Friday, October 9, 2020

Book Release TODAY: Picture This


I am excited to announce the release of my new novella, Picture This on Amazon, TODAY! 

It is available for Kindle, Kindle Unlimited, and in soft cover! CLICK HERE to order.

Carmen Sloan was married at a young age to a man she knew she would spend the rest of her life. She owned her own home, was attending college, and was quickly moving towards the life of her dreams.

After her husband Joe becomes sick, Carmen finds herself living an unrecognizable life, dealing with guilt and sadness daily. Walking to work at a pizza shop to wait tables, while her husband sat holed up in their home, was not the vision she had for her future.

A series of selfish decisions bring Carmen to a place of darkness. Dark secrets begin to wear on her, so she decides to admit her secrets to her husband, the one she used to love more than herself.

Just as Carmen makes a fresh start and life begins to bring her peace, an ugly part of her past drags her back into darkness. Will a broken heart be the death of her?

Picture This is a story of love, strength, secrets, darkness, and new beginnings.
Ready to order? CLICK HERE
Thank you to each and every reader. Without you, I would not be doing what I love to do! 

Author Page on Amazon

Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Writers Corner: Fall writing tips

Fall is officially here! I have put together some fall-inspired tips and ideas to help us get into the season.

Seasonal tips:
  • Dress for success: Get out your comfy sweaters, pants, and socks, it's time to write
  • Hot drinks: Stock up on coffee, hot cocoa, and teas... these are a must when writing in autumn
  • Writing outdoors: Take it outside...write with your laptop on the porch or in the park
  • Writing from home: No porch or park available? Open the house windows and enjoy the fresh air while writing
  • Reading: Take your book and a blanket outside and enjoy the sun

Topic and computer tips:
  • Change your background picture on your computer to something fall-related
  • Take fall-inspired photos to post on social media
  • Start a blog and write fall-related posts: weather, clothing, books, and foods
  • If you write articles online, write a few fall-related articles
Now, grab some friends or family and go pick a pumpkin! (Take a picture for social media!)

Book release: Picture This

What is the first draft?

Author organization tips: Writing down your book ideas

Monday, October 5, 2020

NEW book release: Picture This

Hello! I am so excited to announce my new novella, Picture This!

Carmen Sloan was married at a young age to a man she knew she would spend the rest of her life. She owned her own home, was attending college, and was quickly moving towards the life of her dreams.

After her husband Joe becomes sick, Carmen finds herself living an unrecognizable life, dealing with guilt and sadness daily. Walking to work at a pizza shop to wait tables, while her husband sat holed up in their home, was not the vision she had for her future.

A series of selfish decisions bring Carmen to a place of darkness. Dark secrets begin to wear on her, so she decides to admit her secrets to her husband, the one she used to love more than herself.

Just as Carmen makes a fresh start and life begins to bring her peace, an ugly part of her past drags her back into darkness. Will a broken heart be the death of her?

Picture This is a story of love, strength, secrets, darkness, and new beginnings.

It will be released on October 9, 2020! Pre-orders are available right now for Kindle: Pre-order HERE 

Author Deanna Martinez-Bey on Amazon

Funny Farm: Why do I love this movie?

Monday, September 28, 2020

What is the first draft?

If you are reading this article, it means that you are a writer or want to become one.
Congratulations on following your writing dreams! So many people desire to write and never get around to actually doing it.

Let’s talk about the first draft of your book. What is the first draft? It is the original manuscript. You may be thinking… Now that I have written my book it is ready to be submitted to agents and publishers. Well…hold on just a minute. Before you click send, print out your pages and let them sit on your desk for a day or three. Yup…just let them sit there staring you in the face!

