Friday, August 18, 2017

Friday Five...



All things KB Jacobs...

(you all remember that I'm half of KB Jacobs, right?)

So, today is a big day in the KB Jacobs world. 
We are revealing the cover and blurb for our next book, Crazy Love, book #1 in the Bookstore Love series.


Cover designer: Amanda Matthews (AM Design Studios)

Crazy Love

Kali:
My name means chaos. My mother must have had a premonition when she named me, because my life has been far from normal. No one realizes the truth about me. But he sees more than he should...

Ten:
Can a person have a mid-life crisis at twenty-three? Because I’m pretty sure I’m having one. This wasn’t the life I dreamed about. I settled. And now I’m questioning everything, most especially the conundrum who runs the bookstore. She wears sweater cardigans, but every once in a while I see a flash of ink.

I’m ready to rebel, and I’m thinking she might be the perfect partner to join me. If I can get her to stop arguing long enough to see the real me...

Book #1 in the Bookstore Love series.




*****

And to celebrate our cover reveal, we have an extra little surprise for you. 

Book #1 in the Naked Brews series, 
Deliciously Smooth is FREE!
(TODAY ONLY!)

*****


Aww...French...
My friends know me. Last week, I had one of my lovely friends send me a link to a mug...knowing my love for mugs and French. I had to order it. (Here's the link to the gorgeous etsy store it came from....Paris Print Shop) The translation for the mug says, "I love this mostly because it's in French". LOL. I kind of adore it. And of course it was only fitting to take a pic of it with the French translations of my books...

*****


Snowcroft news...

It finally happened. 

The first draft of Snowcroft Restoration is DONE! 

For those of you keeping track, this is book #4 and is Law's story. And no, you didn't miss #3, Intertwined Hearts. I should be getting that one back from the editor this week. Then they will be releasing back to back in Sept/Oct/Nov timeframe...I'm not sure on exact dates yet. It depends on how the editing goes. 

But last week, I also got covers for them. 

So, next Friday...be back here and we'll do a big, double cover reveal for BOTH BOOKS!

And for those of you that love big books, you're going to be very happy. 
Intertwined Hearts is 128k before edits.
Snowcroft Restoration is 95k before any rewrites...
I figure it will be right at 100k when it goes to the editor. 

*****


Cleaning house...
I see that raised eyebrow about cleaning making it to my Top Five, but I have a good reason. I've written three books in the last three months...and neglected my house so badly. It's literally a pit...so bad. So, my goal this weekend is to clean it from stem to stern.

But I have a secret weapon against cleaning and chores...

I listen to audiobooks. And if it's a REALLY good book, that means I get more chores done.
It's a win/win.
*****


Favorites...
I haven't shared any of my planner pages lately so I thought it might be fun to share two of my favorite stamped images from this week...


You can see the my daily planner pages on my Instagram account... HERE.

That's it from me today. 
I hope everyone has a great weekend and has the chance to pick up a GREAT book!
smiles,
Christi


Friday, August 11, 2017

Friday Five...lots of little updates including WRITING!

Did you miss me last week?
oops. 
I fully had plans to do last week's Friday Five up until Saturday afternoon when I realized it just wasn't going to happen. 

But I'm here today, so I hope you forgive me.

Camp NaNoWriMo update...
It's official...July was an incredible writing month for me. I wrote 73,507 on two different books...at the same time. Half those words were on a KB Jacobs book. Half of those words were on Snowcroft Restoration. I'm so excited. After several months of truly dismal word counts, I needed that boost...big time. 

A big shout out to my writing accountability partners...you know who you are! 
Accountability is the KEY to getting shit done!!



*****

Back to School...
It's that time, and I'm not sure I'm ready. (Note: our back to school is way early this year, too, which makes it feel way too soon). Littlest goes back to school Thursday. She's thrilled. I'm less so. I've enjoyed our summer together. And while I know this will be good for both of us (honestly, we hardly ever leave the house in the summer), I'm going to miss the freedom of staying up all night reading because I know I don't HAVE to get up with the alarm the next day. Note: I always do get up, but there's a freedom to knowing that I don't HAVE to. 

But in better back to school news, back to school means NEW SCHOOL SUPPLIES!

I'm telling you, it's like offering free drugs to a junkie. 

You mean I have to go and spend $$$ on the school supply aisle?
Um, okay...just let me load up the credit card. 

Have I ever mentioned that I have a bit of an obsession with office supplies?
*ahem*
My Nirvana...
*****

It's the little things...
Speaking of things that make me happy. Take a look at this beauty here. 

*happy sigh* My baby (my kindle paperwhite) got some new digs.

Isn't she pretty? 
It gives me even more of an excuse to spend some time in her company...like I ever needed an excuse for that... 
*****

Writing updates...

KB Jacobs...
In the KB Jacobs world, we're getting lots done behind the scenes. Both of the main books of our next series are written. This series is called the Bookstore Love series and I adore these books. I really truly love them. I love what KBJ is putting out. I just more people realized she was out there. 

