Katherine Hayton | BLOG

27 Nov / EOM Accounts

Since starting my online business (as I refer to my book being available on Amazon) I have been keeping to a strict regimen of end of month accounting to keep track of my income losses.

It was going great guns at first – I put in a cash injection to get the whole show rolling so was immediately in profit. I just needed to sell a few copies here and there, and I could legitimately claim success. Then I decided that I wasn’t generating as many sales as I thought were warranted (damn you competitive streak!) so instead of investing in more physical stock to flog around the office, I would start to advertise.

The downfall was sudden. That s**t costs money you know. And you’d be amazed at how high a figure you have to reach before you’re due a royalty payment. And then you’d be amazed how long the retailer can hold onto a royalty payment before remembering that it belongs to you and sending it along.

It’s hard to say that you’ve earned out your investment when it’s still three months away. But when I get it…

So every month I sit down to the grim news that there is much bill and little no income. If I was running this as a legitimate business instead of a wouldn’t-it-be-nice-if-I-could-make-a-success-of-this-hobby business I’d be sorely disappointed.

Luckily you expect to tip a never-ending supply of funding into your hobby because it’s what you enjoy. And on that score I’m definitely a success.

Another drawback to this soul-destroying hobby of mine is that I spend a portion of every day looking at work accounts. That means when I do accounts at home, even though theoretically it’s part of my play-time, it feels distressingly like work.

Still, when it’s your time of the month, it’s your time of the month.

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26 Nov / Roadshows

I have the pleasure of attending a roadshow tomorrow. I don’t remember getting or accepting an invitation but I’ve been told that I’m going so I’ve chosen to believe for the time being that this is true.

Looking back I’ve been counting up the hours that I’ve spent at roadshows throughout my life. Time that I’ve spent being too warm, too cold, absolutely so cold that my nipples were in danger of cutting through the front of my blouse, and hungry.

I’ve deliberately left bored off of that little list. Is this because I don’t start vapidly staring into space and pondering the mysteries of the universe after ten minutes and then trying to chew my fingernails off after twelve? No. It’s because I just anticipate that when everyone read the word Roadshow they took boredom as a given. And boy do they deliver.

Even worse than the gnawing discontent of boredom is the group activities. Someone always tells the exec that these will liven up their deadpan audience and really get them involved in the message. Someone should stop telling them that. Someone is lying, or such a bad judge of human emotion and interaction that they shouldn’t have a job. Certainly not a job where they can talk to people of influence. Not when they’re been dropped on their heads as kids.

A couple of years ago we had to get together and generate ideas for new apps. Awesome. Kids are making a fortune for the same, and we’re getting rewarded with half a club sandwich (the soggy half) and a bottle of water. I didn’t contribute a lot to that one.

Another time we had to move rice between bowls with chopsticks. That was a tad more amusing. In our team there were two pairs of chopsticks available. We handed them to the Japanese woman and the Malaysian man. People from Christchurch are so not racist.

A Long Time Ago, in a Company Far Far Away there was a man who was legend. He created a roadshow that people enjoyed so much that they willingly signed up for the roadshow the following year. Sadly, it wasn’t as good as the first. And then he was fired left the company to attend to family commitments.

Because of him there exists a little spark of hope in every employee in our company’s bosom. A little spark that tends to be extinguished halfway through the first sentence of a roadshow, but reignites the following year nonetheless. I can feel its glow sparking up now.

But onto other things you could be doing right now – after you finish reading this…

One stop shop tonight at Hope. Dreams. Life. Love… Toddle along there to get a load of my book full of hopelessness, broken dreams, the end of life, and the loss of love. A good fit, right?

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Right at the moment it’s lovely outside. It rained earlier, but then it cleared up completely and the sun came out and the air warmed up.

When we go to bed at night there’s still plenty of light outside. When we wake up in the morning it’s already light outside. If there weren’t occasions where I wake in the night to see it’s dark I’d almost believe we were living at a pole in permanent light.

On nights like this in the past, my darling and I used to sit in the dimming light and talk for hours.

We haven’t tried this in a while. Now when we go to speak we not only know what we’re each going to say but what we’re going to respond to it with and what we’re then going to say to that along with the joke that we say together which amplifies the funny.

