Happy Sunday Publisher’s Edition

Here it is! It was a long journey and a tough one. I am a published author !

It is amazing how many people want their book in print and in their hands!

This is why self publishers need to consider publishing both:  print and eBook versions.

The Demon Chronicles

The Print Book is right here.

The Kindle Book is right here.

I have written the second volume and it is now in editing mode. The series will carry on through seven volumes. In the process of doing this, I learned some things that can help other writers who plan to self publish.

The first tip:  Go ahead and Self Publish.

Not self publishing is the biggest roadblock to self publishing. This sounds stupid, but is  actually very wise.

When a person publishes even a small book of short stories, poems, inspirations or photographs, a huge and exaggerated emotional barrier comes down for good.

The lessons are learned, the self defeat evaporates and the road to more self publishing is wide open!

 

Now I have to work on summarizing my series. This has not been easy!

It begins with three fractured, damaged and reluctant heroes who are dragged deeper and deeper into a world of love, more love, demons, stealth and crimes.

The demons are people who started role playing as demons and then forgot that they were once human. They have gone around the bend and are starting to cause a lot of havoc.

The series begins with the most shocking  murder scene in fiction, makes the reader fall in love with the great characters and hooks the reader on the twisting plots.

What is the scary part? We can’t rationalize this  grown up horror tale away.

While the people in this story are not real demons, the fake demons in this story are  real people.

Those people may live and walk amongst us, and that is enough to keep us awake at night!

Doing a series of novellas is different than putting it all into one book!

The second volume was harder because I had to refresh the reader about Volume I while carrying on with the story and adding in new characters.

Why did my characters come to love each other so much and to love with such a twist? Who are all these new people and why are they together? Did I just read that this one loves that one…and that one too?

I had to keep up with the main themes of love, more love, stealth demons and crimes that started in the first book  and will carry all the way through to the seventh book.

It is important to wrap up or continue all events, developments and characters. It is very easy to start a side story or a new character, then forget all about them! Seven Basque imps? Fallen angels? Yep. If there are demons, then those creatures are likely to be part of the mix too.

It gets important to remember every number, quantity, relationship and action, because the writer can forget exactly how much money, how many crates, why, who did what to whom,  and when who did it!

The FBI agent illegally looted an extra 24 boxes or so of evidence? Another FBI agent runs errand for the mob? Of course it can happen. The delicious task is for the writer to create a good reason why or how it happens.

Readers will not forget those details and they will not miss the mistakes, so neither should the author!

How to build a very  easy website:  This was part of my amateur book marketing and writer’s benefit project, so Here is my example.

I did not want my site to be just for hawking my book, so visitors  will find a couple of great articles on how to do a book cover and how to find a web building site!

I needed a website and kept balking at getting bogged down in such a tough project.

I found out that websites are now  as easy as setting up this blog.  Amazing.

My website is built with jimdo, which is the highest rated, but there are many other website builders. Do shop around and find the best website builder for your needs.

As always, make sure that you are dealing with a reputable site and that you actually need a set of features before you pay for anything!

Happy Sunday! I hope I have inspired at least one person to go ahead, realize that dream and get something copyrighted and published.

What It Means To Become A Published Author

Allright! So I am self published at Amazon Kindle, a hotbed of bad writing.

The Amazon Kindle version of the  book is featured on my Facebook page:

THE DEMON CHRONICLES, VOLUME I, Lovers of mine do fly on damaged wings.

I am still waiting for the print proof, which will take some time. I cannot wait to get a stack of real books to look at while I figure out how not to sell them!

I am not a bad writer and my book is in the mix now.  I have been a web writer for most of a decade and have been published in many places.  See my Twitter feed to the right for my news and other articles!

This is my first actual book. It is a novella, which is officially between 30,000 and 40,000 words.

My first literary offering is Volume I  in a series of  7 novellas. This series will carry the reader through tales of role players who forget that they are playing; through the fractured and reconstructed lives of three unique and engaging heroes; and to the final destination. The first book is heavy on character development and establishing the major themes that will run throughout the series.

The story begins with a murder so horrible that this tale is not for the kiddies. Then it takes the reader and the heroes through developments that shock, stun, and generate real laughter. This is why the tag is:

“A story of love, more love, demons, stealth and crimes.”

