Sparks' Notes: Weekly Writing Reflections by Author Lindsey Sparks

Episode 25: New Covers, New Words, and a New Epilogue, Oh My!

January 24, 2022 Lindsey Sparks, Lindsey Fairleigh Season 1 Episode 25
Sparks' Notes: Weekly Writing Reflections by Author Lindsey Sparks
Episode 25: New Covers, New Words, and a New Epilogue, Oh My!
Show Notes Transcript

Hi there! I'm Lindsey Sparks, author of books featuring hidden worlds and twisted myths. Welcome to my weekly author's notes podcast! This episode was recorded on Monday, 1/24/2022, and I would love to share some of my reflections from this past week with you.

CURRENT EBOOK FREEBIES:
Echo in Time
The Echo Trilogy ($0.99 this week only!)
Starter Library for newsletter subscribers

CURRENT WIP:
ProWritingAid: Song of Scarabs and Fallen Stars (Fateless Trilogy, book 1)

READING:
Echo in Time by Lindsey Sparks (me!)

WATCHING:
Cobra Kai

HIGH(s):
Finishing the read-through of SoSaFS
Added an epilogue to SoSaFS
New covers for the Echo World ebook box sets

LOW(s):
Covid strikes again!
Muted mic...

WACKY GOOGLE SEARCHES (in the Name of Authoring):
Reduplicative (easy-peasy)

LAST WEEK'S OBSESSION:
Attempting to figure out TikTok

THIS WEEK'S GOAL(s):
Make the maps for SoSaFS (using Inkarnate)
Start recording my reading of Echo in Time (for the Read by the Author podcast)

