Saturday, May 31, 2014

Doing New Things

Years ago (decades, actually) I discovered that, while I like to know how to do new things, I hate learning how to do them. I want to know now how to do what I want to do. I don’t want to endure a frustrating learning curve in order to master a new skill.

The reason I mention my quirk at this minute, is ‘cause it’s Saturday, May 31, 2014, and I was supposed to have learned how to use a thing called Mail Chimp to send out my monthly blog and any other newsworthy things I choose to send in order to plug my books. But I haven’t learned how to use Mail Chimp, so I’m stuck doing it the old way.

Rae Monet designed a gorgeous new web site for me ( and gave me the Mail Chimp URL. She even uploaded all the addresses of my contact list so that I didn’t have to do it myself. But did I go to Mail Chimp and figure out how to use it? Noooooo. I did not. Perhaps this is because I’m an idiot. Perhaps it’s because I was really, really busy in May. Perhaps it’s because my younger daughter, Robin, came to visit last weekend, and I used up two working days playing with her.
But the fact of the matter is that I just didn’t want to strain my brain learning how to do something new.

So now I feel guilty. Will I reform my lazy ways and learn how to use Mail Chimp before next month’s blog is due? Probably, but only because I hate feeling as though I’ve totally failed at something. Not that failure is necessarily a bad thing, oddly enough. I mean, we all fail from time to time, but generally we get back up, dust ourselves off, and try again. The real failure is in not trying at all, which is what I did with regard to Mail Chimp.

Bah. I hate learning how to do new things!

Oh, my goodness, I just realized Rae altered my blog site page, too, so her gorgeous heading is now up there. Now I feel doubly guilty.

But that’s not the point of writing a blog, either, at least for me. The point of writing a blog is to plug my books. So here’s this month’s plug: RESTLESS SPIRITS (originally published by Jove Haunting Hearts under my Rachel Wilson pseudonym) is now available in audio format. Read by my extremely old friend, Jim Hull (actually I’m older than he is, but who’s counting?) this is the story of how Harry Potter, Penelope Potter’s brother (unfortunately this isn’t the one made up by J.K. Rowling, or I’d be rich) swallowed the soul of a bad guy named Chester Pease, who was shot dead after trying to cheat John Wesley Harding in a card game in Cimarron, New Mexico Territory. It’s a fun book. If you don’t mind listening to books by people who have failed to master Mail Chimp, click on title beneath the book cover, and it will take you to RESTLESS SPIRITS’ Audible link.


I’ll be giving away audio copies of RESTLESS SPIRITS in June’s contest, so if you’d like to enter (although it would be nicer if you’d buy it, but I understand how people don’t like to purchase books by people who haven’t learned how to use Mail Chimp), send me an e-mail with your name and e-mail address to

Thank you!


Unknown said...

Haha, Alice. You are too funny. And we are alike. It's so much easier to so things the way we always have. Just this year, I gave up my overhead projector in my classroom for a data projector. I was one of the last to so so. But now, I LOVE it! Ice been tossing all of my overhead films and can just use regular old paper to show stuff. You know they are going to smash my dear chalkboard and replace it with whiteboards this summer. But I don't have to learn how to use them, so that's not hard, just sad. Sniff.

Alice Duncan said...

I'm glad I'm not the only one, Sue! I'm sorry you have to smash your chalkboard. Sniffle. Of course, in my day, we had blackboards rather than green ones, and I didn't like that, either. Sigh.

Jacqueline Seewald said...


You're still way ahead of me in tech savvy. It seems like every time I blink there's something new we're supposed to learn.

Alice Duncan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Caroline Clemmons said...

Alice, once you try Mail Chimp, you will learn it quickly. Heck, even I can use it, so that proves it's easy. I'm still learning the intricacies, but I've sent several newsletters. Now, if I only knew how to increase my list of newsletter subscribers. . .

Alice Duncan said...

I hear you on that, Jacquie! I still don't even know how to use Twitter. Well, I KNOW how to use it, I just DON'T use it.

Thanks, Caroline! You make me feel much better about learning how to use Mail Chimp! And yeah. I don't know how to do that. Or promote my books. Blech.

Susan Oleksiw said...

Every time I read a post like yours, Alice, I realize I have something new to learn. But the sun is out and we bought a rose bush that still needs to be planted. When you figure out Mail Chimp, perhaps you could tell the rest of us how to use it.

Alice Duncan said...

Oh, yeah, Susan. I'd MUCH rather be planting rose bushes. Caroline can tell us about Mail Chimp :-)

Tessa~ Here there be musing said...

-chuckle- i too, hate to go through the process of learning a new thing.

i too, want to know "how to do it."

but do not want to "read the instructions book" as it were.


perhaps there is a "12 step program" out there, for people like us????????


Alice Duncan said...

Oh, Tessa, it's so comforting to know I'm not alone! And I wish there were a 12-step program for us :-)