|Hope it's a good one!|
|'Beulah, peel me a mouse. Spoiled rotten, moi?'|
I really appreciate the effort some lovely people have gone to, scanning, converting, editing old books page by page and putting them on Kindle, so you can buy the complete Saki, Anthony Trollope, Austen, Dickens, often free or for less than a quid. So here I’m going to make a New Year Resolution: to appreciate our internet freebies, rather than taking them for granted or even booting off at them.
I gave Wikipedia a Christmas present this year as I did last year. Yes, I know people sometimes manage to put funny or scurrilous things on there, but like those who put classics on Kindle, Wikipedia allows a miracle – random people all over the world, choosing to spend their time just sharing vast amounts of knowledge and expertise – and all for nothing. Again, human beings who need to pay rent and Sainsbury’s bills are running this massive resource, and in fact they don’t even take ads. So last year they started occasionally suggesting users donate a few squids, and they are asking again. This doesn’t seem unreasonable to me.
|Sharing is good, even if you are made of Meccano.|
I’m sure we’ve all seen, perhaps even written, furious facebook posts like this: ‘Bloody facebook, how dare you put ADVERTS on my newsfeed! Help, can anyone out there tell me how to STOP SEEING these disgusting ads!’ I know it’s annoying to find ads for funerals and incontinence pads cropping up just after a significant birthday, but let’s face it, we’re using facebook for promo, for networking, for chat, for discussion, for friendship, for keeping up with family worldwide, and it’s all FREE. There are actually people out there somewhere keeping it all running pretty damn smoothly and guess what, they expect to get paid for doing their day jobs! Shocking I know. If we’re not paying their wages, somebody has to. So yes, it’s upsetting when the algorithms human beings on salaries design get it a bit wrong and post a ‘memory’ of something you’d rather forget, and occasionally there are glitches, but let’s be grateful for a great free service for a change.
|An Aardvark. Aardvarks never killed anybody. Thank you, I'm here all week.|
So, if you need to do some research for your new novel, or short story, or poem about aardvarks, google it, wiki it, tweet about it (also free), email your friends about it (ditto), blog about it, and post the link on facebook. Sometimes the good things in life really are free.
And none of these sites is paying me to say these things either (worse luck)!
HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL OUR READERS!
Find out more about my various projects and productions on valerielaws.com (books, art installations etc)
Some of my thirteen books are now on Kindle UK US, iBooks UK US, Kobo, Nook and more, on all platforms worldwide.
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