As most of you know, DragonCon was essentially cancelled for this year due to safety concerns. They are having an online event You. can check that out at dragoncon.org.
I’m going to be sad about this for some time. Truth be told, after serious consideration, I had already decided to roll over my table to 2021. It was still a hard decision, and it’s even harder to hear that the event was cancelled all together.
I love DragonCon. The 24/7, 5 day geek-a-thon, (I say this with affection because I am a geek) with all the costumes, panels, gaming, vendors, mech wars… the list goes on and on. Mostly, I think I will miss the people. There’s a comradeship that happens there that cant be explained. People in your fave fandoms become your new bestie after spending an hour in line with them. And, you can spend hours talking about things that happened at the gaming table. So much fun.
Rest assured, I will be at DragonCon for 2021, peddling my brand of cheesy, scifi, romance.
In the meantime, I’m revamping my marketing plan. I think I’ve got some exciting stuff planned. I’ll be posting that later.
Anyway, that’s really all there is to update. I’m still following quarantine guidelines so I’m spending a lot of time at home, playing video games and writing.
Just for funsies, here’s my lazy cats enjoying their quarantine.
Who am I? I’m Tiffany Easterling, a little sad science fiction romance writer.
I know I haven’t updated in a while, but I had to get through a thing… and I did.
When I got through it, I found myself in quarantine.
Admittedly, quarantine is very lonely. I miss my friends, Julie, Angel, Jessica… I’m talking to you. And, I miss being a bad influence to my kid. As much as I miss them, I don’t want to be anyone’s Ground-0 for the Wuhan-covid. So I stay away, like a sad lonely bunny.
On more exciting news, I got an email verification that my lip gloss will be delivered today, and my hair dye will be delivered Friday. Yes, I’m shallow. I like to look good even when I’m by myself—but that’s not the point. The point is I’m getting hair dye and lip gloss soon. I’m ridiculously excited about it. So, I thought I’d share.
In the meantime… I am working on the re-launch for Priestess, with updated cover. I cant wait to show you the sexy that I’m gonna be adding. Suffice to say…. deeeeeaaaammmmmnnn.
That’s all that is going on with me. I’m kind of boring. My books are way more exciting. I’ll talk more about my current project next post.
In the meantime, check out the view from my office window.
Who am I? I’m Tiffany Easterling, romance writer, and sad lonely bunny.
So I’ve had an idea, mostly because I want too, but also because why not.
Why don’t I/we/you do an everyday cosplay week? You know, that cosplay you can wear every day, that only fans or other cosplayers will recognize.
How about next week, Feburary 10th through the 14th.
Yes I know it overlaps with valentine’s day. I just think it would make it that much more fun.
So here are the rules:
You can participate in one, or all 5 days.
If you have a job or other obligations that require a dress code, you must style your everyday cosplay to follow that dress code. Seriously, your boss isn’t going to believe that the ‘Evilbunny made me do it.’
Any form of fandom cosplay will he acceptable. It can be something as major as a complete outfit, or as minor as a button to represent.
I’ll be representing my own fav. Fandoms. And, I’ll be posting pics on both Twitter and Instagram. If you participate please tag me @evilbunnyempire on both instagram and twitter.
Let’s be crazy and cool and wear every day cosplay.
Who am I? I’m Tiffany Easterling, romance writer, and average every day cosplayer, at least for next week anyway.
Normally I don’t like to complain, mainly because when i get aggravated or angry, I don’t hold on to those emotions very long.
However, on this occasion, I happened to run into a real arrogant, ignorant, self-righteous idiot. And, well, I just couldn’t let it go.
The conversation was centered around going out of town to work, and how difficult it was for afore mentioned idiot, because of his anxiety. The conversation went as follows.
Idiot: complaining about last minute preparations and how he hoped to make money
Me: I understand, I get the same anxiety when I go out of town to sell books…
Idiot: That isn’t the same. That isn’t work….
How the idiot managed to sound so condescending and so stupid at the same time, I will never know, but he did. He really did.
To be fair the idiot probably didnt know how stupid he sounded. I’m not sure the idiot is that self aware. So, I thought ‘Hm. Maybe I should post a blog about what I put into the books I publish’
Keep in mind, I do all of the following whilst working a full time day job. I imagine if I didn’t, maybe it wouldn’t take so long from start to finish.
First, writing the book. It starts as a concept. For me its usually characters. I then create extensive character profiles for my primary characters. Then comes world building. Magic and paranormal structure needs to be created. All of my paranormal rules have some basis in theoretical sciences, and requires extensive research. If I have a setting that is in a different country or culture, that too requires extensive research. Or, I write out detailed descriptions of culture, political systems, and settings, if the story takes place on an alien planet. I create detailed maps. I even have mapped layouts of the living and work quarters of my main charecter. Next comes secondary characters. They too get complete profiles and history. Then there is tertiary characters, and their profiles.
After I do all of that, I start writing the book. However, I do have to continually research during the writing process. There have been times that I have spent two days researching something for it to be a mere paragraph in the book.
