Caitlin Miller Joins the team!

It’s an excitig start to the new month, with author, editor, and reviewer, Caitlin Miller, joining the Chartus.X family as an official editor.

Author of The Memories We Painted, Caitlin Miller is a part-time college student and part-time English teacher in Japan. She has long dreamed of spinning words into stories, and draws her storylines and characters from things most familiar to her: her relationship with God, her family and friends, and life lessons she’s learned along the way. Aesthetic, historical fiction, and green tea are just a few of her favorite things.

Rights Report – The Forgotten Countrymen Series

Author, Kaitlyn Deann

Chartus.X has acquired, in an exclusive submission, world rights to YA Dystopian Romance series THE FORGOTTEN COUNTRYMEN by Kaitlyn Deann, in a nice deal.

Book 1 set for publication in March 2023 (world).

Set in a tyrannical dystopia, the story follows Carson Owens as he navigates the rocky terrain of forbidden love, irreparable heartbreak, and ghastly secrets that could turn their world upside down.

5 Ways to save on self-publishing

As many are aware, traditional publishing isn’t the only route to getting published. Indie and self-publishing are also very viable options for getting one’s words to the hands of readers. Despite the stigma surrounding self-publishing, it does not mean a book is less than par or poor quality (unless the author wishes it to be so).

No matter the route an author takes to get published, there are a number of ingredients involved in publishing a book, and leaving some out–or accepting poor substitutes–will affect the quality of a book. Such things include, but are not limited to, editing, a professional book cover, a good blurb, and proofing.

Continue reading “5 Ways to save on self-publishing”

Creatives & Mental Health

Taking care of your biggest asset...

As a collective, authors, writers and creatives in general are often the solitary sort. And with the days getting colder and darker, this can have adverse effects on one’s health – both physically and mentally.

So I thought it might be helpful to remind creatives (and others) of a few ways they can take care of heir mental health.

1). Exercise.

You may not need to join a gym, or even go for a walk in the cold, but did you know that standing counts as exercise?

Yes, standing. Just by standing every 30mins or co, you are getting your body to move, helping your cirtulation, and improving your mental health. So stand, walk round the room, then go back to whatever you were doing.

2). Get fresh air.

Now, I already said it’s cold, and if you’re like me, you’re probably not built for that sort of weather. But fresh air helps. It really does.

It helps clear your mind and improves your state of thinking. So go stand at the door for a few minutes. Or stick your head out the window once a day.

3). Eat healthy.

A cup of hot chocolate may keep you warm, and with the festive season, sweets and cakes and puddings may seem like a great way to improve your mood. But after a few hours, the crash from your sugar high will leave you feeling worse than before you had them.

And it’s not just sweets. Eating fresh, healthy foods help to boost your immune system and unfog your mind. Which in turn helps your creativity.

So these are three tips I hope might help. And if you really are struggling to cope during this time, there are people out there willing and trained enough to help. Call a friend. Hell, call 10 till you feel you’ve got the help you need. And it if isn’t enough, call a hotline, or your doctor.

Just remember, you’re not alone. You don’t have to be. Take care of you.

Get feedback!

It is commonplace for new writers to be protective of their work. And there’s nothing wrong with that… except that it robs a writer of opportunities to improve their craft and story.

Feedback from peers and mentors is invaluable, especially in the early stages of your writing career.

When you open your work up to others you trust and admire, others with knowledge and experience in the craft, you put their expertise to work for you. Now, that’s priceless!

Some simple ways to get feedback include:

a. finding a mentor

b. finding a critique partner (or partners)

c. joining a writing group

d. sharing free content on your blog or social media (though I would only recommend this to those with a thick hide).

The honest truth is, getting feedback can be brutal sometimes… but the key is to pick out the useful, constructive advice, and run with it. In the end, it’s all about your success.

Can Your Readers Relate With You?

The number one reason readers buy books is because they know the author.

This doesn’t always mean the reader is a friend of the author. Sometimes, the reader may have read other books by the author, heard them speak or interviewed on a podcast, radio or television. They might have visited the author’s blog or followed them on social media. A connection is made, and this drives readers to the author’s books. 

