Why Amazon? Why?

So I just took a look at my book on Amazon and it appears that they have deleted one of my 5 star reviews. Not sure why since it was a review I paid for and it was a verified read review. Needless to say that I am not very happy. So I paid for the review, but the reviewer read my book and said in the small print that they were true opinions and not just a review mill. I guess I am hoping that it was Amazon that deleted because, if the reviewer did, I am going to be pissed.

But I guess it’s time to just pull up my boot straps and try to get better reviews. Not sure what else to do to encourage those have read my book. I’ll just be patient, keep tweeting and blogging, and hope things turns around.

Potholes of Courage Release Date

Hello everyone! If you have been wondering what is going to happen to Nora Clark next, then I have some good news for you! I am so excited to announce that the second book in the Potholes Series is going to be released next Friday 9/23!!!! The Kindle edition will be ready for preorder as of this weekend if you want to get in line faster. I am so excited and I have been working with a great editor so that this book is ready and chomping at the bit for you to dive into it.

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If you would like a preview on the almost finished manuscript, here is a Book Preview I put out some time ago. I hope you enjoy it! Also look out for more news as the release date gets closer!

 

When Reviews Help and Hurt

So I have started to feel the effects of how one bad review can make or break something you want to sell. This has happened both on my Book and my Etsy Shop. Since I received an unfitting 1 star review of my book, it seems like it has been almost black listed. It still have 3.5 stars but my once 5 star book that was getting a good amount of hits is now trailing behind terribly. Something similar happened on Etsy too but I am still holding a 4.5 star rating. Is it just the way the site rates products? I don’t know what to do.

I want to be able to get my book into people’s hands but I really feel like they have judged it before they really got to read it. How is a new author supposed to get their name out there when a person writes a review that is completely opposite of all the others? Why does that review hold so much weight against the others? It doesn’t make any sense and it is rather frustrating.

Back when I had a 5 star rating my book would sell rather well for a no body author like me. And if I did a free promo it would do even better. Now it has hardly moved and it has been on a free promo for an entire day. Has anyone else had this problem and if so how did you fix it? I may not a “professional” author yet but NO book deserves a 1 star review. The time, effort and guts for an author to put out a very personal part of themselves starts the lowest with me as a 3 star. It’s just disrespectful in my opinion to rate someone so low when what you have to say is just out of spite.

So once again, I am asking for help so please comment. I don’t want to close my shop or pull my book when there is something I can do to help it. And if you have bought my book or a product on my shop, I do love to see reviews and comments. I can take constructive criticism but not if it done in a way that is only meant to hurt me and others like me. So don’t be afraid to review but make sure that whoever you review, every word is 100% true. And remember that the person who you are writing about does have feelings. If you wouldn’t say it to their face then maybe it isn’t best to put it in a review.

Any way, hope everyone is having a great day and I will see you next time. Bye!

Potholes of Hope for $0.99 :)

Did you miss the free book promotion for Potholes of Hope for April? I am so sorry about that. But it’s still available for $0.99 on Amazon. I think that if you gave the book a try you would find it to be one of your favorites. Here are some reviews on it to maybe sway you to give it a try 🙂

Format: Paperback

‘Potholes of Hope’ is a book at its best. I was pulled into this simple, smooth, fast paced book from the very first chapter where author Gracelyn Asay skillfully takes her readers through a heart warming life journey of a young teenage girl Nora Clark, who left her family against their will in Ohio with her boyfriend ‘Brad’ to live and fulfill his dreams of perusing a career in Hollywood, California. Trusting Brad left Nora no where and aloof, since there was no coming back to family after getting ditched as her father had stated, Nora had to struggle to earn a living all by herself.
The way author Gracelyn Asay has put a simple story of a young girl through her novel in a gripping and intriguing style of narration, it was definitely hard to believe that ‘Potholes of Hope’ was a debut novel of the very talented writer. Keeping the novel straight forward fresh and fluid with characters easy to connect with was the best example of showcasing authors natural talent and expertise in writing. I was thoroughly entertained and felt outburst of emotions by this absorbing read which was embedded with a moral that God is always watchful over us, He never leaves us, we may think that we leave him, but he’s never gone!
‘Potholes of hope’ is one of the few books, i’ll always cherish for its unique, captivating and naturalistic story line. Those looking for an engrossing read with mesmerizing touch of Christian fiction, this book is never going to let you down. Highly recommended!

