Derry, Northern Ireland

Derry, Northern Ireland
A book I'm working on is set in this town.

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Buh-bye, 2013...

For all my whining about getting nowhere, looking back I realized I've been focused on the negative, too much.

I wrote a new screenplay about something I'd been thinking about for years. The Alice '65 is a serious accomplishment, so far as I'm concerned, because it aimed at becoming something I don't think I can write -- a comedy. Whether or not I succeeded is immaterial -- I jumped in and tried it, at least...and I did get a couple of awards out of it. Now I just need to make some changes I've come up with and start shipping that puppy out.

I finally published David Martin as an honest-to-god book, and I think it looks as professional as if done by a major publisher. Serious artwork in it by an excellent illustrator, and I'm doing everything I can to get it noticed. For once, I put my money where my mouth was.

I took back control of several of my books, cut direct ties with companies I didn't trust, and just republished Bobby Carapisi, The Complete Story. I don't know if this will make any difference in sales, but now it will be on me to do what I can to make it succeed...something I've already begun.

I'm deeper in debt by $2000 over what I was, last year, but for once it wasn't wasted on crap. I can't say I'm looking forward to 2014 because I know I'll get cut down, again. But even though I was, this year, I still got back up and kept staggering forward. I guess that's something to be proud of.

Goals for this year? Just keep on gettin' up and movin' forward. All else is gravy.

BC is on its way...

Okay...Bobby Carapisi's reboot is officially out of the gate. It will be available in paperback and e-book within the next few days. All is settled...and wouldn't you know it -- I found two typos as I was glancing it over. These were in the original books, and for all the times I've gone through the story, I never saw them until now. Both were an extra word that made no sense, where I'd changed the form of the sentence but neglected to erase all of the part I'd reworked.

I corrected it in the manuscript, so if I do ever offer another version, at least that will be correct. But it makes my head hurt...not to mention my eyes.

This evening was spent working on a query letter. After a couple dozen rewrites, I've taken it as far as I can, tonight. I'm letting it sit till the 1st, to give me some space from it. Then I'll dig in, again, and keep honing. And checking for typos.

I'm also reading Flashman and the Mountain of Light during my interludes on the throne...and it is funny. I've had four good laughs and I'm just up to page 49. Flashman is, basically, the history of the British Empire as related by a cowardly scoundrel who still, somehow, keeps winding up a hero. I read the first one, years go, and it was wild, but I haven't read the rest. I think I will; it's fun seeing how George MacDonald Fraser sets up a comedic line with semi-seriousness.

My favorite, so far, is Flashman talking to Queen Victoria in advance of her Golden Jubilee (and after a performance of Wild Bill Hickcock's Wild West Show that had so much smoke from guns firing, you couldn't see anything). He and his wife are having tea with her majesty while he's silently ruminating on how some women's bustles were being fitted with music boxes that would play "God Save the Queen" when the ladies sat down.

I nearly died...

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Day of contemplation, or not...

I did a refresh of 5 Dates and it's good. Damn good. It all falls into place just right, even according to the rules of Syd Field and his ilk. So I will begin sending it out to competitions and offering it as a sample of my work when I go hunting for an agent. I have the WGA's list, and I'm going through the whole damn thing, if I have to, to get myself repped. I made it through about 25% the last time I tried this; not gonna stop, this time.

I'm going to re-up for InkTip, too, and post some scripts on there. Hitting MovieBytes, too. I'm working up a schedule to make myself pay attention to the 5369 different services offering to help you make your script better and get it noticed or sold, all for $50 a shot. (A touch of exaggeration, but not by much.)

I've come to the understanding that I will never win the lottery, nor will my books make me independently wealthy...or even get me to the point where I'll be able to live on my writing income. I'm too niche-oriented. I don't like writing articles for magazines and am no damn good at copy. Writing for TV is a different mindset for me, unless we're talking MOWs or something 8 eps long for HBO. I could do Place of Safety in that format, 3 series of 6-8 eps each. Brendan's not crazy about the idea, but...

I have to do something different. Something proactive. NOW. I know how to write movies and books, and they are what matter to me. So...stick with what you love. Which, for me, is telling stories of people, not characters.

And I love doing that most through movies.


Saturday, December 28, 2013

Got my post cards

I worked up a post card to send out for David Martin and got 100 of them, today. They turned out nice enough...but I feel something is missing. That's why I only ordered 100. Then I went on IndieBound.com and found hundreds of book stores I could send them to, including a couple dozen local ones...and realized I needed better contact information on the cards. Right now, all I have is the website on the back. I can work it okay with these, but the next batch will have that info on the front and back of them.

Guess I better get my Forever postcard stamps, if the PO offers them. Postage is going up, soon. Of course, this all puts me deeper into debt, but I'm hoping all these expenses will cut my tax burden down for 2013...and eventually I'll make more than just a little money off them. Hope springs eternal.

I'm also pushing The Lyons' Den, again. I have a Tumbler thread I posted it on, as well as an art site I go to, and may do up a postcard for that, too. The DM cards weren't expensive, since I did the artwork...well, used Ken's cover art and added some verbiage on the address side. I could do something eye-catching for LD.

I got the proof of BC from Lightning Source and the top margin was off on all the pages. I finally realized I'd forgotten to make sure it was specified that when it was saved from Word to a PDF, it had to be in 6x9 format. So that took some time to correct...and wound up adding 15 pages so the cover had to be adjusted and resubmitted, too. Now I'm waiting to hear back on this submission.

God, one of these years maybe I'll do it all right on the first go.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Too cool update of Rembrandt's "The Night Watch"

Beautiful.


I saw the original painting at the van Rijks years ago. It's magnificent.

Updating the updated cover...


I jumped the gun and submitted a cover without the bar code. I guess I should have waited till I was fresh in the AM and not given Lightning Source an excuse to snark at me. Positive thing is, it gave me the chance to fine tune the back cover and add information that I really should have put on DM. Now it looks right, and for once, Lightning Source accepted it without any problems. I hope. You never know till they actually say everything's okay.

I'm still achey around my former tooth and fighting back what feels like a sinus problem. A small part of the tooth's root was pushing into the sinus cavity, according to my x-ray, so that needs careful watching. Jesus, what a chore this is. I'm still eating soft foods -- I indulged on French Toast for lunch with mint tea -- but DAMMIT, I want a cheeseburger!

I'm going out for a walk. I need milk and a couple things, so even though it's snowed, again, I'm doing the mile trek to a supermarket and bringing home some vittles. I don't want to drive for that short a distance...but if I did drive, I could go to Wegmans' and get one of their tubs of homemade soup...

