3 Questions Wednesday with Ginger Solomon

Good morning, dear reader. Today we welcome author Ginger Solomon to Inspired Prompt. Ginger is offering one commenter an e-copy of One Choice. Stay tuned to find out more.

Ginger 6 - brightened

Good morning, Ginger. Can you describe yourself in three words?

Organized. Average. Friendly.

A great combination.  Next question…

Someone offers you a fully-paid writing research trip to any place you desire to go. Where would it be and why?

eilean-donan-castle-665549_1920Scotland. I’ve had a fascination with Scotland for many years. I’d love to travel all around the country, checking out the castles. I love castles. I love the Scottish accent. I do not love haggis. At least I don’t think I would love it as I’ve never tried it and have no intention of doing so. 😊

Ha! I’m with you on loving the land and the accents, but I don’t think I would enjoy anything that contains a sheep’s lung. For your last question…

If someone made a movie of your life, what would be the theme song?

I’m not good with song names, but two come to mind. It was a toss-up, really. I just couldn’t decide between Don’t Worry, Be Happy or Amazing Grace. LOL

I like that, Ginger. If we’re saved by His amazing grace, we can lay aside worry and be happy. J

Readers: Leave a comment to enter the drawing for One Choice. Keep reading for information about the book!

Click to Tweet: “Organized. Average. Friendly.” 3QW with Ginger Solomon https://wp.me/p2YFil-3pK @InspiredPrompt #interview #giveaway


One Choice finalCahri Michaels is American by birth, but Belikarian by choice. Being selected to participate in the Bridal March forces her to give up the independent life she’s created for herself. She’s not ready to be anyone’s wife, much less to a man she doesn’t know.

Prince Josiah Vallis despises the centuries-old tradition—the Bridal March—that is forcing him to choose a wife from fifty women. Why does it matter that he’s twenty-five and still single?

When Cahri and Josiah meet, passion ignites. Will it spark a godly love that can see them through or will they be burned, never to be the same?


Ginger 6 - brightenedGinger Solomon is a Christian, a wife, a mother to seven, and a writer—in that order (mostly). She writes or reads inspirational romance of any genre, and if she’s busy homeschooling, doing laundry, or fixing dinner, books are on her mind. She’s a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, president of her local writing group, and blogs regularly for InspyRomance.com and at gingersolomon.com.

Author Links:

Website

Inspy Romance Blog

Facebook Author Page

Twitter @GingerS219

Pinterest

Amazon Author Page

Do you Know your Rights?

Google search

I am an author, but I’m also a multi-published freelance writer. In fact, I got my start in writing by freelancing small pieces such as articles, devotions, stories for anthologies, etc. I have been freelancing successfully since 2010 and now have somewhere around 200 published pieces in numerous publications. I also teach workshops on freelancing at writers’ conferences. When I do, I always start with a brief lesson on writer’s rights. Understanding the different types of rights is so important!

These rights are true regardless of whether you are negotiating a contract for a small piece or a larger work. It’s always good to know what your contract says; what rights you are selling the publication / publisher and what rights you are keeping.

Types of rights:

First Rights also called First American Serial Rights (FASR): If you sell a publication First Rights, it means you are selling them the right to be first to publish the piece. (In other words, you are telling them that it has not been published before, and you will not allow it to be published until after whatever time stipulated in the contract. Contracts differ on this—many say one year after the date it appears in their publication, others say six months, and a few say it can be published again immediately after the date it first appears in their publication.)

When you sell first rights, after the time stipulated in the contract, the rights revert to you as the author and you can use it any way you like (you can post it in a compilation of your own, or sell a reprint to it.)

First rights can only be sold once—the first time it is published.

Reprint Rights sometimes called Second American Serial Rights: If you sell a piece that has already been published, you are selling the new publication reprint rights, i. e. the right to publish a reprint of your work. Not all magazines will purchase reprints and those that do often pay less. Not always though; my highest paying article the first time for .25 a word (it was a 1500 word article so that came to $380), the second time as a reprint for another $375 to a magazine that paid just as much for reprints as it did for 1st rights, and has sold two more reprints since then (for $75 & $240) and I’ll sell it again if the opportunity presents itself.

You can sell reprint rights as many times as you can find someone to purchase them. You own the rights to the piece.

One-time Rights are a little tricky. They work more like reprint rights in that the writer owns the rights to his or her piece and can sell them as often as possible. Some well-established writers sell these because there is a demand for that writer’s work. Most publications do not buy these, though. Most stipulate in the writers’ guidelines what kind of rights they are willing to buy, and it is usually first rights, reprint rights, or all rights.

