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Finding the Path Around Self-Created Obstacles

Prepping for For Love of Books and Florida on Saturday (Got your tickets?), working the day job, dealing with the boo boo foot…life has challenges.

The subtitle of this web space is “Finding Inner Strength.” As i see it, that includes overcoming obstacles of your own creation.

For instance, my lack of effective marketing for my books. All on me.

I’m rather pleased with myself tonight. I had 2 issues: bookmarks promoting my Susan Thatcher books that had no contact info and promotional items (chocolate lips) for Monique DeSoto that had no context. No contact info.

Enter QR Codes.

If you’re not familiar with the term, QRs are those boxy-looking abstract designs that you can scan and they’ll take you to a website or a coupon. One of these:

Susan Thatcher QR Amazon or this Monique DeSoto Facebook QR

Yes, they work. Try them.

With the purchase of Avery labels (8293 rounds), I was able to correct both issues – slap a label with a QR code onto the items.

Image may contain: food

Chocolate lips become a marketing tool.

Image may contain: jewelry Image may contain: food

Oh yeah, I made bracelets, too.

Mind you, I’ve been in a funk over the past few days. I haven’t made a lot of money at these signings (but they are fun and I make friends), some of the money that I’d set aside for it had to go to new brakes, my foot is bugging me; I wasn’t into it and was ready to stay home and eat the table fee as a sunk cost. However, with various friendly boots applied to my backside (and some well-timed praise for what I make, book and bracelet-wise), I found it within myself to string together those bracelets, go through extended nonsense with my printer to make those labels, and get out of my own way.

I feel better for having done so. I posted those pictures on the attendee group in Facebook and got an order for a bracelet. Those bookmarks have been bugging me; now they don’t. Scanning the code will take you to my Amazon page where you can buy books. The lips? That link will take you to Monique DeSoto’s Facebook page (and Monique got some inspiration for the next funnydirty short while in the shower).

A couple of Blackened Voodoo Lagers (by Dixie. If you’re not in Nawlins, Total Wine can help you) helped, too.

Sometimes, you need to grab yourself by the scruff and just do it, you know?

 

06/15/2017

And that’s about it.

I owe a blog post, a short story, more on “Baldie Chronicles” (or whatever the hell it’s going to be).

The well is dry.

Dry, dryer, driest. Like Atacama desert dry (there are places in the Atacama that have never been rained on. 4 billion years is a long time to be thirsty).

Mudcracks in a dry riverbed, Pan de Azucar National Park. Only about once every decade water runs here for a short period of time.

If writer’s block was a block of cheese, no problem. I’d eat that sumbitch and look for seconds. Especially if it was cheddar and accompanied by a Honeycrisp apple.

 

If writer’s block was an engine block, you could hook it up to get a jump start from someone else. Nope. My writing engine is as dead as my previous car, Yaz, who died in spectacular fashion June 13, 2016.

If writer’s block was a Lego block, it would be embedded in my foot right now.

If it was a politician, it would be hiring a lawyer right about now.

Image result for better call saul

 

(I may be off my game, but I’m still funny as hell)

 

Reasons Why

It was suggested to me that I should make a list of all the reasons why I write stories, make bracelets, and some other things I’d like to get going (graphic t shirts). I’m going to do that here (and has anyone heard of a magazine called Pyramid? or The Pyramid?)

 

