Do you have a dream to publish your book? Perhaps you think about having a large following of readers, being famous, or getting good money. But none of that is important if you don’t love the process. The true reward of creating, is having a creation. The real payoff, the thing that matters the most, is holding your published book in your hands.
I’ve have written many things throughout my childhood, adolescence, and early adulthood. Books hundreds of pages long written in notebooks with pencil. Multiple award-winning fanfics. My dream, however, was to officially publish a book.
It felt significant to have the book fully written, edited, and finalized. The process of publishing the first time was overwhelming. It had to be formatted a certain way and data set up specifically in the KDP system. It took me days to figure it out with a great deal of stress (I am very practiced at it now!).
But when that book finally came in, and I could hold it in my hand, I was blown away. Dorian and I stared at it, flipped through it, and set it in a place of prominence. We had worked together to create something, and now we had brought a new story into the world!
How does it feel to publish your book? It feels like the achievement that it is. That all your years of hard work were worth it. Your story is now yours to read as you please. While having other readers and making money are good results, they pale in comparison to simply the act of creating. That is something that can never be taken away.
We discuss the three main strategies to use when you need to write a fight scene.
Adventure, fantasy, sci-fi, thriller, horror . . . while all these genres are different, you can expect to find fight scenes in them. Scenes where characters are pitted against other characters, against creatures, or against monsters and fighting for their survival. It could involve weapons, magic, or hand-to-hand combat. Even genres such as drama or romance might have more action-oriented scenes involving escapes, chases, or trying to hide from danger.
As writers, our job is to convey the tension of these fight scenes to the readers. But that is often easier said than done. I am one of those writers that struggle with fight scenes. I take a very long time writing them, and they often go through way more revisions than any other aspect of my work.
In this post I’ll talk about the three main strategies I use to craft a good fight scene in hopes they will help you, as well!
Vary Your Sentence Lengths
When you write fight scenes in your book, readers must be drawn into the intensity of the moment. A good way to do this is to write short, focused sentences. For example:
“She lunged forward. She turned into a kick. Her foot slammed into his spine.”
These are great to keep up an action pace, but no one wants to read an entire fight scene written like that. A good rule is to keep a balance of your sentence lengths. Work in multiple short, action-focused sentences with longer, more descriptive ones. This will give your reader a time to pause and visualize the fight before drawing them back into the quick action. For example, a follow-up might be:
“The force of her kick knocked him from his feet. He was sent sliding across the dirt and the mud, staining his jeans.”
Study Wrestling Fights
Remember that all good fights need to be character-driven. What the character wants should be clear. Someone who wants to escape won’t spend a lot of time going toe-to-toe with their opponents. And with each move your character makes, it’s an opportunity to show their personality.
I recommend studying the way wrestling fights are conducted, such as the ones on WWE or AEW. These fights are structured in such a way that they tell a story. Every character as their own unique move set and unique purpose to be in the fight.
There is also a good give-and-take in the way wrestling fights are staged. Especially for big paid live shows. They will work in shock and awe moments, there will be times when you think the hero character is being defeated only for them to mount a comeback. In short, they push the narrative forward. Watch these for inspiration on structuring your fight scenes.
Use a Randomizer
When I write fight scenes, I will know my high points. But how do I connect them? How do I fill in this space to transition from one big moment to another?
Sometimes, I use what I refer to as my “randomizer”. I use a self-created spreadsheet filled with various fight moves or actions. These can include parry, trip, punch to the face, lose balance, overhead strike, etc. I will then roll either with a dice or with an online roller. The number it lands on is the next move in the fight. Of course, I must then translate it narratively. But that turns it into a fun challenge.
For example, let’s say I’m in the middle of my fight with two characters facing off. They are fighting on a roof. I roll and get a 5. I look at my spreadsheet. The 5 slot says “lose balance”. So I write:
“He swung wild and hard, aiming his sword for her throat. She quickly spun out of the way and his attack went wide. Losing his balance, he tumbled toward the edge of the roof.”
Now I roll again. I get a 13. The 13 slot says “parry“. I write:
“As he struggled to regain his footing, he made a quick strike at her. Hoping to land a blow as he passed. But she deftly parried, remaining unharmed.”
Are there any tricks you use when writing a fight? Let us know below!
