Sunday, July 29, 2007

Old Office Woes

I was looking at some new office furniture just recently. It's getting time to really consider a new desk. The one I'm using now is an antique to be sure. It belonged to my great uncle for years before he passed it on to me. It has to be close to eighty years old. It's VERY sturdy, but kind of small. While everything fits on it, there's not much surface room to write on with all the computer stuff on it. This desk was made WAY before computers became popular in homes. LOL It has nice drawer space, but one of the drawers is permanently locked and I lost the key so the only way I can get into it is to take the drawer on top of it completely out and reach down to the locked drawer. It's kind of a comical contortionist act. I am in the mood for something contemporary anyway.

My Next Novel

I've actually been doing some of my own fiction writing again. Not so much 'fresh' writing as doing the edits on my novel Hell's Own. Originally it was to be released at Chippewa but I pulled it and decided to either try a different venue, or go the way I did with my first two novels, and I think I've ended up deciding to go that way. I had a lot more success with those books overall. Maybe it was just coincidence. It's a little scary to put out books on your own, but with the great publishing prospects available now it takes a lot of the risk out. And most small pubs use print on demand anyway if they're even going to put out a print version. So many can't afford to do it that way either, so you are still left with just the e version which is okay, but limits possibilities a bit. I liked having my two first novels in libraries and that people could order in print if they prefered. Personally I like ebooks since I spend so much time online, but I have to admit that I do like to see hard copies of my book on my own shelves too. LOL So I think I'll go with LULU, they have the most awesome programs. I've used them in the past to make hard copies of edits I wanted to do in print. It costs about the same as printing the pages myself when you consider ink, and paper costs plus wear and tear on printers. Plus it is a nice bound copy to work from not hundreds of loose pages. The quality of the books is really nice. Now all I have to do is come up with cover art. LOL

Book Fairs

I have been thinking about doing some book fairs next summer. Some of my writer friends have done them and had good times as well as selling quite a few books at them. The only thing you really need to set up a booth at those places is either one or two nice portable folding conference tables or even just one folding card table. Some shade is nice for the outdoors ones, but if you stick to indoor ones you don't even need that. A comfy folding chair and you're all set to spend the day talking with people about books. There are several high profile book fairs in the Chicago area each year. That would be a nice 'day out' for me without having to travel far. Have any of you been to a book fair in your area? What did you think of them? I'd love to hear any feed back about what you thought of the whole thing, what things you liked to see at the booths if there were little extras and such. I'm open to all advice on what would make my 'space' nicer.

Sorry Lizzie

I messed up last week. A blogger buddy of mine 'tagged' me here and I just assumed it was for a meme. I was gone the weekend immmediately following and figured I'd get to it when I could... when I finally got around to checking on it in the middle of last week I found out the 'tag' was for an onling meet up chat. I was kind of bummed that I missed it. I wouldn't have been home anyway, but I could have said something before hand to let those folks know I was sorry I'd miss it...

Liz, sorry sweetie, I would have really liked that. That'll teach me to just assume anything. What was that old 'Odd Couple' skit, when you ASSUME, you make and ASS out of U and ME. LOL... well me anyway. Sorry again, girl.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

A World Apart

I was kind of giggling to myself today over the similarities between regular romance novels and romantica, and even down right erotica. The boundaries seem so firm. The proponants of each can be unyeilding in their fanatic desire to keep them seperate, but really the stories are so similar. They can be seperated from something as simple as a bra and panties and the suggestion of open tip bras. Surely it can't be that simple right? Think about it. If you've had much experience reading more than one of the above genres, or even just two of them such as romance and romantica which are often so very similar the line blurs if you just squint you'll realize it's true. I wish authors would spend more time worrying over how to encourage people to read once more, than screaming over the divisions that mean so very little in the end.

Secret Passcode of the Olden Days

I was thinking just yesterday about the old days of the Internet. The once upon a time era that is nothing more than fabled past for many of today's youngsters. Back in the early 80's of the last century (boy does that make it sound old--and me too) the incredible technology was released that would add new dimensions to the still infant world of the home personal computer (pc). The *insert gasp* Internet. With the use of a program purchased on a monthly basis from the wonder companies such as AOL or MSN (back then they were the only two real options with the possible exceptions of business having their own programing especially for their employees, but not available to the public at large, along with a few fledgling upstarts that had a hard time competing in a global market with the AOL and MSN giants) you could plug your computer into the etherial world of mass communication.

Sounds cool huh?

