Start Your Day At Tracy’s Cafe – episode 1

Ep 1 Start Your Morning At Tracy’s Cafe

Tue, Sep 6, 2022 . 8:26 AM 26:05 Owner: Cynthia Carver – we are an affiliate site. 



Our focus is on you, the writer, the author. And this is where you are offered tips and tricks on goal setting, time management, accountability, along with the occasional author-help interview. 

If you haven’t been here before, and even if you have Welcome, my name is Cynthia Carver. And my co host is the lovely Aliya DalRae. We do podcasts on how to write it, how to edit it, how to publish it, and then market it. And that’s your book we’re talking about, because we’ve already published ours. 

If you like this type of video or podcast, please give us a thumbs up, poke the subscribe button and ring our bell. So now let’s get to it. Welcome to Tracy’s cafe, where writers meet inspiration. 

I am Cynthia Carver, and I write paranormal suspense. My Shamaness in Silhouette is my novella series. Small Bit of Justice is the first in the series of Tracy Richards psychic investigator. I want to talk about Aliya. She is an award winning author. You have awards all over your banner.



I do have some bling, my name is Aliya DalRae and I am a paranormal romance and urban fantasy author. I am the author of The Jessica Sweet trilogy, The Fallen Cross Legion series and the Fallen Cross Pack series, as well as a handful of short stories. Most of them do take place in my fictional town of Fallen Cross, Ohio. I also have one normal book, as my father would call it. Which means that it has people in it, there’s you know nothing interesting. No, the characters are interesting, but there is no paranormal, there’s no magical creatures or anything. But my daddy used to say, every time he’d see me, he’d say, Have you written anything normal yet? And I would say no, they haven’t. When he passed away, I wrote a normal story and I dedicated it to him. But I do have one under a different pen name under S. R. Blackmore. I have a children’s chapter book that I wrote for my nephew. And there will soon be another that I’m writing for my other two nephews. The Adventures of Ryan and Rubble are already out. And then I’m currently working on the adventures of Matt and Joe. That will be released in time for Christmas. So again, those were under the S. R. Blackmore. But if you like paranormal stuff, that’s all written by Aliya DalRae.



So this past week, I have worked on a couple of videos for the first time-writer. Once you decide, you want to write a book, but you don’t know whether or not you actually want to invest in a word processing program similar to Microsoft Word. And if you have a Mac, Word isn’t all that compatible with it. It is a PC program. Now, that is not to say you cannot use Word on a Mac. You can really, but you have to use it through the web. You have to be connected online to use it.



Is that like the 365? Or is that something completely different?



I think it’s completely different. This year, instead of spending the money on Word, I didn’t renew my subscription because I am using my MAC. And it just seemed to be a waste of time. A waste of money because I can do the exact same thing on Google Docs. I have to be connected to the internet for Google. And it’s free. I have to be connected to the internet with Word. It’s not free. No brainer.



Yeah, I can see how anyone working with a Mac would be difficult. I’ve never actually never used a Mac, I’ve always had a PC. And I do everything on Word. I mean, up until this year, I did everything on Word. Now, I’m writing on my phone and that’s been with Google Docs. I’ve written one to three novels and three short stories on my phone. 

So yeah, imagine how much I could have gotten done. If I was actually typing my, gazillion words a minute. But yeah, I’ve written all of that on my phone. Now, I’ve transferred over it to Microsoft Word. 

But I purchased Word, when I got my computer. It was called Office Suite, instead of doing the subscription. So, I don’t get all the updates, like the subscription does, which I do believe that’s the 365 subscription thing. So I don’t get the updates like 365, but I also don’t have to pay for the subscription. I paid for it once. And you know, it’s mine forever, as long as I have my computer.



So and that’s called Word Suite?



It’s Microsoft Office Suite. And it comes with Word, Excel, PowerPoint. I think it’s got Outlook, too.



I think that’s it. I still probably wouldn’t be able to use it on my MAC.



No, no, you wouldn’t. You wouldn’t. It’s it’s a Microsoft. 



