Thursday, August 30, 2018

Thursday This n That

We had a yellow-billed cuckoo in our redbud tree this week.  I'd never seen one before, so I got to add a new bird to my life list.  You know, if I actually kept a life list.  If you have no idea what I'm talking about, you're not a birder.  I'm not actually a birder.  I just like to watch birds from the comfort of my own home.  Or wherever I happen to be at.  I'm totally not into driving all over creation to watch birds.  On a side note, if you haven't seen The Big Year, it's totally awesome.

The grain bugs are still here.  They can't be finding much to eat, so I don't expect they'll be around long.  We also are having a resurgence of these little flies.  Look kinda like fruit flies, except they're more interested in Kira's canned food than anything sweet.  Bleh.  Bugs... all part of living in the jungle, I guess.

I'm writing this Thursday night as I wait for the new Homicide Hunter to start.  Why they have to put the damn thing on at 9pm I'll never know.  I almost never stay up past nine, so it starting at my bedtime is really cheesing me off.  Odds are even that I'll fall asleep halfway through.

And then I'll go to bed and lie awake for what feels like freakin' ever.

Hubs sprayed vinegar on the driveway this week.  Is it wrong that we take so much pleasure in watching weeds die?  If yes, you don't even want to know how much I celebrate when he sprays for ticks. 

Somehow or other, we ended up with a mom dog and three pups in the neighborhood.  I haven't seen them yet, but Hubs has.  One of the neighbors seemed like she was going to take them in and do something with them.  Then he saw them running loose again.  If no one handles it soon, I will be scooping them up and taking them to one of the local rescues.  =o\

Yes, I love dogs.  Yes, I would love to have a dog.  No, I will not be getting a dog.  It would be cruel to Kira, for one.  And it would be cruel to the dog, because we do not have the time or the patience for an animal.  Except for Kira.  She's family.

Okay, time for Kenda.  What's on your this n that radar today?

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

"Wow, This is Really Bad"

As I sit here, reading through Unequal and attempting to whip it into some kind of okay before it lands on my editor's desk, I hear the words whisper in my head and pop out my mouth.  "Wow, this is really bad."

Wooden dialogue.  Lame descriptions.  Purpley prose. 


Not the entire manuscript, mind you.  Just the scene I'm reading now.  It's BAD.  Blech.  I feel like I need to re-write the whole thing.  But I only have until Saturday to get this ready.  Hell, I'm not sure I could fix it if I had a month. 

And I have to ask myself, is it really that bad, or am I having a crisis of confidence?  (No, I won't subject any of you to it.)  I mean, I don't write bad.  But I am prone to crises of confidence on a regular basis. And the current crisis is a whopper. 

With the entirely lackluster roll-out of Sleeping Ugly, I'm wondering again what the hell I was thinking becoming a self-published author and wondering why I ever assumed anyone would want to buy my books. 

And then there's the review thing.  Losing one review wouldn't be so bad if I had loads of reviews, which I don't - a fact that whispers in the back of my head that if I was any kind of good, people would get an overwhelming urge to write a review.  I don't even spur people into writing a bad review, which would at least mean I evoked some kind of response. 

And the more I think about all the reasons why I could potentially be craptastic, the worse the crisis gets.  An endless downward spiral of crappy internal dialogue.  :shudder:  So I try not to think about it.  Except when I can't NOT think about it.

I'm not sure what I'll do to resolve the issue with this book.  I might just leave the scene alone and see what AWE thinks.  If she comes back and tells me it sucks, then I'll deal with it.  On the brightside, no one out in the world has seen it sucky and no one ever will.  It's not due out until late November / early December, so I have plenty of time to fix it.  Unless AWE proclaims the whole damn thing unfixable. 


Do you suffer from crises of confidence?  How do you overcome them?  Or do you just motor through and hope they'll go away, like I do?

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Sunday Update - Week 33

Well, it was a busy week here at Sanderson Acres (wholly own subsidiary of Sanderson, Inc. LLC.) despite the fact that I don't really feel like I did anything.

