Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Nicked off Facebook...

“'s shocking revelation is that Amazon allows sellers, who you have given negative feedback to email you and offer you a cash enticement to take your negative review down!!!!”

Do I believe this? It seems silly enough to be true. Would I give money to someone to retract their negative feedback? I’d have to give a damn first. Writer Rule number one – or it should be – some people will hate what you write. Writer Rule number two - develop a thick skin. Don't ask for retractions. Toughen up. General Rule Number three – don’t email a writer and ask for money back. It's tacky. If you didn't like the writer's style then move on. You're not going to like everyone. General Rule number four - one exclamation mark is enough. We get it. If you're that alarmed by what you read then do something more than put it on facebook for people to 'like.'

Okay, that's about the only rules I adhere to...

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Got it...

Years ago when the movie The Bridges of Madison County first came out I watched it and thought, like many other women at that time, “Get out of the car and go to him. Don’t miss out on the love of your life.” When she didn’t get out of the car and she stayed with her husband and let probably the only man who would ever really know her go, I decided it was a dumb movie and I’d never watch it again. But I did, just recently, and being older and a tad wiser, I understood more what was going on. Just because you need somebody doesn’t mean they can ever be a part of your life. I get it. Life does not work out neat and pretty and you deny need because, at the time, despite the pain, it’s the right thing to do. Sometimes you can’t have the person you need. Life is not a happily ever after romance story. Maybe that's why we rely on the fantasy of them so much because the reality is hard. Yes, a profound thought considering there is no coffee in the house….

Monday, 27 February 2012

Smashing it..

So, I’ve been working on putting all the Scarlet Harlot Publishing books on Smashwords. It’s a lot of work to those of us of the half arsed persuasion. Everything has to be a certain way or you don’t get to forge on to the next level. Yes, it’s kind of like a game. And yes, Smashwords has also been caught up in the supposed Paypal witch hunt but like All Romance Ebooks and unlike Bookstrand, they haven’t kicked Indie authors and publishers to the curb without advising what they require. No, I have no respect for Bookstrand at all. Fear and censorship are not admirable qualities to me.

And yeah, lots of writer type people are still not going to be happy with what goes down with book sites but to me that just means finding another angle, another workable solution. There is a way around everything and if there’s not make your own way. No one said you had to go in a straight line now did they? And despite theories to the contrary Paypal does not rule the world.

Rules? Yes, follow them up to a point and then go about your own sweet way smashing them.

Sunday, 26 February 2012


I’ve been thinking about something someone mentioned over lunch on Friday. They were talking about a phone application where single men and women can hook up for sex. It was quoted as being a ‘sausage-fest’. Couple of thoughts struck me about this, in light of the current erotica-is-apparently-bad-for-you debate in ebookland where books on sausage-fests abound, it makes you wonder about the sale and use of such an application. Reading erotica is bad but hitting a button on your phone and ordering stranger sex isn’t. I also wonder about AIDS. Remember years ago when AIDS was at the forefront of deciding if you’d have sex, with who, how and what layer of latex was best? I don’t see the discussion or debate around anymore. Have we become complacent? And as for romance? Personally, I think you can do what you like with your life, your body and your thoughts but dialling a booty call with an unknown ‘sausage’ is really not romantic is? Maybe I’m getting old…or maybe I want more – a lot more – and random sausage ain’t it.

Saturday, 25 February 2012


....Some days you just can't get rid of a bomb...words to live by.

Friday, 24 February 2012

I woke up this morning ... various emails about ‘what is happening to erotica?’ – and - the need to ‘defend erotica.’

What is happening to erotica? Stuffed if I know. It seems it’s a case of looking for ‘reds under the beds’. Those who write it are pissed at the sudden puritan morality that seems to have struck ebook land. Fucking hell people, its sex in a story. It cannot hurt you unless you go out and actively do something stupid and sexually impossible and let’s face it erotica is just that. Fanatsy. A kink. A thrill and nine times out of ten bloody impossible scenarios. See Jane have ménage/bondage sex with five shapeshifter wolves. See Jane have fun. See Jane get tired…very, very tired from aching legs and a sore back. See Jane ask the wolves to stop moulting or shave more. See Jane decide it’s all too hard having sex with hairy wolves and she has sex with cowboys…see Jane get spur marks...seriously, if Jane is that stupid then no one can help Jane. No one can blame erotica for the actions they choose to take. Woman up. You have sex with wolves? That’s your choice. The author didn't make you do it.

