Solitary Pursuits

Meet my friend, Ruth Douthitt. She’s the author of some wonderful middle-grade/teen fantasy books, which I’ve read, and others that are in my To-Be-Read file. In my estimation, she’s a super woman, a runner, an author, an artist, a wife and mother, and a fellow military Brat.

Ruth shares some unique insights of characteristics shared by both running and writing. Enjoy!

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      by R.A. Douthitt

Yes, I know you’ve read about how writing is similar to running. I’ve read those posts, too. But I wanted to blog a little about how writing and running are similar because I do both…a lot! and I want to share some of the lessons I’ve learned.

All By Myself

Remember that song from the 70s? It’s so tragically sad, but true. Nobody wants to be alone.

One of the many similarities between writing and running is that both can be lonely.

I run and train for marathons and even a few ultra marathons. I have also written 8 books. Writing and running can be lonely, but at least with running, you can ask friends to join you!

But with writing, it’s up to you and you alone to do the work. For me, that’s why I set goals for myself. Setting goals keeps me on task. I let others know about my goals so I am held accountable. It helps!

“Attend a conference or join a critique group!” some writers have told me. They explain how these two actions will help end the loneliness. But, as with running, you’ll still have many moments alone.

During the last ultra marathon race I participated in, I was hit with this realization. During the day, I ran alongside many runners, but once the sun goes down at mile 31, many runners leave or head to their tents to sleep. That’s when the race is at its toughest. The trail is dark, the air grows colder, and all you hear is the sound of your shoes on the gravel trail. At that point in the race, you’ll want to quit. Running is much easier with the cheers from spectators and other runners around you!

Yet, you have to keep going, putting one step in front of the other. Writing is the same way. Conferences are terrific! I love meeting other writers and attending workshops so I can learn more about the craft. Critique groups are so helpful. But once I return home from a conference or critique, however, I have to sit at my desk with the computer and work…ALONE.

Family and friends encourage you to write, as those race spectators encourage you to run and that does help. They patiently listen to you summarize your plot, describe your characters, and detail the setting, God bless them. Without them, you’d probably give up.

A race is a race, and there’s nothing like the feeling of seeing the Finish Line as you near the end. Same with writing. It is a race to the finish! We may have pending deadlines created by publishers or ourselves. These finish lines motivate us to stay the course.

Yes, as with running, writing can be lonely. Like training for a marathon, writing requires discipline and endurance.

Finally, as with racing, there is a prize at the end. A reward is needed to remind you why you set out to complete a grueling race or why you are determined to write a book. Make sure you have a reward set aside for yourself, whether it’s a release party, a dinner with family, or a vacation/retreat. Do something good for yourself, you deserve it!

After I complete a book, I throw a party. After an ultra marathon, my family and I usually go out to dinner so I have replace all those calories I burned off. All the pain and loneliness of training is worth it as I sit and celebrate with my family.

These are the lessons I have learned. I keep setting writing goals (I plan on publishing 3 books this year…) along with running goals (triathlons and a half marathon later this year) so that I am motivated to continue.

I stay motivated to endure to the end so I can cross that finish line with my head held high.

Keep running! Keep writing…

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 Click on the book covers to get to her Amazon Author Page:

It’s HERE! The Third Book In The TETRASPHERE Series!

When Jewel Adams and her friends are needed in South America, they discover that something is terribly wrong. A malevolent enemy is zeroing in on Jewel, putting her in danger of losing herself, the people she loves, and her world. How can they stop him?

Watch the Voice of Viracocha trailer, and comment what you think of it below.

The book is available in several formats. You can find it and the others in the series on my website, ptlperrin.org, or go directly to my publishers, Foundations Books.

I’d love to hear from you!

Nothing Makes An Author Happier Than A GREAT Review!

I subscribe to several sites where I find important information and help as an author, including A Writer’s Path and The Book Review Directory. What a pleasant surprise to see my book, TERRA’S CALL, featured today!

Reviews mean several things to an author. We know someone has read our book, and we’re happy that they liked it, or we can learn from their critique if they don’t. Reviews can help move a book up the charts, and good reviews can help readers decide to purchase and read it.

It means a lot to me, and to other authors, when someone takes the time to write a review. Thank you, Kristine Kohut, for this one!

TERRA’S CALL – BOOK REVIEW

Author’s name: P.T.L. Perrin

Book Title: Terra’s Call: Book 1 of the TetraSphere Series

Genre of the book: Teen, Young Adult, Science Fiction, Adventure

READ THE REST OF IT HERE!!!

 

 

 

Triton’s Call is LIVE, and we’re celebrating with another giveaway!

The last Kindle Fire giveaway was such a success, I decided to do it again. You have thirty days from today, October 30, 2017, to enter to win a Kindle Fire 7 tablet with Alexa.

Click here to enter today! Don’t wait! You can earn more entries once you’ve registered on the website, and, if you aren’t on my newsletter list, you will be once you enter!

