I made it! Ulrike's Christmas is pre-released. The official release date is set for Saturday December 17th 2016, and clicking on the book's title in this post will take you to the page for it on Smashwords.
I nearly didn't make it, thanks to a lot of stuff going on (holiday related and otherwise). Although, mostly because of JAWS (my screen reader, for those who don't know). JAWS version 18 came out a couple of months ago, and I got my copy last month, so I'm all up to date now, which is great. But what wasn't great was the fact that one of the free update patches you get between upgrades came out during this past week, and installing it did something that stopped JAWS working on my computer. Kelly checked, and everything else was working fine, so I called my brother, Carl, since he also uses JAWS, and also recently got JAWS version 18. But his version was working fine. Regardless, we agreed it was quite likely it was something to do with the update, and decided the best option was to try uninstalling JAWS, reinstalling it, and not allowing it to install the new patch. Apparently that was the right thing to do, since it's been working fine ever since (though I've had to tell it it's not allowed to update, and I don't want to know about updates for the time being). If you're wondering, the reason I called my brother rather than the company we get JAWS from, it's because this happened on a Saturday, and Sight And Sound are only open Monday through Friday. Of course, without JAWS, my computer is useless to me, and working on things like formatting and uploading the final document for an eBook are impossible. So, no JAWS would have been a huge problem. I could check my eMail on my phone... It would be frustrating, but possible... But formatting a word document? No way!
Anyway, despite my JAWS issues, the eBook version of Ulrike's Christmas has now been uploaded to Smashwords for official release this coming Saturday, and will soon be on other sites like Barnes & Noble, Apple, and Kobo, if it isn't already.
I'll deal with the paperback after the holidays are over.
Are you an author too? Do you have business cards? I don't yet, though that's something I'm considering changing next year. If you're still undecided about it, here's a post that explains one person's reasons why authors need a business card.
Obviously if you have a book out there you want to market it. Of course you do. You want people to buy your book, because if you didn't you wouldn't have it up for sale, would you? So you need to market it. However, I happen to agree with this post about writing for yourself, and with what Barb said in her post from last Wednesday (where I originally saw the post linked). Like Barb, I write for myself, though I hope to find people who enjoy reading what I write as much as I enjoy writing it.
By the way, if you need some tips on naming your characters, you may want to check out this how to survive naming your characters. A couple of the points matter more if you write romance, but some of them are actually pretty good tips regardless of what you write. At least, I think so. If you'd prefer some tips that are more generalized, you can check out these seven tips for naming your characters.
Also, if you're using your Thesaurus to find fancy sounding words so you can sound really smart... Stop! A Thesaurus can be your friend at times, but it can also be your worst enemy. Find out how by reading this post.
Ever wondered what goes on inside a writer's brain? Then check out this article on how creativity effects the brain. Also, regardless of whether your chosen way to be creative is with writing, drawing and painting, or something else entirely, this article written by Jeanie on finding your creative soul during the busy holiday season is worth reading, and will potentially keep your muse happy this holiday season.