writers life

Breaking Up with WordPress and Finding New Beginnings


Because Life Likes to Bite You in the Ahem and Laugh at You!
 

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Remember June? That time I made a big deal about being “back” to writing posts . . . and books . . . and getting my crap together?
 

Well, immediately following that post (like three hours later), WordPress decided it wanted to do us wrong. We tried to mend things (the usual end-of-relationship kinda way): we cried, they cried, had counseling chats, played the blame game, smiled at the memories, and had the “it’s not you, it’s me” talk.
 

It was them, though, not us . . . so we broke it off.


Then we did what any new “ex” would do. We buried ourselves in ice cream and workouts for a proper heartbreak-revenge cycle (it’s called balance). We had to find a new home, transfer our content, and say goodbye to all your awesome thoughts you’ve shared with us over the past couple years. I would have copied & pasted all the comments but didn’t want to seem like a comment hoarder. It’s just . . . it made me sad. So now we’re back with a new look and we’re in a committed relationship with Squarespace.


With all that, I’ll admit I had a “poor me” moment.
 

If you read the post I mentioned above, I was happy “being back” and was trying hard to let go of my writing insecurities. Then WP* glitched horribly (they lost a lot of our articles, messed with the podcast coding, locked me out as admin, etc.), and I was back to feeling like it was a sign I shouldn’t be writing or creating anything. Ever.
 

Luckily, life doesn’t only smack you around. It also gives you exactly what you need. This all happened around the time schools closed. So I was able to enjoy being a mom this summer. I did a lot of creative work, went on a girl’s trip with my editor, had fun with WAD’s** website possibilities, and had a lot of coffee (yes, I’m pretty sure that is a big factor in my happiness . . . and the survival for those around me).
 

I loved spending time watching my kids laughing, running, swimming, and having conversations with them. They’re seven years old so you can imagine just how amusing they are. Time I would have otherwise spent worrying over a post, a podcast production, or stressing over getting a scene just right. And while these are all things that make me who I am and are my passions, there’s nothing like watching my real-life creations to remind me that yes, I can, in fact, make beautiful things. But since I’m done making little humans and the twins are back in school, I’m going back to creating fictional characters and writing about life . . . through the eyes of this storyteller.
 

So I’m back.
 

Again.
 

Raymond too. He’s hiding somewhere, but you’ll hear from him soon.



*WP = WordPress
**WAD = Writers After Dark

By S. Katherine Anthony

sk bio wad pic .jpeg

S.K. Anthony (Shanny) is a writer, a reader, and make-stuff-up-er who lives in New York. She is an award-winning author and a bestseller on Amazon. When she isn’t busy with her toddler twins, S.K. finds herself being transported into the world of imagination. Well, either that or running away from spiders . . . she is convinced they are out to get her!

Website | Books 

A Conversation with #Author Brandon Ax

Ep. 26, The Writers' Podcast

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In this episode, The Writers' Podcast interviews Urban Fantasy author Brandon Ax. We discuss his work, his writing methods, why he doesn't believe in writer's block, his future plans, and a whole lot more. No, seriously, a whole lot more! ;)

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Thank you, Brandon, for chatting with us! And congratulations again on winning The Chapter of Excellence Book Award in the Urban Fantasy category for ELEMENTAL (The Light Bringer Saga, Book 1)!

Author Brandon Ax


BRANDON AX fell in love with fantasy as child after first devouring the entire Chronicles of Narnia series. Born in New Orleans, Brandon spent most of his childhood moving from state to state across the southern part of America. Gaining a love of people and their many stories, he decided to pursue a career in writing. After years of tuning his craft he finished his first novel ELEMENTAL. 

Brandon is an unapologetic geek. Beyond writing he loves to draw, paint,  and sculpt fantastical creatures from clay. His movie collection is only rivaled by the number of comic books he owns and his knowledge of both  could be called fanatical. His love of fantasy is lived out through the characters not only in his books but also while playing  games like Elder Scrolls and World of Warcraft.  

Currently living in South Carolina with his family, he spends his days dreaming up new worlds and fascinating characters. Hard at work on the third installment of the Light Bringer Saga, he enjoys the task of molding a story to its completion.

You can find Brandon here:

Website~  AmazonFacebookInstagram


By Writers After Dark

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We’re S.K. Anthony and Raymond Esposito, your hosts at Writers After Dark. She writes those urban-fantasy–superhero-badass-chicks-with-a-touch-of-romance stories and he writes those dark fiction-things-that-go-bump-in-the night tales.

