Monday, May 29, 2017

The Mind of a Writer/Update On My Writing

One thing about writers, whether you're an author, poet, blogger, screenwriter, your mind is always processing thoughts and ideas. To be honest, we very rarely take breaks (unless it's a necessity such as being burnt out, vacation, family or any other circumstances). For me, it's very hard to take breaks, or should I just say they don't last very long.

You would think that with my next three books that I'm publishing between now and the beginning of next year that I'd take a break from writing. Nope. Not. For. One. Second. I'm still writing and sharing content (feel free to follow me on instagram: www.instagram.com/aquarianmind). Currently I'm posting love poems on there that I've written a few months ago. It was a book but now I've decided to post those for free, it's a different avenue than what I normally write about which is societal issues.

A few weeks ago, I went to Los Angeles for a vacation but also to network and meet people in the business. I met some great people and the one thing that was told to me was to start writing scripts/films. Granted I've seen what scripts look like, I never wrote one and in my mind, "how am I going to write a script?" The reality is I write books in poetry format on societal issues.

So I rode on my 5 hour flight back to the east coast researching scripts, how to write them, learning about the business, how it works and also thinking of what in the world I could write about that would get someone's attention. Let's just say I took it on as a challenge to write a script, develop a storyline and build a few good characters that would be appealing to an audience.

I ended up writing a script on 4 women who are best friends who find a platform of poetry to express the struggles they deal with and go through. It was one of the biggest challenges in my life but when I finished it, it felt exhilarating and I felt so accomplished.

I can surely say it's a whole different realm than writing a book. Writing books, you can write what's on your mind. When writing a script, you're writing what's on your mind but you're also describing every action that's going on and how you want to portray the story. Writing books, you have to create imagery more, with screenwriting, the imagery is there but the actions have to come out. Right now, my script is currently being submitted to a few places to see if it'll be picked up.

When you find your love and passion and you're blessed with a gift and talent, don't waste it, utilize it to the best of your ability. I've now got the itch to develop another script but that won't stop me from writing my books though. You should always keep your options open and available.

My new book Code Blue: An Oath to the Badge and Gun releases Friday, June 16th. I will also be featured in Writer's Life Magazine: Summer Edition. I'll keep everyone updated with the release date of the magazine. In the meanwhile, here's the link to pre-order my book on Amazon: http://amzn.to/2pfG9RD

Be good everyone and follow your dreams.


Jamell Crouthers
Aquarianmind



Friday, May 12, 2017

The One Question I Get Asked As An Author

Recently, I had a long conversation with my dad about my writing, publishing my book and the business. We discussed my recent books I've published, my next one coming in mid-June and he gets engaged about my plans and goals with these books. Then came that one question I knew was eventually coming from my dad. Would I take a book deal from a publishing company. He tossed me a large amount of money scenario and I paused for moment and thought about it.

When I formulated my thoughts I eventually said to my dad I wouldn't and here are the reasons why. For starters, I like being in control of everything that I'm doing (writing, proofreading, book covers, synopsis, marketing, social media, getting book reviews, setting my book prices, doing promotions, etc.). I told my dad it's hard for me to let go of all that I do regarding my goals and my vision.

For me, it's hard to put trust into people who want a piece of the pie. I'm not saying to people who have aspirations to have a book deal to not do it. I'm very fixated on building my author brand and also my brand in general. I don't mind getting input and advice from people, but to be told what to do, that's not something I like dealing with.

I've spent a large percentage of my life being told what to do so for once in my life, I'm in control of my own destiny, I get to do things my way. If it doesn't work, then I can say I tried, didn't succeed, learn from it and then get better at things. Obviously, I'm not good at formatting my books for paperbacks, I'm not good at making great book covers, so I'm willing to pay people money to do those things for me. Some book covers I made myself, some I've paid someone to make it for me. I won't divulge those people but let's just say I get a good deal on my formatting and book covers.

Nothing is worse than walking into a party with a pizza pie and everyone wants a piece a slice. That's how I see the business of book publishing companies. So the big publishing companies will invest into you, but it's only after you've achieved all of the success on your own. Why would I all of a sudden put trust into a publishing company after I've done it all on my own? I'm making 70% doing it on my own, I'll be lucky if I could even get 50% from the head honchos in the book industry.

On top of that, I've planned 4 books to be published this year, I've published one, the next one is coming and the other two are already completed and the 3rd book coming in September, I have a book cover for it. Next year, my goal is to publish 5 books and I will be doing that going forward. So for me, a publishing company will be restricting me from my goals and vision of publishing content every 10-12 weeks.

No, this isn't a bashing post on book publishing companies but the reality is, they're on a significant decline from the outside looking in. People are going the self-publishing route and it's working for a lot of authors. It's just like bookstores aren't lasting as much anymore because the newer generation are reading eBooks more granted paperbacks are still popular but easily accessible on Amazon, Barnes and Nobles and other bookstore websites. You can easily order a book online and have it at your door within 1-2 days.

Okay, so back to the subject at hand, I can get sidetracked sometimes. I always feel it's good for writers and authors to learn the business, do research, learn how to do things, make mistakes, fall on your butt and then get back up and learn from it. Make a few bad investments (which I've done), make mistakes with your books (my books were 8 x 10 and I had to resize them to 6 x 9).

At the end of the day, I enjoy the grind, I enjoy the process of doing this all on my own. It's more work but I'd rather it be this way than trusting a plethora of other people to do something but it's your vision. The best advice I can give for aspiring authors and writers is to do the work on your own in the beginning. Submitting your work to literary agents and publishing companies is a tedious and arduous process and by the time you spend months trying to get a deal, you could've published your own book.

I'm not about awards and accolades, I don't do this for the likes and popularity. I just want people to read my stories, feel, emote and be impacted by what I'm sharing and take a moment to think about the issues we face in everyday society and how they can make the world a better place.

Remember, my new book Code Blue: An Oath to the Badge and Gun will be released on June 16th so if you want to preorder my book on the major bookstores, please do so!


Amazon Author Page

Be good and follow your dreams!


Jamell Crouthers
Aquarianmind

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