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Monthly Archives: August 2015


Nike

This little symbol and a bit of gumption took me far this month!

This month, I have seen things happen that wouldn’t have if I had not done them anyway.It worked! I put on my Just Do It Shoes (Nikes) and did what I had to do to make things happen. There times when I didn’t think they would happen.
I picked up a job where I work 9 additional hours, and then my other job got out of my way. I work during the day five days per week and even there I have been offered flexibility in hours and to some extent, I can even change the days that I work if I have to. I have been thinking about adding a third job which is less of a job and more an avocation. I am thinking about making sweet rolls like I remember eating when I was a child. In addition, I learned how to make rolls that are served around here that everyone who likes bread loves. I have access to an inspected kitchen. I could do this during hours that I am not working on my other jobs and still be able to do all that I need to do with my writing. And if the roll business works out, I will be able to then phase out these other jobs. I think I’ll wait for a little while for this one. Not too long, though. Now that the summer months are almost over, this would be a good time to get this started.

More Changes

Changes are everywhere. The book launch was Saturday and getting ready for it has helped me grow in many ways this month. I learned that I could make things happen even when others around me were less than cooperative. More importantly, however, is that I am learning not to get anxious when things do not seem to be going as I had planned. Sometimes what seems like a delay or a setback could actually be a shortcut to something bigger as was the case with meeting the woman from the radio station on the street.
However, creating the plan is important because as I learned, it gave me direction and focus and kept me at least going in the right direction. During the next several months, I think that I am going to be focusing more on this plan. I plan to focus my attention next month on the various aspects of my business plan. Since I am just releasing a book, I’ll especially focus on marketing and sales.
And then there is still the writing that I have to do. This month much of my time was spent working on marketing my book launch, but next month I want to get back more into the production aspects of book writing too. I have three books to work on final edits (I am redoing When God Turned His Head. One of my beta readers did a thorough proof read and edit for me.) Also I have a new book that I will be writing in November during NaNoWriMo which I will need to work on the plot outline, character sketches, and do research.

Oregon County Writer’s Group Starts Tonight!

There is also the Oregon County Writer’s Group that we are starting tonight! . All I can say is that I need to keep up with my plan if I am going to make any of this work and still write this blog and do my other online writing.

IMG_8330 final copy

Donna Brown is an ordained minister. As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues. Her upcoming book A Coward’s Solace will be available soon. Click here for more information about Cygnet Brown and her books.


Tomorrow is the book launch of Book III of the Locket Saga: A Coward’s Solace! This past week my schedule changed and i have been getting ready for this event. If I don’t have anything more than what I have written here, please forgive me for not doing any more than this.

This week I have been talking with a few people about the event. I have also been working on my speech for the launch. I was thinking about what it would be like if no one else was there. What if no one wanted me to sign their book. I have decided that even if that were the case, I would use this as an opportunity for me to grow as a writer and as a speaker. I have been thinking about something that a friend told me not too long ago. He says that success comes to those who first develop themselves. This is something that I have been learning all year. Growing and developing as an individual must come first, then success will follow.

It has been almost a year since I sat on the side of the road bawling because I had a blown tire, no spare, and no money to get it fixed. It was that day that I learned that I had friends who were willing to help me. My son bought the tire. Another friend went to get it and another reassured me while I was on the phone.  I know that I would still be sitting on the side of that road in my truck if it were not for them. I also know that I have a God in whom is my trust.

I really like the idea of being a self-published author. Someone recently asked me why I didn’t try to get published by a ‘real” publisher and make ‘real money’ with my books. I cannot explain it. I don’t think that she would understand if I did, but that is simply not the path that I am meant to take. As it says in the Bible, there is a way that seems right to man, but it leads to destruction. My gut tells me that is not how I need to go. I know she means well. I think she is trying to say that I am good enough to publish with what she considers a “real’ company,  but it does little for my confidence or self-esteem on the path that I am currently pursuing..

