Facets of a Muse

Examining the guiding genius of writers everywhere

Busy … But at least it’s SPRING! #amreading #mystery #newrelease



It’s been a busy week+ since my book release. Whew! And bonus: I got my books the day some of my readers (the ones who pre-ordered) got their books. There is something about holding the book in your hand to make it real.

Then there’s the whole “deer in the headlights” thing when the first person asks you to sign their copy of your book. First it’s: OMG, seriously? Then it’s: What the hell am I supposed to write?

And my awesome blog release tour hosts have helped spread the word since last week. If you haven’t stopped by their sites, here’s the list again:

March 13: D. L. Finn
March 18: Betsy Kerekes
March 19: Staci Troilo Audiobook Release Day!
March 21: Joan Hall
March 25: Jacqui Murray
March 27: Mae Clair

I still stare at my book in a state of near-disbelief. It’s been a bit scary, because as an introvert, I’ve always tried to stay in the wings. It’s much quieter there. The problem with that, though, is it doesn’t encourage people to buy your books, which is kind of the point.

It’s real!

“Congratulations, love.”

I start to turn, but my Muse stops me. Instead he picks up a book as he drops an arm around my shoulders and pulls me into him. Today he smells like rain with a trace of earthy loam. Spring.

“It looks good, love.”

“Thanks. People seem to like it.”

He gives me a squeeze before letting me go. “And they should. It took you long enough.”

Do I detect a hint of scolding in his voice? “Hey, there are writers out there whose first book took twice as long as mine did.”

He sets the book back in the box with the others. “Uh-huh. There are also a lot of writers out there whose first book took half the time.”

“Your point?”

His eyes narrow. “Your second book better not take as long as this one did.”

I manage–barely–to avoid rolling my eyes. “I know, I know. And you know I’ve been trying to write Book 2 ever since I signed the contract with my publisher.” Seven rough drafts so far. Seven! I’m working on the timeline again. I need to start rough draft number 8. “But you know I also have other stuff to do in the next month.” Not the least of which is spring cleaning. Ugh. We host Easter for my husband’s side of the family. And taxes. And I need to finalize my session handouts for the upcoming Writers’ Institute.

There is still time to register! Click here!

My Muse rests a hip on my desk, arms crossed. “Are you going to work with me more this time?”

“Are you going to stick around instead of jaunting off to who-knows-where?” I counter.

“Are you going to sit your ass down behind the keyboard and write?” he counter-counters. “I’ve been here, love, but I can only stir up the creative energies for you. You have to write it.”

I can’t hold back this time. I roll my eyes. “Yes. I have been sitting …”

He waves a finger, cutting me off. “No. I mean, sitting behind the keyboard, no distractions. You have to re-establish your writing spot. You know it. I insist on it.” He stands, towers over me. “Got it?

“Yes. I’ve got it.”

He’s right, and since I haven’t done anything to set up my son’s room as a writing office yet, I’ll have to go back to my old spot.

Busy schedule coming up. I know there are a few other blog release tours going on, and I’m trying to keep up with them; I apologize that I’m so far behind. I’ve also got a few reviews to write, and some other promo stuff to experiment with.

And SPRING! Woo-hoo! Crossing my fingers we don’t have any late-season snowstorms like we did last year. This year looks promising, except for all the flooding. We are fine where we’re at, and I can get to work without a problem, so it’s good. I should start some kale and maybe a few tomatoes and peppers this weekend, so they have time to get big enough for the garden. I’ll keep you posted.

Have a wonderful weekend!

What? I can sit here.

