Monthly Archives: April 2019

What happens when you put on the Out of Office for a week… a sunny week ;)

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With my “out of office” on at the salt mine, I left work full of great creative intentions…..

I had my “To Do” list written :

blog – write and post

Book Baby 5 -write some more; type  10 0000 words

Book Babies 1-4 – promote

Gig review – write and post

 

It didn’t seem like an onerous list then the sun came out…….

I got off to a good start…..20190419_134140

 

then I got distracted……

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I tried to re-focus with some art therapy….

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and I picked up where I’d left off with Book Baby 5…

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then may have got distracted again…..

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and met some new friends….

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The week was fast disappearing…… I sat down again with Book Baby 5….

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On Friday I allowed myself a mother/daughter day out with my mum….we had a date with a dinosaur 😉

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And by the time I got home from mother/daughter day out, it was after 5pm on Friday and technically my “out of office” had expired….. my week was over…..

But did I manage to tick off all the items on the To Do list?

Yes I did 🙂

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Maybe I should be allowed to put the “out of office” on more often!

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Same View Different Day

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No matter how often you admire the same view, it never looks the same twice……

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I walk past this view several times a week. I’ve walked past this view several times a week for years…..it never grows old, it never stays the same. Sometimes constant change is good…

 

This “proper/improper” author is celebrating some book baby birthdays….

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A few weeks ago, someone, who for their own safety should remain nameless, suggested that I wasn’t a “proper” author.
Biting my tongue at the time, I felt a red mist of anger swirl in around me.
Define a “proper” author?
Apparently, I was duly informed by this nameless soul, its an author who has a publisher.
I have a publisher. It’s KDP.
The exchange  hasn’t rested easy with me then I noticed the date that was approaching and smiled – 15th April.
Today marks the fourth birthday of my KDP published debut contemporary romance novel, Stronger Within.
Today also marks the second birthday of my third KDP published contemporary romance novel, Bonded Souls.

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Proper or improper author, seeing my name on the cover of a “real” book truly was a dream come true moment that will live with me forever.
Almost six years have passed since I began this creative journey. If you are a regular follower of this blog, you know the story. For those newer followers, I literally sat down on my front doorstep in the early evening sunshine on 8th May 2013 and began to write a story. I began to write just for me. I began to chase down that dream come true moment.
So far there have been four book baby dream come true moments (births). Each one has been special. Each one has been unique.
While three of the books form part of the Silver Lake series, they are all individual book babies who came with their own challenges. Like all children that we give birth to, they are related but different and each one is precious to me.
Book Baby 5 is still a work in progress and this is proving to be a bit of a “bumpy” creative pregnancy however I’m still on track…. more or less…. for a 2019 Book Baby birth.
The last six years have been incredible from a creative perspective. It’s been a steep learning curve and a hell of a lot of hard work and I don’t regret a second of it.
I’ve blogged about Stronger Within’s birth and Bonded Souls’ arrival into the world before. What? You missed those blogs? Don’t worry, here’s the links –

https://coralmccallum.wordpress.com/2015/04/15/stronger-within-the-dreams-come-true/

https://coralmccallum.wordpress.com/2017/04/20/book-baby-motherhood-the-toddler-phase/

So, after four years as a published author, have I overcome the fears I mention in those previous blogs? No! Have I reconnected again with Silver Lake characters? Yes! Have I stopped blushing whenever I receive a compliment about the books? No!
This hasn’t been a journey I’ve tackled alone. There are a small group of wonderful friends who provide the love and support, the alpha and beta reader duties and who help to keep me motivated when the demons of self-doubt creep in. You guys know who you are and I love each and every one of you from the bottom of my heart. Couldn’t have come so far along this crazy creative road without you.
I describe myself as an indie author.
As far as I’m concerned, I’m proud to be a part of the indie author community. I’m proud of my book babies. I’m beyond proud of their Amazon and Good Reads ratings. Who would ever have thought that I’d earn 5* reviews for a book I’d written? I’m proud of the fact I’ve earned royalties every month. OK, most months the payment wouldn’t cover the cost of a cup of coffee but I’ve earned something from my writing.
So, am I a proper author?…… I’ll let you decide.