I also suggested that they try Open Office, which is an open source, and it’s free, plus you get updates. That’s a previous video. So you can check those out. If you’re a first time author, and you’re looking for a cheap way to get started. And to find out whether or not you’re even going to be able to finish your first book. And I say, be able to finish because you may get two chapters in and go, Oh, my goodness. No.



So how, how did you start writing? Cynthia, what inspired you? How old were you? When did you know? Well,



My grandson had just been born. So my two younger girls were still really young. And I had just done a cold case. For those of you that don’t know, I am a psychic.  I had just done a cold case. It did not turn out the way I wanted it to. Sometimes when you’re working with the police department, even though they come to you and ask for help. They’re not really open to the help you give them. Small Bit of Justice became an idea. I started writing that 20 years ago. And because I didn’t know how to write, I kept referring to other people. They would say, Oh no, you have to do it this way. Oh, no, you have to do it this way. And then I even had one critique, I’ll tell that story for when we go into critiques. It was really nasty. And I shut down my writing. But when I did start back again, it was through NaNoWriMo and through our friend, Rochelle Bradley. I jumped on board and I thought okay, and cuz I really wanted to write this story. I decided I was going to move forward with it. And then, of course, you know, I had been honing my skills for the prior 15 – 17 years. That entire time, I had started writing my first book many times in many different ways.



That’s really cool. Very cool.



So, and now, that’s the first in Tracy Richards Psychic Investigator series. Now, I’ve begun the second in that series,  News from the Wild Rose Hollow coming up. And that seems to be more of a paranormal-comedy.


I was watching my sister’s dogs one day. And the thing is, there’s like, six, seven, and they’re all trumping. They’re all tromping toward my blue little car. Now I had the doors open, carrying in groceries. As I stand on the front porch and look down the drive to the car, I see this little terrier, sitting at the steering wheel. You’ve got the other one bouncing back and forth, you know, two Labrador Retrievers that are puppies. Well, they really are. They’re not even eight months old yet. 



You know, you got them bouncing. So you had six dogs in the car. Oh my gosh. So when we finally get them all out. It’s like, that’s, going into the new book. So, in the new in News from the Wild Rose Hollow. I wrote the scene where Rascal, a Jack Chawaglehoun because he’s got so much going on. He’s a JackRussel, Chihuahua, beagle, Bluetick, they’re kind of speckled like an australian blue heeler 1



Sis calls him a Jack Chiwaglehoun and they’re purebred Heines 57s. I’m sure.



like Labradoodles?



Now the labs seem to be actually labs of course, you know, if we did the DNA, they could be great pyrenees for all we know. So anyway, they’re in the car. And so I can see them inside this cop car, you know, the door is wide open. And so write the scene that way. I have Tracy in the holler. And she’s got her kids with her. And then they have this really bad storm. But because Tracy’s with her sister, they still think they are, you know, 19 instead of pushing 40 and they get on the pool floaties and they start playing and I’m not going anymore. I’m giving my good scenes away.



You are. I remember you telling me about this story. Well, yeah, you want to keep something to yourself.



That’s right, I did tell you about it. Now, if you’re a new writer, we’re talking from experience. Aliya and I have known each other for a few years now, and have bounced ideas off of each other. And we’ve been through a lot, even in just a few years. So yeah, just don’t let anybody get you down. Because let me tell you, they’re out there. And I have come to the conclusion that they’re just jealous. They’re jealous because you’re doing something that they are not. They want to be an author, but they don’t want to put in the work.



