Monday, September 24, 2012

Everyone Look at This Map

It's located right here:

Zoom in a few times because the booth numbers are ungodly small, and look toward the bottom, across from the Veteran's Park and at the corner of the "soccer field parking." See Booth #56? That's where yours truly will be this October 6th and 7th.

I'm very excited about this. It's a great location right in the middle of things (on the other side of the lake is where I did my sidewalk paintings at Family Days for 10 years straight). Last year I was right by the amphitheater. Usually, Booth #56 is surrounded by food vendors, and I'm hoping that stays the same so I can smell popcorn and hot dogs and roasted almonds all day long...and send S out on missions to find me some.

I was just informed earlier that all booths for Family Days are sold out, and that they sold out in record time. Glad I got my registration in early! I know I said this last year, but I love Family Days and would be really disheartened to not be a part of it. This will be my 12th year as a participant (10 years as an artist, 2 as a vendor).

Be sure to come see me October 6th and 7th. I should have the next book in the Helping Hands series, Shadows in the Night (blog post on that coming soon) available, but I'll only have a small amount so get yours first!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Never Say This to a Writer

"I just want to make a bunch of money so I figured I'd write a book. Can't be that hard, right?"

I can't tell you how many times I hear this at book signings, writing/book conventions, and during random conversations. Each time I smile and nod and offer a few tips on writing, and each time in my head I'm judging you. Hard.

First of all, this asinine statement makes it sound like writing is easy, that anyone can do it and do it easily. Sure, anyone can write, but writing a good book IS hard work. It takes time, dedication, focus, and passion. This is not to say that every book is good, or will appeal to everyone, but regardless, a book isn't something you can just throw together all willy-nilly and think it's up to par with the work of someone who has given it the proper amount of time and attention.

Second of all, it's incredibly insulting to those of us who don't write simply to cash in on a fad and make a quick buck. Some of us simply love to write, and enjoy sharing our words with others. It's fun, it's hard work, it's fulfilling, and there's nothing else we'd rather do. It's not all about the money, which is why many, many, many of us have other jobs and use what little free time we do have to write. Because we love it.

At my last book event, I had no less than five "writers" say this to me. One stated that the economy was bad and she couldn't find a job, so she was going to write a book and cash in on the paranormal trend/craze while it was still hot since "people love vampires and I figure books can't be all that hard to do." Another asked if my books paid all the bills and allowed me lots of vacation time/spending money, and when I stated otherwise, decided "maybe writing isn't worth it after all." I was tempted to ask their names simply so I'd know better than to buy their books in the future.

Maybe I just don't understand this mindset. Perhaps I'm too sensitive. Sure, every writer wants to be successful and be able to support themselves solely on their books. But unless you are incredibly lucky or know someone in the industry, chances are, you aren't going to be an overnight hit. Maybe you never will be, but if you love writing, then that doesn't matter. You do it anyway because it's about doing what you love, and not about trying to leech ideas off of people you think are also only writing to pad their bank account.

If your goal is to be rich and famous overnight by writing a book you don't care about past a paycheck, then good for you. I wish you the best of luck. Just leave me out of it.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Florida Heritage Book Festival

The Florida Heritage Book Festival in St. Augustine, Florida was a success! I sold a lot of books, the most popular being The Sour Orange Derby. I definitely need to order more in time for Port Orange Family Days next month. I also got a chance to network with people and get new ideas for marketing my books, including making audio books and videos featuring local Native American histories and landmarks. More on that to come!

I also got two new indie books to read for my Indie Year Challenge - Prey of the Spirit Bear and memoirs from a flight attendant (can't remember the exact title, but I will post more about it after it's read). I started the Spirit Bear book already and am excited to get into it. Y'all know how much I love my Native American stories. This one focuses more on the tribes of the Southwest.

That reminds me - if you're ever an author at a book event like this, don't go around asking people how well they did and then tell them, "Oh, well I sold out! Lucky me!" First of all, everyone brings a different number of books so selling out doesn't mean much if you bring 15 and another brings 50. Second of all, you kind of sound like a douche. Just saying.

Anyway, some pics!

At the Table

Surrounded by Readers

Other Vendors

Other Vendors

My Outfit (Had to Have My Momma Help Me - I Have No Sense of Style)

(Ignore the white spaces around this photo. It was the only way I could get it to post without it being sideways)

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Dungeon: A Short Story

(Art by Marks Haven)

It's been awhile since I've done a blog post. Things have been overwhelmingly busy with teaching, work, and book stuff, and I'm happy to say a lot is getting done, including the upcoming release of  Shadows in the Night (Helping Hands Part Two) and finishing Into the Shadow Realm (Book 3 in the Whisper Legacy - titles coincidental, I don't actually have an obsession with shadows.

My latest endeavor is to release my first-ever short story titled, "Dungeon." I started it years ago but never finished as I began working on other books. I've now dragged it off the literary shelf, dusted it off, and completed it. After editing it will be made available for the Kindle only, price still to be determined (but no more than $.99). In the meantime, enjoy a synopsis below!

A Short Story by Kristina Circelli

Locked away from civilization. Starved for a freedom yet to come. Lost in the world they created for themselves.

They were friends once, before they were prisoners. Then they were allies, dependent on one another for daily survival. When they escaped, if they escaped, more than just that bond built on desperation, loneliness, and familiarity would be tested.

Their existence - one small, cramped room with a cracked table in its center. Their reality - secrets and lies and a struggle to balance the present with the past.

They were the four. They were the prisoners of the Dungeon.

Stay Tuned for the Release of "Dungeon"