After a few days go back, begin to read your book. Have a red pen handy because there are going to be story, grammatical, and spelling changes that you are going to make.
After you read through your book, mark your changes, and then apply them to your computer document.
After this step is complete you have two choices:
  • Move forward with your submissions
  • Have someone else proofread it for you
If you are looking for a copy editor, please reach out to me!
In addition to being an author and blogger, I am a copy editor and social media manager for authors! 
To answer the question that I proposed at the beginning of this article…What is the first draft, it is just that, the FIRST draft, not the final copy.

More from Author Deanna Martinez:

Preparing your writing environment

Can earbuds save lives?

New approach to writing a plot and creating an antagonist 

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Funny Farm: Why do I love this movie?

Have you ever seen, Funny Farm? It stars Chevy Chase and Madolyn Smith and was released in 1988.

Basically, it is about a couple who moves to "the country" so that the husband can write a novel. They have a variety of strange events that occur and make them second guess their decision of moving from the city to the country. The move pushes them apart and then ultimately pulls them back together.

I said all this to say, that for some odd reason, this movie encourages me as a writer. I'm sure we all have certain music, movies, and books that encourage us to do what we do and this is my movie of encouragement.

One of my friends on Instagram proposed a question yesterday, "What songs do you listen to when you write?" To her question, I responded that I will often have, Funny Farm playing in the background, but I prefer to write in silence.

Now it is out...I'm apparently a quirky writer. But aren't we all?

You may be wondering right now... What is the purpose of this post? And to you I say... I have no idea!

Author organization tip: Writing down your ideas 

Christmas Organizing book 

Monday, August 10, 2020

Author Organization Tips: Writing Down Your Book Ideas

Writing down ideas, what is that? I know most of us rely on electronics to keep up with our ideas, schedules, contacts, basically our lives.

Call me old fashioned, but there is something about writing down ideas that help me stay organized. I always have a little notebook that I carry with me so that I can write down any ideas I have while I am out and about, pertaining to the book I am writing or project I am working on.
You never know when an idea will come to you. If you don’t have a notebook handy, by all means, make a note on your phone. But, be sure to transfer the info to your notebook later. Having all of your book information together in one place will benefit you in the long run. You can refer back to it or add on to it as needed.

I buy a new notebook and a colorful pen each time I start writing a new book. Anything I think of relating to that book goes in that notebook. As I stated, it helps me stay organized and keeps me from having to remember all the details. I don’t know about you, but my brain doesn’t always remember all the details! Some days it is all I can do to remember to wear socks that match!

Tips for writing down ideas and staying organized:

  • Purchase a notebook (colorful pen optional)
  • Carry the notebook with you
  • Keep all of your book information in one place
  • Keep a special notebook for each book you are writing

This is an article about writing down your book ideas, but as you can see, organization is also important for a writer. They go hand in hand.
Write down your ideas and stay organized!

Christmas organizing book 

Organizing your books

Book organizer: Wordy Writer

Monday, July 27, 2020

Interview with P.E. Gilbert: Paul's Fantasy Writings

I met P.E. Gilbert through Instagram. After chatting we decided we would like to interview one
another and publish the interviews on our blogs. Paul published my interview on his blog last week, and now it is my turn! Paul's Fantasy Writings: Interview with Author Deanna Martinez-Bey.

  1. Please tell us your name and a little bit about yourself...
My name is P.E. Gilbert, and I am a blogger, YouTuber, writing consultant, and the author to the fantasy novella, The Sultan’s Daughter.

I studied history at Birmingham University, before spending the next ten years writing a fantasy series (not The Sultan’s Daughter, as it happens). Nowadays, I give writing tips on my blog and on YouTube, plus interview authors and lend advice where I can. I do these things to help writers/authors write more engaging stories.

  1. Tell us about your book: Title, genre, page count, blurb
My book is called The Sultan’s Daughter. It is a fantasy novella, targeted for fantasy lovers and women. It is a short book of 121 pages and it is fast-paced and full of suspense.

