Tuesday, December 18, 2012
Wednesday, November 28, 2012
I've attended seminars, as well, that gave you tips about discovering how much control you do have in your life and making it positive. I admit, I'm prone to cynicism and pessimism, even though I realize that having a positive outlook almost always brings better results.
Two of the best books I've found in the past for those really interested in making positive changes (instead of just blabbering about it) are Covey's 7 Habits of Highly Effective People and Benjamin Franklin's Autobiography (which is free on Amazon Kindle, by the way). In fact, Franklin's book was extremely helpful (although my cynical side snickers and says, "yeah, you know he talked a good game, but did he ever actually implement the methods he espoused in the book? I mean, after chasing all those ladies in Paris and London, when did he have time for personal reflection and improvement?" LOL).
So...I was recently inspired by an e-mail I got from Matt Schroeder, who is an inspirational speaker and has written a book, as well. I asked him if I could post the text from his message and the link to his book. My hope is that if you feel in need of inspiration, you may find something here that will help you.
From Matt Schroeder...
I had a chance to have an individual, powerful, and memorable discussion with Christopher Reeve (AKA Superman; or rather he was the world famous actor who portrayed the Man of Steel,) on the evening before he spoke at my bachelors commencement (June 13, 2003.) A rare and beautiful photograph was taken just after our motivational encounter, and it can be seen in the videos on my website at www.mattschroeder.org, Without describing the details of our meeting, I’ll say it was beneficial to both parties involved, and I often revisit the meeting during my motivational presentations.
"It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you
live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all
-- in which case, you fail by default." -- J.K. Rowling
"Failure only increases your chances for success at your next attempt."
Friday, November 23, 2012
Sunday, November 18, 2012
The holidays are undoubtedly a lot of fun and excitement, but everyone needs a few minutes to relax every once in a while and in the spirit of giving, The Vital Principle is free until Tuesday, November 20!
The Vital Principle is the first book in my mystery series featuring the Second Sons Inquiry Agency. The mysteries are set in England in the first half of the 19th century and this particular novel features the Agency's founder, Knighton Gaunt, a man who gave up social status in favor of discovering the truth. Miss Prudence Barnard is an impoverished gentlewoman trying to survive by acting as a spiritualist until she is accused of murdering her host.
The Vital Principle where accusations of murder focus more tightly on Prudence. Mr. Gretton, the constable, would like nothing better than to arrest Prudence on the spot, but Gaunt is beginning to have doubts....
Wednesday, October 31, 2012
This topic probably isn't one you'd find on a writer's blog, but then, neither is gardening, and it's hard for me to stick to straight writing topics (particularly when you're spending months working on the same book, LOL).
Anyway, as soon as it was available, I upgraded my stalwart Dell desktop to Windows 8. It seemed appropriate for Halloween--I'm a sucker for cheap terror. It's why I love this time of year and the fact that I can watch as many Hammer Studio horror movies as I want. Besides, until I quit and become a full-time writer, I'm also a computer specialist and I like to keep up, not to mention that I usually appreciate new versions of things. They're exciting and I almost always find that the media doesn't give you a really accurate assessment of anything.
The Upgrade to Windows 8
I upgraded from Windows 7 on my desktop. Took a few hours, but you don't have to sit there and watch it. It pulled over all my old programs and files, so there was no problem, there. I did use the compatibility checker and it pointed out a few really old programs that I will need to upgrade, though. No big deal as I don't use them that often, anyway.
The following won't be "news" to folks who have been following all the blogs and boards about Windows 8, but I was a little disappointed, though, to find that because I have two monitors, I ended up with what is basically Windows 7 with no start menu. I had it in the back of my mind that surely it couldn't be that stupid and it would stretch Metro across both of them.
Not so. The new Metro interface only displays on the main monitor and worse, as soon as I click on any of my installed programs (even the Office 2010 tiles on the Metro interface) it immediately flips to the old Windows 7 interface on both monitors.
Everything takes two or three extra clicks to get there. Not cool, Microsoft. You've just made it harder for me to do anything and taken away the things I'd grown used to like the clock and weather because I refuse to have to keep hiking over to the upper right corner, waiting for Charms to appear, clicking on the Metro icon to get the Metro interface back for the few seconds it stays there so I can see the clock and weather before I click on something in one of my apps that makes Metro disappear again. That sentence is as awkward as this interface.
What can't I stay in Metro?
Why won't Metro stretch across both screens?
Why do all my applications, even the Microsoft Office ones, flip me out of Metro to standard Windows?
Why can't you automatically bring back the Metro interface after I close an application, or at least when I move it to the secondary monitor, so I don't have to *blinking* go to the upper-right-corner to summon the Charms menu to bring back the interface just to *blinking* see the weather and time?
Maybe I'll just go to the command prompt and use Powershell all the time instead of any menus or interfaces at all like I do at work--because this really is irritating.
I'm still looking for a way to set it to "auto-return" to Metro after I close an app or when nothing is running on the main monitor. I mean, really, why should I have to work to see the Metro interface?
I see no speed increase and in fact have noticed sluggishness/lack of responsiveness when opening programs, so all-in-all it's kind of a blah event. It didn't do any damage, but it didn't exactly do anything for me, either. But at least if you upgrade now, it's cheap.
I have hopes that over time, they'll think about giving us more options to tailor this beast to do things like stretch across two monitors and perhaps "auto-return" to Metro so we don't have to do that all the time.
Just a few thoughts
Thursday, October 11, 2012
These roses will stay small--no more than three feet in height and perhaps that same in width. They will not throw up large canes, so you generally won’t have to worry about cutting them back except to remove dead or diseased wood.
These roses will grow into medium-sized bushes--no more than five feet in height and smaller in width. They will not throw up large canes, so you generally won’t have to worry about cutting them back except to remove dead or diseased wood, although you may want to trim them back to keep them within the constraints of your garden.
These roses will grow into large bushes and can often be used as climbers. They may throw up long canes. Most likely, unless you have a very large garden, you’ll have to train them as a short (8’) climber or trim them back. They make great pillar roses, though, if you want to add height to your garden by placing them in the middle or back.
I hope you'll take the time to visit your favorite fall rose garden and smell the roses. The cooler weather really brings out the best in them and rose gardens are great places to relax with a book!
Happy Gardening from Amy Corwin, author of Escaping Notice, a Regency romance.
Tuesday, September 25, 2012
Writing and Uncertainty
Thursday, September 06, 2012
Saturday, August 25, 2012
Hope you enjoy the last few months and are preparing for the fall rose season. It can be a pretty spectacular way to end the summer. But if you need a cooling break from the summer heat, there's always a new book to be had...
Wednesday, August 08, 2012
Thursday, August 02, 2012
Although we are firmly in the middle of summer, it will only be a few weeks before the weather starts cooling off. That means, now is a good time to line up and even order plants or seeds you want to plant in the fall.
Which brings me to the real subject of this blog: Fall Rose Planting. :) You knew I'd get there, one way or the other, right?
Roses Unlimited is a great source for "Earth Kind" roses, so I hope you'll check them out.
Duchesse de Brabant, a Tea rose and one of the EarthKind roses that do well in the North Carolina area. “No spraying required!” [Picture on the left.]