Posted in My Journey

Happy New Year! The 2020/21 Edition. 🥂

Well, well, well… what a year it’s been!

I know much of social media today will be filled with negative reviews of an awful year. But I don’t want to add to that. Despite the obvious trials and tribulations living through a pandemic brings, I want to spend today reflecting on the positives and focusing on my hopes for the future, whatever it may hold. And I invite you to do the same. ✨

2021 should hopefully be a big year for me! What with a wedding to plan and a book (or two) to work on! All alongside still getting to know my sassy, 30 year old self. 😉 There’s so much to look forward to. So much love in the air. I know that I am blessed. ❤️

So what positives can I pluck from 2020? I hear you cry. Well my top nine is a great place to start for me. I’m glad to see my participation in the The Carnaby CAL got a lot of love. Hobbies have kept me sane this year. As well as yarn based fun, I also got back into reading, did some top notch Nintendo based gaming, found that Pilates and Yoga are the ones for me and went outside and really just enjoyed taking a walk with nature. I discovered I no longer just kill plants and their presence in my living space is quite lovely. And last but by no means least, and to be honest this is not new news to me but just something that this year has underlined in big fat marker pen, my family mean everything to me. ❤️

So instead of throwing away this year today, I ask you to instead pan the gold from the dirt and cherish the things you have learnt this year. You’ll be surprised what extreme situations can teach us. Feel free to share your findings in the comments. Spread that positivity, share the love. 🥰

So here’s to 2021! A year I know many of us are hoping is full of promise and better times. For me, I hope for health and happiness. Everything else is bonus!

Take care, stay safe and enjoy your celebrations, no matter how small. 💛

– B xo

Posted in My Journey

Unravelled Book Tour! 📚

Hello my lovelies! I hope this blog finds you all well and safe. 😘 At the end of August/ beginning of September my novel had its first ever book tour! 💃🏻 But in case you missed it, I wanted to take the opportunity to compile them all together in one place!

So below I’ve collected the links to all the reviews from my lovely readers. Such kind words. 🥰 Every morning I was waking up to new reviews that made my heart sing. ❤️

Karen Reads and Recommends

Rambling Mads

The Book Reader

The Book of Han

Karen and her Books

Feed Me Fiction

Wonders of Books

A Girl Who Love to Read

The Book Snail

Bookish Bursnoll

The Breakfast Bookclub

Ruthie’s Next Chapter

Books In My Opinion

Honest Mam Reader

Between the Pages Book Club

The Book Reviewing Mum

Dash Fan Book Reviews

These Blank Pages

Booky Charm

Ceri’s Little Blog

Late Blooming Wallflower

Mrs Hible Reads

Mrs LJ Gibbs

Portobello Book Blog

Frenzy Reads

Hannah May Book Reviews

My Ever Growing Bookshelf

Rajiv’s Reviews

I just want to say a big thank you to everyone who read my book and left such wonderful reviews (and took such lovely photos! 😍). Honestly, it was such a wonderful thing to experience! ❤️ Also special thanks to Love Book Tours and Hall Good Books for making it all happen in the first place. 🥰 I am truly blessed.

And remember, if you’ve read Unravelled too, be sure to head over to Amazon and leave it a review… because reviews feed authors!

Thanks in advance. 😘

– B xo

Posted in My Journey

I posted on social media *almost* everyday during lockdown and this is what I learnt.

Hello everyone! 👋 I hope this blog post finds you well.

With the world finding it’s feet again, I believe there’s a lot of room out there for anxieties and fear. So I just wanted to start of with a check-in and big virtual hugs for anyone who needs it. These are still crazy times, so it’s still okay to take everything at your own pace. ❤️

Making the most of my last day of lockdown.

I myself am returning to my day job today and amongst my mix of emotions, I’ve given some time to reflect on the experience of lockdown and what I’ve been able to gain from it.

