Amazon Prime Day, Rainbows + Bestseller Lists,

So the book I can’t tell you about on here has now made it (quite a long way) into the Amazon Top 100 Bestseller List for a third week!! SQUEE I WROTE A GODDAMN BESTSELLER, BITCHES!! (…and my in-laws and assorted relatives still think I’m an unemployed layabout loser working occasional days as a substitute teacher. And I can’t tell them otherwise. They probably wouldn’t believe me if I did. It’s like being a superhero only my secret power is NSFW).

Oh and in case you’re wondering, the money doesn’t get good until you hit the top 5, so no, I’m still poor. This person had a #1 bestseller and still didn’t make anything. And I’m sure some sanctimonious middle class person will try to say “but that’s not why you should write” because you *should* write to be poor (which is fine if you’ve never had to choose between eating or paying rent I suppose), to be unappreciated (which is fine if you believe you’re Van Gogh or something), to be ignored (see prev. re: Van Gogh), because that’s the stereotype we imagine for writers and what we tell ourselves to feel better about the fact that some people are spending 16 hours a day, 6 or 7 days a week doing something they actually want to do (yes, I actually do, come hypomania or depression, I work very hard and some days I only write 50 words but it’s 50 more than I had the day before, other days what I write makes no sense, but that’s okay because it clears my brain out, it’s like scraping the gloop out of the sink so you can wash dishes in it, instead of letting that gloop touch your crockery). Like we imagine that all the pretty people are dumb and all ugly people have hidden depths, instead of seeing that some pretty people are clever and some ugly people are very shallow. I will never stop appreciating being able to write. So I will look forward to writing being my full time income one day but obviously, the money I’ll get in several months’ time (bookstores pay s-l-o-w-l-y) is a LOT better than nothing and while it isn’t going to pay all my bills that month, it at least goes a long way towards it and therefore validates my Goddamn life choices. And I didn’t even have to take my clothes off this time.* ūüėõ

*I am neither confirming nor denying having done this in the past although I do feel it’s high time my cat** wrote a guest post because it would make interesting reading.

**I don’t have a cat. That’s sort of the point.

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And apparently every year Amazon has some special deals that are only available to Prime subscribers. This year, that’s happening on July 12th. From today up to July 12th, Amazon has loads of special pre-prime day deals to get you in the mood (or something).

My personal opinion? Signing up for a free 30 day trial of Amazon Prime, including free shipping and loads of TV shows, makes a lot of sense if you want to do some bargainous shopping. This is a very good month to try Amazon Prime for free, just remember (if you don’t intend to keep it) to cancel before the month is up, and sit back and reap the rewards.

I had Amazon Prime for about a year but I cancelled it in favor of Netflix because they didn’t have such a good range of TV shows. I think I’d consider it again now that the Clarkson Hammond and May show (formerly Top Gear) is on there. Also did you hear about the BBC’s so-called “Top Gear” that they’ve been trying to flog as a replacement to the (not-quite-original but definitely best) Clarkson version? Chris Evans, the show’s main host, and seasoned TV presenting veteran, has just quit. They’re flogging a dead horse, and I’ve been saying since Clarkson got sacked, that nobody in their right mind would sign up to take the place of Clarkson Hammond and May, the audience for that show is too pre-prejudiced against change. They’d have been better off doing a total re-format, since Clarkson invented most of the stuff they did on there anyway. Those of you who know me in person know how much I appreciate Jeremy Clarkson’s contributions to journalism (oh God, the way he can get you from the opening sentence, I wish I could do that), he literally invented new ways to write/talk about cars, and no-one can really replace that. But you can watch Jeremy Clarkson, James May and Richard Hammond messing around in cars IN OCTOBER on Amazon Prime with the 30 day trial in the UK; the BBC was really shitty about copyrights on all the stuff Clarkson came up with while he worked for them, so Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May have renamed their new car show “Grand Tour.” I wish I was eligible for another free trial of Amazon Prime now ūüė¶

