Tag Archives: blogging

Writer’s Ramble 2.0

Last year, right around the time I had a dissertation to write, I attempted to launch Writer’s Ramble, which involved regularly recruiting authors to guest blog. Well, as one can imagine, this little dissertation thing sort of took precedence and the Writer’s Ramble fizzled.

So now that dissertations are done, wedding done, and another book release is around the corner, it’s time for Writer’s Ramble 2.0! Writer’s Ramble 2.0 will be a twice a momth opportunity for writers of all genres to share their input and advice as well as introducing their work to y’all, my readers. For the writers who follow me, please feel free to contact me if you’d like to participate.

This go around my publisher will be assisting me in the writer recruitment process. So let’s raise our digital coffee mug in a toast to Writer’s Ramble 2.0 and get this party started!


Oooh Shiny!

As any of you following my blog may have noticed, I’m a bit random. One day it’s Yard Trek adventures and another day it’s parenting adventures, followed by a gluten free recipe. I imagine many of y’all followed for certain sorts of posts. Feel free to comment and let me know if you want more cats or more recipes, or maybe cats critiquing recipes!. 😀

As book 2 of Crossroads of Fate is slated to come out this year (hopefully–I’ve already seen the cover and finished the content edits), I made a brand new site dedicated to my Crossroads of Fate book series. There will be character renders, excerpts, Zane’s log and who knows what else. So for those of you who followed for the writing and story related stuff, wander over and take a gander. For those of you wondering where the cat recipe critiques are, my cats are food snobs. What can I say? They really, really want it, until you give them some, and then they decide they’d rather have toilet water.

If you like what you see, follow so you don’t miss out on new posts and content! Even better, maybe you’ll be inspired to buy a book.

For now, the Guardian series and various short stories can be found here or can be purchased on Amazon.

Searcher Waylaid

One of the lovely things about blogging is the page filled with stats. I’m positive I’m doing the SEO stuff all wrong. I don’t drop key words. Half the time I write a post and then remember I have to put tags.

Hmm. So what was this post about, exactly? “Everything” is probably not the best tag.

One fun section of stats are the search engine searches which have landed people onto my site. The first two are rather boring, but show that a whopping 13 people purposely searched for me…or that other southerndreamer blogger. Sorry “Southerndreamer”. I totally waylaid them.

Three people probably wanted to find out how to get rid of the critter eating their roof and landed on my blog instead. My answer: Midnight, the feline rodent serial killer.

Given search #4, I’m tempted to find out how many “meow meow meow deck the halls” sites turn up. The internet loves cats, so it’s probably a lot.

I have to say, I don’t recall quoting Metallica, but maybe I did…

Those are just the searches done more than once. So far nothing has yet to replace this one as the oddest search:

anne barringer and johnny sex exy hot

I suppose the rest of you landed here on purpose. Welcome! Of course, there’s always the possibility you were inadvertently waylaid by my blog and are now trapped in a digital world, forced to view my site over and over in hopes of escape. It could be worse. This could be WebMD and your every symptom could be a foreshadowing of doom.

For my fellow bloggers, what’s the craziest search that’s landed someone on your page?

southerndreamer 9
h playa 4
squirrel 3
meow meow meow deck the halls 3
pictures of pinocchio lying 2
kid tucked in with teddy bear 2
pinocchio lying 2
southern dreamer wordpress 2
wearing many hats 2
monster be gone stuffed animal 2
teddy bears keeping kids safe 2
love is dreamer a-ha 2
angry chicken 2
intestinal parasites and hot flashes 2
can i eat chicken tikka masala with ibs 2
hamster ball 2
teddy saves child in sleep 2
system test 2
darth vader holding cookies 2
rockstar teddy bear 2
hush little baby don’t say a word and never mind that noise you heard it’s just the beast under your bed in your closet in your head 2
zombie chicken 2

The many hats of a writer

Motherhood prepped me very well for being a writer. I’m not referring to funny diaper anecdotes or the odd imaginings of a sleep deprived brain, although those things can serve as creative fodder. I refer instead to the necessity of learning skills of a wide and varied selection. For example, the average mother must be a cook, a cleaning expert, a nurse, a teacher, a counselor, and a mechanical engineer (what!? Have you ever attempted to put together baby furniture?) to name a few.