As I’m sure you’ve noticed, during lockdown my content across my social media channels increased dramatically! This was for a number of reasons: more free time, shift in focus and responsibilities, personal goals and in all honesty it’s been something I’ve been meaning to do for a looooong time. Today I want to share with you what I learned from it and some of the things I want to take with me in to my future author journey. So here goes…

Interaction hit an all time high!

Now I know this may seem like an obvious point, but I didn’t expect the true impact it would have. It’s simple really, talk more and people are more likely to respond. I finally sailed past the 500 followers mark in instagram! (A goal I’ve had for quite some time.) Somethign which I’m incredibly greaful for, and I look forward to the new dynamic these followers will bring. But I also now I need to put in the hard work if I want to keep it up and get myself and my books out there. Social media isn’t easy. But it sure feels good when your hard work pays off.

I picked up a couple of new hobbies along the way…

I made new friends!

With pretty everyone using the internet as their main form of communication over the last few months, I’ve found myself being able to talk to people from all over with a lot more ease. (Although I will admit I am still the worst at texting back! 😅) However what this means is during this time I’ve deepened connections with preexisting friendships and also managed to form completely new ones! I really hope that as things all shift again I’ll be able to maintain these friendships as you’re all absolutely fabulous! (And I really will work on trying to reply quicker! 😂)

Different platforms pull in different crowds.

Again potentially a no-brainer, but I really did enjoy the varied conversations I’ve had across my different platforms. It also means I’ve been able to tailor my content so there’s something for everyone! What’s popular on Facebook might not generate the same interest on Insta. And twitter, I’ve found twitter is a completely different ball game…

Socially distanced friendship date was a definite highlight!

I feel more connected with the world, like I actually know what’s going on…kinda. 😂

Okay, so realistically during the pandemic the majority of the news was well, the pandemic. However, my input around the dinner table and even during the current affairs round at the (virtual) pub quiz has increased! And it’s all thanks to my socials. Issues that have arose during this time have been discussed at length by the people I follow, I’ve learnt a lot. Not saying that I’m usually an ostrich, but the news on the TV just isn’t my thing. However I’ve found this way of consuming news and media to be a lot better suited to me. However, I still have to say Russell Howard is still my favourite way to consume the news. 😂

It gave me motivation.

This one was such a boost! Once you announce something on my socials, it gives you the motivation to see that thing through. New hobbies, new projects, reading goals, writing goals. Once it’s out there, it’s got to be done! On more than one occasion I’ve had people comment on how they’ve seen me “thriving” during lockdown. With my posts online being a great inspiration for them to give things a go. Creating a positive outlet during these times was my ultimate goal. Hearing that it’s working and I was bringing people some light in the dark was enough motivation in itself to keep it up.

I enjoyed letting my creativity run wild!

It gave me a routine.

Routine is the main thing I lost at the beginning of lockdown. With my daily life completely turned on it’s head, I was comepletey free of all sense of a routine. At first I found this a blessing, but as with all things, too much of what you fancy will make you sick. By mid-lockdown I’d developed a new little routine (which I know I’m going to miss immensely now I’m out of it) and posting to social media was a big part of that. It was a break out, five minutes to myself. Sharing with the big wide world, having a sense of reaching outside of my four walls.

And I really enjoyed it!

I genuinely got excited about deciding what to post everyday. I was happily filling up drafts section, discovering news hashtags and watching the varying reach. I’ve taken a lot of photos across these last four months (despite not really going anywhere?!) just in case I’d need them for my feeds. What I’ve end up with is a ton of memories. ❤️

Here’s one that never made it to the feed, but is too adorable not to post. (I think I’ll use it to advertise this post!) Pretty sure this little one is going to be missing me today. 😢

And there we have it. What a journey it’s been! There’s been highs, there’s been lows but overall, I’m glad I got to spend this time with the people I did, doing exactly what we did.❤️

B xo

Posted in My Journey, News & Events, The Notepad

Last Call for Submissions!

So with lockdown drawing to a close and the transitional phase of the world trying to get back to normal well under way, I thought it best I give a final call for submissions to my lockdown time capsule. (You can read the launch post here.)

