Tuesday, April 4, 2023

A Report on My Writing Journey for the IWSG Blog Hop #IWSGbloghop #writinglife

 

Insecure Writers Support Group Blog Hop
#IWSGbloghop

Happy IWSG Day!!

Happy April!!

Hello and Welcome to the IWSG Blog Hop!!

What is the Insecure Writer's Support Group?
Founded by author Alex J. Cavanaugh, the Insecure Writer’s Support Group offers support for writers and authors alike. It provides an online database, articles and tips, a monthly blog posting, a Facebook and Instagram group, Twitter, and a monthly newsletter. To find out more, click this link:  Insecure Writer’s Support Group

The purpose of the group is 
* to share and encourage. 
* Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. 
* Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. 
*It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds! 
You're invited to become a member of this supportive group. 
Click here to sign-up and/or to visit the participating bloggers this week.

Thank you to the awesome co-hosts for the April 5 posting of the IWSG--Jemima Pett, Nancy Gideon, and Natalie Aguirre!

?????  April 5 Question ????? 
Do you remember writing your first book? What were your thoughts about a career path on writing? Where are you now and how is it working out for you? If you're at the start of the journey, what are your goals?
You bet I remember writing my first "novel!" I was in seventh grade and my favorite book was Black Beauty, so my first book was suspiciously similar to Black Beauty! I guess I could call it fan fiction. 

My grandmother, Maw, typed up the manuscript written on a yellow lined tablet  ( a real tablet, not an electronic one.) I was in Heaven when I saw the official ms printed from the typewriter, arranged in paragraphs and margins, etc.

After we sold our flower business, when I was 48, I decided to pursue my dream of being a writer. I found the courage to enter our local newspaper office. I met the editor, and we discussed writing an article about a local family farm famous for their gorgeous pumpkins for Halloween jack-o-lanterns and fall decorations. They displayed them in their large front yard. What an eye-catching sight as drivers passed the farm. Who could resist stopping to pick up one or more of the beauties? 


We were friends with the farm family, so I wasn't bashful about asking them if I could write an article about their century-old farm and their fall business. Plus it would give them some publicity too.

Shockingly, after reading the completed article, the editor said yes to publishing it, and he wanted to take a look at more ideas I had for more stories about the local area. Just like that, I started my "career" in freelance writing.

I loved interviewing people, visiting new locations and learning every day. I wrote for newspapers, online magazines known as e-Zines and featured articles in magazines.

After a while, I decided to try writing a non-fiction book for middle-grade girls. After 22 rejections from children's publishers, I could not face more rejections, so I self-published. 

I knew nothing. I pulled my hair out formatting the publication as an eBook. I cried a lot! Compared to modern self-pubbing, the creation of a book using Smashwords was archaic. Even with Mark Coker's excellent guide, I struggled, but finished it!

In 2010, I spent most of my time educating readers about eBooks and explaining how to order the book. I talked to a lot of blank faces during those days. Reading a book that was on a screen was incomprehensible to the majority of people.

Girls Succeed! Stories Behind the Careers of Successful Women 
by J.Q. Rose
Empowering girls to dream big!!


I have come full circle with my writing. In 2021, I updated and made available Girls Succeed as a print book in color! So much easier to do it now! What a delight to see it and flip through the physical pages in my hand. (I still think the interactive eBook version is more interesting with links to the amazing women I interviewed for the book and to informational videos of the work they do.)

As far as where I am now---I am never going to write another murder mystery. I decided I don't need to add to the violence and grief there is in the world right now. I am back to writing non-fiction books and short stories.

I am in the role of sharing the wisdom I have accumulated over the years. Join me in my series, Tips and TOPICS for Writers, on the third Wednesday of the month. I love teaching, sharing and meeting authors. 
Tips and Topics for Writers Series

Click here for the blog post on the new AI technologies for writers and more!
Click here for my experience creating A+ Content for my Girls Succeed book published by KDP.

DREAM BIG
Artist Julie McKevitt

I have fulfilled my dream to be a writer and to have a published book, both traditional and indie. I didn't make a lot of money, but no one can cap the value of a heart filled with stories and friends.

Thank you for allowing me to ramble on about the story of my writing life. I look forward to reading your blog posts on this subject. If you have a writing tip, please leave it in the comment below.

Keep Writing!!!!

UPDATE: I am enjoying penning my latest project so much, I decided to work on it through the summer and offer it to the public this fall in time for 2023 fourth-quarter sales. I'll keep you in the loop. That's easy if you click the Follow this blog button below so you won't miss a thing. Thank you!!

Click here to visit the participating bloggers this week during the Insecure Writers Support Group blog hop!

Click here to be notified when a new article is posted on this blog.



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Filled with photos, updates, new book releases and more!

Thank you.




13 comments:

Natalie Aguirre said...

That's so awesome that your grandma typed your first manuscript on a typewriter for you. It's great that you found your niche on what you like to write best. Good luck on your current project.

Jemima Pett said...

Well, I was going to say 'That's awesome' that you did an interactive Girl Power books as your first one, it looks great (but I know that's the updated version). It's interesting how our careers evolve, though, isn't it?
Jemima

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Glad you got it into print!
I'd say you had a really fun start to your writing career.

J.Q. Rose said...

@ Natalie--Yes, my grandmother was my cheerleader when it came to my writing. I think she could have been a wonderful writer. She was a teacher and she taught me lots of lessons in writing and a great example of a truly Christian woman.

J.Q. Rose said...

@Jemima--Awesome! I like that word to describe that book!! :-) Thank you!

@Alex--My 12-year-old granddaughter really wanted the book in print. It's all her fault I published it in paperback. I'm glad she urged me on with the project.

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

You're an inspiration, Janet. Wow, what a career. I'm so glad I've been following along. Can't wait to see what you do next.

Sandra Cox said...

I learned something new about my cousin:) I didn't realize you had written for newspapers and eZines. You go, Writer Woman:)

Shannon Lawrence said...

What a wonderful story of that first book! I wish you much luck with your heart-filled stories.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Print books have become easier to format now. (Pagemaker was a nightmare to work with when I began but fortunately InDesign is so much better.) That's wonderful you have your book in print now.

J.Q. Rose said...

@Joylene--Thanks, Joylene. This "career" has been and continues to be a learning experience filled with joy, and yes, at times, tears. Thanks for following me and stay tuned!

@Sandra--Yep, I'm full of surprises!! Hey, I like being a Writer Woman. Very powerful!

@Shannon--Thanks so much.

@L. Diane--It truly is a thrill to have print books. I cannot imagine the future with no print books to turn pages and sniff the ink!

Lynda R Young as Elle Cardy said...

What a great journey you took on your writing career. I love that you didn't let fear or doubts hold you back.

Elizabeth Seckman said...

I've always suspected that the ones who succeed in the long run are the ones, like yourself, who enjoy the journey.

J.Q. Rose said...

@Linda--thank you for your kind words.

@Elizabeth--I love this. Sometimes the journey is more fun than finally arriving at the destination...

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