AVISO: GRINELDA MARKOWITZ, THE AUTHOR OF THIS NEWSLETTER, WRITES EROTICA. THEREFORE, NOT ALL CONTENT OR CONTENT LINKED TO HEREIN IS PG-13. ‘NUFF SAID.
The May issue (this issue) is delayed somewhat. My apologies.
Hawne ~ Maybe you can guess how I came up with her name? Her crystal engulfs her in a golden light when used. Everything about her is light, and happy, and maybe a touch on the ditzy side. She sports long almost white blond hair that’s golden by day and shimmers with moonlight by night. She’s a young Tertaën*. Her sister, Grayt, has raised her since the murder of their parents, having born her on her back through the red chi, brown chi, and the yellow chi in her search for the safety of other Tertaën. She was now their ruler and it was important that she survive along with her sister. Though Grayt doesn’t realize it, Hawne dotes on her sister and believes she’d be lost without her. *The Tertaën are those of the Daichi which came to the surface to mate with the beings they found there. Well, interesting story for another time about their first attempts to mate.
Paethre ~ A big feline common to the regions of the red chi (Tze-Jinque), Paethre has a sympathetic relationship with Hawne, they’re bonded for life (not as mates though). Big and friendly and sound in the belief that he’s a lap kitty (think the size of a lion times 1.5 and dark as night). He thinks it’s great fun to bowl people over and lick their faces with abandon. Being an animal of the Tze-Jinque region, his eyes were red and swirled with silver. Also, Paethre will protect Hawne and second, Grayt, to the death.
Apart from their mutual love of spanking, it’s an unlikely pairing, to say the least: Catherine Mallory Jones, a stunning aspiring poet and romance writer with a dark sexual past. And George Aloysius Brown, a witty and endearing Londoner, whose idyllic, white picket fence life was shattered with the end of his marriage to a woman he adored. Were it not for their passion for the written word, their paths would never have crossed.
Alan Daniels (Gal-Friday Publicity) ~ His guest post is here.
Arthur Penner is more than happy to aid a lady in need of help, especially if the woman is targeted by his nemesis Vance Hollister. The fact the woman in question turns out to be not only a powerful witch, but a gorgeous red head with a wealth of curves that don’t quit? Even better. What he isn’t prepared for is the discovery that the woman just happens to be his reincarnated Queen Gwenivere, and worse, she has no memory of who he is.
Virtual Tour Host, Shannan Albright’s post is here.
- I love being a writer. What I can’t stand is the paperwork. [Source unknown.]
- Quote found here: http://www.eddiesnipes.com/2011/07/funny-quotes-about-writing
GUEST BLOGGING ETTIQUETTE
When I embarked on this topic I was expecting to find little or no information on the topic, based on experience with guest bloggers. I also was curious to see if my expectations for bloggers I host on my blog were unreasonable. I’m pleased to find they aren’t. Below are a few tips and comments of my own based on my own observations from interaction with guest bloggers to my site.
With regard to my expectations, I created a file of author info so authors of all experience levels (with virtual guesting) can provide me the information I need to accomplish their post efficiently in a reasonable amount of time. Unfortunately, due to guests to my blog with whom I’ve had dealings, I no longer schedule an author before they provide me the information I require as requested in the author info file I provide.
In looking back at my first few “instruction packets” for authors, they were a bit involved. I have since streamlined them with the average author in mind. Seeing that more folks than not submit their info successfully the first time, I feel certain my expectations are not unreasonable. I hope most of all my author info packets help the novice guest blogger.
My Top Ten Tips:
1. Check the blog to which you’ll be hosted before committing to a date: Because I write erotica as Grinelda Markowitz, I’m sensitive to make sure potential guest bloggers are aware there may be sexual content on my blog. Make sure you’ll be comfortable being hosted on any blog for which you are considering being a guest.
2. Ask for the host requirements before committing to a date: Another thing to ensure you can meet before comitting is their requirements. Some folks just aren’t wired to follow instructions, so if you’re one of those persons, I suggest reading the information then making a check list of things you need to do to complete your submission to the host.
3. Check your calendar when accepting a date from the potential host: Don’t use a calendar to keep track of your professional obligations? More power to you. I feel certain, however, you’ll find guest blog commitments aren’t the appointments in your professional career you’ll jeopardize by not having a system of keeping track of appointments. I will say that in most cases, if a person is a no show for their deadline and after a reminder still doesn’t provide the needed info, I won’t consider hosting them on my blog again. I’ve turned down authors wanting to be hosted in the past. I won’t talk about fairness, however, it isn’t professional to miss an appointment without an excuse more urgent than, I forgot, or I had to work, or . . . .
4. Give the host advance notice (well in advance of your deadline) if you have to back out of a commitment: Rest assured it won’t go over well with them if you cancel at the very last minute, and the very next day you have a guest post on someone else’s blog. Sure, we all have priorities, but once you have committed to a date with someone, you need to keep the date. Being stood up isn’t fun. Above all, many blog hosts have other commitments and projects going on, most likely. You’re not their only focus so that you can yank them around on a string at your convenience. I do understand that the unexpected happens, and I commiserate do commiserate in those cases. MEET your deadlines.
