Posts Tagged ‘Books’

2017 Book News & Changes

Wednesday, January 4th, 2017

Hey everyone! Long time no speak. 🙂 I hope your New Year is already fantastic.

The beginning of a new year brings the promise of dumping the old and starting the new. I rarely make resolutions. If I do, I don’t often write them down. This year I have a major goal. It isn’t writing a certain number of words a week or books a year. It’s continuing some of the things I’ve been working on for several years. At the end of the year, though, I did see some things crystal clear.

One. Make sure I stay on the course of positivity in my professional and personal life.

Two. Continue to write whatever blows my skirt up. Right now that is mostly horror. Sometimes it’ll be romance.

Three. Continue my exciting new ventures with two professionals and friends in the television and movie world, including becoming…drum roll…a producer at a brand new production company. Yep, you heard it here. More on this when I have bigger details to share.

In slightly different news, one of my publishers is going out of business and will be done by January 13. My story Comeuppance (featured in the Nightmares and Echoes III anthology) will be in limbo after that date until I fold it into my own horror anthology. Eclipse and Hostility will go back up on Amazon and other outlets probably by the end of the month. Many thanks to Jennifer Tover and Josh Hilden of Gorillas With Scissors Press for being honest, hard-working, and stand up people. Best of luck to them in all their future adventures.

Okay all! That’s it for today. Until next time, live, love and dream.

Horror Literature, Inspiration & Hostility

Thursday, November 10th, 2016

Welcome to a new month! Glad to have you here and hope you’re having a fantastic day. My latest horror effort is a story I called Hostility. How did this story come about and what inspired me to write it?  One day I was reading a book on horror writing and they discussed an anthology written in the 1990’s based solely on people’s greatest fears. The editor of the anthology had asked each author to tap into those overwhelming fears to create their stories. I thought this was a great idea.

When I pondered my own fears, I dove deep into psychology. When you think of it, that is difficult for most of us to do. We don’t want to examine fear too closely. I realized, though, that one of my lifelong apprehensions is losing control of my anger. And with that I was off to the races and created Hostility.

Hostility releases on November 11, but you can preorder it now right here. Here’s the blurb to get you started:

Myra Harrington is tired. And sick. And sick and tired. Once a therapist, now a life coach, Myra hasn’t accomplished the goals she set out for herself two years ago when she left the insanity of psychology for coaching. One day she rips off the bandage and lets her hostility roar. Isolated in her office by a severe storm, she discovers a new side of herself. What her anger creates will tear apart her world and she may never get it back again.

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You can still get the amazing Nightmares & Echoes III charity anthology and Eclipse, my erotic paranormal romance. Click here to get the details!

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Publishing: Adapting & Surviving

Tuesday, August 9th, 2016

Gratitude is sometimes hard to cultivate, especially if you’re rolling with the punches, whatever those punches might be. I’ve been busy, busy the last few weeks, but it’s all pretty much been good stuff. Even though I have a million things to be grateful for, I’m like everyone else. Sometimes need to remind myself to do a check in and say, “Hey idiot, look at the amazing things you’ve got in your life!” Having an incredible writing career is very much one of the top spots in that gratitude list.

Like every writer at some point in time, I’ve had to jump through hoops and adapt. One of my more recent adaptations is creating more straight horror stories whether they are short stories or full-fledged novels. I’ve always enjoyed writing paranormal romance, but I realized that horror writing had grabbed me by the throat (pun intended) and was begging me to get more involved. (I recently joined Horror Writers Association as an example). Rather than strangling that desire, I am jumping in with both feet. I can tell that my creativity needs it.

So where am I going with this?

A writer, in order to survive the publishing world, has to be willing to adapt.

Over the last several months I’ve seen many authors say they’re quitting writing. Everyone has different reasons. For some it’s been as simple as transitioning into a new career they prefer or feel drawn to at this point in time. They may have been writing thirty years or twenty years and they feel there are other things they’d rather do now. If they can leave the writing career with absolutely no regrets, with a sense of “this is right” in their gut, I say more power to them. Some, though, aren’t feeling it is right in their guts. They aren’t relieved, calmed or settled. They’re profoundly sad and torn up.

Some are quitting because they are discouraged. They might be burned out and blocked. For those individuals they may need some time away from writing to recharge, reassess, and discover through self-analysis what is required to reboot their creativity. These people often come back to writing with a whole new energy, even if it is months later. Many have worked with me in my capacity as a creativity coach. I love helping them discover their way back to writing.

Then there are people who have stopped writing because at the end of the day, if they can’t get accolades, money, and significant recognition for their writing…well that’s the end game. They’re unhappy because they’ve been writing five years or ten years or even twenty and they haven’t become a NY Times best seller and they aren’t making much money. Or maybe they were a NY Times bestseller and they used to make money hand over fist. Just like anyone who used to make money in a career and no longer is, it is understandable they might feel disappointed and discouraged. Some of these writers will stop writing for a while and realize at some point they really were writing for more than money. But if you truly can’t and don’t want to write unless the bucks are rolling in, there is no shame in quitting.

I’d encourage you, though, to consider the fact that making a lot of cash in the writing world has never been guaranteed and has never been particularly easy. Learning to deal with that reality so that you can either move on to another career or to find a brand new way to keep writing in your life…that is paramount. Keep asking yourself why you started writing in the first place. If it was purely for fame and fortune so be it. If it is for the amazing love and satisfaction that can come from creating, and if that creation brings you a high, then maybe money isn’t your honest reason for doing this writing thing. Maybe it’s time to explore adaptation and discovering how to reboot that creativity and keep writing in your life.

