Spring has Sprung: Monday Blog Post

Unknown Desert Flower

Unknown Desert Flower

Last week has been a crazy week for me. So much work on writing and my volunteer efforts with the Northern Gila County Fair and the Payson book festival has just left me reeling. Author applications are flooding in for the book festival. On the fair side, a great deal of coordination is taking place for advertising, promotion, and multiple events coordination. Plus for both efforts, volunteers are needed in multiple capacities. Do you live in the Rim Country? I could use your help! Call me.

I’m starting a new contest. One focused on reviews. Reviews, you say. What’s up with that? Well, in the publishing world, reviews are everything. They are a measure of my audience involvement. My several ratings on Amazon and other book sellers is predicated on my ratings. How many, how good are they? It’s a thing. Other places actually count the number of ratings I have. If I don’t have “enough” reviews, they don’t want to take my ads or other promotional materials. So for an author, reviews are a big deal. So here’s the contest. If you have read or read one of my books, drop a review for it on your platform of choice. It doesn’t matter to me where you put the review. It also doesn’t matter to me what kind of review it is. Don’t get me wrong, I’d love a good review but that’s not what I’m asking for. I’d like an honest review from you on how you liked my book, whichever one you read. Back to the contest. You write a review. Put it where ever you’d like. Send me a link to your review. In a couple of weeks I’ll do a random number generator choice of the people who’ve done a review and you win! Prise? An ebook of mine of your choice. Contest ends April 10th. I’ll announce the winner here on this blog and on my newsletter on the 11th.

Just so you know—my next author interview is romance author Arlene Hittle on April 6th. She’s a wonderful author and her books are sweet. You’ll want to hear what she has to say.

On the gardening front, the tomato seedlings are still doing well. A front is moving in and Tuesday is forecast as turbulent. What do I mean? I mean I have no idea what will happen in my town. It could be rain. It could be snow. It could be nothing at all. Tuesday is hiking day for us. Our group, the Payson Packers, C Group, is planning to drive down to Roosevelt Lake for a hike there. Forecast for that area is dry. I shrug. I’ll have to see what the morning brings both for my garden and for the hike.

SpringIntoReadingGiveawayPromo

The Spring Into Reading giveaway has started. I have links to it on my facebook, twitter, and website pages. I offer a free ebook or for second prize, a $5 Amazon card. There are other prizes as well. Over a hundred prizes plus a grand prize. It’s not hard to enter and there are multiple times to enter. You could easily win a prize. Enter today and every day here.

Mystery in the Woods draft is FINISHED! I am ecstatic. I do have to let it “rest” for awhile before I pick it back up and do a heavy re-write and edit. I am hoping to release it in 2016. In the meantime, I’m outlining the next cozy mystery, Mystery at the Book Festival. It’s the 28th of March and I plan to start writing on April 1st. So I guess I’d better get my outline done.

Take a look at the places I’ll be, below. I’ve ordered owl charms, associated with Kindred Spirits that I’ll attach to new bookmarks. I’ll be giving these away to purchasers of books at the below events. The April 16th event at the Tempe Library is free but the June MysteryCon is a 2-day event with just a $35 entry fee for BOTH days. Sign up for that now. Mention my name on the registration. I may have a special gift for people who’ve registered in advance and visit me at the event. I need to know in advance, though, so register today. Look at my website, Where Will I Be tab for specifics.

Where will I be? Here’s the scoop.

April 11th at 3pm Arizona time I’ll be on the January Jones Sharing Success Stories web talk radio show. Have you heard me there? Don’t miss out.

TempeBookFestival2016

April 16th I’ll be at the Tempe Public Library book festival where I’m on a panel talking about Science Fiction and World Building. I’m looking forward to meeting you there. I have a nice giveaway for purchasers of any book.

Mystery Con Flyer

June 2nd and 3rd I’m at the Scottsdale MysteryCon, Death and Deception in the Desert. I’m giving a presentation there as well on writing a mystery.  Tickets for both days are only $35. New! I’m offering a prize or two to people who register in advance and mention my name in the registration. I do hope you can make it to that one. Here’s a flyer telling all about it.

July 23rd is the Payson Book Festival. I’ll be at my table all day, ready to talk to YOU! I hope you can make it as we will have over 70 authors attending as well as music, food, author presentations and workshops. It will be stupendous! www.paysonbookfestival.org and click on the Meet the Authors tab.

