June 19, 2012

Grace's Mirtillis, and my S. Holmes

Today I had a nice surprise in my mailbox. A copy of my daughter's ex-neighbour's cookbook, 'Grace's Sweet Life'  for me to review. Looks yummy, lots of colour pics of delicious desserts, with easy clear directions. To drool over. How Grace can cook all this stuff and stay skinny is a miracle. Because she has made everything in the book a few times. 200 pages of stuff like:-
 Piccolo Torta al Crema di Formaggio e Cioccolato Bianco con composta di Mirtilli - Mini Blueberry White Chocolate Cheesecakes. That takes 4 pages, including a full page illustration. I will eat those, but somehow doubt I will manage to produce them with my toaster oven and propane stove.
Now, the last one in the book, I just might manage. Pere al Vaniglia - Vanilla Poached Pears. I even have almost all the four ingredients - water(yup) sugar (yup, well, she says demarara, but) pears (yup, as it happens) 1 vanilla bean (no, but I know where to get that) cinnamon stick (yup, may be about five or six years old, but, yup)
Maybe I will try this. Later.
Back to my own books now. Yeah, yeah, boring. Thing is, I now have a small and potentially growing income from my stuff, so I should concentrate and nurse things along, not drool over Grace's Mirtilli's.
I have received two cheques from Amazon US since January, and my US revenue EIN has been received everywhere, so they won't withhold that nasty 30% for US taxes anymore. Smashwords will pay something equal to, or a bit more than, Amazon, at their next quarterly payout. Almost all of that is from sales of my Sherlock Holmes stuff, and mostly priced at $0.99.
I have a print edition of my Sherlock book out via Createspace, and a few people have bought it. Thank you, those guys. I am no promoter, of course, so it is sinking rapidly through the ranks on Amazon. But I have managed to get a book into print with very little fuss and bother, and all it cost was my time. If I spend $25 for extended distribution it can be bought from a number of outlets, and I will likely go ahead with that simply because then I can buy copies from Amazon Canada.
I wanted to buy half a dozen copies, to sell or give away, from Amazon, yesterday. First, not available from Amzn.ca, second, 'eligible for free shipping' -- if you are in the USA. Finally, each copy would cost $3.99 shipping charge + retail price + extra $1.99 ('duties'?). No way, forget that. I will recoup the $25 extended distribution costs with the savings on 6 copies bought in Canada, alone.
I can buy from Createspace directly, of course, I was just tempted by the 'free shipping' offer. Shipping from CS, also in the States, costs rather less, because they charge for the parcel, not per item in it.
Nobody tells you this stuff, trial and error rules.
Eland Dances, meanwhile, is in hiatus, and I will go ahead with publishing that in print next month, to allow a gap between publications. The point is mostly to have one book always in the list of just published items, and to allow any pushing to concentrate on one thing at a time. Not that I'm doing much pushing, the theory is good, right?
Right now I have two Sherlock stories part written, as my NanoBootcamp effort.  Well behind with the wordcount, at about 10,000 words of a theoretical 50k by the end of June. So long as I produce something readable, I will be happy, never mind a particular wordage. Something produced every day is good.Sherlock in print, US