And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man.”
I have thought about how I have grown as a writer, illustrator, formatter, marketer, and person from when I first started a little over a year ago. (Well, I started as a person a little longer ago than that.)
I have met quite a few kind people along the way who have been willing to help me, encourage me, advise me, promote me, etc. We have shared, chatted, brainstormed, and helped each other. I have truly built friendships along the way.
In the beginning I was a beginner in all of it. Today, I still consider myself a beginner as I am still fairly new to the field. Yet, I am feeling more confident in the field and more experienced. Maybe, I could even consider myself in the intermediate level!
I have made quite a few changes along the way. Recently, I changed the cover to one of my books, "Clarinda Cloud," to make it more eye catching. I didn't think of that as much in the beginning. Yet, the importance of cover designs means more to me now and my illustrating skills have improved.
In the beginning, I also "liked" pages and shared things by other authors without considering my target audience, the family friendliness of my sites, or the quality of the things I was liking and sharing in hopes that other authors would return the favor. Yet, I have decided to be more discriminate in what I share or like. I want to "know" more about the things I like or share, so I can really stand behind them. I try not to say anything I don't mean or know about a book or author any more.
I still hope to be able to share, like, and promote books and authors. There are many wonderful books and authors out there. I just want to make sure that I am being honest with my shares, likes, and promotions. And, just because I don't recommend a book, it may not be that it is a great story. It may be that it has some errors in it. Sometimes if there errors were fixed, I would happily give a glowing review!
I am currently thinking of ways I could help encourage quality work in 2014 and beyond. I have thought about possibly offering a proofreading service for children's/MG/YA authors. If I don't do it myself, I have thought about creating a network and offering referrals to other wonderful people who do author friendly services such as editing, proofreading, formatting, PR work, illustrating, cover creations, etc. I have also thought about creating a "write and publish your own children's book" class or mentoring program. (Yes, I am only at the intermediate level with this, however I am an experienced educator. And, often times people will choose people just a little ahead of them in the progress to support them, so that they feel the supporter "knows how they feel and what they are going through" because he or she was there not long ago.)
Research and considerations are in progress for these things now. I would like to get your feedback and ideas. Also, if you would be interested in joining the network, please feel free to contact me.
Notes and Announcements
*Along with all of this reflecting and pondering, I have been thinking about how I could make my sites better. I would like your help there as well. For mainly that reason, I am offering a giveaway contest on my blogs. For more information and a chance to enter, please follow the links the posts on the following sites. I am hoping this chance for you to win a copy of "Clarinda Cloud" will be a win/win for both of us.
~DUO Education Learning Blog
~Clarinda Cloud's Feeling Blog
~What is New with Jodi Desautels?
*I am having a giveaway for my ebooks on Kindle on December 17th and 18th. That means you will be able to get the Kindle edition of "Clarinda Cloud" and "Johnny's Adventure Makes Reading Fun" will be free on those days. Taking advantage of free giveaways on Kindle is a great way to decide if you want to buy the softcover, give the author a review on the book, or have it for trips and in the car. (I don't particularly like the idea of ebooks for children, but they do have their uses.)
*Also, I am going to be co-hosting (with Virginia Wright) the "2nd Annual Author Christmas Giveaway" event on Facebook on December 17th. You are all invited! It is a great way to "mingle" with authors online, ask questions, get answers, play games, win books, etc. Many authors are expected to show up.