Pick a Hill and Die There

I posted this on my personal FB wall, and I’ve been thinking about it even more and wanted to expand on it.

“Does anyone feel like social media has made it so that for every discussion we have, or for every story that is told, we are expected to pick a hill on one extreme of the situation or the other and commit to dying on it?

Truth is important, but for nearly all situations that I am not directly involved in, it’s going to be impossible to know what the truth is, and in all likelihood, it’s not going to be on one extreme hill or the other. Truth is going to be somewhere down in that densely forested valley where actions, intentions, motivations, memory, political agenda, moral compasses, and emotion all mix together in tangled confusion.

This culture of pithy memes, brutal clap backs and epic mic drop moments has lead us to buy into the myth that deep and complicated issues can be summed up by a click bait headline or a political cartoon.

I’m an author—a story teller—and in order to tell a good story, you have to be wide awake to the fact that one perspective will never tell the entire story, and that everyone has biases built into their DNA.

Does that mean we should stop choosing sides, or stop debating? Absolutely not. Discussion is good. LISTENING to other sides is good. Explaining why you believe the way you do is good.

But maybe we can be a little kinder and acknowledge that our hill isn’t the only worthwhile hill around.”

We see this in almost all arenas. We each have different priorities and go about our lives choosing different avenues. That’s good. That’s life. That’s what happens when unique people live unique lives.

But now that we’ve each been handed a bullhorn, and given multiple forums where the norm of communication is to stick a pithy quote on an eye-catching background, it’s easy to think that for every opinion we have, it needs to be the RIGHT opinion. Not only that, but it breeds an environment where respecting someone with an opposing view is nearly impossible.

Those of us with an opinion that doesn’t reside one one extreme hill or the other are too afraid to speak up because we don’t want to risk the wrath of those shouting obscenities from their hilltops. Opinions are stated in absolutes. And often there is an implied insult or threat to anyone who thinks differently.

Civilized discourse is so rare on social media, that when it does happen, we’re all surprised. There’s usually a, “Wow! Thanks everyone for being so respectful in this discussion. I thought it would blow up in my face.” That’s because it usually does. Even if we think a post is completely innocuous, it can turn into a blood bath because someone will make the assumption that by stating an opinion, even in the most benign this-is-only-my-opinion way, we are saying that anyone who thinks differently is wrong. Suddenly someone is shouting at us about intolerance or not having a clue when really, it was just a thought or opinion we had. But we’ve been conditioned by social media into the US vs THEM mentality, so a lot of people are ready and willing to jump into the fight with their knives drawn.

So here’s a shoutout to all of us who are just tired. Tired of the endless cacophony of people who know they are right. Tired of people who turn everything into an argument. Tired of being afraid to even ask for more information because we don’t want to be sacrificed to the gods of social media opinion.

And here’s hoping we can all find ways to engage in civilized discourse despite the odds that are stacked against us. Because if the only voices out there are simply the extreme opinions fighting the be the loudest in their rightness, then this thing is only going to get worse.

There’s your cheery thought for the day.

New Website for Clean Wholesome Romance

Do you like clean wholesome romance? If you read and follow my work, then my guess is YES, you do. And since that’s the case, I’ve got some good news for you.

There’s a new romance that focuses solely on clean wholesome romance.

Kathy over at iamareader.com was one of my very first supporters. We’ve never met in person, but she read Just Ella and promoted it for me just because she loved it. I’ve since used her services for several of my other launches and I really appreciate the work that she does to spread the word about quality books.

So I’m excited to help her in spread the word about her NEW website, CleanWholesomeRomance.com.

She was nice enough to do a spotlight post about me, that includes an interview and some other fun stuff.

    You can also join her facebook Clean Wholesome Romance Fan Group where she’ll post deals, new releases, etc… all centered on the kind of romance we love.

And if you’d like to stay up to date on what she has to offer, then sign up for her newsletter here.
About Clean Wholesome Romance
Clean Wholesome Romance is the “go-to” place for all things related to clean romance. With a linked list of over 500 clean romance authors, featured ebook deals, freebies, giveaways, author interviews & much more, CleanWholesomeRomance.com is the perfect place for readers to find their next favorite book. If you prefer your romance to be free of sex scenes & explicit language this is the place for you!

Clean Romance Authors seeking to find readers and reviewers for their books will find affordable services to help match them to their perfect readers. Whether you have a new release, ebooks sale, freebie or want to bring life back to a stagnant title, CleanWholesomeRomance can help you achieve your goal.


To celebrate the official launch of her site, she is going a $100 Giveaway! So go check it out.

An Author’s Guide to Self-Publishing

I’ve been doing this for a while now, and my editor thought it would be nice if I were to write down a little something about the adventures of self-publishing and what I’ve learned from it. I’ve had several first-time indie authors ask me how to go about it, but you’ll probably be surprised that it’s not as daunting as you might think. The self-publishing platforms are really good at guiding you through a step-by-step process. Continue reading

I Write In Scrivener

I use a program called Scrivener to write my books.

Why? Why not Microsoft Word? Or Pages? Or Googledocs?

Well, I considered doing a bunch of screenshots and explanations, but then realized it would be a whole lot easier to just show you. So I made this:

This is just an intro on how to get started. Scrivener is also great for compiling your book into whatever format you need (epub, mobi, PDF) but there are a lol of ins and outs for compiling that I didn’t want to get into for this movie. Maybe another time. If I get brave…


Happy Release Day!!

Release days are always exciting.

And nerve wracking.

Because no matter how many times I do this, my emotional attachment to these books and their success never wanes. Going to the Kindle page and seeing there are already several wonderful reviews less than 24 hours after it was released makes my little author heart sing. Continue reading

Tell Me What To Write

Since Patreon is a new forum for me, I thought I’d give you guys an example of what exactly I’m going to be doing on it. Yes, you can get early copies of my book releases if you join the $3 tier. But I want to talk about the $2 tier. This tier allows participants to help me write a book. For example, right now I’m just getting it started, and this is the poll that I’ve put up for patrons to vote on.

The results of this poll will determine the basic premise of the story, and then I hope to get more detailed feedback on what the situation will be, settling, etc… Then I’ll write the first chapter, distribute it to patrons, and then we’ll decide where to take the story from there.

Now, this is all experimental. Maybe it will turn out awesome, and I’ll end up publishing the final, polished story. And maybe it will just be something fun and crazy for those who’d like to tell me what to do, and want a little more clean romance in their lives. 🙂

So if this looks like fun to you, then hop over to Patron and check it out. The $2 tier also gives you access to additional bonus content, and a forum of people who love books as much as you do.


Join Me On Patreon

Hey, friends!

I’m trying something new. It’s a new forum, a new way to get your feedback, and a new way to involve my readers in the process. So if you’re interested in seeing a lot more of the nitty gritty of writing and being an indie author, check out my introductory video over on Patreon. We’re going to have some fun.

Want to help me write a book? Because that’s an option now. 🙂 Want to receive early copies of my books before they even go up for pre-order. That’s an option too.

Give it a look. See what you think. And join me if you’d like to participate!