Thin butter on Stale Toast

I’m beginning to feel like thin butter on stale toast. Why? Well, I’ve begun to venture on many paths. This might be something that you’ve felt before or maybe your feeling it right now. I am currently on my blog, Two YouTube channels, Two Facebook pages, and writing my second novel. I also work a full-time job. Balancing life with all these tasks have been challenging. Even with the extra time I have given myself in the day. I’m beginning to think I should mould all of it together in one. I fear that I will piss people off when all they want is to read about when my next book is coming out. Or maybe they’re only interested in learning more about adoption. This blog is a blend of all those things and has been doing well. It helps that in the past few months I’ve been giving it love.

This came to my mind as I did my morning journal. I wrote, half asleep, about what was making my days feel drained. Was it waking up at the crack of dawn, maybe I needed to go to bed earlier, or maybe I was all over the place with my projects?
Audience is key. To get the right viewers or sales you need to know your audience and feed them their favourite foods. People love to get what they’re interested in or else they stop coming around. Am I giving them that? I know the audience of my book is those that like to read darker tales, watch horror films, and love the paranormal. My blog is far from that. My vlogs are far from that. And my Facebook pages don’t feed that fan base. I’m banging my head against the wall. I have created a fluffy platform because I’m a nightmare dress up like a unicorn. There will be changes to this in the future. I would like to grab a fresh warm piece of bread and spread on a thick layer of butter. No more of this thin stale crap.

I don’t think I’m going to keep up with my vlog. I will be deleting my adoption vlog and my vlog that’s connected to this blog. This blog and my Facebook page will become my main focus. I don’t know what will become of me in the future. That’s okay. I will continue doing my morning journal and find the weaknesses in my days, platform, and productivity.

I am human. I am change. I am growing.

Every day that passes I am focused on my goals for the future. My writings and books are my main passion. This is where I want my life to take me. If I eliminate the things that are blocking the path then I will become stronger in my craft. I will have more time for research. I will have more time to study. These are the things I am looking forward too.

I would love to hear from you in the comments below. Tell me if you feel like you’ve taken on to much? What do you plan to do about it?

 

Wicked Soul Ascension 
Want a read that will get your heart pumping?
Available in paperback and eBook.

Link: Amazon
Link: Chapters
Link: Barns & Noble

Advertisements

Top Five Writers Resources

These are the top five writing resources I have found to be useful that benefit my craft.These are the top five writing resources I have found to be useful that benefit my craft.
1. Jenna Moreci
Jenna has a YouTube channel stocked with videos about writing. She is informative and entertaining to watch. I really enjoy her short, to the point, videos. They have helped me expand my abilities as a writer.

The link to her channel: Jenna Moreci
2. Canadian Writer Group
This group on Facebook is meant for Canadian writers. There are groups all over Facebook that writers can tap into. These groups have other writers that you can connect with to see how they’ve worked on their craft and author platform. It’s great to connect with people that share your passion.

The link: Canadian Writers
(Keep in mind this one is for Canadian writers only. If you are not from Canada find the group that is in your area.)
3. Pixabay
Pixabay is a stock photo website that allows you to download free photos. I use the images to spruce up my blog posts. Mostly all my featured images come from this site. I found it a lot easier to use than Shuttershock.

The link: Pixabay
4. Cavna
Cavana is a simple photo editer. I use it with the photos I pull from Pixabay. I use this site to create photos with words on top of the image. These images go on to my social media in the perfect size since Cavana offers templates for all the mainstream sites.

The link: Canva

 

Mortal SoulAscension

Example

 

 

5. Writer’s Digest Magazine
I get this Magazine for free at my local library, but you can get the monthly subscription to come to your door. This magazine is stocked filled with the newest information about the field. It’s beneficial for you to know what is happening in the industry. There is always juicy info.

The link: Writer’s Digest
If you have any to add to this list please leave them in the comments below. I am always looking to expand my knowledge. I want to learn more about all the secrets that you writers have. Please share them with me!

 

Wicked Soul Ascension 
Want a read that will get your heart pumping?
Available in print and eBook.