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Also, this rainbow wig is legit gorgeous I wish I could afford it, its so beautiful, and I wanted to show you all, but WordPress doesn’t allow image links from Amazon. Last time I accidentally pasted the wrong link onto a WordPress post, WordPress actually shut this blog down within seconds, not giving me a chance to fix the problem, and I had to email them 5 or 6 times over 2 days to get them to understand that it was an honest mistake. I totally don’t get the weird and wonderful policies that various blogging sites have regarding their smallprint. I think now I have my own domain I’m allowed to do more advertising, but I look at some of the sites that have come up in reader over the past few months, wall-to-wall advertising, and I simply want to vomit in disgust. The whole marketing model is messed up if they make money from that shit. It’s like those trees falling in the woods and concussing bears who are trying to take a dump.

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Liebster Award II

I have been nominated for a second Liebster award by the awesome Laura at Laura Living Life, check out her blog¬†here! ¬†Thank you so much for nominating me! ¬†Since it’s been just over a year since my first one, I thought I’d do the whole thing again so here goes:

The Liebster award has changed a bit in the space of a year so Imma go through the new rules etc. ¬†It’s an award given to blogs with under 1000 followers with the aim of shouting out blogs that you love so more people get to know them. I did a bit of research on this and apparently when it started it was for blogs with under 3000 followers (but by the time I got mine last year, the blog had to have less than 200 followers and each award had to nominate 11 bloggers, which was SO HARD to find new blogs, I remember spending hours on Twitter searching because all my new blogging friends already had more than 200 follows and I didn’t know how WordPress reader worked… lol). I think 1000-ish followers is a better figure than 200 because it’s more inclusive. If you’ve been nominated, it’s not like the Oscars; everyone who is nominated gets a Liebster award. I did find a new Liebster picture that looked a bit different to the one I used last year, and when I searched on Google images I was just so taken with this stunning starry purple one (I added the year though; feel free to use that pic)!

  1. Thank the person who nominated you and post a link to their blog.
  2. Answer the questions asked by the person who nominated you.
  3. Nominate 5-11 bloggers who you feel deserve the award (normally bloggers with less than 1000 followers).
  4. Create a list of questions for your nominees to answer.
  5. Link your nominees to this post so they know they’ve been nominated.

These are the questions Laura asked me:

  1. How long have you been blogging and what made you start?
    I wanted to share my holiday photos, and my best friend was sick of seeing them (in a good way) so I thought I’d share them on the internet. ¬†Tied in with that, I’d converted a Citroen Xsara Picasso into a mini camper and while I was doing it I was surprised there were no online articles about important details so I started writing ¬†them and thought they could go up too. ¬†About the same time I started my Youtube channel which has always been for hair and beauty… but occasionally I do rabbit vids too because I have 5 bunnies and they’re too adorable to keep to myself, and about once a week I do a beauty-related post on here. ¬†I’ve been blogging since 5th December 2014, which was the day before my mum died of cancer. ¬†Blogging and Youtubing really kept me going, which is probably why I kept doing them.
  2. Describe yourself in 3 words?
    Playful, hardworking, chatterbox.
  3. Where do you see yourself in five years time?
    I’d like to finally get a mainstream novel out as I’ve only had ebooks published so far (through a proper publisher twice and I self-published twice too, but they’re FAR too steamy for paperback though lol). ¬†I’m currently working on a Gothic romance (a la Ann Radcliffe) set in the late 18th century so if it goes well I’ll let y’all know! ¬†In fact, in 5 years time, I’d like to have at least three books written by me on my bookshelf.
  4. What is your favourite holy grail product?
    Coconut oil. ¬†It’s the best.
  5. High street or highend fashion?
    High street every time. Well until I’m a millionaire lol. But when I’m in London I like to walk down New Bond Street and dream…
  6. What is your favourite meal?
    Stir fry in black bean sauce with plenty of rice (and maybe some cheeky noodles) and soya sauce.
  7. Who are your top 3 Vloggers?
    Shaanxo (beauty), Blogilates (aka Cassey Ho, fitness channel) and Roberto Blake (if you want to grow your channel, he’s the goddamn boss).
  8. Who are your top 3 bloggers?
    This is hard to pick only three. ¬†I think Travelling the World Solo, Adventurous Kate and The Blonde Abroad. ¬†They’re just so readable.
  9. Where is one place you would like to visit?
    Any tropical island paradise would be perfect for a trip. ¬†I’d like to live in New Zealand though.
  10. If a celebrity had to play your life, who would you want it to be?
    Lucy Lawless. ¬†She’d nail it in every direction.

