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I Am Still Figuring Out Twitter

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My latest Twittersperiment has several sub-experiments running, but I’ll share what’s going on right now.

1. Permalinks. I was introduced to this method of retweeting recently. Retweets are supposed to be better than tweets for sharing other people’s information. Not sure why, but I know I get a lot more retweets since I started participating in this method. Here’s how it’s done, from the files of one of the retweet groups I belong to.

Step 1: Go to your Twitter profile and post a tweet as you normally would. (Make sure it is in 3rd person. No “Hey, check out my book” tweets please)

Step 2: Once your tweet is posted, click on “Expand,” then click on “Details.” Once you’ve clicked on “details,” your tweet should now be zoomed on your screen. You now have a perma-link at the top of your computer screen that you can copy. Copy that link.

Step 3: Paste that perma-link into the daily thread in the share group you belong to.

Step 4: Follow the links that the rest of the participants have pasted into the daily threads and retweet the tweet that the link takes you to. You must be logged into Twitter for this to work.

When all we do is copy and paste tweets, our Twitter profiles get clogged with a whole bunch of tweets that all look like they are from us originally. If you manually retweet for others, you look more professional and less like you’re only promoting your own books. Also, when tweets get retweeted a lot of times, they get seen by more people.

Another way to create a permalink is to post a tweet and then click on the time in the right-hand corner. It will say now if you just posted it, but you can do this with any tweet in your feed. The permalink screen comes up, and you copy and paste the URL.

2. I have kinda stopped following people. This may seem weird, but I am zeroing in on retweeters, not followers.

3. I subscribe to Social Oomph, a service that, among other things, sends you a list of people who retweeted your tweets. I try to go down that list, click my way to each tweeter’s feed, and retweet something he/she posted. I sometimes find I have  a long list of retweeters, many of whom I don’t know and don’t follow. But I still retweet something from them. And they keep retweeting me back. I also get notice of mentions and retweets from Twitter. I jump in and retweet those folks, too. Their tweets, not just their retweet of my tweet.

4. I note with concern that many people are using auto-retweet services. I don’t know if that means that all these tweets and retweets are fakeys going to fakeys. But if I go to a feed that has nothing from the person/profile but “Blah blah uses autoretweet”, I still go to the link in the profile and tweet whatever page that goes to.

5. The Hootlet app. I love this. I installed it on my browser, and I can tweet any page I go to, in fact, I can share it over up to five social networks at once. You sign up for a Hootsuite account but then just get the app and do your sharing and retweeting without ever going to Hootsuite. It works within Twitter to share across all the media you choose, too.

6. Tweet from Facebook. This sets up to automatically tweet your fb posts. Since you naturally talk about everyday, personal, and/or non-promotional things on facebook, it automatically makes your twitter feed look less full of promo stuff.

Please let me know what sharing and promotional tricks you use, and thanks for reading!

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Posted by on December 5, 2013 in promotional, publishing

 

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Review of Chadash Chronicles Book 1: Fool’s Errand by David G. Johnson

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4 Stars

If you love fantasy RPG games you will love this book. There aren’t so many characters that you get lost, but there is a rich diversity along with familiar types. Rogues and clerics, mages, and paladins dot the landscape, as well as cooks and bards and bad guys. Johnson has done some fine world-building. I appreciated the overall high moral tone along with the realistic enjoyment of a good drink and appreciation for a pretty girl (even if she does have black fur) by ordinary men with extraordinary determination and courage. If you expect a resolution, you apparently had better have book 2 on hand, because it’s still to come at the end of this piece. It does include a satisfactory step toward victory. My one warning is that Christian readers will need to extend a certain degree of grace to accept the presence of God and angels in a new world where the curse is not a factor, but this is a minor issue.