Want more details about these events? Click here for more information.

Click here to sign up for my newsletter. If you are a Brown Rain series fan, I’ve created a list just for you! If you join my regular newsletter, that’s all right too as I’ve put sign-up prizes on both. That’s right. If you sign up for my newsletter you get a free story from me. My next newsletter is being drafted so sign up today. The YouTube video I just made about Kindred Spirits will be in the newsletter. Just a note. I’m going to be sending out newsletters more frequently. Be prepared for fun and contests!

Kindred Spirits released on March 14th! I’m pretty excited about it. You can buy it and my other books at: Apple, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Smashwords, Gumroads  or Chatebooks today! You can also see all of my books on www.ConniesRandomThoughts.com. If you’ve read any of my books, please drop a review on the site where you bought it or on Goodreads. It’s a big help to me in the book rankings each vendor uses to promote the books on their sites. Thanks in advance.

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Merry New Year 2016: Monday Blog Post

Bird by Betty Marsh

Bird by Betty Marsh

For those of you who read last week’s post, we did just fine on the fair audit AND we finished it in one, very stressful, day. Yay! We’re lining ourselves up to get the 2016 fair planned. If you live in my town, I have several openings for volunteers! If you’re interested in our fair, check out www.NorthernGilaCountyFair.com or Northern Gila County Fair on Facebook.

We had my daughter and brother-in-law (hubby’s brother) over on Christmas Eve for our Christmas feast. As usual, I cooked way too much food. The duck was delicious and the company was great. We played both Chicken Foot and a game new to me, Sequence. There was a lot of trash talk and laughter. Good times. The daughter brought her hamster with her as no one was home to take care of it. We had fun watching the little critter in her hamster ball roam all over the house checking things out. Daughter shared her art. The pic at the top is one of her drawings. We think she’s awesome. How about you? LOL!

Writing is going. Even though it was Christmas week, I managed over 6000 words on my November NaNo novel, Zoe Ohale. I’ve got about six scenes to go and I’ll be close to 65,000 words on the work when I’ve finished the first draft. After that is done and put away to rest awhile, I’ll pick up July’s Mystery in the Woods. At this point I’ll have to read the whole thing through to figure out where I left off and what else has to be done. That story was an experiment in NOT plotting. This is where it has led me, down a rabbit hole. No matter. I’ll get it back to active status and finish it up. I’m planning on being at a Mystery Convention in Scottsdale the beginning of June and want to have it there for sale. So, I’d better get writing.

Santa’s Authors Christmas 2015 Giveaway also known as the Winter Wonderland of Books Christmas Giveaway has been extended to run until midnight, January 1st. (midnight after New Year’s eve) Here’s the link through my website:  https://conniesrandomthoughts.com/giveaways-and-prizes/. Fifty authors have put up all kinds of prizes from books to jewelry to Amazon gift cards. Go ahead and log in. You’ll find links to all of the supporting author’s social media. Click on a link, enter to win. The more links you click, the better your chance of winning. The grand prize is $200 of Paypal cash, good anywhere on the planet. I’ve put up the two signed paperback books in my Brown Rain series as my main prize. I also put up my Christmas Tales book (signed, of course) as a second prize. Good luck! Thanks for participating.

This is the time of year for me to look back at 2015 and think about what I want to do for 2016 at least as far as my writing goes. Do you do that in your life or job? I find it helpful to have a goal to shoot for. I did a blog post on this in my December 18th post. Click here to see how I did in 2015. I think my main goal in 2016 is to not only write and publish but to expand my reader base. I have 13 books out now plus stories in four different anthologies. I’ll be able to put out at least three books in 2016, perhaps more. Do you recommend my books you’ve read to other readers?  Do you write reviews for my books that you’ve read on Amazon, Goodreads or the site where you purchased the book or books? Those are some of the ways a reader can help out an author. What is your suggestion for bringing more readers to my books? I hope you had a productive and happy year. I wish you all the best with your goals for 2016.

I published my December newsletter. Did you miss it? Click here to sign up for my newsletter. I make special offers to my newsletter people that I do not make on the website blog posts. If you like the content, please encourage your friends to sign up, the newsletter is sharable, send it to whomever you think will like it. Don’t delay signing up. You’ve already missed out on two great offers. The January newsletter is coming out soon. Sign up now so you don’t miss out.

