From Coffee & Diet Coke to Kombucha & Everything Between

The coffee pot has been placed into the pantry on the top shelf and the grinder cleaned and put away. That’s right, no post for health 005more coffee. I stopped the caffeine frenzy back in May when I stopped the tobacco habit and haven’t looked back. I don’t even know if I’m allowed to call myself a writer without a daily coffee regimen.   

My six to eight diet Cokes a day were gone in that bargain, also. It’s all about making healthier choices. I get my fizz fix from an occasional flavored sparkling water…no sugar or artificial sweeteners, or Kombucha. My concentration, productivity and focus are much improved without the caffeine.

I had elective surgery in June, (one I had put off for six years), which took me to my general practitioner’s office for a follow up. Although her information came after the insurance company told me, she advised me that I was no longer in prediabetes, but had crossed the bridge to diabetic. (HgbA1C = 7.5) Immediately, she wanted me on metformin. I didn’t take that too well. Then she proposed another drug with weight gain as a major side effect. Not going there either. I’ve been losing weight; don’t want to do anything that’s going to compromise that progress. She was concerned about my total cholesterol, (just over the line at 201) even though my HDLs were good, my LDLs weren’t as good as they could be.

Meanwhile, the RS gets informed by his physician that he is prediabetic  (Hgb A1C=6.8), he’s had cholesterol problems for a few years and just recently had to stop a statin d/t side effects.

What to do???

The old hippie philosophies resurfaced. I’m a firm believer that there is a plant out there somewhere with the capacity to heal whatever ails animal kind. With little more discussion, we decided to seek out the assistance of a holistic nutritionist. A lovely lady was highly recommended, Dr. Samadhi Artemisa, who is a licensed nutritionist, iridologist, yoga instructor, massage therapist, and acupuncturist. She also writes a column for the local paper, The Orlando Sentinel.

 

While she lives the vegan/raw life, she was more than willing to help us meat-eaters develop a better balance and work to ward off some serious health risks. After four and a half hours of consultation and an iridology screening, she placed us on a gluten free, dairy free (except for European cheeses in very small amounts), soy free, low carb, sugar free diet that permits no GMOs or artificial sweeteners. Organic vegetables & fruits and grass fed, antibiotic & hormone free beef preferable. We eat five to six times a day, every two to three hours, small portions of healthier foods…nuts and nut butters, veggies, hummus, guacamole, sardines, wild caught fish, lean meats pressure cooked, seed crackers, millet bread, sugar free coconut milk frozen dessert and cultured coconut milk. I’m learning to spiralize zucchini, beets, rutabagas, daikon radish, and other veggies to make low carb noodles, rice and pasta.

This was my lunch today.

Mediterranean Salad 001

Mediterranean zucchini faux pasta salad with heirloom cherry tomatoes, hearts of palm, anchovy stuffed green olives, artichokes, tiny Gruyere cubes and lemon-herb vinaigrette.

Replacing the coffee pot on the counter and taking up space in the fridge) are our supplement bottles which contain: manna stem, angelica root, aloe leaf, senna leaf, rhubarb root, zedoary root, myrrh stem, carline thistle root, camphor, black snakeroot, valerian root, cardamom fruit, saffron pistil, sunflower lecithin, muscadine seed, red Yeast rice, post for health 013CoQ10,flax seed oil, sunflower seed oil, raw sesame seed oil, evening primrose oil, algal, coconut oil, rosemary leaf oil, and oat bran oils, ginseng root extract, holy basil leaf extract, fenugreek seed, gymnema sylvestre leaf extract, Ceylon cinnamon, vanadium, bitter melon fruit extract, turmeric root, ginger root, jambui seed, digestive enzymes, B12 liquid, local bee pollen, Bragg’s apple cider vinegar, polycosonal, artichoke leaf, hawthorn berry, turmeric root, fennel seed, ginko biloba, banaba, and bladderwrack.

Sounds like witches brew, huh?

