Wednesday, September 10, 2014
It's waaay too hard.
To be honest I'd rather devote that extra time to writing my book. Maybe it won't be as successful because I don't have a prior fan base but I really don't care.
Tuesday, September 9, 2014
It has only taken me since the 19th July, 2009 to finally figure it all out. Now that I'm an expert, I feel compelled to share my expertise with EVERYONE!! (mainly so they can sign up for a twitter account and follow me).
Firstly, since I've been making a concerted effort to tweet, follow trends and comment on famous peoples tweets, I have managed to increase my own followers by 4%. Yes. I have risen from 25 followers to 26 followers in the last 3 days.
It may not seem like much but if every 3 day's my followers increases by 4% then I calculate that by...... actually I don't feel like calculating.... but I reckon that I will quickly begin to approach Ashton Kutcher in the popularity stakes.
So let me explain twitter.
A tweet is kind of like a FB status but if you want to tag someone you need to put an @ before their name and can only use 140 characters, so long profound thoughts are disallowed. This tweet will come up in your followers news feeds. If you put a hashtag '#' before a phrase or a word then people who search that phrase or word will be able to see your tweet. If heaps of people start tweeting the same word or phrase with a hashtag next to it, then that word or phrase will be said to be 'trending'.
For example. Yesterday I saw that #explainafilmplotbadly was trending. So I decided to jump on the band wagon and compose my own tweet with that hashtag. I tweeted:
Superficial girl uses big words in order to sleep with stepbrother. #explainafilmplotbadly
If you were on twitter and you had clicked on that particular trending phrase, it would have brought up all the other tweets that have that hash tagged phrase attached to it, including mine. (Incase you are wondering I was talking about the movie Clueless).
I also decided to put up a picture of my beloved Moo (pet pig) with the hashtag #antmselfie. For the reality-tv impaired peeps out there #antmselfie is the tag you attach to a self taken picture, which is then uploaded to twitter or instagram, so that you can be in the running to be a contestant on Australia's Next Top Model.
Why am I bothering to do all these blogs and tweets?
As I've mentioned before, in my last two blog posts, I've been advised to build up a fan base before I get to the stage of publishing my book. But it's a lot harder than it sounds.
I can't be funny on cue and am not overly witty. Half the time people find things funny, that weren't intended to be funny. (e.g. My husband still laughs about the Costco post but when I re- read it, it just makes me mad). So I am constantly lacking funny and insightful things to tweet about.
I do have some twips for first time twitter users though:
1. I followed Donald Trump yesterday (mostly so I could mock him) and had to mute him within 5 minutes. He over tweets and tweets the most ridiculous things. It's not even funny. Don't follow him.
2. Miley Cyrus is ok to follow, if you like looking at selfies of Miley Cyrus. If not, then don't bother.
3. The most interesting people to follow aren't famous actors or musicians, they are writers (like me - obviously), comedian's and journalists.
4. Don't follow anyone who has ever appeared on any of the top model series - it lowers your credibility.
5. Actually, all reality tv stars are out - especially THE KARDASHIANS!! They never have anything relevant or important to say.
6. Kanye West is out too.
7. Most importantly make sure you follow me!!
Anyway. I'd better keep plugging along with my book. Am struggling a bit at the moment. I need some inspiration.
Monday, September 8, 2014
Sunday, September 7, 2014
After resigning from my permanent position with Ed Qld earlier this year I felt a little bit uneasy and lost.
I could no longer say I was a teacher and was forced to answer nosey questions such as 'what do you do?' with "I'm a housewife". I am not saying there is anything wrong with being a housewife, I am just ashamed to say it because I am a terrible housewife. Terrible beyond words. There is always 6 loads of washing to put away and my floors always need cleaning, even when I've just cleaned them.
Earlier this year I decided it would be easier to buy new blinds and trick someone (Kristy) into installing them (whilst deceitfully leading people to believe that I helped her somehow) than it would be to dust the current blinds. I'm a terrible, terrible housewife.
So I needed a new profession. Being the lazy, multitasker that I am, I decide to kill two birds with one stone and write a novel (which is on the on the list of things to do before I die). That way I would be able to proudly proclaim to nosey check out people that I'm a Novelist whilst also ticking something off my list. I'm writing a science fiction novel, which is a VERY surprising choice for someone who does not like science fiction. I have never watched a single one of the Star Wars movies or read a single science fiction book. So it's brand new territory for me.
