Everything should sparkle

Seriously, it should. Not just because I just saw a glitter helmet on the telly (watching American Pickers with My Knight). I’ve been a sparkle lover my whole life. And you all know the joy when my daughter told me I could have GLITTER on my book covers. 🙂

As it stands now, two of the Byte Series have glitter on the covers. I know, I’m excited too!

You knew about Cryptobyte … and the glory that is gold glitter on the cover.

But, now, Metabyte has a new cover. It had to have a new cover (shit happened with my former now defunct publisher, if you recall) and my daughter knows me rather well (imagine?), so when she re-did the cover she added the joy of green glitter. And I smiled, Readers, I smiled a lot. At some stage (probably November) the new covers will be in the bookshop. November because I need to pay for the Cryptobyte copies that have already arrived at the bookshop in prep for the launch on Nov 8. Yeah, they were early. Which is better than being late, right? And for all of you who thought me having a white cover on Qubyte caused OCD anxiety … I’m pretty sure the Metabyte cover will tweak that OCD again. Deal with it. 🙂

#SorryNotSorry

In other news: I’m in Perth with My Knight – taking care of him as he recovers from major surgery (new hip), and, I’m writing. Yes, I am.

I’m having a love hate relationship with the 12th Byte Novel at the moment, but today was a good writing day and now I know that some characters we met in Qubyte are coming back, so, that’s cool. In particular, Tahoma Whitehorse. And I really enjoyed him as a character. Did you like him and his off-sider, Karen Schneider?

It looks like I best go make us some dinner.

Take care out there. xx

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Total hip replacement

Welcome to a random post about our life right now!

This morning I was supervising exercises … looked painful and there are a lot of exercises to do.
But then if you think about it – it’s going to be painful. When you have a bone cut off and a metal shaft jammed down your femur to replace the damaged and worn out ball-joint, and they also replace the socket. It’s going to hurt, a lot, there is no way around that.
There is massive and impressive (painful) bruising on Geoff’s hip (at the back) and his foot is bruised as well. Never mind the incision site … that’s nearly a 6 inch wound down the front of his hip.


When you see stuff written down about hip replacement, it sounds kinda innocuous – “Hip replacement surgery is a procedure in which a doctor surgically removes a painful hip joint with arthritis and replaces it with an artificial ball and socket joint”
Doesn’t seem too bad as long as you don’t think about how they do it and the then the reality of the toll it takes on someone who is fit and otherwise healthy.

Luckily the healing is going well, Geoff is getting better every day. But then he’s tough, healthy, and fit. He finished off 5 months of work with a 7 day week prior to surgery. Not bad with a completely stuffed hip and the ‘good’ hip needs replacing as well! (He’s a carpenter so it’s not a desk job!)

We did have a big surprise though on our way home from the hospital – stopped in to fill his prescriptions and discovered one of them is injectable! Would’ve been nice if the hospital had mentioned that and MADE SURE I knew how to give a subcutaneous injection – but it wasn’t even mentioned! Hence, our surprise.

Luckily I do know how to administer a subcutaneous injection into the stomach. But no one checked apart from the chemist! Bit late by that stage when the patient needs the blood thinning medication and it arrived in pre-loaded syringes.

Well, I’ve given 3 so far and Geoff says it’s okay and the last one was better than the first. By the time I’ve given the next 30+ I should be amazing at it!! Maybe that’s part of my super powers?

In other news: Metabyte is now available for purchase in the USA, along with all 10 byte novels (paperback). Check out the “paperback” page on this site for details.

Launch date and venue announcement!

Today I found out that the launch will be at Upper Hutt Central Library. Woo hoo!

We have a little something special (and fun) planned for this launch but you’ll have to come along to find out what that is.

Wasn’t sure if I’d be able to organize a launch this side of Christmas but our plans changed and I will be here in November, so, we’re launching the paperback version before the digital release (only by a few days but still it counts). Next weekend I’ll bake the cake so we’re ready to roll on Nov 8th.

The learning curve

This morning I was thinking about all the changes in the last 8 months. Some are good and definitely for the better, some sparked a steep learning curve, and the last one was an expensive lesson. Didn’t need that. At all.

Without going into detail: Lesson learnt and sometimes (professionally) change isn’t a good thing. Now I know exactly what I need to do for Vaporbyte next year, and I best start saving!

One of the other changes was a trackpad malfunction which has forced me to use a mouse again. This is not a good situation. Two weeks into this new hell and my wrist is more fucked than usual and now I remember why I made the switch to total trackpad use four years ago. 😦 Would be nice to get this trackpad sorted but it’s ridiculously expensive and I’d have to send my Mac away and I can’t work without my Mac. Catch 22 and then some.

