Thursday, February 28, 2013

Gunning for $1000 Milestone!

Wow, things are going great with the Mechalarum Kickstarter project! I'm already up to $975, and need just a little bit more to push it up into the quadruple digits.

It's important to have mini-goals to work towards when you're trying to reach a really big goal - otherwise, the really big goal can get overwhelming! That's why I've set a target of reaching $1000 by Friday. Every little bit helps :)

Another important goal-reaching technique is to create visual aids that will reinforce the vision of success in your brain. So I decided to mock up a little progress chart for my project. Of course, I couldn't just draw a regular ol' thermometer-type design, so I went ahead and used my (somewhat limited) artistic skills to create a Kiellen-like character flying up into the sky, with some little swirls of flying-ness radiating out below her.

Here's how far we've come in only a few short days!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Mechalarum Kickstarter Launch Party Was a Success!

First things first: my Kickstarter project is live! You can see all of the lovely details here:

Mechalarum: A Science Fiction Novel (on Kickstarter)

I can't believe that I raised more than 10% of my goal on my first day! Can't wait to see who is going to push me to the $800 mark.

I want to give a big thank you to everyone who came out to the project launch party! I was honored to see how many wonderful people I've met over the last year. It's hard not to get a little teary-eyed when I think about how amazing everyone in NYC has been to me.

Everyone who attended was awesome, but I have to give a special shoutout to the Astoria Newbies for pretty much being the life of the party :)

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Lots of Great Crowdfunding/Writing Goodness

I've got some great new publication news to share! Read on if you want to learn more about crowdfunding, crowdfunding for writers, and a great place for general fiction writing tips.

First up is an article that I recently wrote for the Knodes Knows blog called 5 Reasons Crowdfunding Is Hard (And Why To Do It Anyway). Yeah, it's kind of a funny title as we're trying to ENCOURAGE people to use sites like Kickstarter and Rockethub. At the same time, I discovered a lot of pain points during my last couple of months spent researching the industry. I wanted to address them so that I could give people a better idea of what it takes to succeed.

Next is Crowdfunding for Writers: Which Platform Should I Choose?, which I wrote as a guest post for the great folks over at Bibliocrunch (a site for connecting self-published authors with editing, design, art and other professionals). This comparative look at the platforms from a writer's point of view is a good resource for sorting out which site will work best for you - an important early step in the crowdfunding process.

And finally, I'd also like to give a shoutout to the "Prentious Points" section of the Awkward Pegasus blog. Funnily enough, I met the owner of this blog at a New York Gaming Meetup, and he provided some fascinating insights into the similarities between storytelling for games and storytelling for, well, stories. I've been following along for a while now, and I always find tips that help me in my own personal fiction-writing journey.

Image source: Flickr.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Interview with Rob D. Young on Community Fridays

So I've actually had this interview sitting around for a few days, just getting around to putting it up now. Rob D. Young graciously agreed to not only participate in Community Fridays, but also to be the guinea pig for a new format using Google Hangouts to broadcast and record the session.

Although Rob was absolutely fantastic, this first experimental run ended up having a fairly major hiccup: namely the fact that I didn't realize for a big chunk of it that I had to press the big, red "start broadcast" button in order to record. And I call myself a techie... Luckily, Rob was awesome enough to repeat a lot of the great stuff he said on the first run-through.

When you're done watching, I highly recommend signing up for the Creative Writing Collective so you can subscribe to Rob's fascinating thoughts.

Video is below! Watch Rob riff on writers' feelings about getting paid, how writing affects the brain, and more.

And here's the tail end of the first chunk of the interview:

I was originally going to transcribe part of the session, but didn't want to put off this post any longer. I am, however, including links to the people in the industry doing cool things - specifically, performance poetry!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Mechalarum Kickstarter Launch Party Scheduled!

Have some free time on Monday, February 25th between 6:30 and 9:00 pm? Live in or around the New York City area? Like to hang out with fun and interesting people, especially if it means getting out of the cold and enjoying a good beer?