Writing... No new words, but a lot of writerly things were going on.  I did some polishing work on Unequal to get it ready for AWE (Awesome Wonderful Editor, for the new people).  I set up the print version of Sleeping Ugly, got it loaded and approved, and ordered a proof copy.  I set up the print version of Early Grave (finally) and got it loaded on Friday.  Yesterday, I got the notification there were some issues, which I addressed and then re-uploaded.  We'll see what the review is like today.  I'll either address them or ignore them today depending on their level of crucialness.  (Like a potential blurriness in cover details - which I intentionally made kind of blurry, so no big deal.  The fonts are clear and crisp.  The old lady in her wheelchair?  Hazy on purpose.)  We'll see how the proof looks once I get it.  :shrug:

I also began the slog to update all the backmatter of all my books to show that I now have 12 books published.  It's no big deal either.  Open the file, add in the back matter, save.  Go to Amazon, upload new file, go through their stuff, click publish.  DE, FG, and EG are done.  I was a toad yesterday, but I'll get to the rest of them today.

Amazon found one typo in FG that neither it nor I had found before, so it's all good.  I left the H out of enthralled in one spot.  Derp.  It's fixed in the ebook.  Print books do not get fixed.  The expense of new proofs every time I changed backmatter or fixed a typo would wreck me.

I read a bunch.

We went fishing one afternoon.  Nothing exciting to report.  I caught a little bass and Hubs caught a couple little punkinseeds.  It was just nice to be at the lake.

Now that my back is mostly normal again, I'm back to exercising.  I'm sticking to walking for the most part.  The other exercising, I'm doing a little bit of.  Don't want to push it.  Still, I managed to get back to the weight I was at before the back thing hit.  180.4.   Next stop, 179 point something.  I haven't seen a seven in that position on the scale in probably ten years.

The drought is over here.  Not officially because the weather people do love to clench onto their pet calamities.  But since it's raining just about every day, and the grass is all green, and the weeds are growing like, well, weeds, I'm declaring it over.  Hubs mowed and already it's almost time to mow again.  He also sprayed the driveway weeds with a vinegar and Dawn solution.  I really have to weed the flower beds this week sometime.

I can't believe the week ahead is the last week of August.  Where did all those weeks go?

Your turn.  How did your week that was go?

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Saturday Reading Wrap-up - 8/25/18

Well, I finally got the book I was publishing finished, so that means I finally got to read more.  Yay!

The ebooks currently waiting to be read are: Tom's Inheritance (fantasy), Magic Born (urban fantasy), Resurgence (urban fantasy), Sabercat (SF), Before the Wedding (cozy mystery), and Shade Chaser: City of Crows #2 (UF).

Here's how the week shook out for me:

 59) Suddenly Sorceress by Erica Lucke Dean (8/24/18) - Paranormal Romance* - 5 stars.  New to me, but not underappreciated. 
Review: "Fun paranormal romance with plenty of magic and a whole 'comedy of errors' thing going on. A bit too spicy for my tastes, but I flipped past the sexy bits and the story held up well without them. The twist at the end was cute"  

58) A Scone to Die For by HY Hanna (2/23/18) - Cozy Mystery* - 4 stars.  New to me but not underappreciated.
Review: "Cute. A nice, light read and just what I needed to cleanse my reading palate. If you're a fan of British mysteries, you'll probably like this. I can't really say too much about what I really liked without giving away spoilers. Suffice it to say, the mystery wasn't a total shocker, but it was a bit of a surprise how it all turned out."

57) Under the Assassin's Moon by Silver James (2/22/18) - Paranormal Romantic Suspense* - 5 stars.  New release, but these books definitely aren't new to me.  Too bad they are WAY underappreciated.
Review:  "SQUEE! This book was awesome! I love the Wolves. Always. But this is Ms. James' best yet. So good. And the little twist with Zeta's heritage? Mind blown."

56) Soul Breaker (City of Crows #1) by Clara Coulson (8/20/18) - Urban Fantasy* - 5 stars.  New to me but not underappreciated.
Review:  "OMG, that was freakin' awesome! So much awesome dipped in awesomesauce and covered with sparkly awesomesprinkles. The only reason it took me so long to read is I started it and then got really busy with my own work. When I had time, I sat down and inhaled the rest of the book, ignoring pretty much everything else around me for a couple hours until I finished. I definitely need to get the next book. Like now. And then once I get over the book hangover this gave me, read that, too."  
(If you didn't catch it at the beginning of this post, I did buy the second book, but I have scads to read right now, so I haven't started it yet.)