All rights or Exclusive Rights: I generally caution against selling all rights or exclusive rights to a piece. If a magazine buys all rights that means they will own the piece if the writer is willing to sell it. Personally, I do not ever sell all rights to my work. It feels to me like I am selling my babies. They are mine, created from my head and though I am happy for someone to publish it, I do not want that entity to then own it. I want to own my own work! All rights you sell only once, because then it is no longer yours to sell. Selling all rights do, however, tend to pay more and some writers are happy to sell them.

Work for Hire is a term that also refers to the kind of rights a writer will have to a piece. It means the publication has hired you to write for them. Therefore, that publication owns whatever you write. Many journalism jobs are work for hire—where the writer writes for that newspaper, or magazine and as such, writes whatever that magazine wants them to write, and the magazine then owns the content.

I do take some work for hire jobs. I have taken and will continue to take assignments from a couple different devotional magazines. These assignments are considered work for hire, so I do not own the devotions I have written for them. The two I write for are Open Windows (Lifeway) and Reflections (Smyth & Helwys) These are the only instances where I give up ownership of anything I write.

That’s it in a nutshell. Usually you find the rights a magazine wishes to buy in their writers’ guidelines.

Click to Tweet: From @harrietemichael Do You Know Your Rights? What you need to know about writers’ rights. @InspiredPrompt #devotional #writer


Writing Prompt: Write why you would or would not be willing to write on assignment where the publication keeps the rights to your work.

To Blog or Not to blog?

pexels-photo of computer of Inspired

Happy New Year rings out, and with those words, we begin planning, setting goals, and trying our hand at new enterprises. As a writer, your new enterprise might be a blog.

Many of us hesitate to start a blog. We worry about what to say, where to get our ideas, and how to manage something so technical. After all, most of us aren’t computer programmers. Right?

So, here are six steps to get you started.

The First Six Steps:

  1. Decide what topic your blog will cover. This will help when you need to pick a theme for your blog site. Will it be a devotional blog, a business blog, or maybe a blog about the cool historical facts you unearth during your research for that new book? Whatever the focus of your new blog is, make sure it’s broad enough to give you wiggle room, but not so broad, your content is weak.
  1. Choose a blogging platform. The top four I’ve heard discussed in writing circles are WordPress.com, WordPress.org, Blogger, and Squarespace. All but WordPress.org host their own sites. With WordPress.org, you need to find your own host and domain name.
  1. Pick a domain name. For fiction writers, your name.com is the best choice. After all, you are your brand. However, if you write nonfiction, then the topic of your book or the area of your expertise might be a better fit. Domain names are offered by either your blogging platform or your host.
  1. If needed, find a hosting option. Some of the best hosting sites are Hostgator and Bluehost. They are inexpensive and easy to use.
  1. Select plug-ins and/or widgets. The number of available plug-ins and widgets is crazy. I think there might be one that will even wash your clothes for you. Because of the large volume, be careful not to overload your site with too many. However, with that said, there are two that you absolutely need. QuickieBar allows you to put an opt-in form to gather e-mail addresses at the top of your blog, and Mashshare or Digg Digg makes it easy for your readers to share your site on social media.
  1. Content is King. Over the past ten years, the number of blogs on the internet has grown by leaps and bounds, going from a few thousand to millions. So, what’s going to set you apart from the crowd? Your words. Plain and simple. People will take notice if you give them something to notice.

Don’t worry so much about how long the article runs or if it’s too short. Be more concerned about the information you’re passing on to your readers. Would you take the time to read what you’ve written? Is it visibly appealing? Nice photos? Text laid out well? Enough white space? A well-written piece will get noticed, and better yet, shared.

Click to Tweet: Six important steps for effective blogging #InspiredPrompt #blog writer

Now, that you’ve got the basics for starting your blog in the New Year. I’ll leave you with the most important lesson I’ve learned over the course of the two years I’ve
been writing my devotional blog Beautiful Pieces of Grace.

Don’t be in a hurry.Typewriter Don't give up

Consistency and longevity are the keys to blogging success.

God’s blessing for this New Year,

Bonita Y. McCoy

Writing Prompt:Technology made her quake in her boots, but she wasn’t about to tell her new boss. If he wanted a blog, a blog is what he’d get. Now, to find out what he meant by a host.

3 Questions Wednesday with Carole Brown

Today, it is my pleasure to welcome author Carole Brown to 3 Questions Wednesday. Good morning, Carole. Can you describe yourself in three words?

Carole BrownCaring. Determined. Author.

I like that. It takes determination to become an author.  🙂 Next question…

Someone offers you a fully-paid writing research trip to any place you desire to go. Where would it be and why?

A secluded Island. Why? I’m in love with the ocean and islands period. Warm breezes and clear, turquoise water. Relaxed atmosphere. Simple living. Plenty of time to write, muse, enjoy being with family and friends and explore. What more could be asked?BeachStamp

Maybe an instrument. 🙂 But a warm and sunny place sounds divine. Now, here’s your last question.

