Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Free-king Out

Yesterday was my first ever free day at Amazon.  And here's a summation of how it went:

Me: :crawls out of bed, powers up 'puter, gets coffee:  "La la la, let's see how the freebie thing is going.  Wow, eleven books. Cool.  Hey, honey, eleven new people are going to read my book."

Him: "Wow.  Cool."


Me: :blink blink:  "I'm up to 54 books now."

Him: "Fifty-four books?  Imagine if those people actually bought the book..."

Then the roads finally got good enough for me to venture out where I mailed books to some people, talked about Dying Embers to the postal gal and the ladies at the bank and the gal at the convenience store.  Snagged some foodage.  Came home around 1:30pm.

Me: "Holy shit.  124 books."

Him: :visibly cringes:  "So, this is supposed to help with sales?"

Me: "From everything I've read, yeah."

This goes on several more times until bed - except by then we were both cringing as books walked out the door.  Flash ahead to this morning...

Me:  Final tally 356.  And one new sale.  :drinks coffee, smokes cigarettes, waits for Hubs to get up:

Him:  :snags coffee, pets Max, lights a cigarette:  "So what was the count?  Hundreds?"

Me: :cringe: "Do you really want to know?"

Him: "Yeah."

Me: "You sure?"

Him: "Yeah."

Me: "356"

Him: :silence:

This had better work in the long run.  Or I'm going to have serious egg on my face.  Fried.  With scalding hot butter dripping down my cheeks.

Looking on the bright side, there are 356 new people who could potentially read Dying Embers and then recommend it to their friends who might buy a copy.  Or they could like it so much they buy a paperback to keep on their shelves (cuz it's pretty).  Or they could like Dying Embers so much they purchase the next book and the next and the next. 

This morning, though, I'm kinda freaking out a little. 

Oh, and because who doesn't like free things, my Goodreads giveaway contest started yesterday.  There's a widget on B.E.'s Writerly Space if you're interested in the chance to get a hardcopy of Dying Embers and some swag.  (It's on the right side, underneath the 'Dying Embers is for sale' doohickey.)

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Sunday Update - Week 8

Eight weeks into 2015.  Where'd the time go?  I could blame it on being busy, but the time flies just as fast when I'm not busy, so I'll just claim some sort of temporal disturbance and leave it at that.

Last week saw the arrival of my hardcopy books and my bookmarks.  The books are awesome, but the bookmarks were tragic.  Never create and order bookmarks when you're tired.  I uploaded files that should've been 160% larger and when I looked at the preview my brain said 'hey, those look spiffy!' instead of saying 'hey, aren't those supposed to go all the way to the edge?'  :shrug:  Anyway, I enlarged the images and ordered a new batch. Those arrived Friday and they really are spiffy this time.  The front says 'Revenge is better hot' in a red to orange gradiation on a black background.  The back says 'Dying Embers by B.E. Sanderson' and a ways to contact me, along with a bit about the book being available at Amazon, B&N, Createspace and 'other fine retailers'. 

Now that I have all my swag in place along with my books, I'll be packing them in their padded envelopes and sending them off.  I'm shooting for shipping tomorrow, but I have to see how the roads are. 

In actual writerly stuff - as opposed to marketing stuff - I finished this round of edits on Wrongful Termination, and began making edit notes for Bloodflow.  WT is shaping up nicely, and BF is a hot mess.  Today, I'll be starting the rewrite of the second SCIU book - Fertile Ground - which I'll be changing into Frank Carruso's book.  (For those of you who haven't read Dying Embers yet, Frank is a secondary character in there.)  Now I have to remember what Frank looks like. 

On a personal note, my freakin' hand is killing me.  The accident that screwed up larger portions of my body left me with a deep scar pattern on the back of my left hand.  And every once in a while, those scars hurt like the dickens.  Or maybe is the mostly severed, but totally healed, tendon for my left flipping-off finger. Either way, soft tissue damage should not hurt after 20+ years, but there it is.  Makes typing fun. 

In other news, because of the cold here, Max is back in the office at least through today.  He's living the high life.  He's also a major distraction.  Lucky for me, most of my work up to today has been in the living room with a notebook and red pen. 

Coming up this week, I'll be a guest blogger on Laura Bickle's blog.  Stop on by, learn about how I ended up self-publishing, and get a surprise announcement.  (Which will also be announced on FB and Twitter - but Laura's blog will be more fun.) 

What's going on in your life?

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Things That Make Me Happy

Apropos of nothing, here's a list of things that make me happy today...

My new old desk chair creaks and sometimes when I move a certain way, it sounds exactly like a Spring Peeper.

Yesterday, the gal who sells me cigarettes got fan-girl excited when I gave her one of my Dying Embers postcards, and her and the owner congratulated me and figuratively petted me nice for my hard work. 

Kira the cat curling up in the packing papers my print copies came in.

Max sleeping on top of the infrared space heater.  It's so small and he's so big, he only just fits if he tucks his paws and tail in.

How supportive and understanding Hubs has been of my writing for the past eleven years.

The pretty pretty wood siding Hubs uncovers a little more of every day he sands.  

What makes you happy today? 

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Dis Organization

Moving ever onward, I started back to work the morning of my book launch (Dying Embers launched February 13th - in case you weren't following me then or weren't around my other blogs, FB, Twitter, etc.)  The first order of business was to input the WT edits I'd made notes for back in December.  Now that that's done, though, I'm looking around for something else to do.  Which led me to look through my notebooks in search of another set of edit notes I'm sure I made once I got the notes done for WT.  These were for Bloodflow. 

