Proof reading material I've been reading for a couple of years, contending with reluctant printers (why don't printers like me? is it because I resent the cost of ink?), attempting to build a website (ahem), watering a garden, and canning fill my days.
The canning prep may be tiring, but at the moment I look at the pickled onions (made for myself) , the dilly beans and sweet pickled carrots (made for others) with some satisfaction.
I've got electricity and so I'm using the immersion cooker as a canning tool, eliminating boiling water baths in overheated kitchens and constant attention to a timer.
Also known as Sous Vide cooking, the tool sits in the water bath and heats it to a specific temperature, your food is vacuum sealed and resting in the water bath. It never gets hotter than the temp you set the tool to, so it never overcooks.This means I can pasteurize a quart of tomatoes (a rubbermaid tub of tomato quarts!), exhausting the air and killing the microbes within the jar in two and a half hours without boiling anything. No longer doing tomatoes, but I still make pickles.
I've made jugged hare this way. Quite good.
Which is a Very Exciting development in my life. Kind of snuck up on me while I was just taking care of loose ends.
I finally got almost all of the pre-publishing prep work done. What remains is a bio for myself as an author. This puts me in the uncomfortable territory of, “selling myself”. Makes me feel dishonest and pushy, as though I have a back lot full of nearly broken used cars or a coat lined with watches...
And yet it has to be done. Something has to be composed to make my mundane, old lady, self interesting, to intrigue readers (all younger than I) enough that they'll give my work a try. I've managed cover photos and back cover blurbs, found a photo of myself that didn't offend me and met the requirements (300 dpi), formatted and reformatted and picked at all the odd places in the text until there isn't much left for me to do in that department.
And I still rather like the stories, a point that surprises me when I'm also sick to death of looking at them. Even the covers and the blurbs aren't that bad. Maybe not professional, but I haven't made much money writing, so I'm NOT a Pro.
I'm doing this through Create Space, which offers a “preview option” that will allow me to publicly post sections of my novels. I'll be doing that soon – watch this space.