Reminder

Just a reminder the Wednesday free fiction has been (temporarily?) moved to Fridays.

I have many things in the works right now, many ideas, but some are going to need time to get in place. I am unable to be doing that at the moment. But soon!

Stay tuned!

Thoughts on Write, Publish, & Market Like a Boss

I am often asked how someone can get their book published. Or I get asked, “What advice would you give someone writing a book?”

Most people don’t want the real answer: finish the book you’re writing first.

Just finishing the book (whether fiction or non-fiction) is usually the most challenging for anyone. See, it seems simple to sit down and write a book. If you just leave the bull your mind will try to feed you at the door, yes, it is that simple. However, most people can’t do that; the myths that an artist must suffer for their art is just too alluring, especially to those who like the idea of writing but don’t actually want to write. So, I always tell the inquirer to write the book first.

Surprisingly (not!), no one has every come back to me and said, “Okay, I wrote the book, now what?”

For a long time I wished that I’d had something I could tell people to go read and it would help them answer a lot of questions on their journey, including step 1: writing the book.

Now I do.

Enter Write, Publish, and Market Like a Boss.

I picked up this set because I really wanted to listen to Market Like a Boss, but the price on the audio for all three was irresistible.

I did listen to most of it at double speed. I found the narrator painfully slow at regular speed and 1.5 speed was about what I considered normal reading speech. At double speed, I felt like he was really at 1.5 speed.

Since I’ve been writing nearly all my life and have published 25 titles, I wasn’t certain there would be much information there for me. I was surprised that I did find a few nuggets of good information — you can always learn something. Besides, it was a good pep talk for me too.

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Free Fiction: Uploaded on the 4th of July

I was sorely tempted to post this last week and delay the ending of Onesong by one week, but I figured I might have readers coming at me with hatchets if I did that. **grin**

I have enough adventures like that already!

I am kind of disappointed that I couldn’t post this on the 4th of July, but it’s not a very happy story, so I thought it might be best if I wait anyway.

This is a story I wrote last year. My reader sent my comments back, but I honestly don’t think I’ve incorporated them into the story yet, so you’re seeing this pretty much just as my reader did. Nothing about this story here is final. This story kind of got lost in the events of last July — I’d really thought it would be my July 2018 release. But, yeah, llama face.

Obviously I’m still tired and words are not my thing right now.

I thought you might all like a short break before I start something else. I really did like running with a novel. We shall see what strikes my fancy for next week, but for now, a short story.

Enjoy!

cover for blog

Uploaded on the 4th of July

by Dawn Blair

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Walking through the door

Doorway 2014-41 2.5x3.5 acrylic on bristol board Dawn Blair ©2014
Doorway 2014-41
2.5×3.5 acrylic on bristol board
Dawn Blair ©2014
Starting at $4.99 on eBay

A doorway beckons, a promise of adventure just beyond…

Are you brave enough to walk through it or will you turn and leave? Is this your doorway or someone else’s?

Every day we are faced with opportunities. Some doors are meant to stay closed. Some should be opened. Sometimes we need to open them just enough to see what’s inside, then we can change our minds. But nothing will happen until first you reach out for the handle.

Make a Wish

3″x 3″ acrylic on wrapped canvas  Dawn Blair ©2013 Available (until sold) at http://www.zibbet.com/dawnblair
3″x 3″ acrylic on wrapped canvas
Dawn Blair ©2013
Available (until sold) at http://www.zibbet.com/dawnblair

 

Everyone faces challenges of one sort or another. The highs and lows of life may erupt within a day. But you always have the ability to “make a wish.” You can always desire a change, prefer that things were different. But it doesn’t stop there. Action, movement, going forward needs to proceed the wish. If it doesn’t, you’ll remain stuck and wishing.

A key will only unlock the door if you turn it.

If nothing ever changed…

If you know the quote, finish it now with me, “…there would be no butterflies.”

Very good. 🙂

A dear friend of mine found this quote on some cards and some magnets. She was telling me about it and saying that she wanted a larger size.

That very night, I was walking around a thrift store and found a homemade card that was already framed up. I kid you not — that very night. I had to rush it over to her house. She wasn’t home, so I left it on her doorstep. Imagine her surprise when she came home and found it. She was even more shocked when I told her that I hadn’t made it for her, that I had found it.

Synchronicity?

Thoughts become things?

Butterflies are beautiful, wonderful, and delightful. They change from one creature into something entirely different.

Take a moment to ponder the changes that have occurred in your life. Aren’t most of them beautiful and wondrous, maybe even downright miracles?

