Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Top 5 tips for dealing with delays

Funny thing about the publishing world. It involves people. No matter how defined a deadline is, say for a release of a novel, there are still ways to delay its release. Editors get sick. Editors go on holidays. Writers get sick. Writers have family issues. My first novel The Bird With The Broken Wing was mutually delayed by 2 months by myself and the publisher after a death in my family occurred.

So many things can lead to the delay of a novel's release. Some delays are unavoidable. They're also a normal part of publishing. But they are not without consequences.

It's not just publishing that experiences delays. How about that flight that got bumped? I once waited 5 hours for a plane to have its engine changed over. Other travellers have had worse - like tsunamis or blizzards delaying their plans.

The point is that delays are a part of life and writers have to deal with them as they would any other delays.

Most writers these days do a lot of their own promotion. They have to. We simply don't have a team of publicity people at our disposal and publishers typically have one, maybe more for larger publishers but by no means are there hundreds of marketing gurus rushing around promoting our works. So this small team has to promote the books most likely to make the company money. We have yet to venture into the world of Star Trek where money is obsolete and we do things because we love them. Until then, money talks.

So when a writer sets up their promotion and there is a delay, it can mean losing our spot as a guest blogger, losing our spot for the cover reveal, losing money if we've paid for a blog tour and then can't produce the goods. It can also mean dealing with fans who have eagerly awaited the release as recently happened to Ally Shields, author of the The Guardian Witch Series.

Other books in the series are: Awakening the Fire (#1); Fire Within (#2; Burning Both Ends (#3); Blood and Fire (#4); Fire Storm (#5).

"Today I'm fielding inquiries from readers who expected to buy the book,"  said Ally. " I hate to disappoint them. I write on a schedule with personal goals and deadlines. Anything that interrupts that schedule throws off everything else - works in progress, marketing, social media. They're all interconnected. Hundreds of hours and significant money goes into planning a book release, which includes contacting bloggers, writing blog posts, coordinating purchased promotion, arranging contests and prizes. Delays often mean you lose money and have to start over in the planning process. But my biggest concerns are using up the good will of other bloggers and most importantly - disappointing readers." 

Ally's sixth book in the series was bumped from a Sept 5 release to an unknown date. Having an unknown date is possibly worse than having a release pushed out for a month. The unknown is hard to plan around.

Sometimes, though, the writer is the cause of the delay. The release of a novel? George RRRRR Martin's (makes me want to speak like a pirate when I say his name) A Feast for Crows was published five years and two months after the previous volume due to complexities arising while writing the novel. Then he went on a four month signing tour at the request of his publisher and the next instalment, A Dance With Dragons, was delayed in writing and release by another five years.

So, sometimes writers can fail to launch - i.e get writers block, but more often than not the delay is beyond our control. Much like that airplane that needed a new engine was beyond my control. We must practice patience and self-control and sometimes make sense of the senseless. Maybe we'll use the experience in our novels. maybe we'll tell ourselves what our mothers and grandmothers used to say "good things come to those who wait."

Top 5 tips for dealing with delays of the publication kind:

1. Valium: Okay, maybe not valium but you know what I mean. I've never taken prescription medicine but I've heard it's good to calm the nerves. Usually when a delay occurs such as a flight cancelled, I'm far from a doctor to request a sample of the stuff, but the concept behind something to settle the nerves is a good one. So grab a cup of tea. Go have a nice, long lunch or a long walk, sit on a beach. Walk away from the cause of the delay and hopefully you'll leave the anger behind and return with a clear head.

2. Read a book: Thankfully, writers are the kind of people who always travel with a book. Even if we're writing a book, we've usually got a book on the bedside table or coffee table or writing desk. Taking our mind off a negative task and pumping it with positive energy will help reboot us for the damage control we'll need to do to get our book promotion back on track. Reading a book can help us remember why we're doing this.

3. Move on: Sometimes easier said than done, but delays occur. Life happens. Shit happens. Be like my dog and scratch some grass over that shit and move on. Keep writing, keep posting blogs, keep updating the website. Just keep going. Put on those big girl panties and slap a smile on your face and never let them see you cry. Okay, so maybe that's a bit OTT, but you get the point. It's not the end of the world, we need to keep moving to avoid becoming stalled for good.

4. Eat chocolate: Chocolate fixes everything. A tummy ache, a broken heart, a cancelled book release, trouble can be fixed with chocolate. Chocolate has healing powers. It goes great with red wine and reading books. Chocolate will also never roll its eyes at you and complain that you're complaining too much. chocolate will never get up and walk away from you mid conversation. Chocolate is your friend.

