AtoZ Blogging Challenge April 2022. K is for Kindlepreneur on @YouTube

YouTube Channels and Youtubers for writers and everyone else!

I’m joining the AtoZ challenge sharing YouTube channels and Youtubers I follow as an independent author, researcher, learner, reader, and someone who is interested in emotional growth and physical wellbeing, as well as entertainment and current affairs.

I’ve enjoyed watching YouTube videos for years, but in 2020, when the pandemic broke out in Europe and the first lockdown was imposed as a security measure in most countries, I decided to go Premium on YouTube and I started watching even more videos on a wide variety of entertaining and informative topics, which I’d like to share with you over the coming month. I hope you enjoy! 

Today I’m featuring Kindlepreneur a channel for self-publishing authors with videos on marketing, social media for authors, and lots of practical aspects independent writers need to know about to write and sell their books.

This is one of his latest videos on hashtags for authors on the different social media.

I hope you found these channels interesting or useful, and if you want to check out what other bloggers are writing about this month in the AtoZ Blogging Challenge check them out on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

Meanwhile, I hope you’re enjoying this chilly and rainy April!

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

By the way, if you’d like to check out my novels in The Eyre Hall Series, find out more by clicking on the image below which will take you to the information on this website.

Click on my photo for the link to my Amazon Author Page

AtoZ Blogging Challenge April 2022. J is for Jamie Oliver, Jerry B. Jenkins, and Jordan B. Peterson on @YouTube

YouTube Channels and Youtubers for writers and everyone else!

I’m joining the AtoZ challenge sharing YouTube channels and Youtubers I follow as an independent author, researcher, learner, reader, and someone who is interested in emotional growth and physical wellbeing, as well as entertainment and current affairs.

I’ve enjoyed watching YouTube videos for years, but in 2020, when the pandemic broke out in Europe and the first lockdown was imposed as a security measure in most countries, I decided to go Premium on YouTube and I started watching even more videos on a wide variety of entertaining and informative topics, which I’d like to share with you over the coming month. I hope you enjoy! 

Today I’m featuring cook and a Jamie Oliver is a world-famous British chef, restaurateur, author of cookery books, and media personality. I love watching his videos because they are short, clear and delicious! He makes cooking a special meal look really easy and fun and he has hundreds of videos on different types of food, from traditional to more contemporary. Creamy mushrooms is one of his latest easy, simple and mouth watering videos.

And I couldn’t resist sharing this one with you on four fabulous ways to make pancakes, which my grandchildren love.

Bestselling author Jerry Jenkins has a channel with plenty of useful videos on the craft of writing, such as this one on conflict.

I listen to everything Jordan Peterson says, because he expresses his ideas eloquently and clearly. He is a Canadian professor of psychology, clinical psychologist, YouTube personality, best-selling author and host of the #1 Education Podcast, “The Jordan B. Peterson Podcast”. His channel includes videos from his classes, his podcasts, interviews, book tours and lectures and they all include food for thought on a variety of topics such as current affairs, religion, politics, and personal growth, among others. This is one of his most recent videos on finding meaning in life.

I hope you found these channels interesting or useful, and if you want to check out what other bloggers are writing about this month in the AtoZ Blogging Challenge check them out on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

Meanwhile, I hope you’re enjoying this chilly and rainy April!

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

By the way, if you’d like to check out my novels in The Eyre Hall Series, find out more by clicking on the image below which will take you to the information on this website.

Click on my photo for the link to my Amazon Author Page

‘Snow Moon at Eyre Hall’ Chapter 28: Jane Eyre’s Return to Eyre Hall #BookLaunch

One of the highlights of Snow Moon at Eyre Hall, which was published yesterday, is Jane, Michael and Helen’s return to Eyre Hall after the traumatic events which occurred in Thunder Moon at Eyre Hall, during which the three of them were separated and confined away from their home, Eyre Hall.

Jane was taken to Grimsby Asylum, Helen was sent to Lowood Institution, and Michael was imprisoned in the icehouse. Their ordeals led them to take refuge in a Beachill, a small seaside village in Cornwall, where they have started a new life.

Their return to Eyre Hall, in chapter 28, is an emotional experience for all of them, especially for Jane, who built Eyre Hall when she married Mr Rochester, with the money she inherited from her uncle, who had a winery in Madeira.

Chapter 28 – Return to Eyre Hall

Eyre Hall, February 1870

Jane

Huge white snowflakes whirled and fell on the thick snow already covering the lawns of Eyre Hall. I craned my neck to glimpse at the silver clouds sliding across the waning gibbous moon and the fragments of jet-black sky peppered with tiny sparkling stars.