The story is from the sole POV of Princess Nalini, the Sultan’s daughter, who must do everything she can to save her father’s kingdom, despite having two older brothers and several advisors around her who are supposedly more competent than her. The blurb is as follows:

Victory means life and furthering everything that her father has built. Defeat means death, destruction, and ruin.

The choices could not be starker for Princess Nalini after a curse is placed upon her family. Untrained for rule and war, she must adapt quickly. For who else can stop the armies of frightening fanaticism marching toward the capital if not the Sultan’s daughter?

  1. What is your writing inspiration?
In general, my desire to write stories comes from my love for great books and films. I write in order to give back to the industries that have given me so much joy since childhood.

More specifically for The Sultan’s Daughter, my inspirations come from history, fiction, and historical fiction. I got the idea to write the story after I read a biography on Saladin by Professor John Man in 2019, around the time (coincidentally) that the new Aladdin film came out. Yes, Princess Jasmine is an inspiration for Nalini, but I would not say that they are alike in personality at all.

Other inspirations for this book include my general knowledge of Ancient Egypt and the Middle East; the deaths of the three French kings Louis X, Philip V, and Charles IV in the early-14th century (all of whom were brothers and died heirless, which in turn started the One Hundred Year’s War with England), and Margaret Beaufort as depicted by Philippa Gregory in The Red Queen.

  1. Are there more books in the works?
Yes! I am planning the sequel to The Sultan’s Daughter as we speak. I do not have a title for it yet, and it will be a while before I start it (let alone finish it). But I intend to start writing it in the autumn, and I am excited to continue the story.

(I must say that I have been overwhelmed that people, who have read The Sultan’s Daughter, have asked me if there is going to be a sequel. It is wonderful to know that people enjoyed my story so much that they want to read more. That is a dream come true, honestly.)

  1. What are some tips you can provide for other writers as far as networking their books?
Yes, I have a few tips on this front, all of which I do on a regular basis. First, I would advise writers/authors to use social media platforms, like Facebook and Instagram, so that they can: a) regularly post content to show their expertise, and b) make connections and promote other people’s works. 

Second, write a blog and interview authors or other forms of content creators. This second point links into my third tip, as I urge authors to focus on getting promotions rather than sales for their books. The more promotion you can get, and the better name you can get for yourself, the more sales will come your way.

Fourth, if you want to go to the next level, start a YouTube channel or TikTok account. Video content will give you a greater profile online. And the greater your profile online, the more chance people will have of coming across your books, which can mean more sales. (I will be setting up a TikTok account very shortly in order to give myself a greater profile online.)

  1. Can you please share your contact information with us? (Please include social media links)
For sure. I am on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube, plus I have a WordPress blog (Paul’s Fantasy Writings) and a website. Here are my links, so that you can view my content and/or contact me:

Lastly, I would like to say thank you, Deanna, for this opportunity. I really appreciate it and I wish you only success and joy going forwards.

It was truly my pleasure to work with Paul. He is kind, professional, talented, and knowledgeable. I look forward to working with him again in the future. 

Wordy Writer: Workbook Review 

 Flannery O'Conner: How she impacted my life

My interview with POC magazine

Friday, July 24, 2020

Christmas in July: Christmas Organizing Book

Are you enjoying all of the Christmas in July posts? I have been! Let me introduce you to a book I have written, it's called, Christmas, Get It Organized. I wrote it several years ago and just updated it on Amazon.

It is now available on Kindle or soft-cover. Both are super affordable!

Christmas, Get It Organized: Kindle 

Christmas, Get It Organized: Soft Cover 

Let me share a description of my book:
Do you find yourself dreading the Holiday season? Does the word Christmas make you cringe? Christmas…Get It Organized by Deanna Martinez provides easy steps to be ready for the Holiday without all the stress, crowds, and expenses.
Learn easy ways to stay organized, spend less, and have more time to spend with the people you love, doing the things you love.
Deanna will show you how to make lists, shop ahead of time, have parties, bake treats, create drinks, add new family traditions, and much more.
Gifts do not have to be things we buy. They can be things we make or time we can give.
Put Deanna’s organizing ideas into practice this year and find yourself laughing instead of crying this Christmas.
Simply click to purchase and download your copy of Christmas…Get It Organized, now!

