Tuesday 19 August 2014

Review: Not Until Tonight by Jessica Sankiewicz


Every day after work, Haley goes to the bar across the street from her apartment to get a drink. It's the only time she gets to see Skylar, her bartender and crush. She would like to get to know him as more than a friend but she's afraid he won't be interested and she'll have to go elsewhere for her after work drink.

When Skylar asks Haley to pretend to be his girlfriend for a night, she is more than happy to oblige. She finally has the chance to make something happen without risking anything. But pretending proves to be more difficult than she thought. She's not sure she can resist the pull any longer with her feelings growing stronger, and it seems like Skylar is feeling the same way.

At the end of the night, will they be willing to turn a fake relationship into a real one?

 Not Until Tonight is a novella that manages to pack everything into a short amount of words. It's a cute New Adult tale of Haley and Skylar that is both sweet and fun and doesn't try to get our attention by shoving an angsty, broken heroine and hero in our faces which is something that NA tends to do a lot. Who among us haven't visited a bar with a cute bartender serving drinks and haven't had a fantasy about falling in love with said bartender? 
         I have to also give Jessica points for writing a good female best friend dynamic and for being able to give the other secondary characters real charm in such a short book. I'm glad that Skylar's ex who brings about the need for the girlfriend charade isn't painted as some scheming harpie who is trying to claw Skylar back. This book is really about Haley and Skylar taking things to the next step and being brave enough to give their feelings a chance. I enjoyed reading Not Until Tonight and if you're looking for a quick and fun read I would recommend it.



Sunday 10 August 2014

A Call to Edit

Wow, it's been a while since I blogged about something that isn't Insecure Writer's Support Group. I want to apologize for my absence and ask that you all be patient with me for a little longer. You see aside from being generally lazy, I've spent the last few months doing Camp NaNoWriMo and also working on the final self edits for my first novel.
        That's what I'm here to talk to you about today. You see I need your help. I'm fast approaching the end of any edits I can do for myself and soon I'm going to have to hand my WIP to a professional. The question is which professional. There are so many editing, cover making and formatting services out there that it gives me a headache just thinking about it. I've trawled through hundreds of web pages trying to get a handle on services vs pricing but nothing seems comparable. Some editors don't even offer the same kinds of edits.
        I'm more than happy to pay for quality but without having used a service before I'm not sure what "quality" actually entails. That's where you guys come in. I know many of you have published before, some of you many times over. Are there any services that you could recommend to me? Bearing in mind that I've written a young adult dystopian novel set in Australia. I'm not even sure at this point whether I would prefer to use an Australian or an international editor so any suggestions you might have would be great. Thanks in advance.

Thursday 7 August 2014

Insecure Writer's Support Group: Determination & Motivation

Insecure Writer's Support Group is a blog hop hosted by Alex J. Cavanaugh where totally insecure writers can get together and share the things that are making us go argh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
       Last month I decided to participate in Camp NaNoWriMo on a whim. I didn’t really have a story in mind until the night before and I gave myself a smaller word count goal so I wouldn’t be as stressed as I am when I do November NaNo. As luck would have it, I managed to get myself into a great cabin for camp and we did word sprinting which really boosted my word count. By day 9 I had reached my word goal so I decided to up it to 50,000 words because I was doing so well. In the end I also surpassed the second goal by day 23. This time I didn’t change my word count goal and I think without that motivating me I just lapsed back into my usual procrastinating habits.
        I started writing random “Life Goal” lists which happened to include pretty much all of the things that I’ve wanted to do, that I should have been doing instead of writing goal lists. These include writing, editing, exercising and reading. Every day since I reached word count I’ve been honing my lists, borrowing books to read, thinking of edits to change and rolling out my yoga mat and then rolling it back up. 
        Instead of following through with any of these activities I found myself watching yet another Simpsons repeat. Or sometimes staring vacantly at my laptop screen wondering what else I could look up on the internet. I know that most published writers whether traditional or self-pubbed need a certain amount of discipline that I just don’t seem to have. I write daily tasks for myself in my diary adding a little tick box that I continually move from day to day, week to week until months have gone before I even really think about completing the task. I’m not the kind of person who can set a goal and then force myself to complete it that day, which is really weird because I finished my word count goal so much earlier than planned.  
        I’m not sure what changed last month for me to be able to do that. Perhaps it was my cabin buddies. Maybe it was having some kind of accountability to real people and not just to myself. Maybe it was just a good writing time for me. Whatever it is, I am worried that now that July is over I’m going to lapse back into being a super procrastinator. What’s up all you published writers out there? Do you guys have a schedule you work to? Do you make yourself write despite feeling a bit bleh? Tell me your secrets so that I might also be a time champion and not a waster.