Helen pointed to the ground. “Why has the snow got a blue glow?”

“It must be reflecting the light of the moon. If there was a new moon, the snow would be black,” I replied.

“I forgot it was so pretty. Max says it never snows in Beachill.”

Annette rushed out to greet us when she heard our coach. “Come inside quickly, there’s a frightful gale.” A young girl took our coats and said she’d carry our luggage upstairs to the new wing. “Tell Tomas to help you, Trish,” said Annette. “The trunks are heavy.”

We stepped into a drawing room ablaze with the furious burning of crackling wood. I gasped. It was just as we had left it.

“What’s wrong?” asked Annette.

I waved my hands in the air. “Nothing has changed.”

“Why would it? I love the way you decorated Eyre Hall, Jane. It’s perfect.”

I searched for the house I once lived in and imagined I would never leave. The furniture, the paintings, the candleholders, and chandeliers were identical. “And yet nothing is the same.”

Michael’s hands rested on my shoulders. “Shall I kindle the fire, mistress?”

I sighed. “It seems such a long time ago, Michael.”

“Eight months since we last came and fifteen months since we lived here,” he replied, but it didn’t matter how many days or months had passed, we had returned to a different place in another lifetime.

“I’m hungry, Mummy!” said Helen.

Seconds later, a tall young man with a sullen face and heavy eyebrows entered.

“Sorry, Mrs Rochester. I was taking the trunks upstairs. What do you need?”

“Thank you, Tomas. Bring us some tea, hot chocolate, biscuits, cakes, and ham sandwiches.”

As we ate, Annette asked us about our journey, James, Helen’s school, and the final chapters of The Orphan, but carefully avoided asking about our reason for coming. At last, Helen fell asleep on the couch and we were free to talk.

****

Jane and Michael’s reason for returning to Eyre Hall is the climax of Snow Moon at Eyre Hall and the Eyre Hall Series itself. As those of you who have read the series can imagine, it is related to Junot, the Sin-eater, Bertha Mason, and Mr Edward Rochester. The final secret Bertha left at Thornfield Hall will be revealed in Snow Moon at Eyre Hall, at last.

Read Snow Moon at Eyre Hall to find out Bertha’s last secret here. It’s on launch offer at 0.99 and you can also read it for 0,00 on Kindle Unlimited!

Snow Moon at Eyre Hall: Book Five of The Eyre Hall Series de [Luccia Gray]

Snow Moon at Eyre Hall is Book 5 of The Eyre Hall Series. I suggest reading in the following order:

Resurgam, An Eyre Hall Series Novella

Blood Moon at Eyre Hall

All Hallows at Eyre Hall

Twelfth Night at Eyre Hall

Volume One of The Eyre Hall Series: a Box Set including these first four novels.

Thunder Moon at Eyre Hall

Snow Moon at Eyre Hall

Midsummer at Eyre Hall (to be re-edited and re-published in autumn, 2022)

UK Link to The Eyre Hall Series

US Link to The Eyre Hall Series

International Link to The Eyre Hall Series

Subscribe to my newsletter for special offers, updates, and new releases here!

‘Snow Moon at Eyre Hall’ Chapter 29 #Preview #Amwriting #Amediting

Good morning and happy Friday!

I’m struggling (we authors are always struggling, whether or not we’re established and famous!) with my final edits of Snow Moon at Eyre Hall, to be published in February 2022, and I thought I’d give you a sneak peek of the first paragraphs, about 280 words, of chapter 29 called Return to Eyre Hall.

8 am at my writing desk, in my tiny study with my three basic tools, my tea, my laptop and my creativity!

Chapter 29 – Return to Eyre Hall

Jane

Huge white snowflakes whirled before falling on the thick snow which covered the lawns of Eyre Hall. I craned my neck to glimpse at the silver clouds sliding across the waning gibbous moon and the fragments of jet-black sky peppered with tiny sparkling stars.

Helen pointed to the ground. “Why has the snow got a blue glow?”

“It must reflect the light of the moon. If there was a new moon, the snow would be black,” I replied.

“I forgot it was so pretty. Max says it never snows in Beachill.”

Annette rushed out to greet us when she heard our coach. “Come inside quickly, there’s a frightful gale.” A young girl Annette called Trish, took our coats and said she’d carry our luggage upstairs to the new wing.

We stepped into a drawing room ablaze with the furious burning of crackling wood. I gasped. It was just as we had left it.

“What’s wrong?” asked Annette.

I waved my hands in the air. “Nothing has changed.”

“Why would it? I love the way you decorated Eyre Hall, Jane. It’s perfect.”

