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Writing For a Living: Not a Hobby

 I am always serious about my writing... and I'm not just serious about this beautiful new book, Book One of my Kendrick Creek series, set in the blue mist of the Smoky Mountains... I'm in love with it. Such a good story! :) Of course I'd think that, but it is.... I've just sent it out to wonderful influencers and I hope they love it.

PREORDER LINK HERE, JUST SO YOUSE DON'T MISS IT! 

Writing For a Living: Not a Hobby

Even when I'm a goof, I'm a goof with a purpose and that purpose is to make what I love doing worthwhile so that I will DIE doing what I love.

Writing stories. And supporting myself with writing money.

Now before all y'all write my epitaph, I'm not dying. (That I know of) I'm not sick, even... I'm just saying that writing is the kind of job you can do until the grave calls. I give you Laura Ingalls Wilder... James Michener.... Herman Wouk.... Agatha Christie.... Sue Grafton and so many more! 

As long as you have your health and mental acuity, you can write A VERY LONG TIME.

Now folks might get sick o' youse, they might feel like you've told the same story for the last five years (note that I'm naming no names here) and they may eventually chuck your work across a room, just because, but in the meantime you're acquiring new readers because they haven't read all gazillion books, and do you know that there are 331,000,000 people in this country alone? And if you add in the English speaking world? Another 20,000,000 native speakers. And over a billion if you count English as a second language. That's a lot of Kindles, darling.

Writing For a Living: Not a Hobby

I remember years ago someone explaining to me that people don't buy Kindles or tablets to read. They buy them for games.

My Kindle Unlimited account begs to differ. 

I could live on what I'm making on my indie books. Not live "big", but I'm not a big-living person. But I wouldn't starve and I could pay my bills on my indie books alone, so if you think those efforts don't add up over time, I'm here to say you're wrong... and don't give up! 

This isn't bragging. It's the farthest from bragging, but folks aren't generally supposed to talk about publishing money. It's often kept secret which is one way of having control over authors so they don't chat and create an air of discontent. That's pretty much old news now, but it was a Very Real Thing for a long time, and maybe still is... there was even a Secret Website where you could report your income anonymously and they would share the demographics online... I am not kidding. That's how things were. This was eight years ago. So we're not talking another century or dinosaur era or historical... we're talking very recently.

When I was newly published with Love Inspired I overheard a fellow at a conference  chatting about his wife's book and I heard him say, "We'll never get rich on it, but it keeps her happy."

Kind of like she was a puppy... 

I hope I hid my dismay.

First, writing a book and getting it published is tough! It's no walk in the park. And yeah, starting with category books, we don't make a ton initially... but if we stick with it and produce two-four books/year, it adds up... 

Here's an article link to Possible Publishing Trends for 2021

Talking money is rarely comfortable for folks because it's a private matter, but in this industry it was taken to new heights... Publishers didn't want authors talking and revealing advances, hence the "sweet" and "nice" and "really sweet" designations you see in publications.

To make a living in category and small books, you need to produce several/year and give yourself time to build a backlist. That's huge.

To make a living in big books, you need to wow a wonderful publisher and sell books... and that combo will keep you selling! 

And if you want to make it in indie publishing, keep writing great stories and put them out when they're ready... folks do love to read... and they like a bargain, so my KU readers are happy... I'm happy... and my books are being read.

I have to say honestly, I'm not sure how serious it all is now. I don't pay attention because I am loving what I'm doing, writing my Love Inspired books and Guideposts mysteries and having fun with my indies... and honestly, this brings the best of three worlds together, like triangulating the location on a gps. 

Money and income are important. I've had to balance finances and juggle change for most of my life, and I respect money... but I don't love it. 

What I love are readers. Touching hearts. And helping people to find healing through words, through scripture, through stories... because that helped me through tough times.

And this is what I want for you, if your goal and dream is to write for a living: Don't stop.

Stay strong.

Work whatever jobs you have to to get by until you can pay your bills comfortably with writing income.

Never give up... unless you can. Because if you can, if it's not your stronghold, friends, that's okay! 

I had more I was going to say but I have a cold (first bug in 11 months!!!!) and my head is stuffy and I'm going to drink tea and offer two copies of this beautiful new Smoky Mountain book... Ruthy goes Blue Ridge! And loves it. And I'm adding pics of what we're doing here at the farm to support the scholarship fund in honor of our beloved Lisa who went home to heaven August 17th.... and to raise awareness and join in the battle so many are fighting: cancer. These are a couple of our "Wreaths of Love".

Writing For a Living: Not a Hobby

Writing For a Living: Not a Hobby

Leave a comment below and we'll chat about books, and writing and paychecks. 


Writing For a Living: Not a Hobby

Ruthy is living her dream of writing beautiful stories and fun mysteries and running a busy and growing pumpkin farm on the side... and she's blessed to have family and friends working right along with her! Friend her on Facebook, (warning: Ruthy is conservative, bleeds red/white/blue and is pro-life, so you've got to know this going in... With Ruthy what you see is what you get, so a little preparation is a wonderful thing! You can also email Ruthy at loganherne@gmail.com or visit her website ruthloganherne.com. She'd love to get to know you better! 



Living, Breathing Snow Scenes

 

Living, Breathing Snow Scenes

By Ruth Logan Herne and Mary Connealy

Ruthy here.

Living, Breathing Snow Scenes

I can generally tell when someone has never driven, walked, stood in or experienced a real blizzard or lake squall (blizzard-like conditions over a specific area instead of a general storm) because they tell it wrong. Not just different... because what one fears, another one takes as a challenge, so the variants of character(s) are fine... but the storms themselves are uniquely similar. So are the effects. But how those effects affect an area can be so different based on terrain, setting, wind direction. And as a writer, as an American author, 50% of your readership could live in an area (like mine and Mary's) where snow is a reality for six or seven months/year. We can cite the October, 2018 blizzard that decimated farms and animals throughout the Midwest to April blizzards that keep people from Easter services and cover fertile fields with flood waters as the Mississippi basin drains 1/3 of the country. Those staggering numbers mean you need to get it right or lose readers. I remember a line from "A Town Like Alice"... "But he was an 'abo', and he was painting his place." 

The hero was explaining why the aboriginal man got the painting uniquely right. So how do you correctly write something you've rarely or never experienced? We've got some great ideas for you today so you Don't Mess It Up... 'cause if you do? They'll boo ya! (Derek Jeter to President Bush 9/2001)

Here are a couple of shows that show actual winter:

The Last American Cowboy (Season 1, Episode 1)

Heartland Docs (Season 1, Episode 2) 

Heartland Docs is also available from National Geographic on your Disney + app if you have that.