I'm currently reading a paperback - Band of Brothers by Stephen Ambrose.  (Yes, the WWII book about Easy Company that the mini-series was created from.) Sometimes a gal needs to read real paper.  And sometimes she needs to go NF.  But after that, I will keep making my way through the new ebooks.  And I'd get through them all if I stopped downloading things that look interesting.  ;o)

Thursday, August 23, 2018

Thursday This n That

Coffee is awesome.

The world has gone freaking insane.

The hydrangea that the deer ate is coming back.  I went over to that garden the other day because I thought I saw something green smack in the middle, where the hydrangea had been.  Sure enough, there's a clump of tiny leaves struggling to thrive.  Yay.  I also have anemones popping up where I planted some bulbs months ago.  I thought the bulbs were dead, but nope.

Life will find a way.  Sometimes.  Maybe.  My hummingbird bush is dead. For reals. There's no coming back from dead.

Except when you're Chester Chipmunk.  He's alive when I was certain he was dead.

My brain is stuck on edit mode.  This comes, I expect, from finishing SU and jumping right into editing UEQ.  I'm editing the TV, books I'm trying to read, my own speech, other people's speech... Yeah, that last one is only in my head.  I don't want to get punched in the mouth by someone out in the world for correcting them aloud.  Okay, sometimes I reword Hubs out loud, but he's used to living with a woman whose brain is up her edit hole.

I used that phrase - my head is up my edit hole - when talking to an acquaintance recently.  I thought she'd pee her pants laughing.  I should take this show on the road.

Does anyone else here watch Face Off?  It's a competition show with movie makeup artists doing challenges - like create a demon makeup or a witch or a fairy.  I think it's pretty neat.  Hubs tolerates it.  It's not his thing.  And that's okay.

Okay, I think that's it for me.  What have you got for me?

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Time Off? Piffle.

So, as you may have heard, Sleeping Ugly went live Saturday night.  Sunday I was a total toad.  I couldn't have looked at another fictional word if my life depended on it.  And I proclaimed to Hubs that I was taking a day off. 

To which he replied, "A day?  You should take the next two weeks off."

Which would be lovely, except I can't.  I have a book due to the editor on September 1st and I want to scrub it up a little before I sent it to her.  That's less than two weeks.  Nope, no time for days off right now.

Hell, I took almost the entirely month of June off.  And that was the month I was supposed to be writing the first draft of Ugly and the Beast

Speaking of which, I'm committing to writing that first draft next month.  Kind of a NaNoWriMo in September.  I'll send Unequal off to the editor and get my buns in gear.  I'd be putting out UatB if I hadn't taken June off.  Instead, UEQ is next and UatB will be early next year. 

This is what comes of taking time off, doncha know.  Schedule shuffling and having to bust several humps to get things done that should already be done. 

I took time off.  Now I'm paying the piper for it.  Derp.

So, Sunday was my day off.  And that's okay.  It's not like I work 8 hour days anyway.  Of course, when I'm trying to meet a deadline, an 8 hour day isn't unheard of... :cough: this past Friday :cough:  And working a few hours every day for weeks on end isn't either.  Any time between 5am and 9pm, 7 days a week, I might be found working on something - writing, editing, marketing, accounting...  It's all part of the business.  We writers don't have normal schedules, eh?

What's your schedule like?  (Don't answer that, Silver, LOL. Your schedule makes me tired just thinking about it.)  Do you take 'time off', as in days at a time?  Or do you catch a few hours here and there when you can?

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Sunday Update - Week Derp


Which means I edited my brains out last week. 

Nothing much else went on. 


Seriously, though, I busted my hump and I got it out on the 18th like I said I would.  I still haven't gotten links up in all the places, though.  I'll do that today. 

I did little reading.  I only really got one day of active in and that was yesterday morning when I couldn't look at another crutch word to save myself.  No fishing.  No gardening.  The house is a pigsty.  I've neglected Hubs and the cat. 

But it's done.

Now, I have to format it for print and go over Unequal again to clean it up a bit for AWE. 