If you are a new or experienced author on Amazon’s KDP, you might wonder if you are pricing your book competitively. Will it make you enough money? Is it overpriced? Is it underpriced? It is attractive to consumers? And why is there a 35% or a 70% royalty option? Who doesn’t want to make more money? We’ll talk about each of these points below to help you price your book!
Is My Book Overpriced?
You spend a great deal of time and effort on your book. You know you should earn income appropriate to your efforts. However, are you pricing your book to high? Readers often consider price when choosing which book to purchase, and not everyone has the extra money to buy whatever they choose.
A good way to determine if your book is priced too high is to survey similar books in your genre. When you open your book’s sale page on Amazon, you can scroll down to see similar titles other people have bought. Look at the prices of these. Is yours the most expensive of the list? Visit your local bookstore and browse your genre, checking each price. If your book is always on the highest end, you may have overpriced it.
Is My Book Underpriced?
If you price your book extremely cheap, everyone will rush to buy it. After all, who doesn’t want a good deal? Well, this isn’t necessarily the case. Actually, you could be “shooting yourself in the foot”, as it were, by pricing your book too cheaply.
Consumers often attribute the quality of an item to its price. While everyone wants a good deal, if people think something is surprisingly cheap, too cheap, they may assume it is a low-quality item. Therefore, they may assume your book is not good and that is why it’s so cheap. When pricing your book, don’t make the cost so low that one questions how good it is. Also, your efforts deserve a good price. Don’t undersell yourself!
Who Wouldn’t Want a 70% Royalty?
When publishing an ebook specifically on KDP, it gives you the option to choose a royalty plan. You can choose between 35% or 70%. This seems confusing. Who wouldn’t want more money per book sale?
First thing to know is that not all books qualify for a 70% royalty. Your ebook cannot be priced higher than $9.99, or lower than $2.99, to qualify. You must also have this book enrolled in KDP Select. Enrolling in this free program allows your book to be part of Kindle Unlimited (subscribed readers can read your book for “free” and you get paid per page read), your book is allowed to be lent between readers for 14 days, and you can run discounts or free promotions of your book.
Be aware that even if you choose 70%, this may not apply to certain international markets. Honestly unless you are a worldwide-known author, there is no reason to not take advantage of the perks you get from choosing the 70% royalty plan. It gives you better outreach to potential readers.
We hope this has been educational! Happy publishing!
We look at the pros and cons of places to promote your book.
Where to promote your book? That is a question on every indie author’s mind. You did all this work, but how do you get people to actually see what you’ve written? There are many marketers out there that claim to be able to make your “sales soar”, but many of them are only scams. Here is our list of where to promote your book, as well as what to look out for.
This one is not the quick-success guarantee many people make it out to be. Unless you’re someone that likes to stir up a lot of drama, you’re likely not going to build a huge following online. Cultivating a social media presence to promote your book will be a long-term, daily effort. And books aren’t exactly the type of quick entertainment content that reads well on things like Instagram and the platform formerly known as Twitter.
Pros: Access to a large audience, able to post multiple times a day, able to capitalize on trending hashtags to get noticed, free
Cons: Slow to build followers, book marketing isn’t a “quick laugh”, posts can easily read like ads
Be aware of: You can pay for ad campaigns that let you reach a lot of people.
Be wary of: People pretending to be influencers that just want a quick sell promising they can get your book out to thousands of people.
Book Review & Reader Websites
There are many websites out there run by a single individual or group that will review books, post about their favorites, and allow you to promote your book on their site. Some of these are good, some not so much. It is a good way to get your book in front of people that are currently looking for something new to read. The problem is that a lot of these people tend to be “free book collectors” that are just waiting for a free sale period to stock up. They don’t always turn around on reviews and revenue for you.
Pros: Targeted audience, good visibility
Cons: Sometimes can cost money, no guarantee of any actual sale
Be aware of: Some websites offer packages to promote and review your book. On the right site, this can give you great outreach.
Be wary of: Just because a lot of people are signed up for their newsletter doesn’t mean they have good engagement.
Most indie authors choose to publish on Amazon’s KDP because of the ease of it (most of the time, haha). Amazon may market their advertising as an easy way to get sales, but it is a lot more complicated than that. If you go into it without knowing anything about their system, you can quickly get overwhelmed. Make sure you do some research first so you understand what you are filling out. I recommend reading this. While these ads can get your book many, many views, it’s not always a good ROI. Where you market it, what keywords you use, who you target, and when you run your ad can result in lots of sales, or no sales at all.