The setting is San Francisco, California. The story goes around the world to London, Cornwall, the Greek Isles and will include parts of Europe where I have lived or visited.

The characters all come together from different parts of the world, but they are guided toward love and friendship with each other  in ways that are suspiciously convenient for someone or some force in the universe.

There is plenty of  action in the book, too.

Are the events supernatural in origin or are they just serendipity? It is up to the reader to get the  book and find out!

For those who want to publish at Amazon Kindle or CreateSpace without spending a dime!

The process is a burdensome one, but the author who sticks with it and survives the frustrating process, the rewards are tremendous. There are more than enough blogs and posts with help, both at the sites and at places like Hub Pages.

The manuscript has to be single spaced, paragraphs indented by default (not by tabbing the first line over), and there are no spaces between paragraphs.

The mansuscript page size has to be formatted to fit the size that you chose for your printed book. I chose 6″ x 9″ and set up my manuscript page for that size.

Simply corral the word processor and set the page size to 6″ x 9″ if that will be the size of your book. Then upload to create space, read the alerts and notes,  play with the margins, and keep uploaded until the text fits properly.

 CreateSpace is for getting printed books. Kindle is for e-books that go on Amazon Kindle.

ISBN: These are International Standard Book Numbers, and they cost a bundle.  This number identifies your unique book and only your unique book.  It is important for the book industry, especially when titles are the same or very much alike. Amazon will give one for free, but it is good only for Amazon. I was so broke that I took the free one.


The Book cover For Kindle: I imagine that there is a way to do a back book cover for the e-book, and will have to work that out later. I just used a front cover that I had already designed. This was done at Photobucket PRO, which has an incredible new photo editing software. I simply sized a photo that I took with my HTC Thunderbolt at 8 mp.

Then I used the text option, found a font that I liked, and put the simple words on the photo.  Then I downloaded it, converted it to PDF, and it is now at Kindle as the cover!

Continue reading

Some Articles!

I’ve been publishing at Hub Pages and have some great articles for you to enjoy there!

Here are some more photos, some previews, and some easy links to follow while I invest some time in getting set up over there.

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Technological Marvels That Have Saved Humanity From Trouble And Difficulty (Definitely Satire!)

Since the dawn of man, humans have searched for Dawn. Humans need to have washing liquid or something that can get the fat and grease off of hands and plates!

Since the dawn of man, humans have longed for lightweight, but super useful stuff that would hold up against all kinds of heat, cold, dropping, stabbing, piercing, burning and sinking under water.

Since the dawn of man, humans have striven to invent, make and distribute cheap crap in the most effective ways possible.

Humans have now reached the point where technological marvels that make life wonderful are always being honored and recognized for their goodness.

Here are some of my personal favorites.

 

 

 

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The Sacramento Occupaton At Cesar Chavez Park (I am very proud of this one)

After setting out for César Chávez Park in downtown Sacramento, California, it was clear that parking was going to be an issue.

Parking is always an issue in Downtown Sacramento, which is why most residents of the region do all that they can to avoid the place.

But yesterday, there were big doings in César Chávez Park. Several hundred children showed up to do a “flash mob” dance. After midnight, about 16 of the protesters were arrested in a “catch and release” program for violating park rules by blocking the park entrances or staying in the park after closing hours. The arrested individuals were either lying or sitting at the 9th and K street entrance.

These hardy souls braved a blustery day to start the first wave of the ongoing Sacramento Occupation style version of the Occupy Wall Street Protests.

But what a contrast!

Travel Through Technology: The search for the ultimate mobile tablet device

Yes, I am Borg. I was assimilated during February of 2010 with the purchase of an Android OS smartphone. The Android smartphone has become my tiny little laptop, phone, clock, weather station, calculator, news reader, literature library, gaming system and more.  Then there is “Angry Birds”.

There is even an app for reading the “check engine” codes on my car. That one has not been used yet, but it is there.

Now there is a burning desire for something that lies between the bulky laptop and the miniature smartphone: a tablet device that will have:

A 7 inch to 10 inch screen,

Dual core processors

At least 1.1 GHz speed

Dual core processor

Good battery life

The newest Android operating system

4G service

At least 5 megapixels on the camera

USB slots

HDMI ports

Front and rear cameras, at least one with HD video capacity

And the capacity for upgrades for at least 18 months.

