Monday, December 31, 2012

The Slaw Has Been Slayed!

I've always had a curious relationship with vegetarianism and veganism. Waaaaaaaaaaay back in the day when gas was 65 cents a gallon, I experienced vegetarianism first hand during my late father's annual staff Christmas party. He had a staff member who was Hindu and thus would always bring a rather nasty smelling (to me anyways) cooked vegetable dish.

Throughout the proceeding three decades, the only other contact that I had with vegetarianism was a couple of classmates from a 8th grade Catholic school (don't ask how a Methodist me was going to a Catholic school). In fact, my knowledge of vegetarianism was so limited that when I was having a casual conversation with someone and I happened to mention that I don't drink milk* and they called me a "vegan", I had to ask what that meant.

*I don't drink milk because I do not like the taste of it. I will consume other dairy products like cheese and ice cream, but I will not drink milk.

However, as with most things that I initially have no opinion about, I soon developed an opinion of vegetarianism. While I had no beef with those who practiced and pursued and didn't try to impose their beliefs on me (actor Dirk Benedict came out with a memoir that wound up being a thinly veiled paean to the vegetarian/vegan lifestyle), I did have a beef with those who held a holier-than-thou/egotistical drama queen/severely militant attitude about it.

Example of this holier-than-thou/drama queen attitude was found by me watching an episode of "The Real World" in which one of the participants went off into a deep blue funk because not only was a goat slaughtered, but she didn't want to go near any grass that was tainted with goat's blood.

However, I did not see true militancy about vegetarianism, which often goes hand in hand with animal rights, until I hit the chat rooms in 2007.

There, people were so blinded by their twin beliefs that no matter what reasonable scenario any of us came up with that could be applied as an exception, it would be torpedoed as cruel and inhuman. Perversely, this made everyone else more determined to cut this person down to size and show the world how narrow-minded and bigoted they truly were.

There was one memorable individual, who every Thanksgiving would write a letter to the editor decrying the slaughter of turkeys for a holiday meal. Which is fine by me. But she instantly became cannon fodder, as she was so rigid and inflexible in her beliefs that even those where were initially sympathetic to her viewpoint would often turn against her because of that rigidness.

After a couple of years of slamming this person for her views (and certainly not for her vegetarian lifestyle) I moved on to more adult pursuits, namely blogging.

In the blog world, I did come across a few bloggers who either wholeheartedly participated in that particular lifestyle or made it an integral part of their overall health. And the thing that was/is most refreshing about these bloggers, is that they don't try to force it down your throat or mock you for being a meat eater.

With one particular blogger (and you know who you are), I was able to have a very informative conversation about it. She more than answered my questions about it and gave me a somewhat better understanding of why someone would choose to become one.

I'm still not a fan of that particular lifestyle, but as I gotten older, I have gradually introduced certain kinds of veggies into my diet (i.e. peppers, onions and salsa). I've also redeveloped the attitude of so long as you don't mock me for mine, I won't mock you for yours. Tolerance you might say, which for someone my age (47), is actually a good thing.

So remember folks, for every bowl of coleslaw that you slay, a hamburger gets its wings.

And for those of you whose curiosity might be piqued, please check out the following bloggers, who either wholeheartedly pursue that lifestyle or make it an integral part of their overall health.

Riot Kitty at Riot Kitty.

Lynn at Good Things Happen.

Elsie at Integrated Memoirs.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

And The Winner Is....

Bit of a throw away post today, as I'm trying to decide on who to pick as a winner for a contest that I had held a few weeks ago on Gluttondan's blog.

I had 11 entries and I narrowed it down to three numbers:




So what I would like from you, my very favorite readers, is to pick one of those three numbers. I have this posted on Facebook as well, and the one with the most votes over the weekend, will be the judge the winner.

To make it a little more fun for everyone here, one lucky person will win a free copy of either my chapbook Betrayed!, or a copy of my latest, Line 21 (when it drops to print), your choice.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Kids And Marriage

How Do You Decide Who To Marry?

You got to find somebody who likes the same stuff. Like if you like sports, she should like it that you like sports, and she should keep the chips and dips coming.

Alan, age 10

No person really decides before they grow up who they're going to marry. God decides it all way before, and you get to find out later who you're stuck with.

Kirsten, age 10

What Is The Right Age To Get Married?

Twenty-three is the best age because you know the person FOREVER by then.

Camile, age 10

No age is good to get married at. You got to be a fool to get married.

Freddie, age 6

How Can A Stranger Tell If Two People Are Married?