Erotica cannot hurt paypal, credit card companies, book depositories or those with starched knickers and closed minds. The call from some authors is 'defend erotica.' No, I see no reason to defend it. If I did I would have to defend dildos, cock rings, lingerie, alcohol, strippers, Thunder from Down Under, burlesque, marriage, waxing, drugs, movies, back seats of cars, sexy men, deep and meaningful looks and sexy words from a person's lips. All of that can lead to sex. As for being told not to link the current slamming of erotica with censorship? Excuse me, but I come fully formed out of the box with my own opinions and beliefs and being ‘told’ to do something makes the whole censorship issue valid. I issue a polite ‘Bugger off’ to that.

Erotica – love it, hate it, legs closed or open, come or don’t come, imagine or refuse to, sex/no sex, read it, chuck it, moralize over it or don’t give a crap. This is just a storm in a tea cup that will blow over when ebook profits go down and the thinking turns back to selling more erotica because monetary greed beats sexual need.

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Not too shabby…

So I was a boot camp this morning and we were all lying on the grass at the Cairns Esplanade with our legs in the air, stretching calf muscles, hamstrings and doing leg things that were torturing our abs. Anyway, in between sweating and grunting, I looked up at my lycra covered legs and I thought to myself, ‘you know, you’ve got good, straight pins for a chunky gal.’ I was quiet impressed with myself as I had never considered my legs before. They look pretty good at that angle. I must consider viewing the world like that more often. See? In the midst of pain and sweat there’s always a bright side.

Dear Indie Author....

Dear Indie Author,

We have made a decision to no longer maintain most indie author accounts at Therefore, we are deactivating all titles associated with your account and no new uploads will be accepted. Your final distribution payment will be disbursed to you within 30 days and your account will be closed. During this time you will still be able to access your sales report from your account.

BookStrand will focus on its core business by servicing accounts of publishers with clear submission and publishing guidelines that best serve our targeted audience. Our customer base was successfully built on this premise, and it's time to go back to our roots.

While we understand you may be disappointed in losing a distribution outlet for your work, there are still several outlets that currently accept self-published titles. We wish you the best in your endeavors.



Well here’s the thing Bookstrand, I already deactivated my account so deactivating something that no longer is valid seems like an overkill to me. Added to that you have killed off a lot of good Indie authors who have written many great stories that have nothing to do with sex. Did I mention OVERKILL?

Freedom of speech and equality – you don’t got it. Equality in publishing is not about censorship. But hey, they’re your rules and you don’t have to believe in freedom and equality if you don’t want to.

And going 'back to their roots'? It fascinates me that Bookstrand is the home of one woman getting taken/shagged/fucked by five men – usually shapeshifters/cowboy - stories. This is okay apparently and it’s not obscene regardless of what sexual practice is used against the one woman. Double standards much?

Funny old world ebook publishing.

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Wankers R Us....

So I rang the ATO – Australian Taxation Office – aka Anal People Unite – as last year I paid too much tax and receiving a tax instalment letter telling me I should again pay too much seemed a tad odd to me. After the usual press 57 buttons, drink a cup of coffee, swear at government departments and their on hold music while going through the receipts in my purse, I got this woman who basically indicated that yes, I did pay too much last year and yes they expected me to pay in advance again. Why? Well, you’ll get a tax refund next year. But I want to use MY money now. Well, you can’t. Why not? Well, we’ve set it up so you have to pay. Okay then – change it. Oh we can’t do that. That means we have to vary it and varying it means you’re trying to not pay your taxes and you’ll get penalized and have to pay a fine. Fined for not overpaying when I don’t have to? Correct – you don’t want to cheat the government do you? I said have you listened to anything you’ve just said to me? Her response was that she didn’t have to. She was employed to tell me the regulations and that if I didn’t overpay I’d be a tax cheat. Riiiight. I have to overpay so dole bludgers and 17 year old baby making machines don’t have to get a job. No, naturally I’m not accepting that. I escalated the complaint. The staff member said I shouldn’t do that. Why not? Because you’re not supposed to. My response? Honey, I do lots of stuff I’m not supposed to. Wankers.