The harsh reality of a rugged snowstorm is life-threatening. It can also be funny. And poignant. Think of ALL the Hallmark movies you've watched where they get snowed in... roads blocked... gently falling snow. #notreal #Imserious #itsnotlikethat but... they generally have the BAD SNOW between the heroine and the airport, right???? :) That way bucolic innocence wins the day.

Here's a list of what to look for on videos and shows if you're inexperienced at writing winter storms. 

1. Snow: This might seem obvious, but a thick-falling, moisture-heavy 31-degree snow is heavy and piles up quickly, making travel dangerous without a major wind attached. Conversely a frigid cold, tiny flake 10 degree storm with a 40 mph wind, makes white-outs and blizzard conditions (creating "no" or very low visibility) an immediate danger. Even if your folks aren't going out into the storm (sensible people, right?) what they see out their window affects your reader and sets the scene.

2. Wind: Wind and snow have clogged interstates, mountain roads, village streets, shut down cities and wreak havoc whenever they walk hand-in-hand. In cities, the immediate problem is congestion. A heavy snow needs to be moved. Millions of people need to stay put. Tens of thousands of cars clog the roads. Power lines fall, people are cold, options severely limited. And little apartments don't have much room for a pantry, do they? 

     Conversely in rural circumstances if there isn't a stock of food, being cut off from civilization, no power, no internet, no phone, no nothin' is a dire straits situation. (Mary's historical excerpt gives you that imminent feeling of danger. She threw in a fire for good measure.) :)

3. Slush: No one talks about slush, but slush on the roads can throw a car into a ditch or reel it into a field like my Welcome to Wishing Bridge opening chapter...  Amazon lets you read the opening chapter here for free, and I'm not bragging when I say that this chapter kept an editor from going to the Manhattan fireworks show several years ago because in her words "I couldn't put it down..." The result was a bestselling book with over 600 reviews and a 4.6 rating... But it starts with a storm that brings the characters together... God and their history take care of the rest. 

Living, Breathing Snow Scenes



4. Ice: Ice is treacherous. I had a really good ice storm scene as a book opening for Love Inspired and it got axed a few years back (see? I get stuff rejected, too... and it's made me tougher. Stronger. And more aware of my individual audiences) The deadliness of ice, the lack of control, the furor and weight of an ice storm is probably best applied in small doses... :) 

5. Visibility: Snow isn't rain. Driving rainstorms thin your vision field and can be awful.... That's another blog, though. Heavy snow can obliterate all of your senses except touch. It can deaden hearing, blind vision, mask smells and there is nothing to taste in a snowstorm unless you bite your lip in fear, and then the metallic taste of your self-imposed wound becomes a reminder to stay calm... or as calm as you can.

Mary sent me a great excerpt from her wonderful book "A Reluctant Warrior", and between the fire and the snow and the fire's effect on the snow, it's a gripping scene. If you read the Wishing Bridge opening scene... and Mary's scene... and take the time to watch those two episode links (and you might have to buy the opening episode of "The Last American Cowboy". I bought the whole series so I can use it for reference writing Westerns and cowboys... it's been invaluable.) you'll have immersed yourself in the realities of snow and how a brilliant scene doesn't just draw a reader in... it leaves them longing for more. And maybe-- just maybe-- they'll skip the fireworks to read your book.

EXCERPT FROM THE RELUCTANT WARRIOR by Mary Connealy 

Living, Breathing Snow Scenes












Ruthy asked me to write about snow. This scene (I’ve cut a few chunks out of a much longer scene) was one I brainstormed with a couple of my kids. I needed my characters in danger and had decided to have a villain burn their house down.

Except, shame on me, I decided that wasn’t enough.

I wanted to talk about how dangerous fire was and one of the kids (or several talking together) said yes, fire is dangerous but how much worse would it be in the bitter cold during a blizzard. And out of that came this scene. Heavy, powdery snow like they get on the ski slopes buried the house. Then comes the fire, digging yourself out through doors and windows that are buried deep.

And blazing fire melts the snow into ice and you’re soaked in ice water, surrounded by deep snow.

One of the things I loved about this was the fire that was trying to kill them, is now desperately needed to survive. And the snow that was freezing them, is now an insulator on the bunkhouse still standing that helps them warm the building and save them.

It’s all how a matter of degrees…in this case, blazing hot and brutally cold degrees.

Here the best of the snow and cold from the scene I wrote.

The Reluctant Warrior 

[Cam set his children] down, sick about leaving them in the bitter water and ice. But he had to get everyone else out. He had to. These four out here were soaked now. Him, too. Cold, with wet clothes was as deadly as fire, though a slower way to die.

>>>>

Fire danced up the back of Slim’s coat. Cam juggled Gwen to free a hand and rip the coat off the youngster. Cam slammed the coat on the ground to extinguish it. Then he caught Slim by the arm, still hanging onto Gwen, and dragged them all forward. He collapsed in the ice water, now sooty and blackened. 

There was sudden shouting and hands pounded on him. Someone screamed. In the yelling, he heard, “Your hair’s on fire!”

Gwen was gone from him. Cam was pushed face first into the icy slush, then rolled onto his back. Through the daze, Cam swatted at the attack. Hadn’t he been hurt enough?

All the grappling hands turned him onto his front and his own coat was torn away. Trace grabbed snow in both hands and plowed it into the back of Cam’s head.

Then he was back on his feet, shivering violently, even with the blazing cabin at his back. He was soaked front and back in ice water. A stiff breeze froze his fingers and face, the rest of his body chilled with shocking speed.

And he looked at the whirlwind of hurt and scared people. In all the action, Penny and Gwen lay motionless. Then Penny coughed. It was deep and sounded painful but it was a sign of life.

Trace hauled Cam to his feet. “Your hair, your coat, most of your back was on fire.”

Cam’s blue army coat was shoved back in his hands and he pulled it on, even though it was as wet and cold as he was.

He realized no one from the cabin had a coat.

The men from the bunk house had grabbed coats. Everyone on Trace’s ranch slept fully clothed and kept their boots on to battle the cold. But the men in the bunkhouse had grabbed their coats. No one from the cabin was given a chance.

“We have to get the children warm.” Adam turned toward the bunkhouse, then turned back. “We put the fire out in there.” 

Cam’s eyes went to Maddy Sue (his daughter) shivering. Water dripped from her clothes. Ronnie was soaking wet. Maddy Sue wrapped her arms around her little three-year-old body, shaking, crying. Cam met Slim’s eyes, judged the boy to be fully alert, picked up Gwen and handed her over. 