So on with the writing process. My last book, this took two years.
Next comes editing.
I start by going through my work first, correcting any continuity or charecter errors. Keep in mind, if I change it add something at the end of the book, I then have to go and thread that through the rest of the book.
Next, editor number 1. The first editor is for content and continuity. It’s this editors job to pull out slow, or confusing aspects of the book. It’s often a painful process because a good editor will very likely tear the book apart.
I input the changes.
Then editor number 2. Grammar and punctuation. It is exactly that simple and complicated all at once.
I input the changes.
On to beta readers. Ideally, it’s best to have more than 20, but it doesn’t always work out that way. So off goes the book to the people I’ve literally begged to read it in a very short amount of time.
Time to start the publishing process.
While the book is being reviewed by the beta readers, this is when I start working on my cover. First finding an artist. This is never easy. Finding an artist that mashes, and is available is difficult at best. After I sign a contract, its time to look for stock art for the artist. Other authors skip this step. Me, I want to make sure I help my artist get as close to my vision for my cover as possible. It saves a lot of frustration. Also, I’d recommend working with an experienced cover artist that knows the market. Their feedback is invaluable.
At this point I’m getting feedback from my beta readers. Again, this can be a painful process because sometimes I’ve made obvious errors in continuity and context. Some beta readers just dont like my work, and that’s okay. Even though I’d prefer it didnt happen, I generally get at least 1 beta reader that is not into the whole paranormal romance genre.
I input the changes.
Next, I send my manuscript to the final editor. It’s their job to polish my work.
While my manuscript is at the last editor, I’ve usually gotten the preliminary art from my artist. Time to enter into negotiations for changes. Sometimes I do get stonewalled because ‘artistic license.’ And then have to find a second cover artist, it has happened. To be clear, I dont get upset when this happens. It just means me and the artist didnt mesh. But, getting cover art is an extensive process. So on to changes… and or a new cover artist. Eventually I get the cover I both want and need to get my manuscript the attention I feel it deserves.
At this point I’m getting ready to market. I write a short, medium, and long synopsis. As well as updating my author bios.
I also start marketing the book. Keep in mind, I already keep an active presence on social media. So, the marketing is extra to that.
By this time, I’ve gotten edits back from the last editor. I input those changes.
Simultaneously, I send my cover art to a graphic designer. Sometimes the cover artist will do the graphic art on the cover. I like to consult with an actual graphic designer. Or, have the lettering and graphic design done completely separate from the cover.
At this point I go in and assign the book ISBNs. I need one for both the electronic and paper copy of the book. And, the application is detailed.
Now it’s time to review the lettering, and book spine graphics. This takes a back and forth because not all graphics look good in small print. Not all graphics look good in large print. And, yes all printing styles should he checked. It’s very important for marketing.
Now that everything has been approved and ISBNs assigned I upload the book into amazon. This is also time consuming because it takes 12 to 24 hours for Amazon to approve the formatting. Sometimes getting the bleed and headers just right is very difficult
After Amazon approves the book it is time to order proofs and check my work.
I input any changes and re-upload the book. Finally…
It’s time for the book release. Which means back to marketing, lots and lots of marketing.
This is the point where I have to go relearn HTML coding because my website needs to be updated, and I’ve completely forgotten how. Hours of work is spent for the most minor changes on my website. Major changes take days.
Now that that is all done, it’s back to marketing. Blogs, contests, online interviews, applying to reader groups and websites for the opportunity to have my book included for their readers/newsletters.
Also, I put in applications at multiple venues, so that I can go sell my books.
Also, also, I send out inquiries to several bookstores to see if they will stock my books.
Remember I work a fulltime day job.
And, I’m still keeping up with my social media relationships.
So now that the book has been released, its time to prepare for face to face sales and encounters. Time to order, approve, and print posters. Order, approve and print bookmarks, bags, and any other giveaways.
I’d like to point out here, whilst marketing is necessary, it is not writing. And, most definitely not nearly as fun.
From start to finish, it took me 3 years to release my last book.
I will confess writing is truly a labor of love. There is nothing more wonderful to me, than getting lost in my works as I write them. But make no mistake, it is laborious. It is work!
So, when you see an author dont be like the idiot. Please respect them and the work they do.
Who am I? I’m Tiffany Easterling, and I have 2 jobs, one of which is writing cheesy scifi romance.
Normally, I really dislike posting my goals because a lot of the time I miss my own self-imposed deadlines. Yes, I have issues.
But, I do have goals that dont have a definite deadline, so I can talk about them. The rest are plans, and ideas in the works.
One of my goals, to get healthy, lose weight, and wear some awesome cosplay. I’ve already started… so that’s that. It will be done. Eventually.
Another goal, find some cute summer sandals that are comfortable to walk in before summer. This might prove slightly more difficult.