Next week, we'll have the cover reveal for the first book...Crazy Love.
***

Snowcroft...
Things are also moving right along in the Snowcroft world. 
Book #3, Intertwined Hearts is with my editor right now.
Book #4, Snowcroft Restoration is *this* close to having the first draft written. It's at 85,000 words and counting.

As of yesterday, they both have covers. And I can't wait to show them to you. They're GORGEOUS!!
Maybe we'll do a cover reveal week after next (since KBJ has next week booked for cover reveals). 

Right now, I'm tentatively planning to release these in September and October...so SOON!

Note: if you can't wait for more Snowcroft, here are some great posts with a lot of information about what is coming in this world...with a super-rough excerpt and everything.
***

All things Found...
I love how much you guys are loving these stories. I'm getting lots of questions about more books to come. The short answer is...YES! There are more books coming. 

Book #2.5...Found at the Jazz Club...Brady & Emily's story
I plan to write this as soon as Snowcroft Restoration is done. This will be a quick, fun little holiday novella. No, I really mean it this time. This WILL be a novella.

Book #3...Found at the Gallery...Remy and Galleon
Yes, they will be getting a story. But it's going to be a bit. For one, Remy is too young. But I do think he and Galleon will be an incredible couple.

And then there's Landon...
You all are savvy. So many of you have asked if Landon will get his HEA.
Well, yes and no...
Landon is a fully developed, fully integral character for another series that I've written the first book in. I just borrowed him for Found at the Bookstore. So, his HEA won't be in part of the Found world. But him and his BDSM clubs are the main setting for this other series that I have planned as a trilogy. His book is the final in that series. 

For those of you that have heard me mention Broken Control, that's the first book in that series. Keep asking...who knows, maybe that will give me the push to write Tanner (#2) and then Landon's (#3) books. And no, Broken Control hasn't been released...although I love that book, too...but maybe soon!
*****

Favorites...
It's been a while since I mentioned my favorite reads, so this week I have two for you...
Fish Out of Water by Amy Lane (audiobook)

Illegal Contact by Santino Hassell
(releasing August 15th)
(my review will be up next week)

Both of these books are male/male romance and I gave both of them A+ rated reviews. Just so, so good! If you like m/m, go check them out. I don't think you'll be disappointed.
*****

Have a great weekend everyone. 
Tomorrow's my birthday. I'm thinking the best birthday gift would be finishing Snowcroft Restoration this week!
smiles,
Christi

Friday, July 28, 2017

Friday Five...all about my new planner organization.

A few weeks ago, I started a new planner method using a Travelers Notebook (TN) and the bullet journaling (bujo) method. I thought it might be fun to explain how it all works and what my setup is. 

(there's going to be a LOT of photos. If you click on them you'll be able to see them bigger)


What is a Travelers Notebook?
A TN is basically a folder that holds other notebooks inside it. They come in a ton of different sizes. Above are a few of mine...
(discussing them from left to right)
1. Websters Pages TN--brown far left
 (I used this one to track the household financial stuff)
(I use this one to do long term tracking on my writing projects...it goes out several years, so I can track what I plan to do in 2019-2020, and beyond..and sometimes I'll do longterm brainstorming in it)
3. Chic Sparrow Nano's-- turquoise and lime green
(honestly I buy these little ones to check leathers before I invest in one of the big Chic Sparrows that can be rather expensive...esp if I get something that I won't like to use...a lot of people use these as little wallets and I hope to get one set up to try that soon)
(this is my main planner and the one I'll be showing you today)





The Components of my Everyday TN:

The great thing about TNs is that the whole system is interchangeable. All the books inside are held by elastic bands (you can see them in the center of the black leather below...just slide the band to the spine of the notebook in the center and it's secure...there are YouTube videos about this if you don't get how it works). So you invest a lot in the cover and just switch out the books when you finish one or are going on a trip. I love this because I like to switch up my system.


Above you can see all the components of my TN (all of these components will have a section where I explain how I use them further down below):
1. Bright pink book is a Leuchtturm1917 notebook. This is my main daily planner. 
2. There are two kraft notebooks (one decorated, one not yet). These are 4 month inserts from Chic Sparrow. This is a messier place where I can jot down appointments and my book review schedule.
3. The pink flowered notebook is a place for me to track my writing goals and publishing checklists.
4. Then there is a tiny notebook in the back pocket that I use to track my book reviews obligations.
  
My main planner book inside my TN...
My main planner book is my Leuchtturm1917 and it was that journal that helped me decide that the A5 TN was the size for me. 

And I'll admit right now that the A5 is a big planner to carry everyday.

The main reason I like the Leuchtturm1917 is that the pages are numbered and there is an index in the front. For me, that means I can jot down info about my books on any given day and be able to find it later without having to go through my entire planner (and still not find the information).

I mark book information with the stars.

The other thing that I really love about this system is the dot grid pages. 
My layout is different every single day, depending on my needs for the day. 

Some days have more blank space in the to-do list area. Some days have more space for me to just jot down notes. That changes for me every. single. day.


I also love this system, because it combines my art along with my planner that I carry with me everyday. Before July those were two separate planners. Now it's all in one big book.