I searched for the house I built and once lived in and imagined I would never leave. The furniture, the paintings, the candleholders, and chandeliers were identical. “And yet nothing is the same.”

Michael’s hands rested on my shoulders. “Shall I kindle the fire, mistress?”

I turned to face him. “It seems such a long time ago, Michael.”

“Eight months since we last came and fifteen months since we lived here,” he replied, but it didn’t matter how many days or months had passed, we had returned to a different place in another lifetime.

****

Snow Moon at Eyre Hall: Book Five of The Eyre Hall Series de [Luccia Gray]

Snow Moon at Eyre Hall is Book 5 of The Eyre Hall Series. I suggest reading them in the following order:

Resurgam, An Eyre Hall Series Novella

Blood Moon at Eyre Hall

All Hallows at Eyre Hall

Twelfth Night at Eyre Hall

Volume One of The Eyre Hall Series: a Box Set including these first four novels.

Thunder Moon at Eyre Hall

Snow Moon at Eyre Hall

Midsummer at Eyre Hall (to be re-edited and re-published in June, 2022)

There will be a box set for books 4-6 and possibly another novella this summer.

UK Link to The Eyre Hall Series

US Link to The Eyre Hall Series

Subscribe to my newsletter for updates here!

Have a wonderful Friday and Weekend!

#SoCS Stream of Consciousness Saturday ‘The Question is Who, and the answer is…’ #SaturdayThoughts #Tanka

This post was written in response to Linda Hill’s weekly Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt. 

 This week’s prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday Linda has asked us to begin a post starting with the word ‘who’. Join in and have fun!

This morning, as I do most mornings, as part of my morning routine, I wrote my morning pages. There are many ways to write your morning pages, more in tomorrow’s post, but for me it’s just one page of free writing which takes about ten minutes to write in my journal. This morning I responded to Linda’s prompt and started with the word ‘who’. Here’s what I wrote.

****

 

Click on the link to listen to the podcast The Question is ‘Who’, and the Answer is…. 

 

Who said life would be easy, or fun, or even interesting?

Who told you all your dreams would come true?

Who predicted true love and happiness were in your path?

Perhaps it was your parents, or a TV ad or programme, or a grandparent, friend, teacher, or even a therapist?

Or maybe You decided that You were worth it, that You were enough, that it was You who foretold and visualised your future and then made it come true by turning wishes into goals with careful planning, perseverance, hard work, motivation and determination? And why not? A little help along the way.

It was You who made the promises, and it is You who can make them come true.

Who said it was possible, valuable and deserved? You

Who said it was impossible, worthless or undeserved? You

Who is right either way? You

It is always You. So, believe in yourself, work on yourself, plan to make your dreams become goals and make them come true, because your life is a gift, and You have the power; it’s in your hands.

The question is WHO, and the answer is YOU.


Writing this post has reminded me of the poem Invictus by William Ernest Henley.

Here’s the last stanza:

It matters not how strait the gate,
      How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate,
      I am the captain of my soul.

I Hope you’re having a wonderful Saturday! Take care and stay safe.

#SoCS Stream of Consciousness Saturday ‘Stay Calm’ #SaturdayThoughts

This post was written in response to Linda Hill’s weekly Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt. 

This week’s prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday Linda has asked us to use a word starting with the letters “cal” as our prompt word. Join in and have fun!

****

Stay Calm

Calm is a word which has become one of my favourites. Every day is full of tiny problems which give could lead to disaster if I don’t find a solution. A broken washing machine, losing my car keys, forgetting my best friend’s birthday, a toothache, a traffic jam which makes me late to an important appointment, a bad hair day…

On any day, so many little things can go wrong and cause havoc, but if I react by losing my nerves, which I sometimes do, it only makes matters worse. On the other hand, I can usually find simple solutions to most small, daily problems if I react calmly.

Machines can be repaired, if it’s urgent I can access a dry cleaners or laundromats, hairdresser’s, dentists, or an Uber. If I calm down, I can find most misplaced objects (once I put the keys in the freezer and found them retracing my steps!). A heartfelt apology or an honest excuse will often work wonders when I’ve made a mistake. Responding to a rude client (in my case student) with more rudeness or anger will only increase the problem, calm them down or ask them to leave. But if I’m worked up, the solution to even the simplest problem becomes impossible.

So how do I calm down when I’m feeling hysterical? The following simple activities take between 2 and 10 minutes and I find they usually help me relax.

1- Controlling my breathing does wonders, I love the breathing technique recommended by Dr Chatterjee; three in, hold for four and breathe out in five, then repeat until I feel calmer.

2- If I can, I find a quiet spot and close my eyes, and breathe slowly and visualise the problem and think of a solution.