After gleefully editing my Facebook work information from reading 'Teacher' to 'Science Fiction Writer' I set about my working out the setting and characters for my new book.
I'm about 6 weeks into the book and have written 12 chapters. I write everyday and spend anywhere between 30 minutes to 5 hours, depending on the amount of research I need to do in order to write the chapter I am working on.
I constantly switch from between LOVING my novel and imagining myself being interviewed on Ellen after the book has been made into a highly successful movie trilogy to absolutely hating my book and wondering 'what on Earth am I thinking?'.
Last night I had one of those nights where I was really swamped and felt like it was a crap idea and was going nowhere. Hoping to find some motivation I decided to google novelists to find out what they get paid and how to be a successful one. Novelists, especially first time novelists, rarely make much money at all from their book. It's lucky that my motivation for writing this book is to tick a box on a list and have a more interesting career than 'housewife'. I also realised that I would have to stop promising the kids that when my book gets published I will buy them a horse they can ride and pay for riding lessons a couple of times a week etc.
One authors website, that I stumbled across, advocated building up your social media following. My blog has 14 followers and I have 22 twits following me on twitter, which is much less than what he recommended (he himself has millions and HAD millions before he even published his first book).
So now on top of writing my novel I am going to be tweeting my head off and hashtagging everything (apparently other people who hashtag similar things may start following you) and blogging as often as possible so I can build up my followers. How this system works I have no idea.
Writing this blog is really difficult. I think I can only write so many words a day before my words become finger dribble, spewing across my keyboard.
So, after posting this I'm hoping to have a few more blog followers and I will try hard to think of things I can tweet to make myself a more popular twit.
Sorry this is such sucky writing. I've been writing all morning and am now devoid of any inspiration or creativity.
Saturday, May 31, 2014
Thursday, May 29, 2014
- Don’t pay for membership
- If you have paid for membership don’t go there to ‘win’ your money back
- If you have a baby take a 2nd person with a pram. No trolleys with the baby capsules.
- Yes, the giant marshmallows look cool but they are not worth $6 a bag.
- I was told they sold everything but tobacco, alcohol and coffins. I beg to differ. They hardly had any toys, had only token camping and tool items (you couldn’t even call it a range) and sold bits and bobs of other things but nothing really special.
- Do not be lured in there under the false pretences that you will find a 5kg tub of Nutella (as advertised on the front page of their brochure). This item no longer exists. You can only buy smaller ones.
- Prices may be cheap but do you really need that many? There is no option to select a small amount of anything. I bought 3kg of tomatoes for $3.33 a kilo (what a bargain!!) but didn’t really need 3kg and ended up having to spend $10 on tomatoes!
Friday, April 25, 2014
I have just posted pictures of Maroon Dam on Facebook and they are stunning (even if I do say so myself!!). We had a fabulous few days camping. However, I do not want my stunning photos and cheery Facebook status updates to reflect the actual situation at Camp Lake Fire.
It is abysmal. Horrendously overpriced and shamelessly run down. What could be a spectacular location for a thriving business is a disgusting rip off.
There is no doubt about it. Maroon Dam is beautiful. You can catch fresh water bass fish there, Kayak, boat, canoe - whatever water sport you desire!! The kids LOVED getting out on the water and playing. But the facilities at the camp grounds are pretty much the 2nd worst I've seen in all my travels around Australia (the only place worse I've stayed is behind the dirty pub in Winton - you may recall the horror from my blog post in Big Trip Blogs). They are so dirty and smelly I couldn't bare to even walk near them - let alone go in them!!
The outdoor "fully equipped kitchen and dining hall/conference area is also available for cabin users. A sheltered area with a wood-fired pizza oven, fridge/freezer, BBQ’s and hot & cold water washing up sinks" that is promised on the website is nothing more than a couple of dirty broken tables, 2 fridges that do not work and I didn't even stay there long enough to investigate whether or not there was actually a wood fired pizza oven. I was so scared that I was going to catch salmonella or camplyobacter just from breathing in the air surrounding the outdoor kitchen that I made a mad dash back to the safety of my car.
