And the Retrograde Will Be Over When?

For those who haven't heard, Mercury is in retrograde. That means my life has been filled with a lot of those days. You know the ones I mean.

The other day our garbage disposal disposed of itself. Another day one of our dogs tried to become the neighborhood bully. There have been more incidents, but you get the gist. Who knows what tomorrow will bring.

I hope your days have been much less eventful than mine.

But since retrograde is about fixing things, I'm doing a

Blog Clean Up
Some of you might have noticed that my Blog Roll in the sidebar is out of control. Over the weekend, I'm culling blogs whose blogger hasn't visited me in a year or so. This does not apply to group blogs. The only way I know you've visited is if you comment or email me. So if you haven't commented here this year, I will be removing your blog from the sidebar over the weekend unless you comment here sometime this week. I'm pretty sure the bloggers this applies to no longer visit here, but I feel the need to say this anyway.

Regulars and new followers have no need to worry :)

Moving along, thanks to all of you for voicing your opinions last week about guest blogging. We'll do it again!

Wednesday, October 12, will kick off the Second Under the Tiki Hut Guest Blogging Event. Guest Blogging will end Wednesday, December 28.

Many of you indicated three months of the same theme gets a little predictable. So we're going to change it up a little. Since this is Under the Tiki Hut, I want to keep the beachy feel. But autumn and winter come to the beach, too. Depending on where your particular beach is, October to December is prime time for hurricanes and nor'easters. And I love snow on the beach.

So here are the rules. This time it isn't you, the writer, under the tiki hut - it's your character. Any character - one from your novel, your story, your memoir, or one you create especially to visit here. And since October to December is loaded with holidays, the holiday appropriate for the date of your post must be featured. That's it.

Your Character. The Holiday. Under the Tiki Hut. Very simple. Very easy. And readers get a feel for how you write. Any questions?

And I'm still stealing AND plagiarizing some of Alex J. Cavanaugh's Tips for Guest Bloggers:

* Contact me as soon as possible so I can fit you into one of 12 Wednesdays.

* I'm open to all bloggers. Humor is a must. Or suspense. Or a combination. No downbeat posts! This will also work in your favor. And my blogger buddies get preference.

* I schedule my posts on the weekend before they appear, so I need your post by Sunday evening before it's scheduled to go live on Wednesday. This will also help avoid any further Blogger snafus. And I prefer short guest posts - no more than 750 words TOTAL for intro/promo and post. I might fudge a little on that, but not much. Divide it however you want - ex. 300 promo and 450 story. If you're long on one, cut some of the other. If you're long, ask first - don't just send it to me. Readers are accustomed to zipping in here and zipping out. So the shorter the better.

* I’ll encourage commenters, but I need you to do the same. I'll promote on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.

* I don’t require a free book or anything. Really! I would rather support you by purchasing my own copy.
These are Alex's exact words! Mine, too.

* Please have the courtesy to thank me when it’s over. And you really need to thank the commenters, too.
I'm not a Hot Tamales fan like Alex, but you can send him some :)

Thank you, Alex, for allowing me to steal your rules.

If you are interested in guest blogging at Under the Tiki Hut, please email me:
tikihuttime AT gmail DOT com

And please spread the word!

Thanks :)


Laura Eno said…
Your garbage disposal isn't funny but the way you put it gave me a chuckle-sorry.
Characters on the beach would be entertaining!
Jan Morrison said…
I like this! And I like the idea of cleaning up my bloggy house - good idea. I do have some blogs that I visit that never visit me but that is usually because they don't visit anyone - they're like some sort of weird celebrity bloggers like the Yarn Harlot...I visit them but I rarely post as they have a zillion posters.
I'm in a cleaning up state of mind.
Linda G. said…
May your retrograde be a thing of the past soon. :)

I bet it will be fun to read character guest-blog posts!
Colette said…
Ahh, I hadn't heard about the Mercury retrograde, but that explains a lot!
Carol Kilgore said…
Laura - Chuckles are cool. Is Jezebel coming to the beach?

Jan - I will leave blogs like that, too. Those I don't mind. I want to leave as many as possible, but it's grown too unruly as it is.

Linda G - I'm thinking another couple weeks. I think those posts will be fun, too.

Colette - It certainly does.
LR said…
Oh man, I was wondering what's going on. Now I know that Mercury is in retrograde. :)
Karen Walker said…
Well, Carol, thanks for explaining my life lately - I've so out of the loop I didn't know Mercury was in retrograde. I am so glad I can blame something for feeling out of sorts and being tired of things not working the way they are supposed to.
VR Barkowski said…
Ah, Mercury's in retrograde. At least there's an excuse.