Pros: Marketed directly to people shopping for a book, easy click to buy the book
Cons: Not user friendly, costs lots of money for a good campaign
Be aware of: The more you invest in your ad, the more outreach you will get.
Be wary of: Books with few reviews, bad reviews, or uninteresting descriptions might not perform well and you will be out the money.
We give some top tips to help effectively write a book summary!
“What is your book about?”
It’s the dreaded question asked to writers all around the world. How can you possibly sum up an entire novel’s worth of character backstories, relationships, plot development, and intrigue? How can you condense a fully fleshed out story into a few sentences? And even worse, how can you make it sound intriguing without spoiling your carefully-plotted twists and turns?
Unfortunately, that is the task that falls on us when we have to write a book summary. If we ever want anyone to actually read the book, they need an overview of what it is about. There are plenty of theories and how-to’s online, but I have always been of the opinion that there is never one right way to do anything when it comes to creative writing. What you’ll find here is a series of tips to help you generate ideas and give you a launching point to summarize your book. Enjoy!
Focus on One Character
Books are full of so many colorful characters that are all important to the plot. But if you try to include them all in your summary, you get a confusing mess. Who wants to read something like this:
“Donna knows she has to break up with Conner, because she is secretly in love with Thomas. But that is complicated by Thomas’ involvement with Derrick “Knives” Laforge, the biggest mafia boss in Metro City. Thomas wants to be free from Derrick and marry Donna, but he doesn’t know how to. But Conner has something going for him, as well. His sister, Susan, is Donna’s best friend and is determined to see her and her brother together, no matter the cost!“
As hard as it may be, try to streamline your summary to focus on a singular character. This is a better revision of the above:
“Donna is caught between two men competing for her interest. Her heart may have chosen the bad boy wrapped up with the mafia, but her mind knows a solid friendship without risk of death is the smarter choice. Torn between loyalty and love, Donna’s choice will alter the lives of everyone around her.“
Understand Your Stakes
I once read that “a problem a character can walk away from, is a book the reader can walk away from”. When you write your book summary, but sure the stakes are clear. These don’t always have to be life and death, end of the world type of stakes.
Think of this simple formula. Character wants something > This is what happens if they don’t get it.
Let’s give some examples from the Thread of Souls books.
For Book 1, we understand in the summary that: Zok wants to find out who murdered his mentor. If he doesn’t, his Order and his reputation as a paladin will be ruined.
For Book 2, we understand that Unole has to clear her name. If she doesn’t, she will lose the only home she’s ever known.
Give a Thematic Overview
When there’s simply too much to fit into your summary, it’s helpful to give 1-3 sentences of thematic overview. These work best at the start or end of your summary, and usually can exist separately from the “meat” of the summary. For example, if we take our Donna summary, we might put after it:
“Donna’s Choice weaves a dramatic tale of love and loss against a backdrop of a dirty city where each day is a fight for survival.”
We have something similar at the end of each Thread of Souls book. Because Thread of Souls is an eight-book series, it is much longer and involved than you would need for a stand alone novel. But it is good as a reference:
“Thread of Souls is an award-winning eight-book epic fantasy series based off a TTRPG campaign. These stories weave a world of deep history, cultures, and lore with a fascinating pantheon of good and evil gods. Adventure across the vast world of Corventos while diving right into the heart and soul of a diverse and colorful cast of characters whose passions, strengths, and failures drive the story. “
We hope this has helped you feel more confident when you write a book summary! Practice always makes things better. Write multiple summaries and compare each one, growing and revising until you have your final product!
Top Tips to Help Struggling Writers Get Their Thoughts Together!
We creatives have busy minds, and that can make the process to organize writing difficult. There’s just too many ideas! While I don’t believe there is one path set in stone guaranteed to work for everybody, here is what I do to help keep my ideas in line while I am writing the Thread of Souls books.
Google Docs to Organize Writing
I use Google Docs a lot. Many years ago, I used to keep all my story notes on Microsoft Word on my computer. After the computer crashed and destroyed everything, I only trust the Cloud haha. But it also is easy to navigate, and works well when you’re working with a co-author like I am. The lovely Dorian.