Both the pages above are what my layouts look like when the day is complete. To see what they look like before I do any of my tasks (and have all the added notes/scribbling/page counts), all my daily layouts go up on Instagram page in the mornings when I get them complete. You can find that HERE.

NOTE: I rarely spend more than an hour doing my layout in the morning. This is a time to get me focused on what all I have to do for the day. I also spend that creative/artistic time thinking through the scenes I plan to write that day.

That's actually how my art planner originally started. It was 2 summers ago and I was missing my plotting time while I drove Kat to school and was trying to recreate that at home somehow. Mindlessly coloring rubber stamps (all the images in my planner are stamps from Unity Stamp Company) does that for me.


The calendar inserts...
Because I don't create my page layout until the day of, there are things I need to track for the longterm...appointments, my review schedule, release days, etc. For this there are two inserts that I bought from Chic Sparrow. 

The outside is plain kraft cardstock, so it was fun to decorate this one. The other one isn't done yet.

They each are dated for 4 months and this is where I keep my blog schedules sorted as well as other little things that I know about before the day that I want to keep track of. 

BUT this isn't a system I could ever use as my main system, because there isn't enough room there for everything I need to track daily.

(and if you look above, you'll see how desperately behind I am on all my reviews. All those books on Tuesday should have had check marks beside them LAST week...sigh.)

I do love that these come with those little flags (which I spent one day watching a webinar and watercoloring each week a different color).


My publishing checklist book...

There is nothing pretty about this notebook. This is my workhorse writing tracker. I'm in several different accountability groups that meet each week. This is where I paste all my goals associated with those. 

There are three different sections in the book.
1. Quarterly goals
2. Weekly goals
3. Publishing checklists


^^^
I literally just print up what I post online and trim it to paste it into the book. So not pretty or elegant, but it's all in one place and it works. 


^^^
That is an example of my publishing checklist that I made up. When I finish the first draft of a book then it moves into this process. This list goes through all that rinky-dink marketing stuff I have to create and is supposed to work so that I'm not scrambling to do it all the last week or 2 weeks before release. This is a new system, so it's not tried/true yet, but I'm hoping I can make it work to make my life easier.

If anyone is an author and wants a copy of this file (it's just a word doc...printed up two pages on a single page to make it small enough to fit into my book), drop me a comment here or send me an email with your email address and I'll send it to you. 

NOTE: if you look at that notebook above, you'll notice it has washi tape down the center. That's because I discovered you cannot use cheap, glued together books in the TN system. The elastic puts too much stress on the glue binding. I fixed that in this book with my washi tape down the center of every other page. If I cared about how this book looked, that would bug me. But I don't. 

But now I know...all the TN inserts need to be stitched or stapled for it to not fall apart later. 
***

And that's my new planner system. If you have any questions or want to see something closer, ask. This is still a work in progress, but so far, I love it...although I'm eyeing another A5 Chic Sparrow cover...just waiting for some more Nanos to check out leathers first. ;)

Have a great weekend everyone!
smiles,
Christi

Friday, July 21, 2017

Friday...not quite...Five!

It's 7:00 on Thursday evening and as I type this, I have a million and a half things to go do because we're headed to Tucson tomorrow to do a quick whirlwind visit to see our son.

So, I know that I promised you a full write up of my new Bullet Journal planner and my Travelers Notebook, but I simply don't have time tonight. Next week...I really, really promise this time...pinkie promise (so you know I can't go back on it.)

But I do have a couple of other things to share with you.
Write. All. The. Words.

As of fifteen minutes ago, I hit my 50,000 word goal for the month of July (which just happens to be CampNaNoWriMo month).

The breakdown of those words...
1. 26,461 words were for KB Jacobs 
2. 23,817 words were for Snowcroft Restoration
3. 542 words were added to Intertwined Hearts right before I sent it to my editor.

And the month isn't over yet. 

***We should finish writing the KB Jacobs book early next week. This is book #2 in our next series...the Bookstore Love series.

***The first draft of Snowcroft Restoration should be done before the end of the month.

***And did you catch that Intertwined Hearts went to the editor? 

So many books still releasing in 2017...

Sept
Bookstore Love #1 by KB Jacobs
Intertwined Hearts (Snowcroft #3)

Oct
Snowcroft Restoration (Snowcroft #4)
Smolder (Paranormal Texans novella #1)

Nov
Bookstore Love #2 by KB Jacobs

Dec
Bookstore Love #2.5 by KB Jacobs
Shiver (Paranormal Texans novella #2)
Found at the Jazz Club (Found #2.5...maybe)

All these release dates are tentative, but I think it's all do-able at this point.

*****

Book Release News...

Secondly, did you see I had a book release this week? 
The reviews have been overwhelmingly amazing for Found at the Bookstore. Thank you to each and every one of you who've already read the book and loved Stig and Ryder just as much as me.


*****

And if you didn't catch the first book, now is your chance. Found at the Library is a Bookbub deal today...only $.99. 
This is a limited time markdown, so go grab it while you can. 




Have a great weekend everyone!!
smiles,
christi