Well, it was, but when you consider the limitations its rather laughable now.

The early days of the Internet were imprisioned by the walls of the individual server. You could talk to anybody you wished so long as they were also a part of that companies package. Sounds kind of like a lot of modern day cellphone plans, lol. At least with cell phones you CAN call outside the network, you just get charged more. With the infant Internet it was not possible to communicate with someone outside the walls of the server.

Even inside the walls it was severly limited. It consisted of email and chatrooms for the most part. There were small advances that would enable users to create a 'web-page' that unless you had higher computer skills were mostly just business cards online. But, it was a start toward a more prolific future.

Then came the whispers. Code words bandied about that were said to make it possible to break free the binds of the behemouths... a single prospect guarded by the gatekeepers called HTML.

It actually sounded simple. A language that would allow you to write your way out of the box. Simple until you tried to read and understand the language. Foreign language class never seemed so difficult. For the common person it appeared that being relegated to the confines of the server would be a forever sentence. The murmured prospects of a 'world wide web' were out of reach and incomprehensible.

My husband and I were part of that early age. We had laptops that were such new concepts back then, and came complete with what was then the leading modem technology. Those obsolete little machines now would sweat and shiver with the speed prospects needed for today's Internet connections, but they were cutting edge at the time.

However, when those machines broke down, which they did with alarming speed--the fragility of the hinges on the early laptops was legendary--we didn't morn the loss very long. After all, we weren't really missing out on much.

Enter the late 90's. Once again revisiting the prospect of purchasing a new computer to replace my old desktop relic that I used for bookkeeping and writing there weren't any to be found that didn't come with the promise of high-speed (at the time) Internet hook up.

Okay, well, that's fine so long as it still does what's needed, I thought. Plus I'd heard about the marvelous advances the Internet had made and how it was now a world wide web for everyone regardless of their ability to speak in foreign tongues like HTML.

Glory be it was too. What an amazing place this is, and it has come further still in just those short ten years. What normal everyday people can do on the web is mind-blowing. Yet so many I meet who were born later, lived longer in the tech age, or maybe all their lives in it don't remember, and realize what a marvel it really is.

I can only imagine what ten years from now holds... and what marvels we will posses right at our fingertips.

Full speed ahead, damn the torpedoes--yes, I do love technology.

The Digital Age

I love technology. Some of my friends think that going back to the 'simpler' life would be more satisfying. There are times that I think so too... but then again, haha, I'd have to live without so many things that are simply awesome. When you really think about it technology effects so much of our lives. It touches just about everything. Without these modern marvels life would be so much more complicated and difficult--so much for the 'simpler life'.

I know, I've tried to do without some things that the proponants of a simple age see as superfulous. When my washing machine, and dryer seemed to combust at the same time (I think there is a built in clock in some of these machines set to destruct at a certain time requiring new purchase. There must be, why else would both machines blow a gasket at pretty much the exact same time?) I tried to do without. I don't exactly have a stream nearby to beat clothing on rocks at, but I tried hand-washing clothes, and drying on lines. Now line-drying does have some cool advantages, but time saving and back relief are not amongst them. As for hand-washing, that may be just fine and dandy for some delicates, but chore clothes are not a good option for real clean outcomes.

Then of course there are the ever discussed air conditioning units. I know my ancestors lived without the benefits of these marvelous cooling devices, but I'll be danged if I know how. Perhaps we're all soft for the advances made in technology. We'd be stronger and better suited to life if we 'toughed it out'... or we'd be dead early. In my case I'm pretty sure of the later outcome.

One thing is for absolute sure there are technologies that are not life necessities but I sure would miss them.

I LOVE my ditigal cameras. What a revolutionary breakthrough those devices are. Not only do they make picture taking more accurate, manipulative, and better controlled, their instantaneous production of the pictures is delightful. Storage is amazing with a simple teeny microchip device called an SD card. Transfering to any computer via a simple plug in device that utilizes the usb port on a computer makes viewing on a big screen a snap.

Could I go back to a world without things like digital cameras... sure. Would I want to? Not on your life.

Full Circle Is Out

I am such a horrible friend. I feel so bad. My good friend I.M. Cupnjava, whom many of you also know recently had her debut novel published. I've known about it for days and I keep forgetting to shout out about it. I remember, just too late after I've shut down my computer for the night. Shame, shame, shame on me.

This is a book that is not to be missed! It has everything from erotica to blow your mind religious concepts. It is a version of the ever popular yaoi style of erotica that is a long-lasting art in Japan and now sweeping other continents as well. It's a new twist on vampires that will make your blood tingle. It is everything any reader could ask for. Get ready to hold on to your seat for a wild ride.

