Monday, May 17, 2010

What Will You Be Doing This Summer?

The last weeks of school are right around the corner. Summer is knocking at the door with lazy days and sunny skies. My son could not be happier. Today he announced, “There is only one week and three days left. I cannot wait to sit around all day playing video games, sleeping in, and not taking test.”
If life could only be that easy as his mom. No, I will be spending my summer working on projects I normally do not have the time for during the school months. I think many writers forget summer is not a time for us to take a vacation. Yes, vacations are important, but taking three months off from our writing is not ideal. Summer is the perfect time to maintain, refresh, or jump-start projects. Yes, having all three kids at home does make working a challenge. However, I find this the perfect time for me to work on writing workshop ideas for the New Year. To refresh old workshops I have done for upcoming conferences. Putting together new ideas for school visits, updating old school visit agendas, and researching what other authors do for their school visits. This is also a great time to update my websites. All three of them along with my two blogs and many social sites. It is important to stay on top of your content. You want to keep your marketing face fresh and new looking even if you do not have a new book out. By working over the summer on new ways to make old content new, you keep your foot in the door come the new school year. Think about it . . . most children’s authors do not make their money from selling books. No, most children’s authors make their money from school visits, doing workshops, and speaking engagements. So what are you going to do this summer? Sit around by the pool drinking iced tea or working on some new content to keep your marketing face fresh?


  1. My speaking engagements are always light during the summer, so I intend to do research for my next book and expand my speaking possibilities through marketing. No pool for me!

    And wow - do you remember those days? Do nothing but sleep, watch TV, play video games, and visit with friends? Wish I had some of that time back now...

  2. Since my daughter is grown with her own family and we live in Florida where it’s pretty much summer all year, my schedule doesn’t change much – there are usually fewer signings and appearances.

  3. As writers things may slow down for us such as, book signings, speaking engagements, and of course no school visits for children's authors. But this is a time to work on our writing goals. It is also a great time to work on submissions to publishers, write those query letters, and of course like I said above update, refresh, and research new ideas.

  4. What aren't I working on this summer might be a shorter list. I try to have fewer virtual book tours in July, but it never works out. I've got a full slate of authors that month, even though we'll be on the Outer Banks of NC for the first two weeks. So, part of my vacation will be working.

    Our girls get out June 21st, then have a camp starting June 28th, which will bring them through until we leave for the Outer Banks. When we return, I've got several ghostwriting projects to work on, my current WIP, and probaly more virtual book tours.

    I hope to have some fun with the kids too, though. They don't stay little forever.


  5. So true Cheryl, little ones do grow-up fast. My son only has four years left of school after this summer. My middle daughter starts school and well . . . my youngest is still a baby. However, with three children it seems life goes a lot faster.

    I hope you'll have time to pop over during the summer and share how things are going with all the projects you have going on. Life as a writing mama never seems to slow down or take a break. I hope you get to enjoy half the summer with your family.

  6. I plan to keep working on my writing as usual. Right now I'm doing research for a couple of books, so that will spill over into the summer. Hoping to take a working weekend trip to get some pictures and "hands on" information for the books I'm researching.

  7. Susanne,

    You have me interested in the kind of book you are working on. I always love hearing writers getting "hands on" experience.

  8. My daughter gleefully announced the same thing this morning. And, I thought, oh, no. Here comes summer!

    I plan to finish my current WIP this summer--while bribing my girls with beverages at the local bookstore cafe, so I can write, dropping them off at the public pool, so I can write...

    It isn't easy, but I AM looking forward to the warm weather!

  9. lol - I plan on attending several homeschool conferences and other small events around my area - starting this weekend and going through the end of August, possibly even more in the fall. I'm trying to get my books into the hands of folks who can use them the most. My kids are both in high school and for the last several summers I've not had to worry about how to keep them busy as they seem to disappear for most of the summer visiting relatives, et cetera only to come back to the end of July to start doctors' visits and preparing for the upcoming fall (school starts the third week of August) and up until this year had been band camp but this year, neither one wants to be in marching band - which is fine with me. But son has decided he wants to play football, so they have begun their training and I'm sure will start back earlier than marching band camp does so it may be a short summer. We will all be busy. Oh yeah, writing - I hope during the times I'm traveling to get some mor stories written in my series - E ;)

    Elysabeth Eldering
    Author of the Junior Geography Detective Squad, 50-state, mystery, trivia series

    Where will the adventure take you next?

  10. I'll be doing the same thing I've done the last 3 years. Babysit two days a week (I can't wait until my grandsons are in school) :)

    The other days I'll be working on keeping cool and writing.

  11. Virginia, I'm working on a couple of books, one a MG and the other a YA. Both stories will be based around a lighthouses. I'm planning on visiting a couple of lighthouses this summer to try and get a feel of what it might have been like to live in them and work in them day after day.