Christmas in July: Tips for writers

Christmas in July: Christmas folders

Monday, July 20, 2020

Christmas in July tips for writers

Happy Christmas in July, authors! I have come up with a July to-do list for writers. Here you will see things that we can do now to prepare for the upcoming Holidays.

1. Start writing your Holiday e-books now. These can be fiction or non-fiction books that pertain to the Holidays. Create, edit, design them, and get them uploaded into KDP (or platform of your choice) to release in time for the Holidays. (I am a copy editor, so please reach out for your editing needs.)

2. Develop a Holiday themed blog, Facebook group, or website. By creating these now, you will have time to grow your following for when you start posting Holiday related posts. These sights will help you share the Holiday e-books you have for sale.

3. For freelance writers, start sending queries to magazines and websites. It is time to send in your Holiday themed articles and material.

Christmas in July: Christmas Folders

COVID-19 Decluttering: Organize your books

Wordy Writer Workbook: Great Christmas gift

Friday, July 17, 2020

Christmas in July: Christmas folders

It is that time of the year again...Christmas in July! This craft idea is perfect for writers because it requires research and we all love research, right? In all fairness, I do! It is one of my favorite parts of the writing process.

You can make the folders by yourself or with your children. I made mine with my daughter and bought all our supplies from The Dollar Tree. I may have spent $8 on our supplies, but you can get more elaborate with your folders if you want to.

  • Pocket Folder
  • Stickers
  • Old magazines
  • Scissors
  • Computer and printer, optional
  • Markers, optional

Fortunately, I have a collection of Holiday magazines, ranging from Good Housekeeping to Women's Day and then some.

First, we decorated our folders with a Christmas theme.
Then, we flipped through the pages of the magazines and clipped Christmas ideas. We clipped recipes, decorating ideas, gift ideas, and anything else we wanted to try out this Christmas.

If you don't have magazines, you can search for ideas online and print them out.

Then, add all of your clippings to your folder. It's that simple. 

Fiction writing: Character living space

Fiction writing: Nature settings

Monday, July 13, 2020

Fiction writing: Character living space

Do you realize that the detailed living space of a character speaks volumes about the type of person they are? Allow me to explain:

Dynamic extrovert:
A character with this personality type will typically live in a vibrant space.

Your flighty or flaky character may have a messy, yet cozy living space.

Lonely introvert:
A loner will most likely live in a crisp, clean, non-cluttered environment.

I'm sure you can see where I am going with this. Your characters' personalities will determine the type of space where they live, work, or spend their time.
These spaces do not simply serve as a backdrop, they are scenes in your story and need to be treated as such.

Susan walked into her living room and dropped her keys and briefcase onto the couch, after scooting the flannel blanket aside. As she sat, she glanced around the room and realized it had been weeks since she picked up or cleaned the place. Dustbunnies were gathered at her feet and take-out boxes from last week still sat on the coffee table.

Does this scene make you think that Susan is a straight-laced professional who has her life together? Nope. It sounds like Susan falls in line with a scatterbrained character, right?

Houses, rooms, workspaces, and hangouts can show the reader into the life and personality of your character.

Fiction writing: Nature settings

What is the first draft?

Flannery O'Conner: How she impacted my life

Thursday, July 9, 2020

Set reasonable writing goals

Always remember to set reasonable goals for yourself. The keyword in that sentence is,
you guessed it: Reasonable!
Writing a two hundred and fifty to a three hundred page novel is going to take you more
than a week to write.

It is good to have goals, but make sure they are suitable for your life. If after looking at
your calendar you feel that you will be able to dedicate three hours a week to writing, set
your goals accordingly.

