I’m back with more questions from blog readers about RVing, what’s happening in our lives since we hung up the keys, and all kinds of other things. While I try to answer all questions individually, I also share them here occasionally. These are some that have come in since we have been on a road trip the last few weeks.
Q. How come when I enter your weekly contest my name doesn’t show up, but when I tried to enter again I got a message saying I was already entered but still didn’t see my name?
A. Some entries are held waiting for approval. I don’t sit by my computer 24/7 waiting for new entries to come in, I approve them when I have a chance to get online, but always at least once a day. If your name doesn’t show up, please be patient and wait. If you try to enter a second time you get the message that you did. If you try a third time the program automatically assumes you are trying to violate the rules about only one entry per week and sends them all to spam.
Q. Call me a skeptic, but I’ve always believed that there is no free lunch and nobody does something for nothing. How do you and the authors who give you books to give away in your weekly contests make any money from it? What’s in it for them and you? Like I said, call me a skeptic.
A. Okay, you’re a skeptic. Happy now? To answer your questions, the authors who donate books to the weekly drawings get a tremendous amount of exposure from it. And, the hope is that if a new reader gets a taste of their work, they may buy other books by that author. As for me, it draws readers to the blog, and I get that same exposure when I feature one of my own books.
Q. With the coronavirus outbreak we have decided to stay put and not leave home until the threat is over. We are stocked up on provisions and can stay inside for at least a month if necessary. Aren’t you afraid to be traveling all over the country like you are with this going on?
A. Not in the least. Every year the flu kills more Americans than this latest “pandemic” has, as do drunk drivers. I think Ebola, SARS, Zika, Bird Flu, and a litany of doom and gloom predictions throughout my lifetime have all been blown somewhat out of proportion. Yes, they are all serious, but I just looked outside and the sky is not falling.
Q. We are shopping for an RV to go fulltiming in and two RV salesmen have told us RV parks will not allow campers that are more than 10 years old. We cannot afford a new RV and are wondering how true this is. Do you know?
A. Always remember the basic rule that if an RV salesman’s lips are moving, he’s lying. Think about this, most new RVs, especially motorhomes, are financed for 20 or more years. So, does that mean after 10 years you can’t use it anymore? There are a few “resorts” that do not allow older RVs, but the vast majority of them are happy to welcome a customer with a vintage RV as long as it looks good and is well maintained. We fulltimed for many years in a 35-year-old bus conversion and never had a problem.
Q. My wife is a huge fan of your books, but I do my reading on a Nook. Why can’t I find them in the Nook bookstore?
A. All of my books are available on Amazon in both print and ebook format, and if you subscribe to Amazon’s Kindle Unlimited (KU) you can even read them for free. One of the rules to be in KU is that your books have to be exclusively on Amazon. Even though I sold very few books through Barns & Noble, the Nook bookstore, and other venues, being a bit of a cantankerous and independent old fart, I resisted doing that for a long time. But when I finally decided to give it a try, my income more than tripled. You just can’t argue with those numbers. But all is not lost, there are programs available that will convert most Kindle books into formats you can read on your Nook. Just do a Google search and find one that works best for your needs.
Q. Nick, I remember several years ago you had a beautiful motorcycle that I admired when we were both parked at Elkhart Campground. You let me sit on it, and being short-legged like you, I was surprised to find a big bike that fit me. What kind was it and do you still have it? If not, many I ask why you got rid of it?
A. It was a 2002 Yamaha V-Star 1100cc. No, I no longer have it. I owned motorcycles for most of my life and loved them, but I sold my last one when Terry and I got married. Until then everything I had ridden was in the 550cc to 750cc range. After 10 years I bought the V-Star, and while I loved it, after a decade of not riding and then moving to a bike almost twice as big as what I was used to, the learning curve was just too steep. My skills and reaction time had diminished to the point where it just wasn’t fun anymore.
Q. Do you still have back issues of the Gypsy Journal available? We read them for a couple of years then went in a new direction in life. Now we have come back to the idea of RVing and have learned that you no longer publish it. But we would be interested in any back issues we could get our hands on.
A. We have 15 years of back issues, 90 editions total, in PDF format, available on a USB drive. Each issue is 36 pages, so that’s over 3,000 pages of RV information, travel stories, tips and more. Regular cost has been $75, but we have recently lowered that to just $50 postage included. To order, log onto www.paypal.com and make payment to firstname.lastname@example.org with your request for the Back Issue USB.
Be sure to enter our latest new Free Drawing. This week’s prize is an audiobook of Birdsongs, the first book in my friend Jason Deas’ excellent Benny James mystery series. To enter, all you have to do is click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn Sunday evening.
Thought For The Day – She said, “Undress me with your words.” I replied, “There’s a spider in your bra.”