Thursday, February 25, 2021

We're having fun now (just joking, it ain't fun)

February 25, 2021

It used to be you could say "shoot me" to explain your level of frustration but it's not safe to do that these days. Too bad because I'm definitely at that point. 

Why, you ask?

Yahoo is ending its Site Builder website software. My .com has used Site Builder since 2004, and it couldn't be any easier to use. So OF COURSE they'd do away with it. 

They've offered to allow people to keep their website past ending support BUT you will no longer be able to add to it OR make any updates. Yes, it's frustrating. 

If I have to learn new software and create an entirely new website from scratch, I will certainly do it someplace less expensive. Not that Yahoo webhosting broke the bank or anything near to it. It's just there are cheaper alternatives out there if I want to keep the .com, and I do. 

I haven't made a decision on where to go, but I am going to finish a project I started a l-o-n-g time ago, and that's load book description pages here at Between the Keys. I'll at least have a decent fall-back for when the current website goes down. Check out the menu to the left for portals to information. As of this date, it's a work in progress so you could end up at the .com for the next little bit. But not for long if I can get 'r done. 

It was a good run. Seventeen years. 

More information when it becomes available. 

KC Kendricks

Sunday, February 21, 2021

The Winter 2020 Between the Keys Newsletter is Available

February 21, 2021

Isn't it confusing that only eleven days of winter happen in December and yet that December names the entire season? The winter of 2020 isn't over until March 20, 2021. Maybe it's just one more reason winter is generally a person's least favorite season. We're already confused due to lack of sunlight and warmth, and then the calendar screws with us. 

There was a time, in my distant writing past, when I was diligent about putting out a monthly newsletter. It was called Forrest Whispers because at that time only my alter ego published it. Jump to 2008 and I switched my focus and let the newsletter go. Fast forward to 2017 and I resurrected a newsletter and called it Between the Keys to stick with my "brand." I was doing okay until like so many others in my age group I was called upon to care for aging parents. I'm not complaining because life is what it is. I made the decision to relax and put out a newsletter when I have time to do so. 

The Winter 2020 edition of the Between the Keys newsletter is out! It's viewable in two locations - on my website and here at the blog

You're invited to check it out.

KC Kendricks

Monday, February 15, 2021

It's a matter of taste, isn't it?

February 15, 2021

Put a group of published authors together and sooner or later the talk will turn to book covers. What makes a good cover? What do book buyers really like? How do we win the book cover lottery? It's an important topic - to an author.

My own personal experience with book covers is mixed. It's gone both ways for me. I've had great covers that didn't seem to move many copies and downright horrible covers that did. Go figure. 

Back in the days of working with publishers, the idea was to suggest ideas to a cover artist. The cover should reflect the story. The cover should have key elements from the story. The writer submits a helpful form and BOOM! The cover comes back with two bare chests and no heads. So why did the form require a description of the main characters? It was a bit frustrating but so is making my own covers. 

Don't misunderstand me - I like the creative process of making a book cover. But days like today, when I went to one of the stock photo sellers, it gets tedious. In looking for just the right guy that fits the story, that feels like the main character, I found beards. Lots and lots of beards. I don't like beards. Beards strike me as lazy, especially if the guy doesn't keep it well-trimmed. 

I must have scrolled through a hundred pages of "sexy handsome man" photo and found nothing. And some I did see I know have been used repeatedly on other covers. All of a sudden a pair of bare chests seems like a really good idea. 

I've reached the point in writing July Heat that I need to get the cover created and I feel stymied by what I found. My preference is to see the character's faces, and if possible, his eyes. (There's a story about this title here.)

So it's going to take a bit longer than I thought to make the cover. I know some will say I should hire a cover artist, but that doesn't work for me. It's like asking someone to read my mind and then they fail at it and I have to pay them regardless. No, it's better I take a week or two and conduct a good search to find the right guys.  

In the end, some readers will like the cover and some won't. There is very little I can do about that. Readers will buy or not buy for reasons I may never know. What I do know is I need to create a cover that pleases me. At the end of the day, that's the bottom line on a cover. 


 KC Kendricks

My home on the web- Between the Keys: 
Visit my bookshelf at: 

Social media links:
Life through the eyes of my black Lab, Greenbrier Smokey Deuce:
My country life at Holly Tree Manor:

Sunday, February 14, 2021

A little upgrade for the office

February 14, 2021

Several years ago I moved my office from a spare bedroom to the sunroom. My house is surrounded by woods and I enjoy having a good view of what's happening outside around me. You'd think it would be a distraction, but it's proven not to be one. 

That's not to say I never grab the binoculars for a better look when the deer move in for a quiet afternoon in the shade. Or spend time sitting out on the porch spying on the neighbors hawks.   

The longer I stay with writing, the more my office becomes my nest. When I wrote the first book, I had a small corner of the spare bedroom and a cobbled-together desk. The chair wasn't so great, either. I got a new desk and chair, and then a file cabinet. My husband, ever a good carpenter, got a four-by-eight sheet of melamine-clad plyboard and installed a solid desktop. That worked for a few years until one day I spied my current desk. I made the jump from "good enough" to "big girl furniture." I'm still using that desk and credenza in the sunroom

Back in the days when I did interviews at various review sites, one of the questions was always what music do I listen to when I write? With the wonderful playlists on YouTube these days, it's a very eclectic mix. What seems to be more important to me is scent. What does my office smell like?

