Time Flies When You’re Having Fun

I must be having fun, because I can’t believe I haven’t been here since June.

In July, I flew to Texas to pick up Princess Pancake and bring her to Ohio. What a whirlwind of playing with dolls, playing games, drawing pictures … and being loud just because we could. Everything in my life took a back seat while I played for five weeks.

CutiepieShortly before she left, Rich dug a hole in our old garden and made a fire pit. Not only did we have fun roasting hot dogs and marshmallows with our granddaughter, but we also spent a few Friday nights around the fire with our neighbors – the ones who moved into the house with the stairway to nowhere. I’m not much of a camper or the outdoorsy type, and I had no idea I would enjoy sitting around a fire so much.

firepitWe took a ride on the motorcycle. Yes, only one ride for me this year, and it was to visit with our friends at the horse manure ice cream stand. I have a knee acting up, so I haven’t been so keen to ride this year, but it sure was nice to feel the sun on my face and the wind in my hair again. We have a few ninety-degree days coming up, so maybe I’ll try to ride again.

In book news, I have a few things to share.

5,000_WordsI read this book – 5,000 Words Per Hour: Write Faster, Write Smarter by Chris Fox – and found the information to be helpful. By putting Chris’ ideas into practice, I’ve been able to quit procrastinating and make steady progress on Murder Wins the Game. Not only will I be able to finish the book soon, but I’ll be able to complete another book I started this year. The $2.99 price for the Kindle edition of 5,000 Words Per Hour is definitely worth it, and if the iphone I have wasn’t a dinosaur, I would have purchased the app he wrote to go along with it.

Speaking of Chris Fox … when I was searching for information on his book, I stumbled upon his WordPress blog – Chris Fox Writes. One of his more recent posts is an inspiring post about time and how his attitude toward time affected his life. It’s very motivating. Give it a read.

bookreportFor those of you who are authors with a book(s) at Amazon, if you haven’t yet seen the BookReport tool – try it out. It’s colorful, accurate, and the ka-ching sound when you sell a book is a pretty cool. BOOKREPORT (click the Learn more link.) The program is free unless you have over $1,000 in sales during the month. The cost is then ten dollars for that month.

bookbubBookBub. Ahh, BookBub. BookBub is frustrating and awesome. I tried for six months to get an ad spot with them. I was turned down every month – once within two hours. I was thrilled when I received word in July that Murder Under Construction was chosen for a feature to run on August 15. The ad would run on a Saturday, and I didn’t know if that was good or bad, but I didn’t care. It was BookBub!

I’ve been blown away by the results. Since the ad ran eleven days ago, there have been over 100,000 downloads of the book (105,555 to be exact). Within twenty-four hours, the book reached #1 in the Amazon Free Store, #1 in Cozy Mysteries, and #1 in Women Sleuths. The book is still holding in the top 100 in the Free Store and remains in the top ten in the two sub-categories (as I type this). Out of thirty new reviews, twelve are five stars and twelve are four stars. This thrills me! I’ve had requests from several people to be added to my mailing list, and I’ve had more interaction with people who have enjoyed the books than ever before – many of them going on to read the Susan Hunter series. It’s been quite a ride.


Now it’s time to get my head out of the clouds and get back to work. As with any good ad, downloads and sales will taper off, so it’s best to keep moving forward and write the next book.

That’s where I’m headed this evening – off to the pink room for some “writing sprints” ala Chris Fox. I’d like to knock out another scene or two today.

I’ll be back soon with my report on the second half of James Patterson’s lessons on writing.

How has your summer been going so far?

42 thoughts on “Time Flies When You’re Having Fun

  1. Wonderful news, Maddie. Your books are taking off just as I knew they would. I’ve thought from the start you’d become a best-selling author (because you have such a great product and brand), and it appears you soon will be. Big congrats! You know I love your series, especially MUC, and I will always be one of your biggest fans. Not to mention I love the way you make things happen!

