3 Things I Learned From My Most Recent Book Signing

3 Things I Learned From My Most Recent Book Signing

Hello, writers!

It’s been a few weeks since the overwhelm of my latest book release, Look Better In Writing: A Quick & Easy Guide to Capitalization (Vol.2). Now that I have a fresh mind to level-headedly reminisce about the pros and cons of my book signing on March 3, 2018, I thought it would be a great time to blog.

But first, let me acknowledge and THANK everyone who showed their support via attendance, purchase, donation, encouraging words, etc. I APPRECIATE YOU ALL. 🖤

Okay, let’s move on to the three things I learned from my most recent book signing and how you can learn from them, too.

1 || Always Be Ready to Explain What Your Book Is About

Sometimes, people may be experiencing your book for the first time. Sometimes, your book’s cover does not fully describe what the book is about. Sometimes, people forget your book’s purpose. This is all okay, but as an author, you must be ready to explain what your book is about at any given moment. That being said, Look Better In Writing: A Quick & Easy Guide to Capitalization (Vol.2) is about the most common rules for writing or printing in capital letters. [The first volume of the Look Better In Writing (LBIW) book series is about punctuation marks.] Both books are written to help people strengthen their written communication skills and gain confidence in their writing.

Like Vol.1, this book is condensed into a quick & easy guide. Meaning, I don't define every single capitalization rule in the history of English, because who has the time to read all of that?! Each book chapter represents a common capitalization mistake that I see on/in social media, professional emails, text messages, and anywhere else there’s writing. If you’ve ever gotten confused about capitalizing days of the week, seasons, and proper nouns, then Look Better In Writing: A Quick & Easy Guide to Capitalization (Vol.2) is for you!

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A Quick & Easy Guide to Capitalization (In Writing)

A Quick & Easy Guide to Capitalization (In Writing)

Writers...

Ever drafted an email and got stuck on whether or not you should capitalize a word? Ever wanted to recommend a book online, but didn’t know how to capitalize the book title? If you’ve ever gotten confused about capitalizing days of the week, seasons, and proper nouns, then Look Better In Writing: A Quick & Easy Guide to Capitalization is for you.

Don’t let a basic grammar rule like capitalization hold you back from writing an easy-to-understand text message, social media caption, blog post, college essay, professional email, business proposal, church announcement, or any other form of written communication. The meaning of a word can change by simply capitalizing one letter in that word. That’s pretty powerful! Learn how to hold the power in your hands by learning when, why, and how to capitalize in writing.

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3 Easy Capitalization Rules

3 Easy Capitalization Rules

We all know the basic capitalization rules like capitalize the first word of a sentence. But there are a few more common rules for capitalization that I'd like to bring to your attention.

1. Capitalize Proper Nouns

A proper noun is the name of noun (a person, place, thing, or idea). More specifically, a "proper noun has two distinctive features: 1) it will name a specific [usually a one-of-a-kind] item, and 2) it will begin with a capital letter no matter where it occurs in a sentence. For example:

President Obama is writing a book.
I would love to interview President Obama.
I wonder if President Obama is fully rested after serving two terms in the White House.

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3 Hacks to Help You Write Your Book Faster

3 Hacks to Help You Write Your Book Faster

Happy Monday, writers!

Oh, wait. Excuse me.

Happy MLK Day, writers!

Three years ago today, I published my first (and only) short story. Like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. (MLK), I, too, had a dream. As a child, I dreamt of becoming a famous author among other things. I didn't think it was possible, so I pushed that dream aside and pursued careers that had more clearly-outlined paths like teaching.

Nevertheless, January 15, 2015, was the day one of my dreams became a reality. My short story Confessions of an Adult Nerd: The Bay Area Blues (Volume 1) hit Amazon and was well received.

It was a process to write that book. Allow me to briefly explain why...

My first book, SoKoDiaries: An American Teacher Living in South Korea, was a biography of sorts, where I revealed my excursions as an English teacher living in a foreign country. While living and teaching overseas in South Korea (SoKo), I had tons to write about because I was experiencing something that was new to me and my audience at the time. In fact, this is what my audience was used to reading from me: true stories about my life as an educator.

But after the third and final volume of SokoDiaries--my first book series about my teaching in South Korea--I wanted to try something different. I wanted to try my hand at short stories. My childhood dreams and vivid imagination came rushing to me near the end of 2014, and I needed a creative outlet. I wasn't confident in my ability to pull off another book genre other than non-fiction, but I tried it anyway. In honor of MLK, I made my dream a reality by clicking "publish" on Amazon three years ago.

