State of the TAM - 15 Sept

I’m in Fermanagh

What’s Up?

It is a truncated, but hopefully still entertaining, newsletter tonight. I am taking a socially distanced mini-break in Fermanagh. So a: I’m freaking knackered! and b: the internet is significantly less good tonight than yesterday since a whole bunch of other people arrived.

ANYHOO! I am in a dog friendly and very nice cottage in Fermanagh. Jax has been very good about everything, but did get woken up by a fox about 1am last night. He then spent the next few hours roaming the house looking for the fox, peering out windows, singing a fox-hating serenade with the wee dog in the other cottage.

It has been a good few days for a little pupper. He has been to three - THREE -castles, walked along Lough Erne, got into Lough Erne for a paddle, and impressed everyone he met. He also ate some sheep poop today, so that’s going to be fun in about an hour!

I’ve been a bit more nervous, despite my wipes, face masks, and stick to poke people with (joking!). It’s been fine though. Fermanagh is a good place to go to not be too close to anyone.

Pics below!


Pupdate


Recommendation of the Week

Well, I think it is going to be good! Check out the Bad, Dad, and Dangerous anthology, containing stories from Bru Baker, Jenn Moffatt, Rhys Ford, and some weirdo TA Moore :D

Pre-order now


Deal of the Day

You can still get Mischief Maker by Andi Lee on sale. IF you hurry that is. Go and check it out, it’s a fun, warm-hearted, Black Country read. Get your sticky dondies on one today! (That’s authentic Black Country that is :D)

On Sale Now


Must Read of the Week

I have voted in every election in Northern Ireland since I was eligible to vote. Sick, bored, hungover, or lazy, it didn’t matter. Up you got and to the voting station you went. In the current political climate it is more important to vote, and vote safely, than ever.


State of the TAM - 8th Sept

Kicking ass at puppy class!

Ok. So there’s other stuff I could write about, but none of it is as cool as the fact that Jax and I KICKED ASS at puppy obedience last night. He came to heel. He lay down. He came between my legs and lay down. He walked nice on the lead. The only thing he KINDA flaked out on was walking up to other dogs, being chill, and then walking away again.

But, to be fair, I have never been chill when faced with a puppy so why should he be? Right? Exactly.

He is the best of dogs! Of course, all dogs are the best of dogs. So there we go.

I have also spent the last two days with a carpenter in the house hanging new doors. Plus side, they look awesome even though I still need to paint them. Minus? Oh wow, my house is crooked. I swear there isn’t a straight lintel to be found in here. The carpenter was planing like a good one to get them in place.

All done now though. Thankfully. One thing about post-Quarantine semi-isolation is I have had to time to identify all the weird wee jobs that need doing around the house. Some of them I ever got around to doing something about!

Blog tour announcement for Bad, Dad, and Dangerous anthology will be coming soon :D


Ugh, I hate this respectability policing of people. For years people in authority have tried to drown out people with viable concerns by primming up their mouths at their ‘tone’. Now they clutch their silk neckties because a woman once, in a discussion about the body part, said pussy. (And trust me, politicians over here are just as bad.)


Recommendation of the Week

It’s a little known fact that I was there when this collaboration took its first shaky, baby step last year. Well, I veered by when they were talking once and ribbed Poe in passing about the fact she believes in jackalopes. Still counts!

Anyhow, punks (Poe is one!), mystery (they’re both good at that), and New York (where there are few iguanas). Who can turn this down? Check out A Friend in the Dark by C.S. Poe and Gregory Ashe. It has just gone live today with all online vendors.


Too cute!

Foxfeather Zenkova @foxfeather
As we count down to 36 hours left, a few new original painting tiers were just released, along with one last custom bird pin reward!
kickstarter.com/projects/foxfe… If there's a species you'd love to see, now is your chance to nab it & get a pin made specially for you! #birdtwitter

Recommendation of the Week

Yes! Two this week! Because both authors are great and put up with me jigging around excitedly at Cons.

The lovely K.C. Wells has a sweet new romance that is out this Thursday! Pre-order now.

From kids to adults.
From BFFs to lovers.
Except life is 
never that



Must Read of the Week

The Doorway Effect is fascinating. I mean we imagine our consciousness to be this transcendent thing, if we imagine far enough we get to things like telepathy and telekinesis. Yet we can still completely flake out because we…walked through a door.

Forgetting why you entered a room is called the “Doorway Effect”, and it may reveal as much about the strengths of human memory, as it does the weaknesses, says psychologist Tom Stafford.