Nominations:

1. 24 Carat Kelly

2. My Spanglish Familia (I can’t remember if you’ve had one before, but have another one for the New Year!)

3. Madd About Beauty

4.Nia Patten Looks

5.The Purple Realm

6.Life With Tisha

7. The Striped Coyote

You might wonder why, when I’m predominately a travel blogger, I didn’t nominate any¬†travel blogs… well I like to keep the Liebster going forwards and all my favourite travel blogs have thousands¬†more followers than that¬†(shout out to Travelling The World Solo and High Heels and a Backpack you guys are awesome!!).

Here’s my questions:
1. Describe your blog in 5 words?
2. What’s (briefly) your usual haircare routine?
3. Puppy or kitten?
4. Who are your top three bands?
5. Do you paint your nails?
6. If yes, do you paint your toenails to match your fingernails?
7. What’s the one thing you’ve found hardest about blogging?
8. Do you Youtube? If so, link us up (because people from my blog will probably be reading this and they need the scoop on your channel)!!
9. Do you have any tattoos or piercings (that you want to share with the world) or have you ever considered these, if so where?
10. What’s your favourite style of sunglasses?

Give me a shout when you’ve done them ‘cos I can’t wait to see your answers and find out more about you¬†all!

Also I have to share this with you from Google’s 29th February Leap Year bunnies (I could watch this all day). If you right click, save picture as, it should just save as a gif on your computer so¬†you can upload it to WordPress the same as if it was a picture, then you can have this on your blog too! Everyone gets bunnies!

google leap year bunnies

11 words British people don’t actually say.

This article is about the “British” words and phrases we don’t actually use in Britain, so if you’re planning a holiday to England, Scotland or any other part of Britain, and trying to learn some colloquialisms, scratch these from your list – the consequences of saying some of them can be a fist to the face (which, curiously, we tend not to call “fisticuffs”). This article has occasional use of the f-word etc.

This article about British words came about after an American blogger mentioned how if he ever came to the UK he’d be sure to tip a bob to the waiter. That was shortly followed up with someone (also American) commenting on a page on dialects with some sense of authority that British people said “sitting room” or “parlour” instead of “living room” or “den.” If you’re writing a British character for a book, these words will throw up a big red flag that kills suspension of disbelief for anyone British reading the book, and if you’re coming to Britain for a trip or travel, you will be mocked for using these words.

So here’s the words and phrases we just don’t say (or very, very rarely) in the UK:

1. British Accent – we rarely classify ourselves as “British” as opposed to our individual countries. For example, I’m English, my mother was Irish (which ISN’T part of the UK), my father was Jamaican (we say Afro-Caribbean not Afro-British, BTW), the man on my birth certificate was Scottish, my best friend at uni was Welsh. So we would start by saying “English accent” or “Scottish accent.” Then we’d get more specific, such as “Northern accent” for people from the north of England.

2. Bob – we call it money or cash, we use the word quid to mean pounds, or p (pronounced “pee”) to mean pence (multiple of penny). If you say “pennies” (multiple of penny) to anyone from the UK who speaks Polish, they will laugh at you because that’s how you pronounce the word “penis” in Polish.

