Wednesday, March 4, 2020

IWSG & Friday the 13th Blog Hop

Yay! It's the first Wednesday of March. Spring is coming! Is anyone else already over the winter? I love the changing of seasons, but our winter here has been drearier than usual. The way snow falls in Colorado is it dumps a bunch of snow on us, then the sun comes out the next day and all the snow melts. This year it's lingered, and the sun has stayed hidden for a week at a time, which does NOT help those of us with Seasonal Affective Disorder. Even though spring in Colorado still means snow, it also means surprisingly nice days, sun, and deep blue skies. It's 58 degrees today! In the dry air of Colorado, that means no coat for me, warm cars, and a warm house.

But while we wait for spring, why not enjoy another edition of the Insecure Writer's Support Group?


Created by Alex J. Cavanaugh, the IWSG serves as a way for insecure writers (and who among us isn't) to get and give support. Anyone can sign up; just click on Alex's name and add your blog to the linky list. You can also participate on the Facebook page if you don't have a blog.

This month's co-hosts are:

The optional question is:
Other than the obvious holiday traditions, have you ever included any personal or family traditions/customs in your stories?

I'm sure I've inadvertently reflected customs in stories, but I can't think of a specific one. I admit, I have trouble answering these types of questions, because at this point I've written A LOT of short stories, and they're each their own universe. I start going through each one in my head before giving up.

My insecurities right now involve titles and book launches. My second collection of horror short stories is coming out this month, and I'm second guessing the title and trying to figure out if I should do a launch party at all. I did a poll for the title in a writing group I'm part of on Facebook, and the one that won was the one I already had, and was wondering about. So I'm probably sticking with that title, though it's different from my first collection in that part of the title is NOT named after one of the stories in the collection, which means I changed the rules on myself. But hey, it's a lot easier to not have to change everything already in the book, right?

As far as the book launch, I'm curious: how do you feel about book launch parties for second, third, fourth, etc. books? The first book is a big deal, but do people feel meh about going to launch parties/signings each time an author has a new book come out? Let's be honest. The reason I'm wondering about this is that I'm afraid of having a book launch that no one shows up to. I remember being so scared and prepared to be let down when I launched Blue Sludge Blues & Other Abominations. Then I was pleasantly surprised. But it's not my first release this time, so I have no idea if it's worth having a party.



I'll be having a blog hop on Friday the 13th to get the word out about my collection. If you'd like to participate, you can sign up via the form at the bottom of this post. I ask that you post on Friday, March 13 with one of the following:
1. Your favorite urban legend
2. Your favorite old wives' tale
3. Something scary that occurred in real life and taught you an important lesson

I'll send book information to everyone before the 13th.



Time for stats. I post my submission stats each month to keep myself accountable. My stats in February are:

4 submissions
2 rejections (one with a nice personal rejection and a request to submit something else)
1 anthology release including one of my short stories
0 acceptances




Currently reading: The Year's Best Horror and Dark Fantasy: 2015



Currently watching: Don't Trust the B in Apt. 23 (it's an oldie, but one that amuses me to no end, so I'm watching it again.) This is the show Kristen Ritter starred in before Jessica Jones. And though I never watched Dawson's Creek (so I'm sure there are in-jokes I'm missing somewhere), James Van Der Beek playing himself is hysterical.



Just finished watching: I may or may not be ashamed to say that the other day I binge watched the entire season of a new show called I Am Not Okay With This. It's a YA starring two of the kids from IT (Bev and Stanley). It's about a young woman hitting puberty while also gaining some scary super powers. On top of all of that, her dad committed suicide less than a year before, and she thinks she likes girls. Talk about a lot going on in your life at once.



Will you be signing up for the blog hop? What are your insecurities? Have you seen either of the TV shows I mentioned? How do you feel about book launches for books beyond the first one?

May you find your Muse.

*Swoosh Blue Clip Art images courtesy of clker.com, Victoria

49 comments:

  1. A launch party is scary. Especially at this time of year. I'm generally inundated with company, so my time isn't my own. I had to threaten everyone to please don't talk to me today because I'm super busy. I like to visit at least 40 IWSG blogs. I feel for you, Shannon. But I think you have to trust that this is what you're meant to do. Have that party. Any excuse for a party is a good thing. I'm signing up for an alert right now so at least I can stop by and cheer you on.