For some, writing every day is a reasonable goal. If this is a possibility for you, decide if
you are able to dedicate 30 minutes a day to writing your book or 3 hours a day. Always
remember that something is better than nothing. So, 20 minutes a day or every couple of
days is better than going 2 weeks without writing at all.

For others, every other day or twice a week may be attainable.
Sit down and take a few minutes to write out your daily schedule. Then, decide when you
can fit in time to write.

It is really that simple.
After you set your writing goals, strive to attain them. But, do not beat yourself up if
sometimes you do not reach the goals you have set for yourself. Just decide to start back
up tomorrow and try again.

To print off a free daily calendar that you can design yourself, click here

Fiction writing: Nature settings

COVI-19 Decluttering: Organizing your books

Sunday, July 5, 2020

Fiction writing: Nature settings

Think about the climate of where our story is going to be set. Do you have a clear image in your mind? Is it sweltering or frigid, do you see cactus or snow piled mountains? Is it raining cats and dogs or is the sun shining bright in the sky without a cloud in sight?

These facts are more important than you may think when writing your novel. Why? Because the reader has to be transformed to where your story is being told.

Before you begin describing the natural aspects of your setting, decide on the geographical location. By doing this, it will make the details of describing much easier.

If you have never been to the geographical location of your story, be sure you do plenty of research before you begin writing about it. You have to know enough about the climate and visuals in order to take the reader away to that place.

Questions to ask yourself about the climate of your story location:

  1. Is it hot or cold
  2. What will people wear (coats or bathing suits)
  3. Is everything green and lush or brown and barren
  4. Will there be high rises and apartments or white houses with picket fences
  5. Concrete patios or miles of grassy land
  6. Rain, snow, sunshine, tornadoes, hurricanes, avalanches 

I think I proposed enough questions to get you thinking about the natural details.

Tip: Be sure to transport your reader to the setting of your story.

Monday, June 29, 2020

COVID 19 decluttering: Organize your books

Are you sitting home bored out of your mind with nothing to do? Even if you're not, chances are you do have more time on your hands.

Let's make the most of being home by purging and organizing!

Let's talk about all those books we've accumulated over the past several years. Now is a perfect time to go through and let some go and get the rest organized. 

I ask for books for my birthday and any Holiday that encourages giving gifts; from anniversaries to Christmas,  books, books, books. So, I have a few! 

What books should I get rid of?

1. Cookbooks with difficult recipes
You know, the ones you bought, but NEVER use. Yes, those. Time to lighten the load.

2. Books you read and wouldn't rate with 4+ stars 
You know you won't read them again, so pass them on.

3. Old textbooks 
You've held onto these in the event you need to refer back to clarify what you once learned.  But, all they do is collect dust and take up space. Pass that learning forward.
  • You can donate these books to a local library or thrift store. 
  • You can also sell them on an online marketplace. 
  • Offer them to family and friends who need or want them.
Fun idea:
Organize a virtual book exchange! Use social media or your contact list to get a list of people who are interested in taking part. 
Post the books you have available and have them picked up from your front porch. Social distancing...check!

More from author/copy editor Deanna Martinez: 

Sunday, June 7, 2020

Wordy Writer: Workbook review

Wordy Writer sent me a copy of their workbook: Wordy Writer - The Bones of your Story.

This workbook was designed to help authors create an extensive outline for their book. It contains sheets such as Story and Structure Development, Character Chart, Character Development, Chapter Outlines, and Notes.

Basically, what it does is lead you through the entire writing process of your book, allowing you to keep track of all the important details. It even has a chapter entitled: Kill Your Characters!

The workbook is approximately 122 pages, is geared towards fiction writing, and is well thought out and put together. The cost, including tax, is $26.56 and worth every penny.

I am working on my fourth novel, and when I start preparing for number five, I will be using this workbook. I suggest using a new workbook for each book you write.

