Tuesday 10 October 2023: Some stuff done + Book review

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Yesterday’s jobs started with me finishing the latest book for NetGalley. I wrote and posted yesterday’s blog post and opened up today’s blog post to get it started. Then I opened Canva to create the ‘book review’ graphic for today, and the ‘currently reading’ graphic for tomorrow. I updated my handwritten notes in my NetGalley exercise book, and started work on the graphics.

I started to write the blog post from the bottom, with today’s book review. When I was happy with it, I copied and pasted it to NetGalley, Amazon and Instagram. It auto-posted to LinkedIn, but it isn’t auto-posting to Twitter/X or Facebook anymore and the ISBNs never seem to work on Goodreads. So those will have to wait until today’s blog post is live.

Medium gets the book reviews last, unless Amazon is refusing reviews until after a publication date in the future. Then, Amazon gets it last. This time, because it was an older book, Amazon was one of the first to get the review – and approve it.

I updated my Trello board and reading log, then I chose the next book to read. Deadly Shores was an old book; the next book is the latest book. I’ll continue working like that until I’ve caught up a bit. In between, though, I might, say, read a Christmas story if the whim takes me.

I did a bit of brainstorming for the NaNo project, The Secret of Whitehorse Farm.

I’d already done the posters for Monkey Dust’s next gig, which is this coming Saturday, I’d already created the event on Facebook, and I’d already added the gig to Diane’s Gig List. So all I had to do was share it all again. The gig list post was late showing up, but as soon as it did, I shared that too. And so ended those two client obligations for the day.

I was really tired after another disturbed night (the dog woke me up twice) and I didn’t have a lot of energy. I just wanted to go and curl up with a book. So I closed down and did just that, starting the next read for NetGalley as well as a bit of swotting up on Shea MacLeod’s Write Novel’s Fast method, which is the A5 journal.

Here, then, are today’s jobs:

  • today’s blog post
  • The Secret of Whitehorse Farm NaNoWriMo project (novella)
  • the People’s Friend writing hour on Twitter/X
  • A Winter Promise call for submissions (short story)
  • The Mucky Duck call for submissions (short story)
  • the Vietnam book
  • order repeat prescription

The Fool has disappeared from the list today because I already filled my morning slots with everything else. The writing hour takes an hour, but everything else gets a 30-minute slot. Only the client work in the afternoon is done during Pomodoros.

Book review

This feature is in association with NetGalley.

Deadly Shores by Kerry Buchanan

Many thanks to NetGalley and to Joffe Books for letting me see an advance reader’s copy of Deadly Shores by Kerry Buchanan.

Deadly Shores is the latest police procedural for Harvey and Birch, Buchanan’s pair of detectives, set in and around Belfast in Northern Ireland. It’s book 3, from what I can gather, and while I did enjoy it as a standalone story set within the series, I do feel I would have benefited more from reading the first two books. I felt as though I was missing a few details and was failing to understand the chemistry between the two officers.

I loved almost everything about this story. I loved the unusual setting, I loved getting to know how the Northern Ireland police force worked, I loved the characters, who felt nicely established, and I loved the storyline. It kept me turning the pages to find out what on earth was going to happen next.

I stalled when we ‘discovered’ who was behind the mystery, but I ploughed on in the hope that this was a massive red herring. It wasn’t, and in a way I was also glad that it wasn’t. But I would have preferred to have been kept guessing until closer to the end, at least to give me half a chance of trying to work it out for myself.

There was also the usual lack of thought with characters’ names. Having so many similar sounding names was a bit confusing, especially at the very start where we had Aaron, Asha, Aiken and Alistair in chapter one, closely followed by Jim and Tom in the same line, Steve and Steele in the same line, and Clara and Claudia in the same line. This is such a quick and easy fix, I don’t know why so many authors let it happen.

But it’s a nice read, I presume a good continuation of the series. I enjoyed it so much, I bought book 1.

Four stars.


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