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Reaching Milestones and Conquering Fears

This post I’m changing pace and inviting you in for a friendly chat. So grab a cuppa and settle down. It’s all about workshops, writing groups, dreams and milestones.

Last week it was my birthday and I turned 40, it sounds old… it is old! To celebrate we had a much needed family holiday: Lots of riding bikes, swimming, crazy golf and a selection of rum based cocktails. Yum!

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Now that I’m home, I’m reflecting and when I look back on my life I’m not disheartened. I’ve crammed a lot in: achieved and failed in incredible ways. And more important than the past, I still have dreams to fulfill.

Many of you already know of my goal to obtaining an agent for my debut novel, and although it’s had some great feedback it’s time to shelve that story and start afresh. So with the help of my awesome betas I’m changing the sequel into a standalone. Yay, beta’s!!!!

Thank you Ari Meghlen for your invaluable feedback on the opening chapters of Mischief and Mayhem.

In the next few month I plan to start the submission process again.

I’m surprisingly optimistic about this. I learnt an incredible amount from my first novel and who knows, maybe one day it will still be published. Statistics say that on average, an author get picked up by an agent on their third novel. It’s all about perseverance, which is why following your passion is so important. Slogging away at something for years with no recognition or validation is brutal. We need the fire and determination to keep going. Hopefully, you have a few cheerleaders to keep you going!

 

Enjoy the journey - Benedict Cumberbatch
– Benedict Cumberbatch

I’m currently halfway through Rebecca Alasdair‘s YA contemporary-romance novel, Holding Up The Sky. Its beautiful and heart-wrenching… I can’t remember the last time a book made me cry – In a good way. I’ve completely connected with her MC. Rebecca is still looking for beta’s, so if you’re interested pop over to her blog, she has all the details written there.

I’ve joined a friendly little group of like-minded entrepreneurs where I hosted a short talk about copywriting and persuasive writing. You can checkout my previous posts if you’ve missed them. Yes, I was nervous and my voice wobbled a little, but the group were engaged and seemed genuinely interested. I even had a well-timed laugh.

My writing group (there’s only three of us, shh!) is taking shape and we’re set to meet this month. And from those experiences the opportunity to hold my own writing workshops has presented itself. (Aah, run’s around screaming!) I’ll keep you posted with more news.

Exciting times ahead!

Author Lorraine Ambers - fantasy romance writer

Thanks for stopping by. Do you have any news? If so, please share it. You know I love hearing from you.

Until next time, Much Love.

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© Author Lorraine Ambers and http://www.lorraineambers.com, 2018.

Three Tips to Harness your Creativity

Today I want to introduce my 3 tips on how to keep your creativity cup full and overflowing.

We all have divine times where our creativity is bursting into life. Where the sun sparkles, the birds chirp and we become our own version of a Disney character. Filled with the joy of a new quest, the pen becomes an extension of our essence and the words simply flow.

Unfortunately, the opposite is also true. When life has dealt us the short-straw, the world around us dulls to greys, and putting one word in front of the other becomes impossible. Some call it writer’s block, I call it writer’s burnout. The stress and strain of life take its toll. Robbing the very thing that we held most dear:

Our passion. Our creativity. Our art.

Writers harness your creativity

Tip One: Silence that inner critique and keep going despite its cruel taunts. Remember that every artist goes through times of self-doubt, the secret to overcoming them is to reach out to those around you for support. I’m a huge champion of this blogging community, they have become a virtual family, offering words of encouragement from a like-minded perspective. I love you all.

Twitters #writingcommunity is another great resource. For more practical advice on conquering this negative beast; read my post on  Overcoming Self-doubt.

“The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.”
― Sylvia Plath

Cinderella giphy

Tip Two: Allow yourself time to fuel your Inspiration. There is an abundance of beauty in the world, use everything in your disposal to re-boost your creativity. Books, movies, art, nature or even the hustle and bustle of a busy town. Take nothing for granted. Though every story has been told before, it has never been expressed by you. So feast on the stories surrounding you and then retell the tale.