Author: Julie Holmes, author

A fiction writer since elementary school (many years ago), and NaNoWriMo annual participant for over a decade, I have been published in small press magazines such as "Fighting Chance" and "The Galactic Citizen". I write adult mystery with a touch of romance, mystery with extrasensory elements, contemporary fantasy, and epic fantasy, and I'm represented by the fabulous Cynthia Zigmund of Second City Publishing Services. My debut novel, "Murder in Plane Sight", has been released by Camel Press (an imprint of Coffeetown Press/Epicenter Press). In real life, I am a technical writer and empty-nester with a wonderful hubby, one cat (what writer doesn't have cats??), two dogs, five chickens, and more chipmunks, squirrels, and rabbits than any garden should have to deal with. My garden, our hobby farm, and Nature's annual seasons are some of my muses.

38 thoughts on “Busy … But at least it’s SPRING! #amreading #mystery #newrelease

  1. Whew! What a busy time, but glad you are taking time to celebrate. Iโ€™m sure your muse would approve of a moment to enjoy a glass of wine and some chocolate, despite his admonishments to get to work on book 2! The polar ice cap is receding here, too. No snow storms in the next 10 days of weather predictions, but I expect April to serve us unwanted winter. Dreaming of flowers!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Nooo! Don’t jinx it! But yes, I suspect Winter will toss us one last hurrah. Boo. And the plan is to dig into Book 2 soon (probably not until after Easter, though, with all the other stuff going on). And as encouragement/accountability, I’m going to take an online novel-writing class from my writing teacher. Take that, procrastination!

      Have a great SPRING weekend, Molly!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Release time is always busy, but it is so exciting, isn’t it? Your Muse is right that sitting down at that keyboard is critical. But there’s also the need, I think, to take some time to celebrate. Writing a book is not easy, and you did it. I’m thrilled for you!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I remember the feeling when someone asked me to sign one of my books. It’s feels strange. Like you, I prefer to stay in the background but as you said, that doesn’t sell books. Listen to the muse! (Coming from someone who needs to listen to her own muse and finish book three!)

    Liked by 1 person

  4. It IS cool that you got asked for the very first time to autograph a book. Enjoy your success and your chocolate!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. That first autograph request is almost surreal. I’m really happy for you, Julie.

    Now listen to your muse and get to work on book two!

    Liked by 1 person

    • It is. And it’s an exercise in coming up with something halfway sensical to write on a moment’s notice!

      The plan is to buckle down. I’m going to take an online novel writing class from my writing teacher to help prod me along!

      Enjoy this wonderful SPRING weekend, Staci!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I’ll see you Monday, Julie! I’m cleaning and polishing right now!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Gotta love a sarcastic muse, lol. Glad you can keep him in line ๐Ÿ™‚
    Enjoy the moment, it’s the inspiration that will carry your through the next book!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. There nothing like holding that first book…congrats. I’m hoping spring takes hold too. My garden calls me. Have a great weekend Julie!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I haven’t gotten the garden call quite yet; it’s still pretty muddy around here. I have, however, added starting seeds to my list. Kale, tomatoes, and peppers. Maybe brussels sprouts, too. Now that it’s warming up, and with the added incentive of hosting Easter, I suspect I’ll be doing a bit of spring cleaning as well ๐Ÿ™‚

      Enjoy your SPRING weekend, Denise!


  9. Congratulations, Julie! Your Muse has an amusing way of keeping you on track! And that he’ll do. I’m not sure I want to know how many drafts it might take to publish a book! I was hoping just one! But…! Have a great weekend too. ๐Ÿ“š Christine

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Christine! And yes, I suspect he won’t give me any slack over the next few months. And I’m going to give myself a little extra incentive by taking an online novel-writing class from my writing teacher ๐Ÿ˜€

      Enjoy the wonderful spring weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. “When thereโ€™s the whole โ€œdeer in the headlightsโ€ thing when the first person asks you to sign their copy of your book. First itโ€™s: OMG, seriously? Then itโ€™s: What the hell am I supposed to write?” I laughed out loud reading this, Julie. I felt the same. Congratulations! I’m really looking forward to reading your book. By the way, I loved your dedication. No doubt your mother is so proud!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much, Jill! And I’m slowly getting my head into that mode of “I’m an author, so this is the stuff I have to do if I want people to read my book”. It’s a matter of getting somewhat comfortable with it, I think.

