Our month of giveaways continues! Today, our guest Ellen Byron offers up a copy of her new book, Body on the Bayou the second in the Cajun Country Mystery series and some swag!
To be entered to win, leave a comment on the post. Winners for the week will be announced in a special blog post on Sunday.
When Plantation Shudders, the first in my Cajun Country Mystery series, was published, I figured promoting it meant some blog posts, a few Facebook updates, and the occasional tweet. Boy, was I wrong. There is so much more to do than that, and the last year has been one learning experience after another, tears followed by triumph… and then followed by tears again. But as I now hit the computer to promote Body on the Bayou, the second book in my series, I proudly share five of the skills I’ve managed to conquer.
- I always wondered what the odd button reading “Print Screen” on my keyboard was for. Who knew it actually meant, “Print Screen?” Apparently everybody but me, because when I put the question “How do I take a screenshot?” to the Sisters in Crime Guppy group, a half dozen people patiently wrote back, “Hit the print screen button and then Control-V.” Ta da! Here’s a screenshot from an early draft of this very post:
- Snipping tool. Ah, but how to turn a document or a PDF into a JPEG? That’s where a program called “Snipping Tool” comes in. (And the fact I even know what PDFs and JPEGs are is testament to what I’ve learned this year.) Some far more skilled person than yours truly guided me to the Windows menu where this computing miracle resides. I use it define an image and then save it as a JPEG. Which is exactly what I did with the example below.
- Canva. I howled to the winds when I first tried Canva. Frankly, I still barely get it. But I bumbled my way through the site enough to create this Facebook banner. So… yay, me!
- Making folders. Oh, the heady pleasure of discovering I can create folders to store my trillions of docs, emails, and photos. This may seem like Computing 101 to a lot of you, but to me it was an eye-opener. I do this so often now that I’m not including a picture because I wouldn’t know which “Folder” option to choose from. Email? Documents? Photos? The options are endless and wonderful – at least for me. Less so for my husband who has to back up all my data.
These are just a few of the skills I’ve picked up in my publishing journey. I’ve also created newsletters and sponsored contests. With some assistance from my teenager – this is where those impossible creatures come in handy – I’ve made bookmarks, business cards, and brochures. (Vistaprint and GotPrint are my new BFFs.) But perhaps the important task I’ve conquered is number five…
- Learning how to use an electric wine opener.
Two years ago, I won a basket at a school silent auction that included a fancy electric wine bottle opener. I’m embarrassed to admit I was too intimidated to use it. But when I discovered I’d left my manual opener at my recent book launch party, I panicked. Then I decided that if I could master the above steps 1-4, I could figure out how to use an electric wine bottle opener. Success!
And thank goodness, because nothing says “Man, do I need a glass of wine” like a battle with any of those previously mentioned skills.
Readers, what computer skill – or skills – have you mastered?
BIO: Ellen’s debut novel, Plantation Shudders, made the USA Today Bestsellers list, and was nominated for Agatha, Lefty, and Daphne awards. The second book in her Cajun Country Mystery Series, Body on the Bayou, offers “everything a cozy reader could want,” according to Publishers Weekly, while the Library Journal says, “Diane Mott Davidson and Lou Jane Temple fans will line up for this series.” A TV veteran, Ellen has written for many hit sitcoms, including Wings and Just Shoot Me.