Have work, will travel.

It’s holiday season and I’ve been trying to be organised, as the term finishes for this school year. Fitting writing into family life can be great fun, but also a challenge. I write all of my books by hand in A4 green Tink notebooks and then transcribe them onto a computer. This means that I can easily pick my work up and carry it anywhere with me. This made me think about travel and holidays. I do like to relax on holiday, but also find it a great inspiration for my work. Different scenery and a change in temperature can make you feel more at ease and able to let the words flow. I particularly love to write in Spain and France as I enjoy looking at the countryside and the architecture. The U.K. inspires me with it’s history and eclectic styles too.

If you are stuck in any kind of writing rut, perhaps a change of scenery is all you need. I don’t mean two weeks in Cannes, but even working outside or moving rooms for a while with your laptop if you have one, or taking your notebooks and sitting on a beach nearby or somewhere with a good view, might be enough to change your mood and give you fresh ideas.

Lizzie Chantree blog 7

Top tips for utilising the views nearby. 3 Quick Tips. 

  1. Plan a day where you can take your writing tools to a new location. Sit and take in the scenery and draw inspiration from your surroundings.
  2. If you are already on holiday, keep a notebook in your bag or pocket. You never know when you might see something interesting, or notice a location that could fit seamlessly into your latest book, blog or article.
  3. Take photos. These photos can become your own stock photography. Keep them in folders on your computer and instead of buying stock images for promotion, upload your own images into software like Canva to keep costs to a minimum for your own designs. These photos might also come in useful when you are writing about locations for descriptive reference.

Introducing… Kate Braithwaite.

Today it’s my pleasure to introduce you to author Kate Braithwaite. I asked Kate to send me a picture or photo which represented her personality and the image she sent was drawn by her son Max when he was 8. He’s now 15! She has always loved this drawing. Kate uses it on her Translations blog – very different from her historical novel writing – which is all about living in the States with her husband and 3 kids and the ups and downs of speaking UK English in America. Check it out as it’s really great.

IMG_0732.jpg

Kate’s novel, The Road to Newgate, is due out on July 16th. It’s a story of love, lies and the pursuit of justice in a time of terror threats and bigotry. Could be set anywhere and contemporary but its historical. Based on true events in 17th century London. It’s my second novel but my first with Crooked Cat.

2

This is the official blurb for The Road to Newgate…

What price justice?

London 1678.

Titus Oates, an unknown preacher, creates panic with wild stories of a Catholic uprising against Charles II. The murder of a prominent Protestant magistrate appears to confirm that the Popish Plot is real.

Only Nathaniel Thompson, writer and Licenser of the Presses, instinctively doubts Oates’s revelations. Even his young wife, Anne, is not so sure. And neither know that their friend William Smith has personal history with Titus Oates.

When Nathaniel takes a public stand, questioning the plot and Oates’s integrity, the consequences threaten them all

Here are some links…

mybook.to/theroadtonewgate

www.kate-braithwaite.com

https://twitter.com/KMBraithwaite

https://www.facebook.com/KateBraithwaiteAuthor/

https://transatlantictranslator.wordpress.com/

authorphoto

 

Are you a tidy person?

Are you a tidy person? By this, I mean, is your desk space clear, your housework up to date and your mind clear and raring to go? Lol:) I try and keep on top of housework and the studio where I write usually has a clean desk space, but with a second book launch and book tour rapidly approaching, I seem to be surrounded by piles of ‘stuff’. I have a corner for gifts for my online facebook launch, boxes for my paperback launch, books ready to sell, paperwork that needs clearing, notes and lists of things to do and suddenly my clear area to work has become an avalanche!

Perty.Lizzie Chantree. Launch party

Multi-tasking is something I am good at, but I’m so easily distracted by another idea that I have to write lists and cross them off, so that I finish one task before I begin another. I don’t always stick to this rule though. My studio, although very well thought out and organised, is quite small, so everything has to have it’s place and I am finding that my space is creeping into other areas of the building as I leave more boxes that I can’t fit into my studio, just outside the door.

