Sarah vs. The Turkey…

I was once chased by a wild turkey… well semi-wild and it wanted my soul, or something. It definitely was not chasing me down for a hug or returning a dropped wallet.
When I was a junior in high school I had an odd English class. One half of the year it was taught by a coach and one half of the year by the drama teacher. Our school was shy an English teacher for just one period. Some people thought it was awful, but I think I received the best education that year. They both had a different approach to English that was captivating and challenging. And even though I still complain a little now, I learned a lot from the Walden Pond assignment. Although, I am not sure I learned exactly what I was supposed to learn.
The drama teacher decided to have us do an assignment that he had to do in college. We were to go into nature, have no one else around, have nothing that was entertainment, or anything too civilized. We were told that we couldn’t even take fishing polls or see civilization. We also had to document in a journal all events, preferably every hour. I assumed watches were completely allowed. He wanted us to do the project over the weekend. I was wondering the entire time he spoke, “How am I going to convince my mother that I needed to get lost in the woods for 7 hours?” My grandparents and my aunt had some land in Mariposa that they shared. It was over 20 acres large and I always ended up with poison oak when I went hiking there. I still wanted to go up to their cabin to do this project.
I pondered all day about how I was going to ask. My mother had class that night after work and this bought me time to think. My mother walked in the door and before I said a word she said, “I don’t want to hear any bitching from you or your bother, we have to go to Mariposa. My teacher is making us do a Walden Pond assignment.” I found out later that she had the same teacher as my teacher had when he was in college. She and I talked for a short while on the project. She only needed to be out in the wilderness for 3 hours, not 7.
We went to Mariposa and my brother got to bring a friend to help keep him out of the way. He was 16; his Super Nintendo alone should have kept him out of the way. Before we left my aunt warned us that a guy a few roads over just let out 12 turkeys because he was being kicked off his land and that turkeys can get fairly aggressive. My mom said she wasn’t too worried, she was just going to tan by the cabin, listen to music and if I turkey came near she would go inside. I was miffed. She wasn’t going to do her assignment like she should. I had planned on doing every little bit of it (well, all but peeing in the bushes, I did not want to end up with poison oak there!). I had already decided that I would even document that. I was not going to lie.
On the windy and bumpy drive leading to the cabin a turkey ran in front of our car. It was bigger than I thought. Upon reaching our destination another turkey was in our front yard. My brother and his friend tried to chase it off, but the turkey in turn chased them. While the two boys were running all over the country side, my mother looked at me and said, “Well, that should keep the birds busy. Let’s get the car unpacked.” Never mind that there were wild and crazy turkeys out there chasing one of her children already. Was she going to trip me if the turkey came back and use her other child as live turkey feed for her own personal escape? I got out and unpacked the car. After the first load to the house, where she carried near nothing, she said, “Why don’t you bring everything to the door and I will take the bags to the rooms?” Great, I felt like she just tripped me to free herself from the turkey. An image flashed before me, my mother slamming the door closed as I’m running up to it, being chased by a flesh eating turkey, locked out and left for dead. I tried to shake the image from my head as I carried very large loads to the door all the while being rushed by my mother.
My brother and his friend ran across the yard screaming and yelled, “Are they still chasing us?”
“They?” I said as I looked behind him. There were two running after them. I yelled, “Two! Split up!”
“NO! You never split up in a horror movie!” my brother’s friend yelled while grabbing a push broom that was on the side of the house. I was as still as could be. I thought of the seen with the raptors in Jurassic Park. All I had to do was grab the one bag in front of me, shut the trunk, and make it into the house. I did it all as fast as I could move. I didn’t think the birds saw me. Once in the house, I saw my brother was at the glass back door and my mother was in the bathroom with the door shut and locked. I let my brother in but his friend was still out there. My brother ran to the kitchen window and looked out. His friend had a broom and was swinging it at the bird.
My brother and I looked at one another. “He is my guest,” he said as he went to the back door opened it and yelled, “RUN!” His friend ran for the door and once inside started to laugh like a madman.
My mother emerged from the bathroom. “Who’s next? Those long car rides just make a person need to go.”
It was near dinner time, so I would need to go on my venture the next day. I got a hold of the very cute and friendly ‘boy next door’ (next door there is about 3 or 4 blocks over). He let me know that only 2 of the turkeys were left. A few of the birds had been shot, some just died, and one was hit by a truck. From what he said it did do some damage before it went. His little sister was scared to go outside because the birds were so mean. I told him of my class project and he promised if he saw any turkeys he would chase them down the hill and not towards me. I was very leery of going into the wild wilderness now. Before my biggest worry was poison oak and mosquitoes, now I had to fear massive, freakish birds with a taste for human blood.
I readied myself the next day. I brought OFF!®, a blanket to sit on, my notebook, a pen, a few pencils, a couple pbjs, and a stick… a very long stick. I walked out the door, past my mother sunbathing and listening to old 60’s and 70’s music. I shook my head as I walked by. I went to a spot that was a little thick with brush so I would hear them if they came. There was a crib of rocks near by I could climb up and scream if I needed. I looked out at the woods. I heard birds and thought of the turkeys. I heard leaves and thought of the turkeys. Every journal entry was full of my new found fear of turkeys. I wondered back to the cabin for a bathroom trip twice in the 7 hours (my bladder was stronger then) and saw no turkeys. As it grew time for dinner I wasn’t as worried and felt I had picked a safe place. I packed up my things. I stayed an extra 15 minutes because I felt guilty about the trips to the bathroom.
I went to the cabin, nothing. I went in and made dinner. My mother sat down and started looking over my journal. The night came and went. After I had my shower my mother told me to pack the car while she took hers. My brother and his friend were out hiking to the tip of “lookout rock” to see if the day was clear enough to see Yosemite.
I put all of the bags in the car and as I shut the trunk I saw a head pop out from the overgrown grass and weeds near by. I looked over at it. It was the turkey. The turkey cocked its head at me and charged. I ran like hell screaming “TURKEY!” I ran circles around the cabin.
Soon my brother and his friend were back. They were yelling and screaming at the bird. Things like, “I’m going to eat you!” “I’ve been waiting for this!” “Your time has come!” “Luke, I am your father.” and lots of profanity. I jumped in the car and wished I knew how to drive. My mother, done with her shower, looked out one of the windows and watched.
The boys never hurt the turkey. They did scare the hell out of it and the man down the hill, with the two asses in his yard, fired a gun. My brother said he warned them first and they moved out of the way. He missed but it freaked the bird out enough for us to make our escape.
I vowed, while I was rubbing Campho-Phenique© onto my poison oak patches, that I will forever and always enjoy turkey. I will never feel guilt of any kind for devouring poultry. That year my family enjoyed turkey more than we ever had. While we sat at my grandparents table, taking pleasure in our wonderful meal, we all talked about different run-ins we had with the birds. We found out how the last one met its maker. My uncles went hunting.

