Monday, July 30, 2012

Revised, Edited, and Totally Out of This World Author, Catrina Taylor

Please let us for a brief moment travel through space and time; through the galaxy to the world of the creator of Xarrock. My guest for this week is author Catrina Taylor and she's part of the Tasha Turner Coaching Virtual Blog Tour. Please make sure you let her know what you think and ask your questions, and perhaps it won't be Scotty beaming you up but someone out of this world! 

Every writer has a routine, and the routine leads to the most prolific writing success the author is able to produce. It’s much like those who walk into an office building in the morning. They stop by the coffee maker, tuck their lunch away in a shared office refrigerator, say hello to the boss, a coworker and the neighboring cubical, before sliding into their chair to check messages and start their day. For an author it can vary by environment and opportunities. My day of writing is often split between shifts. I have a morning shift, a day time shift and if I have the energy, a night shift. Of course that’s not counting the shifts that include insomnia ridden writing sessions throughout the night.
Every author has a different process but mine typically starts at four in the morning and I write, edit or revise until six in the morning. Around then the kids wake up and get ready for school. At eight, after they are on the bus, and I’ve had a couple of cups of coffee, I return to writing and editing. By lunch I try to take a break. It’s often not a full break as I spend it eating and marketing but during that time I’m not writing. Afternoons are often spent reorganizing my thoughts, drawing together continuity data from within the manuscript and reworking scenes I like or didn’t like from earlier in the day to make them better. By the time the kids are home from school, I don’t have much time or ability to focus on work again until they are in bed asleep. That’s when, if my eyes are open, the night shift writing and editing begins.
As each book is edited, revised, edited again from the outside, revised, rewritten and redeveloped well enough for publication, formatting, cover art and the like is worked into the process during the day. Weekends are used to optimize websites, create content like this blog post and post to my own sites.
My day is often full of intensity, creativity, and children playing. I love every minute of it and I strive to continue to do so with every step forward. How does your day go? What kind of goals do you set for your day? How best do you achieve those goals?

About my guest:

Catrina Taylor is a single mom and a science fiction author with a love of words that draws her into fictional creations daily. Playing with her children, reading books and developing strong characters are passions that are unyielding in their day. Her fictional universe around Xarrok beckons her generation after generation, commencing with Birth of an Empire: The Beginning and continuing across five more generations.
Her currently available releases are Birth of an Empire: The Beginning, Below the Surface and Change by Design. Each crafted science fiction story is part of a greater universe, and series. Adding to both the short story series and the main introduction series later this year, Catrina has three more titles nearly ready for release. Consequences is the next book in the Birth of an Empire series. MindTricks and Through Anguish detail the stories of Keydra Tan and Zaren Rixx, and their recruitment into the Xenonian Psionic Corps. All three stories will be available by September first.
You can connect with Catrina on Twitter, Facebook or at the home of Xarrok,

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Writer's Block: When Your Imaginary Friend Won't Talk To You

This week I have a special treat for you, romance author, Anjie Harrte is offering an insight to a problem that plagues most writers. Thank You Anjie Harrte for being my guest!

Writer’s Block: When you imaginary friend won’t talk to you.
I saw a post about this on facebook when I was blocked about writing this very blog post and well it got me writing.
How often are you blocked?
For years I was blocked. During my teenage days I wrote up a fury. Exercise books upon exercise books of stories;  Sweet Valley high fan fiction and; poetry all given to a friend who had access to a computer to type up for me. I stopped writing due to the loads of assignments and studying for exams and then I started working and got so busy that I didn’t find the time to write and if I did now and again I was too blocked to write anything. I guess my imaginary friend was upset with me for all the neglect I had shown them that they refused to talk to me.
But, like a good old’ pal, my imaginary friend came back to me during a time of depression. Caught in a black hole, consumed with emotional pain and frustration I started to write again. I wrote all the time. I was working as a script writer; editing and writing commercials for a radio station and in my spare time I was writing poems and shorts.
My poems reflected my depressed state. A few verses from one go like this:
My eyes burn
The tears sting
Like ashes in an urn
It settles, unmoving

My chest is tight
My throat feels stifled
I am loosing this fight
I am about to topple

I feel lost
Without any hope
This is a high cost
My life seems a joke
My face is stained
With signs of my tears
My heart aches and pains
As I relive these fears

I continued to write and write, allowing sorrow to bleed on to paper and let my words heal me. My muse; my friend; that voice that guides me; saw me through it all as I wrote until I was able to produce words such as:
I drop on my knees
My heart in sorrow
I beg to be free
To see a better tomorrow
 A tomorrow void of pain and agony

I didn’t give up on myself because I had an outlet; I had writing and writing gave me hope. I continued to cry to the heavens through my words and one day I was able to say:
This betrayal as harsh and cruel as it is
Is teaching me a lesson
A lesson I intend to learn well
Giving me the strength to deal with such adversities
To pick my soppy self from the floor
Brush the sands of hate and regret away
And move on to see the better and greater day.

However, when I started to feel better, when I was healed and smiling and laughing and socializing again, my imaginary friend shrunk away.  I am not sure if they did so because they were jealous of the attention I was giving to my other friends, if they felt hurt and neglected or if they just wanted me to experience life and its miracles. But, whichever one it was my imaginary friend didn’t talk to me for years on end. I started to write many stories during those years, never getting past a few hundred words and scrapping all of it because it sounded horrible. Without my muse I couldn’t concentrate on any project long enough to produce anything creative; and I didn’t make any special effort to get them back.
Sometime in 2011 sitting behind my computer at work, my imaginary friend returned. It was like meeting an old chum and picking up back like there was never distance between us. The ideas flowed, the words danced on the page before me and my fingers tapped away at the keyboard. During that time I could say I have had certain days or moments when my imaginary friend takes a break from me. I often feel like a fish out of water during those times and only wait for them to return. Sometimes a simple photograph, a topic of discussion on facebook, something my toddler does, or remembering a past pain brings them out of hiding as they take command of my writing and the words flow like water from the might Kaieteur Falls.
Some people can put their fingers on who or what their muse is; what they sound like or what they look like.  Some people see their muse in their characters or their love of something. I don’t know who or what my muse is, but I do know I have a powerful muse. Because when they are around, there is no rest for my fingers and when my imaginary friend isn’t speaking to me, I feel as though part of me is missing.
So do you experience writer’s block? Do you feel as though your imaginary friend is giving you the silent treatment? How do you deal with it or get over it?

Anjie Harrte: Romance with some Caribbean flavour
Anjie Harrte is a twenty nine year old mother of one who resides in sunny Guyana, South America. Sometime between running a small business, having a full time job and being a mother and partner she finds time to pursue her passion for creating stories. Anjie dreams up stories of contemporary fiction splashed with some romance, a little dose of murder or an ounce of suspense and sometimes when no one is looking she dashes in a little twist. When she isn’t doing any of that, she is decorating a cake, knitting a chair back or sewing her latest design. Anjie even finds time to lurk around and stalk people and pages on facebook and you too can stalk her if you like at  or you can follow her on twitter @anjieharrte or keep updated with her writing at or follow her stories at

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


One of my favorite authors, Lyndsay Sands is having a contest for the release of her latest and greatest book, Lady Is A Vamp. For those of you who are fans of her Argeneau series, its the long awaited Jeanie Louise's book. Along with possibly winning the book a  Louis Vitton Vernase Pegasi Travel Case. Click the link here to join in and enter for your chance to win these faboo prizes!

Sunday, July 15, 2012