Married people usually look happy to talk to other people.

Eddie, age 6

You might have to guess, based on whether they seem to be yelling at the same kids.

Derrick, age 8

What Do You Think Your Mom And Dad Have In Common?

Both don't want no more kids.

Lori, age 8

What Do Most People Do On A Date?

Dates are for having fun and people should use them to get to know each other. Even boys have something to say if you listen long enough.

Lynnette, age 8

On the first date, they just tell each other lies, and that usually gets them interested enough to go for a second date.

Martin, age 10

What Would You Do On A First Date That Was Turning Sour?

I'd run home and play dead. The next day I would call all the newspapers and make sure they wrote about me in all the dead columns.

Craig, age 9

When Is It OK To Kiss Someone?

When they're rich.

Pam, age 7

The law says you have to be eighteen, so I wouldn't want to mess with that.

Curt, age 7

The rule goes like this: If you kiss someone, then you should marry them and have kids with them. It's the right thing to do.

Howard, age 8

Is It Better To Be Single Or Married?

It's better for girls to be single but not for boys. Boys need someone to clean up after them.

Anita, age 9

Single is better, for the simple reason that I wouldn't want to change no diapers. Of course, if I did get married, I'd just phone my mother and have her come over for some coffee and diaper-changing.

Kristen, age 10

How Would The World Be Different If People Didn't Get Married?

There sure would be a lot of kids to explain, wouldn't there?

Kelvin, age 8

You can be sure of one thing--the boys would come chasing after us just the same as they do now.

Roberta, age 7

How Would You Make A Marriage Work?

Tell your wife that she looks pretty even if she looks like a truck.

Ricky, age 10

Wednesday, December 26, 2012



Breakfast is the 2nd most fun you can have while eating. Why? Because depending on your age and work habits, almost anything can pass for breakfast. And contrary to popular opinion, it is not the most important meal of the day (just ask my daughter Jenelle)

And to give you the 4-1-1 on breakfast, here is my good bud Yello Bear, who made sure that he got good and smashed at yesterday's wild office party in preparation to today's informative monologue. Take it away Yello Bear!

Oh man, never, repeat, never mix Jagermeister with Tequila. Uggh...I think my blood alcohol is still sitting in the 1.9's. Still, you'll be happy to know that I did not drink and drive to get here today. I drank and crawled on my hands and knees. Do you know long it takes to crawl from that there tree down to the basement? And don't ask how I got to the tree. All I know is that there was a lot of screaming, squeezing and somehow I woke up with four telephone numbers pinned to my sweater.

Anyways, back to today's topic. If you're a kid, chances are that breakfast usually involves cereal hot or cold), juice/milk, and some kind of toast/waffle/pastry. Maybe some kind of egg product is involved, maybe some kind of meat (MEAT!) as well.

As you get older, your tastes change. Maybe you skip the hot cereal and just have a bowl of cold. Perhaps some kind of nuke 'em egg product or some kind of leftover ('fess up, you probably did this like G.B. did while growing up. Pizza anyone?).

And finally, when you get to be an adult, breakfast can be whatever you happen to find while running around like a chicken with their head cut off trying to get to work on time.

Whoops, excuse me.

the sound of a toilet flushing some three minutes later is the unmistakable sign that last night did not agree with Yello Bear.

Uggh....gotta remember to chew it back. Anyways, I'm sure most of you are not like that last example, and in fact either have a sensible breakfast M thru F or indulge on the weekends.

For G.B., breakfast has more or less become like his lunch, in that he has to watch his caloric and sugar intake. Let me describe to you what G.B.'s typical breakfast is 99% of the time.

After his cat Holly wakes him up for her breakfast, he collects his morning beds and staggers downstairs to feed himself and the cat. Holly's is dry cat food (no wet, 'cause wet equals barfing.

He nukes water for his coffee, and yes, he does instant. To him, coffee is coffee, unless it's from D&D, in which case it tastes like Autocrat on steroids. In other words, crap.

While the water is boiling, he toasts two frozen waffles (or bread if he's out of waffles) and pours himself a bowl of either generic rice krispies, cheerios or corn flakes (sugar content on all is less than 3g per). He takes out either two small pieces of sausages to nuke or two slices of turkey bacon to nuke once the water is boiled.

He then takes out a ziploc bag of canned fruit and takes exactly two pieces out and puts them in a small bathroom cup. This, believe it or not, is actually one of his two servings of fruit for the day.

Excuse me again....

