Cats and Email Apps = Bad Combination

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“Look at how cute and innocent I am. I’d never send emails on you!”

I’m pretty sure my cat just spammed my entire gmail contacts list — meaning everyone I’ve corresponded with on gmail. If you got an email from me you didn’t want today – I apologize. If your curious how Goose managed to spam my contacts, read on.

 

Earlier in the year, I wrote a detailed book proposal for Earth Reclaimed, which is one of my novels-in-progress. I used it to apply for a writer-residence-program at the Boston Public Library. I didn’t get in.

When I saw Publishizer was hosting a proposal contest, I realized the one I had written more or less met their guidelines. After doing a few google searches and not finding any red flags, I made some revisions, and created a proposal on their site.

Screen Shot 2017-07-08 at 10.46.29 AM.pngPublishizer is kind of like Kickstarter, but for books. People can use to get pre-orders for works they are self-publishing, however, if an author gets  enough pre-orders, they can also get deals with traditional and indie publishers.

I’m still querying my complete, polished novels to agents. This novel is completely unrelated to those. I thought that while I am trying to make something happen with those projects, I can take a completely different path with this one.

Today, I was getting the campaign ready to launch. One step involved emailing my contacts to see if they want to subscribe for updates. I allowed the app to connect to my contacts list. By default, it had all the contacts checked off. I was carefully going through, unselecting agents and literary magazines who I did not want to bother.

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Mischief Managed

I had only deselected a few people when Goose jumped up on my keyboard and walked across the enter key.

Agents and editors do not like getting mass emails from writers who are trying to promote their books. In fact, many of them tweet about how much they hate it. When I see those tweets, I would think, what kind of idiot would spam agents with their self-published book promotions.

Today, I am one of those idiots.

Not because I intentionally spammed people, but because I let an app connect to my contacts with the intent of sending a group email.

I’ve been pacing around my house in a panic, thinking this is going to lead to rejections. I need to stop. Hopefully, agent’s and editor’s spam filters will catch this so they do not get mad at me. And maybe, some half-forgotten acquaintances I’ve lost touch with will pre-order my book.

Later this weekend, when I officially launch, I will post updates on my blog.

Update: Once I calmed down and asked people if they got my email, no one had actually gotten the email. I logged back onto the site I sent the email from and discovered that Goose had sent a “preview” and it only went to my email account. I am very, very, relieved!

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And Goose needs new mischief to cause….

©2017 Sara Codair

 

Our Donation to the ACLU of WA

I am so proud to be part of this anthology! If you haven’t read Alternative Truths yet, you should.

B CUBED PRESS

On July 6, 2017 three representatives of B Cubed Press, Karen Anderson, Blaze Ward, and Janka Hobbs presented the first of many checks to the American Civil Liberty Union of Washington.

The money is part of a commitment to set aside a portion of the proceeds of the sale of Alternative Truths, an anthology that looks at the America that might be if the current political path continues unabated.

On hand to receive the check was Caitlin Lombardi, Community Relations Director at the ACLU of Washington.

Should you have any questions or desire a review copy of the book, please contact Bob Brown, owner of B Cubed Press, at kionadad@aol.com.

clip_image002Left to right, Karen Anderson, Caitlin Lombardi, Blaze Ward, Janka Hobbs

The following text accompanied the donation.

In 1953, a nation was reeling from the unapologetic assault on free speech from the likes of Joseph McCarthy.  In answer…

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Camp NaNoWriMo Take Two

Like Birds (1)
This isn’t an official cover, just one I designed to keep myself motivated. I still need an agent and/or a publisher for this book. 

My first time genuinely attempting National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) was a success. I finished a short YA novel with a day to spare. My critique groups read it and gave me feedback, spurring three in-depth revisions. This summer, I read it out loud to my mother on the beach, and revised some more. I sent out my first volley of queries and got some rejections.

A friend who wants to start an editing business did a copy edit. I posted my query to three different critique forums and got a truckload of helpful. I just need to hear back from someone about my new opening and closing, I’ll be ready to send out my second volley of queries. I have them more or less ready to go, and my fingers are itchy to hit the send button, but I need to wait for that last bit of feedback on my new opening, since that is the chapter that will essentially either prompt the agent to hit reject or ask me for more material.

I liked it so much that when the first Camp NaNoWriMo came around in April, I was determined to finish my next WIP, Community Magic, in that month, but all I managed to do was add 10K words to it.

A few things went wrong:

  • I was doing a revision of Like Birds Under the City Sky – the novel I wrote in November.
  • I had a ton of grading that month, and students who really needed in-depth feedback on their papers.
  • I had to get my completed works, queries, and pitches ready for #DVpit. This included finishing the revision of Like Birds Under the City Sky so I could pitch it.
  • I was bothered by a lack of short story acceptances, and attempted to remedy that.
  • I also had no clue where Community Magic was going plot-wise, and was lost in character development and world building.

After the month ended and I didn’t win CampNaNoWriMo, I didn’t do much with Community Magic. I posted my queries to forums for feedback, hoping to increase my request rate. I did another revision of Like Birds Under the City Sky. I signed up for an online class intending to use it to write short stories, but by the end of it, I was 10K words into a new WIP.

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I’m not thrilled with this design, but until I take better classroom or campus photos, it will suffice. 

Now it’s July, and the second CampNaNoWriMo is happening. I’ve gotten feedback on the first five chapters of Community Magic, wrote a very rough query for it, and have a much better idea of what the story is, what the conflicts are, and how they will be resolved. Instead of being a pantser this month, I’m going to be a planster. I’m not outlining every plot detail before it happens, but I am writing a general synopsis, identifying my destination, and thinking about the different ways I can get there.

I will finish a draft this month, and if I don’t have an agent by this time next summer, I’ll probably be querying Community Magic.