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5 “Be’s” for Twitter

Just a quick post this afternoon.

Clip Art Image Copyright by Microsoft. Clip Art Used by Permission of Microsoft

Clip Art Image Copyright by Microsoft. Clip Art Used by Permission of Microsoft

I’m sure these have been written about on someone else’s blog but these are just a few of my thoughts regarding interaction on Twitter.

  1. Be polite – thank people for following and for retweets that affect your product.
  2. Be helpful – seek out ways to help others, the easiest being retweeting.
  3. Be accessible – getting DM spammed? Just block them or unfollow and be open to legitimate messages from others.
  4. Be cordial – follow someone back and answer their DM as best you can (remember, if you don’t follow back but send a DM to a new follower the other person cannot reply).
  5. Be outgoing – Twitter is a very friendly place where even introverts can network or make new friends easily so stop standing on the sidelines waiting to be followed. Go follow someone who clicked Favorite or Retweet on your post or a post you found interesting.

That’s all for now, thanks for reading! Please leave comments below and view my News and Contacts pages. I’m also in the middle of a Indiegogo campaign so please check that out and consider supporting publication of The Bow of Destiny. I’m working on the next episode of the The Bow of Destiny prequel blog serial, What is Needed, so check out that post from Monday too.

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Quick Tip: YouTube for Authors

Need to get more use out of YouTubeLogo

When I was preparing my video for The Bow of Destiny campaign on Indiegogo several weeks ago I haphazardly uploaded my material without thinking too much about YouTube and the channel I was presenting. Since I don’t intend to post large amounts of video I just didn’t see the value. But like most social media this it is a fallacy to underestimate the value of any service. I was focused on the project and thought little of what I could do.

Tip #1: Even if you are working on a project and getting into a new social media platform stop and learn a few things.

Tip #2: Link as much as you can to your channel. I recently went back to my channel and linked as much of my other social media channels into YouTube so people can see what I’m up to easily. Many people are not on every type of social media or they don’t visit their accounts everyday so the information is beneficial to them and you to better connect.

Youtube Links

How do you add all your information? On your channel click on the About tab and there you can add all the links you want so you can make it easy for all those high-visual folks to find and connect with you elsewhere.

Youtube_About

Tip #3: I found it best to link my channel with my Google+ account even though I don’t use it that often (though I’m working that more now too).

What tips do you have for YouTube usage? How are you leveraging the this channel for writing? Share your thoughts below.

Remember blog followers via email receive a FREE copy of my ebook short story, The Black Bag – just click to sign-up! See my Contact & News pages to connect with me on other social media venues.

What is Needed Part 6

Photo used in The Bow of Destiny book trailer

Photo used in The Bow of Destiny book trailer

Author’s Note: This is the conclusion of Part 2 of the prequel blog serial entitled “What is Needed”. Click on these links to read Part 1, Part 2 (first section)Part 2 (Conclusion)Part 3Part 4 and Part 5. This series is a companion to The Bow of Destiny (Part 1 of The Bow of Hart Saga) as expanded writing samples for the current Indiegogo campaign for the novel. The events of the blog series pre-date those of The Bow of Destiny by several hundred years but include several long-lived characters who appear in the forthcoming novel. Please read this post and consider supporting the fundraiser. To learn more about The Bow of Destiny campaign click the provided link. This material is copyrighted and not intended for reproduction except at the author’s consent.

What is Needed (Part 6)

by P. H. Solomon

Troll-wolves howled and Hastra slipped into the shade between trees with Zelma and Howart. If only we can avoid the pursuit one last time. The Tower’s just ahead if I remember correctly. She pinched her lower lip and peek along the old road they followed.

The sun dangled between corona-rimmed clouds and the snow-capped peaks of the Grey Spires. Sunshine bathed the path ahead of the three furtive shapes with golden light.

Zelma’s breath puffed mist. “Is it still clear?”

Howart loomed in the shadow of the trees. “They aren’t as close as yesterday.”

“They make enough noise to scare everything for miles. But I don’t see any scouts so let’s go.” Hastra eased out of hiding onto the overgrown road and her two companions followed.

Her stomach rumbled but Hastra dared not call for a halt so she ate bread from her bag. Two weeks and the food’s still good though this is hard now. She kicked a root and stumbled but Zelma steadied her.

At the head of the long rise Hastra spied the pile of weathered stone named the Old Tower. Where Withlings used to go to see and hear instruction or speak rituals. Now it’s the dead end of the trap Kregen sprung on us. They staggered over the path against wind that snapped and swirled across the end of the headland that thrust into the booming sea.

Horns and Troll-wolves howled. Much closer now. “We must hurry now, sister.”

Zelma walked on with eyes wide and shivering.

