Articles to check out

Ice cream, furniture, pizza, customer service, and condiments

I hope your September is treating you well!

Quick update: On Sept. 19, Patrons on Patreon get access to 3 new Rucksack Universe stories. They’ll be available worldwide Oct. 19, and I’ll be back soon with more about those.

Main news… Check out these recent articles of mine:

The latest ice creams were surprising—and many were pretty darn appetizing too:

2019 Ice Cream Trends Coming to a Freezer Near You | ZeroCater

What are some of the latest trends in wooden furniture?

Wooden Accents – Eugene Magazine

I love making pizza. And pizza for breakfast has come a long way since the cold stuff you left on the counter after last night’s shindig:

What Is Breakfast Pizza? | ZeroCater

So many options abound for organizations trying to up their customer service game. These 2 pieces make the choices clearer:

How to Pick the Best Customer Service Software for Your Business | Outpost Blog

The 4 Best Customer Service Email Management Software Options | Outpost Blog

And to finish, more food writing! What are notable and popular condiments in each of the 50 US states?

Condiments Are Cool Again: Here’s What Each State Is Into | ZeroCater

Over 500 writing days! February 2019 writing report (plus an update on our busted little yellow car)

By the numbers, during February I wrote 40,040 words, at an average of 1,068 words per day. I wrote every day, which put my writing streak at…


501 days in a row as of Feb. 28!

I cracked the big 5-0-0! February’s scribbling puts me at 82,583 words for 2019—on track for 500,000 words for the year.

While February was a short month, it was an intense one. I’m building out some fiction ideas in tandem with my new websites (which are just about ready for you to see). I also had some usual suspects in the mix, of articles, exclusive posts to my patrons, and business writing for clients. But a lot of things have getting more and more focused on my fiction. Which I’m finding quite interesting.

Now to see what things look like at 1,000 writing days in a row…

A PS about our little yellow car

February’s recent snow, as you recall, did a number on the roof and back window of my and Jodie’s wee 2004 Toyota Matrix. Now, to be clear, this was our secondary vehicle; Jodie mainly drove it to and from her group teaching space. In a typical week, this car went 20, maybe 30 miles.


The official word came recently from our insurance: The damage was so extensive, and the repair estimate so high, that the car had to be totaled.

So it’s bye-bye little yellow car. It was a wonderful car, and it did a lot of things for us, especially at a time when money was much tighter.

We are keeping positive though, and our insurance (Safeco, btw), has been great to work with.

What’s next?

Just to put this out there, we are interested in replacing the Matrix with a used Nissan Leaf. Especially since the car doesn’t get driven a lot, we’d like to have a wee electric.

Budget-wise we particularly like the 2015 Leaf, with 2013 as a close runner-up. 2011 and 2012 would be fine too.

If you know of anyone selling their Leaf, please feel free to send word my way 🙂

Here are some recent articles to check out

Reading: Shattered by Kevin Hearne. I will never, ever, ever think of the legends of yeti the same.

Watching: The Good Place. Jodie and I have been wanting to start on on this show for a while, and now we are just about through the first season. The dialogue is hilarious (especially the “fork” and “bullshirt” euphemisms, because as you know, I’m a feckin sucker for good swearing stand-ins). Ted Danson’s performance is brilliant, and I dig the diverse casting. It took a few episodes before I felt really invested in the characters, but now the plot is rolling beautifully. (Parks and Recreation’s Adam Scott as a cast as demon named Trevor is also well done.)

Listening: NPR’s Life Kit Podcasts. Update on these. Last mention I was about to start on them. Now I’ve listened to 4 of the 5 series, and I’m hooked. The money ones have validated choices Jodie and I have made, while also giving us some fresh ideas on further improving our business and family finances. The fitness and diet ones have been refreshing real talk, no-nonsense discussions about facts around fitness and diet. Next I’ll be listening to the parenting “tough questions” series, and am definitely looking forward to more Life Kits.

Asking: If I wrote an Instagram account as a Rucksack Universe character telling stories, would you be interested in following that?

50% off sale Rucksack Universe during Read an Ebook Week

I read my first ebooks in 2012, on an app on my iPod Touch. I was immediately taken—especially given the circumstances.

My son was a few months old and having a cranky, cranky night. I spent a good hour or two with him in a carrier on my back, while I walked all over a hotel. While giving him some much-needed dad time and my wife a much-needed baby break, I also got to do some serious reading. I’ve been smitten with ebooks ever since.

