Up for Review: “The Roads We Take”

I have met some wonderful people recently. One of those wonderful people I met online, still not a physical meeting, and that’s okay, but we’ve become fast friends because we are both writers and love to write; as well, we have something to say.

Anyway, my friend was in the midst of writing, and I believe he had a writer’s block for a short period, but lo and behold! He cranked that puppy out, and he published his book!

In the shortest amount of time I can muster, while reading about six book at once, I am going to get into this book of his, and I am going to finish it, so I can write a review on it. I’m not sure if he would like me to, but I had decided this myself; a review would, I think, help him keep going, because he is rolling out those doggies!

So please check back here very soon, for the new review of Ethan Edgewood’s book, “The Roads we Take.” I am looking forward to reading it, and I am looking forward to telling you about it. Meantime, enjoy the week, and the coming summer, and watch here for as many books as I can post for review, so you can plan your summer reading.

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Confessions of an OCD Genius

Have you ever found yourself reading three or four books at once? Well, not “at once,” exactly, but taking turns, reading some of one tonight, another tomorrow, and a little of yet another the afternoon, and yet another in the evening before bed, and…. you catch my meaning..

It sometimes concerns me that I am acutely bored easily, and I have to continue changing the venue. Then I think of some people who had the exact same problem with certain obsessions of theirs, which I believe now has a clinical name: Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Consider Picasso, or Einstein, or even Leonardo Di Caprio; think about someone like Nicola Tesla, or Edison, and there are a multitude more.

The nice thing though is that this kind of problem is equated with high intelligence, so I’m on the clear… although so is it also equated with bipolar, or mental illness in some… so… anyway…

I would like to think that I am in that “highly intelligent” category. The problem with my reading so many books at once is that it takes me longer than average to finish a book, by virtue of the fact that I only read a very small amount per week, because I am reading so many within the same period.

This can be a concern as well, due to the fact that I am terrible about deadlines. Now, what author do you think should be terrible with deadlines? Right! None! but then, I read somewhere that one of the greatest minds today never meets deadlines:

“I always deliver what I say, just maybe not in the time frame that I say it” – Elon Musk.

That’s right, folks, Elon Musk, a great mind and a brilliant entrepreneur. He does not meet deadlines…

Now, before anyone cries out that I am advocating leaving deadlines behind, and acquiring OCD, remember, these are regular quirks for specific kinds of people. Whether or not they offer a unique breath of fresh air is beside the point; the point is, it is a painful process at worst, an annoyance at best.

So when someone asks me to read their book for review, or a professor asks me to submit a paper by the end of the year, I must tell you, I am hard pressed to do so, and I am harder pressed to finish anything but in my own timeline. I was never very good at following the pied piper, you see; I’ve got my own calling of a different drummer.

Stay tuned for my multiple reviews AFTER I’ve finished all these books I’m reading presently! I guess I started this entire blurb to cover my…slowness, to finish reviewing a number of books I am supposed to review. Au revoir!

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Let me know…

The one thing that concerns me is when someone demands a speedy reply, and then you do not get a speedy response in return; after all this fuss about wanting a reply immediately, they do not respond to your reply, which is needed, for some time, or not at all.

I am embroiled in a conversation with someone who claims to have missed me after I managed to reach them after a long while, and they say: “Why didn’t you just call, or if not a call, yahoo, or hotmail me, or Skype, or Zoom, or something!”

And I say… nothing. I just managed to reach them after complete, long silence,  and they reprimand me for not reading them…is that not contacting first?

How does that make me feel? It makes me feel quite discomforted, because though they are trying to excuse the truth: that in reality, they care not whether or if they ever hear from me again, but since they did, they use social norms to address you being the culprit of the matter, lying through their teeth all the way. Or, they simply do NOT care whether or not you see them as a fool. Finally, they ARE a fool: they cannot remember you from their Auntie’s baked pumpkin bread.

How inappropriate for them.

Have you guessed yet, what I’m doing? I am attempting to speak without insults, slang, or poor English language. Yes, we can do it! Come on, folks, just try. You do not have to be rude when you address one of my postings, nor do you need to find fault with the way I present an argument, unless it is within your purpose in life to do so. Just use proper English, social etiquette, and supported argument documentation, and I will relent.

Let  me know if you know how to write. If you write how you speak, it’s okay, as long as you are clear in your communication. But if you want to present something of value to either me or the audience who may be reading this, then it should be academically presented, or at least generally accepted formal English.

Heck I can change on a dime, and be like a doodle-cherry mixed up hockenberry fool, me-self! But I choose to write my best, to respect your reading time, and hopefully I can be entertaining as well. Keep those comments coming!

Just write!2015-05-28 06.33.55

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Let me be Perfectly Clear…

I never wanted to be a computer programmer, or a computer website maker, or a computer Whizkid, or ANYTHING having to do with computers…

I just want to WRITE. I just want to share my thoughts, show my ideas, write my fiction or non-fiction, and be a friend to anyone who can  handle my particular blend of humanity.

So when it comes to computer quirks, errors, judgments, pixels, stifles, jarfulls, who knows!!! I don’t and I don’t WANT to… I need “a few good men” (or “women) who can help, and perhaps be a contributor, as well as a subscriber. I will trust you until you give me reason NOT to… So

Let us be clear: Got any complaints about the site? Fix it or shove off, but don’t remain bellyaching! Love ya!!

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The Longmire Mystery Series

Do you like mysteries? Do you like westerns? Do you like contemporary western/cultural mysteries? You will like this series then.

While these short novels are not academic by any means, and are very simple reading, they are exciting if you like the midwest landscape imagery, the theme of mystery and all its tenets, and the cultural conflicts/comradery between wyoming white folk and the Cheyenne. This is the kind of reading to enjoy after a long day’s work, after dinner, without television blaring, with a fire on, (or not) and seated in a comfy chair with a cup of coffee, some tea, or whatever you enjoy drinking before bedtime. You will enjoy these books, I know I do.

