Battle in the Mind of an Author - The Aftermath

It's been three years since the big fight, and I'm just finishing up the scene that caused all the raucous. Unfortunately, things didn't bode well for the male character. Oh, don't worry. He's not leaving the story. He's merely a bit disgruntled at the moment, but he'll live.

So what happens now?

I keep writing. With 171 double spaced pages already completed, the ending is closer than ever (Goal? December 2019). However, this is the part that makes me a bit nervous. I want the ending to be as interesting as the beginning, so the reader doesn't want to put the book down until the last punctuation.

In the meantime, I'm having fun negotiating scenes with my characters. Nothing like having them change my mind with respect to how the scene should go.

I better go before he notices I'm not working on his manuscript. 😉


"Billiard Buddies" Relaunch

https://www.amazon.com/Billiard-Buddies-Cassandra-Ulrich/dp/1080432841/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1567277775&sr=1-1Change in inevitable. I remember the joy when "Billiard Buddies" first landed a contract after experiencing three rejections. It's been quite a journey achieving a cover that fit and receiving positive feedback from many readers. Those positive ones helped me get through the not so great ones.

I persevered.

Recently, the publisher released the book back to me. At first, my gut clenched and I sighed...a lot. Once I got over the initial shock, I set to working on placing my logo on the cover, re-reading the book for any errors, and reformatting the print version so it matched "A Beautiful Girl."

I just received a copy of the print version today and I am thoroughly pleased. I hope many more people read this story and leave reviews. It was a lot of fun to write.



Mid-Summer Push

With the warmth of summer making an appearance, the inclination to spend more time relaxing on the porch or going to the beach with family and friends increases. Despite that, I've maintained the writing momentum started back in January. The three works in progress are coming along with respect to merging additional files containing individual scenes into the appropriate location in the chosen story. From time to time, new scenes come to mind that help to fill out the plot. The way my brain creates never ceases to amaze me.

I did received a couple rejections for poetry contests I entered earlier this year, but that, I've learned, is the journey of a writer. I'm waiting to hear from a few more contests. Hoping for a winner.

I've also carved out some time to work on my website. There's much to do. Hopefully, I'll catch up by the end of summer and begin a repeatable rhythm.

That's all for now. Back to writing.


What's been happening so far in 2019?

Not a whole lot of posts, that's for sure. It's crazy how life (health, job, family, pop ups) can redirect the best of intentions. I really thought I'd be posting at least once per month this year. (Oh, well.)

I did manage to do some writing in the midst of the chaos, though. With my 2019 SMART goals in place, I began merging scenes of three stories into the appropriate files. It's much like working on a thousand piece puzzle three times over. (Ha!) This, I have discovered, is one of the side-effects of being a panster. (Remember the typing I did from all those loose sheets and notebooks back in 2017?) See my Accomplishments in 2017 post.

I've also been shaking up my tweets a bit, some by way of my FaceBook Author Page. It's been challenging, but fun, to think up new things to say besides quoting scenes from my published works.

Then, I had the opportunity to travel to St. Croix for the 2019 USVI Literary Festival and Book Fair in April. Teaching students about self-publishing and visiting Arthur A. Richards Junior High School were the highlight of that trip. My visit to the school was cut short due to plumbing issues that still plague the islands post the hurricanes in 2017. I also participated in Career Day at the Samuel M. Ridgeway School in June 2019. Reading scenes from a couple of my stories for the students was a blast.

And, during my trip in St. Croix, I landed an impromptu in-person interview at WSTX radio in Gallows Bay. How fun was that!

For the not so great news, two of my stories were released back to me. That means the contracts were cancelled. And that other story I'd hoped would land a contract? Well, that's not happening. Time to figure out what to do next.

In the meantime, I continue to enter writing contests, hoping for another winner. I took a chance late March on a SciFi 2030 battle scene in Battle of Kitee and made it to the semi-finals. I only had one week to pull it off, so I wasn't even going to bother until two co-workers convinced me to go for it. Receiving positive feedback from folks in the military made my year. As for a win with another story? We'll see.


Happy New Year! It's 2019.

After a busy year rebuilding my website, winning a poetry contest, winning a spot in a short story anthology, being interviewed on the radio, releasing Adelle & Brandon, and being named Writer of the Year, I'm ready to see what 2019 has to offer.


Introducing L.A. Sartor...

Cassandra, Thank you for hosting me on your blog. I love to answer comments, so I hope your readers ask away.

1) Given the tendency for authors to have many favorite books, what is a favorite book of yours?
I’m just beginning a new Cozy Mystery Series, a new genre for me, so I’ve been reading a lot of them lately. I’m so impressed with humor and a light touch combined with a complex mystery, so at the moment, one of my favorites is Nancy Haddock’s A Silver Six Crafting Mystery Series.  I love them all, but book one,  Basket Case, introduces the characters and you just fall in love with him. 
2) Besides reading/writing, what do you like to do for fun? How long do you have? Play the piano, take long walks with my husband, travel, use my embroidery machine,  sew, create word art, photography, and just sit in my backyard and watch the critters. 
3) What/Who inspired you to write?
I’m not sure I was inspired by any one person or thing other than the muse at the age of four, that’s when I started writing. My mom always has my back and always believes in me.  My husband has the patience of a saint, and my best friend is always there to tell me the truth and be a cheerleader.

4) How many projects have you completed/published?
I just published my 8th book, Dream Of Me This Christmas Eve. I have 5 more unfinished works and 5 or 6 screenplays including one contracted work and one award winning piece I turned into a book, Stone Of Heaven. Several of the screenplays I’m turning into books, and I have outlines for at least 3 more books.  I’ve done several articles for the Roundel, the BMW national magazine.
Guess I’ll be writing for a while. 

5) What are their genres?
Romance, Romantic Suspense, Adventure/Action Romance, YA, Cozy Mystery, Noir Mystery

6) What’s your most/least favorite thing about being a writer?
I know a lot of writers say this, but having a fan tell me how much she/he enjoyed my work. What I hate the most is asking for reviews. We need ‘em, but I hate asking. 

7) What do you consider as the biggest lesson learned from being a published writer?
To remember who I’m writing for, to give the reader an experience as they read.  It’s not about me, it’s about delivering on my promise.

8) Any final words?
Honestly, I can’t imagine not writing. When the words are flowing, I’m in my own bit of heaven. When they’re not, I get up and walk away. Do one or some of the things I mentioned above and sooner or later a way to solve the problem presents itself and I get back to the keyboard.  Frankly, I’m one lucky girl to have this career. 

9) Where can readers find your writings?

I’m on Amazon, Kobo, Apple Books and Nook.

10) Where can fans find you online?


Resisting the tempation to use ly words

Gone are the days when I really enjoyed using ly words. Now, I am working hard to avoid them in my writing. Why? Apparently, they prevent me from using descriptive words to draw my readers into my stories. But it's not as easy as it sounds. Even as I write this blog, I've already used a couple.

So, now when an ly word enters my mind, I must find a different way to write what I want to explain. This is going to be tough. 😣