“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and will be lost.”
― Martha Graham

Tip Three: Let’s not forget that without darkness it’s hard to admire the light. Many artists, myself included, struggle with mental health issues. In times like these, be kind to yourself and practice the steps that help you into recovery. Though you won’t appreciate it at the time, our art is often made stronger for our empathy and compassion to the burdens of life. It is the silver lining to a thunderous storm.

“One must still have chaos in oneself to be able to give birth to a dancing star.”
― Friedrich Nietzsche

Author Lorraine Ambers - fantasy romance writer

Thanks for stopping by.

Do you have a tip on harnessing creativity? Why not share it with me?

You know I love hearing from you.

Until next time, Much Love.

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© Author Lorraine Ambers and http://www.lorraineambers.com, 2018.
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Copywriting and the Benefits for your Blog

Today we’re going to explore copywriting and how the techniques can benefit bloggers. It’s also a vital skill for all entrepreneurs in any line of business. In a previous post we discovered the advantages of persuasive writing, which has many similarities and should be used in tandem when crafting a descriptive content for the purposes of engaging your audience. Don’t forget to check it out.

typing, blog, flowers, writing, copywriting

 

You might be asking – what is copywriting and does it apply to me?

Copywritingcopywriters create fresh written content for advertising, marketing and descriptive texts. Copywriters can write more creative text, like ad jingles, taglines, and other creative copy, or more research-based copy, like a job description on a website.

As a writer, copywriting will become paramount in your marketing. From little social media snippets, to writing an introduction about you or your work, and of course blogging. The aim is to coax your audience into engaging with you, your brand, so that they choose to invest in your product. But also to drive traffic to your site by using some of the tips mentioned below.

Writing Group-Team work-Laptop

Do your research: Like any good writer knows, research is paramount to your success. You may not need to use every piece of information garnered but you 100% need to know what your promoting. Research, research, research.

Use rich SEO content: Define the keywords relevant to your brand and product and insert them throughout your content. This will encourage your blog post to be picked up by search engines and rank you near the top.

USP – Unique Selling Point: What makes you standout from the crowd, why is your work different from your competitors. I’m sure you’re aware of how hard this is, but it’s a necessary skill to master.

Use your words: Colourful prose and strong verbs are essential when crafting each piece, thankfully, we’re writers and have an advantage – use it. Make it interesting and tell your story.

Use a catchy headline: Remember the 4 U’s, Urgent, Unique, Ultra-specific and Useful. Your goal is to catch the reader attention and hold their interest.

 

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Know your audience: Identify your target audience and work to appeal to them. Give them what they want by painting a vivid picture that satisfies their desire. Learn to speak to your ideal customer.

Be clear and concise: It’s easy to play on words, but sometimes that’s not the best way to hook the reader. Make your language easy to understand, don’t bog the reader down with jargon. Everything you write should have a purpose. Equally make your blog easy to read: utilize the white space, use bullet points and short paragraphs. And never forget the advantage of great imagery.

Focus on the benefits: Your readers want to be emotional invested, so highlight the benefits, not the features. Talk about what you, or your product does not is, and demonstrate this. Make the reader feel like they’re getting something, give them instantaneous gratification. Use persuasive writing to ask questions that encourage the reader to agree.

Back up your claims: Build your credibility with the following:

  • Facts and statistics
  • methodologies
  • testimonials
  • case studies
  • success stories

Include a strong call to action: Take advantage of the opportunity to tell your readers what to do. Call, sign up, buy, register – you’ve gathered their support and interest, now make sure they invest. Successful writers and marketers use the power of three at all times. Don’t be subtle or cleaver, drive your audience to use the CTA in three different places.

Lead with your strongest point: Don’t save the best for last, you want to grab the reader’s attention and keep it. Stress the value of what you’re offering. Let your natural writing voice flow, research indicates that most successful blogs employ a relaxed, personal style.

Author Lorraine Ambers - fantasy romance writer

Thanks for stopping by.

Do you have any tips to share? Have you experimented with copywriting by applying these tips to your business?

If so, have you had any positive results? Please share your experience. You know I love hearing from you.

