Category Archives: Lucy at the Heart

Where Lucy talks about real stuff, real life and the journey we’re on together in this big, wide world.

When Writing Joy Disappears

on March 19, 2024

Do you remember those first heady weeks (or years) of writing before you published? The determination to make time to write the story burning inside you to be written? Publishing should only increase that delight in following your dream and pursuing your passion. Right? The truth is…not so much. When you are writing that first

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My Recipe: Find Joy in Your Writing

on March 19, 2024

My recipe for finding joy in your writing: (As with all advice, take only what works for you and ignore the rest. This is what works for me. 😊 Also, this is not advice for hitting best seller lists or making enough money to quit your day job. This is about recovering the happiness that

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Creating Audiobook Excerpts

on December 11, 2023
Cinderella's Jilted Billionaire Audible Splash Art

Have you seen the cool audio excerpts for books, podcasts, etc. and wondered how to make them? I sure did when I brought out my first indie audiobook (it wasn’t/isn’t an option for my traditionally published titles). Only, I had no clue how to do it. So, I asked my friend, who had successfully launched

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Stickers and Other Book Swag

on December 4, 2023
An assortment of reader swag

Before I give you links to my favorite purveyors of personalized swag, let’s address the elephant in the room. Space and money for bulk orders. We don’t all have it. This is where having a community is key. When you design swag that is unique to your genre, but not your books, you can split

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My Breakup Book with Trad Publishing

on November 30, 2023
graphic for My Breakup Book with Trad Publishing article

A Little Backstory I published my first book with Harlequin in 2003. Over the next two decades I published 75 more books with 4 traditional publishers and 1 small press. I learned so much, had some incredible editors and connected with readers that became part of the fabric of my life. In 2017, I got

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Tropes and How (not) to Use Them

on November 27, 2023
Romance Novel Tropes Heart Graphic

Like it, or hate it…tropes sell books. Every fiction popular genre has them, as do some of the nonfiction genres. Even literary fiction has popular tropes, though they are rarely referred to as such. 😉 But inserting a trope for marketing value can ruin the underlying story. It can also enhance it. We’ve all read

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Tips for Writers: Affordable Bookmarks

on November 16, 2023
Tips for Writers: Affordable Bookmarks Article Splash Image

The more time I spend on social media in the author/writer space, the more I realize how much we can help each other. I’m far from having all the answers, but what I do know, I will share. Let’s start with something that a lot of authors need and not all believe they can afford: bookmarks.

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2005 Travelogue for Australia by Hubcap

on August 9, 2022

My husband used to write travelogues for our trips. They always made me laugh. This is one he wrote for our trip to Australia in 2005. Wish I could find the one he did for New Zealand that same year. 🙂 _________________ As part of the Monroe family journey to the South Side, we now

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The Business vs. the Creativity of Writing

on August 4, 2022

Writing for publication is a business, but it is not only a business. It is a creative endeavor but not only a creative endeavor. Finding balance between those two truths creates a lot of tension in the writer’s psyche. In fact, it can be paralyzing to both creativity and forward career momentum when the two

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10 Important Truths I’ve Learned Being a Published Author

on July 22, 2021

1. The opening line is NOT the most important sentence in my book. Some people would have you believe that your entire story hinges on that first line.  Um, no.  If you excel at the clever first line, fantastic! I sure hope you also excel at the thousands of words to follow, because that’s what

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