Love your guest blogger premise. I forwarded it to my CP. I would LOVE to see her characters under the tiki hut during the holidays. I'm already smiling.
Stephen Tremp said…
I need to declutter my blog as well. And I'd love to be a guest blogger. I'll send you an email. Thanks and hope there are still openings.
Steal away and yes, send me all the Hot Tamales!
I try to clean up my blogroll about once a month, removing bloggers who've vanished or no longer visit. I tend to add more than I take away though. Soon my blogroll will scroll down into the next country.
And my character is snarky, but not the most positive individual in the world. Unless you want him complaining about seagull crap on his space ship.
Isis Rushdan said…
Carol, I thought I was the only one watching and feeling Mercury in Retrograde. It has sent my anxiety into overdrive since my agent chose this time to send my ms on submission (continue to gnash my nails). Can't wait for it to be over.

Keep cleaning house!
Lydia K said…
Your guest posts have been great! Keep 'em coming!
Carol Kilgore said…
LR - I first learned of it at Manzanita's blog - Wanna Buy a Duck.

Karen - Happy to help :)

VR - I hope she emails me. Three dates are already taken.

Stephen - Cool :)

Alex - Snarky is good. Email if you want to guest. I'd love to see your character here :)

Isis - Yikes. Another couple of weeks of retro-ness I think.

Lydia - Thanks. Glad you've enjoyed them.
julie fedderson said…
Mercury is in retrograde until the 26th. I'm hiding until then. And I am a fan of the guest posts, as well as your top tens.
Hart Johnson said…
Mercury in retrograde? Is THAT who's to blame!? Blast it anyway... wait. No... no blasting while Mercury is in retrograde...

My husband and I honeymooned at the Oregon Coast in the first week of December... FABULOUS storms and waves. I love that rocky coast when it's like that. It makes a person feel very small, which I like... nature making me feel small... I will be all over guesting next summer when I have a BOOK...
Mercury is in retrograde? I didn't know that!

Looking forward to the guest bloggers!
Carol Kilgore said…
Julie - I'd like to hide. I'm glad you enjoy those posts!

Hart - OK. Next summer. I love storms on the beach. I've even been rescued once by the Navy when I was a kid.

Golden Eagle - never know what you'll learn Under the Tiki Hut :)
Helen Ginger said…
When Mercury comes out of retrograde, I hope we get some rain and cool temperatures. Then we could all gather under the Tiki Hut and sip margaritas.
Mercury Retrograde is a pain in the you-know-what!! Carol, this sounds like lots of fun. I look forward to reading the posts, and to mine in December. Thank you for the opportunity. :-)
Clarissa Draper said…
That's really cool what you're doing. Doing a guest post in the form of character would be fantastic. Can't wait to read them.
J.L. Campbell said…
Sorry to hear about the stuff that isn't going right, but things usually can and do get better as the days go by. The upcoming character series sounds interesting.
Carol Kilgore said…
Helen - Yes! Mark it on your calendar.

Melissa - You're welcome. I'm looking forward to all the posts, including yours.

Clarissa - Thanks. I hope everyone has fun.
Carol Kilgore said…
Joy - We crossed. It's the retrograde - LOL. I hope it will be as successful as the summer series has been and, I believe, will continue to be.
Talli Roland said…
Ooh, what a great idea! I'd love to sign up, but I think October will be a bit mental for me!

And oh, I hear you on 'those' days. Ergh!
Carol Kilgore said…
Talli - I still have a couple of slots remaining in November and December. Let me know.
M Pax said…
I hate when the garbage disposal goes out. Hope things are improving your way :)
Hmmm no wonder I've been having strange cravings over the past weeks. :( (And no, I'm not pregnant, blame it on Mercury!)
Hope this Mercury retrograde ends SOON. Regarding your concern with your sidebar, my blog was acting up, too. I had to ask for help in the blogger forum. Problem solved. ;) Too bad you can't see who's visited your blog. I don't always leave a message when I visit your blog...but I do visit.
Hope you solve this problem.
Carol Kilgore said…
M Pax - Looking up every day, thanks! Now if only I could finish plotting....

Claudia - You I don't worry about :) Some blogs I don't comment on either. Mostly I'm talking about people who've been here once or twice a year or more ago and never again. Or never commented again, so I don't know.
Tami Brothers said…
Great idea! I'm a huge fall fan and I LOVE fall at the beach. I'd love to try something that would fit in that timeline.

I've been in that funk myself lately BUT things seem to be looking up after this afternoon. So I'm hoping they continue in that vein. (crossing fingers)

Can't wait to see the changes to the blog.


Whoops, I commented on another post, just part of the chaos of my life these days!
Carol Kilgore said…
Tami - I'm glad things are looking up for you. Maybe a little here, too :)
If you want to share fall at the Tiki Hut, send me an email. I have a few open dates remaining.

Conda - Not a problem.
What a fun idea for the Tiki Hut! I've discovered how helpful it can be to write as one's character. Looking forward to reading, but too chicken to do it just yet. Hopefully the Tiki Hut will be around for quite awhile!
Carol Kilgore said…
Shannon - I hope to be around for a while!
It really is wild how things seem to go amuck when Mercury is in retrograde. And "those" days are no fun. I hope things get better. That garbage disposal might have come in handy for your blog clean up. ; )
Carol Kilgore said…
Cynthia - Things are back in working order with a new disposal :)