From the middle of insanity…

 

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He’s still here!

 

My brain needs a disciplinary, as I can no longer make it behave the way I want it to.

Mind you, it must be contagious, for my laptop and tablet are exhibiting similar tendencies.

I have spent last evening, first with the laptop and then the tablet, trying to run through my emails from the comfort of my armchair.

The laptop was on a go-slow, so I switched to the tablet.

This annoying piece of crap decided not to respond at all. Patience personified, I kept trying, only for the battery to drain away faster than a chocolate teapot. Something it shouldn’t have been able to do, seeing as it wasn’t actually doing anything.

 

I can feel the day coming when I will take a hammer to the both of them, as I am not sure how much longer my brain can cope with these insanity-inducing contraptions.

It wouldn’t be so bad if I wasn’t aware of all the wonderful things they can do. When in a good mood, of course.

But I ask you, is it asking too much to have a piece of equipment that actually does what it says on the tin?

We wouldn’t stand for such substandard performance from any other electrical object, so for all that’s Holy, do we put up with it?

 

The main desktop PC is not immune to such shenanigans, it’s just sneakier. Its favourite trick at the moment is ignoring whole sentences while I am busy typing them.

I get no warning, no sign that something has gone awry. The first I know about it is when I try to read the work back, only to find yawning great holes where parts of my story are missing.

I tell you, it is beginning to feel like a conspiracy…

 

On the bright side, and I do try to find this even on those grey days, nothing affects my pen and paper. Sometimes I am so glad that I can write, blissfully, as far away from technology as I can get. As happy as Larry, knowing that I am in total charge of the creative process.

So, to end on a much happier note, I must report that the mindset for the new WIP is firmly in place. I have enjoyed being away from all the technobabble so much, that I shall be doing a lot more of it!

 

©Jaye Marie 2020

Of Some Concern

Stevie Turner

I read an article on my BBC News app this morning which is concerning for us all, I think.  A chap asked that rather large company we know so well  for a Data Subject Access Request to find out how much data about him had been stored.  Granted, he has various electronic gadgets dotted about the house, for example an Alexa listening device, a Fire TV set-top box, Echo speakers, Ring cameras, and a Kindle e-reader.

He discovered the results were ‘mind-bending’.  A file contained all 31,082 interactions which had taken place via Alexa and also all the audio clips.  Another file contained all the 2,670 product searches he had carried out since he started in 2017, including separate files for which device he had been using and also his location.  A third file contained details of all 83, 657 Kindle interactions, including the time of day for each tap. …

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#ThrowbackThursday ~ The Life of a Writer… with advice from @AriMeghlen

 

The life of a writer is not what I thought it would be in the beginning.

Maybe years ago it was what I imagined, but in these digital times, it has changed so radically from that idyllic, if rather a romantic notion of what being a writer would be like.

These days, we all wear so many different hats, it’s a wonder we get around to writing anything.

What with the constant struggle to come up with interesting posts; reviewing all the books we read; trying to find new and effective promotional ideas.

Not to mention all the thinking, worrying, emails and planning, there are not enough hours in the day!

So when I read Ari Meghlen’s post on organising your life better, my interest was aroused! In this post, she recommends assigning different days for specific jobs and not deviating from this agenda. This could work, but not sure about using an alarm clock to keep me on track!

I have long attempted to devise a routine that would help me to get more done, but the harder I try, the more complicated and slower I seem to get.

I have always had a problem with rules and restrictions. Or rather, fate seems to, on my behalf. The minute I decide on a certain idea, a timetable or schedule, you can just bet something or someone will come along and wreck it!

I try to be more productive, especially with my writing, and one of the ways I have found that actually works is to try and write 1000 words every day. As I am up long before anyone else in my family, I can usually manage this with ease. So in one area at least, I have it covered!

Ari has some good ideas HERE on her post; does anyone else have anything to suggest that would improve the lives of us desperate to be better organised writers?

