Monthly Archives: January 2016

Twitter for Writers—Eight Ways to Nuke Your Brand

This blog has a lot to offer, even if you weren’t around during that Cold War. I was, and I wondered how my desk would protect me from that nuke.
Besides…Kevin Bacon? Well, yeah

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Image courtesy of Flickr Creative Commins via Per Gosche Image courtesy of Flickr Creative Commins via Per Gosche

I’ve been an advocate of writers using social media since 2004, before social media was really a thang. In the early days of Gather and MySpace it occurred to me that we were seeing a fundamental shift in how humans would 1) be communicating 2) forging relationships and 3) finding/discovering entertainment.

Digital Age Writers? You have…no…idea.

Back in my day *wags cane* we were fighting the Russians and there were NUKES pointed at us for twenty years. We had to get our moms to drive us to a library to research for a paper using the Dewey decimal system. There was no Google. 

If you wanted a popular book and didn’t save enough babysitting money to preorder the next David Eddings book in the Pawn of Prophecy series? In hardback? You waited.

Your turn. Like behind fifty other people.

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Winning the Fitbit Game #MFRWAuthor #amwwriting

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A Rare Foggy Morning

WordPress informs me it’s been twenty two days since my last post. Time is definitely slipping away. All that snow…well a lot of it is gone but melting snow produces its own inconveniences (MUD) plus there are places where I know the packed snow/ice will continue for a month or more.

All of this cold and slippery is not conducive to exercising, or at least it offers reasonable excuses. It didn’t take long to slide back into very bad habits, and on my last doctor visit some of the pounds had crept back. Sigh. Probably because  my steps had fallen from around 7,000 per day to (gulp) 3,000 or less.

Not acceptable.

I needed to come up with a plan that I could follow. So I created a few simple rules:

ONE: Be Less Efficient. Seriously. Instead of carrying a full load in from the truck, carry one bag in each hand. Better for balance on slippery spots, plus…more steps.

TWO: Use the Stores. Any of the larger stores offer a safe, warm atmosphere to move around. I can add in the less efficient here as well. Instead of planning how to shorten my shopping as much as possible by making one planned circuit, I’ll go back and forth from plumbing to eggs back to paint swatches, along with a quick trip out to what’s left of the garden center.

THREE: Make it Fun for All. Walking around the yards and fields with the ‘lukis keeps all of us exercised, plus it really helps with the dark day doldrums. Granted I can’t stride out in bumpy fields the way I can on smooth surfaces, but we’re all still out and moving around.

FOUR: Get UP. If I’m at the computer for long stretches (writing, really!) then I need to stand up, move around, go outside and walk even if it’s just to check the bird feeders.

FIVE: Have a Fallback Plan. If I can not get out of the house, much less out into the yards, I know it’s a certain number of steps around the large main room, and I can add in the garage if I get bored just going in circles. Every. Step. Counts.

SIX: Never Miss a Chance. Once enough of the ice had cleared from my road, I started walking down to the gate, then running (okay, sorta stumbling) back up. First one time, then two, and I’m up to three or four times now.

Every step counts, and I am determined to be in better shape this June than last.

Coming with me?

front-cover-finalYou might ask, what am I writing? I decided Lana needed her story told. That would be Tyler Randolph’s ex-wife; Sydney Castleton’s estranged sister. From a Question of Honor. This book is A Question of Trust. Lana needs to learn to trust.

On Amazon

 

 

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Let it Snow #OldLadySuccesses #MFRWAuthor

Do you remember how, when we were kids, we couldn’t wait to see snow falling? Snow Days! No school! Go out and get cold then come in and get warm. Sledding and snowmen and snowball fights. What were we thinking?

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Snow can be so pretty in the dawn, even prettier when the shadows fall across it in the 026evenings. During the day sunlight sparkles on the snow, gorgeous to watch, even though it can hurt our eyes.

Snow can also be deadly when it packs into ice under our tires, or piles up where we need to walk. Those of us with helpful people around, either in the house or in the neighborhood, can have that snow cleared away before it becomes too difficult. I’m very fortunate to have a neighbor who keeps the lane plowed, and does what he can for my driveway.

For the rest, I’m pretty much on my own. Since I refuse to let something like fluffy frozen water hold me hostage, I’ve learned where and how to keep myself as safe as possible. And how much I can do at one time. A few minutes every hour not only gets me up and moving but it’s also not so exhausting.

034Before the snows start, I collect my equipment: a good flat faced shovel (as opposed to a pointy shovel which I’ve always called a spade; several show shovels, with varying length handles; a good push broom, and a regular broom. The shorter snow shovels make me bend over too much and hurt my back. I like the longer ones to work on sidewalks though the short ones help with big piles of snow. The regular shovel is great to get under ice, or to clear heavy, wet snow. The brooms help with fresh, lighter snow on my back (concrete) porch slab; once one of the dogs have walked on it, I need the shovel. Keep all of this close to hand, inside near a door. It does no good to have your equipment outside in a shed when the snow is knee high in between.

025Driving. If you have to drive on nasty roads: Slow down. Then slow down some more. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking your four wheel drive vehicle means you can go zooming down the highway. That extra feature just means you can get yourself out of nasty situations more easily. If you’re lucky.

Sadly the parking lots in my area are not well tended. Early plowing mounds up the snow into impressive barriers but there is still up to three inches of slush or ice, depending on the temperature. I have to remember I’m going to be pushing my cart back through that slush. Just nasty sometimes!

When it’s slushy, either on the roads or in a parking lot, I use the lower gear on my old truck and…yep, I slow down. Mostly I let the truck move without touching the gas pedal much. When you do start to skid, the best thing is not panic (yeah, easier said than done!)

Using all this knowledge, I was feeling pretty darned proud of myself. Until I eased up my lane, backed into the cleared area, then thought I’d want to move over just a little.

I got stuck in my own freaking driveway. Sigh. Too embarrassing to let my neighbor see it! What to do, what to do.

Mulch works very well to give your tires a grip on icy driveways. Isn’t it lucky I bought two big bags to winterize my garden, and there’s some left? All it took was stopping to think.

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Boo likes to watch the bunnies in the snow

 

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