No, I'm sick of soup.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Updated cover for BC


I spent much of today making this cover look as professional as I could while listening to WFUV play a lot of alt-rock (only bits of it Christmas-y). I've asked Bowker to issue me a barcode for it, which should be okayed, tomorrow...then it will be ready to start printing via Lightning Source. This is step 2 of reclaiming my work.

It's funny -- Amazon has the previous edition of this book listed as Out of Print with limited availability.  Limited is right; I sold 1 copy of the paperback. That's as limited as you can get. At least this one will be better priced -- $15.95 instead of $23.50, and in a 6x9 form instead of 5x8; doing it that way was a mistake on my part.

I think I'll work on Porno Manifesto, next. I never liked that cover; too garish and wrong. But I also want to re-issue HTRASG...it's just that I'm still not sure how to do it. This book's gotten me into some fun trouble, and much as I'd enjoy maintaining the irritation quotient, considering the subject matter, I need a new cover workup and some way of publishing it without being told, "No way in hell."

I've stayed in since I had that dental work, focused on keeping my mouth clean and not getting any infection where my tooth once was. I'm prone to that, if I'm not careful...and while my jaw still aches, so far nothing too bad's happened.

Man...I'm racking up some deduction on the taxes for 2013...

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Started reboot of BC

I sent in the e-book form for Bobby Carapisi, after reworking the description a dozen times. I don't have to upload that till Vook gets back to me, so I can go over it a bit more. Not ready to share, yet.

I also did some sketching, just to get this need for something nice out of the way. Not ready to share that, either...it's not looking anywhere near what I wanted, yet.

I took this photo of the Empire State Building from the rooftop bar of the hotel I was staying in, last week. I'd stayed there, before, about a year ago...so I think I've done this before. But the cold night air and the glow of the lights shooting into the sky made me want to do it all over, again.

I set my camera on a table and held it still, and it took a one-second image. I can't believe it came out this steady. It's not perfect, but I'm happy with it.

One of the rare occasions I am...

Monday, December 23, 2013

Working on BC

Got Bobby Carapisi, The Complete Novel all set to republish in both e-book and paperback, so will put it up on the 26th. No writing done because I had a tooth pulled, this morning and I'm focused on that. Aches but that's all, so far. So I slept a lot and toodled down to the store for extra Tylenol and am having too damn much soup and am almost ready for bed, again. So instead of me whining or discussing my non-stop hard work on my chosen craft...here's something fun, for a change.

This is actually from a video asking everyone to sign up for the ACA...but it's so right...and cute...
Have a Holly-jolly Christmas,
And a wonderful New Year!
Happy Holidays to one and all,
And I love Rudolph's...gear.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Am I the weak parts of Jake?

Jake Blaine is the lead in The Vanishing of Owen Taylor. He was backup to Antony St. Lazarre in both ...Holding Cell 6 volumes, and was the one decent, trustworthy guy in the whole story. Now that I've been exploring his history in OT and finding it links too strongly to what's happening in the book, I'm finding aspects of his life closely mirror mine, lately...and that's not necessarily a good thing.

He's cut himself off from members of his family who hurt him or condemn him. Like I've done. But he's strong enough to face them and forgive them and help them if they need it. And still keep his self-respect. Me...I just can't. I don't think people change...or really mean it when they say they're sorry, because I can hear the qualifying words they use to mitigate their apology.

That happens between Jake and his mother, whom I've never given a name to in the new book. She's making contact with him, again, because she's broke and in desperate need of help; it's obvious from the way the chapter is structured...and I think Jake realizes she's not really sorry but just in need, still, he's big enough to put that aside and help her. With conditions, but he does what he can.

I also have a hint of that near the end of ...Straight Guy. Curt was kicked out and had been on his own since he was seventeen and, once he's realized just how deeply he's dug the hole he's in, he wants to make sure his younger brother will be okay...and breaks down in tears when he realizes the kid grew up so much stronger than him, he can ignore the hate sent his way. Which neither Curt nor I can do.

In BC, Eric has no reason not to trust his family will back him up, so I don't understand why he doesn't. And going over the book, again, I realize it's never explained. Whereas, Bobby's big loving family turns their backs on him...and he doesn't even think to ask them for help because he knows it won't be forthcoming. I've got one entire section of the family I feel that way about. I'm still confused about that dichotomy.

Hmph...I beginning to think Jake is the most powerful character I've ever joined up with...and I have to wonder where the hell he came from.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Final scene from Some Like It Hot

Just for the halibut...and to show off Wilder's anarchic sense of humor --

GoDaddy is anything but go or my daddy...

Man...I just spent 5 hours updating my web page to reflect David Martin's availability...and I keep getting reminded by GoDaddy that I have no idea how to properly use their design assistant. As soon as I'd get one aspect of the upload set like I wanted it, something else would vanish or adjust itself or lose what I'd done to it. There was one line that refused...and I mean flat out refused to change the font color, no matter what I did. It wanted to stay white, so it stayed white. End of story.

But...I did finally get the damn thing to at least be livable. A bit on the bland side, but something I can direct people to. Of course, during all of this, I found a mistake on the postcards I'm getting made. Dammit. That was another chore, because I did everything exactly like they said and when I uploaded it, everything was right where it needed to be and they were happy and all I had to do was okay the proof...except the color of the synopsis was a soft gray instead of black. I couldn't get it to change so had to call VistaPrint's help line...and they had to go in to remove the color coding themselves. This one was not my fault; it was a glitch in their system.

So that's been my day -- getting postcards set up (I'm supposed to have them by Friday...but I doubt I'll get them till Monday or Tuesday, the last two days of the year), and updating my webpage. I now have a nice little backache, my eyes are crossed, and I hate GoDaddy.

I'm leaning towards doing a complete restructuring of NYPDB, since the stuff I worked so hard on was taken out. That would mean stripping it down to just the story about the disappearing drugs, and using only snippets of the guy's history as filler or where explanation is needed.

I read a great interview with Billy Wilder, who wrote and directed movies like Double Indemnity, Sunset Boulevard, The Apartment, and Some Like It Hot, and his work process makes a lot of sense -- focus on giving your lead a clean, clear line of action. I do tend to meander, but it would work perfectly for NYPDB...which really needs a new title. The Good Guy?

On a side note: one of my brothers is born again, and has decided that I am going to hell by own choice. Found this out in a short Facebook exchange. I unfriended him. I'm too old to put up with that shit.

But it does seem to be spreading...

2013 and those who are now gone...

TCM Remembers what we've lost this year, in Film, TV and Theater...

http://www.tcm.com/mediaroom/video/935327/TCM-Remembers-2013-TCM-Original-.html

It's not YouTube and I can't get it to embed, but if you click on the link, it takes you straight to the video's page...

Friday, December 20, 2013

Why a third volume to "Bobby Carapisi"?

