Monday, April 24, 2023

How did I do that?


April 24, 2023

In the twenty-plus years I've been writing I've never heard another writer say they love to do promotion. N-E-V-E-R. I've never said it either, and promotion used to be a lot easier. These days a writer can experience death by social media, and that's not a joke. Trying to keep up on every platform out there is stressful enough to cause a stroke or heart attack. I don't do it. I prefer to have a real life. My promotional activities are carried out here at Between the Keys, in the Facebook groups, on Twitter, and kind of/sort of on YouTube. 

A few days ago, I fixed a cup of tea and sat at the computer to do a little promo while a load of laundry was in the washing machine. Last year I set a goal to promo the entire Men of Marionville series on Facebook so I scrolled the spreadsheet and saw where it was time to post the info for Your Whisper in the Dark in a few groups. Imagine my surprise when a group admin responded that the links on my promo sheet were incorrect. 

I may be a novice gardener, but I'm not a novice computer user. I generally know what I'm doing when I begin clicking away. Nonetheless, she was correct. The Amazon links in the promo were fucked up crap. 

I fixed my promo sheet, and thanks to my spreadsheet, the posts containing the bad links, but now I need to figure out just what screwy thing I did when I copied and pasted the info the first time. Was it me or was it Microsoft? I'm sure it was me not keeping a close enough eye on Microsoft. 

It was a lesson learned, and now I'll check the links on all my promo sheets before I post them. That will be annoying to do, but necessary. It may be enough to start me on the path to day drinking. 


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

KC Kendricks, Between the Keys, contemporary gay romance novels, LGBTQ novels, a writer's life, Your Whisper in the Dark, Men of Marionville, promoting books, ebooks, m/m romance, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Blogger, authors, learning, social media

Thursday, April 20, 2023

Twelve years is a bit late to censor a post

April 20, 2023

Between the Moon and the Deep Blue Sea was first released in May 2011 at the now-defunct Amber Quill/Amber Allure publishing house. It was the third best-seller at the pub that month (brag, brag!). As one would expect, I promoted the hell out of it, posting it on every blog I had posting privileges. That was in 2011. Suddenly, in April 2023, I got a few notices from Google that the post didn't meet their "guidelines" and was under review. 

Wow. Twelve years later.

I went back and took a look at the excerpt I used for promotion and decided Google had a problem with a couple "slang" words, namely that used to describe a bit of male anatomy and a common usage word to describe giving pleasure to that part of the anatomy by mouth. I made a few changes, clicked for a second review, and the posts were once again approved. 

Wow. Twelve years. I wonder how many people saw all those posts? And I wonder what snowflake saw a post and complained. I mean, twelve years later. 

I've written about censorship before. Censorship is a danger, a threat to all of us. If a powerful company is willing to censor my poor little romance novel, what else is it willing to censor? I fully expect THIS post to go up for review.

It may sound like a good thing to keep "adult" posts behind a content warning, but it's not. It's not my responsibility to parent YOUR children. The Internet/Interweb is a marvelous place, but it's also very adult in nature. YOU need to guide your children inside it, not me or any author. 

Censorship blocks the sharing of free thinking. Free thinking is dangerous. Free thinking might have us planting a garden and growing some of our produce. Free thinking might have people reasoning out that when the nearest grocery store is an hour away, a short-range electric vehicle isn't practical. Free thinking might have some of us believe our daughter is really a biological female who will eventually choose to procreate, or not. Free thinking might have some of us believe that it's okay to accumulate enough wealth to support ourselves in retirement instead of having the State support us. Free thinking might have some of us believe that we have the right to defend ourselves under the Second Amendment.

Now, I realize that censoring my silly little post is nothing in the overall larger scheme of things, but that's the insidious nature of censorship. It starts small and chips away, chips away, chips away at all the little things until suddenly what has been lost is a big thing. 

We need to be on guard. We need to stay diligent. We need to be able to recognize how censorship attempts to shepherd us into having only one choice, and one voice. As an author, as an America, I believe in the First Amendment and the guarantee of free speech, of which writing is a form. 

Opposing views and free speech are necessary to a free people. It's a lot more important issue than slang words in a romance novel, but I recognize it as just the beginning. 

If they have eyes, let them see. 


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

KC Kendricks, Between the Keys, censorship is dangerous, First Amendment rights, parental responsibilities, free-thinking, author voice, country lifestyle, rural living, romance novels, LGBTQ romance, m/m romance

Tuesday, April 11, 2023

All things end: Saturday Evening Romance

April 11, 2023

In September 2008, I opened a promo blog called Saturday Evening Romance. I envisioned it as a place where authors could post excerpts to promote their books. It worked, after a fashion, but it turned me into a Marshall. I posted a simple rule - don't spam the blog with more than one post a day. It's fucking amazing how many authors cannot read. 

Like everything in life, SER has run its course. Those authors with posting privileges no longer use it as a promotion tool. My friend, the late Christianne France, has quite a few posts still up but her books are no longer available. A lot of the posts are from authors who were also with Amber Quill Press, now defunct. 

Sadly, the time has come to delete the Saturday Evening Romance blog. I've pushed the button on it and it's gone.

The decision was not made lightly but it was the right thing to do. No one likes to click a link and find it no longer works. 

I'm grateful for those authors who did post there in past years and I wish those who are still writing and publishing continued success. 

Now we move on. 


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

KC Kendricks, Between the Keys, a writer's life, LGBTQ romance, m/m romance, Kindle romance, blog ending, romance novels, Men of Marionville, Centerville Muscle, Sundown saga, Southern Cross, Amethyst Cov


Sunday, April 9, 2023

Easter 2023

April 9, 2023

To the Christian follower, today is celebrated as the day Jesus rose from the tomb signifying his triumph over death. It's a promise given but perhaps not fully understood by mere mortals. Until you get there, you can only guess. 

Easter is to me a sign of renewal. The seasons have turned and spring has established itself. My grandparent's generation, at least those I grew up knowing here in our mountain enclave, called the daffodil the "Easter flowers." This year, the daffs have been blooming for about a month already, and the late variety I have, the beautiful white Mount Hood, is showing off. Seedlings are thriving in the greenhouse and I've had the mower out to level the grass but not actually cut it to summer length. 

People denigrate churchgoers not realizing that "church" today is as much about community as it is faith.  Yes, faith is spoken and discussed but in many churches, that faith is a call to community action. Easter reminds us we can triumph over those things that seem insurmountable. 

In quiet and unassuming ways, we can respond to the modern call to "give back," knowing what some fail to acknowledge - the call to give back is ancient. We get more accomplished if we simply go about our business without stopping to thump our chests and cry out to the masses 'look at me!'. 

Easter is here, and it's a day to renew promises, especially to oneself. What those promises may be to each of us is personal, but no less important than the next person's. Easter is also a day to reflect upon and accept there are mysteries in this world bigger than we are and as simple as a bulb in the earth shooting up a beautiful white flower. Easter is here, and our hopes are renewed. 


KC Kendricks, Rayne Forrest, Between the Keys, Easter, mysteries, hope, renewal