Is this too much to ask? Today I will explore the ratings and the reviews in order to see if such a beast exists.

 

TABLETS

Tablets had a terrible time of it in 2010. My preferred service provider, Verizon, was slow on the uptake with its 4G network and the prices practically prohibited buying a tablet that had not proved its worth.

The Apple iPads are a hot commodity, but I am not inclined to pay for Apple because of a technical culture that is practically Albanian in its isolation and inability to play well with Adobe Flash. I would love to have the Apple apps market and ease of use, but cannot take another chance on a limited, expensive and far too rapidly non upgradeable product.

In April PC World had a fairly recent  and nifty slide show of 15 tablets that are supposed to compete with the iPad. Again, my preference is for the Android OS.

None of that makes much sense right now, because many of the devices in the slide show either have no Android or Chrome OS, or they have not been released yet.

A search of Verizon’s tablet market shows only two options: iPads and Samsung Galaxy Tabs. The new Galaxy Tabs are out of stock, but some pre-owned versions are available.

Sprint has the highest customer rating on the Galaxy Tab, but  T-Mobile and Verizon also have high customer ratings for these models.  The problem with the Samsung Tab is that the OS is Android 2.2 Froyo. It would be lovely to have Android 3.0, simply because of a mentality that wants the latest hardware and OS for later upgrading. So the Galaxy Tab is out of contention.

There is the Motorola Xoom: the chameleon of controversy, threat to the iPad, and nabob of newness. Xoom runs on Android 3.0 Honeycomb, but has yet to be modified in order to get the 4G equipment installed. There is a wi fi version, but that is it. Xoom is a hot commodity with an ice cold price of $599 with a 2 year contract (or $799 without the contract).

Joshua Topolsky at Endgaget has written a magnum opus of a review for the Motorola Xoom, so I find these details.

The Xoom has the desired 5 mp front facing camera and a rear facing webcam at 2 mp. But holding up something the size of a book to take a picture is not an optimal situation. The video shoots  at 720p  and some basic video editing software is included.

There is some size, at 9.8 x 6 x 1/2  inches. The weight is fine at 1.5 pounds.

The resolution is higher than the iPad’s at 1280 x 800 to Apple’s 1024 x 768.

Some of the buttons are in annoying places. The power button is too close to the camera button, for example.

The portrait resolution is taller than normal, and might look a bit awkward. But most of my non reading use will be in landscape view, which is just fine. Human eyes and brains are incredibly adaptable  and that portrait awkwardness would probably go away with more use.

Battery life is at about 8.2 hours, which is fine, given that my current Android smart phone requires many visits to the juice bar, even with a battery saver app.

the Xoom has a Micro USB and mini HDMI jack. This helps with output to TV, synching with other devices.

It has the 1GB of DDR2 RAM and 32GB of internal storage.

 

WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING WITH ANDROID OS?

The spanking new Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 has an obvious 10 inch screen and has a hefty starting price at around $500. The reviews and specs are sparse and the release date is sometimes in July.  Pre orders are supposed to start on June 8 at Verizon, but nothing is at the Verizon site.

This model stays true to Google’s plan for Android to be for mobile devices. This one runs Android 3.1 and is the thinnest and lightest tablet of all, weighing in at 1.25 pounds.

The 32 gig model will blast the bank account at $629 and there is a 16 gig model at about $529, both with a two year contract at Verizon.

This device will take the Android 3.1 update when it comes, but the apps market for Honeycomb is kind of slim right now. This is odd, since developers have been scrambling to catch up with apps for Android.

It has 1 GHz and a 1280 x 800 res display.  The processor is a dual core NVIDIA Tegra 2. It will be 4GLTE enabled.  The cameras are pitiful at 2 mp front and 3 mp rear, but waving a 10 inch camera around is not the dream photography scenario anyway.

There are no USB ports, so some kind of dongle will have to be set up for adding any bells and whistles that are USB dependent.

Back in may, one reviewer at BGR found a lot of crashes and bugs in just one 45 minute session, and this is always a problem with first generation and new devices.

As a result, a lot has to be fixed before the Galaxy Tab 10.1 becomes a serious (and highly desirable) contender in the Android wars.

 

 

CHROME OS: IS IT TIME YET?

