Posted in #Quest2016, nonfiction

Out with the old, in with 2016


I was inspired by one of my classmates in the Blogging201 course, BlueCarPaintedGreen, and her blog post to join #Quest2016. You can find out more about it here.

This past year (and the year before that) was not much fun, so I thought I’d try something new  for 2016. It will be great to have a creative community to support and from which I also receive support.

The Quest to do ‘business as unusual’ begins simply enough, or so it seems.
Three times a week, you get a prompt question, which you answer on your social media or blog. I joined late, so I’m way behind. And, as usual, I seem to be doing things back to front; but this prompt seems the best one for me to make a start.

I’ll be answering the prompts on this blog, and on InBetweener too.

Day 5–Seth Godin’s prompt: Who would miss you if you were to disappear right now? What would have to change for that question to lead to a better answer?

Quest2015 prompt 1 no1

Quest2015 prompt 1 no1

Quest2015 prompt 1 no3

Quite a depressing question to contemplate, so I don’t suggest you do.
And if you have a dog or a cat, give them a hug. Yes, right now, please. Thank you.

What would have to change for that question to lead to a better answer?

Tricky question this. I would have to do better, I suppose–be better. Except, so many do what I do, better. So many have taken similar ideas (and sometimes mine) and done them better.
So better is not an option. Ditto different.

Besides, none of this is answering the real question: What would have to change…?

I would have to change, or the world would have to change. Or both.

Or, and this seems infinitely more doable and thinkable: My world would have to change, ‘cos heaven knows what’s in yours, and I don’t know yet (’til I get to know you and your world) whether or not I want to be a part of it.

My world would have to change. That’s what it boils down to.

Quest2015 prompt 1 no4

How do I change my world? I’m open to suggestions.

Posted in nonfiction, Outdoors, Photos

Tiger and Crow

Tiger and crow

I was lucky enough to take this photo during my very first visit to the Siberian Tiger Park in  Harbin, North East China.

I loved this photo from the moment I first saw it on the display screen of my camera, that freezing cold January morning. This photo tells me so many things…

  • Small things can go about their business whilst big things pass them by.
  • Different planes of existence don’t always interact.
  • The symbol of death may pass you by and still leave you whole and vital.
  • Neither of these beings have any thing to prove to anybody else, and so they have presence and balance.
  • But most all this photo speaks to me of harmony and beauty–a perfect moment with which nature has gifted me.

The tiger and crow has rewarded me for seeking perfect moments by showing me that they do, indeed, exist–especially when we least expect to find them.

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Posted in Design and inspirational books, nonfiction, Reviews of Smashwords eBooks, Tips and Hacks, Uncategorized

Become An Exceptional Designer: Effective Colour Selection For You And Your Client by James Dean

m_James Dean Colour SmashwordsTitle: Become An Exceptional Designer: Effective Colour Selection For You And Your Client
Author: James Dean
Rating: 90-95%

This is an unsolicited review of a Smashwords epub download. This is merely my very subjective opinion, and should be regarded as such.

In Brief:

This is a great colour resource from James Dean, not just for interior designers, but for all designers. I found it useful as it reminded me of colour theories and sets I had forgotten.

The Whole Story:

Based on a series of lectures for a course, it’s great for students and as an afternoon read for designers who need a little brushing up on aspects of colour.

Written in well presented chapters, this eBook covers the basics of colour and colour mixing, with a nice chapter on the psychology of colour too. Colour wheels and an explanation of the Munsell System make practical colour applications easy to understand, while short summaries on colour theories by the masters adds a nice touch.

I would have preferred more graphics and photos, but that may be because I like pretty things 🙂

What I learned?

I learned that lighter colours like yellow have more shades than tints while darker, colours like red, have more tints than shades; which probably accounts for why I dislike using much red in my designs:)

My favourite chapter was on the psychology of colour which included some fun facts to pique my trivia nerd interest.

Rating: 90-95% less 5% because I like my pretty pictures.
Recommended to: Students studying design, artists, designers and the perpetually curious

About the author:

James Dean is a architect with a passion for design and constructing unique architecture.
Smashwords Profile
Author Website

Posted in nonfiction, Outdoors, Reviews of Smashwords eBooks, Tips and Hacks, Uncategorized

REview: Camping Hacks from a Diva! by Lynn Sable


m_Lynn Sable I hate Camping SmashwordsTitle: Camping Hacks from a Diva! I Hate Camping But I Love Glamping!
Author: Lynn Sable
Rating: 100%

This is an unsolicited review of a Smashwords epub download. This is merely my very subjective opinion, and should be regarded as such.

In Brief:

I hate camping, myself, but love being out in nature and the odd (short) hike, so I loved, loved, loved this eBook with all Lynn Sable’s very doable hacks, from making foil packs to ‘taking care of business’ with a pop-up room and solar shower.

The Whole Story:

Written in a very conversational, easy tone, this is a quick fun, useful read. Lynn Sable takes you from the bare basics: preparing food (including dessert) to turning your tent into a 5-star retreat space. There are easy recipes for breakfast, lunch and dinner, a bug spray recipe, options on equipment and some top secret hacks on lighting and making your own firestarters.

What I learned?

News hacks to apply not just to camping, glamping and being outdoors, but for power outages too. There’s a ton of equipment out there to make camping trips really comfortable for the whole family.

Rating: 100%
Recommended to: campers, glampers and everyone who is thinking of spending some time outdoors in summer—or Australia.

About the Author:

Lynn Sable loves traveling and the outdoors. She’s also written a YA thriller/suspense Oh No You Didn’t.
Smashwords Profile
Read an interview with Lynn

Posted in nonfiction, Reviews of Smashwords eBooks, Uncategorized

REview: Tough Love for Beloved Free eBook Readers by Den Warren

Warren Den Tough Love Ebook ReadersTitle: Tough Love for Beloved Free Ebook Readers
Author: Den Warren
Rating: 70-80%

This is an unsolicited review of a Smashwords download.

In Brief:

This short, sharp, expressive rant of an Indie Self-publishing Author voices what every author (including myself) thinks, from time to time, but is too afraid to say; complete with cute love/hate marketing gimmick 😀

The Whole Story:

We writers love our readers, maybe not as much as we love our dogs or cats, but we’d miss our readers almost as much; so I admired Den Warren’s honest rant and analogy, which I believe took a lot of courage, and maybe a glass or two of whiskey:-D

Mostly well said, but at times shifting into I-still-need-this-bunch-on-my-side, this ranting article gives both writers and readers much to think about.

What I learned?

Every writer goes through the whole lack-of-feedback-from-free-downloaders hell. I should really leave a review for all those books I’ve downloaded, especially from Smashwords. After all, I’d like the same done for all my books.

Rating: 70-80% for honesty, bringing a voice to those who should know better, and making me smile.

Recommended to: Free eBook downloaders, Free eBook writers, those researching the pitfalls of being either.

About Den Warren:

Den Warren writes sci-fi and superhero fiction.
Smashwords Profile:
Author Website:

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