Pet Peeves…. every Wednesday…. maybe?

Today’s pet peeve. Flip-Flops. Say what? What’s wrong with flip-flops you say?

As the title states, this is a pet peeve. It’s my own neurotic disorder and opinion. If you don’t agree, then that’s fine. I don’t need to hear your reasoning behind it. But you will hear mine. haha.

OMG. I really can’t stand people who wear flip-flops everyday and everywhere. What in the hell? Put on some real shoes for god’s sake!

This goes mostly for men. Yet, I can easily say the same for women too. If you’re not by the side of a pool, or on a beach, or a boat, or locker room shower, PUT some real shoes on! They are not the appropriate foot wear to go shopping. They are not the appropriate foot wear to board a plane. They are not the appropriate foot wear for site seeing. They are not the appropriate foot wear to got to a restaurant (even if that formal dining is a Taco Bell or Hardy’s).

Why in the world would one think I want to look at their nasty feet while I’m eating my chalupa? Or stuffed next to you on a flight to New York? Or standing behind you in the grocery store? Is it just laziness? Does the person not own any real shoes? Like pair of boots, tennis shoes, flats, heels, docs, Mary Janes, high-tops, vans, or converse? What if you needed to walk or run. Those things can’t be a wise choice. And the noise. Flip. Flop. Flop. Flip. Flip Flop. AAAAGGGG. Make it stop!

Oh, ladies….sandals, if nice and pretty, are exempt. Carry on.

Oh and everything I just said also goes for CROCS!!!!

The Book Market…. and why it’s chaotic…

Do not take my word for it. Just think about this observation and make your own conclusions. I have no real reason or even a clue why it is this way. Maybe there’s some industry secret that makes sense and the senior’d Editor or Publishers would get in my face and say, “yeah, duh dude!!” (I used two exclamation marks because that means it’s more exclamatory than just one, right?)

It’s been over a decade since I bought my first e-reader. When the Amazon Kindle entered the market, it basically dominated. It was a nice piece of engineering. It was CHEAP! And it with the power of Amazon books behind it, the sky was the limit. I remember when the big book sellers all had one: B&N had the Nook, Borders had the Kobo. I really struggled with which to buy. Because like everything in America, they were proprietary. I wanted something more universe. I really didn’t like how I had to buy my books from one business —all the time. In the end, my mother solved it by buying all Kindles one year for Christmas. Why? They were the cheapest and technically the largest source of books.

I was so excited. Don’t get me wrong. I love books. And when I say books, I mean real books. You know, paper, ink, the smell of a printing press. But, like the iPod, I was amazed and fascinated by the efficiency to carry around every song I owned and not have to worry about a back pack full of CDs and Cassette tapes. Now I had something for books too. Wow. No more rooms full of books. No more storage units filled with books. No more sleepless nights thinking where I put that one book that I now want to re-read. Yet, there was a problem. A very big one.

The cost! I would literally have to rebuy all my books. Or I could just simple move forward with digital only books. And that was a problem just as big. I love books. I want to hold them and smell them. So, okay, I’ll just buy most books digitally and then the favorites I would buy the real deal. Ok. That might work. Then it didn’t…. see, digital books should be cheaper. And when I say cheaper, I mean A LOT cheaper. And unfortunately they weren’t. Even a basic knowledge of commerce knows that a book you pay $26 for is really only getting about $6 to the publisher and $3 to a writer. (And cost of printing isn’t even factored here for ease of understanding). Because the universal rule of business is 50% as in everything is purchased at 50% to make the seller money. So the book is printed and sold to Wholesaler who buys book for around half the cost they’ll sell it to a Bookstore. Then that bookstore needs to double it so they can pay the rent, employees and make a profit. What if? The book never has to be printed. This cuts out a bunch of middle men and costs. The book never has to go to a printer. There’s no paper, no trees sacrificed to feed the machines. The books are not stacked on pallets and stored in warehouses (rent of warehouse costs money). Nor is the book put on trucks and trains and shipped to the Wholesalers warehouse. No gas used, no salary of a truck driver (or train driver…huh engineer?), no wholesale warehouse rent. Then those books would have to be back on a truck or train to ship to the bookseller. See where I’m going here?

There’s a ton of cost in printing a book and just getting it where it needs to be. But digital doesn’t have that. I mean its basically just electrons and photons right? How do you put a price on tiny particles of energy. I guess if you wanted to get picky you could say how much does it cost to transmit the file of about 1MB to a user. There’s the small cost of the user’s internet and electric bill. The publisher or writer has to store the book on a server or hard drive that costs money to buy or maintenance. But isn’t that literally pennies. I mean like 5 cents or a dime! So I’ve concluded that a book, with the original profit margin in place, should sale for about $4.99. Split that 50/50 with the writer / publisher…. huh? HUH? Sounds good. Maybe the publisher worries about lost sales buy sharing digital files?….

Now my RANT and gripe. Why in hell are digital books more than paper books? Clearly this is a big issue and why digital books will fail. Unlike digital songs which went to a very cost effective (cheap) model. .99cents a song…. So why can’t books do something similar and stay around the 4.99 price model? You know why I’m still buying tons of paper books to my regret. Because the books I’d most likely buy digitally are usually $14.99 and I can get the Hardcover for 12.99 (or a soft cover for 8.99). Sorry, I’m not JK Rowling and I don’t have $billions to burn. Is it me or is this just backasswards??

to be continued…..maybe….

Writing is Hard Work….

I know I’ve said it before. But writing is hard work. Especially for me. Mostly because, I have good days and great days. And then some not-so-good days.

I can easily sit down and work the keyboard for a few hours and write pages and pages. Yet, then my OCD and Anxiety kicks in and I look at the writing and feel its not very organized. Or my thoughts are not coming out right. Even when I know its just a rough draft. Or a quick blog post thats not polished. I sit and worry that it’s crap.

Then, the internal debate happens. Delete. Leave it. No. Delete it. Okay, lets revise and edit it. No, it wasn’t meant to be edited. Okay. Delete it. Forget it. Just leave it. I’ll come back to it tomorrow and edit.

Sometimes writing is a chore. Yet, I do it because I know its something I have to do. Like a job, you have to do it even if you’re not really into it. So I just write. Mostly garbage or just stream of conscience stuff. This is when I rant or throw common sense at a problem and try to explain the upside or downside.

I hope I’m not alone in this battle to write. I think this is why I’m insanely curious to how others write and try to voyeur on their writing process. Like a nerdy 7th grader, I’m trying to justify I’m not alone in this complex world.

And don’t get me started when I think I’m just writing this stuff and its like a note in a bottle. I doubt anyone is reading it or even finding it on the web…..