Monday, 20 February 2012

Conspiracy theory or a load of bollocks?

I say bollocks to the explanation that indie authors and publishers get their books banned or pulled because paypal or credit card companies do not want consumers buying contentious stories yet you can buy dildos, cock rings, vibrators, anal toys and god knows what else with your paypal and credit card. I think it’s always easier to blame someone else. It makes the one who is placing blame look like they have no choice. The vast majority of people in the Western word always have a choice. If you object to something on moral grounds then say it. Don’t hide behind piss weak excuses.

I do believe that the rise of indie authors and publishers is pissing off some people. Too bad, so sad I say. Modern technology gives people – writers – choices. Be confined within the limits of what someone else dictates? Or do what you know and believe is right and in doing so avoid all the bollocks? And banning books or stories? Censorship only enhances the allure of those stories. Thank you so much for that.

Wherever there’s a will, there’s a way.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Just you?

I took some time off and shot up to Port Douglas – 50 mins from home – and did an overnighter. I just needed a moment away from stuff so I had time to think and not do. I got an excellent local’s rate at one of the resorts.The beach was fab but it is FNQ (Far North Queensland) and everything is always good in FNQ. I did get a couple of swims in before the beaches were closed due to stingers and I sat and stared at the waves for a long time and thought about stuff. Waves - amazing, life changing and restorative things.

A few of thoughts...

1. I loathe plastic key cards. I like real keys that have substance. See pic. My keys versus pissy hotel card. Rarely do I lose real keys. Plastic ones disappear the minute they hit my handbag.

2. Why are they going with those dispensers now in all the hotels? How am I supposed to get supplies for the gym? Where have all the freebies gone? Long time passing?

3. I wonder at people who cannot fathom why anyone travels alone. I do. I like it. I adhere to the 'she who travels fastest, travels alone' policy. Is it just you staying? Dining? Swimming? Standing on my head? Chanting a Himalayan pop song from the balcony of my room? Yes. It is. And I am not 'just’ anyone. I swear, we accept gay and lesbians more than we accept sole travellers. People are different. Not everyone needs to have their hand held.

In conclusion, I know the following – I'm pretty damn good as I am. And just me? Yeah and get over it.

Saturday, 18 February 2012

Port bound....

I am in Port Douglas - - this weekend. It’s literally just 50 minutes up the road from where I live. Why? I think the picture above says it all. Working at getting it right. Life – work – people – balance – me. Hoping you are the same.

Friday, 17 February 2012

Benefits of Friday…

- It’s good for your skin as you can relax because it’s almost the weekend.
- No boot camp on Saturday – well, there probably is but not for me.
- You don’t have to work hard because it would be wrong to sprain anything before the weekend.
- Calories don’t count on a Friday because it’s all to do with mathematics, happiness and something else vitally scientific that makes
calories rendered useless.
- World peace is doable on a Friday and would be but for the fact world leaders are not genetically human and don’t understand Fridays therefore rendering world peace useless.
- You dislike less people on Friday because it’s Friday.
- If they made a calendar of just Fridays people would actually never be sick.
- Stupid policies don’t count. They’re filed in ‘b’ for bin.
- Everyone is beautiful on a Friday – probably why there are so many hook ups.
- The time space continuum means Fridays do go slower when anticipation is higher therefore it’s best to feign boredom to confuse the time space continuum thing.
- Lastly – say what you like on a Friday. Dare all. Be all.

