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My First Award Nomination

It’s a beautiful surprise when someone takes time out of their day to recognize your blog. It’s easy to feel like we’re shouting into a void and wonder why we do this at all, then something like this happens.

Bushra, I’m deeply touched and I want to take a moment to say how grateful I am that you nominated me and how fortunate I feel to have connected with you. You’re truly a ray of sunshine and I enjoy your blog posts and the supportive comments you leave on mine.

So, let’s hope I’m doing this right since I’m a noob.

Rules

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This beautiful graphic came courtesy of Bushra’s blog

1) Thank the person who nominated you

Thank you so much, Bushra! You are such a kind and supportive person. I appreciate you taking the time to think of me and nominate me for this award. You’re amazing.

2) Include a link to their blog in your post

Friends, you’re seriously going to want to check out Bushra’s blog. Click here to visit!  She has a gift for creating beauty in this world, whether it’s through her creations or her uplifting words. You’ll be better for having discovered her.

3) Share 7 facts about yourself

1- I still have my writing journal from third grade 😂

2- I took karate for 1 week in the first grade and have been convinced ever since that I’m a total badass because of it.

3- I find funny people irresistible. I want to be around them all the time. It really is my favorite quality in a friend.

4- I have an optic nerve drusen in my left eye and I’m terrified that I will go blind in that eye and be unable to drive and lose my independence.

5- Craft beer is a BIG part of my life (bigger than I ever expected)

6- I have 3 rescue dogs and I love them to pieces.

7- I love living in small towns. People are kind and there are more green spaces.

4) Nominate 15 bloggers of your choice to keep spreading the love

Here’s my list of nominees…

  1. K E Garland | Inspirational quotes, stories and images
  2. Give It A Spin
  3. Frugal Husband
  4. H.A. Callum
  5. Writing Block 
  6. Relatable Thoughts
  7. Seeking Divine Perspective
  8. Saving Joyfully 
  9. randieri.com
  10. Fractured Faith Blog
  11. Peatmore News
  12. brokenanvil29325 
  13. Writings By Ender
  14. Christina Anne Hawthorne
  15. Melanie at Home

None of the nominees should feel obligated to accept or do a post. I just wanted to recognize your blogs. I think you’re great!

Blog

The sound of silence.

Hello friends,

Well, I gave Wattpad and Chapterbuzz a try and while I was getting some reads and buzz I totally wore myself out. I was so busy trying to write new chapters, edit old ones, read others’ work, comment, and uploading new stuff I burst my bubble.

I haven’t written anything new in over a week. I hate when I get in this space but I know that I have to let the dry spell happen.

But you should write every day!

Yeah, that’s what people say. But I know if I force it, I’ll just be writing crap. And does it matter what I write? Does this blog post count? Do my tweets count? Does it matter if I paint, read, doodle, or think instead? Those are all creative things. I’m going to adjust that old advice to suite my creative style. I’m going to create every day.

The muse is mad.

Don’t tell him/her I said this but my muse is moody and needy. *Looks around worried they heard* The muse wants my full attention and I wasn’t giving it. Now I’m going to have to play hard to get and work on other creative outlets until s/he decides to forgive me or that s/he can’t live without me either and starts telling me the story again.

There’s no need to despair.

This has happened to me before. I thought I’d never write again. And like an oncoming fever, the urge to write takes hold and I can’t stop writing. I’m wiser now. I know I can relax and wait for it to happen because it will.

What about those stories you were sharing?

If you were following along on Chapterbuzz or Wattpad, no worries. I’ll still be posting some work on my Sneak Peeks tab. This way, I’ll be keeping all the follower growth on my blog instead of spreading it out in all different websites/platforms. If there’s a story you want more of, let me know and I’ll add to that story (as the muse allows. As they’re not speaking to me at the moment, I have time).

Creators, what do you do when the muse isn’t talking to you?

Readers, are there any of my stories you’d like to see more of?

Allie

Blog

One of those days.

Hello friends,

It’s one of those days.

One of those days where I can’t seem to do anything right.