3- I’m a great believer in the power of writing lists, so just sitting down for a few minutes and writing a list of possible solutions, also helps.

4- Asking for help. If I can’t solve it myself, I think about who I could phone and ask for help.

How do you keep calm? 

#SoCS Stream of Consciousness Saturday ‘March 2020-March 2021: A Year to Remember’ #SaturdayThoughts

This post was written in response to Linda Hill’s weekly Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt. 

This week’s prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday Linda has asked us to write about this past year to share our common experiences as a way to connect, to feel a little less alone, perhaps. 

****

March 2020- March 2021: A Year to Remember

I’d use four words to describe how I’ve felt over the last year: Connectedness, Silence, Introspection, and Renewal.

Connectedness

Perhaps ironically, from March 2020 to March 2021 is the year I have felt less alone in the world in my life!

I feel connected to everyone in the world, because we’ve all had to cope with the same fears, restrictions, economic crisis, and illness this pandemic has brought.

The very existence of this pandemic, which originated in a market in a town in china and reached every corner of the world in a few weeks, just goes to show how interconnected we are.

We all breathe the same air, are warmed by the same sun, and our tides are governed by the same moon. We are all unique, but that doesn’t mean we aren’t connected to everything else on our planet and universe.

Silence

At first, during lockdown the silence, especially at night when the curfew meant we were all at home early, was terrifying.

I love silence. In fact, when I write, I often I use my headphones on mute to block everything out and write, but that’s my choice, for a few hours. This silence was different, it was empty; life was missing. And it was distressing, because it wasn’t normal. It was the silence of absence; as if the world had stopped breathing, and it led to a distressing feeling; as something was missing and there was a hole in the world.

Now, after a year we are still on partial lockdown, but the vaccine is being administered and there is a light at the end of the tunnel. The Silence is no longer frightening, it’s just silence, a friendly, quiet silence. A silence waiting for the storm to pass.

Introversion 

Apart from the pandemic, between March and September 2020, I’ve had challenging months, not related to the pandemic, but worsened by occurring at the same time. I was forced to travel, visit several hospitals, and take care of administrative and household matters in hospitals, shops and government offices, when all I wanted to do was hide at home and wait for the storm to pass.

I wrote little during this time, except some notes and poems, and a few blog posts, but I didn’t have the routines or mindset to revise or continue writing my novels.

However, I did read a lot, especially personal growth and self-help books that have helped me immensely to understand myself and cope with stressful situations. I’m still reading these wonderful books and posting reviews and opinions about them on my blog every Monday on a weekly post called #MondayMotivation. 

Renewal

Fortunately, October brought a relative peace back into my life and I was able to devote my time to my literary pursuits with renewed strength and enthusiasm.

And now that winter is coming to a close, the vaccine is being administered, and the world seems a safer place, we are all longing to get back to our lives, but our ‘new lives’ because at least I am not the same person I was last March. I want more freedom to hug my friends and family and to travel, but I also appreciate everything I have and everyone I love, much more.

I value and feel grateful for my comfortable home, my internet connection for social media, work and enjoyment, the food in my fridge, the clothes I choose to wear, the friends I speak to on the phone every day and the air I breathe.

What are your reflections on this last year?

Carrot Ranch #FlashFiction Challenge #99Words ‘Return to Alaska’

This 99-word flash fiction piece was written in response to Charli Mills’ weekly challenge at Carrot Ranch. Thanks Charli for the prompt!

February 25, 2021, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story using the word frozen. It can be descriptive, character focused, action driven. Go out onto the ice and find a frozen story. Go where the prompt leads! Respond by March 2, 2021. Rules & Guidelines.

Return to Alaska

“Hi, my name’s Suzie. I’ll be looking after you this morning.” I smiled at the pretty hostess.  

She showed me some images on her screen. “Where would you like to go today, Maggie?”

I needed to return to the cabin where I had left my unfinished manuscript.

“A beach, the mountains, a lake, or…”

“I want to go back to Alaska.”

Suzie pushed my wheelchair into the viewing room. “Why are you always so keen on Alaska’s frozen landscape?”

“I have to finish my novel.”

Suzie squeezed my limp hand and slid on the 3D glasses. “Alaska it is.”

  *****

I wrote a stream of consciousness post inspired by the word ‘Frosty’ on Saturday, The post included a short story, improvised in two parts, on Friday night before going to bed I wrote the beginning and on Saturday morning I wrote the end of the story. No editing, no thinking, just improvised writing. Here is the post.

I usually take hours to write my posts, but stream-of-consciousness frees me from the constraints of a ‘well-crafted’ text. I literally wrote it in less than half an hour and amazingly, it is the post with the most likes in all February!