Wednesday, 15 February 2012


Today was deadly dull at work – even more deadly dull than normal – and I was surrounded by the walking dead. I call them that because I came very close to nudging some of them with a pencil to see if I needed to call an ambulance. But some of them are so dull that the thought of touching them could mean the dullness would rub off on me so instead I balanced the pencil on my nose until that got boring which generally is after about 2 minutes or when the phone insists on ringing. I followed that trick up by emailing contacts and acquaintances around Cairns to remind them that I am looking for another job and that “I’m dazzling, smart,charming and can balance a pencil or pen on my nose.” The response was ‘we know.’ Good. After that I tried to do some writing at work but the characters kept yawning in the middle of sex, his foot fell asleep, she snored and he rolled
over on his stomach and said “mugalumpwallah…hmmm…zzzz.” I just don’t see that selling. So then, I wrote a list on the pros and cons of me having an uncomplicated, one night stand of pure, dirty sex. The list became so long and complicated that I decided to go back to balancing the pencil on my nose.

I can honestly say the most productive thing I did today at work was to put this picture of a jellyfish on my desktop. Yeah…job well done.

Not liking Stevie...

When I was a kid, The Mary Tyler Moore show used to be on TV. She was the preppy woman who was always perky and pretty and tried to do everything right. Even as a kid I knew that was wrong. I liked her neighbour Rhoda - different, mouthy and streetwise.

Anyway, a situation came up yesterday that reminded me of that TV show. I can’t remember the story in full but Mary had to deal with this kid called Stevie whom everyone liked and thought adorable. She didn’t and that was hard for a good girl who wanted to do everything right and upset no one. In the end, she had to break down and admit out loud that despite everyone else liking this ratshit kid, she didn’t. It was a bold move for Mary.

Here’s what I think – to hell with being politically correct and worrying about what others think. If you don’t agree with something, say it. Nothing ever gets changed until you do. If you don’t like someone forced upon you as someone you must like? Say “I don’t like Stevie” and don’t compromise your comfort for another’s.

Me? I spoke those immortal words and shocked quite a few. As for that '
Stevie'? He shut up and sat down.

Tuesday, 14 February 2012


Love is a grave mental disease ~ Plato

Monday, 13 February 2012


I was reading someone’s profile page on facebook and it said, amongst the languages they spoke, they had the ability to speak ‘American English.’ I found that interesting. English, other than the odd vowels that some countries add or remove, is English. Despite the drawl or the twang, it’s still English. I’m an Aussie. I wouldn’t call it Australian English. Yes, we have our own form of slang that many can’t understand and we have a lovely, distinctive way of speaking but we still speak English. I find it interesting, in a world that while coming together faster and faster through distance and technology, we have people who hold fast to ideas like ‘American English’. Is it then separated into states and provinces?

Yes, keep your own culture and beliefs. They’re important, but if a large percent of the world’s population speak the same language labelling
it as being something that it’s not makes me wonder at the thoughts, beliefs and actions of the labeller.

Sunday, 12 February 2012

Blah magic...

So, I had been feeling pretty damn down lately due to various reasons I don’t want to go into. I was dragging my arse around and wondering the point of a lot of things and when I looked in the mirror all I could see was this dreadfully plain looking woman and that didn’t help. The plain thing
isn’t new. I’ve been plain for years and accepted that as a fact. It’s just when you’re feeling emotionally blah and crap, looking like Olive Oyl’s fat sister doesn’t help. Then I went to my regular hairdressing appointment today. And magic happened. No, it’s not the colouring, chemicals and cutting etc. It’s just dealing with professional people who understand that you want more out of who you are. You don’t have to explain stuff to them. They know why you’re there.

I feel better. Not great. But better. Feeling down? Don’t look to friends that you have to explain everything to especially when you can't. They’re probably never going to get it as they’re too close to you. Go to the hairdresser. They get it.

Suck it up...

I had a short talk to a wise, straight forward friend last night. It made me realize I need to go into suck-it-up mode and accept that I cannot always have stuff that I want. Blessed are the real friends who point out the obvious. We all need that.