Link: Amazon
Link: Chapters
Link: Barns & Noble

Adoption in Writing. And then, Adopting…

I started writing Wicked Soul Ascension long before I started thinking about children. I knew Mark and I would want children in the future, but we never talked about it. My main character from Wicked Soul Ascesnsion, Blaze, was adopted by her family after she lost her mother and father in a fire. I never thought that years later my husband and I would enter the adoption process after my novel was published.

The problem with having written an adopted character:
I didn’t know much about the process or the traumas of an adoptee. I heard many stories about international adoptions and domestic adoptions. I also have experience working with children that have been adopted. But now, I’m going to be the mother of an adopted child.
How will they feel when they read this fictional story?
Will I ever write about an adoptee again?
These questions have been weighing heavily on my heart.

On the other hand…
Maybe my child will want to become a writer. I can’t wait to read to him/her books while we curl up in their bed. Trips to the library.

This adventure is the scariest one yet.

 

Wicked Soul Ascension 
Want a read that will get your heart pumping?
Available in print and eBook.

Youtube Vlog about our adoption:
Latest Video
Our Journey to Family

 

The Nightmare of Page 40

Wicked Soul Ascension
Chapter 3 Page 40

This dark nightmare that Blaze endures is one of my favourite scenes. When I first approached it I wanted it to be lighter so I could ease the readers into my madness. But, when I wrote the scene it was blah! I crumpled chapter three into a ball and threw it into the recycling.

(Spoilers…Sorta…)

Here is the dissection of the nightmare of Chapter 3:

I reapproached the nightmare with a new angle. The night before I sat down to rewrite chapter three I had a horrible and yet amazing dream. There were ups and downs all over the place. It was like riding a rollercoaster without the safety harness. I knew then how these dreams should play out.

The nightmare had to be about school. Most nightmares that happen are about things we fear or cause us some form of hardship. Ether in the past or in the minds predicted future. At least, that’s from my experience.
Blaze, main character, the students at the school bullied her for being different, easy to pick on, and socially awkward. The teachers never gave Blaze a chance to work through the trauma she had experienced as a small child. Blazes’ mind is a dark eery place where the most twisted things were allowed to happen. I decided that the students and teachers needed to be displayed in the most Blaze-ish way possible. Meat hooks were a great foreshadowing choice that I snuck in. Those of you that read the book…did you catch that?
I took away the sound of the room. The blood that dripped from the open wounds, no creaks, or steps were all void of sound. Loud music in horror movies, even the lack of music, usually means that something is going to pop out. So, I wanted to try it out in a book. I loved the result. It truly added to the emotion of this scene.

After it was written.
The finished nightmare in chapter three made it’s way to my favourites list. I ended up reading it at the Laughing Oyster Book Reading Series on Vancouver Island, Canada. I had never read in front of anyone since English class in school. I mumbled my intro to the crowded room. My hands vibrated as my knees grew weak.
And then, I read the two pages.
When I finished I glanced up from my sheet of paper at the audience panicked that I picked the wrong passage for the crowd. I meekly said, “thank you,” into the mic.
A pause.
Nothing.
Not even a cough.
Finally, they all let out a breath at the same time before they began to clap. It was then I realized how intense the passage was. That the air in the room was sucked out while the audience held their breath.
This is my goal. I want my readers to truly feel the aura of each scene the way I read the nightmare of chapter three that day.

 

Wicked Soul Ascension 
Want a read that will get your heart pumping?
Available in print and eBook

I have done a live reading of this scene on my Facebook page.
Skip forward to 14:12 for the reading.    (Click Here)

 

Writing: Blaze and Hope

The characters Blaze Nemasa and Hope came to me in my original stories that I would write in middle school throughout high school. In one copy of the story that I wrote in middle school, Blaze and Hope visit Japan to explore all the things that my friend Kim and I wanted too. It was our own little fan fiction that we had created. Of course, Blaze and Hope were not called by the names they have today. Over time their names developed into the story for the roles that they play through Wicked Soul Ascension. Hope brought light to Blaze’s life where as Blaze felt like all she did was destroy things that got close to her.When I first learned about the art of writing a story I was fascinated by symbolism and foreshadowing. I would look for it in movies, books, and even everyday life to see if it would apply to the real world. I took this to heart when I renamed my new characters for the Ascension Trilogy.