LOOKING FORWARD TO:
Reading Echo in Time out loud

COOL THINGS:
Inkarnate
Artbreeder
ProWritingAid
Descript

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Hi there! I'm Lindsey Sparks, author of books that include hidden worlds and twisted myths. Welcome to my weekly authors' notes podcast. Today is Monday, January 24th, and I would love to share some of my reflections from this past week with you. Okay. So, um, first off my. My bargains and free books. So Echo in Time as always is free. Um, and then actually this week only. Only, um, The Echo Trilogy, the omnibus edition ebook. Book. Is only 99 cents on all major retailers. Um, and in the US, the UK, Australia, Canada. And then in India. It is 65. Um, rupees, I want to say is. Um, The money. Type. Um, and yeah, so definitely grab that if. If you don't already have that ebook bundle, um, it's all. All three super long books and it also has Resonance and Dissonance. So that's a great deal. Um, and then also as always. Um, you can always sign up for my Newsletter. And you could access to my starter library with Echo and Time After The Ending. um, Legacy of the Lost and. Also Resonance and Sacifice of the Sinners. So that's that. Um, okay. So my current work in progress. Oh, my God. It's like. I never going to change. No, it will. We're like reaching the final stretch. For this one is Song of Scarabs and Fallen Stars, which is the first book in the Fateless Trilogy. Um, which continues the Echo World saga. Um, and I have finished the out loud read through and I just loved it. I really just genuinely loved this. This book. And, um, No, I'm. I'm just going through it with pro writing aid, which is the, um, AI. Grammar checker that I use. Um, and it picks up on things like, um, If I am using passive voice too much or. Like just the normal grammar issues. Like. You know, weird comma usage or, um A little excessive usage of M dashes. That's my personal. Um, I'm really, I'm really fond of the em dashes. Um, And repetitive words and stuff like that. So it's definitely. Finitely recommend per writing aid, if you are, um, Like, if you write a lot of stuff, even if you just read a lot of emails and stuff like this, and no, I'm not sponsored. By them. I just really love their software. Um, so. So, yeah, pro writing aid is great. So that's what I'm doing and probably. B combing through that for a couple more days. Um, just in between the other stuff that I'm working on. And then I'll be handing that over to my editor. So, yeah, I'm I'm excited for this. Book to be entering its final stages. I'm sad that the read through is over because. Because I love that part. Um, but I am excited because I will be doing. I'm recording myself, reading. I think it's the first. Seven chapters. Um, for like teasers. And previews and stuff before the release. So that's exciting. Um right now, I am reading echo in time, um, which is the first book, um, in the whole, like, Eco world saga. So in the first serious. Echo trilogy, which is, um, super cheap right now. Ah, yeah. So I'm reading that for read by the author. Um, The new podcast that I'll have that's gonna start coming out in Next month in February. Um, and that is, um, I'm really excited. Excited about this. So I'm going to put it up as podcasts and I'm going to put it up on YouTube. Sharing my screen so people can read along if they want. I'll have little interjections on the YouTube version. Um, little like inside. Just like, what was I thinking? When I wrote this, I'm sure there'll be comments from me about like, I really wish I hadn't written that. I know there's one part that I. It's like the only part. In any of my books. Um, That I wish I could go back and. Change. And it's kind of sucks that it's an echo and time, which is. You know, So the, the entry point into this world. Um, but I just feel. I have learned so much and grown so much as a writer since I wrote that. Um, but that's okay. I still, I still feel like the. The story is really beautiful. Um, Even with that part that makes me cringe a little bit. Um, if you've read it, you. Probably can guess what it is. Um, Yeah, so. So we are still watching Cobra Kai. Where in season? For, and I know there's one more season coming up, but it's not available yet. Um, And we're already sad that it's going to be. Over and we're going to find. Find something else to watch. Although, I think that there's a new Marvel show that I wanted to check out. Um, and I don't know if it's out yet. Moon Night. I don't know anything about it, other than it's supposed to be maybe kind of bloody. And violent, which. Um, Maybe that'll make. So my husband is into it. I don't know. He likes Marvel stuff, but, um, Yeah, we'll see. Um, Anyway. Okay. So. My highs this week, we're finishing the read-through of Song of Scarabs and Fallen Stars. Um, I would say that's both a high and a low just because I, um, I really. I love the story. I want to keep reading it. Um, I kind of feel like I have a book hangover. Um, but that just makes me even more excited about sharing it with the world. World and my. Um, my readers who. We're with me in discord. Um, listening to the read through there. We're a few people. Who were in there most of the time. Um, I know I have kind of funny hours because my schedule works around. Um, Um, when my children are sleeping. Or occupied and. So I was very impressed that they stuck with me through the whole thing. And, um, But they just, they loved it. So, I mean, they said they loved it. I hope they were genuine. Um, but oh man, their reaction. Actions, like when I got to the. There's this one scene. Um, closer to the end, which was the actual scene that like started the whole. Whole idea for this book for me. Um, And it was just so