Showing posts from April, 2016

Benchmarks and Benches

Book #1 I looked up the word benchmark but I didn't learn much. It's a combination of bench + mark, and it represents a new standard. (So what's the bench got to do with it?  Do we sit down and rest when we reach a point where we've done something really cool? I don't intend to. Who wants to rest when you're on a roll?) Wherever the word came from, I'm approaching a benchmark with The Sleuth Sisters, the first book in the series. Sometime in the next week it will hit 1500 in audio book sales. For a book I wrote under a pseudonym, published myself, and promoted haphazardly at best, that's amazing. The production company people are pretty happy, too, since I did a 50-50 share of the profits with them rather than pay upfront. With a second, third, and soon a fourth installment in the series, we've got a small but reassuring stream of money coming in. In e-book, print, and audio sales, I'm earning more on the Sleuth Sisters than any of my ot

She's NOT Going to Like It

Earlier this year, we became the proud owners of a new camper. The plan is to do some traveling in the months to come, but we struggled with the problem of what to do with Old Cat. As our only remaining pet, she's become a bit of an obsession with us, and we both act completely silly as we try to do whatever she wants us to do, even though she's quite senile and doesn't know herself what she wants. In the past we've tried boarding, which she hated, but at least she had Alice, her companion cat, then and they could reassure each other. We also tried taking them to relatives' homes, which worked pretty well. Right now, however, all the relatives who would take her have their own pets, and at her advanced age (she's 21) she doesn't adjust well to strangers. We've also left her in the house alone, having a relative stop in every day and check on her. (She seldom saw the cat and judged she was okay solely by the fact that the litter box needed attention.)

How Do You Choose What to Read Next?

Anyone who reads knows there is a huge industry out there trying to grab your attention. Big publishers wave their "golden" writers in front of your face with words like "gripping" and "must-read." Small presses try to get readers to their niche market by promising can't-put-'em-down books tailored to your tastes. And self-published writers beg you to sign up for their newsletters and blogs so you'll know when they get that next book ready. Books are offered daily at great prices, even for free, with the hope that you'll love them so much you'll come back for more and more from that author or that publisher. You could download enough free books from BookBub or InstaFreebie that you'll never catch up on your TBR. Though most of them won't be worth your time, it's there, and it doesn't cost you a cent. I have friends who love the adventure of looking for pearls among the grains of sand. Smart readers ignore the hype