rowan tree blossom

DECEMBER 2019

I'm sitting here looking at my list of things which had to be done this year! Sigh! Definitely not anywhere near complete. Money is the big problem. To do a good PR sales push of our Writer's Choice books means a couple of thousand dollars with Bookbub, and an average now of $50 per advert for most email book promotion newsletters and one needs to use at least ten newsletters. A good editor starts at $1,000 for proof reading a novel. A good cover artists costs anything from $500. When one sells quite a few e-books it still doesn't cover all these costs and I hate the thought of sending out work unedited with a poorly design cover. I won't do it. Writer’s Choice is about quality.

The Japanese stories are with the editor. Well licked into shape by my colleagues so fingers crossed. I've also got some recordings to do which is good although a pain to do at home as the builders next door putting up a large house are making a dreadful row and mess. Dust everywhere and that teeth setting whine of saws and the nailers banging away means it’s tricky finding a time when there is silence enough for recording. I'm trying to sell as much work as possible because I'm saving for Iceland. I want to get to that conference.

The novel is being very good and is growing and developing so well but it means I keep having to go back and add little touches to be sure that the right threads join up at the end and the emotions I know my characters feel are set and grow properly. I am quite fond of Melisande - poor lass - and am enjoying embroidering all those little details which will make a reader like her too.

Heritage week was a riot and my costume very comfortable to wear. I need a long hat pin for my boater though. I never lost it to the wind but it came close to flipping away a couple of times. There was a bevvy of costumes spanning the whole range of Victoria's reign. I did not envy the crinoline wearers though. Trying to squeeze into the average loo cubicle in one is hopeless.

Christmas is always a family time so I hate it when my family are in Canada and Australia and I can't get to them. Now the church community is such a terribly unhappy place that's no fun either. As the weather is the hottest on record and threatening to remain so until February I plan to escape and shall take my body board to the beach and enjoy the company of the dolphins and a bracing surf in water which is nowhere near as chilly as it was when I first settled in Otago.

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