 

 
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Posted by on December 4, 2013 in book reviews, publishing

 

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Snippet from A Dodge, a Twist, and a Tobacconist, and A Dickens of a Reminder

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As we finished our lunch, instead of Rose, the thin, sallow girl I had learned was called Dulcinea, the Campbells’ adopted daughter, entered, bearing a cunningly carved elephant cup of fragrant wood brimming with frothy milk.
“Thank you, Dulcy,” Kera said warmly. I started, noticing that the child’s left hand was only a withered claw. She did not speak, either, just bobbed and awkward curtsy to both of us and left.

“Rose told me Doctor Mac rescued Dulcy from a hospital after her indigent mother died,” Kera sighed. “And Rose adopted her before they were married. Dulcy was the beginning of Rose’s ministry to orphans. She is so blessed to have those two as parents. All of these children are so blessed, to be covered in prayers and taught to praise.”

She looked wistfully out the window as Rose darted by, having apparently challenged Oliver to a race. The two had comets’ trails of children screaming and running joyfully after them.

“Doctor Twist spent his childhood starving, cleaning hemp and making coffin-linings. He told me the coffin-maker made him march in the funeral processions because he had such a sweet face and looked so like a mourning angel, wearing a black top-hat and bearing ostrich plumes. He said the man thought to have him made into a mute — that it would make him more valuable as a mourner and people would pay more for funerals. I thought my upbringing was a horror story.”

She fell silent and I saw that she was nodding off over the last of her milk. “Are you strong enough to get yourself off to bed?” I asked.

“I can manage.” Kera rose slowly and approached my bed. “Now I can kiss you and you need not fear me.” She bent down and placed her lips on my forehead. “Rest well, my father in Christ.”

Free sampler of the first book

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Book One, Narrated by Florizel of Bohemia                                          Book Two, with Oliver Twist as Narrator

dodge ebook 2525 redesigned legacy 2

 
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Posted by on December 2, 2013 in general writing, publishing

 

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“Why Are You Just Sitting on the Side of the Road?” — What Will You Die For?

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“Two weeks? You can’t tell me anything more – ?” Talia’s phone gave a bloop and she saw the message satellite signal lost flash on the screen before it went dark.

Talia pulled over to the side of the road and sat with her head on the steering wheel, praying with all her might for her aunt and uncle, and for clarity in this craziness. After all, they weren’t involved in some international spy mission. They were just digging holes in the ground! This couldn’t have anything to do with the Testaments, could it?

Talia realized suddenly that he felt really, really hot. She started to roll own her window, but the switch didn’t work with the engine off, of course. She started the car and cranked all the windows open. She pulled at her scarf and yanked down the zipper on her coat, but it didn’t help. Her vision started to blur.

“Ms Rodriguez? Are you okay? Why are you just sitting on the side of the road?”

Talia turned her head, so … so … slowly. Her neck hurt, and it felt so heavy. “”Oh … Clark ..I mean, Officer Johnson. I don’t know. I’ve had this cold, but I just … I feel so weak, and I can’t see straight … “

“Sit right there. I’m calling an ambulance,” Clark exclaimed.

“Oh, no …” Talia’s tongue felt so thick, she could hardly talk.

“No arguments. Don’t you move. We’re seeing lots of these cold things turning into serious cases of pneumonia. It’s nothing to mess around with.”

 
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Posted by on November 25, 2013 in general writing, publishing

 

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“Are you so selfish?” — another snippet from my Nano project

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“What?” Keith jumped up. “What are you saying? We’re supposed to take the kids’ Bibles away from them? Their prayer journals? Their memory cards?”

“There’s no need to be defensive.” Doctor Summers glared up at him. “Please be seated. You will only be borrowing them, to get them scanned. And we want materials from everyone in the community. Parents, grandparents, pastors – Anyone who studies the Bible. Don’t you see? This will become a resource people all over the world can use, for all time. Mr. Bradley, your prayers, your thoughts, your study of the Bible could teach someone in Thailand, Mali, Alaska – someone in a spaceship traveling to Mars – these insights will become eternal.”

