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The law of cats and other time wasting things… 30, January 2008

Posted by babychaos in Art, careers, General Wittering, handy hints, Life and living, Play, writing.
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Mmm, red letter day today, time for our huge hairy cat, Chewbacca, to have his shots. I book him in for 10am so he can go out have a quick patrol of the parameters and then when he comes back to sit on my lap and purr from about 9 onwards I can lock the cat flap and stuff him into his box before he knows what’s hit him.

Good plan huh?


Except as usual, the wheels fall off.

He goes out at the usual time and that is when we realise that our neighbours, either side, have clubbed together to have new TV ariels fitted at the same time. Their gardens – and ours – are full of strange men, friendly but strange nonetheless. There are power tools, noises and smells which do not compute and Chewie does a bunk.


I wait until he is too late for me to make the appointment before ringing the vet to cancel. Within seconds he is at my side, chirruping merrily.


I ring the vet and explain he has just turned up. They agree I can be late.


Once in the surgery, I open the box. He is sitting with his back to me, sulking. I up end the box and without changing position he slowly slides to the bottom. Finally he is weighed, checked and (hoorah) the vet administers a worming tablet. He is now asleep, upside down, where he shouldn’t be but I will allow him to spend the morning there, to make up for the trauma!

On a completely different note, I have found an interesting website. It’s one of these write stuff and earn rewards sites.

If any of you are up on this kind of thing you’ll know what I’m about, if not it’s places like epinions, ciao or dooyoo where you write product reviews in return for points.

The points add up and if you’re lucky after about… ooooh… ten years or so? You earn enough to redeem them for a £5 Amazon voucher. However for all the sweat blood for bugger all aspect (actually you can earn a good living off them but only if you treat it like a job, submit something every day and read practically everything else which appears so people find out who you are and begin to read your stuff) they have their uses.

Many years go I went to a book signing. I told the writer, Terry Pratchett, that I wanted to write a novel but that it wasn’t going very well because what was in my head was very detailed and somehow I just couldn’t do it justice, on paper.

I asked if he could give me some advice. He said I should just write stuff. Write something every day, write letters, e-mails or write about how I can’t think of anything to write. He said that if I did that long enough, I’d learn to drop the details in, in passing, by instinct and it would all come together. He’s dead right. It hasn’t come together quite yet but it’s improved enough to prove that yes, practice helps.

Anyway, as a writer, before I started writing this blog, I used to write reviews for review sites on the grounds that for those days where I couldn’t think of anything to write, I could pick something to review from their ready made categories and earn a very small amount of money for following Terry’s advice.

I still do this when I’m short of inspiration and then I submit the results to as many article and review sites as I can. In my view, since I’ve written the stuff anyway, I may as well get as many pennies for it as I can, they all add up eventually and/or give me another link to ingratiate me with those nice people at Google.

So, recently, I’ve found this site called Quassia which does pretty much this but it also follows the trend of article sites – you publish lots of articles with links to more information on your own site and it counts as an incoming link andGoogle loves you and yada, yada, yada.

Well, because it’s new, Quassia pays you more points than many other sites. Interestingly, it’s entirely geared to website promotion so you sign up add a website you want people to visit and then go about the process of earning points. The more points you earn the more your site is promoted – a bit like paid listings on Google, only sliding scale, the more you “earn” the higher your link is placed. You can also affiliate an adsense account with your area on the site – which seemed quite a good idea to me.

So… You get credits (they call them Quasia dollars but since they’re points and are not a financial thing, I prefer to call them credits) if…

  • you tell someone else about it and they join.
  • you write an article, yourself, points vary depending on whether the work is original to you, published for the first time on Quasia or elsewhere and how well it gets rated by other users.
  • you look at new articles or “screeng intels” as they, rather pretentiously, call it, written by others and rating them on a quality level A – Outstanding, B – Good job, C – Decent enough, D – Below average, E – Awful or even F – Fail [Reject] although you can fail articles which are not in English, incomprehensible, about Quassia itself or pornographic.
  • further units if your rating is the same as the majority
  • further units if you are the first person to read and rate an article.
  • Any article you submit has to be rated by 10 other people before it goes live.

When you’re rating other people’s work, you get extra credits for being the first to read it and if your rating agrees with the majority you also get bonus credits. I’ve managed double credits for most of the articles I’ve “screened” ie read and rated.

What’s on there? So far I’ve read some interesting recipes, some pretty good SEO and web editing hints and some absolutely AWFUL lyrics and poetry! I got 100 credits for submitting a bread recipe… which was nice, especially when I guess the nearest comparable site would be, DooYoo which gives you a mere 50 points for submitting an article – 50 points which have usually expired before I have earned the minimum redeemable points allowance.
In summary, it seemed like a good place to put soundbites, like yesterday’s thing about cats and static, it seemed like a good place for me to dump writing and earn something useful – optimisation (however little of it) for my business website in the form of links – I doubt I’ll do it enough to get actual promotional value – but if, like me, you have more than one blog or website to promote, it has a handy extra of allowing you to add as many sites as you like, so long as they belong to you.

I’ve no idea if it will work but it will be another useful thing to keep me writing a times like now, when inspiration is thin on the ground and it seems I can earn about 100 credits with absolutely no hassle from rating new articles as they appear. I just stuck the site up in a background window, go there sporadically, refresh the page and then read and rate the two or three new intels which have appeared.

I’ll let you know more when I’ve managed to link it up to my adsense account – which I stupidly linked with this site before I realised adsense on WordPress is verboten.

Still, I know some of you are quite active promoting your blogs (or at least, it looks like it to me although that might just be because I’m comparing your efforts with mine and I do, frankly, bugger all to promote this blog) so I thought the odd one of my readers might be interested. If you are and you want to join then if you go in via my page here I get some credits which would be very nice.

Oh yeh and a word of warning… they don’t respond to my kind of humour very well!  I don’t think I’ll be earning huge amounts of points for any of my material.  After explaining that kneading bread with nail varnish or false nails was a no-no I got, and I quote “Very interesting but lost my attention with the false nails part…yuck!



1. Franklin - 4, February 2008

Very interesting blog! I can sympathise with the cat story. Darn cats LOL When it was time to get mine fixed, she ran away and didn’t come back for weeks.
I use adsense on my blog, which is a wordpress and have had no probles, so I don’t know why you say it is verboten.
I went and looked at the other site, and will go back and have another look. The quote you posted was written by someone with no sense of humor LOL

2. babychaos - 5, February 2008

Hi Franklin, thanks for dropping by, I think it’s because WordPress, themselves, host my blog… so they don’t allow me to use adsense on their pages or at least they didn’t last time I looked – which was about 3 months ago! I’ll have to go double check now!



3. Brian - 6, February 2008

Chewbacca is an awesome name for a cat!

If I weren’t allergic to the little arrogant balls of purr and fur, I’d probably have one too. I would have named the little condescending twerp “Fuzzball” just so I could say “Laugh it up, Fuzzball” when it gave me that “Yeah, I just scratched through the leg of your chair, what are you gonna do about it” looks. But “Chewbacca” is even better!

4. babychaos - 9, February 2008

Glad you like it, he was pretty type cast when we got him, less so now but still violent, the kind of cat to accuse other cats of spilling his pint so he can have a good old pagga, fearing and avoiding guests and yet loving and soppy beyond belief to Mr BC and myself.

I like the idea of shouting “FUZZBALL! NO!” When it’s misbehaving, too!



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