Took the Leap and Went Wide

I’ve been debating off and on about keeping my books in Kindle Select or going wide. With Kindle Select, you have to stay exclusively on Amazon and readers can borrow your books from the library instead of having to pay for it. I had fun with the program. My sales rank peaked with the KDP pages read. I got some reviews from readers who took a chance on my writing by borrowing my books.

Through all the good, this month I made the decision to pull my books out of KDP Select to go wide. Going wide will help me reach new readers by having my books on sites like B&N, Kobo, Apple, Overdrive, etc. I think the opportunity to do this will be more important than a sales rank.

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Six Plus One has to wait until February. If you want to take a chance on my writing, click here to borrow.

I hope you guys will check out my books now that I’m not tied down by only Amazon.

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One By One–click to buy

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Something’s Amiss–click to buy

Twisted Obsession–click to buy

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

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Trying Something Different. No Resolutions This Year.

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I know I’m late, but I’ll say it anyway: HAPPY 2019!!!

I’m open to changes for the new year. Hence, my haircut. I literally got all my hair chopped off, shorter than my pixie.

Even though I didn’t plan any writing resolutions, I’ve been pretty productive this month. I was asked to do a book signing in March, and I signed up to be part of a horror anthology.

And, the biggie…I took my books out of KDP select (Six Plus One will be finished in February). This means I’m going wide. My books will be available on all book platforms like Barnes and Noble, Apple, Kobo, etc.

Yesterday, I received my sketchbook from the Brooklyn Art Library. I’m participating in the Sketchbook Project, and I’m very excited! If I ever open an Instagram account, it’ll be for my art.

Did you guys make any New Year resolutions? What are they?

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

 

 

#IWSG Blog Hop–My Self-Doubt Hitting Me Like a Mack Truck Unexpectedly

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It’s that time again. IWSG hosts a blog hop the first Wednesday of every month. Writers get to discuss their doubts and fears they’ve conquered, their struggles and triumphs. Even though writing is a lonely activity, it doesn’t mean you can’t surround yourself with people who understand what you’re going through.

Showing vulnerability makes you strong. If you’d like to read more from bloggers who shared their personal experiences, then please click IWSG sign-up sheet.

March’s question–How do you celebrate when you achieve a writing goal/finish a story?

When I achieve a writing goal or finish a story, I do a happy dance. Then I sit down to catch my breath and pat myself on the back. Me, the biggest procrastinator ever, actually finished something! No just talking about it. No just stalling by doing loads and loads of research on my story topic. No just keeping it in my head but not putting it down on paper. I actually FINISHED!

After the excitement wears off, I always treat myself to a notebook or sketchbook at Books-A-Million. I used to treat myself to a chocolate muffin or a brownie, but I’m not allowed to have chocolate anymore because of the caffeine in it. So, now I treat myself to blueberry muffins or cinnamon buns.

I would love to say I’m one of those writers who loves the craft so much that I only write for the pleasure. If I said that, I’d be lying. I totally need incentives to finish a writing goal. An incentive can be getting to watch TV or Netflix after so many words written for the day. Or taking a road trip over the weekend if I write 3 or 4 days in a row.

Back in December, I was so excited for 2018. I just knew I’d create a better writing schedule for myself, making me more productive. I’ve failed miserably so far. Still being artsy, I’ve been sketching and outlining a comic instead. Doing that won’t help me publish more novellas though. I feel disappointed like I’ll never get out of this ‘publish only 1 book a year’ rut if I don’t focus on fiction writing. Unfortunately, I don’t really know how to get out of this rut…

I thought I had conquered my fear, but it’s definitely haunting me again. I’ve allowed my fear to cause self-doubt and totally mess with my self-confidence. I guess it started when my new release, Six Plus One, didn’t have a good debut. Now, I’m back to thinking my writing sucks even if that may not be true…it just seems like the advice of ‘when you produce more books, you get more sales’ isn’t holding true for me. Every book had a decent release except Six Plus One. I often wonder: what if I have bad luck–where for each new book I publish, I’ll keep getting lower sales?

I’ll get out of this rut, I promise…

That really felt good to share. Letting it all out may very well be the first step in getting my productivity back 🙂

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

My Favorite Story Type #DIYMFA

What’s Your Favorite Story Type?

Tell us which story type you love and why. Are you using it in your current work-in-progress?

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My favorite story type is my characters using their wits to outsmart a killer stalking the group. Since I’m twisted, the killers usually end up winning 🙂 I don’t think I’ve ever written a happy ending…Survivor plots interest me because of the suspense. It’s fun scaring yourself. My stories are always full of betrayal. If I’m not writing horror or suspense, then I’ve been known to write a drama of a character dealing with inner-struggles. My short stories are usually tragedies. No matter what, obsession and death are major themes in my books. My favorite horror movies are the Scream trilogy. It’s where I get inspiration for my stories.

I’m definitely using the survivor plot in my current work-in-progress.

