Oh, how I wish I had one. A Life, I mean. In a very technical sense of the word I suppose I do; for example; I’m still breathing, and mobile, and I can carry on a conversation (as long as it’s with someone of my own generation, at least).
On the flip side, I don’t go anywhere (except the feed store and the pharmacy and every once in a while a grocery store). I don’t drink, I don’t gorge on food, I don’t hang out in bars or chase women. Frankly, I’m terrified one of them will allow me to catch her, and then where would I be?
I’m usually up early in the morning to make the coffee and catch a bit of the news before I go out to feed the horses (Arabians), goats (“Fainting goats”, and we just got two new babies!), chickens (layers, but they’re on strike right now), dogs (two Great Pyrenees) and the barn cat (she terrifies those dogs; nobody messes with the barn cat). So there I am, sipping coffee and catching up on world affairs early in the morning and twinges of guilt boil up in my stomach right along with the strong morning brew. Because I’m sitting there, working on waking up, and I know – I just know – all of those animals are bitching about the delay in getting their breakfast. Now, understand, they always – and I do mean always – get fed before 8:30 in the morning. Always. But come 8:00 they are all standing by their feed stations, waiting. Rain or shine, I KNOW they are waiting, and counting every minute. So I usually get off my butt around 8:10, leave half of my coffee to go cold and head out to feed.
Maybe I have to go back to getting up at 4:30…
Instead of doing fun stuff, I work. Right now, I’m writing “Standing Wave”, the fifth novel in the life and times of Terry Rankin, refining my new web site (the temporary address is www.garyshowalter.net , but I will be retaining www.garyshowalter.com as the permanent address).
Just yesterday we completed the post-production and quality testing work on the audiobook versions of “The Big Bend” and “Hog Valley”. Those audio books along with all of the other novels in the series (eventually) will be on sale direct from the web site once all of the dust settles from the construction and I have a chance to do a bit of sweeping up and polishing.
Some of you, no doubt, are scratching your heads at that. The first two novels were available in audiobook format for several months through Amazon, Audible and iTunes, but both myself and my narrator, Neill Hicks, were extremely disappointed by the paucity of the royalties we received. So we decided that I would recover the distribution rights and market the audio books through my own web site.
Hence the new web site (within a few weeks it will be up at www.garyshowalter.com) with the soon-to-be-available E-Commerce page. If you do visit the new site, please know that while it IS up and running, it is far from finished. A few pages have yet to be posted and the E-Commerce page will only appear next month.
By the way, ALL of the Terry Rankin audio books will sell for $10.00 (Audible.com had them priced at $24.00, unless you joined as a member), with the exception of the odd giveaway and discounts during promotional periods (I get a kick out of doing promotions, by the way!). Along with the promotions I will make ‘gift certificates’ available if you know someone who loves audio books.
Back to the new web site for a minute, if you don’t mind; all of the work, including a bit of editing on the current pages and the addition of new pages and the E-Commerce page, etc, are scheduled to be completed by mid-April. While I am not doing all of the work on the new site myself, it has cost me lots and lots of hours in emails and phone calls to get the work done correctly and do all of the post-production work getting the audio versions into a marketable format.
But all of the little bits should be ready to come together by the end of March and the E-Commerce page should be up and running by the end of the first week in April. I’ll take the next week for testing and fine-tuning and then get it all shifted over to my own domain name at www.garyshowalter.com.
I get tired just thinking of all of the stuff I have to do. But it sure beats pulling weeds for a living. I did that for years, by the way. I’m a slow learner.