Can y’all believe Thanksgiving is this Thursday?! Time really has been flying at Casa James this fall!
It’s been a hot minute since I last wrote, so let me catch y’all up on a little bit of what’s been going on — then let’s talk turkey, ‘k?
Daughter Lauren finished beta reading for me! Yay! And she’s amazing! I’ve made all the necessary re-writes and changes she suggested, so that’s done.
Now I’m hoping to get at least one more person to beta read for me before I send it to an agent and then pray, pray and pray some more that it’s good enough to warrant a kind and encouraging response of, OH MY GOSH! YES, OF COURSE I WANT TO REPRESENT YOU!
A Call for Potential Beta Readers
If anyone’s interested in beta reading for me [sorry, I can’t pay, but would adore you forever!], please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
My manuscript is close to 100,000 words in length, so it’s a healthy-size! Or maybe you could read a mere hundred pages of it? Whatever you could do, I would be ever so grateful and truly appreciate it! What I’m looking for is someone who will tell me:
- if you like it or not;
- if it holds your attention;
- if you have any problems with it and if so, what those issues might be;
- anything you absolutely hate;
- redundancies you encounter;
- whether it flows;
- anything that you absolutely love (fingers crossed there’s something in there); and
- whatever else you think I might need to know in order to make this a successful book! 🙂
It’s humor-based if that helps.
I was talking with a writer friend about writing a query letter and a synopsis — and if I wasn’t terrified before, well, I am now. That is a whole thing unto itself! This is probably going to be as difficult and almost as long as writing the book! What have I done, y’all?!!!!!
Also, I’d written what I thought was a forward for my book. Well, it turns out I can’t write a forward for my book. No one can write a forward for their own book. Who knew that only someone different from the author can write a forward or — it’s not a forward! How embarrassed am I that I didn’t already know that?! So my forward has now become either a preface or an introduction. Considering it has elements of both, I’m now calling it a prefa-duction. Or do you think an intro-face sounds better?
As y’all know, my blog’s been giving me major trouble since last June-ish. After a short and bittersweet uhm…”snafu” with the former tech guy, Eric is now at the helm and is keeping “the old girl” up and going. The best news is that people who haven’t been able to leave comments in a very long time are able to again. Yay!
My concern at present is whether or not my readers are even aware that stuff has been fixed. I fear that some have just moved on because of all of the issues WWS has had over the last several months. And if that’s the case, I’m incredibly sad about it. 🙁
Also, David started getting notifications of new Wayward Sparkle posts from Mailchimp — as he should have (yay), but they ended up in his spam folder (boo!) So, if you haven’t been getting notifications from me recently — you might check your spam folder.
One blogger friend emailed me and said that she’d been blocked from my site! Holy Toledo, y’all! I feel awful that some BS from my site made my blogger friend feel awful! If you get a message that you’ve been blocked from my site EVER, please let me know immediately so I can let Eric know so he can fix this right away. And please know I would never block you!
Doing the Two-Step
Recently, Eric had me sign up for a Two-Step Verification log-in process which, thankfully, won’t impact any of y’all! Have you done this with your own site? It makes it much more difficult to be hacked, which is great. But it makes it almost impossible for me to get into my own site. Ha! Speaking of not being able to get into things —
Social Media Presence
Remember when I had my cataract problem and couldn’t see worth a damn for about six months? I think that’s when something happened to my Twitter/X account. I noticed last spring when I got my vision back, I wasn’t able to access it. So, now the time has come to deal with it and I don’t even know where to begin.
The last I saw, I had close to 10,000 followers on Twitter/X. It was once over 12,000. Anyway, close to 10,000 followers is a lot to lose if I have to start over. Do people even follow X anymore or is that pretty much obsolete? What about Face Book and Instagram? They’re still relevant, aren’t they? Anything else y’all think I need to do to strengthen my online presence? Or know of a good site I could visit to find out this info?
I’ve been remiss (hanging my head in shame) about keeping up a good social media presence because — well, it really doesn’t matter why. I’m gonna have to get with the program and remedy that.
About a week ago, we received a text from my ex that he now has cancer (declined to say what kind), but he stated he was disabled, unemployed and won’t be able to work again. He’s only 61. He’s always provided Ry with health insurance (per court order) but has stated he is no longer going to do so.
Of course, I wished him well and hope he’s able to overcome his health issues. Still, what that means in practical terms for me is I’m now having to figure out Ry’s insurance. Dealing with Social Security has been quite the eye-opener.
Also, the best way I know to keep the “fun” in dysfunctional is to invite government agencies and my ex into our family’s life during the holidays. Yay.
Chris’s post at Freethinker’s Anonymous mentions doing something that scares you on a daily basis. If I do nothing except deal with insurance for Ry and peddle my book to agents, that should take care of every day for the rest of the year. Even though it’s scary, though, it’s still a blessing!
Talkin’ Turkey Day
So, we’re heading over to David’s side of the family for Thanksgiving this year. The last time we did this, things did not go well, which you can read about here.
For whatever it’s worth, the person that things did not go well with won’t be joining us (may she rest in peace.) I’m sure her presence will be felt, though. (Also, I swear I had nothing to do with her dying!)
The thing is, other complicated family stuff has been brewing. So there’s that. David tells me that I may have more fodder to write about.
WHAT DOES THAT MEAN AND WHAT DOES HE KNOW THAT I DON’T????!!!!!
Also, I promised to bring a side dish that I’ve never made before. What the hell is wrong with me, y’all?! Now I’m totally stressed out about Thanksgiving!
The best news is that we’re finally going to meet Lauren’s boyfriend! He’s joining us for Thanksgiving and is meeting the entire family (mostly) all at once. Since the hosts are making ham, pea salad and macaroni and cheese for Thanksgiving this year (were any of these at the original Thanksgiving?), Lauren’s boyfriend has suggested he may bring an entire roasted turkey! I think that would be both hilarious and brave! He will always have a special place in my heart for at least thinking about doing this, y’all! I’ll update what happens the Sunday after — if he actually follows through! Along with other fodder.
Because, apparently, for some, it’s just not Thanksgiving without the turkey! Gobble, gobble.
So, what are your plans for Thanksgiving? What food or traditions makes it Thanksgiving for you? What are you most thankful for this year?
Also, any encouraging words or thoughts about, ya know, the book thing or the online presence thing would be most appreciated, too.
Personally, I appreciate and am thankful for each and every one of you! Happy Thanksgiving, y’all!
With that Wayward Friends, I’ll leave you with a few of our favorite traditions — listening to “Alice’s Restaurant”, watching the WKRP in Cincinnati Turkey Drop episode and watching the little boy helping his mom with the turkey!