 

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase

I really liked this book. I loved the characters and how they weren’t perfect and how God uses that to their advantage even if they don’t see it at the time. The books I like are those that just tell the story without a bunch of fluff and detail about the surroundings. Just enough detail to feel like I’m there and in the story. Potholes of Hope was a perfect combo of those. I am eager to read the next volume.
So why not give it a try? It’s only $0.99 and it’s a great book 🙂

“That’s Not a Real Job”

I was talking with someone the other day about what I do for a living and I couldn’t believe whatI heard. I told them that I am a stay at home mom and I have an Etsy Shop. What did they do? They laughed and said “It’s a good thing your husband has a good job because that is not a real job”. I was so mad I could have spat in the person’s face. What part of that statement did he mean wasn’t a real job? The stay at home part or the Etsy Shop part? Either way, it was a complete blast to my face.

Being a stay at home mom is not cupcakes and glitter. It is a lot of hard work chasing after my child (I can’t even imagine how moms do it with two or more), keeping her out of trouble, tantrums, discipline, cooking, cleaning, grocery shopping, and anything else that has to be done in a week. Heaven forbid something comes up where a friend is sick and needs a meal, or your family comes for a visit. All in all, it is a full time job and, the worst part (if there really is one) is that you don’t get paid for it! I do so many things as a stay at home mom that the person I was talking to probably doesn’t use at all. When was the last time he cooked a meal from scratch? Or when has he had to use long division to figure out if the price per pound will be worth it in the long run?

So for all us stay at home moms, we need to form a union or something because we work twice as hard as anyone who works… except for working moms which I have been as well up to a year ago and that was only part time. Still, it was nuts because I would be out of the house all day, then come home and do all the mom duties, and the wife duties when my husband got home. I was so happy that I was able to quit my job, not because I didn’t like it but rather I just couldn’t do it all. Since becoming a stay home mom, I have been able to actually gather skills that I would never have the time to do working outside the home like making so many things from scratch (coconut milk, flour, cookies) and dehydrating foods. But the one thing that being a stay at home mom did for me was give me the chance to start my Etsy Shop.

That has been an adventure in itself. I opened my shop back in December and my world has been turned upside down. Now I am not just the mom in the house, but, with the shop, I am the owner, marketer, sales person, customer service, campaigner, consultant, and so many other things that I would never end this post. How the person said that having an Etsy Shop isn’t a real job, I will never understand. Yes I am on PinterestTwitter, Instagram and Facebook off and on all day but it is 100% for work. When I “clock out” (hahaha) the last place I want to go is on social media.

Why might you ask? Because I am interacting with people, tweeting, pinning, and following all day long. It gets really tiring having to look at a little screen all day and still try to run a house and raise a child. Then when an order does come in, it can get really fun. Thankfully my daughter is starting to get to the age where she can just sit and watch so for my smaller projects like my Bird and Butterfly Infinity Summer Scarf I can do them more often in the middle of the day instead of after she goes to bed. But if it’s like one of my Crochet Baby Blankets or my Shark Blanket or Shark Baby Cocoon, I have to do those at night after all my other work because she wants to help me by playing the “push the yarn ball around the house” game.

I didn’t even mention that I am also an author with my Debut Novel “Potholes of Hope”. Lord knows what he would have said to that one. That there has it’s own set of craziness because marketing a book and marketing a handmade business can be similar but is usually a completely different audience. So I have two marketing circles that I am in. So that means using all the social media sites above but I also to have a separate Facebook page for my book. It’s a lot to keep track of.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my life! I wouldn’t trade it for the world so please don’t think I don’t want orders and stuff. I am just pointing these things out that it is just a walk in the park to be a stay at home mom and it isn’t like I sit and crochet all day and roll in the cash. There’s a lot more to having a successful handmade business that many people don’t realize. I don’t do the work in marketing and social networking, I don’t make any money. So the next time you talk with someone and they say they are a stay at mom mom or have a hand made business, please don’t write them off. More than likely, they are more talented than you are.

Have any stories like this? I would love to hear them! So comment below and have a great day!

