Archive | Blog RSS for this section

WordPress theme changeover time!

Currently, (as in 9:11am on the 24th April 2013) I have a theme called Skeptical installed. It has a great features but of course as soon as you change anything, you break something. Case in point being a giant book cover a few posts down that now hangs out over the side-bar.

Then you start hitting barriers … have the developers built in the function to alter the width of the posts? Will I need to edit the php myself? What else will that break?

What I really like about Skeptical is that you can insert an image as the thumbnail for the post. You end up with a really beautiful blog once you start doing it. Of course when you have hundreds of entries already, it doesn’t work so well.

If you want to check out Skeptical you can find it here.

***Argh, more broken posts! More images too big or posts with no image at all but it’s showing a broken image link. Urgle bargle gurgle.***

My massive writing project list is way too long

I’m in the midst of updating my project list for a job application and it is takingĀ forever. How many children’s activity books does one person need to write in a lifetime?

I wish there was some way to find out who had written the most books in the world. I know R.L. Stine has some 300 titles (although there is the claim of ghost-writing). I think I’ve written more children’s activity books than anyone else in the world … but how would I prove it?

Once I’ve finished then I’ll post the project list up here.

(Goes back to typing)

Random thoughts

If you have a medical problem you should research it on the web and then when at the doctor’s you should ask questions you already know the answer to. If, for example, you know a certain medical procedure comes with an increased risk of hypertension later in life, you should ask “Is there any risk to this? Will it have an effect in the future?” When the doctor says “no, no effect” then you ask the very direct question and see what happens. Short answer here is: if they lie, obfuscate, hide information, only push you towards surgery … get a different doctor.

There really needs to be a real estate agent review system. I can’t find a really good one for Australia. I’ve rented since 1998 and most of my agents have been terrible incompetent morons. But there is no centralised review system so no one ever knows.

Making money on eBooks is great! You forget work so easily. Forget all those hours and struggle. Soon it feels like you’re making money for nothing.

On writing and publishing – just start. This is damn near the only profession where others will piss on you at the start. They’ll tell you how hard it is. How it is such a fucking struggle. You’ll never make it blah blah. Turn up to learn Karate and they’ll teach you. Turn up to learn how to swim and they’ll teach you. Turn up to learn practically anything else and they’ll teach you and not piss down the struggle of writing. So… just start.

Having an emergency fund is a brilliant idea. I completely agree with “if you have no emergency fund, you already have an emergency”. I started one last year and then blammo, right before Christmas my car needed $1550 of repairs. We’re talking the week before Christmas. I had the money in an emergency fund so I was fine. If this had been last year then I would have either had to stay at home over Christmas or whacked a great blob of money on my credit card.

Being hungry can lead to being angry. Eat.

You are buffeted by moods and your energy level rises and falls and sometimes you have no idea why. While some of this is a mystery, other bits aren’t. For example: get good sleep, exercise, spend time with people.

 

Morgan M Morgansen’s Date With Destiny

Such wonderful playful use of language! I love this …

Super Monkey Group: The Blurting Beetles of Baloogo Loogo new cover!

Super Monkey Group: The Blurting Beetles of Baloogo Loogo has a new cover! Illustrated by the excellent Jeff Bellio. Check out his illustration work, it’s beautiful.

You can find this book at Amazon for Kindle and Smashwords for anything else.

Australia’s Housing Bubble keeps on keeping on

1. The ratio of house prices to incomes is one of the highest in the world.

2. Superannuation funds in Australia receive favourable tax incentives which make investing in housing a good long-term strategy.

3. All working Australians have mandatory superannuation payments made by their employers and it is this near-trillion dollar lump of money that is investing in housing.

4. Australians at an auction attempting to buy a house can literally be bidding against their own superannuation money to buy a house.

5. The last attempt to cut these favourable tax incentives failed due to the weight of superannuation funds that has accumulated over the years. Politicians could not cut the tax incentives as all superannuation funds would take a sharp drop at the news. House prices would also drop on the news and many Australians would find themselves paying off a loan worth far more than their home.

6. In Victoria, the government introduced a plan which limited the sprawl of Melbourne, calling for higher density housing to be built throughout the city, connected by train lines and other forms of public transport – a plan for the future of Melbourne with a much higher population than today.

