Category: Miscellaneous

To pay or not to pay.

Kelli Owen, my friend and mentor, has driven a few notions into my brain since I started submitting my writing. “Get Paid!” and “Contracts can be Changed!”. The one I am choosing to focus on today is “GET PAID”.

Harlan Ellison link to blog
To pay or not to pay

So being a new author I obviously still have a lot to learn. I made my first mistake of giving away my first story, and learned my lesson pretty quickly from that.

However, I hear that authors are getting paid less and less as the years go in. Now hold on a minute, when I started buying books paperbacks were4-5$. Now when I pick up a book, I’m easily paying 10-12$ and those are still paperbacks. My question is in the giant funnel of money from reader to author… Who’s taking more than their share?

Theres a lot of discussion about whether or not exposure is worth much these days. Exposure is exposure. Awesome but someone is still making money off the books they are selling. Unless they are giving the book away, it’s not a for the love of the project. Mr publisher is making coin from your hard work. Makes no sense to me.

I personally want writing to be my job, therefore I must get paid. I work hard on my stories, why would I give them away?

It seems like a lot of projects are for the love. Which is fine but I’m sure they aren’t giving the books away. Someone is making money on these and it sure as hell isnt the authors.

Charity is fine. As long as the money is going to someone other than the guy who won’t pay us.

Don’t insult me by offering me 3$ for my story or 0.0004 cents a word, don’t laugh, it’s out there. To top it off, the publisher is selling the ebooks for 3$. There’s a disconnect there.

If it wasn’t for the writer, mr editor, mr publisher and mr reader would have nothing but a pretty cover and a shit ton of blank pages. We writers are the ones who birth ideas and turn them into stories for everyone else, why are we the ones being paid less and less???

Oh, cause we allow it to happen.

Sure there’s no union for writers, we are stuck taking care of ourselves and supporting each other. That is perfectly fine, so is giving your work away it’s your work. But don’t complain when you want to be a “real” author instead of a hobbiest and no one wants to pay you.

(Now, here’s the kicker. I can make 500$ on a free story, if I push the books myself. This is fine to make rent or the car payment, but the publishers aren’t learning their lesson. They won’t make as much as they usually do and more money goes to the writer, so when you can, ask if the author has copies to sell, rather than ordering from the publisher. All copies of my books are personalized and autographed!)

Stand up for your writing and get fucking paid!

What’s happening in Mandywritingworld

With my comments in yesterday’s post about being a procrastinator, I’m consistently looking for ways to keep me motivated and working. When I first started the novel I’m working on, I was posting daily updates on Facebook which informed my friends of where I was at word count wise. I seemed to maintain a steady 1000 words a day. Since I have my blog, I thought maybe if I told everyone what I was up to, there’d be some expectation on my part to keep you guys posted on where I’m at. If there’s no advancement in my stories, I will not be happy about posting about that, so I’m hoping it’ll drive me to get more done.

What’s on the desktop? *(This is where all my Work-In-Progress ends up. I like to have a visual of what’s going on in my imagination. Some maybe working titles, some might stay the same. I never know until I’m done the story.)

Short stories: Terrible Things (Horror), Home Renovations (Horror), Obama & Maple (Action/Comedy), This Only Happens In The Movies (Horror).

These are all probably going to end up as short stories, (except maybe #HR). I’m trying to pull away from the flash length for now. (Flash stories are usually under 1000 words and predominantly what I’ve been submitting lately.)

Novels: The zombie novel (Horror)  I’ve been calling it a zombie novel but it isn’t really a zombie novel, I just don’t want to give anything away about it. Call me paranoid, whatever. I’m saying nothing about it until it’s done. It’s sitting around 43000 words, but the intro needs an entire rewrite for sure. It’s my first novel, so who knows, it might never even make it to print.

Where the hell is Mandy now?

I’m part gypsy, which keeps me gone from home a lot. I’m not gonna lie, I’ve seriously entertained the idea of putting my furnishings in storage and buying a motorhome. It’s still in the back of my mind, all I have to do is avoid the snow. 😀

Until I get my motorhome, here’s are my plans for the next few months, well at least the locations that have to do with writers and/or books.