Mystery at the Fair released July 15th! I’m pretty excited about it. You can buy it and my other books at: Apple, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Smashwords , Gumroads  or Chatebooks today! You can also see all of my books on www.ConniesRandomThoughts.com. If you’ve read any of my books, please drop a review on the site where you bought it or on Goodreads. It’s a big help to me in the book rankings each vendor uses to promote the books on their sites. Thanks in advance.

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NaNo Break: Monday Blog Post

Thankful that Mom will stop in the middle of the road to let me eat. Oatman, AZ by Randy Cockrell

Thankful that Mom will stop in the middle of the road to let me eat. Oatman, AZ by Randy Cockrell

Since my last Monday blog post, it’s been crazy. I managed to get a few words written this week but for the most part, the week, at least concerning NaNo, has been a loss. I’ve only written two days out of the seven. Since today is the 23rd, that means I have only seven days left to get to 50,000 words. On Saturday I had 35.3k finished. That means I need over 2k per day to finish NaNo. I think I can do it. The rest of my month, except for Thanksgiving Day, is appointment free.

I attended for my first time, the Arizona Fair Commission Conference. I’m so glad I went. We’ve not attended, by we, I mean the fair board in general, this conference in years. It was way past time to do so. Several nearby fair managers, have all volunteered to help us out. It was so nice to be among such passionate people. I learned a lot about fairs, entertainment, management and organizational skills specific to fairs. I can’t wait to share it all with the rest of my board.

I taught a writers workshop on November 20th, in Camp Verde, AZ on critiquing. What a wonderful group of writers. Everyone, no matter their skill level or time as a writer, had excellent points to offer on the topic. I think we all learned a lot! I know I did. I enjoyed meeting a whole new group of writers. They all have such unique points of view. I can’t wait to read more of their work.

I’m compiling a new feature on the site, author interviews. I don’t know about you but as a reader, I’m always on the lookout for authors new to me to read. I think I’ll start the new feature in January. Perhaps one article every other week to start. If you like the feature, please be sure to comment. I have to assume that no comments means that you’re not interested and I’ll drop the feature after a time. So, be sure to let me know what you think of the posts!

Santa’s Authors Christmas 2015 Giveaway also known as the Winter Wonderland of Books Christmas Giveaway started 1 November. I have a link to the giveaway on my website, https://conniesrandomthoughts.com/giveaways-and-prizes/. There’s also a Youtube video at the bottom of the page to watch. You will love this. Fifty authors have put up all kinds of prizes from books to jewelry to Amazon gift cards. Go ahead and log in. You’ll find links to all of the author’s social media. Click on a link, enter to win. The more links you click, the better your chance of winning. The grand prize is $200 of Paypal cash, good anywhere on the planet. Good luck! Thanks for participating.

I finished getting all of my books but my first (The Bad Seed) up on Chatebooks.com. You can find my books by searching on my name or here’s a direct link. https://www.chatebooks.com/index.php?route=product/search&search=Connie%20Cockrell  I’m very excited to be able to provide multiple platforms for readers to find my work. Chatebooks, as the name implies, is only for ebooks. To get a paperback copy of my books, go to Gumroad.com/ConnieCockrell or to Amazon.com. Both of these platforms can sell both ebooks and paperbacks.

Thanks for stopping by my blog today. I wish all of you a very happy Thanksgiving full of family and friend love and good food.

I published my October newsletter. Did you miss it? Click here to sign up for my newsletter. I make special offers to my newsletter people that I do not make on the website blog posts. If you like the content, please encourage your friends to sign up, the newsletter is sharable, send it to whomever you think will like it. Don’t delay signing up. You’ve already missed out on two great offers. The November newsletter is coming out soon. Sign up now so you don’t miss out.

Mystery at the Fair released July 15th! I’m pretty excited about it. You can buy it and my other books at: Apple, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Smashwords , Gumroads  or Chatebooks today! You can also see all of my books on www.ConniesRandomThoughts.com, Books tab. If you’ve read any of my books, please drop a review on the site where you bought it or on Goodreads. It’s a big help to me in the book rankings each vendor uses to promote the books on their sites. Thanks in advance.

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Fair is Done and In’D’Tale Conference is Coming

Draft horse logging demo 2015 by Randy Cockrell

Draft horse logging demo 2015 by Randy Cockrell

The Northern Gila County Fair is over! If you’ve never been involved in the administration of a fair, here’s a short explanation.

