Monday, July 6, 2015

Lessons from the Fandom: 4 Reasons Every Writer Should Be on Tumblr + Step by Step Instructions

I'm really not much of a fangirl,
but thought this was cute. :D (Source)
Not long ago--the beginning of May, actually--I started a fan account for a TV show I love. (Bet some of you can guess which one. :D) I did it for a couple of reasons. 1) Because I like the show and thought it would be fun 2) I wanted to experiment with some marketing techniques and learn some social networks I wasn't already on, and I thought this would be a good way to do so without making too many mistakes concerning my own writing.

So, now I'll be don't a series called Lessons from the Fandom. Just little tips and tricks I've learned from this experience.

Today I'm going to talk about Tumblr. I've never been on Tumblr before, at least not to post my own stuff. I've searched it before for gifs and things, but even that's been fairly limited. It's just not my social media network of choice. 

Well, that's changing now. For the last couple of months, I've gotten to know Tumblr, and it's one of my new favorite platforms. I've come to conclusion that every writer should be on Tumblr!!!

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Why?

1) It can greatly increase your audience. - It's yet another social network to connect with people on and the audience is very active. It's easy to spread your influence there and network with others.

2) It doesn't take ANY extra work on your part. - I've literally just copied and pasted. If you're already creating blogposts, pictures (i.e. facebook or pinterest) or just about any other kind of post, you can simply upload it to Tumblr in exactly the same format. (Of course you can change it if you want.) But you don't have to necessarily do yet another post to be on Tumblr. Just use the work you've already done anyway. 

3) Hashtags translate to a VERY targeted audience. - Tumblr probably makes the best use of hashtags of any social network I've been on. I know this because when I started out with my fan account, I had like 5 followers, but dozens of people were finding and either liking or reblogging my stuff every single day. That's because people on Tumblr are awesome at searching with hashtags. And that means the people who find your stuff will be exactly the audience you're looking for. It's awesome! Plus that naturally grows your following because people who regularly find your stuff through searches inevitably end up following you. 

4) It's fun! Yet another network to have fun on. It's so great to see people like, comment, and reblog your stuff. I know it makes me unreasonably happy. :D

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So, what's next?

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Kindle Fire HD Giveaway!!!

So today I'm beginning my epic giveaway for The Botanist. But this won't be like most giveaways. You can only qualify for seven entries total. And to get them, there are only two things you can do. You won't be commenting or following me on any of my social networking platforms (unless you want to of course, but it won't affect your entries).

So here's how it works. I'm giving away a Kindle Fire HD. The lucky winner should receive it just in time for Christmas. (Yea!) This giveaway is going to go all the way until November, which is a long time for a giveaway, but it's got to be that way to give people time. Here's why: The only way to gain entries to this giveaway is by reviewing The Botanist. So of course, I need to give people time to read the book and write the review.

Most people who enter bookish giveaways are avid readers to begin with. If you're reading anyway, you might as well give yourself the chance to win a Kindle Fire while you do it, right?

But that may not even be all of it! I MAY be giving away more prizes, just depending on the number of reviews I get. 


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  • I'd love to get a thousand reviews. For a thousand or less, I'll just be giving away the Kindle Fire HD. 
  • For every 100 reviews over 1000 that I get, I'll also give away a $25 Amazon gift card. So, if I get 1100 reviews, I'll give away the Kindle Fire + one gift card. If I get 1200 reviews, I'll give away the Kindle Fire + two gift cards, etc. 
  • And IF--one can only hope--I get 2000 reviews, I'll give away a second Kindle Fire. So spreading the word for more entries will bring more prizes and more chances to win! Just sayin'. :D


So, hop on over to Amazon, or your favorite book retailer, grab a copy of The Botanist, and then enter for your chance to win!

I'd also love help spreading the word. To that end, I've embedded some tweets below. (Sharing is caring! :D) 

So, enter below, have fun, and happy reading!






a Rafflecopter giveaway

Early reviews for The Botanist:

"I had no clue who the killer was and loved how the book ended. It was so easy to get sucked in...I had to forcibly put it down or I was going to read through the night...my first book by LK Hill but it won’t be my last." --Amazon Customer 
"The serial killer is incredibly creepy and the buildup to the final climax of the story keeps you on the edge of your seat."--Scott (Amazon Customer) 
 "I do not recommend reading this after dark. It is very creepy, and terrifying...There’s a touch of romance here, a bright spot amid a cave of horrors."--Ramblings on Readings 
"I don't usually enjoy creepy books, but got drawn into this one quickly and literally stayed up all night to see how it ended!"--Annette Stacy (Amazon Customer)
Retweet below if you feel so inclined! :D 




Monday, June 29, 2015

Going Forward, Creative Blogging, Nominations

Hello all! Happy Monday morning!

