Sharon Schulze

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Location: New England, United States

Thursday, November 30, 2006

A-webbing we will go . . .

Is webbing a word? I guess it is--webbing on a chair, perhaps?--but probably not the way I used it in today's title. Somehow "webbing" doesn't conjure up the sort of image "googling" does (and yes, googling is officially a word; it's even in dictionaries); for some reason it makes me think of Elmer Fudd with his rifle and funny hat, out shooting "wabbits."

Unfortunately I'll now have that song running through my mind for the rest of the afternoon :-).

What I was doing while webbing was fiddling with my website ( if you're interested)-- updating it, and playing around with the various templates, palettes and layouts available with the particular website-building program I use. I came up with some interesting--and a few eye-popping--combinations before I settled for pretty much the same template, palette and layout I'd been using. There aren't too many choices for each. That's one of the limitations of this program that I can't overcome, although other than that, it's fairly user-friendly. I enjoy maintaining my own website, and since I'm not planning on teaching myself advanced html anytime soon (basic html is ok), this is the program for me.

I've seen an on-line discussion recently about branding; in book PR (i.e. websites), is it more important to brand your name as an author, or to simply promote the most recent book? I'm guessing the author's name is more important, since books come and go, but since it's difficult to quantify the impact of PR efforts anyway, who knows?

This is where having a marketing degree instead of an engineering one could come in handy. However, since I doubt Fluid Mechanics or Reinforced Concrete Design will do me much good in the PR wars, my best bet is to keep muddling along for now and keep an eye on what's happening in the book-selling biz.

The bottom line--before I head back to 1788 in the work-in-progress--is to remember that websites, PR and branding are all pretty worthless without a book to promote, so I'd better get cracking!

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Just call me aqua girl . . .

Lately I've embarked upon a course of self-improvement--losing a few pounds before my clothes won't fit, taking care of some medical stuff, and trying to whip my out-of-shape bod into shape. Rejoining Weight Watchers has helped with the lbs., visits to the dr. are helping the other stuff, but the exercise part has been a struggle. I usually don't like exercise that looks like exercise, the old "do 8 reps. of this, and 10 of that . . . and don't forget to spend X amount of time warming up and cooling down . . ." I don't think it's that I'm lazy; maybe I just get bored with that kind of work-out.

I have a treadmill, "Walk Away the Pounds" videos, and Pilates videos, and I've been using them, but I needed something new. Recently while perusing my local paper, I found a new possibility: Aqua Aerobics.

Our local Park & Rec Dept. offers various classes at the city pool; the schedule is decent, the cost is very reasonable--I've got no excuse not to give it a shot, so I signed up.

The first class was yesterday. It was great! I enjoyed getting into a heated pool for 45 min. (it felt so good on my aching joints--it's been raining and damp here in CT for the better part of a week, and my bones were feeling it). While I could tell I was getting a good work-out, it was also fun. Lots of variety, a good instructor, and a bunch of nice ladies in the class.

I'm looking forward to tomorrow's class. It was a nice change from sitting with a computer in my lap for hours, and it's good to crawl out of my cave and see other people once in a while. And who knows? After 8 weeks of this, I just might be more buff ;-).

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Five Things You Might Not Know About Me

I've been "tagged" by Margaret Moore--it's a kind of chain reaction of links among authors' blogs--and it's giving me a much needed kick in the pants to post something on my own blog (if you check out the Harlequin Historical Authors blog or 2BeRead, the PASIC blog, you'll see that I have been posting on those blogs :-)).

The purpose of being tagged is to blog Five Things You Might Not Know About Me. I've been mulling over what might constitute something about me that might be interesting and/or different. Here's what I've come up with:

1.) Isabella Towle, one of my ancestors, was accused of being a witch in Hampton, NH in 1680.

2.) The first vehicle I ever drove was my dad's bulldozer.

3.) I love green olives.

4.) I've been parasailing twice, and it was great!

5.) I was once a teaching assistant in the Civil Engineering Dept. at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. Other than the 2 secretaries, I was the only woman working in the department.

I'm tagging Victoria Bylin and April Kihlstrom. I hope they'll join in, and that you'll check out their lists.