I’m Beth Reason and I approved the following Musing…


Mornin’ all.

I’m training my youngest teen to make coffee since the resident baristo is getting older and won’t always be on hand. As I choke down this witch’s brew, I’m thinking I shouldn’t have been the one to train him. He makes coffee like I do now. *sigh* I hope a stomach lining isn’t strictly necessary. I mean, people can live without entire spleens, so I think I can spare just a bit of stomach. Right?

In other news, I got my cover art done.


Hey, that’s not very nice.

“What? You want a medal or something?”

…well…now that you mention…


Eh, it was worth a shot.

I’m okay with how it turned out. It wasn’t my best design, but it wasn’t my worst. And it’s done, that’s the main thing. I got the book formatted for upload, too. It turned out to be harder than I expected to decide where to put the “chapter” links in the table of contents. It was written in diary format, and often books in such a style don’t bother with chapters at all. However, it’s a digital book, and it’s a real pain in the ass to try and remember where you left off if your tablet becomes touchy and reboots itself for no apparent reason and loses your page. You can’t just pppffft your thumb on the side of the pages and turbo-scan the words that fly by for the last line you remember reading. A hyperlinked table of contents is necessary.

In a normal story, the chapter breaks kind of define themselves. A lull in action, or right after a poignant or suspenseful revelation… In diary format, eh. Not so much. Any one of the entries could be its own chapter.

I once read a book on my tablet that had 52 chapters. Now, if it’s a Tolstoy or Michener tome, then chopping the story into 52 manageable chunks is reasonable. However, the book in question was only 168 pages long, including the title page, a two-page long dedication to the two dozen people that helped write the book, a two and a half-page table of contents, AND a foreword.

…and just for the record, that book was HORRID. There was next to no editing done, the story line was a confused mash up of half-thoughts, and the main character was so insipid that I honestly rooted for the bad guy and was disappointed when he didn’t win the day.

There is rarely ever a legitimate reason to have a book broken down into 3-page chapters. Usually authors will do this to artificially increase the page count, making it a cheap way to trick the reader into thinking they’re getting a better value. Pitiful. I never, ever want to be one of those kinds of authors. If my book is going to be long, it’s going to be because I can’t stop rambling on and on, not because of some…

Polly Normalson took a failing construction business and turned it into a Fortune 500 company. It’s this type of fiscal responsibility that residents of New Hampshire need. Polly Normalson, a new hope for New Hampshire. *Paid for by the EEO PAC of New Hampshire*

O-kayyy… That was weird.

*look left* *look right*

Um…I guess we’ll just keep talking?

Anyway, like I was saying, if my books end up being bloated, it’s going to be because I couldn’t shut up, and not because I felt like I had to add some two-page BS gush-fest or fifty bazillion page breaks for chapters. I tend to operate under the notion that if it annoys me, it’ll probably annoy someone else and I shouldn’t…

Bob Everyman was a soldier who fought in the American Revolution. Now a 235-year veteran, he understands the importance of a strong military presence for a proud America and the need for solid values. Bob Everyman, a strong leader for a stronger tomorrow. *I’m Bob Everyman and I approved this message.*

…um…you guys are hearing this too, right? I mean, it’s not just the voices again. Is it?


Polly Normalson has a strong record of modern thinking. She was the first in her industry to solely rely on wind energy, making her company New Hampshire’s first zero emissions manufacturing plant. Polly Normalson, for a cleaner, healthier tomorrow. *Paid for by the Citizens for Cleaner Air*


I get it. It’s that time of year again. Damnit. It’s not bad enough that I’ve got to listen to these political ads at every commercial break on tv…now they’re turning up on my very own…

Bob Everyman has been a strong leader for over two centuries. After saving George Washington from the Red Coats, he served his community by voting for classic American values. He’s proud of his record and his patriotism speaks for itself. *This ad sponsored by the VFW.*

Okay. Let’s forget that they’ve hijacked our chit chat for a minute. I have to say, I’ve lived here my whole life and everyone knows Bob Everyman. They make a good point when they say that he’s served the community with patriotism. Isn’t that what we need, more of those firm, classic values?