I had somebody ask me that, They felt the book was complete at the end of volume 2. Everything else from that point onward was obvious. They allowed that some of what Allen did wasn't expected, but they questioned my attempt to do an add-on to humanize him. All I could say was, it made the story complete, to me.

Someone else once told me, when we were joking about serial killers, that I could never be one; I had too much empathy with people. My response was something along the lines of, "You never know what people can do until they do it." But she didn't accept that, not for everyone.

Both of these incidents happened some time ago, but I've been thinking a lot about them, lately. Not sure why. I've been over this terrain so many times -- all the characters in my head and writing a couple of leads in my books who are anything but nice and making them as believable as I could -- but I feel like I'm missing some key element to help me really grasp what this means for me. And for my writing.

I think it was jolted back to front and center with me because of that 16 year-old kid who drove drunk and killed 4 people while maiming 2 others, for life. Thanks to his lawyer and a psychologist claiming "affluenza" -- an illness that stems from having too much money and parents who don't teach you anything about accountability -- he got probation...so long as he went to a facility to teach him...something or other; I'm not clear exactly what that would accomplish, but a big deal was made about it costing $450K a year.

The situation reminded me of "The Great Gatsby" by F. Scott Fitzgerald. Daisy Buchanan kills a man's wife during a hit-and-run while driving Jay Gatsby's car, then lets Gatsby be blamed for it and holds no sense of guilt when he is destroyed by her lie. And that book was written 90 years ago. It seems the rich have always been not only different but a bit sociopathic.

The reason I comment on this is, as upsetting and horrible as his actions were, I pity the kid. He destroyed several people's, several families' lives through his stupidity and selfishness. His own life is ruined and he can't see it. His parents won't be around forever to protect him, and eventually he will crash and burn...and may take more people with him. All because he was raised by two uncaring fools who had more money than humanity and instilled in him the same sense of entitlement that Daisy Buchanan had.

And that's how I felt about Allen and his actions. Jean Renoir once said, "Everybody has his good reasons," and I wanted to give Allen the chance to explain his. Which he did, albeit without intending to. He thought he'd just write some porn stories to mess with Eric's mind, but instead he revealed why he became what he became...and Eric winds up pitying the man who hurt so many people.

I think that's the element I'm trying to get to...to understand. How can one be angry at someone's vile actions and yet feel sorrow for them when they're held accountable? Is it just how you're was raised? Is it part of your DNA? Is it because of events you had to live through? Is it mere psychosis? I don't know. Maybe I shouldn't know. Maybe that would end the magic link to my characters, within me.

But I'm still asking the question...

Thursday, December 19, 2013

I got DM in paperback

It looks good, too. I think I should have made it a bit smaller, but it's an easy read. In reality, it's 95 pages, not 98, but there are some blanks in there, by design. If I do a hardcover, I think I'll aim to make it closer to 5.5x8.5"...but that won't be for a while.

I'm still dealing with the idea I have to do a page-one rewrite of NYPDB, so haven't had much to say about anything. It's going to be a major project to get it into shape, and going through it is a brutally depressing experience. All the work I did...I got 66 pages in before I had to set it aside. I was nowhere near in the right place for it.

Instead, I reformatted BC-Complete into 6x9" format. I reread some of it...and I'm still proud of it. I can't imagine putting out a book that I'm not happy with...and reminding myself of how I was able to pull off three completely different POVs in the book, with completely different writing styles and attitudes...it makes me feel better about thinking I know what I'm doing. I may not be perfect at it -- I should have had more humor in the story -- but I've got nothing to be embarrassed about. And I'll be damned if I let that twerp redo any part of NYPDB, again, once I get it set.

This trip to NYC was hard on me, for some reason. Maybe it's because I'm on antibiotics for this infected tooth and they're messing with my body chemistry. Maybe it's the weather. Maybe it's just my reaction to my work being trashed. Hell, I don't know. Maybe I'm just getting old. I just know I was exhausted at the end of each day, and when I finally got off the train at 2:30 in Buffalo, this morning...and had to dig my car out from the snow...it was hard. I didn't get to bed till after 4am and woke at 10:30, achy and brain dead. They offered me the day off and I took it.

I'm getting my bad tooth pulled, on Monday. It's still bothering me and that's the only slot they had available until the 3rd of January...which would not work, since I want to be in decent shape when I head to London and Dublin. And then I'll have two weeks on the road and god knows what else going on. Hopefully, I'll be healed by the UK trip...at least well enough.

I can't complain much. My little brother had to have all of his pulled and now has dentures. And my grandmother had to do the same thing when she was in her 30s. But I actually dread it.

I am getting old.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Joan Fontaine 1917-2013...dammit...


But then, again, maybe not. She was 96, and that's a good long life. And she left behind so many wonderful moments in movies -- clueless Peggy revealing she's pregnant in The Women; The unnamed Mrs. DeWinter descending the staircase in Rebecca, then confronting Mrs. Danvers; Lina growing to believe her husband is a killer during a game of Scrabble in Suspicion. She leavened her intelligence, beauty and grace with a hint of a smirk. That's why I used her as the image of Gretta in my book, The Lyons' Den. I always felt she'd be killer as a femme fatale. Her sister, Olivia, may have had more talent or luck with better parts, but Joan Fontaine got her Oscar first...and deserved it.

I have nothing else to say...

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Ah, New York...and the end of an era...


The train trip was long and slow. We got in an hour late. I worked on NYPDB as much as I could as we crept along, but got so frustrated I had to stop, at times, and walk away. I thought I did a good job with the first edition, but apparently the guy I was writing this for doesn't agree. I'm only on page 67 of the rewrite (out of 349 pages), and so much has been changed, I now have to check it line-by-line. When he adds in stuff, he doesn't put in commas or periods and starts paragraphs in the middle of sentences. Other parts are left untouched except for an occasional extra phrase that doesn't make sense. He even took out sections I'd worked in to help prep the reader for the lead's hallucinations. Ugh.

Suddenly I'm wondering if I should actually read the first edition. This is pretty bad, and if it was published anything like this, small wonder it got negative feedback. Of course, it's my own damn fault for agreeing to do it. I didn't want to, from the start, but because I let myself get talked into it, I'm now caught in my own sense of obligation.

And pride. I don't want people to think my work is that messy or amateurish. I can get reactions like that quite enough with my own unvarnished writing, thank you very much. And have. Granted, my grammar's not perfect, but Jesus Christ, at least I know the difference between their, there, and they're. And I put in periods at the end of sentences. Or exclamation points (which I used to use way too many of ). But oh...this is gonna break my back.

So much for cutting back on whining.