They’re those that cheat and I don’t understand that. I don’t understand why people want to bring each other down because the way I look at, you know, especially as indie authors, the way I look at our community, everybody should read my books. That’s it, read each others books, scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours type of mentality.  Now, are my books for everyone? No.  So that’s a little outside the box. But you know, we all want everyone to read and love our books, whether it happens or not, whether it’s possible or not, doesn’t matter. But the fact of the matter is, you can only write so many books a year. Even if it’s all you do, and I know people who put out a dozen books a year or even more, but that’s their full time job. Most of us have a day job, or, you know, in my case two day jobs, plus my writing, so I can’t. I can’t be as prolific as others. So there’s going to be a gap. You know, you read my latest book, yay, great. I’m thrilled. But then what are you going to do? When you’re done with my book? Are you just gonna sit there and not read? That’s exactly why I’m going to tell you to go read Cynthia’s or go read Rochelle Bradley’s, or, you know, go read JB Richards. There’s thousands of us, you know, you could read so many more. There’s no reason for anybody to be cutting anybody down. We should all be pushing our readers to read the next author. You know, why wait for me to write the next novel? Go read this or that. You know, I don’t want you to only read my books. That’s just selfish in in. It’s just weird.


Follow us using the links below. But not in a creepy way.  But, on our social media. 



Don’t be a creeper. Well, I just, I want to support everybody. I want everyone to succeed. I want all of you to succeed. You know, it’s like Cynthia saying, you know, if you feel this book inside you, and you just know it has to come out. Write it down. I mean, it doesn’t matter if it’s awful. Because every single first draft that I have written has always been and I know the next – it’s not going to be perfect. It’s never going to be perfect the first time now. 

Tell yourself the story. And that’s what the first draft is all about is just telling yourself the story. You can clean it up later, you can make it pretty and everything. But just get those words out. And you’ll feel the excitement in it, you’ll feel the joy in it, of telling a story and of finding out what happens next. Because the only thing better than reading a book and turning that page and finding out what happens next is imagining it and living it. And in being that story. There’s nothing like it in the world. And if you’ve got that in you, I mean, don’t let anybody stop you from getting it out. I didn’t tell anybody about my first book, not a  soul that I wrote it. Writing it was actually a bit of therapy for me. I was trying to get through something. And so I just wrote it on my lunch hour through the course of a month. I wrote 110,000 words in a month. And yeah, it was crazy. It’s just, you know, I was depressed. I had words demanding that I just had to get them out.



Jessica Sweet, that’s who possessed you.



Jessie was my sweetness. She was there. Because you know after I wrote it, I put it in a cyber drawer. I wrote it in 2009. And I published it in 2016. If that tells you anything. I sent it to my cousin who I will admit is now my biggest fan, or one of them.



And her words were … 



She was about halfway through it and she said it was worth showing to someone. And she never spoke of it again. And I was like, okay, it sucks. Anyway, back in the drawer. And then at my old job, I met a lady and she loved Twilight and really liked vampires. Maybe she would like to read. She said to send it to her. So I sent it to her. Never heard another word from her. I’m like it super sucks. So its just gonna stay in that drawer right. And then another girl I worked with published a self published self help book. And I’ve ordered a copy from her. I wanted a paperback, a signed copy. Her inscription to me said, here’s me sitting in front of the fireplace reading your book next. She didn’t know I’d written the book. She had no idea. So I called her and I said, How did you know? She says, Well, I was just thinking optimistically. I said, but I do have a manuscript. She said, You do? Yeah. Okay, so for a third time, I sent my book baby out. And every day, I’d get emails from her. Oh, my God, I can’t believe it. Oh, my God, I can’t believe Oh, you did this really? 

I’m like, No she’s just making it up, you know. So I reached back out to the second lady. And I said, remember when I sent you my manuscript.. And she’s like, I forgot all about it. I never did read it. And I was too afraid to ask. I just assumed it was awful, because she never said anything. And she had just gotten busy and forgotten that she had it. So then she reads it, then I get the same reaction from her as I got from the other lady. And they’re like, you have to publish this. And I don’t know how. And they’re like, and of course, the first lady was like, I do. So this is what I figured out I mean, keep in mind, folks, all I did was write out my feelings. All I did was try to get this story out. And you know, all of a sudden, people are saying, you got to do this. 

So I’m like trying to edit it. And I’m trying to find cover designers, because who knows how to find a cover designer? It’s not me, you know? And I’ve got like, 12 friends on Facebook, because, you know, Facebook’s about games, right? I mean, that’s all we really need it for.



I finally get it all together. I finally find a cover that I like. It took a lot of reaching out. The one lady connected me with another lady an author. And she’s like, well, you know, do you have a platform? I don’t even know what a platform.



