Finding an Editor is like finding a Dentist!

Finding an Editor for my self-published book plus several titles I am working on, is like finding a dentist. Both have one thing in common: I cannot afford either of them!

So my first book sits on several sites like Amazon, iBooks, and about 4 more sites, with no reviews. It has two reviews from Smashwords and I am so grateful! I listened to what they said and changed the book and cover.

I’m disabled on disability with two teenage boys who eat all the time, bills are a joke and I help my mom take care of my grandma/her mom, and I help my mom when her MS is bad. I have an eye disorder too so SEEING mistakes in my books is harder.

I could never afford an Editor because my goal is to keep my work at FREE pricing. Can’t do that on Amazon but through Draft2Digital I can get it on Barnes and Noble, iBooks and more priced at FREE!

This title has been out since December of last year, I did a giveaway on goodreads for ten books and it is free on Smashwords too but before that I had it on Amazon through their 3 month program where I could offer it for free lending. So I know someone must have read it! Two are confirmed.

As I work on finishing a new title, the weight of my world coupled with my seemingly lack of talent haunts my mind. Stop smoking, take care of my depression, anxiety, ADD, and Myasthenia Gravis and everything else under this roof (autistic son, one who has no “I’m full” trigger) and know my work is out in this world not shining like a jewel because I have been the only proofreader but maybe it’s just a piece of fool’s gold. I told myself I was publishing my books for myself, self satisfaction not for money or fame or even one review. It was important to me to get my first book published quickly because I needed my grandma to see it. She can pass away at any moment right now.

I have American Indian blood of the Chickasaw tribe in Oklahoma. If I lived there instead of California, I could get free dental work, health care and a house. A house in the middle of scorpions, ticks and tarantulas along with tornados. I’ll stick with earthquakes here in California. Besides the one and only time I went to Oklahoma was to see my birth father, where the indian blood came from, and my half brother tried to shoot me for fun, because he was bored! Nope. Not going back.

There is a TV show in the USA right now called Smile. It showcases people who get free dental work. Circumstances in their lives that has led to their rotting teeth is extraordinary but i can relate. I was born early and was too premature. I can’t afford a dentist to fix my teeth so I just have one here and there pull the tooth out. It sets me back financially of course but that’s all I can do. I don’t smile because of my teeth or missing teeth. I’ll never date. Shoot, I’m making myself depressed.

Life is a gift, and we can view it in a positive light or a negative cloud.  Pushing through all the muck around me, I’m grasping at the light, holding on to it with all my strength and promising myself that no matter what, I’ll never let go.

Mental health and Foggy Days & My first book is published and available on Amazon!

This Is Life

My son is in the hospital for depression. It’s been hard but his father drove me to see him on Saturday and Sunday. His 72 hour hold is over and he will be discharged on Wednesday.  It was one of the most hardest things I have ever done. To bring my son to crisis where he was taken back behind many locked doors by these very big men. Then they moved him by ambulance, totally strapped down from neck to feet more than an hour away.

Other than missing his handheld gaming system, food at home, and some other regular day comforts, he is doing quite well. I just pray that this is helping him as his life is just beginning and I need him to thrive while he survives.

On another note, our neighbors had a party last night and they turned their sound system all the way up. God says to forgive your neighbors but I found it hard because I already had a migraine and they do not care what time it is or how loud they are or to be courteous to thy neighbors. I called the police the last time they did this and they threw eggs on our cars. But on that occurrence their sound system was maxed out and on both times, the chairs we sat in vibrated from their pounding, swearing music.

My mom’s multiple sclerosis has not improved rather it is weakening her further. She couldn’t get pills down her throat without gagging so she’s wearing a cervical collar and it helps like magic! I am a caregiver to both my mom and grandma who;s leg was amputated in April of this year. I am a mom of two boys I love dearly and guardian of four cats that do not always get along and I am constantly cleaning up their messes as one overeats and up it comes while another overeats and makes a mess in both ways which can get pretty stinky, poor maine coon kitty. So furry. While our cat that overeats got bitten by another one of its siblings, I took him to the vet a week ago and he’s 21 pounds. He is doing much better now.

My happiest note is that I took my book I wrote for 2014 and I ordered the proof paperback and published it on Amazon!  I want it available as free so I’m going to have to figure it out as it would not let me do that. The lowest I could go was $0.99 and I am all about free books!

I will gladly send a copy to anyone who would be willing to write a review for me. This book was written in thirty days and edited in fifteen days by myself. It is just the beginning as I have one more complete novel that is my jewel that I am editing right now.

We have super foggy nights and mornings and I hope  that people drive safely! It didn’t rain but the cars drive by making that swooshing sound from the wet pavement.


