many of you may know I was using Camp NaNo as a way to jumpstart my revision/editing process on my novel Vendetta. I can say that it is quite effective if you are able to commit time specifically to write. I was not. 

I had a goal of 35,000 words, and I ended up with 16,987 words by the 30th. I’m upset that I didn’t reach my goal, but I have to remember that there were a lot of factors I didn’t have control over. 

One being my mothers week long stay in the hospital. That just turned everything upside down, and it sucked up all of my time. Even after she was released I was always busy with school, taking her to the doctors, going to the doctors myself, my normal responsibilities, and trying to find time to sleep. It was a hard month. 

All of that being said I am continuing on with revisions/edits. I’m actually in the middle of completely rewriting the second half of the book. I’m hoping to have it polished and ready for an editor by June, but we will see where life takes me. 

Book Reviews · Erotica/Erotic Romance · Paranormal · romance · suspense · Thriller · Uncategorized

BOOK REVIEW: Dark Awakening (The Kategan Alphas #2) by T.A. Grey

Where To Find It

Amazon // Nook // Kobo

Genre: Eroctic Romance // Thriller // Suspense

Series: Yes, this is the second book it the series. However, these books do not need to be read in order as T.A. Grey focuses on different characters in each book. If you would like to see my review of the first book, The Mating Cycle, click here.

Synopsis

Once a vibrant woman, Alison Bennson suffered a terrible trauma in the past. When her past crashes back into her life, Alison must turn to the Kategans for help. Rome Kategan has been a haunting thought in her mind ever since she met the grinning rogue. If only she was the woman she used to be she could enjoy the sexy male, but instead she is haunted and fearful for the future.

Her past has emerged with vengeance and with one purpose in mind for Alison—death. Rome Kategan swears to protect Alison with a passionate determination that frightens Alison almost more than her past. Now, in the midst of danger, Rome must protect the woman he loves and convince her to be his mate.

Review

When I first began reading Dark Awakening  I honestly wasn’t expecting to like it more than I had liked The Mating Cycle. To me Sarina and Vane were the shit. However, I can say that I was pleasantly surprised.

In The Mating Cycle as a reader we are given a glimpse of Alison Bennson as the best friend of Sarina. In the first book we were told that Alison has had a rough past, especially when it came to men, but in Dark Awakening we get to know her at a whole new level. Her passions show through just as much as the skeletons from her closet.

I feel like T.A. Grey deserves some pretty big props for writing this book. I say that because with each book her writing just keeps getting better, and the character development is on point. The pacing was perfect for me, and I didn’t feel like the characters were rushed into the decisions that they made. They did things at their own pace even when things got hot and heavy.

I know after I finish reading the next book I’m going to be eating my words, but I think this is my new favorite of the series. I just feel like Alison is so likable and relatable. She’s young, has a great personality, and major guy problems. I feel like any girl my age can relate to that, even if it isn’t to the same exact circumstances.

There are so many good things that I can say about Dark Awakening that I don’t want to mention the bad. But I have to. There was a small issue and one quite big one in my opinion.

The small issue was just the odd typo or misspelled word. It wasn’t something major, so it really didn’t bother me. There really weren’t that many of them.

However, the bigger issue was kind of a plot hole. If you aren’t one for any sort of spoilers I would skip this section of the review. Alison and Rome have sex a couple of times during her breeding cycle, and he cums inside of her. After this happens there was a brief moment in the book where pregnancy was brought up as a possibility, but it was only a couple of sentences. After that it was not brought up for the remainder of the book, but I believe that it really should’ve been discussed further. Personally I feel like it leaves a hole in the plot.

So all in all I did really love this book. I loved Alison and Rome, the were honestly perfect. I also loved getting to see the characters from the last book re appear again in this one. I give this book a 4 out of 5 stars. I really wish it could’ve been a 5 star book.

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2017 Writing Updates · AmWriting · CampNaNoWrimo · Uncategorized

Camp NaNoWrimo Week 1 Check In

So as many of you may know I decided to participate in the April 2017 Camp NaNoWrimo. I’m still struggling to figure out it was truly one of my better decisions. Either way, I plan to do check ins each week to keep you guys updated on my progress. So there won’t be any “Writing Update” posts from me until next month.

So, how is it going so far?

Not terribly well. I set a goal of 35k and as of right now I’m a couple of days behind. It wasn’t for lack of trying, but unfortunately because my mother doesn’t follow the instructions of her doctor she ended up in the hospital on Tuesday. I’ve been so stressed out about everything, and so busy making sure she’s got everything that she needs that I haven’t had much time to write. Yesterday she got released, so I’m hoping that I’ll have a little more time on my hands.