What does that tell me? Perhaps I spend too much time on my other posts and make them worse with so much preparation and editing?

Anyway, as this week’s Carrot Ranch prompt was ‘frozen’, which is pretty similar to ‘frosty’, I decided to use the same basic story idea and rewrite it with more careful editing and reducing it to 99 words.

Here’s the original stream-of-consciousness story with no editing: (Except ProWritingAid, which does the spelling and punctuation automatically as I write, which is a lifesaver!)

Frosty

I would love to stay at a log cabin, like the ones you see in films, in distant places like Canada and Alaska, sit by the window and write whatever comes to mind, drinking cups of tea and hot chocolate, by the fireplace, and eating hot soup with crusty bread (maybe I am hungry?).

I’d write a story about a writer who was in search of inspiration. She rented a cabin in the snowy countryside in the Alaskan wild, where she found a diary in the bedside table drawer, left behind by a previous occupant who had also come to write a book.

She opened the first page and read:

Once upon a time a writer needed solitude to write her novel, so she rented a cabin and found a diary written by a previous occupant. It started with Once upon a time…

She wrote the first chapter, and then she left.

She returned every year to find her diary in the same place. She wrote a new chapter each year.

(And now I’m going to bed, because it’s one o’clock in the morning. Tomorrow morning I’ll reread my post and write the end of the story.

Hi! I’m Back. Here’s Part II).

“Good morning, Maggie.”

Maggie turned to the pretty young girl and smiled.

“Where would you like to go today?” the nice girl said, showing her images on a screen. “There’s a beach, the mountains, a thick wood, or…”

“I want to go back to Alaska.”

“If you’re sure?” Maggie nodded enthusiastically.

The girl pushed Maggie’s wheelchair into the viewing room. “Why are you always so keen on frosty Alaska?”

Maggie’s eyes shone. “I have to finish my novel.”

The young girl caressed Maggie’s wrinkled hand, put on her 3D glasses and said, “Alaska it is.”

****

Well, what do you think?

Have I improved the story with tighter editing, or not?

 

#SoCS Stream of Consciousness Saturday ‘Frosty’ #SaturdayThoughts #FlashFiction

This post was written in response to Linda Hill’s weekly Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt. 

This week’s prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “-sty.” Find a word that ends in “-sty” or use the word “sty.” Enjoy!

Frosty

A few words have crossed my mind, such as:

Nasty, but I refuse to let any type of unpleasantness into my life.

Dusty, but I’m not in the mood to think about housework or dirt.

Crusty, I was tempted, but it’s way past my bedtime and I’m not hungry.

Hasty, I’m no longer in a hurry. I’ve been there, done all the rushing around, life is slower now.

Misty, this word brings sad memories. It’s the name of our cat who was run over, and I don’t need sad memories right now.

So, I finally settled on Frosty because I live an hour and a half’s drive from the Mediterranean Sea, where the climate is mild, so frost is a pretty, exotic thing I see very little of, and therefore it has no negative connotations for me. On the contrary, I looked through Pixabay and found some lovely pictures of frost, like this one:

I would love to stay at a log cabin, like the ones you see in films, in distant places like Canada and Alaska, sit by the window and write whatever comes to mind, drinking cups of tea and hot chocolate, by the fireplace, and eating hot soup with crusty bread (maybe I am hungry?).

I’d write a story about a writer who was in search of inspiration. She rented a cabin in the snowy countryside in the Alaskan wild where she found a diary in the bedside table drawer, left behind by a previous occupant who had also come to write a book.

She opened the first page and read:

Once upon a time a writer needed solitude to write her novel, so she rented a cabin and found a diary written by a previous occupant. It started with Once upon a time…

She wrote the first chapter, and then she left.

She returned every year to find her diary in the same place. She wrote a new chapter each year.

(And now I’m going to bed, because it’s one o’clock in the morning.

Tomorrow morning I’ll reread my post and write the end of the story.

Hi! I’m Back. Here’s Part II).

“Good morning, Maggie.”

Maggie turned to the pretty young girl and smiled.

“Where would you like to go today?” the nice girl said, showing her images on a screen. “There’s a beach, the mountains, a thick wood, or …”

“I want to go back to Alaska.”

“If you’re sure?” Maggie nodded enthusiastically.

The girl pushed Maggie’s wheelchair into the viewing room. “Why are you always so keen on frosty Alaska?”

Maggie’s eyes shone. “I have to finish my novel.”

The young girl caressed Maggie’s wrinkled hand, put on her 3D glasses and said, “Alaska it is.”

****