It's been weeks since I posted regularly on my blog, which is all kinds of weird for me. I love blogging and have been religious about it for years. But life has gotten in the way a lot lately. I'm hoping now to return to a more regular schedule. So, a couple of things.

1) I've been nominated as a creative blogger (see below).

2) What I post on this blog may change a bit. In the past I've done a lot of weekday memes and blog hops and things. I won't be forsaking those all together, but I'll be doing fewer of them. The reason being is that I want to focus more on my own writing, rather than reading and blog hopping. 

3) For that same reason, I'll probably post less than I used to: only 2-3 times/week, rather than 5+. 

4) Other than that, I'll still be around a lot. Not going anywhere anytime soon. :D

5) I'm also still working on a whole new marketing plan for my books, and I'll share it and it's results as I go along, so I'm super excited to see how it works.

Creative Blogger:


I was nominated by Jeffrey Scott over at J.A. Scott (thanks Jeff! *waves*). If I am to accept the award, I need to follow a few rules. That's where this blog post comes in.

The rules:
1. Thank and post the link of the person who nominated you.
2. Share 5 facts about yourself to your readers.
3. Nominate 10-20 blogs and notify them.
4. Pass on the rules.


Facts about me:
1. I am a hybrid author (both traditional and indie) who writes across many genres, including scifi/fantasy, historical fiction, dystopian, and crime fiction.
2. I am unmarried, but live with my sister and four-year-old niece in Northern Utah. 
3. I come from a huge, tight-knit family. There are twelve of us kids, all from the same two parents. (Everyone take a deep breath! No passing out while reading my blog!)
4. I run a daycare during the week to pay the bills. I find that I have a LOT less motivation to write when I have to work a 9-5 job. Staying at home with a bunch of rugrats gives me (some) time to write during the day, but more importantly it doesn't kill my motivation to write during my spare time.
5. I am a The Walking Dead fanatic. Anyone who follows my blog for long already knows this. When the show is on (Oct-Nov, Feb-Mar) I do very in-depth analyses of each episode on my blog. I even have a fan account on Instagram and Tumblr. I've actually learned some marketing lessons from these accounts, which I'll be turning into blog posts soon. Stay tuned! :D

I nominate:
1. Alex J. Cavanaugh - If you want to know how to run a successful blog, go follow him!
2. The Geek Twins - Maurice and Nigel, always bringing fascinating scifi, pop culture tidbits I don't hear anywhere else. 
3. C.D. Gallant-King - An amazing author who shares great characters and excerpts on his blog!
4. Johnny Worthin - Another fantastic author with a sense of humor that just won't quit. Once you know Johnny, you won't forget him.
5. Lehua Parker - YA Author with a delightful series about a boy who might just be a shark, set in Hawaii.
6. Ann Marie Meyers - Delightful ME/YA author. Check out her book, Up in the Air.
7. The Brothers Washburn - I love their YA horror. It's just a truckload of fun to read!
8. Jo Ann Schneider - Another fabulous JFP author! Check out her latest book.

I'm supposed to do at least 10, but I'm gonna stop there. 

What blogger would YOU want to know more about?



Monday, June 22, 2015

Sorry for the Absence!

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Happy Monday, Everyone!

Sorry I was gone all last week with no explanation. I had a super-busy weekend, and figured I'd just have to do posts each day, rather than in advance, and then my internet went out. It was a hardware problem, but it really took most of the week to get it fixed. :/

And yes, I could have connected with my phone--I did a couple of times just to troll my networks, answer comments, etc.--but trying to actually create a post from my phone is a major pain in the neck--not worth the effort--so I decided to wait until my internet decided to stop being a bully.

Anyway, I'm back this week. Thing is, I've been doing a lot of thinking about where I want this blog to go. I'm putting together a new marketing strategy for my books, which I probably won't implement until next month, but it will change the way and frequency in which I post.

I'll probably do fewer memes and try to focus my blog more on writing and, what it's named for: Musings on Fantasia. So that means I'll still be doing book, film and TV reviews, focusing on interpreting stories and such. And I'm sure I'll do other things as well that strike my fancy. But without the extra memes to fill in gaps, the frequency with with I post will probably go down to 1-3 times/week.