I might even finish that book I was reading today. 

What were you up to last week?

Oh, and the book is for sale at $2.99 or free with your Kindle Unlimited subscription.  Be warned: It's totally snarky.

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Saturday Reading Wrap-up - 8/18/18

Well, I don't really have that much to talk about this week.  The majority of my week was spent working on Sleeping Ugly to get it out for publication.  Which was supposed to be today, but probably won't be because I still have a boatload to do and not enough time to do it in. (*See below.)

Anyway, enough about that.  On to the books...  err, book...

55) Prince of Poison by J. Douglas (8/13/18) - Fantasy*# - 4 stars.  New to me and underappreciated.
Review:  "This book was really enthralling and totally gripping, despite a few editing flaws. It has an interesting premise and I was totally into the characters. Then I got to the end. And now I'm torn between getting the next book to find out if what I thought happened really happened and totally not wanting to read the next book because it actually did happen. As it stands now, I'm setting this series aside.

I'm giving this book 5-stars because it was gripping and interesting and stays in my thoughts even now. But I'm also giving it 3 stars because of the end. So, 5 plus 3 divided by 2 equals 4.

As always, your mileage may vary. It's entirely possible all of this gets resolved in subsequent volumes. I'm just not ready to face the next book yet.


And that's it.  I started reading Soul Breaker (City of Crows #1) by Clara Coulson, and I got 13% of the way through, but I haven't touched it since Monday.  Once I get my own book uploaded for purchase, I'll be able to finish this one.  The beginning of it was pretty good, so I'm looking forward to finishing it.

What about you?  Read anything good last week?  What are you looking forward to reading this week?

*I did it!  I got Sleeping Ugly up for sale last night.  

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Thursday This n That

I sent Hubs off to fish by himself on Tuesday.  He needed to get out of the house for a while, and I had a boatload of stuff that needed doing.  He left and I cranked up the jams while I worked.  It was a good afternoon for all.

This is one of those weeks where I have everything to do and I'm doing my damnedest to get it all done.  But as of writing this post last night, I still have about 100 pages to go through on SU and THEN I have to address the few things in the edit letter and THEN I have to scan for crutch words and itinerant typos one last time.  And I still have to format it.  So, while I might still make the 18th, don't hold your breath.

Of the 'everything to do', I did get all the work for pay-job done by Wednesday afternoon.  Go, me.

Yeah, I rewrote the beginning of SU, but my editor approved most of it with only a few tweaks.  Expect a snippet of that tomorrow on Outside the Box.

I managed to walk a mile yesterday without wanting to whimper, so the back thing's mostly gone. 

God, I want pie.  So bad.  Maybe when I hit Wallyworld tomorrow, I'll break down and buy me some.  That would be awesome.  Maybe I can get away with one of those mini-pies.  Hmmm.

Okay, that's it for me.  Your turn.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

The Back/Neck/Shoulder Thing

If you missed seeing a post yesterday on Outside the Box, I was trying to limit my time on the computer in an effort to get over the damn back/neck/shoulder pain.  I sat here only long enough to edit a few pages at a time and then back to the recliner.  Off and on all day.  Since it seems to be working, it's likely going to be more of the same today. 

Except in addition to editing, I also have spreadsheets to do.  That stuff requires hunching over sheets of paper with my eyeglasses on and a magnifying glass in hand, entering lines of data.  Life would be so much easier if the manufacturers emailed the spreadsheets, but since they don't, I have to work with what I have.  :shrug:

On the upside, my malady has recovered enough that I can read again.  Also, in small spurts to not aggravate the issue.  But I'm reading.

Hubs asked if perhaps I was thinking about going to a doctor.  My first answer was 'Nope'.  My second answer was 'Actually, I have been thinking about it and the decision was 'nope'. What are they going to do?'  To which he said, "I don't know.  Maybe give you muscle relaxants?"  Which was when I reminded him that I am allergic to muscle relaxants.  A fact discovered the first time I pulled the same damn muscle in my back in 1988, humping luggage up three flights of stairs during college orientation.  Got home, went to the doctor who prescribed a muscle relaxant, and hello to the cure being worse than the injury.  I'm never going to try that again, lemme tell ya.

