About me Q & A #1

I have no idea how often or how regular I’m going to do this, but I’m bored to the point of whimsical right now and felt like doing this to amuse myself.

I’m going to interview myself about whatever happens to come to mind.

Future versions of this might feature favourite questions from comments, emails, Facebook, or Twitter.

Are you a vegetarian/vegan?

No.  Though I was until I got married to someone who I can’t seem to convince that humans aren’t carnivores – I didn’t grow up not eating meat so it was no hardship to give in to the fact that I was not going to win the argument against cooking steaks, chicken, pork, etc.

So you’re married?

Yes

To a man or woman?

Yes

Tea or Coffee?

Tea by preference, though if I’ve an empty stomach I have to keep it to specific herbals or just go with coffee.  Tea on an empty tummy makes me extremely sick for no reason I can understand.

You use a peculiar grammar and spelling, where are you from?

Books.  Seriously, I learned most of what I know of English from reading so much; I read a great many English authours and American authours from the days when the written languages between English and American weren’t as different, but I do read some newer American authours which causes some of the peculiarities.  Where I was formally educated really is irrelevant since I don’t actually remember a damned thing from my English lessons, and my family speaks with a rather eclectic mix of dialects and accents.

Your books seem a little mixed on the subject of feminism, but you admit that you’re a woman.  Are you a feminist or anti-feminist?

Neither.  My feelings on the matter of this stuff I think can be best stated by Ms Emma Watson in her amazing speech to the U.N.  I believe in equality.  A woman who wants to be June Cleaver and a woman who wants to be just this side of Teddy Roosevelt after male-to-female transition are both advancing the cause of feminism since the whole point comes down to having the freedom to choose, and I think that (as Ms Watson said) we too often forget the poor gents in the subject.  They have their own degrading stereotypes as well – what business is it of mine if Dennis Rodman wants to wear a dress?  I’m not going to tell him he’s any less a man for it.

Your “biography” page says you don’t speak Swahili.  Do you speak any other languages besides English?  Your books have French and Italian in them …

And I’m quite good at faking those languages with a little help from a dictionary and the Latin I studied in school.  I, sadly, no longer have any functional proficiency in Latin even though I adore the language (far too little opportunity to use and expand, the dangers of studying a dead language), but I remember enough of the core of the language to understand how to use what I look up when translating out of English and into the French and Italian used in my stories.  English is my only fluent language, though I’m conversant in American so long as the topic doesn’t stray too far.

You mention that your writing only pays your power bill, what do you do for a living?

Telephony switch engineering.  I work for an internet/cable/phone company fixing switch issues with customers’ phone features and phone services.  Before that, with the same company, I worked various permutations of technical support for either the customers themselves or the in-field technicians.  Mostly it’s a very boring job, and I’m not sure with what it pays “a living” is a strictly accurate term, but it pays the rent.

Mac or PC?

Amiga.  Sadly they’re getting more than a little dated, so I use Macs.  If I must use a PC I put Debian Linux (Testing) on it … or, by ultimate preference, DOS.  I’ve been using computers for a long time.  I’ve used a plethora of hardware, OS, software.  I’ve things I like and hate about most things, Windows and most Microsoft products are the sole exception:  I find nothing positive to say about their products that couldn’t be said about anything else like them and couldn’t have been said about those other things first … but could go on at length about all the things I hate.  The single positive thing is that MS Word does make putting different page numbering in one part of a document versus another easier than any other current word processor.

iOS or Android?

Neither, or iOS.  For a tablet I prefer iOS.  I have rather mixed feelings about smartphones.  Android, by-and-large doesn’t impress me, though I’ve nothing against it in theory, just in specific details of how it’s implemented.  Most reasoned arguments against Android generally echo my own feelings about it.

And I think that concludes for now.  I’ve run out of ideas, and probably should stop goofing off now anyway.

cheers! :)

Absent-minded = ME!

Oh GOD!  I just realised I never put the sample chapters of Ready or Not up on the site!  And, if Love or Lust‘s sample is anything to go by people do like to read those before buying.

I’m terribly sorry.  I got distracted by issues with the print edition, and various things simply classified as ‘Life’.

It’ll take a little bit to get it set up in a way that doesn’t fight with WordPress, but I’ll have it up later today or sometime tomorrow.

#Ashamed

Upadate: Sample is up.

Ready or Not – Print Edition: Still delayed

Ready or Not (concept only)For those who prefer a nice physical, bound book to hold in their hands … I’m sorry but I’m still working on that for Ready or Not.