This concoction of herbs, extracts and oils is supposed to lower our bad cholesterols, raise our good ones, control our diabetes, and enhance our brain’s performance. My energy level has, at least, tripled!

Some of them are more palatable than others.

post for health 015

Yummy and thicker than axle grease!

We’ve had two visits for therapeutic massage and two visits for acupuncture. So far, the RS and I have lost twenty pounds each in three months. His fasting blood sugars have come down from the 130s to the 80s, and mine have come down from the 130s to 110s. He hasn’t had his HgbA1C checked again, but mine has come down to 6.6 from 7.5. I’d still like to see my fastings come down under a hundred, but it’s early yet. Today I discovered that my two hour post prandials vary between 106-116.

I’ll add that we are both swimming and walking daily with three ten minute exercise routines, after breakfast, lunch and supper, that aren’t terribly strenuous and can be done in a bathroom.

Little strides over time.

The RS doesn’t like it, but I’ve added Kombucha, an effervescent, fermented tea, to my regimen. He says it tastes like flavored beer to him. I never liked beer, but I love Kombucha. If you would like to learn more about Kombucha and brewing it, I recommend the Kombucha Mama’s blog, web site, store and videos. Her Kombucha Kamp has everything you need to know to get started brewing your own.

There are so many added health benefits. The antioxidants, polyphenols, and probiotics are reason enough to drink it.

What it does:

*alkalizes the body

*detoxifies the liver

*increases metabolism

*improves digestion

*alleviates constipation

*cancer prevention

*reduces blood pressure

*relieves headaches & migraines

*aids healthy cell regeneration

*reduces kidney stones

*improves eyesight

*reduces eczema – softens the skin

*prevents arteriosclerosis

*speeds healing of ulcers

*helps clear up candida & yeast infections

*boosts energy – helps with chronic fatigue

*destroy free-radicals that cause cancer

*rebuilds connective tissue – helps with arthritis, gout, asthma, rheumatism

You can buy commercial brands, but why, when you can brew it yourself?

I keep it in a dark, well ventilated room. The temp stays between 75 and 85 degrees.

MOST SIGNIFICANTLY, I FEEL BETTER THAN I HAVE IN A VERY LONG TIME!

Have you made any dietary changes to improve your health?

What is working for you?

The Day After

Thought I would drop a line or two about my promo results.

Moved from somewhere above 500,000 in ranking to #6100, and made it onto three Top 100 categories, but that’s not saying much…and I don’t think improved rankings have ever sold books for me.

Actually sold 58 books, which is better that my last promo, however, I paid Book Gorilla $50.00 for the promo.

That was 18 books more than my last ENT promo, yeppers, I think the days of 200-400 per promo are over.

@ 35% royalty, that comes to $20.10, which means I went in the red $29.90.

On a positive note: Fifty-eight people might read my book. :)

I’m really about over the whole marketing scene for this book. I think it’s just going to have to sit there until and unless someone happens upon it or wants to see something else I’ve written after more books are published. I do have an interview coming up, but I have a hard time getting tremendously excited about those. They often net me a reader or two.

11694760_10153437808387719_6149488242826565559_n

How to deal with it? The only answer is writing more books. To that ends, I have decided to go ahead and publish Naked Alliances. It got the approval of ten out of twelve beta readers. I have a new editor with an established reputation in the genre, who likes the sound of the story as I described it to him. Now, it’s just a matter of getting the Synopsis ready for him. He should complete it in September. Depending on how much work it requires, I might be able to release before the end of the year.

And The Conduit is coming together for me. So, there’s that to look forward to next year.

A Little Promo & A Little Info

Before it becomes a museum relic, you have an opportunity to buy this book for just 99 cents!!!

11218809_10153437767057719_2100613954475623271_n

 

Red Clay and Roses is on sale this week for 99 cents. Yes, I know, I said I didn’t like that artificial ceiling we’ve set for ourselves, but it was the only way to get Book Gorilla to take it…see what I mean?

The book also has a new Pinterest board HERE.

I think you have to be a member to see it.