On the upside, this particular back thing hasn't bothered me in years, and it's more annoying than anything.  I have things to do and do not have time to be laid up.  But, as Sunday taught me, I'd better take some time to take things slower or I'll be screwed.  (Sunday morning I felt a little better, so I overdid it and Sunday night I paid the price.) 

And to that end, I've been sitting in this chair long enough now that I'd better get off the computer for a while.  Just to be safe.  I'll be around on and off to check comments, though. 

Peace out.

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Sunday Update - Week Whatever

It was a whatever kind of week.

Wrote about a thousand words on Ugly and the Beast.

Touched base with my AWE and got Unequal on the schedule for editing.  It'll go to her on Sept 1st, which leaves September for writing new words on UatB.  It will be my PerNoWriMo. (Personal Novel Writing Month - in which I shall write the remainder of this book which should be about 50K words.  Good lord willin' and the crick don't rise.)   Which means, I hope, that Unequal will be out sometime Nov/Dec, and UatB will be out in Feb(?). 

I barely got any reading done.  (See yesterday's Reading Wrap-up.)

I did get my edits back for Sleeping Ugly.  I'm cracking as much as I can on those.

I went fishing.  Caught a bass.  See Thursday's post for more info on that.

See?  Kind of whatever.  Why?  Because early in the week, I pulled a muscle in my back and then I aggravated it reaching for juice on the bottom shelf, way in the back of the bottom shelf as a matter of fact, at Wallyworld.  So, for the most part, I've been sitting in my recliner, watching TV.  Can't read because staring down at a book makes the back thing worse. Oh, it's better than it was.  A little bit every day.  Well, except for that juice incident - which I admit was really stupid.  I should've called an employee over to get those for me.  But no, I had to do it myself.  Bleh.

This also means that I only exercised 2 out of 7 days - Sunday and Monday.  Three if you count fishing on Tuesday which was mostly sitting, so it probably shouldn't really count.  I had lost another 2/10ths of a pound, but I probably gained that back with 5 straight days of sitting on my ass.

Oh, and today is my daughter's 25th birthday.  Happy Birthday, Ki.  Have a great one!  And remember, no matter how old you get, you'll always be my KD Kitten.  ;o)

How was your week?

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Saturday Reading Wrap-Up - 8/11/18

I picked up another bunch of new to me books this week - some needing review love and others just because they sounded interesting. Let's see, I got Tom's Inheritance (Arthurian fantasy), Magic Born (urban fantasy), Suddenly Sorceress (urban fantasy), Resurgence (urban fantasy? paranormal suspense?) and A Scone to Die For (mystery).  All free.  Then last night, I picked up a book I've been meaning to read called Sabercat (SF) for $2.99.  It's all good.

Here's what happened in my reading week:

54) The Haunting of Hattie Hastings: Part One by Audrey Davis (8/6/18) - Paranormal Chick Lit?* - 4 stars.  New to me with plenty of reviews.
Review: " Okay, so I didn't notice this was Part One of Three when I downloaded it. I actually didn't notice until midway through it, but it was intriguing enough that I forged ahead, hoping it was a complete book in itself but maybe one part of a larger story arc. Nope. It just stops. On a cliffhanger, of course, which is kind of dirty pool, if you ask me. However, having said all that, I really did enjoy reading this part. And when my book budget allows, I might go in search of parts 2 & 3. I guess what I'm saying is it's worth reading, but make sure you download all three parts so you can read them straight through. Otherwise, it's a bit of a bummer when it stops"

53) M in the Demon Realm by Mark William Hammond (8/5/18) - Urban Fantasy* - 4 stars.  New to me and a little underappreciated (under 25 reviews).
Review: "I had a really tough time getting through like the first half of this - not because it was slow or uninteresting, but because it was all 'short attention span theater'. No scene breaks. No chapters. One sentence you're here and the next you're there. But I forged ahead and I was glad I did because it really is a kickass story. I mean, once you get used to the totally off-the-wall way of storytelling. Maybe if I was younger I could've handled it better and it would've been a five star read for me. Your mileage may vary."

