Wednesday, February 27, 2013

SEO--Strike One!

Usually going to Barnes & Noble is a mind-stimulating treat. But when you have the words "Search Engine Optimization" buzzing like angry wasps in your head, you're driven . . . driven to pick up the first book available that has those mysterious words in the title.

Why? Why did I have to find out more about SEO? Why did blithely sit down in B&N to read a good bit of Jon Rognerud's text on the matter, only to get myself further confused about trying to have a business on the Net? Then I emailed Jon, he emailed me back, and I guess I'm stuck. In more ways that one, because in terms of marketing, both Cathy and I might as well be ambivalent troglodytes by choice and nature, backing away then toward "visibility" in much the same way a background actor avoids the limelight but teases herself with knowing a blurry image of her left knee might make into an episode of "Two Broke Girls."  Yes, I did background acting. For the last 6 years, as a matter of fact. Then it gets to the point where productions ask for "20-somethings, no larger than a size 6, who are hot, hot, HOT!" just a few times too many. It's humiliating to be humiliated by being a sensible, mature woman of an average size. Screw that!

So off I am on a new vocational course. Publishing ebooks! But.... You mean I can't just write something, put it up, sit back and collect money from pleased readers? Uh, no. And Jon Rognerud and others with expertise in this glowing world of online businesses will happily show you that. In multiple, mind-boggling ways.                           

We have to get a new book cover. A better website. A competent formatter. Many days surfing to find compatible sites for HeartFix and the other ebooks slowly gestating in my head and on my computer. What I really want to do is just write. That's all Cathy wants, too. Strike one.

Monday, February 25, 2013


Our book made it to Smashwords, and though I hastily overpriced her, she's now more reasonable. It's really a bargain, we think. (Yet the book needs further formatting for their "premium catalogue" and the cover is, yep, kinda lame.)  Cathy and I truly have no idea what the market is for a book like ours, especially one that presents to lovers the kinds of radical truths our ebook does.

Because the key is consciousness. Far from being an overused, New Age-y buzzword, consciousness entails everything in our minds, hearts and total reality of our lives on Earth. How conscious one remains in dealing with his/her significant other sets the tone and quality of the relationship. <--- That simple sentence expresses the theme of our HeartFixes, though they admittedly ask a lot of the reader. Emotions, words, attitudes and impulses must be closely monitored, until the corrected ones become habit. Cathy and I have paid the price of conscious work in our own relationships, and the benefits have been enormous. Sure, we had to sacrifice some sacred cows, such as controlling or changing our partners' 1. Finances. 2. Facial hair. 3. Dinner choices 4. . . . Those are just examples! The goal was getting to and maintaining the deep love at the core of our daily interactions. Like any worthwhile goal, it took time, work and commitment. But getting there can be half the fun!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

21st Century Workforce

A week without my desktop, an older laptop cursorily filling in, helped me realize just how much we're dependent on the New Internet/Digital World to feel active and alive. The HeartFix ebook, main project of course, has been spottily worked on, as I cannot see well on the smaller machine. So in fits and starts, she's almost ready to go, save for some parting words to readers, a book list for further reading, and --last but certainly not easiest --formatting. From RTF to PDF to compatible formats for leading online distributors.(Now there's a sentence that never existed before, say, 1989!)

Alone in my little office room, I'm too easily persuaded that everyone else is out and about in the hard copy world. "Non, non, ma cherie!" she says to herself: Workers from sleepless 16-year-olds to graying execs waiting for the requisite gold watch sit in front of their machines doing everything from creating viruses to making million dollar trades. I and so many others are somewhere in between, pummeling the keyboard for far less sophisticated and impressive reasons. Or talking on their I-Phones. Or doodling on their digital pads. Or, young though they may be, kids sit or stand fixated on their hand-held gadgets, feeling insulted if someone calls by voice instead of texting.

So this is what it's come to. I sit for hours and stare at my magic monitor, feeling my butt and hips spreading like melting snow on the first day of spring. Our hearts work on the same matters they've struggled with for centuries. But our brains are likely developing symbiotic neurons to be encoded in our DNA and passed on to those generations for whom neural compatibility with machines will be a survival necessity. Will our hearts keep pace?