However, if you’re in the USA and decide to buy the book, go to AmazonSmile: HERE, and choose a charity. Then type in Red Clay and Roses. Better yet, write in the charity of my choice: GMO Free USA Inc, in the others box :) .

If you are not familiar with AmazonSmile, a little info from their site: AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support your favorite charitable organization every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at smile.amazon.com, you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as Amazon.com, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to your favorite charitable organization. You can choose from nearly one million organizations to support.

Not certain if this option is available outside the USA.

Or you can wait for the movie.

11753286_10153438193882719_3681702253874334631_n

(If you’re really young.)

Special thanks to Misha Burnett for turning me onto PhotoFunia.

How to Use Pinterest to Get Massive Amounts of New Readers (Guest Post)…

sknicholls:

If you have wondered how to use Pintrist to your advantage as an author, well, here you go!

Originally posted on Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog:

A reader was confused.

After reading a persuasive blog post about the value of Pinterest, he inquired of the writer, “Is it possible for authors to use Pinterest to get attention to their writing.

I only have one word for this reader and anyone else wondering.

Absolutely!

Pinterest has great value for writers and anyone looking to grow their readership due to the vast amount of people using Pinterest.

More than 60% of all consumers get information visually, by looking at pictures. Pinterest is comprised of these graphics, or pins, displayed on virtual bulletin boards.

The answer for writers looking to use Pinterest to grow their audiences is simple—use Pinterest bulletin boards to get interest in snippets of your writing.

How to Use Pinterest Boards to Create Interest in Your Writing

The diagram below shows a basic plot structure. If you make a Pinterest board for each element of your…

View original 890 more words

Step Through The Lost Door

sknicholls:

If you have have one of these books, you will want all of them. They’re all on sale NOW!

Originally posted on mishaburnett:

This week, starting today August 6th, through next Thursday, August 13th, all four volumes of my series The Book Of Lost Doors will be on sale for 99 cents each.

4Promo

Please help me spread the word!

View original

Birthday Promo

sknicholls:

A chance is coming up to get some really good books this week! Misha Burnett’s “book of lost doors”

Originally posted on mishaburnett:

4Promo

My birthday is August 9th, and so I am running a promotion this week, from Thursday the 6th to Thursday the 13th. I’ll be posting the official promo, with the proper links installed, on Thursday, but I wanted to share what I have so far.

I don’t ordinarily ask for reblogs, but in this particular case I would appreciate anything you all could do to help me publicize it.

Thanks.

View original

Ninety-Nine Cent Novelist

download (1)

We need to do something about this. I don’t know about you, but most of the time my book is selling; I’m doing a 99 cent promotion.

Not very encouraging when you have two more books being prepared for publication.

Granted, I’ve stepped out of the promotional arena, because the brain energy it takes to produce a novel consumes me. Trust me, that stuff doesn’t come in a bottle.

N0623

Well, maybe it does for some.

Recently, I was with a group of people talking about minimum wage jobs.  There was much feedback from young people that were upset because they could not make an adequate wage to meet the cost of living, rent, power, water…never mind, cell phones, internet access, laptops, cars. So, most had two jobs, and that seems to be the status quo.

The old-timers just laughed and talked about paper routes and mowing lawns, working at odd jobs for pennies while they gained experience in the world. But times are different, yes they are.

Write-a-Book

I mentioned it was tougher to be a self-published writer and promote your own books. I heard this response, “Yeah, the ninety-nine cent novelist is never going to make ends meet.”

giphy

Yep, in the minds of the educated public, the self-published author is a ninety-nine cent novelist. That’s what we’ve earned.

Now, you can spend years of your life devoted to writing a few books that will sell best at 99 cents, UNTIL you break out of the fortress of the unknowns and BECOME somebody.

There are a zillion posts on the internet telling us how to do this, write dozens of books, brand yourself, build an author platform, make trailers, do interviews, maintain a blog, and use all manner of social media in thirty thousand different ways to reach your audience and the media experts that can get your work noticed.  Or hire a publicist. That will likely run you thousands not hundreds of dollars. Unless you have a team of minions.

minions-just-had-the-second-biggest-opening-in-history-for-an-animated-film

 

If you can do all of those things well, you’d be better off to become a publicist. Publicists get paid a mean $60,400 per year as of May 2011, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. But I digress.