Until next time, Much Love.

 

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© Author Lorraine Ambers and http://www.lorraineambers.com, 2018.
Novel-Artwork-Michelle Kenney

Review: City of Dust by Michelle Kenney

I receieved a copy of City of Dust from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Novel-Artwork-Michelle Kenney

The fight is never over.

Life in Arafel is no longer safe. Not since August’s disappearance, and whispers of a ghost controlling Pantheon.

Meanwhile, Talia stands torn between secretive twin, Eli, and best friend, Max.

Betrayal forces Talia to leave the sanctuary of her forest home as she pursues the stolen Book of Arafel. A book which could destroy the freedom of all those she loves if it falls into the wrong hands. And when she enters the ancient ruined city of Isca, she fights to protect the vulnerable from the iron grip of the Pantheon, while learning to fight for the man she loves.

But with the shadow of the Black Aquila looming ever closer, will she put the freedom of others above her own, or will she follow her heart?

This is Michelle Kenney’s thrilling second instalment in the Book of Fire Trilogy.

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I award this novel 3.5 stars

Author Michelle Kenney is a fantastic writer who writes beautiful prose and compelling characters. The world building is rich and luscious. Mixing the natural world of Arafel with a post-apocalyptic Exeter where its scientists tinkers with genetic moulding. Here we encounter a tapestry of Roman mythology and a diverse selection of mythical beings.

What I loved.

Talia is a feisty, feral girl struggling with the after-effects from book 1, Book of Fire, when she and her companions are thrust back into the clutches of Pantheon. I loved her brother Eli and their close bond. Eli’s disadvantages made him more endearing. I particularly adored the love triangle, between Talia, her best friend Max and Pantheon’s smouldering General August. Where does Talia’s heart lie and is August the traitor he’s portrayed to be? The inner turmoil and tension was a great hook. It’s a fantastic concept: Genetically modifying Roman DNA to create a new breed of humans and a complex rich selection of mythical creatures.

What I didn’t like.

The science technology during the dialogue was occasionally jarring, pulling me out the story. During the middle scenes the pace dropped, there was a lot of tunnel traversing and not a lot of character reflection or growth. I lost connection with the story and my desire to care for the quest. However, this picked back up with the reintroduction of the love triangles tension.  The final chapters reached pivotal action that had me on the edge of my seat, only to disappoint with the cliffhanger ending. (I’m not a fan of those, but you can’t please everyone.)

If you’re a fan of YA dystopian fantasy then this novel is for you, It’s a well-written read that is similar to The Hunger Games and The Mazerunner.


About the author.

Michelle is a firm believer in magic, and that ancient doorways to other worlds can still be found if we look hard enough. She is also a hopeless scribbleaholic and, when left to her own devices, likes nothing better than to dream up new fantasy worlds in the back of a dog-eared notebook. Doctors say they’re unlikely to find a cure any time soon.

You can follow Michelle over at her pages…

Michelle’s Facebook page

Michelle’s Instagram

Thanks for stopping by. Do you love reading dystopian novels? If so, what is your favourite story / series? Mine is The Hunger Games, I freeking love Katniss.

Author Lorraine Ambers - fantasy romance writer

Until next time, Much Love.

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© Author Lorraine Ambers and http://www.lorraineambers.com, 2018.
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Perseverance in your Dream

There comes a time in everyone’s journey to success where the depths seem too deep, the mountain too high and the dream too far.

It’s easy to talk about goals and accomplishments when were in a positive place, the true test of our resilience happens when we’ve sunk below deck, absorbed the inky ocean colours and turned midnight- blue.

During those harrowing times, self-compassion and self-love sound like fairy-tales, told to wayward travellers who can only ponder at the creatures dwelling below the surface.

girl underwater fantasy magic wrting author Lorraine Ambers
photo credit: Women Underwater via photopin (license)

For my fellow drifters, hang tight and wait for your anchor to be called home. And remember you’re not alone in the world, there are artists and dreamers who have been where you are. The glimmering sun is just beyond the surface, sometimes we need to kick, push against the tide and persevere.