One of those days where I absolutely hate myself.

I don’t feel like doing anything.

I don’t want to be a complaining Debbie Downer, I’m just hoping that if I get it out, I can dust myself off and move on.

Failure reigns.

Maybe it’s the weather.

Or maybe the shadow has returned.

Blech.

 

 

Blog

Finding support along your writing journey

 

Hello friends,

The past few days, I’ve been thinking about the bumpy road that I’ve traveled along during my writing journey. Sometimes, it feels like I’m just spinning my wheels in the mud and I really need to turn and look back at where I began.

Reality will surprise you.

Let me just start by saying that I’ve been lucky, I’ve had quite a few people who supported and encouraged me from the start. But I was surprised that some of the people I initially thought would support me most haven’t. Their words saying one thing, their actions showing quite another. I’ve talked to other writers along my way who don’t have any family or friends supporting them. It’s incredible how many people think writing is just a hobby. I don’t fault them. When I was in third grade, I never thought I could be a writer when I grew up. So, I wrote in my free time while working a “real job” for the entertainment of my work friends and my family, never thinking I could share my work beyond my small circle. Imagine where I could be now if I took my writing more seriously way back when. But wondering about that is a whole other blog post, and I’ve tried to train myself to stop doing it.

Back to my point…to the writers who are just starting out, don’t stop if you find you’re not getting the support you long for. Just write and connect with people through your blog (if you have one) on social media. You might find people you barely kept in contact with from long ago will suddenly be the ones lifting you up. You may find people you don’t even know will be the biggest fans of your words.

You’ll find your people.

Don’t get discouraged if some of the people closest to you that claim to love you and support your work don’t show that support. They don’t follow your blog or read your blog posts (let alone an entire novel), they don’t share anything on social media, they definitely won’t buy your book or write a review. It doesn’t mean they don’t love you, but they just don’t understand how hard a writer’s journey is and how much encouragement matters.

In the beginning, they may be all you have, and when you don’t feel supported, it can make it hard to continue. So, to any writer starting out, I just want to remind you that you need to try your best to keep putting words down even if you have no one who wants to read them at the moment.

Keep pushing. Keep moving forward and don’t let that discourage you.

You may just find that strangers or people you barely know will be the ones to encourage you and read every word you write. Take the time to make connections on social media. Get to know these strangers because, before long, you might find that they aren’t strangers anymore but friends.

Someone I barely knew on Twitter, but who I found funny as hell, enjoyed my tweets as well. And now she’s one of my besties, and we chat every single day. She’s one of my biggest supporters, and she more than makes up for the lack of encouragement I found from others, and she makes me believe in my talent.

Shout out to Billie Jean! You’re amazing, and I love the poop out of you!

I also found others who have supported me. People I barely know. And I didn’t do this by posting and shouting about my writing/book all day. On my blog, I write from my heart–including ups and downs. I spend most of my time on the social media platform I enjoyed most (Twitter). I play games. I goof around. I interact with other posts and tweets. I don’t censor myself. None of this is challenging because I have fun. This should be fun, after all. Sure, you’ll still get discouraged from time to time, but now you’ll have people behind you who will lift you up and make you laugh.

Don’t let anyone make you feel foolish.

I’ve had people in real life squash me and make me feel like my usage of social media is stupid and a waste of time. They made fun of how much I tweet. Yeah, I tweet a lot, but I’m spending time with the people who support me. How can that ever be a waste of time?

Boo to the people that bring you down! Some people who will claim to support you but may secretly want to see you fail because they’re jealous that you dare to follow your heart.

At the end of the day, you need to concentrate on the ones who want you to succeed, for real, no matter how you met them or where you met them.

If you’re a new writer and you don’t have support, I’m here, and I understand. Feel free to comment or email me kalicecompeau@outlook.com.

 

Blog

Just Be Yourself

Hello friends,

I’ve been thinking lately about all the blogging/branding advice I’ve been reading lately. There’s so much of it, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. Following the usual advice has sometimes done me some good but I found the one thing that has worked best for me is…

Being myself.

