Thursday, April 27, 2017

A New Look

I've cleaned up the blog a little because I will soon have the new website up and running.

I am still having a little technical kerfuffle with the website. It's done. It looks great - Thanks, Alex! BUT somehow I just haven't clicked the right boxes or pushed the right buttons because it isn't working. Soon...maybe.

That means the blog has reverted to its blogger address. So reset those bookmarks. will now go to the website (whenever the dang thing sorts itself out).

I've spent hours playing with Wizards - the setup kind, not the magical fun kind. There's a whole jargon that goes with this stuff that I have to keep looking up, and even when I find the definition, I'm not sure if it applies to me. Especially when the instructions are written for someone who probably knows what they're doing. And I most assuredly don't! Sigh.

I can't say it's been a learning curve because I haven't mastered anything.

I really do feel like a dinosaur today.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Back to the Drawing Board!

I got Transmutation #2 back from First Reader with a big fat note - this doesn't sound like you.

Curious. I was struggling a little with this one. Every day when I sat down to write, I was forcing myself to concentrate on the book. But when I started A Changed World #4, I was having a great time. That should have told me something.

The Transmutation series is based on a very old story with a million characters and dozens of side plots that ramble off in every direction. While trying to slim it down, I'd taken the heart out of it. While I was writing, I started having serious doubts that First Reader confirmed. It's kinda boring.

So I did some thinking about who and what and why. This book was a little too rambling and repetitive because I felt like I needed more time to spread out events and didn't have a subplot in place to make that work.

There's a lot from the original doorstop that just doesn't work anymore and needs to be ditched. But certain plot points are critical to get the story to the important events. I couldn't figure out what to toss and what to keep.

After a lot of juggling I discovered the missing piece, I hope. When I sat down to do the rewrite, I was having a lot more fun. That's got to be a good thing! So I think I'm only behind by a week or so.

Now, back to that rewrite!

Thursday, April 13, 2017

A Changed World Series - Book #4

While book 2 of the Transmutation (Space Opera) series is with my first reader, I've started outlining the next book in A Changed World Series (Post Apocalyptic).

I like all of my characters, but I have to say that it was fun to visit with Wisp and Nick and Angus and Tillie. I haven't seen them in awhile and they have been very busy. This is a world that I've grown very comfortable with.

Book 4 will be a continuation of life at High Meadow, but a few months after the end of Gleanings. I've got some loose plot ideas that I need to sort out. And I've got a bunch of new people who need to be integrated into the storyline. Plus there are some loose threads from the previous books that I need to coordinate.

I'm shooting for a release in the fall, barring any complications.

I've been trying to stay on top of my allergies so that my writing isn't impacted. Since I learned that "powering thru" only gives me a lot of stuff to rewrite, I've avoided writing on days I have brain fog.

Hopefully, I won't need too much rewriting when I hear back from my first reader on Transmutation #2. The quicker I can wrap that one up, the faster I get to work on A Changed World #4.

So--on to marketing.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Space Opera and Mystery for 99c

I've got a couple books on discount.

Space Opera - The first book in the Transmutation series, Facade, is on sale at 99c. Book 2 will be coming out in a month or so. I'm just wrapping it up for my 1st reader. It is only available on Amazon so you can get it thru Kindle Unlimited also. Grab it here

Mystery - The first book in the Asher Blaine Mysteries, White Lies, is also on sale at 99c. It is available all over. Here are some of the major retailers:

Amazon      Barnes and Noble     Kobo     Apple

These books are sorely lacking in reviews. I would love it if anyone would add their honest review on the site where they bought it.

And now I need to get back to tossing words into the computer.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Genealogical Rabbit Hole

It happened again. I meant to just look into one thing and suddenly I've lost the whole day.

Sometimes while tracking down stories of my ancestors I get so involved in chasing one more clue that I totally lose track of time.

A nibble on land records in the 1800s and a nibble in the newspapers and I'm gone for hours hunting down someone that might not even be related to me. And two days later I know their complete life story and it has no relation to my family at all.

I have a genealogical "brick wall". That's an ancestor I can't get past. I know the county in Ireland where he was born and a marriage record, so I should be happy with that, but I'm always trying to give it a nudge. He came over during the Potato Famine years and a lot of those records were lost.

It's frustrating because there is so much information available. And I am willing to page through old documents online, but they often don't have the dates I need.

Which leaves me behind on everything this week because I went a little overboard on the research.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Winter Arrived

After a crazy warm winter, we had a dose of the arctic. Ouch.

Fruit trees have flowered a month early. Last night it went down to 16 degrees. Needless to say, we aren't getting any apricots this year. Luckily my cherry and apple trees hadn't flowered yet.

But that's just my little patch. I'm not a fruit farmer. Some of them have lost their entire crop for this year.

We get to go to the grocery store and pick out fruit that comes in from all over the world. I don't think it sinks in until you see the reports on the news about how devastating this can be. The county south of me is mostly apple orchards. The year we had the Easter freeze they lost them all. It was considered a natural disaster and they were able to apply for aid.

It's hard to understand in a time when food is readily available for most of us, how fragile farming is. Fruit trees won't rebloom. A crop wiped out by flood or tornado can't always be resown. We have become spoiled with ease of access. If one farm or orchard fails, we can get produce from another. Maybe.

By Sunday we will be back to short-sleeve weather. But the damage has already been done.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

A Little Stressed Out

There's a lot going on right now and it has me feeling more than a little stressed.

The renovations on the house are coming along nicely but... I work at home. Power tools in the background are hard to block out. I'm used to being on my own with the three cats. Having a man or two banging around the house is a distraction. I'm torn between trying to ignore them and feeling guilty for not making them lunch. (My family feeds all guests.)

As a result, I'm not getting as much work done as I would like. I had planned to have the current WIP to my first reader by now. Not going to happen. That changes the schedules for everything else I've planned this year. Bummer.

The crazy spring weather has made things worse.

First, my allergies went on overload. I'm still tinkering with combinations of medication to get things under control. Brain fog, sinus headaches, eyes so itchy I've scratched them raw, congestion like concrete. So I have a swollen raccoon face and can't breathe. Ugh.

Second, warm weather means yard work. I've been working in the yard pretty regularly ripping out the honeysuckle and briars that are strangling everything else. And I only got a small patch of poison ivy on one arm so far... But I keep thinking that I am behind schedule because of May weather in February. I was all ready to start putting seed in when I remembered what month it was. Sheesh.

So today is catch up day. I need to review the marketing and redo my writing deadlines and, oh yeah, WRITE!