The sound of a toilet flushing yet again some three minutes later is the unmistakable sign that this morning isn't going to well for Yello Bear. this time the meat is done and he plops the waffles/toast on the plate. He then pours either some sugar free syrple or spreads some oleo on the toast and thus, breakfast is depressingly done.

The other 1% of the time is when G.B. splurges while grocery shopping and buys either a four pack of nuke 'em egg thingys or one of those nuke 'em breakfast bowl thingys (took G.B. an awfully long time to eat scrambled eggs in a non sandwich form).

So his breakfast looks like this for at least 4 days a week:

1} Waffles (w/syrup or sliced cheese)/Toast (with cheese or s.f. jelly).
2} Meat (sausage or turkey bacon).
3} Cereal (always cold, never hot, and only 2% of the time does he have cereal that isn't what was previously mentioned).
4} Coffee (no cream/milk. He has an intense dislike of liquid milk/cream or dry creamer) with three sugar substitutes.
5} Two very small pieces of fruit.

The only time he will eat non-sandwich style eggs M-F is if he actually goes to a restaurant, and has someone cook it for him. On a rare weekend, he will actually cook himself eggs, but that usually becomes a fried egg sandwich for lunch.

Since my stomach is churning once again from talking about food, I need to split the scene for a spell. Before I do, G. B. wanted me to ask you what's on your plate for the first meal of the day?

Monday, December 24, 2012

I Have To Talk About...Me?

Next month, I will be taking a giant leap into the deep end of the publicity pool and let me tell you, I am scared speechless over the prospect of executing this giant leap.

Contrary to popular opinion and cyber world theatrics, I do have a major phobia in talking about/tooting my horn about myself and/or about my writing (one of the primary reasons that I do not mix well at social gatherings).

I meant, it's one thing to sit behind a computer and pound away on a keyboard and produce all kind of nifty verbiage, and it's another to sit behind the computer and play keyboard commando in regards to tooting your own horn (yes, anyone can do that). To do it in front of a group of people who are strangers however, can nerve wracking, and to do it in front of people that you know, can make you go screaming into the night.

For those of you who do not enjoy the daily/hourly wonder that is me on Facebook (and you should, you know), I announced on Facebook that after much consideration and the small jumping of a few hurdles, I managed to score a spot in our vendor program at work, so that I can properly pimp my book.

And being the slightly anal retentive person that I am, I have two, count 'em, two attack plans in place.

Plan #1: I have two nifty displays made up, each one touting the e-book version for Nook & Kindle; I will have two business card displays featuring my new & improved business cards (which will be ordered after January for tax purposes) and a smaller version of the book cover; a display of bookmarks (also ordered on January 1 for the same reason); a DVD of my book trailer for people to watch; and most importantly, I will have books to sell.

Books to sell will be a key factor because it will help me easily fulfill a small requirement for participating in the vendor program: 10% donation of all sales to charity.

But just in case I don't have any books, which is real possibility because my book is supposed to drop in print sometime in early-to-mid January, plan #2 will still have all the above to play with, plus my charming personality.

However, it's using my charming personality that has me concerned.

Why? Well, like it or not, in the almost 7 years that I have been entrenched at my current employer, most people have already developed an opinion about me. Now if you add in the fact that I'll be talking about a book that under normal circumstances I would probably get in trouble talking about, then you can probably understand why I'm felling the way that I am.

However, the one saving grace about this particular signing/pimping, is that the building is really isn't open to the general public, so I'll pretty much have a captive audience to practice with.

And the practice will definitely come in handy because next year one of the events I plan on participating in is our town's annual summer extravaganza.

To finish up this post, let me ask you this question: Were you incredibly nervous the first time you had to do something like this? Do you find its easier to do the more times that you do do it?

Friday, December 21, 2012

Advertisers Love Me, Oh Yeah!

Order replica Prada products! Abercrombie & Fitch? Bring it on! Ugg boots! Sushi! Gucci knock-off! Louis Vuittons! Payday Loan! Bridesmaid Dresses? Absolutely! I'll look stunning! Hermes handbags!! Yes! Yes! Is there more? You bet your sweet bippy there is!

My friends, this is but a sample of what doesn't make it to my blog on a daily basis. Every two days, I purge out of my spam filter about 50 spam comments that Blogger was able to redirect. I won't say that they weren't published on any of my post, simply because I moderate comments, so more often than not, they don't slip by to the next state of my comment queue, which is the link on my dashboard that says "X amount of comments awaiting moderation."