5. Catch up with friends: Talking with real friends is a great way to vent about life's problems. Let's face it, we all need to vent, so do it. But just choose the correct platform so that it casts you in a positive light, not a negative one. Remember that social media sites are open to the public so what you say on Facebook can be read by a potential publisher.

And finally, before you go, here's your chance to win a signed novel.
All of September and October 2014 I'm giving away one signed copy of my first novel The Bird With The Broken Wing. Check out my website for details or enter via the rafflecopter form below.


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D L Richardson is the author of speculative fiction. She has three teen novels and one short story anthology published. Her first novel reached number 2 at OmniLit and number 38 at Kobo Books. Her second reached number 1 at OmniLit. Little Red Gem is her third novel and recently won 2nd place Best Books of 2013 Paranormal Cravings. She lives in Australia on the NSW south coast with her husband and dog.

Contact information

Twitter    !/DLRichardson1


Friday, 5 September 2014

Jean BookNerd: D.L. Richardson Author Interview

I'm just going through some of the interviews and giveaways I've done over the years and I thought I'd share this one. It was one of my first interviews/reviews and giveaways with JeanBookNerd blog and there were over 12,000 entries for a few copies of ebooks and some swag.

I'm giving away a print copy of the novel all through September and October 2014 so stop by the blog and website to enter. anyway, here's a link to the original interview. I hope you enjoy.

Jean BookNerd: D.L. Richardson Author Interview: Book Nerd Interview D L Richardson is the author of ya paranormal novel The Bird With The Broken Wing. She once ran a secondhand cloth...

Win signed novel, open international, one to give away


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Easy graphic design tool for writers

This week I came across an incredibly easy graphic design tool to make banners and ads for my novels. I discovered this tool a smidgen too late, as the deadline to get 50% off an ad for RomCon magazine lasted only a few days and it took me longer than that to track down a site that suited my level of expertise. I missed the deadline. Sad face. Next time I'll be ready.

I usually create my images in PowerPoint and covert them to jpeg, and earlier I provide a post on how to create an image using PowerPoint. You can read the full blog post here. The problem with this method is the quality of the jpeg is shit. I can create an okay quality png file, but nothing I use is compatible with a png file. So I had to find something I could use, because let's face, I'm on a budget. I need it free. and I need it easy to use.

Well, this week I found exactly what I was looking for. I believe this new tool is the best thing since the invention of the word processor. So far I have created high quality images for ads that won't be fuzzy and the best thing is this is so freakin easy to use. I want to create banners and ads just for fun!

Okay, I'm using the very simplified steps of the software in order to produce an image because I haven't yet figured out how to manipulate text and images. So I'm configuring the images in a format I know well - PowerPoint - and then I'm copying them across to my new software.

So what is this brilliant new tool that has distracted me from my writing goal? Serif DrawPlus Starter Edition.

One of the best things about this software is that it's free to download. Nothing worse than spending money to buy a car only to find out you can't drive the thing. So I'll give you a quick lesson on what I've tested so far.

Create a new drawing and pick your size. You can enter custom sizes which is perfect for when an ad tells you the specifications. The ad I wanted to place had a size specification of 3.5 inches high and 4.5 inches wide with 150+ psi. None of this meant anything to me. But when you create a custom size you can select the width and height. The 150+ psi comes when you export the image.

You'll get a blank page and this is where you insert images. What I did was create the text boxes on PowerPoint and then copy them into the Serif page. A tip to remember is when you're using Serif DrawPlus that when you select paste it won't paste until you click somewhere on the page. Another thing to remember is that if you delete an image it will insert a new one on top of the other images, so you'll need to move them off to the side and then cut and paste them back onto the board.  

 I copy the text from the PowerPoint slide onto the DrawPlus board and then resize them to suit. Note that the blue line in the image is the size you set at the start, so it's a good idea to set the image outside of that, which is called the "bleed area".
Then when it's ready to convert to a jpeg it's as easy as selecting File > Export > Export as image. here's the point where you set the dpi to whatever the ad specifications are. Remember mine was to be 150+ dpi which means greater than 150, so I exported it at 200 dpi
And then when you select Export and choose your file location you have a high quality jpeg. (You'll note that I changed the image to the correct one. For the examples I used my YA fantasy novel image but it is not a romance so to avoid any confusion I made the switch at the last minute.)
This is the final jpeg using Serif DrawPlus at the large view.