Writing this is making me realise that I need to spend a few hours putting everything where it should be and finding a designated corner for book launches. I also have a library talk coming up and need promotional items and banners for that which will take up more space! In fact I need to sell more books and find a bigger studio. You’ve got to have a dream!

56962474-D81F-4F77-88E8-BE818D202317

Mailing lists

Lizzie Chantree blog 7

I’ve read a lot about the importance of mailing lists and with new legislation coming in with regard to privacy, it’s been pretty hectic for everyone who has a subscriber list, not only trying to work out what it means, but also to make sure we comply if we can.

I have been working with my publisher and have a book out this year, another in July and am writing a third. In between this and marketing my books, I have found it difficult to keep up with sending out newsletters or building that all important mailing list. My apologies to everyone. I use MailChimp for my newsletters, have still sent out a newsletter offering my subscribers the option to unsubscribe or to stay and have a privacy page on my blog now.

This has actually given me the drive to begin proper newsletter and to keep up with sending out news of my writing. I’m not going to send it more than once a month, but it will have more content and things that aren’t on my blog. It won’t be a sales letter, but it will be topical news about my writing journey and some marketing tips that aren’t on my blog, which are just for subscribers.

 

Wishing you all a fun filled and creative weekend.

 

From Lizzie

 

🙂

 

Making YOU time.

I’ve been chatting to a lot of people lately and many discussions are about how busy everyone is. I find the term busy really stressful! The reason is because I have a vivid imagination and picture everyone running around waving their arms in the air and panicking. In reality, busy people are often enjoying their day or job and are being super productive. What I would say, is that even the you are busy, try and carve out some time for yourself.

As a creative person, I find it inspiring to chat to others on my networking hour on twitter, even though it’s such a fast paced hour. I enjoy meeting friends and family for lunch an make time for this, as it inspires me and makes me feel more energetic and happier when I am at work. I also fit in time to read. As an author it’s not only important for my job, but it’s relaxing and time away from everyday worries or tasks can breathe fresh life into your day and make you much more able to concentrate after taking a break.

Making time for yourself might be at the bottom of your to do list, but it’s actually important for your wellbeing and might help you stay focused and reduce stress levels for the rest of the week.

believe in yourself

Top tips for carving some YOU time into the day.

  1. Get up an hour earlier. It might seem harsh, but if this hour is spent exercising or reading a book, even if the book is about a business topic or hobby, then your mind is drawn away from worries and your day starts with an alert mind.
  2. Make time to have a lunch hour if you can. Eating at regular intervals perks up a tired body and mind. Do something completely different to your job or task for that one hour.
  3. Phone a friend or family member. Pick someone you haven’t spoken to for a while and reconnect. It’s so easy to lose contact with people because everyone is busy. Take a moment to call or text and say hello. It might mean a lot to the person you are calling that you have taken time out of your busy schedule for them and it could make you feel good too.

 

 

Writers life.

Sorry I haven’t been posting here very much lately. I’ve been working on the first edits of my latest romance book and had deadlines to meet. I can’t wait to tell you all more about my new story soon. I now have a publication date from my publisher of the 9th July! I’m trying to work out if I should hold another actual book launch and have almost decided to go for it.

It’s #NationalPuppyDay too, so I thought I’d post a picture of my writing assistant, even though she’s nine, as she still looks like a puppy! She sits on my feet or lap while I’m writing and keeps me warm.

Have a great day everyone.

Get writing!

Happy new week everyone. Today’s post is about motivation. What motivates you to get up in the morning and then sit at your desk and create your products, or write your books or blog posts? For me it is the feeling of accomplishment when I see a finished manuscript. At present, I am only about 5,000 words into my latest novel, which is the sequel to Ninja School Mum. It’s hard to stay motivated when you still have 75,000 words to write, but the thought of holding that book in my hands when it’s ready, is worth the time it takes to write it.

Lizzie Chantree book quote 7

After a lengthy and exciting book launch for Ninja School Mum, it has taken me a while to re-energise and get back to my routine of 1,000 words a day if I can, as a minimum. This week, to motivate myself, I have written a ten point list of goals for the week and scheduled writing time into each day. This might sound silly, but writing time is very easily overlooked when the washing needs doing, the school run organising, the dinner prepared and the housework and shopping completed. Actually writing a weekly plan for when I will sit down at my desk without interruption, gives my week structure and makes me push other tasks aside for after my writing time.