I just learned Peter O'Toole and Tom Laughlin died. O'Toole was a national treasure as an actor. I think my favorite role of his was as Eli Cross in The Stunt Man. You never knew if he was crazy or just crazy like a fox in that, and it helped make you fear for the stuntman's life, though his turn in My Favorite Year was breathtakingly funny. "I'm not an actor! I'm a MOVIE star!" He was who he was, and that's all who he was. Take it or leave it.

Tom Laughlin was a maverick who gambled his own money in making Billy Jack, and it was huge. I saw it when it first came out and loved every second. Now I look back and think it's too black and white in its attitude and actions, but back then it seemed the only way to get anything done in the way of justice was to rip things apart, and he tapped into that, very neatly. He was who he was, as well.

That's three dead in Hollywood, including Paul Walker. Makes you wonder if the superstition is right.

Everything comes in threes.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

It's official...


David Martin is available in paperback and e-book on Barnes & Noble, in paperback on Amazon, in e-book on Kobo, and via a number of distributors. I am now completely published. Next comes finding some way to get people to notice it.

I've downloaded a couple of PDFs discussing ways to advertise your self-published book. We'll see if they have anything to add to what I've already done.

Now I'm beat and have a 9 hour train trip, tomorrow...so I'm wimping out.

Friday, December 13, 2013

All done for Christmas

Cards are off. Late, but on their way. I'm not doing presents; I've got too many bills to pay as it is, and I'm still waiting to get paid for a storyboarding job I did 6 weeks ago. I've got 3 registered letters for Amazon demanding they stop offering 3 of my books as new titles. It seems my gut is beginning to calm down from the Amoxicillin. I've got all day tomorrow to get myself ready for NYC.

I'll be doing a lot. The main packing job. Looking at another possible job up in Harlem. Getting GBP and Euros for the trip, next month; there's an American Express office in Macy's and I'm staying 2 blocks from there. Dropping off a container that once held 2 small globes from the 17th Century. And coming home Wednesday.

On the train, I'll work on NYPDB. I guess I need to finish that so I can get it out of the way. It's not so bad working on it; it's just no matter what I do it keeps getting fucked up because the guy who I'm writing it for keeps reworking stuff and his grammar and spelling are truly sad. And I can't let it be published looking like that.
Enough whining. Jeez...I'm becoming a master at it. I may take my DVD of Firefly with me to watch, too. I haven't seen any of it, and I like Joss Whedon's work. Somehow he's able to combine humor and horror in ways that diminish neither. I wrote him and asked if I could buy him lunch when I was in LA, the next time. No response. not that I blame him. He's probably got a zillion things going on, and some twit from Buffalo wants to have a chat out of nowhere? But I'd love to be able to give his touch to Carli's KILLS.

I could just watch all of Buffy, again, and see if I can catch the idea, by osmosis...

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Need ideas for promotion

Okay, I need some ideas on how to promote David Martin. I did an ad on Facebook that got its page a number of "likes" but hasn't done anything in the way of sales. The same thing happened with The Lyons' Den and Bobby Carapisi -- lots of looking, no buying -- so I've learned my lesson; that's not the way to go. Especially since Facebook charges like crazy for it. I'm open to any ideas anyone might come up with that don't cost a hundred bucks a pop. I'm still a poor, struggling writer.

I'm doing a bunch of jumping around January and early February. There's the trip to London and Dublin the first full week. Then I'm going to Santa Fe to oversee a shipment of archives. Then I'm hopping up to San Francisco to load in and load out a book fair at Fort Mason, then down to Los Angeles to work the California Book Fair in Pasadena, then home. There's a possibility of another stop in Santa Cruz, but that one's looking iffy. It's packing 1800 books for England, and the guy buying them hasn't decided if he wants them shipped by air or by sea. It won't be cheap, either way, but it cuts the cost if I'm already on the west coast to do the packing.

It's snowing good and hard, right now, and is around 18 degrees. Took me an hour to drive 4 miles. Still, it looks so lovely coming down. I'd feel differently if I had to walk in it or work out in it, I'm sure, but my car's good and warms up nicely. It'll be interesting to see how the countryside looks from the train, on Sunday.

Apparently, I'm going to have to sue Amazon to get them to stop selling new copies of some of my books. I've contacted them several times and they're still shrugging me off, so I worked up a final letter and will send it to the 3 head guys, there, giving them one last chance. If that doesn't work, I guess I have to see a lawyer, because this is now copyright infringement and theft, so far as I'm concerned. I think I'll sure for a million and offer to settle for a hundred-thousand.

Yeah, right, that'll work...in my dreams.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

In avoidance of things unwanted...


I am ElectroLion hear me bit-roar. Especially at that which I do not wish to do. But instead of deflecting to wasted time -- i.e. surfing the web and fiddling with Facebook -- I started prepping BC to republish. Paperback first then e-book. I don't know exactly when I'll do it, but it doesn't hurt to get it ready. And publishing it in a 6x9 size makes it a lot slimmer of a paperback.

I'll still work on NYPDB because I feel the obligation too strongly not to, but I'm not going to break myself up over for it. I want my brain to be open, right now, since Brendan's begun making noises and notes are coming forth. I don't know if I'll shift my focus to P/S or stick with OT till it's done, since I'm so close to finishing it, but whatever happens is what happens. It doesn't help me creatively to get caught up in confusion, no matter how well it seemed to work for Daniel in LD.

Looks like DM is going to be a minimal seller. Haven't sold a single copy of the e-book, yet, and I still can't figure out if it's available for sale as a paperback, yet. The e-book showed up on B&N, but you have to find it under my name; if you input the book's name, it doesn't show. That's in Nook. I may see what happens when I check it out on Lightning Source at work, on the PC. On my computers, all I get is the set-up page.

I'm going to bed early, tonight. I'm on Amoxicillin for my tooth and it is not being nice to my body. I'm wiped. Maybe that's why I'm taking such a casual attitude to everything. Or maybe I'm finally at the point where I don't give a fuck, anymore; I'm just gonna do what I do.

Dunno which is better, but...rrrrrroooooooaaaaaaarrrrr-beep-rrrrrrrr.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Here we go with DM

David Martin has been accepted for publication by Lightning Source. I have no idea how long it will take to make its way into book stores or online for purchasing; the e-book may be the only version available for a while. But it's out there, now, and I feel a lot better...satisfied, almost. Once I see a copy, I'll decide how to proceed with a hardcover version.

The last time I felt this sense of satisfaction was when I got the first two sections of Bobby Carapisi published. That one was a struggle to write, and completing it...this was before I'd decided to let Allen tell his story...it was like I'd fulfilled a promise. To my characters. The books didn't sell very well, but they have been read. Eric's and Bobby's stories have been told in other people's minds, and that's what counted.

With DM, it's a more general promise fulfilled. I made a first step when I posted it on this blog, a while back, but the story wanted to be something people could hold and feel and share, not just read. So there it is...and I feel good.