Currently I’m sitting at 3,936/35,000 words. Still 31,064 remaining in order to complete my goal. I’m going to do my best to get the bulk of my writing done this weekend, so that if I don’t have the time during the week I’ll have some sort of a cushion.

I hope everyone also participating in the Camp is making progress! Wish me luck guys!

Book Reviews · suspense · Thriller · Uncategorized

Book Review: The CypressTrap by JC Gatlin

Slide 1

Synopsis 

When Rayanne commandeers her husband’s weekend fishing trip, she knows it’ll take work to adjust Owen’s attitude. She has no choice. Since the tragedy, they lost so much. They need to reconnect. 

Without her knowledge, Owen texts his best buddy, Daryl, to join the getaway. The three of them aren’t alone in the backwoods of Georgia, though. Owen took something that didn’t belong to him. Something that changed their lives. And now the owner wants it back. By any means — including a posse led by a killer dog. 

At first, Rayanne is clueless about the item and its value. One thing becomes crystal clear: If it’s not returned, they might not make it home alive.

Where You Can Find It

Goodreads

Amazon

Review

I have to say that I have become quite shy of free books for download on Amazon. That is only because of the fact that the more I have read, the less good books I have found. However, JC Gatlin has pleasantly surprised me with this captivating read.

Normally I don’t  read a lot of thrillers, or suspense, but I’m glad that I picked this one up. From the beginning I was sucked in. It was an interesting concept with the little rabbits foot being the point of the conflict throughout the whole story. Simple, cliche even, but I did like that bit.

It’s a story that keeps you interested, the kind where you want to keep turning the pages. If you’ve been following me, you’ll know that recently I’ve been struggling with finding these gripping types of books.

Besides my own personal praise on the books entirety. I feel like the characters were good. Maybe they could’ve been fleshed out more, but they weren’t bad in my own opinion. But something that really got under my skin was that Owen kept saying “Dropp’n F.” Like what? Why? I understand that characters have quirks but that really just annoyed me more than anything else.

Overall I’d give this book a solid 3 out of 5 stars.

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2017 Writing Updates · A Day In My Life · AmWriting

March Wrap Up & April Goals

March was another one of those months where I felt, well, blah. Unmotivated most of the time. Yet even when I got the feeling of motivation I let others put me down. It was definitely a month of me questioning my values and what it was that I truly wanted.

At the end of the month, I’m glad to say, I got my shit together. I sat down and started making character lists, outlines, and even decided to participate in CampNaNoWrimo.

Most of the month I did manage to hit 500 words a day on at least one project. There were a few days that I just felt blah and didn’t write anything. I did read during the month, but it was a lot of picking up books and losing interest. I also did work out as well, which I’m quite pleased with. I feel better when I do, and that alone makes me want to be in the gym more.

April Goals

  • Finish my goal of 35,000 words for CampNaNoWrimo. I’m revising VENDETTA and with the way that it looks now I’m scraping the whole second half of the book.
  • Continue going to the gym
  • Complete and post 6 blog posts for the month
  • Stay on top of my school work
  • Read. Just read. Then review what I’ve read regardless of genre or release date.
  • Continue outlining Anasatia’s Rising

So those are my goals. I’m really hoping to finish NaNo this time around, I’ve never been able to do it. But since I set a reasonable goal for myself I think it’s a good bet. I’m also hoping it will help me get into the habit of writing everyday.

AmWriting · Uncategorized

Writing Update 5

I feel like someone finally ignited a fire within me this past week. I’ve felt so good about it too.

If you follow me on twitter you’ll know that I’ve been quite busy. I’ve been able turn my writing up to a whole other notch. I was able to write more than 2,000 words. 2,417 words to be exact on VENDETTA.

I haven’t worked very much on Anastasia’s Rising this week. I did do some work on outlining further, and creating a character list for it as well. However, for VENDETTA I’ve been revising/rewriting, creating a character list, and basically an outline so that I know what I’m up against when it comes to writing the second book.

I’ve also been quite active on social media. I’ve made several posts on Instagram that have gotten some pretty decent likes, and my engagement on twitter has been pretty good as well. Twitter really has been my place recently, and it’s actually helped me get in contact with other writers. Which I do like.

Besides my writing, I’ve been out a couple of times. I went to see Beauty and the Beast, which I absolutely loved. It’s one of my favorite movies, and I think Emma Watson was perfect for Belle. However, I feel like they could’ve picked a better Beast.

School has been going good as well. At this point as long as I’m passing my classes I no longer care. I just want it to be over with.

So that’s been pretty much, and with Camp NaNo going on I can’t wait to return with an update next week.