I have been known to write 5,000 words in a day, or as few as 50, so I will let you know how my plan works. The main point here, is to stop procrastinating and to get writing!

You can’t edit a blank page.

My 10 point goals for the week: Schedule time for each point.

  1. Write 1,000 words a day of my latest manuscript.
  2. Write a blog post for Monday.
  3. Post in my Facebook group, Lizzie’s Book Group.
  4. Visit 4 other blogs to support them.
  5. Write the questions for my networking hour #CreativeBizHour on Twitter.
  6. Post to my author Facebook page.
  7. Post to my author Instagram page.
  8. Write guest posts for other blogs.
  9. Update Twitter feeds daily.
  10. Cover design for my latest book, out in July.

 

Looking for a great new read?

Susan Roebuck

COMING SOON! “Forest Dancer” by award winning author Susan Roebuck, will be here in February 2018, published by CrookedCat Books. This novel is set in Portugal in the forests outside Lisbon and as I have pre-ordered a copy, I can’t wait to read it!

Portugal

From the author:

It’s such a varied country with different cultures and landscapes. In one day you can drive from the north through national parks, ancient stone villages, past rocky mountains and steep hills covered in vineyards, to the more populated Centre with its famous Coimbra University, the walled town of Obidos down to rocking, vibrant and beautiful Lisbon. Cross over the vast Tagus river onto the south bank and travel through the plains of the Alentejo, past fields of wild-flowers, sunflowers, cork and olive groves with villages of white and blue cottages until the well-known, glamorous Algarve appears, its sparkle reflected in the azure sea because that’s as far as you can go on mainland Portugal.

The country is 900 years old, revels in the fact that it is Britain’s oldest ally (thanks to Queen Philippa of Lancaster who married Dom João I in the 14th century), and, in the fifteen and sixteenth centuries created a huge empire overseas thanks to its New World Discoveries. Portuguese is even today one of the most spoken languages in the world (thanks, largely, to Brazil).

Living in such a beautiful place, I decided to write three novels set here.

Portugalmap

“Rising Tide” was set in a small (fictional) fishing village on the little-known Alentejo coast.

“Forest Dancer” is my new novel, published by Crooked Cat Books, and is set in the mountains just 20 miles west of Lisbon

“Joseph Barnaby” will be published by Crooked Cat Books in 2018, and is set on the island of Madeira.

Forest Dancer - Susan Roebuck

Book blurb : It’s a long way to go to create a new life for yourself.

Classical ballerina, Flora Gatehouse, has no choice but to take a risk. Having failed an important ballet audition in London, she moves to a small cottage in a forest just outside Lisbon, Portugal, her only inheritance following her father’s death.

Soon, Flora is involved in village life, where fate takes a new twist when she becomes attracted to forest ranger, Marco. But they are off to a shaky start.

Can Flora find acceptance in a foreign land, in a magical place that harbours secrets and heartache?

 

Book Links:

Forest Dancer (paperback and ebook) on Amazon : myBook.to/ForestDancer1

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SusanRoebuckauthor/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/sueroebuck

Blog: http://www.susanroebuck.com

 

 

Day 2. Blog Tour. Ninja School Mum.

Today’s stop on my blog tour is with author Alice Castle and her wonderful blog. We talk about invention, first jobs and being a romantic!

Check out Alice’s post for my blog tour here: http://www.dulwichdivorcee.com/meet-the-author-lizzie-chantree/

 

Thea 3.jpg

Meet Thea, one of my main characters in Ninja School Mum. She is a new mum and looks after her niece for her bossy sister during the school day. She feels very overlooked by her family and although she used to have a responsible job, she now finds it hard to remember a time when anyone actually noticed her at all.

Meet Award Winning Author Heidi Catherine!

About Heidi Catherine:

Heidi Catherine is a writer with a weakness for stories that encourage readers to see the world in a new light. Her debut novel, The Soulweaver, explores the possibility of loving the same souls over many lifetimes. This novel is the winner of Romance Writers of Australia’s Emerald Pro award and will be released by Crooked Cat Books on 19 January 2018.

