Saturday, March 28, 2009

LOLZ With Charts and Graphs!

This is my end of the first quarter chart of what keywords are used to find me. Yeah, it's a couple of days early. I'm just having waaaay too much fun. And, really, isn't it all about the day going faster? I got the data from Google Analyzer. I made the chart using GraphJam. And, true to it's name GraphJam really Jams!

Disclaimer: Most of you are coming directly to the site or via facebook, so no keywords for you!

funny pictures
moar funny pictures

But Wait! It looks like some people don't take graphs and charts as seriously as I do!

song chart memes
see more Funny Graphs

song chart memes
see more Funny Graphs

Thursday, March 26, 2009

The Big Snark-Off: Annual Bests!

As far as I can tell, I started blog-snarking sometime on February 4, 2008. Ergo, it has been over a year since my first Snark-Off. Time for a fond look backward at some of my favorite snarks in the past year.

Oh! The memories!

Our first memory is from 2/21/08: Ickiest Name for a Fictional Character So Far This Year
Emperor Mathias the Glistening. Strangely, I've not seen a sequel to this work.

And who can forget the saga of the dead roach in the empty office? For weeks my reader was glued to the screen as the roach's descent into nothingness was chronicled. And my grief on day 43 when our roach friend simply disappeared? Excruciating. Things That Make The Day Go Faster

Some of my posts were amazingly accurate: Things I still think are Bad Ideas: South Carolina to Offer Cross on Car Platesvia All News Feeds on 6/5/08
Those naughty little SC legislators later got their hands smacked for such a stupid idea. Told ya so, butt-heads!

But hey, I can't think of every snark I post. That would be too original! Some of the best come from my idols at Smart Bitches, Trashy Books. Here are some of my favorites this year:

Look Out! Behind You!

Not only that, but Smart Bitches also kept my fascination with wereducks fed: Well, fuck a duck indeed from Smart Bitches, Trashy Books

Then there was
this jewel from October 27, 2008: Smart Bitches, Trashy Books has been in rare form lately with Vintage Category Art, and Politics and Photoshop. If you think the pictures are a riot, read the comments!

But let's not let Smart Bitches have all the glory! What Not To Crochet gave me some of my most favorite of all pictures in the whole wide world!

A real turkey who really does not need a hat: For Your Consideration from What Not to Crochet by SB&C:

So that was it, the year in Booktending Snarkiness. I hope you enjoyed the post because, guess what?

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

First You Run to a Mayan Reproduction

First You Run (Bullet Catcher, #6) First You Run by Roxanne St. Claire

My review

rating: 5 of 5 stars
Another fun read in St. Claire's Bullet Catcher series. This one has a touch of gothic as much of the action takes place in a remote and isolated place. It also has a touch of the paranormal as opinions about the importance of 2012 in the Mayan calendar is explored.

The growing relationship between the hero and heroine develops slowly but surely and the character development gives us a good feel for the characters.

View all my reviews.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Friday Good News

OK, I'm in big trouble here. Somehow, I forgot to star any Good News in my reader! Surely there must have been some good news this past week or so.

Sure, the economy sucks. Yeah, a lot of people we love have lost their jobs. I just forgot. Or maybe I need to subscribe to some cheerier blogs. Food for thought.

So, in the absence of Good News, I give you:


Above, we see banannaman from
Oh the Bananamanity! via Picture Is Unrelated - WTF Pictures by pizzaburger on 3/5/09 "Racism. Sexism. Religious Intolerance. These are as nothing compared to the tragedy that is Antifruitarianism."

To the right, something that we'll need to use eyebleach after viewing.
From: A Holiday In Hell via Picture Is Unrelated - WTF Pictures by pizzaburger on 3/13/09

Below is something we never see in the desert. From:
Lobster Knife Fight via Picture Is Unrelated - WTF Pictures by pizzaburger on 3/18/09

And, from the Fashion Department:
I just don’t know what it is!! via What Not to Crochet by SB&C on 3/19/09

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Oops! Highlander Romance Fail

Shadow Music: A Novel Shadow Music: A Novel by Julie Garwood

My review

rating: 2 of 5 stars
After a few years following the Claybornes, Buchanans, et. al., Garwood has returned to the Highlands in this historical. It is flawed for a romance.

Much of the first half of the book is spent filling in the reader on Highland customs and life as well as the conflict with England at the time. The hero and heroine do not even meet until 1/3 of the way through the book. So the developing emotional relationship between them does not really have enough time to truly develop.

Part of the barrier is perhaps the hero's reluctance truly engage with the heroine. While the strong silent type often works, it seems to fail this time.

The requisite HEA does happen. I do look forward to working my way through the next book to at least see what happens to the rest of the bold Highlanders. I am also hopeful that Garwood will work her way forward to various places in history, ending with a series of contemporary suspense. That was good fun.

View all my reviews.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

How Do You People Find Me? Using Google Analytics

I started using Google Analytics to analyze this feed. Most of the time you wild and wacky readers are coming in through the url or my egotistical posting of my link on Facebook. But I do get the occasional keyword hit. Since January 1, 2009, here's how it shapes up:

Keyword %
what's a good book to read* 50%
day go faster* 31%
suspense novel plot generator 13%
camel edition 6%

*and variations thereof

As an example of how obscure I am, that 50% number is really just 6 or 8 hits. But it boosts my ego to use the percentages.

Why anyone would look for "camel edition" is beyond me.

I can even use analytics to see which entry specifically was hit. I have many entitled "Things that make the day go faster" so I can see which one it landed on. I only have one page entitled "What's a Good Book to Read?" and it was last year sometime.