      So glad you liked my dedication! You are right, she would be proud!

      Enjoy your SPRING weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Such a beautiful kitty. Have I mentioned that I like your cat? Not sure I have, so just to be clear: I like your cat. Totally just blew your mind, didn’t I?
    I look fwd to reading your book as soon as I finish the current one I’m reading. Maybe next time I see you I can get it autographed. ๐Ÿ™‚ Perhaps book two, if not.
    Your own writing room. Oh, how heavenly that sounds! My writing room is sitting on my bed with a laptop. Not very exciting. (Also, my bum gets sore. I’m sure you wanted to know that.) ๐Ÿ˜‰
    Congrats again on the release!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ll let Zoey know you are her biggest fan ๐Ÿ˜€ I dream about my very own writing room, but I know I must be patient. First WI, then Easter (and all the associated cleaning — ugh!), then garden, then I can think about redoing my son’s room. All while writing book 2.

      Enjoy this first weekend of SPRING! Woo-hoo! Finally!

      Liked by 1 person

  12. I’m so glad you had fun with your launch. And I can relate to that “What the heck do I write?” when signing books. ๐Ÿ™‚ I guess you already found out that the writing pressure never ends. It’s always there – on to the next book and Happy Spring!!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Julie, you’re doing brilliantly with the book launch – it makes it all real somehow! haha … I had that panic at what to write for a book signing – once I’d come over the shock people were asking me to!๐Ÿ˜€ What did you write in the end? When out at book events I now look at what other authors write. Yesterday one wrote, after my name, ‘lovely to meet you’ – which was sweet! Good luck with the rest of the launch, promotion etc!

    Hooray … I’m so happy that Spring is finally on the way for you! Hope you have a chance to take a break and enjoy! xx

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Annika! I’m still working on what to write. I keep thinking something along the lines of “Enjoy life and have fun” or ???? I like the “lovely to meet you” bit. That is sweet!

      Planning to take a nice walk outside later. Only thing is the neighbors spread manure on the fields beside our property, so everything has a pungent farm smell. Not the most desireable odor, but at least it’s cow poop and not pig or chicken poop. Those smell worse to me.

      Yay, Spring! Enjoy it!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Oh, Julie, I love your thoughts for your book signing … definitely go with this or something similar! ๐Ÿ˜€

        How did you get on with the walk? Normal manure smell is tolerable but pig muck is horrendous so thankfully not that.

        Oh yep, loving Spring … now weโ€™re on to another sunny day! I donโ€™t even mind that the bright sunlight wakes me early! ๐Ÿ˜€

        Liked by 1 person

      • The walk was refreshing! Still some smell, but it’s been a few days since the neighbors spread the manure, so I think it has dried some. Yes, pig manure is definitely worse! When we bought our place, it was a former farm. The barn still had a nice thick coating of pig muck we had to clean. Ick.

        Weather is getting warmer–looking forward to everything finally turning green!

        Liked by 1 person

  14. Congratulations on your book release Julie. I got here through a common blogger we seem to know, Jacki Murray.

    Even though I have always liked reading and writing short stories here and there for my English class in school ( long time ago), I have finally decided that after 5 years in WordPress and reading mostly poetry and practicing it, so WordPress you might say is my University, I have finally decided to take the leap and start a novel, hence is why Iยดm following much more closer real writers like you.
    I look forward to reading your book.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Hi! I am so sorry I’ve been an absentee. Hubby and I took a vacation to the beach. I’m now back and trying to catch up. I am so excited about your print books. There is nothing like the feeling of your own book in your hand, especially the first one! Congratulations!

    P.S. Left you a review on Amazon, Goodreads and Book Bub. Wonderful story!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Congratulations on your book release. I think we get the muse we need. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

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