Theoretically this should be ridiculously easy and all, but Createspace is what I go through for the print because it’s the highest quality Print On Demand publishing service after Lightning Source, which I’d prefer to use but lack the Photoshop skills necessary to get the cover and page layout right in a single go and thus would get obscenely expensive.  Problem is, though, that Createspace apparently hates me.  It’ll lay the pages out pretty neatly while I’m experimenting along the way still writing the book and such; then I upload the final document file which, in theory, ought to be perfect since I’ve been testing along the way … … … random badness happens.  In this case it keeps setting the pages several inches too high up and to the right.

So far I’ve found all the things not causing that.  I pray it’ll only be another few days to a week before it’s up, but it could be as many as two or three more weeks.

I’d go with a publisher and save myself these headaches, but I’d be simply trading them in for different headaches.  At least this way I keep full control and don’t have to worry about some artist getting strange ideas about what my covers should look like (for those who think an author has control of her cover art through most publishers, all I can say is, “that is adorably naïve, honey.”), higher royalties, an editor I know well and trust not to decide to rewrite the book for me (yes, it happens), and control over release date (sort of).

Ready or Not on sale now

Ready or Not (concept only)Ready or Not is now on sale!

This does not include the print edition, sadly.  I’m having arguments with the layout for no reason that makes logical sense.  It should only be another few hours to couple of days.

Too the various ebook retailers take their own variable time-frames to put the book on their virtual shelves.  If your favourite doesn’t have it yet — give it a few more hours.  If it isn’t there by 6pm US/Eastern then please contact me.  Odds are I already know about it, but can’t hurt to make sure.

 

Available now for us$3.99 (and various proportionate prices in various other countries and currencies) from:

smashwordsibooks-button-graphicallromanceebooksdt-fiction3dwebnookkindle-logo

 

 

 

Dropping Kobo support

Kobo eReader

Kobo eReader (Photo credit: ndh)

I like supporting various e-readers and their associated services.  It’s, frankly, not usually very difficult.

Sadly, Kobo has decided to make it so.  For no reason I can fathom they do not accept ePub files that even the most exacting alternatives accept without question and that work on their App (I don’t have one of their devices so have no idea), won’t accept a MOBI file that Amazon took no issue with, and does very strange things when fed a raw .doc/.docx file.  Therefore, while Love or Lust will continue to be sold there for the foreseeable future, Ready or Not will not be carried there nor will any future books.

I’m sorry.

If you’re a Kobo user you can get ePub copies from Apple, DriveThru Fiction, and Smashwords.  Nook is also an ePub version, but it can be awkward to get at the file, though not impossible — so Barnes & Noble is another source of the file.  I do not use DRM so the file you get from any of those sources will play happily with your device so long as Kobo continues to support standard ePub format.  My personal recommendation is not-Smashwords as the formatting gets a little weird after the trip through their “meat grinder” which is as horrible as it sounds.

I am actually very sad to be leaving Kobo, and I may return some day if their service to the publisher/author improves.  They are almost as respectful to their content providers as Apple and offer many of the same services.  Only DriveThru Fiction can remotely say the same.  Still I have no intention to spend hours or even days pulling my hair out trying to track down its various imagined code errors.

Ready or Not pre-orders

Ready or Not (concept only)Well, it’s finally done with my editor.  A quick proofread by me and some arguing with the various retailers, then the book will be available.

Smashwords and iBooks allow pre-orders, though it is not yet listed with Apple.  Smashwords is another story.

I’ll have the first two chapters up for samples sometime in the next couple of days.

The release is scheduled for 26 July.  Even if Apple doesn’t get the pre-order set up before then, the book ought to be available for purchase and download by then.

The other retailers: Kobo, DriveThru Fiction, All Romance eBooks, Kindle, and Nook will start showing up on that date as they each complete their own listing processing.

There, of course, will also be a print edition; and most likely a Goodreads give-away for an autographed copy or two.

Love or Lust will be reduced to us$2.99, Ready or Not will be us$3.99 their print editions will remain us$17.99.

Hope you will enjoy it as much as you did book 1.  It was certainly a lot of fun to write if not nearly so much fun to edit.  Book 3 still has no title, but one will be announced by the end of the year.

The end is in sight!

Ready or Not (concept only)First off, my editor should be done with Ready or Not in the next 3 – 5 days.  As soon as I get it I’ll be setting up pre-order on iBooks and Smashwords (the only outlets that allow it) for about 1 – 2 weeks later (it takes a bit of time for Apple to process the upload, they run pretty thorough quality checks on the file to make sure it won’t make your iPad spontaneously combust or something) during which time I’ll give it one more read through and buff.