Yeah. That stage.

It makes it easy to communicate information when you need to, but it sure makes for dull conversations.

But at least we get to read in bed longer.

It’s still a month till Summer and the solstice is far away in the future. It’s 21 degrees outside (for lovers of fahrenheit that’s warm but not hot) and the birds are singing their way to bed and the sun still has a half hour before it’s fully set.

Peace out.

Today we’re going the minimalist route with one blog tour stop. The lovely Owltastic Promotions is hosting me tonight, and it’s already up if you want to go and check it out RIGHT NOW!

Find out my favourite joke (that still makes sense when you read it rather than relying on being said aloud) and whether I am turned on by the things I write. Or really, really not because that’s inappropriate given my subject matter. Get on over there now.

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Isn’t that enough to have you running scared?

I’ve only just gotten used to writing out the year as 2013 2014, and it’s about to change. I remember when a year took years to get through. Time moved so slowly that I had to measure out my life in quarters, and halves. How old are you little girl? I’m four and three-quarter years old, ma’am.

Now I’m lucky to remember the decade, while the precise year is a pot-luck based on what feels most familiar in my mouth. Occasionally there’s a complete hiccup in my brain where my mouth tries to say twenty-eight, while my head says ‘that’s not it’ but fails to supply anything else.

Still, on the bright side at least these days I can easily afford Christmas presents, and have enough forethought to know that I need to get it organised sooner rather than later. Therefore I have done my Christmas shopping, and booked my flights and accommodation and now can sit back and watch the last weeks of the year fly by.

In other news…

Blog tour is recommencing after the weekend break with a whirlwind two stop date. First drop by Fiction Zeal and have a bit of a nose around, and then if you’re still up for more have a late night drink at Tina Donahue Presents before falling into bed completely satiated.

Yeah, that’s the stuff.

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23 Nov / Celebrations

The other day my hundredth blog post came and went without much fanfare. Truth be told I didn’t even realise that it was my hundredth until after I’d published, and then noticed the number.

So – hooray for my hundredth blog post. Rah, rah, rah and all that jazz.

Now that it’s had time to sink in I’ve decided to release something to celebrate the occasion in style because it’s not going to happen again, is it? These little milestones have to be noted otherwise my life will be gone before I notice and nothing will have been done about any of it.

So guess what it is that I’ve released? Guess what it is that I’ve done in order to mark the occasion of my hundredth post?

Give up?

I’ve released a book of collected blog posts called “One Hundred Days of Noise.” Yes that’s right. No longer will you have to click out to the side of a main blog post in order to see the others. No longer will you have to curl up in bed with your laptop or PC while you catch up with what’s been happening in the world of Katherine. Now you can handily download the collected nonsense onto your favourite e-reader. And if you don’t have an e-reader you can download it onto your laptop and curl up in bed with… hang on.

If you want to download it onto a Kindle you can do it through Amazon and pay only $4.99. That’s right. Only $4.99. For something that you can read right here on blogger for free.

If that doesn’t tickle your fancy you can download it from NoiseTrade for the same price as blogger charges. That’s right. Nothing. It’s available in Mobi, E-Pub and PDF format so should fit onto any reader you happen to own.

No, thank you.

And here’s a link to a blog tour post that went up a little sooner than expected. I love and appreciate promptness in any shape or form, and you can find an excellent example of it right here on Writer Wonderland.

Get on there to read my take on critique groups and other assorted jewels of wisdom. And when you’re done download the free e-book and read through any blog posts you’ve missed. Or read them again and see if they stand up to repeated scrutiny.

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For the last few days we’ve had a slightly wild pet keeping us company. A fledgling blackbird fell out of its nest (or flew out of its nest) and now is in no position to fly back to it.

Either its parents, or other unrelated birds who are taking pity on it simply due to species affinity, are turning up every once in a while to shove a couple of beakfuls of food down its gullet. Otherwise, it’s on its own.

Except for me and my darling. That little bird is now our favourite part of the garden. No matter in which part of the garden it happens to be.

It still has a few fluffy feathers. And it doesn’t emit any sounds, so when it opens its mouth for food it has to plead soulfully with it’s cute little eyes. When they connect with you, you feel it. You feel this little bird’s pain.

