COVER REVEAL and Book News!

Today is the big COVER REVEAL day for my new novella coming this fall!! I started writing Falling For You after Bake My Day was published, but then decided to put it aside to work on the next novel instead. Book 3, which I’m hoping to release this winter, I wrote during NaNoWriMo last November, pushing Falling For You to the side. Fast forward to this summer…I decided to dust it off and finish it! It’s set in the same town of Maple Falls and will follow Ali’s story which will continue into book 3 as a secondary story. It’s fun and a little adventure along the way, finding out who really loves her and how lucky she is to have those special people in her life.

I’m planning on an early to mid October release, depending on the timeline of a few more steps I have to take to get it finished. Once the kids are back in school, I can devote a little more time to it. For the next two weeks while they are still home for the summer, they will take priority 🙂

And now….the cover!!! I hope you love it as much as I do!

fallingforyou-graupman-ebookweb

It matches perfect with the theme of Bake My Day to continue on with the series!! I love the work Christa does at Paper and Sage! I would highly recommend her to anyone looking for a custom book cover.

Once I have a better idea of a release date, I’ll let you all know and I’ll have it available for preorder soon!! To keep up on my current book info, you can sign up for my NEWSLETTER HERE.

Have a great day!

Shannon

When your pants won’t cooperate!

Plotter vs. pantser……I never really knew which one I was. I suppose it depends on the book. While writing Bake my Day, I was a complete pantser, but with the two I’m currently working on, I can’t seem to follow that same format.

In the past, before writing Bake my Day, I thought in order to have a solid story and for all of the storylines and such to flow correctly, I needed to have every scene spelled out ahead of time and follow along with my notes. But I never finished a story I started.

Then comes NaNoWriMo! I decided to participate in too short of time to plan, to sit down and write an entire novel in 30 days with no outline and no planning. As soon as my fingers hit the keyboard, I knew I had a story in me that was dying to get out. I began typing and the words came with little to no blocks along the way. While there are many people out there that cannot do that, I was pleasantly surprised that I could. I felt as though I had more freedom to be creative without a “plan” already in place that I felt I had to follow.

Now that I am trying to write more stories, I feel like I don’t have the same flow as I did on the first. I’m not sure if I’m thinking too hard, or if I’m taking too long in between writing sessions where I can’t remember where I left off in order to pick it back up again.

As frustrated as I am with it, I will not give up on the process. My plan for this evening is to read through my novella that is currently in the works and take notes on what I have written so far. I’m hoping that will help me to pick it back up again and get this first draft finished. My goal is to have this one out before the next novel planned for late 2017.

As a planner in every other aspect of my life, I truly enjoyed the process of “pantsing” my last novel. I think it is important to look at both methods along your writing journey, or any other journey you may be on, and figure out what works best to get you to the goal you have set for yourself.

Be sure to check back later this week for a great interview I have coming up with author Courtney Walsh, getting to know her and all about her wonderful new novel Just Look Up, releasing on July 4th!

Shannon

New Year, New Book, New House

Happy New Year! I hope the first month of the year has been good to you all. It has been a very busy start for my family so far. We put our house up for sale just before the holidays and will be moving soon. Between packing boxes, I’ve tried to squeeze in a little work on book 2.

I participated in NaNoWriMo again back in November and luckily was able to power through my first draft. A couple days ago, I reached the end of chapter 2 on my second draft. While I wish I could find a little more time than I am giving it right now, I know soon I will be able to. I have quickly found out that moving a family of 6 takes a LONG time and a LOT of boxes! My new house will have an office overlooking the front yard and I can already picture myself writing there…

A little bit about book 2! It will be taking place in Maple Falls again, surrounded by some familiar characters, as well as a few new ones. The main character in this book will be Mary Bradford. If you read book one, you will remember her from the coffee shop. She is Linda’s (the owner of the coffee shop) daughter. She was briefly introduced in the craft night scene and again later at the coffee shop. It will be set around Christmas time may or may not be wedding bells 🙂  More to come about book 2 soon!

Back to packing more boxes and praying for warmer weather closer to the move. Moving in winter in MN is anything but ideal, but I did happen to see a few 40’s peek in to the forecast coming up.

Have a wonderful week and I’ll update again soon!

