I know Better Than That!

The direction is simple. It is repeated over and over as you master this tool of your craft. We know that we have to do it, and are reminded constantly. Sometimes it is even automatically done for us with out our even knowing…
BACK UP YOUR FILES!!!
General I am pretty good about this, especially anything to do with my writing. I back that up in multiply ways; flash- drive, the cloud, separate computer.  Losing hours of writing is a writers worst nightmare (other than writer’s block) and we all take extra care of our manuscripts.

It’s the everyday things that you forget about.  If you’re like me you click the “remind me” button because you just don’t want to take an extra 5 seconds to let the program back itself up.  Instead, you just keep adding more and more information.  Well, today my taking shortcuts came to bite me in the butt.  I lost all my contacts in my iPhone and had that instant moment of panic and devastation: I had everything in there: phone numbers, addresses, birthday, private notations, codes and directions.

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Lucky for me some really good friends were able to walk me through a few steps and I was able to restore an older version which saved about 90% of the information (thanks guys!)

So I’ve learned a valuable lesson, and I promise to back up my files every time I pause in my work or every time my computer promotes me

…until I forget again and it ignore so that I can keep writing!

It’s all about the Name…

As a writer, one of the hardest things I have to do is to decide on the right names for my characters.  It has to look right in print, sound right on the lips and feel right in my heart.  It can take time to pick the best one, and often I find myself changing it as I start to get into the story.  And then there is the decision on if I should give my characters a nickname…

Nicknames are often used as a sign of love between friends and family and often the only make sense to a select few that are part of that inner circle. The most common nicknames are shorting of your full name, or maybe a combination of your initial’s (JJ, DJ). Or maybe it’s an endearing name like Sweetie or Honey.
Whatever the name, once you have it; it’s yours for life. Have you every run across a grown man who tops 6′ and is called “Tiny”? Oh you many move away and start a new life, change your whole persona, and forget all about it. But the minute you go home, or meet someone from home-out comes that name and you are thrown back in time.
Since most of us receive our nick names from our loved ones, we embrace the feeling of belonging that it gives us, or at the least we “grin and bare it”. That name is a connection between people, special, even if it is just between two souls.
My nickname when I was little came from Grandpa. My grandfather was a quiet man, always with a pipe in hand and a smile on his face. His humor was simple and often took you by surprise because it was so often right on the mark. Except for this nickname-I just never quite got it! My mom actually had the name before me, I just became number 2.

And the name you ask? TERMITE. (I am Termite 2).

When I asked my Grandpa about it, he would just smile and say “A termite gets into everything.” That’s all there was to it, and it made sense to him. It’s been years since he died, and with his passing, my nickname became silent. It just never sounded the same coming from anyone else.

So, I ask you, is your nickname as special as mine?

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There’s Something About A Puppy

beagle-puppies-wallpaperToday I stopped by a friend’s home and discovered that they have a new addition to their family: a 7 week old puppy.  The family was really excited about the little tike, and like all puppies he was just too cute for words.

While I was there, we took the little guy outside to do his business and a little exploring.  Once he realized that he (still no name yet) was free to roam the huge yard, he took off like an arrow being released from the bow.  His short little legs stumbled in the taller grass, but once he made it to the freshly mowed lawn area he was free.  Rolling in the grass, chasing his short little tail, and running from us when we called; it wasn’t long before he worn himself out.  Looking up at us, he gave a wide yawn and simply took a nap right where he sat.

Picking the puppy up, we went back inside to visit.  Before long the school bus stopped out front, dropping off my friend’s son from school.  With barely a hello to me and just a wave for his mom, her son had only time for his dog.  Laughing, she told me that all anyone in the family wanted to do when they came home was check in on the puppy.  This tiny ball of fur had become the center of the household in a very short time and now there was no problem keeping her family home in the evening, spending time together.

Now my dog is no longer a puppy, but he is still an important member of our family.  His personality and actions give us plenty to laugh and talk about.  In my writing, I always include animals; either cats or dogs.  In the Citrus Beach Mystery Series, the main character has a Beagle puppy that plays an important role.

When I go to purchase a book, if there is a dog or cat on the cover, then that book gets more of my attention and a greater chance of my purchase. If you go to Amazon and look in the kindle books under “Cozy Mystery” you will find that there is a sub-heading for animals.
So, I guess you can reason that having a puppy on the cover helps sell books! And since the cover is the window to a book, you can honestly ask
“How much is that doggie in the window?”