Thank you to all of the submissions I have received so far. I’ve enjoyed going through them, despite their sometimes darker tones. You have been heard. 💕

However, I still feel I’m missing some important voices. Especially with the end goal to be a real depiction of life in lockdown. So I’m giving out one last call.

Art, photography, poetry, short stories, streams of consciousness, crafting, gardening, sign writing, articles, case studies, diary entries, even lengthy social media statuses. If it’s raw and real, I want it!

To submit your piece attach it an email, in any format, and send to brionymarshallauthor@gmail.com along with your preferred name.

My plan is to create a downloadable PDF that will be available from this blog. Something that we can download on many devices and share in the memories of this time. Taking forward with us the strength and creativity of the human race, even in extreme circumstances.

Thank you in advance for taking part and I hope to hear from you soon.

– B xo

Posted in Guest Posts, My Journey

Guest Post: How to support your favourite authors on Amazon…

Hi everyone. 👋 Today I have something a little different for you. My publisher has written this guest blog post for me. After some rather sad and irritating situations we’ve found ourselves in recently, we both thought it best we share this information before things get out of hand. I hope you find it useful. Any questions? Feel free to leave them in the comments and I’ll be sure to pass them on.

– B xo

When an author publishes a book it’s natural for family and friends to be delighted. They’d be the first to support them, and to ensure that – should they buy a copy of their book – that some of the revenue goes into the pockets of their loved one. Because, let’s face it, Jeff Bezos doesn’t need the money.

However, when buying a copy of your favourite author’s book from Amazon, you may not be sending any royalties their way. Across the vast majority of book sales, only by buying copies directly from the publisher’s website is an author guaranteed royalties.

This post is probably pointing out the obvious, but it’s amazing how many people who wish to support an author mis-order on Amazon.

Amazon doesn’t just sell new books, it’s also a marketplace for second-hand books – and this is what some people forget when ordering from the site. If you’re not paying attention, and simply choose to buy a copy of the author’s book from the first supplier listed, you may not receive what you think.

We know of authors’ friends and relatives who have received damaged/well-used copies of their loved ones’ books after ordering on Amazon, and assumed they have come from the publisher. No publisher would send out a battered or used copy when fulfilling a ‘new copy’ sale (that said, they have no control over how well Royal Mail may treat the book during delivery!). The purchaser, in this scenario, will have ordered a second-hand copy from Amazon without realising. 

Authors only receive royalties on the sake of new copies; once a copy is in the public domain – whether sold at a car boot sale, on Amazon, from a charity shop or elsewhere – it’s like any other second-hand product…only the seller gets paid. If you want to ensure an author is rewarded for the wonderful content they’ve created, which you’re about to read, support them by purchasing a new copy of their book and not a second-hand one.

Sometimes, this mis-ordering is genuine error. Amazon doesn’t give any priority to new book sales, and therefore doesn’t always present the publisher/provider of new copies at the top of the drop-down list on a book’s sales page – you need to be aware, when ordering, exactly who you’re ordering the book from. Whilst you may not know the publisher’s name, Amazon will state the condition of copies and whether they’re new or not.

Of course, many people are happy to order second-hand copies of a title and, due to the rise of Amazon, we have all become used to purchasing books at rock-bottom prices. However, for book buyers who wish to consciously support a certain author, take care when ordering from Amazon. Our advice, as you’d expect, is to order directly from the publisher – not only will the author receive their respective royalties from the sale, it’s also likely that they’ll receive more of the revenue when there are no Amazon selling fees to meet.

Think of the amount of time and talent an author puts into the creation of their book. If we all only ever bought second-hand copies, how are authors expected to pay their bills? 

Support the writers of the world and buy new books!

(Originally posted on Hall Good Books Blog.)

Posted in My Journey, News & Events, The Notepad

How will we remember this time?

Hello everyone. 👋

I hope you’re all keeping well and doing whatever you can to keep yourself going through these crazy times!