Saturday, 11 February 2012

Read one, read ‘em all…

So I had been reading this series from a well known best selling author. It’s a load of bollocks. Why? Because in all 6 books the heroine is exactly the same – in huge trouble, delicate like fine porcelain yet can fuck like a hooker and can tame terrible beasts just by touching them with a hand – you know, before the hooker thing. The hero is tortured, angst ridden, no one will ever understand him and he has a sexual appetite that would scare an elephant. The books are so bloody predictable that I cannot get more than half way through book 3. This begs the question…actually several. Do we buy these books because of the hype and are sucked in by advertising? Do women, predominantly, want to read the same story over and over because it is predictable and they don’t have to think about complex scenarios? Are we so desperate to read hot sex scenes that we’re not particularly worried about an actual plot? How they hell do these writers get away with it? Good luck that they do as they’re making money and I cannot disrespect that. But seriously? Are we that brain dead as readers that we don’t care anymore? Just slap a best seller banner on the front and have 6 stories in a row where either a misunderstood, loner heroine or a gay man, in desperate trouble, is going to be protected from the local bullies and shagged senseless by 5 interchangeable cowboys/shapeshifters/vampires who ‘know what’s best for her/him.’

We seem to have lost the plot.

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Head job...

So there’s this manager type person at work who wants to get inside my head. Why? Probably some psychological bullshit to justify his existence in the office and point me out as odd and unusual – I am – and to make himself seem normal when in reality he wants to sit in a corner and suck his thumb because life scares him as he feels like he’ll never be good enough. See? I studied Psychology in University. I have a BA in it. What that means is I can dazzle people with technically Freudian penis envy type statements to leave them wondering about who they are, do they need a penis and what time does the bar open and “can I bring Noel, my duck?” That’s psychology for you. Make people believe they have a problem them slug them heaps of money to solve it. Noel is a good name for a duck…
Anyway…where was I? Oh yes – the head job person. I have explained to him that he is intruding in stuff that has nothing to do with him and that worlds could collide if he insisted on his course of action to understand me – better to back off and buy a duck called Noel.
Want to head job someone? Think down and leave the upstairs alone because no one has to explain themselves to you.

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Nudie Run...

Mother-of-seven regrets going nude on Greyhound bus, which results in a good behaviour bond.

I don’t understand nudie runs. Why? What for? Freedom? Self expression? Pissed as a newt? Nothing good ever comes of it.

And I absolutely do not understand cooking in the nude…talk about hair in food…yeeesh…

Tuesday, 7 February 2012


....I’m in the pursuit of it at the moment. No, it doesn’t mean I’m going to shut up and not say what I think or not do what I want nor do actual work during work hours. Come on. Get real. Let’s not get crazy. All that would kill me. I’m trying to transform my Greco-Roman ruins body into a temple that doesn’t have doom in the title. To this end I’m running and eating fish. Lots of, not fried...the fish that for the running? I'm mainly frazzled and sweaty.

No, not preaching at anyone. I’m just an ordinary yet fantastically, amazing woman who is making some changes. Benefits of eating fish? Cows grin at you. Go on. Make a cow happy.

Monday, 6 February 2012

I’m fascinated…

…with these TV adverts where a bunch of yanks, usually with incredibly false smiles, appear on Aussie TV and try and tell me, a woman who has worn a bra since she was 11 years old that they have come up with this whizz bang phenomenal bra that will change my life and I can throw all the others away and live my life in harmony. If that’s not enough to make me want to buy it they then trot women who have supposedly bought what is effectively a sports bra to announce how this bra has changed their lives for the better and they are so much happier with their boobs. Here’s what I think. We send a load of Ah Bras and Genie Bras over to the various warring hotspots in the world and we dump loads of them out of helicopters because they seem to make everyone incredibly happy and fulfilled. I believe if they can make every woman on the planet happy with their boobs – massively huge undertaking that - then truly they should be used for world peace. Mr Obama? Are you listening? Probably cheaper than bullets and you get three different colours for one fantastic price…try it. If you’re not happy they’ll refund your money. Can you do that with bullets?

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Of late...

