Productivity Tips: How to Stay Focused Admist Chaos

I got an interesting email today. Karina from BookMeditationRetreats.com has informed me about an article, Lystia Putranto published February 3, 2017.

Karina wrote:

“To be productive is a something that we all struggle with sometimes and at times, we find ourselves procrastinating on our daily task. On this article, our contributing writer, Lystia, shares a list of practical tips that can help us establish and maintain our focus.”

I found this article helpful and interesting and agree with Karina, that we might find this post very useful.

The title is: Productivity Tips: How to Stay Focused Admist Chaos and Lystia lists five very useful tips on how to organize ourselves.

  1. Make a Daily Schedule and Stick to It
  2. Take Up Meditation
  3. Do One Thing at a Time
  4. Minimize Distractions
  5. Give Yourself Designated Breaks

Each of the points includes more detailed explanations and gives us insight in her studies.

All in all a very interesting and useful blog post.

Please read the entire article here: https://www.bookmeditationretreats.com/news/productivity-tips-stay-focused

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It’s Writing You’re Worth – Guest Post by JannyC

Writing was not my first career choice. In fact, I avoided the career path like the plague. It was not a logical choice, or so I was told.  Being a writer is a dream.  What if being a writer is a destiny and sometimes there are some destines you cannot escape. Hello nice to meet you. Let me introduce myself I am a writer.

 

The Beginning

To be honest I have been telling stories since I was 4. They were all in my head acted out via Barbie’s, or She-Ra action figures or me with my friends outside on the playground. This made sense for my first step into the writing world was being a comic book script writer. Writing was a destiny I could not escape. I’ve been writing in this business off and on for nearly 8 years. Freelancing writing is the kind of job that is a side job not your main job to pay the bills with. “Writing” was a dream. I almost believed it. I had stopped writing when one day I got an email from a total stranger. They said they missed seeing my work. When was, my book coming out that I had mentioned I was writing? One person even offered me money to help with my writing career (I declined in case you are wondering.). Next day another email from a young girl who said I inspired her to write herself could I read a sample of her book. BAFLING!

 

Jump Starting

I decided to dive back into my writing taking a serious stab at freelancing writing as my career. I found jobs, but they were usually low paying, no recognition, plus they worked you like a mule job. Hey it was a job, right? You had to start at the bottom and you’re your way, up right? Problem was what I didn’t know was I was selling myself way below my worth. Add onto it these jobs were getting me nowhere. I was writing anonymously. I was not getting KNOWN. All the articles I wrote were basically ghostwritten. If I was to show someone my portfolio what did I have to show?

 

Writing You’re Worth

It took the help of my husband to finally convince me I was not writing my worth. I believed since I did not have the prestige like most writers do of going to college my experience did not count. I schooled myself actually learning first-hand the world of authors and publishers. One thing I learned was that when you are passionate about something you instantly possess that thicker layer of skin they talk about. The literary world can be brutal my friend, and the grammar police are very REAL.  I got truly convinced though when I wrote an article for my husband’s boss for his business and he paid $50.00 for my top-notch work. He loved the article saying to my husband his wife was a phenomenal writer. This made me think. Maybe I WAS not writing my worth.  I decided no more taking writing mill jobs. No more charging low prices because I am some little indie writer.

 

Discovering My Worth

So, what happened? I avoided the sent per word pricing. You can say I am at intermediate level so I just went with a flat rate. I do book promotions and each package includes a complementary book review that goes on Amazon and my blog as well as a promotion week of their book. I had 3 packages people could choose from. $10.00 for one book $20. If you had two books and $30. For 3 or more books. I was very cheap, thinking indie authors will love this. I am so affordable! I was only drawing in $30 to $40 bucks at the most. After discovering my worth I raised my prices to $15., $26, $60.  This seemed to draw more peoples interest in me. More orders started coming in. I had one client order $103.66 dollars ‘worth. It seemed I was doing better charging more that I was charging less! I also had the proof to back up my work via my blog and website I created.