“Get her inside. She hasn’t shown any sign of waking up, not even coughing.” She was alive though. He felt her breathing. He felt her warm in his arms.

Ruthy here: Connealy did a brilliant job of showing how nature and elements TRY TO KILL US!!!! But if we keep our wits about us, and react (very physics friendly, we need an "equal and opposite" reaction to be able to save ourselves!!!) in the best ways, we can live. Or people die and we have heart-gripping backstory that haunts  heroes and heroines for years to come.

Either way works... and if you tell it right, it's a scene your readers will never forget.

I know you can do this. I know it takes work and word choice and scene speed, and all those little things that separate the men from the boys... but I have faith in you. Do your research. Write, write and rewrite... Make 'em feel every step of the way. I trust you.

You've got this.

We've got a couple of books to give away today... but you've got to tell us you want them! The book will most likely include a winter storm! :) Leave a comment about winter below... and we'll be checking in throughout the day. Ruthy has two kids all day today (remote learning) and a 9:00 meeting, but she'll mosey over here... And Mary will check in off-and-on, too... And thanks for stopping by Seekerville. You and your success mean so much to us! 

Mary is tossing a copy of The Reluctant Warrior and Ruthy is giving away a copy of Wishing Bridge... a total score for two wonderful people! If you already have one or both, tell us.... You know we'll take care of you!


Living, Breathing Snow Scenes

Mary and Ruthy have been friends for about 18 years now, maybe more, once Mary forgave Ruthy for giving her a Bad Score in a writing contest.... and then they came face-to-face and Ruthy had to admit it, and cry and whine and beg forgiveness (okay, you know that never happened, Ruthy succinctly told Mary why she tried to ruin Mary's career before it even got launched, and she takes full responsibility and credit for Mary's amazing success.) Yep. That seems more likely. 

                

Living, Breathing Snow Scenes

Find Mary's website here...





Living, Breathing Snow Scenes





Ruthy's website here....




Friend and annoy them on Facebook and they do love it when folks buy their books. Links for The Reluctant Warrior and Welcome to Wishing Bridge are below: (in case you missed them as you skimmed, darlings!) 

BUY THE RELUCTANT WARRIOR HERE


BUY WELCOME TO WISHING BRIDGE HERE




10 Ways to Check Your Two-Year Plan


10 Ways to Check Your Two-Year Plan

Hey, Ruthy here, and if you're not familiar with me or my work or my absolutely wonderful books, that's okay... Because you're probably here to see if there's some tidbit of wisdom or advice that's going to give you an edge on getting published. 

10 Ways to Check Your Two-Year Plan

First: GO YOU! This is a great dream, an awesome career and I am having the time of my life! Jump in. The water's fine!!!!

Second: Probably only about 35% of authors feel that way.  To the other 65% (I am totally making that figure up, but I'm basing it on a lot of authors, so I could be right. I could be wrong. Take it with a grain of salt) it's work and a series of ups and downs and failures. But I went into this biz in 2002 and it took 8 years to get published, and honestly, those 8 years honed me and my craft. No regrets!

So yes, failures happen. Book failures, edits, revisions (Can you re-write the whole book please? Because it's awful...) and rejections. And after 61 books (with another four ready to be released in the next nine months) I still get rejected. In fact the most recent one let me know that my book wasn't the category I picked (subjective to publishers: Women's Fiction to one publisher is Mainstream with Romantic Elements to another or Trade-length romance to a third.) after he mentioned being so bored by the opening chapters that he put the book down because he couldn't care less what was happening to the heroine.

HAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!

That would have crushed me eleven years ago. I'd have been curled up in a corner with my blankie and my ni-ni and my binky. 

10 Ways to Check Your Two-Year Plan

Now I look at it, barely read it, and know that I can put the finished book out as an indie next year and make money-- and good money because I've established myself as a hybrid author with indie and traditional publishing-- because first, he's wrong... it is a good book and the opening will grab a lot of women who've struggled with their pasts. I'm always surprised that even in this day and age an editor can't see beyond his or her preference to what relates to readers. Especially to women who've overcome problems... and second it's okay if the book didn't fit the targeted line but there were nicer ways of saying that. :) I share that because there are power struggles in publishing. Some are seen, some are unseen but they exist and that's part of why you need real backbone to survive and grit to thrive. 

But today's point is scheduling. I started making two-year plans long before I was published. Having a simple schedule keeps me focused. And I don't lay out massive charts or plans, I keep it simple. 

An excel calendar: 

10 Ways to Check Your Two-Year Plan

I'm not sure how clear this will be. For this example I color-coded the Love Inspired books and proposals in yellow, the Guideposts Mysteries in blue and my fourth Wishing Bridge in rose.

And here is how I figure out what I can get done even if the world implodes (which seems likely!) sometime soon:

I keep my word count estimate at 1K/day.

That's about 4.5 pages/day.

Here's the reasoning behind that. Could I write faster? Some days, yes. Some days no. But that's a solid 365,000 words/year, or six 60,000 word books.

If I can't make a living off of 5 to 6 books a year....

Or even 4 books/year. 

I'm in the wrong business.

So that's my goal. This allows me leeway to adjust as needed. During my busy farm season (I own a pumpkin farm in Western New York) I might have to cut things short. But because I'm usually ahead of schedule, it's no biggie.

So here are the 10 things:

1. Be Realistic. Don't set an unreachable goal unless your goal is to fail.

2. Set a daily word count. It's visible and tangible. Nothing subjective about it.

3. Set up a calendar either online or on a wall or a sheet of paper.

4. List your goals on the calendar even before you're published.

5. Treat your business like a business.

6. Allow wiggle room. If you want to write 2 books/year, 500 words/day will do that. 

7. Make writing a habit. Show up, ready to work and then work.

8. If you can quit, do it. Not everyone who loves to read is meant to write and it's a tough business. 

9. Print a hard copy every 100 pages +/- and make sure your story makes sense. Do those corrections, then move on to next section. This keeps your book firmly in mind and you can visualize your changes, corrections better.

10. Expect hard times and celebrate the good times. We all fall. The difference is, successful authors get back up. And if you need a helping hand, that's what people like us are for. We don't charge you. We just want to see you be successful.

I love writing stories. I love creating. But I'd be fooling you if I didn't say yeah... it's work. And so much better when you love, love, love your work. (This doesn't mean I love rejections and revisions... but when I entered this arena I vowed to do whatever I needed to do to be successful, so that was my long-range goal... and I've met it. There's a lot of satisfaction in that.)

10 Ways to Check Your Two-Year Plan


I'm so happy that you came by today... and I hope visualizing how to look and plan ahead helps because this is about the only thing I plan... is how to reach that four to six book/year goal and stay there.

