New Toy

Guess what. I have a thing! I’m super excited because I am 99.9% sure this is going to fix the issues I’ve been having with the audiobook recording. I gave it a test run earlier, and so far, there is much magnificence. AND it’s pink!

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I’ve been fighting with Audacity for quite some time. I’ve cruised forums, watched youtube videos, downloaded like 10 plug-ins, learned how to use Nyquist code, etc. It turns out that I had a hardware issue the whole time. I’m still pretty new to the audio game, so I’m still feeling my way around. Learning is always good!

I’m on a bit of a writing break at the moment. I might do a short story here and there, but I need to step back, disengage, regroup. I haven’t done that in quite some time. My writing might be suffering because of it.

I have been reading, though! If you have anxiety and/or your brain won’t shut up (like mine), this book might help. It’s about inner peace and meditation and dealing with the stress that comes from fixating on problems. I’m a bit over halfway through, and it has already helped me a lot. I will say that it can be repetitive at times, but the read is definitely worth it.

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Bookity!

Hey-o! Though I have been absent, I yet live.

This book is out. I have a creepy story called Carnival in it.

Indianas Emerging Authors

Here is the link.

A longer thing that I wrote will be available soon. It’s $1.99 while it’s in preorder. The price will increase after the book comes out on 8/28.

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Link to the preorder on Amazon

I am currently busy working on too many things and plan to return to the blog on a somewhat regular basis in about a month or so.

Oh, I DO have a blog tour lined up for some days in September, so I will post links for those stops once they are up and running.

I set it up through Bewitching Blog Tours, and I have to say that I am very impressed so far. Roxanne really has her stuff together. Here’s the link for Bewitching Blog Tours if you’re an author and you’d like to check it out. And no one paid me to say that. But, you know, if someone wanted to offer a discount in the future…  🙂

That’s it for now. I’ll return around the 28th. Party on, Wayne.

The Listen Edit

I am so excited that today is Friday! I don’t have any real plans for this weekend, except for book working, which = much productivity!

During one of my last few posts, I mentioned that I was going to have a robot voice app read my most recent book to me. I did this with the hope that I would hear typos. My eyes skip over things and autocorrect for my brain, which is all well and good when I’m not trying to proofread.

Typos were found, but that wasn’t all. I heard unintentional repetition, perspective switches, all kinds of stuff.

The listen edit was life-altering, for real. I’ve never really 100% trusted human eyes or spell checks. While extremely helpful, I realize now that more was needed.

This week, I listened to the book I have coming out in August and started on Love and the Dark because that’s my next audiobook project.

I found so much that I needed to fix, more so with Love and the Dark, which was disconcerting because that book is actually out. No worries, though. I’ll fix it right up and publish updated versions before I record the audiobook.

If you write books or stories or whatever, I highly recommend that you do a listen edit. There are free apps. Robots don’t autocorrect when they read. What is on the page goes directly into your ears, for better or worse, and as long as you’re actively listening, you will hear things that don’t belong there or things that are missing.

Getting It Completed and Other Plans

So last weekend, the husband was occupied, and I decided to have an audio editing extravaganza. It was magnificent! I edited 7 chapters over the course of 3 days, which was about 40-45 finished minutes, which a TON of work. Audiobook production is not for the lazy, that is FOR SURE! I took yoga breaks. I took Skyrim breaks and Dead Space 2 breaks. Caffeinated beverages and wine were consumed but not at the same time.

I have 4 chapters left to edit, and I have to record the closing credits. Then I’ll have to go back through what I recorded and read along to make sure all the words are there and correct. I made some changes as I was recording, too, adding a couple of speech tags, etc, so I need to update the print editions to make sure they match those parts.

Damn, my life is glamorous.

After I finish this project, I’m revamping the soundbooth a bit. Moving blankets might dampen the sound more effectively than the foam setup I have now. The foam is…decent, but the moving blankets are heavier and more solid. There’s still a tiny bit of an echo in there that I’d like to get rid of. I might use the foam and the blankets together if I’m not happy with just the blankets. The blankets will look better as well, perhaps less like a serial killer’s lair, not that the appearance really bothers me.

I would also like a light because the big light in the room is somewhat blocked. I’m thinking one of those battery-operated nightlights that stick to the wall.

Another thing I plan to work on after Oceans is done is the Iyrico audio. That was the short story audio project that I rage-quit a while back, before I started recording Oceans. It was a lot of work, and I’m starting to feel ridiculous for abandoning it. If I can shape it up without having to rerecord the whole thing, I might go on and do that.

I also came up with a brilliant idea for editing my print books that is somewhat related to the audiobook thing. One’s eyes have a tendency to correct mistakes as one reads. That’s not very convenient for me when I’m looking for typos. One of my rounds of editing is now going to involve having an app read the text to me. I’m hoping that my ears might catch a few issues that my eyes do not.

Now, please enjoy this picture of Bleu’s ginormous kitten eyes.

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Quitting But Not Quitting

I decided to stop taking outside submissions to NightLark. That’s the publisher I started a year or so ago.

For the last couple of months, I’ve been thinking about it, and I’ve been back and forth on whether I wanted to keep it going. I took the holidays off, read a submission or two and thought about picking it up. Every time, something stopped me.

There have been many frustrations, a lot of them with myself. I’m not assertive enough. I’m not that great of a salesperson, really.

In the end, I decided it wasn’t worth the time or frustration. It just wasn’t. Life is too short, and I have too much that I want to do, creatively.

I will say that running it has been, by far, one of the best learning experiences for me. For real. I did things that I never would’ve tried with my own work.

I do still plan to use it for my own books, but for the foreseeable future, I’m not taking on any projects from other authors. The website is staying up with occasional updates. The books currently listed there that aren’t by me should disappear here in the next few months.

So yeah. Still writing. Still recording. Just not handling anyone else’s business.

Tonight in the Sea of Words That is my Life

The obsession is real and true, my friends. One of the most difficult parts of this whole book writing thing is letting go.

I’m currently driving the CreateSpace people crazy. I’m also driving myself a little crazy with the upcoming book release. Tweaking it has become a kind of habit. I try to let it go, and then I find something to adjust and again, I tumble down the spiral of obsessive compulsive checking and rechecking and scrolling through 300 pages of words, and I can’t trust myself because nothing is ever perfect.

But the book will be out on time, the ebook, at the absolute very least.

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Rapid-Fire Randomness

Hey, what’s up! I’ve been sick for about the last week because my husband decided to bring home the plague. I haven’t had much energy for blogging, but apparently, that won’t stop me from posting words on the internet.Today, I have some random bits and bobs about what’s been going on.

Current writing project: Desmond Winters and the Ghosts of Arbolettis (middle-grade book), word count – 24231, a little over a third of the way complete if I hit my 60,000-word goal.

Most recent books read:
Catcher in the Rye by JD Salinger – meh
The Bell Jar by Syvlia Plath – slightly better
Magruder’s Curiosity Cabinet – pretty good

Currently reading:
Shadows of the Dark Crystal #1 by JM Lee and Brian Froud

Also about to start:
Splintered by AG Howard

Most recent movies watched:
The Magnificent Seven (2016) – very good
Don’t Breathe – not bad
Star Trek Beyond – decent

And here’s a picture of my son’s new snail. Its name is Larry and it is slightly larger than a quarter. Every time someone sees this picture, they ask me how big it is.

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