31 May 2014

Google Store Addition - My New App

My first app!
So I haven't posted anything in over a week. Blasphemous, I know! I've been busy at work and so much is going on these days I feel like I can't accomplish anything. Changes at work and a little side action (if you know what I mean). That means I'm learning new stuff! Get your minds out of the gutter.

Much of my evenings has been dedicated to learning how to use the tools needed to build mobile apps. I started out making changes for an organization and once I updated theirs successfully, the bug hit me. I needed an app to compile all my art and social outlets together. What writer wouldn't want something like that, huh? Their own portfolio portal! Was that redundant?

Every evening at exactly 7:00, I would shimmy up to my iMac and plug away at my design. It's not the bestest and greatest I'm sure, but it's MINE. Kind of like the draft manuscript that you just finished. You know the feeling, you just have to publish it right away, it's just that awesome. Shameless to say, I did just that.

So, only my blog readers know about this link and I only have an Android version published. I have an iPhone distribution ready, but haven't had a successful upload into the Apple Store just yet. Coming soon.

A peek at my fashion web template

Be kind. Please use the app and give me feedback. Even if you only download it to test it out and never use it again. I'm sure to improve. If it totally sucks, I need to know this too! Just as if in a writing critique group, let me have it. I will update and make it better, I promise.

Notables, as in Diane Carlisle notable projects. I take checks. No seriously, it's FREE! But if you want a website, I have to charge for that. I'm completely affordable. The app has a "get a quote" form.

P.S. I'm willing to hire a graphics artist to redo my header on the app. Any takers? I know it sucks. Use my app contact form and shoot me an estimate.

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21 May 2014

New Mobile App Coming Soon

I have been fortunate to have had opportunities to learn new things and this week hasn't been much different, only I've had my head in the clouds (literally, so to speak) learning how to build mobile apps for Android, iPhone, and iPad devices. I've had a heck of a time learning, but it's coming along. The more I learn, the more I realize my potential for such good AND bad.

With learning comes mistakes, and boy have they been painful. Today I discovered that I caused another developer a slap on the hand for infringement violations. It was all innocent, I promise!

Anyway, it's been cleared up and I get to keep my developer accounts with Google and Apple. What a scare! I know this seems a bit over-dramatic, but hey, this is a blog, not a news site. Stay tuned here though. My subscribers and readers will be the first to download and test out my new app, so stick around!

What will you be able to do with my new app?

  1. Get a quote for web design, photography, content management, and editorial services.
  2. View my extensive portfolio in one place
  3. Submit guest posts and ideas for my blog
  4. Request a review of your book
  5. Purchase my books (short stories for now, I'm working on it!)

Do you think there is a demand for this type of mobile functionality?

Until next time, don't go causing people to get in trouble for intellectual property rights violations (unintentional), unless of course you're just learning the ropes. Then you get a couple of screw ups before you'll be held accountable I'm sure. And as my friend Randi always says, "Stay classy, Blog-o-sphere!"

Okay, that wasn't infringement. I totally gave her credit.

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12 May 2014

Things Got Ugly at PCB

We're in Panama City Beach this week, so if I missed posting anything for you, you now know why! Actually, I felt an urge to share something with you. Knowing I love to break rules whenever I have the chance, I thought you might enjoy my latest display of rebel awesomeness.

These were my own empties. Multiple rules were broken on this evening.

  1. Alcoholic beverages were consumed in the spa
  2. Motrin for our aching backs were consumed before entering the spa
  3. No adult supervision existed for the lot of us
  4. We did not seek consultation from our respective doctors as they were not available

Then we made it out to Coyote Ugly where most of us rode the mechanical bull. I didn't make it onto the bull, mainly because I didn't want to make a fool of myself. I discovered the next morning, I'd found myself on the bar instead. So much for making of the fool.

Here's my son Cameron's attempt at mastering the beast. Sorry, but I have confiscated and destroyed all videos pertaining to the bar.

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06 May 2014

5 Motives For Animals in Fiction

I asked Tim to recall all the fictional novels he's read (or movies watched) where animals played a part. I did this because I was curious to know what other readers would come up with, not just me. He named the novels (movies) and I noticed there were, to me, different motivations for animals appearing as characters, even the walk-ons. These are the ones I found.

Please Like My Protagonist

At most conferences I've attended and online writing classes I've taken, the speakers have discussed this thing referred to as "pet the dog" which simply means get the reader to instantly like your protagonist. Whenever any character shows affection toward an animal, it will create this connection with your reader. How about an Orangutan? Remember Clyde in Every Which Way But Loose and its sequel? Best sidekick EVER!

Here's a quick example. When a cop picks up that cute puppy in an alley while searching for some bad guy, notice he gives it a quick snuggle before tucking it safely behind some dumpster? Now, back to the bad guy and doing the much needed deed, moving the plot along. It's not realistic, but it works. The cop has a soft spot, even while in the middle of a very dangerous chase. This cute scenario doesn't really belong in the story, but it serves one of two purposes for supplying elements which seem out of place. It adds to character development. The other would be to further the plot, which it does not.

Creating Conflicting Emotions

Two elements I love to experience at the same time are feeling my love for humanity and feeling love for a helpless NON-human type. How does one promote love for humanity? Um, you have an horrific animal which causes incomprehensible damage to society. Think King Kong, Godzilla, Food of the Gods, and Jaws. It's man against this indestructible creature wreaking havoc upon their villages.

And don't give these creatures any qualities that make them human, like King Kong actually falling in love with the girl. NOooooooo!!!! Now we have to like the creature, and that defeats the purpose of bringing society together to kill it. Talk about conflicting emotions for your readers.

In Jaws, the mother was protecting her 15 foot baby the fishermen killed! Those bastards. Of course, any mother would go after them murderers, and with great vengeance. How do you hate such a creature?

Creating Horror and Anticipation

One of the things in fiction that has a remarkable affect on readers, and I say this from my own experience as an avid reader of horror, is the mention of acts performed by domestic animals, acts we cannot deny but we cringe knowing of them. Like the cannibalism of hamsters when one of their own becomes ill. No, our pets are not cannibals!

Authors remind us of the horrors we wish to deny. They torture us with these tidbits of information, reminding our kindred of the evil which exists in our innocent world, the one we so desperately seek to escape. MWAHAHAHAHA!!

A stray dog wouldn't eat the scalp off a dead man. But, what if he'd been abandoned and was hungry, like the one in Stephen King's Gerald's Game? I think King described it like the sound of pulling up carpet? I don't care how hungry my Maggie ever gets, she'd never eat my scalp!

Promoting Religious Views

So, what does it say to you, the reader, when you read about the family pet who died? Pet Sematary is an example. Karma? Did you get a sense that the author had a particular religion they were depicting or did it just seem creepy to you? Coming back to life: evil times 3! I'm not suggesting this was the intent, but when I read the book, I felt a lot of ceremony in it.

Political Dissidence

Animal Farm is a great example of this, but that's literary stuff, so who cares? :)  Read it!

I use animals in my short story Snow Leopard. The cats in my story are major characters and they play a very prominent role in how I feel about political dissidence in America today. They are tools and my intent has always been the hope that my readers will relate on a deeper level at some point.

Okay, I admit, I'm being overly harsh on the writers out there, but I want to know. Do you think about why you include animals in your scenarios? Do you ever wonder why you find the need to include them? I think it's okay to do it, I just wonder if you know why you do it and do these specific reasons I point out hit the mark?

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