Patience and perseverance have a magical effect before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish.
– John Quincy Adams
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I will leave you with a couple of inspirational quotes and links to my popular posts in the hope that they help keep you afloat.


Remember, it isn’t the dreamers who have good lives – it’s the doers. Remember also what I call the three Ps of success: passion, planning, and perseverance.
– Homer Hickam

How’s your WIP coming along? Share with me your tips for perseverance. You know I love hearing from you. Thanks for stopping by.

Author Lorraine Ambers - fantasy romance writer

Until next time, Much Love.

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© Author Lorraine Ambers and http://www.lorraineambers.com, 2018.
Love writing, notebook, pencil, tea

Top Tips on How to Write Persuasive Content

A writer’s career is more than sipping tea and typing. It also entails running a savvy business where all the job roles become your responsibility; administrations, planning, marketing, graphic designing, etc.

Today were going to look at persuasive writing and how it benefits entrepreneurs in any line of business.

Perhaps you’re asking; what is this and how does it apply to me? Well…

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Persuasive writing is writing where you try to convince the reader to take a particular issue on a point of voice. Persuasive writing may be designed to convince the reader to take your position on that issue or may be designed to convince the reader to take a certain action.

Whether you’re an indie author or traditional author, persuasive writing will become paramount in your marketing. This will include writing about your brand, when creating blog posts, reviews and even through your online presence.

The aim is to coax your audience into engaging with you and your brand, so that they choose to invest in your product, your book or newsletter. We’re all aware that the hard-sell pushes your potential audience away. Whereas, persuasive techniques will entice your reader towards you desired outcome.

book pen artist writer author Lorraine Ambers fantasy romance novel YA

Here are my top tips to help you craft the perfect piece of persuasion.

Know your target audience: This is the most crucial step; once you’ve identified this, you can tailor your advertisements to encourage that particular demographic.

State your reasons why: Nobody likes being told what to do, so give a reason before asking for a call to action. Show what can you do for them. Your audience wants to know – What’s in it for them? What will they benefit from buying this product?

Be consistent: This helps build integrity.

Use repetition: Spice it up a little and get creative to keep your audience interested. On average, your product will have to be seen by the client seven times before they take notice, from there on your building trust to encourage a purchase.

Use social proof: This is where testimonials, reviews and outside referrals become invaluable assets. Psychologically people tend to take comfort in the tried and tested.

YA fantasy romance Author Lorraine Ambers Desk

Comparisons: Metaphors, similes and analogies are a persuasive writer’s friend. Relating your product in a way  that the reader already accepts as true. Then you’re well on your way to convincing the reader to see things your way. Comparing your novels to similar authors has the instant advantage of drawing in your target audience who already enjoy that genre and style of writing.

Agitate and Solve: A useful persuasion theme is to identify a problem that resonates with your audience. Agitate the issue  before offering your solution which will solve the issue. Remember empathy is powerful here; you want to help the audience because you’ve experienced the problem and now have a solution.

Prognosticate:  This is a persuasion theme that provides your reader with a glimpse at the future. It’s a strategy built on credibility, if you can back up your claims with experience, credentials or a clear grasp of the subject, then this persuasive technique is a sure winner.

Unify your audience: This technique offers group inclusion. The power of knowing your target audience allows you to offer things that will appeal to them, making them feel selectively included, part of a group and offers real value. A newsletter is a perfect example of how authors can embrace their readers.

Be aware of objections: Being capable of presenting all of the pros and confidently navigating away any  potential objections that may arise. Then you’re actively solving problems and intelligently persuading your readers to invest.

Perhaps your character is trying to persuade the reader to agree with his point of view, as done in the Netflix series You. We know Joe’s behaviour is wrong, but through his constant  management of our objections and by justifying his point of view, Joe manages to keep the watcher on side. That is the power of persuasion.

Storytelling: This lies at the heart of persuasion. Passionate writing that allows the reader to independently persuade themselves.  By using all of the strategies available, tell a beautiful and engaging story. Colourful prose and strong verbs are essential when crafting each piece. Thankfully, we’re writers and have an advantage – use it.