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

My Supporting Characters #DIYMFA

“The five main types of supporting characters–Villain, Love Interest, BFF, Mentor, and Fool. Keep in mind that not every story needs to include all of these archetypes. Sometimes you might omit several of these archetypes; other times you can have one character filling multiple archetypal roles.”–Gabriela Pereira

What’s Your Favorite Supporting Character Archetype, and Why?

Which archetypes resonate with you the most? Which ones do you sometimes overlook? Most importantly, how can you rethink these supporting characters to make your overall story more compelling?

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With supporting characters, I love writing the villains and fools. I’m a horror and suspense author. Of course, I love writing bad guys haha. Psychology fascinates me. Why do people do the things they do? Exploring this concept, I love getting inside my villain’s head. I read somewhere that every villain is just a misunderstood protagonist. According to Gabriela, “the [f]ool’s purpose is to ‘tell it like it is,’ to set the protagonist straight and debunk any myths or misconceptions that the protagonist buys into.” Being an INTJ, I’m all about asking the question: why? The fool character allows me to keep asking questions, to get the other characters to think, to keep them on their toes. In the real world if I wasn’t the main character in my life, then I’d totally be the fool supporting character.

I often overlook the mentor. Sometimes the BFF is mentioned in passing but the friendship hardly shows on the pages. These characters bring peace to a story. I guess I enjoy writing conflict too much 🙂

I can definitely rethink how I use these supporting characters in my stories, so I can make my books more compelling. Instead of using each archetype and having too many characters, I can have one or two share these different traits. The fools have been my favorite characters to write. In One By One, Brady was my favorite. And, in Something’s Amiss, Bradley was my favorite. Some readers hated those guys. Maybe I can learn to write the fool in a more likable way. Just because they question the main character every step of the way doesn’t mean they have to be a pain in the ass to the readers.

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

Resistance As My Compass

“You have a project that you really want to work on, but for some reason every time you  sit down to write it you feel…stuck. This is not writer’s block. When you are actively trying to write but nothing comes out, it’s called resistance and that is a totally different beast. Resistance comes from fear, and fear has a purpose.”–Gabriela Pereira

Share a story about a time when resistance was your compass.

Share an example of when resistance has pointed you toward a writing project that was juicy and high-stakes…and maybe even a little bit scary. Did you face that fear head-on and overcome your resistance? What was the result of pursuing (or not pursuing) that project?

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Plot and dialogue are my favorite parts of a scene. If you ever read any of my books, you’ll see that it’s dialogue-heavy. Always. Characters interacting with each other is interesting to me. To see the relationship dynamics, to see personality through body language or how they speak, to see how smoothly they lie or manipulate.

Years ago, I took a break from writing fiction to pursue writing screenplays. My writing buddy and I studied the ins and outs of scripts, even printing a few so we could read popular movies and tv shows. I bought Save the Cat and researched, researched, researched. Even though I don’t ever see myself in Los Angeles, I’m not brain dead. If I ever got a staff writing position for a tv show, then I know I’d have to move out there.

Being nervous, being fearful, being anxious, I used that energy to co-write a screenplay with my writing buddy. We got to the end of our indie drama, then decided to try our hands on a teleplay. Wouldn’t it be awesome to pitch a tv show idea to Netflix and they actually pick it up!!! Especially a dark comedy 🙂 We taught ourselves how to create loglines, pitch an idea. We even researched production companies.

I put my heart and soul into our projects. I often wonder what would have happened if we kept pursuing it…Now, I keep writing short films because that’s possible to put something together and share on YouTube. Since I live in West Virginia, my best bet is producing something on a budget and hoping I get discovered that way.

So many writing interests, so little time…

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

A “Best Practice” That Didn’t Work for Me

“It took me years to realize that someone else’s “best practices” were useless if I didn’t test them out and adjust them to my own style. Now I know better.”–Gabriela Pereira

Share a “best practice” that didn’t work for you.

Have you ever tried one of these “best practices”? How did it go? Did you make adjustments so the advice would suit your style? Most important: What did you learn about yourself as a writer from this process?

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A writing “best practice” I once read was: write every day. No matter what. Put your butt in the chair and type/write your book. I was NOT GOOD with this practice. If I wasn’t in the mood, I couldn’t force myself. I didn’t want writing to feel like a chore. It should be fun. Being productive is fun, right? That “best practice” doesn’t really factor in personal lives. What if you’re sick? What if you have an unexpected visitor all week? What if you’re depressed? What if you’re tired from your full-time job?

Instead of thinking I have to write every day because an expert told me so, I dabble in my stories. To adjust, I write at least 15 minutes a day. It can be my actual story or notes for a story. This way there’s no pressure. I have good days where I can write at least 2,500 words, and there are some bad days where I don’t even break 100 words. My mindset–there’s always tomorrow.

I learned a lot about myself as a writer, regarding how I dealt with this “best practice.” I’m starting to think maybe I should step back as writing for a business and go back to writing as a hobby. I was probably much happier…

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby