Monthly Archives: November, 2012

Memories by Carol Carroll

I am in the process of rewriting the first novel I created. I’d like to ask a favor. Would you read this short sample and comment what your reaction is? Good, bad, and in between! I have thick skin, I need to get honest feedback. Thank you for helping me out.


by Carol Carroll

For every life there is a story, one of laughter and tears, struggle and joy.

Linda listened to the haunting sound of the chimes coming from the grandfather clock down the hall. She counted the strikes; ten… eleven… twelve. She laid alone in the darkness, on the double bed, in her long ago childhood bedroom. Her throat felt tight with emotion, her eyes swollen from the tears. Why do I need so badly to be held tonight? She sighed deeply, rolled onto her side, and pulled a pillow up to her chest. Why do I always need someone to make me feel all right again? Why can’t I be strong, capable, in control? I’m not a little girl anymore. I’m twenty-five years old, a grown woman for heaven sake. Still… she felt as helpless as a small child. She covered herself with the warm quilt and closed her eyes, but sleep would not come. Her thoughts traveled back to days gone by, vivid memories replayed in her troubled mind.

Chapter One

Six-year-old Linda immediately fell to her knees and started picking up broken pieces of the shattered mixing bowl she’d accidently dropped. Every muscle in her small body tightened, and her lips quivered with shame and fear.

Towering over Linda, her mother shouted, “Well now you’ve really done it! Why do you have to be so clumsy? All you have to do is hold on to things. Use your head, child.” She rapped sharp knuckles against Linda’s skull. “For heaven’s sake, pay attention to what you’re doing!”

Linda dared to look up. Her mother’s face was contorted with unrestrained anger. Fire seemed to shoot from her eyes while she spewed her cutting words. Instinct told Linda to run and hide. Weakness in her legs and knees kept her in place.

“I hope you realize you’ve broken my favorite mixing bowl. I’ll have to buy a new one now, and they don’t come cheap you know. Why do you have to be such a klutz all the time? Oh just get out of here and let me clean up this mess!”

With downcast eyes and head hung low, Linda left the kitchen and walked slowly across the front room to where her daddy sat in his over-stuffed, easy chair. When she raised her head, she saw him look up from his newspaper. He immediately put down his paper and held his arms out to her. Daddy pulled her onto his lap, held her close, and gently pressed a kiss on the crown of her head. He didn’t say a word. He didn’t need to, just being in his strong, protective arms made everything in Linda’s world all right again. She sat quietly, feeling safe and warm and loved.

The snowy-white curtains hanging over the double-hung windows caught her attention. The windows were open, so the thin sheers fluttered in the breeze and twisted into different shapes. Linda could tell how windy it was by how far the curtains blew into the room.

The front door was standing open also. She could see through the screen to the covered porch on the front of the large, white, farmhouse. She could hear the birds singing and the rustling of the leaves on the branches of the tall trees in the yard, a peaceful sound.

Daddy reached over and picked up his pipe from the glass ashtray on a stand. He placed it between his teeth, but didn’t light it. He just held it there, bit down on it, and seemed to be far away in thought.

Linda twisted around to get more comfortable. The loud bang of a cupboard door being slammed made her cringe. She looked over at the doorway to the kitchen. Her heart pounded against her chest, her little mouth puckered, and she tried hard not to cry. She knew Mama was still angry—so angry. It seemed to Linda that Mama was always upset, always mad at her.

She looked up into her daddy’s eyes and whispered, “I try to do what Mama says, but I never do anything right. I don’t do anything good enough.” She snuffed her nose, tightly gripped his shirt in her hands, and snuggled closer to Daddy. She could feel his chest rise with every breath he took, hear his heartbeat, and feel his arms tighten around her.

She heard his voice near her ear. In a quiet, sympathetic tone he said, “It’s all right, little one. It’s not your fault. I know Mama gets upset, but you just keep on doing the best you can. If you keep trying, Linda, someday you will succeed at whatever you set out to do.” He tilted her face up to his and said, “Now let me see that pretty smile.” Linda’s face lit up, her eyes sparkled, and her rosy lips turned up into a radiant grin.