Ebooks also helped me get my start as an author. That’s why I love being part of Read an Ebook Week from Smashwords.

Now through Mar. 9, the entire Rucksack Universe is 50% off, along with great deals on loads of other great reads. 

Get 50% off Rucksack Universe ebooks

If you’ve been wanting a good excuse to try ebooks, here it is. If you’ve been wanting to top up your reader with more amazing books, you are about to be all sorts of all set. If there’s someone you’ve been wanting to tell about the Rucksack Universe, now is a great time. Thanks for spreading the word!

What do you like about ebooks?

January 2019 writing report

By the numbers, during January I wrote 42,543 words, at an average of 1,372 words per day. I wrote every day, which put my writing streak at 473 days in a row as of Jan. 31—in fact, I’m on pace to hit 500 days in a row around the end of February.

I’m aiming for 500,000 words for the year. It’s attainable, plus I’m anticipating some slower going as I try some new things in Rucksack Universe tales and other stories.

Why slower going? I can tell you in one word.

No. One number.


Earlier this week I went through my catchall “Fiction” file for all the various Rucksack Universe scribblings, drafts, and concepts that I’ve started and haven’t finished over the last few years.

And there were 90.

I’m still reeling from that. I had a feeling it was a good-sized number, but feckin 90?

That’s 90 stories that could be out in the world. That a publication could be considering. That you could be enjoying. 90 potential new adventures in the Rucksack Universe. Just sitting around in a damn file, doing nobody a gram of good.

Well, except to irk me—and I like to turn irkedness into action.

So starting now, I’m working on how I’m going to get all 90 of these to some form of finished story.

It’s going to be an interesting year.

Business article: How to Use Collaborative Email to Convert Your Pre-Sale Leads

Sales is all about working with leads in a timely manner. But how can you do that with a small team and lots of email? I’m always amazed at the insights I gain from the people I talk with for articles.

How to Use Collaborative Email to Convert Your Pre-Sale Leads | Outpost Blog

Business article: Gmail for Your Business Email: Is the Paid Option Worth It?

Starting a business brings so many choices—and costs. Sometimes a new business wants to save money by using a free Gmail address. Here’s why that’s not a great idea…

Gmail for Your Business Email: Is the Paid Option Worth It? | Outpost Blog

Happy Holidays

Y’all, I just want to keep this simple. It’s the holidays, after all, and I know you’re busy.

May your season be bright.

May your 2019 be full of wanders and wonders.

And may our friendship continue.

All the best from my wee family to you. Happy Holidays to you and yours!

Business article: Clean Up Your Email: Whip Your Inbox Into Shape in an Hour

Try as a I do to stay on top of email, sometimes I have to block out some time and really dig in—and now, thanks to working on this piece, I can do that much more effectively now:

Full story: Clean Up Your Email: Whip Your Inbox Into Shape in an Hour

Business article: Sharing Passwords Hurts Your Business—Do This Instead

Working on this article really brought home to me why you unique logins are really critical:

Full story: Sharing Passwords Hurts Your Business—Do This Instead

Business article: Out of Office Email: How to Handle Email When You’re On Vacation

Heading out of the office for the holidays? Here’s what to do before you leave:

Full story: Out of Office Email: How to Handle Email When You’re On Vacation


Anthony St. Clair - Travel Fantasy Author / Craft Beer Writer / Business Copywriter

Author and copywriter Anthony St. Clair has specialized in online content since 2000, blogged since 2004 and is the author of the Rucksack Universe travel fantasy series.

FREE Sample

Check out this free sample of FOREVER THE ROAD

Anthony's third book, FOREVER THE ROAD, is a Best Books 2015 Fantasy pick from Library Journal's SELF-e, and a 2015 Oregon Book Award nominee.

Download your free sample to find out why Nth Degree's reviewer said this "high-stakes story, told with wit and compassion," left him "completely gobsmacked."

Rucksack Universe

Travel fantasy tales
of wit, adventure & beer

Forever the Road by Anthony St. Clair, a Rucksack Universe Fantasy Novel - learn more and buy now

Home Sweet Road by Anthony St. Clair, a Rucksack Universe Fantasy Novella - learn more and buy now

The Martini of Destiny by Anthony St. Clair, a Rucksack Universe Fantasy Novella - learn more and buy now

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