AND... since all y'all have been so nice, I have an e-copy of "Deceiving Death" to send to two people... but you have to tell me you want it! It's only available on Kindle because it's a novella... but it's a great suspense and I think you'll love it. A quick read... and who doesn't love romantic suspense???

10 Ways to Check Your Two-Year Plan

Award winning, USA Today Bestselling author Ruth Logan Herne is living her dream of writing the kind of books she likes to read, having crazy fun with other authors, working on her farm, spoiling her grandchildren and appreciating her many blessings! You can visit Ruthy on Facebook, email her at loganherne@gmail.com, stop by her website ruthloganherne.com or talk with her here in Seekerville. She loves chatting with readers and writers! 

Keep A Simple Christmas!

 Keep a Simple Christmas.


Keep A Simple Christmas!


Sounds like an easy concept, right? To embrace the beauty of Advent with faith, hope and love. No worries. No pressure. The way Christmas should be.

But we tend to be our own worst enemies when December rolls around. List upon list upon list and so much to do, make, buy, freeze, clean, organize, send... 

Of course this  year a pandemic may have calmed things somewhat. Or brought its own worries and pressures. 

I always went all out for Christmas. It was silly, really. And it took a bunch of years for me to learn my lesson, and that lesson was this: Put God first.


Now don't get me wrong. I love to bake. (And I need to lose ten pounds of delicious fall baked goods, my bad!!!!!) And I love decorating. The outdoor Nativity is tucked in its spot off the front porch and lit with spotlights.


Keep A Simple Christmas!



Great-grandma and Uncle Chuck's Santa and Reindeer are up and lighted every night...  And twinkle lights surround the front windows. 


Keep A Simple Christmas!


That doesn't make me unsimple, just so you know. It makes me festive! :) But I make time for those things I love at Christmas time now. Prayer. Contemplation. Music. Baking. Being with kids. Praising God. With some decorating thrown in on the side!


I asked the wonderful Seekers to share some of their simpler Christmas ideas and these wise women did not disappoint! Here you go:

From the wisdom of multi-published Erica Vetsch: 

My tip for keeping a simple Christmas...


At least one night in December, after the decorations have gone up, I take the time to turn off all the house lights, turn on the tree lights, and just sit on the couch and be still. No music, no Christmas movies on tv, no phone in my hand. Quiet and reflection and thankfulness. A bit of a reset in the middle of what can be a hectic season and schedule that helps me regain some equilibrium and peace. 

Keep A Simple Christmas!


Farm owner and award-winning author Pam Hillman offered this wisdom from her blog:


TIP ON FOOD: As far as food prep goes, I do indeed keep it simple around here. Every year, I prepare a big pot of potato soup, beef and vegetable soup or chili, and cornbread. We’ll have a couple of desserts, but this is what the kids prefer. A big pot of soup or chili is definitely simple and easy. 

Keep A Simple Christmas!



Debby Giusti has lived her life as a military wife. She's no stranger to sacrifice or having to make things special on short notice. Here's what Debby has to say:

In my youth, Advent was a time of preparation for Christmas, not in a hectic shopping or pre-Christmas party way, but in prayerful anticipation of the coming of the Christ Child. Folks didn’t decorate their homes until closer to December 25. Some people fasted during Advent just as is often done during Lent. Others cut back on their family gift giving and instead reached out to those in need. Over the last few decades, Advent has grown into a festive four-week celebration, but this year, mainly because of COVID, I believe we’ll see a return to the basics with a renewed appreciation of family and faith. So how will I keep things simple? More prayer, more quiet listening to the Lord, more preparing of my heart as well as my home for the Birth of the Baby Jesus.

 

Wishing all of you, dear friends, a peaceful Advent as we journey to Christmas 2020!



Our Texas gal Mindy Obenhaus chimed in with this (and I can relate, totally!): 

Cooking is my love language, so I like to deliver trays of cookies and candies to friends and neighbors. It’s like spreading joy one cookie at a time.

Ruthy agrees. Cookies are not only an equalizer, a treat that levels the playing field, but they are a conversation starter, a calming influence, a blessing and they're small enough that you can eat one or two and mitigate guilt. Being Catholic, we take our guilt most seriously! :)

Keep A Simple Christmas!

And my dear friend Mary Connealy made me laugh with this true and funny overview of simplicity:

As always I'm the dork here. I have no lovely, sentimental, faithful, beautiful words of wisdom.
But I really REALLY keep things simple at Christmas. So simple it's probably a jerk move.
I order 95% of my gifts online. And I do it early.(ok I can't think of an exception, so maybe 100%)
I fact, I think I'm done shopping except two. 

Keeping things simple.... Remembering Bethlehem. Putting the stable first. 

"That's what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown." (From "A Charlie Brown Christmas" by Charles Schulz) And all the gals of Seekerville, the tall and the small are wishing every one of you a blessed and wonderful Advent season of preparation... and a beautiful Christmas. You are in our prayers!

AND....  we have several lovely books to give away today! 

Keep A Simple Christmas!



Two copies of Debby's "Amish Christmas Secrets" in a wonderful 2-in-1 with Vannetta Champman and 2 copies of Ruthy's newest Love Inspired "Finding Her Christmas Family".  Let us know which you prefer so we don't give you something you already have!

Multi-published and USA Today Bestselling author Ruth Logan Herne is blessed to be surrounded by SO MANY wonderful people in Seekerville and she likes telling folks all about it. Author of over 60 published novels and novellas, Ruthy is living her dream of publication and running a crazy fun pumpkin farm in Western New York. A mother and grandmother, she's often seen with chocolate (that she doesn't need) and coffee or Diet Mtn Dew (which she absolutely does need!) Friend Ruthy on Facebook, email her at loganherne@gmail.com or stop by her website ruthloganherne.com. She'd love to hear from you! 


A Back to Basics Post: Focus on Heroes: How to develop characters with character.

 We all have our favorite characters in fact and fiction.

My real-life heroes tend to be actual heroes. The sacrificial type who really stand their ground for the sake of others. Jesus. John Adams. Ben Franklin. Mary, the mother of God. Joseph, who stood in place and cared for a son not his own. Mary Magdalene, Susanna and any woman who followed that cross and stood with Christ in His hour of need. Martyrs. Harriet Tubman. Rosa Parks. Mother Teresa. Every soldier and sailor who stormed those beaches at Normandy, knowing what would happen. And so many others...

Fiction is a different venue.

A Back to Basics Post: Focus on Heroes: How to develop characters with character.


When we look at fictional heroes we use a different metric.

They don't have to be superheroes, changing the world for us to love them. But they need to be better versions of themselves and probably better than most any real person we know.