  2. Hey Maddie, I love seeing your posts. You feel like neighbor to me 🙂

    Congrats on Bookbub!
    I too, have been rejected multiple times, and I think – “oh well. I expected it”, so the day I get accepted I won’t know what to do with myself.

    On the other hand, I did a promo blast myself and got over 10k downloads 2 times, & made it to #25 and #20 in All Amazon Free (#1 in Cozy Mystery and related cats). Less expensive than bookbub and I made it all back and more on sales of that book (A Cup of Murder) after it came of promo, and the others in the series.

    And I use BookReport too, but not as fond of it as I am KDPulse.com [no subscription] (disclosure I built it 🙂 It’s cool as I can see all the stats and track all books during a promo. Different than book report.

    It’s good to hear you’re back at writing and blogging. Your posts always stop me whatever I’m doing and I look forward to the distraction & short adventure thru your stories.


    • Hi Kevin, I always enjoy seeing you, too! 🙂

      Congratulations on moving your book with other promos. Marketing takes so much of my time, so it’s one of the things I tend to let slide. I hope to do a promo blast in November – before the holiday buying rush. Hopefully, I’ll have a new book out at that time.

      That’s an impressive tracking tool you developed. I’ll definitely look into it. You are so creative, and I had no idea you haven’t been writing for very long. I just grabbed A Cup of Murder. I’ll start on it tonight! (Did you hear a ka-ching noise?)

      As for BookBub, I was really getting discourged, so I “pitched” my book to them in the comments section when I submitted. I addressed the type of humor in the book (akin to movies like Bridesmaids and The Hangover), the cover (dirt isn’t sexy), and I quoted lines from three positive reviews that addressed the humor, the writing, and a similarity to a well-known author. I think the pitch helped to give them reasons to choose my book out of the crowd.

      I hope I’m back. I think all the hoopla has died down here, and I can spend more time blogging, visiting blogs, and being productive with my writing. Thanks for stopping by! 🙂

    • Thank you, Mary. I do have my days where I want to throw in the towel and give up writing, but I spring back pretty quickly – and quitting is not an option. 🙂

      I don’t know exactly what’s wrong with this knee. It’s better than it was when our granddaughter was here, but I do find it odd that it hurts most when I’m lying down (pain is on the inside of the knee – meniscus?). If it doesn’t clear up soon, I’ll see a doctor. Thanks for asking.

    • I think you’re right, Mary. She certainly is a ray of sunshine. And she was so funny this year; she had me laughing all the time. I can’t believe it will be another year before we can see her again. Thank goodness for Facetime!

  3. Congrats on your great book news!! That’s awesome, Maddie. I’m so thrilled for you. I’ve never heard of Chris Fox, but 5,000 words per hour. That seems superhuman to me. 🙂 Princess is adorable. It’s good to have some connecting time. Good for you guys. Great to see you here!

    • Hi Amy! Thank you so much.

      I can’t imagine 5,000 words per hour, but I’ve been so happy with the results of my sprints, I just might get there someday. After reading his book, I’m also more open to the idea of mapping out my story rather than writing by the seat of my pants so much. I’m already seeing the benefits (faster writing) of having a scene ready to go in my mind before I start writing.

      I’m looking forward to getting around to blogs and connecting with friends again. I’ll be by your place soon! 🙂

  4. Congratulations on getting on Book Bub and all the new downloads!! How exciting! I love your books, so I know that once people find you, they will keep coming back for more. I am Filing this post into the “things I need to know someday when I write my book”. Thanks for sharing what is helpful for you :).

    • Thank you so much for all your kind words, but the BIG congratulations goes to you and your family. I’ve tried to check my reader every now and then, and I did see a while back that your household has been blessed with TWINS! I took a quick peek a few minutes ago, and they are adorable. I’ll be back soon to read more about them. Zeke and Skeeter – no pie names? 😉

  5. This was such a happy feely post. It’s good to see your name in my inbox again, and nice to see things are going so well! Congrats on the bookstuffs, that’s wonderful to see.