DNF (8/4/18) - Title Redacted - Mystery.  The story seemed interesting and kind of fun until I got slapped in the face with what appeared to be the author's cognitive dissonance.  You really shouldn't have your characters act one way philosophically for the first part of the book and then slip a totally opposite way of thinking into their persona in the middle.  Not without cause.  It's disingenuous.  Maybe if the character had some kind of epiphany which changed their thinking 180 degrees, but not out of the blue.  It's like dating a guy who's totally awesome and wonderful, so you move in with him, and that's when he turns into a complete asshole. Umm, yeah...

I'm currently reading Prince of Poison (fantasy) but it's been slow going because I pulled something in my back/neck and hunching over the ereader is exacerbating it.  I have to finish reading it by tonight, though, because my edits are due in today and I have to get cracking on those.  Not sure if that's gonna happen, though.

Speaking of edits, I don't expect to read a lot over the next week because I ought to be concentrating on getting this book finished and loaded for publication.  We'll see.

Read any good books this week?

Short Addendum: This morning I pre-ordered Silver James' Under the Assassin's Moon (paranormal romance), but it's not due to hit my Kindle until the 21st.  

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Thursday This n That

I went fishing on Tuesday afternoon and despite what all the fishing reports are saying about bass only being deep and only biting on specific lures and junk, I caught a good sized bass, close to the ledges I was fishing from.  On a worm.  Actually, I was reeling in to cast out again and just as I got the worm almost out of the water, the bass attacked.  It was like Jaws.  Out of the depths it rose and BAM!  It was a keeper, but the water's been so warm I didn't think it would taste awesome, so I threw it back.  Only caught that one fish, but it was worth it.

I really need to vacuum.  The dust bunnies are whispering 'Viva la Resistance' in the corners and shadows.  I must put down the uprising before it explodes into anarchy.

Yesterday, I pulled out of the driveway and something was up ahead in the road.  From that distance, I wasn't sure if it was a leafy branch or a dead critter.  As I drove ahead, I was saying 'don't be a dead thing, don't be a dead thing, don't be a dead thing'.  When I got a little closer, it moved.  It was a broad-winged hawk with its back to me, its wings spread over whatever prey it had in its talons.  I had to stop the car before it moved, but it took off, critter gripped tightly beneath it.  Which was really cool until I noticed it had a chipmunk.  And I was all like "Chester!  Nooooo."  But hey, hawk's gotta make a living, too.  And hopefully, it wasn't actually Chester from our yard.  It's hard being a chipmunk in a woods full of predators.

Yep, nature's a bitch sometimes.  Why the hawk couldn't have come over and eaten one of the dozens of rotten gray squirrels in our yard is beyond me.  To borrow a phrase from Chik-Fil-A, 'Eat Mor Skwirrl'.

Gray Squirrel = Furry-tailed rat.  Would you believe Land Pigeon?

I've been thinking of all the things I've given up since we made the dietary changes earlier this year.  Fried chicken.  French fries.  Tater tots.  Hashbrown patties.  McDonald's.  Little Debbie snacks, especially the Nutty Buddies.  Mountain Dew.  Fritos.  Sugar in my coffee.  Doughnuts.  Muffins.  Danishes.  Candybars.  Bratwursts and smoked sausages.  French onion dip.  Sour cream....  I don't really miss all that.  Much.  I'm still holding onto ice cream, pizza (although I buy the little ones now instead of full-sized), and peanut M&Ms.  Except the M&Ms are dark chocolate now.  I still eat chips and crackers, but they're all baked now.  And hamburgers - 93% lean and made at home on the Foreman Grill, so the fat drips away.  Let's not talk about cheese.  I can't give up cheese. Ain't happenin'.  I do try to eat less of it, though.

Okay, that's enough out of me.  What've you got?

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Lamentations of a Tightwad Reader

Ugh.  I saw a blog review for an awesome book and I so wanted to snag a copy so I could get lost in the world.  So I went to Amazon.  And the ebook is $9.99.  Argh.

Yeah, I know, you've heard it all before.  But I guess I'll keep repeating it until either my book budget gets loads healthier or something changes in the way traditional publishing prices their ebooks.

Come to think of it, I'll probably still bitch if I ever have loads of money.  It's the principle of the thing.  And it's driving me away from reading traditionally published books - new, anyway.  I still pick up hardcopy traditional books used.