I have recently been blessed with a schedule that is more flexible than any I have had in a long time. I think I am in the best place that I have ever been. This will mean a lot to me as I stretch my public speaking and book signing legs. I see my future meeting people on a one to one basis. I like the idea of getting to know people in this way rather than through some big company. I have media coverage for my event.  I am really not worried that no one will show up for my book signing. I cannot wait to tell you about it either!

IMG_8330 final copy

Donna Brown is an ordained minister. As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues. Her upcoming book A Coward’s Solace will be available soon. Click here for more information about Cygnet Brown and her books.


Why am I here?

A cygnet becomes a swan regardless to what the ducks think.

A cygnet becomes a swan regardless to what the ducks think.

One of the things that I recently realized is that I need to get serious about using a business plan for my authorship/publishing business so that I can better understand my purpose.. In order to do that, one of the first things that I need to work on is making certain that my business plan has a mission statement that jells with my own personal mission statement.
Several months ago my affirmation was “I am a spiritual being on a physical journey” and I have incorporated that affirmation into my life to the point where I can see that it is the truth at least for me in my personal life.
To some extent, it is also true in my writing as well. I do have Christian content in my books, and I hope that it is not just Christians who are reading my books. I hope, to some extent, that those who do not believe as I do will enjoy the stories that I tell. As I see it, people liked to come hear Jesus speak and tell stories too (parables) and few of them (at first anyway) committed to anything that he was trying to show them. I am certain, however, that what he did influenced many of them perhaps in later years.
In Romans 8:28 it says that “all things work toward the good of them that love God who are called according to his purpose.” I see where that had been happening lately for me. I have a purpose in my life that God has ordained and it is definitely related to my writing and publishing what I write. I am working on updating my mission statement on my publishing company mission statement to state that. Part of it is included in my publishing logo, “Writing the Books Folks ‘Swan’ to read, but it doesn’t include that spiritual aspect that is central to my purpose therefore my mission statement needs to be more than just that logo. During the next couple weeks any way, from time to time I will be working on that mission statement. I’ll let you know how that turns out. .
How about you? First, do you have a business with a good business plan? If so, does your business’s mission statement include a spiritual component fused into its fiber?

IMG_8330 final copy

Donna Brown is an ordained minister. As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues. Her upcoming book A Coward’s Solace will be available soon. Click here for more information about Cygnet Brown and her books.


A Change For The Better

pencil-icon

My daughter told me the other day that she hates change. I however have learned that change is the only constant so I have learned to take change in stride. My job schedule has changed so that instead of working six days per week, I am working seven days, however, I am working fewer hours per day. Friday and Saturdays I am only working three hours per day and with both of these jobs, if for some reason I cannot come in that day, I can just call in or change the day easily with another person. I will have much more flexibility with writing.  On the days when I used to work twelve hour shifts, I now work just seven and there are fewer responsibilities as well.

Changing my work pattern will be interesting in that I have more time in the mornings and in the evenings most days. It will actually open up more time to write during my best hours which is what a writer really needs. I also still have evenings clear. Three more evenings than I had on the ole schedule. I am smiling.

Final cover for A Cowards SolaceI have been thinking about what I want to write in this blog next month. One thing I have to do is finish the re-edits on my book When God Turned His Head. I hope this is the last re-edit I will have to do on that book. A lot of people who have read the book like the context of the book, but almost everyone has commented on the fact that there is a lot of typos in the book. Thanks to one of my beta reader, that should change.

Another thing that I am planning to work on next month is to work on creating my business plan. I am seriously, increasingly considering my writing as a business and a business needs a good business plan. I got a book that I am reading that is really good for this and next month I plan to share it as I develop my business plan.

Another thing that I have been thinking about stepping up my online marketing.One thing that I intend to do is to work on developing twitter tweets related to the history and characters in my books and connect my website and here in my blog. I will probably connect Facebook too because a lot of my friends find my trivia questions interesting. I have had more traffic with my trivia questions than I did with almost anything else. We will see how that works out.