Anyway, this week may still be a bit touch and go, but after that I'll get back into a routine. Hope everyone has a wonderful week! :D

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Follow Friday: A Character's Shoes + Funny Friday

Gain new followers and make new friends with the Book Blogger Feature & Follow! If this is your first time here, welcome! You are about to make some new friends and gain new followers -- but you have to know -- the point of this hop is to follow other bloggers also. I follow you, you follow me.

The Feature & Follow is hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of Parajunkee's View and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it'll allow us to show off more new blogs!

How does this work? First you leave your name here on this post, (using the linky tools -- keep scrolling!) then you create a post on your own blog that links back to this post (easiest way is to just grab the code under the #FF picture and put it in your post) and then you visit as many blogs as you can and tell them "hi" in their comments (on the post that has the #FF image). You follow them, they follow you. Win. Win. Just make sure to follow back if someone follows you!



If you can step into one characters shoes (in a book) and be them for a day who would it be and why? Also if you want to be creative, what scene? - Suggested by Seeing Night Book Reviews


This question actually goes great with character week! 

Hmm. This is a really un-creative answer for me, but I think I'd have to go with Nynaeve al'Meara from The Wheel of Time. Favorite series. Favorite character. And I think I'd like to experience the most powerful female Channeler int he world. Just for one day, you know? 

If I had to pick a scene, there are plenty of battle scenes that are pretty dang cool, including when she catches Moghedien. But I always really liked the scene where she rides from one end of the continent to the other, gathering Lan's army for him. One of my favorite scenes, so I think I might want to step into that one. :D

What character/scene would YOU step into?



Welcome to Friday Funnies! Because everyone needs a good laugh on Friday.

(All pictures courtesy of my LOL Pinterest Board or my Geektastic Board.)


Supernatural/Tangled Mashup. Love it!

LOL.

The sad thing is that I had to watch this for like 30 seconds
before I noticed Vader. :D

Yeah pretty much!


Hope one of those gave you a laugh! Happy Friday, Everyone!


Wednesday, June 10, 2015

3 Tips for Writing Fantasy Characters

Before we get to character week, I'd like to report that the Summer Author Bash Party on Facebook last night was a smashing success! I honestly didn't expect so much attendance and participation, and was pleasantly surprised. I'll be contacting the winners of my contests today. Thank you so much for everyone who stopped by and participated! It was so much fun! :D

Character Week: Fantasy

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It's CHARACTER WEEK here on my blog, and I'll be giving tips on writing characters in different genres. These won't be tips on how to write a well-rounded character, as is the norm for talking about characters. Rather, these are extra things that characters in specific genres should possess. 

Today, we'll focus on the the Fantasy Genre. Fantasy is really it's own thing. We're talking about creating a world that is vastly different than our own, and as the creator of it, you can do whatever you like with it. You must live by your own rules, of course, but that's another topic. So what kind of characters are required for fantasy worlds. Here are some pointers:

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1) Use your characters to explore your world. This doesn't necessarily mean they have to be curious, though that's definitely not a bad thing. They may just need to be able to roam, or know some aspect of your world well enough to introduce it to your characters. Unlike with other genres, where a character may be discovering the world with your readers, in fantasy you generally want at least one character that's already very familiar with it. Use them to show the world to your readers.

Example: We'll use Harry Potter, and we're all pretty familiar with him. Now, he was new to the wizarding world, so we were experiencing the world for the first time with him, but notice most of the other characters--the magical ones--were already very familiar with the world. Between the two types, we got plenty of exploration and discovered the world effectively.

2) They should show/interact with the weaknesses and strengths of your world. Create characters that have ties to the most interesting and extreme parts of your world.

Example: Harry again. Harry had direct ties to the most magical parts of his world, both good and bad (i.e. Dumbledore vs. Voldemort), the most magical objects (Sorcerer's Stone, etc.) and the most ordinary (i.e. Muggles). We also see him right in the middle of the biggest debates (muggles/mudbloods, treatment of various magical creatures and races, etc.) So you can see that Rowling effectively used her characters, both Harry and other side characters, to explore his world.