Friday, February 15, 2013


I've managed to work through my frustrations regarding computers. Up to a point. Big Machine is still at the shop and I'm forced to use this ol' laptop. Just darn glad my husband bought it for me. Imagine 3 whole days + additional hours with NO COMPUTER AT ALL! I would at least pass out, if not need the EMTs and possible hospitalization.

Lame histrionics aside, this project we've named "HeartFix" has given my life a new and much-needed boost. There's only so much satisfaction and life contribution to be gained and given by half-hearted house maintenance, shopping, reading, walking the dogs and watching TV. That, dear friends, has been the substance of my life, not counting the days here and there I spent on various TV show sets doing "background." While I miss rubbing elbows with the likes of Melissa McCarthy and LL Cool J, et. al, that endeavor remained fallow due to the lack of steady ambition required to move forward as an actor. Now if I was in my 20s or 30s and "hot, hot, smokin' hot!" I'd have given it a try, I really would have.  So now my antsy-ness relates directly to the publication of HeartFix. We wanted it to debut on Valentine's day, but that lovely day passed ...( my mate gave me a cherry-scented candle) ... when Catherine and I lunched yesterday she reminded me that there's no rush, no rush at all. She's relaxed! I hyperventilate! She's sanguine! I fret and sweat!

Steps I'll take in the coming weeks--final proofing, cover creation, website construction. While I wait for the energy to accrue for the first task, I will mix myself a vodka amaretto fizz. My own recipe!

Monday, February 11, 2013


     So, some world-class asshole hacked my FaceBook account. Plus a stubborn malware named AGENT3. CPCF has invaded my machine and is doing its best to terminate with extreme prejudice my entire system. Regardless of privacy laws, there truly isn't any anymore!! So, HeartFix will be delayed until I dabble--with Fry's--in a little ComputerFix. (Now there's a book I know I'll never be able to write!)

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Can Dorner Be HeartFixed?

     While a relentless, record-breaking blizzard hammers the northwest, we here in sunny So. Cal. must deal with the unfolding suspense drama of Christopher Jordan Dorner, rogue ex-cop and stealthy multiple murderer who has the police all over the lower half of our state in a blue frenzy. This reaction to one crazy, lethally pissed off individual naturally gets ramped up by the media until all of us assume the Dorner manhunt is the important local news of the day.

     Not  necessarily so. While nabbing and possibly eliminating this guy may be Job One for the LAPD and other law enforcement, that or any other news item has no power to rule personal awareness. One of the important factors in HeartFix (and LIFE!) is the fundamental concept that we really do have power over our minds and emotions, and that outside elements, while frequently necessary to study, understand and follow, with enough attention and practice can be placed on the mental and emotional back burners, where they can simmer for awhile. And if need be, burn out.

     Taken at face value, Dorner appears to be the end-all antithesis of a sane, loving, conscious (HeartFixed?) man. His manifesto lays blame on everything and everyone from childhood bullies to the alleged lack of integrity of his superiors in the LAPD. As a matter of fact, his own personal integrity, while perhaps once recognized by others, disintegrated along with the rest of his self-image when the role he'd fully assumed as his full identity was suddenly pulled out from under him like a tattered old rug. The vagaries of life have a way of doing that to all of us, one time or another, most likely multiple times. What if Dorner had realized that who he is isn't what he is? Or that others' opinions cannot change the fundamental integrity that apparently typified a number of other actions and decisions in his life? What if he learned and understood that his feeling of victimization was just that--a feeling--and that it doesn't mean that, ipso facto, he is a victim?

    Well, Chris Dorner's consciousness would appear to be so far from accepting even a glimmer of those realizations that perhaps it would take years of therapy and rehabilitation to bring him even a modicum of sanity. He is now so invested in taking deadly revenge on his perceived arch enemies that the goal has fully overtaken his whole being. He is not the man he once might have been. Thankfully, he is not your typical guy!

      Commitment toward love, sanity and health is everyone's job one. Then effort is required, all the time. Not surprisingly, many refuse to take on such an overwhelming task. But in the end, clearing our lives of false identities and creating what we want pushes all other "news" aside. In Dorner's case, I gladly place the waiting, watching, judging and hoping game in others' hands.    