I have one folder titled Thread of Souls, and that is broken up into subfolders. While I am writing, I keep a few documents permanently open.
The actual document I am writing on.
My outline. I change sections to gray text when I’m done with them, but I never delete in case I need to refer back.
My handy word list! I have a spreadsheet with great synonyms for “said”, emotions, expressions, fighting moves, etc to help me when I’m blanking.
I also have one other document I pull up as needed. I have the original game notes from the game. As you know, Thread of Souls is based off our TTRPG. When I outline, I initially start by going through the rough game notes and sculpting the story off that base.
Evernote to Organize Writing
Because I’m writing a very detailed series of books with a fully fleshed out world, I can’t expect myself to remember everything all the time. What is Zok’s age again? What symbol is on the temple to the Holy Dragon in Somberdale? How much as Taliesin talked about his sister?
When I needed answers to these questions, I use Evernote. This is not an endorsement, I’m not getting paid for this haha. But after trying some other software Evernote was just the easiest for me to use. I have my notes divided up by:
I keep this open on my computer so I can quickly use their search bar and find what information I need.
In summary, I keep a few documents open on Google Docs, specifically an outline and a handy word list. I also use Evernote to keep track of things that happened in prior books. I use all of these while I am doing my writing.
What strategies do you use when you organize your writing?
It doesn’t matter if you are an aspiring or experienced writer, when it’s time to choose a book title it can feel overwhelming. You want it to catch a reader’s attention, you want it to convey the theme of the book, and you want it to feel unique to the story you are telling. It can all be overwhelming! We outlined three simple strategies below to help you in naming your book. These are strategies we put into place when we choose book titles for our Thread of Souls series.
The Aesthetic Title
You may want to choose a title that focuses on the specific aesthetic of your story. Is your story dark and moody? Is it romantic and epic? Is it violent and strategic? If you have an idea of the vibes of your story, you can begin to create a short list of words related to them. Try not to fall into the stereotypical trap of young adult novels with edgy names, but instead choose words that relay the moods and themes of your work.
For example, if you book is romantic, you might want to include a color of passion in the title, like red or purple. Or aesthetics associated with romance such as flowers, fire, silk, the night, or chocolate.
Animals are also good metaphors for themes in your book. Foxes are associated with being cunning, owls for wisdom, dogs for loyalty, elephants for sturdiness, or spiders for laying traps.
Consider other symbols and what they mean. A full moon is often associated with power. Storms are often associated with troubling times. Rain for rebirth, a garden for life, an apple for temptation, and so on.
Here are some real-life examples: Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen, The Chaos of Stars by Kiersten White, and Midnight Beauties by Megan Shepherd.
The Prominent Name Title
You may choose your book title based on something prominent within the story itself. This could be a character, a location, or an item of note. This brings the focus onto something instrumental to your story’s plotline.
Some examples of stories named after characters: Romeo & Juliet by William Shakespeare, The Book of Mordred by Vivian Vande Velde, and Pendragon by D.J. MacHale.
Some examples of stories named after locations within: The Two Towers by J.R.R. Tolkien, Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones, and Out of Africa by Karen Blixen.
Some examples of stories named after an item within: The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis, Through the Looking-Glass by Lewis Carroll, and The Singing Sword by Jack Whyte.
The Fairytale Setting Title
Sometimes you might want to cement the grand scale of the story you are telling. This is especially helpful if you are telling a book trilogy or series. This allows you to be flexible with subtitles, as well! When going for this type of book title, choose a synonym for “story” and then something else from the list above, such as a character name. We’ve got some great examples below!
The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis, The Kingkiller Chronicles by Patrick Rothfuss, and A Song of Ice and Fire from George R. R. Martin.
How We Chose the Thread of Souls Names
“Thread of Souls” relates to everything that is published within our fantasy world. It not only goes with our theme of multiple character POV’s and how they influence each other, but also of the prominent goddess of death in the stories and her theme of threads. Readers familiar with Greek mythology will easily recognize the allusion to the Fates.
The eight-book series we are currently on is dubbed the “Spider Octology”. This is not only because of a prominent god feature and the number of books in the series, but also is thematic since spiders are associated with laying traps.
