Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Danke Schoen

Ordinarily, I'd be driving Uncle Billy to Manny's Deli & Liquor today, but since he and Clara have gone to Las Vegas on a week-long junket, I have some time to myself, which is good because it gives me an opportunity to thank Helen Ginger, of Straightfromhel blog fame for graciously nominating moi for a Liebster blog award. (Whew, I'm going to have to lie down for a few minutes and rest after that sentence).

Aaaannnyway, as a recipient of the Liebster Award (Liebster evidently means 'favorite' ... or something like that ... in German), I am required to name five other blogs worthy of mention, so here they are:

Straightfromhel
A Texas-sized helping of book reviews, info and interesting tidbits from the world of literature provided by the witty and charming Helen Ginger (back at 'cha, Helen).

Alex J. Cavanaugh
Join Cap'n Alex's ninja army before they take over the universe and you're left alone, drifting through the cold and empty void of space.

The Blood Red Pencil
Whether you are and established author or just tapping into your muse for the first time, these folks review all the stuff you ignored in English class ... but this time you'll enjoy it.

Indies Unlimited
A sort of 'Cheers' like environment for the indie author ... one place that won't reject you.

Valkyrie Rising
Musings from the land of my ancestors by prolific author and uber-people watcher, Prudence Macleod.

"You done, writing that post?" asked Cheryl.
"Yes, why?"
"Alma Beeler is on the phone ... she wants to talk to you."
Now what?

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Egg McOhoh ...

    Clara smiled. "Okay, let's start with the macro ... you're new book is a novel, right?"
   I swallowed the last bite of my Egg McMuffin. "Yes."
   "And it's fiction?"
   I nodded.
   "Now that we've established that, let's determine the genre ... is it a crime novel? Thriller? Mystery?"
   "This is where I get bogged down ... I'm just not sure which genre describes Headwind."
   "Well, it isn't that unique ... we just have to look for similar books. Can you think of anything?"
   "I guess it comes closest to a road-slash-buddy story ... you know, where disparate characters are thrown together on a journey."
   "Kinda like Midnight Run?"
   "Well, sort of ... I've thought of that, but there are essential differences ... besides, that's a movie, not a book."
   "Okay ... but what are the similarities?"
   I sipped my coffee and thought about it. I was about to answer when I saw Uncle Billy walking across the parking lot.
   Clara followed my gaze and saw him too. "There's your uncle ... I'm mad at him."
   "So, I heard."
   She looked at me. "What did you hear?"
   I blushed. "Nothing really ... Billy just said you were angry with him."
   "He's like a kid ... he thinks I don't know he's seeing other women."
   "Does that bother you?"
   "I don't care what he does. I just wish he be more honest about it."
   Billy came in the door and stopped cold when he spotted us. Then he slowly walked over to our table.
   "Well, if it isn't my two favorite authors," he said.
   "Hi, Uncle Billy."
   "Hello, William."
   I decided to avoid the crossfire and stood up. "We can finish this later Clara ... "
   "Don't leave on my account," said Uncle Billy.
   "I'm sure William wouldn't mind hearing 'author' talk," said Clara.
   I slipped on my coat. "No, really ... I told Cheryl I'd stop at Kroger's to pick some things for her ... thanks for your help Clara."
   "I feel like all we did was talk about my book."
   "No, no, you were a big help ... I can run with what we discussed ... thanks again." I picked up my coffee cup and walked quickly away.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Family Lies

 "Didn't you get my message?" asked Uncle Billy.
"Yes, I got it." I braced for what was coming.
"So, why didn't you call me?"
"I was in the middle of something ... and I forgot you'd called."
"What the hell was so all-fired important that you forgot I called?"
"What difference does it make ... I forgot okay?"
   "No, seriously, I'm curious."
   "I was doing research on the target audience for my books."
   Billy snorted. "Target audience? That's easy, drunks and losers."
   "Thanks, Uncle ... I appreciate the support."
   "I'm just kidding ... don't be so damn sensitive ... but I needed to talk to you."
   "Okay, you're talking to me ... "
   "Clara's giving me grief about not coming home last weekend."
   "Why would she care?"
   "You know we've been dating."
   "Yeah, so?"
   "So, I was supposed to go with her to the casino on Sunday, and she couldn't find me."
   "Where were you?"
   "You know exactly where I was ... you saw me."
   "You were with Alma Beeler."
   "Yep ... and Clara is busting my chops ... you gotta help me."
   "What do you want me to do?"
   "Just tell her I was staying at your place."
   "You want me to lie for you?"
   "As one guy to another ... you can't betray the fraternity."
   "Uncle Billy, aren't you a little old for this nonsense?"
   "If you're too old ... you're dead. Please, just help me out here."
   "I'm not lying to Clara. I won't mention that I saw you in Alma's car, but I'm not going to tell her you were staying with me. You're going to have to sort that out yourself."
   Uncle Billy was silent for few seconds. "It's a good thing your mother isn't around to hear what a traitor you are to the family."

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Jungle Fever

   "So, what are blogging about this week?" Cheryl asked.
   "I don't know, I'm still mulling over the stuff Irv Nesbaum said about finding my audience."
   "Makes sense to me."
   "Well, it does to me, too ... from a marketing standpoint ... but not so much from a creative one."
   "But as an independent author, don't you have to consider both?"
   "That's the dilemma ... yes, I do ... but I hate marketing."
   "I know you do ... believe me, I know you do ... but sometimes you just have to suck it up and do things that aren't all that pleasant."
   "You're right, of course, but ... "
   "There's always a 'but' with you."
    "But, it's a lot easier for Nesbaum to find his audience ... he writes about a specific topic ... I write stories."
   "What did Irv suggest?"
   "He said to look for other authors who write the kind of stuff I do."
   "Sounds like a good idea."
   "Maybe ... but suppose I find other authors ... what then?
   "I don't know ... maybe get in touch with them? What did Irv say?"
    "He didn't ... and I didn't think to ask at the moment."
    Cheryl patted my shoulder. "Okay, I see your point ... but you've got to start somewhere ... do a search on Amazon and see what comes up."
   I sighed audibly.
   She started to walk out, stopped and said, "Oh, by the way, Uncle Billy called your cell this morning ... I couldn't get to it fast enough to answer it ... but, it looks like he left a message. Do you want me to bring your phone downstairs?"
   I was already surfing Amazon for books with key words of action and adventure ... the return list stunned me.
   "Do you want your phone?" Cheryl repeated.
   "Oh ... yeah, sure," I mumbled.