The biggest scam in publishing.
I've made many mistakes in my struggle to get a book published, but none was worse than contacting Xlibris publishing; they are nothing more than thieves and scam artists.
Out of curiosity, I googled them last night, to see if they were still active as the last time I heard about them was several years ago when they had a dispute with their distributors for non-payment of costs, nothing has changed.
If you don't believe me, check out the site (Pissed Customer), on there you'll find page after page of complaints about these people.
Years ago, when I helped people, I was asked to edit a book that they had edited the book after I told the author about their practices; he sent me the first pages.
I started but got no further than the first page as the editing in hand was giving me a severe migraine; to get the book readable, I would have needed to write the story from scratch. It didn't help that he'd written the story as one block of over 35 lines with no pauses.
There was every error in writing you could imagine from the wrong capitalization of words to bad grammar, and it was not picked up by their editing staff.
Two stories in an anthology.
I forgot that several years ago, I had two ghost stories published in an anthology. The reason is it took me ages to track down the book online, and I rewrote the stories a few months later for sale on Amazon and Draft2Digital.
I don't expect to see any benefits from having my Twitter tweet published in an issue of Premier Christianity magazine, but publicity is its reward in my view, and this is another feather in my cap.
I have to say that PC has improved this month, I am still not certain if I will get a renewal for my subscription next year, but it is looking more toward me renewing than not renewing.
A fitting description for me.
I fail to find a more apt title for myself than the Keeper of Lost Causes because that is how I feel about the last four years of my life as a writer, as I tried, in vain, to boost my e-book sales www.amazon.com/-/e/B007U50BOI.
The keeper will be deleting hundreds of short stories this week from an old USB stick I found locked away, it is hard for me to believe I once wrote more in an afternoon than I do in a month now, but that is what dejection is like.
The need for closure.
I will be ending my time as a writer soon, and I am contemplating bringing several stories to an end, not at all pleasant, for what reason?
There are several reasons -
No interest from the reading public.
No sales for my e-books.
A lack of interest on my part caused by the above reasons.
I left some stories open in the hope that sales for the e-books would encourage me to write a sequel, but nothing happened.
Years ago, writing a character off would have caused me grief, but not anymore as nobody is reading my stories.
The ghosts don't dance because the drive that once flowed in me has left me.
Like the people in the image, I feel at a loss as to how to move on, but I will find a way to move on after this decade of disappointment.
The death of a character.
I don't find it difficult to comprehend the change in my writing, after all, none of my e-books have sold in the last three years, and this leads me to a situation that years ago would have upset me - killing of a beloved character in a story - but not now.
The situation first comes to show seven years ago when friends who were following the adventures of my hero (Mark Johnson) got worried that after a bad week I'd kill off their hero; in the end, I spent days trying to write a gruesome end, but I never could do it.
The next time was when I had to kill off a character who was dying slowly in my second sci-fi series (The Word); I knew his story needed a heroic death to give his life meaning, but I cried for days after writing his finale.
Now, I woke this morning with an ending for my romance that I had not foreseen, and feel no remorse if I write the death of Kim Altland from "A Homecoming," after all the book has been on sale for two years and not sold.
I haven't decided how to end "The Reunion - www.alsdominion.co.uk/the-reading-room/the-reunion," or even if I shall end it, nobody cared what happened in the end.
Brexit and beyond.
Brexit was never about what we could do with the money we save; it was always about having the money available to benefit the UK.
One of the first things we need to do is to pay the Nurses, Carers, Emergency services and the Armed Forces a living wage. Along with this, we should pay more to people with a disability and living help from a charity.
Why are the politicians talking about a withdrawal agreement, when the only agreement to be discussed is how the French are going to pay the UK and the USA for their incompetence in both World Wars?
History is repeating itself as the UK is being expected to pay for another capitulation to the Germans by a French government.
One of the bigger issues of today is the rise in knife crime; one way to combat this is when we leave give the Police a big pay rise to encourage and have the government back the force to encourage more young people to enroll. Also, stopping so many non-UK residents should increase the opportunity for the youngsters to get a job and work for their future.
Not even the price of a cup of coffee.
$1 a day is all would take to make me happy, and give me encouragement to write again; sadly, most months I don't even earn $0.40 a week for my time writing.
You would think with over 35 e-books on sale on both Amazon and Draft2Digital earning $1 a day would be easy, but it is anything but easy.
People are happy to read my free blog but won't pay a nickel to give me hope for my e-books.This raises the question, I wonder how many of you would read these pages if I was to impose a fee?
Relying on charity
Like the majority of people in the UK, Brexit will have little, if any impact on my life; when you live on or below the poverty line what concerns the rich is of little note to you.
I don't have a bank account in the EU.
I can't afford a vacation, let alone one in the EU.
I don't eat a lot of food from the EU, or drive a car.
When you rely on help from charities to pay your bills, you have nothing to worry over as you have lost it already.
Escape from the mundane life I lead.
For the last ten years, I used my gift as a writer to enable me to escape from the mundanity of my life, and the ever-increasing financial stress my life involves.
Now I've stopped, I feel I have no escape to save myself, but at the same time, I cannot afford the software and the running costs for the enhanced blog as my e-books www.amazon.com/-/e/B007U50BOI and www.draft2digital.com/book/ never sold in any quantity.
I keep thinking of ending the stories I have on file - www.alsdominion.co.uk/home/alan-places-unwritten-stories - if only for some relief, but I keep asking myself who cares www.alsdominion.co.uk/the-reading-room/who-cares?
I won't be writing after April, but I have found my sanctuary in being a virtual tourist - www.alsdominion.co.uk/home/a-virtual-tourist - www.alsdominion.co.uk/the-reading-room/my-life-as-a-virtual-tourist.
Beauty comes from within.
It is only my opinion, but I would much rather see a lady who knows how to enhance her charms with as little make-up as little; I have never been a fan of ladies who use masses of lipstick especially bright red.
There is nothing wrong with enhancing what the Lord has given you, in my view, but I am against adding for the sake of money, that is one reason why I have never considered plastic surgery, and I never will, even if it meant improving my life.
The exception is if you are born with a deformity, or a noticeable birthmark as one of my cousins was.