Ex Trailer Trash

Much Munching and Munchkin

The picture at the top of the page may not win any photography competitions, but the chicken pasta salad it depicts tasted good, which trumps photo quality in my book. It’s massively-doctored Suddenly Salad. The boxed pasta only made up about a third of what was in the bowl. I added coarsely-chopped chicken, sliced baby cukes, diced tomato, and chopped mushrooms, plus added some bottled Olive Garden dressing to give it more flavor. Yeah, I could’ve made a homemade vinagrette, but I was too tired to do any more by the time I was off work tonight.

Thanks to a last-minute family rescue mission, our photography time this weekend was limited. The light wasn’t ideal, either, so I got very few shots I liked. But I got to see one of the granddaughters, which is always a good thing.

I mentor authors and book designers, and have for a few years. I’m proud of some of the folks I’ve met that way and always do my best to help them succeed. One of my star mentor-ees is now my partner in crime, one of my two co-admins for the online community. She’s absolutely amazing. When I first encountered her she didn’t know from one day to the next if she was going to eat, if she and her little boy would be homeless, etc. Within a couple of years she was making a steady income. Not a fortune, but where she lived it didn’t take a fortune to do okay. I didn’t give her the talent – that’s all her. I simply encouraged her to use it.

We have four groups, each with a focus on specific aspects of the indie publishing industry. About the only thing we don’t teach is writing. There are thousands of outlets covering how to write – but until we came along, virtually none tutoring on how to create an effective book cover, how to professionally format interiors, how to market and do the business end of indie publshing, and where to find the things all the above require.

We’ve been recognized by some high-profile names in the business, which is gratifying. Unfortunately, some days (like today) it’s an added challenge to get it all done. I’ve been trying to keep up with questions, rebuild the associated website from scratch (customcoverpro.com), and in the last 24 hours we split the cover design group from the interior design group to improve focus. I got a whole lot of thank-yous from people who needed help with book interiors.

The few sad photos only yielded a handful that are worth two cents.

This old shack has clearly seen better days. It was one of about half a dozen dilapidated buildings at the edge of a Native American community called Blackwater.


I liked the lines of this irrigation pump and what I believe is a saguaro skeleton next to it.


This lone tree twists and turns its way toward the sky.


And this piece of farm machinery in school-bus yellow (and rust) popped against a hazy sky.


This last shot was only to capture the dust devil. In spite of a fairly wet summer, these things spring up all the time. This one’s on the small side. I’ve seen them hundreds of feet across and strong enough to tear apart sheds and roofs. They don’t compare to a Midwest tornado, obviously. They can still be a nuisance.

Like I said – okay pictures, nothing blue-ribbon-worthy.

4 thoughts on “Much Munching and Munchkin”

  1. Man, your pictures are absolutely blowing me away now. Those were all gorgeous, each and every. Bravo! With the exception of the pasta pic of course. But as you said….mmmmmmmmmmmmm….. 🙂

    1. Thank you! Interesting though – I thought this batch of photos were all sub-par. Good to know it’s gradually coming down to being self-critical.

      The pasta was a quick phone snap before we devoured it. That salad is one of our top-5 favorite meals. I even like to pretend it’s somewhat healthy, given the volume of fresh veggies, lol.

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