They put others first.

They take care of the heroine, even if she's pretty sure she doesn't need it.

They think ahead. (Come on, ladies, it's fiction. Of course they think ahead!)

They generally don't over-react unless there's a gun involved and it's a Western. In which case, we get it.

They're rarely grumpy even if they don't say too much.

They think a lot. (Again, fiction. Work with me here) :) 

They're quite teachable. (I'm thinking of Mary Connealy heroes here. They don't talk much, and they're often surprised by the feminine mystique, but they do think. #HERO!!!!)

They're kind to dogs and children, even if lacking experience with both or either.

They have a sense of humor. (Jason Bourne is an exception. I'm sure there are others.... Wait, so is Mr. Rochester but gosh, that was a TRAGIC LIFE!!!!!!!! Oh my stars)

They are often ruggedly handsome which means they wouldn't be seen on the Euro fashion runways wearing girl clothes. 

They're adorable when befuddled because they come through in the end.

They never let the bad guy win.

They get there in time, even if it's the nick of time. (Wait, Bourne is the exception again. Jason, really???????)

They may save lives. (doctors, sheriffs, officers, military, firemen)

They may build things. (Construction, builders, architects, Amish)

They might be farmers or ranchers.

High school football coaches are great, too! :) Rugged, teaching/coaching, competitive and good to kids. That's one that checks a lot of boxes!

Heroes pull us into stories whether they're male or female. We either identify with them or admire them or want to meet them. Live in their towns, their homes, eat at their table.

What draws you into characters? Is it what they've experienced? What they've overcome? What they're doing? Leave a comment below, darlings and I've got a copy of "Finding Her Christmas Family" for one lucky person who loves, loves, loves beautiful Christmas stories! 

A Back to Basics Post: Focus on Heroes: How to develop characters with character.

A Back to Basics Post: Focus on Heroes: How to develop characters with character.

Bestselling, multi-published author Ruth Logan Herne is living her dream of writing great stories on her pumpkin farm in Western New York where the leaves have fallen, winter's approaching, but at least it's tiptoeing in this year... not barreling full-force, so that's good! She's also wishing all of you a blessed and wonderful holiday season. She thinks we're blessed to have the lot o' youse (Yankee way of sayin' "all y'all") here and she loves to hear from you at loganherne@gmail.com or friend her on Facebook or stop by Ruthy's website ruthloganherne.com 

Some Ho! Ho! Ho!'s of Christmas and Publishing

FIRST!!!!! Happy Veterans Day to all of our current and former military! A special shout out to my uncles Jack and Larry who both fought in WWII... My sister Ronnie, USAF Captain Veronica Herne who was an army nurse in Vietnam. Brother Terry Herne, this man's army. Brother Sean Herne, USMC: Semper Fi, Sean. Brother-in-law Sgt. Dan Blodgett, U.S. Army... And to all who served: Thank you!

And now we return you to our regularly schedule program:

The holidays have long been a slow-down tradition in publishing. From Thanksgiving until post-New Year's Day, the time lag from publishing houses to authors s-t-r-e-t-c-h-e-s out and if you were waiting on a contract or edits or acceptance/rejection, you were likely to wait until, well...

Let's just say you're likely to wait. 

There are multiple ways to handle this time lag.

You can wring your hands...

Watch the clock move slowly toward the new year...

Take up knitting or backgammon....

Study French. 

Or roll with it. And if you can't name any French-speaking authors, my guess is that most of us roll with it.

But does that mean time off?

Not necessarily. And probably not if you want to be a career author instead of an occasional writer. That's a self-awareness choice. But either way, I go into the holidays with a few solid tips to keep my holidays lovely, peaceful, Christ-centered and filled with the fun things I like to do with my family.

I NEVER HAVE DECEMBER DEADLINES. When you have to pick deadlines sometimes two years in advance, I learned years ago to avoid the holidays for deadlines. From mid-November to around January 8th, I don't schedule a deadline because why mess up the beauty of the holiday season with a deadline that doesn't need to be there? Isn't that the beauty of being self-employed? I want my Christmas season to be prayerful and filled with lovely church services, time with grandkids, making gingerbread houses, cookies, planning parties (well, maybe not this year, dagnabbit!) and 

I aim to work ahead of the curve. Farm season makes that a challenge because the farm has grown exponentially the past two years, but it can be done. Sometimes it's simply a matter of sitting yourself down and writing something... I have learned to never put off writing. It comes first every morning and that keeps me on schedule. Ahead of schedule, actually. And then I have no need to panic. Ever. (Confession: panicky people tend to annoy me, so when folks start goin' on their deadline fussin' online or wherever, I just kinda wanna smack 'em because they've got a job that hundreds of other people would give anything to have and they mess with it. Stop fussing. Turn off the whining. And work. We now return you to your regularly scheduled Ruthy program.)

The holidays are special. They're beautiful. But they also mess with normal schedules (not Covid related) and I try to remind myself that when I worked at school... when I ran my daycare... when I sold wedding gowns... when I waited tables... no one gave me six weeks off. NO ONE.

So that's how I treat my writing. It's not something I shelve when I get busy. Contracts dry up real quick when that happens.... It's something I treasure, twelve months of the year.

So tell me, how do you juggle holidays and work? 

I've got two copies of "Finding Her Christmas Family" 

Some Ho! Ho! Ho!'s of Christmas and Publishing


and I actually have time in November to go to the post office, so you'll actually get them! Leave a comment below and I'll tuck your name into the cranberry orange relish dish! And right now I'm listening to coyotes calling behind my house. 

I love living in the country!!!!!


Some Ho! Ho! Ho!'s of Christmas and Publishing

Multipublished, award-winning and bestselling author Ruth Logan Herne has published over sixty books and is living her dream every single stinkin' day. :) Email her at loganherne@gmail.com or friend her on Facebook (with all the other crazies, darlings) or stop by her website and check things out. 

Storyteller Self-Therapy Unleashed

 I can kill people in stories.

THIS IS FROWNED UPON IN REAL LIFE.

Understandably. Killing is wrong. It's mean. It's despicable. 

But writers have the best therapy tool at their personal disposal: We can take out our angst on fictional people, no one really dies, and no one goes to jail. :)

This means that if you tend toward hissy fits or days of pouting, writing can be cost-free and beneficial for you. 

There are multiple ways to look at Writing Therapy:

Self-interest: We kill off or make the life/lives miserable of people we model after real people... I will admit that I've used this tool from time to time, not to be vindictive, but it does have a healing effect when you take those irritating or frustrating traits in people and use them in fictional characters to move a story along or set a scene or plot. I've also used this to set character arcs for Really Nice People, too! And that helps to make characters relatable and believable. 

