Tag Archive | shopping

Last Minute Christmas Gifts

Is your Christmas shopping done? That would include the last minute gifts you might have forgotten about, or any little extras, just because you felt like it.

For a little shameless self-promo, if you need a gift idea, spoken as an author – buy someone a book! Better yet, buy a book by Gail Sattler.

Then after Christmas, if it’s one you haven’t already read, ask to borrow it. I’m a big Kindle reader, and most books can be loaned out by the buyer to a friend’s Kindle. For free. Gotta love it.

To make it easy for you – go to www.amazon.com and in the search box, first select KINDLE from the options, and then put in me – Gail Sattler. Or, another favorite author. That’s okay.  * insert smiley face here * .

Merry Christmas as you finish up your shopping.

My next, and last post before Christmas will be by my guest Linda Matchett.  And then, we’re almost at the end of 2018.

Ho ho ho. Merry Christmas.

Do Writers Give Books For Christmas?

Is your Christmas shopping done?

Mine isn’t.

A lot of people think that writers give books for Christmas. I can say that most of us do not. That is because books given as seasonal gifts are not usually appreciated. If an author gives a book as a gift, most people appreciate it. Who doesn’t appreciate getting something for free? But the point of that is, most people think that our own books don’t cost the author anything. That’s not true. Yes, most publishers will give a certain number of books with a contract, but we’re supposed to give those books away for promotion and reviewing. Not freebies for our friends.  I know authors who buy lots of books for various purposes. They’re not free.

If I give someone a book for Christmas, I’m more likely to give away a book not written by me. Not even necessarily a friend’s book, but a book that I don’t know the author, and just think the recipient will enjoy that book.

It’s a total thrill for me as an author when someone buys a book I’ve written, then comes to me to ask me to autograph it for a friend.

I’ll never forget the first time that happened to me. I was at home, I’d gotten the kids off to school and went back to bed because I had worked the night before and hadn’t gotten to bed until approximately 2:00 am. I was only dressed in ratty sweatpants and an old t-shirt, I hadn’t combed my hair, and I certainly wasn’t wearing makeup. I don’t even remember if I was wearing socks. The doorbell rang, so I answered it. It was the mother of a friend of one of my kids. She’d bought a few of my books, and she came to my door to ask me to autograph one of them because she was giving it away as a birthday gift to her sister.

Not a moment of glory, but I did sign the book and write a nice birthday wish.

No, writers usually don’t give their own books as Christmas gifts. But we sure love it when others do.

A Writer’s Mind – My Fear of eBay

Today my guest is Karin Beery, who has a unique perspective on something many of us use all the time, with no thought. But as a writer thinks…. what if….

Owner of Write Now Editing, Karin Beery is an active member of American Christian Fiction Writers and the Christian Editor Network, where she teaches several editing classes through the PEN Institute. Her debut novel, Summer Plans and OtherDisasters, released earlier this year. As managing editor of Guiding Light Women’s Fiction, she is looking for stories that entertain, encourage, inspire, and enlighten. Find out more at her website.

The writer’s struggle – how can you add more conflict to your story?

I’m always looking for new, fun ways to mess up my character’s lives, and sometimes that involves observing ordinary situations and asking “what if”?

What if that guy hadn’t stopped his bike in time and he’d ridden in front of that minivan? Maybe all five of those kids belong to the lady driving. What if she’s single? What if he likes her? What if the kids don’t like him?

That’s a pretty typical list of what-ifs for most writers, but the other day I had a revelation. While wondering how suspense writers create their plots, I realized the truth: my husband and I are easy prey for the next psychopath looking to pin a murder on someone.

You see, I’m not only a writer, I’m also a fan of cop shows and suspense novels, so I know how this works. One finger print, some DNA, and I’m going away for life. But how could someone frame me for murder?


That’s right. It seems so innocent – I have something you want so I sell it to you for a bargain – but what if it’s really just a way for murderers to frame innocent people?

Think about it. Every time my husband and I box up something to ship to a customer, we use high-quality packaging tape. Do you know how hard it is to use that tape without leaving a finger print on it? And that adhesive! How many skin cells does it rip off every time I tear a new strip? As if that’s not enough, I’ve noticed more than one of my hairs accidentally taped to the outside of a box. So. Much. DNA.

I’m not selling shoes. I’m shipping off frame-me kits!

For the record, I didn’t do it. I’ll never do it. If you ever hear about me being arrested for a violent crime, take this post to the police and tell them I was framed!

Am I overreacting? Possibly, but that’s how I’d frame an innocent man if I wrote a crime novel. It’s just how this writer’s mind works … and probably why my husband doesn’t ask for my help.

Time to start Christmas shopping?

As a writer, what do I think about at Christmas time to buy everyone?

Well, the natural thing would of course be… books. But then that’s what everyone expects me to give, so I can’t. Besides, according to all contracts from publishers, the few free copies the authors get are supposed to be given away as promo to potential buyers, not freebies to friends and relatives.

My next thought is, a reading device, like a Kindle or a Kobo. But truthfully, almost everyone on my Christmas list already has one. So I can’t. Besides, if I did, I’d be tempted to load it up with my own books, which hopefully all my friends and family have already read. Besides, you can download the Kindle reader app onto your phone, if you really want to read a book on your phone. Which I don’t.

Or, how about a remote keyboard that syncs with a cell phone. Everyone has a cell phone, right? But then again, no one I know, except a few other writers, need to type long things into their phones that would make a separate keyboard worthwhile, so I can’t. Although it sure is cool to have a keyboard that works with a phone. Except, one more thing to carry in our purses that we don’t use every day. Plus the time it takes to connect, especially when you haven’t used it for a while. (But it’s still cool!)

Then the next thought, buying a pass/ticket to a really cool event – like the next writers’ conference. Learn lots of stuff, meet cool people, schmooze with authors. Get autographs. Oh wait. My friends schmooze with me, and it’s probably not that exciting. And not everyone things attending classes and workshops is fun. Never mind that idea.

Oh well. I guess there’s always Starbucks gift cards…