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Monthly Archives: October 2010

>Happy Halloween

>Yay, Halloween!  Darth Vader and Pink Witch have already gone out with a relative to scab food from total strangers so I’m left with two Dragons and a beautiful baby Buddha (who isn’t dressed up, she’s always this chubby).

Counting down to Nanowrimo – why yes, yes I am going to talk about it until the end of time – and I’ve changed my mind again.  I received the proof copy I was waiting for so decided to do a round of edits instead of working on a first draft this week.  I couldn’t help it, the shinies were too pretty for me to keep ignoring.  Besides, if I’m writing the sequel for Nano then I need a quick refreshment course in the world.  I could read notes but . . . nah.

It’s funny because when I started thinking of writing the first novella, I wasn’t serious about it but then I went overboard on the world building and backstories and now I can’t leave it alone.  I’ve put everything else on the backburner and any new ideas I get all involve this one little novella.  If I hadn’t been slacking so much this year, I’d probably have a series of five going on by now.  Next year I’m going to learn to live on a lot less sleep.  🙂

I’m going to watch some spooky family films (then a scary grownup one when Darth Vader, Pink Witch, the Dragon Duo and Baby Buddha are asleep), eat lots of popcorn and sugary goodness then try and get a good start on Nano once midnight hits.  *Is excited.*

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>Do You Really Want The World To Know What You’re Thinking?

>Over the last month, there’s been more than a couple of occasions when I’ve thought – WTF were they thinking?  Today alone, there’s been at least three.  One of which was Maura Kelly’s blog post – pretty much about finding obese people on television disgusting to watch.  *Shakes head – WTF was she thinking?*  It’s a long post but I walked away with that singular impression.  Then, the awesomeness of the backlash caused her to edit her post and add an apology.  She basically crawls for forgiveness – which, for the most part, isn’t given.  She isn’t the first, won’t be the last.

Apart from the above blog post, I’ve seen people pretty much destroy their fan base with a single (horrendous) comment.  Even I, a self confessed book freak, have been put off authors by one idiotic outspoken moment.  Others, because of a few moments.  Being rude and patronising is offputting to watch.  Sympathy towards dangerous/law-breaking acts don’t generally go down so good.  Scoffing differing opinions because you always know best is mildly irritating on a 13 year old – adults don’t wear it half as well.  There’s a way to say things, if you’re alienating (or worse, intimidating) people you come into contact with then you aren’t getting your point across so well.

Do you really want the world to know what you’re thinking?  Because it isn’t always pretty.  And there will always be someone who disagrees.  And even if you apologise, it’s not really enough because the impression is probably already in there too deep to fill in with something else. 

It bothers me when people burst out with a controversial comment or blog post and then retract it all once they get aggro from it.  If you’re going to say something (like Maura Kelly who basically insulted a significant percentage of people) that is controversial, you’ve either spoken without a second thought (not good online because someone always remembers) or else did it on purpose to get a reaction.  If it’s what you truly believe and you want to share it then at least have the back bone to stand by it and the common sense to not make it any worse.

Lots of people want that reaction, that one comment/statement/blog post/idea that sets them apart and gets them remembered.  But it’s scary.  Especially when there’s a big kneejerk reaction.  Backing off at the last moment doesn’t work.  Trying to carve a different statement for yourself takes a long time.  Getting attention might be good but do you really want to be remembered for being a *insert appropriate term here*

If you want to make a name for yourself, make sure it’s one you’re willing to wear for a looooong time.

>Vroom Vroom

>I’m trying to get an old draft finished before Nanowrimo begins but I’ve been busy getting pissed off at random things so it hasn’t really been getting anywhere fast.  I’ve learned my lesson the hard way about going back to a cold first draft so I think I should finish this one and then start on my Nanowrimo project later in November.  Possibly.  Maybe.  We’ll see. 

I tend to work hard when I’ve something to be competitive about which is why I’ve signed up for the All Ireland Word War during Nanowrimo.  (It’s the best way to make sure I keep up even though I might start late.)  I’m writing for Dublin as always.  Anyway, if anyone would like to buddy up then feel free.

