Digital Age Authors & The Ugly Truth About “The Good Old Days” of Publishing

Kristen Lamb aims and hits the bulls-eye, once again!

Kristen Lamb's Blog

I travel all over the country to teach writers how to create a brand and build a platform, and it never feels like work because I love preparing each of you for success. Yet, every audience has at least one (usually at least three) of a certain type of writer— the one who resents having to use social media. And they almost always sit in a spot where they can glare at me and interrupt and tell me I have the brain of a monkey who’s head was crushed in Wal Mart’s automatic doors.

Hey, can’t please everyone.

I Didn’t Make the Rules

Every industry has been modernizing since the advent of, I dunno…BUSINESS. Farmers relied on horses and plows until a seriously cool invention, THE TRACTOR. Scribes were a tad ticked with the invention of the printing press, and anyone who worked in an office in the 80s eventually had…

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Friends Of Unique Cars

I am honored that my 1960 Plymouth station wagon has been featured by Friends Of Unique Cars.

Thanks, Friends Of Unique Cars and all the petrol-heads in Oz! (Australia)

Friends Of Unique Cars

The picture of my wagon in front of Bella Italia restaurant (Port Angeles, Washington) was originally posted here in One Less Entry On My Bucket List.

When Poetry Makes a Difference

Victoria Adams' Reading Alcove

Why is a book of poetry, The Songs of Kiguli so terribly important to bright and inquiring minds living in the rural areas of Uganda?

1236165_10200400083191948_1324088671_nThe Kiguli Army School was originally founded to provide an inexpensive education to the children of soldiers in the Ugandan Army.  At inception it was registered as a Universal Primary Education school or UPE.  UPEs were set up by the government of Uganda to provide free primary-level education to children across the country.  Registration does not mean that the operating costs of the school are covered.  Books, stationary, school meals, and much of the salaries paid to teachers and administrators are not covered.

The cost of teacher salaries was not supported by the government until 2001 since the ministry of education had difficulty locating the registration number.  From the organization of the school until 2001, the teachers were paid out of the army’s “Rational Cash…

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Welcome Back to Vampire Week 2.0!

I’ve been waiting for this with fanged breath!

Deadly Ever After

Today’s Brew: Julie is swilling some something out of a can with a mean looking pumpkin on it, and I am drinking water since I have to be up at ass o clock.

by Kristen and Julie (bear with us as we change POV)

TWO VAMPIRE BOOKS, AN UNDEAD DUO, AND A DREAM

Picture it. Last year at this time, Kristen’s living room, which was still a hotel room at HoJos.  Shark Week just ended, and we came up with the idea to do vampire week on the blog. We wanted to make it an annual tradition, and you know we are good to our word.  Vampire week is back.

A lot has changed since last year’s event.  Julie and I had just started querying, and God, were we bad at it.  We’d just started meeting people on Twitter.  We didn’t know what to do about this vampire thing…

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The drowning laptop and Steve Jobs

Laptops and iced tea do not get along, as I found out last Thursday night. Another “desktop-replacement” now consigned to Davy Jones’ locker.

So now I send you this missive from the old desktop that was replaced in theory, if not in practice.

“Grandpa box” though it may be, the desktop has all too many advantages over the laptop. One of which would be if I were to spill water on this keyboard, I’d be out $5 in the worst case (assuming the keyboard wouldn’t be just fine after drying out). And I have a couple of spare click-clack keyboards in my parts pile, anyway. I would just Keep Calm And Carry On, as they say in “The Tube.”

Want to add an extra 4TB hard drive, swap out your dead DVD burner or your video card? No problem on your desktop. A screwdriver and a few minutes; you’re back in business. New 25″ LED monitor? Just plug it in.

The (sole) advantage of a laptop is portability.

My little mishap forced me to re-examine whether I really need a “desktop-replacement”. Turns out, I really do not. If I was living out of a suitcase, resting my head on different motels’ pillows every night, then yes I would need a big laptop.

Why don’t I need to replace my laptop?

One word: Tablet.

When Steve Jobs first bandied about the iPad, I must admit that I was one of the skeptics. Not anymore. At least not about the purpose of tablets. The iPad itself, well there are these things called MicroSD cards that Apple appears not to have heard about, which ensured my money would be handed to an Android. “72GB” Android (8GB + 64GB MicroSD), all for less than a 16GB iPad 3 … 😉

Facebook, e-mail, YouTube, all on my Android. Dragging a laptop to the coffee shop is like walking a St. Bernard in comparison.

And, in an irony Steve Jobs may never have considered, made my desktop sensible again. My desktop has many advantages over the laptop, and so does the tablet. So, for myself and many others, tablet plus desktop cancels out the laptop. A laptop alone has no big advantages over the desktop-tablet pairing, and many disadvantages.

Yes, Steve Jobs, you were correct. Ironically, in a way that matches the old gear-head ethos. “A dedicated single-purpose tool is always better than a multi-purpose tool.” The tablet is the most convenient for content consumption and the desktop is the still the best for content generation.

I never thought I would even suggest that the venerable laptop is now obsolete for all but the most nomadic travelers, but as Walter Cronkite always signed off, “that’s the way it is.”

Update: I repaired the laptop and it’s running faster than ever!

Inspiration ~ What a poem can do

Victoria Adams' Reading Alcove

The school:

Kiguli Army primary school is populated by 687 students. These students come from diverse backgrounds, experience and lifestyle.  Mostly, they are dependents or orphans of the Ugandan military fraternity. The school can be found on the hinterland closest to the shores of Lake Kyoga, Uganda. Lake Kyoga is a freshwater lake that supports several landing sites and fishing communities from which many a Kiguli student hails. Some of the children’s parents work in the Ministry of Defense ordnance factory called Luwero Industries Limited. The school has thus been made the centerpiece of the company’s corporate social responsibility plan due to filial as well as patriotic links. The school is also located in an area that is part of a re-forestation project being conducted by Luwero Industries.

422866_423627354360152_876206834_nThe school is a primary school, not a military or boarding school.  It is not grooming new soldiers. There is a premium…

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Running Home Available NOW!

Congratulations, Julie Hutchings!

Deadly Ever After

Today’s Brew:  Champagne!

by Kristen

Picture it, Whiskey Tango Boulevard. Not as you know and love it today, but in the late 1980s.  Two teenage girls with bad hair, a love of fantasy, and a notebook pass their free time.  They filled that notebook with ridiculous stories about their friends and rock stars.  When they weren’t in the house, the dark haired girl would tell the blonde stories of her “dreams” to entertain her. They would pass notes between classes full of more of the same.  Their wild imaginations could not be stopped.

Move forward a few years, to when the brunette tells the blonde that she’s going to major in business in college.  The blonde thinks this is the most ridiculous thing she’s ever heard.  You don’t want to business, she tells the brunette.  You want to write.  The brunette majors in creative writing and still manages to go…

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