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  2. Good luck with the new collection! Go with your gut regarding the title and the launch party. I'm sure everything will work out wonderfully. :)

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  3. Like you I've not deliberately included family traditions in stories, but suspect they've found their own way in.

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  4. I think a launch party is good for any book.
    Sounds like you should stick to that title and run with it.
    Thanks for co-hosting today!

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  5. I think we share similar weather patterns. It's strangely warm today up here in Maine, but the powers that be are calling for more snow later in the week. Oh yippy . . .

    You are always so productive. Way to go! Best of luck with the story collection release. It looks amazing! Thank you for co-hosting!

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  6. I'm with Alex, a launch party should happen for EVERY book you write! Our weather has been mild, for the most part this year. Hope it stays that way! Thanks for co-hosting this month!

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  7. I had a launch party for my first book. It was scary stuff. Not had another since. But its publicity, and all publicity is good. Loadsa luck for the release... :)

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  8. I had a launch party for the first book, but now do the online thing. I guess if I were selling thousands of books I'd definitely go with another party with cake etc. but I'm not! :(

    Congratulates on your new release!

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  9. I blasted through I am Not Okay With This and enjoyed it. It's like Stephen King's Carrie for the modern age. Such a strange blend of authentic teenage experience and wild plot line. Hope it gets more seasons.

    I've never been to a launch party, but maybe you could designate a co-reason to have the party (along with a holiday, perhaps?) to generate interest.

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  10. Book launch parties? I've never had one. I have participated in multi-author events, though. Perhaps something with several horror authors? Thanks for co-hosting this month.

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  11. Everybody deserves a party!! Launch away! Great op to sell back list. I hear you on those dreary days. Being from Michigan, I've finally invested in a 'grow light' and wouldn't you know, we've had tons of sunshine. Not going to complain! Thanks for co-hosting, Shannon!!

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  12. I hadn't thought about book launches for second books. Interesting to read the comments. I don't have them because--as you say--I'm afraid no one would show up! Thanks for co-hosting this wonderful event!

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  13. I'm in the no book launch party camp for books after the debut one. I just don't have the energy to keep doing that. Thanks for co-hosting this March.

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  14. Book launches can be fun. Invite people who you know will show up. Celebrate each success!

    Those gloomy winter months can take a toll. I'm glad to see the sun and the melting ice and snow here in MN, too.

    Thanks for co-hosting this month!

    Mary at Play off the Page

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  15. I've never had a single book launch, but I wish I could wrangle up enough help for one. I don't see why there shouldn't be launch parties for books beyond the first.

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  16. Hi,
    That someone chose a name that you already had with knowing that you had it is a confirmation for me that it should be the name you go with.
    Wishing you all the best and thank you for co-hosting.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Pat G @ EverythingMustChange

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  17. I didn't even realize there was a Friday the 13th this month until you said something.

    I haven't done a launch party in real life, but I did do a Facebook party for the release of Seismic Crimes. I think I did it for one other...maybe 30 Seconds. But for other books in my series, I've just done blog tours and blog hops, no Facebook parties.

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  18. I think every book deserves a launch. I'm sure you worked just as hard on each subsequent book...

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  19. Signed up. I am afraid I don't care for horror. I do occasionally read it. I watch some with friends back when I was younger, avoid watching unless it is crime show involving serial killers which is horror too.

    I sometimes will read it but it has been a while. I do like Dean Koontz type of horror-thriller. That being said I can come up with something for the blog hop. I also find the psychology behind horror interesting and all that shadow-fear stuff of the subconscious can be fascinating.

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  20. I have not done a launch party and am not quite sure what one is, but if it is something which has worked for you, do it again.
    Your stats were inspiring. If you don't submit you can't get accepted.

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  21. A launch party is good for any book, and if it's in a series, you can bring the rest and remind people about them.

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  22. I'm in favor of a launch party whether it's your first, fifth, or fiftieth book. You wrote a book, an entire book, and that's worth celebrating! Also, super encouraging stats for your submissions, how awesome. Thanks so much for co-hosting this month!

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  23. I'm thinking a launch party is good but I'd be nervous too. I have I Am Not Okay With This on my wish list. Glad you liked it. I'm watching The Stranger now.

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  24. I go to launch parties because I want to get to know the author. So for me, first, tenth, or more all offer a fun evening getting to meet and chat with the writer.
    Good luck with your personal blog hop. Interesting idea.
    Thanks for hosting the March IWSG blog hop
    Lynn La Vita blog: Writers Supporting Writers

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  25. You should do a launch party as long as you want to do one. I don't think it matters that it's not your first book. You should still celebrate!