The dork. The nerd. The clown. The sometimes potty-mouthed and dirty-minded weirdo that I am. Sometimes vulnerable. Sometimes sad. Determined. The failure. Struggling writer. True.

The true me–is the me that people connect with.

Lesson –Just be yourself!

The you that you truly are–no matter what that looks like–is bound to be better than anything artificial you try to portray.

Did you know that I had another blog and also a different Twitter account that I up and deleted one day? It’s true. I wiped everything clean and started new.

I wasn’t having any fun at all portraying myself as a serious person. And although I am serious about working hard to improve my writing and creating quality books, I am–at heart–a big, goofball weirdo freak. I think my freakery shows up in my writing. So why should I pretend to be someone else and shock people when they read my writing where a woman discusses her friend’s sascrotch? They are likely to get confused, or worse, put off. Best to be honest about who I am from the start, don’t you think? (I promise there is nothing dirty, or inappropriate in my children’s books–unless farting disgusts you.)

Yes, I’m a writer. But does that mean I have to put my (computer, not prescription) glasses in the corner of my mouth and say, “mmm, yes,” as I ponder the symbolism built into my serious literary work?

Pllllllttttttt! I take my work seriously but not myself.

On Friday, I felt the need for a break from my work-in-progess and tweeted this out…

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As you can see, it got quite a good response. 😂 😂 I’ve been drawing like crazy, especially that first day. I didn’t write. I didn’t do much tweeting of anything else.

But you know why I kept drawing and drawing? Because it was fun. And it’s still creative. Which I believe has a positive impact on my writing. Some of my drawings gave me the giggles so hard I thought my ribs might crack. Unbelievably, (especially for Twitter–you users know this) there has been no trolling on the entire thread and only one person tried to bring politics into it (insert eye roll) and isn’t that fantastic?!?! The best part has been that more than one person has said that reading the thread brightened their whole day.

True, it didn’t bring in book sales (not completely true, one person who discovered me did buy one) but I made people laugh and smile. And this thread kinda is me telling a story, isn’t it? And that’s what I love to do anyway. I’m showing my personality. –telling a little mini picture story about who I am.

Making money is nice but the saying is true, the best things in life are free. I love that I’ve connected with people. And with the nasty, hate-flinging tweets I see day after day, I’m happy that I may have been a ray of sunshine cracking through the muck for someone.

Here are a just a few of the doodles I did…

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If you’d like to look through the whole thread, you can find it here.

I did get my editing in this morning and I’m hoping to do some writing but I’m also going to be drawing more because, believe it or not, more people are waiting and I don’t want to let them down. I want to keep sending smiles (and maybe some giggles) out into this cranky world.

I am going to take a moment to request that if you enjoy my blog that you give me a follow. Also, if you’d like to buy one of my books, the link to my amazon page is here.

If you have read either of my books. I’d also like to kindly ask you to leave a review on Amazon and/or Goodreads. Reviews go a long way in helping indie authors like me find new readers.

I’m also posting my adult works on Chapterbuzz. You can find the link to that here.  I’d be thrilled to get more “buzzes” and feedback there. (Those works are in progress and haven’t been fully edited.) You can find some of them on this blog under the tab, “Sneak Peeks.”

Please and thank you! I appreciate all the love you’ve shown me and my work more than you can imagine.

Until next Sunday, keep smiling!

Allie 💕

 

Blog

It’s good to take a break.

Hello friends,

I didn’t post on my blog last week because I needed a break. I may be spreading myself a bit thin with posting 5 works on Wattpad and Chapterbuzz, writing a weekly post for this blog, plus all the other things I have going on in my life. I’m not going to stop doing any of these things, though, because I realized that while I might need a break from bits of it at times, I’m capable of doing it.

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The hardest part for me in keeping up with writing in this blog and posting my works-in-progress on Wattpad and Chapterbuzz is how vulnerable it makes me feel. This blog reveals feelings that I have always tried to mask. It’s not easy to share my struggles and admit that I walk around feeling like a failure who has no idea what in the hell she’s doing. But when someone reaches out and lets me know that they connect with a post, it makes it all worth it.