Potholes of Courage’s Proof

So Potholes of Hope is about to run a free promotion again for April. I hope you will get your Kindle copy so that you get to see what all the buzz is about. As if that isn’t good enough to get a free book, I have the second book of the Potholes Series in the works called Potholes of Courage. I am excited to announce the cover today!

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The tentative cover for Potholes of Courage 🙂

What do you think? I think it it is pretty awesome. I don’t have a release date for this book yet but it will be before Christmas. So stay tune and be ready for more cool stuff as the date it chosen.

Trying to Figure it All out

Most people tackle things one thing at a time. Not me! I publish a book, open an Etsy Shop, raise a toddler, and be a wife all at the same time. Those are just my immediate duties. I have others at church, with our extended families, and outside activities. (Yes I have hobbies and friends outside of all that.) So when does it end? When will I stop pushing myself? I honestly don’t know.

Now I have been trying to learn how to make my Etsy Shop more successful and market Potholes of Hope properly. Both are two very different dragons to slay. On one hand I have a book that I need to be open and happy about even though I feel like all my posts and tweets fall on a lot of deaf ears. Then I have my Etsy Shop that I have to sell myself and say what a great creator I am when I am only hoping for one sale a month. How to juggle both while still giving my daughter and husband the time they? Honestly, it’s by the grace of God.

When it comes to any type of selling for me is really hard. I am a terrible (let me say it again, terrible) sales person. I have bombed many job interviews because they required me to do a simple sales pitch and I couldn’t. I couldn’t sell fire to Eskimos. I felt like I was being pushy and ride for telling someone they needed this certain tanning product. I would start out my pitch strong and end with a “please”. I think one of my interviewers actually laughed at me.

Now the irony of all this is that my profession is sales! AHH!!! But now I am selling things that I really care about. They are things that I have put a lot of thought and time into to make them what I want them to be. So I get on my phone and keep tweeting and posting because I know my products are good and people need them. They need good books, baby blankets, and rugs. It may seem crazy but it’s my life and I love it. I would be bored to live any other way.

But speaking of selling, I have a new listing! You know that shark blanket I was telling you about in my post I Love Filling Orders!? Well here it is! I think it looks awesome! What’s cool is that it comes in sizes for babies to really tall people. There is no one who can’t enjoy being eaten by a shark. So click on the link below and get your’s ordered today.

Shark Blanket, Eat Me Shark Blanket

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Working on the Sequel

I am so happy with how well Potholes of Hope is doing. I mean, I am a no body author, but people are actually buying and reading my book! How can’t that be exciting? It’s been eight years in the making to get this book out and now it’s actually happened. People are reading words and thoughts that I have put down on paper. It’s just, wow!

Well I have some good news! There is a second book to Potholes of Hope since it is volume 1 in a series of 4! I have the sequel (Potholes of Courage) being proofed right now an hope to release it this fall. Nora has been through a lot and there is still some potholes ahead so she will have to take courage to overcome them.

So hold tight, enjoy the first book and wait for the second. I promise you, it will be worth the wait 🙂

When the Day Goes Right

How often can we say that? I haven’t been able to say a day wen as planned I think since my daughter was born. But today seemed to go just right 🙂 We got up, had breakfast, my daughter was in a good mood, went to my candy store (the fabric store), Costco where I got some herbs and strawberries for my garden, and then home again.

Once home, I planted my herbs and strawberries, my daughter was ready for a nap, I sewed a shirt extension that someone had ordered and then I made a maxi skirt. I thought my daughter would be up by then so I sat down with my computer to do some admin work with my book and my Etsy Shop but she still gave me another hour of nap time! I couldn’t believe it! Must be growing time for her. The only time she sleeps more than two hours is when she is going through a growth spurt.

So now I am just sitting here waiting for her to wake up and my husband to get home for us to eat dinner and have a relaxing night. Like I said, these kind of days are not normal but, when they happen, I am very grateful 🙂

But it got me thinking, that God really does look out for us and we do have the mountain moments when things are going right. It just means that I need to enjoy the moment that I have and prepare myself for what will be coming in the future. Maybe if I am little bit prepared, no matter what is, I will be able to handle it the way that God would want instead of me running around like Chicken Little yelling “The sky is falling!” when really it might just be a simple change in direction and not a complete tragedy.

So here’s to the blessing of good days and may God be with us all when the days get hard. He is control of both and both are for our good.