great. Great to see. They're like, whoa, like reactions typed out in the, um, Chat. As I was reading it, I really, really loved that. Um, okay. So other highs, um, another, I added an epilogue to Song of Scarabs and Fallen Stars. So it was a scene I had been thinking about. Um, I had, it's actually similar to a scene I had originally had in the outlet. Outline for like the second or third to last. I think it was the second. Second to last chapter. Um, but now I've just added it as an epilogue. I think it works. A lot better as an epilogue than actual in actually in the story proper. Um, because it is, um, It relates more to the story coming in the next. Book than it does to. The story in this book. So, um, but I, it does address an issue that I felt like needed. To be mentioned, um, In this book. Um, that people would be wanting to know more about. Um, yeah, so. That, um, I was really excited about adding that scene and it's a little. Um, that's just a fencing. Um, And. Yeah. So the other high, this. It's been a great week. Um, I got new covers for my. I cover designer, Molly. Um, we got you covered design. She sent over new covers for all of the echo war world. Bundles. Well, not all of them. So she had already done the. Um, new cover. Over for the echo trilogy bundle. Um the one that has If you look it up, it's got, um It has like a snake. Coming up from one corner. Golden stake and then it has like a golden. Um, Falcon. Coming down from the other. Corner, like they're fighting over the feather of my aunt. Um, and I think it's really pretty. Um, so she did new covers for the echo. Earth echo trilogy the, um, cat. Du Bois Chronicles, omnibus volume one and volume two. Um, and then also for. The fatalist trilogy omnibus, which is not, you can't see that yet because. It's not up anywhere. Um, so I'll reveal. I think that was my favorite. Um, but I'll reveal those, um, eventually. But you can see, you should be able to, I have already. Um, uploaded them to. Amazon or Kindle. Um, for the cat to walk Chronicles. So as soon as they make those lives, You can, you can see those there. And, um, Um, hopefully everywhere else. I'm going to upload them everywhere. Everywhere else, as soon as I'm done with this. So, um, yeah, they look very cohesive. I think they're really pretty colors. And. Um, yeah, they're just really, I really liked the way they all look together as a series. These of omnibuses, it's kind of a funny series, a bundle series. I don't know what to call it, but, um, yeah, they look really pretty. So I'm very happy with those, um, any lows this week? Yes. Um, Last week when I recorded sparks. Notes. Um, I randomly decided to record it on my phone. Phone too, because I'm like trying to figure out ways to get more stuff to. Put up on Tik TOK. So I wanted to have more video footage. On my phone and, um, I. Had my mic muted, like my, this mic, my, my big mic, my podcast mic. And so I had to use my phone audio, so I apologize. It's the audio for last week's episode was sub par. Um, I made a major goof. I switched over. I've switched over. To a new software for, um, all of my podcasting. And, um, descript. It's amazing. Um, however it did. Change my process for recording a smidge. And, um, I can't, while I'm recording, I can't actually see my little sound waves, um, which I could, when I was using audacity. Um, Um, so I, I did not know that my mic was not recording anything. Because it was muted anyway. So luckily I had the backup. Audio from my phone. Um, it was definitely a lot lower quality though. So that was, um, about mirror, but, um, I worked out all right. And now my screen went black. Okay. There we are. Um, let's see. Um, oh, the other bummer. So we were supposed to do. Our. It's been delayed so many times we're supposed to do. Our. Our Christmas. Um, with my husband's family. I'm supposed to come over to our house. With we're spread all over the state. Um, Of Washington. His parents are in Eastern Washington. We are in the maple valley area and then his sister is up in. North of Seattle. In the Snohomish area. And so. So everyone was going to come over and, um, this has been. Delayed because of crazy snow and weather the past. If, if. If you know anything. Well, if, unless you lived in Washington, you probably wouldn't. No, but we have the cascade mountains splitting our state in half. And, um, we have couple of passes and if those passes close, there's not really any way. To get to the other side and that happens a lot in the winter. So, um, holidays. Always a little bit. Up in the air as to whether. Um, Whether in, or when we're going to be able to make them happen. So anyway. There was no snow issue this time. However, his sister. Did, um, come down with COVID. So we. We're not able to do our big family. Um, Christmas, big family. There's only like. Six of us. Um, Our little R with my kids, I guess that would be eight. They can't ask people to. Um, So we were not able to, to the sparks family Christmas. Um, But two, we. Um, his mom did still come. Over. So that was nice to see her. Um, And it sounds like. Like his sister and her daughter are on the mend. So that's good. Um, But just a bummer. Um, Okay. Wacky, Google searches this, um, this last week. Um, I did, I had like a ton more synonym things. Um, because I was finishing the read through, but I did, um, want to point. Out this one fun one. Which is a new word that I learned. Which is, um, a word for type of word Which is, and I'm totally going to Bumble this because I tried, I practiced saying this because it's. Really hard for me to say. Reduplicating. reduplicating I cannot say it like fast. I. I have two. Like pronounce every single. Every single syllable, very, um, an unsuitable. If that's