Practice makes perfect:  Much like novel writing, all writing form’s need revision and editing to make them shine. Don’t slack on the essentials.


Thanks for stopping by.

I love hearing from you, please comment and let me know if you have any tips on persuasive writing? Have you used it in your stories or marketing techniques?

And more importantly, have you watched You yet? ;0

Author Lorraine Ambers - fantasy romance writer

Until next time, Much Love.

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© Author Lorraine Ambers and http://www.lorraineambers.com, 2018.
Writing Group-Team work-Laptop

Benefits to Joining a Writing Group

There are many positives to being a writer. It’s a journey of discovery, evolving creatively and building a solid sense of self. But as every writer knows, there’s a downside. Mine is isolation resulting in poor mental health. It can feel as though we’re plundering through the dark, searching for a switch that will shine a light upon what we hope is a work of literary art.

So, how do we know when we’re good at our craft? Or when our manuscript is ready for submission? When we need to return for yet another round of edits?

Pixel image computer desk research business

One of those ways is to work with likeminded individuals, offering critique, being a supportive shoulder to lean on and to congratulate when success beckons.

These are the benefits of a writing group.

There are many varying options: I’ve had great support from my online communities where I’ve found fellow betas readers. There are also Facebook groups and online forums where you can share your work and receive an honest critique.

But if it’s a more personnel touch you’re seeking, then a local writing group is what’s needed. Face to face contact has huge benefits, solving loneliness and can eventually lead to long lasting friendships. These groups tend to meet regularly for a couple of hours.

Creative writing groups are another avenue to meeting fellow writers, but maybe you’re wishing to converse with people already on the publishing route.

Creating a Logline for a Novel, The Perfect Pitch

Maybe there’s nothing like that in your local area. Have you ever considered starting a group yourself?

Here are my top tips to consider when starting out.

Keep it small. You’ll want to devote time to each member, which requires reading through their work and offering feedback. This means keeping your group intimate. You don’t want everyone to become overwhelmed with the amount they have to read and equally you want your readers to offer enough of their attention on your work. I’d suggest six members to allow for adequate attention in the two hour slot.

Be honest. The main goal is to learn and grow. That being said, criticism should be an unbiased feedback that doesn’t result in the writer feeling belittled, stupid or attacked. Be kind and don’t forget to tell them what works.

Don’t take criticism personally. Seeing your work through someone else’s eyes can be difficult, but hopefully you’ll nurture a group where everyone appreciates negative criticism delivered in a gentle way. Support and encouragement are just as important.

Meet regularly. Keep momentum alive. This is your dream and only you can make it happen: work for it.

Are you a member of a writing group? Share your experiences, what did you learn from it. You know I love hearing from you. Thanks for stopping by.

Author Lorraine Ambers - fantasy romance writer

Until next time, Much Love.

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© Author Lorraine Ambers and http://www.lorraineambers.com, 2018.
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Make Powerful Intentions and Reach your Goals

Happy New Year!

Hello, my wonderful blogging community, fellow writers and avid readers.

I make vague resolutions at best, that evolve my aspirations into intentions and goals. And the reason why I’m not so hot for resolutions, is because they’re as fragile as glass. Treated like promises, that ultimately shatter into a million fragments and scatter to the wind. Never to be recovered, or fulfilled – leaving only bitter disappointment. It’s how I imagine Cinderella felt, a rich world of wishes and dreams at her fingertips only to vanish at that notorious strike of midnight.

Cinderella giphy

Instead I promise to honour myself with love and care. To grow in new ways that allow for my writing journey to unfold.  Whatever will be, will be… helped along by my hard work and determination.

Even though I’ve taken a couple of weeks away from blogging, I’ve loved reading everyone’s reflections about last year and how they plan to approach 2019.

It’s got me thinking about my own journey and how far I’ve come in one short year. So here are the highlights:

I attended two writing events packed with advice about the publishing journey and submitting. I pitched to an agent and met up with fellow blogger, the wonderfully talented Amelia over at the Uninspired Writers.