Analytics only takes into account the hits made during the time period specified. I specified 1/1/09-3/15/09. I could do as little as a week.

Since I just transferred from Feedburner, Analytics is also only able to look back in time to January 1, 2009. If it went back farther, I'd probably also have the entry "Prednisone, Insomnia from" showing up. Feedburner is transferring everything to Google, so if you're using feedburner, you can transfer to Google, and then use Analytics to do the same kind of analysis.

So, what is this telling me?
If I want even more hits, I should title all entries either "What's a Good Book To Read?" or "Things That Make The Day Go Faster." Or, more logically, write more on those topics to make the title match the content. That would probably be best.

It also tells me that people out there are really interested in finding a good book to read. As well as making the day go faster. My blog is obscure. If people are finding me using variations on that search term, then it must be a good one.

Do I Care?
Yes and no.

My ego would love to have everyone in the blogosphere hanging on my every word. Challenge failblog!

On the other hand, I only write here what pops into my head. And to use this as a practice for my someday book of essays. So my behavior is unlikely to change unless I want to inflate my ego.

But is it interesting?
Yes! And Google Analytics will be of great use to serious bloggers, especially those in corporate settings.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

The Big Snark-Off: Camel Edition

Lots of Snark This Week!

Let's Go!

This Almost Makes Me Want To Be A Cheesehead:
Piles of Links! Miles of Links! via Smart Bitches, Trashy Books on 3/7/09:
All hail the wondrous things about Wisconsin. There are many. And not just the Packers and cheese. Evidence: The University of Wisconsin Milwaukee Library Nurse Romance Cover of the Week collection.

Zombie Alert!
Free books, as in free beer, and more via Free Range Librarian by K.G. Schneider on 3/10/09
I thought you might want to see this. This is the editor of the book talking about Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.” Really, who can ever
get enough of those Regency zombies?

Take THAT Jane Austen!

Culture Department
Thanks to my FFABulous former coworker, Eduardo Corral @ Lorcaloca for the heads up on this one!
SPD Bad Poetry Contest: Worst Postmodern Lyric
1st Prize Winner: James Wagner
Category: Worst Postmodern Lyric
Congratulations Mr. Wagner!

C'mon Ladies! We're Marching to Pretoria! Links on Romance via Smart Bitches, Trashy Books on 3/9/09: South African men are fans of the romance.


Oh Puh-leeez shut your pie-hole you rw whacko shill. Do you really think the PRESIDENT is worried about you? He has a whole country to run, for crap's sake:
Limbaugh Challenges Obama To Debate via The Limbaugh Lie Of The Day
by (Joseph Lyles) on 3/4/09

And now...Camels

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Once-in-a-lifetime Library Customer Interaction!

Patron: I've been standing over at the Special Needs Desk for five minutes and those two people at the desk are ignoring me! What are they? Blind?

Library Assistant: Yes

Result: Fastest patron retreat in history!

Kudos to Debbie V. , Library Assistant Extrodinaire for sharing this great moment in customer relations!

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Loose and Easy

Loose and Easy (Steele Street #9) Loose and Easy by Tara Janzen

My review

rating: 4 of 5 stars
From the title, one might think there is a whole lot more hot and heavy sex in this one. Not particularly. Actually less than usual. For this author. Still not PG-13! Janzen will always be R-rated and, doggone it, writes those sex scenes rather well...

And, really, how would these people have time to stop for sex with all the action taking place in one night? And what an adrenaline rush all that action is! The SDF team is macho as ever as Johnny and Esme (aka: Easy) rush to get the reward for returning a stolen painting and try to get the money to the Bad Guy With a Comb-Over who is holding Esme's father hostage for a betting debt.

Double-crosses abound. Bad guys are walloped. And, in the background, General Grant arrives at Steele Street to help place the seeds for a future book. And Easy's cousin Dax also gets some play as set up for another book.

As always, Janzen's heros and the predicaments that bring them together with the heroine are over-the-top. But the characters are well-defined, the emotions are high, and there is a true HEA for Johnny and Easy.

View all my reviews.


Inferno Inferno by Karen Harper

My review

rating: 5 of 5 stars
A really great example of a PG-13 contemporary romantic suspense. The bad guy is truly deranged. And yet, from what I have read about firestarters, he certainly fits the profile. The profile is also discussed within the book as FBI agents join the heroine in tracking down the "boy next door" arsonist.

The BND arsonist has been bedeviling the FBI for some years. He also has a connection to the heroine. The final Big Fire in a Dry, Remote, Highly Forested Area and the pursuit of the BND give the requisite adrenaline rush. The characters, major and minor, are detailed. The growing relationship between the hero and heroine is nicely handled. As a bonus for those preferring PG or PG 13 romances, there is a genuine romance minus the heavy sex.

Bonus points for information about wildlife of the area and a particularly disgruntled bear. A refreshing change of pace, this might also appeal to some readers of thrillers.

View all my reviews.

Jogging Moose!

Monday, March 02, 2009

One of the worst books ever!

Blackout Blackout by Guy N Smith

My review

rating: 1 of 5 stars
In the name of ceiling-cat and Patsy Cline DO NOT read this book. Occasionally in the publishing world, a British book gets printed that is, well, completely off-base with US geography. Mr. Smith has Wyoming close to New York, for one thing. Oregon has a desert. I was hoping this was alternate reality. Sadly, it was not so.

And the inaccuracies and muck and mire continued and continued...I finally just gave up and skimmed to the end. The book is clearly in the horror genre and the only credit I can give to Mr. Smith is that it ended on the appropriately ambiguous note.

Just goes to prove: Only write about what you know!

View all my reviews.