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking recently. Mostly on a bigger scale. Some days, when I can push past the fear and anxiety I realise that I am in fact living through history. Experiencing a time that will be talked about and even taught about in schools for decades to come.

And then I wonder, but how exactly will this time be captured? And will that capsule, whatever it’s form, resonate with me?

And then I had a light bulb moment. 💡

As an author I write about my own feelings and experiences as an inspiration for my works. Especially feeling what I am right now, the obvious idea would be to write a novel about all of this. But that is only from one perspective…

My experience won’t be the same as your experience, or your neighbour’s experience or your friend’s experience or your friend’s friend’s experience and so on and so on…

Writing for me has always had an element of catharsis to it. It’s one of the reasons why I originally started writing as a young confused teen. Without my angsty emo poetry Unravelled would most likely not exists. 😂 But I digress…

What I’m trying to say is that I’m know I’m not the only one that turns to their creative muse when the emotions hit.

Here’s a little taster of my lockdown so far….

So I want your creations! Your poems, your short stories, your streams of consciousness, your art, your excerpts, your monologues, your scenes, your letters, your doodles, your haikus. I’m really setting no limitations with this. Anything! Any creative splurge is welcome here.

My hope is to make our very own time capsule of these unprecedented times. I’m not making any promises. All I’m working with at the moment is ideas, passion and a good feeling. But depending on the success of this launch I’m hoping to have a new project on my hands.

So whether it’s isolation, rainbows, grief, community spirit, financial uncertainty, new found freedom, nature walks, PE lessons, clapping at 8pm or singing along to You’ll Never Walk Alone. I want to read all about it and who knows what we could achieve.

If you’d like to submit a piece to my Lockdown Time Capsule. Please email brionymarshallauthor@gmail.com with your piece attached and include your preferred pen name. I look forward to seeing what you guys come up with.

So there you have it. May your ideas flow like water and your pens drift across it’s ocean.

Happy Writing! ✍️

– B xo

Posted in My Journey

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter everyone! I know times might be hard and weird and just down right bizarre right now. With many traditions for today having to be thrown out the window. 😢 But we’ve got to keep strong.

Around this time of year we see nature come alive. It’s fought through the bitter cold and harsh trials of winter and now it’s blooming and growing, raising it’s head to the sun. In these crazy times I think we can learn a lot from nature as we watch it thrive.

I hope you all have a nice Easter, no matter what you get up too. Stay safe, eat some choccie and spread the love in any way you can. 🌸

– B xo

Posted in My Journey, News & Events, Unravelled

Thank you so much! ❤️

I have been absolutely blown away by the feedback from my publisher this morning regarding our eBook giveaway…

Guys! 164 downloads over 5 days… that’s incredible!!!

I’m lost for words…

That’s well over a hundred of you out there who now own my novel that didn’t less than a week ago! Wow… Thank you so much. ❤️

However the sad news is my free eBook offer has officially ended. 😔 But if you didn’t get a chance to take advantage of this fab offer do not fear! Because…

❤️ My paperback is still on sale for only £4.75! (And remember if you order through HallGoodBooks you get the free Adrian scarf knitting pattern too!)

❤️ The eBook is a still at a reduced price of only 99p! (So it’s still a bargain if you ask me. 😉)

Thank you again all for your continued support on this amazing journey of mine. To everyone who downloaded, liked, shared and commented on any of my content over the last 5 days… you’re all superstars. You make all the hard work and behind the scenes pedalling definitely worth while. ❤️

And finally, please remember that reviews feed authors! Just a few words from you could make such a difference to my visibility as an author and how my content and, more importantly, my novels are seen by the big big online world! So go on make my day, click here for my Amazon page. 🥰

And with that I suppose all that’s left to say is happy reading! I look forward to hearing what you think and if you have the eBook be sure to send me your selfies of you and your e-readers, I’d love seeing Unravelled in wild! ❤️

– B xo

(All images included on this post are thanks to Headshots & Hydrangeas. If you ever need a flat lay of dreams, make sure you drop Ginger a message. 😍🥰😘)