The Perfect Meal Ready For Some Public Consumption

Last night I sent out several email invites to some suckers, er, friends, yeah friends and family members to download an advance copy of my very first book entitled, The Perfect Meal.

Other than the obligatory good comments I received from my little sister (no, I did not pay her. Yet.) I only received one other message from those invited. This individual wanted to know why one of the main characters had to fall in love with a “young” woman.

While I tried to explain to her the main characters were all young adults in their early 20’s, that it really didn’t fit this specific story line to have them fall in love with older women, I finally relented, told her to piss off, and just read my book before her eyes were too old to focus!

Okay, I didn’t use the phrase, “piss off”, but most of the rest 😐 I hope she knew I was kidding. LOL ? 😉

This is the actual image. An image with the message of 'image not available'

Anyway, now just waiting patiently for a little feedback. Also waiting for my superstar artist friend, Robert Chilton to work me up some cover art magic and I’ll be hammering away to get this baby uploaded into Kindle, and various other online e-book systems.

Not to delude myself, but if anyone stumbling by this post is interested in reading a free advance copy, leave me a comment here and I’ll add your email address to the dropbox system and get you an invite sent out right away.

Oh, you want to learn more about the story before making such a commitment? No worries. Click on through to read the concept and description of The Perfect Meal. You can leave your comment there!

As always, please accept my gratitude and thanks!

Facebook Connections, American Idol Parties, Real World Jobs

Just a quick pass at some thought processes occurring today (the past few days, actually.)

At the South Rim (no green screen)

— I’ve recently somewhat reconnected with a lovely woman I knew from high school and briefly during our college years. Beyond the catching up and reestablishing where each of us is in life at the moment, I’m struck by how hard the process is. Of course, we are all different and there’s no doubt that the act of interlocking the pieces of ones past with their present (and subsequently, their future) may be easier for some. I suppose this is just life? Whether the connections are happening via a chance run-in at the local grocery store or (increasingly) on Facebook, it’s what we do (or don’t) with them which is fascinating me currently.

— The family and friends activity of getting together for viewing American Idol on Thursdays seems to have bankrupted itself. Perhaps more accurately it is the pockets and desires of those who fatefully volunteer to do the food for party night. Personally, I’ve had a blast when I stepped up to the plate, but then, I savor being in the kitchen and cooking super yummy food. Others complain they are not getting any sort of return from the participants (we all pay the food bringer $5 for their getting and preparing the meal). Perhaps we should charge more? But then fewer folks will attend. And that’s ironic considering most have no problem bringing their own alcohol, which I suspect costs more than $5. Not that I have challenges with that either. My disappointment comes in from the fact that the activity can be such a great chance to get together, visit with friends and family. Meet new folks who are invited. Generally socialize, have (usually!) really good eats, while indulging in the guilty pleasure of watching singers compete for the prize. This week is off, and my guess is that our previous commitment of carrying the Thursday party on for So You Think You Can Dance is not going to happen either. Too bad, cause I personally like that show much more than Idol!

Olive Oil Sign

— On getting a regular, “real” job. Ugh. Actually, not all that ugh, but ugh nonetheless. The biggest frustration is knowing ends need to meet, regardless of how frugal and minimal one has developed their lives. And that’s fine, however what isn’t all that groovy is being jerked around by potential employers who either don’t know what they are looking for, don’t have the authority to make decisions or simply have egos which (sorry, have to do it) are writing checks they can’t cash. My biggest concern is getting out of the mindset that I am a writer. It is what I love doing, and though yet to pay many bills (technically I am a professional writer regularly selling articles and copywriting) the time and effort I’m putting into my first novel will, I trust, someday pay dividends. Maintaining an eye on the goal of being able to earn all revenues from writing must be maintained.

