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Sunday Update – August 7, 2016

Oh my god, what a week. It all started because I got paranoid about my website and blog and decided that I needed a back up plan for it if it ever got hacked. Really, everything I do depends on this website. I use this website to sell my books, to give information to my readers, and to advertise on Facebook. If it were to go down, I'd be screwed.

So two weeks ago, I started looking into backup plugins for WordPress. I decided on Backup Buddy, bought it, some of their online storage, and got to work installing it. Only it didn't work. Of course. I had a feeling it wouldn't because nothing works right out of the box for me anymore. This is also why I take forever to update my computer and phones. I wrote to Backup Buddy's customer service and they got back to me and said I needed more PHP memory. Then I wrote to my hosting company to ask how to do this. TEN DAYS LATER, after going back and forth between my hosting company and Backup Buddy, my hosting company made a big change on my server and screwed up everything. I nearly cried. I had to get on the phone to them because email was too slow and have someone there fix it while I sat on the phone with them at 9:30pm. And even once they fixed all the problems, I still couldn't schedule posts. You probably saw my post on the blog yesterday, right? That was a test that was supposed to go out on FRIDAY. It took me a whole day of troubleshooting to find the problem which was with another plugin, WP Super Cache, which needed its cache dumped.

Probably none of this means anything to most of you. Lol. But even when I know what I'm doing, and I'm able to talk the programming talk with my hosting company, it was still a VERY frustrating week dealing with all of that. Then on Friday, both my kids were home sick with a fever and stomach bug. Lots of puking into bowls and forcing medicine into them so they could be comfortable. And my car is in the shop. I was driving on Tuesday and the check engine light came on and the car stalled out. I managed to pull into a gas station, call my husband, and then restart the car. I took it to the dealership the next day and we've been making do with only one car. Thankfully almost everything that needs fixing will be covered under the powertrain warranty. Still it's a lot of work and I'll be without the car for most of this coming week.

In book news, I decided to put SUMMER HAIKUS on sale during the Olympics since it's set during the Tokyo Olympics of 2020. The only advertising I'm doing for it is sending out to my mailing list, blog, and Facebook. I had a stressful Friday because of the kids home sick but add on top of that watching 40 people unsubscribe from my mailing list and two people complain that I was sending spam, and I was worried my MailChimp account would be shut down. I make sure never to spam! People are only on my mailing list because they opted-in to it. If you opt-in to a mailing list and they send you email, THAT IS NOT SPAM. Spam is when you get email you never signed up for. This drives me nuts. Don't sign up to get my free books and then tell MailChimp I'm spamming you. *deep breath* And all of this stuff isn't even writing related! I wasn't able to write several days this week because of the car troubles, the kids being sick, and just overall fatigue from dealing with all of this.

But the good news is that I passed the 20k mark on the next Daydreamer book. I thought I'd be farther along by now, but I'll take it. I went to bed last night not believing my idea for one of the conflicts in this book would work out but then I woke up this morning feeling better about them. I did some research on the Japanese equivalent of LLCs (Limited Liability Companies) and I think my ideas are solid. If you're interested, here's the wikipedia entry I found on gōdō gaisha (合同会社), abbreviated GK, which is the Japanese equivalent of LLC in the US.ōdō_gaisha

What else happened this week?




My week was full of food photos because I was too stressed about other things to take photos of anything else. I made fire roasted salsa, ate a funnel cake at the pool (sorry, not sorry), and enjoyed some granola and yogurt.


When the Olympics are on, I'm watching! I'm a big Olympics fan and I look forward to the Summer Games every four years. I was watching Men's Gymnastics in that photo and I'm watching Women's Archery while I type up this post.


And yay! Crossed the 20k mark on this book! I'm not going to get as far as I would've wanted in this book before I leave for Japan, so I'll probably work on it while I'm there. No big deal though. I'm sure I'll be very inspired while I'm there!

This week on the blog: My Top 5 Japanese Winter Destinations and I'm not sure what else. I've been working on a blog post on Facebook advertising, but I think I need more data on that. And I want to write about Authorial Voice, but I haven't nailed down what I want to say. Maybe it'll be a quiet week on the blog or maybe I'll be inspired to write something off the cuff!

5 thoughts on “Sunday Update – August 7, 2016”

  1. Website things can stress me out like nothing else. I know enough for the usual things (I did understand your explanation of what happened), but when something goes wrong it’s so frustrating. And it takes so long to figure out what is wrong and how to fix it. I am so sorry to hear you had to go through that. And then your kids were sick and you didn’t have a car, sounds like a difficult week indeed.

    I didn’t realize mailchimp could shut down your account if too many people report it as spam. I sometimes accidentally subscribe to newsletters I don’t want to (entered a giveaway last month and didn’t notice the small letters *sigh*) and I make sure to always just unsubscribe and never mark spam as I know how much it hurts authors and I know they are only trying to grow their audience. But that’s even worse when people report you as spam while they signed-up for it, they probably just forgot they did.

    I’ve heard of LLC’s but never knew exactly what is was, just looked up the dutch Wikipedia page to see what the dutch equivalent is.

    That funnel cake looks delicious! I don’t think we have that here, but it looks yummy and sweet! Glad to hear you made some progress on your book! I hope this week is a better one with less stress!

    1. It was a difficult week indeed, and I’m so glad it’s behind me. Add on top of that to difficulties with Dragon dictation and I nearly just gave up! :) But I got the website stuff fixed and my MailChimp is still in business so we seem to be okay.

      Yeah, if you get a certain number of unsubscribes in combination with people marking your email as spam, they can shut you down. I believe the number of unsubscribes you can get is really high if people don’t mark it as spam. But once they start claiming it’s spam, you’re screwed. So yeah, it’s stressful. There’s a reason why the cartoon chimp on MailChimp is sweating when it’s time to push the button. Lol.

      It turns out that my research on Japanese LLCs might be for naught because I decided to change the story some. We’ll see!

      And I want another funnel cake. Maybe I’ll get one this week, :)

  2. My goodness, it does sound like you had a bad week :-/ And now you’ve also made me all paranoid about backing up my site!

    Congrats on reaching 20K though! And that salsa you made looks absolutely delicious. I’ve always loved tomatoes, but I’ve never had homemade salsa. I imagine I would love it. But grrr, I missed the men’s gymnastics trials. I’ll have to see if I can find it online. I heard about the French gymnast who broke his leg though :-/ That makes me sad.

    Anyway, maybe this week will be a better one for you :-)

    1. I think it’s a good idea to back up your site often, both database and all of your images, so I’d look into it if I were you. It’s good to have something to fall back on should anything happen.

      The salsa was really good! I will totally make it again. This time I might add more vinegar/lime juice and cilantro, definitely. Otherwise, it was super easy.

      So far this week is going well! I have a little anxiety as this week is a change for the kids’ camps and I know Japan is coming up, but I’m managing!

  3. I’m so sorry about your stressful, sick-ful week! How frustrating that people are marking you as SPAM. I recently went on a little unsubscribing spree (don’t worry, I didn’t unsubscribe from YOU) because I’ve been buried in email, but I’d never mark them as SPAM – the only way I would do that is if I unsubscribed and waited awhile and still wasn’t taken off the list (this has happened to me before).

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S. J. Pajonas