Since our event center has no buildings, everything that needs to be under cover must have a tent. So on Tuesday, after a pleasant Labor Day, I was at the event center at 7am to meet with the company that puts up our tents, and with the town Street Department Director, who was going to help us get our exhibit stands to the event center grounds. The day was spent moving those stands, cleaning them, and making sure the tent company brought the tables and chairs we’d ordered, too. Several of the Exhibit Tent departments brought in volunteers to set up on Tuesday night.

Wednesday. All departments had to finish setting up so that at 1pm, exhibitors could drop off their exhibits. The tent company set up the livestock tents. Lots of details like, the lighting didn’t work, or the air conditioning had to be brought and turned on, exhibitor questions and more all had to be handled.

Thursday. The tent company put up the entertainment tent. All departments have brought in judges to judge the exhibits. Each department has to complete a report on the number of exhibits, broken down by the age group the exhibitor belongs to, how many exhibits we have, and what awards were given. This report goes to the state. After that is the arranging of the exhibits so that everything can be seen and appreciated by the fair attendees. Livestock begins arriving on Thursday afternoon. Vendors set up starting at noon.

Friday. The fair opens. We have Kids Day on Friday morning. All of the elementary school children are bused to the fair and they get first look at everything. Lots of extra activities are scheduled for the kids. After that, it’s a regular fair day; music, draft horses, livestock judging, and more are scheduled. Added bonus, every third year  a state inspection occurs. This is an audit of the way the fair is run and how we spend the tax dollars that are sent to us. I felt we did very well. Of course there are always a few things that we can tighten. We’ll address those in the upcoming year.

Saturday. Fair opens at 8am and closes at 9pm. Horse shows, livestock auction, music, a dance and more happen on Saturday.

Sunday. Last day of the fair. Opens at 8am. Livestock sold on Saturday are loaded up for processing and gone by noon. The Exhibit tent closes at 4pm so that we can sort the exhibits by exhibitor, making it easy for them to pick up at 5pm. By 6pm, all of the exhibits are gone. The grounds are closed.

Monday (today). Back to the event center to make sure all trash is picked up and dealt with. Tents are removed. Portajohns retrieved. We all collapse.

If you’re thinking of volunteering for your fair, good for you. This is a wonderful community event that highlights the best of local talent, and whether that is growing tomatoes or woodworking, what a fantastic resource for your community. Good for you.

Author Friend Boost! Selena Laurence. Her newest book is the last in her Lush series, a lush reunion.  Here’s a description.

Ten years ago Lush bassist Colin Douglas met the love of his life. Then she broke his heart. Now, in a small Texas town, in the midst of the breakup of his band, Colin has found Marsha, and he has no idea what to do with her.

 Marsha O’Neill hasn’t had it easy. Since losing Colin, nothing’s gone right for this east Texas waitress—except for Sean, her six-year-old son. She’s worked hard to give Sean what he needs—the best of her. Then a hot bass player walks into her bar and she knows the world isn’t done screwing with her yet.

What happens when life gives you a second chance? Can you learn to trust again, live again, love again? Colin and Marsha are about to find out that second chances don’t come easy.

You can find more at http://selenalaurence.com/

Writing progress. Nothing on Mystery in the Woods. Instead I spent my time leading up to the fair writing flash stories for scheduling for the rest of September since three days after the fair, I’m headed to the In’D’Tale conference, http://indtale.com/indscribe-con-information, held the 17th, 18th and 19th. Hope to see you there. When I get back from the conference, it’s time to get ready for October. I plan on having all of the Friday Flash stories for October written and scheduled by the end of September. It’s a lot of writing and I’ve decided to write all horror/Halloween type stories for October. I already have six title prompts to work from.  We’ll see how this goes.

On September 24th, I’ll be in Strawberry, AZ, speaking to the writing group there about CreateSpace. I’d love to see you there.

I’m totally up on conniesrandomthoughts.com.  I’ve put a notice up on my WordPress blog so my readers can find me. Be sure to follow me at my new website. I stopped posting to the WordPress site (www.conniesrandomthoughts.wordpress.com) after Friday, August 7th.

Thanks for stopping by my blog today.

I put a special offer up in my July newsletter. Did you miss it? Click here to sign up for my newsletter. I make special offers to my newsletter people that I do not make on the website blogs. If you like the content, please encourage your friends to sign up, too. Don’t delay. The September newsletter is coming out soon. Sign up now so you don’t miss out.

