News from The Cape of Cod Week 11

News from the Cape of Cod – Week 11

Our Cosmic Connection

Here we are more than half-way through the summer, and it has been a memorable one for weather. Today is sunny, warm (77 degrees) and low humidity. (sigh of contentment) Actually, that was yesterday. Today is cloudy and cool.

Frank, one of the realtors at Raveis Realty in Osterville, sent my daughter this picture of the Cape Cod Canal from a plane. Beautiful!

The traffic, my favorite subject, is heavy, but moving surprisingly with courtesy and patience. That includes the out-of-state-drivers as well as the residents. It is congested, but only because most of our roads are two lanes, and not built for speed. Probably by the end of summer, I will wish I really did have a jet pack broom, like Grannie Goodwitch, or at least I was more versed in Astral Travel.

The Writers Studio is coming along famously. Last Friday, everyone brought their devices (lap-tops, mostly) and without much ado, the members paired off and worked together helping each other. It was a very productive meeting.

Something Bloody is completely written, and in edit by me. I am working on the graphics, and chapter headings. It is already cut and pasted into the book size. My sister, Donna, in San Antonio, (bless her) is helping me edit this one and hopefully, the other members of the writers’ studio will do some Beta Reading for me.

I was shocked when I wrote the last chapter. I fully expected to write some more, but it was DONE I was told by my whoever they are. As they really wrote it (who else can I blame?) they had the rights and privileges to say it was complete and not to do another thing to the story.

That catches you up on that end of the spectrum.

For this blog, I want to touch on the Fifth Season – Late Summer which will begin August 22nd through October 21st. This season, in the Zodiac, falls from Sagittarius into Libra. And the accompanying Meridians are the Spleen and Stomach. According to TCM, these are the Earth Elements.

There are 12 signs in the Zodiac, and 12 major organs in the body, six are yin and six are yang

In TCM there are five elements that are talked about, I reasoned there had to be six, because of the major organs. The one element not included in some of the readings I have done in TCM was the element of Spirit. I included that in the Early Spring season, which is the awakening of nature and bridges from winter into spring. I will most probably be taken to task for this.

These two organ systems are the Three Heater and Circulation Sex, sometimes named The Triple Burner or Three Heater, and encompasses ENERGY and is used as a diagnostic tool in Chinese Herbal Medicine. The Pericardium, or Circulation Sex function is to protect the heart, both physically and emotionally, and to help us energetically connect sexuality with love.

As far as earthly elements, water, wood, metal, fire and earth or dirt, these are all elements that are seen and felt. Spirit is the energetic force.

My apologies to Luc Besson, there really are Six elements… I reference his film (and one of my favorites) The Fifth Element

Now, without further ado, or as my friend Monty would say, “And now for something completely different.”

The Six Seasons are:

  1. Winter – Water Element, begins December 22 to February 21st. Meridians are Kidney and Bladder. The Zodiac signs are Capricorn and Aquarius
  2. Early Spring – Spirit Element – February 22nd to April 21st. (The Spring Equinox) The Meridians are the Three Burner, and the Pericardium (Sex meridian) the Zodiac Signs are Pisces and Aires
  3. Spring – Wood Element – begins April 22nd, to June 21st (Summer Solstice) The Meridians are the Liver and Gall Bladder, and the Zodiac Signs are Taurus and Gemini.
  4. Summer – Fire Element – begins June 22nd to August 21st. The Meridians are the Heart and Small Intestine, and the Zodiac Signs are Cancer and Leo.
  5. Late Summer – Earth Element – begins August 22nd to October 21st (Fall Equinox September 21st) The meridians are the Spleen and Stomach, and the Zodiac Signs are Virgo and Libra.
  6. – Fall – Metal Element – begins October 22nd to December 21st (Winter Solstice) The Meridians are the Lungs and Large Intestine. And the Zodiac Signs are Scorpio and Sagittarius.

There you have it. After referencing three of my books for the correct information, I have finally put the chart together. Boring, I know but someone, somewhere may like it.

Basically what I’ve done here is tied TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) and the Zodiac or (Astrology), and the Cosmos (Star signs) together – Our Cosmic Connection.

On a happier note, here is another reason people flock to The Cape of Cod…….