Below is an jpeg I created using only PowerPoint. The text is too blurry for my liking. When I save this as a png file it's clearer to read on websites, but not all sites support png.

If you're looking for an easy to use graphic design site I'd recommend giving this one a go. It's great for authors who need to crate banners and ads for blogs and online magazines. I reckon I might also be able to use this for ebook covers.
Have fun creating!


D L Richardson is the author of speculative fiction. She has three teen novels and one short story anthology published. Her first novel reached number 2 at OmniLit and number 38 at Kobo Books. Her second reached number 1 at OmniLit. Little Red Gem is her third novel and recently won 2nd place Best Books of 2013 Paranormal Cravings. She lives in Australia on the NSW south coast with her husband and dog.


Twitter       !/DLRichardson1

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Write what you love, plus chance to win signed print book

We've heard that adage "write what you love" and there's a reason writers are told this. Because writing what we love means we're being true to our hearts. And if we're true to our hearts then our writing won't suffer. Nor will the readers.

We can't kid ourselves. Well, we can but not forever. Whenever we lie to ourselves it's only a matter of time before the truth surfaces. Many books and movies also back me up on this. One big area where people kid themselves is in relationships. We often adapt our beliefs/principals/opinions/behaviour to suit someone else or to keep the peace or so they won't find out that we're not perfect. Invariably our true self comes home with a slam of the door, a stomp of the feet, and a defiant holler of 'honey I'm home'. Sometimes the triumphant return of our true self is to our detriment. If only we'd presented our real self at the beginning of the relationship we wouldn't have to cook food we don't eat for a bunch of friend we don't like to praise the win of a sporting team we don't give two hoots about.

Writers should never kid themselves either. If you're not a fan of bodice-ripping romance, then don't write one. You won't be doing your readers any favours by trying to pull the wool over their eyes. You won't do yourself any favours when you're interviewed about why you write bodice-ripping romance and you say that you do it because it seemed an easy way to get published, as opposed to writing it because you love it. I know. I wrote YA novels when I really wanted to write for adults. At the time, I couldn't get the words on the page, yet they  flowed when I wrote the words in the POV of a teenager. I love my YA novels and my YA characters, but I feel a sense of relief that I'm finally writing a few novels for adult readers.

Readers want to know that the author loved putting those words on the page. I loved putting the words on the pages of my YA books, so maybe I do love them in the same way that I can love all models of a certain car.

For example, my favourite car in the world in the Corvette. Some models that I prefer over others, but overall there isn't a bad Corvette. I love their curves, their elegance, the horsepower. I watch Less Than Zero just to see the Corvette the characters drive around in. I ogle them if they're ever on the road. I saw a yellow one parked on the street last week and I was sorely tempted to stand beside it and have my photo taken. So if I love all models of Corvette, then it's fair to say that I love writing for both teens and adults. As long as the genre is what I love.

Are you getting that I love Corvettes? The passion and enthusiasm shows in the way I speak about them, doesn't it? It's the same with writing. If I'm only mildly enthusiastic about, say crime novels, then I should never attempt to write one, no matter how popular they are. Because when I'm asked about my writing, I want the passion to come through. I write speculative fiction. Why? Because I love it.

That's not to say that I don't like contemporary fiction. But when it comes to writing I can't find the voice. I need to find the voice or readers will see through the lie.

I recently spoke to a group of writers and the feedback was that my passion for writing shone through. It's true that I love writing. And I love sharing my tips with other writers. Anyone who wants to be a writer must love what they do. The road to publication is a long, long, long one. They can build cities in less time. And the successes are few and far between. So we write because we love it.

We must also write what we love. I am a huge fan of shows like Supernatural, Star Trek, Doctor Who. Can you see the pattern? Paranormal and science fiction are two genres that I love. So I write paranormal and I write science fiction. My second novel, Feedback is a blend of paranormal and science fiction. My current project is science fiction. I have started writing contemporary and it has been shoved in the drawer that many times that it's apparent I might not have what it takes to write contemporary fiction. I might not have the passion for it.

I hope that you know a little more about why writing what you love is important. And I hope you can see that I love what I write about.

To show how much I love what I write about, for all of September and October I'm giving readers the chance to win a signed print copy of my first published novel The Bird With The Broken Wing. The entry details are below. Contest starts soon. Be sure to check back tomorrow to enter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


D L Richardson is the author of speculative fiction. She has three teen novels and one short story anthology published. Her first novel reached number 2 at OmniLit and number 38 at Kobo Books. Her second reached number 1 at OmniLit. Little Red Gem is her third novel and recently won 2nd place Best Books of 2013 Paranormal Cravings. She lives in Australia on the NSW south coast with her husband and dog.

