Sunday, March 30, 2014

Windy March Days

It seems the wind blows fiercely almost every day, at least thus far in March. I've also noticed windy days have become more frequent in the past few years, have no idea why. When I've visited Florida, the wind is almost a constant there. Now, here in north Alabama, windy days are increasing.

Not much to write about in my daily life; just the usual. Have upcoming maintenance issues to get taken care of. Someone coming Tuesday to give estimates for installing a new storm door on the back, and adding a new doggie door in the wall. The doggie door is in the bottom of storm door now, and will need moving since I want an all-glass storm door to let in abundant sunshine. Flushing apparatus needs replacing in toilet; want new kitchen sink installed; last, need wood fence doors that lead to back yard shortened -- have started to sag, and lawn care man needs to get riding mower through those gates.

There's more, but it can wait till next fall. Sigh. Always something when you own a home. One of these days I might find a condo, less maintenance. But I doubt I could have 3 dogs and 3 cats in a condo! And my pets are central to my life, my constant companions.

As a matter of fact, I took Muffin & Oscar on a neighborhood walk earlier. It was nice to get out in the windy sunshine, visit with neighbors along the way. I usually take Rambo separately; it's just become impossible to walk all 3 dogs at the same time.

I finally received my first check from Amazon; it was certainly not a fortune, but enough to put back into more editing/formatting/cover-art to improve my novels. And maybe a bit more promotion, when I get the novels the best I can. At least I have plenty to keep me busy. In fact, I still have two more novels to edit/proof, as well as a couple books of short stories, essays and poetry. But I'm in no hurry to get those online, since I would like to space new releases during the next year. In the meantime, I keep working on editing, proofing that work when I have time.

Starting April 1st, my novel, The Dark Fire, will be available free for five days. My first-born novel, it will always hold a special place in my heart.

I added a copy of my hand-out author card as the heading for this blog; you can click on it, go to my Amazon author website. I'm handing out some to people here where I live, friends, neighbors, anyone who likes ebooks or has an e-reader, either tablet, phone with Kindle program or a Kindle.

Lately I've been reading a lot on my Kindle. What I enjoy is finding undiscovered gems in indie published ebooks on Amazon. It's amazing how many I've found while browsing either free or discounted work. Especially interesting and entertaining are the ebooks that really don't fit a particular genre, rather have twisting plots with unexpectedly unique characters. My reading is all over the map, no particular kind of fiction, whimsical and eclectic.

Unfortunately, I dropped my camera the other day, broke it. The thing was not very costly, and I never liked it. Guess I'm in the market for a new one -- something to spend time looking for online!

I am dreading another round of medical visits; I need to see several specialists -- allergy/sinus issues; two dental crowns needed, etc. Keep delaying, not fun.

Alas, that's about the extent of my life these days.

Monday, March 03, 2014

March has arrived!

I sure hope spring is just around the corner, but you couldn't prove it by the weather today. It's in the 30s, and falling into the low 20s tonight. Yesterday was a gorgeous day: bright sunshine, light wind and 75 degrees.

I took the dogs to the wooded park, and we all enjoyed the nice, meandering walk. Saturday was nice too, a bit cooler, so I took Muffin on a short neighborhood walk. Unfortunately, my knees hurt later. I still can't walk comfortably on pavement -- even with new shoes and thick, padded inserts. The wooded park has a graveled path, and that's about the only option now for a bit of exercise.

I wish I could find an activity that I really liked. The orthopedic doctor suggested "chair yoga" just for the stretching and relief for my joints/muscles. I haven't googled it yet, but plan to soon.

Wednesday night I'm going to a new AA group meeting. It's held in a different location, and only once a week at night. I think I might fit in better with that group, and perhaps can find a sponsor at some point. So far, I don't have any urge to drink at all. It's like something that happened in another lifetime, but I recognize that it can always come roaring back if I let my guard down and don't attend AA meetings.