Just in case you thought I was kidding about the full extent of little birdie’s beauty here are the clips of proof:

Am I right, or am I right?

Okay, maybe he just looks like a little bird to you, but me and my darling both work long hours and can’t reasonably expect a pet to amuse itself all day long while we’re out of the house so we are sadly lacking in animal companionship. Therefore a pet that comes with it’s own caretakers is the epitome of all that is adorable.

In homage to South Park we’ve even gone so far as to name him McNugget. Yes we have. Yes we did. Cutey wutey little birdie McNugget.

Just dropped in to type this up before I get back to cat duty. They’re not laying claim to him on my watch.

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We’re watching an old series of the West Wing at the moment, and it’s strange all the people that keep turning up in it as people other than what you know them now to be.

Yip. Pretty sure that sentence made perfect sense.

I’m currently watching the weirdo out of the Saw franchise – the main serial Sophie’s Choice killer weirdo, not any of the other ones – wearing a military uniform. It’s not pleasant. And it’s hard to take him seriously.

I also think that the President’s men shouldn’t be hanging out with a slutty weed dealer, and Peggy Olsen just needs to grow up and stop hanging around with college kids.

There’s a nice twang of nostalgia seeing Ron Silver on the screen again – I miss him. I loved it when he was in Chicago Hope and kept bringing out the x-ray showing the instrument his ex-wife left inside a shortly-thereafter-dead patient.

I’m not actually sure what he’s doing here now, I’ve lost track of everybody. Now I’m just playing the game of pointing and saying “he/she was ***** out of ****!” I love IMDB in these situations. My memory isn’t up to the game much anymore.

And now Christian Slater has walked onscreen. In a slightly darker uniform. Is anyone in The West Wing named Heather?

Funniest of all is seeing the same virtuous morality that a bunch of newsmen currently own spilling out of decade old mouths as though it was fresh material. I may have that backwards, but that’s the way free TV rolls.

Onto my attempt to “break the internet” one blog at a time.

Another solo star hosting me tonight. Pop along to Jane Reads later tonight for a guest appearance by… (drum roll please) ME!

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19 Nov / Better than FREE

Today I’ve had my book approved for launch on Story Cartel. So I launched it.

For the next three weeks it’ll be available for free download in formats for Kindle, Kobo, Nook Book and whatever knock-off branch of e-reader you’ve managed to get your hands on. Or their tablet app equivalents.

Free download. What could be better than that?

Well, the better bit is that once you’ve read my lovely though harrowing book Found, Near Water, you get to toss your opinion of it about willy-nilly. In fact if you pop a review on Amazon, B&N, Kobo, iBooks or another digital bookstore that takes your fancy you will earn entry into a draw for a whole lot of excellent monthly prizes which I can’t be bothered to list here but you can find on the Story Cartel website.

Interested? Check out the FAQs here then sign up and download your free copy of my book here

Or, you could help out a starving artist and purchase a copy. Up to you. Even if you do pay for it you can still feel free to toss around your opinion of it – people will probably pay it even more attention.

And onto my tour of the wild, wild, inter-web.

There’s only one stop on the tour tonight, so all the attention goes to Megan’s Blog. Yahhhhhh Megan! Drop by later to say hi, or ask any of your burning questions and I’ll try my best to deflect them with humour.

It’s just my way.

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18 Nov / Password Changes

This morning I changed my password at work.  My computer is now secure – even from me. Every time I sit down to get to some real work I instead elicit a series of  beeps informing me that I am locked out.

It also informs me that I have no memory, and I’m resistant to change.

My computer is a bit lippy.

And before you suggest it, yes I do only change the last digit in my password each time. If I changed the whole thing I’d have to keep the helpdesk on speed dial.

Even worse is when I sit in front of my computer at home trying to access a user only website, with a repeated error message thwarting my efforts. And I go through the whole rigamarole of resetting my password – waiting for a good twenty minutes for a reset code that never arrives – until I finally twig that I’m using the wrong email address.

But the worst of all is when I receive a message from microsoft, or paypal, or my bank, kindly informing me that even though I can’t remember my password, someone in China can.

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