And she’s like, you know, a fan base. I said, I don’t even have a published book yet, how can I have a fan base?  It was just the being point, to make a long story even longer. The point is, I was not planning on self publishing, I had never dreamed that would be something that I would do. And yet here I am, 21 books later. And, you know, I’ve got four in the hopper that I just need edited. So you can do it. The bottom line is you can do it.  just, Oh, I gave you a story for that long winded bit there. I apologize.



But I got excited for you. Because this is what this channel is all about. We have been there. We have done that. And we can help you, the listener, do yours. You know, we’ve already written our books. We’re writing more. If you’re new to writing, new to the channel, or new to writing, put pen to paper. We’re here to help you. Absolutely. So the channel is about setting goals, accomplishments, and accountability. What are you going to be held accountable for this week? Put your goals, accomplishments and accountability in the comments below.



I am editing Fallen Sun. It is book six in the Fallen Cross Legion series. I am halfway through my first read through. I would like to finish that read. And I am also going through my second children’s book to find which chapters I would like to have illustrations made for. And I’d like to get some more words down in book seven of the Fallen Cross Legion series. So that’s me. So I think that is ambitious enough.



Let’s see, as I put my glasses on to read, I say I want to finish editing Book Three. I got half of it done last week. I want to upload it to Amazon. I want to order author copies and I hope to have them in time for September 17 which is my Book, Book, Book signing event at books, books, books. It is at the Groff Events Center on West Orange Street in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. And you’re invited in. So, that’s our goals. That’s what we’ll be held accountable for. And then Friday night, if you’ll catch us on Aliya’s channel at After Hours at Buzz’s Tavern. And we’ll go through what we actually do, so leave your questions and your goal and anything else that you might have in the comments below. We will do our best to answer so please click the subscribe button, leave a comment, share the video. Stay creative and keep writing.




Welcome to Tracy’s Cafe.


Have you written anything normal yet?


Instead of spending the money on Word, I use Google Docs.


What’s the difference between a subscription vs. free?


What inspired Cynthia to start writing?


What’s going on in your life? 




The first draft is all about telling yourself the story.


How to get your book out of the drawer and into the world.


What are you going to be held accountable for?



2 – Writing Tools

Transcript –

2 – Writing Tools – a walk in the woods

Today our focus is on you, the writer, the author. This is where we offer tips and tricks on goal setting, time management, and accountability. Along with the occasional author-help interview.

If you haven’t been here before, and even if you have, WELCOME! My name is Cynthia Carver. Our podcasts on how to write it, edit it, and publish it. Then market it. And that’s your book we’re talking about. If you like this type of video or podcasts, do give a thumbs up, poke subscribe and the bell.  Now, let’s get to it . . . 

Welcome to Stop! Just Write …  where writers meet inspiration.

Let’s talk about tools today.  The only thing you need to begin with is your imagination, a pencil or pen, and a notebook. Most of us have laptops either PC or Mac, iPads or a tablet Phone. Each comes with a basic word processor.  On my iPad I have downloaded google doc’s and it’s free, connected to my gmail account. That means I have the ability to pick up where I left off on a different machine. My Galaxy Note also has google docs and Samsung Notes. Google allows me to switch between devices and Samsung Notes I had to transfer as in retype it into a document. There are open source word processors that are free and you don’t have to pay for with a large one time sum or the monthly payments of other processors.  MacBook has Pages and a PC can download Open Office can save files into a .docx if you need to send a WORD file to your editor if need be. Microsoft Word is a subscription fee or a yearly fee and can only be used online if you are an Apple user. 

Writing off line is often less distracting. Google allows you to save to G-Drive. My favorite is using a stenographer’s pad. I write on one side of the pages until I get to the end of the book, flip it over and continue writing. This allows me to set it up like a tent and transcribe from it. This is an easy format for me, as I was taught over half a decade ago to transcribe this way.