I’ve had my submission package critiqued by the superb agent Sallyanne Sweeney and an editor from firefly publishing house. Where I received critique that strengthened my novel and helped me accept that my books are better suited to the adult genre and not YA.

I began submitting to the US where I received a few personalized feedbacks about great writing, but told my concept isn’t strong enough. Hopefully, novel 2 will have more success.

Entered PitchWars.

Entered two PitMad events over at Twitter and had interest from 1 agency and 1 publishing house. (See, they liked my concept – proving it really is subjective.) Unfortunatly, they were not the right fit for me.

One of my short stories was shortlisted in a competition by the Henshaw Press.

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Photo by rawpixel.com from Pexels

And I got to work with two new betas, giving me three amazingly supportive girls.

Uninspired Writers

Ari Meghlen

K.M. Allan

My love and eternal gratitude goes out to each and every one of you. I can’t thank you all enough for the support and encouragement I’ve received. So here’s to a new year, with new mountains to climb. Let’s take in the sights together.

Why not share your hopes and dreams for 2019 with me. What’s one thing you aim to accomplish this year? You know I love to hear from you, so please drop me a comment.

Until next time, Much Love.

Lorraine Xx

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© Author Lorraine Ambers and http://www.lorraineambers.com, 2018.

12 Days of Christmas book tag

With Christmas just around the corner, I can’t think of a better way to spread the cheer than with this festive book tag. Why not discover what books have influenced me and my writing and what books take pride of place on my bookshelf. Yay!

This tag was started by Nicola over at The Fantastic Book Dragon.  And I have the wonderful Ari Meghlen to thank for tagging me.

On the first day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: a partridge in a pear tree. 

The partridge stood alone in the pear tree. What is your favorite stand alone?

My favourite stand alone has to be The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. The magic, the stunning settings and the whimsical beauty that surrounds that novel is breath-taking. I’m must read it again.

On the second day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: two turtle doves.

Love is in the air! Who is your one true pairing?

I’m head over heels for Rhysand and Feyre in ACOMAR. Their journey through the series was pure, delicious tension. I cried for a week after reading that novel, it was the worst book hangover to date.

On the third day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: Three French Hens.

In the spirit of threes, what is the best trilogy you have read?

The outstanding Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. Katniss is a true heroin and the move adaptations are one of my favourite books to moves, them and Harry Potter. Closely followed by; His Dark Materials by Phillip Pullman, a sensational read.

On the fourth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: four calling birds.

Since series usually consist of four or more books, what is your favourite series?

This is a clear winner for me. It’s the swoon worthy A Court of Thorns and Roses by my favourite authoress Sarah J. Maas. I can’t wait for the next instalment.

But I must admit, I devour PRN novels too, Immortals After Dark by Kresley Cole will always have a special place in my heart… and on my Kindle too. Lol.

On the fifth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: five golden rings.

One ring to rule them all! Who is your Favorite Villain/Antagonist?

Ooh, it’s the devilish Rhysand from ACOTAR. Though he’s spun in the darkest light, he is the only one to aid Feyre through her trials under the mountain. For every villain is the hero of his story and not all is as it seems. This duo was a huge inspiration for my second novel.

And Kaz Brekker from Six of Crows… need I say more. He’s cunning, conniving and a law unto himself. Marvellous!

On the sixth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: six geese a laying.

Creation is a beautiful thing. What is your favourite world/world-building?

This is a tough choice, so many unique worlds are cherished in my heart. The bigger the better. So, I’ll choose a world not yet picked in this Tag: Caraval by Stephanie Garber. The uniqueness of the Caraval island and all the magic and mystery it entails were exhilarating. I still haven’t read Legendary. So if anyone’s wondering what to get me for a present this year… hint, hint! ;D

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On the seventh day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: seven swans a swimming.

Who needs seven swans when all it takes is one good animal sidekick? Who’s your favourite animal sidekick?

I really want to mention Lyra Belacqura‘s sidekick from His Dark Materials, her shapeshifting Daemon Pantalaimon. But also,Grimalkin from The Iron Fey Series by Julie Kagawa, a mythical cat with a surly attitude who appears as and when it suits him.