The one detrimental aspect of getting all of these spam comments is that is does a phantom jacking of my most popular posts. If you take a gander at the top five list on the left (you have to click through to see it if you're reading this via the e-mail or reader) at least three of the posts are there directly due to the shenanigans of those wonderful advertisers out there.

Sad to think that the top five posts are there not because people read them (especially if the post is four years old) but because advertisers use them in an attempt to clog up my blog with pointless verbiage.

I'm sure that you're wondering how I can put such a positive spin on receiving pointless verbiage on my blog without going nuclear? Well my friends, it's really simple. You have to have some faith that your host server can get the job done and you have to want to do whatever it takes to help your host server get the job done.

If you do the following step, chances are very good that you can cut down on the amount of spam that actually goes onto your blog. What I mean by "actually" is when you open up the comment section to a blog post and you see a spam comment on it.

Moderate your comments. Alternative: remove the ability of people to leave "Anon" comments.

If you moderate your comments, it gives Blogger a base platform to start from, because it force the comment into your moderation queue. And if the same IP is leaving the comment, this allows Blogger to eventually flag it and automatically move it to your spam filter.

Removing "Anon" eliminates the need for Blogger to flag comments, because no spammer that I know of actually has an ID to play with.

However, do keep in mind that if you do have spam filter, make sure that you go through it at least once a day. I suggest this because sometimes a comment from a regular reader will make it into your spam filter, either accidentally by Blogger, or if you're like me, accidentally hitting "spam" instead of "publish".

These really are the two most effective ways of cutting down on spam comments that I've found in the past 4 1/2 year of blogging. There are a few other ways to cut down on spam comments, but they have the side effect of irritating and potentially alienating your regular readers.

So remember kids, if you're tired of wiping out spam comments on your blog 'cause you really don't want your readers to go out on a seriously overpriced shopping trip and blaming your for it (or worse), using G.B.'s advice will make your blog super user friendly and fun place to visit.

However, if you really do want your readers to go on a seriously overpriced shopping trip, put up the links that the designers have created in the first place for their product.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Welcome To Radio Geezer!

I have a strong urge to post something mindlessly upbeat. Today's post, which was postponed from last Saturday, hopes to do just that by bringing a slight smile to your face and slightly less heavier heart.

Where fresh and innovative makes the corporate suits break out in hives!

So get ready to relive those glory years of music, 'cause we all know that change is bad! Bad! Bad! Bad!

Familiarity is good, 'cause it makes the corporate suits cream their pants! Good! Good! Good!

The first track on this eight c.d. set that passes for 12 hours of programming, which gets repeated in random order the next 12 hours is Amie by Pure Prarie League.

This is the only song that you'll ever hear from that fantastic album "Bustin' Out", 'cause it was the only one that charted super-duper high on Billboard. And you can forget about the fact that the album is one long story of romance and heartache and that the ony way you can appreciate the song "Amie" is to listen to the preceding track.

No sir, you won't find up digging deeper into an album, because we're Radio Geezer!

Next up for your listening pleasure, the world's most overplayed live song that isn't from Frampton Comes Alive.

I Want You To Want Me by Cheap Trick.

Yes ladies and gentleman, boys and girls, children of all ages. Cheap Trick, who had memorable albums and memorable songs (Surrender, Dream Police and The Flame) are all but reduced to a live song that features screaming fans from Japan. We love live music here at Radio Geezer and we especially love live music that has a top 100 hit connected to it,'cause we just love Billboard's Hot 100. Most importantly, we love listening to fans scream becasue a concert is about the money, not about the music. So we also wouldn't play this song by them either.

And right after Cheap Trick, we have the most annoying power ballad ever to come from a Canadian blues player: Angel Eyes by Jeff Healey.

Yup. You can forget about us digging deeper into his debut c.d. or anything else, 'cause you know wedding songs are da bomb, no matter who plays them. So what if the rest of his album rocks, especially this song:

Radio Geezer is into the "Ka Ching!" of the cash register, 'caue you know that our goal is to make the suits happy, not you.

And finally, the last song that Radio Geezer will play for this hour, 'cause you know 4 songs are our maximum output. Anymore than that, then we have to cut advertising spots, and that'll make the suits go super limp faster than seeing a sexy picture of the Minority Speaker of the House.

Rock & Roll All Night by KISS!

Yes, as much as we love old rock, we love it even more when old rock bands try to jump on a trend and come out with a song that truly sucks. DISCO!!!! We love disco, and how much more discotech can you get than KISS?