— Finally, the next couple of months will be fraught with change, moves, and the opening of new life chapters. Exciting and a bore at the same time. But only boring when I slip into the dark regions of thought and don’t wish to work hard at making progress towards the future of my own design. This author would be greatly appreciative of the occasional reminder or comment from friends, family, interesting associates and the like. Just slap down some words as if you’re slapping me upside the head. Don’t worry. I’m sure it will hurt me more than it does you 😐

Story Engineering For Dummies Like Me!

Taking on the task of writing a novel which is something more than a diary or worse, is not for the feint of heart. The reality is, there are things unknown and not understood which will serve to defeat the aspiring author. Every time. Period. Good news? Story Engineering, by Larry Brooks is here, now, to help save the day and an otherwise less than great story.

Anyone Have YOURLS Working On an NginX Server?

Started serving static files (images, pdfs, txt files, etc.) from a spare domain I have several months ago. It’s short at 5 letters, so I was thinking this might be a great set up for doing my own URL shortening as well.

Because I run NginX and FastCGI to power my WordPress installs, I often find it a challenge to implement stuff that’s been developed for LAMP stacks. I know the YOURLS instructions has a link to an Nginx fix, however, I was unable to get it to work.

Just wondering if anyone stopping by has any experience or can point me towards some knowledge on how to troubleshoot.


What Should I Know Before Committing To Freelance Copy Writing?

I’ve been putting a lot of thought of late into moving full steam into the arena of Freelance Copy Writing. I was turned on to the concept a while back, early on in my SEO writing activities and as a result bought into Peter Bowerman’s “The Well-Fed Writer”. I actually was more interested in his “The Well-Fed Self-Publisher” and subsequently got off of the track for pursuing freelance copy writing.

Now, however, I’m thinking that it could be more interesting to pursue some quality writing opportunities. Don’t get me wrong, I’m grateful for the SEO writing that I do. Every now and then some interesting topics are assigned to me, and I find when that happens, I truly enjoy the process.

If you’ve done any of this type of “web writing” you’ll understand just how little it pays. Understandably so. For the most part, and what I believe to be reality, this type of writing isn’t designed to be read by anyone real, living (or dead). Simply put, the search powers that be want “real” content; not words generated by some form of YACG (yet another content generator).

And that’s totally groovy. If you can deal with the lack of passion. If you enjoy putting words together and have them pretty much never read again, SEO can be a super easy way to make a living.  Just not much of a decently paying living. Again, I am grateful to have access to this type of work for the past year or so. I always do the very best I am able to with any given assignment. But I’m at that point of needing more.

More income for sure. More importantly, a real sense that what I’m creating is valuable to someone, will get read (and hopefully appreciated!) by a real, living breathing person (that is not me.) So, I’m now in that mode of contemplating whether or not it might be worth developing the contacts, putting out feelers for clients, dealing with clients when they do come, and generally making a successful go at becoming a Freelance Copy Writer.

While I’m no expert, my belief is that I have the chops to do the writing. I’ve several pieces which I’ll pull together in order to start a portfolio. Some good friends have indicated they enjoy my writing and feel I’d be well suited to pursue a living (at least for a while) in this arena. Of course, you really can’t trust the opinions of your friends. That’s why they’re your friends! 😉

There’s not a whole lot of folks reading this site, but if you are and have any thoughts, ideas or suggestions, it would be lovely to hear them. My biggest concern is that which I just don’t know about going down this road. If you can share your insight or experiences, let’s start a conversation. And thanks for your time and interest. Much appreciated!

When Is One At the Bottom of the Barrel?

Image courtesy of Wikepedia

You know life has sunk about as far as possible (from a tech perspective, at least) when you are:

  1. Pet sitting for your mother’s business because you can’t find a decent tech job,
  2. While rushing out to the mailbox to get the Netflix out before the mail truck comes back up the road, you discover that you didn’t notice the dog decided not to indicate she needed to go back outside,
  3. You can no longer figure out how to access the ISP service by plugging straight into their modem,
  4. The speed you get from your bluetooth connection from your netbook to the smart phone is faster than the pet sitting client’s ISP.

These are just some Monday morning thoughts. Nothing too deep here 😉