Also, is anyone else an ebook addict?  I’ve bought over 20 books this week, all those 99c and $3 things add up.  I think I may have a problem.  🙂  Seriously, I’m one-clicking like crazy.  My excuse is research, I’m learning more about writing and editing by actually reading than anything else.  *Loves excuses*

>Smokin’ Me Out

>In ten days time I will be (hopefully) getting stuck into some Nanowrimo goodness (or crappiness). I’ve an outline kinda sorta written out so I’m waiting until November to get cracking, mostly because I want to think through the conflict a little more. I’ve been playing around with a first draft I left alone earlier this year (it’s so cold, I’m finding it hard to get into even though I still know exactly where it’s going) and trying desperately not to edit something I need some space from. I’m hoping Nano will distract me enough to get quite a bit of space. I’m waiting for a couple of responses to something that needs a final edit but they don’t seem like they’re going to happen anytime soon so at least I won’t be as close to it this time. I find it hard to focus completely on more than one world at a time so I’m a bit edgy on an inbetweener right now. 🙂

I’ve been reading a bit lately too. Recent reads include:

The Red Church
A Very Hairy Adventure
Forevermore
Waiter,There’s a Clue in my Soup!
Monster in the Mirror
On Writing (and some other non-fiction)
Grubs
Out of Time
The Scrubs
Draculas

Am still pondering what’s next . . . .

>Migraine Inducing Covers

>I’ve spent the best part of the last four/five days working on a book cover. Ebook cover was quick but I wanted to get a proof from Createspace to help with editing. I find it so much easier to edit if I use a different format each time and I figured waiting for a proof would give me a little distance from the story. It’s just a novella so the proof would cost less than five dollars. Not complicated, apparently, unless you’re me. Every single time I thought I had it figured out, something else would go wrong so finally I used the Cover Designer (template Palm which allows you to upload your own front and back cover complete with Title, author name and blurb in your own font) and settled for having a woeful spine.

I know it was just a personal proof but I figured I might as well learn something about the Createspace cover process. Besides, I didn’t want the thing to beat me. Which it kind of did but let’s not go there. The problems I ran into included completely misunderstanding the cover template, ballsing up layers, using a program that doesn’t convert into PDF, using a program which did convert but the file wasn’t accepted by Createspace and finally, using a program which converted the file perfectly . . . into the wrong size. My headache finally stopped last night at 2am after a well deserved glass of wine.

I’ve learned a fair bit, including not to go near Createspace’s community or help sections because it will only confuse me more. When my head’s in a better place, I’m going to post about the things that can go wrong in the hopes it might save someone else a week’s migraine. If I decide not to send this novella to the recycle bin, this is (along the lines of because I’m not on the pc that I worked on) what the ebook cover might look like – image courtesy of © Inga Marchuk | Dreamstime.com

>Am Reading . . . & Being Easily Pleased

>Haven’t mentioned what I’m reading for a while because I haven’t been reading much. I’ve started at least ten books that I dropped after the first chapter. Not because they’re bad, I’m just having trouble concentrating. Anyway, recently finished:

Claimed
Mated
Forsaken by Shadow
The Wild’s Call
Shadowbound  (Still a freebie)

(Think I’m forgetting something)

and am currently reading The Red Church. I thought I’d already read it but obviously not. Probably going to start something else today, something short to get through during my editing breaks – probably A Very Hairy Adventure.

Totally stole this from Walking on the Line of Crazy but it cracked me up so much I had to use my own kid’s photos. I showed it to my OH and his first comment was: Who owns those kids? *Snicker* Recently I told him about some random film or something and he said:  So, is that for kids or just for humans? Should my babies be worried? 😀

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>New Book Covers

>A reviewer on Amazon complained they found my horror collection in the children’s section. Of course this sparked off a mini freak out by me so I went running to Kindleboards for advice.  Peoples over there reassured me I hadn’t somehow messed up the categories (Amazon confirmed it today) but it was mentioned that my cover didn’t match the content. Also, the description wasn’t very, well, descriptive.

So I went looking for a new cover. While I was at it, I had an eye out for a new cover for my fae stories too. Finding a cover that matches the content of the flash fiction is hard so I went with something I thought was creepy enough and am hoping for the best on the description.

The new stuff is still uploading to Amazon but the covers are already showing. Thought I’d show them here. Mostly to give me a new post. 😉  I know I’m not exactly . . . half way to good at book covers but I bought some images (from people on Dreamstime who actually have talent – credited on the title page btw) and hopefully the whole thing isn’t entirely awful.  I’m going to pay someone to create a cover for my novel.  One day.  If it ever makes it out of my laptop alive.