Good of Mankind: Sometimes good must triumph over evil and that means the bad guy or girl must die or be arrested or thrown into a dungeon. :) To have good triumph over evil is an age-old plot device we all love and it works. Sometimes we try to re-invent the wheel... but the wheel is already functional, so then it becomes our take on what needs to happen in the story and how far we let the evil go. That's a tough line to draw, and that's when good editing comes in handy because while the author may think the perpetrator needs a beat-down, the editor may see from the reader's point of view that less is more. 

Healing Waters: A lot of authors are introverts. (Disclaimer: I am not an introvert. I'm not even sure why people are introverts, because I actually like people and relish chaos and enjoy interaction, but the fact remains that authors like me seem to be more of an exception, but just so you know, I do have feelings now and again... although I am sometimes the most insensitive person on the planet. Although a good commercial might make me cry! :) Dichotomy, much?) 

Introverts can find healing therapy in their story-telling art. They can affect the lives of fictional characters, which in turn can inspire real people, all done with a keyboard. This isn't a bad thing, it's a very good thing. Emily Dickinson is a classic example. Unfortunately, she didn't have the joy of acceptance and recognition in her time, and that can be the downfall/outcome of hiding in an upstairs room. (insert wry grimace here) Still, the quietness of writing a story can be therapeutic for the introverts among us!

Getting Even Is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong: Unless it's in a book!

We have free license to make people pay for their mistakes and/or bring them to restitution or redemption. Both can work, both can have an effect of satisfaction for the reader, but it is important for the author's choice to fit the narrative. That means you have to make it plausible from the beginning that if you're saving a character from him or herself, it makes sense... and if you're making them pay for their evil deeds, your timing is essential. The buildup has to be there. But in the end the writer's satisfaction with getting even fictionally is absolutely appropriate and carries NO JAIL TERM!! :)

 You Can Prove Your Point Systematically:

Now this is a different kind of self-therapy.

You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink.

We've all heard this. We all understand the meaning. The horse needs water to live, horse won't drink despite best efforts, horse dies.

How Sad!!!!! But totally the horse's fault. I'm reminded of the old "I sent you two boats and a helicopter" joke, but I'll stay mum on that. As authors we can mentor, advise, counsel and chat with people about writing, life, faith, family, friends... but in the end the choices are firmly in the other author's hands. That means if you fail, it's not systemic failure. It's your failure.

If you take time off, it's your choice... and your time.

If you stop writing after book one because no one bought it (I was a dozen books in before my first sale...) then maybe this isn't the job for you. Is that mean?

No.

It's honest, so the writing as therapy idea only works if you're writing and it doesn't cause you more angst in your personal life. I am often amazed at the things people post on social media about their writing job, their books, their lack of opportunity, all of which are pretty much the same across the board. 

It's only therapeutic if you love it and if you keep doing it. But I will tell you honestly, after watching a lot of authors hit the wall after being contracted, it's not for everyone and there is no shame in that.

In the end, it's all up to you, the author, to do what it takes. Maybe to have what it takes.

But if you do it and stick with it, the self-healing therapy is right there and I promise you: It's way cheaper than some of the more traditional kinds and might even make you some money.

AND.... speaking of wonderful stories, here's a great story just released from Love Inspired Books, with a 4.9/5 rating on Amazon, my third Golden Grove story "Finding Her Christmas Family".... Available nationwide and I'm giving away two copies here in Seekerville!  LINK TO AMAZON HERE

Storyteller Self-Therapy Unleashed

Leave a comment below... it can be about therapy, about great stories, about your latest escapade with a cute puppy.... I'm opening the conversation up to a simple back-and-forth chat because sometimes that's the best story starter! And I'll put your name in the drawing!


Storyteller Self-Therapy Unleashed

Multi-published, bestselling author Ruth Logan Herne loves God, her family, friends, her country, dogs, Diet Mt. Dew, coffee, chocolate, and freedom... and kids. :) In her other life she owns a pumpkin farm in Western New York so is often seen baking, selling, laughing and meeting people throughout September and October every year, a job she also loves! Write her at loganherne@gmail.com, find all of her sixty-plus novels and novellas on Amazon.com, visit her website ruthloganherne.com or visit with her here in Seekerville or Thursdays at yankeebellecafe.blogspot.com where she talks life, love and food... and crazy house projects from time to time. 



Risk vs. Reward: A Back to Basics Post


Risk vs. Reward: A Back to Basics Post

We hear this phrase all the time.

Risk vs. reward.

It means is the risk you're taking worth the reward you hope to glean? How do you measure that?

We hear "measured risk".

What you're doing has risk: the question is how much?

We hear "Return on Investment". 

Will you get more from your investment than the risk you're taking? 

These are questions small business people ask themselves, and if you're an author, you are a small business owner. You own you! And your product is for sale. Whether or not you're incorporated or running solo, you are the business person.

Is this the boring side of writing? 

Heck, no! It's a major component of any business, my friends, it's what separates the people who make a living writing and the dabblers. Now there is nothing wrong with dabblers.

Emily Dickinson was a dabbler... little known during her life in Massachusetts. If you look at her work now, you know that she was amazing. So if you're happy in your cozy space and spending hours a day on craft isn't your thing, that's okay!!!! You're okay! 

But if you view/see/consider your writing as a career, as  a valid choice for gainful employment, you need to look at risk vs. reward.

Some choices you make are low risk. Writing. Working. Editing. Writing some more. 

We hear so much between friends, advisories, industry professionals.

There are online classes and blogs (like this one!), professional gatherings, conferences (when there's no pandemic, right?) and loops full of professionals.

That last one can trip you up if you say too much. Remember, it's not a gathering of friends in your living room. It's a virtual group of sometimes hundreds of people, some of whom lurk, (including most editors and agents on loops) and watch and listen and learn about you.

It's good to bite your tongue. Don't over-react. Bide your time. Keep working. Remember the adage "It's better to let people think you're stupid than to open your mouth and prove them right."

There are grains of truth in that!

Social media can be your undoing... all of your time, talent and treasure can be swept under a rug if social media goes crazy on you. If you become a target of any group. Does your opinion matter?

Of course it does!

Mostly to you! :)

But when you put it out there, you may get 20 or 50 friends who jump all over you in sympathy but what about that editor or agent or publishing house? What do THEY see in your posts?

Do they see the fresh, eager, pleasant author that draws people to him/her?

Caveat: If your name is Stephen or Nora or Clive or J.K., this does not apply to you. Say what you want, because your sales are in the millions and that's not likely to change. Nor, are you generally on Facebook, so you get a pass... because your risk will not significantly affect your reward because you've already made millions of dollars.