Something else I feel is weary. I don't want to wade through IF/NYPDB again. I took that on as a favor, just to rewrite a script so many years ago...but the story wrapped itself around me and I now feel an obligation to see that it's told in the best way I can. So I can't just dump it. But having to go through it, line by line because I don't know what the other guy did and didn't do in his third grade grammar...it's daunting. I just want to get it done, but I can't push through. When I do that, I make massive mistakes in spelling and grammar, myself.

What a way to write. I can't do a decent job on a piece unless I'm invested in it, so I guess I'll never be a good gun for hire in the script doctoring realm. Hell, I'm still attached to Straight On Till Morning, an adaptation I did of Beryl Markham's life story, and I'll never be able to do anything with that. No one will tell me who owns the film rights, now.

Yeah, yeah, I got nothing else to do but chase after a movie biography about a woman next to no one's heard about that'd cost a hundred million to make -- real good use of time.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Is there really a choice?

I've been having trouble with a tooth so got the dentist to fit me in, today. I was hoping it's just be an impacted gum or abscess or something easy to treat. And while I do have an infection, it's around a tooth that will need to either be pulled or get a root canal. Pulling the tooth is 10% of what it costs to get a root canal, and I don't have dental insurance. And considering how much I've screwed up my finances (a large part by trying to get my writing to be noticed), my choice is simple. Pull it. I don't have nearly $2000 to handle the other way...and that's with a discount.

The only teeth I ever had pulled were my wisdom teeth. Maybe I should've kept them in; they might have helped me see my way clearer when it comes to things like money and career.

Then I got a note from Lightning Source that part of the cover for DM was outside the image boundary for the cover. Which I didn't get, because I used guidelines to make sure I was within the space allotted for everything. But they insisted I lower the title of the spine by 1/16" and resubmit it. The only positive aspect of that is, I discovered I wrote Ken Min's name wrong, in his acknowledgement. He's the illustrator, and I left out his middle initial, so had to redo both the text and the cover, anyway.

Currently, I feel like such a complete fuck-up. Getting everything right, again, took most of the evening, and I'm still fighting with Amazon over them selling new copies of my books even though they aren't supposed to, so no real writing done. So I'm in a blue mood and on antibiotics, which always bring me lower.

"Blue mood, you left me standing alone, without a song in my heart, without someone of my own" -- or something like that.

Wah-wah-wah.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

DARIAN'S POINT

I just found this photo of Aiden Turner, and he is the perfect image for Patrick Thomas O'Brien in my gothic-horror story, Darian's Point.

It's set in Ireland in 1910 and deals with a legend about harpies that live in the Cliffs of Moher. He's returned from America, where he's a successful architect, with his wife, Marion. She's a Boston Brahmin and her family thinks she married beneath her. There's death, destruction, human sacrifice, all the glorious stuff.

It's currently an award-winning screenplay, but it may be better to rework it as a novel. I have the followup, set 100 years later, already written as a script (Return to Darian's Point, also an award-winner) and I know what I want to do with the first section, setting up the whole situation.

Aiden's around 30, now. Thomas is 35. If I work it right, by the time he's that age, I'll have someone interested in making the movie.

Better get a move on.

Better opening for IF/NYPDB

I'm thinking of calling Inherent Flaws/NYPD Blood by a new title -- Betrayed. Does that work? It fits the whole idea of the book -- betrayal...by the cops, by the lead character, but society, by criminals...

Here's the new opening chapter.
-------------------
In 1962, New York City Detectives assigned to The Special Investigations Unit of the NYPD Narcotics Bureau (SIU), arrested a French Television personality. His car had been shipped to New York from Marseilles, and hidden in secret compartments was 50 kilos (110 pounds) of pure heroin. With an estimated street value of 50 million dollars, The French Connection, as it was referred to, would be the largest single seizure of illicit drugs for years to come. It wound up becoming a book, and then became an Oscar-winning movie that glorifyied the police work. But that was really just the beginning of the story; what happened afterward has been a dark secret of the New York City Police Department.

As with all evidence, the seized drugs were taken to the NYC Police Department’s Property Clerk Office was located. The following year, it was transported to a Federal Laboratory in order to determine its origin. From there, Federal Marshals escorted all 50 kilos to Washington DC for a senate hearing on heroin trafficking. In 1964, it was returned to the NYPD and locked away under the protective gaze of the Property Clerk’s Office.

And quietly vanished.

Now at the time, the Property Clerk's Office was located at 400 Broome Street, within sight of 240 Center Street -- Police Headquarters, at the time, both of them old, cranky buildings that had been put up before God had teeth. There was already talk about moving everything to a new highrise close to Court Square, so maybe it would have been discovered that the drugs were gone, then. But that didn't happen in time for me.

The fact is, my part of this story ended nine years later. Inside Police headquarters. Just past midnight. My life going to hell, just like this city was going. Under siege by crime. Streets empty, silent and dark. Cold. Alone. The few people out always watching back over their shoulder. Yeah, the perfect version of hell.

I don't remember a lot about that night, but images still jump up in front of me. A line of cars parked across from HQ, under this row of ugly brick buildings going two, three, five, seven stories up. Rickety fire escapes dripping down the front of the tallest one, like a cancer, its arched windows looking like they wanted to hide from it. Stores on the ground floor all secured behind rolling metal panels. It's crazy to know that even here, the city’s never been safe.

The visions shift to my girl parked below one of those fire escapes. Top down on her brand new 1973 Eldorado convertible, even though it’s close to snowing. I can still smell it in the air. Smell her perfume. It's like she wants me to see her, wants to make sure I know I'm not alone. Put an ache in my heart to know she cared so much, especially after all I’d put her through.

Now I look back -- I know I should have just got in that Caddy and let her drive me away. Anywhere. Truth is, I thought about it for half a second. I just didn’t realize how bad off I was. Didn’t realize that if I did go into HQ, like I’d been doing for days now. Weeks? Didn't matter; that would be the end of it.

But I wasn't thinking straight, so almost zombie like, I walk across the street. Dark and empty, both ways. Jerky and crazy. Operations was almost finished shifting to One Police Plaza, several blocks south, and I was glad. This once grand dame was way past her prime, with her columns and half-hidden windows and sort-of balconies. She took up the whole narrow block. And the fat iron railings along the sidewalk, put there to keep you from dropping into the gullies that vanished into the basement’s emptiness, it’s like she was giving off this “stay away” vibe. Even the stupid dome on top made her look like she thought she was the capitol of someplace instead of too old to work in the modern world.