Horrible Saturday: Held at the York Emporium (Best bookstore in the world!!!) July 14th, York, Pennsylvania.


As for conventions, it looks like I’ll be attending Horrorfind 14 (Gettysburg, Aug/Sept 2012),  Killercon 4 (Las Vegas, Sept 2012) and Anthocon 2012 (Portsmouth, November 2012).

I am working on having chapbooks of She Makes Me Smile available for the conventions. (You can also still pick up SMMS on Amazon for 0.99.) As of right now, I’m not sure if I’ll be reading or on any panels at the conventions, but you never know… I’ll keep you updated as soon as I find out.

If you see me at any of the upcoming events, don’t be shy, come say hello and have a drink with me.
I’m not hard to miss. Just look for the curls, colourful tattoos, and the Canadian accent.  EH!


Commitment Issues.

Hi, my name is Mandy, and I have commitment issues.

Now, I’m not talking about commitment in relationships, which is what I’m sure most of you thought I was referring to. (Now, if I look at my life now and still being single at 34-35, okay, fine, maybe I do have some problems in that area, but I’m not even gonna touch on that at the moment… I’ll leave that for another time.)

I’m referring more to the little things. Like the fact that I just put up my magnetic knife holder today. It’s one of those wall-mount ones and even though there’s only one place in my entire kitchen that I would put it, and I’ve had it for almost a month, it still took me up til now to get it done.

I say that as I look over at an unused pile bulletin and white boards in the corner of my office area. (There are three in total, one big bulletin, one big white and one small white). They need a place on the wall, somewhere… It’s not like in the kitchen. There’s a lot of different options out here in the living/office/dining/entrance room, UGH, too many options. *(I’ve even been contemplating moving stuff around, so I don’t put holes in wall for nothing, just in case I get a dining room table or something… I sound like a french verb tense, the planning for the future just in case it happens one. I’m sure they have one close to that, there’s one for everything else.) I haven’t moved “rooms” yet, nor have I done anything with the boards, I’m just waiting. For what, I don’t know. I’m stationary stockpiling…

Maybe in my deep brain I figure there are fairies that show up and hang stuff for me.
Maybe I don’t like holes in the walls…

I think I just can’t decide where to put them. *(I glance into the living room where there are two paintings that need hanging and I know that in the bedroom there’s a poster or two that need framing and a spot on the wall.) I want to hang things but then there’s all these holes in the walls, if and when I decide to move things. Putting things up just makes them so permanent.

There’s my fear of commitment.

OMG, I just need to get those hanger-things that I can hook more weight onto, that aren’t permanent…
I’m off to find those. 😀
Alright, I suppose that was easy.

Hmmmmm. Too bad they don’t make a sticky-fix like that for my love life.



How often do you post a blog? I try to post once a day, but is that overkill?

*(I’m noticing that the font changed on my blog… I don’t know why, I’ll figure it out later…)

At times I have nothing to say, but I try to come up with something to rant about just to have a post. Is quantity or quality better here? You don’t want people to lose interest but you don’t want to shove redundant things in their face everyday either. I think there’s a fine line and I’m working on finding out where mine is. (I apologize if I annoy people, apparently your line is much closer than mine is.)

My blog has been more about my writing (or lack there of) these days, so I try to just post when something writing-like happens. Lately I’ve been struggling with the writing things, mostly because I’m at the editing part. I like to do an entire rewrite instead, which is not always the better idea. I just can’t control myself sometimes. CHANGE CHANGE CHANGE…

So I don’t save and I walk away, this time I ended up here, blogging. 😀

Well I’ll figure out when I’m supposed to blog and about what, I guess if the piece of bloggery interests someone then it really doesn’t matter what the topic is about, but more about the time the other spent reading it and hopefully enjoying it. I spent the time to write it, one for a venting area… GRRRR OVEREDITING! Two, in hopes that someone kills time or gets a laugh out of something I wrote. 😀

So yeah, I did the one, I vented. I also found a blogtopic. So yay, two in one.
I’m off to enjoy the sun now.
Have a good weekend.