If you want to order Triton’s Call, click here to visit my website. Watch the trailer, order the book, and check out my other books!

Nanowrimo starts tomorrow. That’s National Novel Writing Month, where those of us who sign up for the challenge will write 50,000 words in 30 days.

I honestly did not think it could be done, and signed up the first time just to see how far I’d get. I wrote the first draft of Terra’s Call that time — 50,000 words of it.

Triton’s Call was born during Camp Nanowrimo in April, 2016. Again, the challenge was the same, and the first 50,000 words of the first draft happened.

I couldn’t stop there, so that November, I wrote the first draft of Voice of Viracocha, which should be released before Christmas! How could I possibly stop now?  I have one more book to write to complete the TETRASPHERE series, and this is the month I hope to get the first draft done.

I’ll ask you to pray for me, as I’ll be praying for everyone who’s taking this challenge. It is not easy, especially during the Holiday season. I thank God for my Daughter-In-Law who will be doing Thanksgiving this year, and for her other Mother-In-Law and everyone else who is bringing goodies for the celebration. We have so much to be thankful for.

Now, go enter for your chance to win that Kindle, and check out my other books!

 

Soliciting (and Offering) Feedback as a Writer

Feedback. We writers need it! We love those stellar reviews we get from our readers, but getting those reviews requires writing good books. For that, we need people to help us along the way.

Andrea Huelsenbeck lays out the reasons and the methods for giving and receiving great feedback. Here’s her guideline for critiquing another writer’s work, whether you’re in a critique group or a Beta reader. I’m paying attention! I hope you are, too.

A Writer's Path

by ARHuelsenbeck

How do you know if what you are writing is any good? Too often I reread something I wrote years ago (or days ago) and discover it’s shamefully incoherent.

Writing is a mostly solitary profession. We craft the words while alone. But we release them into the world at our peril if we don’t get some feedback first.

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Terra’s Call is LIVE, and We’re Celebrating!

How? We’re giving away a $50 Amazon gift card to one lucky winner! You have to enter to win it, and we’ve made it easy. Here’s what my friend Seth says on his blog, the Giveaway Guy:

“So who wants to win something?! P.T.L. Perrin and I have partnered up to give away a $50 Amazon gift card to one lucky Giveaway Guy reader.

Enter to win using the Rafflecopter form below. You may share on Twitter once a day for extra points for the duration of the giveaway.”

CLICK HERE to read more and fill out the form. The contest runs until October 12, 2017. Wishing you the BEST!

Palm Trees Are Made to Dance

Few things are as unnerving as an approaching hurricane. When we saw the satellite photo of a swirling buzz saw bigger than our entire state heading directly for us, we couldn’t help but feel a growing sense of urgency. My heart screamed, ‘RUN!’ My mind said, ‘Stay. It won’t be as bad as they say.’

‘Stay calm’ I told myself, as the frantic newscasters built a doomsday scenario, minute-by-minute, for days ahead of the storm.

“Stay calm,” they told us, as they showed pictures of empty grocery shelves and cars lined up for miles at the gas pumps.

“Stay calm,” they said, while announcing evacuation orders, one after the other, during the perfect days before the storm, when people were still heading to the beach.

Evacuation route

The TV stayed tuned to the Weather Channel, and when we flipped stations to get anything other than hurricane news, all the other stations broadcast nothing but incessant talk about the hurricane. Don’t get me wrong. It’s a good thing. Those folks at the local stations live here with their families. They care. They do an amazing job.

We didn’t leave, and when it hit, we had my almost 96 year-old mother-in-law with us, along with my sister and adopted sister from the part of the state that was hunkered down for a direct hit, where Category 5 winds and a fifteen-foot storm surge were expected. Our family still in Naples were in secure buildings, in professional care. We prayed and worried, but knew they would be better off there.

A hurricane is like a roller coaster. The ride to the top is pure anticipation. In my case, I repeatedly tell myself, “You idiot! What were you thinking?” And then there’s the pause at the top of a mile-long vertical drop. At that point, I know I’m committed, and it’s time to relax and enjoy the ride.

My sister brought her adorable little dog who, naturally, had to go outside — storm or no storm. That’s when I realized once again that palm trees are made to dance in impossibly strong winds, and little dogs will not pee in them. I, however, enjoyed being out in it, if only for a few minutes, dancing with the palms. hurricane wind

We survived with only the loss of my beloved ficus tree. It was cut back to the nub, the sound of killer chainsaws grating on my nerves. It will grow again.

I grieve the islands and the Florida keys, wondering how they will ever come back from this devastation. Yet, come back, they will. Like my ficus, the life is there, the strength is there, and in the sun and tropical breezes, we’ll watch it grow and do what we can to help. Texas will recover from Harvey. The Caribbean will recover from Irma. Where there is life, there is hope, and God is with us all.