Daddy looked down at her. His eyes traveled to her dark-brown, curly hair, and then to her deep, dark eyes that could express much more than any words could say. He smiled back at her with love shining from his eyes. Linda knew without a doubt she was special to him; his expression told her so. She was comforted. She believed she could do anything she needed to, Daddy said so, and Daddy was always right!

Linda heard Mama coming toward the living room. She breathed in deeply and held her breath while she watched her mother stop in the doorway, flip the switch to turn off the bright kitchen light, and then turn on the ceiling light above them.

Mama was dressed in her usual attire; a colorful house dress with buttons down the front and a stiff, starched half-apron tied around her slender waist. Her dark hair was cut short. Soft curls around her oval face accentuated her brown eyes. If they weren’t so cold, hard, and flinty right now, and her mouth wasn’t so puckered, she would be beautiful.

She gave Linda a smoldering glare, then turned her head and focused on Daddy. “Did she tell you what she did?” Daddy shook his head. “She broke my best mixing bowl. She just let it slip right out of her hands! It’s in a hundred pieces.” She exhaled noisily. “I had to sweep it up and throw it out. That girl is so clumsy, she is always destroying something!” Mama walked over to her chair, plopped down, and picked up a quilt piece to work on. “I try to teach her to do things right. She’s just impossible.”

After a few silent, uncomfortable minutes, Mama said, “Linda, it’s time for you to go bed.”

Linda climbed down from Daddy’s lap. With her eyes on the floor, she walked over to Mama. She gave her the mandatory kiss on the cheek and said, “Good night, Mama.” With sad eyes and trembling lips she turned around. On the way to the stairs, she hugged Daddy, gave him a kiss, and went up the steps to get ready for bed.

When Linda reached her bedroom door. she heard Daddy complain angrily, “Did you have to be so rough on her? Was your damn mixing bowl so important?”

“It’s not just the bowl,” Mama snapped back. “It’s one thing after another. I want her to learn to be careful and to do things right!”

“Yes, but you’re always so critical of her, and you’ve been so darn short-tempered ever since Jimmy was born.”

Linda knew there was going to be a fight. She hated to hear them argue. She thought it was all her fault. She hurried into her bedroom and quickly shut the door. She covered her ears with her hands, ran to the bed, climbed onto the quilt, and curled herself up into a tight ball.

Her mother’s angry, high-pitched voice was still coming from downstairs. She shoved the pillows hard against her head to block out the sound. Tears welled up in her eyes and streamed quietly down her cheeks until she finally fell into a troubled sleep.



How important is editing?

 I am so grateful for the opportunity to get my books self-published. I don’t think I will live long enough to see the day the big guys will take a look at my novels. I realize the bottom line has to be the main focus for the traditional publishers. Competition is getting tougher all the time. They feel the pressure to stick with the old tried-and-true clients. That simply doesn’t leave much room for new authors to break into the book selling business, even ones with books that are as good or better than what’s already out there.

The biggest problem I see for the self-publisher is the writers who publish unedited, less than quality works. When I start to read an eBook with spelling errors, fragmented sentences, poor grammar and such, I cringe. I’m sure some I see are first drafts, sometimes people don’t even bother to run a spell check. 

Readers won’t settle for sloppy writing, and it reflects poorly on all writers who are trying to put their books out there. I hope readers will sift through and not give up on finding the wonderfully well-written works that are available. I’ve read a lot of self-published books that I enjoyed immensely. 

I believe I know what some of you are thinking. And yes, the cost of professional editing is indeed a factor for most of us new authors. Although it would be first choice, there is another way to get manuscripts edited. We meet other authors here on the internet through social media. We can find a couple that we can work with to trade edits with us. View samples of their manuscripts, and see what they do for your sample, before agreeing to trade edits. No one wants to rewrite for another writer, it would take too much time.

 They will see things we, as the writer, miss. It’s a big help in perfecting a story. And when the editing is finished, and all corrections are made, ask some people to beta read the story to pick up anything the editors may have missed. After making any necessary revisions, we can publish our book with confidence. 

Even the most well-known writers have their work edited. They know editing is crucial to publishing a good book.


A guest blog by James Murray

As I watched one of the national news feeds yesterday, I was reminded of how unaware the public is to one of the more serious drug-food interactions.

