Friday, March 28, 2014

Welcome to Stumblers Anonymous

Hey all,

I hope you're enjoying the last bit of winter. Or is it the last bit?  I guess it depends where you live.  I've been told some of you are seeing signs of spring, while others are still trapped in the grip of winter.  

I guess winter can be a time of learning and research.  It was when I was living in the US, there in northern Idaho.  The winters in the panhandle can be long, hard and snowy, so diving into my writing was easy to do.

And research.  One of my favorite things to do.  In fact, a lot of my stories came from ideas gleaned during research instead of the other way around.  I'd head online to find out an answer to a research question and find myself distracted about something else entirely.  Those damn links.  *sigh*  I'd see one, click on it and I'd go into an idea I'd never thought of before.

So much fun.

One of my favorite places to get ideas is a link my daughter turned me on to.  She sent me the information several years ago and I loved it.  When I have time to "waste", that's where I go.  I can look at beautiful photographs, get new recipes, learn how to make a chandelier out of an old map or learn a new yoga pose for my health.  And where can I do all this in one place?

Have you ever Stumbled?

I swear, this place is totally addicting.  Once I start, I can't stop.  If you've never been on Stumble Upon, you're really missing a treat.  You can find EVERYTHING, there.  And I mean EVERYTHING.  What is it?  Well, Wikipedia describe it thusly...

StumbleUpon is a discovery engine (a form of web search engine) that finds and recommends web content to its users. Its features allow users to discover and rate Web pages, photos, and videos that are personalized to their tastes and interests using peer-sourcing and social-networking principles.

 Sometimes I wonder about how they decide what I like.  The way it works is this...  You press the "stumble" button and it takes you randomly to a website.  If it's one that you really like, you press the thumbs up icon...if you're not so impressed, the thumbs down.  And the site records your likes and dislikes and chooses websites it thinks you'll enjoy.

Most of the time it works, other times I just scratch my head and think, hmmm...

For example, I'm an author, so I often get pages on that topic.  I also love crafting, nature, travel and critters, so I get those.  But every once in a while I get page after page of really odd links.  Stuff I'd never go to on my own.

Most of those I just Stumble though--ignore and go to the next one--but every once in a while a new topic will jump out at me and boom, just like that I've got a new interest.   And quite often a very cool new idea for a book.

Just the other day I found a great site by stumbling.  Since some of my new work is more suspense oriented, this site--as gruesome as it is--gave me some great ideas on how to murder someone!  LOL  Interested?  Go check it out HERE.

I've found some awesome ideas on how to decorate my home on this search engine.  I swear I think we need to buy three houses to use them all.  This one is one of my favorites.  Take a look HERE.

Or, another fun site I would have never looked up on my own is a hoot.  Jonathon and I adore the ride Splash Mountain at Disneyworld.  But we would have never thought about doing something like THIS.

And finally, there are those amusing sites that are nothing but a hilarious waste of time.  And we all need something like that every once in a while.  Can you say, MEEYOW?  (Don't forget to hit the rain button!)

Anyway, once you check the site out, you'll see why it's so addicting.  There is something for everyone.  Want a recipe for the best brownies on the planet?  You'll find it stumbling.  Want to know which Greek god used a lightning bolt?  Stumble can be the answer.  And if you just need a cute animal fix, you can definitely find in on Stumble Upon.

So what are you waiting for?  Stumble on over and see what you can find.  Trust me, once you do you'll be joining me at Stumblers Anonymous!!!!

Have a great week!!!

CJ England

Follow Your Dreams


Phylis said...

Will have to do that some day. It seems sometimes as if time just keeps flying away from me! Thanks for sharing it CJ!

Ray said...

That is addicting. I spent about fifteen minutes before remembering I was reading your blog.