Please visit their website for more information:

More from Author Deanna Martinez:

Flannery O'Connor: How she impacted my life

Spreading cheer and encouragement during COVID-19

Easy book writing tips

Friday, May 15, 2020

Flannery O'Conner: How she impacted my life...

I have this quote on my work desk!

The writer is only free when he can tell the reader to go jump in the lake. You want, of course, to get what you want to show across to him, but whether he likes it or not is no concern of the writer.
~ Flannery O’Connor

It has been years since I first laid my eyes on this life-changing quote. Flannery O’Connor was a writer and a darn good one in her time.
I was browsing online one-day several years ago, and read this gem. It jumped out at me, resonated within me and changed my life for the better immediately after I read it.
As writers, this is exactly our job. She nailed it. We are to write the story we have in our hearts…do what we are called to do. We are to write it the best we can. After that, it is not our concern. Of course, we want to write a best seller and in order for that to happen, people have to like what we wrote. But, this quote goes even deeper. We will always have people who do NOT like our stories, writing style, genre, etc. It is those people that this quote is referring to, (At least in my opinion it is.)
  •     Write your story
  •     Write the best you can
  •     Have it published
  •     Do not worry about the naysayers
  •     Create your own success and keep writing 

 More from Author Deanna Martinez:

 To the lady who handed me her dirty tissue

 Easy book writing tips

 How to stay accountable to writing


Saturday, April 4, 2020

Writing and Editing tips: Keeping your body comfortable

We are going to take a look at different equipment you can use as a writer and/or editor as well as ways to keep your body comfortable while you work.

Desktop Vs. Laptop

Benefits of a laptop:
You can work while you travel.
The downside of a laptop: 
They make work harder on the body. Because of the construction, the screen is too low while you type, which causes you to have to look down, and this causes extra stress on your neck and spine.

If you like to work from bed, I have an idea for you:
1. A wooden bed table
2. a sturdy chair pillow
These items will save your back and more bending forward to reach your laptop!
(See above photo)

Benefits of a desktop: 
You can make it ergonomically correct. Add a wrist rest, a footrest, a table to lift your monitor, and back support for your chair.
You can purchase 2 flat screen monitors. Having 2 monitors will benefit you when you are comparing two versions of a document, doing research for your work, and in many other instances.

The downside of a desktop: 
You have to sit in the same place every time you need to work.

General tip: Turn down the blue on your screen or purchase a pair of blue light glasses. This will protect your eyes and may help your eyes from getting tired.

More from Author Deanna Martinez:

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

My interview with POC Magazine

I am happy to announce that I was chosen to provide an interview with a local magazine!

I was asked about my work routine, how I began writing, how I started copy editing for other authors and social media management.

Several of the questions were thought-provoking and required me to take a few extra minutes of reflection in order to answer to my liking.

Others, I answered swiftly, without any hesitation.

Please take a couple of minutes to read my interview and please share with others who may be thinking about starting their own business.

I have also been featured on a local podcast: The Average Joe. Here, I tell my story of how I overcame physical abuse in order to become the person I am today. 

Sunday, March 29, 2020

How to start your fiction writing career

Prepare your writing environment: click here

Have you always dreamed about becoming an author in the fiction genre? Do you sit and daydream about doing book signings and seeing your handiwork being sold in book stores all across the world? If you answered yes to any of these questions, this article will help get you on the path to obtaining your goals!

Writing Down Your Ideas
Go out today and buy yourself a notebook that will only be used for your story ideas. While you are at it, buy the matching pens, sticky notes, and page tab holders to go with it.

Set Aside Some Time
After you have your notebook and accessories all set and ready to go, pencil in about thirty minutes to an hour on your busy calendar to sit down and write out your story ideas.