The bottom line from Google is that Chrome is for laptops and is eventually headed for desktops while Android will be around for smartphones, laptops, tablets and Google TV. The main point is to help those who do most of their action through web browsers, rather than through programs that reside on their computers. Thus, po

I wrote an article on an early version of a Chrome device last December when the Christmas launch was delayed for more beta testing by a huge number of people.   Now it looks as if some Chrome devices are going to be available this Summer. Brad Linder at Liliputing has one scoop, even if he has not been able to fully test the latest Chrome and Android books.

The Samsung Series 5 Chromebook  is rather large, at 12.1 obvious inches. It has a large starting price, too: Around $430. But, as the historical cloud computing advancement that was hooted and jeered at during the 1990s, Chrome takes only seconds to get from the power off position and straight to the web.

Bang! Chrome computers will be designed to do one thing:  get to the web through a browser. If a website is running properly and supports Chrome browsers, then there should be no issues.  Also, there will be far less malware, because what little data is downloaded is supposed to be “sandboxed” within a specific application. This will prevent malware from one program from getting to other parts of the computer.

The big deal about the Chrome OS is that you do not download whole computer programs into your device in what is called “desktop native” work.  Of course, users can store  data for offline work when there is no internet connection, but most of the action goes on through cloud and web applications that can also be accessed from Windows, MAC or Linux PCs.

I had heard about this last year and even applied to be a beta tester, but got debunked from that action. I have been waiting for CHROME as my first choice.  With 99 percent of my writing work, social networking, entertainment and research done on the web or through Google applications, I may be free of the laptop in no time!

The Chrome devices probably will have to be an enhancement or extension of PCs and laptops, but will someday free us from the mess that software conflicts, malware and breakdowns have created in our lives.

Google Chrome devices will take mobile computing to Star Trek levels of grandiose advancement.

In the end, my choice will probably be for a Chrome device with Verizon’s 4G LTE service. Given the ability to access the same web accounts with smartphone, desktop and large tablet, this looks to be the way to go.

How To Know If You Are A Web Writing Addict

There are signs. There are indicators. There are alarming symptoms.

But we do not care. We cannot get up from the computer and walk away. The draw of the news, the drag of the tweet, and the siren call of the blank editing screen are all powerful forces that keep us glued to our computers.

We seek any kind of gratification that comes from writing and publishing our thoughts and opinions. We live to read the works of others. We stay intoxicated with the substance of the words.

We are addicts, as imprisoned as a three strikes felon, held prisoner by the web as we hunch over glowing screens and hide in our darkened rooms.

As a scholarly study, I have developed ten questions that will help to determine if a web writer has fallen off the edge, has gone off the deep end, has bought a one way ticket to la la land, or has simply lost their mind.

This study was inspired by a post where a woman who shall be called “X” plaintively and eloquently lamented her plight as a writer’s group addict.


TEN QUESTIONS FOR THE WEB WRITING ADDICT

1. Do you long to be writing something even when you are already writing something?

2. Does your diet swing wildly between microwaveable dinners and laborious, elaborate meals from the foodie blogs?

2a. Is your diet mostly a liquid and vitamin diet?

2c. Are your teeth getting loose?


3. Do you spend more time talking to your doctor about your writing than you do about the giant buboes that are growing all over your neck?

4. Do you hide your writing from family and friends, write in secret, or write while alone?

5. Have you ever edited while driving?

6. Do you move your lips or talk  out loud when you write?

7. When alone, do you burst into loud laughter when reading other people’s blogs…or your own?

8. Do you feel that you cannot have a good time at another writer’s blog if you cannot comment at least twice?

8a. Do you comment more than three times a day?

9. Have you taken more days off from work than you have from writing?

9a. Do you even still have a job? If the answer is “no”, ignore entire question.

10. Are you in last night’s pajamas right now?

10a. Did you brush your teeth and wash up today?


If you answered “yes” or “no” to any of these questions, then you show signs that you are a web writing addict.

You should immediately seek help at the nearest bar, church, swimming pool, park, garden, store or gym.

Note to self:

Wait… If I put a link to “X’s” post, then people will know who she is! I’d better fix that….



My Blog Sucks

I set out today to write a scholarly thesis that is based on the hypothesis that, since vaginas look like clams and testicles look like walnuts, the only possible conclusion is that the origins of all of humankind lie in an Indian Casino all you can eat buffet somewhere in Botswania.