Mystery at the Fair released July 15th! I’m pretty excited about it. You can buy it and my other books at: Apple, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, or Smashwords today! You can also see all of my books on www.ConniesRandomThoughts.com, Books tab. If you’ve read any of my books, please drop a review on the site where you bought it. It’s a big help to me in the book rankings each vendor uses to promote the books on their sites. Thanks in advance.

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Monday Blog Post: County Fair, Story Submissions, and Event Jitters

Quartz Rocks by Connie Cockrell

Quartz Rocks by Connie Cockrell

Gardening has picked back up. The Early Girl and Roma tomatoes are producing like crazy. The trellis is leaning way over due to the weight of the plants and fruit. I’ve had to do emergency tie-offs to keep everything upright. I harvested two more cantaloupes and took them to my daughter. We just can’t eat everything fast enough. Pears are still being harvested. The zucchini is slowing down. A good thing as I still have two giant ones in my fridge to use up.

Author Friend Boost! Lazette Gifford. She has just released her newest book, In the Shadow of Giants. Here’s a description.

In a future filled with starships, a gathering of Norse sail far wider oceans than they had in the ancient past. When members of the Chinese pantheon abduct one of the Norse, it will take all of Odin’s skills to convince an estranged Loki to help get her back.

You can find more at: http://www.lazette.net/

The Northern Gila County Fair is September 11- 13th. We’re in the ramp up. Tuesday starts the major lifting. I’ve been posting like crazy on the Facebook page: Northern Gila County Fair. There were four articles in Friday’s paper. Monday starts the KRIM radio spots. We’re all scurrying to tie up those last minute details. If you don’t hear from me next week, you’ll know why.

I received my editor’s edits this morning and finished my final corrections of Gold Dream. (The post picture is meant to represent this story.) I wanted to send this story to a particular contest. Don’t know what I was thinking but I overshot the wordcount by 4X. Sigh. I thought I could pull up a story I’ve already written. I found one I liked, edited it to a good place and realized that I had posted that on my blog. Since it’s been “published” I couldn’t submit that one either. The deadline for the contest is September 15th. I don’t feel that I can write and edit a good short story in seven days. So! I sent Gold Dream to a western fiction story magazine and I’ve saved the edited version of the second story, a scifi, to a file for a collection to release next year. Yay! No work wasted. I’ll try and get my act together for the contest next year.

Did something fun last Friday. Hubby, me and Mom took a ride up to Flagstaff. We had to get the car a service for some sort of computer update. Afterward picked up the daughter and her friend and went to the Pioneer Museum. Housed in what was once the Indigent Hospital, we learned a lot about early Flagstaff history and of the homeless population problem. If you’re ever in Flagstaff, this is a great place to visit.

The Pioneer Museum in Flagstaff is located in the historic Coconino County Hospital for the Indigent. The Hospital was built in 1908 using purniceous dacite from the Mount Elden Explosive Eruption about 500,000 years ago. The building was used as a hospital until 1938 and was considered a Poor Farm. The exhibits within the museum reflect the history of Flagstaff and northern Arizona. Visitors will learn of the local history of ranching, logging, transportation and life in Pioneer Flagstaff. Festivals and events are also held on the grounds including the annual Wool and Fiber Festival, the Folk Festival and the Heritage Festival.

2340 N. Fort Valley Road

Flagstaff AZ 86001

Phone 928-774-6272

Email: wpeterson@azhs.gov

 

The week after the Fair I’m at the InD’Scribe conference in Palm Springs, CA. http://indtale.com/indscribe-con-information  This is my first conference and I’m more than a little nervous. I want so much to learn a lot of stuff from all of the experienced authors that will be there. I want to connect with the readers that are attending and, obviously, sell a lot of books. If you’re around the Palm Springs area September 18th and 19th, stop on by. I’d love to chat with you.

On September 24th, I’ll be in Strawberry, AZ, speaking to the writing group there about CreateSpace. I’d love to see you there.

I’m totally up on conniesrandomthoughts.com.  I’ve put a notice up on my WordPress blog so my readers can find me. Be sure to follow me at my new website. I stopped posting to the WordPress site (www.conniesrandomthoughts.wordpress.com) after Friday August 7th.

Thanks for stopping by my blog today.