Consider Taking a Free Writing Course Online
Chances are you already have some type of writing skills or you would not be interested in writing a fiction book. However, one is never too old or established to learn! Take an online writing course to sharpen up your writing skills. One course in particular that will get you ready to write is The Crafty Writers Creative Writing Course. This course will teach you how to take your story ideas and turn them into the fiction novel you are dreaming about.

Creating Your Characters
This is a very important part of creating an enjoyable novel. You have to breathe life into each character as if they are real people living real lives. A good idea to achieve this task is to take bits and pieces about people you know and combine those traits with your fictional characters.
Not all characters can be good guys. You should have your “good guy” characters, but you also need to have the antagonistic characters (the “bag guys”). The antagonist will help to bring the struggle into your story.

Proper Story Layout
A book, as well as a movie, should have three main sections: The introduction, the struggle and the overcome. Think about your favorite movie. It has a short beginning, a lot of drama in the middle and the happily ever after in the end. Now, think about a movie that you did not like, chances are this movie started off way too slow and that made it feel boring. Ever watch a movie and after it ended you thought, “It ended just as it was getting good?” The reason for that is because the introduction was way too long and the struggle and overcome were way too short. Writing books work the same way. The introduction and the overcome are to be shorter than the actual struggle (the meat of the story).

Now that you have some really good and basic ideas about how to write a fiction book, take them and run with them. Get started today. Do not delay. The quicker you get started, the quicker you will get your first book completed.

Setting Reasonable Goals
Always remember to set reasonable goals for yourself. Writing a two hundred and fifty to a three hundred page novel is going to take you more than a week to write. It is good to have goals, but make them reasonable. If after looking at your calendar you feel that you will be able to dedicate three hours a week to writing, set your goals accordingly.

Some of the bold headlines in this article have links attached. Click on the links to learn more about that particular subject.

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Spreading cheer and encouragement during COVID-19

Hello, world! So many of us are struggling right now with either sickness, financial hardships,  depression, or maybe even all three.

I am using this blog as a platform to share some happiness! If you are sitting home with extra time on your hands, use this time to focus on things that make you happy.

I have a food blog you might food brings joy to many of us: 

And if you are a writer or have always wanted to be, I have written several articles that will help you on your journey:

Prepare your writing environment 

One of the best writing tips around: Set reasonable goals for yourself

How to stay accountable to your writing: Don't make excuses and share your project

What is the first draft and what do I do after I write it?

Writing a novel: How to come up with story ideas and plot twists

Organization tips for writers: Writing down ideas

Sunday, March 8, 2020

To the lady who handed me her dirty tissue...

free Adobe images

Oh, the joys of working at a fitness center! In addition to writing books, copy editing and social media management, I also work part-time at a local gym. It's an easy job, scanning membership tags, doing laundry and some easy data entry. But, the customer service aspect of this job gets me in some way, shape, or form every day.

Take today for example...

When someone walks up to the counter, I automatically extend my hand to take from them either their key tag, car keys or locker key. It is a natural reaction for me to reach out as someone approaches the counter.

I was busy chatting with a colleague as a lady approached. I stopped talking and reached my hand over the counter and this lady proceeded to hand me her dirty tissue! I can't even make this stuff up. First of all, why? Second of all, with all the worry over the big, "virus" going around, why? Thirdly, why?

I realized what was happening just before I touched her snot rag and pulled my hand away with the quickness of Spiderman. I looked at her like she had three heads and her response was, "I didn't see a trash can."

I pointed in the direction of the trash can, which was all of three feet away. I was disgusted! What if I would have touched it?

To the lady who handed me her dirty tissue: Why?