 

If you feel like you’re struggling, ask yourself are you writing your worth?


dsc09294About our guest author JannyC:

JannyC is a published author (Writing under the pen name of Jan Marie.) and freelance writer. She currently writes at Indie Promotions where she helps writers and entertainers promote their work. follow her on

Twitter @ReviewerJannyC

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Indiebookpromotions/

Linkined: www.linkedin.com/in/janis-cramlett-a08b3673

Author Marketing Support 2017 – here on Writer’s Treasure Chest


Since this blog exists I hosted 40 fellow authors on ‘Writer’s Treasure Chest’. I am very proud of this number, but I’d like to do more.

It’s January 2017 and I plan to publish further Author Spotlights here on my blog.

By now ‘Writer’s Treasure Chest’ has over 600 followers and I’d love to introduce you to them, either with a Blog Tour participation, a Guest Blog or an “Author Spotlight”, which was indeed the most used feature and includes an interview.

To me it is a pleasure and an honor to have had you all here as guests and I’d be delighted if you come back any time for promotion on ‘Writer’s Treasure Chest.’

I had a returning interview guest last year and there is a chance for a second interview ANYTIME!

I’d love to continue giving a chance to authors and writers to promote on ‘Writer’s Treasure Chest’. Therefore it’s a pleasure to announce the good news:

There are slots available now!

It’s free and can’t do any damage, right? Spread the word about your work, your books, your passion.

Whether you plan a blog tour, would like to be featured in an interview, or provide my blog with a guest post, please use the widget form on the right side of the page to contact me and leave me your message.

Unbenannt

Fill in the form and pick the subject: “Blog Tour”, “Author Interview”, “Guest Post” or “Feedback” – and let me know what I can do for you. I would like you to enjoy the spotlight and make your post a remarkable experience.

It will be a pleasure hearing from you!


Guest Post – Sarah Zama

getPart


AIN’T WE HAVE FUN
THE NEW WOMAN ENTERS THE SPEAKEASY

The Dawn of a New Era

When the XX century started, the Gibson Girl was still the paragon of beauty and elegance. She was pale and curvy, she would coiffed her long hair in complicated ways, and she would use very little cosmetics. She wore long, hindering clothes, she would spend much of her time in the house.
The Gibson Girl was expected to become a wife and a mother and that was her main, most valued role in society.

Though this was the situation when the XIX century died, things had already started changing throughout that century. Upper class families had started aiming for fewer children to whom the family would give more attention and concentrate more expectations. But controlling births in the XIX century was still very hard and abstinence was the most effective method of contraception.

But at the beginning of the XX century, contraception methods became more common and effective, and this triggered a huge change in the dynamics of families.
Couples could now decide when to have children and how many. These led to women having the possibility to prolonged their non-mother years and achieve other goals (like for example an education) before they turned to the caring of children. It wasn’t just a change of lifestyle. It changed the way women thought to themselves and so the way society at large perceived them.

 

1920s: enter the New Women

When the 1920s began, this New Woman, who was daughter to a mother who had great aspirations but little possibilities to realized them, stepped to the scene and had all the intention to capitalized on everything she had.

The fact that intercourse between the sexes was now separated by childbearing, changed the way young people understood themselves and their relation, and as it may be expected, this affected women in particular.
Young people started to increasingly think that exploration before marriage was acceptable (intercourse before marriage was still socially condemned). They started dating, which meant young people went out on dates even if they didn’t have any intention to marriage the particular person. Sex appeal became very important for both men and women, because having the possibility to choose on the date practice meant you had to heighten your possibilities to be chosen.
The New Woman’s New Look

This resulted in a dramatic change of look on the part of women: contours became more important and gladly sported. Skirts became shorter, stockings became sheerer, the practice of making them up (which was considered bad prior to the 1910s) became absolutely acceptable for young people.

The Gibson Girl never made herself up, and even when she did, she useed a limited range of cosmetics, which were normally very hard to detect because they try to mimic the pail complexion that was fashionable at the time.
Nice women weren’t expected to ‘paint’ their faces, that was what actresses and prostitutes did. And in addition to the social stigma, makeup was also quite dangerous, since it still incorporated dangerous substances, and quite difficult to put on.