As things move forward, it is time, actually, probably past time for me to look ahead and find online reviewers for A Coward’s Solace. I have to tell you that finding people to review A Coward’s Solace creates anxiety for me because I am not certain how the book will be received by other people and that makes me nervous. I, of course, think that my book is a wonderful creation. I hope others feel that way, but like my children, I am prejudice toward my own creation. So right now, while I am finishing the final preparations for my book launch, I am also working on finding these reviewers and asking them what they think. I have done this before so I know the drill. I am learning to have a thick skin.

If you are interested in reviewing my book, please let me know by replying below. I will get back with you with a free e-copy of Book III of The Locket Saga: A Coward’s Solace..

IMG_8330 final copy

 

Donna Brown is an ordained minister. As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues. Her upcoming book A Coward’s Solace will be available soon. Click here for more information about Cygnet Brown and her books.


Book Launch in Final Preparations

Just nine more days until my book launch! I am so nervous and so excited all the same time! The flyers are up all over the county. I have contacted the media and I am tracking the books on FedEx. they should be here this weekend.. Now all I have to do is work out the details. I am working on a speech for the book launch. It can’t get any more exciting than this!

Final cover for A Cowards Solace

 

A Coward’s Solace Is Available on Kindle!

Whether or not you plan to attend the book launch, (or whether or not you are even able to attend the book launch or not), A Coward’s Solace is available on Amazon Kindle! If you are intrigued by real events from a fictional prospective, you will love A Coward’s Solace. If you like a good love story, you’ll also enjoy A Coward’s Solace. If you are looking to be inspired, again, you will love Book III of The Locket Saga: A Coward’s Solace. Now available on Amazon Kindle.

No Longer Afraid

The other day when I was putting my flyers for the book launch of Book III of the Locket Saga: A Coward’s Solace and the flyer for the writer’s group around town, I put on my Nikes and called them “my just do it” shoes. I liked the play on their logo because it reminded me of this month’s affirmation. I will do it anyway, even if I am afraid.
What is amazing is that this week I discovered something truly amazing. I am no longer afraid. What was fear has now been redefined as excitement. Whether the book launch or the writer’s group is a success or not, I have discovered that I am enjoying the journey.
I am also no longer looking at problems as problems, but rather as challenges that I have to overcome. I have discovered that I am not panicking over every one of these challenges as they come up.
Allowing Room For Others To Procrastinate
I have learned that I am a lot more dependable than several people that I have worked with recently. Although it is frustrating, because I have developed a do-it-now mentality, I get projects out of my hands and into the hands of others sooner so that if they do procrastinate, I can be (as I told one person) the squeaky wheel. Although I am frustrated, I am less frustrated than I would be if I didn’t have this mentality. Dealing with other people is after all just another challenge.

Have Had Calls About the Writer’s Group

since putting up the flyers for the Writer’s Group, I have been receiving calls and continuing my arrangements for the first meeting. I still have to create itinerary and questionnaire handouts for the meeting.and I have to rehearse my speech, Just over a week and it will be history! How time flies when you’re having fun!

More Event In The Works

In October, I plan on participating in another event both as an author and as the president of the writers group. I will have more about that as time draws closer.
In the meantime, I want to work on participating in more book signings around the area and continue to expand my book sales region, more on that later too.

 

IMG_8330 final copy

Donna Brown is an ordained minister. As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues. Her upcoming book A Coward’s Solace will be available soon. Click here for more information about Cygnet Brown and her books.