Blaze’s last name was a different story. I had a bad dream one night and I remember a voice calling out Neeeemaaaassssaaaa! It was the creepiest thing. The next night the trees growled it. I knew that morning that I had Blaze’s last name. I then had the joys of trying to spell the blasted sound. I have to admit that it didn’t come out perfect, but it was close enough and easy to pronounce without hesitation.

The personality of Blaze came naturally. She seemed to want growth. She longed to break out of her shell and blossom into the daring, passionate, character she became by the end of the book. I struggled with her voice in the beginning. Once I got a hold of her it was hard to let go.

Hope on the other hand…her character jumped out of the book with her bubbly personality that balanced perfectly with Blaze. She almost scared me with her vibrant voice and spontaneousness.

I feared to put the two together so often. Blaze seemed so monotone and Hope to hyper. As the story progressed I realized that they were a match for each other. The story took a strange twist when their traits begin to switch. Hope becomes dull voiced, withdrawn, and less bubbly and Blaze gains this conference that she never had before. I really enjoyed this part. Watching the story take its toll on the friends. The horror of the Sinful Realm effected Hope and Blaze equally in an opposite way. I thought I would struggle to do the change, but it was fascinating to see the effects. I felt like a scientist experimenting on them as I threw those twists at their personality traits. How would they react if I did this to them?… Well, that was interesting! What about this? I found when one progressed the other degressed. As if they could never be on the same plain together. If one was wild the other was level headed.

When I finished writing Wicked Soul Ascension I had troubles with self-doubt about the friendship. It seemed too fictional. It wasn’t until I received the printed copy months after the revisions, edits, and formatting that I got a chance to sit down to read the story. I understand that there is always something knew to learn, and this pairing taught me meany things. I am quite in love with Blaze and Hope. I am happy with the way they turned out.

If you have read Wicked Soul Ascension I would love to hear your comments on Blaze and Hopes friendship.

Do you have a friend that is bubbly or monotone? Does your personality complement theirs?

 

 

 

WSA

 

Wicked Soul Ascension 
Want a read that will get your heart pumping?
Available in print and eBook.

A Month of Tears. A Month of Happiness.

The end of November is a fearful day for NaNoWriMoers. These writers are finger cramped, shoulder achy, and brains are pulled like taffy. The 30th of November is a time to cheer and/or a time to cry. They have to write a novel in a month. That’s 50, 000 words!

Here’s how it happens:
National Novel Writing Month…November.
Goal: Write 50, 000 words in a month.

November 1st: Writers at the ready? On your marks, get set…GO!
November 3rd: Thinking everything’s fine. A little behind, but that’s alright.
The first Saturday: Turn off the phone, ignore people that live in the house…write like the end of the month is tomorrow.
Sunday…day off. Saturday took all the writing ability out leaving fingers and arms like wet noodles. 3,000 words over the target. Do’in alright.
This lasts until the next Saturday.
November 11th: Take the day off for Remembrance Day (Canadian Holiday) Push writing aside, only a few thousand words off of the goal…
November 18…another Saturday…when did that happen? Oh! No! No…no…no! Write with fingers on fire. Nothing makes sense but it’s words, that’s all it needs is words…right!
Four sleepless nights, 79 pots of coffee, 13 bags of chips, and 2-3 missed showers later. Finally back on track.
November 25: The last Saturday of the month. Sleep becomes a distant memory. Could cry tears of coffee. Might turn in to a potato chip…when is the last time a real meal was eaten? What’s that smell?
November 30: Finally did it. A winner! A winner! Pumps arms in the air. The smell knocks out the dog and cat from the stink, but it’s okay. A NaNoWriMo Winner!

I’ve devoted 4 years to National Novel Writing Month. I won all four times, although I deleted last years win from the website. That’s how badly I pushed myself. The whole thing was a mess.
This year I aimed higher than the 50, 000 because I had won each year I’d competed. This year I aimed for 60, 000 finishing with 62, 000. I was quite proud of myself for getting there. I did, however, avoid all contact with the world outside of my own imaginary one. I did shower, go to work, and eat regular meals. Other years…well, not so much.