  1. Books: I like to create stories.
  2. Books: I get inspired by all kinds of things that can play out into multiple acts with beginning, middle, end.
  3. Books: I’d like to make enough money from writing to support myself.
  4. Books: It’s cook to get to the point where the characters stop “listening” to you and have been fueled enough with detail to start acting and talking on their own.
  5. Books: I like to explore ideas.
  6. Books: I wrote These Foolish Things because I thought older lovers are interesting.
  7. Books: I’m writing short stories because I’m used to writing essays, briefs, and papers.
  8. Books: I’m writing erotica because it’s legal (for now) and I can give it my own twist.
  9. Books: I want to create characters that people care about, want to have as their friends.
  10. Books: This is a lasting legacy.
  11. Books: I’m good at this.
  12. Books/writing: I like to entertain people. My words get a better response than me as myself.
  13. Books/writing: I want to write things that inspire people to think differently about a subject, to see themselves in, to learn something
  14. Books/writing: I have something to say
  15. Books/writing: my great-grandmother, Daisy Washburn Lovell, wrote two books, “Glad Tidings” and “Glimpses of Early Wareham.”
  16. Books/writing: If Grandma Lovell is going to be in the Library of Congress, so am I
  17. Books/writing: I think if I get these stories out of my head and onto paper, I may be able to sleep better.
  18. Books/writing: I get a kick out of autographing copies.
  19. Books/writing: Reviews: so far, they’re positive
  20. Books/writing: I have an excuse to attend group signing events
  21. Books/bracelets/T shirts: the American standard for judging the quality of your talent is whether someone is willing to pay for it.
  22. Bracelets: I have friends with issues that certain stones can treat.
  23. Bracelets: I love handling the stones.
  24. Bracelets: Researching which stones do what is fun.
  25. Bracelets: The bracelets are beautiful
  26. Bracelets: I enjoy earning money from something that I create.
  27. T shirts: It’s fashion, in a fashion
  28. T shirts: It’s fun to come up with messages
  29. T shirts: colors, glittery print = FUN
  30. All of it: I am more than my day job and goddammit, I aim to prove that.

Stuff

There will be an Imaginary Conversations, Part II, just not today. I am venturing into new territory with a racy/naughty/sexy short story with humor. I haven’t written a short story since Margaret Edwards’ Creative Writing class at UVM (Go, Cats, Go, except they got put up against Purdue in the first round of March Madness this year and were quickly gone. Basketball is a religion in Indiana. Whattayagonnado, ya know?) in 1981. Okay. 36 years between short stories (the two things I sold to Playgirl don’t count because they were short. Wicked short. And those were over a decade ago). That’s a lot of rust. Anyway, since I want this to be ready to offer as an e-book for Book Obsessed Babes (Jacksonville, FL April 8. I STILL HAVE 2 GENERAL ADMISSION TICKETS!!!!), I need to focus. This story won’t write itself – the computers haven’t gotten that smart. Yet.

Speaking of upcoming short story, just remember the names “Patti” and “Ed.” Okay? Patti and Ed. Trust me, they are very busy imaginary people. The word count right now is 3379. How many in the final? I don’t know; it will take as many words as it takes to tell the story. I will say things are getting interesting.

I know I’ve promised you Liz Gardner’s story before Ty came along, and “The Baldie Chronicles” is under construction (and has been for some time), but it’s been fighting me tooth and nail. That’s the way it is with creative things; sometimes you are so inspired that you can work on a project for days and weeks on end, like Jack Kerouac and “On the Road” (although there may have been some drugs involved to make that happen), or sometimes, the Muse abandons you in favor of less difficult company (I can be a pain in the ass, I really can) which you end up envying when THEIR book soars to the tops of the charts and gets a big fat movie deal while you sit at home in your yoga pants with the big run in the butt and envy oozing out every pore. (You know damned right well your book is miles better if only people would read it, but that would involve getting out of the yoga pants and it’s almost time for “Diners, Drive-Ins, and Drives” anyway. Not to mention you THINK you may win the next Spider Solitaire game). Listen to “Luck Be A Lady Tonight.” Inspiration is as fickle as Lady Luck.

Luck Be a Lady Tonight (Like you can do better than Ol’ Blue Eyes?)

And that’s giving me ideas for another short story.

Let me tell you, while I’m talking about myself, and if you’re a fellow author who writes erotic things, I’ve found myself visiting websites and looking up terms that would make my mother roll over in her grave (Not my great aunts, though. Ruth and Loretta were cool. Marion still is). The shit that turns people on….I don’t even need George Takei for the “Oh, myyyy.” I was concerned about getting the logistics right. Not so much. Anything goes.

And finally, I want to offer 2 (two) General Admission tickets to Book Obsessed Babes in Jacksonville, FL, April 8 at the Omni Hotel. Trust me, Sheer Bliss Events puts on a great event.

I have to go see what Patti and Ed are up to.