More flashes hit me as I get close to the entrance. How abandoned and disarrayed she looks. Nothing was left inside but a couple low-key, bare-bones offices, one of them oh-so-happily involving me. After that was done...after I was done for...the city would try to figure out what to do with this relic. Maybe tear it down and sell the land. Not a bad idea. At least it’d get rid of the bats flying around and screeching in the black, black sky.

Flash as I climb the steps to the main entrance. It's not easy, thanks to the cracks and chips missing in them. Another flash of me shaking so hard, I have to hold onto the banister. And the revolving door is in constant motion, waiting to sweep me in. And half the lights are either busted or missing, making the whole place feel like part of a Hitchcock movie.

Older and darker, inside. More lights burned out. The floor a mess. Shadows everywhere. The only guy I see is a cop sitting at this half-circle of a reception desk. He doesn’t even look up as I enter and whisper, “Hey.”

“Buono -- how ya doin’?” His voice softly echoes and booms.

“I...I been better,” I say, my voice soft and cracking. Dying. I can hear the death in it, even if he can’t. “Been a long day. All these lights missin’ – don’t maintenance care, no more?”

He grunts. Never takes his eyes off whatever he's reading. He has a lamp on his desk and a cushion under his butt; he's set.

I stagger down a corridor. Aim for the lockers next to the office that was crushing my life. That's when I finally pay real attention how quiet it is. Like nobody else is around. Had they already moved the last people over to the new building? I wouldn’t be surprised. That’d keep my secret safe, a secret that was finally shredding my world. Shredding me.

The corridor grows longer. Darker. Shuffling sounds whisper around me, fresh and new, echoing from everywhere. My breathing goes sharp. My eyes dart about, wary. I'm screaming in my mind, "Why're so many light bulbs gone from the fixtures?" That don’t make sense -- unless they’ve been removed. Make it harder to see into the darkness. See past the shadows. Perfect for an ambush.

I'm by the first door on the left. I unsnap the safety harness. Check my pistol. Peek in the room. Nothing but rows of freestanding lockers set up for the few people left in the place. Dark and dirty and empty and quiet and nothing but shadows. Even my breathing echoes.

Or is it mine I hear?

I don’t want to go in there, but God, I want out of this uniform, even more. No more being a cop. Back in street clothes. In my girl’s Caddy. Safe, again.

My shakes became sudden quakes of fear. I do that a lot, now, 'cause I finally realized what I got myself into, and the terror is neverending. Too late to second-guess, now.

I carefully slip inside. Creep past row after row of lockers. Get closer and closer to mine. I see no one. Nothing. I'm sweating, despite the cold. The building's so damn cold. I can watch my breath whisper in and out, like it's trying to escape. They weren’t even bothering with the heat, anymore. Maybe they kept at fifty...but no, no but it feels colder. Like ice.

I finally reach my locker and lean against it, damn near exhausted. I look down at my shaking hand. A thin trail of blood whispers over its skin.

Aw, no...no – I got shot? I got hit? No. No.

I almost faint but slam my head against the locker. It hurts, but it stops me. Gets me back in control. I fumble with the lock’s combination. Run through it three times. Blood smears all over. It pops open. The noise bounces off the walls. I nearly jump out of my skin.

The shadows grow darker. Deeper.

I heard that shuffling sound, again. I freeze. Listen. Nothing but silence. Not even breathing.

I slowly pull off my coat. It doesn’t hurt, but something pulls sharp against my left shoulder. The shirt to my uniform is soaked with blood. I wipe my face. Blood smears over it.

I was hit. Crap, I was hit. Dammit. No keeping it quiet, now.

No, God, I can’t let ‘em know I’m hurt. They’re animals. They’ll take me down and tear me apart. I should take a shower. Oh, that’d be so good. Clean the blood off and warm me and –

I heard the shuffling sound, again. It's close. I start to quake, again. But then I think, maybe it’s my partner come looking for me. He’s a good cop; he’d be worried.

“Bobby?” I called. “Bobby, that you?”

Nothing. Not even the shuffling. Just silence.

Silence.

Silence.

A whisper of a sound comes from my right and I turn and find –

A gunman standing at the end of the lockers, raising a pistol!

Everything clicks into slow motion. I yank out my service revolver. Drop to one knee. Fire at him.

My first shot hits his left knee. The second rips through his thigh. Two more hit an arm and a shoulder.

He gets a couple of shots off at me. I feel something punch my side. Then he crashes against an office wall. Lands in a sitting position, his leg twisted under him.

I force myself to rise. Slowly. Carefully. Dizzy and in complete disbelief. This can’t have happened. It couldn’t of.

I inch up to him. Pistol ready but shaking in my bloody hands. Barely under control and hoping to God he isn’t gonna make another move. I hear voices. Footsteps running. Echoing. So far away. Getting closer. Taking forever. Why don't they get here, already, and –

The guy lifts his gun, unsteady.

I fire, again. The bullet explodes through his skull. Blood splatters over me. Covers me. I can't see, there's so much. I drop to my knees, about to pass out – and then I see it.

The gunman’s gold shield.

He's a cop.

A detective!

I just killed a NYPD cop in police headquarters!

“Man, there’s gonna be hell to pay for that,” I think as red covers my eyes and screaming surrounds me and I quietly drift towards darkness...and my trip to hell really begins.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Lazy days...well, day, anyway...

I shuffled around some paperwork and filed it away. It'd been sitting so long, it was dusty so I've also been sneezing. But I stayed home...except for a quickie trip to the PO to mail out some bills and buy some stamps (it's all the way across the street from my building). Cleaned up my computers, a little, too. But overall did as little thinking as possible. Mainly played with Facebook.

I'm gearing up for a rewrite of Trainee/Inherent Flaws/NYPD Blood into some new edition of the book. The guy whose story this is has made some significant changes that need a bit of polishing. I doubt I'll do a serious rewrite, but you never know till you get into it. Then I'll start working it into the proper format to be published via Smashwords and Lightning Source. I hope to have enough awareness of how they both work by that point to do it more easily.

I also want to find a new title for it. None of the ones used so far are really right. If anybody has any ideas what to call a fictionalized version of the true story of a young cop driven close to madness by detectives stealing drugs and using the police code of silence to shut him up...and then terrorize him when he starts trying to stop them.

Say...that may work as the tag.

BTW...it's almost time for the Santa Speedo Run in Boston. The 14th. I'll be en route to NYC for a packing job. Dammit.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Third time's the charm...I hope...

I had to correct some errors in the submission material for David Martin. Apparently, when you make one change in the format of an unusual layout for a Word Document, it forgets everything and reverts back to its presets. Which I didn't think to check before I sent in a new PDF. So tonight was spent going through the whole piece and reworking it so it would fit into a 6x9 format. Amazing. I'm so techno-stupid, it seems I can't even do inputting right.