Unfortunately, used books don't make the author a damned bit of money.  Which makes me kind of sad.

And authors really aren't making that much on the sale of the book originally.  Which is irritating, but a reality of traditional publishing.

But, as a self-employed, self-publisher who is also an avid reader, I have to get my reading fix where I can.  Which leaves out new trad-pub books in any format unless I can find them in the thrift shops.  (I smooth over my conscience by writing reviews where I can.)

Surely, I can't be the only one.  Readers have a limited amount of money to spend, for the most part.  So, I'm guessing, they either buy traditional and read less, or they eschew traditional and surf the waves looking for bargains.  Or maybe they do a mix of both.

I picked up six books last week for a grand total of 99c.  Five freebies and one 99center.  One was a dud, sure, but it wasn't the one I paid for, so it's all good.  Paying for duds pisses me off, but I can get over it quicker when they're 99c than if they were $9.99.  If I accidentally drop a $1 bill through a hole in my pocket, I'm way less irritated than if it had been a $10.

Anyway, the book I mentioned originally lost a sale.  And they lost a review.  I'm sure no one cares about one little reader and one little review.  But like I said, I can't be the only one who feels this way.  Ten readers lost?  A hundred?  It starts to add up when you think about it.  But I guess they aren't thinking about it.  So sad.

Do you stick to a book budget?  How do you choose where to spend your limited funds? 

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Sunday Update - Week 30

Hello again.

Let's see...  I didn't write anything.  I didn't edit anything.  I didn't do much of anything writerly... Oh, wait, I did do some stuff.

I received the final cover for Sleeping Ugly.  Then I wrote the back cover copy for Sleeping Ugly and, with the help for AWE, I got it suitable for other people to read.  Then I created a Goodreads listing for it.  I also started the process over at Amazon to get it out there for all of you to read.  They're telling me as long as I get it uploaded by the 25th, it'll be available for preorder on the 29th.  :shrug:  I'm still shooting for the 18th.

I added the cover and link to the sidebars of my blogs.  And I did a new banner for my Facebook page.

I started to set up advertising at Book Barbarian for a sale on Wish in One Hand for later this month, only to discover they're booked solid through mid-Sept.  Bummer.  Ya snooze, ya looze.  I'll have to sit and think a while on how else I'm going to do some marketing.  I was hoping to do a sale on the Once Upon a Djinn books prior to the release of Sleeping Ugly.  Not that SU has anything to do with the OUAD books, but, ya know, paranormal and paranormal.  :shrug:

I read four books last week and DNF'd two others.

I had my yearly last week, too.  Everything is copacetic with me.  Blood pressure was up a little, but I was already irritated.  And I promised I wouldn't go into all that.  Anyway, it's back down to normal now.  And I won't have to go through that again for another year.  Yay.

On the 'being active' front, I managed 7 out of 7 days.  Not all hard core but being active is being active.  And I'm down to 180.4 pounds.  Like I said before, the clothes are fitting better, so it's all good.  Down the road a bit, my clothes will be loose and then I'll do some shopping.  What I'm really looking forward to is losing enough weight that I can wear my wedding ring again.  I mean, if I really tried, I could shove it on, but then I wouldn't be able to get it off again and my finger would hurt.  So I'm not going there.  I have no illusions about getting back to my pre-married weight.  That'd be another 25 pounds.  But my ring was a little loose back then, so there's hope I'll be able to wear it again. Eventually.

No fishing.  Between the heat in the afternoons and working in the mornings, I'm finding it hard to eek out a few hours to sit at the lake.

We still only have two fawns.  Well, unless that pair of fawns Hubs saw the other day were a set of twins and not our usual two.  Then we'd have four.  But it's unverified.

Our grain bug infestation is ongoing.  And I'm cleaning the kitchen in segments.  The cupboards are done.  I did the counters yesterday (full-on, move everything and clean under/behind).  I swept the floor, but I need to scrub it.  They're harmless little bugs, but gah.  It's not like we don't already have plenty of bugs in here.  All part of living in the woods, I guess.  At least these grain bugs don't bite.  That'd suck.

Well, I think that's about it for me this week.  What's up in your world?