Formatting. You’ll need one inch margins on the left and right hand side, one inch from the top and one and one-half from the bottom. Set your margins before you begin your document. You’ll thank yourself later.  The next step is to choose 1.5 or double line spacing. This allows for your editor to read it easily.

When you begin to think about grammar, I suggest ProWritingAid or Grammarly. Don’t use both together. You might think it would be a better option to use both of them together, that is a strong nope. They contradict each other. Is that wrong? No. They are both correct in their own consistent manner.They will really confuse you if you decide you want to use both of them, especially as a new writer not secure in their grammar. Just choose one or the other.  My choice was ProWritingAid with the paid lifetime and I used the discount at the end of November when they offered NaNoWriMo winners a substantial discount. 

Next thing to work on is getting all of your social media under one name. This is whether you plan on becoming an Indy Author, Traditional Author, or a Vanity Press author. You will need all the ways to contact you under one name that is not the name of your book. For example, when you look for me on Instagram you will find me there under Cynthia Carver, and on twitter my username is Cynthia underscore Carver. When you look for your name, if it is already taken, consider adding author or books behind your name or Books by your name. But with the consistency of your name, like my name with the underscore and author added to it, you can find me by searching for my name. Plus use the same profile picture across the internet. This will allow your readers to find you by the correct name because they will see the same photo they associate with you.  Also, consider purchasing your URL. That’s your address dot com.  Purchasing only the URL and nothing else will keep your costs down, secure your name choice, and you can redirect it without additional cost to your social media platform of choice. The last but not least important is setting up your free LINKTR.EE account and putting all your social media links and URL in one spot. Again, I used CynthiaCarver and it’s there for easy searching results. Then I have all my links; youtube, social media, Amazon Author page, right there in one spot. You may not need it yet, but get it and secure your author name of choice.

Did you watch yesterday’s video? How many words can you type in twenty minutes? Oh, you don’t like to type or it takes so long with the hunt and peak system, well guess what? Google doc’s has a voice typing option under tools and a word count meter under tools. The voice option takes a while to train your computer to get your word pronunciations consistently. It took me about six weeks to train mine and it gets better the more I use it. 

I know that I can type between 80 and 100 words a minute. Typing while thinking of the story, sometimes I have to stop and think about what the character will say, do, respond, and during those times my typing slows down while my mind configures those scenes. I went to school a half century ago when typing was taught on manual typewriters, and I was very slow. I remember then learning on an electric typewriter and felt as if my fingers were flying across the keys at 60 words per minute. When the computer came along, I pounded the keyboard. I had to retrain myself for a lighter, faster touch. 

We’ve gone over word processors, you’re gonna need one. If you don’t have a word processor, get a notebook system that works for you. Mine is the stenographer pad so that I can set them up tent style and transcribe from them. Second was your author name on the URL and all your social media. Place them all under one name. Make it easy for your readers to find you. Third, ProWritingAid or Grammarly. It doesn’t matter which you choose. And if now is too soon, put that on your Writer’s Wish List for purchase later on or wait for November and aim at completing NaNoWriMo to get the discount there. Set up your account, again under your author name.

Thats it for today; Word processor, Social Media under one name, the name you will be writing under, Grammarly or ProWritingAid or put it in your Writer’s Wish List for later.

A side note. My first novel I wrote for NaNoWriMo, didn’t make sense. It was missing chapters, my last chapter first, and it had the 50,000 words. That’s 1, 667 words a day. And if you missed a day, it had to be made up the next day or in chunks.

Thank you so much for your time. It’s very much appreciated. If you liked what I had to say, share the video. Don’t forget to subscribe, click the bell and poke the thumbs up. Follow us. Our links are in the description below. Stay creative and keep writing.

Cynthia Carver, writes magickal realism paranormal, starring a psychic investigator. NaNoWriMo, Preptober, and Edit-ary we cover it all, and sometimes in order.

Aliya DalRae, writes paranormal romance and urban fantasy, featuring shifters and vampires. This channel is based on fiction, paranormal, and creative writing.

Join our podcast/youtube mailing list:

Follow Cynthia:

Follow Aliya:

Appreciate my content? Buy me a cup of coffee, a gallon of gas, or dinner. Thank you!