Hastra brushed hair from her face. Is she cold or afraid? The edifice loomed out of the gloom of dusk in the east. Distant lightning flashed across the Bay of Storms from the east and lit the roofless tower-top. It defies wind and weather. Gusts tugged at the low scrub-trees scattered around its feet. This isolated end of nowhere may be the end of us. If only Eloch…

The travelers hurried into the shadow of the Old Tower and took refuge from the blasts in a shallow alcove. Snippets of howling and horns broke through the roar of wind. They’re coming now. There’s no escape. Hastra hugged herself but still shivered. “Now what?”

“I don’t know except go up.” Howart steadied himself with a trembling hand on the stone. He leaned against the wall, slid into a crouch and laid his head on scratched arms folded over his knees. A ragged sigh escaped from his thin lips. “Just need to rest a while.”

Hastra peered along the road. We’re all spent and bound to die. She touched the death wound from which she’d risen. “What is needed is given.”

Horn blasts floated on the wind. Zelma’s lips quivered and dark circles ringed her eyes above pale skin. Her hair reached from beneath her gray hood. “They’re coming now.”

Hastra nodded. Even her hair seems faded. “They’ve found our scent. We can’t stay here long. If we are needed atop the tower then let’s climb.”

Soft sobs escaped from Zelma. “Then what?”

Hastra embraced her sister. “We’ll pray, Zelma. All will be well in the end. We’re here for a reason just because we’re still breathing when we should be weeks dead.”

Zelma forced a thin smile through her tears. “It will never be the same as it was, but perhaps we see better atop the tower.”

Hastra stirred. “Trolls are near. It’s time.”

Zelma’s hair fell across her face as she touched Howart’s head. The Grendonese man remained still. “He’s fallen asleep.”

Hastra’s head whipped around at the close sound of horns. Zelma jumped and Howart started.

The gaunt man stood. “We must go and seek Eloch’s guidance.”

They scurried from the alcove and climbed the stairwell that wound around the tower’s girth. Wind flailed the surviving Withlings and the storm thundered in the bay as they fought for each ascending step. They ignored their weariness as horns sounded closer.

Hastra staggered. Surely there’s time for us. She thrust her hands before her and pulled for the next step as rain pattered the stone.

Horns sounded closer along with hounds baying, clear and constant, as the din of pursuit carried over the wind. They grappled their way to the top and knelt with their cloaks twisting in the violent wind.

Snarls announced the arrival of trolls. The troll-wolves howled. Kregen’s voice rose in the wind. “Quickly, take them.”

Hastra raised her eyebrows to Howart and Zelma. There’s fear on their faces. If only we can meditate in all this. “Pretend it’s the Hall of Silence.”

Hastra shut her eyes and raised her hands. What is needed is given and I need focus. She ignored the troll boots clamoring on the steps. She breathed and reached for practiced calm. Move in me, O Eloch. She exhaled. Welcome warmth bloomed at the edge of her awareness and she waited rather than reached for it in conscious thought. Warmth swallowed her fear and grief.

Hastra’s eyes blinked open and shut as her usual trembling at the presence of Eloch took hold. Her arms shook and her body quaked. Zelma and Howart undulated like grass in the wind in Hastra’s brief glimpses.

The clouds spun into a whirlwind that detached from main storm and churned toward the tower. Hastra closed her eyes. Calm as a sleeping babe. Indecipherable words erupted from her mouth.

The wind rumbled and drowned the clamor of troll horns and hounds. Hastra’s body stilled with the wind and her eyes opened. Light glowed in the spinning gust. We’re protected from our enemy. Her arms dropped to her sides and then she fell over and stared at the shape moving amid the light and whirlwind.

Beyond the silence with the whirlwind, Kregen cringed at the stairwell. He stretched out his arms and shouted unheard words. He shook his fist with a grimace and fled.

“You have come as children in need. Will you serve on?” The voice suffused Hastra with the rich whisper of peace and inexorable power.

Kregen’s offer rose with the flash of the knife. Hastra smiled as tears spilled from her eyes. “I will serve.” Zelma and Howart answered the same.

“Zelma Vorcinni, should you choose to follow, to you shall be given the task of protecting for long years that which shall come to you in time. You shall want for nothing, not even companionship in desolate places.”

“Howart Balto, should you choose to follow, to you shall be given the task of hiding against chaos what shall come to you after a while. No power of time or change shall pierce the bulwark about you in the midst of confusion.”

“Hastra Vorcinni, should you choose to go, to you shall be given the task of labor against innumerable foes, yet you shall find rest and plenty in the midst of want and danger.”

“And now, my children reach to me if you will come and be comforted and healed…”

At Eloch’s urging, the three Withlings stretched out their hands as one.

The whirlwind fell away.

Hastra rose on one elbow amid a grass covered field at dusk. “Zelma? Howart?” She sat alone with her bag that held her food and the Book of Prophecies.

End of Part 6

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Thanks for reading!

PHS