Did you know the Cape of Cod sits on a bed of crystal? No wonder I love it here.

Dowse Beach in Osterville — Photo by Tina Finkbeiner (my daughter)

Happy Summer… (It is almost over.) 15 weeks of tourist season but the rest of the time it becomes ours.

News from the Cape of Cod Week 8

Sandy Neck Beach

Here is the blog in an MP3…

July 18, 2017

NEWS FROM THE CAPE OF COD – WEEK 8

Here we are in the middle of July already and it doesn’t seem possible. The weather has blown hot and cold, cloudy, and sunny, now rainy, and foggy.

The Fourth of July was momentous, as visitors, and tourists flocked here to celebrate and visit with family and friends. I believe I heard there was an 8-mile back-up as they left the Cape, that was for both bridges.

The photo above was taken by my daughter of Sandy Neck Beach as it juts out into Cape Cod Bay. Beautiful, isn’t it? That is the north side of the Cape. The south side is bordered by Nantucket Sound and the Gulf Stream, which keeps us warm well into September and October.

The Mini Cooper has had her top down frequently and my fun meter is very happy. The fun meter is a gauge on my dashboard that measures how long the top has been down. YAHOO!!! The sun roof doesn’t count. This Mini has been mine for a whole year, now.

Figure 1  My Fun Meter

STORY:

When I was with the salesman considering the purchase of this convertible, the salesman was pointing out all the features. He paused and asked me if I had any preferences that he hadn’t covered. My reply was, “But I wanted a sun roof.”

Figure 2 Yahoo!

 

Mini’s are becoming increasingly visible here. When I first purchased mine in 2006, there were only 3 Minis on the entire Cape. Now, I can happily say that number has increased. We blink lights at each other in passing, and if windows are open, a wave.

The Mini sound system is incredible, and I love to tootle around with the top and windows down, with Herb Alpert and his Tijuana Brass blasting! Oh, yes, I do! So far no one has given me the evil eye!

IN THE WRITING STUDIO,

We welcomed 4 visiting members who are with us until they must return to their other lives. It is refreshing to have 2 poets, which rounds out the group nicely.

I do have plans to start a monthly T. V. broadcast from the Cape Cod Media Center. It will air on Channel 99. Stay tuned.

MY BOOKS:

Preparing for the Cape Cod Writers Conference in August, I updated and revised my WRITING AS A RETAIL BUSINESS, which I intend to sell in the bookstore at the conference. Also, my 2 new books, CREATING A PAPERBACK IN KDP and E-BOOK TO PAPERBACK CREATESPACE EDITION. Both are Self-Publishing with Amazon.

That’s the news for now.

Happy Writing,

Sharon

 

THE HOOK

What is THE HOOK?

The HOOK is what you use to HOOK your readers, to HOOK their attention, to hopefully get them interested enough to buy your book. It is your one and only chance to “Make the Sale, or Get the Job.” If that sounds unusual, it isn’t really, it’s salesmanship.

Let’s try this.

You have written a book. You want to publish it because:

  1. You think it is good.
  2. You want to share it with others.
  3. You want people to buy it.
  4. You want to make money.
  5. You want to get paid for your work.
  6. You want to help people.
  7. You want to inspire people.
  8. You want to entertain people.
  9. You want to educate people.
  10. You love to write and you could care less if people buy your book. (Perhaps we should leave that one out?) You do have several chances to make that first impression, not unlike meeting someone for the first time. It’s like a job interview, and in a way, that is exactly what is happening. You are being interviewed by someone, (a potential reader), and you hope they will buy your book. (You will get the job)   The MODERN READER or TODAYS READER is usually on their mobile device, computer, IPhone, and surfing to find something of interest. Unless they specifically know what it is they are looking for, they are surfing. They are already in their chosen category (Fiction, Non-fiction, Romance. Action/Adventure, etc.) That part is already accomplished.  There are numerous possibilities for you to consider for your cover. KDP and CreateSpace do offer Cover Creator, a program, with which you can DIY a decent cover. I have used both programs and had good results. You can also employ the services of a graphic artist who will create the whole thing for you, also which I have done for some of my books. Todd Engel has designed many of my covers. Here is his information at https://www.facebook.com/Todd-Engel-Engel-Creative-Graphic-Design/ You will see one of my book covers right in the middle of his banner-display. (Angels in Action) Here is their link:https://www.canva.com This program is free to use, and they do offer royalty free graphics. You can also purchase graphics for a very nominal fee.
  11. Your BLURB is your introduction or the short paragraph that you will use for the back of your book cover or the paragraph that you will use to best describe what your book is about when you enter this information into the KDP program. This information will be what the public will read when they look at your landing page (the basic page on Amazon that has your cover thumbnail, price, and other pertinent information). KDP has already set up this page for you, free, and this is where your potential reader will be automatically forwarded to when they click on the thumbnail of your cover.
  12. HOOK # 3 YOUR BLURB.
  13. A web based program (free) for graphic design is Canva.com.
  14. Your potential reader likes your title, it’s interesting and is a possibility. The next thing your reader looks at is your COVER. Covers that are very busy and have lots of action, illustrations, printing, do have merits, remember, the reader is going to be looking at a THUMBNAIL, a postage stamp size of your cover, so plan accordingly. Sometimes less is better. The key ingredients here are; book title, sub-title (if one) and Author’s name. These are what MUST show in the thumbnail of your cover.
  15. HOOK #2 COVER
  16. What does your title say about your book? Does it reflect some sense of the book? Are you completely satisfied with this title? One of the benefits of Self-Publishing, especially on Amazon and KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing), is, you do have the option to make changes. Choose your title carefully so that it reflects what your book is about. If there is something about the title you aren’t comfortable with, then work on making it better. Remember, this is what will attract your reader.
  17. On Amazon or any book site, the TITLE is your first HOOK. If the Title holds no appeal to the reader, he/she will slide right by yours until he/she finds one that will catch their interest. (These are all Marketing Strategies, by the way.)
  18. HOOK #1 – TITLE
  19. The first thing they see is your TITLE.

This HOOK #3, Your Blurb, should answer these questions:

 

WHO

WHAT

WHERE

WHEN

WHY

HOW

This blurb will be like a news story on the front page of a newspaper. It should answer those questions, in fact, that is where those W’s came from (journalism).

 

To break that list down, let’s do this:

  1. WHO – the who is your main character- who are you writing this book about?
  2. WHAT – is happening to this character that the reader should, or might want to identify with, to know more about (the plot)
  3. WHERE – where is this taking place? in Chicago, Illinois, along the Amazon River, the Angelic Kingdom? The reader should have some point of reference.
  4. WHEN – when is this happening? Years ago, right now, in the future?
  5. WHY – what cataclysmic event has happened to the protagonist (hero/heroine) that you have written a story about? Why should the reader read on?
  6. HOW – will it be resolved? How will this story end? Make this point like a cliff hanger to make the reader WANT to buy the book. (The Sale, or The Job.)

 

HOOK #4 FIRST CHAPTER

 

Amazon KDP offers potential readers a peek (look inside) at the first few chapters of your book, right on your landing page, which gives the reader a better idea of what your book is all about. This is a clever bit of marketing that KDP has already done for you. Your first chapter should also answer those five ‘W’ questions. Here is where you set up your story (plot) and characters. If they get this far, they are interested, and will probably purchase the book, if not now, then soon. KDP also offers the following, (built right into your landing page)

Read for free – Kindle Unlimited – you still get royalties for this option.

Kindle Matchbook – which ties your print and e-book together.

Buy now with one click – making this easy for the reader.

Deliver to the reader’s device (iPhone, tablet, etc.)

Send a free sample

Give as a gift

Add to your list (this has a pull-down screen with the following:

Kindle Wish List (private)

Shopping list

Kindle Wish List (public)

Gift Ideas List

And finally, if none of the above work, a Create a List option.

So, you see, Amazon has done all this marketing for you, and obviously offers all these choices so the reader does not leave your landing page empty-handed. All very clever marketing tools, which benefits both the Author and Amazon.

 

NOW, TO SUMMARIZE:

Your Four Hooks:

TITLE, COVER, BLURB, AND FIRST CHAPTER

 

 

 

REMEMBER:

IF THEY DON’T GET THE HOOK,

THEY WON’T BUY THE BOOK

 

Happy Writing,

Sharon

April 28, 2017

 

https://audacious-author.com/the-hook/