Writers run into a very similar situation. Here are a few “hats” a writer wears:

1) Historian. If you write anything set prior to oh, yesterday, wikipedia becomes your best friend, but even that doesn’t cut it at times. Hours or days can be lost in the deluge of information when all you really wanted to know was when indoor plumbing became a common fixture in most households. I’ve known of wealthy, famous authors who fly to exotic locations so they can accurately portray the setting. (For us who consider the park exotic due to a distinct shortage of fame and wealth, we use the internet, or even better, make up fictional places.)

2) IRS Taxes expert. Once you’re published and receive royalty checks, or advances (a rare thing now days), Uncle Sam wants his cut. Figuring out just how much he gets involves math that makes differential equations look fun.

3) Social Media PR Rep. A writer must have an internet “presence”. There’s Facebook, and Twitter, and Google+, and forums, and mailing lists, and….. It goes on and on. Worse, people expect you to update and post! Who has time for all that?

4) Website Designer. The number one thing that gets asked when people meet you and find out you’re published (if they’re interested) is “Do you have a website?” It’s the foundation for all that social media updating. Sure there are nifty tools and wizards, but navigating through it is still a pain. Why does the wizard automatically turn all hyperlinks red? Why can’t I click and make the font bigger like I do for regular text? What the hell is a– what’s it called again?

5) Actor. Once you have that nice shiny hard back or trade paperback in hand publishers expect you to go to signings, meet people, sell your soul books, and even attend conferences and the like to build a fan base (or keep it from stalking you demanding the next book…depending on how unknown or famous you happen to be).  No one wants to listen to a boring person. If the person acts boring, well, sheesh, the book is probably boring too!  Whether it’s humor, drama, eccentric behavior or clothing that makes people go, “Woah!”, one has to become an actor to some degree, especially if you aren’t someone that likes public speaking. You must adopt a public face and sell the books. There are a million and three books out there, so getting people to pick yours might involve telling that one story about the green punch and….

Needless to say, it can be rather overwhelming. There are days I channel DeForest Kelly:

Dammit Jim, I'm a writer. Let me write!

What are some skills you found you had to learn to make it in the business of being a writer? What do you do when the business of it threatens the whole point of doing it in the first place; writing?

Google it!

WordPress comes with a handy little feature that shows you what search terms have been used that directed people to one’s blog. Most of my readers are people I know or other bloggers who happened upon the blog via tags. I believe there is an in depth process of using key words and what not to drive readers to one’s blog. In case you’re wondering, I have no idea what that process is. I’m proud to say that in the nine months since I began blogging, I’ve  hit 1,000 total views! I know, there are probably bloggers out there who manage that in a single day. I’m not sure the antics of my critter horde or witty commentary by the three kiddos really rates that kind of attention. We just aren’t ready for that kind of paparazzi. How would I explain the pictures of Miss Drama streaking through the house? What if they snapped incriminating photos of Mr. Smarty-pants and Miss Diva using duct-tape to tie up their sister? Sadly, I must admit I have photographic evidence of this. Considering my children may one day hold the power of life and death decisions in my old age, I’ll be kind and withhold the damning photos, especially since Miss Drama seemed to enjoy being duct-taped to a file cabinet.

Since I’ve yet to invite, by cleverly inserting special words that all the search engines snatch for their little searches, the hordes of people dying to hear my every word, I wondered if anyone had landed on my blog via a search. It turns out, not many. Some search engines it seems have not yet sold out to the Google advertising machine, and do not share their info, thus the “Unknown terms”. I thought everyone used Google.

All but one search make sense, as the words appear in at least one blog, or handily, in the title. I’m still wondering how on earth that one landed on my blog and why anyone would search it. I probably shouldn’t ask those kinds of questions. My brain might melt. Further, I suspect I should tell my friend, whose name I took out, that her doppelganger is hanging out with a shifty, although supposedly “sex exy” and “hot” guy named Johnny.

love is dreamer a-ha
secret love affair
picky, picky, picky, frosty the snowman
#### ######## and johnny sex exy hot
fictional dreamer
Unknown search terms