Writing Update – Time for Colorado Gold

Sometimes “writing” is not about putting words on paper at all.  Sometimes, for me, writing is about socializing, learning, and marketing.  Here’s a quick update on what’s going on in my writing life:


Author Carol Berg at last year's Colorado Gold Conference

Author Carol Berg at last year’s Colorado Gold Conference

Yes! The event I look forward to all year is going on at the Denver Renaissance Hotel this weekend.  Bunches of writers, aspiring authors, agents, editors, and everything literary are coming to town for three days of fun and learning.  I can’t wait to be a part of it all again.

I’m looking forward to seeing Sharon Mignerey, who moved to Texas several years ago.  And I’ll spend time with Mike Befeler, asking not only about his work, but how his house is surviving the flood waters from the mountains.  People from my critique group will be around and I’ll look forward to chatting with them both about writing and about their lives.  Each week when we meet, there is little time to bond as writers. We have to focus on reading and editing each other’s work. This weekend will provide the time for just being friends with a terrific interest in common.

But best of all, MY GRANDDAUGHTER IS COMING TOO! Whoo Hoo!  Chloe is thirteen and one half, old enough to understand what’s going on.  She is a wonderful writer and is excited to visit Colorado to see what the “grown-ups” do with their writing.  I hope I haven’t over-sold the event, but with books to buy, sessions to attend, and people to meet, I’m sure of one thing–Chloe will not be bored!  I can’t wait to introduce her to my friends.


Three Chimneys Gifts, Littleton, CO

Here’s where I’ll be Saturday, Sept. 28. Hope to see you there!

Yipee!  I have another book signing coming up.  If you live in the Littleton area, please be sure to stop by Three Chimneys, Natural Surroundings on Saturday, September 28th between 11:00am and 3:00pm.  This is the historic shop I wrote about a couple of months ago.  I can hardly wait–just need to get people to come to the event.

Also, tomorrow night I get to visit with a women’s book club. I am so excited for this.  Thanks to my friend, Gina Fenske, I’ll visit the group in Gina’s home, answer questions about writing and possibly dogs, then encourage the group to tell me about themselves, and tell their friends about Faith on the Rocks.


I cannot believe I am so close to having a second novel ready to submit to my publisher.  Today, I am planning to review, edit, and/or rewrite the last seven chapters of Sliced Vegetarian, the second Daisy Arthur novel.  Sometime tomorrow, I will export my document from Scrivener, the writing software I use, to either a pdf or Word format, and send it off to three talented writing friends for review.

When I wrote Faith on the Rocks, I think I took every single chapter to critique group.  As a result, I only had one beta reader, or person who reads a work before taking it public.  Technically, I should probably refer to these friends as “alpha” readers–people who read a work in process, but I feel that Sliced Vegetarian is at the public testing phase software companies refer to as “beta sites.” Please wish me luck.


For a marketing person, I’ve been pretty lax about pushing myself and my books “out there.”  I want to start sending a monthly newsletter to people, with the idea that through the newsletter they can keep up-to-date on Daisy happenings, about Prophet–aka “Thunder” and Nalla, or “Georgette.”  If you’d like to be on that mailing list, please let me know.  Also, if you have ideas of articles you’d like to see in that newsletter, again, I’d appreciate hearing from you.

Wishing you a great week, full of all the adventure you want, and the best reads you can find.

Becoming a Productive Writer/Public Speaker

I had planned to talk with you today about becoming a more productive writer, but need to update my regular reading friends on “Daisy News” first.

Beth Groundwater siteWhoo Hoo!  My very first guest blog is today!  If you have time for a quick step over to author  Beth Groundwater’s site and blog, you could possibly win a copy of my book.  And if you have a blog you’d like a guest post on, please let me know.

Book sales have been going well according to my publisher, and I’m closing in on 2000 copies sold!  This is, of course, before returns, but I currently have visions of grandeur.  I hope those who  read Faith on the Rocks will enjoy it and spread the word that this makes a good, light read at the beach or on the back deck.

Tuesday Talk Show

Looking forward to chatting with Lindsay Woods.

I’m really looking forward to my first radio interview on Tuesday, July 30!  Back in college, I tried working on a radio show for my dormitory at Michigan State University.  Talk about disaster!  I was too afraid to actually talk on air, so I just kept playing music on the record player and, believe me, I have no taste in music worth sharing!  Had to try at least.

Anyway, the host of Ft. Collins based KRFC 88.9FM The Tuesday Talk Show is Lindsay Woods.  We met through ballroom dance here in Colorado, but found we both grew up in the same area of Michigan.  Lindsay is a vibrant personality and wonderfully fun person to be around, so I’m sure she’ll help me overcome my Michigan State background to talk about my book.  Hope you can join us.  If you can, please let me know and I’ll send you a call-in telephone number for your questions or comments. For those not in the Ft. Collins area, my friend, John, found this link: http://radioradio7.com/radio/KRFC-889-FM-Fort-Collins-CO.html 

Now, as we’re on the shameless self-promotion part of this blog, I do want to thank everyone who came to my book signings this weekend.  Mike Befeler was a complete hero at Broadway Book Mall, helping me through my first effort.  I was able to see some friends at the signing both from my fantastic critique group and people who I haven’t connected with in a few years.  What a thrill.  And Mary Ann, one of my best friends, even brought me a rose from her garden to mark the event.

On Sunday, my fantastic ballroom dance friends and a couple of great neighbors attended a private party where I had the spotlight all to myself.  I tell you, it’s a wonder I can still get my head through the front door!

At this point, book signings and appearances are all about selling books.  The average book signing results in about 8 books sold, and that’s where I sit today.  I could use your help, though.  If you have any places you think I could do signings (shops that also happen to sell books, places that are focused on Littleton, Pets, Special Needs People, or mysteries) please let me know.  I’d love to do a signing or talk in your area.  Of course, I’m limited on travel budget–ie I have none, but I can do podcasts and connect to you through  other media.

Now the hard part of being a writer kicks in.  Sales is party time, but without product, sales don’t exist.  I love Faith on the Rocks, but Sliced Vegetarian needs work.  So how do you balance between writing and promotion?  I’m not sure, but plan to try.

In that effort, I’m reading The Productive Writer by Sage Cohen.  Her book is jam-packed with exercises and other organizational things to keep you writing.  I particularly like in Chapter One how she has you set up a group of files in an effort to “make a case” for your writing future, and asks you to study your author heroes.  I also like how she calls us who write People of Letters.  It sounds so noble when drawn out like this.

So, here’s a thought for you today: pick an author and research her.  Find out how she got started in the writing profession, what other work he’s done besides the books you’ve read, what kind of writing life he or she leads.  Is there something in your hero’s work style that you might emulate?  We’re not looking to become the flamboyant Thomas Wolfe or suicidal Ernest Hemingway here.  Just find out how they wrote and ask yourself if their habits might become your own.

Good luck, and happy writing!