The subject of the feature was the adverse interaction between many drugs and grapefruit. It was presented as a “startling revelation” that there is a detrimental interaction between certain drugs and grapefruit when either the fruit or the juice from it is consumed concurrently with these medications.

The truth is that the medical community identified this harmful interaction at least ten years ago and now pharmacists routinely attach alert notices to certain prescription medications involved in these interactions.

The new information here is that the number of drugs that can cause a deadly interaction with grapefruit has doubled in just the last few years.  At present, 85 drugs interact with grapefruit to cause injury, 43 of which cause serious or deadly interactions.

The list of drugs that interact with grapefruit now includes many blood pressure medications, most of the cholesterol-lowering drugs, certain cardiac drugs, some anti-seizure medications, specific chemotherapy drugs and a few antibiotic medications.

What astounded me about this news broadcast was that the medical expert being interviewed recommended that patients who have been prescribed these medications “stop taking their medications and call their physicians for alternatives”.

The easier solution and a much better recommendation would be to simply STOP EATING GRAPEFRUIT!

Many of the drugs that interact with grapefruit are maintenance medications, those that patients take every day for chronic medical conditions. If a patient is achieving good therapeutic effects (especially long-term) with a drug therapy, it’s considered irresponsible to discontinue that drug in favor of a specific food in the diet.

The safer action is to keep the patient’s medical condition stable with that specific drug and to DISCONTINUE EATING THE OFFENDING FOOD.

As healthy and tasty as grapefruit is, if taken with certain medications it can be deadly.  As little as one-half grapefruit, or the equivalent in juice, can interfere with the metabolism of certain drugs.  A chemical in grapefruit called furanocoumarin causes some drugs to stay in the body much longer than expected and create an overdose effect when subsequent drug doses are given. Patients have died from respiratory failure, kidney failure and internal bleeding as a result of this accumulated drug effect.

As mentioned, this has been known for a long time and patients are now being warned about this serious interaction. The problem, however, remains a public health hazard for two reasons.

First, many people don’t read warning labels and, secondly, grapefruit is usually a food consumed as part of a healthy diet. People don’t associate a food as simple as grapefruit with having a deadly effect, and the problem is becoming more widespread as additional new drugs come on the market that have this potential interaction with grapefruit.

While it’s important to have news features to educate the public concerning this dangerous drug-food interaction, it should be emphasized that the recommended plan should be elimination of the offending food, not the beneficial drug.

It’s much easier to delete grapefruit from the diet than it is to find a replacement drug that would work as well as the one prescribed by your doctor, particularly if that drug is working well to control a medical condition.

Thoughts? Comments? I’d love to hear them!

Tags: Deadly Grapefruit, Food-Drug Interactions, Grapefruit and Drugs

Bio for James J. Murray:

With experience in both pharmaceutical manufacturing and clinical patient management, medications and their impact on a patient’s quality of life have been my expertise.  My secret passion of murder and mayhem, however, is a whole other matter.  My obsession with reading murder mysteries and thrillers left me longing to weave such tales of my own.  Drawing on past clinical expertise as a pharmacist and an infatuation with the lethal effects of drugs, I create novels of Murder, Mayhem and Medicine that will have you looking over your shoulder and suspicious of anything in your medicine cabinet.

James J. Murray





My First Book Signing

Today I have my first appointment to set up a book signing.

Like with every other first I’ve been doing since I wrote Inconclusive Death, I’m traveling into unknown territory. It’s a little nerve-racking, but at the same time exciting to be learning more about marketing my book.

I’ve read on the internet about how others do a book signing, so I have a good idea how to go about it. I know I need to pick a place where and when there is high traffic, the more people coming through the better.

Then there is promotion. I have to get the word out and try to get people excited about coming by. That one I’m still working on! A press release could help. A few folks probably still read newspapers, right? Maybe I should give a free book to someone who calls into a radio station? The DJ gets a lot of calls when he has a freebie to give away. Posters, do people take time these days to stop and read a sign on a door? It can’t hurt to try it.

The day of the event, I’ll need an eye-catching display. I’ve never been shy. I won’t have a problem being friendly to the strangers who dare to look my way! I hope to have a few hours of fun talking about my book and what people like to read.