So, I need to write a new blog…

I know I need to write a new blog but sometimes new blogs don’t just fall into my lap from the sky. If they did it might hurt … I’ve read some pretty heavy blogs. Ok, bad pun, sorry. I’m moving on now past the pun.
This blog, the one you are reading right now, is a blog about blogging when there is nothing going on in a person’s mind (or life) to blog about. The sad truth is, I know we have all been here. We have all, at some point, thought, “I really need to update my blog, but what do I write about?” Then one ponders and contemplates, the kids do a few funny things, a friend says a witty comment, but nothing is worth writing a whole blog. What next? What now? One could always stoop to the point of writing about that one time when the guy next door went out and got his newspaper in his underwear and it was disgusting. But how many blog buddies would like to read that? Sometimes a dream can save a blog update or family coming over for a visit. Great ideas, stories, useful facts, fun facts, obscure facts, lesson learned, life experiences, or even interesting family history can save a blog update.
I’m afraid not much can save this blog. I’ve been so involved in my series my mind keeps thinking of it, visiting it, working on it problems, my mind doesn’t want me to write a blog. My mind wants me to write another chapter, complete a few more paragraphs, or better yet finish the book! This is when some writers ask for a fellow author if they’ll do an interview with them (and they can both post it). Another trick is a poll of something they can’t figure out. How many people like stuffed dragons over stuffed bears? Or when you were 5 did you think the ocean was thrilling, scary, or boring? Me? I’m writing this, this time. Next time I think I should do a poll… what do you think? Poll or no poll?

Authors do not get to pick the prices…

I was told the prices for The Strongest Fire. I still do not know how much it will be on the Kindle and Sony reader. I will be buying that package next month! I did ask about the Nook and it is not determined yet whether or not the Nook will carry iUniverse books. My assumption is they will over time and that they just need to hammer out all the details. But that is just an assumption and I know nothing of the inside deals this company is going to make.
*looks around nervously*
So, without further ado…
*drum roll*
The prices are…
*opens cyber envelope*
E-Book $6.00
Perfect Bound Softcover (aka trade paperback) $18.95
Casebound Hardcover (sleek, no dust jacket) $28.95
I wish the prices were just a few dollars lower. And if there is anyway for me to take a cut in percentage to make these books a little more inexpensive, I will. I want my books read, easily available, and affordable for everyone. Unfortunately authors do not get to set the prices.
If anyone would like any further information, please don’t hesitate to ask.
I still do not have an exact date, but I was told that it will be out before Christmas.

