Current Facebook Status: So much laundry, so little time. And where’s that Mary Poppins snap thing when you need it?
Currently Playing in the Background: Whining children
Those of you who know me know that I’m a cheapskate. I don’t spend money easily or often [unless it’s on books, then sometimes I spend too much ;)]. Virtually all of my Kindle books were free. I’ve had an iPhone for two years but have yet to pay for an app.
But, somehow, I have two apps both worth about $10 each; the reality is they’re both worth far more.
The first is the iMapWeather Radio app. Literally, a lifesaver. No matter where I am, it will tell me if dangerous weather is headed my way. The official “National Weather Service” beep isn’t like the other beeps I get for text messages or appointment reminders, so there’s no chance I’ll confuse it with something else. But then a voice proceeds to tell me that I’m under some kind of warning. Thunderstorm. Tornado. And when you live in tornado valley, this is a Very. Good. Thing.
The other app is also a potential lifesaver. Or at least a career saver. Hopefully, a career starter.
Linda Rohrbough is the guest blogger over on Pentalk today. As a part of my discussions with her about today’s post, she offered me a review copy of her new iPhone app Pitch Your Book. You can head over there to see what she has to say. Below is my unbiased review.
Now, keep in mind that I’m a pantser. I have no clue what’s going to happen before I manage to wrap up Suburban Straightjacket. [Well, that’s not entirely true, but I’m not anything like a friend of mine who has an EIGHTY page OUTLINE for a story she wants to write someday.] So any faults with what you see below are mine, not Linda’s in any way. And, of course, I procrastinated actually emailing these out so not much in the way of crit partners looking at them.
Linda teaches the three log line method and has for years. I’m not going to spoil anything by getting into the whys and wherefores of each of the lines she has us create, but here’s what I’ve come up with:
A confirmed bachelor inherits four kids, leading him to advertise on Craigslist for a wife. The relationship with his new bride is going much better than he could have dreamed when he loses his job, forcing him to become Mr. Mom and throwing his family into a tailspin. Through it all, he learns again that love never fails and, sometimes, laughter really is the best medicine.
If you’re like me and think that, well, anything is too much to pay for an app, you need to reframe your thinking. Don’t think of this as an app. Think of it as a conference workshop on your phone. You know that big conference in September everyone’s talking about? The one in St. Louis [go Cardinals!]? Yeah, that one. This app is something like a workshop you could take there. But you don’t have to travel. It’s right there. And reviewable. You can listen to it as many times as you want. Flip through the flash cards. Retake the chapter test to make sure you haven’t missed anything – or that you remember it even though it’s been a while since you listened to the lesson.
In all, it took about an hour or so to go through the app. I listened to most of the lessons in the car [tape deck, you know – older cars can still be techno friendly!] and then took the quizzes later. The concepts have been percolating in my head ever since. In fact, I’m typing this a few minutes after 1AM because that last sentence up there JUST came to me as I was lying in bed not-sleeping.
Did I get it right? We’ll see. Will Linda’s method work for me like it has many others? Only time will tell [look for a post in late September to see if it did]. Is this app also a Very. Good. Thing? Yes.
Plus something she said sparked the very, very basics of a plot for the sequel. Wanna see? [And remember, this is being written shortly after 1AM. Take it with a big grain of salt and blame me if you don’t want to see more. Not Linda or her app ;).]
A widow advertises on Craigslist for a father figure for her two kids. She doesn’t anticipate the heady rush of feelings that come whenever he’s around and tries to cut him out of their lives for good to avoid feeling like she’s cheating on her late husband. When he’s not easily deterred, she finally comes to grips with the idea that sometimes, life really does give you second chances.
So there ya go. If you have an iPhone and want to pitch your book effectively, run, don’t walk over to iTunes and get this app.
And watch out for that funnel cloud, would ya?