Bestselling Author Delilah Devlin
HomeMeet Delilah
BookshelfBlogExtrasEditorial ServicesContactDelilah's Collections

Archive for 'favorite quotes'



Melanie Jayne: “Time is Very Precious to Me…” (Contest)
Monday, December 13th, 2021

“Time is very precious to me…”
March 4, 1993, Jim Valvano at the ESPYS

We need more.

We want more.

There is never enough.

I’ve been a published author for six and a half years and have released twenty-nine books with four in the pipeline and five planned for 2022. I’m often asked how I produce so many books and manage all the work that goes into being a romance writer.

There isn’t a simple answer.

During the last six years, I was working full and then part-time. I run the house and always seem to be chasing a repair person because something has broken (Currently—my washer is giving error messages and not fully draining). I’m not the type that can lock myself in a room and work for eight hours straight, totally focused on what is in front of me. I must have a plan, and even more importantly, stick to it.

Here are five strategies that have helped me.

  1. Know how much time in a day is actually “yours.” For four days, keep a detailed list of what you do and how long it takes. Start subtracting from twenty-four. Sleep, tv time, morning coffee, social media, meals, errands, grooming (remember to shower). The remainder is “your” time. **Round up, everything takes longer in reality.
  2. Pay attention to how long tasks take from start to finish. For instance, a run to the bank. You should factor in changing clothes or showering, gathering the necessary papers, finding your keys, plus the trip itself, and then when you return, another change of clothes, putting receipts away. What you at first claimed was a twenty-minute task, now turns out to be sixty minutes.
  3. Learn how long it takes for you to get into your writing headspace. I am jealous of those who can write while waiting in the carpool line or while their husband is driving them somewhere. I don’t work that way. I have found I have a series of steps I follow before I can get to the words. It starts with dog out/dog in, laundry started, drink at the ready, and music or tv playing low in the background. I also check e-mails before I start in case something important has arrived. Then, I write. It takes me at least thirty minutes to settle in. When you do the math, I lose valuable time getting there, but once I’m ready, I’m working.
  4. I make To Do Lists that are feasible. I try to keep it to six items. I don’t want to self-sabotage by giving myself too much to do because I won’t get it all done.
  5. Prioritize what is important and what you need to accomplish today. What do you want to do? Social media is a time suck, not only producing posts but scrolling through everybody else’s. I know that TikTok is currently the hot trend. I found that I don’t believe I have enough to share to post often, and for a while, the stress of worrying about it caused me to lose valuable time.

Our lives are busy and constantly changing. Your scheduling will evolve as your life changes. You will learn how to trim minutes in certain areas, and maybe, add more in others. Remember, every day offers a new opportunity. Don’t give up!

Today, I’m offering a $20 Amazon Gift Card for a great time-management tip shared below.

About the Author

Melanie Jayne/M. Jayne spends her days on a grain farm in central Indiana with her long-suffering husband and mastiff, Duncan Keith. She writes Contemporary Seasoned Romance and has published several series. As M. Jayne she is the teller of tales of the Novus Pack. You can learn more about her work here:

http://www.readmelaniejayne.com
https://www.facebook.com/MelanieJayneAuthor
https://www.bookbub.com/authors/m-jayne
https://www.bookbub.com/authors/melanie-jayne
https://www.instagram.com/ReadMelanieJayne
https://www.tiktok.com/@MelanieJayneAuthor

For Novus Pack Fans- Trust Me comes out on January 25th. Learn more at http://www.readmelaniejayne.com/trust-me.html

New Poll & a Favorite Quote (Contest)
Tuesday, November 23rd, 2021

UPDATE: The winner is…Raye G!
*~*~*

Between two evils, I like to pick the one I haven’t tried before.  ~Mae West

I’m a film buff. I’ll admit it. And I love old classic movies. My absolute favorite black and white movies are Harvey with Jimmy Stewart and Arsenic and Old Lace with Cary Grant. I don’t watch as many these days because the family surrounding me doesn’t get black and white. If there aren’t explosions and superheroes, and dazzling color, what’s the point?

I included the quote above because Mae West was always a treat on the screen. How she got away with some of the things she said back in the day of strict censorship I’ll never know. She was witty, sexy, and her one-liners still slay.