The Strongest Fire: Book One of The Vampiress Sagas…

Stop.
I would like you to think of yourself for a moment before you begin to read the story of my younger life. I want you to think of who you are and the changes that would happen to you if you were transformed into an immortal being. Think carefully about what you might do if you had to drink blood in order to keep your sanity. You are unique. I am sure you would do things that I could never think of.
But what if you did not want the changes or you were forced to be somewhere you did not desire to be, how would you react then?
This story, told from my memory, and written in a language not my own, is the second chapter of my life. The first is short. I was born. I grew up. I married. I had a daughter. My husband died. My daughter died. All of this occurred in a twenty-three-year time span.
This is my story, my eternal life; this is how I reacted…
Mary

The Strongest Fire…

In this tale Mary is telling the first 100 years of her immortal life, starting in the year 1000 when she is transformed into a Vampiress.  Mary doesn’t handle the change very well and has a hard time fitting in.  After all, she is an Irish Catholic and has a strong love for life, God, and her deceased daughter.  Mary never presses her shipmates to believe as she does, but she never gives up in God and trying to do what is right.  And also she never gives up on trying to be on dry land.  In Mary’s reluctant journey we discover things as she does, about the vampire race, her new family, their personal beliefs, and many other things all while traveling on the sea.
Please read Mary’s story in The Strongest Fire coming soon to Amazon.com, Borders.com, Barnesandnoble.com, and iUniverse.com/bookstore.  The book will also be available to be ordered in most bookstores.  Thank you.

August, September, October, November…

I have not counted days, weeks, and months like this since I was expecting my daughters.
Here’s what my chart thingy/timeline looks like right now.  I still don’t have any clue when my book will be done.  I know I’m close.  I know that even though I am close bad things can still happen.  I know I’ll have one more look at everything before it’s ready to be finished.  I don’t know how long that will take on their side, but from what I understand on my side it should just be a quick check and a stamp of approval.  I’m still hoping everything will be done before the Holidays

Send Marketing Success Workbook 08/03/2009 Ready  
Implement Proofreading Cover Corrections 11/10/2009 Active  
QA Proofreading Interior Modifications 11/10/2009 Ready  
Submit Materials 07/29/2009 Success  
Evaluate Manuscript 08/03/2009 Success  
EE Preparation 08/04/2009 Success  
Conduct Editorial Evaluation 08/04/2009 Success  
Conduct Evaluation QA 08/13/2009 Success  
Send Evaluation to Author 08/13/2009 Success  
Author Review Evaluation 08/17/2009 Success  
Editorial Consultation 08/17/2009 Success  
Submit Revised MS-Post Eval 08/28/2009 Success  
Conduct edit 08/28/2009 Success  
Conduct Edit QA 09/11/2009 Success  
Send Edit to Author 09/15/2009 Success  
Assign PSA to Project 09/24/2009 Success  
Prepare for Design 09/24/2009 Success  
Polish Cover Copy 09/24/2009 Success  
Setup Proofreading 09/30/2009 Success  
Design Interior 10/01/2009 Success  
Design Cover 10/01/2009 Success  
Author Review Edit 09/18/2009 Success  
Conduct Interior QA 10/02/2009 Success  
Conduct Cover Design QA 10/05/2009 Success  
Submit Final MS – Edit 10/06/2009 Success  
Confirm Proofreading Readiness 10/06/2009 Success  
Conduct Proofreading 10/06/2009 Success  
Conduct Proofreading QA 10/29/2009 Success  
Send Proofread to Author 10/29/2009 Success  
Author Review Proofreading Interior 10/29/2009 Success  
Author Review Proofreading Cover 10/29/2009 Success  
Submit Proofreading Corrections 11/10/2009 Success  
Implement Proofreading Interior Corrections 11/10/2009 Success  

But is it worth it…

The PSA thing could have gone a little better, but everything got worked out in the end.  I guess my PSA is on maternity leave and another lady is taking her workload and well… it just got a little confusing.  It seems to all be fine now and everything is ok.  At least I expected a few bumps in the road.

Now on to the next part, this is where I’m going “Oh crap, what do I do?”  Marketing!  There is a ton of different options in the marketing area.  You could spend $100,000 here easy and still want to get a few more things.  This is a hard area.  I was thinking of spending another $600 to $1,000, which I could make in 1 large payment or over 4 monthly smaller payments.  I could do that, but then there is this package that I was told about by my Senior Market Consultant.  It’s lovely and it cost $3,000 which is more than we planned on.  But it is perfect.  But ouch! I don’t know if we can take another hit of that much cash, and the truth is, I don’t know if I’m worth it.  If so, my book would come to near $10,000, maybe over.  I would have to look over everything again to see exactly how much.  I felt the edit was worth it, I felt the proofread was a must, and I know this book won’t sale itself, but is this worth it?

Here is the link so you can view and judge…

http://www.iuniverse.com/Servicestore/ServiceDetail.aspx?ServiceId=BS-5001

Yes, I do want it.  I’m not saying that.  It would be sweet if I could have it.  But can we do it?  This one I just don’t know.  I know if we did, I would have to wait until after Christmas to do it.  That’s a fact.  I know I should sleep on the idea first anyway.  But can I ask my family to be broke for another 4 months because of me and my book?  Because that is what it would come down to.  We would be very broke, nothing in the house could break, but we could do it.  It would just be very very very very very very tight.  And the payments would be $749 a month for 4 months… ouch and *deep breath*

My wonderful husband is leaving this up to me, but I don’t know if I want that kind of weight that comes with that kind of “do what you want” gift…