Mandventuring – Down The Right Path.

I left the house yesterday. No wait, it’s not that I don’t ever leave the house, but I left the house just to peruse the neighbourhood, rather than run errands or whatnot. I’ve been meaning to do it since I moved into the neighbourhood in February.

I made an observation to myself yesterday (while running an errand) that when I go out, I only go out one way. I go down the elevator and out a door and head left. It’s the way to the stores and the bus route, my friends live to the left, the bars are to the left… I have no reason to go right, well not until yesterday that is.

It wasn’t really a reason as more than me just being bored. When I look out off my balcony, I see a school, another apartment building and this field that leads to this path, which in turn runs along the river. I just wanted to explore and see what’s shaking in the neighbourhood (things like this are good to know incase of zombie infestation or apocalyptic situations arising…) Also, I was tired of staying in, so I left… and went right. (Right would be more like behind my building rather than in front… Directions just seemed easier to explain.)

I finally got to the path… I suppose I could’ve cut through the schoolyard, but that’s really only okay when school’s not in. School was in, I didn’t wanna be the playground creeper and opted to avoid the schoolyard entirely. I went around the big building and followed my GPS thing on my phone to the pathway. *(The pathway is the Ottawa River Parkway, so said the signs once I got to it.) I didn’t really need the phone, but it’s fun to play with…

The path is pretty straightforward, it goes on for awhile, I only walked for 30 minutes one way then turned around and came back. (I had dinner plans so I was dealing with time constraints.)

Now while on this walking tour I decided to take photos, most of them are normal, like this one…









Then I found this… A random greenhouse thing in the middle of suburbia. Well it was between houses and the path I was on…






I’m not sure who or what it is, there was no sign that I could see from the path. It’s weird, the doors that are on the sides are bricked in, like a super solid fixture. I wanted to go check it out, but I was concerned about the enhanced Canadian security that was around this building… I trusted the sign.








I’m not sure what it was, but my imagination totally started making stuff up…






Government grow-op… Zombie housing… GERMS… So many things were running through my head, I should have taken notes for writing later. I’ll remember to do that next time. I’m definitely going to check it out again, hopefully find out what it is. I’m thinking probably tomorrow when I assume there’ll be no cars parked outside… There’s probably isn’t a sign, but you never know. 😀

I’ll keep you all posted…
Oh! If I’m never heard from again, come save me from the greenhouse place…


Skydiving. Why? Because.

I was sitting here trying to think of what I could write about, that’s the issue with wanting to post something everyday. I may not necessarily have an interesting topic to write/rant/talk about. However, in a few days, I’m going to jump out of a plane… (it was supposed to be April 30th, but plans have changed now, the skydiving place is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.) So yeah, in the near future, I’ll be attached to someone else *(who thankfully knows how to use a parachute, cause I sure as hell don’t) and jumping out of a plane at 12 500 feet. I’m not sure what that is in jump height, I’ve never done this before, so it’s high. 

Part of me is excited, but part of me also wants to puke all over myself. People ask my why I’d jump out of a perfectly good airplane, I state to test out a perfectly good parachute. *Insert smile* Yet inside part of me is… Yeah, why are you paying 250$ (plus applicable taxes) to jump from a plane, which the only reason you are in is to jump out of…

Oh yeah, I suppose do it for the thrill. 😀 It’s on my bucket list, to skydive. When the opportunity came up, I didn’t hesitate. *(Maybe I should have, but whatever, it’s a good friend’s birthday/birthday present and I only live once.)

So if I don’t splatter/bounce/shatter, I’ll post about it in May. I’m pretty sure I’ll be safe and it’ll be awesome.

People skydive all the time, right?

Cavalcade of Terror = 1st publication.

Well I can finally say that I’m a published author. “She makes me smile” is due out May 1st. I’m super excited and I decided to celebrate the event by spending 6.39$ on YAY! I own one more little chunk of the interwebs. I spent the last day working on developing this site to the best of my abilities (which are lacking in computering skills). Yah there was a little bit of frustration, but I had a helpy-hand (Thanks Lincoln!) so I didn’t smash the computer or anything dramatic. 😀 The website is kinda up… I’ll be working on it as I go and as I get accepted to more things. I figured it’s just a good way for people to find out what’s going on with me.