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Sharing my works-in-progress on Wattpad and Chapterbuzz really kicks me outside my comfort zone. I have one complete novel up and I’m still in the process of writing all the others. I’m finding it challenging to write new chapters and give them, at least, a second edit before putting them up. Usually, my books go through multiple edits (my first book probably went through around 30 rounds plus a 3 professional edits) before sharing. Talk about showing your warts! I’m not perfect, no matter how hard I wish I was. Opening up and putting my process on display feels horrible in many ways but I think it’s been good for me. I love getting feedback and I greatly appreciate those of you who have checked out my chapters.

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One thing I’ve learned along my writing journey (and I guess in life, in general) is that I have to sometimes do something that is so uncomfortable for me and ask for the things I want. So, I’m going to give that a whirl again… If you’re reading along on Chapterbuzz, would you become a “fan,” “buzz” my chapters, and comment occasionally.  If you are following along on Wattpad, would you please “follow” me, “view” and “vote” for the chapters you enjoy, and leave comments, please. Believe it or not, I love feedback and it doesn’t have to be all positive. If you notice errors, point them out. I’m sharing, not only because I want to find readers, but I want to improve. I can tell when someone is trying to be helpful and when someone is being a troll, so if you aren’t a troll, don’t worry about hurting my feelings. Please and thank you.

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Phew! That was hard and I feel a swirling cloud of discomfort in my gut but it will be worth it if someone who didn’t know I want those things, does them. It really means a lot to me to connect with readers. This is why I do this. I love telling stories but it’s not as much fun to tell them to myself.

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I’ve blabbered on long enough with this post. It’s a beautiful (but chilly) day. I’d like to get out and go for a walk to enjoy it. I also need to edit and post (hopefully 🤞🏻) four chapters.

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Blog

Here I go, yet again

Here I go, yet again

A few things about me before I begin this blog post:

  1. I love to tell stories, always have.
  2. Every day I fight the voice in my head that tells me I’ll always be a failure
  3. I’m awfully stubborn.

1 & 3 are the only way I can fight 2. 2 is always telling me to quit. 1 is the biggest reason I’ll keep pushing, keep failing, keep picking myself up and trying again.

What am I doing to fight the voice that says I’m a failure?

I remind myself of a few things:

There are a lot of people out there who want to write a book, haven’t, and probably never will. I have, over and again.

There are also a lot of writers out there who don’t share their work. I understand that. I’ve been sharing for a few years now. I’ve been trying to put myself out there more and more no matter how uncomfortable it makes me feel.

I’ve done things in my past that scared me and made me push myself to succeed. I try to put myself back in the place I was in during those times when the thought of failure gripped me tightest. This helps me remember how helpless and hopeless I felt then, yet, I succeeded in the end.

What’s making me feel like a failure now?

Marketing myself and finding new readers. This seems like mission impossible. I wish I had the budget to do a massive marketing campaign, but I don’t. The writers I see succeeding are those that have lots of dollars behind them (I’m not saying their books are good, but I bet there are a lot of great books that go unnoticed because they can’t pay for the buzz that comes from a great marketing campaign–both indie and traditionally published authors.) I just read an article yesterday about an indie author whose debut novel sold over 10,000 copies. He said the key to his success was spending the money on a intensive marketing campaign.

I’m putting all my extra money into opening another business at the moment and chose to spend my writing budget on editing and cover art. Hopefully, in the future, I’ll have more money to sink into marketing, but I just don’t have those funds available right now.

While I work on the other project and wait to have these funds available, I feel like I’m stuck. There’s only so much I can do on my own with a shoestring budget to try to get the word out about my book. But I don’t think there are a lot of people out there who are willing to take a chance on an unknown author. Maybe this is bad of me to say, but I feel like a lot of people just buy into the buzz that comes from reading something on the NYT bestseller list.

What steps am I taking to push forward until I have a marketing budget?

