Cozy Chat: Debuting Debut Authors with Connie Matsumoto

I’m a decisive person. One week after I began to think about writing a book that I never
imagined I’d author, I closed my interior design business and dove into the deep end of creative
writing. My goal: To write and publish a historical novel. Crazy right? I didn’t think so at the
time, but it didn’t take long for me to realize that writing is really hard. And getting published is
even harder. But unflinching determination got me through. That and working smart.

Please attend my Cozy Chat, Debuting Debut Authors, and I’ll share my story with you, focusing
on:

Getting off the wall and jumping in the pool! I dove into the deep end of writing where I
quickly found myself in way over my head! Since sinking wasn’t an option, I doggie
paddled my way to breathing, thinking, learning, working, and connecting more
strategically.

Finding stride. While drafting my manuscript, I was swimming laps several mornings a
week. With my face in the water, my mind wandered to particular scenes I was working
on and creative thoughts flowed. When writers are in the grove, it’s like swimmers
gliding with their faces in the water.

Balancing. Just as swimmers have to coordinate various body parts in movement, writers
might consider how they manage time between writing, developing a business mindset,
and engaging in meaningful literary citizenship. I spent as much time as I could in the
water writing, while investing my time learning how the pool operates and forming
relationships with lifeguards, swimmers in the adjacent lane, the lane beyond, and the
pooled community.

Propelling backward. After writing from the heart, revision can feel like you’re
swimming the backstroke, going backward and propelling forward while getting
exhausted in the process. This was the time when I climbed out of the pool and walked
away for a while or simply floated while imagining one final perfect draft. How many
edits and drafts does it take? As many as necessary.

Marketing. Matching my breath with my strokes, I developed a strategy to raise my
profile and interest in my book. Social media is just one tool in an author’s promotional
toolbox. Let’s talk about the others!

Ready to jump in the pool with me and learn from each other? I can’t wait to meet y’all in San
Antonio!

Connie Matsumoto is a former corporate and interior design devotee who embraced creative
writing later in life. Of White Ashes (Loyola University Maryland Apprentice House Press) is her
debut novel. She lives with her co-author husband Kent and adorable West Highland Terrier in
northern Delaware.

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