In the late 1910s and early 1920s, cosmetics became not only safer, but also a lot easier to use. It also became portable (the compact was invented) and this, coupled with the new attention to sex appeal and driven by the example of ever more popular film celebrities, made makeup ever more common and socially accepted.

1920s women also started bobbing their hair.
This was claimed to be for practical reasons: no more confined to the house, the life of a young woman was a lot busier in the 1920s. Women engaged in activities with their male counterparts and did things that were unthinkable for their mothers. Going to the beach, doing sports, going around in cars, dancing the new crazy dances, all of this became routine of the modern girl. That was the reason, she clamed, why she needed less cumbering clothes and short hair that made it easier to be active and still remain well-groomed.

Social stigma

But here was more to the changing in the 1920s women’s look and that didn’t get lost on women themselves, nor on society at large. Women were cutting with the past and embracing a new conception of life.

They made themselves up because they wanted to be more attractive, because they lived their sexuality more freely, and that was condemned by society as a decadence of their nature. They bobbed their hair because they refused to be bound to the practice of caring after it for a long time everyday, which bound their mothers to the house. Society at large cried out at the carelessness and lack of responsibility of women who seemed – and in fact were – questioning their traditional social role.

In imposing a new look for herself, the New Woman of the Roaring Twenties also imposed a new idea of herself. The idea of a person who could do what she desired and grabbed the possibility to do so.


Sarah Zama - dieselpunk author (1)About Sarah Zama:

FULL BIO

Sarah Zama was born in Isola della scala (Verona – Italy) where she still lives. She started writing at nine – blame it over her teacher’s effort to turn her students into readers – and in the 1990s she contributed steadily to magazines and independent publishers on both sides of the Atlantic.
After a pause, in early 2010s she went back to writing with a new mindset. The internet allowed her to get in touch with fellow authors around the globe, hone her writing techniques in online workshops and finally find her home in the dieselpunk community.

Since 2010 she’s been working at a trilogy set in Chicago in 1926, historically as accurate as possible but also (as all her stories are) definitely fantasy. She’s currently seeking representation for the first book in the Ghost Trilogy, Ghostly Smell Around.
In 2016, her first book comes out, Give in to the Feeling.

She’s worked for QuiEdit, publisher and bookseller in Verona, for the last ten years.
She also maintain a blog, The Old Shelter, where she regularly blogs about the Roaring Twenties and anything dieselpunk.

 

CONTACT INFO AND LINKS
SOCIAL MEDIA:

There’s always room for one more – Author Spotlights available

Picture courtesy of: www.google.com

Picture courtesy of: http://www.google.com


For the past few months I got busy hosting several authors here at ‘Writer’s Treasure Chest’, either with a Blog Tour participation, a Guest Blog or an “Author Spotlight”, which was indeed the most used feature and includes an interview.

To me it is a pleasure and an honor to have had you all here as guests and I’d be delighted if you come back any time for promotion on ‘Writer’s Treasure Chest.’

In the meantime it turned out the first run is over, most of the Featured Author Spotlights are published or at least prepared.

Many of these spotlights have been quite successful and word about the articles, books and authors circled through social media channels which I am very grateful for. This all was possible thanks to you and your help!

I’d love to continue giving a chance to authors and writers to promote on ‘Writer’s Treasure Chest’. Therefore it’s a pleasure to announce the good news:

 

There are slots available now!

Whether you plan a blog tour, would like to be featured in an interview, or provide my blog with a guest post, please use the widget form on the right side of the page to contact me and leave me your message.

Unbenannt

Fill in the form and pick the subject: “Blog Tour”, “Author Interview”, “Guest Post” or “Feedback” – and let me know what I can do for you. I would like you to enjoy the spotlight and make your post a remarkable experience.

It will be a pleasure to hear from you!


 

 

 

 

Maggie’s Fork In The Road – by Linda Bradley – Release Day!

Maggie’s Fork in the Road is book two in Linda Bradley’s Montana Bound Series. Maggie Abernathy is back with the precocious eight-year-old neighbor, Chloe McIntyre. In this Women’s Fiction novel with threads of romance, the cast of misfits will captivate your heart as they continue their journey.