The tracks around the campsite are so badly run down you need to engage 4wd just to navigate around what could be quite an easily fixed up track.
I know I'm being very harsh on this camp but there is a reason. You may remember that the spot behind the pub at Winton, which was the scene of one of the most horrific sights of my life, was free. Camp Lake Fire, like to charge $15 PER PERSON PER NIGHT!!!!! Yes!! For my family of 6 that equates to $90 a night!!!!! Luckily we stayed when it was very quiet because during the busy periods, Camp Lake Fire like to squeeze 650 people into the area!!! The damage to the environment must be horrendous!! The place is basically a dust bowl and the few port-a-loo's, which are grotesque beyond words, scare campers into pee-ing in the water. Thank god we have a camp toilet and were not driven to such measures!!!
There is great fishing in the lake but unfortunately you have to pay $17 for 20 live bait. Is that expensive? I don't buy bait very often but to me, $17 for 20 tiny shrimp seems to be a massive rip off. I could buy 20 Fresh Australian prawns cooked for less than $17!! Ben and his trusty fishing partner spent $85 on bait for the 2 days they were there. They did manage to catch 4 reasonably sized bass. I'm sure it would have been more had it not been for the 650 guests the previous weekend wreaking havoc on the lake draining it of it's Bass population.
Had this camp charged a little less my review would be much kinder. At the very least it would be nice if they charged $7.50 a night for children, instead of $15. For the $250 Ben and I spent on our two nights there I expected a LOT more. The caretakers seemed very lovely and very helpful, even though the wait period for receiving bait you have paid for often exceeded 2 hours.
I truly felt like Camp Lake Fire liked to squeeze every last dollar out of their guests, without investing any of that money back into maintaining and improving the park and surrounding environment.
Mt Barney Lodge is not too far away and for less than half the price they manage to maintain an immaculate environment and have strict rules to prevent overcrowding. They are not intent on squeezing all the $$ out of you and go above and beyond to make sure you have a pleasant and comfortable stay in their stunning natural environment.
There is another camp grounds near Camp Lake Fire. I went to investigate them during my stay and found the owner rude beyond belief. I turned up merely wanting to make an inquiry about the place but was met with instant hostility once he found out where I was staying. He even refused to serve me citing that 'he only serves his guests'.
Overall I had a brilliant 2 nights. But this was because of the amazing company we were with and the beautiful lake. It really was sooo stunning. It is such a shame that the owner of the place has let it get to that state.
Would we go back??? Such a tough one!! I loved it!! I really did. But I don't love being ripped off and I feel for the money that they charge, there should be higher standards. The very fact that 650 people happily camped in a dust bowl with a few mangy port-a-loo's over the Easter weekend is a testament to the beauty of the place. If they changed their pricing so that kids weren't the same as adults I would be back there in a heart beat. Or, if they spent some of the $250 Ben and I spent on improving the tracks, laying grass, upgrading the loo's, etc - I would also be back. But at this stage no.
Friday, March 28, 2014
Wednesday, January 29, 2014
- I did not go to the Olympics as a figure skater
- I have never sung onstage with a band
- I have not written a book (although I have started to write about 6 and have one almost completed in my head)
- I am not even close to meeting any of the above mentioned people
- I have not been to the pyramids
- I chickened out of getting a tattoo
- Never dyed my hair blonde
- And I haven’t had the pleasure of spending a week in a Buddhist retreat.
Thursday, January 23, 2014
I’m back!!!! I know I was awol for most of 2013 but I do have some sensational excuses.
Firstly, since Ben capped me at 4 children, I have had to fill my aching uterus with farm animals and baby seedlings. Unfortunately, caring for all the animals and plants left me with no time whatsoever. I just don’t understand how I used to manage- pre acreage that is. I would go out all the time, educated my children, cooked meals, socialised, drove the kids to 65 squillion activities a week and still managed to squeeze in at least 2 hours of telly a night. I just don’t understand where I found the time to do all that!!