Bob Everyman wants you to believe that he can lead the nation forward. However, his record shows that he has voted against change 1,432 times in his centuries in office. New Hampshire can no longer afford to keep the status quo. A vote for Bob Everyman is a vote for more of the same. *Paid for by the Committee to Elect Polly Normalson*

Hm. You know what? They make a really good point. I’m kind of on board with that idea now. I mean, think about what the world was like 200 years ago. They didn’t even have Facebook! How can Bob Everyman possibly understand the nation when it’s kind of moved on without him?

Polly Normalson claims that she led a company from failure to success. What she forgot to mention was that in 2011, the Senate Committee for Unequal Pay unanimously agreed that Polly Normalson’s push for structured pay increases caused twelve board members to quit, putting the entire company in jeopardy. Is that really the “new hope” New Hampshire needs? We think not. *Paid for by the Old Boys Network for Bob Everyman*

Whoa, that one was a little harsh and misleading. It’s almost as if Bob Everyman has no legitimate point, so he’s desperately trying to turn a positive situation into a negative to get the votes of the people who won’t take the time to really think about what’s being said. Seems a little low. Well, at least Polly Normalson won’t ever stoop to…

Bob Everyman poops his pants. Do YOU want a leader that smells like a barnyard? *Paid for by the LMNO PAC to Elect Polly Normalson*


Well that escalated quickly.

I’m Bob Everyman’s great great great granddaughter, and I am here to tell you that Bob Everyman does not, in any way, smell like poop. Polly Normalson is using insults instead of facts because she’s afraid to face the issues head on. Bob Everyman. He doesn’t smell like poop. *Depends Undergarments is responsible for this ad*

Seriously, did any of you out there honestly believe that Bob smells like poop? Clearly it was Polly stirring the pot. However, in fairness, Bob did sling mud first.

Come on, politicians. Stop slinging mud and stop reacting to it. Do you realize the idiocy of Bob’s response there? I mean, NO ONE thought he smelled. No one. Yet waltzing his however-many great granddaughter out there to say “poop” over and over makes us all think the lady doth protest too much. Jeez. He’s been in politics long enough that he should know what’s happening here. Maybe he really does suck at his job.

Are you tired of the political mud-slinging? Do you want a leader who works hard instead of wasting his time smearing his opponents? While Polly Normalson and Bob Everyman have lost sight of the bigger picture, Jessie Commoner has been hard at work, fighting to resolve the issues New Hampshire faces. Jessie Commoner, the real voice of the state. *Paid for by the NH GPC*

Oooh, fresh meat. I’ve never heard of Jessie Commoner, but you know what? I like his style. He burned the both of them at once while making himself look really good. I don’t know who you are, Jessie, but I believe that may have been a checkmate. What can the others possibly say…

Jessie Commoner claims he’s a real voice for New Hampshire, but what kind of voice is that? Who is this guy? Have you heard of him? Because we certainly haven’t. And did you get a load of his hair? We think it’s a rug. Come on, New Hampshire. We’re already kind of a joke to the rest of the country. Do you really want some no-name with a fake hair piece proving the nation right? *This ad paid for by the Committee to Stop Jessie Commoner*

Ouch. I would not want to be Jessie Commoner today. And just between you and me, I kind of think he does wear a rug. Still, seems mean to point it out. I wonder which of the other opponents ran that ad?

Oh boy. Do you think they went in on it together? I mean, if they could team up for that, maybe there’s really a chance for bi-partisan support in the government.

And that pretty much sums up my hope for this election cycle. There’s so much mud and bitterness in the campaigns already that the very best I can hope for is that the people who get elected can stop neener-neenering each other long enough to slay the bigger threat when the chips are down.

Here in the Green Mountains we’re used to clean air, open living, and free thinking. Elect any one of the men or women running, and they’ll keep…


Thus concludes the Morning Musing for Saturday, October 11, 2014. Only three and a half more weeks of these ads. I’ll say one thing: they certainly make me understand why Mickey Mouse gets so many votes…


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