 

Maggies_fork_in_the_road_cover

 

Maggie Abernathy learns that pesky neighbors, John and Chloe McIntyre are moving to Montana. The only problem is…she can’t fathom living without them now that they’ve stolen her heart. While trying to digest the news and accept John’s decision to leave Michigan, Maggie ventures to Chicago with Chloe to see Chloe’s Hollywood mother in a photo shoot, where the three kindle a quirky bond making it even harder to say goodbye. With the support of Maggie’s meddling mother, best friend Judy, and a surprise visit from Montana rancher, Winston Ludlow McIntyre, Maggie begins to wonder which fork in the road leads home.


MAGGIE’S FORK IN THE ROAD

Chapter 1

John’s news knocked the wind out of me leaving me breathless, speechless . . . paralyzed.

Breathe, I told myself.

The dim room grew foggy as my eyes searched John’s face. “Really,” I said. “Why now? And why here?” What was it about delivering bad news in a restaurant? First, Beckett, now John. For the love of God, I wondered if breaking a woman’s heart in public got them into a secret men’s club.

Letting my guard down proved one thing. Hurt was inevitable. John and Chloe’s absence would leave a hole in my heart, a gorge of sharp edges. We were more than neighbors. We’d become friends that navigated life’s ups- and-downs together. And now they were moving. I’d have new neighbors and I didn’t want new neighbors. I wanted John and Chloe. I needed John and Chloe. We bonded last summer when I dealt with breast cancer. Their craziness made mine seem normal. John and Chloe weren’t any ordinary neighbors; they were family, eccentric misfits, like myself that conformed to the beat of life while traversing the bumps in the road.

Massaging my temples, I caught my breath. The throb pierced my skull. Since John and Chloe’s arrival, there’d never been a dull moment. Mom came around more often. And Chloe’s mother, Brook. Jesus, she flitted in and left like a summer storm leaving sky-high humidity and heat that scorched everything in its path.

Broken-hearted, Chloe had wept over false promises, her bags packed, her hopes magnanimous. And God, Beckett.

My ex-husband found his footing with a new lifestyle that didn’t include me, or any other woman. I’d heard through the grapevine that he was dating and wondered if his better half was as handsome as he was.

I searched John’s face for an answer.

“I didn’t know how to tell you. I’m sorry, Maggie. I don’t belong here,” he said, lowering his voice. “I can practice medicine in Montana and my dad could really use the help.”

Montana was one hell of a long ways away. I swallowed the sting of disappointment. John’s eyes searched mine. His news left a bitter taste at the back of my throat. “You can’t leave. I love you,” I whispered.

The pressure behind my eyes burned something fierce. How was it possible that I felt so much for someone I wasn’t romantically involved with? I certainly thought about it enough and the few recent kisses we shared established a deeper connection spurring buried promises that I’d made to myself. Moving forward in the wake of waiting for perfect timing proved difficult.

The corners of John’s mouth drooped. His jaw clenched.

“I can’t believe I said that.” I stared into my half-empty glass of Merlot, my cheeks smoldered from the realization that he didn’t return my sentiments. My chin quivered as he touched my hand from across the table.

“I want to put the house up for sale when Chloe’s school year ends.”

My forced smile hurt. It was the kind that everyone knows is fake and by John’s expression, my attempt to lighten the moment had failed. He squeezed my hand. I sipped my wine trying to avoid eye contact with the waitress. Her return with the dessert tray came at the most inopportune moment. After listening politely, John asked for the check. I wrapped my shawl around my shoulders trying to hold myself together. “I’ll meet you outside,” I said, fumbling with my purse.

“I won’t be long,” he said. “Maggie—”

The leg of my chair got stuck on the carpet. I shook it loose in disgust, studying the face of a man that I thought just might be a permanent fixture in my life. His eyes sadly apologetic.

“Damn, you’re beautiful.” With a heavy sigh, he paused. “I’ll be out in a minute.