We’ve created this impression of ourselves. We wanted to sell something, anything, at any price, to get our preciously crafted words into other hands and minds so they might be appreciated by others as much as we appreciate them. We’re willing to give it away for free, because we know once someone hears our stories, they’ll pay whatever we ask to hear more, right…wrong. It’s crazy. It’s giving away your hard earned money in hopes that someone will pay more later. They won’t. They’ll just wait till your next sale. Because we have taught them that we will have one.

giphy (1)

 

Now, there is this whole culture of readers out there who won’t pay more than 99 cents for a novel, and free is better still. We created this culture. At any given point in time readers can find something for 99 cents or free that suits them, or not, and they are quick to let you know if not. Their biggest complaint being quality, which they most often define as “poor editing”. Readers want to beat writers to death with their books.

Rigoletto-Book-Throw

Don’t believe me, just google free or bargain priced books and see how many hits you get. Then go to any forum discussing the self-published.

Yet, that’s part of the promotional process…and it’s killing us.

There’s got to be a better way.

A couple of years ago, there were many calls for a collective of sorts and several efforts were made by people trying to organize self-published authors.

But I think that’s the wrong approach. It serves to further the divide.

Another approach:

A quality writer’s collective that promotes itself with both traditionally published and self-published authors whose books range in price from $2.99-$10.00. A web site store where readers could select quality self and traditionally published books that are reasonably priced. And quality authors would be promoted for starters. No reason why we can’t work with publishers to accomplish this. After all, we ARE publishers.

Oyster and Scribd have tried to do this and they are failing because they are not meeting their own standards for quality and they are attempting to get rich off of monthly subscriber fees.

The last eight books my husband ordered from Oyster and Scribd were hideous! He won’t even go there anymore, for traditionally published or self-published. And he’s getting frustrated, so frustrated that he told me my work is the best he’s read in a month and he reads a lot. So, I took that as a compliment. (As off-handed as it might have been, I know he meant well.)

The focus and promotion should be on Quality. Reasonable prices. No subscriber fees.

Gatekeepers (other author members) would not judge the content in the way that a developmental editor would, but no book would be accepted if it didn’t meet strict guidelines for copy-editing and proofing. Authors/publishers could pay a small fee to have their books reviewed for a set criteria. If the book is rejected, they wouldn’t be given but one opportunity to correct it, so there would be a great incentive to do it right the first time.

Word of mouth is supposed to be the very best marketing plan. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could promote ourselves and others in a way that makes everybody happy?

animated-belle-story-beauty-beast

So, what do you think?

Settle for this:

boxofshame

When our sales look like this:

Capture

Ideas, thoughts, suggestions?

Go Set A Watchman––Review

sknicholls:

I haven’t read this book yet, but I applaud Harper Lee and wish her much success. It is well deserved. I understand that many believe “To Kill A Mockingbird” was written by someone else, or at the least, heavily edited for marketability. It worked, and I will read her “original” with much due respect.

Originally posted on Jackie Mallon:

UnknownGo Set a Watchman is a must read. I’m so happy to say that. I wanted to enjoy it and enjoy it I did.

I happily traveled with Jean Louise/Scout back to her hometown. I couldn’t wait for it; bought the book on the day of its release, the anticipation heightened by the image of the train coming up the tracks on the book’s cover. Who ever thought we’d be taking this trip together?

Harper Lee spends about a hundred pages allowing Jean Louise to explore her old hometown, notice the changes, indulge in the nostalgia, infusing the first third of the book with a meandering, Alabama sultriness that might irritate some readers. In other words, the book starts off a bit slow.

Then it goes from zero to sixty and all the shocking layers of life in Maycomb during the years since Jean Louise has been gone are peeled…

View original 906 more words