a word, another new world, maybe. Um, anyway, so. Were duplicative is a word like easy peasy. Itty bitty. Walkie-talkie just a few of my favorites. Um, I discovered. Covered this word. Or F word for a types of words. Um, Um, when I was looking up how to spell easy-peasy because my grammar checker. Providing aid did not like the way that I had done it, which was not hyphenated. So it should be. Easy-peasy hyphenated. Um, just FYI. I use that word a lot in my daily life. Um, and my heater's going on. Sorry. Um, but it's really cold in. Here. And so reduplicating. And I'm sure. You can guess based on the name of it and also. So having heard easy-peasy itty-bitty walkie-talkie is a word that contains. Two identical or very similar sounding parts. Um, and I just. Love this word we're duplicative. I love that there is a, um, like name for a family of words like this. I think it's great. Um, so yeah, learn that this week. Thanks, Google. Um, Or last week. So this last week's obsession. Was still, I'm just still. I mean, it was kind of like figuring out a couple of things, but one of them was Tik TOK still. Just attempting to figure this out. Um, and I switched over to a business account. I mean, the. The saga, me learning. Ticktock right. I switched over. To a business account, which, um, means I can get more analytics and I can add. Active link to my bio on Tik TOK. Um, however, it comes with a massive downside, which is suddenly. Only are cut off from. Like all of the popular music. And that's part of tick-tock right? Is that you can add. Pretty much every song that's avail or that exists. Well, probably not every song. But pre. Like tons and tons and tons of songs. Um, Pretty much anything that I was listening to on Spotify, Spotify, I was able to find. On Tik TOK. And it was really looking forward to sharing my. Playlist from song of scabs and fallen stars, um, in different posts with quotes that linked up to the songs. I'm not really sure what I'm gonna do about. This, I might switch back to a regular normal account again. Um, I don't know how much it's worth it to just have to be As a business account. Um, just to get the link. In my bio, but, um, It's just a huge bummer. It changes my whole strategy and what I was going to do, and the types of things that I was. Going to share. And it's just like, it's really, really limited. The music choices. I'm like, no, there's no, none. Pretty much not. No. So songs. Not just pretty much actually no songs. That are on my song of scarabs and fallen stars. Playlist are. Available to me now. Through Tech-Talk since I'm a business account. So. I'm probably going to switch back is what I'm guessing. Um, And, you know, that's okay. So. Um, I think that I heard or read. I heard. I'm an author friend that once you reached 10,000. Um, Subscribers or followers or whatever they're called on Tik TOK. Um, That you can add the link to your bio then, then so. Like 20, 24. I don't know. We'll see how long that. It takes. But, um, yeah, I've. I'd like part of the thing that I was so excited about. Joining Tik TOK four. And posting on Tik TOK was being able to share this playlist because music is such an essential. Part of this book and it was such an essential part of me writing song of. Scabs and fallen stars. Um, and this, my process for this one, which is so unusual for me, because I'm not usually, um, Music is not usually. Such a big part of my writing process. And I. I still can't write with music on. Um, but it was huge for like my brainstorming. Storming and plotting. And I just had, I was listened to it all the time. Um, in the, in the like months when I was writing this book, Just not when I was actually writing. So. Yeah, I like I'm feeling like I'm leaning towards switching away from the business account. Um, so I don't know. I'll keep you posted or maybe I won't. I mean, you. Probably don't. But I've talked about it for like five minutes. So. You know, here we go. Um, Let's. Let's see, um, Oh, I also was. Really. Watching a bunch of YouTube videos for incarnate, so that. Um, software that I'm using to make the maps for song of scabs and. Fallen stars, um, which I definitely recommend checking out if you're into maps and map. Map creation or a few until anything like, um, D and D or. Do you just like creating fantasy worlds or anything? Like that, um, definitely check out incarnate. Um, but yeah. Um, it's a little bit complicated and I've been watching some tutorial videos. To figure out how to, um, create these maps. Um, And I think the thing that was the hardest for me starting. Out was that I wanted to make sure it was. You know, relatively. Accurate in terms of the general layout of Egypt. Um, Yeah. And and so I had to figure out how to. Ad. A map of Egypt to get like the actual, like, Geographical region laid out properly. Beyond, just like a. Here's the coast. Here's the river. Um, Here's the. Desert. Kind of situation. So yeah. That I was watching a lot of that and, um, This week's goals are to make the maps. So I have two big goals. For this week, one is to make the maps for a song of scabs and fallen stars using incarnate. Um, I feel like I can probably tackle these, um, especially using my big computer out here in my office. Um, it's a kind of. Of computer resource intensive software. Um, So. My laptop. Inside was struggling a little bit. I was trying to do it a little bit while the kids were eating breakfast and that. Um, was very laggy and slow. So, um, I think. It'll work better out here. Um, plus I have a mouse and stuff and laptop. Finger pads are no fun for stuff like that. Um, and I also am going to be recording, um, echo and time. Um, for the read by the author podcast. Um, and hopefully. I will be really