My biggest problem is I don’t know how to set up the book signing with the manager of the store. I hope he has done this before and has some guidelines that work for him! If not, I guess we’ll have to brain storm. I can do that. Wish me luck. I may need it.

Editing – Why Not to Do-It-Yourself

A Guest Blog by Gerald Rice

Every independent author wants to cut as many corners as possible when it comes to publishing a new work. But what many don’t realize is they may be costing themselves money in the long run by putting out a poorly edited book.

Reviews are the life’s blood of any product. Whether it’s a book, a car, or a box of cereal, a bad review or worse, a series of bad reviews, can be the death knell of whatever it is you’re trying to sell. So aside from the ‘exorbitant’ cost of hiring a professional editor, what other reasons to go it alone?

Nobody knows my story as well as me. -While true, this is a double-edged sword. Writers have a tendency to be too close to their manuscript, falling in love with their words and keeping words, sentences, and entire sections that take away from the overall story.

An editor will change my words or rewrite my story. –This is completely untrue of any editor worth his or her salt. I look at editing as sandpapering the rough edges off a marble statue (I have no idea if you actually sandpaper a statue, but you get the idea). Do I sometimes suggest a better word in places? Absolutely. But that’s what an editor does: suggest. Every single change an editor makes to your story should be plain and evident so the author can agree or disagree upon review. If your editor operates differently, fire him or her immediately.

I can just get my friend to read it for me, he likes my stuff. –Another potential mistake. People too close to an author may tend to hedge edits. Sometimes, I’ll look at a page I just finished and see a whole lotta red and I wonder if I’m being overly critical. But then I remember, that’s what I’m being paid for. And if the client does feel like the edits on any particular page are heavy-handed, he can always not take the ones he doesn’t like. Back when I used to write a lot of poetry I was on a site where we would post poems and critique each other and there was nothing worse than someone who just couldn’t handle people saying anything other than how magnificent their piece was.

It’s just not affordable. –Now that is a potential drawback. A professional editor can cost as little as a half cent a word to several cents. But it’s really a ‘what’s it worth to you’ situation. Do you believe this is a book people have to read? Will it change lives? Do you have a plan in place and editing is just one cog in the wheel to creating a best-selling juggernaut? If it is, then the cost of an editor is only a drop in the bucket compared to what you’ll eventually rake in. If it’s not, then why exactly are you writing it? Don’t put a speedbump in your way by having a story a lot of people may set their eyes on and quickly cast aside as unreadable. And there are levels of editing. For simple proofreading, I charge only a half cent. That means I read the story to correct for grammar errors and punctuation. So if you had a 100,000 word manuscript, I would charge a meager $500 to proofread it. The cover of my novella, Fleshbags, was $400 and that was on the less expensive side so far as cover art. I charge more when I check for things like syntax errors, sentence flow, and proper word usage. I also will solicit the author for more information to understand confusing sentences and do follow-ups with clients to make sure they understand all the edits.

Think about the last book you purchased. Whether you wound up liking it or not, I’d bet it had a nice cover. As an independent author, unless you are also a graphic artist, professional photographer, or painter, you’re not qualified to design your own cover. Editing is just as important as an eye-catching cover. In some ways, it is more important than a cover. There have been a few books I’ve read that impressed me on the outside and I was completely letdown when I turned to the first page. At least with a crappy cover my expectations would have been lower. Covers also periodically change and vary depending on the country. But save for being translated into a different language, all those different covers are wrapped around the same story.

Before you put out your next novel or novella, set yourself up for success. I don’t know the statistics, but the heaviest cluster of sales of books occur somewhere in the first few weeks after release. Just like the three L’s of real estate—location, location, location—the more books that sell in a cluster, the closer an author gets to finding their book located on a bestseller list. An independent author/publisher can do it. Just look at the Fifty Shades trilogy, which have been ranked 1-3 on the NY Times Bestseller list for the last 20+ weeks. I can’t vouch for how well-written these books are, but the point is, word-of-mouth rocketed them into the American lexicon. And more people will be talking about an author’s book when it is not only well-written, but seen under a scrutinizing eye to make it the best possible story it can be.