Contact information

Twitter    !/DLRichardson1

Friday, 22 August 2014

Top quotes from movies/books/TV shows

When was thirteen I was in a school play. I had one scene. It was a musical and therefore put on by the music teacher who was more focused on the singing and band that stage direction took a back seat and was kind of left up to the students. Yeah, as if we know what we're doing. Anyway, I was so terrified of forgetting to enter at my scene that I memorised the entire play. Despite shows like X-Factor and Idol portraying confident teens, the truth is that some teens dread the idea of being up on stage, so when the lead character pulled out one week before curtain time I stepped into the  lead role simply because I had memorised the entire play. I wasn't any good (something about lack of stage direction perhaps) but it wasn't a total disaster.

The point is, if you asked me today to recall a single line quote and I'd be stuffed. I have to write everything down now. It's possibly the reason I get a bit cynical when I read or see characters who quote verbatim long prose or poems. Like really, who can remember stuff like that? Maybe one or two quotes that really touch our hearts and minds will stay with us forever, but on the whole, I think we like to see lists of quotes from music, poems, movies, TV shows ,and books to trigger the old memory banks. 

Why do we love quotes? Because they express how we feel and think at that particular moment. Inspirational quotes can give us the courage or affirmation that we need in order to do something. Funny quotes can pick up a mood. The perfect quotes from a book can make that book remain forever in our hearts and minds. Quotes connect us with characters or people or places or time. they are in some ways the mirror with which humanity views itself.

So without further ado, here is a list of some of my favourite quote and lines from movies, books, and TV shows.

Flash Gordon
"Flash, I love you but we only have 14 hours to save the universe." 

Blues Brothers
Elwood: "It's 106 miles to Chicago, we got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark and we're wearing sunglasses."

Love Actually
Karen: "Would you wait around to find out if it's just a necklace, or ir it's sex and a necklace, or worst, worst of all, it's a necklace and love? Would you stay, knowing life would always be a little bit worse? Or would you cut and run?"

Star Wars
Yoda: "Try not. Do...or do not. There is no try."

Muriel's Wedding
Muriels' sister: "You're terrible, Muriel."
[I know of a person who's children named their dog Muriel simply so they could say this line. Poor dog.]

The A-Team
Hannibal Smith: "Overkill in underrated."

"You're gonna need a bigger boat."

Big Bang Theory:

Sheldon: "A Little Misunderstanding? Galileo and the Pope had a little misunderstanding."

Amy: "I don't object to the concept of a deity, but I'm baffled by the notion of one that takes attendance."

Amy: "Sheldon, sometimes you forget, I'm a lady. And with that comes an estrogen-fueled need to page through thick glossy magazines that make me hate my body."

Amy: "On the bright side, every six year old there was jealous of my tiara. Not gonna lie, it felt good."

"Interesting, you're afraid of women and insects, ladybugs must render you catatonic!" - Sheldon Cooper; The Big Bang Theory provided by Rachel Sawyer from Queensland, Australia

"I'm not scared, I'm rationally concerned... there's a difference!" - Danny 'Danno' Williams; Hawaii Five O  provided by Rachel Sawyer from Queensland, Australia

Dean: "Bitch."    Sam: "Jerk."

Dixon: "Can you think of a worse hell?"    Dean: "Well, there's hell."

Dracula to the pizza delivery guy: "Do you take coupons?"

Bobby: "Now have we done feeling our feelings? Because I'd like to get out of this room before we start growing lady parts."

Castiel: "Uriel's the funniest angel in the garrison. Ask anyone."

Dean: "I'm gonna go stop the big bad wolf. Which is the weirdest thing I've ever said."

Sam: "I miss conversations that didn't start with 'this killer truck'."

Bobby: "Ijiots."


The Outsiders: "I lie to myself all the time. But I never believe me."

Gone With The Wind: "My dear, I don't give a damn." [Frankly, there is no frankly in the book. it was added into the movie and is the first time I realised that movies don't quote verbatim from the book. Kind of a let down but I got used to it.]

Black Beauty: "We call them dumb animals, and so they are, for they cannot tell us how they feel, but they do not suffer less because they have no words."

Black Beauty: "If a thing is right it can be done, and if it wrong it can be done without; and a good man will find a way."

Tuck Everlasting: "Life's got to be lived, no matter how long or short. You got to take what comes."