seeing the first episode of that. Next. Week, um, That is my. Goal and my plan. Um, and then it would be weekly. Weekly. After that. Um, and I'm thinking it's probably going to be. About 12 episodes. So about three months worth of. Podcast for that first season, which is all echo and time. Yeah. And what am I looking forward to for. This week, I'm reading out loud and working on these mountains. I mean, my two goals. Goals are to two really fun things. And I'm very excited about. Um, I just feel really happy that I finish. Finished, um, That I've kind of wrapped up song. And scarves and fallen stars a couple of weeks early. That's given me a little extra time to do some. Some fun stuff. We're constant from. Fund projects like this. Um, it helps when it's a book that I'm really excited about. Um, and I'm just really, I think the thing that I'm. So excited about reading, um, echo and time out loud for read by the author. Author. Podcast is, um, I haven't read. Like. Myself. Echo and time in a very, very long time. Like we're. Looking at a deck decade here, like I've listened to the audio. Audio book many, many times. Um, in preparation for later. Books. Um, and I have flipped through the books. I've. Um, Skimmed the book for, um, Next screen keeps timing out. I've skimmed the book for excerpts and quotes. Um, but I haven't actually read it like. Cover. To cover. And I definitely haven't read it out loud and I'm not sure if I, so reading. Out loud as part of my process, but I'm not sure if I ever actually read this one out loud because. Because, um, when I was publishing this book, Um, in 2013, Um, I. Was sick. And I had a very, very, I had no voice. My voice has gotten, I had lost my voice. Um, I think I had laryngitis actually. Um, and I, um, so LP Lindsey Pogue had. To come over. And read it out loud for me so I could, um, listen. I have to hear the flow of the language to be able to. I feel like I can, um, Like make sure. The. The words are right. The flow is right. It's just, I it's just the part of the way that my brain works. Um, Yeah. So I am so excited because I'm not sure if I've ever actually read this whole book out loud by myself. So I'm really excited to dive back. Into this and. I'm already anticipating this struggle of like, Wanting to continue. So we'll see how that goes. Like with the rest of the books in the series. Um, I was not. Not planning on putting all of the series up for free and. Audio Odd and read by the author being read by me. Um, But I'm not, um, opposed. To the idea because it is the flagship series for the echo world. Um, if I was going to give away any complete series in. Audio for free. Um, it would be that one. It wouldn't be the professionally produced. Audio read by Dana day, which is amazing her accent for. Marcus is just. Beautiful. Um, But I'm not sure. I mean, now that I've said it out loud, it probably means I'll do it. So I don't know. That's usually what happens with me. We'll see. Um, I. I did want to mention again this new segment that I added from last week, which is cool things that I wanted to share with you. I think these are all probably the same things that I had last week. But in case you missed it, these are all really cool. Cool things. Um, so. So first off incarnate that I was already talking about the map generating software. Where, um, where you can create these really cool, beautiful fantasy maps. I mean, I'm talking like Butte. Beautiful. You can create the coolest, like watercolor style. Fantasy scenes and layouts and like taverns and. Temple. I mean, it's, it's so cool. Even if you don't want to create maps. I highly recommend just going and browsing through the maps that other people have created. Like, they're beautiful. Um, And I'm really excited about some really excited about using that for song. Scabs and fallen stars. I am also really excited about using it for. Atlantis legacy. And like creating. Um, the alpha. Site. And creating. Creating the, um, Um, oh my God. The Elysium. Um, I was like, I cannot remember the name of the ship that they're on the Um, I think it's going to be so much fun and it's going to be so full and just pretty and oh, I really want to create the beta site. Oh, the beta site is going to be so pretty. Um, yeah. Yeah. And probably the omega site. I also, I don't know. We'll see how this goes. If I can figure. It out. And then also check out, um, our breeder, our breeders super. Cool for creating character portraits and you can do other like, um, AI generated. At art. There, I haven't explored any of the other kind of like. Areas, um, of stuff that you can create. I've only done the portraits. But it's super cool once you figure it out and how to use it. It's really, really. Fun. Um, And then pro writing aid. I highly recommend. Amend. If you read a lot of stuff, even if it's just like emails, um, it's a great. Great great. And grammar checker, and, um, also descript. Which is the software that I use for recording my podcast. Um, it's. I've got a really cool editing capability where you can, um, just like select. The text of the section that you want to clip out or alter. Um, it's just, it's. I think, I believe it's also AI. I mean, everything has AI now, right? Um, but I'm pretty sure it's like very the core. There is an AI run program. Um, and definitely. Fear into like recording stuff or have like podcasts that you need to edit. Or any kind of recordings that you need to edit? I definitely recommend, describe. The script. So those are my cool things. Um, and. Well, let's see here. Um, I think that's it for me this week. So. Bit of a long one. Um, thank you so much for listening. I will be back next week to ramble some more. And until then, Happy reading. Have a great week.