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Monday 30 September 2013

Promo Weekend Success

Despite a few technical glitches, the promotional weekend was a success. Lucky Dip proved popular, as did the first two books from the Boldre Wood Trilogy, which is great news. It's also great timing because, whilst out blackberrying, I had a lightbulb moment so bright it was probably picked up by NASA. I now know how to resolve the issue I was having with the end of book three. So, not only do I now have a good stock of blackberry jelly, but I can also finally finish the trilogy. I must go blackberrying more often.
Watch this space for updates on the progress of Billy.

Saturday 28 September 2013

Sorted! Promotion Live!

Hooray! Lucky Dip is now available FREE! Get your copy now!

Thank you Kindle for resolving the issue so speedily.

Happy reading. Hope you enjoy it.

Promotion Day

Okay, slight hiccup with Kindle: all promotions are supposedly in progress, but Lucky Dip appears not to be on free promotion. All my other books are free at the moment, so if you're interested in them and haven't already downloaded them, now's a great time to do it. As for Lucky Dip, the whole reason for the promotion, I don't know what's going on at the moment, but I'm investigating. I shall keep you informed. Hopefully it will be on the free list shortly. My apologies for any confusion, I'm endeavouring to contact Kindle to find out what's going on.

Friday 27 September 2013

Keep on Running

The Mail online today features two stories concerned with running. Such stories always draw my eye as I am, in my imagination at least, something of a runner myself (true, if you've ever seen me lumbering through our twice weekly 4.5 mile run you might be justified in snorting derisively, but I'm sure you wouldn't be that unkind).
The first article is a rather sneering and contemptuous piece about the Chief Police Constable for Cleveland who in a show of solidarity with her officers took, and promptly failed, the fitness test. Embarrassing, but kudos to her for giving it a go and let's not forget, she's unlikely to be sprinting through the streets after miscreants in the line of her duties. Nevertheless, her street cred would recover some ground if she could get fit in the next few weeks and subsequently ace the test.
The unfortunate Chief PC might take inspiration from the other story in the Mail concerning the activities of grandmother of two, Mimi Anderson who is something of an endurance race legend. Not content with completing the Badwater Ultramarathon, running 135 miles through Death Valley, then turning around and doing it all over again, she now plans to undertake the Spartathlon, running 153 between Sparta and Athens, then back again.
As much as I admire her, I can't help but think she ought to arrange for a friend to give her a lift back to save her that return run.

Thursday 26 September 2013

Countdown to Promotion Weekend

No, I'm not talking about football, about which I remain appallingly ignorant. I refer, of course, to the promotion which will run this weekend to celebrate the publication of Lucky Dip. Lucky Dip will be on promotion on Saturday 28th September, the day after tomorrow (if you're reading this on the 26th), whilst my wider collection will be on promotion all weekend, the 28th and 29th.
So please, join in the celebrations and download the books. They're on me! If I could provide balloons and cake I would, but Kindle make no provision for such frivolity.

Dino 101

Well, I've now completed four of the tests on the Dino 101 course and have only dropped half a mark so far, a fact I would be prouder of if it weren't for the extreme revision and replaying of lectures I've put myself through before each one. Apparently I've reached a time in my life where fresh knowledge can only be acquired and retained through repeated exposure. Nevertheless, it's been worth it. I have learned, even if I've had to hammer the knowledge in, and I've developed a new interest.
So, you may see me scrambling around the exposed rock faces of the South West, with a notebook in hand and a determined, if slightly baffled, look in my eye. Don't mind me. I'll just be trying to figure out which layer of rock was formed during the Mesozoic.

Tuesday 24 September 2013

Go for Launch!

We're there! Lucky Dip has been published for Kindle. It's available now, but if you can bear to wait, it will be on promotion this Saturday 28th September. All my other books will also be on promotion throughout the weekend (28th and 29th) in celebration of Lucky Dip's launch.

Monday 23 September 2013

Dino 101

In between working on the final preparations of Lucky Dip and new material for the next of the QT Anthologies, I've been taking the truly superb Dino 101: Dinosaur Palaeobiology course run by the University of Alberta. This is a free course that anybody with access to the internet can take. Despite being free, this is a comprehensive and fascinating introduction to the world of dinosaurs.
It's also really made me work my brain, as parts of it have not come easily - most especially distinguishing Saurischian and Ornithischian dinosaurs from each other, which is easy to do when they're just skeletons, but when they have their clothes on (so to speak) it's altogether more tricky. I think I've got it now, but it's taken a more concerted effort than I was expecting, which is no bad thing at all. I also now have a hankering to visit Alberta.

My shockingly poor rendering of a T-rex (Saurischian!).
My apologies to the excellent tutors of Dino 101.

Lucky Dip

The final edits and read-throughs are complete. The conversion is done. The graphics are ready. And today I've finally got around to considering what keyword tags I want to use to help people find 'Lucky Dip' amidst the squillions of books uploaded to Amazon. We're nearly there! Just a few last bits of admin, and then it will be ready to publish. I predict that within a few days it should be available. We'll be running promotional offers to launch the book, as well as consecutive offers on the QT Anthologies. I shall let you know the details when they're finalised.

Wednesday 18 September 2013

Let Sleeping Dogs ...

I know, I said I wouldn't be discussing any more animal news stories. So I lied. I think you'll forgive me. There are two animal stories today that appealed to the sloth in me. One concerns the baby elephant who was desperate to wake a sleeping canine friend, and the other is that of the barn owl who was supposed to acting as ring bearer at a wedding but instead decided to have a snooze in the rafters. Well, you would, wouldn't you?
The dog in the Mail's article is a pretty determined sleeper, refusing to wake despite the elephant relentlessly poking him with his trunk and blowing dust at him. You have to admire that kind of dedication. And before you offer up all your sympathies to the cute elephant, consider the dog's point of view. How would you like to be woken in the morning by a playful elephant. Ah, I think I may have just lost my own argument there.
As for the owl as reported by the BBC, I can see why the rafters would have seemed more appealing than a daytime wedding. She's an owl for heaven's sake! I can just imagine her thoughts when the ladder appeared by her side. Do owls know many swear words, I wonder.

Wednesday 11 September 2013

September Blues

As much as I hate being the bearer of bad tidings I'm afraid it's my onerous duty this morning to inform you that summer is over. Sorry. If I could have held on to it for longer I most assuredly would, but forces outside my control have decreed we've had our lot. At least under this particular patch of grey sky anyway.
You see, our house is suddenly eerily empty. There are no mysterious bulging boxes blocking gangways, no over stuffed carrier bags loitering with intent, no clumps of coats and nests of cables and wires waiting to trip the unwary. No daughter. She's gone back to the halls of learning to add still more strings to her bow, leaving behind a house that's far too tidy, far too quiet, and nowhere near full enough.
To all those correspondents currently writing glee filled articles in their columns for the nationals about how marvellous it is to have their homes back now their children have gone back to school, I send a giant, juicy raspberry. I may be miserable at the moment, but I can at least comfort myself with the knowledge that I've always dreaded September. If you can't figure that one out, you must be going about it all wrong.

Thursday 5 September 2013

New Story!

Well, it's September already, and it's been a month since I last added to the QT library, so here's a new story for you. This one resulted from a challenge set on the CTZ Writers Forum: to write, in any literary form, about some comedy in either the House of Commons or during a business meeting. 'The Defeat' is the story of a night of high drama in government.
Hope you enjoy it.