Monday, June 28, 2010

Press One for Frustration

I absolutely hate automated phone trees. I'm not overly fond of Verizon at the moment either. Back in March, Verizon and Yahoo parted ways, thus disrupting my email service through Outlook Express. I was briefly able to access my email through the web, but then the incoming and outgoing addresses changed and I wasn't able to access my email at all. So, I called Verizon.

After pressing or saying one for English, I had to press or say my phone number. Then I had to say internet, then email, then tech support all so I could hear a overly friendly, annoying computer voice tell me I could get help on line. It made me wonder why that would even be an option if I was having trouble accessing the internet.

But I had internet. I just couldn't access my email. But then once I jumped through all their hoops to get to tech support for email, I was put on hold. Five minutes later, the annoying voice asked for my phone number again and the phone tree hell began again. By the time I finally reached a live person, I was already pissed.

But after two days and changing incoming and outgoing POP 3 addresses, I finally had email. I thought that would be the end of it.


About two weeks ago, I got an email from Verizon telling me they're changing to Frontier Communications and my email address will change. The date for this big change was slated for July 1 and the email stated there would be no disruption in service. But the change began today. And there was a disruption in service.

So, once again I called Verizon and got stuck in phone tree hell.

Not only do I not have email for at least twenty four hours, I'm still going to get a bill from my email provider who's done a piss-poor job of providing email service for these past three months.

I can't access my email through Outlook or via the web. And because my email address is changing, I have to fill forms out and alert God knows how many people, loops, blogs, etc to give them my new address that I don't even know yet.

Of course, Verizon promises a smooth transition. They promise to forward all my mail and alert all my contacts in my address book. Then again, they promised no disruption in service and said the change wouldn't occur before July 1 too.

I'll also have to change my email address on my blog. And my website. And I don't even want to think about Facebook and MySpace.

Did you know you can change your password on Facebook and MySpace but not your email address. So, for the rest of my life--or for as long as I have Facebook and Myspace accounts--I'm going to have to remember my OLD email address to log in.

What the crap?

And I'm sure Verizon--soon to be Frontier--will not reimburse me for all the money I spent on bookmarks with an email address that's going to change. And I'm sure they won't adjust my bill for the days I go without email. Or change my email address on paypal, Amazon, and all the other sites and places I can't even remember who'll need to know my new address.

Maybe I just don't like having change forced on me, but this is looking like a monumental pain in the butt. And I haven't even had email for the past eight hours so I don't know what important emails I might be missing.

Has this happened to anyone else? Is there an easy way to transition through this?

And what about my Facebook account? I do NOT want to start a new one. I already have pictures and friends. I don't want to start from scratch. But using an old email address will annoying the crap out of me.

I do feel sorry for the customer service employees at Verizon. The lady I talked to was nice despite my irritation when I called. Like I said, by the time I finally got to talk to her, I was already annoyed because of the phone tree hell I'd been trapped in for ten minutes.

She was sympathetic and apologetic, but she was stuck in the middle. There was nothing she could do. Verizon's stand on the matter is this:

"We're sorry for any inconvenience but Verizon email services will be down for at least twenty-four hours while we make the transition to Frontier Communications."

I just hope their communication and customer service skills improve. Because right now, I am NOT a happy camper.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Contest winner and another great review

I'm so thrilled. I came home from the beach and found out I have another great review for OUR OF THE DARKNESS. This one is from Coffee Time Reviews.
"Lilly Gayle presents in a detailed, accurate manner a rational paranormal romance. The two main characters in this story jump right off the pages and engage the reader. Who cannot feel for a sexy vampire with a conscience?" You can see the entire review at

Thanks Venus for a great review!

Also, I'm happy to announce that Rebecca Clark won my blog post contest. Congrats Rebecca. Please contact me and let me know if you want an e-book or paperback copy of OUT OF THE DARKNESS.

Thanks to everyone who's read my blog or my book. Without readers, I'd just be writing for myself.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Father's Day

In the United States, the tradition of celebrating Father's Day is not even a hundred years old. It all started in Spokane, Washington in 1910- two years after the first Mother’s Day observance in West Virginia. William Jackson Smart’s married daughter, Sonora Louse Smart Dodd, came up with the idea during a Mother’s Day sermon.

During the sermon, which extolled maternal sacrifices made for children, Sonora thought of the sacrifices her father made. William Jackson Smart—a civil war veteran—became a single parent after his wife died in childbirth when Senora was sixteen.

Senora felt her father made as many sacrifices as any mother. He endured the loss of his wife and kept their farm afloat while raising his six children. Sonora believed strongly that if mothers had their own special day, then fathers should too.