I am going to give a paperback copy away in goodreads once I finish the proof.

Ethical Author, free ebooks from Amazon and no turkey


Through a blog I follow, I found out about being an ‘ethical author’. While I have always had strong beliefs in life, this organization came up with a perfect code of conduct.

Now, with finishing up, I am busy editing each chapter of my books, “Love Awakens” that I wrote for 2014’s writing challenge. I am using grammerly and editing this book chapter by chapter. With my role as a caregiver of my mom and grandma and being a mom to two boys and four cats, life can get a bit tangled for me. Writing helps me remain sane, or as sane as I will ever be!

My mom who has multiple sclerosis is getting her motorized wheelchair tomorrow which is a boon! She can barely hold her head up now even though we are doing her shots, it is frustrating to see her so frail! Then my grandma is still going to her physical therapy appointments like today’s, where she walks with her prosthetic leg. 80+ years and having had her left leg amputated above the knee only seven months ago, she is amazing. This holiday season will be blessed as she is no longer in clutches of the horrible pain she suffered for too long. She is a very strong woman, all of us are! Since I am now the chef and my carpal tunnel keeps me from being able to do many things, we won’t be having a turkey for Thanksgiving this year. I think we’ll go with a rotisserie chicken, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, pumpkin pie, black olives and gravy for those who want it. I am not a gravy person. I hate peas and carrots too. Thank goodness I can hide the peas and not serve them this year!

Here are some free Amazon Kindle books for you to enjoy. Remember that there are thousands of books available to you for free every day in almost every category of reading you are looking for. Same goes with Barnes and Nobles and the Nook.

Look at the top 100 free Kindle books here: (make sure to click on Free!)

From there, you can branch off to different categories from the menu on your left.

Happy Monday!

Yeah! Made it to Friday! Free books and twitter experiences

I have been so reluctant to really join with the Twitter tidal wave but alas I did yesterday and found a huge resource bonanza of help for beginning writers, established writers and everyone in between.  I was amazed to find that a ‘professional’ editor charges $2.00 USD a page , double spaced at a 12 point font with a minimum of some odd pages. And that was that ‘professional’ editor’s sale price!  I found three more editors but they belong to a certain website writers should visit.  Also I found KindleMojo a very interesting place you should be sure to check out! It’s free to join.  Then, here is a tweet:  has an opening for one indie writer. Then there’s Indie Author Reviews And this one . I will have to start a special spot for editors. Here is one then don’t miss out on this site . Oh my but I will put that on my to do list. Twitter blurs my mind with all the possibilities and the way it reaches out through various social media and big name websites, celebrities, famous authors, indie authors, the unpublished like myself and sneaks in and plants a spike right in the middle of your life, one that intends to stay forever. At least you don’t have to feed it!   Ah here’s another editing helper or here Gosh I could go on forever. I have updated my pages 


I need to get on with editing my book but life is blowing me farther away from my goals. My kids go back to school next week and I hope I get plenty of time to get my first book in order. I only wanted one book but it’s too long as the industry seems to like 400 pages or less. And my story is way too above that.  Happy Friday my fellow Earthlings.Image

Thursday 8/8/13 free ebooks, editing notes for writers, some blogs + more

Sites for Readers (Giveaways) and Writers (Information) HERE


Today is Eid for my boys’ father so he is coming to take them ‘out’. I get my stitches removed from my gums today too!  I would rather hide under my pillow all day from the drama that is about to occur. Heaven help us get through this day.

Got the domain but can’t polish it without more $$$ and publishing rants

I just bought today for the next year totally forgetting that I could purchase it through other sites with less restrictions to the layout and well I’m disappointed that I can’t navigate this site as well as I usually can. This domain is named after the street I grew up on and miss. I might publish with it as my whatchacallit? Pen name? ‘By Night Shade Lane’ or ‘By Colleen Michelle Johnson’… So on to my publishing thoughts. I wanted this site because I felt it would be good to have it as an information site as I get my first book ready to publish. I’ve got one company calling me and emailing me asking for thousands of dollars to publish my book, which I say, “No thank you.”.  There are assorted rights for the author by choosing to self publish or take the route of sending queries to Literary Agents who then might be able to lead me to a publisher.  I’ve visited which allows you to search through lots of Literary Agents and I’ve seen a few I really admire right off the bat. I watch the top 100 books for free and paid on every day including the genre I am expecting to place my books in. I look at the book covers, the comments, the book lengths, as much as I can to help myself figure out where I might find my niche. My one biggest problem while editing my manuscript is my over use of the word ‘I’. It is totally making me bonkers. I spent so much time on photo stock websites looking for the exact images I wanted for a cover. 🙂Image