How was school?

The Sentinel first edition hardbacks have been ordered and if you were one of the initial group your signed, authenticated, and numbered copy will ship as soon as they are in my hands.  If you are sad that you missed out on the first editions you may be in luck.  Hardbacks ship in orders of fourteen, so, I'm going to have six extras that will be in that same run.  So, if last week was the last chance then this week is the double-secret-final-mega last chance.  At least for a signed first edition.  I'll sign any hardback/paperback after that as well.

In other news.  I was rejected by Bookbub. Bummer.  I really want to do a Bookbub promotion and if they ever accept me you'll hear all about it.  Until then, though, I'll probably keep most of the rejections to myself.  They can be a bit disconcerting.

In even more other news.  The Sentinel is available for pre-order on Amazon for $6.99 and will be available for pre-order soon on B&N, Ibooks, Smashwords, Kobo, and other online retailers. Everything is coming together really quickly and for the most part the process is smooth.  

In even double more other other news.  To help promote the launch of The Sentinel, Rex Chase will be available for download on Amazon for a paltry $.99 for a week during the month of September.  So, if you haven't ever downloaded the book you can get it at a pretty steep discount September 12-19th. I really need to build up those reviews guys!

AND, in the final extra super triple octuple announcement I also have a Goodreads giveaway starting now through September 26th.  I'm giving away five paperbacks.  Four are the final four copies of Ma'iitso Rises, and one is a new copy of the revised Rex Chase.  Sign in to Goodreads.  Get an account.  Get a free book.  Leave me reviews!  Please!

OK, enough news. Onto the blog!

I enjoy talking to and with my kids.  They usually don't annoy me, they often make me laugh, and even if they are going on and on about Beyblades metal masters I get a kick out of how excited they are. I know I've talked about them before, but I have two boys. My older one is in third grade now, is full of energy, and according to him, never learns anything in that supremely boring place called school.  My younger is in his first year of kindergarten, is also full of energy, and loves school and is willing to talk about it for as long as you'd like.

So, talking with my younger one about his day, is, so far, pretty simple. I can literally say, "How was your day?" and he'll go on and on.  I can't say I was fully prepared for that after dealing with the older one for years.  It's nice.  I can't just throw in a few.  "Man that sounds hard!" and "Whew, you got lucky there!" and "I can't believe she said that!" and I've learned everything there is to know about his day.

My third grader makes me work for it, though, and that's fine, because like I said before, I actually DO want to know how his day was.  Without prodding a conversation with him would go more like this.

Me: How was school today?

Kid: Fine.

Me: Did you learn anything?

Kid: No.

Me: What did you work on?

Kid: I don't remember.

Me: Did you get in any trouble?

Kid: Yes/No/Maybe. (This varies from day to day, although lately he's been staying out of trouble, but if he was in some kind of trouble.)

Me: What happened?

Kid: I don't remember.

So, those talks would get a little boring and repetitive. I started thinking of ways I could liven up the conversation and get him a little more into it, and trick him into telling me how his day was. On a side note, I also really enjoy tricking my boys.  One time I tricked them into tasting a dog biscuit by eating one of the biscuits myself first, except for one thing was different. I showed them a dog biscuit, palmed it, replaced it with an Oreo, and then told them I ate a dog biscuit.  Needless to say, they didn't enjoy the dog biscuit and thought I was disgusting, until I told them I really ate an Oreo, and then they were pretty mad at me, but I thought it was funny and, in the spirit of fairness ended up taking a bite of the dog biscuit. But, I digress.

My older boy needs more incentive to tell me how his day was, so our conversations usually go something more like this.

Me: How was school today?

Kid: Fine.

Me: Was there an alien landing or anything awesome like that?

Kid: Daaaaaaad. (In his most exasperated voice.)

Me: I'm serious. If an alien landed in your class today what would he have learned about?

Kid: First, there weren't any aliens, but we did talk about Abraham Lincoln.

Boom!  Then we're off and running about stuff he actually learned in school. Now, if I'm trying to learn about different aspects I ask different questions, but what works best with him is to assert something outrageous happened and then let him bring it back to earth.

Me: How was school today?

Kid:  Fine.

Me:  Did a herd of rhinos with monkeys riding them run down the hallway?

Kid: Daaaaad. (exasperated voice)

Me: No really, I heard a herd of rhinos ran through a school in Colorado.

Kid: That never happened.

Me: I'm pretty sure it did.  Anyway, did you play anything sweet at recess?

Kid: Yeah, we...

Then he ends up telling me all about his day.  Generally I throw in some more questions about who he played with, who his friends are, if anyone was mean to him, if he was mean to anyone else, if he was the teacher what would make class more fun,  if he could play Beyblade metal masters with just one person at school who would it be, etc. etc.  What used to be a ten second conversation is now as long as I have time for it to be, and generally I have a pretty decent idea of what is going on with him.  Now, don't get me wrong, I still find out about some things later that I didn't know, but that's just kind of part of the deal. Trust me, right now if I form any question into a Beyblade question I'll find out what I need to know.  That kid loves those things.

So, to conclude.  I like talking to my kids about their day and am genuinely interested in getting a response other than "fine" or "boring".  For now, they are still young and getting them to talk with me is as simple as relating it to Beyblades, spaceships, or a herd of rhinos.  Maybe that won't work when they're teenagers, but I'll have to jump that hurdle when I get there, and trust me, I'm not in a hurry. 


1: Your extra super mega last chance at a first run signed hardcopy is virtually gone.  Make it happen today.

2:  The Sentinel is available for digital pre-order on Amazon and will soon follow on B&N, Ibooks, Kobo, Smashwords and the like.  Stay tuned for more info.

3:  Rex Chase will be available for $.99 download on September 12-19th.  If you don't have one, get one, and leave a review.  I need em.

4:  Oh yeah, I got rejected by Bookbub.  That one kind of sucks though.  You can forget about it.

Have a happy September 3rd!

Posted on September 3, 2014 .