Here is a breakdown of the subtitles of the four books published so far:
Book 1 – Phantom Five. This is named after the adventuring group the Phantom Five created across the story.
Book 2 – Ash & Thunder. Not only is this title a bit aesthetic for the chaos and violence in the book, but it also directly relates to two major battles that take place within.
Book 3 – Path of the Spiders. Many secrets are uncovered in this book regarding Taliesin’s missing spiders.
Book 4- Asunder. The story begins with many of our heroes split apart, and thus the group has been torn asunder.
We hope this has been helpful to you! We’d love to hear how you came up with the names for your stories below!
Rangers are versatile members of any party. They can lead a group through dangerous wilderness without getting lost, track a wild beast or missing person in diverse environments, and are capable of wielding a multitude of weapons. They’re hired by travelers as guides and make excellent bounty hunters and monster slayers when the time calls for it. They’re also quite passionate and considerate of nature and the flora and fauna that live among it.
If you’re playing or writing a ranger, we’ve got some tips on how to get in their head. Dorian has played a ranger for six years and understands them quite well. Having done so for such a long time, or course, not all rangers are the same. So, for those looking to play or create a ranger, here’s what you need to know.
Roleplaying a Ranger
Playing a ranger comes down to a few key factors. No matter if you’re using the most popular TTRPG in the world, Pathfinder, Forbidden Lands, or Lord of the Rings, rangers have several things in common. Focus on the following traits when you create a ranger to improve your roleplay and writing.
Rangers are fierce protectors of nature. They work to safeguard all that is natural in the world.
Rangers know their plants. They can tell the party if a plant is deadly, poisonous, edible, or has healing properties. If they don’t know, they work to do so.
Rangers are kind to animals. As protectors of nature, they work to understand creatures of the world, even the dangerous ones. If it comes down to a fight with a beast, they may instead choose to scare away the creature instead of killing it. Rangers are also known to have animal companions.
Rangers always seek to understand. Rangers tend to stick to the wilds or live away from cities. This can make them curious about the world. Going to a large urban area can seem outlandish to them but with every place they visit, they seek knowledge first. Knowing more about a place, person, or creature is highly beneficial.
Rangers can be difficult at first. Like nature, rangers tend to be guarded and may appear off-putting at first. Once they get to know a person, they warm up easily to them and let their guards drop.
Rangers are masters of weapons. There is a reason rangers are known as masters of the hunt. Not for their hunting skills, but their ability to wield and master just about every weapon created.
As writers, we find inspiration in nearly everything we come across. So, we thought to help with your roleplay, we should introduce you to a few popular rangers from movies and video games.
Geralt of Rivia. Geralt is a Witcher, which is a fancy way of saying ranger. He hunts monsters, uses herbs to make potions and poisons, and is proficient in knowing creatures, tracking, and fighting. He’s gruff and blunt but has a kind heart and is always willing to help those in need.
Aragorn. Aragorn from Lord of the Rings is one of the best examples of a ranger we can think of. While known as a Ranger of the North, the title referred to a wandering people who protected the land but sought to remain a secret from others. This gave them a reputation for being distrustful, harsh, and dangerous. While Aragorn can appear quite harsh, he’s kind to everyone he meets once he learns more about them. He also has several animal companions during his journey. Brego is with him in The Two Towers and The Return of the King. While Bill the pony accompanies him in The Fellowship of the Ring.
Ruuda Drybarrel. Self-plug. Ruuda’s backstory in our fantasy book series Thread of Souls focuses on her interaction with a group or rangers. She was trained by Deep Stalker ranger Nier Shadowsnare but was not blessed to be a Deep Stalker herself. The Deep Staker rangers are protectors of the Deep Hollows and work to ensure safe passage for travelers on the roads, protect creatures, and are hired out when needed for specific jobs. Ruuda’s history with the rangers could play a larger part in her story, but you’ll have to read and find out.
You don’t have to look far on the internet to find multiple people posting their own “writing rules”. It’s on Twitter, Pinterest, blogs, published books, and more. Some are from professional authors, some from amateurs, and some from just random people who think they have talent but haven’t published anything yet. As authors ourselves and people who often publish blogs about writing tips and tricks, this begs the question, do you actually need rules for writing? Are there actual do’s and don’t’s that make or break your book? Or is it all just nonsense from people with superiority complexes?