Check out the awesome cover.

In a war-torn world, a group of vampires struggle to reclaim their past glory. One of their own is missing. Weakened by solitude, the leader of the vampires, Kendrick, must find Byron, his covenant mate, before the pain of isolation kills them both. However, locating Byron is the least of the vampires' problems.

The chaos of the world's death rattle breeds suffering, death, and pestilence as well as a call for vengeance. The opposing sides of good and evil never looked so similar. A war that began with the dawn of time has enjoyed a respite. That respite is ending. Vampiric history, human history, and the lives of two lovers are about to come full circle.

Check out this awesome book today at: FULL CIRCLE - Lady Aibell Press

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

MTV's Parental Control

I just finished taking a break for lunch and while I was eating I watched a little tv to unwind. I picked a new show I'd never seen before and I couldn't even wait to get back here and tell you--I would NEVER watch this show again. No way, no how.

On my one hour break I actually watched two of the shows back to back. If it was so aweful why did I subject myself to a second viewing? Well, honestly because I was praying it couldn't be as bad a second time.

Here's the deal: On MTV's Parental Control there is a mother and father who have a beautiful daughter, that last part seems to be an absolute prerequisite. In each 1/2 hour situation the parents completely abhor the guy their daughter is dating--for really good reasons each time. So they set out to choose from a number of available suitors two potentially better boyfriends for their daughter to date once and choose between them and the original boyfriend.

Of course, you have to know you're only seeing a part of what these people are really like. For the orininal guys it has to be said that they probably have SOMETHING going for them that isn't shown on the show. The show highlights their worst attributes. For the new guys they probably only show the best sides of them... still.

In the first show the guy the daughter was dating was a complete jerk. Rude, obnoxious, lazy, nothing going for him at all but sleeping all day. If there were any good points to this total looser it was imposible to see. Both of the parent picked dates were far better looking, and had more personality, and better vocabularies for sure. The dates looked like fun. I really thought this girl would wake up and say bye-bye to the looser boyfriend... but no. She chose the jerk!

The second one as well. This current boyfriend was a totally delusional nut job who seemed to truly believe he was a night. He walked around wearing a plastic viking helmet with horns and carrying a plastic sword and saying things like he rode on dragon's backs through the clouds and had healing capabilities with his hands. He also looked like a total spaz doing what he thought were martial arts moves, and was completely out of shape for a mideval knight.

The two guys the parents chose were considerably better looking, had brighter personalities, and the first one had a great date. The second one's dating senario choice could have been a little better, but it was at least creative. I couldn't believe it. I thought for sure the daughter would dump the idiot and pick one of the guys who had his head in the current century... but of course not.

No way on earth I will ever click on that show again. Wow, what a bunch of nuts.

The Low Down On Goats

If you haven't already seen it, since I failed to mention that my article was published at Associated Content last Friday, check out the link on my sidebar for my articles there. My new article 'Get Your Goat' is online now. Even if you never considered owning a goat, find out what wonderful creatures they are and what terrific products that create for their owners. Above all, they are one of the most loveable animals ever placed on this earth. I think if they made for fitting housepets I'd even rank them over dogs and cats, both of which I also own. Get the inside scoop on goats--check out my article and find out all you ever didn't need to know about the fantastic goat.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Busy, busy

Whew what a busy weekend. I haven't had a chance to get on here and write at all. I went to a goat show on Saturday. You can read about that on my farm blog. All day Sunday was spent pretty much just being lazy. I had a bit of a summer cold that started mid-week last week and just kind of left a hazy trail by Sunday that made me not want to do anything at all.

Liz, I'll get to that tag today at some point. LOL So much fun those are.

I watched the latest series installment of 'John From Cincinnati' last night. Boy I just can't tell you what keeps me watching that show. There's something about it. Normally a show like that I'd have turned off after the first one or two episodes and never looked back. You never really know where the show is going, or what its purpose is. Most times you're not even sure what you've just witnessed at the end of a segment. It's confusing and convoluted. The characters aren't very endearing. In fact, most of them are downright (insert unmentionable word here. It's funny, I have quite a trucker's vocabulary in person, but I can't seem to write those words down for posterity. LOL)