I’m going to use all my platforms to try to find more readers. Finding even one more reader is better than giving in to my fears and giving up. Someday I may be someone’s favorite author, but that won’t happen if I stop trying to find them.

I’m going to keep sharing my journey on this blog. I’ll keep tweeting. And I’ll keep searching for new avenues to find readers I can connect with.

The newest way I’m doing this is…

I’ve joined Chapterbuzz.

I’m hoping to find more readers via Chapterbuzz. I’d love (and also feel terrified and nauseous) to share my work-in-progress and hear constructive feedback about how I can improve each chapter.

If you’d like to read my 1st draft as I go and help me improve my book, I’d love if you’d come on over and join me. When you become a fan and “buzz” my chapters, it gives me points that will help me to become more discoverable by other readers. Click here to join. (It’s free, btw)

I’ll also be posting on Wattpad.

I’ll also be adding my chapters on Wattpad. You can follow along and read my chapters by clicking here.

 

Maybe these will be flops, some of many failures on my road to finding readers, but perhaps it won’t. I’m always willing to try.

I’m going to keep moving forward, no matter how slowly, or how many times I stumble and fall flat on my face.

Thanks for reading. From the bottom of my heart, I appreciate it.

 

Blog

Where’s the sweet spot?

Where’s the sweet spot?

Hello friends,

I’ve been trying to blog more regularly but that’s got me wondering how much is too much and how much is still too little?

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I want to post content for my readers regularly, but I don’t want to overload their inboxes either. When I subscribe to a blog and get more than one or two posts a day, I get the urge to unfollow the blog. It’s just too much when 5, 10, or it may as well be 1000 pour in. That’s all I see. I don’t even read them or check to see what the subject is anymore. Usually, I don’t unsubscribe because I don’t want them to feel bad but I really do hate it. I don’t want anyone to feel that way about me and my posts.

I don’t want to post so infrequently that I’m not finding new followers or keeping the ones I have interested in me and my journey.

So where is the sweet spot?

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Photo by Gratisography on Pexels.com

I guess just like figuring out the best days and times to post, I’ll have to experiment to find the answer to this as well.

I’d love to know your thoughts. So please, leave a comment below to let me know how much is too much or too little?

Also, is there anything you’d like me to post about?

Blog

I thought I hated ebooks.

I thought I hated ebooks.

I’m going to say right away that print books are still my favorite way to read.

And I continue to hate reading anything longer than an email, blog post, or article on my phone or my computer.

For quite a while now, I believed reading an ebook was always going to be a horrible experience. I bought a kindle fire years about because I used to travel quite a bit and I thought it would be nice to be able to play games (like Scrabble-even though I suck at it and always lose😂), watch movies, and have some books to read while I was on airplanes or trapped on a long car ride. It was nice for the movies and the games, but I hated reading on the fire.

What did I hate about it? Two things really:

  1. The fire feels heavy. Maybe I’m weak, but it’s just heavy enough to make reading in certain positions uncomfortable.
  2. The glare! I hate it. It doesn’t matter how I adjust the brightness, I can’t see it outside. And any lamp or skylight in my house that hits it the wrong way makes it annoying.

Besides the ability to play games and watch movies on the fire, I liked the price. It’s so much cheaper than the kindle Paperwhite. And I’m into saving money.

My brother told me how much he loved his Paperwhite and I kept thinking, “no way I’m spending money on one because I already know I hate ebooks and how much different from reading on the fire could it really be anyway?”

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Then, one day, a book that I desperately wanted to read was released, and it was available as an ebook only. That book was Unanchored by Stephanie Eding (you can read my review of it by clicking here). I waited for the print version to release. And I waited. But then I decided I couldn’t wait anymore. So, I bought it. Then Amazon Prime Day happened, and with the discounted prices on kindles, I decided to treat myself.

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While I didn’t go for the Paperwhite like my brother recommended, I did buy the plain kindle e-reader in white, and I LOVE IT!

I read Unanchored (excellent book, btw) and enjoyed every moment!