What else? Well, my novel Season of the Serpent, continues to sell several copies each day. Thanks to indieauthorland it still comes up on their site -- truly great free publicity for authors. Also, I noticed a reader posted it on Good Reads website, and that might account for sales too. Of course, it is only $1.00. I ordered name cards today - with my name, email and website to my e-books. I hope to distribute those to the library, the newspaper and any other venue I think might garner readers.

I have a lot of outside maintenance jobs that I'll have to hire done soon. I dread it, because finding reliable help is always a challenge. Next week I'm also going to run an ad in a small free paper that is distributed throughout the city/county for occasional housework & pet care. Come to think of it, I might also run an ad about my work, since the paper is also online too. Huh, this marketing thing is starting to stimulate my imagination!

My dogs are doing great, though Oscar is slowing down in his old age. He doesn't like to play at all; he barks if Rambo & Muffin rough-house too much. It's like he's saying, "Hey! Knock that off, it bothers me!" :-)

With that, I'm outta here for today.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Bi-polar winter weather

It seems here in the South we'll have a few glorious days of warm, sunny days and then literally overnight...not just cold but frigid temperatures. At least we haven't had snowfall or sleet/icing because the moisture shows up when we have warmer weather.

Last weekend was simply gorgeous -- I took the dogs to the lakeside park on Saturday & Sunday, then the wooded park on Monday. Wonderful. And mainly due to the fact the cortisone injection I got in my neck practically overnight got rid of most of my back pain. Nearly a miracle, except it was a modern marvel of health care. And fortunately for me, I had the procedure done without even a co-pay due to the good insurance policy I have now. Thanks Obama!

Otherwise, life goes on as usual here. I didn't make any New Year's resolutions, since I have realized in the past few years it just makes me feel guilty when I fail at those. I do hope I can get the remainder of my work at this year; I need to work on that as time permits. I'm not in a hurry though, because I want to have new material spaced out, not all at once.

My novels are doing well, considering I have done very little promotion. In fact, other than the interview with indieauthorland, I've not done much. I wish I could do more promotion, and maybe that is something I'll tackle this year. I could hire some PR, and may do that at some point.

I have lots of doctor/dentist appointments coming up, trying to get health care issues taken care of now that I have insurance. I'd put off a lot of problems because the bad insurance I had was a "junk policy." Sigh.

My pets are all healthy, and one of my cats is approaching 16 years old. As I type this, my smallest dog Muffin is asleep on my lap. It's quite a trick typing around a sleeping pet, but I mastered it years ago! (smile)

My blogging has become sparse, and I always hope I can write more. Alas, such is life. I've also been reading/researching a great deal in the dystopian fiction genre. I think my next novel will be in that category -- on the order of Revolution, Falling Skies, The Event, etc.

Tonight is in the single digits, and of course, I have a doctor's appointment in the morning. The radio is announcing possibility of power outages due to the demand; fortunately I have natural gas backup wall heaters.

Where oh where is spring? Can't wait!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Happy Holidays to my friends, readers & people near and far

First, may your holidays be bright and merry. Or if not that, at least tolerable and serene. Remember to smile a lot at family gatherings, even if you don't like some of your relatives. Just keep smiling, and they'll wonder what you have been up to!

I haven't even started my New Year's list of hopes for next year, and was thinking lately I'd not accomplished much this past year. But then, upon reflection, I realized I had done something that I was proud of, and that took a lot of my time. I edited, re-edited, and finally have 11 of my past novels online at I had covers made for some, and others I created using Amazon's online tool. It was more than just editing past work too; I had to learn how to format the work for Kindle ebook reader. I could still improve on that, and may at some point re-work the formatting, but first I need to finish editing the remainder of my work. I have 3 more novels, as well as a book of short stories, and poetry. In the meantime, I've been halfway outlining another novella...

I can't say sales have been spectacular, but I am selling at least one or two novels a day. And that is mostly the ebook I have promoted a little. Once all the work is online, I'll look into promotion more since I'll have time for that effort.

So I am going to stop beating myself up for not getting anything accomplished this past year. Maybe I'll even think of something else positive I have done. Who knows?

And now, off to our family gathering where I will smile mysteriously...