For the last couple of days, all we have done is work on getting the new issue of the Gypsy Journal mailed out, and we have made a big dent in it. Well, Miss Terry has made a big dent in it! My job is basically to stay out of the way and be eye candy.
Yesterday we drove to the commercial mail service we use in South Bend to drop off a load of stuffed envelopes to go out to our subscribers who use Standard Rate Mail. That sure made some room in the back of our Explorer and took a load off the shock absorbers! 🙂
Back at the campground, Terry started in on the several smaller mailings that we send out to subscribers who use mail forwarding services such as the Escapees Mail Service, Alternative Resources, FMCA Mail Service, etc. Those all go into boxes and are shipped directly to the mail services by UPS, which speeds things up a little bit, and saves us a few bucks in postage.
While Terry was busy with that, I started in on the mailing labels for our First Class subscribers. We use Stamps.com to print our mailing labels, and every time we have a new issue to send out, it seems like I have to go back to Square One and start over again. A few months ago, my buddy Greg White helped me set up the first class mailing list in a format known as Comma Separated Value (CSV), which is what Stamps.com seems to prefer. I kept very careful notes on the process Greg showed me, and it worked the first time. But since then, I keep getting an error message, or else when I print the labels out, it skips every other name, or mixes them up in a different order.
I fought with it for a while, Terry tried it, and the results were the same. We finally settled on a method that works, it is just a lot slower than it should be. I’m about to drop Stamps.com and just go back to sticking on stamps from the post office.
Terry took a break from envelope stuffing to make a delicious dinner of anchovy garlic aioli. I will never be a skinny man! 🙂
The weather forecast had called for strong thunderstorms yesterday. There was a pretty strong breeze all day long, and about 8:30 p.m. it began to get ugly. We had a lot of wind, rain, and lightning strikes all around us. A little bit of hail too, but not too much. The storm only lasted a half hour or so before it moved on. The news said there was a severe thunderstorm alert until 2 a.m., but I think we dodged the bullet.
Quite a few readers have asked me when my mystery novel Big Lake would be available for the Barnes & Noble Nook or other e-book readers. I uploaded the book to Barnes & Noble the same week I did to Amazon’s Kindle bookstore, and it still has not gone online. Every time I contact them, I get another excuse. Finally I gave up, and last night, I opened an account with Smashwords, an online e-book store and e-book distributor. In less than two hours, I had uploaded all of my e-books, Big Lake, Meandering Down The Highway, The Frugal RVer, Work Your Way Across The USA, and The Gun Shop Manual to the Smashwords website.
So if you have something other than a Kindle e-book reader, you can go to Smashwords and order any of my e-books in Epub format for the Nook, Sony Reader, Kobo, and most e-reading apps, including Stanza, Aldiko, Adobe Digital Editions; in PDF format; Rich Text Format (RTF), LRF, which is used in older Sony Readers that do not support Epub; or as a PDB for Palm reading devices. According to Smashwords, the books will be available on Barnes & Noble and the Apple i-Book store within a few days, or, if you don’t want to wait, they are available now for immediate download from Smashwords.
Today will be more of the same – printing labels and stuffing envelopes. But it’s moving along well, thanks to Terry’s hard work, and I think we can pretty much wrap the mailing up by the end of the week. Then we can play!
Thought For The Day – I’d rather have a life full of mistakes then a heart full of regret.