Author Talk – Stop! Just Write.


1 – Staying Productive

Welcome to Tracy’s Cafe where writers meet inspiration. Today our focus is on you, the writer, the author. This is where we give tips and tricks on goal setting, time management, and accountability along with the occasional author-help interview.


If you haven’t been here before, or even if you have, Welcome. My name is Cynthia. We do podcasts on how to write it, edit it, and publish it and then market it. And that’s your book we’re talking about.


If you like this type of video or podcast, do give us a thumbs up, poke the subscribe button, and click the bell. 


Today I want to talk about wanting to write your book. Maybe you have one that is already started, maybe it’s just your dream to start writing it and then you think, Oh my gosh I’ll never be able to write that many words. Let me help you chunk it down. First off, lets don’t get overwhelmed with word counts. We have different counts, if you write a novella that is a different word count than if you write a novel or an Epic Fantasy. Let’s don’t be concerned with the outcome, let’s focus on 250 words a day. That’s not really that much. Blog posts are usually 300 – 500 words, you get some that get rather long winded and write 1,500 words. But for the most part it’s 300 to 500 words.


Sabrina – I’ll introduced them as they walk across the screen.


Whether or not you want to write a long book or short, a novella or an actual novel. What we want to do is for you to find the sweet spot for your writing. Writing 20 minutes a day without a goal of how many words you write, could be.


There are a couple of writing not virtual conferences (Events) , Nanowrimo is one of them. National Novel Writing Month and it’s in November. They recommend you write 1,667 words a day. That might not be you, You might only want to write half that or to challenge yourself you only want to write 600 words a day. There are Prep-tober, and we will do preptober on this channel too. It begins in October. And it allows you to sit down and plot out your novel. But it gives you a road map as to where you want to be at the end of November. And then we have edit-ary. It is where you skip the month of December and you don’t write that month. Then you come back in January and you edit the story you wrote.


When I first started twenty years ago, I got caught up in the habits of successful authors. I would write five pages and then edit the heck out of them and that’s what I did. I edited so much my story wasn’t there. Then I would go through and do it again. So the advice I was taking from very successful authors did not work for me. What does work for me, is writing and not editing, then going through it by reading over it, tweaking the sentences, paragraphs or different scenes and then going through it yet again.  I will go through it about three times. And if I feel like it is a pretty good story but maybe the grammar isn’t right, then I will send it off to my editor.


That will be another video on how to choose an editor, one that works best with you. 


Chunking your time, if you are not one of these people who can sit down with a planner and account for each hour of the day. Make a list of six things you know what six items you are going to dedicate 15 – 20 minutes a day to0, and you can check them off. You will find yourself more productive if you are not a rigid planner. I’m not a rigid planner. 


What else did I want to talk about? (looking over notes) Genres. Don’t be concerned about your genre. Just tell your story. At the end of your story, have someone that is more versed in genre you should label your story as. I did not have any clue what my story genre was, I thought it might be thriller. I was wrong. It was more of a suspense. We knew who the bad guys were to begin with, but how they were going to get caught? So don’t worry about it, just write it.


And with that being said, That’s it for today. Decide how many words you are going to do, and if that doesn’t work decide how long you are going to write. If you only have 15 minutes before you head out to work? Do you want to write over two cups of coffee? And we will see you tomorrow. Because this is where we are going to focus on your book, you write it, you edit it, you market it and we are here to help you along the way.


So if you like the video, please subscribe, click the reminder bell, leave us a comment or share. Until next time, happy writing, stay creative.

Cynthia Carver, writes magickal realism paranormal, starring a psychic investigator. NaNoWriMo, Preptober, and Edit-ary will be cover it, and sometimes in order.

Aliya DalRae, writes paranormal romance and urban fantasy, featuring shifters and vampires. This channel is based on fiction, paranormal, and creative writing.

Join our podcast mailing list:

Follow Cynthia:

Follow Aliya:

Appreciate my content? Buy me a cup of coffee, a gallon of gas, or dinner. Thank you!