I actually made this wrist corsage today for the upcoming prom. We are smack dab in the middle of prom season at the shop with many more intense weekends to come. The beautiful white flowers (ranunculus, spray roses and hyacinth blossoms)and the sparkly black ribbon remind me of the flowers and colors in the wedding that Quincy and Alex and maybe another surprise friend are attending in the next Flower Shop Mystery that I'm working on. Ten Little Bridesmaids is a 10 or eleven installment serial that I'm currently working on. If you sign up for my email newsletter list, as a bonus, you will have access to the members only section of my website where you can read a rough draft of the first chapter!
Congratulations, Jenny Close! You have won the drawing for either a free ebook or $5 Amazon gift card. Please email me at email@example.com to claim your prize!
So I did this in the last month...
14" of hair donated to Locks of Love!
From their website:
"Locks of Love is a public non-profit organization that provides hairpieces to financially disadvantaged children under age 21 suffering from long-term medical hair loss from any diagnosis."
Please check out this fantastic charity.
Coming soon, the winners from our March comments drawing will be announced.
Everyone who leaves a comment during the month of April will be put into a drawing to win either a free ebook or a $5 gift card.
Have you ever had long hair and then cut it off? If so, did you regret it?
At my last trip to the grocery store I was reminded of one of my favorite things from the month of March. Girl Scout Cookies! This also brought back memories of my days in the Brownies and the Girl Scouts. Time spent in the Girl Scout organization was a positive life-changing experience for me and I would recommend it for every girl.
When I got home from my cookie buying, er, grocery buying trip, I pulled out one of my many treasure troves of souvenirs and found these beauties:
I'm so glad that the girls can sell at the stores now and even online. When I was doing it, we went to all our relatives and friends and then we went door to door. I hated that. My mom would sit out in the car while I knocked on the doors of strangers. (Turns out, most of the houses we went to were people my mom knew, but I didn't know that. She just wanted me to build some confidence in approaching people on my own). I would recommend this fine organization for every girl. Not only did I learn how to work with people when it came to the selling part of business, I also learned about fiscal responsibility, achieving goals, keeping business records and just plain old sticking to a daunting task until the end. At that's just from the selling cookies part. I won't go into all the details about fun weekly activities and crafts, camp-outs and parties. Please support the Girl Scouts by buying lots of cookies!!
Were any of you a Brownie or a Girl Scout or a Cub or Boy Scout?
Remember, everyone who leaves a comment will be placed in the monthly drawing for a free ebook or Amazon gift card!
The beginning of this video is how I felt when I saw the new Pee Wee Herman movie show up on Netflix! Also, I love how Mr. Herman handled a very public humiliation. So, when you ask why I didn't post the news of the release of Happy Homicides 2 on Valentine's Day, my answer is the same, "I meant to do that." Well maybe I didn't, really. But we'll just put that in the allotted category for mistakes and human foibles!
And, if you'll notice, yours truly, Annie Adams is listed as one of the authors of this awesome cozy mystery box set. Have you read any of the other authors? What do you think of Death and a Dozen Roses, starring Aunt Rosie? Let me know in the comments below. Everyone who leaves a comment gets their name in the monthly drawing for a free ebook or an amazon gift card!
After a lot of work and a whole lot of great support, The Happy Homicides box set is now available for sale. Get all 13 novellas for only 99 cents! And you'll receive a free bonus of recipes and craft ideas including one of the recipes that appears in my contribution to the anthology, Flowers Food and Felonies at the New Year's Jubilee.
Thank you for all the support and all of your emails and comments. Keep them coming. Here are the links for grabbing your copy. Enjoy!
I was completely surprised when I read this in Kristen Lamb's most recent blog post:
"According to the Book Expo of America, as late as 2006, 93% of all books (traditionally and non-traditionally published) sold less than a 1000 copies. Only one out of ten traditionally published authors would ever see a second book in print."
How much time and emotional energy did I waste back then by being jealous or more accurately, intimidated by thinking that if I saw a title on the shelves of a book store, then that author must be a success, and that my measly, fledgling little book sales could never put me in the same league as "that kind of author?" (Sorry about the long sentence). While the whole time, because I decided to take the risk and try self-publishing despite the existing and still predominant stigma (in 2013) against doing so, I was selling far more copies than that of just one title.
I don't write this to say "yay me." I just write it to say, we need to make decisions based on fact, and we certainly can't base the confidence in ourselves or our businesses on what appears to be and especially what appears to be in someone else's paradigm. (Check out that 90's power word!)
