Saturday, September 28, 2013

Feeding a Starving Artist -

Okay, here is the promised follow up post on feeding this starving artist.  Normally I don't do product endorsements.  But I'd like you to listen (or read) me plugging the next two products I'm going to talk about because they really are that awesome and worth you clicking on my referral links to buy them. 

Earlier this year, we had another baby and I got a bit crazy in the head (probably sleep deprivation induced) and began coming up with ways to save money for our children's future.  While doing so, I stumbled across the Mr Money Mustache blog, a blog about an average guy who made himself rich through frugal living (good reading but be warned, his language is a bit vulgar sometimes).  On that blog, and through other sites related to that community I came across the following great products.  If you purchase them through the links on my blog here, you'll get a discount and so will I.

The first is this link:
You'll get $25 off the purchase of a phone or plan through and I'll get $25 off my next month's bill too.
We used to be paying about $100 for Verizon wireless service with a pair of dumb phones and no special data plans or anything.  Then we found Ting.  It is a smaller carrier that is pay as you go (no unlimited plans), but their rates are so cheap that for our usage patterns, it doesn't matter!  We pay $42/month after taxes for both of our smart phones. That is $21 per phone per month!  Some people on this plan pay as little as $9-$12 per month (low utilization users or those smart enough to leverage combining Google Voice accounts with VOIP technology and Wi-Fi).

Ting uses the Sprint network with free roaming onto the  Verizon network when there is no sprint signal.  We have found no drop in coverage area or call quality by switching from Verizon to Ting.  The ting website has a calculator in which you can plug in your current minutes, texts, and data from your current plan and see how much it would cost to make the switch.  If you're tech savy as I mentioned above, you can use Wi-Fi to keep your minutes, texts, and data usage to bare minimums while still making calls, messages, and browsing the web on the cheap. 

And there is no contract.  You are month to month from day 1 and can quit at any time with no penalties or fees.  I don't know why you'd want to quit because the service is AWESOME!

Their customer service impressed me greatly when I first ordered my phones.  I accidentally ordered two  of one kind while my wife wanted one kind and I wanted another.  So I called their customer service line, got a live person within two rings, and had the whole matter resolved within 5 minutes.  The person on the line was incredibly friendly and easy to work with.  I had a question about the billing of those phones at first as it took my bank to show the purchase of the two phones and not the pending purchase of 3 phones.  I called again, and again they answered within two rings and had my concern resolved in less than 5 minutes.  They billed me correctly for the two phones we actually purchased and not the one we didn't need when I mis-ordered originally.

Please feed this starving artist by using that referral link above, if you find this service to be right for you.  I am amazed at how good the service is and how much cheaper it is than any of the big cellular carriers.  If you don't want to scroll all the way up, here's that referral link again:

It looks like I'll need to do this in two parts.  I'll talk about some super awesome budgeting software in the next post.  Again I'll include a referral link which gives you 10% off the purchase price and I get $6 for having referred you.  I don't normally believe in marketing crap but not only do I get a kick back from promoting these products, I genuinely love them.  I wouldn't be blabbering about them if I didn't LOVE them or didn't think you would too.

An Apology, a Progress Update, and Feeding A Starving Artist Teaser

First, the apology, then the fun stuff.

I'm sorry.

Now on to the progress update.  What? You want more of an explanation than that?  Okay.  I'm sorry that I haven't blogged in more than half a year, about 3/4ths of a year to be precise.  Why is that?  Back in the beginning of the year, my wife and I had another child and let me tell you, those tiny adorable fountains of cuteness and inspiration are also a lot of work.  Also my day job had several major projects going on and our team temporarily shrunk just when we needed the extra hands most.

But fear not, I have not stopped writing.  Blood On The Vine is now finished and awaiting final editing.  The book after it, Vine Ops: The Lewis Park Affair, is about 90% the way through it's first draft.  At the rate I'm not getting the first vine novel edited and prepped for publishing, the second vine novel might be hot on it's heels.  So after a two year absence of fresh novels out of me, you will get another two right together!

I also have been planning to get the covers redone for the two Skye novels and perhaps even edit out the prologue, intermissions, and epilogue of the first book, in the second edition.  Though I like the characters introduced outside of the main narrative, those segments don't actually add much to that narrative. Feel free to leave a comment and let me know whether you think those parts should stay or go from A Clouded Skye.

In the meantime, my sleep deprived brain has continued cranking out new story ideas and I have several short stories and several novels I hope to write up as soon as the current two projects are finished.  If only I had 36 hours in each day, sigh.  I'd write at a faster pace if I could quit my day job.  That won't happen though till I make more money off my book sales.  So buy my books and feed a starving artist.

There are other ways to feed this starving artist too that you can also greatly benefit from.  Since I'll probably ramble rather long about these methods, I'm going put those into my next blog post rather than talk about them in this post.  Stay tuned.