I am so happy to finally have my friend, and fellow author, Anna Kristell, visiting. I couldn’t wait to hear about her scary night, alone in the woods, and the cool writer’s workshop she attended, the following day. (Yep, she lived to tell the tale! ;) ) Here she is!
When my friend, Katherine, asked me to write something for her blog about my recent workshop weekend I was knee deep in writing a book and I put her off. My bad, I know, but I’m making it up to her now. What can I say? Hot highlander or blog post, I think you get the idea!
Anyway, a few weeks ago, I attended a small workshop about two hours away from home. I met a lot of wonderful people, learned a lot of things I didn’t know, which I’ll share with you, but first I have to tell you about my experience in the cabin…
Now keep in mind this workshop was held at a Youth camp. There had been some talk of several people spending the night in the cabins and possibly a campfire on Friday night. Since I was driving two hours to get there, I decided I would join the party. When I arrived, I discovered that the plans had changed and that besides me, only the event coordinator and her husband of one week would actually be spending the night. Well that was alright, I could handle a night alone in a cabin reading and relaxing with no distractions, couldn’t you? This is where the craziness began.
I was told I could have any cabin I wanted so I chose a lovely little log cabin in the woods with a front porch. Inside were six bunk beds, a couch and chair and a little table with a lamp beside one of the bunks. Perfect! I trudged back up the wooden steps to my car and unloaded all my gear, bedding, duffle bag etc. Since the cabins weren’t equipped with bathrooms, I thought it might be a good idea to take a walk before dark to locate the bath house. When I discovered it was quite a ways down the road, I decided to move to a closer cabin. I walked back down the steps, gathered up my gear, went back up the steps, loaded the car and drove on down to another group of cabins in the vicinity of the bath house.
I opened one of the doors and the heat about blew me away. Someone had turned the thermostat on high and I couldn’t find the dang thing to adjust it, so I went on to the next cabin. This one was not as cozy as the little log cabin; it was a newer cabin with several bunks, a concrete floor and a picnic table in the center of the large room. Well, okay, at least it was close to the bathroom should I have to go in the middle of the night…
I got my bedding all laid out on one of the bunks only to discover that the only light switch and the outlet to plug my phone charger in were by the door so I moved all my bedding to the bunk closest to the door and made my bed for the second time. I read for a while, talked on the phone, texted, checked my Facebook and my email before finally deciding to call it a night since I had to be up early the next morning for the workshop. Well, the phone cord didn’t reach my bunk so I placed my phone on the top bunk and I was sleeping on the bottom, no biggie. I turned out the light and it was pitch black! Yikes! I quickly got into bed and attempted to go to sleep when all of a sudden a loud boom sounded outside. I sounded like a gunshot. Telling myself I was crazy, I was just about to fall asleep again when I heard the same sound once more! By now, being the writer that I am, I began to imagine all sorts of scenarios. I quietly got up and without turning on the light, because I sure didn’t want the shooter to know someone was in that cabin, I retrieved my cell phone and took it to bed with me, where I lay awake for quite some time, hoping I didn’t have to go to the bathroom until daylight. At some point I fell asleep and when daylight came I opened the door and peered outside. Seeing the other couple walking from the bath house to their cabin I figured I was safe, gathered my things and went to take a shower. When I got to the building where the workshop was being held, the event coordinator asked how my night was. When I told her about the gunshots, she laughed. She hadn’t heard them but she told me the guy that lived next door to the camp liked to shoot his gun. OMG! If you only knew the ideas that had been running through my head all night long…secluded camp…alone…
Oh well, it made for a great story and now to fill you in on some of what I learned at the workshop.
One of the workshops was about writing blurbs and since Katherine expressed an interest in that, I’ll share a little of what I learned. When writing a blurb, you need to start it off with something catchy, something that will reel in your potential reader. After that initial reel-in, keep it short and to the point. Don’t make it too busy. It needs to be punchy, evocative and it needs to tantalize that might be reader. You should aim it at your target audience (age and genre) and it should be neither too long nor too brief. Make sure it’s easy to read and gives an accurate description of your book. No info-dumps, no errors and no confusion.
Another thing we discussed was your pitch. For example, say you’re at a book signing event. You’ve only got a few seconds to capture the reader’s attention. When asked what your book is about, you only have about ten seconds to get them to buy your book, so you will need to have your pitch perfected. Tell what the book is about, make it interesting and make it short!
Author C.S. Marks was the presenter for this very valuable class.
I hope I’ve entertained you, as well as helped you learn a few things you didn’t know. As some of you know, I write sweet romance under the name Anna Kristell and spicier, spanking stories under the name Isabella Kole. If you haven’t checked out my work, feel free to go to my Amazon pages.
I am also on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Linkedin and Goodreads.
Katherine here, again. I wanted to share a few books from Anna and her spicier side, Isabella. :)
If you like spanking romance, then check out her new book, Accepting His Terms. Plenty of spice and spankings in her “Isabella” books.
f you like a sweeter romance, then check out The fab Five Series, by Anna. I am sharing my favorite cover!
Thanks for stopping by!