What National Novel Writing Month has taught me:
I’ve learned that I can write a novel in two months. Why it takes me until November every year to complete my novel is due to the goal. I need to start setting personal goals, as well as keep to those goals. Without them, I don’t think I’d get anything done. This is something I am going to strive for in 2018. I will start setting personal goals. Who knows maybe in November 2018 I will be working on a whole new trilogy.

Cheers,
C. B. Dixon

To All Those Writers in NaNoWriMo,
I know that you tried your hardest. The month is a hard adventure that can take you to some strange places; physically and mentally. Remeber on all the good times; laughs you might have shared with your characters, writing buddies, or things that happened to you while you were writing. Remember all the friends you might have met online as you posted for help, shared stories, or Instagrammed a picture. Reflect on all the fumbles, mistakes, and blocks that you might have had. How did you get past all of it? Did you grow stronger as a writer because of it?

To Those Who Didn’t Make the 50k,
Life can get in the way of many things. You put yourself out there, you tried. Great job! It’s hard to write a novel in a month. I hope to see you next year, and the year after that, and then the year after that.

To Those Who Won,
Congratulations! Your back must be sore. Go relax with a nice cup of something other than coffee/tea. Maybe a bottle of rum? See you next year!

 

Wicked Soul Ascension 
Want a read that will get your heart pumping?
Available in print and ebook.
Amazon
Chapters/Indigo
Barns and Noble 

Music and The Writer

I was a young child setting up dance routines to the soundtrack of The Labyrinth with my cousins, or singing made up songs on the trampoline. My poor parents had to deal with this tone-deaf child that couldn’t keep a beat. No matter how bad it was, I loved doing it.
I lost interest in music when I got older. I liked it as background music, but I would never turn it on to clean or just sing-a-long. I hit a strange phase as a teenager.

girl-2605433_1920

Fast forward to 2017. I still can’t keep a beat. I can never remember the words, but I sing-a-long anyway. And…cleaning without music! Hello! I’m sure that’s a sin!
For my first novel, Wicked Soul Ascension, I only listened to music to distract me from the other noises in the coffeeshops where I wrote. I lived with roommates at the time, and most of the time they were great. I had my writing times, but my desk was in the living room for a while. I kept pushing writing for another time. The room was always too busy.
It was during this time that I refound my love for music. Listening to songs with lyrics was hard. I ended up writing in some of the words into the manuscript my accident. I had a hard time editing that out. So, I listened to classical music. Violin, cello, and acoustic guitar became my favourites. I branched into other types of music from there.
After I published Wicked Soul Ascension I had dug my claws into 50’s, punk, classic rock, and pop. I had grown up with classic rock from my dad and pop from my mom. I found my love of strange music all on my own.
I now have Spotify. I didn’t think my music collection could get more strange. I have a playlist I listen to as my characters are getting through their day by day, one for when they’re in battle, and another to add that eerie effect.

I’m glad that music found me again. It was meant to be. I find that music makes me a better writer. The music seems to pull my imagination out of its dark corner so I can see it in full view. There are still thousands of songs that I haven’t heard that I was meant to hear. Just as there are thousands of stories within me ready to be told.

Here are some of the songs I listen to almost daily. It’s always changing and growing. That’s the joy of discovery.

Old Favourites:
Misunderstood by P!nk
Ain’t No Rest For The Wicked by Cage The Elephant
Joker And The Thief by Wolfmother

Random favourites:
Chasing Ghosts by Against The Current
Human by Rag’n’Bone Man
The Devil’s Bleeding Crown By Volbeat
Places We Were Made By Maisie Perers

My music doesn’t really have walls. I don’t listen to one thing. I pick out the books I read the same way. It’s like my brain has no borders when it comes to liking something. I rather like whatever (music, books, coffee) for how it makes me feel instead it’s label/brand.

What is your favourite song? Do you find music motivating?

Cheers,
C.B. Dixon

(I will keep howling out my favourite songs when I think no one is listening. My poor dear husband.)

Check out my novel: Wicked Soul Ascension