#Insecure Writers Support Group (#IWSG) post. Today, a little help with photo editing and a new book by T.B. Markinson.

December #IWSG is upon us. Here we talk about our trials and tribulations and terrifically exciting stuff once a month. You might ask for help, or you might tell us about something you think might be helpful.

First Wed of Every Month

This month, helping our Captain Alex J Cavanaugh are:  Sandra Hoover, Mark Koopmans, Doreen McGettigan, Megan Morgan, and Melodie Campbell! Go visit them if you can!

I’m going to tell you about one techie thing that I’ve found useful. If you like it, I might do some more. I don’t share much along these lines as I think everyone knows everything there is to know and who am I to tell you anything techie, but just in case there’s someone out there who can do with a little heads up, here are a few things I’ve learned in the last few years about editing pics.

EDITING IS MONKEY BUSINESS

Okay, editing our pictures, images and whatever used to be straightforward when google made picasa etc available, but they slowly took away the extra bling that made these work, so I went hunting to find out what the next editing thing was. Sure, I have a fancy editing program, who doesn’t, but most of the time I want a quick fix. I hate wrestling with those big guns like Adobe Photoshop.

I discovered PicMonkey. Now if you use PicMonkey, move on, as users of this program know it’s not rocket science, but gives a lot of bang for your buck…or for free! Many long-term users including moi, have found no good reason to register for the Royale, ad-free version. I put up with a bit of adwork along the bottom, quite blind to it, really. And if you install fantastic fonts that you download, they are automatically added to PicMonkey, maybe not all, but enough to make life exciting. And you can superimpose your own photos as overlays to add that personal touch.

  • So…if PicMonkey is new to you. How do you get it?

Simply go to picmonkey.com and you will come to this screen:

You can do all sorts of things from here–

  • choose one of your saved pictures to edit from your picture file, facebook, OneDrive, Dropbox…

Here is where I make my badges for WEP such as this one for a past December challenge using a shot of a cute ice cream van on the beach at Biarritz in SW France. Went a bit gang busters on the overlays, but what the heck!

  • You can opt to Touch up one of your images, or you can click Design, which gives you the option of automatically sizing for facebook headers (which work for twitter too), or squares or rectangles of various sizes so you can make your own quote badges, or, whatever, really.

  • Or you can make a Collage. Several options are available…here’s some of my Morocco trip I made for my facebook cover photo on my return.

  • Now within all these marvellous applications, you can edit your heart out–

Once you choose your picture to edit, you will see this on the left:

There are SO many options–you can crop, rotate, adjust size, create textures, add a frame, enhance…just to name a few. Such a great tool for blog headers, blog badges, blogfests, blog quotes…

You might get the idea that I love PicMonkey. I do. It’s so quick and easy, yet with a deft hand, it can turn out professional-looking images for whatever you want. So that’s me done. Now I have some news. See below:

Yes! Another book from T.B. Markinson…A Clueless Woman. If you’ve read T.B’s books, you’ll appreciate what a treat her new book will be. Now released:

Amazon US

Amazon UK

Amazon Canada

Amazon Australia 

Goodreads

Blurb:

Graduate student Lizzie Petrie feels more comfortable around books than people. Although an expert in the Hitler Youth, she’s a novice in love. Her former lesbian lover is blackmailing her, and not even those closest to Lizzie know the full story of their abusive relationship.

When visiting high school English teacher Sarah crosses Lizzie’s path at the campus, their attraction is instant, but not without complications. As they start to spend more time together, suspicions arise from both women in this sexy piece of LGBT fiction.

Plenty of good-natured teasing takes place between lovers as well as between PhD students in this lesbian contemporary romance. No relationship path ever runs smoothly, and oftentimes, those who can’t keep their mouth shut hasten necessary confrontation.

Lizzie finds herself buried in a mess of lies in this romantic comedy. The harder she tries to keep Sarah and the rest of her friends from finding out the truth about her first girlfriend, the more endearingly clueless she becomes.

About the Author:

T. B. Markinson's profile photo

T.B. Markinson is an American writer, living in England. When she isn’t writing, she’s traveling the world, watching sports on the telly, visiting pubs, or taking the dog for a walk. Not necessarily in that order.

Mailing List:

Get the first book in the series, A Woman Lost, for FREE by signing up to TB’s Readers’ Group here.

Links:

Twitter        Facebook        Blog        Goodreads     Amazon Author Page

Here is an excerpt I’ve especially chosen from the offerings T.B. sent to me:

“Well, well, well. What do we have here?” If Meg hadn’t been standing right in front of me, I would have recognized her snide tone, even despite the fact that she’d dyed her once-blonde hair a rich, fiery red. “Getting drunk on a school night. Shame on you, Lizzie. What would Dr. Marcel say?” Meg’s companion helped her slip into a coat. Hopefully, that meant they were leaving and pronto.

Approximately 150,000 people lived in Fort Collins, and the one person I didn’t want to bump into ever, let alone with Sarah, was peering down at us.

“Hello,” was all I could force out.

Meg’s gaze wandered over Sarah’s face and upper body before settling on me. “What happened to only drinking at home?” She crossed her arms.

“I’m afraid I’m a bad influence.” Sarah came to my defense.

“I see.” An older man tugged on Meg’s arm. She wore a tight dress—not her usual jeans and J. Crew sweater. And she was with a man—very unusual. “Have a good night, Lizzie.” She turned each Z in my name into a weapon. “Oh, I’ll be calling you to discuss that financial situation you brought up last time.” She gave Sarah a final glare and rolled her eyes. Red-hot anger raged through my mind and body as I clamped my lips together to keep everything bottled inside. How dare she treat Sarah so flippantly?

I counted to ten before I said, “I’m so sorry.”

Sarah’s eyes darted across the room to where Meg and her companion were exiting into the darkness. “Is she a friend?”

I snorted. “Former …” I’d been about to say girlfriend, but instead added, “acquaintance.”

“I’d use another word for her.”

I let out a rush of air. “Really? What would that be?”

  • Thank you for coming by! T.B’s book sounds pretty good, doesn’t it? I’m sure she would appreciate a supportive comment.
  • I know some of you are going to recommend your favourite editing program to us. Don’t be shy! What editing program pushes your creative buttons? Tell us why.
  • Thanks for visiting my blog. Please leave a comment so I know you’ve passed through.

And the fun never stops! It’s time for WEP’s December challenge, which involves something science fiction-y. Details are in the current post at WEP. Please visit and check it out. You can sign up here or at WEP. Love to have you!

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2 thoughts on “#Insecure Writers Support Group (#IWSG) post. Today, a little help with photo editing and a new book by T.B. Markinson.

  1. Hi Denise – I’ve seen PicMonkey recommended elsewhere … so thanks for these tips and the confirmation that it’s a great photo-editor to use. TB’s book sounds so interesting … about a subject I know nothing about .. a learning curve of a book … the passage you selected enhances the idea that it’s something I could do to read to understand. Cheers Hilary

    Liked by 1 person

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