If someone made a movie of your life, what would be the theme song?

Hubby and I have always loved Kenny Roger’s Through the Years. It says a lot for a song and fits our life perfectly. How fortunate we were when God brought us together. Tough times? Of course, but God saw us through. Misunderstandings? Plenty. We’re works of progress. Adventures? Oh, my, not enough space and time to tell all. Still in love? Definitely!

I love that song, Carole. Thank you for being with us today.

Readers, Carole is willing to give away a book (reader’s choice of print or kindle in states; outside of states, kindle only).

 

Click to Tweet: A secluded Island. What more could be asked? 3 Questions Wednesday with Carole Brown @InspiredPrompt #interview #giveaway


 

Both rebels in their own way, Josie and Jerry Patterson must figure out how to keep the other’s love…and keep the German enemy at bay.

She has two loves—her skating and Jerry, her husband. But when he returns home looking like a skeleton trying to return to life, she’s scared. What happened in Germany to change a man so much? Has another woman captured his heart?

Jerry has vowed to let Josie live her own glamourous life…especially after what happened in Germany. But when his wife’s life is threatened, Jerry realizes he can’t stand by and do nothing. Jerry has to risk all for the very soul and life of himself—Josie.

These two damaged, rebellious people learn the hard way that leaning on God instead of their own selves and abilities is the only true way to love and happiness.


Author Bio:

Carole BrownBesides being a member and active participant of many writing groups, Carole Brown enjoys mentoring beginning writers. An author of ten books, she loves to weave suspense and tough topics into her books, along with a touch of romance and whimsy, and is always on the lookout for outstanding titles and catchy ideas. She and her husband reside in SE Ohio but have ministered and counseled nationally and internationally. Together, they enjoy their grandsons, traveling, gardening, good food, the simple life, and did she mention their grandsons?

Personal blog

Facebook

Amazon Author Page

Twitter

BookBub

Pinterest

Goodreads

Linkedin

Google+

Stitches in Time

 

Back to Basics for Writers – Plotter or Pantser?

by Tammy Trail

You might be a PLOTTER if you have ever wondered if you should be more organized with your writing. Plotting is a systematic way of putting your story thoughts together. You might decide to do it by scene or chapter. You will need to know what each character’s goal, motivation and conflict are for each scene. This system may require you to write an outline of your story idea.

A writer friend showed me one method when I first started working on my story. You simply take 3 X 5 index cards and write each chapter idea on a card until you have each chapter worked out for the whole book. If you’re writing romance, a suggestion with this method is using different colored index cards for your hero and heroine. For instance, pink index cards for the heroine and blue for the hero. Using index cards gives you an opportunity to change the cards around to rearrange your chapters, or change the time frame of your inciting incident.

There are many different plotting systems you can find with the help of the internet. I have read the “Plot Skeleton”, by Angela Hunt. Randy Ingermason has a Snowflake system that you can purchase from his website. Scrivener is a downloadable system that helps organize your story and allows you to keep your notes, pictures, outline, and your manuscript all in one place. This is also a great tool if you decide to self-publish your novel.

Some writers may consider themselves ‘free spirits”, and refuse to use any kind of plotting system because it stifles the creative flow. This is the PANTSER method – you fly by the seat of your pants. I started out with an idea for a story with no formal plotting method I imagined my heroine’s appearance, her personality and motivation. Then I created a life for her in the 18th century that I incorporated into a story.

My initial first chapter is now my third chapter, and I finished the book just shy of 70,000 words. When I began to edit my story, I found plot holes; places where my story lost connection and became a dead end. Now that I’ve had time to think about my story, I’ve written a whole different first chapter. Sounds a little crazy, huh?

Well, admittedly I am flustered with the complete process. Do I feel that I’ve wasted my time? Not a bit. I have learned a lot from this first draft. I went back to my index cards and began to look at them in a whole different light. I began to fix plot holes, and really think about deep point of view for my main characters. It’s still a work in progress.

Whichever method you choose, neither is wrong as long as you write the story. I haven’t given myself a label. I guess I’m just a bit of a rogue. I love my characters and the journey I envision for them. One day soon I hope to call myself a published author. I’m still learning through my own journey. How about you?

Writing Prompt:  Tracy pushed the off button on the remote just as the first clap of thunder shook her little house. She went to the kitchen to retrieve her flashlight; storms and electricity didn’t get along in her small town. The flashlight was forgotten when she heard a  rattle at her back door. She watched in awe as the doorknob shook violently from left to right. Then the lights went out.

Click to Tweet: So you want to #write. Back to Basics – Plotter or Pantser?