On the eighth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: eight maids a milking.

Milk is so 18th century. Which book or series takes beverages/food to a whole new level?

The Cruel Prince by Holly Black luxuriates in tables full of banquet food. Simply scrumptious. And at the other end of the scale, Blue’s family make some odd concoctions in The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater.

On the ninth day of Christmas my true love sent to me: nine ladies dancing.

Dancing is just one skill of a Lady! Who is your favourite kickass female lead?

Whoa. Just one…. well take at least three. Feyre from ACOTA. Katniss from Hunger Games and Selina Kyle from Catwoman Soulstealer. Did I mention Sarah J. Maas is my favourite author? :d

On the tenth day of Christmas my true love sent to me: ten lords a leaping.

How about your favourite leading lad?

Choices, choices. So many fantastic males to choose from. Obviously I’m going with Rhysand from ACOTAR.

On the eleventh day of Christmas my true love sent to me: eleven pipers piping.

What is your favourite book or bookish thing with musical influence? (It can be about music, reference music a lot etc.)

Edward’s piano playing from the Twilight Series by Stephanie Meyer. The original romance series that set me on my path to write fantasy/romance.

On the twelfth day of Christmas my true love sent to me: 12 drummers drumming.

Drum roll please…what is your favourite read of this year?

How can I choose just one? There has been so many. I’ll go with Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo because I was blown away by that story, and because I’m reading the sequel Crooked Kingdom right now.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Voila! A little sneak peek into my bookshelves. I’ll be taking a short break over the Christmas holidays and I’ll be back with you in the New Year.

I tag the following bloggers:

K. M. Allan

uninspiredwriters

Caffine and writing dreams

Merry Christmas to you all. Mwa. Xxx

Author Lorraine Ambers - fantasy romance writer

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© Author Lorraine Ambers and http://www.lorraineambers.com, 2018.
snowflake Christmas ice photo

Writing Deadlines and keeping the Christmas Cheer

With the encroaching Christmas holidays, deadlines become a predominant factor in most of our minds. They add additional pressure to an already fraught time of year. Manifesting stress where it’s not needed, this is something I’m guilty of. I pile on extra jobs and beat myself up for not accomplishing each and every single one of them.

But it doesn’t have to be that way.

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On top of the extra demands of December: Shop, wrap, cook, clean, preen. We authors often juggle work, family, and the demands of writing, promoting, blogging and social media.

Realising how insane all of that sounds, I thought this week’s blog could help lighten the load by shinning a little comedy and sprinkle a few well-meaning quotes into the mix. Sit back and enjoy!

“At times, it is better to “just do it” than to “do it right”. One reason new year resolutions don’t work is that we expect too much from ourselves. Rush, meet your deadlines, you can always continue from where you stopped next year.” ― Asuni LadyZeal

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“A lovely thing about Christmas is that it’s compulsory, like a thunderstorm, and we all go through it together.” – Garrison Keillor
***
“I love Christmas. I receive a lot of wonderful presents I can’t wait to exchange.” – Henny Youngman
***
“A deadline is a negative inspiration. Still, it’s better than no inspiration at all.”
― Rita Mae Brown
i-relieve-stress-by-taking-deep-breaths-of-my-wine-glass-1aP
“Goals are dreams with deadlines.” ― Diana Scharf
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“If the novels are still being read in 50 years, no one is ever going to say: ‘What’s great about that sixth book is that he met his deadline!’ It will be about how the whole thing stands up.”
― George R.R. Martin
So my fellow writers, take a leaf from some of the greats and relax over the deadlines. By all means, keep writing and work towards your goals, but at the end of the day: Pop your pajamas on, watch a Christmas movie, drink hot chocolate and enjoy the festive season.
As always folks, thanks for reading. What sort of deadlines do you place on yourself at Christmas and how do you relax and unwind at the end of the day? Tell me all about it, you know I love to hear from you.
Until next time, Much Love. xXx
Author Lorraine Ambers Web-Banner YA fantasy book review romance

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© Author Lorraine Ambers and http://www.lorraineambers.com, 2018.