…I have been noticing a couple of things happening with ebooks. The first is the word ‘fuck’ is appearing in the titles of many stories. I find this interesting as it seems to have overtaken ‘wolf’ in the title. I also wonder why the word ‘fuck’ in a title is more acceptable than showing nipples on a cover. Both indicate sex yet only one seems to upset the ebook police. Why is that? Is it because ‘fuck’ is part of our common vernacular but for god sake keep your nipples to yourself?

The other thing that interests me is ebook pricing. $2.99 for a 3500 word story – and call it what you want in your own mind but under 20,000 words is a story. I find the prices authors/publishers are applying to their stories are ridiculous. Yes, yes, I realize you had to get someone to do a cover and edit and the author spent probably half a day writing the 3500 – 5000 word epic that was supposedly torn from their angst ridden soul but that’s your problem. Why does a reader have to pay $2.99 for what should be a 0.99 cent book and nine times out of ten they’re not even going to see the cover on their ebook reader? Hmmm?


I went for an early morning swim at the lagoon on the Cairns Esplanade then followed this with coffee, sitting on the wall watching the tide come in. It was overcast, humid but peaceful. So bloody peaceful. I thought once more how much my life has changed since I packed up everything I owned, chucked in my job and headed off to a new life. There is a measure of peace I hadn't ever imagined I would have. I owe nothing to no one and I answer only to myself. That’s priceless.

People are always moaning about how they’re "not lucky" and that others are. I say bollocks. Luck and peace is yours if you have the guts to take a chance. Stop whining. Start taking chances. You’re in charge of your own destiny. Get out there and take the risk.

Saturday, 4 February 2012

Dirty Sexy Yours....

...out now through Scarlet Harlot Publishing.

Ah, Inspiration…

Yesterday, at boot camp, I was lying flat on my stomach. I was dirty, sweaty, hot and the grass I was lying on was saturated because it was raining. On either side of me were two nicely built, hot gentlemen who was very polite and smiling and we chatted as we waited to launch into 10 push ups and then a sprint, that we would have to do ten times in a row. I thought to myself “This isn’t so bad…"

Thursday, 2 February 2012

No birthday cake for you!

So, the other day at work it was someone’s birthday and we forgot or didn’t know and everyone looked at me and I said what? They had this half arsed theory that I should have known because Tinkerbell, who used to be in my place and lasted two seconds before scarpering after doing a crap job, used to have a list of birthdays and she would produce cakes for these occasions and I expect people oohed and ahhed in appreciation. The question was then asked of me, had I made up a birthday list with the names of the people – who range in age from 25 to 50 – for birthdays. No. Was I going to? No. Why? Because frankly I’ll forget, I have other stuff to do – let’s face it if I have time to stuff around with a birthday list I’d rather use that on the work internet for personal business - and basically you’re all grown ups. I did advise that I was happy for someone else to make a list and take Tinkerbell’s place. This apparently ruins the surprise. How I’m not sure but I did point out that forgetting and not getting a cake was also a surprise so maybe we continue with that tradition. On further questioning I discovered that no one really cared whose birthday it was as long as they got something to eat. Ah. Of course. Offices – hot beds of intrigue? No – just greedy people sitting on their arses and contemplating what to eat next. No surprise there.

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

It's huge...

So, I stopped on the way home from work and bought two huge pots of bamboo. Why? Because I could. They were so huge that as I was wheeling the trolley through Bunnings, mega Aussie hardware store, I couldn’t see where I was going cause I’m short and they were huge. I got to the check out and the check out dude said “They’re huge.” Correct. I wheeled them over to Verity, my non huge car, and stopped and thought about the follies of my life. Think big, buy huge then contemplate after the fact how to cart it small. I ended up putting the bamboo in the front passenger seat on the floor. It took up that, part of the back and the windscreen. But I live in Cairns and we drive like cowboys so what the hell. I’ll use the Cairns excuse. It was an interesting drive, me in my small, lime green car, peeking out through bamboo. I told my father about it over the phone. The ex-Viet Nam Special Forces man said “Watch out for Viet Cong.”

Life…it’s huge man.