Monday, December 30, 2013

Resolving in the New Year

We all know that most New Year's resolutions are well-intentioned and voided by the spring. Most of mine are at least. But last year's resolution was a success.

Last year this time, I decided I would self-publish before the year was out. Granted, it took me a while to get started, as in, I kept thinking of reasons not to do it "quite yet." Foremost was the Romance Writers of America conference in July which I was attending and where I'd be taking the self-publishing route.

And I'm glad I did. I found my cover artist and formatter from contacts there. After that, I found an online course which had so many details my eyes were crossing!

And then, in October, I did it! I self-published After the Thunder Rolls Away. Now I've got to study on marketing and to that end, my first ad will be up on Free Kindle Books and Tips on Wednesday, January 1, 2014.

Now I need to start the roller coaster of another book (it is edited and to the formatter), then revising my previously published ones to bring them into the 21st century if they weren't already there. Technology drives everything now.

Including self-publishing.

May you make good, sustainable resolutions. As soon as I think of my next attainable one, I'll let you know.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Pay Day!

Not yet, but I did receive notice from Amazon that monies will be deposited in my account the end of this month from the sale of After the Thunder Rolls Away. Yeah!

Does it cover my expenses? Oh, please. No. Is it a step in the right direction? Of course!

Now I await iBooks and Nook reports.

Friday, December 06, 2013

Ah, the raccoons

We have been blissfully raccoon-absent for several months. I know this because the outdoor cats' water bowl has been clean of a morning and there is dry food left. Then, three nights ago, the water bowl was filthy and the food was all gone.

Hmmm. Raccoons?

I set up the game camera hoping to catch a glimpse of the varmint and to my surprise, found we have FIVE raccoon visitors. Judging from the sizes, I thought, a mom, three little ones, and a juvenile, perhaps left over from a previous litter?

So I set the trap and easily caught either the mom or the juvenile, although I think the latter. Our weather has then turned to ice and freezing temps and I don't trap in extreme bad weather, so I thought we'd all live to fight another day.

This evening, I wanted to check on the food I'd left for my outdoor cats and who do I find indulging in it, but three young raccoons! I opened the back door and they skittered up the pergola post, pausing to look at me and listen stone-faced as I told them what naughty raccoons they were. Two disappeared onto the roof, but one remained while I stood outside and watched my cats eat their food.

The weather will warm this week and I will set my trap again.

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Choosing the proper time to mail the Christmas cards

It may seem like a small thing. The obvious time to mail the Christmas cards is when you've had the time to do them. Since we only send to friends and family who are out of town, the number is limited. But I don't want to do it too soon.

What if they've moved? Then my card is returned and I don't find the proper addy until I receive their card and then it's more postage and a new envelope. That's providing we haven't been written off their list or our address of 34 years didn't get lost in their move. Or either of us still care what the other is doing.

Perhaps for some folks, FaceBook and email have replaced the traditional Christmas card. But I like cards. I collect all the photos in my album and watch my friends and their children grow old and up just as surely as they do me and mine. For many of us, this is the only connection of the year.

The second part is, who gets a letter and a photo with their card? And if I send one and all I get back is a signature on theirs? No news. No photos. Just an obligatory card. One more check mark off their list.

So it really is a cause of mild concern. For what it's worth, I have my letter written and on some there will be a handwritten note also. Photos are printed. I suppose by now that if we've cared enough to keep in touch all these years, a photo and a letter and a note will go in each card.

Maybe this weekend. It's supposed to be bad weather. Sounds like a good way to spend the afternoon.