The Eye Of the Beholder


Well, it is the day after. Always a bit sad for me, but I do look forward to the New Year’s Eve celebrations and the first day of the New Year. So it’s not completely over yet! And I always leave the decorations up until after New Year’s Day. It keeps that holiday feeling for just a little bit more.

I don’t do a lot of book reviews on here. I really don’t do much of anything on a consistent basis on this site. I mean, this is not a food, health or parenting blog. It’s a ‘whatever pops into my head’ blog. So for those of you that stop by, it’s always a surprise. Rather the way it is for my children when they stop by our house. They never know what project I’ll be working on! Back to this post…

I first began this blog back in May of 2015. One of my first followers/likes, and a blog that I did the same for was this one:

I was intrigued by the cover of his book, The Eye-Dancers. I also enjoyed his posts, and insights into life, the stories he shared. It reminded me of my teenage years living in upstate New York and Vermont. But since I don’t read Young Adult, I really didn’t think of reading his book. Well, after a year or so of struggling with getting my own books out there, and understanding how very important it is to have reviews of any kind, I decided I would read it. I had purchased it a while back, and then I finally began reading last July.

I don’t normally take so long to read a book, but I’ve had several on my nightstand for a couple years now. I made it a personal goal to read 25 books this year on Goodreads. I reached that goal and reset it to 30. Now I’ve read 32 for 2017…and that feels really good! At one time I loved to read. It was better than watching a movie, or having friends over. But marriage and children put that love on the back burner. Unfortunately I’ve read some not-so-good books lately, and that makes it hard to forge ahead. Just a bit of advice if you are going to self-publish. If you don’t have a degree in journalism, etc., take some writing courses, attend some writing conferences, or have a really fantastic editor. The typos, bad research of a topic, head-hopping and boring plot-line really lose a reader’s attention…and quickly! 

On Christmas Eve morning, I finished reading The Eye-Dancers, and I was pleasantly surprised. I don’t mean that in a condescending way. I literally went into it with the idea that it was a book for Young Adults, and just not my cup of tea. What turned it all around and kept me reading was the great writing, well-researched topic, well-developed characters, and the believe-ability of a time-travel book. Me, a 53 year old woman could enjoy the story, and look forward to more. Because I’ve heard there’s another one coming! 😉 Because of all the above, I wanted to share my thoughts here, and support a fellow author and their writing. Below is my review for Goodreads and Amazon:

I don’t normally read YA, but I do enjoy time travel-type books and movies. So I thought I would give this one a try. I rated it a 5-star because ‘it was amazing’ since it was well-written, very thought-provoking, and well-researched. That is saying a lot after some of the books I’ve read lately with the head-hopping, plot holes, etc. The author didn’t ‘dumb-down’ the characters as I’ve seen so many times in YA. The author also nailed the teen years of angst and thought patterns. It made me think of my own years and the struggles I experienced and felt. And somehow, the author made this story feel as though it could really happen…which is fantastic in my mind, considering the plot! It is what I loved about the Time Traveler’s Wife and Somewhere In Time. I read the books behind those movies, and I loved the books even more. Thank you for a very good read! 

You may purchase The Eye-Dancers right here:

From the reviews the book has received so far, readers are thinking the same as me.


*I purchased the book and wrote the review on my own with no encouragement from the author. These thoughts are my own. Did I cover all the bases? 😉

Self-Publishing and Formatting Quick Tips

I have just returned from a fantastic writer’s conference in Pittsburg, Kansas where I had the privilege to be a part of workshops taught by Kathy Ide and Twila Belk, or Twila Belk and Kathy Ide. (Now they each have first billing!) If you’ve been around writing, editing, publishing groups at all, you’ve heard their names. I learned so much! I am very thankful that editors, authors and speakers are willing to teach these workshops. So, when I read this post this morning, I just had to share it. More great information and so many helpful tips. Get out your notepad!

Lit World Interviews

One of the biggest challenges to Indies is getting a professionally published looking book when up against the costs of editing, proofreading, formatting and cover designs. If you can afford these services then foregoing them is not a good idea, but when you really can’t afford them they can mean the death of some really great literature. There are a couple of things that can help though.

Editing or Proofreading Swopsies

Rather than simply asking for Beta readers, offer to swop proofreading services. Writers have a different kind of eyeball when reading. I’ve just finished a Joanna Trollope book, professionally published by one of the big houses, professionally edited and put together, but so far I’ve found a couple of typos and instances of poorly strung together sentences. As far as the cover design is concerned, if it wasn’t for the fact that I was specifically looking for and wanting…

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Indie Publishing

I absolutely love that I am self-published! For a control freak such as myself, it fits me wonderfully. I can write, design, book release, and write what I would like all at my own pace. And it is mine! I have had some amazing help along the way…couldn’t have done it without those two ladies…but I’ve still had a sense of control. And for me, that is huge!

So, when big-name companies are recognizing indie authors, that’s even more amazing. There are so many writers out there that have wonderful stories to tell, and now they can.

During the month of October, Amazon will be celebrating great writing self-published via Kindle Direct Publishing, CreateSpace and Audio Book Creation Exchange.
Share why you love being an indie author in social media and on your blog. Feel free to create videos, photos and posts about your experience! Remember to use the hashtag #PoweredByIndie so we can share your stories as well
Visit the official landing page to discover great indie titles and learn more about indie authors – share the page with fellow authors!Like the KDP Facebook page so you can join author Q&As, stay connected to the campaign and get tips on publishing from AmazonLet’s celebrate great writing together!

I received the above from the Kindle Direct Publishing team and wanted to share it on here. It’s been a pleasure working with CreateSpace and Amazon to get my manuscripts into book format and available to the public. And now I’m very privileged to be participating in several events this fall where I can have my books available to the public, and meet my readers.


This one was at the Wichita Public Library back in September.

I never dreamed of being a writer, and I’m still in awe when I think of all that has transpired on this writing journey over the past year! I’ve written a four-book series and self-published five books. That’s incredible to me! And it all took place in this little corner:


I do love to sit down and write, and I love to design. But as I’ve said so many times before, that’s only the tip of the iceberg. These two ladies, one a very dear friend and the other our oldest daughter, step in and take care of all the hard parts. Julia Ryan at has created amazing, beautiful covers for all my books. She has been invaluable help to my daughter in showing her the ropes of editing, typesetting and making that interior look fantastic! I can get the words strung together, but that’s about all it is without those two. Britta Ann Meadows is beginning her own journey with Peas in a Pod Editing and Design. Thank you both so very much!

So join me in celebrating great, self-published writing!



The Top 50 Sites for Indie and Self-Published Authors

This post was very helpful to me, so I wanted to share it with you! Indie authors are coming into their own. As a self-published author, this list was very interesting. I have used Smashwords and CreateSpace. CreateSpace is a bit more user-friendly in my opinion. If you are thinking of publishing your own book, check out this list and read all that you can on the topic. I would highly recommend it!

Future Self

I stumbled across this fantastic resource and wanted to share with you. I’d love to hear any feedback.   # URL Category 1 KBoards – Writers’ Cafe ALL 2 The Newbie’s Gui…

Source: The Top 50 Sites for Indie and Self-Published Authors