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To celebrate being  Book Baby Mummy to two books celebrating their birthdays today, they are both FREE  to download to Kindle for the day.
If you’ve not met Jake and Lori yet, not is your chance.
If you’re a Silver Lake fan, then thank you for your love and  support. There will be news about Book Baby 5 soon. Book four in the Silver Lake series is coming…..promise!
Happy reading! 😊
Amazon.com links –
Stronger Within – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00VXDSC1M
Bonded Souls – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06XSQHG71

Amazon.co.uk links –
Stronger Within – https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00VXDSC1M
Bonded Souls – https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B06XSQHG71

some images sourced from Google – credits to the owners

Social Media and the Voyage of Self-Discovery

Like many other writers and bloggers when the creative juices fail to flow smoothly, I find the internet is a great place to procrastinate.
I’m sure many of us who should be putting our precious time to good use can be found lurking within social media apps like Facebook.
Perhaps we even try to convince ourselves its actually research.
I’ll confess to meandering through Facebook on the odd occasion… coughs … ok .. regular basis.
I’ll also confess to playing some of the “self-discovery” games to be found on there.
You know the one s- “5 signs you are keeper based on your profile picture,” “What will you look like at 70 based on your profile picture.”
These entertain me.
My personal Facebook profile picture for the past few years has always been a photo of my Converse clad feet. What on earth can you determine from that?

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Quite a lot apparently!
Here’s some recent discoveries……

Some of these are scarily accurate! I’ll let you work out which ones 😉

 

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This one was reassuring though 😊

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Enough procrastination- I’ve a book to finish writing!

An Inspirational Book Launch….. my first actual book launch.

Recently I received an invitation to a book launch.

Despite having self-published my book babies and contributed to several poetry anthologies in the past, I’d never actually been to a book launch.

Let me back track slightly here though….

Several months ago, I received an email at work looking for people to submit poems to a local charity to be compiled into a book that would be sold to raise funds.

I duly trawled through my two poetry notebooks (I don’t write that many poems), selected two that I felt fitted the bill and sent them off then I heard nothing for months……

Out of the blue a few weeks ago, an email arrived to say that both poems had been chosen to be included in the book.

Cue invitation to the book launch!

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So, who are Mind Mosaic?

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Mind Mosaic Counselling and Therapy are a local charity funded mental health organisation offering individual counselling and therapy sessions to adults, teenagers and children. They run group sessions and also offer training. Mind Mosaic have been in existence since 2012 and have grown steadily over the years….and they continue to grow.

Girl Child agreed to be my chaperone for the evening, neither of us too sure what format the event was going to take.

As the invitation says, the book launch was held in the function suite at the local arts centre, The Beacon Arts Centre.

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For two hours we were treated to an evening of poetry and music to launch the book, Inspirational Poetry.

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The book comprises of 42 poems by 23 different “poets”, local people who have been brave enough to make themselves vulnerable by sharing their heartfelt words.  The theme of the book is mental health awareness and the poems cover a diverse range of aspects of this. Each poem is accompanied by a photograph,

As the editor of the book, Johnny Woods, commented, it’s two books in one. It’s a photography book with poems and a poetry anthology with photos.

Personally, I felt the first hour of the launch was a little intense as the poems that were read from the book centred around bereavement, loss and depression. Local musicians, Yvonne and David Lyon, lightened the mood with a short set of folk influenced music though. Fabulous!

After a brief interlude for tea and coffee, proceedings took on a more uplifting vibe. Yvonne and David returned to the stage to perform another short set. (Yvonne – loved the song about the little angel. Could visualise it in my mind’s eye.)

Three further speakers recited some of the more uplifting and motivational poems from the book.

And then, with a vote of thanks, it was all over.

So, what did I contribute to the book?

These…

 

A Teenager’s Bleak Despair

I stare into a bleak world of despair

Easy to be drawn into its depths.

Voices echo inside my head.

Their cries fill the void.

My mum hates me,

Wishes I’d never been born.

My grandparents loathe me,

I’m letting them down.

My peers despise me,

I’m not from this town.

A mirror appears from the dark.

My haunted face stares back.

A light shines from behind

Clear and golden and bright.

Still the darkness draws me in.

 

Hidden From Prying Eyes

Deep inside me

Hidden from prying eyes

Hides me.

 

The public me

Paints on the smile

And glides through the working day.

 

The mummy me

Offers cuddles and hugs

Showering my children in unconditional love.

 

The friend me

Is calm and loyal

Always there to support and assist

 

The real me

Stays hidden

Quiet emotional

Nervous and scared

Frightened she’s found by prying eyes.

 

 

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Mental health awareness is a subject close to my own heart and I am proud to be associated with this book.

If you want to show your support for Mind Mosaic and this fantastic anthology, copies of the book can be purchased for £10 a copy by contacting them at admin@mindmosaic.co.uk or calling the office on 01475 892208 (option1)

And remember, folks, it’s ok not to be ok.

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Also, check out Yvonne Lyon at www.yvonnelyonmusic.com