“But it’s voluntary, right?” Talia asked. “People don’t have to give us their Bibles, do they?”

“This program fails if it doesn’t accomplish the critical goal of gathering all the possible data,” Doctor Summers insisted. “It must be completely inclusive to succeed. How can we say that only fifty percent, or seventy-five percent, or even ninety-eight percent of people’s Bible study information gives a complete picture of this vital topic?”

“What exactly do you mean by ‘this program fails’?” Keith’s dad demanded.

“It doesn’t fulfill the requirements,” Doctor Summers said. “It doesn’t qualify for the grants.”

“You mean additional grants,” Keith prompted.

“No, I mean any grants,” Doctor Summers responded.

“You mean we lose everything we’ve gotten from implementing the Bible as Literature program?” Principal Bradley choked.

“It’s clearly stated in the contract you signed that this is a graduated program, consisting of steps that must be followed. The program itself is voluntary, but you agreed to provide this information – complete information. Really, there’s nothing scary or unreasonable being asked for here. Are your Bible studies secret? Why does the idea of sharing them with the world disturb you? Are you that selfish?”

 
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Posted by on November 24, 2013 in general writing, publishing

 

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What Will You Die For … Snippet

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“Hey, not to insult you, but we could run down to the mall and get you some clothes – my treat. You’d have some clean stuff to wear, anyway, sans bubbles. Jo-Jo really soaked you. Sorry.”

“No, I always have extra clothes in my duffle in the car. I was just so tired I didn’t think about how I must look. I’ll go get it …”

“Oh, yeah, the Doomsday Dufflebag.” Keith seemed to be probing to Talia looked up at him and said nothing. He recovered the fumble pretty quickly. “No, please, let me get it. I just want you to know, I haven’t heard Joana laugh like that since she got sick. Dad and I didn’t think about how good it would be for her to have a real friend again. People get so creeped out by how she is. We never hear from her old friends anymore, except she chats with them online sometimes. They don’t come to see her.”

Keith bolted away. Talia started crying again, and barely got herself under control by the time Keith knocked and handed her the duffle. She stretched up and kissed him on the point of his chin. He kissed her back, just a peck, on the top of her head, like he had Joana. “Okay, good night, then,” he stammered, and fled.

The debate within herself didn’t last long. Talia tossed the duffle on the bed and headed into the bathroom, twisting the knobs on the whirlpool. The sound of sweet, tinkling brass camel bells sounded over the rush of water. She hurried back to the bed and dug in the bag for her tablet.

“Hey Talia, where are you? The GPS on the Tesla is showing a location I don’t know.” Talia loved hearing that bear growl voice, but his words made her temper spike.

“Uncle Remmy, you set the GPS to spy on me?”

“I’ve never spied on you, my baby niece, just looked out for you best as I could. What are you doing that would make spying necessary?”

Talia flushed. “Nothing! Some kids from school missed the bus and needed a ride home. One of them lives pretty far away. Another teacher came along, and then the principal invited me for dinner. I’m spending the night at his house.”

“You’re spending the night at the principal’s house? Really? Were you that naughty on the first week of school?”

“Uncle Remmy,” Talia started to giggle. “He has a handicapped daughter, and I helped get her ready for bed. It’s really late, and I’m really tired, so they offered to let me stay.”

“Yeah, it is really late, isn’t it. I’m sorry, Tchatchki. I never know what time it is. Any new information about the Testaments?”

“I keep finding the same stuff over and over again, Popo. It’s like there’s a wall around Spain, hiding everything new.”

“That’s good, though. That means they have something to hide.”

“That’s what I thought, too. I know they’re there. I knw they are. Anyway, how’s the dig going? I didn’t expect you to even have satellite there.”

“Don’t tell the government, but I’m bouncing off one of theirs. It won’t be in position long, so I’ll have to wrap this up. Any problems with that Bible course yet?”

“We just had the first class today. I almost messed it up really bad, Popo, but Keith walked in and fixed everything.”