And if you're voting blue or red or nondescript, do you want to alienate 50% of the shrinking pool of readers by being overtly political?

It's your choice, of course.

But choices have consequences. They always do. We teach our kids that every day, but sometimes we fail to see that in our adult lives. 

When I write a story I see the basic mathematical equation of Newton's 3rd Law: "Every action has an equal and opposite reaction."

Risk vs. Reward: A Back to Basics Post

When you put that into emotion and words, it becomes the back-and-forth flow of a great story. In life, it becomes the reality we immerse ourselves in.

Good or bad, negative or positive, whiny or stoic, introvert or extrovert, we are humans and we have control. How we use that control in our professional lives can make a great difference in how others perceive us and how our path is charted.

Your risks can have a definitive effect on your reward.

Your duty is to ask yourself "Is it worth it?"

And then take responsibility for whichever path you choose because you're a thinking adult. You know that actions have consequences... 

Are you ready to risk your potential reward to those consequences?

That's the crux of the question.

I'm celebrating the re-release of this beautiful story "Season of Hope", book 2 of my North Country series originally my debut Love Inspired novels... and I hope you win one! Leave a comment below and I'll tuck your name into the drawing for one of two copies of this wonderful book that shares the stories of two overcomers... and how they grabbed hold of God's second chance together!

Risk vs. Reward: A Back to Basics Post



Risk vs. Reward: A Back to Basics Post

Multi-published, bestselling inspirational author Ruth Logan Herne is immersed in pumpkin life on her farm in Western New York and gets up in the wee small hours to write stories that folks love to remember... A mother and grandmother, she can often be seen with coffee or Diet Mtn. Dew, cookies, dogs and cute kids. She loves writing about small towns and faith and the kind of people we meet every day, and Ruthy actually likes people (she is not an Emily Dickinson type!) and would love to hear from you! Email her at loganherne@gmail.com, visit her website ruthloganherne.com or friend her on Facebook where she shares pics of the farm and family she loves. 

Release Day Party.... Second Time Around!

 I love release day parties!

Release Day Party.... Second Time Around!

I can honestly tell you that sixty books in, I still love, love, love release day parties.

This one is a second release for this beautiful story of second chances, new beginnings and the chance to start over.  It was my third sale to Love Inspired, and this North Country series began my career... so how fitting to be able to re-release them on Amazon now!

I was just chatting with Pam Hillman about re-releases... I love working with companies that re-release books. I've often wondered why more don't do that???? It's quick cash for them and if there's been a space of time, authors often have a whole new stable of readers, so wouldn't it make sense to re-release? Low investment, strong return.... Sweet for all involved. 

And Love Inspired is great about this. They re-release stories on a regular basis and they've done this with a lot of mine, but when I started writing for LI, the books were longer... that means those longer books don't fit the current packaging, so they gave me back the rights to my first three books and I'm re-releasing them this summer. 

I know I party-danced when "Waiting Out the Storm" released in June...

And now "Season of Hope"  is releasing!!!! Did I mention that???? :) With new formatting from the Killion Group (I've been happily using them for years) and a beautiful cover by Beth Jamison of Jamison Editing who is crazy reasonable with her editing and her cover work. 


Release Day Party.... Second Time Around!

And next month will be the re-release of an award-nominated debut novel "Winter's End", but today we're celebrating "Season of Hope", a story that has touched a lot of hearts. It tackles some rugged subjects, a family betrayed by the husband/father that was supposed to love them and protect them... The strength of a former Delta Commander who's risen above his slip into alcoholism years before and the growing strength of Rita Slocum who we met in Book One, the widow who fell into the hole of substance abuse when her world fell apart.

But Rita has taken the reins once more with the help of her sister-in-law, AA, and the love of her children. Two of them, anyway. The third is a handful in so many ways, but as Rita strengthens, so do her children... and her chance at a new beginning. 

I love stories of mended hearts. I love stories that wrap us around the hero and heroine's hearts and let us see them as real people... and that's because I surround myself with real people. I love people. They amaze me, impress me, confound me and bless me in so many ways and I often think of how much introverts miss in the story and glory of life by not embracing people.

Because therein lies the story. With people.

I have TWO COPIES of "Season of Hope" to give away today. E-copies... the paperback is coming but won't be available for a week or two. I hope you win a copy!!!

But if not, I can absolutely promise you that Brooks' and Rita's story is well worth every penny of that $1.99 price tag... or free on Kindle Unlimited.

And you honor me with every book you read and/or buy! So thank you!


BUY SEASON OF HOPE HERE!!!!


Release Day Party.... Second Time Around!

Multi-published, USA Today Bestselling author Ruth Logan Herne lives a prosaic life on a pumpkin farm in Western New York and she absolutely, positively loves it, but she also loves to write unforgettable stories that lift women's souls because a woman who's soul sings to the Lord is a woman that can handle whatever this life hands her. With over 2,000,000 books sold, you know that Ruthy loves what she does!

You can email Ruthy at loganherne@gmail.com, visit her website ruthloganherne.com or friend her on Facebook (where she loves to talk... and talk... and, well, you get it.... )  :) 

10 CHOICES WRITERS MAKE EVERY DAY

Publishing has changed. It has changed drastically since I started this journey about 18 years ago, and here's a bit of advice from a gal who has published nearly 60 books: A meteor didn't take the dinosaurs. The inability to adapt did.


10 CHOICES WRITERS MAKE EVERY DAY

If you don't believe me visit the Museum of Natural History in NYC.

Let me give you a brief Ruthy history: I wrote for eight years before getting a contract with Love Inspired. I was approached by Theresa Park (Nicholas Sparks' agent) in year five but she didn't want to talk further if I didn't pull my work from Harlequin/Love Inspired. Ouch! I made mistakes... and stayed writing through them. The publishing climate changed. I stayed writing. Christian publishing houses began to close. I kept writing. I examined markets, tried to mentally predict what would happen next (hahahahaha! Good luck with that, LOL!). I saw that romance was going to a much higher degree of sensuality than I was comfortable with and with that I left RWA (Romance Writers of America). I kept writing. Entering contests. Going to conferences and meeting people when financially possible, and I learned to watch quietly because what gets put on the Internet stays forever on the Internet... Oops! Publishing contracts from Love Inspired kicked off my career: in 2009 they offered three separate contracts and a new page was turned.

I love working with Love Inspired. I love that women with short purse strings can afford these books, and that they're available in Walmarts and pharmacies and grocery stores... where women tend to shop, right? No brainer. But I also like writing bigger, broader books.

I kept writing.