3. Ta – Nowhere do people in the UK say “ta” for goodbye. That’s an Americanism you have imposed on us. “Ta ta” might be said by a posh elderly aunt (or a young lady with adorably misguided aspirations) from time to time, and “tara” (pronounced ter-rah with a long a at the end) is another word for goodbye, but we don’t say “ta” to greet someone’s departure. Ta is an informal way of saying “thank-you” in the North of England (as in, ‘ta very much’).

4. Cheero – Nobody’s said this since the second world war. Cheerio is sometimes used by older people, but again it’s dying out and it’s considered more old fashioned than roast beef. The last time I heard it was in the lyrics to a song in Oliver Twist, in the context “so long fare thee well, pip pip cheerio…” and we also don’t say “thee,” so it shouldn’t be considered an accurate representation of our modern language (it was made in the 1960s, after all).

5. Codswallop – Another old-fashioned term, we tend to say “bullshit” “bull” or “crap” (crap has three meanings – excrement, something that is really terrible, or something that is untrue). Our favourite, however, is “bollocks” when we want to call out something as untrue. The only time in living memory that a British person’s said codswallop was when Hagrid says it in Harry Potter and the Sorceror’s Stone (we call it Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, BTW) – and that’s set in 1991 (if you do the math from the gravestones etc this adds up).

6. On your bike (actually, it was always “on yer bike”) – Very dated to the 1980s. We tend to say “fuck off” these days or, if we’re being polite, “sod off” or “get lost.”

7. Fitty – this isn’t a word. I’ve lived in Britain for 29 years, I’ve travelled all over, I’ve voraciously devoured literature, and nobody has ever used this word in any context. It’s made up. Some people would say someone is “fit” meaning attractive (or “she’s well fit” or “he’s dead fit”), and there’s the very outdated and generally offensive word “totty” which again no-one has used for a very long time, but we just don’t have the word “fitty.” It even sounds made up. Referring to someone as “fitty” will probably have people wondering whether you think they’re epileptic. If they buy into fear-of-rape culture, they might even use this opportunity to make a scene.

8. Rumpy Pumpy – if you suggest having some ‘rumpy pumpy’ to any woman under 45, she will tell you to fuck off. AVOID! Nobody’s used this word since 1995, and even then it was only in an ironic sense. Nobody actually uses this word to describe sex that they have had or are going to have.

9. Sweet Fanny Adams – no, we say “fuck all” to mean the same thing. Nobody’s used “Fanny Adams” to mean “Fuck All” since World War II.

10. Toodle Pip – again, the only time this gets used is by people who are being ironic. It’s a joke. People are taking the piss when they say this.

11. Cack-handed – I got this claimed as “I’m not co-ordinated” from this page but actually it’s a derogatory term meaning left handed (the hand that you wipe your arse with if you’re right handed), from the days when schools were run by a certain type of nuns (and other pro-social psychopaths) who thought that left-handedness was a sign of the devil. There are plenty of British people out there who hate on lefties due to their subconscious cultural conditioning. Use it anywhere near a left-handed person and prepare to get bitch slapped. It’s as offensive to a left-handed person as the N-word is to most human beings.

12. Fisticuffs – another one from Oliver Twist, people tend to call a fight a “scrap” a “punch up” a “brawl” or a “fight.” Then they tend to call the police. Assault is a crime in Britain, and is defined as “any unwanted physical contact” but people still do it and the police are utterly arbitrary in whether they choose to enforce it or not, like most other things here. I know someone who got a criminal record for putting their hand on someone’s shoulder, and I know someone who got away with trying to kill their child after years of abuse. It varies.

Generally when looking at British words and phrases, when faced with the choice between a bigger or smaller word, we will use the smaller one. Water will always find it’s lowest level, and it’s the same with language – think about what the minimum is that you need to say to make yourself understood instead of trying to dress it up with loads of words or phrases that might be inaccurate. Communication is about understanding, and the only real rule of communication (at least, general communication, not specialized e.g. academia) is that if most people can’t understand you, you’re doing it wrong. I stated “most people” not “all” because you can’t please everyone and some people will just never understand you.