Braving the Elements

Rambling in the Garden

Thank you all for your good wishes on our first early opening for the National Garden Scheme. After storm Ciara had passed over people said we were lucky it wasn’t that weekend we were opening – we knew nothing at that point about Dennis nipping at her tail! It was always going to be a risk opening the garden to visitors in February, but access around our garden is relatively easy whatever the weather, and we would only have cancelled the opening if we were covered in snow. One thing we have learned from the event, however, is that there will always be people who want to visit a garden, even in inclement weather.

Like our first opening, back in June 2017, potential visitor numbers was the Big Unknown, although we can say in hindsight that for all our June openings numbers, although variable, have been in the same sort…

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#Colleen’s Weekly #Poetry Challenge

Colleen’s 2019 Weekly #Tanka Tuesday #Poetry Challenge No. 165 #PhotoPrompt

 

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Image Credit: © Ritu Bhathal

 

Quick

stubborn

Midnight sky

Dark thin branches

An old sentinel

Safeguarding the portal

Forgotten time, another world

Bright lights, hidden moon disguising

Daring to enter where angels won’t

Bring back new magic to a world waiting…

©anitadawes 2020

Damage Control…

 

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Still looking for some magic…

 

The internet excelled itself today…

What with all the constant buffering…

Then Word, WordPress and Grammarly ganged up on me, and everything I had just spent the entire morning doing simply vanished.

Could this be a ploy to get me to switch to the new WP editor, Gutenberg?

Before I knew what was happening, the sneezing arrived!

Everyone in the family has had this cold and I was hoping it would miss me, but this wasn’t to be. Should have been a golden opportunity to crawl away and die quietly but I just couldn’t do it. It would feel too much like giving in and I can’t remember the last time I did that!

Although I have been dragging my heels for long enough, feeling ill was the very last straw. I decided it was time for the confusion and procrastination to stop, even if my nose dripped all over everything!

The problem began last year when I spent every writing hour trying to finish my detective thriller Silent PayBack. Daydreams and routine went out the window and coaxing them back in again has been difficult, to say the least.

We wanted to try something new this year, something that might make a difference, like having a landing page with either Mailchimp or book promotion with BookFunnel.

I have been re-reading some of those marketing books, looking for helpful hints. Trouble is, most of them contradict each other, leaving me more confused than ever.

But despite all of this, we do have a plan!

(despite the weather, the sneezing and the confusion)

 

  • Our books must be the best we can make them, even if it means spending some money. (you have no idea how hard that was to say!)
  • Check all the covers, editing, back matter and blurbs.
  • Update promo material and create more
  • Possibly switch to Gutenberg editor. (I must be mad to even suggest this)
  • Create new book trailers.
  • Write more character interviews
  • Get more reviews
  • Finish both of our WIP’s

And…

Drumroll please

I have a great new idea for my next book!

 

©JayeMarie 2020

 

 

Alone In The Dark

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Fate has brought me here
Chasing the moon in darkness
Finding myself at this lake
Under the full moon gaze
Surrounded by nocturnal eyes

I’m not sure why I’ve come
My intuition is seldomly wrong
So I stand with an empty mind
Playing with the darkness
Until my curiosity is fed

The moon sweeps the tree tops
Making the shadows come alive
As dark nimbus clouds appear
Leaving me alone in the dark
To find my way back home

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SILO

Iain Kelly

Hazy streaks blurred her vision. She stumbled on weighed down by her burden.

The silo was there, as she remembered it, offering sanctuary as it had done when she was a child.

She staggered inside. She embraced the dark coolness and dropped the heavy weight.

She regrouped. Her parents hadn’t seen her in years. She imagined their delight when they saw her walking up to the farmhouse.

His body would be fine in the silo. No one would discover it until she had moved on, and her parents would not betray her if they did find him.

They had never approved of him anyway.

barns-1-dawn-miller Copyright Dawn Miller

Written for Friday Fictioneers hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields (more details HERE). The idea is to write a short story of 100 words based on the photo prompt (above).

To read stories of 100 words based on this week’s prompt, visit HERE.

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