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With the holiday season and a first-of-the-year deadline behind me, I’m finding it easier to breathe, and find time for the rest of my life – which includes Marketing Mondays.

But first I’d like to announce that the THE KEY TO THE REALMS (the much anticipated sequel to THE WELL OF TEARS) is finally done and off to the editor. As soon as we have a firm pub date, I’ll be sure to let you know!

This was the first book I’ve written under contract (and to a deadline) and I find myself thinking about and examining things like creative process, motivation, and discipline. Mastering the management of my writing life is an ongoing journey, and I am beginning to believe that it will always be at odds with my artistic impulses. It’s almost an oxymoron, isn’t it – the idea that you can (or should) manage creativity. In the immediate aftermath of deadline hell, I am full of conflicted feelings. But, the book is done and I’m not dead, so it’s all good.

Every winter, I co-teach a writing class on novel structure with writing/publishing pals Jennifer McCord and Scott Driscoll. This session is the first I’ve participated in since becoming published, and I am really looking forward to sharing my recent experiences with the new students. We’ll be doing a lot of talking about what it means to be a working writer.

Another discussion that always comes up in these classes centers on the realities of publishing – and learning how to work within an ever changing business model that is often unfriendly to authors, and even downright hostile.

I have a lot to say on this subject, especially as an Amazon Publishing author, and especially when it comes to Barnes & Noble. But this last week two talented authors whom I admire said it best – and with a lot of class. For those of you out there who are writers aspiring to publication, or even authors who are looking for good advice on book marketing strategies, I highly recommend taking a look at this article from authors MJ Rose and Randy Susan Meyers :

Seven Ways Two Anxious Writers Are Making Lemonade

This blog post offers some common sense ideas and good old-fashioned common courtesies for self-promotion. Not the least of which are thoughts on how to create a supportive author community, and some suggestions for grass-roots marketing efforts that we all would do well to put into practice.

I’ll be back next Monday with my latest thoughts on Social Media buzz-builders.