So now it's all re-uploaded and waiting for the next final word. God, I hope it turns out right, this time.

I'm staying in Dublin in January. If I really, really feel the need to visit Belfast, it's only a couple hours up the coast...but I have a lot to consider doing in Dublin. Tara's closed for the winter so no day trips, for sure. I considered Shannon and traveling up to see The Cliffs of Moher, again, but that was too complicated. Now I'm calm and ready for the journey.

I took this photo my first trip to Ireland -- 12 years ago. It's Dublin looking up the Liffey. The country was just changing to the Euro, and everything was wild and wacky. I'd already been in the country 8 days so was on their timeline. Went to see a mediocre play at the Abbey Theatre. Took a day trip to Blarney Castle. This is where I fell in love with Guinness.

This time, I'm just kicking back.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Hop, skip and jump across the pond

I'm headed for London, again, after the first of the year. It's a quick trip -- just 4 days to pack some rare books for shipping -- but it'll be fun. What's hysterical is the bouncing around I did trying to get a decent fare. After dealing with ridiculous offerings from Hipmunk, Travelocity, and Expdia -- like leaving from Toronto, but having to change not just planes in NYC but airports, in the middle of rush hour with only a 3 hour window -- I was cross-eyed. Talk about absurd. (Though there was one that tempted me with a return trip by way of Oslo that included a several hour layover; I've never been to my other mother country.)

Turned out the cheapest way to do it was one-ways -- Buffalo to London Heathrow, Gatwick to Dublin or Belfast, and Dublin to Buffalo. Meaning, I'm hitting Ireland, too. I'm debating between Belfast and Dublin; I want to do Belfast because PRONI (Public Record Office of Northern Ireland) is there, but they aren't open on a Saturday and I wouldn't get into Belfast till just a few hours before they close, on Friday, unless I was willing to nearly spend the night at Gatwick...which I'm still considering.

However, that would also entail a trip from Belfast to Dublin on the train so I wouldn't get to see much of the city. And it's not like Belfast really plays much into P/S (that's what I'm calling Place of Safety, from now on; POS is too distracting), not until a section after Brendan returns home.

Alternatively...I love Dublin. I could do the Guinness Storehouse Tour, again. I could hop up to Tara and see the smaller mounds...if they're open. Hmm...better check into that. I could do a tour of James Joyce's city. Hit the archive library there. I think I still have my membership card.

Too much to decide...but I am leaning to Dublin. It's an easier time and fits in with my script and play, Wide New World, as well as the things I've been reading, lately.

Whatever I decide, I've got two legs of this trip bought and paid for -- so I'm arriving in London and leaving from Dublin, no matter what. In-between is me blowing my budget.

Can't wait.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

I think I have a hero...


I am in awe of David Mason Chlopecki. This guy lives in NYC, has a successful clothing line, has built himself up from god only knows what...and is what he is and if you don't like it, tough shit.

If he wants to dress up like a unicorn, in jeans -- he does.
If he wants to come across as a bad-ass, he does. And what he says in his House of Vader blog is fun, educational, confrontational, all too totally David. (Link to it in the "Blogs I follow" sidebar.)
Doesn't hurt to look like a Viking God (the guy on his left is probably 6' tall). I used him as the model for Dion in The Vanishing of Owen Taylor...and find that Dion's the most decent guy in the book. The most enjoyable.  The one I'd most want to be around.

This is my favorite fun photo of Dave -- blue ponytail, pink leather, too-cute scowl, Exterface photograph. He is what he is. I'm finding inspiration in a lot of people who've built their own existence. I think I'd like to refurbish mine, now, and people like him give me hope that it's possible.

Just like Dion's doing for Jake...as life mirrors art, once more.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

A little bit about Edgar Allen Poe

Fascinating idea about E A Poe's sudden death, via Lionheart Writers, a new blog I've happened onto.
----------------
Edgar Allan Poe Mystery
, via the University of Maryland Medical Center

September 24, 1996

In an analysis almost 147 years after his death, doctors at the University of Maryland Medical Center believe that writer Edgar Allan Poe may have died as a result of rabies, not from complications of alcoholism. Poe's medical case was reviewed by R. Michael Benitez, M.D., a cardiologist at the University of Maryland Medical Center. His review is published in the September 1996 issue of Maryland Medical Journal.

"No one can say conclusively that Poe died of rabies, since there was no autopsy after his death," says Dr. Benitez, who is also an assistant professor of medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. "But the historical accounts of Poe's condition in the hospital a few days before his death point to a strong possibility that he had rabies."

Poe was 40 years old when he died on October 7, 1849. He had traveled by train from Richmond, Virginia to Baltimore a few days earlier, on September 28. While in Richmond, he had proposed marriage to a woman who would have become his second wife. (His first wife had died). Poe intended to continue on to Philadelphia to finalize some business when he became ill.

Poe was discovered lying unconscious on September 28 on a wooden plank outside Ryan's saloon on Lombard St. in Baltimore. He was taken to Washington College Hospital (now Church Hospital).

Historical accounts of his hospitalization indicate that at first he was delirious with tremors and hallucinations, then he slipped into a coma. He emerged from the coma, was calm and lucid, but then lapsed again into a delirious state, became combative, and required restraint. He died on his fourth day in the hospital. According to an account published in the Maryland Historical Magazine in December 1978, the Baltimore Commissioner of Health, Dr. J.F.C. Handel certified that the cause of Poe's death was "congestion of the brain."

In his analysis, Dr. Benitez examined all of the possible causes for delirium, which include trauma, vascular disorders in the brain, neurological problems such as epilepsy, and infections. Alcohol withdrawal is also a potential cause of tremors and delirium, and Poe was known to have abused alcohol and opiate drugs. However, the medical records indicate that Poe had abstained from alcohol for six months before his death, and there was no evidence of alcohol use when he was admitted.

"In addition, it is unusual for patients suffering from alcohol withdrawal to become acutely ill, recover for a brief time, and then worsen and die," says Dr. Benitez, who adds that withdrawal from opiates does not produce the same scenario of symptoms as Poe's illness.

Dr. Benitez says in the final stages of rabies, it is common for people to have periods of confusion that come and go, along with wide swings in pulse rate and other body functions, such as respiration and temperature. All of that occurred for Poe, according to medical records kept by Dr. John J. Moran who cared for Poe in his final days. In addition, the median length of survival after the onset of serious symptoms is four days, which is exactly the number of days Poe was hospitalized before his death.

Poe's doctor also wrote that in the hospital, Poe refused alcohol he was offered and drank water only with great difficulty. Dr. Benitez says that seems to be a symptom of hydrophobia, a fear of water, which is a classic sign of rabies.