I put a special offer up in my July newsletter. Did you miss it? Click here to sign up for my newsletter. I make special offers to my newsletter people that I do not make on the website blogs. If you like the content, please encourage your friends to sign up, too. Don’t delay. The September newsletter is coming out soon. Sign up now so you don’t miss out.

Mystery at the Fair released July 15th! I’m pretty excited about it. You can buy it and my other books at: Apple, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, or Smashwords today! You can also see all of my books on www.ConniesRandomThoughts.com, Books tab. If you’ve read any of my books, please drop a review on the site where you bought it. It’s a big help to me in the book rankings each vendor uses to promote the books on their sites. Thanks in advance.

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Monday Blog Post: It’s Busy!

Apples, pie, Applesauce, Connie Cockrell

Apples for pie and as Applesauce by Connie Cockrell

The garden has slowed down. The pear trees are ready to pick and the Sungold Cherry tomatoes are ready but everything else is slow. It’s been super hot and I think the garden is just resting. The apples I picked weeks ago have been sitting on my kitchen table nagging me to do something with them. So Sunday I turned the majority of them into applesauce, some into an apple pie and the best ones went in the fruit crisper to eat out of hand. That’s the picture up at the top. Yay!

Author Friend Boost! J.A. Marlow She has just released her newest book, When the Skies Fell (A String Weavers, Book 6). Here’s a description.

A band injury forces Kelsey hale and her team to return to space station Sanctuary, the last remaining Weaver refuge among the multiple Universes. Not a good place to go considering the Weaver Council wants to take away her Weaver band. Kelsey turns the risky visit into an opportunity to learn more about Professor Hadrian’s ultimate plan for his Phoenix Eggs. Only one other person might know: Dr. Rozelle Mallard, his former aide and traveling companion.

Professor Hadrian arrives on Sanctuary to heal his own band injury and he will do anything necessary to keep certain information forever secret. He knows of a way to silence Rozelle while also stealing Kelsey’s Phoenix Eggs. Never mind that it will kill both of them.

He forgets the Weaver team he is dealing with.

He forgets Kelsey’s determination to never give up.

He forgets what Phoenix Eggs really are.

Join Kelsey Hale in a coming of age science fiction adventure across alternate universes and encounters with alien planets, species and societies. Thrust into a dangerous journey to places she could have never imagined, she is determined to discover the truth of her mysterious past. A truth that will change her life.

See more at: http://jamarlow.com/category/new-releases/

Amazon US

Barnes and Noble
iBooks
Kobo

 

I haven’t mentioned it before now but we’re creeping up on the dates for the Northern Gila County Fair. This year it’s September 11- 13th. I’m still the VP of Exhibits with all of the work that entails. But this year in addition to managing the website and Facebook page, I’m doing the marketing for the fair. I have ads in several high profile Arizona magazines and newspapers. I’m posting daily on our facebook page: Northern Gila County Fair and daily updating our website, www.NorthernGilaCountyFair.com. I’d love it if you’d leave a comment on the facebook page. Saturday we (members of the fair board and some 4-H kids) were in the Payson Rodeo Parade and handed out a BUNCH of flyers advertising the fair. The picture at the top is our float. As we went we could hear the comments about the fair. “Oh, we have a fair!” “It’s just a dollar admission!” “Cool!” Let it be known, this is the 61st fair, shouldn’t be such a mystery but there you are. More people now know about it and will, maybe, come.

Betrayal Moon for the Forward Motion anthology is completed and turned in to the anthology editor. I’m pretty pleased with both the story and the world I’ve created.  I expect the book to be published in October or November, just in time for Christmas gift giving! I’m looking forward to writing in that world again.  I finished my edits of Gold Dream and sent it to my editors. They’ll get back to me this week with their edits and I’ll go final. The deadline is September 15th so I don’t have a lot of time to dither. I’ve gone back to writing Mystery in the Woods, the second book in the Jean Hays series that I started in July. Not as many new words on it this week as last but I’m getting there.

I’m totally up on conniesrandomthoughts.com.  I’ve put a notice up on my wordpress blog so my readers can find me. Be sure to follow me at my new website. I’ve stopped posting to the wordpress site (www.conniesrandomthoughts.wordpress.com) after Friday August 7th.

Thanks for stopping by my blog today.

I put a special offer up in my July newsletter. Did you miss it? Click here to sign up for my newsletter. I make special offers to my newsletter people that I do not make on the website blogs. If you like the content, please encourage your friends to sign up too. Don’t delay. The August newsletter is coming out soon. Sign up now so you don’t miss out.