I can't wait for tonight's 'Big Love' installment though. That and 'Burn Unit' are still my favorite shows. 'Painkiller Jane' has come back strong from a couple of weaker episodes and I'm enjoying them as well. I watched the first of the new second season of 'Pysche' but that was just a little too campy for me. I took that off my line up. See... I'm tough like that, but I can't stop watching 'John From Cincinnati' for some reason. There must be something there.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Well I finally did it. I wrote one of the articles that has been nagging at me for months now. I submitted it last week to associated content and got paid for it yesterday, but it is still not 'live' yet. Hopefully sometime today it will show up online and I'll post a link to it for you guys.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Get Tee'd Off

People who love to golf know that one of the most things they continually need to replenish are their golf balls. All of the other necessities for the sport last a long time, but it is easy to loose balls, and lets face it, those poor little things get some major wear and tear. They can be rather expensive, but you can get great values by purchasing used ones that may have been lost and retreived without being worn out at great deals.

Getting out on the green is a relaxing way to spend a sunny afternoon and get a little excersize while you're at it. Don't let not having enough balls stop you from your favorite past-time anymore. Get a good supply at a more affordable price and you're ready to Tee off any time.

Series Update

I'm almost up-to-date on my series for the week. I often tape them in case I get called away by something on the farm, or work on-line during the episode. The only one I haven't watched yet is my Friday night installment of 'Painkiller Jane'. This week's 'Big Love', and 'Burn Unit' were fantastic as always. I added a new series on Friday nights--the second season of 'Psyche'. I'm still a little up in the air over whether I'll continue with that one. I didn't see the first season, but the commercials looked really funny. I found the show itself to be a little campy, but still good enough to hold my interest, so we'll see.

I bought a copy of the new DVD 'Astronaut Farmer' yesterday. I've been dying to see that since I first saw the commercials. I meant to watch it yesterday but ran out of time. I'll let you know how it was after I see it today.

Monday, July 09, 2007

I don't watch much television. I do watch a lot of movies. I prefer them to most television shows anymore, although I do like my 'oldies'. What I do try to do each season is pick a couple of series that I think I'll be really interested in and follow them. This year there are four, which is high for me. One is a second season, that's 'Big Love' on HBO. I really like that show. Not that I'd ever be interested in that lifestyle it's just fun to see what it's like, and how they handle problems that are pretty much, with some exceptions a lot like the problems we all have, except magnified by larger families. Another is a first year HBO series called 'John From Cincinati'. That one started out really weird, but really interesting, but after last night's installment I'd have to say it has sunk way down on my list of favorites and if it doesn't pull back up in the next episode it will probably get booted off the watch list altogether. The other two are on different channels. Both of them are first season runs. The first, USA network's 'Burn Unit' is fantastic. It has yet to fail in it's delivery and I love it. It's probably my all time favorite of the year so far, with 'Big Love' a close second. The last series is Sci-Fi channel's 'Painkiller Jane'. It's actually really pretty good. It did have an episode last week that almost lost me in its gimmicky, bad effects at the start but rallied to be decent enough not to get turned off. This week's was really good so it's still in the running.

All in all, it's harder and harder to find good series on tv these days. Once in awhile you find a real gem though, and I'd have to say at the moment for this year it's USA network's Burn Unit for me.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Burn Me Up

This isn't a paid post. It's my opinion that this season's must see series is USA network's Burn Unit. I thought it sounded really good from the previews I'd seen and read, but I watched the premiere last Thursday night and it way more than lived up to it. To me it's a sort of combination of the old 'Mac Gyver', and 'Miami Vice' series plus a little of the movie 'True Lies', all combined with a unique twist and delivery all its own. It's fun and it will keep you guessing. At least if it continues to deliver the same quality as the premiere.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Treasured Pets

I get such a kick out of how we pamper our pets in this society. I laugh about it but I do it too. My dogs, cats, and even livestock often eat better than I do. I buy Premium dog food, and top of the line cat food. They get all sorts of treats and of course toys to play with. Even the horses have balls in their pastures to play with. Thankfully the goats make playtoys out of anything they can jump on from fallen trees to the picnic table so I don't really have to get stuff for them to play with, but I have enough cat toys laying around my house, hidden under carpets and in corners, and even under the bedspread where I'm sure to find them when I crawl into bed at night and scream thinking I just layed on a rat or something equally icky. I don't know what I'd do without my cats, or my dog though. They are treasured companions. They listen with soulfull understanding as I tell my troubles to them, and play with me when I'm happy. They give me such great joy I can't imagine not giving them everything I can. I'm pretty sure that's why we spend so much money on our pets. They give us what money can't buy.