*Insert trumpet fanfare here*


YES!!! There it is… The book.

So back to my first ever story being published… 😀 “SMMS” is in Cavalcade of Terror: A Horror Anthology. It’s supposed to be out May 2012, but it’s available on so order away. I’ll have copies with me for those looking for the ones with signatures and the like. The first 50 will have Wes Southard‘s autograph as well. He also has a story in the anthology, “A Promise Not Kept”. So be sure to check that out. He’s a good buddy of mine from the States, so it’s pretty cool to share the TOC with him. (He’s the one that first said that… and I was like. “Ummm, what’s that… what’s a TOC?” He laughed and explained it, but in my defence I went to french school, so I wouldn’t have ever heard that… Table des matieres maybe would’ve have rung a bell. 😛 Ha!)

I was also “friended” on FB by someone else who has a story in the book: Rocky Alexander, author of the story “How Artful Murder Can Be”. I’m a fan of new people and I think that’s pretty cool as it’s someone that I may have never met had it not been for this anthology. Can’t wait to read his story and perhaps down the line maybe meet him and get a fully autographed copy of the book 😀 Yay new people!

I will try to be more proactive with the blogging… and the writing for that matter. For those of you who read the last post about me on meds, well let’s just say that it was not a great idea. I think I lost two weeks of my life to feeling sketchy. Meaning, I’m not ADHD. Not sure what I am, but definitely don’t need those. Things are back to normal now, which is good, so I should be about as normal as I can get.

Check out the book… Let me know what you think. Review it places and tell your friends about it. I’m new at this whole authoring thing, but I’m learning. Hopefully you like the words, if not maybe you’ll like my next one. *(Hopefully sooner than my TBay friend Liz, who thinks I’m disturbed and can’t/won’t read my horror stories. I promised her that one day I’ll write something for her. :D)

On that note, I’m off to edit something for someone and find more coffee.


Mandywords on Medication.

I have a hard time being proactive with my blog. I seem to forget about it for a time, even though I always have lot to say. I suppose its just to get into the habit. I was writing first thing in the morning but when I moved into my own place I kinda fell off that schedule. I was writing in the morning because it was before the roommates woke up. I’m very easily distracted and normally as soon as someone else wakes up, I can’t focus on my writing. Now that I’m on my own I can write whenever… But I still struggle…


I suppose I may be afflicted with a little ADHD., maybe not. I asked my doctor about it, she suggested medication. I concurred and started taking them.

In the last three days, I haven’t made a lot of progress on the novel, but I’ve been working on other things, like planning. I seem to be able to sit and plan things out better, which I hope will in turn allow me to write the novel in a more fluid manner.

I’ve also started finishing up a lot of the intended stories I have floating around. Most of them seem to be erotiporn but there are enough of them to make up a book. 🙂 so we will see where that takes us. Once I can sit down and finish them.

No new rejections or acceptances yet and there are still two stories floating around in limbo land. Fingers crossed.

I have no end to this post so I’ll just end it on that note.


MandyMornings: Creative Hotwiring, Midgets and Unicorns.

I feel like I waste a lot of time in the mornings… I should just wake up and write, but for some reason I can’t do that. I need a creative hotwiring. I feel like I need that time to get the brain thoughts flowing. Normally after 2 hours of chatting, one blog post and numerous cups of coffee, I’m usually good to put down about 1000 words on the novel (or short story, or whatever I’m working on at the moment). I wish I could just get up and write. The three hours from when I wake up til now, would be so better utilized if I was putting the time into the story, but I can’t. Even though the story is done in my head, it’s doesn’t go onto paper as fluidly as it plays out in my imagination movie theatre. From what I’ve seen so far, it’s going to be awesome (when I get it finished…) 😀

I’ve told and retold my story to friends that will listen. They like it, or they are just being nice and trying not to aggravate the crazy girl… Ha!