7. Most efforts to build higher density housing across Melbourne has failed as local resident groups use local laws and councils to block development. The richer the suburb the lower the success rate of new development. This has the result of pushing development to the poorest suburbs which lack the necessary infrastructure to accommodate rising populations.

8. As a result of the incredibly high ratio of housing prices to incomes, Melbourne has a rental vacancy rate that has dropped below 1%. Like a large game of musical chairs where almost everyone has sat down, the lack of rental properties means that even full-time employed people are at risk of becoming homeless if their landlord decides to end their tenancy. This has also led to other issues such as under-the-table “auctions” for renters to bid up the rent against each other.

9. Lack of housing has contributed to skyrocketing rents which, despite even the high price of housing in Melbourne, mean that renters are sometimes paying close to a standard mortgage payment in order to rent a home.

10. Despite large amounts of land being available for building (mostly held by developers) the Government has failed to pass any legislation forbidding hording of such land or enacting any tax to encourage release of land. As a result we have low land supply, low density housing only, low rental availability, high housing prices and hundreds of millions of dollars invested via superannuation to ensure the situation will not change.

A true story about an island and recycled food

Beachcomber Island, Fiji.

Everything is brought in by boat and obviously the profit motivation is there and so when it comes to food you get … recycling.

Beef on one night turns up the next day as beef curry, etc.

So one night my gf and I are eating and I have one forkful of this beef curry. It tastes sour so I spit it out but swallow some of the sauce. This is enough to put me on the toilet for about two hours with liquidness pouring out. Urgh.

Some other guy on the island ate a whole plateful and then decided to drink and live it up …

About 10pm I head out for a short walk, looking to get some water to replace what I’ve lost and I feel a gurgling in my stomach. No worries, I’ll just head into the public toilet rather than walk back to my room.

I walk in just as this guy staggers past me, drunk and holding the legs of his shorts closed. He gets halfway into the room and lets out this noise, a groan and gasp mixed together before he goes down on his knees and lets go of his shorts.

Liquid shit pours out onto the floor. The stench is instantly revolting.

He falls on his side, tries to pull down his shorts and just lets go. I hear the longest wettest fart of all time … it had pieces in it, a spluttering shower of shit.

He throws up while on his side.

I step back as two Fijians rush past me into the toilets and see what is happening. One grabs a hose and turns it on while the other one gently pushes me back out.

I didn’t realise I’d been holding my breath until I got outside.

Places you can find my ebooks

Now that Smashwords is distributing to various websites you can find my ebooks all over the place.


Want FREE ebooks? If you’re reading this on my website then click on Free Downloadable eBooks.

Want to TORRENT free ebooks? Check out the sidebar under Mathew Ferguson’s Download Torrents. Use uTorrent and away you go! Those book are in pdf form.

Want to pay me some moola? Check out my books for Kindle on Amazon.com

Got yourself a Nook? Head over to Barnes and Noble, my fine friend.

Got yourself a Kobo? Chicka-cha!

Apparently my books are on Sony e-reader and Apple iPad but I’m not sure they’re showing up in the stores yet.


Want paper books? Well, my original work is in eBook form but feel free to buy any of a zillion Disney/Pixar books that you can find here in Australia. There’s a good chance I wrote it.

WordPress is stripping hard returns from posts? A solution!

Man oh man.

So for some dumb reason WordPress’ TinyMce editor decided to stop working. I think it was the upgrade to the latest version of WordPress that did it but then again it could have been something else.

I still had my visual editor but when I clicked on HTML there was none. If I put a gap like this:


Test


Test


It would publish like this:

Test

Test


The WordPress forums are nearly useless on this topic. Hooray a post from three years ago!

Anyways, after messing around for three hours I found a solution.


1) Install New Plugin

2) TinyMCE Advanced

3) Activate then click on the plugin to enter settings

4) Under Advanced (down the bottom in the red box) you’ll see a checkbox “Stop removing the <p> and <br> tags when saving and show them in the HTML editor”

5) Check that box then write a test post.

6) When it works, write my name in some graffiti somewhere.


As an aside — I’d like Google to add some of the search parameter settings under the main search box. I do not need to see posts from 2007 on this particular topic …

Rap News 5: News World Order – the war on journalism (ft. Julian Assange)

Man, I love the Rap News -- and it’s made in Melbourne too!