Now I have no spare time. From the moment I wake up someone or something wants something from me. A typical day will see me rising at 6am. It takes me a full hour and a half to stumble around the house (usually searching for a diet coke) to feed the kids breaky. Diddy and Rohan usually have 3 courses each. This morning tiny, little Diddybell had 2 weetbix, 1 piece of raisin toast, a banana and then sausage stew on toast (which is a lot tastier than it sounds!!). Wait – that’s FOUR courses!! I then had to cook Kylah eggs. She likes hers boiled. Jazzy requested sausage stew on toast with fried eggs. This is all while I was half asleep!!
I then spend the day either teaching the kids, cooking, tending to animals, washing or gardening.
I try to get the kids to look after the animals as much as I can. Kylah is great with them. She feeds the horse, pig and tends to the dogs. Jazzy’s job is to care for the Chicken’s and baby chicks. Although I am the one who constantly has to hose the chicken poo off our outside area. 5 acres of grass to crap on and they prefer to do their business right on our doorstep. Rohan is supposed to care for the pig but for some strange reason Moo, our pig, has a liking for me (I think he can sense that we share an innate love of food). I’m the only one that he will walk nicely on a lead for. We need to spend at least two hours a day walking him around while he eats grass. He is such a little bugger. If we leave him to free range he gets into so much mischief!!
Diddy’s only job, so far as I can tell, involves torturing the poor animals with love and ‘kindness’. 2 chickens have sadly perished while being a part of Diddy’s elaborate games. They really were killed with kindness….. She loves them to pieces. Maybe just a little too much though. When they decide that they no longer want to play her games and try to run away she will put one of them in an animal feed bin, so they can’t get away. Poor little things died of fright!!
The dog’s fare much better with Diddybell’s games. They patiently ‘sit’ when she tells them to and ‘fetch’ when she tells them to. They even put up with her trying to dress them and do their hair. It’s quite funny to watch Diddy bossing a big German Shepherd around. The horse is none too fond of Diddy’s games. Poor little thing copped a kick from Kelvin, our horse, when she tried to force feed him playdough.
All that, on top of hand watering a humongous vege garden left me with no time.
Last year I also became a bit of a recluse. My friends jokingly called me a ‘hermit’. I really don’t cope well with change and making such a huge move and completely changing my lifestyle really took it’s toll on me. There were many changes last year.
I particularly found friendships the most challenging. I’ve never had a problem with friends before so I don’t manage issues very well. I’m a ‘keep the peace’ type person. But I had to make a few very difficult decisions last year and some friendships ended because of them. I knew that I would be sacrificing a friendship if I made these particular decisions but at the time I felt like I had no choice. I don’t regret anything I’ve done. The only regret I have is taking so long to move on and spending so many hours analysing things.
Someone once told me that you have friends for a reason or a season or a lifetime. I’ve always thought I was more of a ‘lifetime’ type person but maybe I’m not.
I hope this blog isn’t making me sound better than I actually am. For all of you marvelling at how much I squeeze into a day: STOPRIGHT NOW. My house looks like a bomb has exploded in it…. most of the time. It is usually clean for the 3 minutes prior to visitors coming over. The other night, as a surprise for Ben, I thought I would have the house all clean and tidy for when he came home. I cooked dinner and then shouted orders at the kids to clean up while I vacuumed and mopped. The kids helped happily and it wasn’t until it was all finished that Diddy asked ‘Is Nanny coming over?’. ‘No’ I replied. ‘Well who is coming over?’ asked Rohan. ‘No one!! Mummy does sometimes clean of my own accord you know!!!!’ I yelled at my puzzled children.
Actually I clean a lot. It’s just keeping things clean that is my problem. I am such a scatter brain… it never crosses my mind to pick something up. I am in awe of people who put something straight away after they have finished with it. Firstly, I never know if I’ve finished with something so it would be impossible for me to put it away. The fine line between using and not using is constantly blurred for me. Quite often I am mid task when I remember a more interesting task and jump ship or simply decide I’m bored with the current task and that I will get back to it in a sec as soon as I have half done about 6 other things.
One things for sure is life is certainly not boring here on Nobel Acres (yes I’m still trying to get that name to stick).
Anyway one of my goals for 2014 was to keep up the blog. Not because I think you’ve all been missing me terribly… but because I like the idea that this is a permanent record for my future descendents to read. I think I only have about 10 followers on this blog, which is a lot more than I have on twitter. I only have SIX twitter followers. I am #verysad. I tweet all the time and no one reads them.
Anyway I should go to bed.