We’ve all done it. Run upstairs to get your keys, but forget that it is them you’re looking for once you get to the bedroom. Open the fridge door and reach for the middle shelf only to realise that we can't remember why we opened the fridge in the first place. Or wait for a moment to interrupt a friend to find that the burning issue that made us want to interrupt has now vanished from our minds just as we come to speak: “What did I want to say again?” we ask a confused audience, who all think “how should we know?!”

Read More


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State of the Tam - 1st Sept

Blog tours, news, and more

What’s Up?

It has been a week of organizing things!

The blog tour for Bad, Dad, and Dangerous is being put together as we speak. Stay tuned for more info once all i’s have crossed and the t’s dotted… Wait? Kidding! Right now, everything is in hand.

If you’re champing at the bit for more details, well you’re going to have to wait! But…you can get ready for the Wolf at the Door blog tour in October! Expect exclusive content, information about the author and the world, and prizes. Also a rather cute blog tour gif that I’m MODERATELY proud of.

Thanks again to all the blogs that are hosting me for this tour!


Pupdate of the Week

Jax KILLED IT at puppy obedience class this week! He climbed on wobbly things and prickly things, he sat, he ignored the trainer when he was meant to (mostly! Once! It counts!). He remains the social butterfly of the group though!


A: Mark Ward is an extremely good writer. He once made me start a critique with ‘you talented asshole!’.

B: I love the cover of this! It’s fun and evocative and charming.


Deal of the Week

Get $1 off all $10 dollar + eBook orders from Dreamspinner Press! Just use the Coupon: Dailydeal.

Buy Now


I love Hilda.


Recommendation of the Week

I do love a good rock and roll romance :D.


If he was a king in the Middle Ages, his sobriquet would have been Grunt the Disgruntled.

No one asked me if I wanted a sister. I would have said no.

#doxiesofinstagram #daschundsofinstagram #dogsiblings #coonhoundsofinstagram #exasperatedpup
August 30, 2020

Must Read of the Week

I don’t know if I agree with this advice. Can you imagine someone writing this to a C-Suite executive in their company? I used to get told that my writing style was too stern because I underused question marks and exclamation points.

Still, it tickles me to imagine someone writing it to me. I mean, I’m an author! I have written a novel!?!

(As an aside, I still remember my neighbor went into Waterstones to support me by asking if they had my first book on the shelves. Then, when they asked if she wanted them to order it in, she fixed them with a disgruntled look and said, ‘Oh no, I wouldn’t read it!’ And left.)

Life Would Be Better If We Added This Line to Every Email

It may seem off-putting at first, but in time we’ll all be thankful.

screen-shot-2017-04-30-at-12-49-43-pm-e1493571213425.png.webp

One CEO has a simple solution:

“I work a lot through email and text. I make it my goal to review what has come in and separate those that I can answer,” says Beth Ford, the chief executive of Land O’ Lakes, in a recent interview with Fast Company.

“I also always say to my team: ‘Please don’t write me a novel, I won’t read it.’ I just don’t have the time. Instead, write in the subject line what it is that this is about. And tell me upfront–is a decision needed, or do you need me to look at something, or is it a ‘When you have time, take a look at this’?–so I can prioritize effectively and be responsive when I need to be.”

Read Now


I…really wanna try one of these? I don’t think I’d like it, but look at it!

State of the TAM - Aug 25

SOOPER SEKRIT PROJECT!

What’s Up?

It is FINALLY time to unveil the SOOPER SEKRIT PROJECT that I’ve been working on! I am delighted to announce that I am included in the Bad, Dad, and Dangerous anthology along with Rhys Ford, Bru Baker, and Jenn Moffatt. It was awesome to work with such talented authors and lovely people on this idea.

Pre-orders are available now, and the anthology will be released on Oct 6.

(Now for months of me trying to remember not to call it Dad, Bad, and Dangerous :D)

There is TECHNICALLY a V2 announcement still to come :D but that’s not quite ready!

Pre-Order Now



Pupdate

Jax went to his second obedience class this week. He didn’t do quite as well, but it was mostly based around settling behavior (he has eaten every bed we got him) and not charging the food bowl (which he has no interest in doing). We did work a bit on his jumping up at people! Which is good. He just wants to love everyone, but he’s a muddy little goblin a lot of the time.



Recommendation of the Week

Look, frankly I think more people should take Eldritch Horror Gods from Outer Space away from Lovecraft. They deserve better. It sounds fun. What more can you ask for in your interstellar abomination gods?