Now, let me explain something... or rather sum up... I have a bunch of 5-subject college ruled notebooks laying around the house.  Each one has different stuff in it - with no real rhyme or reason to any of it.  Whatever notebook happens to be handy and still has empty pages, I use whenever the mood to write or edit or ponder strikes me. 

Over the weekend, I grabbed the full one looking for those notes and realized I have no clue what's in any of these suckers.  In the interest of figuring things out, I took a pad of sticky notes and used them to denote which pages had which story.  Any pages not pertaining to a specific story, I ripped out (jotting down anything important therein). 

Now I have three notebooks with yellow papers sticking up out of them, all with book titles.  And I still haven't found the edit notes I am... was... sure I made.  I've got one more left, but I'm beginning to doubt whether I made those notes at all or whether I made the notes for another book and only THOUGHT I made notes on Bloodflow. 

I do that sometimes - think about doing something so much that I think I actually did it.

Anyway, I'm not the most organized person in the world, but I'm trying.  Still, I think my style is more Dis then actual Org.  I could really use a secretary - if I could stand the thought of someone else pawing through my stuff on a regular basis. 

On the upside, I found some story ideas I'd forgotten about, a few notes of quirky questions I left myself, and a passel of pages of me yelling at myself.  (I do that.  It's part of the process - especially when I'm stuck.)  The downside is my fat little fingers were itching to play in some of those other ideas when I have work to do.

Additionally, and apropos of something other than the subject of this post, I think I hit on the way to tie Fertile Ground (the next SCIU novel) into Dying Embers better - by making Frank the main male character instead of the dude I already have.  (I thought about changing the heroine, Teri, into Lynn from DE, but I couldn't make it work to suit the story.  Lynn will have to wait.)  It'll take some major rewriting, but I think my readers will enjoy it better if they have a character they already know waiting there for them.

How are you at organization?  Do you leave yourself notes in your own work?    

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Sunday Update - Week 8

This whole past week went by in a smear.  Sitting here this morning, I was all like 'WTF? It's Sunday again?' and sat wondering exactly what I did last week.

Let's see...

I'm almost done with the first round of edits notes for Wrongful Termination.  I made these notes back in December, if I remember correctly - when I was waiting for things to start moving with Dying Embers.  They're pretty detailed and helpful - when I can read my own handwriting - but I learned so much from editing DE that I know I need to go back and start the whole thing over for WT.  I'll finish the last two pages of notes today and maybe give myself a couple days away from WT.  I can always work on inputting the edit notes for Bloodflow.

I read some stuff.  Not a lot of stuff, mind you, but some.  I gave up trying to read The French Connection.  I just wasn't in the place where a true-life police procedural from the '70s was holding my interest.  I switched over to a Mack Bolan action novel.  That was awesome.  Then I read a novella that was really beautifully written, but kind of disappointing in its shortness.  I could've read volumes about that world.  It was like being shown the buffet at Bellagio and then being told you can only take one small plate of awesome, tasty food.

My promo postcards came in, but my books - which were on a truck headed this way on Friday - never made it.  To cut UPS some slack, the roads back in here are freak-nasty.  I finally put on my big-girl panties and drove to Walmart yesterday, so I know.  Of course, I have a little front wheel drive trooper of a car and UPS has a big-ass boat of a truck.  I don't blame him.  I just want my freakin' books so I can have a contest and mail these suckers out to people.

I spent some time trying to figure out MailChimp so I can offer all y'all a newsletter to sign up for.  I tried reading the tutorial yesterday, but it was all gobbledy gook in my head, so I gave up - again.  I'll figure it out eventually.  I just need to be in a mental place for learning new stuff.  I so ain't there this weekend.

Also, I took some bird pictures - some of which I posted here and others over on FB.
What can I say - it was a busy birding week at Casa Sanderson. 

Your turn.  How'd things go in your world last week? 

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Screwing Around

I'm kinda at loose ends right now.  Clicking over to look at sales data, when there's no sales data to speak of, is driving me bonkers.  As if, checking for new reviews, etc.  Bleh.  I should be writing, or rather editing, but I'm a little under the weather and I don't have the patience. Plus, Max is in the office today and he's more than a little... MAX! Cut that out!... distracting.

Anyway, I was screwing around the other day answering 'questions' at Goodreads, so if any of you want to know any more little tidbits about me, go here:


And if you have any questions you'd like to ask, feel free.  I'll answer them if I can - and if they aren't too personal or anything. 

BTW, Max is at least part Maine Coon.  If you don't have experience with Maine Coons, they like to climb and they're easily bored and they crave attention.  Of course, to them negative attention is the same as positive attention.  Same same. 

Now you can return to the regularly scheduled screwing around of your own.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Bird Nerd Post

It's been a while since I posted bird pics.  As you may or may not know, I'm a bird nerd.  Not a bird watcher, per se.  I don't go racing all over the country, adding to my birding list.  I'm content to notice birds wherever I happen to be.  I count the eagles on my way to and from Walmart, for instance.  And I note birds along the roadside.  And I attract birds to my yard so I can snap their pictures and all them to my own 'collection'.  Yes, that's what it is - I collect birds in my head and on my hard drive.  And I need to correctly identify them - because hey, that's what bird nerds do.

Anyway, with the recent winter storm, the birds were really out en masse yesterday.  Here are a few of the better shots I took.
Male Cardinal
Carolina Chickadee
Female Purple Finch

Fox Sparrow
Goldfinch - Winter Plumage
Rusty Blackbird
White-crowned Sparrow (possibly female or juvenile)
Hans and Franz (male wild turkeys)

What about you?  Are you a bird nerd?