I'm reminded of someone in my day job industry who had the most beautiful retail shop full of all kinds of expensive treasures. This person also had seemingly endless numbers of events for very large corporations and was highly sought after for weddings. The product orders she shared with me were just mind blowing. I couldn't help but wonder how was it she was selling all of these flowers and gifts to all these many powerful clients. The event work itself was just huge. Well, down the road I found out the truth and it was right around the same time I was preparing to make the decision whether to self-publish or keep trying to impress the agent who had strung me along for over a year, telling me how much she liked my book. I found out that my colleague was so deep in debt and had been robbing Peter to pay Paul for so many years, that it finally caught up to her. All of her many, many credit cards had finally been maxed out and she wasn't allowed any more late payments even with a hefty fee--it was that bad. The word spread from disgruntled employees who were never paid all or even any of what was owed. Suppliers had become tired of bounced checks. This colleague had been undercharging by a long shot what others like myself had been charging and that's why she was so popular. Unfortunately, she wasn't charging enough to pay all the bills and make a living, and it finally caught up to her.
Her family lost everything financially.
I had been comparing myself and my business to her for years and judging myself pretty harshly over it. I was doing the same with authors as I would do my weekly stop in to the bookstore. And whether someone publishes traditionally or indie is not the point here. The point is that we've got to stop comparing ourselves, JUDGING ourselves or our work and careers against others without having all the facts. (Really we shouldn't be comparing ourselves at all). It never is what it seems from the outside. NEVER.
This has been a hard lesson for me, and I constantly battle the urge to repeat this self-destructive behavior.
Thanks to Kristen Lamb for sharing her wisdom as she always does and here's to making good decisions based on facts and reality and not comparing ourselves to anyone else. Here's to writing because we love it, and hopefully making successful careers from selling lots of great, entertaining books that we loved creating.
I just spent the weekend in one of my favorite spots in Northern Utah and that's in the city of Logan. Such a beautiful place with a uniquely vibrant community in a college town. I attended the League of Utah Writers conference. The League is officially 80 years old! Fantastic.
The keynote speaker at the conference was Dean Wesley Smith. I was fortunate to be able to spend some time not only attending Dean's lectures, but in meeting with him and another group of professional writers in private conversation. We exchanged ideas and networked. It was my great pleasure to learn from his vast experience as a working writer. I cannot thank him enough. Please visit Dean's website
http://www.deanwesleysmith.com/ not only to read his insightful and spot on blogposts but see the VAST collection of he and his wife, Kristine Kathryn Rusch's writings, but also a daily accounting of Dean's word count. The words this guy is producing and publishing is enough to blow your mind.
Thank you LUW, DWS and the Over the Water Gang for a fantastic weekend!
If you're like me, you have a secret love of coloring. You know, like when you were a kid and you opened up the brand new box of 64 Crayolas and colored to your hearts content in your favorite coloring book? (Mine was a giant Sesame Street coloring book. Actually it still is and I still have it).
Now it doesn't have to be a secret love any more. The new in-vogue thing is coloring books for adults!
Here is a link to a full book, and also, here is a link for a free printable from the most awesome website The Graphics Fairy.com. Of course, it's a floral pattern. Beautiful Hollyhocks in any color of your choice.
I've been listenening to podcasts lately on an almost daily basis. I've had a smartphone for several years now, yet only until recently got on the podcast bandwagon. I'm so glad that I did! I listen to podcasts while driving, cleaning, getting ready for work, gardening and while arranging flowers at work.
Since I hope you'll have a chance to check out some of these podcasts, I'll only spotlight one or two at a time. I'm sure many of you have heard of Tim Ferriss, author of The 4-Hour Workweek and The 4-Hour Body. I can't think of a singular way to describe Tim. I first found out about him while researching methods for losing weight. I ran into his blog http://fourhourworkweek.com/blog and I learned about oh so much more. A description of Tim can be found on the informational blurb about his podcast:
Tim talks about every topic under the sun and deconstructs big ideas, talks about philosophy and putting things into practice. I admire and feel like I relate to his enjoyment of everything and his search to learn about as many things as he can. I am particularly awed by his guest Maria Popova. In this podcast she talks about her very popular blog, reading, philosophy and so much more. Please take a moment to go to Tim's blog and better yet, listen to the podcast with Maria Popova. I bet you'll be hooked.
Annie Adams is the author of "The Final Arrangement," part of the Flower Shop Mystery Series including the Zombie Delivery Van
Annie Adams is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon properties (amazon.com, or endless.com, MYHABIT.com, SmallParts.com, or AmazonWireless.com).