Confessions of an Adult Nerd: The Bay Area Blues (Volume 1) is MY testimony. I thank you guys for celebrating my bookiversary with me, but what about YOUR testimony. I know writing a book is challenging, but perhaps I can give a few simple strategies you can use to make the book-writing process more digestible. This blog post consists of three hacks to help you write your book faster.

I understand that there are different types of writers. Some writers are decision makers, so it doesn't take them long to create chapter titles, book covers, etc. because they're sold on their decisions right away. But that's not everyone's testimony. In fact, I know of a few writers who like to let their work sit for a while, and they come back to it days and weeks (and maybe even years) later to make sure it's what they really want to share. Whatever type of writer you are, I believe these three writing hacks will help you write your book in less time than you think is necessary.

1 || Put your book in a 3-ring binder so you know it’s real.

This may sound cheesy and pretentious all at the same time, but it works. Sometimes, we get so tied to our computers/laptops that we cannot see our writing progress or lack thereof. If you print out your book and see blank chapters, then it'll hopefully inspire you to create chapter titles along with the content that is appropriate for each chapter. Or you may find that you actually need to edit a few chapters and scale down. Or you may find that your book is not that far from being publish-worthy. The physical, printed papers help with the book-writing process because your work will feel more like a book, and it will be organized in case you want family and friends to proofread it.

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Celebrating the Bookiversary of My First Grammar Book

First of all, Happy Thanksgiving!

Second of all, it's almost the bookiversary (book + anniversary) of my first grammar book, Look Better In Writing: A Quick & Easy Guide to Punctuation Marks (LBIW).

This time last year, I was writing and adding the finishing touches to the LBIW book. I released it on Black Friday in 2016. So, tomorrow, I'll be celebrating my bookiversary. In the past 364 days, my LBIW book has made its way to seven different college and university libraries. WOW!

In any case, I wanted to celebrate tomorrow by offering my LBIW book for $3.00. Say hello to Black Friday and Cyber Monday!

Happy Gobble Gobble!

Nailah

3 Common Grammar Mistakes To Avoid

3 Common Grammar Mistakes To Avoid

English is the global language, therefore, it's important that we write and speak it properly and correctly. That being said, there are grammar mistakes that are more common than others, and I want to talk about 3 of them. Not only will I discuss these 3 common grammar mistakes, but I will also share ways to avoid them. (I'll keep the blog post short and sweet because I have a video that goes into more detail.)

1 || Avoid not knowing the difference between THEN and THAN


Example sentences with "then":

I went to the store, then I went to school.
In 2012, I lived in South Korea. Life was simpler then.

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The Benefit Of Writing Through Difficult Times

Life is always changing. There are happy times, just as there are difficult times. There are relaxing times, just as there are stressful times. There is no way to predict the circumstances that life will bring; It's unpredictable like the weather.

Speaking of the weather, most of you reading this blog post are aware of the U.S. weather crisis that is happening in Houston, Texas. (If you're not, then you can read up on it here.) Hurricane Harvey is definitely a life-changing experience for Houston residents, property owners, business owners, and more. This tropical storm is a national crisis and (directly and indirectly) affects America as a whole. 

We don't know the storm's next move, but we do know that there are many people with heavy hearts as a result of it. The question is, how can we help people heal their heavy hearts? As a Christian, I've been praying and donating to organizations. As a writer, I've been writing. WHY? Because writing is therapeutic. While I, personally, have not been directly impacted by Hurricane Harvey, I understand the therapeutic need to cope with loss. Any loss.

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3 Tips To Help You Write A Book Faster

3 Tips To Help You Write A Book Faster

Writing a book is not easy. Sure, there are some simple strategies you can use to make the book-writing process more digestible, but the work still needs to be done. The WRITING still needs to be done. If you're anything like me, you don't want to wait 17 years to write the second chapter of your book after writing the first, and then another 17 years to write chapter three. I'm exaggerating, of course, but I know that writing a book can be a slow process for some people. And I understand that there are different types of writers, so there are different types of writing processes; however, I have a few tips that I believe will help every type of writer write their book faster.

1 || Put your book in a 3-ring binder so you know it’s real

This may sound cheesy and pretentious all at the same time, but it works. Sometimes, we get so tied to our computers/laptops, that we can't see our writing progress or lack thereof. If you print your book out and see those bald-headed chapters, then it'll hopefully inspire you to fill them out. Or you may find that you actually need to edit a few chapters and scale down. Or you may find that your book is not that far from publish-worthy. I'm telling you, the physical, printed papers help with the book-writing process. It will feel more like a book, and it will be organized in case you want family and friends to proofread it.

Read More