Tuck Everlasting: "Nothing ever seems interesting when it belongs to you - only when it doesn't."

To Kill A Mockingbird: "People generally see what they look for, and hear what they listen for."

To Kill A Mockingbird: "The one thing that doesn't abide by majority rule is a person's conscience."

To Kill a Mockingbird: "Atticus told me to delete the adjectives and I'd have the facts."

“What is the point of being alive if you don't at least try to do something remarkable?” — An Abundance of Katherines (Novel); John Green (Author)  provided by Rachel Sawyer from Queensland, Australia

"Sometimes, you read a book and it fills you with this weird evangelical zeal, and you become convinced that the shattered world will never be put back together unless and until all living humans read the book." - The Fault in Our Stars (Novel); John Green (Author)  provided by Rachel Sawyer from Queensland, Australia

"To love is to destroy, to be loved, is to be destroyed." The Mortal instruments (Novel series); Cassandra Clare (Author)  provided by Rachel Sawyer from Queensland, Australia

More quotes will be added to this list so please check back if you'd like to read more.

Also, if you have any quotes you'd like to see included in this list please list them via the comments box and I'd be happy to include them.


D L Richardson is the author of speculative fiction. She has three teen novels and one short story anthology published. Her first novel reached number 2 at OmniLit and number 38 at Kobo Books. Her second reached number 1 at OmniLit. Little Red Gem is her third novel and recently won 2nd place Best Books of 2013 Paranormal Cravings. She lives in Australia on the NSW south coast with her husband and dog.

Contact information

Twitter    !/DLRichardson1

Sunday, 10 August 2014

The Bird With The Broken Wing by D L Richardson ebook now $2.99


Latest news!!! What a surprise it was for me to check in on my online retail sites and discover some good news about my debut novel The Bird With The Broken Wing. I regularly do this to make sure links are working and what not. Anyway, I checked in and discovered that my publisher has reduced the ebook price to $2.99 USD.

This is great news, because many ebooks are set at this price point and I've often thought that maybe this deterred buyers rather than attract them, which is the essence of selling.
you can read reviews for this YA fantasy novel on author website

Author's description of the book:

"The Bird With the Broken Wing is a tale about a guardian angel who ends up in Purgatory with the mortal she was assigned to watch over. While working on getting her mortal out of Purgatory she discovers some disturbing news about her presence there."

Things about this book you did not know, as told by the author D L Richardson:

"This was originally an idea about adult characters who die and end up in Purgatory and there they meet a soldier who has been there forever, since there always has to be someone to watch over the doorway to heaven and he's kindly let everyone else through first. It's not until he meets a woman and she discovers how long he's been there that she forces him to ascend and she'll take over the job of watching the doorway."

"I never got this story idea off the ground until I made the characters teenagers and of course tweaked a few other things, such as introducing an angel into the group."

"This was my first novel published. In some areas it is too clipped - yes, you can edit a novel to death and lose the flow. I'd like to one day put back the flow but then I also think that novels are moments in time and should be left as they are."

Official about the book stuff:

Angels may not reveal themselves to mortals...but when the mortal Rachael's watching over is hurting, how can she stay hidden in the shadows? Guardian angel Rachael becomes trapped with the mortal she's been assigned to watch over. Unable to watch him suffer, she decides the only way to free him of his inner demons is to break the rules about becoming involved, revealing her true identity, and applying divine intervention. But what choice does she have? Without her help, his soul will be trapped forever. Then a stranger appears, giving Rachael reason to wonder if his is the only soul in need of saving... 
Genre: YA Paranormal Fantasy
Publisher: Etopia Press
ISBN 13: 9781939194084
ISBN 10: 1939194083
Number of pages: 147 ebook / 224 print
Word Count: 48,138
Cover Artist: Eithne Ni Anluaine 
Book Trailer:      
Print: Book Depository
Ebook: Amazon   Barnes and Noble
Plus everywhere else books are sold online

Links you might like:
Carrie Underwood saves bird with a broken wing
Teens take 'Battle of the Books' seriously
Amazon and Hachette battle it out for ebook prices


D L Richardson is the author of speculative fiction. She has three teen novels and one short story anthology published. Her first novel reached number 2 at OmniLit and number 38 at Kobo Books. Her second reached number 1 at OmniLit. Little Red Gem is her third novel and recently won 2nd place Best Books of 2013 Paranormal Cravings. She lives in Australia on the NSW south coast with her husband and dog.

Contact information

Twitter    !/DLRichardson1