The cool spring breeze sent shivers down my spine as I exited the restaurant. I caught my breath. How could I have told John I loved him? Why now? I wrapped my arms around myself. If I could survive cancer, I’d survive this. Hearts mended. Beckett taught me that lesson the hard way, but this was John and Chloe. Our attachment was the seam that mended that wound, made it invisible.

John opened the car door for me. I climbed in. His stare rustled my nerves. Pretending to rummage for something in my purse, I rooted around inside my bag and finally decided I was searching for my sanity. It wasn’t there. I even checked the hole in the satin lining. Nothing. How could I be so upset over something I didn’t ever really have? John reached over and buckled me in before shutting the door.

“I know you’re not okay.” He turned the key in the ignition. “This wasn’t an easy decision,” he added.

I studied his profile. “I know it wasn’t easy. I know you’re unhappy here in Michigan.” My heart skipped a beat. Saying the right thing tasted bitter. I wanted him. I wanted him before, but couldn’t admit it. I wanted him now, but he was leaving. “Thanks for dinner,” I said, trying my best to be grateful.

“I know this wasn’t the evening out you were expecting.” He checked the mirrors and backed out of the parking spot.

The jazz on the radio couldn’t fill the silence between us. The ten-minute car ride by the lake seemed like an eternity. The sliver of moon like a dagger in my heart as its white glow washed over the glassy lake. I loved the lake. The lazy cove in Grosse Pointe was the place where my only son, Bradley, grew up. It was a place of solace, a place for meeting new friends like Judy and her two boys, Harry and Walter. It was the place I first saw that horseshoe tattoo on John’s left shoulder as he strolled down the beach holding Chloe’s hand. It was the place where Bones peed on Brook’s leg, the place where Brook and I bantered over Chloe, and took photos in an effort to prosper from our differences. It was the place where I held the snarky seven-year-old when Brook broke her heart and went back to Hollywood, California, after promising her daughter a life together.

John coasted into his driveway. “I’ll walk you home.”

A thin grin passed over my lips, lips that he’d kissed just before telling me that he was moving to Montana. My empty stone house waited for me, along with a wrinkly- faced Bulldog. I’d still have Bones, thanks to Mom. Maybe that’s how it was meant to be.

John parked the car then gazed into my eyes. He longed for something, something I secretly hoped would keep him here, close to me. He got out and walked around to open my door. As I swung my legs out of the car, my skirt cascaded over my freckled shins. He linked his arm with mine and led me home. “All seems quiet. Chloe must have been good for the sitter.”

“We’ll see. Only time will tell,” he said. “She’s older and wiser now.”

“She’s eight, and being in third grade doesn’t make you necessarily wiser, it makes you taller with bigger teeth.”

We sauntered up the stairs to the porch. Digging in my purse for the key to the front door of my house, I stood like a pillar of salt waiting for John to say something, to tell me he’d changed his mind on the way home. “I’m not sure what to say,” I whispered. John caressed my cheek. I shut my eyes, memorizing his touch. I nuzzled into the palm of his warm hand. Please don’t leave, I secretly wished. I had no right to ask. He stepped closer, his breath in my ear.

“You’re not making this easy. You never do, Maggie Abernathy. Look at me,” he murmured.

Afraid to open my eyes, I swallowed away emotion. John was always doing stuff like that, telling me I was beautiful, telling me I had a hold on him, but not a strong enough hold to keep him here. I gazed into his Irish eyes. I heard my heart shatter as it broke all over again, leaving me with a pit in my stomach. John led me inside, his hand on the small of my back. His eyes gleamed with intent. He tugged at the fringe on my shawl making it drop to the ground as he kicked the door shut. John picked me up then carried me upstairs. As much as I knew I should have stopped him, I couldn’t. I didn’t want to.

Moonlight flooded my bedroom. John took off his shirt then unbuttoned my blouse exposing my lace bra. He ran his fingers along the edge of the cup, tickling my skin, leaving me with goose bumps, wanting more. His mouth covered mine. Laying me upon the bed, I closed my eyes, and let him in.

