The Writer’s Life and Pimping My Readers

So, this is not a belly aching post.  Except it sort of is.  I’m now well enough to actually work most of the time, except…

Except this week has been insane.  For those not aware of it (those on the Facebook Diner know) my older nephew had a heart attack and surgery last week.  He’s now home and recovering well, but for a while there it was kind of shaky. 

I love all my nephews and nieces (including by marriage) but Jorge is special since I got to spend a lot of time with him before I married when he was five.  Also, he’s only 33, so a heart attack was alarming.

We had a friend drop by last Sunday (from out of state) so we had dinner with him at Pete’s Kitchen on Colfax, and that was a bright spot in a week that was otherwise just dreary.

Then on Monday we played with car trouble which necessitated a lot of phone coordination, so that halfway through the day I gave up even trying to write.  Tuesday I caught up on the non-fic, and Wednesday I started arranging leech therapy for the oldest cat.  (You probably don’t want to know.)  Thursday was The Day Of The Plumber.  Trust me, no details wanted — or will be given.  Just… no.  It pretty much highjacked my day from 11 am till eight thirty pm.

And Friday, after The Day of The Plumber (I think I’ll write it as a horror story!) I didn’t feel up to writing the chapter, but I thought I’d do it by the evening.  Except when I went to the attic to do the cat boxes, preliminary to doing the (usually) two hours of house cleaning I do to keep entropy slightly at bay, I found that one of the cats — probably while we were dealing with the plumber, so it was dry) had carpeted the attic in diarrhea.  It started at one of the boxes, but continued all through the attic, including nooks and crannies, where cats hide when scared.  Since the attic is storage space with stacked boxes, it was like a scavenger hunt that was no fun at all.  Also… let’s say the paint scraper was needed.  That’s all.  Then there were two thorough moppings with bleach-and-pinesol and piping hot water.

In Portuguese mythology er… excrement is supposed to presage money.

I’m gonna be SOOOOO rich.  And then I’ll hire someone to handle this stuff. 

Anyway, I finished cleaning at four thirty instead of one or so, as is normal.

BUT I hope we’re now done with the Chinese fire drills.

One of the car issues persists but I’m hoping it will be the obvious and simple solution.  (Can everyone hope for that?  Thank you.)

So today I’d like to do my post for PJM and then just write.

The amazing thing is that I AM feeling better.  I have to be.  I actually WANT to write.

Meanwhile, we’re pimping your fellow readers and commenters, so go and get something good to read.


Another Saturday is upon us, and so we bring you this brief shameless plug commercial interruption public service: the weekly reader promotion post! Again, future entries can be sent to my email. Happy reading!
The Free Range Oyster

Dan Melson

The Man From Empire (Rediscovery)

The Man From Empire
An arcology in the Empire has been destroyed, estimated casualties 18 million. Osh Scimtar, an Imperial Secundus, has the opportunity to follow the saboteur’s escape route if he goes immediately. He arrives at a technological but primitive world, just beginning the climb the Empire has already made, populated by humans whose ancestors must have been from the Empire. He meets a young woman who helps him learn what he needs to know to complete his mission on this unknown world with no knowledge of or contact with the Empire. A world known to its inhabitants as Earth.

Laura Montgomery

The Sky Suspended

The Sky Suspended
A generation has passed since asteroid scares led the United States to launch its first and only interstellar starship. The ship returns and announces the discovery of another Earth. People are star-struck, crowds form in Washington, DC, and a boy from Alaska and two lawyers grapple with issues surrounding the question of whether ordinary people will be able to emigrate to the stars.

56 responses to “The Writer’s Life and Pimping My Readers

  1. Glad to hear your nephew is doing well and yourself. I tend to find writing gives me a perk! Great blog 🙂

  2. Glad to hear good news on the nephew!

    Hopefully your house will behave itself for a while.

    • Honestly this happens in every house when we think of moving. I think it’s like a kid trying to hold us back with interesting problems. Of course, when everything is fixed we move. But we have other reasons for moving, this time. (Mostly if the kids get where they want to, in two years this house will be mighty big for two people.)

    • Christopher M. Chupik

      Indeed, glad to hear he’s recovering. It’s never fun to have family in hospital.