Dr. Benitez theorizes that Poe may have gotten rabies from being bitten by one of his pets. He was known to have cats and other pets. Although there is no account that Poe had been bitten by an animal, it is interesting that in all the cases of human rabies in the United States from 1977 to 1994, people remembered being bitten in only 27 percent of those cases. In addition, people can have the infection for up to a year without major symptoms.

The Poe case was presented originally to Dr. Benitez as part of a weekly meeting of medical center physicians, called the Clinical Pathologic Conference. It is an exercise in which a complex case is presented without a diagnosis, and physicians discuss how they would determine a patient's condition and course of treatment. Dr. Benitez did not know that the patient in question at this particular conference was Edgar Allan Poe.

The idea to analyze Poe's death came from Philip A. Mackowiak, M.D., professor of medicine and vice-chairman of the Department of Medicine at the University of Maryland Medical Center.

"Poe's death is one of the most mysterious deaths in literary history, and it provided us with an interesting case in which to discuss many principles of medicine," says Dr. Mackowiak, who runs the weekly Clinical Pathologic Conference at the medical center.

Dr. Mackowiak agrees with Dr. Benitez that rabies was the most likely cause of Poe's death, based on the available evidence. He adds, though, that after Poe's death, his doctor went on the lecture circuit and gave varying accounts of the writer's final days. "The account on which Dr. Benitez based his findings was more consistent with rabies than with anything else, but the definitive cause of Poe's death will likely remain a mystery," says Dr. Mackowiak.

Edgar Allan Poe is buried in a cemetery next to Westminister Hall at Fayette and Greene Streets, just one block from the University of Maryland Medical Center.

Source: Poe Mystery | University of Maryland Medical Center http://umm.edu/news-and-events/news-releases/1996/edgar-allan-poe-mystery#ixzz2mTOnoQmx
University of Maryland Medical Center

Monday, December 2, 2013

Updates and reworks...

I read through the instructions from Lightning Source, but somehow missed the part where you have to have the PDF you submit already formatted into a 6x9 page or they bump it. And yet the images, even though they're being saved to a b&w pdf, still have color structures instead of black and white. Which makes no sense to me, but apparently does to techies. So I had to rework the book...and it increased to 96 pages. Making my spine fatter, too, so I had to redo the cover. I think I have it like they want it, now...but I guess I'll find out, tomorrow.

Truth be told, I like how it looks in 6x9. The words are a bit larger and the text cleaner-looking. And the images fell neatly into place with only a little jiggering. Of course, you never know until you actually see it. I had everything exactly like Create Space wanted it for Bobby Carapisi, The Complete Novel but the cover still came out off by 1/16".

I'm almost excited about the book...and trying not to get too expectant. But I wrote the first draft of this nearly 25 years ago. It was a lot shorter -- 40 pages, if I remember right -- and Little, Brown & Co. was interested in it, but only if I'd cut the story to 14 pages. I trimmed it down to 28 but couldn't go any lower and make it work. So that fell apart. Since then, it's been one of those projects I couldn't quite get back to...until I posted it on my blog. Then it began working on me, again.

I hope it does well and people like it. But I thought The Lyons' Den would be my breakthrough novel and it's sold worse than just about anything else I've written. You never know with your own work.

Just heard Tom Daly's acknowledged he's dating a boy. No big surprise, but I'm happy he's happy. The majority of people are supportive, but what's interesting is how many are turning on him for it.

No better than an animal is man, at times.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Meanderings...

I finished reading James Joyce's The Dead and also The Sisters. He's very accessible in these stories, not like the jumble of Ulysses. I like the simplicity of his style, and the tenderness he shows for his characters. I wasn't aware the reason The Dubliners series wasn't published for over 10 years was because he'd used actual locations around Dublin in it, instead of making up names. Silly reason to hold up publication of a work of fiction, so I think I'll look into it more.

My next project, despite everything said before, is polishing up the newest incarnation of NYPD Blood as Inherent Flaws, tho' I'm trying hard to come up with a better title, albeit one that's not so pulpy. I feel a bit responsible for the guy I've been writing this for. He just wants his story told. So I let him know what the costs are for publishing it through Lightning Source and Smashwords and we'll see how that goes.

I guess I won't get back to OT till after Christmas. But this break from it may be good. I had no idea how to bring the story bits together at the end without it going on and on and on. I may get back to it sooner; I've got a probable packing job in NYC beginning the 16th and will take the train down on the 15th. I've deliberately set myself up on the one that does not have WiFi available. No distractions.

This is going to be a full week, getting ready for that and other possible jobs. I sent one estimate over to my bosses earlier this evening. Next come 3 more.

Let's rock.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Here we go with DM...

David Martin is now submitted to both Smashwords and Lightning Source for publishing. I now await their verdict as regards the files I uploaded. Hopefully I'll have all of that next week. I also ordered a proof of the paperback, to be safe.

I'm pretty sure the electronic edition will be okay; it's already been auto-vetted and now just needs a human to think it's good. That can be a trick.

I already had one mistake pointed out for the paperback version, in that I didn't remove the color profile from the black and white images I worked into the text. I didn't even think to check them. It meant going back and redoing all of them, since I can't figure out how to shift them to B&W in Word or a PDF, or paying Lightning Source $10 to do it. I paid.

I'm into this book for a hefty sum...and I doubt I'll ever break even...but I don't feel bad about that. I'm so used to not making real money off my writing, it doesn't really affect me. At least I'll have it out there, ready to be read. That's what really counts.

I'm thinking of offering a hardback edition, but that'd be another $71 for setup, and I want to see how the paperback does, first. Then maybe I'll do a nice one in cloth, with a slipcase, if they offer that. Give them as Christmas presents, next year.

I had a fun little bout of searching for the copyright documents for DM, last night. Went through just about every box I had before finding it. There's so much dust still floating around in my apartment, right now, even Zyrtek can't keep up with it. But I found all my copyright docs, so it was worth it. I found I even had one script that's still registered with the WGA; I thought they'd all lapsed.

It was weird, digging into boxes of materials that basically show a life of wasted opportunity. All the scripts I never wrote. Stories I had ideas for. Competitions I'd entered. Companies and people I contacted about my scripts...all of that numbers well into the thousands. Jeez.

Like the man says, you can get kicked in the face for just so long before you figure out it's a good idea to stop letting them kick you. I never did know what to do to make Hollywood notice...or I did know and just couldn't do it, for some reason. Probably one of my deep-rooted psychoses. We all have them; but mine were detrimental to my chosen career. Should've figured that out years ago.

Now I can focus on OT, again. NaNoWriMo ends today, and I only have 12K in wordage for Carli's KILLS, so that's a bust.

Story of my life.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Kitteh will not be denied...

Need I say MOAR?

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Wednesday's perfect Thanksgiving rip..

Couldn't resist...