Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas Eve

Every year we go to my in laws for Christmas Eve. We have a nice dinner and open presents- usually pajamas.
I have my own tradition of wearing a Santa hat each year on Christmas Eve. I like to have things fun and festive for Christmas Eve and more serious for Christmas Day if that makes sense.
Part of the fun of Christmas this year was the soda tree my husband made. I thought it turned out great. We were short on cans, so he ended up improvising to get it finished this weekend.



A few nights ago we drove around Draper and admired some amazing  houses and lights. (including a house that looked like a cross between the white house and a hotel) We even saw some deer. We ended up at the Draper temple where they had a beautiful nativity. It was awesome and touched my heart and soul.
We don't make a big deal about Santa, in fact the last few years we asked him to only fill the kids stockings, no big elaborate gifts. Not everyone can afford the extra "Santa tax" and I don't want that to be the focus of Christmas.
I'd like to read a Christmas story tonight or maybe tomorrow morning.
I hate opening presents in a messy house since it just adds to the mess. We have been getting things in order the past week which makes me happy!
We went to church yesterday after a bit of a break. It was nice to go back especially so close to Christmas.  We will remember Christ in Christmas.
Tomorrow we will have a nice Christmas breakfast, either waffles or pancakes with eggs and bacon, cinnamon rolls and egg nog. We will open our presents then off to my side of the family.
Merry Christmas to all!
What are your traditions?

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Guest Post: Finding the Baby Jesus Tour Stop (wonderful short Christmas story)



Welcome to the guest post and tour stop for Finding the Baby Jesus by Kimball Fisher. I asked for him to talk about writing tips and getting published.

First here is my review of the book and then following is his guest post....

Review:

A touching story for sure. Tears were streaming. A great way/story to focus on the true meaning of Christmas. I highly suggest reading it! Definitely worthwhile.



Guest Post by Kimball Fisher:

It's a bold new world for publishing. I've published both with big New York houses such as McGraw-Hill (4 of my non-fiction books) and gone Indie as well (with FINDING THE BABY JESUS). Both routes offer certain advantages and disadvantages. Traditional publishing, of course, offers wide distribution and book marketing benefits as well as needed (no matter how good of a writer you are) editorial assistance. But certain projects (such as my short little Christmas book) don't fit the big house mode, and some authors with an established fan base are foregoing the traditional route altogether to maintain more creative control over their projects.

The advantage of the Indie method is that anyone with basic computer skills can go somewhere like SMASHWORDS and publish without the hassle of bobbing and weaving around the publishing gatekeepers. You upload your book and (if you did it right) voila! You're published! But that's the disadvantage of the Indie route as well. Anybody who thinks they have a good story can be published, now. There's a gazillion books out there. And in the Indie world, without the benefit of the vetting scrutiny of editors and literary agents, readers know that lots of these books are unreadable junk. Plus with a gazillion books, you have to do something to stand out from the crowd. 

Here's my advice: If you want to be successful in the Indie world, write the best possible book you can. Join a writers critique group and let your new friends dismember your little darling so that you can put it back together again as a new and improved creative product. Go to writing conferences and get critiques from published authors and professional editors and agents. Write the book over again. Then hire an editor. She'll help you polish your writing until it's nice and shiny. Hire an artist to help you get awesome covers. Turns out that people do judge a book that way.

Remember that unless you are some kind of amazing genius, you simply can't do everything by yourself and expect to sell Indie books to anyone other than your family, friends, and people who owe you something. Plus you have to develop a marketing strategy to get noticed. It's a lot more work for the author than going traditional. But it's pretty fun, too. I like getting to know more about the business side of books than I did before.

Anyway, happy holidays! And keep reading!