Gerald Rice is the author of numerous short stories and novellas. Download his current work The Zombie Archives, here:

Tags: Editing, self-pub, self-publishing, bestseller, ny times, do-it-yourself, the zombie archives, short stories, novellas

The Butterman Cometh – Available 10/30/12 on Amazon, B & N, and Smashwords. Please visit for more details.

Find Carol’s latest book at ask

Find Carol Carroll's book, Inconclusive Death - an Aaron Blake Mystery, at ask David.

A Thanksgiving Treat

A Special Interview With Robt Emmett 

I met Rob some years ago in a writer’s group on the old, Eons website. His stories of a teenage boy growing up in a small, lake town drew me in. This teenager had engaging stories to tell, and before long, I felt like I knew the characters personally and liked them.

Rob has not pushed to have his books published, but I wish he would. The world is missing some fine stories!

Carol: Hello Rob. Please tell us a little about yourself.

Robt Emmett: My career as a machine designer and project engineer was dictated by my imagination. I’ve spent a lifetime creating new machines. Upon retiring, I found that I couldn’t turn off my need to create. My woodworking was one outlet, but not enough, so I started writing.

Carol: Now, can you tell us three things most people don’t know about you?

Robt Emmett: I never wanted to be an engineer, but it was that or starvation. I’m a well-adjusted introvert. Which means that I don’t blush as easily as I did in my youth. I only dated three girls in high school.

Carol: What was the first thing you ever wrote?

Robt Emmett: My ABCs, but the nun said I spelled them wrong. My first ‘official’ writing was ‘Premature Birth.’ It was about the birth of my twin nieces.

Carol: What prompted you to write that particular piece?

Robt Emmett: I needed to pass English 101. It was the fourteenth English course that I’d taken and I needed it to graduate. (Read that as I passed four in high school out of eight tries and two of six in college.)

Carol: What does writing mean to you?

Robt Emmett: Relaxation. I would like to be a published author, but my ego will not allow me to go the ‘Vanity’ route. I enjoy putting my MC, Robin Benôit, in awkward situations and see how he works himself out of them.

Carol: What are the genre and the name of your latest published book?

Robt Emmett: Right now, I’m between published novels…zero and one. I challenged myself to write a work of one hundred thousand words. (Why? I don’t have a clue!) I titled it, “What Happened to Schultz.”

Carol: What’s the story about?

Robt Emmett: The setting is 1961. Robin Benôit, a twenty-year-old bachelor, has a number of girlfriends. They don’t know he’s an analyst for a woman who heads a spy organization, one who keeps track of communists on university campuses in the upper Midwest. Barbara, the spymaster, also does other ‘odd jobs’, including ‘wet work’, for the CIA.

One of Robin’s girlfriends asks that he look into a bit of his family lore and he agrees to investigate.The story concerns his grandfather’s involvement in a land deal that went bad at Mitchell’s point on Beaver Lake. One of the land partners, Schultz, mysteriously disappeared.

Then someone wants Robin dead, who? His aunt who hates him? She is unhappy that he is looking into a thirty-year-old happening. The Monsignor’s chauffeur, an ex-IRA hit man, because Robin let out a secret about the Monsignor’s past, or the shyster lawyer for Robin foiling his attempted seduction of Patty. Robin liked her a lot. On the other hand, was it the communists, were they upset that he would uncover their plan?

Carol: If it were made into a movie, which actor would you choose to star as your main character?

Robt Emmett: A young Harrison Ford or a totally unknown actor that has no plans to make acting a career, as playing Robin is, professionally, a bad idea.

Carol: What advice would you give to new writers just starting out?

Robt Emmett: Have a day job! It is easier to be a professional athlete than a well-paid writer.

Carol:  Where can people connect with you online?

Robt Emmett: Facebook Robt Emmett

Robt Emmett: I’m only writing this because I owe Carol. She requested that I do this as a mea culpa. For me to write about myself is, in my opinion, a mea máxima culpa!

Here is a small excerpt from What Happened to Schultz.