The e-reader was light, and the pages looked like real, print pages! It doesn’t have the built in light but I’m always too sleepy to read when it’s getting dark anyway. I’m sure if it ever becomes a problem I can get one of these nifty, little, clip-on lights (And I’ll still be saving money- YAY!)

I am reformed. I love ebooks! Ebooks are cheaper, which appeals to my thrifty nature, so I don’t feel like I’m taking quite as big of a risk as buying a print book. Usually, I get print books at the library anyway, but I’m a slow reader, and if a book is a new release, I can’t always read a book in the time the library gives before a hold is placed, and I have to return it. Now I can get the ebook and enjoy, reading along at my own pace. And btw, when Unanchored comes out in print, I’ll buy a print copy for my bookshelf. If it’s something I know I’ll want to read again or gift to a friend, I still prefer print. I’ll also still be utilizing the library for a large majority of my reading (I rarely read new releases anyway), but it’s nice to know that if a book is only available as an ebook, I don’t have to grumble and roll my eyes.

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YAY!

If you’d like to buy my book, ASTER THE SPIRIT TALKER, available in print or ebook, click here. 

Blog

How I reclaimed my inner spark

How I reclaimed my inner spark

A while back I wrote about discovering that I had a vitamin d deficiency. You can find that post by clicking here if you’re interested.

I suppose it started when I moved from Hawaii to Ohio (there’s whole lot less sunshine here😂).

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Photo by Tookapic on Pexels.com

I knew I wasn’t feeling great but it was such a gradual change, I didn’t really recognize my symptoms. Here’s what some of them were:

Depression ✅

Muscle Weakness ✅

Tiredness ✅

Crankiness ✅

and a few others that open a whole other can of worms that I’m not interested in sharing with the world at this point.

My doctor put me on a high dose of vitamin d which I’m still taking and will continue to take forever. At first, I didn’t really notice a difference. I experienced some pain in my joints, and the changes to my mood were so gradual, I didn’t really see a change taking place (oh, but it was).

This summer I’ve been spending more time outdoors, without sunscreen. I know. I know. You should wear sunscreen, cancer and all that jazz. I wear hats and long sleeves if I’m going to be out long doing yard work or something like that. And I will put a little sunscreen on AFTER I’ve been in the sun for a while but never before going out. (I’ve not once gotten sunburned, btw).

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Photo by Victor Freitas on Pexels.com

Anyway, I did not realize how deep into a shadow I had moved until I was basking in the glow of my inner spark once again.

Before, I had a hard time doing anything or remembering to do anything. I’d forget appointments and important dates without lists, alerts, and alarms. I’d always been the kind of person who was on top of the shit that was important to me. Then, nothing was important to me. I struggled. Everyday.

When the warmth of spring arrived this year, I started taking daily walks again. Walking is something I did a lot of in Hawaii and I was happy that I was finally feeling like doing it again.

Then, this summer, I went for one of my evening walks. The person I was walking with and I saw a man bending over in his yard. I couldn’t help myself, and I made a loud fart noise and started giggling (yes, I’m 10), and I laughed so hard I struggled to continue the rest of the way up a hill we were on. On other walks, I’d mall walk or sometimes prancersize. Laughing became a regular part of the walks. I had so much energy. I really was acting like a complete idiot again.

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Now it’s the norm once more. I do stupid shit. I giggle. I snort. I really enjoy doing simple, everyday things that had brought me so much misery to even think about doing before.

And guess what…I’m usually not even tired until bedtime!

Who knew a vitamin deficiency could have such an impact on my life?

I’m grateful to have a doctor that thought to check for it and didn’t just throw a pile of antidepressants at me and call it good (Not that people don’t benefit from anti-depressants. I’m just saying it wouldn’t have been the answer for me because it wasn’t the root cause of my problems, so please don’t feel the need to yell at me in the comments).

I’m so happy to feel like myself again. It would have been absolute misery to live the rest of my life the way I was feeling. I’m not sure I could have continued on that way.

I’m back. And it’s really great to be back and remember how it truly feels to be me.

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If you’re interested in buying my book, ASTER THE SPIRIT TALKER, you can buy it by clicking here.