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Saturday Reading Wrap-up - 8/4/18

This week, I downloaded a bunch of free and inexpensive books.  #50 and #51 are part of that.  I also picked up M in the Demon Realm (urban fantasy), The Haunting of Hattie Hastings part one (paranormal mystery), and Prince of Poison: Stoneborn #1 (fantasy).  I'll read those eventually.

52) Puppet on a Chain by Alistair MacLean (8/3/18) - Suspense - 4 stars.  Neither new nor underappreciated.  Part of my old crime novel collection that I'm slowly working my way through.
Review: " If it wasn't for the fact that the story takes a rather long time to get to the point and there seems to be a lot of extraneous information between here and there, this would probably be five stars. I almost gave up on it several times. Obviously not my favorite MacLean novel, but it's good if you can hang in there and read it all. And when you get closer to the end, some of the extraneous stuff begins to make sense and weave into the plot. Not a book for those with a lack of patience."

51) Murder Most Thorny (Myrtle Grove Garden Club #2) by LouLou Harrington (8/1/18) - Cozy Mystery* - 4 stars.  New to me, but plenty of reviews.
Review: "Fun little cozy mystery. Might have been better if I'd read the first book in the series before I read this one, but I didn't really feel like I was left out by not reading it. I might go back and get the first book, or just forge ahead."

50) Ghosts of Pinkerton: Vampire and The Frenchman by Andy DeJong (7/30/18) - Supernatural Adventure?*# - 5 stars.  New to me and way underappreciated.
Review: "That was AWESOME! I really enjoyed reading this book. I loved Jasper and Cole. And Angus. And Emma. Even Gilles... until, you know. Malice was a deliciously evil villain. I can't wait until the next book comes out. There'll be a next book, right? Pretty please?"
(This question mark is there because I wasn't quite sure what genre to list this as.  It's kind of a genre blender.)

49) The Andromeda Strain by Michael Crichton (7/29/18) - Technothriller - 3 stars.  Neither new to me nor underappreciated.
Review: "Well written, interesting, thrilling up to a point. But ultimately, disappointing."

DNF 7/29/18 - Lord Foul's Bane by Stephen Donaldson.  A recent thrift store find.  Many times over the years, I'd heard of this but never took the chance to read it.  I didn't get that far in before I decided I wasn't really that interested in learning more about Thomas Covenant or his leprosy.  It probably gets better, but I don't have that kind of patience right now.

DNF 7/29/18 - Krondor the Betrayal by Raymond Feist.  One of my thrift store finds from years ago that I've held onto because I paid good money for it and I wanted to read it.  I got a couple dozen pages in and meh.

I finished that MacLean novel last night and I wasn't sure what I'd read next when I finished this post.  Plus, it was almost time for Live PD.  You'll find out next week what book was next.  ;o)

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Thursday This n That

I wrote an extremely long rant yesterday for today's this n that.  Then I deleted it.  You're welcome.

And yeah, I kind of hate it when people say 'you're welcome' before I've had a chance to say 'thank you', too.  I did it above because trust me, you're grateful I didn't post that rant.  And if you aren't, you should be.  It was pages and pages of Ranty McRanterson.

The sum of the deleted rant: I hate doctors.  So much.

And road construction.


Our two fawns are doing well and visiting the yard regularly now.  So cute.

By my estimation, I've lost 12-14 pounds since May of last year. 

Baby pileated woodpeckers are so awesome.  Speaking of pileated woodpeckers, we sat and watched one tearing apart an old cedar log I've been using as a border.  It's cool, though.  Wreck it all you want, Wild Thing.  Wood chips were flying everywhere!  Too cool.

Every morning when I start out on my walk, I smell the most wonderful floral scent.  But nothing smelliful is blooming around the house right now.  When I leave the area, it disappears, so I know it has to be around here somewhere.  :shrug:  Whatever it is, I love it.

First thing in the morning around here, we get the most intricate and amazing spider webs.  You can see them really well in the first rays of sun.  A couple feet in diameter of the classic, round web designs.  Unfortunately, you can't see them in the shade which is why I frequently walk into them when I'm doing my morning walk.  Bleh.

Okay, that's it for me right now.  Any this n that for you today?