Shannon

One Year Ago…

Exactly one year ago, I made the decision to participate in NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month). For those of you who are unfamiliar, November is national novel writing month, with the goal of writing 1,667 words a day for 30 days, ending with 50k words and a complete first draft of a novel in a month.

Many people who choose to participate plan for a month or more beforehand, plotting, outlining, developing characters, etc. Being that I decided the day before to do it, this is what I had planned out to start my novel:

Main character: Cora

Yep, that’s it! I had no outline or characters to go on, I just knew that I wanted the character’s name to be Cora. It was amazing how when I sat down to write, the story just came out. It definitely changed (a lot!) from first to final draft, but I was able to get a story down on the page and ended with 51k words on Nov. 29th, one day early.

My novel was not finished at that point, but I completed the goal for the month. I got busy with my shop literally two days later for the holiday season and was not able to pick my book back up again until February! I ended my first draft around 70k and then let it sit for a month or so and started all over again with the second draft.

I have no doubt that NaNoWriMo is the reason I was able to publish Bake My Day. Without the daily goals, the wonderful writing community, and all of the accountability that comes with participating, I would probably have never seen it through to the end.

That being said, a couple of days ago, I decided to participate in it again this year!!! I wasn’t going to, but I know that it worked for me last year so why not use it again to write book 2? The book I am going to write starting tomorrow was slotted to be book 3, but I am leaning more towards setting the other book 2 aside and making this one book 2.

I’m happy to dive into Maple Falls again and revisit the characters, seeing where life has taken them since Bake My Day! Yes, I know they don’t actually exist, but I think it must be a writer thing 🙂

I will update weekly on my progress and hope to “win” this year again, completing another 50k in 30 days!!

Shannon

How I got started

As I sit here writing my first blog post, I can’t help but think how long I have wanted to do this. Not just blogging, but actually writing a book from start to finish. I knew I wanted to be a writer since I was ten years old. That being said, the last 23 years I have been pursuing it in some form or another.

I have written a few manuscripts that will probably never see the light of day, but they were great practice if nothing else. Some I may go back to, take parts from, rework them, and create something new.

My current work in progress (WIP) is a book I hope to become my first that goes to print. I began writing it on November 1, 2015. That is the starting date for NaNoWriMo, also known as National Novel Writing Month. It has been something I have wanted to participate in for many years, but could never fully commit the time.

Then, a couple of days before Halloween, I decided that this was going to be my year to participate. I own my own business and it was a slower than average fall, typically my busiest time, so I took that as a sign and ran with it. I went online and signed up, committing to writing 50,000 words in 30 days.

I’m usually a planner in every aspect of my life, but sitting there, on October 31st after a late night trick-or-treating with my kids, I had no outline for the novel I was to begin the next day. Part of it felt scary, like I was already defeated and thought there was no way this was ever going to happen. But the other part, the excitement for creating something new from absolutely nothing, took over and luckily won out in the end.

With a goal of 1667 words per day, I was determined to stay on track. I wrote every day for the first twenty days or so. Then, we went on a weekend trip with the kids, two of them got sick, and before you knew it, I was four days behind in my writing. Each day that passed I felt more and more like quitting, not thinking I would ever make up that much ground to be able to finish by the deadline.

On the next day, I refused to give up. I figured out how many words I needed to complete the 50,000 word requirement and divided that by the number of days remaining in the month. It only went up by 1,000 words or so per day which seemed way less intimidating once I saw it written out. “I got this,” I kept telling myself. Some days I would write during nap time, some days I wouldn’t write until almost nine o’clock at night.

After writing on the fly and being the pantser I never thought I could be, I finally finished. On November 29th, after writing nearly 4,000 words while my husband was watching football, I submitted my 50,000 words and became a NaNoWriMo Winner! I printed out my certificate and framed it, so proud of myself for finally completing something I had wanted for so many years.

Two days later, my business took off and was busier than any other holiday season I have had in the past, making my accomplishment even more rewarding. I was so thankful that I took those 29 days and worked as hard as I could, knowing and praying that my business would soon pick up. I am so thankful that it waited for me to complete my first draft of my novel. After that, it was nearly three months before I was able to pick my writing up where I left off and begin the editing of draft two. And that is where I will pick up next time.

 

Shannon