More from Author Deanna Martinez: 

Easy book writing tips

How to stay accountable to writing

My interview: The Average Joe podcast

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Easy book writing tips

For those who are at the beginning stages of writing their are some helpful tips to help guide you through the writing process:

Beginning tips

Start writing an outline
(Writing an outline for your book will help you stay on track and organized through the writing process)

Make up a writing schedule
(Set aside time to write each day or at least every other day)

Pick a place to write
(Find a quiet place in your home as well as another location to write)

Set deadlines
(Start with daily, then weekly, monthly then a completion deadline)

Along the way tips

(Research the details)

Think about your book
(Think about your book when you are not writing and make notes)

Create notes
(Carry a notebook or note app on your phone. You do NOT want to forget a good idea)

Edit as you go
(when you get to a stopping point, go back and edit what you wrote)

Ending tips

(Go back and edit at the end)

Take a rest
(Set the completed book down for 2 weeks and then edit it again)

More from Author Deanna:

How to stay accountable to your writing 

Using owned media as an author

My social media course: reveal

Friday, February 14, 2020

How to stay accountable to writing: Don’t make excuses and share your project

Do some of these sound familiar?

Oh, if only I could find time to write. You can!
How do you find time to write books? I make time. I schedule it in.
You must have a lot of free time if you have written three books. I do not have tons of free time on my hands.
You must not be married or have children if you are an author. I am married and have two children.

How in the world can one stay on task when writing? I’ll give you a tip: Tell people what you are doing!
Tell people you trust. Share with those who will encourage you and not hold you back. Tell them that you are writing a book. Make a blog and blog about the process. Post it on Facebook. Just get the word out. By telling people what you are doing, you will be encouraged to keep going and to finish your project. You may even be able to pick up helpful tips along the way. People know people and you never know what types of doors will open for you by sharing your project.

How will telling others keep me accountable?
Eventually, after hearing about your project enough, people will begin to ask you how it is coming along. They will begin to encourage you to keep going and they will tell you how much you encourage them with your entrepreneurial spirit! The interest that others will take in your project will encourage you, keep you accountable and help you find your way to completion.

More from Author Deanna Martinez:

Using owned media as an author

Should you follow your heart when writing?

To outline or not to outline...

Saturday, February 8, 2020

The tornado at Panera Bread: February 6, 2020

I have a little story to tell...

On Thursday, February 6, 2020, I had a 1:30 pm meeting at Panera in Raleigh, NC. Specifically, the one on Colonnade Drive off Six Forks Road.

I arrived early so I could work on novel number four before my meeting started. Yey, me! I took my obligatory photo of my computer and my coffee as you see below...

My meeting partner texted me that they were running late...the text said 1:44 pm. No problem, I just kept working on my book.

After their arrival we started talking and about 10 or 15 minutes into our conversation, I felt the pressure in my ears change and I immediately got light headed. I said, "Oh, man, my ears." My friend said, "You felt that too?" And as soon as the words slid from their mouth, the clouds broke loose and rain started pelting sideways and the wind started blowing so hard that the outside tables and umbrellas were blowing everywhere. Yes, we were sitting inside of the restaurant, where at this point the power went out.

My friend ran up to the front doors and peered out and then came running back, while screaming, "Everybody take cover. Get into the bathrooms!" And we all got up and ran to the bathroom area. I wound up in the men's room with many others, both male and female. We all stayed in there for a good 10 minutes...everyone was texting their family and friends. It was a scary 10 minutes for sure. My hands were shaking so badly, I could hardly text.

We all emerged unscathed, and went about our way. As I stepped outside to go to my NEW car, by the way, I saw in the parking lot, a tree that was broken in half that had gone THROUGH someones car! It was awful. (Picture featured above)

Having lived through a tornado before, (In April 2011, I had half a pine tree go through my house), these were all typical signs of a tornado and tornado damage. Plus, I felt it in my ears and in my head, just as I did in 2011.

My family was home safely. They endured extreme hail and brutal thunder and lightening. I saw several baseball sized hail as I approached my home. We, our cars, home and property were safe...thankfully!

And that's my story!

My Car :) 
More from Author Deanna Martinez:

My Interview: The Average Joe podcast

Weekend in Snowshoe: The things I saw...

Using owned media as an author