Too Much Info
When you start to look up some guidelines for writing online, it doesn’t take long before it all just feels too much. “Describe eyes like this”, “Don’t describe eyes at all“, “Don’t use prologues“, “Use prologues”, “Don’t slow down your pace“, “Give the reader time to breathe“. It all feels a bit contradictory. If you are looking for hard advice to follow, it can seem like a losing battle.
This reminds me of an amusing quote I found on Pinterest once that made fun of these writing rules by saying “the best thing to give your reader is just a blank page“.
Do Rules Have a Place in Creative Writing?
When you are writing a creative piece, is there really a need for rules? Do you need to follow a formulaic plotline? Or do you simply write what is in your heart? Everyone has different tastes in stories. What one person likes to read will be completely different than what someone else likes to read. It begs the question if there is much of a point in sticking to certain specifications as if that will magically make your book the perfect story for every single person in the world.
We once worked as part of a writing team for a company, and one member of the team believed that stories should have a “you did this / you go there” POV so that the reader is drawn in to believe they are part of the story. But for both of us personally, we really dislike those types of POV’s and don’t enjoy stories written like that. This team member spouted out all these “rules for writing” to support his point, but does that have any merit when it actually comes down to personal taste?
Breaking the Writing Rules
We watched a documentary about J.R.R. Tolkien once, and something said in it will always stick with us. It said that his Lord of the Rings books would be considered completely unmarketable today because they break all the “rules” of telling a story. And yet, they still live on as one of the best works of fantasy. Unless, of course, you don’t like The Lord of the Rings, in which case refer to the paragraph above.
We knew an author who was a huge Stephen King fan, and he read many of King’s guides on writing. As such, he believed one should never, ever, use adverbs. However, he was also a big fan of Patrick Rothfuss’ Kingkiller Chronicle. Having read The Name of the Wind, we found this an interesting point of view since Rothfuss liberally uses adverbs. In our opinion, both authors tell fantastic stories, though we are much bigger fans of fantasy than horror.
When Should You Actually Pay Attention to Writing Rules?
So, is there any use for these writing rules if all it comes down to is personal preference? When we post blogs or entries on social media giving writing tips, it is with the intention that people will use this if they are seeking help, or an outside point of view. Not as a rule to always follow. We really dislike the dialogue tag “said” and use it as infrequently as possible. We have written a blog post about alternatives to use. But if you like “said” and hate all other tags, more power to you! You do what works best for you. That post is only meant for those seeking input on different ways to write dialogue.
If you love you writing as-is, don’t worry about what others say you should or should not do. We do think that everyone can benefit from hearing outside viewpoints on how others go about their writing, and writing courses, but that doesn’t mean you suddenly have to change what you do entirely just because someone else does it that way.
Perhaps we should change “writing rules” to “writing opinions”. So many young, potential authors get scared off of ever starting a book because a random person on the internet will toss around these rules like they are decrees sealed in blood that you must follow or end up a failure with no future. This is just silly. Tell the story that is in your heart exactly the way you want to tell it. There are people out there who it will resonate with. And in the end, you have told your story the way you wanted to, and that is the most important thing.
Happy February! A bit late on the draw this month, but we have our Spool of Souls monthly update on what we are currently working on, and our new releases.
Upcoming Book Releases
After a big delay due to an injury, we finally have a date in mind for the publication of the promised lore book “Jade’s Alphabet of Animals”! We’ll be sending it out to ARC readers in March, with publication in April. It will be our first picture book, and will give whimsical insight into lore for Thread of Souls. If you are interested in being on our early reader ARC team, please reach out!
We’ve mentioned before that we will be launching a behind-the-scenes podcasts that talks about the creation of the books. That was supposed to launch this week, but we’ve had a few setbacks just with our own scheduling. Life gets hectic. We hope to have it going later this month, and it should be available the same place as our newly released soundtrack.
Our Corventos map blanket is here! It is so beautiful! We have that and many more items available in our Redbubble store. Our roadmap for the year is to release a new product each month, so keep on the lookout for them!
If you are one who likes to support artists, we have recently opened up subscription tiers on DeviantArt. These include early access to art as well as once-a-month requests. If you haven’t visited our DeviantArt yet, check us out! That’s the main place for all Thread of Souls-related art, and we occasionally host contests, a well!