My Journey to Become a Writer 02/07/2024 Post #38

Informative Image

Today was another doozy of a day. Did I spell that right? Is there a correct and proper spelling for doozy?

I’m still trying to repent from typing two spaces after a period. I’m not sure that this dog will ever learn that new trick.

I do feel old today. Yesterday I upped the prescription on my readers – which I never needed until about three years ago, and today I turned the house upside down looking for my checkbook which had gone astray.

When I went to triple-check the car, I found I’d lost the key fob, too – which had just been in my hand. I finally found it in my shirt pocket (the key), and then I saw a pair of my dad’s glasses stuck under the seat. Maybe I should hold onto those for someday soon.

Last of all, I found my checkbook, which had fallen down between a wall and desk in the room upstairs, which is still lined with boxes to sort through. Some days are like that. A lot of them have been similar as of late.

What Did I Accomplish Today to Be a Writer?

After that saga, I was able to focus on my writing efforts; but most of what I did today was in the realm of laying a foundation for being able to do all this in a less scattered way.

I did do Day 38 of the 100 Words a Day Writing Challenge 2024 through LA Writer’s Lab.  

What Am I Afraid of Doing Next in My Journey as a Writer?

I’m scared I won’t take the time to lay a good foundation, because I’m too busy putting out fires.

Stuff I find myself saying:  Where did I put that?!

– Jody Susan

How Am I Balancing the Different Aspects of Being a Writer?

Today I worked on my organizational binders. I’ve gotten in a bad habit of jotting random notes all in a jumble, and sticking papers in highly unsensible places. Having various three-ring binders with plastic sleeves and pocket dividers has always helped my sanity in the past. I love “school supplies” and creating systems.

Did anybody else used to hide behind their Trapper Keeper in elementary school? Those made such ideal cubicles.

What I’m Doing About Building a Body of Work as a Writer

I participated in a class led by Mary-Beth Manning from L.A. Writers’ Lab today. I’ve been focusing my work in that class on current content – especially in the realm of caregiving and grief; but I’ve also gotten courage to share a couple of poems, and the first chapter of my memoir (which is hopefully coming out soon).

What I’m Doing to Complete My Manuscripts as a Writer

Tonight I submitted the first page of my memoir, “About Trees”, to the Boston Writing Workshop for their Writers Got Talent Contest. Submissions are picked at random and then critiqued by agents in front of the audience. I’m attending that conference this weekend (via the web) in hopes of learning how to pitch to agents and write query letters. I’ll let you know how it goes, and if I’d recommend attending one of their events.

What I’m Doing to Grow My Website as a Writer

I just bought the Pro version of Canva, so I’m working on my branding kit. I’m highly partial to my current logo; but can’t say I’d pick pale pink as my core color, so I’ve been playing around with various hues, trying to settle on some that I like.

What I’m Doing to Build My Blog as a Writer

Other than these posts, I’ve put blogging on hold, while I get back to getting the basics in order. Hopefully soon I will be able to finish a bunch of drafts I’ve set aside and get a schedule going. I still want to talk about that three year cruise, competing with AI, caregiving, converting my cargo trailer into a tiny house/studio, tips for writers, etc…

Not so Fun Fact About Me:  I have more ideas than I have time to for. Sound familiar?

What I’m Doing About Networking as a Writer

Today I attended that writing class, made preparations for the Boston Writing Workshop, worked on creating a business card, reached out to some caregiving clients, and sought out contact information for some potential readers of my work. I also heard about The Moth for the first time and listened to a few story submissions. I don’t know if I’d ever get up at one of their events and share my work. I’m much more comfortable behind a keyboard than a microphone; but maybe someday I could take a leap.

What I’m Doing About Monetization as a Writer

Today I worked on learning more about QuickBooks, just in case I ever actually make some money. I did find out I made enough on book royalties from KDP last year to have to pay taxes. Whoopee! I guess that’s a win???

Trivia Question: Does Amazon handle sales tax for authors, or do authors have to take care of that for every sale?

I was asked about Amazon’s sales tax on KDP yesterday and didn’t know the answer for sure, so I looked at an invoice for a book I’d bought, and saw that I’d been charged sales tax, so I’m assuming Amazon takes it out automatically, especially since it would be way too complicated for individuals to keep track of city, county, state, federal, and international taxes codes.

As for income tax, I believe people paying U.S. taxes are to report these profits as royalties on their 1099 Line 2.

Was that thing I learned in high school called? the inter-state tax law, where one state couldn’t tax another?

I guess that’s been abolished because of online sales.

What I’m Doing About Social Media as a Writer

I responded to some comments today, and finally found a way to navigate between my two Facebook accounts, though I don’t know how to repeat the process. Working on my branding kit through Canva should help make posting a simpler process in the future.

What I’m Doing About Artificial Intelligence (AI) as a Writer

The Canva Branding Kit had something called “Brand Voice”. I looked into that, and I guess a company is supposed to create a way they would like to communicate to their audience, and then the computer will do it for them. Wow – if this continues, we are going to have less social graces than ever before. Won’t we lose all sorts of interpersonal skills?

What I’m Doing to Stay Organized as a Writer

Today I worked on my operations manual binders, fiddled with Canva, worked on getting QuickBooks set up, and set out some lamps so I could see. Now I just need to find bulbs for them. Too bad I’m not bright enough to remember where I set the box of bulbs. At least I finally found my checkbook – and readied myself to send more money out into the world, hoping someday some will come back in from all this effort, so that I can at least break even.

Looking Back at My Writing Journey

Today in class I wrote a synopsis of the story of my grandparents’ barn, which stretches throughout my memoir series. When I was done reading it, my teacher commented that maybe I’m in a “barn raising phase of life”, like all of these parts I’m putting together currently are part of the foundation for what’s about to be built.

She added, “I’m not saying it’s all just going to be a happy ending.”

I had to laugh and burst out, “Well I sure hope it’s a happy ending after all this!”

I’m thinking the series will be called, “A Full-Circle Story”. I’ve had that phrase in my head since the day one of my dear mentors, Jean Wilson, was buried, because her granddaughter said to me, “That barn is a full-circle story!” That sentence has stuck with me.

Jean loved that barn like I did, and played in it when she was a little girl. There was a fifty-seven year age difference between us; but we shared the same childhood memories. She became my pen pal, and a prayer warrior on my behalf at the age of ninety-four.

I’d hope this barn story would make her happy, too.

Any Other Thoughts on Becoming a Writer, Random Rants, Tales, or Trials…

Nope. Time to brush my teeth and get to bed.

Thanks for reading what I’m writing,

Jody Susan

Oh, but speaking of branding, you might be interested in this post…

Don’t worry – I didn’t get a face tattoo – although, ironically, the pale pink branding color Canva picked from my logo does look a lot like my skin right now.


I'm not sure what to say here: I once got second place in a dog-look-alike-contest? I know how to fold a fitted sheet? I'm pretty much a poster child for social backwardness - at least as far as social media is concerned; but I have some stories I think I'm supposed to share and am attempting to do that here, in this space.

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