You're invited to the launch party for my Mechalarum Kickstarter project! I've also got a special guest author friend who will be relaunching his novel, so there will be plenty of opportunities to learn about crowdfunding, writing, and the ins and outs of self-publishing.

The event is free and open to the public, and will be held at Chelsea Manor in Manhattan. For more info, check out the Eventbrite invite, or use the widget below!

Monday, February 11, 2013

My Goals for Early 2013 and a Great Goal Infographic

Well, now that I've let the cat out of the bag with my big self-publishing/Kickstarter announcement, I'm excited to share my rough overview for the year. It's always interesting to post these things publicly, and then to come back and see how time and work reshape them.

Without further ado, here are my Goals for 2013:

1. Get better at recognizing (and accepting) failure. In the past, I've been scared to admit when something doesn't work out according to my plan, instead hoping that no one will notice. But you can learn a lot by owning up. I've already got a start on this - last summer, my ambitious Prancing Laggard video game humor project fizzled unceremoniously, and I'm working on passing on the reins.

2. Get better at celebrating (and rewarding) victory! Success is great, and sharing it with the world makes it just a little bit sweeter. The people in my life WANT to be a part of my big wins. I should let them!

3. Give - and accept - help. I've been pretty good at lending a hand when asked, but when it comes to my own projects I sometimes try to go it alone when working with a team would make things so much better. I want to not only accept offers of assistance where it makes sense, but also take initiative and ask for a hand.

4. Crowdfund and self-publish my first novel, Mechalarum. This one will involve a billion and one mini-goals and mini-steps to achieve. It's daunting to even try and keep the whole thing in my brain at one time. But as long as I keep focusing on one little piece at a time (like, say, this blog post), I'll continue to make progress.

5. Make wonderful products with the Knodes team. Writing fiction is awesome, and I'm excited that I'll be bringing my novel into the world soon. But that doesn't mean that I want to give up my inspirational, new day job. I have a sneaking suspicion that I'll always have more than one big thing going on in my life. It's invigorating - and overwhelming - to have so much going on at one time.

6. Figure out how to maintain a healthy lifestyle while living in the city. This might be the hardest resolution of all to keep. I do get some exercise just by walking around the city, but it doesn't quite balance out all of the time I sit staring at a computer screen. I'd love to multitask some of my socialization time to make sure this gets done.

7. Have fun!
I like that I have a mix of concrete tasks and conceptual goals to work towards. However, this only covers what's going to happen until around June - after that, I have no idea where my life will take me.

And finally, here by way of, is a great infographic for helping you work on your goals. It's a great representation of why writing your future vision down is so important.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Five Years Later... Time To Publish?

In February of 2008 I published my first blog post, in which I talked about getting ready to write my very first fantasy novel.

Five years, five (drafts of) novels, and several very long hiatuses later, I'm finally ready to come full circle. Yep, that's right - I'm going to self-publish for the first time, and officially get some of this written stash out into the world at large!

But wait, there's more! I've decided to use Kickstarter to fund the publication process. I'm committing fully to this endeavor, and I don't want to leave anything to chance. I'm raising money to hire an awesome editor, get some great visual talent on board, and really make as big of a deal of this as I'm able to.

Crowdfunding a novel is not an easy task, but luckily, I'm not going it alone. I'm already building the foundation for a great team, including some awesome people who are going to be helping me put on local events in New York and hosting me on their sites and blogs over the course of the project.

Interested in climbing on board? Head over to my website and drop me a line on my contact form.

As if that weren't enough fun news, yesterday I got "chucked" by the wonderful team at Knodes. You can read about it - and see me mugging for the camera in our office - here: Emma Gets Chucked :D

Stay tuned for lots of exciting stuff to come! And if you're in or near the NYC area, keep February 25 open on your calendars. I'll be posting info for the launch party here soon!