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  26. Book launches are still important. Especially since you haven't solidified the title yet, which means no early promotions yet.

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  27. Go for it with the launch party if you're comfortable with it. Titles are important and sometimes they just come and sometimes they're hard to come up with.

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  28. I'm not over the winter yet. We've actually been lacking the dreary weather here in Northern California for at least the last month. This Gothic horror writer has to go dormant when it comes to the winters or he gets seasonal defective disorder! Lol

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  29. I'm in! I'm a bit of a wimpy reader (blame the nightmares) and person. Urban legends totally freak me out but they are fascinating!

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  30. I don't see why a second/ sequel book launch party should be a problem. I can't say a whole lot about it because I haven't done a book series yet. But Rowling I believe did book signings for her Harry Potter sequels and they had good turn outs. Maybe decide based on how good your first book did?

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  31. I think it is a good idea to name a collection of short stories by the title of one of the stories. Maybe the story you consider the best. Or the title you like the best.
    As for a launch party - not sure. But any publicity for any book (first or second or tenth) is better than none, imo.

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  32. Hi, Shannon! Congrats on the launch. I get the anxiety, but I think you should have a book launch. Hopefully, I can come.

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  33. Congratulations on the book launch!
    Because I am incapable of doing anything normal, my worst depression comes in the spring.

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  34. Absolutely have your book launch party, Shannon! And good luck with it. I'm just up the road from you in Aurora. We've definitely had the snow coming down in the last five or six weeks and too many cold, gray days. But yesterday and today were glorious! We made sure we bought a house with a southwest facing driveway ~ LOL Gotta love that solar heating. Thanks for co-hosting today.

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  35. Every book is worth celebrating. Definitely have a party. Congratulations on your accomplishment!

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  36. Congratulations and good luck! Every book is a new baby in the family. And worth all the celebration!
    Sonia from https://soniadogra.com

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  37. Congrats on the collection release! As to a book party, I think I'd go with my gut feeling/mood. I do miss Colorado's weather (yes, I can't believe I'm saying that either!)

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  38. Launch parties are a lot of fun and if handled properly, a good tool.

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  39. I hear ya' about worrying that noone will show up at the book signing. sigh...I am facing the same insecurity for my fourth trad published book. But any excuse for a party is good! And the PR about the book signing will help sell your book even if only your Mom shows up at the signing!!Let me know what you decide.
    JQ Rose

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  40. Of course you should celebrate another new release! Thanks for the tips on those two movies/series. Now I'll have to watch them both ;-)
    Thank you for co-hosting!

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  41. Congrats on another release! How exciting! I hope your launch goes really well!

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  42. Congratulations on the new collection release. Thanks for co-hosting the IWSG this month. I think your blog hop is a wonderful idea and I would love to participate. Also - every book deserves a book launch party.

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  43. Thanks for co-hosting! I hope the launch goes well.

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  44. Thanks for co-hosting and congrats on your upcoming release. I'm always second guessing a title for a story. There are times when I find the right title and then there are times when I think there has to be a better title than this one.

    I've done a blog tour before which was fun and a bit nerve wrecking. Yet to do a launch party but they do seem like fun.

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  45. Congratulations on the upcoming book release. Launch party sounds fine to get the word out. Every book deserves some kind of launch event. That's how I see it at least.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

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  46. I really don't care for launch parties ONLINE, they're weird--unless someone out there has thought to change the way they're handled? Multiple posts and comments per post turns into a huge tangled mess of trying to keep up!

    Launch parties at a library or a book store, well, there--that's where the real FUN is in my honest opinion! <3


    ♥.•*¨Elizabeth Mueller, Author¨*•.♥

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  47. I got distracted by seeing if I could come up with a blog post for your blog hop in this short a time. Success! Its all written, so I signed up for the hop.

    I'm not a fan of blog tours/hops, simply because its targeting fellow authors. Not sure how many actually purchase the book. But this Hop seemed like a lot of fun, and I'm not opposed to the events. Thanks for the posting opportunity :) Looking forward to getting the book details in my email.

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  48. I have no experience of book launch parties as an author, so don't know how valuable they are in terms of sales, etc. But as a reader, I love them! I would definitely attend a book launch for an author's 2nd, 3rd or 4th book. There are not many physical bookish events around here but I do join in with a lot of online launch parties if there are interactive games, competitions and so on.

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