Well... several years ago a girlfriend started to sell Scentsy. I got a wax warmer and a few scented waxes for a Christmas gift and I've enjoyed changing the scent in my office every day since. That first warmer quit working a few days ago so I did what a lot of us are doing during this pandemic - I scurried to Amazon as fast as my fingers could click and ordered a new warmer. I also found liners for the wax! What a good idea! 

I ordered a small package of liners and I couldn't be happier with them. I'm not in the habit of recommending products, but I didn't know about them so I figure maybe other people don't know. They seem to be very sturdy, hold a good amount of wax, and can be reused at least once. If you like using the scented wax as much as I do, give those liners a try. I'm not an Amazon affiliate nor am I getting paid to give a review, so don't be afraid to click. 

As for what scents I like, it varies by season, but I'm a big fan of patchouli and sandalwood. It takes me back to my youth, back to the days of peace, pot, and Woodstock. I also like almost everything citrusy and spicy. Fruity scents are fine in the summer, but never in the fall or winter. 

So that's the blog for today. Now I must get some writing done before it's time for the Daytona 500. Can't miss that one.


 KC Kendricks

My home on the web- Between the Keys: 
Visit my bookshelf at: 

Social media links:
Life through the eyes of my black Lab, Greenbrier Smokey Deuce:
My country life at Holly Tree Manor:

Thursday, February 11, 2021

Another three inches


February 11, 2021

Don't go there.

Yes, I write romance with some, ahem, interesting love scenes, but that is not the "another" three inches to which I refer. I'm talking about snow. As in it is fucking snowing again. 

I'm so over this winter? Maybe not. 

In reality, this winter has been reminiscent of the winters we had when I was a girl. We actually had appreciable snow in December, and that pattern has carried through to at least today. 

Winter makes living on the side of a mountain very interesting - and beautiful. When it snows, the world becomes a quiet white cathedral. It's incredibly peaceful. The other side of that coin is one should not hop in a vehicle and expect to drive down the hill. One should prepare to slide down the hill. Better yet, one should plan ahead and stay home. In the case of the writer, she should stay home and write. 

That's the plan for today. As I work on this blog entry, it's predawn. To enjoy the snowfall, I've switched on the backyard floodlights and have a nice view out my window. The deer are moving along the top of the yard, close to the stone fence (I must tell the story of the stones someday). Quiet, graceful creatures, I wonder how they fare in this sort of weather but I dare not provide any food. My garden will be in enough jeopardy from them come summer. 

It's time for me to get to the manuscript, but I'm reluctant to miss any of the dawn. I've waited so many years to finally have that luxury and it feels like I'm cheating myself if I ignore it. There will be plenty of time to work on the manuscript today. And to enjoy the snow. One does not preclude the other. 

Sunday, February 7, 2021

A white cathedral


February 7, 2021

There are days when events align in magical ways. Today my grandfather would be one-hundred-eleven years old. Today, it's snowing, a wet, clingy snow that turned my woods into a white cathedral. 

My grandparents gave me the piece of ground I built my home on forty years ago. They loved the land and respected it as it provided so much for our family. Food, water, shelter, fuel, privacy, safety, and beauty. The land is a living thing. 

I was up before dawn this morning and settled at the computer. Like so many of us, I have remote controls for all sorts of gadgets and I switched on the backyard floodlights to watch the snow. Keeping an eye on the clock, as soon as I knew the sun, while still hidden by the thick cloud cover, would be above the mountain, Deuce and I went out to take pictures. 

Walking during a snowfall, it's easy to allow the white peacefulness to flow into your soul. The only sounds were those of Deuce's paws crunching through the snow and the calling of the young red-tailed hawk who fledged here last summer and never left. He's claimed my "territory" as his, but I'm sure we can peacefully coexist. If I thought he'd find it and eat it, I'd toss a raw chicken breast his way. Songbirds and squirrels are scarce during a snowfall and he may be in need of a snack. He also likes mice and moles, also scarce at the moment. 

That my grandfather loved this small part of the planet he cared for is not something I question. He did. I know it cost him to hand it over to me and is proof, to those who need such a thing, how well he loved me. Be it strange or not, I spoke to him on my walk through his white cathedral today. His response was all around me, keeping me warm on this cold, snowy morning.


 KC Kendricks

My home on the web- Between the Keys: 
Visit my bookshelf at: 

Social media links:
Life through the eyes of my black Lab, Greenbrier Smokey Deuce:
My country life at Holly Tree Manor:
Snips and clips on my YouTube channel: KC Kendricks Between the Key

Monday, February 1, 2021

Strange things in the Realm

February 1, 2021

So I posted a blog on January 28, just a few days ago. It was just a fluff piece about not much of anything. I like to just toss thoughts I think are interesting out into the Realm. It's a good thing to do to remind myself and others that we are still able to think for ourselves and Google doing our thinking isn't a good thing. Here's an example. 

I posted a blog on January 28. (Yeah, yeah, we already established that.) Looking at the Blogger stats, it would appear it was posted on January 26. I don't know about you, but that's scary. HOW did Blogger know I was going to write that post? Are the Ancient Alien theorists correct that we're all some great experiment and our actions are being directed to observe the outcome?

Blogger KNEW I was going to write a post on January 28 and it just tipped its hat. Now WE know that Blogger knows the future. Now we just have to pay closer attention. 

The next thing - how is Blogger calculating half a view? What does Blogger know about the half-people out there in the Realm? We're getting into some scary stuff here. 

Enough of pondering Blogger's place, or is that ranking, in the Realm of Cyberspace. In the real realm, I need to finish my coffee and go work on the WIP. Unless of course, the theorists are correct and even the real realm is an illusion. 

KC Kendricks
(with tongue firmly in cheek)