Monday, 15 March 2021

 At last, only a year and a half late thanks to the evil events at St Luke's, the ebook is out with Smashwords, Kobo and Amazon. The print book has its launch party on the 31st of March. All welcome to a riotous hour of free books, free food and authors letting off steam in our local library.

One of the nice things about small local communities is that one has easy access to precious things. Our local museum has put many of its photos online. I found a trove of 1880s photographs in an album taken whilst the family was on a trip to the mountains. As my lass is in the cover of 'Wild Colonial Girl' these young women all went mountaineering in yards of petticoats, long flapping skirts, hats, gloves and  parasols. They were photographed in various spots all over the Alps and very sweet they looked too.

I was able to use one of the photographs as a background for my cover and Peter Langdon, the cover artist, used it then popped Melisande in the foreground. A real wild colonial girl. Actually the wildest trip she has in the story is exploring what is now Fiordland National Park by boat. But she's game for any adventure.

Now it's time to persuade people to buy a copy and write a review.

 Computer Rage.

I HATE computers! I hate the internet and pushy old Google trying to make me use google systems. And I really hate that they make me feel so stupid because I don’t understand how they work and can’t make ‘em work.

            You guessed it. I’m struggling to make the technology work. There has to be the promotion, to a landing page (what’s that?) then there must be a link from the landing page to a chain of emails which have to be written and set for certain dates. Ouch! And why is the computer screen writing so small on everyone else’s pages.  If I enlarge it satisfactorily half the screen disappears and some functions won’t work. The idea is to set up an automated system which will be triggered every time a reader click on the free or special offer button. It’s supposed to save me lots of time and effort and let me write. Ha!

            The real truth of the matter is that I can’t seem to get my head round the way a computer works. Everything I do results in hours of frustration, expensive expert help and it’s   a mess until some IT person does it for me. I hate that. Why can’t I make the thing work? I’ve tried separate keyboards, but the damaged wrist and arthritic hands and fingers mean loads of retyping, sliding the mouse accidently and losing work, dropping into other webpages and the mysterious disappearance of pages as I work. Writing is no pleasure any more and Microsoft’s stupid little Hellos and Welcome back drive me nuts. I’d be more impressed if Docx actually held on to the formats I use, and had a decent publishing template. The number of times all my templates vanish and I have to start again resetting everything instead of just writing. Why isn’t there a good reliable computer designed for writers without all the stupid games and apps and things most people don’t want but have forced upon them when they buy a computer? I’d love one which knew what a publishing standard format was.