A while back, Sunita posted at Dear Author asking if genre fiction was creating a market for lemons. The post generated a lot of discussion. I didn’t contribute anything, but was nodding along as I read it. There’s so much “noise” about new work, much of it through non-traditional venues or sources, that as a reader I find it hard to sort through it meaningfully and am often not impressed by what is touted as the great new thing. It’s gotten to the point that there are very few reviewers whose recommendations I’ll take seriously.
But even as I’ve taken a pretty big step back in the volume of bloghopping and other social media I use, I am still seeing loads of marketing of new self-published books. Is it successful? Maybe others are buying these SPAs but I am not, because the samples I read are loaded with basic grammar and spelling errors, faulty sentence construction, character cliches, and info-dumping. Why waste my reading time and cash (not even $0.99) on books that will make me pity the delusions of these authors and weep for the future of readers everywhere (if they think that dreck is as awesome as their squeeing indicates)?
Since I’ve taken to browsing via tablet, I’m much less likely to comment or engage. Maybe I need to rethink my browsing habits. I miss interacting with other readers online more. But I also don’t want to get sucked into drama, and the online community feels (to me) prone to drama and kerfluffles more today than I remember it being in the past. Or maybe I’ve got a lower tolerance today. *shrug*
Amazon Prime is bumping up the price. Once I would have said it was worth even $99 per year based on the volume of books I bought with the free shipping. It’s still worth that to me…but not because of books’ shipping costs. I still buy paper books there, mostly text books and gifts, even though my Kindle purchases have dwindled almost to nothing; my bigger use is of the streaming and of shipping for other goods, mostly stuff that I can’t find easily locally. (Seriously, I love Luna’s Chocolate Cherry Almond bars but none of the grocery stores near me stock them; just peanut butter and cookie dough — what is up with that?)
On a similar front, I keep getting emails from B&N to come back. *sigh* No. I’m sorry, but no.
Another plug for the Budget Bytes cookbook and website: the one pot stroganoff turned out well. I added an onion and some spice, and think it would probably be excellent meatless. The vegetable “curry” was good, although it seemed like I ate it forever. The banana cocoa baked oatmeal still ranks #1 among favorites (tied with the maple dijon chicken thighs and roasted sweet potato), although the coconut-applesauce-pineapple baked oatmeal isn’t bad. I’m going to try the pumpkin version next. (Yes, I like oatmeal for breakfast. And I really like being able to make it on Sunday and pop a serving into the microwave all week for a good breakfast with minimal effort.)
Also on the food front, marzipan is still my favorite sweet. Tienda had huesos de santo “cookies” on sale. Yum.
On the technology front, I’ve switched from an iPhone to an Android phone. I’m still adjusting but have to say that I very much like the size — not the largest phone out there but larger than Ignacio who was a 3G (old, very old).