a path

Last Thursday I needed to get my flyers for my book launch. The designer who was supposed to get them for me was late getting to his business and then I discovered that he had not picked them up from the printer. If I was going to wait for him to get it, I would have to wait for a whole week. That was not an option. I had to get them myself from a location in a town 30 miles away.
A friend of mine had been expecting me to bring flyers to him to deliver in another town, and because the designer was late to his business and I had to go pick up the flyers, I was two hours late getting them to him. On the way to his town, I saw the sign to the local radio station. I knew that I needed to stop and see them, but there wasn’t time then, so I drove past, making a mental note to contact them on Monday.
I dropped the flyers off with my friend and then took the rest of them to my town to pass them out. I hung them all around the square and as I was hanging the last one, a woman stopped me and asked me what my flyers were about.
I told her about my book launch and that I was starting a writer’s club. She told me that she was from that same radio station that I wanted to stop at on the way to taking the flyers to my friend! I was so excited, that I had to hug her.
I realized at that moment that it was a divine appointment that God had brought about specifically for me.If I would have been at that location two hours earlier, I would not have met that woman.
The incident reminded me of what the writer of Proverbs said in chapter 3, verses 5 and 6.
“Trust in the Lord with all of your heart, lean not unto your own understanding. Acknowledge him with all of your heart, and he will direct your path.”

Spiritual Versus Head Knowledge

Over the weekend, I had two divine appointments. This time, I spoke to two young women about how spiritual knowledge is different from head knowledge. We discussed how when we listen to God spiritually, he gives us direction that individuals who only know head knowledge do not understand. God used me to reassure to young women that listening to God’s direction is not only not crazy, but it is totally possible

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Today I had another divine appointment, this time, again, it benefited my direction. A man called me and wanted to know about the writer’s group that I am starting and as we talked, he offered me information concerning writing press releases for the local news organizations both in print and on the radio including ones that I did not personally know. He also has connections with authors in other cities and we talked about the possibility of using Skype to connect with those individuals.
What I think is really amazing is that one of those young women than I talked to was impressed with how confident I seemed. She said that with my confidence, I was certain to succeed. Not long ago, that was not the case, but since I have determined to follow the path that God has set before me, I can do so boldly and with confidence.

IMG_8330 final copy

Donna Brown is an ordained minister. As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues. Her upcoming book A Coward’s Solace will be available soon. Click here for more information about Cygnet Brown and her books.


Last week, I heard that futurists believe that within the next one hundred years, thanks to the increase in global communication, everyone will only be speaking three languages. English (because it is the language of global business), Spanish (because it is the language of the common people, and Mandarin Chinese (because, even though there is a one child limit in China, there will still be a lot of Chinese.) Since I now know both English and Spanish, and my middle son is fluent in Mandarin Chinese, my family has these languages covered.

I think that it would be sad to lose languages like French or Swedish, Hebrew or Russian or any number of languages that exist today. There’s an essence of individuality in all languages.  How sad it would be if the Normans had not brought the English poulet leaving us with the Anglo-Saxon word chicken. How rich our language has become with the addition of poultry and pullet. which are English adaptations of the French word.

This whole language thing keeps me returning to the idea of NewSpeak in George Orwell’s book: 1984.  If words for certain concepts do not exist, then the concepts will also disappear. Rather than voting or conversing on facebook, writing what I write communicates the freedoms that I have in writing in my native tongue.

My preferred way to communicate is through writing.

If you were to ask me how I prefer to communicate, Hands down, I would have to say that I prefer to communicate through the written word.

It  doesn’t bother me to write an email or write an article or even write a book. I love the fact that I can write down whatever I want, edit or delete it before putting it out for someone else to read.

. . .But I Hate Texting

I don’t know why, but I hate texting. Okay, actually I do know why. I don’t like all those tiny little buttons that I have to touch when I text. I don’t like the fact that I have to pick at each letter and sometimes hit the letter next to the one that I intended to poke at. My husband has voice activated texting, but I don’t have that. Maybe I would like that better, but I am just not into the learning curve that is involved with learning how to use that system.

Making A Phone Call Is For Me Is LIke Pulling Teeth

Another thing I hate doing is making phone calls. I would rather stand in front of a room full of strangers than I would to talk on the phone.

I would rather talk to anyone in person than I would to talk on the phone.

How about you? What is your favorite form of communication?

IMG_8330 final copy

If a picture is like a thousand words, then I like this type of communication as well.

Donna Brown is an ordained minister. As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues. Her upcoming book A Coward’s Solace will be available soon. Click here for more information about Cygnet Brown and her books.

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