There are 10 so far, that I know of, and I am sure he’s working on more, since it has become a hit series on television; first on A&E for four seasons, then on Netflix, the company working on the next series.

The novels thread through with the same protagonist, who is a Wyoming lawman, the best friend of a Cheyenne bartender/restauranteur, and the father of a daughter attorney. He has a Phillie deputy who is female, and (as far as I’m concerned) mouthy and a bit obnoxtious, with two other deputies: (on the show the name is different): Ferguson, and “Branch” and there is plenty of mysterious murders going on in the Absaroka County, which the protagonist, Sheriff Walt Longmire, reminds the readers (and Netflix goers) is HIS county, and he aims to keep it clean.

It’s exciting to watch how author Craig Johnson has characters interact with each other; father to daughter, lawman sheriff to deputies, white man to native man as childhood best friends, and a host of characters in each book that graces the county with such different perspectives on life, death, murder, mayhem, fair play and crime.

Each book is naturally carried through with the backdrop of a particular crime (usually murder), but while it is being solved (the mysery part), the characters are lively and interactive, always showing such human and realistic sides of people we can all identify with.

The first of the series is “The Cold Dish,” take it from there, you will have a lot to enjoy, and besides, you get to watch it on television/Netflix too–what a deal!

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IBC Review Section. Vol.1, S1

How many agents does it take to screw a lightbulb?

Depends upon how far and how bright the light; the reach of the light, what little distractions that may hinder the light; the kind of bulb that can give light for how long….

Does that sound complicated? That’s because it is. There are so many articles, authors, writers, interviewers, speakers, lecturers, all of whom claim to know how to find an agent, but the truth is: if you don’t know anyone in the business, you are pretty much out of the game.

The only way you can actually make yourself be put INTOthe game is if you are a writing genius, or have such an ingenious story, or you have a lot of money with which to rub publishers’ elbows at conventions. Or, you use your money to enter every single contest, or you can make yourself known with an acute sense of marketing. Doesthis sound hard? It is.

One has to acquire an agent to acquire an agent! Sounds crazy but it is pretty much true in many cases, in order for someone to market your exceptional skills. So why am I trying to discourage you, if that is what you think. I will tell you my advice: work on your skills, until you KNOW your writing is perfect. Does that sound hard? It is! It means going over it to find story misgivings, problematic issues in the storytelling, character flaws or unrealistic behavior; spelling, punctuation, structure of sentences, and so on and so forth…

For heaven’s sake! Whoever told you writing was easy, anyway? If they told you it was easy, they were lying because they wanted you to buy their book, or have them coach you, or somehow, they wanted you to give money to them… be careful!

Hopefully, you have the benefit of some of the things I just listed above.

And with that grand opening, I want to talk about getting published. A funny happened on the way to the slush pile…

People started publishing their own books, to spare their egos the blunt tongue lashings or rejections, but they never considered maybe the publisher was right; maybe their manuscript was junky, or messy, or just not a good story. So they decided their work was so good they would just publish it themselves with their own publishing name. So how easy (or difficult) is this to carry out? Well, let’s look at this for a moment.

To start any business one has to have a plan, some cash, and an open market to sell your wares. For example, if I decided I wanted to start a widget business: “Lydia’s edgy Widgets,” I would have to create first a business plan, one that explains (on paper) how I’m going to get this widget business started, how I will make it fly, and how I will keep it in the air. …Why do I need to do this? Unless you are Jesus Christ Himself–the only perfect being ever to set foot on this earth–you and I both know we all have a tendency to procrastinate if things get a little hard to do. With a plan, we tend to read it step by step, follow step by step, and usually if we do that, we will get to the best part: the end of the plan… making and selling widgets like there’s no tomorrow.

Once I’ve got that plan down so well I am even impressed I wrote it, I take it to a friend who knows about these things, like…an intellectual property attorney.

“What!” You say, “Where the heck am I going to get money to visit one of those?” My point exactly. If you haven’t any access to one of those expensive retainers, you’d better ask people you know, like Facebook or LinkedIn fans youknow are in the biz (or close to it–no telling how honest these folks are, either). Whatever you do, don’t ask your own relatives, they always say your stuff is the greatest, because they love you and don’t want to hurt your feelings. Am I getting even close to discouraging you? Then keep reading.

So now that you’ve gotten someone to look at your plan, (with feedback, I hope), you can start making a business of your widgets either by investing in your business with your own money, to get the manufacturing going, or by obtaining funding, which means you need to market your wares. Let’s hope your wares are already up to par, (as I mentioned before) because if they are not, you will have a difficult time getting anyone to want to invest in your cute little project.

But we are talking about writing aren’t we, not widgets. Do I still have to make a plan? Of course. you ought to have a plan about how you are going to write, how MUCH you are going to write, where you will plan on submitting your work, if you are going to hit the contests head on, or pack your bags and ride the convention circuit, or both, or none, just start mailing manuscripts like crazy. You should have all of this in your plan. Add to that, how many hours it will take you to finish one book, of poetry, short stories, or whatever your genre or specialty is, and start creating your manuscript/portfolio, and you don’t stop while marketing one, you keep writing. But once again, right here, let me say–again–you had better have your wares up to par!

In fact, your writing had better be pretty perfect! I am not merely talking about your grammar and punctuation, although that is important, but your story or stories, they had better be sensible, rational, interesting, and exciting, maybe even life-changing. Have I discouraged you yet? No? Good, you must really want to write. Maybe you must really even be a writer.

So, go on then: write on, comrades!

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