I’m truly sorry this has taken so long.  Sadly for various personal reasons (see spending a week in hospital and a month on narcotics, thereby unable to interact with my editor), various reasons related to my editor having this unfailing talent for getting terribly ill with a flu during the summer (normally, however, it’s closer to August so wasn’t strictly planned on), and the simply embarrassing number of errors in this book which slowed down the process (seriously, for Love or Lust she was able to get through nearly 2x as many pages in any given hour) it has just taken forever to edit.

This, like its predecessor, will be available in ebook and print from all the same retailers for us$3.99 for ebook and us$17.99 for print (various international pricing available proportioned based on the retail outlet in question).

New estimate

Ready or Not is coming along pretty well, not as quickly as I’d like or had hoped, but it’s not as far off track as I’d feared.

To be frank it’s got rougher edges and so is needing a more thorough polish than Love or Lust did, as well my editor is taking things a bit slower this time around because she’s terribly embarrassed at some of the errors that managed to still be in the first book despite her editing.

That said, book two could be out as early as the anniversary of the first book.  The more likely date is about a week later than that — around 3 – 6 July; worst case scenario we’re looking at mid-July (barring some catastrophic mess that carries things beyond even that).

All told it is going well, and the story came out pretty decently and the edits are really making it shine I think.  So the wait, I feel, will be worth it if you can all be patient a little longer I think it’ll be enjoyable.

I’m, of course, working on book 3 as well.  It still doesn’t have a title because — frankly — I’m not far enough along to be entirely sure what it’s about.  Still, I’ve some rather great bits so far, and it should go pretty smoothly (though, now I’ve said that, I’m going to hit a case of writer’s block 60km thick and made of adamantium).  I really can’t imagine it being out sooner than spring 2015 and will likely be summer 2015, though if the rest of the book goes as well as these first chapters have we could be looking at a Dec/Jan release (just don’t hold your breath).

Updates and contemplations

Frankly this post isn’t really about anything in particular.  I just had some things to share.

First the important one:  Ready or Not is looking more and more like it will not be ready until around the anniversary of Love or Lust‘s publication (end of June).  I’m sorry, it just didn’t come out half so cleanly in its first draft as Love or Lust had so the editing is going a bit slower, and too there’s the several weeks’ delay while I was in hospital or recovering — my editor takes a very interactive approach to the process (for which I’m grateful) instead of just assuming she knows what my idiot mistakes are supposed to say.  Regardless work should progress well from here and I’ll announce a release date the moment I have a really good idea when that will be.  Sorry for the delays, I am; I’ve anxiously awaited a sequel more than a few times in my life, and I really appreciate the messages asking after the next book and stating how you’re looking forward to it.  It’s possibly the most heartening thing an author can get.

Next is a contemplation on surgeons.  Plastic surgeons work hard to minimalise scarring, and even have tricks for removing ones someone/something else left behind.  Why is this technique not taught to all surgeons!?

I was looking down at my belly full of laparoscopy wounds (yes, plural … 5!), where a damnedable drain thing was, and then the gash showing the neighbourhood of the problem which took me to the emergency one fateful Tuesday afternoon and realise that the former half-dozen scars are dimpling and then the gash is like six inches long and near my hip … glad I don’t go in for skimpy bikinis!  And I’m not so self conscious as to now avoid two-pieces, but good God, could these not have been done in a cleaner way so that they can’t be seen?  Ah well, I suppose it’s better I’m alive than flawless, which I wasn’t anyway — I’ve my share of childhood scars, I was quite the active little thing.

Finally a comment:  Frozen was seriously, undeniably, unabashedly one of the awesomest movies I’ve seen in awhile and certainly continuing my newfound adoration of Disney animated films.  Tangled, Brave, Frozen, Princess and the Frog … I love this new trend of the princess being the hero of the story, and I love how in Tangled and Frozen the prince charming was not a prince (though they were charming … in their ways) and were heros, I love the equality of that.  Most of all, though, I simply love the phenomenal storytelling that is going into these.  Frozen really took the lead, though, there was something simply beautiful about it, I swear to you I cried at more than one point watching that movie … albeit, not for long (thank you Olaf, I love you!!).  And for those wondering, I didn’t see it until recently — movie tickets in this town are obscene, but we have a second run cinema that finally got it … c’est la vie.