When it comes to writing, we don’t agree on genre, but we do agree that . . . we love stories . . . and one of the things we love most: hanging out in our mostly-sober, Writers After Dark studio and debating the merits of just about anything related to the story of life.

Bestsellers: The Awful Truth

— Ep. 16, The Writers’ Podcast

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Think bestseller lists are all about top sellers? Think again. In this episode, we unravel the mysteries behind the seven surprising factors that go into selecting a bestselling novel. We also discuss some of the methods that Indie authors have used to achieve a coveted place on these lists and how Amazon’s new approach may be an independent author’s best shot at becoming a household name.

 

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By Writers After Dark

WAD bio pic.jpeg

We’re S.K. Anthony and Raymond Esposito, your hosts at Writers After Dark. She writes those urban-fantasy–superhero-badass-chicks-with-a-touch-of-romance stories and he writes those dark fiction-things-that-go-bump-in-the night tales.

When it comes to writing, we don’t agree on genre, but we do agree that . . . we love stories . . . and one of the things we love most: hanging out in our mostly-sober, Writers After Dark studio and debating the merits of just about anything related to the story of life.

In the Studio: A Q&A Author's Special

— Ep. 14, The Writers' Podcast

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This week, to help with SK’s Hurricane Recovery Therapy, we’re taking a deeper look into the minds of our two favorite authors. Unfortunately, they weren’t available so we decided to interview each other. And to add a bit of fun, we had no idea what the other might ask. So, here is an opportunity to discover what Raymond's theme song would be, his most outrageous bar bill, which sitcom helped Kat learn English, and what it’s like for an introvert to become a podcaster.

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By Writers After Dark

WAD bio pic.jpeg

We’re S.K. Anthony and Raymond Esposito, your hosts at Writers After Dark. She writes those urban-fantasy–superhero-badass-chicks-with-a-touch-of-romance stories and he writes those dark fiction-things-that-go-bump-in-the night tales.

When it comes to writing, we don’t agree on genre, but we do agree that . . . we love stories . . . and one of the things we love most: hanging out in our mostly-sober, Writers After Dark studio and debating the merits of just about anything related to the story of life.

The Five Stages of Writing Grief

— Ep. 07, The Writers' Podcast

Knowing when you need to improve your writing is emotionally challenging for most writers. In episode seven, we examine the five stages each writer must conquer to achieve acceptance and to ultimately improve their writing.

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By Writers After Dark

WAD bio pic.jpeg

We’re S.K. Anthony and Raymond Esposito, your hosts at Writers After Dark. She writes those urban-fantasy–superhero-badass-chicks-with-a-touch-of-romance stories and he writes those dark fiction-things-that-go-bump-in-the night tales.

When it comes to writing, we don’t agree on genre, but we do agree that . . . we love stories . . . and one of the things we love most: hanging out in our mostly-sober, Writers After Dark studio and debating the merits of just about anything related to the story of life.

Using Body Language in Your Novel, Part Three—Arms, Shoulders, & Posture

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For this third installment of using body language in your novel, we’re going to focus on the upper body and ways to infuse an ordinary story with deep layers of . . . well, upper body language description O_O — I knew this experiment to write a post while tipsy would make things difficult, but let’s just say it’s “interesting” and go with it. After all, I do write “after dark”so . . . yeah.

As we know, a person’s physical actions, whether performed consciously or unconsciously, reflect their mental state. And using these cues in our stories can help the reader dissect a character’s nonverbal communication, such as being nervous, angry, or even if they’re lying, among other things. I’ve covered facial expressions along with eyes and eyebrows, but now let’s move on . . . and remember, don't over do it!

Here are some body language “tells” to further enhance your characters’ emotions:

Part Three: The Arms, Shoulders, and Posture

Arms:

Arms are used a lot in self-expression. So it can be an easy way to indicate to your reader your character’s true comfort level. Make sure you use other cues as well as the context to build the right sense of emotion.

* Raised Arms. This can be used to indicate excitement. When people are happy, their arm motions defy gravity, and so should your character’s. So have her raise her arms high above her head to show she’s super duper excited.

* Swinging Arms. Use this to indicate your character is feeling good or confident. On the other hand, think of an insecure person and how they slouch with restrained arms. So use swinging arms—or lack of—to showcase your character’s confidence or insecurity.

* Crossed Arms. Use this to indicate anger, arrogance, frustration, insecurity, or that your character is feeling defensive, closed off, or even cold.

* Crossed Arms with Clenched Fists. This can indicate your character feels defensive or even hostile.