I’m 1600 words away from 40000. Based on what everyone told me, a novel is between 80-90K. I’m almost half done and that gives me an inner fuzzy, warm feeling.

I am a little worried that nothing has really happened in the novel, considering I’m at 40K. Let’s say I’ve got well developed characters, maybe? Not sure, but whatever I have it works. Maybe shit’s just gonna hit the fan all of a sudden… 😉 The last half of the novel is all sex, blood, midgets and unicorns. (Scrap the unicorn idea, that’s a little farfetched…)

I’m struggling to write this post, I guess that means I have nothing more to say… So that’s it.

I’m off to crest the halfway mark. Hopefully today, if not today, definitely tomorrow.


Focus and Drive. Guess you can’t have everything…

The first part was written on Friday, yesterday I added the second part. Sometimes blog posts get lost or forgotten on my phone forever, this one was saved. 😀 Enjoy!!!


Well, I haven’t written from the treadmill in awhile. I suppose it’s probably related to the fact that I’ve stopped going to the gym for a little. I’m back at it again, but this time with more drive. I’ve always talked about wanting the bikini body but I’ve really never gone after it, I seem to like to talk about things, but the get lost on the delivery/execution. As for the “bikini body”, I’m not looking for a sixpack or über muscles but I would like to get away from any part of me other than my boobs jiggling. (I am sadly aware that my boobs will probably be the first things to go, I have partially prepared myself for that, I’m really not happy about having just spent well over 200$ on bras that won’t fit me anymore.)

I’ve been watching my drinking, I know that it’s the main reason for my calorie intake issues. I can’t treadmill enough to burn off what I drink. So what do I do? I cut down drinking… It’s been two days so far…

My fridge is loaded with healthy food,  I’m working on the working out everyday, I stopped taking the elevator and now take the stairs, well unless I’m carrying something other than my purse. There are 108 steps to get down from my place on the seventh floor, unless I take three steps per landing (rather than two in the previous count), then there are 132. 😀

As for writing, I’ve realized that when I am focused, I can write 1000 words an hour, yesterday I cleared 2300 🙂 I think that’s a record for me. Problem = no focus. I honestly wish I could concentrate, I might be dangerous lol

I’ll work on the focus. For now, I think I’m doing alright.



Day two of the treadmill posting, it’s tougher today though cause the stupid treadmill keeps asking for my heart rate. Both hands are needed for that, bleh.

Plus me being the attention-deficit, distractible moron that I am, went and misplaced or forgot my headphones somewhere (whatever, they are gone…) so it’s a quiet day at the gym today 😦

I went out for a friends birthday last night so I kinda figured I wouldnt make it to the gym this morning but here I am. Somewhere along the way, I picked up some drive.

I think the drive starts when I step on the scale in the morning. Yes, I know that weight is not an indication of blah blah. But it drives me to fer to the gym. Plus, I take the stupid stairs all the time now and I really REALLY want it to be easier on the way up… Usually by the sixth floor (12th set of stairs), I want to die. I’ve also realized, after taking all the set of stairs in my building a few times, I can go down the stairs faster if I’m turning to the right. Not sure what that means. I’m also not entirely sure if the stairs are really a better option than the elevator as I run a higher risk of falling or tripping. I haven’t yet so I’ll keep at it.  Screw you steps, I will conquer you.

Oooh good news! Last night, Dickie (best friend) and I were driving to a Bday party for a mutual friend when my phone informed me of new email.

I was mid-read when I realized what the email (x2) was. (the last couple days I’ve been checking me emails furiously… I forget about it and voila!) my two flash stories were accepted into 365 days of frightening flash.  I screamed, which nearly caused Dickie to drive off the road, I was super excited. Way to excited to be confined in a car, I think.

Needless to say finding out that I am going to be published again may have been one of the reasons for me ordering a bottle of wine, after having two beer and then ignoring my “I do not do shots” rule, like a bunch of times. All that lead to my obvious intoxication, but at least I made it to the gym…

Thanks Drive, stick around, I’m way more productive with you here.

(AND, I didn’t almost fall of the treadmill while blogging any of this… Perhaps the Yoga is helping my equilibrium issues 😉 YAY!)