Think about that.

Writers: You Always Have A Choice

Thursday, September 18th, 2014

Choice. Many artistic people, whether they are writers or in another creative field, are prone to thinking that is destined to cause them significant grief. It is the same thinking even those outside of creative career fields are prone to believing. The belief that they have no choice.

Recently I read a post on social media that prompted me to write this blog because as an author and creativity coach, I don’t want anyone to lose their creative drive. The social media post hit a nerve with me, I’ll admit. It was one of those posts where one author tells other authors what they should be doing with their career, which publishers to submit to, etc. Advice is fine, and everyone gives advice to other people sometimes. I’ve given advice to other authors in blogs and in person. What worries me is when anyone insinuates that there is one right way to approach a career or a creative endeavor. “You should” was stated in this social media post over and over.

All of these shoulds give the impression there is only one way to have a writing career. Numerous articles, magazines, conference workshops and various other situations give authors continuous advice on the ins and outs of a publishing career.

If shoulds destroy creativity, what do you do? You have a choice. Always. Define for yourself what maintains your creativity. If you don’t have your ability to create, if you allow other people (no matter who they are) to define what you want to happen in your writing life, you’ll never be satisfied with your writing life. You’ll constantly be following trends, chasing someone else’s dream because you believe it “should” be your dream. You’ll stop writing because something bad happens in your career. You’ll throw your hands up and give up. Maintain your creativity. Fiercely defend it agains the shoulds.

You always have a choice.

Shindig Video Get Together February 1

Tuesday, January 15th, 2013

 

Hey guys! Keep forgetting to tell you about my Shindig Video Chat coming up February 1. I hope you’ll be able to attend. Stop by here for all the info! Would love to see you there.

http://www.shindig.com/event/denise-agnew

 

 

Naughty New Year Blog Hop!

Friday, December 28th, 2012

Okay, so this isn’t really a blog post about anything naughty. But it is a blog in the chain of wonderful blogs that could lead you to winning a Kindle Fire HD “7, a free paperback or an ebook. So make sure you participate in the Naughty New Year Blog Hop by clicking the banner above. The blog hop runs from December 28 to December 30 with a live chat and Grand Prize winner selected December 30 at 7pm Eastern.

Anyhoo, by now you know writers are strange creatures. And we don’t actually exist. I’m pretty certain we’re only a myth. Back when I did paper book signings (I rarely do them now), people would see the table with “author signing” on it and piles of paperback books. They’d come up to my table, gawk at me and ask, “You’re a writer?” I’d smile and say cheerfully that I am. Readers don’t always know what to make of us mythical creatures, so here are some freaky facts about me.

Freaky Factoids about Agnew:

I’m an Honorary Army Mountain Ranger (I’d tell you how I got it, but then I’d have to kill ya.)

I grew up with German Shepherds. Lots of them. Most of them were trained for police work, including attack and finding illegal drugs like heroine. Now I have a precocious but loving Mini Schnauzer.

My dad was a cop for twenty-nine years.

I’m distantly related to Vincent Price.

I’ve traced my ancestry back to the 1400’s in France and the 1500’s in England, but I’m also Welsh, Scottish and Irish.

I lived in England for three years.

My favorite snack in the whole world is popcorn.

I’m an amateur archaeologist, archer, paranormal investigator, and a Reiki Master.

Now that I’ve enlightened you with those fascinating and not so fascinating things about me, what are some freaky factoids about you? And don’t forget to click on the banner above to enter the blog hop!

 

The Best Books on Writing. Ever!

Monday, January 3rd, 2011

First of all, Happy New Year! I hope your holidays were filled with warmth, happiness, love and health.

I didn’t make any real New Year’s Resolutions this year except for one. Write what I enjoy writing. It sounds like such a mild goal, but in my career at this point, it’s really all I need and want. It feels good.

Later in the month I have an article/blog that I feel is a little controversial in the writing world, and I’m not even sure if I’ll post it yet. I’m still thinking about it. In the meantime, I wanted to start the year with a positive for all writers. In the writing world we hear about how to plot, how to write characters, how to do this and that. I’ve found the best writing books, for me, aren’t so much “how to” books as they are books that inspire. So here’s the list. If you’re a writer, check ‘em out. I hope they inspire you to write that next book and keep on writing no matter what the publishing world throws at you.

On Writing – Stephen King

The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles – Steven Pressfield

Creativity For Life – Eric Maisel

Coaching the Artist Within – Eric Maisel

Fearless Creating – Eric Maisel

The Van Gogh Blues – Eric Maisel

Freeing Your Creativity: A Writer’s Guide – Marshall Cook

Writing Past Dark: Envy, Fear, Distraction, and Other Dilemmas in the Writer’s Life – Bonnie Friedman

Bird By Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life – Anne Lamott

Wild Mind: Living The Writer’s Life – Natalie Goldberg

I have a few other books on writing, though I’ve given away most books on craft. Not that I think I can’t learn more craft. Every writer can. It’s just that books on how to get out of my own way, how to find inspiration and creativity have given me far more than any book on craft ever could. I listed the titles above in hopes that you, too, can find that spark and that fire and write the book you’ve always wished to write.