* Crossed Arms with Thumbs Up. This can be used to indicate your character feels superior to the other characters. (This is crossed arms, but with visually demanding thumbs pointing upward.)

* Crossed Arms with Crossed Legs. This can be used to indicate your character is feeling emotionally and physically closed off. In other words, he’s resistant to another character and is opposed to what that character might be suggesting.

* Concealed Crossed Arms gestures. This can be described as your character holding onto something in front of him with slightly crossed arms. Use this to indicate your character is feeling nervous or insecure but is trying to hide it. Public and famous people are good at this.

Hands:

* Hand Texture. The physical description of hands can be used to indicate your character’s age (wrinkled or smooth), physical labor (calloused from hard work, burns from being a baker, scar from being in the army, etc.), or even privilege (having silky hands with an amazing manicure).

* Open Palms. This can be used to indicate honesty. When your character is telling the truth, his palms can be described as open.

* Closed Palm with Pointed Finger. This can be used to indicate dominance. And if it’s the middle finger, it’s a sign of aggression (as you very well know).

* Fidgeting and Twitching Fingers. This can be used to indicate your character is anxious, feeling inner conflict, or is bored. It can also be used to enhance your character’s personality, for example using specific quirks like biting nails when nervous, etc.

* Drumming Fingers. This can be used to indicate your character is feeling annoyed, impatient, or agitated.

* Clenched Fingers Behind Back. This can be used to indicate power, authority, and as a warning against misbehavior. Perfect for a character who is an authority figure.

* Cracking Knuckles. This can be used to indicate your character is ready for a fight, feeling violent, and angry.

Posture:

* Upright Posture. Described as sitting or standing up straight with shoulders back. This can be used to indicate power, confidence, and control. Your character can command respect, show leadership, and promote engagement with an erect posture.

* Leaning Forward. This can be used to indicate your character is feeling hostile or aggressive.

* Leaning Back. This can be used to indicate your character is lazy, arrogant, tired, or lacking the courage to do something important.

* Sagging Posture. This can be used to indicate your character is feeling sick, insecure, in need of help, or sad.

Shoulders:

* Shoulder Shrug. This can be used to indicate your character is confused, lacking confidence or knowledge, being obedient, or even to indicate an apology.

* Single Shoulder Shrug. This can be used to indicate your character’s lack of commitment, insecurity, and anxiety. Or it can be interpreted as a suspicious move, as in she’s possibly lying or holding back information.

* Raised Shoulders. This can be used to indicate your character is anxious, scared, insecure, tense, or is feeling small and insignificant. And if she’s combining raised shoulders with lowered head, it can mean she’s feeling threatened.

* Spread Out Shoulders. This can be used to indicate your character is relaxed and is feeling confident and assertive.

* Pushed Back Shoulders. This can be used to indicate your character is cocky and exerting dominance.

* Turned Shoulders. This can be used to indicate your character’s lack of interest, trying to escape, or feeling uncomfortable.

* Single Shoulder Raise with a Tilted Head. This can be used to indicate your character is flirting and is attracted to someone. It can also be combined with a slight turn of the head while she’s touching the side of her face.

And there it is! A couple extra details to use for your characters’ upper body gestures. Be sure to come back in the next few weeks for more body language tips for your novel.

See Part One—Facial Expressions here.

See Part Two—Eyes, Pupils, & Eyebrows here.

See Part Four—Legs, Feet, & Bonus Tips here.


By S. Katherine Anthony

sk bio wad pic .jpeg

S.K. Anthony (Shanny) is a writer, a reader, and make-stuff-up-er who lives in New York. She is an award-winning author and a bestseller on Amazon. When she isn’t busy with her toddler twins, S.K. finds herself being transported into the world of imagination. Well, either that or running away from spiders . . . she is convinced they are out to get her!

Writer’s Imposter Syndrome

— The Writers' Podcast, Ep. 04

What is the difference between issues of self-confidence and Imposter Syndrome? In episode four, we discuss these distinctions and provide remedies to become a more confident writer.

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By Writers After Dark

WAD bio pic.jpeg

We’re S.K. Anthony and Raymond Esposito, your hosts at Writers After Dark. She writes those urban-fantasy–superhero-badass-chicks-with-a-touch-of-romance stories and he writes those dark fiction-things-that-go-bump-in-the night tales.

When it comes to writing, we don’t agree on genre, but we do agree that . . . we love stories . . . and one of the things we love most: hanging out in our mostly-sober, Writers After Dark studio and debating the merits of just about anything related to the story of life.