'Calandra's Spring' released for Kindle on amazon.com.

Friday, May 31, 2013

Time to write

I always thought that in retirement I would have hours of free time on my hands, all to be spent writing.  Then how come I just don't have that time any more? Top priority at present is our newish grand-daughter.  She is 8 months old now and I seem to spend a minimum of 3 days a week making sill noises, building towers for her to smash down, teaching her to 'drum' in time and working out novel ways to keep my glasses on my face.  Just as well the last glasses I bought are heavy duty, though I must admit, she takes them off with such grace and a glint in her eyes that it now is a routine each time we get together. 

Some writers use the current phases of their lives for inspiration.  When they have small children, they write for them.  That certainly worked for J.K. Rowling.

I am nearly finished my latest book.  Still being edited and I am tossing around ideas for the cover.  So far, I haven't launched into getting a professional cover made.

Nor have I offered any printed books, restricting them to digital versions.

This holds back sales and its potential.  Some people still love having a shelf of books.  I am thinking of printing just one of each for the family record. Just one.  But I do think that Kindle needs a button that potential buyers can hit to send a request to the writer to create a printed book.  If there is demand, I will certainly provide it in print but so far I haven't been down the smashwords/createspace route.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Sad to report the sudden death of writer Captain Doug Danielson

When I first moved to Puerto Vallarta, I joined the Writers' Group. I'd heard good things about this small and jolly group of people who just wanted to write, be it memoirs, poems or novels, many based on the locale.

The first person to hold out his hand in welcome was Captain Doug Danielson, the moderator and 'show-runner' and he was always a positive presence in our landscape!  He encouraged and helped many people down there, wrote some fun books based loosely on his job as a boat delivery expert and shared his experiences in marketing the printed or digital word.

Yesterday, quite suddenly, Doug died, shocking everyone that, in fact, he was mortal. His vibrant spirit had us all believing he would be around forever.

We wish Karen and his family peace in the knowledge that they 'had a good one there' and that he was much-loved in whichever community he dropped anchor. 

Vale Doug!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Tornado Alley and sadness

Hearts of the world are with the people of Moore Oklahoma as they now try to dust off and start all over again.  Loss and mess are everywhere.  But also the news reports are showing so much courage in the light of what seems an impossible clean-up.

The death of the children in the school is very poignant.  Books litter what is now their grave-site.

I would like to see FEMA and Mr. Obama putting some real effort and thought into designing some tornado proof buildings, some below-ground, water-proof emergency shelters and also having a massive tree-planting campaign.  Can't help thinking that the dust bowl, tornado alley and this disaster could be avoided with the re-planting of trees removed by farmers a hundred or more years ago.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Completed two weeks in Puerto Vallarta without one day of swimming in the sea

Arrrrghhh! How hard we just worked!  Tenants are gone.  We spent many an exciting day (!) sanding down doors that had been damaged by gel nails (ladies, please be more careful) then painting and felt that the place was looking fine.  Then we discovered (niftily camouflaged in that way that renters feel justified in doing) and a comparatively new kitchen cupboard shelf was hidden underneath a tray and was rotted by some acid or something spilled by them or their maid.  OK, that was only built in late 2010.  So we are somewhat gritting our teeth. We also completely re-planted all the major garden beds and hope they bush up nicely in the wet season.

The place is looking very nice now and will be in the care of Manuel, Margo and Dominique until it is sold or rented.

We will miss its lovely mountain and farmland views (ahhhh bananas!) and the little town next door, not to mention our good friends down there but I am sure they will visit.

Now back to L.A. and back to some serious writing.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Anyone want to rent (or buy) a writer's retreat in paradise?

We are at present down in Puerto Vallarta cleaning up after tenants (tenants really are from a different planet and never quite 'get' where their hands have left greasy cosmetic marks) and re-planting the garden which has all buy died.  Disheartening.  However, now we are moving on and have a charming, large house with a lap pool for sale (or rent).  The house for rent will come with a cleaner, pool carer and gardener and these costs will be included in the rent.  We do not have the wifi account activated so bring your international account and wifi dongle or access your emails from local cafe. 

If you are interested, please contact me and I can send you photos.

Basic information is:
3 bedroom
4 bathroom
Lap pool
Solar power

Pretty garden

Close to many attractions - golf courses etc. (even a zoo).

Very safe in a secure neighbourhood with 24 hour security guard.

Email me through the blog!