  3. In Portuguese mythology er… excrement is supposed to presage money.

    So can you tell someone that they’re full of … omens of wealth?

  4. Sorry to hear about your nephew. Good wishes going his way.

  5. Because an excuse to push Flanders & Swann is justification sufficient,

    Oddly, no plumbing in the saga; it is unplumbed.

  6. Sorry about all the life-problems, and I’m hoping your nephew is better already.

    Have you ever thought of doing your life as a soap opera series? Graphic novel format – just to make other people feel better about their own?

    ‘Live like this – and keep writing.’

    You write so beautifully ABOUT it all – my sympathies, but I’m also shaking my head and chuckling.

  7. Good wishes and thoughts toward your nephew.
    And, thank you for doing the promos! You all are great.

  8. Heh, I’m up to 11 now. And really hating the format of the reports page on Amazon. Why they can’t tabulate all the different sites on one page, I have no idea.

    So, what’s the Normal rate of looking at that page? I know I’m being a bit too obsessive….

    • It depends. For a new, never-prior-published-anywhere author, well, some of ’em confess to a superstitious dread that a sale won’t happen with the window closed, and so leave it open all day, every day.

      For people who have just put out a book, or are running a promotion, it’s often every couple minutes until real life remind them to quit being a rat pressing the lever and go eat something / pick up the kids / etc.

      For those who’ve published several books, they often avoid the temptation by immediately opening a word document and starting on the next manuscript , so their minds are busy and fingers, if they must twitch, are typing words instead of F5 – F5- cntrl+r

      So a couple times a minute, tapering to every couple minutes, finally to once a day, and over time, to once a week, then once a month is fairly normal. Calmer Half has three books published via KDP, and I check once a week to update sales figures on the spreadsheet I built, then he checks that when dropbox notifies him the file is updated. (Unless I’m running a promotion, in which case I check once a day to see how it’s affecting sales, but he just checks the excel file. And when a new book is released, I’ll be doing once a day checks to KDP and to the item listing to check ranks and affected sales/also-boughts, to flesh out the database of “your target market also likes the following.”)

      In a couple days, you should start getting “also viewed”, and then at some sales number (it depends), it’ll change to “also bought”, and then you’ll look a chunk of time to (And claim it’s market research.)

      • I started getting “also viewed” last week. Most of them trace back to that 8 hour window when it was listed under Erotica. I finally looked at a few.

        Good god, I’m in the wrong racket! 4500 word stories selling for $2.99! And because of the telepathy keyword, a lot of these linked stores are about hypnosis and mind control. There are some rarefied fetishes out there that don’t have quite as much sex in them… but at 4500 words, how much sex can there be period?

        Anyway, I just wish it were formatted so that a header column would have the book, and then there would be rows attached to it for each store, instead of only showing one line at a time.

      • Oh, and as for launching into the next story, yup! Starting in now on “Pretty Hate Machines”. Which will set chapter 4 of “Dr. Mauser: Red on Red” back some more.

      • once a month. I can’t do anything about it, except worry…

        • I check until the tan bar of shame has disappeared. And if it goes too many days, I find something to give away. that always jumpstarts actual sales, as well.

          Then I calm down and check a couple of time during the month.

          • I’m spooked by No Will But His, so I’m hiding. Last time I checked it was selling 3 copies a day, up from two copies last month.
            Mommy — I’m scared.
            Amanda says it’s just because I don’t want to write the other six women, which is true. BUT it’s also that I look at it and I go “So many stories I actually love, and the fictionalized bio of a dead queen out-sells them? Oy vey.”
            It makes me feel I’ve lived in vain.

          • I don’t worry about the tan bar… on the non-english sites.

  9. OK, I need to get off my duff and get the next short story up on Amazon. I finally found cover art that works. Sheesh, but it’s hard to find pictures of pine trees that 1) don’t have mountains in the background and 2) leave space for text.

    When a half-hover crashes in the forest does it make a sound? It does if a Great Lord’s son is a crew-member. When Commander Ni Drako’s accident investigation pulls her into a feud dating back to the Great Relocation, can she solve the mystery without getting in the line of fire? (Yeah, right, who am I kidding? This is Rada Ni Drako we’re talking about.)

  10. The Other Sean

    I hope everything goes a little smoother this coming week.