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3) Give your characters a weakness or vulnerability that directly relates to your fantasy world. Giving them something like a physical limitation is all well and good (really not bashing it) but it's so much more compelling when the vulnerability is tied to the world itself, rather than something that could crop up in our world or any other. A strength or potential strength that's tied directly to the world is compelling as well. These just have to be things that only make sense in the context of your fantasy world.

Example: Weaknesses: Harry's similarities to Voldemort; Frodo's vulnerability to the One Ring; Strengths; Daenarys's immunity from fire in Game of Thrones; Bella's immunity to Edward's mind-reading powers in Twilight.

So if you're writing any kind of fantasy story, make sure your characters are intricately tied to your world. It will make the story all tie together better and be more compelling and memorable overall.

What qualities to do you give your fantasy characters?

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

2 Essential Historical Fiction Character Qualities + Summer Bash Author Party and Teasers

Hi Everyone! Quick announcement before we get to Character Week. I haven't promoted this NEARLY enough because my life has been so crazy lately, but tonight I'm participating in an Author Summer Bash Party if anyone would like to attend.

It's completely online, a Facebook event from 6-9 pm tonight, MST. The URL is here: https://www.facebook.com/events/112803962385057/

Basically it's me and eight other (awesome) authors. We'll each take a 30 minute time slot (my slot is 7-7:30 pm, MST) to run things. We'll ask questions, which our audience will answer. They'll have a chance to ask us questions. And there are tons of great prizes. I'm giving away a bunch of ebooks. I know others are also doing giftcards. And the grand prize we all chipped in for is a Kindle Fire HD. So the prizes are pretty darn awesomesauce!

Other authors include: Allison Rose, A.S. Winchester, Christy Sloat, Emma Raveling, Emm Cole, E.J. Mellow, J.Kowallis, Kirstin Maddock, and Sunshine Somerville.

So stop by at the above URL tonight and ask or answer some questions for a chance at great prizes. We'd love to meet you! 

Okay, onward! (Teasers below.)

Character Week

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It's CHARACTER WEEK here on my blog, and I'll be giving tips on writing characters in different genres. These won't be tips on how to write a well-rounded character, as is the norm for talking about characters. Rather, these are extra things that characters in specific genres should possess. 

Today, we'll focus on the Historical Fiction Genre. I write and love historical fiction, but it can be a challenging genre to conquer. 

Here's the thing about historical fiction characters: just like every other aspect of the genre, they require a bit of research. That can be a good thing or a bad thing, depending on how you view things, but if you're big on historical fiction, I'm gonna take a wild guess that you aren't opposed to historical research. :D

So here are a couple of things to remember about your historical fiction characters:

1) They must have the beliefs that people of the time in their circumstances had. If you're writing about the sixties, you need to do some research into the decade to figure out what people knew and believed. Depending on the character, time period, and setting, it might only be subtly different from contemporary beliefs, or it may be vastly different. 
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For example: The middle ages was full of monarchists, most of whom believed in Divide Right to Rule. This meant that whoever became king or queen was God's will and that person, because God had directed circumstances to place them on the throne, could do no wrong. Everything they said, did, or thought came directly from God. This was a sincere and powerful belief of most people who lived on earth at that time. It informed every political and religious decision they made. Can you see how characters living in this time would be vastly different from contemporary ones who believe in democracy, choice and accountability, and the will of the people through popular vote?

2) Despite potentially outdated or ignorant beliefs, your characters must still have some over-arching, transcendent belief that makes them likable and/or relatable. Historical fiction is all about the regrets our society, and sometimes the human race as a whole, has about our past. We need to see both hope and struggle from these characters. In fact, this is a an invaluable opportunity to create dichotomy in your character 

For example: Someone who is closed-minded in some ways due to his belief in Divine Right Rule, but who the reader also roots for because the character is a genuinely decent and compelling person.

Make sure characters in your historical fiction have both these qualities. I've read histfic where one or both of these were lacking, and it definitely did not make for compelling or memorable characters. 


What qualities do you think Historical Fiction characters should have?

Teaser Tuesday




Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

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This week's teasers come from Beautiful Darkness by Kami Garcia. I read book 1 like two years ago and am finally getting around to the sequel. (Yea!)

Another crash. Now I was covered with the fine white dust of her fallen ceiling, broken chunks scattered on the floor around me. That's not what I meant and you know it. 
Do I? All I know is that it shouldn't be so hard. Loving someone shouldn't be so hard. 
I never cared about that. I felt her fading away, pushing me out of her mind and out of her heart.

What are you reading this week?