I had 14 novels complete when I was contracted.  My first post-contract agent didn't see them making it anywhere... they didn't fit.

I kept writing.

My next agent echoed those words. They weren't typical Christian fiction, they didn't fit in the box, and because I was so good at category, maybe that's where God intended me to be.

I figured God wanted me to do exactly what I was doing... honing my craft, and working on my mission to give women the strength and grace and tenacity to see how faith builds us up in times of trouble... and I knew those stories might not fit the prescribed CBA "box"... but I knew they were good.

I went indie with those books, hit Amazon bestselling charts and began my hybrid career, not as an "in your face" move because I respect these women. They were right. PUBLISHING RARELY BENDS TO MAKE ROOM FOR NEW STUFF. That's their prerogative, right? Ours is to make our own choices to build our careers. Who knew??? 

And you know what? Rather than fuss and whine (which I've watched happen countless times) about what publishing wants, or the (gasp!) ignominy of writing to market... (shocked face and gasps again!) a strong writer examines the business side of the market, their time, their choices, their goals, and goes from there because, my friends, in case you've forgotten or never knew this, writing is a business.

It is not a hobby if you want it to pay the bills.

You do not have limitless choices when you are under contract.

They are paying you to produce a product, the product they bought... the product they're standing behind, the product they plan to market, the product they hope to sell to a targeted audience/readership just like Fruity Pebbles are normally targeted toward really smart kids because they're delicious!!!! AND.... Kashi Go flakes are marketed toward adults who don't run off an extra 500 calories while sitting at a desk.

As an author, you don't just write the book unless you're going indie.

You may be asked to re-write the book.

You will have revisions. Some of them may not sit right. When this happens, you do the revisions because they bought the book... you're the author, but it is now their book.

You will have edits. Multiple edits. And you don't necessarily get to ignore them although there is some compromise available, especially once you have a track record. But establishing that track record, building a readership, now that's up to you. 

Back to choices, because no matter how many fingers get pointed at the tyranny of publishers, here are the facts: This isn't about them. It comes down to you.

10 CHOICES WRITERS MAKE EVERY DAY

1. You may have to jump through hoops. In day jobs we call that "having a boss".

2. You will have to compromise. 

3. You will have to take advice and adjust your time frames, schedules, focus and deliver the goods in a timely fashion. 

4. You may have to write to market. That means that you may be asked to write books that sell to a prescribed audience/readership. Before you think of this as an insult, consider this: the publisher is paying. That gives them a really firm leg to stand on. If you don't want to write to market, that's okay, too! But it's not an insult to be asked to produce a book that fits a niche. I do both. Category romance and cozy mysteries are great examples of writing to market... and paying the bills! I love being a small business woman who has built a career that pays the bills... But as mentioned above, writing other stories takes a different path.

5. Don't shrink back from proving yourself. Women have been doing that forever. Now is no different. When my indie books took off, I was offered contracts for bigger books from publishers. Yay! But my work and effort came first, and it's often like that. This is not offensive. It's how things go sometimes. The old adage rings true: The harder you work, the luckier you get.

6. Publishing isn't easy and you will make hard choices. One publisher asked one final question before deciding on a contract: Will I still write for Love Inspired? I said yes... and they did not offer the contract. It is a personal decision how much power you're willing to concede and I assess each offer, contract on its own merit and my faith.

7. Your covers aren't always your dream covers... but when readers fall in love with your work, you'll realize that readers don't care as much about covers as they do about authors who touch their hearts.

8. You will have to relinquish a measure of control. Not everyone can do this. Think it over carefully.

9. You will have to deliver manuscripts on a deadline, edits on a deadline, background and art work on a deadline... and take advice from editors, copy editors, sales teams and marketers and follow the rules.

10. Working with other authors isn't always easy. Word to the wise: We are a diverse group, even when we are considered a "stable" of writers. Like horses, we are of many colors and temperaments. We have different talents and goals, but you would be wise not to burn the bridges because it may be a big industry but it is a Very Small Pond. Be nice. Play nice. Or mind your tongue. What you put in print on social media gets seen by many.... take it from one who made some early mistakes and think, think, think before splashing your current angst all over Twitter or Facebook or Instagram. 

I've been honored to help and mentor and advise a lot of aspiring and now published writers... We've been doing Seekerville for fifteen years, so I've watched promising authors crash and burn numerous times because the work and expectation involved isn't a piece of cake. 

I hope that's not you.

But then-- dear author-- that's entirely up to you. 

Indie publishing has opened so many doors and options that didn't exist as a viable option even ten years ago.

Ten years!!!!

To quote Nora Roberts on writers and success: Successful authors aren't always the most talented. They're the ones who didn't quit.

And that bit of truth holds true today, too.

And a double giveaway of this new mystery today!!!!! "A Fallen Petal", book 2 of "Savannah Secrets" from Guideposts Publishing! 

10 CHOICES WRITERS MAKE EVERY DAY

When an acclaimed author announces his next book will be a deep dive into the predecessors of Savannah’s oldest citizen, 104-year-old Harlowe Green becomes very nervous. Harlowe fears that a long-buried family secret might not just tarnish his reputation, but it might also expose his family as criminals. Years ago—almost a century now—he went on a trip north with his parents and little brother, Lawrence. Only three of them returned home, and everyone around Harlowe refused to acknowledge that Lawrence had ever existed. Concerned that time is running out to understand what happened, Harlowe implores Meredith and Julia—fresh off their first case—to help him find the truth. But will their discoveries bring him peace or confirm his worst fears and destroy his family’s good name?

10 CHOICES WRITERS MAKE EVERY DAY
Multi-published, bestselling author Ruth Logan Herne is thrilled to be doing exactly what she loves doing, writing beautiful stories with unforgettable and wonderfully relatable characters while helping to run a pumpkin farm, enjoy a big family, and balance a cake on a plate like Seuss's "Cat in the Hat". :) Her newest mystery has just been released by Guideposts, and she's thrilled to share it with folks today! 

You can email Ruthy at loganherne@gmail.com, friend her on Facebook, visit her website ruthloganherne.com or hang out with the many varied authors here in Seekerville or Yankee Belle Cafe. 

Writing For a Living: Not a HobbyLiving, Breathing Snow Scenes10 Ways to Check Your Two-Year PlanKeep A Simple Christmas!A Back to Basics Post: Focus on Heroes: How to develop characters with character.Some Ho! Ho! Ho!'s of Christmas and PublishingStoryteller Self-Therapy UnleashedRisk vs. Reward: A Back to Basics PostRelease Day Party.... Second Time Around!10 CHOICES WRITERS MAKE EVERY DAY

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