For the few people who’ve read my novel #mischiefmaker and wondered what the board game #monstercrunch actually looked like, here it is! Found it in my parents loft and had to bring it home with me! #lofttreasures #boardgames #animallark #andileewrites #mmromance #geekyfun
August 23, 2020

Must Read of the Week

I find this sort of study fascinating. I’ve spent…probably too much time to productive…online arguing with people who claim they wouldn’t fall for a cult-leader/scammer/con-artist because they’re too smart/wary/informed. The truth is that the smarter and more intellectually curious you are, the easier it is to fall for something like a cult if you’re in an emotionally vulnerable spot. Because most of the time, cults don’t have time to commit a whole lot of work to A.N Other recruit…so you have to do the majority of the heavy lifting.

I mean, I have never walked past a BOGOF deal in the supermarket :D

Don’t Get Fooled or Conned Again — Here Are the 5 Tactics to Look out For

People and businesses routinely use five techniques to get us to do what they want, says presenter and broadcaster Alexis Conran. Here’s  how to recognize them.

web_ready_never-be-conned_v02.jpg

Most of us get fooled or conned on a regular basis. No, we’re probably not falling for Ponzi schemes or those “send us your password” phishing emails. But we set aside our better judgement all the time in less dramatic instances — we go for the “buy two, get one free” offer at the drugstore and walk away with more band-aids than we can use in 20 years; we order the chef’s daily special because it sounds, well, special but it’s really the restaurant’s way to off-load fish on the verge of going bad; or we get distracted from an alarming increase in crime in our community by a press conference from the mayor where she touts a promising rise in high-school test scores.

Read Now



Deal of the Week



State of the TAM - 18 Aug

Year of the binge-watch...

What’s Up?

It has been A Week! I know it is only Tuesday, but I still stand by my statement!

Yesterday Jax went to his first puppy obedience class. He was not the worst puppy there! He was pretty good in fact, wanted to go and play with everyone else but he did his ‘sit’ and his ‘down’ and MOSTLY paid attention when I needed him to.

It was fun! Next week we’re doing ‘Settling’ training, to teach him to go and lie down on command. Which will be good when I’m painting or whatever.

Which was the other big news…at least to me. I painted the living room over the weekend. When I got the paint I thought it was going to be just a quick freshen up, but wow! That room really needed three coats of paint apparently. I have finally picked all the paint out of my hair and the room is looking much brighter. Despite his nosiness, Jax only got some paint on his nose.

We have also got the publication date for the SOOPER SEKRIT PROJECT. So we should get cover reveals and blog tours sorted soon. It’ll be fun. I really enjoyed working with everyone involved.


Pupdate of the Week

Sometimes even the #writingstaffie needs the afternoon off. Thanks @rhysford_author for the pool :)
August 11, 2020

I agree with the message. I mean, wear a mask. Don’t kill anyone. …KINDA don’t feel that ‘don’t kill anyone’ is a maxim that this bunch are living by.


Recommendation of the Week

Rhys Ford dips back into the Sinners world with this collection of short stories. A must read for fans of the Crossroads Gin rockers :D


The Sausage, the Legend, the Doxie deserves every biscuity bit!

Poor @gunther_the_dachshund is on a very restricted diet for pancreatitis, so I made him some biscuits that fit his needs for his birthday.

(Aka how you know your dog owns you instead of the other way around.)
August 4, 2020

Must Read of the Week

Now, obviously, as a writer I’m not too keen on AI’s generating articles and/or fiction. On the other hand, as a big ole SF nerd of long-standing the evolution of articial intelligence is fascinating. At what point does programming become thought? At what point does thought become programming? I mean, there research that suggests that human intelligence developed to host and spready memetic information. Then there’s the Nature and Nurture debate, isn’t that programming of a sort?

A college kid’s fake, AI-generated blog fooled tens of thousands. This is how he made it.

“It was super easy actually,” he says, “which was the scary part.”

paper fortune teller ai

At the start of the week, Liam Porr had only heard of GPT-3. By the end, the college student had used the AI model to produce an entirely fake blog under a fake name.

It was meant as a fun experiment. But then one of his posts reached the number-one spot on Hacker News. Few people noticed that his blog was completely AI-generated. Some even hit “Subscribe.”

Read Now



Mic Drop of the Week!

C.S. Poe @cs_poe
A Friend in the Dark, written by me and @tekhnemakre is now available for pre-order:
books2read.com/AFriendintheDa… Coming Sept. 8! A suspicious death in NYC brings together a snarky CI and grumpy Army vet, and the mystery they uncover just might be the death of them as well.

I hate the taste of cilantro. I also can’t smell asparagus wee. One day I need to find out if I can sniff out arsenic or not. (Probably not. I had arteries in my nose cauterised when I was a kid. Now my sense of smell is awful.) I would 100% be tempted to do this just to freak out the friends who do love cilantro!

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