    My summer has been hectic, most of it planning for going back to school which starts in a couple days. It’s been stressful but I’m really looking forward to it.

    • Thank you, and It’s good to see you again, too! Glad you’re looking forward to going back to school. Hope everything goes well for you. Are you working on another book these days?

      • It’s going well enough! And yep, absolutely. Now that I’m done with my trilogy, I’ve got at leaaaaast five others I could be working on. Trying to decide what I want to do for NaNo this year (well, first I’m trying to decide if it’s going to be safe to do NaNo at all this year, depends on how much schoolwork I have!).

  6. I think the summer months are hard on writers. There is so many other things that need to be done with fair weather that we just can’t sit inside at a computer.:( Your granddaughter is gorgeous! I see why you would be so proud. That smile would melt any heart. Congrats on the book numbers. I hate Book Bub. It has caused a log jam of books on my kindle to read. They are stacked up knee deep now and I’m already up to my elbows in hard copy books. I’ll give the Chris Fox book a look see. I’m not a book writer but it couldn’t hurt to be informed. 🙂 Hope the knee gets better. If that’s all that hurts as a grandmother, you are doing just fine. 🙂

    • LOL on the log jam. I understand. I finally put everything on the cloud and only keep a few books at a time on my Kindle. My reading list doesn’t seem so daunting then. Yes, I can live with a sore knee – it doesn’t keep me from writing. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by, Marlene!

  7. What a great and productive time you’ve had while hiding from us all!!! Now I know why, I applaud all your good news, and Princess is adorable you certainly made the most of time out with her. Go to a physio and discuss your knee. Specialised exercise could help. Doctors generally just give you a pain killer or want to cut some thing out…

    Good to see your happy blond avatar pop into my feeds.

    • Hi Pauline! My apologies for disappearing yet again! I have such good intentions when it comes to blogging and visiting blogs, but an idea for a new series has popped into my head, and I’ve been trying to write two books at once. Time is literally flying by.

      I hope you are well, and I do plan to visit with you soon.

    • Sylvia, I hoped to do some catching up today, and I just took a quick peek at your blog. I’m so sorry to read of your mother’s passing. My sincerest condolences. Your tribute to your mother was beutiful (as was she), and the pictures were lovely.

  8. A big congrats, Maddie. Your Princess Pancake is absolutely gorgeous! I hope the knee is feeling better soon, there’s nothing quite as exhilarating as a good bike ride 😀

    • Hi Dianne! I remember a time when I was reading blogs and responding to blogs nearly every day. And I used to write blog posts, too. What happened? Where has the time gone? We used to have pizza parties on my blog. 🙂 Ah well, times change, but I sure do miss you and so many other friends. Today, I’ve promised myself that I’m not allowed to write until I visit with some friends. I’ll be by your place in bit.

      Thanks for always stopping by here and being so supportive!

  9. Princess Pancake… hmm. I’m drawing a blank there. I’m an old Aunt Jemima man myself… : )

    The Horse Manure Ice Cream Stand. Yes, well–! I’ve never been there, but I’m already making a mental note: Do not ask for toppings… : P

    Re– what was it– Bookburp??– a huge and very sincere (and hopelessly belated) congratulations on that amazing #1 triple!! Absolutely fantastic!! I couldn’t be happier for you, dear Maddie, and it certainly couldn’t have happened to a nice, sweeter, more talented person and writer. That was huge– hope you sipped a little Pink Champagne in the Pink Room!!

    Always rooting for you and wishing you much happiness and success!! : )

    • What???!!!! How did you sneak in here three months ago and leave a comment without my knowing? Color me red and embarrassed! But it was such a treat to find you and your kind words here today. I hope your holidays were wonderful, Mark, and I wish you a very happy and prosperous 2016! xoxoxo

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