I closed the arched, oak door at the parsonage. The Monsignor had conned me into purchasing the place and now it was my home. Easing the lock in place, we went into the study. I lifted a stack of records up on the spindle and set them to play soothing music. I wanted a glass of wine. As I poured, Patty surprised me and asked me to pour one for her also. I handed it to her and sat on the sofa next to her. She inched away, tasted the wine, and smiled. We made small talk while we sat and watched the moonrise over the lake through the large window.

Patty sat her half-finished glass of wine on the end table. She took a breath and looked at me. “Robin, I don’t think you understand that all this… this whatever you are into, bothers me. It bothers me a lot. And I…” She talked and I listened. She had a point.

When she finished, I was more candid with her than maybe I should have been. Between me being honest with her, mostly, and the music, she started to mellow. She moved back closer to me. I wasn’t quite home free. When I rested my arm over her shoulder, she flinched. I told her that what happened at the lake was a freak thing. It should never have happened, and it never would again.

She bought it and allowed me to kiss her. It was a cold kiss, but a kiss nevertheless. I eased away from the subject of the lake and asked about how she liked being an archeologist and digging in the dirt at the Point. That improved her mood. The kisses were getting better—a lot better.

I looked into her eyes. “Patty, I really appreciate your work at the dig on Beaver Lake, it should answer what happened to Schultz.”

On the record player, the drummer finished his intro to “Night Train”and Buddy Morrow started his trombone solo. Patty finished off the rest of her wine.

The study door slammed open. The record player’s arm skated across the record. Patty screamed and dropped her wine glass. It shattered on the hardwood floor.

I drew my Walther as I shot to my feet. A hand pushed me back down and ripped the pistol outta my grip. Looking cross-eyed at the large-caliber gun Barbara held at the end of my nose, I said, “Bar! Damn it! What the hell’s going on?”

To her bodyguard, Barbara ordered, “Max, take the shiksa home!”

This was the old Bar, the hard-assed one. I saw a muscle jump in her cheek before she said, “You’re dead Benôit!”

“Bar, what the…”

After cocking her pistol, she said through clenched teeth, “Shut the fuck up!”

Publishing on Kindle

A guest blog by Gerald Rice

An easy guide to publishing your eBook on Kindle.

Go to Amazon:


Scroll down and click on Independently Publish with Us


On the left hand side, under ‘Self-Publish with Us’, click on ‘Kindle Books’. At the next screen, you’ll click ‘Sign in’ or ‘Sign up’ if you don’t have an account. Enter all the yackity-smackity they ask you for if you’re creating a new account.


Next, click on ‘Add New Title’. You’ll see a blue box titled ‘Introducing KDP Select’. That’s a promo program Kindle has where you can offer your book for free for up to five days in a 3-month period. I won’t go into detail here or advise whether or not you should use it; for now skip it. Scroll down to ‘1. Enter Your Book Details’ and begin to enter the information requested. Skip the ‘this book is part of a series’ and edition number stuff unless you have more than one edition of your book or it really is part of a series. Under ‘Description’ write the jacket information describing your book. That’s what people will see when they look up your book and land on its Amazon page. ‘Book Contributors’ pertains to the author, editor, cover artist, and anyone else you need to give credit to for the creation of your book. Language, publication date, and publisher are all obvious, but ISBN is a little tricky. It isn’t necessary for you to have one for an eBook. As a matter of fact, if you go out and get one, Kindle still will not use it on your book’s page. So if you’re publishing on Kindle only, don’t bother getting an ISBN.

‘2. Verify Your Publishing Rights’ you want the second option. ‘3. Target Your Book to Customers’ is where you’ll put descriptors in to help people who read your genre find your book.


Being a horror author I would put my book in the fiction category and there’s a horror sub-category. You’re allowed 2 categories so pick whichever other one also applies. After that, type in up to seven words you would most closely associate with your work under ‘Search keywords (up to 7, optional): (What’s this?)’.

Now you’re almost ready for kung fu. Under ‘4. Upload Your Book Cover’ click on ‘Browse for image’ where you’ll select the .JPG you’ve made or purchased for your cover. It’ll take a moment to load and then you’ll be ready for step ‘5. Upload Your Book File’. I recommend enabling digital rights management, but that’s up to you.


