Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The minutiae of my life

Sspreadsheet3 When I had a day job, I got stuck with a lot of nit-picky work.  It turns out, I was very good at it and--heavens, even enjoyed it!  I typed in lots of numbers, and updated all kinds of obscure information on various data bases and then got lots of printouts and spreadsheets I could pour over.  It was heaven!  Of course it was the ONLY good part of my job.  (My management sucked, but that's life.)  So is it any wonder that I love to play with my spreadsheets and databases in real life?  

I have five separate mailing lists: four e-mail and one snail mail.  Yesterday I sent out one of my periodic newsletters.  Consequently, I spent most of my free time yesterday playing with the mailing lists, and watching my stats rise (and not nearly enough).  

One of my lists is new to me and I'd never actually used it, although I've been cleaning it up for the last two months.  (Removing duplicates and bad addresses.)  Despite all those hours pouring over the list, 10% were still bad addresses (bounces) and 9% of the list unsubscribed.  (Did I offend them?)

Contest As part of the newsletter, I offered a contest.  (It's just for the newsletter people--so if you want to get in on the next contest, you have to join the newsletter list.  I'll be giving away more books in October.  There's a sign up box right on the right.  Go ahead--sign up now.  I'll wait for you to get back to this post.)

For this contest, people had to answer three easy questions about the Booktown Mystery series.  I was surprised at how many people got one of the answers wrong.  And one of the answers to one question (the name of Tricia's cat) was hilarious.  Wow--I was amazed at the number of readers who entered.  I wish I had more copies of the book to give away (I've got three). 

I'm back to polishing the ms. today, so no playing with my lists and spreadsheets for another month or so when the next newsletter comes out.