Moonlight washed over his skin. It caressed every muscle and curve of his brawny body. I snuggled in behind him, tracing his horseshoe tattoo with my finger. “Did this hurt when you got it?” My lips grazed his skin as I whispered into the darkness. “Maybe if I got one, I’d have better luck.” I closed my eyes then crawled beneath the covers. John’s square jaw and simmering eyes held my stare. He crawled back to where I’d settled in and peered down at me. Lowering his head, his lips met mine. I squeezed my eyes shut damming the deluge. My heart pounded against my rib cage, telling me it was time, time to let go. John was leaving and this would be our perfect goodbye. “Chloe’s probably wondering where you are,” I said, caressing his whiskery cheek. “So, you’ve decided to grow a beard?”

“No, just a little scruff. I hear women like that.”

He leaned over me and kissed my lips as he brushed strands of stray hair away from my face. His Adam’s apple twitched when he swallowed. I waited for the words, the words I wanted to hear, but they didn’t come. “You’re so damn beautiful,” he said, caressing my cheek. “We should have done this a long time ago, Maggie Abernathy.”

Nervous knots filled my belly as I listened to his deep coaxing voice. My eyelids fluttered. Fierce emotion mounted beneath my calm surface. Reaching up, I wrapped my arms around his neck. “Yeah,” I whispered. “We probably should have.” 


Buy Maggie’s Fork In The Road:

Maggie’s Fork in the Road on AmazonMaggies_fork_in_the_road_cover

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Linda Bradley’s first book in the series:Maggies_Way_

 

 

 

 

 

Praise for Maggie’s Way, Montana Bound Series: Book 1:

-“Linda Bradley’sfresh voice will keep readers riveted from beginning to end. Bradley delivers aheart-warming story full of disarming honesty and beautiful drama…This onestands out!” -Jane Porter, New YorkTimes and USA Today Best Seller, Author of Flirting With Forty and It’s You

-“Maggie’s Way is aheart-warming tale of love and loss, fear and friendship. With charmingcharacters and a moving plot, Linda Bradley’s lovely debut gently remindsus that it’s never too late for second chances.” -Lori Nelson Spielman,International Best Seller, Author of The Love List and Sweet Forgiveness

 

-The Romance Reviews Readers’ Choice Awards – Summer 2016

-Greater Detroit Booksellers Best Award Finalist 2016

Contact Linda Bradley:

Linda Bradley_Head Shots

Guest Post – Jan Sikes

TilDeathDoUsPart_BookAnd_CD-Text

 

‘TIL DEATH DO US PART

JAN SIKES

Luke Stone has cheated death so many times he’s lost count. He’s  been everything from a simple poor country kid to a roughneck, a singing star and a convict.

 

But nothing compares to the satisfaction he finds with the woman who sets his out-of-kilter world back on track. When Darlina danced her way into his heart so many years past, he never dreamed she would stick with him through thick and thin to finally, after he endures many years locked behind bars, become his wife.

 

And now, to have a second chance at making music, simply proves that secretly held dreams can come true.

He knows he won’t be filling the Texas dancehalls, honky-tonks and auditoriums as he did in his younger days but that doesn’t matter. He’s writing and singing again only this time Darlina joins him writing her own songs and performing with him.

 

But fate has other ideas and the forlorn hooting of an owl or a lonesome train whistle in the dead of night warn him not to get too comfortable.

 

He’s learned to pay attention to these signs as they are never wrong. Even so, he charges full steam ahead determined to leave a lasting legacy and make his family proud.

 

With sand in the hourglass of time running thin, Luke and Darlina draw on each other’s strengths to persevere through trials that would destroy a lesser man and woman.

 


 

 

ONLINE_3D_Cover_TilDeathDoUsPartThis is the fourth book in a series of true stories.

LINKS TO PURCHASE:

Jan’s Website 

Amazon eBook 

Texas Authors

 

 

 

 

 


 

Award winning author, Jan Sikes, writes true stories in a creative and entertaining way. Her current project is a trilogy which chronicles her life with veteran Texas musician, Rick Sikes. She also releases music CDs with each book. Jan has written songs, poetry, short stories, screenplays and novels

 

Jan_Dec_2016 (1)Follow Jan:

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