Not being able to decide if she prefers living in Melbourne or the Mornington Peninsula, Heidi shares her time between both places. She is similarly pulled in opposing directions by her two sons and two dogs, remaining thankful she only has one husband.

Heidi loves to hear from readers and can be found at www.heidicatherine.com


The Soulweaver by Heidi Catherine

The Soulweaver Blurb

She’s loved and lost him a hundred times across a thousand years. She can’t bear to lose him again.

Lin’s dreams are haunted by faces of people she’s never met. Unable to shake the feeling she’s lived before, she’s drawn to Reinier—a stranger whose soul is heartbreakingly familiar from a time gone by.

Reinier helps Lin unravel the mystery of her past life as Hannah, a girl who sacrificed herself for her true love, Matthew. As Lin falls hopelessly in love with Reinier, her memories of her life as Hannah sharpen and she finds herself unable to let go of Matthew.

With her heart torn in two, Lin must decide whether she should stand by Reinier’s side or track down Matthew and fight for his love. What she doesn’t know is that her decision will ripple across our troubled planet, affecting far more lives than just her own.

Winner of Romance Writers of Australia’s Emerald Pro award, The Soulweaver is a story that will change the way you see the world.

 

Here are five fun things you may not know about me, by Heidi Catherine!

1. I am a vegetarian who used to work in a delicatessen. You’d think that coming home with shoes filled with chicken blood might have been what tipped me over the vegetarian edge, but almost 20 years passed between me leaving work at the deli and deciding to no longer eat meat. My decision also had nothing to do with the tray of ham I threw at my boss’s feet when I resigned… I promise.
2. When I was growing up, my father was a forensic scientist with the police. My sister and I were strictly forbidden to look in his briefcase, which of course meant that we looked in it every chance we got. Until one day we found a jar with a human finger floating in it (nail polish perfectly intact). Scarred for life!
3. I recently had a Soul Reading, where I was told that in my past lives I’ve been a trapped miner, a dancer and a famous male actor in black and white movies. Apparently I was a very dapper and had a lovely moustache. Those were the days…
4. In my early 20s I was talked into doing a bungy jump. I was so petrified that I refused to jump so the guy working there picked me up by my hands and dropped me straight over the edge. It was one of the worst things I’ve ever done.
5. In celebration of signing my first publishing deal, I got a tattoo on the inside of my left wrist that says ‘BELIEVE’. A few minutes before the tattoo artist began he confessed to me that he’s dyslexic. Not exactly what I wanted to hear!

The Emerald Pro award is an annual competition run by Romance Writers of Australia for the best unpublished manuscript written by a published author. 

 
The Soulweaver won first place in the Emerald Pro awards in 2015. 
 
 
Emerald Pro judges’ comments:

‘This entry had me transfixed from the very first sentence and the intrigue continued throughout the whole book. Amazingly well written, fantastic use of poetic language, unusual story line that made sense even though it transposed time and characters. Thought it was wonderful.’

`I would describe it as really beautiful, clever and interesting story about love (not just romantic) and connections.’

‘The story, it’s amazing! Loved it! I love the concept and the storyline.’

‘The writing is beautiful, and I think this story has been very carefully crafted for the target readership. I think it will really appeal to young female readers (and older ones too).’

‘This was a very compelling novel opening. I shivered a few times while reading it— always the sign of a good story, I think! I thought the plot was well structured and well paced. The tone of the opening drew me in, and the writing was expressive without being overly flowery. The supernatural part of the story was also dealt with beautifully.’

‘The opening lines are very powerful and would definitely grab the intended audience. There was a feeling of intense emotion straightaway and I was captivated by what might have happened.’ 

 

Book Title: The Soulweaver

Author: Heidi Catherine

Release date: 19 January 2018

Available for Sale at: TBC

ISBN: TBC

Retail Price: TBC

Publisher website: www.crookedcatbooks.com

Author website: www.heidicatherine.com

Author Twitter: www.twitter.com/heidicatherine

Author Facebook: www.facebook.com/heidicatherineauthor