Anyway, Mae West isn’t why I’m here. I got sidetracked.

The other day, I asked you to vote on your favorite themes for a future Boys Behaving Badly Anthology. I’ll admit, I had my favorite. I thought for sure it would be number one. Also, the times I’ve mentioned my theme to authors, they were very excited to write something for it. However, your choices have me rethinking. Not only do I need to appeal to readers but I also have to attract writers to the project.

So, vote one more time to help me decide. I’m not saying I’ll choose your idea in the end. I have to love the idea, too. However, your choices do influence. And here’s a challenge for you! I put two themes together in a couple of those choices because they looked interesting to me…

(1) Vote for your favorite theme, then (2) offer an idea for a title for the book for a chance to win a $5 Amazon gift card! The previous titles have been Rogues, Blue Collar, Pirates, Stranded, First Response, and Cowboys. So shorter titles are preferred!

Narrowing it down... Which themes appeal to you the most for the next Boys Behaving Badly Anthology? Choose only one!

  • Silver Foxes/Military Heroes (40%, 8 Votes)
  • Silver Foxes (30%, 6 Votes)
  • Military Heroes (20%, 4 Votes)
  • Military Heroes/Winter Holiday Stories (10%, 2 Votes)

Total Voters: 20

Loading ... Loading ...

 

Finding Motivation… (Contest)
Tuesday, May 25th, 2021

UPDATE: The winner is…Laura!
*~*~*

I wasn’t born self-employed.

I spent years in the Army, years in a corporate cubicle, a stint in a classroom, a non-profit, etc. My time was mine to manage inside my employers’ bubbles. In fact, I was a project/program manager for years, and I planned work for others. None of that really prepared me for being a self-employed, full-time writer.

Most days, I happily hit the keyboard. I’m enthused about my story that has a drop-dead date to complete or I’m staring at a deadline to return a set of edits. Deadlines do help with motivation. However, there are days when I have my lovely month-ahead calendar sitting in front of me, with all the work parsed into numbers of pages to get me to the finish line within a very doable timeframe, when I look at it and think: But I don’t wanna. Not today.

This week is soooooo hard. It’s the last week of school for our four online students. Their mother and I have been their support/mentors/tutors all year long, bending our work schedules around theirs to make sure everything gets done.

Online schooling is hard. But we managed to help all four kids, 7 through 16-years-old, get through it. And we managed to have fun along the way, with family movie  or game nights and special dinner rewards, and with limited excursions to the park or the flea market (large areas, few people). We’ve followed the rules and kept everyone healthy and happy for 14 months. We’ve drawn closer as a family because we had to be each others’ friends and playmates.

During all of this, I have managed to write. Not as prolifically as I did maybe eight years ago, but more so than I did three years ago. I carved out hours in my schedule to retreat to my “mole hole” and write.

So, why am I dragging ass lately? We’ve made it through a huge commitment. Next year, we’ll only have one child staying home because the rest have been vaccinated, and all of us have learned how to use a mask. Next year, should be easier, right? A cakewalk, really.

So, back to why I want to blow off today… There’s not anything special happening to draw my attention. I simply don’t want to open the files I need to open and bury myself in another world. I want to drink some coffee, sit on the back patio, and play some Charm King on my phone. Something that will add pages to write to all the days that follow.

In my brain, that seems like a wonderful tradeoff—until tomorrow morning comes.

I love this quote…

My answer today is tomorrow!

Contest

For a chance to win your choice of a download of one of my books, share a motivational quote or tell me how you deal with self-motivation. Are you a Last-Minute-Mary or do you do today so tomorrow is free?

Baby Bird Courage & Open Contests! (New Contest, too!)
Tuesday, March 2nd, 2021

UPDATE: The winner is…Denise!
*~*~*

“There’s nothing in the middle of the road but yellow stripes and dead armadillos.”
~ John Hightower

~or~

“Might, could, would — they are contemptible auxiliaries.” ~ George Eliot

Both of these quotes are talking about the same thing. The opposite of taking the middle of the road or dreaming about what you might-could-would do is having the courage to take the plunge, to go all in.