But my spirit is failing and my heart simply pounds, filled with the overbearing sorrow that can only come from a heartfelt revelation of the truth: my blogging sucks and there is no hope for me, unless you, my colleagues and peers, help me to crawl out of the muck of my own miserable and grandiose self delusions concerning my writing abilities.

As a result of recent revelations about my sucking blogging, I have abandoned my greatest scientific breakthrough, ever, and have embarked upon a quest to improve my pitiful position in order to redeem myself in the eyes of the dozens of gushing and loyal people who read and rate my vile extrusions each month.

I have a professional background in general studies and have read under some of the world’s top scholars, most of whom happened to be on top of me at the time, making reading an arduous task, but a neccessary task nonetheless.

My novel, “The Life And Times Of An Amateur Forensic Liquid Nitrogen Accountant” was a best selling sensation among the amateur forensic liquid nitrogen accountants of the world!

The sequel,  “Penis Fish” soared to the top of the highly competitive Aldiko free books market!

But I fell onto hard times when my high risk venture into the business of making blankets with sleeves was run into the ground by a merciless competitor who would stop at nothing to dominate the world’s sleeve-blanket markets.

I subsequently lost my ability to read any blog about someone’s schnauzer who left poop on the front stoop where it was picked up by the shoes of the visiting society matrons from the Lobelia Society.

In fact, there are blogs that I regularly read for inspiration and example. They make me break out in hives or have difficulty urinating. That list is far too long to go into here, so let us return to my story, since this is all about me.

I descended into a nightmare of using too many commas. I abused highly addictive drugs such as passive voice, paragraphs that never seemed to end, titles that had nothing to do with the content and pronouncing the word “pseudo” as “psss-suede-doh”.

After a lengthy incarceration in the prison of my own allegedly brilliant mind, I was released to my own recognition and allowed to write blogs that had complicated HTML code. They boasted multicolored text and various fonts for repeating the words “STFU” and “LOL” in over 250 colors!

Still, the readers shunned me. Except, that is, for those who wanted to escort me down to the darkened back alleys of places like WordPress and Blogger, where they would read me the riot act, ravishing my body of work again and again until I could barely put myself back together and skulk  amongst the pillars of the  blogging world.

And now I have dedicated myself to places like Open Salon and WordPress where the rarified air is shared by people who seem to be breathing through widely opened mouths. Those writers contribute far more moisture to the air than is acceptable for any human congregation, indicating that all of my writing companions are either oversexed or are complete perverts at all times.

I throw myself on the mercy of all who come to my blog in order to snort derisively at the substandard excresences of a complete incompetent who begs for someone to pay attention.

I implore all who thrive here to forgive my mistakes and to give me one more chance before I must be evicted and forced to blog, 140 letters at a time, on Twitter.

Why, that would be worse than being boiled in canola oil or drawn and quartered by a sidewalk portrait artist and his monkey. The monkey would, of course, collect the quarters while flinging feces at my already tattered hems while the artist exaggerates all of my least attractive facial features, creating a drawing so hideous that my last few coins will have been wasted!

I am your most grateful servant,

Photobucket

Xenonlit

Happy Sunday

We think that we are successful

When we use bland statements

To express bland dismay

At the hate, the racism, the rage, the lies

Just how do we defend ourselves,

Our country,

Our families,

Our neighbors,

Our peace?


Will we do that through prayer

Through faith

Through love

Through kindness?

Will we let the angels fight the mighty battles?

While we say nothing

Do nothing

Or act as nothing

While claiming,

then insisting

that we said and did it all?


Or will we be the warriors against evil

against wrong

and speak our true hearts

and speak our true minds

refusing to follow down wrong paths

never calling them dark paths

dark deeds

dark words

dark behaviors

And offending dark peoples in the process

Blaming them for what we do

And for what we have become

Instead, will be begin

to call  wrongs what they truly are?

 

We live in the type of  times

Where saying plenty

While saying nothing at all

In order to save ourselves

Or to breed false peace

Has never saved a life, a nation,

or a soul.

 

Will we be sound enough

In faith enough

Right enough

Strong enough

Good enough

To stop blaming dark

To stop condoning by silence

To stop supporting

With the weakest of words?

 

Will we do

and live

and bless

and excuse

our wrongs?


Or will we stop the evil

Before it gets too far along?