“Who’s Keith?”

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“The principal said I had to have a co-teacher. His son, Keith, is the one he picked. It’s good, because he’s really strong in the Science areas. And he’s super-good at discipline, too, which is how he fixed my mess-up. Two kids go saved, Popo! Right after class!”

“Praise God. Praise God. But little one, you will tell me if there’s any trouble, and you know what kind of trouble I mean. We need this trip to Spain. We need it badly. But we need it hiding in plain sight. No one can know the real significance of these Testaments.”

“I understand, Popo. I remember everything we talked about. What I’ve told people makes it sound like they don’t really exist, or we don’t know for sure what they really are, anyway. They have no clue.”

“Peace, perfect peace, Natalia. Get some rest.”

 
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Posted by on November 23, 2013 in general writing, publishing

 

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Character Interview with Sebastian from Dana Pratola’s Second “Descended” Book

SEBASTIAN-500

AMAZON: http://www.amazon.com/DESCENDED~Sebastian-Dana-Pratola-ebook/dp/B00GM7NKMA
BN: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/Dana-Pratola?store=allproducts&keyword=Dana+Pratola

Men like Sebastian want only one thing, and Natalie has vowed not to give it to him. Yes, he’s gorgeous, intelligent and heroic, but he’s also a constant reminder that she isn’t good enough for him. Can she outrun a club owner who wants her dead when she’s weighed down by the failures of her past?

His whole life, Sebastian has viewed women one way – as marvelous distractions. But when Natalie enters his life, he’s forced to see the world – and women – in a new light. Teaming with Jett Cestone, they enter a world of sex traffickers to rescue young innocents. But only Natalie can rescue him and give him the one thing his heart needs.

Character Interview for Sebastian

Hi, we’re interviewing Mr. Sebastian Gray from Dana Pratola’s newest book Descended: Sebastian. It’s the second in a series. I’ve read the first one, so I’m guessing this one will also deal with a man who is more than ordinarily powerful, and perhaps a woman who might just show him his power isn’t going to be enough to deal with her in quite the way he plans.

1. What do you do for a living, Mr. Gray, and how’s business? I’m an architect, and business is fantastic, thanks for asking.

2. You’ve been seen with some remarkably beautiful women, but none for very long. What’s your secret to fighting them off, especially since you basically propositioned every one at that Las Vegas bar the other night? Hmm. Fighting them off…not what I’m known for. But when I was with a woman, and our time was up, I was always honest. Right from the start. I had no desire to mislead anyone.

3. That flight from Las Vegas must have been terrifying. At least one passenger said you appeared to be meditating or chanting. Does that relax you, or was there some other reason for doing it? >> I have no idea what you’re talking about.

4. There seems to be one woman you not only didn’t try to fight off, but actually may have kidnapped? What makes Natalie different? >> Nat…she’s…. I don’t know if I can answer that. She just is.

5. Some of us like to exercise the “phone a friend” option at odd times in our lives, but it seems especially odd that you brought Mike in to help you solve the problem of Natalie. What’s special about him? >> Mike’s been my friend for years. We’re more like brothers than anything and when I need him, he’s always there. Sometimes he does the thinking for me. Helps me see things I might have missed because I’m too eager, or not paying attention. I’ve never known loyalty like his.

6. What did you think when the police showed up, and who did you think Matt was? >> I thought Matt was Natalie’s boyfriend. I had the impression he did too. But when the cops charged in, all I could think was, great, I’m going to prison and I dragged Mike down with me.

7. What do you think made Natalie claim she came to your apartment of her own free will? >> I want to believe it was just because she thought I was hot, but I know she had her reasons, pertaining to Matt.

8. Who would want to, or have the power to, interfere with your plans for Natalie? >> Only one person could try to interfere. Jett Cestone. But I can handle him.

9. Do you think it’s going to be easy to get rid of her? >> I have no intention of getting rid of Natalie. Ever.

10. Do you really want to?

 

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