Right now I have dozens of notebooks filled with projects. Thanks to encouragement from my posse, I’ve chosen one. I’m 12,000 words deep. And, it’s going to be amazing
As far as upcoming ideas, I’m thinking on a 3 series lecture to offer at my local library. If they let me. And, a 1 series lecture for distant libraries, again if they let me. I never thought I’d do how to ‘writer’ stuff. But, I see a need in the writing community, and I have the knowledge. So, why not share.
I’m also thinking on contests. I’m just kind of lacking creativity. I always base these things on what I would find appealing. However, what I find appealing and popular opinion are not the same. So, I’m open to ideas.
I do have one idea, something I’ve always wanted to do. And, if I get others to participate, well hells yeah. I’ll be posting about that idea next week.
I traveled a lot this year. Starting it with a cruise, and ending with a mountain vacation. And, there was a trip to Dragoncon in between. I got to see ancient cities, lavish castles, and met some amazing people.
Shout out to Karen. I met her at Dragoncon when she bought my book.
I accomplished a lot too.
I managed to survive a company restructuring for the day job. I finished and published Priestess. I got to go to Dragoncon as a vendor… to sell my books. I got to see my dad. I have improved my writing style exponentially. I started my weightloss, get healthy journey. I’ve kind of/sort of started a goal, which is to help other indie authors publish themselves. I found a face moisturizer that works, and yes that is a big deal. This is not new, but I am and was surrounded by people who love and support me. Oh oh, and I found out my sister is an amazeballs manager.
And… there was the setback.
Most everyone knows I took down Priestess because of some fatal grammatical errors that changed a lot of the context.
This devastated my writers ego.
I was forced to re-examine my author dream.
I always had this idea in my head that my success as a writer would mean I could support myself as a writer. I thought if I worked hard enough writing would be my day job. And, I’d always be smiling. I didn’t have the expectation of being a millionaire. I just want to write full time, maybe travel to some cons and spend hours talking about characters with fans. Yes. I realize the ridiculousness of that dream… now.
My books are grains of sand on vast beaches.
Because, I made the decision to take Priestess down, I came to believe that I would never accomplish my dream. I’d ruined my own reputation.
Well, I’ve matured a lot in three months because the scope of my dream has changed and I realize, that I’m living it.
I’m a writer. I’m an author. I’m a story teller. Monetary success can’t give or take that away from me.
So the dream has changed. I’m probably never going to make money as a writer. But, I am still living my dream.
I’m a published author. And, guess what. In 2020, I will expand my dream by publishing more works. And, those stories are going to be amazing.
So expect more super cheesy, scifi actiony romance from me… a lot more.
By the way, I did get the edits back on Priestess, and i will be doing a re-release with prizes, new cover reveals, and deleted scenes. It’s an amazing story and needs to be in the world. So look forward to that.
Also, look forward to more interaction from me.
Who am I? I’m Tiffany Easterling, writer, author, storyteller… still.
Admittedly, my writer’s confidence took a huge blow a couple of months ago. I was so deeply affected that I couldn’t hear the stories that were constantly whispering through my mind.
After a very enjoyable vacation in the North Carolina mountains, I’m very happy to say, I’m finally hearing my stories again.
I cant wait to write them.
Who knew? I just needed a vacation.
I will post more about the happenings on my vacation in a different blog. For now, I will say this. Visiting the Biltmore, Ashville North Carolona, and. Driving the Blueridge Parkway should be on everyone’s bucket list.
In the meantime, expect more updates from me. And, look out for the re-release of Priestess.
Who am I? I’m Tiffany Easterling, and despite my existential breakdown, I’m still a writer.
Before I explain, I must state a fact. I love my stories, my characters, my bad guys… my books. And, I’ve finally developed into my own writer style.
It’s the putting my work out into the world that causes my anxiety.
I’m about to leave for Dragoncon.
I’ve got a car full of books, posters and print material. I’ve paid cover artists, editors, and graphic designers, to make my books beautiful. I genuinely think they are beautiful.
Now, comes the hard part. Trying to get them out into the world.
How do I explain to people that I think my books are amazing?
What if people reject them? What if they reject them without reading them? What if I sit at my table at Dragoncon and people just walk by?
No, this isn’t my first convention table, but I only worked super small conventions.
This convention is huge
I’ve wanted to do this for years.
You’d think I’d be more excited and less anxious. But, my brain doesn’t make any sense.
My fear/anxiety is not going to stop me.
Honestly, even if I sit at my table and watch people walk by, I’ll do this again… and again.
I’ll keep loading my books and print material, and driving all over this country. I’ll keep braving my fear and anxiety to find readers. Even if it’s only one reader, because I get deliriously happy when I find readers that love my characters and stories as much as I do.
So, I’m off to Dragoncon. Ready to do this. And, excited to frollic at one of the best sci-fi gaming conventions ever.
And, and, and, David Tennant, Zackery Levi, and Cary Elwes are going to be there! How lucky am i?
Who am I? I’m I’m Tiffany Easterling, a mostly nervous, definatly excited, writer of butt-kicking action and delicious romance.