The photo was one I found on a stock photo site when I typed in “Courage”. It made me laugh. I can’t imagine what would go through a bird’s mind before taking that leap. And before you think, “It’s just instinct” — have you seen videos of crows problem-solving? One on FB the other day showed a crow dropping pebbles into a water bottle to raise the level enough his beak could reach. I’m not sure any of my kids would’ve figured that one out. 🙂

I’d love to hear a little story about courage you’ve witnessed or experienced—big or small. Comment for a chance to win a free download from my backlist of books!

Open Contests

  1. A Pretty Little Puzzle & a Ton of Open Contests!This one ends soon! Win an Amazon gift card!
  2. Tests of Courage (Contest) — Win a FREE book!
  3. My Book-Meme Goddess (Contest) — Win a FREE book!
  4. Michal Scott: African-American Opera: My Latest Rabbit Hole (Contest) — Win an Amazon gift card!
  5. Ready for Spring? (Puzzle-Contest) — Win an Amazon gift card!
Tests of Courage (Contest)
Tuesday, February 23rd, 2021

UPDATE: The winner is…Brenda Rumsey!
*~*~*

“All of us have moments in our lives that test our courage. Taking children into a house with a white carpet is one of them.”
~ Erma Bombek

I love that quote. Isn’t it soooo true? When my sister lived in Texas, she had a property in the country—and a white-as-hell carpet. You know where my kid spilled the grape juice, right?

I’m thinking about kids because school is back in full swing after Snowmageddon. Online, for our house. But there are Zoom meeting alarms set, homework to supervise. We’ll be busy.

The snow is melting. Yesterday, we had huge slabs of ice slide off the roof. It was dicey getting out the doors. There’s snow in patches, and “The Great Mudding” has begun. Towels are on the floor in front of every entrance for folks to clean off their shoes before coming inside.

I’m busy working on two sets of edits, plus charging back into my Work-in-Progress, Hardman—along with 20 items on my daily To Do list. Gah.

So, to the contest…

Tell me about your family’s “tests of courage” for a chance to win a download of your choice from my backlist of books! 

Trout and Dry Pants… (Contest)
Monday, February 8th, 2021

UPDATE: The winner is…Ann Ivey!
*~*~*

“You can’t catch trout with dry breeches.”
~ Anonymous

Whuh?

I know. I love obscure quotes. I collect books of them. This one, to me, is funny. Not sure why. Maybe because I’m not a fisherperson. Still, it does make a point. You can’t catch this fish without wading into the water, getting your boots and pants soaked. An inconvenience, sure. However, those wet pants are also a badge to be worn with pride. You went “all in.”

So, why am I posting this? Because we all have moments when we can go all in or chicken out. We can choose the comfy sofa or do something to prove we’re part of life. I chose to be in the Army. When war broke out, I contacted everyone I knew to get a posting somewhere in the war zone. Why? Because I’d spent twelve years preparing for it and didn’t want to sit on the sidelines. I wanted to see it firsthand, with my own eyes. I got my wish. Fast forward eight years… When I decided I’d had enough of working in a cubicle and attending boring meeting after boring meeting, I decided I’d give writing a go. It worked for me. That choice could just as easily have led to failure, but I succeeded. Of course, I didn’t quit the day job until I was sure I had a fighting chance.

So, my question to you is what dive into the deep end of the pool did you take? Share for a chance to win your choice of a download of one of my backlisted books. I’ll choose three winners! When did you get your breeches wet?

Bzzz…Busy Lists, Honey Do’s, etc.
Friday, February 5th, 2021

The happiest of all lives is a busy schedule. ~Voltaire

I’m not sure that’s true. The thought of a slothful day sounds like heaven. Lately, because I have so much work on my plate, I rise around 6 AM to begin my days. I write down every little thing I want to complete in the order I want to complete them. None of that Steven Covey stuff about working on the highest priorities first because if I didn’t put “Shower” on the list, I’d forget!

Today’s list includes a shower, yes, and editing a certain number of pages, writing a certain number of pages, reading a certain number of stories, cleaning my desktop (my art supplies have overtaken its surface!), blogging, the daily art project, and many little administrivia things (phonecalls to be made, for example), and if I can get to it, vacuuming and mopping!

I like a list—even a long one. Today’s has 15 times! Checking off accomplishments is my nirvana.

Are you a listmaker?