Click ‘continue’ and on the next page, you’re ready for pricing. I know what works for me so far as how to price an eBook, but that’s up to each author to determine what their work is work. If you’re the author and you hold all rights to your work, select ‘Worldwide rights’ under ‘7. Verify Your Publishing Territories’. So far as ‘8. Choose Your Royalty’, that’s going to be determined by how much you charge for your book. Anything between $2.99 and $9.99 qualifies for a 70% royalty, anything falling outside of that gets half the royalty amount at 35%. Finish off by checking off all the other regions so the price updates automatically.

I like to make my books lendable, but again, that’s up to each individual. Select as appropriate under ‘9. Kindle Book Lending’ and click the last box before clicking the ‘Save and Publish’ button. In a few short hours, you’ll be published!

You might want to follow up with making a visit to Author Central to set up your author’s account where you can have your tweets and blog entries feed into as well as setting up your books to show on your page, but you are essentially done!


Gerald Rice is the author of numerous short stories and novellas.  His current work, The Zombie Archives, can be downloaded here:


Tags: kindle, amazon, self-pub, self publishing, author central, ISBN, publishing, book
The Butterman Cometh – Available 10/30/12 on AmazonB & N, and Smashwords. Please visit for more details.


Oh My!

What a week it’s been. As I have recently published my first full novel, I have moved into trying to figure out how to market. I can’t believe how many sites out there are devoted to instructing people how to do their own marketing. Of course, most of what I find says pretty much the same things, and they usually want to sell me a course to let me in on all the details.

One thing leads to another and before I know it another day has slipped by without my writing a single word on my new story. Hopefully once I get all this good advice into some kind of organized plan, I’ll be able to get back to my novel.

Let’s see, the first and seemingly most important issue is to build a hub from which all the other facets can take off from; the hub being either a blog or a website. Okay, that part I started about a month ago. I enjoy blogging and reading other’s blogs. No problem.

Next thing is to grow a mailing list. I have to work on that one. It is suggested getting social is a good way to let people in the cyber world know I even exist. All well and good, except I’m enjoying the social aspect too much! I’m spending a lot of my time getting to know people, which I love, but how do I fit in some time to write?

Then there is figuring out how to launch my new book. I’d never even heard of a book launch before getting into all this marketing business. I need to learn how to set up book signings if I want the general public to know I live and breathe and sell books! Okay, I will do that just as soon as I find the time.

Book trailers, what a great way to advertise what my mystery book is all about. One more thing I have to learn from the ground up. I’ve never even videotaped anything except my children with a super eight camera forty years ago. That one I will put on hold.

I go into the internet to find an answer to one of my many, many questions. Before I finish one thing it links me to another that I just have to see before I lose track of it, and then there’s a new link there vying for my attention. I’m gleaning a wealth of information, which is boggling my mind. And I still need to get back to my writing.

My helpful sites tell me all this marketing strategy takes time, lots of time. Patience is essential, stick-to-itiveness is a must, and fortitude helps a lot.

Meanwhile my husband is beginning to think he’s a widower. Now that will never do. He is, and always will be, my number one priority. So I will keep plugging away. I will make time for writing. And most important, I’ll spend quality time with Marv. Everything else will have to be patient.

Modern Technology, a time saver?

Why does everything have to be so complicated and time-consuming these days?

I was led to believe that all of this new technology is meant to save us time and work. Then why do I find myself spending hours to get things set up to use it? Yesterday I switched internet companies. That’s all, just wanted a new provider.

To begin this project, one day last week I spent considerable time holding on the phone to speak to a representative who could set up a new account and send out a tech to hook up the system. By the time I finished with the call, nearly an hour had escaped me. 

When the nice young man got here to switch the service, that job took another hour, or close to it, to accomplish. Then my engagement really started in. I had to take my old modem back to the owner. It took at least 45 minutes, since I had to wait in a long line to return it to them. My patience was beginning to wear thin.

Later, I had to set up a new security program on my computer, so it would be safe to use. A lot more time on the phone talking to the sales person, and then more downloads to figure out. Save this, run that; wait, wait, wait! My whole evening was shot. 

And to think, there was a time I would have relaxed in the front of my TV and been entertained on a Friday night!