Mystery at the Fair released July 15th! I’m pretty excited about it. You can buy it and my other books at: Apple, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, or Smashwords today! You can also see all of my books on www.ConniesRandomThoughts.com, Books tab. If you’ve read any of my books, please drop a review on the site where you bought it. It’s a big help to me in the book rankings each vendor uses to promote the books on their sites. Thanks in advance.

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Monday Blog Post: Spring is here

Daffodils, Connie Cockrell

Daffodils by Connie Cockrell

Above is a picture of some of my daffodils. The really early ones, the miniatures have been up for two weeks. The tall ones, with the orange centers, just started blooming. I have a few late bloomers in the beds as well so I’ll have daffodils well into April. I also began my gardening. Saturday I pruned the dead wood out of my blackberries. I have let them run amok all over the ground. I really should trellis them and prune them back. I suspect they’d produce better if I reined them in. I still have to trim my rosebushes, they still have dead blooms on them from last fall. I had really wonderful roses last year after pruning them back very hard.

My book signing for March 21st at the Scoops Ice Cream store here in Payson is just a handful of days away. If you’re in town on the 21st between 1 and 3pm, stop by to grab an ice cream and chat. You can find both of these events and the July Book Festival on the Where Will I Be? tab on this website. I’m featuring my latest book, Lost Rainbows, but I’ll have my other books there to buy as well.

The month has been so full of Fair planning and Festival planning that I haven’t written or edited as much as I should have. However, I wrote two flash fiction stories last week but only posted Sixty-Four. The other one became a long telling instead of showing and needs a lot of editing to become presentable.

The Payson Book Festival planning is moving right along. You can see the information on www.PaysonBookFestival.org if you’d like. Kick-off pricing on author tables is now over. There’s still time to sign up for a table, though. You can share a table, too, to make your costs less. Fill out the Author Registration and get that in to us so we can reserve you a table. Author registration closes at the end of April so we can put the program together. You’re not an author? Then mark your calendar to come to Payson for July 25th to meet us. We’d love to chat with you.

My short story, After Math, came back from my content editor. It has a few more comments but I haven’t had a chance to take a close look at it. I’m hoping to get that polished up and off to a magazine soon.

Thanks for stopping by my blog today.

Lost Rainbows released January 25th! I’m pretty excited about it. You can buy it and my other books at: Apple, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, or Smashwords today!

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Monday Blog Post: March is Here!

InD'Scribe Conference

InD’Scribe Conference

Big news, I’ve signed up to attend my first ever writer’s conference. It’s called InD’tale Con and is being held in Palm Springs, CA on September 17 – 20, 2015. I’m pretty excited. I’m catching a ride with another author from Payson and I expect we’re going to have a lot of fun. If you’re around Palm Springs at that time, stop by my signing table and say hi!

I’ve also arranged a book signing for March 21st at the Scoops Ice Cream store here in Payson. I put info out on the radio, the newspaper and put up posters all around Rim Country. If you’re in town on the 21st between 1 and 3pm, stop by to grab an ice cream and chat. You can find both of these events and the July Book Festival on the Where Will I Be? tab on this website.

I’ve managed to create a couple more chapters in my All About Bob story. Poor Bob. I’m being pretty mean to him. I’ve also begun the planning and outlining for my next Brown Rain book, not sure what I’m calling it yet. Rest Stop, has come to mind. Anyway, in this book Alyssa will be the main character though Kyra will have a lot to do as well. I’m planning to write it during April’s Camp NaNo. I still need to edit Mystery at the Fair. I’d like to release that in May, and have it ready for the summer reading season and for the July Book Festival and the September conference.

The Payson Book Festival planning is moving right along. You can see the information on www.PaysonBookFestival.org if you’d like. Kick-off pricing on author tables, half price now ends March 15th. Hurry, sign up for a table, you can share a table, too, to make your costs even less. Fill out the Author Registration and get that in to us so we can reserve you a table. They’re going fast at this great price.

I’ve sent my short story, After Math, to my content editor. I hope I’ve rewritten it enough to change the feel of it and make my main character the girl I had in my head. I’d like to get it circulating, maybe even sold.

Thanks for stopping by my blog today.

Lost Rainbows released January 25th! I’m pretty excited about it. You can buy it and my other books at: Apple, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, or Smashwords today!

