Thursday, January 27, 2022

Guest Post from Tinia Montford, Author of It Started with a List & a GIVEAWAY


 -10 things you wish every aspiring writer would know


1.     Don’t be afraid to share your work 

Seriously. I know it can be incredibly nerve-wracking and scary, but you have stories people want to read! Believe in yourself and your work. Just like my grandma always says, “Chew the meat and spit out the bone.” Take whatever feedback resonates and let go of what doesn’t, but always strive to be the best writer you can be.


2.     Find a village

Writing is lonely. Luckily with the internet and technology you can connect with anyone in the world! Find local in person writing groups or online. Those groups or individuals will definitely be there for you during the writing and revision stages. Plus, they can be more helpful than family and friends who may not understand your obsession and passion for writing.


3.     Don’t edit while you write 

DON’T. Did you read me correctly? DON’T EDIT AND WRITE! Seriously, break free of the urge of wanting to get the words “right” the first time. It doesn’t matter. Your first draft is for YOU! It’s about understanding what the story you’re writing is! Revisions is the time to make it all sparkly and pretty. Don’t hinder yourself by editing, please don’t.


4.     Learn how to write… But take advice with a grain of salt

There are many roads up the mountain. What advice may work for someone, may not work for you. Always continue to try to be the best writer that you can be: Read your favorite books, author interviews, textbooks on the craft, seminars and lectures. These are valuable resources to perfecting your craft but learn what fits you and your writing style instead of stifling your voice.


5.     The process is slow 

Writing is a slow process. No one becomes the next Stephen King overnight. It takes dedication and grit. To continue to write and write and write, ignoring the self doubt and insecurities or a story that flops. Who you start out as a writer will not be the same writer you end as.


6.     You are your own worst enemy

 Just as the famous Henry Ford saying goes, “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t–you’re right.”


7.     One is the loneliest number

 If you’re serious about writing, you will become a hermit. You will spend hours and hours over the keyboard clacking away. Your family, friends, and loved ones will not understand why you care so much about writing. That’s fine. You know why.


8.     Writer’s block doesn’t exist, you’re just a perfectionist

 I’m sorry but I said what I said. *In my NeNe Leakes voice.


9.     Burnout is real

 You will burn out creatively at some point. That is not the same as writer’s block. It’s great to take a break from writing now and then! Read a book from your very long TBR list! Watch movies! Speak with those friends you temporarily abandoned while writing. Go to that coffee shop you’ve been eying. Refill that creative well because it’s a fact, you can’t drink from an empty well.


10.  Remember why you write

 Above all, remember why you want to be a writer. Whether it has been a life-long dream or something you’ve recently discovered. Hold on to this reason because when the rejection letters come, negative reviews, people who doubt you and don’t take you seriously. that reason is going to hold you steadfast.



It Started with a List
Tinia Montford
Publication date: January 25th 2022
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, New Adult, Romance


Time’s up for Vassa Blackwell.

With her college graduation looming, Vassa reflects on the past four years. After a devastating betrayal from her closest friend leaves her ostracized, she trusts no one. Now she is mega disappointed. No wacky misadventures, no drunken nights, and no regrettable mistakes that you can NEVER tell your parents. Work and class, class and work. That’s it. College is supposed to be the best years of your life… Right?

Vassa feels as though she’s cheated herself out of a full college experience. Notable with romance and boys and stuff. So, she makes a college bucket list. Then the worse thing ever happens. Her list falls into the hands of Lazarus Gilbert. King of the baseball team, sworn enemy (in her opinion), and her annoying upstairs neighbor. He thinks he’s found something fun to do. She thinks she’s in trouble. That’s until she discovers there’s more to Lazarus than he lets on…

With the pressures of post-college decisions and failing classes, can they complete the bucket list before the semester runs out? Are Vassa and Lazarus just too different to get along? Will they both come out winners in the end, or will she retreat to her safety-zone? Is it too late for her to learn to live and let live, and let love enter her heart?

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Author Bio:

Tinia (TUH-NIA) Montford is a Pisces who’s a sap for romance, especially when there’s (tons of) kissing. Loves eighties sitcoms and will consume anything with chocolate. She graduated from the University of San Francisco with a degree in English and Graphic Design.

She is a world traveler having climbed a volcano in Nicaragua, scaled Angkor Wat in the blistering sun, and roamed the Acropolis of Athens. Oh, she also dabbles in short stories occasionally.

If you can’t catch her writing, you can bet she’s overindulging on poke bowls, listening to the same four songs, or chilling with her adorbs doggie. She is currently pursuing her MFA in Fiction.

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