5. Check the attitude: Divas and Primadonnas aren’t really as attractive as they think themselves to be. The host isn’t there at your beck and call. If you commit to be hosted, then the ball field is theirs (within reason). If the blogger you’ll be visiting with asks you to make changes because you either didn’t read the author info (apparently) or bother to follow the instruction packet if you did read it; make the changes. Do understand you may not be extended another invite to be hosted if you back out after being asked to make changes or provide additional info.
6. Proofread your material: Since I’m dealing with authors, I don’t proofread their material. I expect to make few changes to the content of their post. My primary focus when creating the blog posts of my guests is formatting. I want to lay it out in an attractive yet streamlined presentation. Also, I don’t know about other host bloggers, but I prefer to have a certain continuity and uniformity in each post. That’s one reason it can be crucial to follow the requirements laid out by your potential hosts.
7. Pay attention to layout: If the person who will be visiting with you on their blog provides a requirement package and lays it out in a certain sequence, follow their sequence. It’s not a problem to have to rearrange a few things for a post, but when everything is received in a wad of hooie, then the time intensiveness of creating your post just went up tremendously. I spend up to 20 minutes per post. The info I get back from the author that is as requested in the info packet usually takes 10-15 to create the post.
8. Word Count: You’ll come across hosts who require certain word counts be met. A streamlined post is easier to read through in one sitting. Also, for my blog, I prefer to provide enough of a teaser for the visitors to my blog to be enticed to go out and purchase the book(s). Check your content to be sure it meets all requirements from the host.
9. File formats: I have the worst time dealing with docx files for some reason, so in the author info packet I hand out, I indicate which formats to submit files in. It seems copy and pasting from a docx file picks up additional formatting whooie that can be troublesome to remove. I spent over an hour on a post once and finally had to remove all formatting and reformat the document file first before I could create the post. I no longer accept files submitted in the wrong format as a result. This goes back to reading the instructions provided and making a checklist of what’s you need to ensure in your submission.
10. Do the research and/or ask questions: Got questions about what the host wants or certain elements of using your social media? Keep in mind your host isn’t being rude when they refer you back to the instruction packet or fail to answer your questions about how your social media works. The latter, I won’t answer as I don’t usually have time for that. I will answer questions about the former if they aren’t answered in the instruction info. If they are located in the instruction info, I refer back to that. I (and most hosts) don’t have time to provide info over and over that’s in the info file. Clarification is altogether different and I’ll not only answer the questions in that vein but modify the author info packet so it’s more clear. There are any number of resources for learning how to use your computer and social media, e.g., Google and other search engines, book stores, your friends and colleagues who are more savvy, but it’s not reasonable to expect your host to field these questions from you.
Just a word to hosts: When I did my first guest blog, I had no idea what to do. The info back from the host was sketchy and that didn’t help me any either. One host told me to do whatever I wanted. I hadn’t a clue really what a guest post was so I felt a little out of my element. Fortunately, I had a mentor who was more than happy to help me with questions I came across as I embarked on my writing path. Not all new authors have that advantage. I suggest providing a template of some sort of what you’d like to get back from them. This will make an intimidating endeavor, less so. I did a bit of googling on the topic of guest blogging which helped me stick my toe in the water. And, if there are numerous problems with the same element of your hosting process, it’s time to re-evaluate and make sure you don’t need to tweak your system a bit.
Links of interest:
How’s Your Guest Blogging Etiquette?
Marketing Your Blog to Increase Traffic and Your Earning Potential
Guest Blogging Etiquette: A Bit from Both Sides of the Equation
Guest Blogger Etiquette
Must-Know Guest Blogging Etiquette
Guest Post Blogger Etiquette
8 Guidelines for Guest Blogging Etiquette
Etiquette In Guest Blogging – The Most Complete Guide
The Transition of the Seasons
When I first conceived this topic, I was considering the transition from Winter to Spring. In Texas, the South Plains, there’s not really a smooth segue between the seasons, as a rule. However, you feel the coming change in the air, in your bones, and it’s just a matter of waiting or Mother Nature to decide which way she wants to swing. My writing seems to be a bit of the same way. It seems I can stay engaged with one writing project for a time then need to switch off, always returning in rotation back to it in due course. I have one story in a holding pattern [A Ghostly Tale, or Two] and hope on the next transition to pick it up again. I can see, looking back laying the foundation of preparedness, I’m able to meet the demands of my writing efforts much better than perhaps a year ago, six months ago. I’ve leveled off at this point on a mainstream writing project for the last few months, but feel that warning of pending change of focus coming on and figure it won’t be long before I’m on another writing project for a time. I look forward to that span of time when things level out and I make headway on the task(s) at hand.
In work as Grinelda Markowitz:
Johnny B. Goode
Mother’s Milk [working title]
A Ghostly Tale, or Two
From left to right: Arrinay, Grayt, Gayadnae Bezhyanya.
From the Kalaydan Chronicles: Book I ~ The Moon-kissed Chi
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Thanks For Visiting ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
If you’d like to be a guest author for this newsletter, please email me (email@example.com) letting me know which of two months Aug 2, Sept 6, Oct 4 and Nov 1 would work for you. I’ll give you the first of the two which is available. I have slots for tour stops, interviews, blog posts, character interviews and new releases. Let me know which you prefer.