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Ledger? What Ledger?

   Feedback we're receiving from our pre-pub readers shows, thus far, we're pretty much on the right track. Very ironically, though, the HeartFix tools we've codified in the book become vital in our own lives, reflecting where we as the authors still need to work on our own relationships. My partner/husband/mate/companion whom I've been with for nearly 25 years still can't get it through his head that he doesn't do nearly enough around the house. He doesn't do nearly as much as I do. I feel like the whole responsibility of maintaining our household and completing necessary day-to-day tasks is entirely on my shoulders!<---- What you're reading in emphatic italics at left displays my stubborn, ingrained attitude bred from a lack of conscious awareness, a reversion to my ego programming that keeps a tally of who does what, when and how much. And I expect my beloved to do his part to balance the ledger!
   HeartFix #26   Burn the Ledger.
   Wish I could say this one's easy. Few of them are, if you're used to relying on ego responses when your partner doesn't match your wants or expectations. Keeping a tally of who does the "most" in the relationship inevitably backfires, once the piling resentments explode into anger with what you view as a diminishing number of your partner's contributions to his or her side of the ledger. On the other hand, couples who demonstrate that it's their finest pleasure to serve one another lift their relationship to a place of heightened functionality and cooperation.
   (Yeah, yeah, Don, I know. Listen: I'm working on it!) {{{sigh}}}

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

To Market, To Market . . .

  Nothing like beginning a computer project to show you just what you DON'T know! As in--Facebook marketing. That's the big thing, now--marketing your products on the internet, through "the cloud" as it were, though I'm still not sure exactly what that is; I usually think of them as fat, fluffy things that periodically wet the earth. But on FB: I notified others of this blog, but every time I tried to post my note, it looked as if it didn't get up there. So I tried again. The upshot being that I ended up with several successive posts about the blog. Can we say "desperate online marketing?" Puh-leeze! That darn ebook isn't even ready yet. The darn ebook won't be for everyone. The darn--I mean blessed--ebook may not even make our self-imposed publishing deadline, due to the fact that both Catherine and I have a major planet or two in Virgo and cannot abide anything not ship-shape-perfect-no-mistakes-everything-in-there-we-want, etc. etc.  (I wish that influenced my housekeeping...) The unpublished ms. has been sent to a select few for their input, and already we're listening and tweaking, and more to come, more to come, more to come. We want the best product we can possibly manage.
  Now I'm off to a neighborhood meeting. Stay frisky, my  friends.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

HeartFix Manual to Debut

WELCOME, friends and other loved and loving ones. Catherine and I have just about finished the final, publishable version of the HeartFix Relationship Manual, our first ebook set to be ready for purchase on--could there be a better time?--Valentine's Day. Between then and now a number of things need to be done, including adequately formatting the ebook for upload on sales sites such as Amazon, setting a price and creating a book cover. We had no idea how long the whole project would take and how many learning curves had to be conquered. (Including this one--I neglected to choose a template for this brand new blog and now have to figure out how to get one. You'd think there would be a simple button . . . but no, nothing that un-geeky easy!) Fear not: A more attractive blog is in store!

The HeartFix Relationship Manual offers readers a plethora of suggestions on what attitudes and behaviors shape the most gratifying and long-lasting love relationships for us largely clueless humans. This is no amateurs' effort, either. Catherine Solange and I have had a fair share of relationships, both heartbreaking and confusing as well as--finally--satisfying and consistently loving. We're both there now, happy to report! So, we've taken the hard lessons from those relationships and mixed in our best-learned precepts of consciousness and spirituality. In this sense, the HeartFix Manual will be uniquely suited to those who not only want to improve their relationships but also have an overriding desire to continually work on themselves, to find and use the tools to improve their outlook on themselves and their lives.

It's here, too, where you can post your questions as well as your own personal experiences with the HeartFixes or other relevant areas of concern. We welcome all feedback and suggestions. HeartFix, like the better approaches to life as a whole, is a process-oriented task featuring incremental steps and generous room to grow and change.