Why is it then that we fear change so? Maybe we aren’t sure what we will become. How about we stop fearing the unknown and embrace the fact that we can go through a change and become something better than we are now? Let’s give that a try, shall we?

My Illustrated Dip

Last time, I talked about The Dip. Strangely enough, shortly after I posted the blog, I found an illustration on my journey into the dip. Here it is:

In case you can’t read it, I’ll tell you what it says. The first little lady walks into the dip saying, “Cool, I’m an artist.” She gets further down the slope (a.k.a. slide) saying, “This is easy!” At the bottom, life becomes more difficult and you can’t skate by anymore. “Oh crap, this is hard!” But the little lady keeps walking up the hill. It’s slow going and unless one looks back here, it doesn’t feel like progress is being made to the next level. “I’m such a newbie,” she moans with regret. It will continue to be an uphill climb, but “Learning is good!” I’m currently at the point of trying hard to convince myself of this last part.

After I drew that, I pulled a card from a set of my Wayne Dyer cards. The quote seemed to fit and inspired me, so I’ll share it here:

Failure is a judgement, an opinion. It stems from your fears, which can be eliminated by love — love for yourself, love for what you do, love for others, and love for your planet. — Wayne Dyer.

Yeah, that’s what I’m talking about!

Where Change Begins

I received a scary email this morning.

It said that someone I know of (I can’t say I know him personally, but I do know his children) is going to run for president. Believe me, knowing his children, this is not a man who you want running the country. But he says he’s tired of complaining and wants to change the corruption taking place in D.C.

Okay, it’s obvious right from the beginning that this man isn’t going to make it far. Why? He’s bitten off more than he can chew. He wants to jump right into the top position without “taking care of his own back yard.”

We all know there’s no such thing as an overnight success. Even people that find themselves suddenly famous have worked for hours before the world finds them. No one shoots to the top of the best-seller list without first writing the book.

As artists, we have something we want to say to the world. Are you building this in your own backyard first? Remember, you are the change you want to see in the world.

Not Every Brushstroke Is Golden

You’ve heard me say it before. It still remains true.

There are just times when a painting needs help. Overcoming the fear of changing a painting is the true challenge. Recently I’ve had to rethink my stance on dating paintings. Until now, I’ve put the year a painting was done on the front beneath my signature. But what happens when a painting isn’t as done as I thought it was?

I had finished Windswept Angel in 2009 (or so I’d thought). I’d been in a rush trying to finish it for a show, and that was my first mistake. Never rush a painting just because you want to be done with it and show it off. I knew better than this, but I did it anyway. Here’s a look at the original:

Windswept Angel
20x16 Acrylic on Canvas
© 2009 Dawn Blair

I knew there was something wrong with it. The eyes bugged me and I hated having so much thick hair across her face. It made her look like she was wearing a scarf or something. I know that if I hear that nagging voice, then I really need to listen to it. So I put it back up on my easel.

With a deep breath, I started working on the painting again. I was terrified of messing it up. Terrified! Not that I’m afraid of destroying a painting gone wrong, but I really didn’t want to repaint over the canvas. I liked this picture. It just needed help. So what if my “help” ruined everything?

I’m proud to say that that I didn’t ruin it. In fact, I made the correction exactly as I wanted. Here it is:

Windswept Angel
20x16 Acrylic on Canvas
© 2010 Dawn Blair

So now the painting is dated 2009, but actually finished with the correction in 2010. Yep, a good reason not to date the canvas itself. My art program I can change to reflect it accurately. I can even add a note, but who wants a scribbled note at the bottom of a canvas? Or maybe I could scratch out the year and write the correct one like I do on my checks. Just kidding! I’m chalking it up to a “live and learn” experience. Be sure to check out the painting on my website for all the details.

Have you ever had any “live and learn” experiences like this?

Happy Holidays!

Happy holidays to you!

I hope you’re looking forward to the coming year. I am. I have some great things planned. What can you expect?

Weblinks is returning. It’s had over 15000 hits. I feel like I was just getting the ball rolling with the story when I had to quit, but now I’m ready to get back to it.

Here on the blog, I’m going to release some of my favorite painting secrets that I’ve discovered or learned.

I’ll also be listing 3-4 pieces on eBay weekly – another thing that had gotten dropped but I want to resume. Every week, there’ll be a preview of the pieces that will be listed.

I’m so looking forward to 2010. It feels like it’s going to be a great year. I hope you’re finding yourself inspired! What would you like to do? What are you going to do to make that happen? Go for it!