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Monday Blog Post: Am I Catching Up?

February, Gardening, Parsley, Connie Cockrell

February Parsley by Connie Cockrell

 

I had a great time speaking on the 18th, last Wednesday at the Arizona Professional Writers monthly meeting.  I talked about my adventures as an Indie author, provided a hand-out with a ton of great links and sold a few books. Many thanks to everyone who came.

Also on the 18th was the first installment of Lost Rainbows as a serial. It’ll be posted on my blog and on Wattpad (www.Wattpad.com).  I’m ConnieCockrell on that site. It goes live on Wattpad  Wednesday, the 25th.  A new chapter will be released each Wednesday for 16 weeks. Enjoy. I’m also posting my monthly contribution to Chicklets in the Kitchen on the 25th so it’s another banner Wednesday for me. I’ll be showing you how to make gluten and dairy free oatmeal-raisin cookies. Yum! Please feel free to share those posts with friends and family.

The Payson Book Festival planning is moving right along. We’ve begun the Sponsorship drive and you can find a form on www.PaysonBookFestival.org to contribute if you’d like. We have a Kick-off pricing on author tables, too. Half price now through mid-March. Hurry, sign up for a table, you can share a table, too, to make your costs even less. Fill out the Author Registration and get that in to us so we can reserve you a table. They’re going fast at this great price.

The warm weather here has caused the green onions to come up and self-seeded parsley to start sprouting.

February, Gardening, Spring Onions, Connie Cockrell

February Spring Onions by Connie Cockrell

The fruit trees are starting to bud out too. Several flowering trees in the neighborhood are already blooming. It’s too soon, of course. If my fruit trees bloom now, they’ll get frost blasted for sure and I won’t get anything. I keep telling my trees to go back to sleep. I don’t think it’s working. We haven’t had rain in a long time, I may have to water. Ack!

I also volunteer for the Northern Gila County Fair. (www.NorthernGilaCountyFair.com) We’ve come very close to cancelling the fair because we didn’t have enough volunteers. Fortunately, we did a big newspaper and radio push and several people stepped up to help us out. Yay! The 61st Northern Gila County Fair is a go!

The Book Festival and the Fair have been taking a lot of my time this month and I haven’t done much writing because of it. But this week has no appointments so I think I can get back to my writing. My All About Bob story has been languishing long enough. I also need to edit my November story, Mystery at the Fair and finish editing my short story, After Math, so I can re-start submitting it to magazines. Lots of writing still to do, so I’d better get cracking.

Thanks for stopping by my blog today.

Lost Rainbows released January 25th! I’m pretty excited about it. You can buy it and my other books at: Apple, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, or Smashwords today!

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Monday Blog Post: Running As Fast As I Can

Wading, creek, hiking,

Wading Sycamore Creek by Randy Cockrell

How many of you are helping a parent through the Medicare maze? I am because as I mentioned in my December posts, my mom moved in with me. The move has inspired a complete redo of her Medicare insurance, this being another state and all. What a mess! It’s a federal program! So why aren’t there federal guidelines, places to go, consistent standards and pricing? I’ll live through this process but the aggravation is all on the government.

Lost Rainbows is up on both Smashwords and CreateSpace so you should be able to find the book on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Apple and other sites.

Mybike ride on a Greenway path from Scottsdale to Tempe Town Lake and back again, about 30 miles was fantastic. What a wonderful resource for the town. After a year break from bike riding, yes, I was sore. But, I’m healed up now and the ride is so lovely that I may do it again. The Tuesday hike had us wading a couple of streams. A picture is at the top of the blog. Stream wading isn’t something we usually have to confront in Arizona and a few hikers had some reservations. However, in the long run, everyone crossed safely, in both directions and we had a wonderful hike.

On the writing front. I’ve done practically no writing last week. I’m the chair of a committee for putting on Payson’s first ever book festival as well as a board member for a couple of other volunteer organizations. All of them have collided this week to put me off of my regular schedule. This weekend my hubby and mom and I snuck away and I have had time to write. I’m excited about new stories.

Sign up for the newsletter on my blog, www.conniesrandomthoughts.wordpress.com. You’ll get the scoop on what I’m writing much earlier than I post it here.

Thanks for stopping by my blog today.

Lost Rainbows released January 25th! I’m pretty excited about it. You can buy it and my other books at: Apple, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, or Smashwords today!

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