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Inspiration is Sitting Right Next To You.

January 3, 2020– I’m sure that we’ve all had an excellent rest and a fantastic holiday. Time spent with family and friends is never wasted, especially if you’re a writer. We’ve all been there, gathered around the dinner table, enjoying a meal with our family when all of a sudden, our great uncle Larry decides he’s going to regale us with a hopelessly inappropriate story of when he was young and reckless. As your sister ushers her kids away from the dinner table and says a silent prayer that they didn’t hear about that time in Reno, I hope that you’ll keep your ears open for writing GOLD. Here’s how your writing can be inspired by the people around you!

1) Listen. Does great Uncle Larry speak with a German intonation, or does he pause for effect after every sentence? Does he swear a lot, a little, or not at all? Does he speak fast or slow or a combination of the two? Is he monotone and boring, or does he command the room? The way someone speaks tells a lot about them. The same goes for the characters you create; it shows their education level, their level of openness or closed-mindedness, it can show your reader which part of the world they’re from, and it sets the tone for who your character is.

2) Watch. Look at great Uncle Larry’s mannerisms as he speaks. Watch his body language and how he gestures. Is there a character that you can model after him ever so subtly in your writing? Are there things about his personality or the way that he tells stories that will make your characters more interesting? Maybe it’s how he raises an eyebrow or how he shakes his fist at the ceiling. Perhaps it’s how he leans forward or backward in his chair while reminiscing about the good old days. Is there a deep crease in his forehead from years of worry, or does he have an epic beard? Whatever it is, take note because gestures,  body language, and appearance help develop your character more thoroughly. We don’t want to read about wooden people who just sit there like untouched dolls on a shelf. And remember not to describe their physical traits so much that the reader gets bored or loses interest. We comment on the remarkable, note-worthy things about our characters and leave the rest up to our readers’ imaginations.

3) Combine. Does your Aunt Edna roll her eyes every time great Uncle Larry tells his story? Does she fold her hands or throw them up in the air as if to say, not again! Does your mother fiddle with her left earring when she’s uncomfortable, but trying not to seem rude, while deep inside, she’s hiding a burning rage that tempts her to tell great Uncle Larry to shut the hell up?  Combining character traits help deepen your characters and make them seem more realistic. Don’t go overboard, or you’ll end up doing the exact opposite.

Inspiration is all around us always. We just have to be aware of it, and as writers, I find that we are the most observational people on the planet. Keep a notepad close; your family and friends are a character development goldmine. X LLB

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You Can’t? Or You Won’t?

November 20, 2019– Ok, let’s be honest here. It’s time to get real and answer the question…Is it that you can’t? Or that you won’t? Whoa, let’s back up for a second. Grab a pen and a piece of paper.

It’s important to change the voice in our head that says we can’t do something. Make a list of all the things that you think you can’t do…here are some examples:

  1. I can’t find time to finish my manuscript! Is it that you can’t find time or that you won’t make time to schedule an hour a day to work on it?
  2. I can’t get bookstores to stock my books! Is it that you can’t get them to stock your books or that you won’t keep asking and finding creative ways to get them to say yes?
  3. I can’t stop writer’s block! Is it that you can’t stop writer’s block or that you won’t stop finding any excuse to keep procrastinating?
  4. I can’t get organized! Is it that you can’t get organized or that you won’t put systems in place to help yourself?

You get the picture. As soon as we get real about the things that are holding us back, the sooner we can deal with them head on. Stop saying you can’t because YOU CAN. You just have to be willing to do what it takes.

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5 Things…

November 15, 2019– Want to change your writing life in a year? A month? A week? What if I told you it could be easy as 1, 2, 3? Well, maybe 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. It’s true, your entire life can change by doing five things, here’s how:

  1. Make a list of 5 things that you will do each day. These are things that are considered the MOST important tasks that must be completed by the end of the day.
  2. Make your list the night before. This is an important step because as soon as you wake up, you’ll know exactly what you have to work on and you’ll be able to get started right away. No time to waste!
  3. Keep your list so that you can look back on it at the end of the week, month, year to see just how much you’ve accomplished and what steps you took to create your future.
  4. Start a new list each day. Try not to repeat the things you did the day before. New items on your list breed new results and new opportunities.

Be sure to do things that will further your intentions as an author. Maybe you need to check in with your mentor or find one, perhaps you need to call distributors to see how you can get them to carry your titles, or maybe you need to read for an hour a day in an area of your field. Whatever your five things are, commit to them and watch your career and your life change. X LLB

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Great Expectations…For Yourself

November 8, 2019– There’s a little book on my desk by Dr. Denis Waitley titled, The Psychology of Winning. I haven’t opened it in such a long time that I had forgotten most of the concepts, so today I flipped open to a random page. The text on the page read, “Winners expect to win. They know that so-called luck is the intersection of preparation and awareness.” I’d like you to complete the following exercise, get a piece of paper and a pen or open your laptop and answer the following questions:

  1. How do you feel about the above statement?
  2. Are you prepared and aware of the opportunities around you?
  3. What are 5 things you can do to prepare for opportunities coming your way? What opportunities would you like to have this year?
  4. What expectations do you have for yourself and your work for the rest of this year? What about 2020 and beyond?
  5. Do you expect to win as an author or as a publisher? How do you expect to win?
  6. What does winning mean to you?

Wishing you the most success, X LLB

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Forests Ontario…Plant All The Trees!

November 7, 2019– During the month of December, Pandamonium Publishing House will donate to Forests Ontario in support of tree planting. We know that our business uses precious resources and we want to help balance things out by donating the amount of dollars for the amount of books that we printed this year. For example, if we printed 500 books, then we will donate $500.00 and so on. It’s important for us to remember that everything we take from the environment, we need to, at the very least, return what we’ve used. (Also, all of our books are available as e-books!)

Please join us in our efforts of planting trees by clicking on the link and considering a donation. Thank you for your support! X LLB

https://www.forestsontario.ca/community/get-involved/donate/   Forests Ontario

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Your Habits Determine Your Future…

November 6, 2019– Habits are defined as something that we do often and regularly, sometimes without realizing it. What if I told you that if I looked at your daily habits, that I could predict your future? Well, that’s exactly what I’m telling you.

  1. Success doesn’t just happen. Success and the quality of your life depend on the things you do consistently. Think of this, if you made a decision to work on your manuscript for fifteen minutes each day, or to make three phone calls to a potential client, or that you were going to pack a lunch instead of buying it, think of how much of a difference these little habits would make over the course of a year! Successful people don’t just float to the top, their success is based on their habits. Do you know what most billionaires have in common? They work out daily, they meditate, and they wake up early. They have good habits that carry into other areas of their lives.
  2. Bad habits will eventually catch up to you. Do you smoke? How do you feel? How will you feel ten years from now if you don’t quit? Do you procrastinate? Do you find ways to avoid doing what needs to be done to help yourself in the future? What will happen in a few months if you decide to keep procrastinating? Will you lose a promotion? Will you lose your shot at a dream job? Bad habits may seem like they don’t matter right now, but eventually they catch up with us. By improving one thing each day, you can dramatically change your entire life. If you smoked one less cigarette per week and kept building on your success, soon you’d be smoke free!

I could go on and on about habits and how they help or hinder us, but you get the picture. What habits are you creating to further your writing career? Are you working on them every day? I hope so!

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