Right now, I’m going over notes for todays writing group. And quite excited to meet the participants. It’s nice having a week day group. Hopefully this will help the next few weeks race and I’ll be in Perth before I know it.

Readers, I’m a bit over this ‘being apart’ bullshit because this is a long stretch and it’s no fun. The sooner we’re back together the better.

You know what would help cheer this author up and keep me motivated to move forward despite the stress of the last few months? Come on, I bet you do … yeah, see, you got it. Buy a book! 🙂

Drinking coffee with Jimmy Buffet …

Obviously not in person, but I’m drinking my coffee and listening to Jimmy Buffet on YouTube – so that’s close, right?

Don’t have much time for mucking around this morning. Got a rep rugby game to watch at 9. Grandson 2 is playing. Last time our surname was in an Upper Hutt rep team it was my brother and it was about 42 years ago

Yesterday was supposed to be a writing day – but for whatever reason it wasn’t. And that’s okay. Because, sometimes you need to take a moment. I learned a few years ago that I need to trust the process and trust my brain. (Who we call Brian brain because I can never spell brain the first time.)

Despite knowing exactly what was happening in the story I’m writing, and I thought I had a handle on the subsequent scenes … Brian had other ideas. Brian decided I needed to take a moment. Once upon a time I would’ve pushed on regardless … but I’ve learned a thing or two. And I know, the next scene will be a shit-ton better because I stepped back.

Sometimes writing is about not writing. Sometimes it’s about letting your subconscious do some work. Usually (for me) that’s because I didn’t see something than can change everything … 🙂

Anyway, when you’re writing (or doing anything creative) how often do you listen to your brain and take a minute?

It was Crashbyte …

This morning I opened a file called ‘Crashbyte’ – that’s what Vaporbyte was always supposed to be called. Book 12: Crashbyte. Somewhere as I was following the story, (and it happened pretty fast – two chapters in) I realized Crashbyte wasn’t going to be book 12. It may not ever be an anything. That’s okay, it happens. I left the file and a few days later I saw an entire scene – nothing at all to do with the two chapters I’d written.

I started writing. I knew straightway it the beginning of something. By the third chapter I knew it was something called ‘Vaporbyte’. Great.

This morning I opened that other file, the Crashbyte one. As I read, a slow dawning occurred. By the time I’d finished I knew what I was looking at. It’s not a nothing at all. It’s part of Vaporbyte. It’s the other story thread.

Apparently I’m writing again. Need to catch up? Then, here …

Life versus writing

Funny how things change. Used to be writing that was my happy place. Now it’s Perth. I have little time for writing and am struggling to find a reason to carve that time out. Finding writing time has been increasingly difficult for the last four years. The only real writing time I get is when I’m in Perth.

I’m too tired to go back to writing late at night and way too tired to get up earlier than I already do.

My days are spent helping other writers, that can be fun and rewarding, I guess. BUT I cannot write in the bookshop – not effectively. Some days I can, but mostly I cannot. Interruptions are rife. Now if they were interruptions because people were buying books, it’d be okay and worth it! But generally, they are not. They’re time consuming phone calls or people coming in asking for directions or browsing (but not buying) or in people calling in for help. Days like yesterday when it was probably a perfect writing day – our internet and phone were out. So, no writing. Hard to work when you work in the cloud and the internet is shitty. And it’s often shitty. Thanks for that Spark.

Smashwords store wide sale is on this month. Fantastic, right? Usually, yes. This time around. 12 days without a sale. I have no idea why or what is going on. The only thing that changed is Facebook pretty well suppressing all links to the outside world and not letting anyone ask for posts to be shared. But I don’t know if that is what made a difference.

I am tired of hearing how great my books are. If they were THAT great then sales would reflect that, right? And people would take two minutes and write a review on a platform that actually helps other people make a choice (and NOT post it on GOODREADS or AMAZON).

Or is it that everyone just tells me but not other people, because I’m accessible?

Sometimes it feels like Ellie is still a fucking secret? This is my 10th as a published author, for almost all of the 10 I was with the same publisher.

I don’t know what it is. I do know that it’s hard to generate sales without money and without sales there is no money (that goes for me personally and the bookshop). Catch 22.

If you have any ideas that do not involve ANY money, because neither the shop nor I have any. In fact, my stupid positive thinking means I have less now than I did before. Yeah, I had more 2 more titles printed for the shop – thinking they’d sell. AND I’ve got an editor to pay for a book that I’m wondering if I should even release. It’s a fabulous story but who will read it?

The same five people?

Well, hey, that’ll pay for the cost of printing! 🙂