Inspired by Ms Anna Jarvis's struggle to promote Mother's Day, which was in May, Senora began a rigorous campaign to celebrate Father's Day. She proposed celebrating on June 5th, which was her father’s birthday. The idea gained strong support from the town’s ministers and members of the Spokane YMCA, but the ministers suggested moving the date to June 19th so they would have time to prepare sermons to celebrate fathers.

Mother’s Day was endorsed in newspaper articles and many of these same papers carried the story of Spokane’s Father’s Day celebration. But Father’s Day wasn’t as quickly accepted as Mother’s Day. Members of the all-male Congress were hesitant to promote such a day, feeling the country might see such a move as self-congratulatory.

Still, Father’s Day increased in popularity and in 1916, President Woodrow Wilson and his family personally observed the day. President Calvin Coolidge recommended in 1924 that any state wishing to hold their own Father’s Day observances could do so. He wrote to the nation’s governors that "the widespread observance of this occasion is calculated to establish more intimate relations between fathers and their children, and also to impress upon fathers the full measure of their obligations."

There was still debate in congress over approving such a day, but in 1966, President Lyndon Johnson signed a presidential proclamation declaring the third Sunday of June as Father's Day in the United States. In 1972, President Richard Nixon established a permanent national observance to be held on that same date and Sonora Smart Dodd was honored for her contribution at the World's Fair in Spokane in 1974.

Mrs. Dodd died in 1978 at age 96, but most people still accredit her with the first Father’s Day celebration. However, some scholars believe the tradition of celebrating one’s father can be traced to ancient Babylon some four thousand years ago.

Records show that a young boy named Elmesu carved a Father's Day message in clay wishing his father good health and a long life. This was the first documented account of a Father’s Day observance. And although no one knows what happened to Elmesu and his father, the tradition of celebrating Father's Day remained in several countries around the world before the United States proclaimed the third Sunday in June as the official date of Father’s Day.

Many countries celebrate Father’s Day on the same day as the US, but other countries celebrate at different times. For example, Germany celebrates fathers on Ascension Thursday—40 days after Easter. Australia celebrates this day on the first Sunday in September, and Belgium celebrates Father’s Day twice a year, once on St. Joseph's Day and again on the second Sunday in June.

So, what other countries besides the US will be celebrating Sunday, June 20, 2010?
The United Kingdom celebrates the third Sunday in June as do the Netherlands, Japan, France, Canada, Chile, and Argentina. And Bulgaria celebrates Father’s Day on June 20th every year.
So to all fathers around the world, Happy Father’s Day.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Have I arrived?

I was amused today to see two used copies of my book available on Amazon for $3.00 more than you can buy the book new. I don't know why, but this made me laugh hysterically. I mean really, will anybody pay more for a used book than for a new one? Maybe it's an autographed copy and one of my friends, family members, or co-workers who came to the book signing think my autograph is worth something. Does this mean I've arrived?

I think not!

But, I have had a wonderful week. And the book signing was a huge success. I even sold a few copies to people I don't know. So, I may not have arrived, but I'm feeling pretty darn good.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Today's the Day!

New dress. New shoes. And ready for my first book signing at Stovall's Gifts in Oxford, NC. I'm so excited. And thankful that Julia was willing to host my book signing on the same day as her wine tasting.

Wine and books just seem to go together. And I'm hoping the free flow of wine will entice folks to buy my book!

I love to read in the tub with candles and a glass of wine. But I guess I shouldn't try that with my NOOK. But I can read my NOOK by the pool with a cool glass of wine this summer. And since my book is available in both print and e-format, I think it would be a nice book for others to read by the pool or at the beach this summer.

Even though my friends, family, and co-workers have been incredibly supportive, I'm hoping strangers will buy my book. Lots and lots of strangers!

Will post pictures of the book signing later.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

My First Review

Wow! If the rest of my day goes as well as my morning, this WILL be a great day. I just opened my email before going to my "real" job and found my first review from NightOwlReviews. I just have to share!


Megan Harper is a doctor who’s working on people who are extremely sensitive to sunlight. Her sister had that genetic problem and that drives her to find a cure.

Vincent Maxwell is a part of Lifeblood, a large blood donation bank. He wants Megan’s help and information. He is a vampire and at first Megan thinks that he has the same genetic problem her sister did.

As these two work together more twists and turns reveal themselves. Megan finds out Vincent’s secret. Will these two be able to have a happy relationship. Will they survive to be together?

Out of the Darkness is a Top Pick for me. I just loved the plot and the interaction between Vincent and Megan. The sensual scenes were hot and the ending was done just right. The villains were chilling and Vincent’s history compelling. This was an action packed and exciting read.