This is the reason for the “about the author” section in books. Readers want to know who the book came from. They want to know the author is an actual person, just like them. That automatically makes the author relatable. They’re human. And once a reader can connect to an author on that level, it becomes easy to persuade them to buy your book. 

Who the author is plays a big part in the success of their book. If a specialist gynecologist were to write a book on menopause, it’s more likely to be bought by people experiencing said ailment than if a baker who experienced menopause wrote the book. This is simply because the specialist is just that. A specialist! 

Who you are affects how people receive your book. 

Growing up, I never truly belonged anywhere because of my mixed heritage (and the discrimination I faced due to it). For many years, I struggled to fit in because I was too light to be black. Then I moved to the U.K. where I was too dark to be white. And this was part of what formed the basis for Age of The Anathema. I’m a mixed-race author writing about people being persecuted for being mixed race. And one comment I got back when Tainted came out, was by a mixed-race woman who said: “… finally, we have someone who will speak up for us.”  

She bought and read the book because the author was relatable. 

So, as an author, stop and ask yourself:

“Can my readers relate with me? Or am I just another author to them?” 

Glasses: Also a writing tool

 "...And one sunny spring morning, I awoke to find my glasses missing a screw."
***

To all those who wear glasses… you know what it’s like when your glasses just don’t sit right.

For those fortunate enough to never experience such discomfort, wearing glasses that don’t sit right can be really frustrating, especially when you’re writing.

Besides typing, I like to write, draw, and doodle in my notebooks. And recently, my glasses keep sliding off my face. But I get ahead of myself. It all started when…

I travelled for a few months, and got locked down abroad without my spare glasses. One sunny spring morning, I awoke to find my glasses missing a screw. (#crying)

It relieved me to find the screw about an hour later. I fitted it back, thinking that was over and done with.

Until my glasses started zooming in.

I’d be reading, and after a couple of minutes, my glasses would creep down my nose, toward the page. It got steadily worse, and by the time I returned after the travel restrictions were lifted, I was literally having to hold my glasses in place.

Clearly an inconvenience.

And for those wondering, I don’t wear contacts because my eyes water a lot.

Anyway, many reading and writing blogs touch on tools, apps, and equipment creatives need. But I don’t think I’ve ever seen any which touch on glasses. And I know I’m not the only creative who wears glasses (or has had an interesting experience with them).

Glasses are a tool to aid your sight. They’re meant to make your visual experience better, not worse. And I know there are a lot more issues that occur with glasses than them just not sitting right. Things like getting the right prescriptions, and the right shape of frames to fit your face, and the right size so the lenses cover at least 70% of your field of vision. And let’s not even go into tinting and glares.

So, there are many, many things to deal with when talking about glasses. This is just to remind you that glasses are also a writing tool, and as a reader, writer, or just a basic human being, remember to get your glasses sorted.

Plan And Plan Again

Don’t just be a writer who only practices writing. Pick a project and work on it. A writing project, like a book, is good but shouldn’t end whenever it ends. Projects have time frame. Give yourself time when you should be done.

Continue reading “Plan And Plan Again”

New book for the new year!

As we kick off into the second month of 2021, we have a great new book which will aid you on your journey to making your dreams a reality.

Dawn Lulu-Briggs’ debut book, Words, Sweeter Than Honey: A simple guide to understanding affirmations gives powerful and easy-to-remember phrases to change your life… Literally.


WORDS, SWEETER THAN HONEY

A Simple Guide To Understanding Affirmations

Synopsis:

In a world where everything seems hard or tough it is my sincere wish that anyone who comes across this book gets to smile. My intention is to soften the edges, one beautiful mind at a time.

Each word is carefully thought out and each affirmation is written and sent with love.


Out on February 6th, 2021 in print and ebook format.

2021-02-06T12:00:00

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Release Date


ABOUT THE AUTHOR’S :

Dawn Lulu-Briggs is a self-taught inspirational speaker who has developed enough strength to keep going, no matter what.

She is a resilient, selfless goal-getter, and an emerging thought-leader who never points you in directions or areas she hasn’t walked in herself.

She is fearless and full of faith.