Rock meets disco meets Billboard Hot 100! Ahh...I can just smell the Wall Street suits instantly creaming their pants over that song, but certainly not over this one:

And for our next hour of programming we will feature faves from you the listener. Yes, here's your chance to tell Radio Geezer what's your most favorite overplayed song on the radio. Doesn't matter what genre, 'cause we like it all!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Guns. Don't. Kill. People. Understand?

A very good Facebook friend of mine and fellow writer, KC Sprayberry, came up with a good limitus test for all the idiots who do not believe the following statement to be true:

Guns Don't Kill People, People Kill People

First off, let me give you two definitions of the word inanimate:

1} Not living: not alive.

2} Relating to nouns for non-living things: belong to a category of nouns that refer to things and concepts considered to be without life.

Therefore, a handgun is just that: an inanimate object.

It's made of steel (or some other alloy), contains dozens of working parts, and looks impressive while lying on a table doing nothing.

The limitus test.

Take a handgun, unload it, make sure there's not a round in the chamber and place it on a table. Now yell at the handgun, "Fire!"

Does anything happen after you yell, "Fire!"? Of course not.

A handgun will not work without an external force present. The external force would have to pick up the hand gun, load it, make sure a bullet is in the chamber, take the safety switch off, and squeeze the trigger.

Without that external force present, a handgun remains an object that is as deadly as a leaf falling on your head.

So to say that handguns (or any other kind of gun) kill people simply isn't correct. A handgun is simply an implement of potential destruction, just like any other implement that people may use to harm others. Without an external force present to put things in motion, the inanimate object of potential destruction remains just that.

I have no other comment to add, just because I'm so incredibly upset about the stuff I've read and heard about over the weekend that I'm fighting a raging war within myself over whether or not I should simply tear all the assholes out there a brand new one, either on the blog and/or on Facebook.

Friday, December 14, 2012


Why the children? Why? Why? Why? WHY?

What in the world did they do to deserve to wake up the next morning in the Almighty's loving arms?

Thursday, December 13, 2012

G. B.'s Disjointed Blog Tour of 2012, Take Siete

A very good late morning to everyone today.

Once again, I was able to smooth talk my way onto another blog today. Gluttondan (aka Workingdan) was gracious enough to remind of a bet that I had recently won on Thanksgiving when the Patriots crushed the Colts. The winner, being me, got to bloviate on the loser's, being Gluttondan, blog. Specifically, I get to bloviate about my book, which will be dropping in print later this month

So today I am over at Gluttondan's wonderfully skewered little blog called, appropriately enough, Shameful Promotions. Please keep in mind that since Gluttondan's blog is pretty much in the same vein as Riot Kitty's blog, only a tad raunchier, viewer discretion is strongly advised.

Also, be forewarned that although I did supply the post, Gluttondan decided to put his own unique spin on my blog post.

Enjoy and I will see you all over there later today.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Have I Got The Time?

Hell no, I don't have the time. What do you take me for, some kind octopus?

Since November 27th, I've often felt like I was an octopus, in that all kinds of issues/problems/tangents have been rearing their ugly head all at the same time. Be it work related or family related, it has demanded my attention to the point where I had to tell my muse to take five to the power of ten (that's 9,765,625 minutes or about 18 1/2 years) while I deal with whatever calamity is going on.

However, we are not going to vent on that today. Today's post will be an update on the various writing related thingys that are going in my world right now (hence, all the writing related tags that you see at the bottom of this post).

No original writing to speak of has oozed from pen since mid-October, which is directly due to my novel, Line 21, being unleashed to the general public.

That isn't to say that I haven't been doing any non-blog related writing. On the contrary and as I mentioned in a post from a few weeks ago, I have been attempting to write a synopsis for my novella "A Shadow Warrior's Redemption". However, when I finally sat down to do it, I discovered much to my annoyance that when I flipped open the novella (I have a hard copy), I still had a mixture of past and present tense, as opposed to being all present tense.

Thus, we started editing the novella, yet again. However, that came to halt this past week as I got an e-mail from my publisher stating that my book was ready to be sent to the printers and would I be kind enough to proof my PDF one last time making sure to look for errors and not to change prose and oh does the cover meet with your approval and oh do you want a pic on the back cover and oh is there anything else you might want to add to the back cover?

So to the side did my novella get flung to, and after blowing off the dust bunnies, we opened our PDF, to once again do a line-by-line edit. I say "once again" because yours truly neglected to save his notes from the last time he did this, which was in mid-October prior to the release of the book.

So we proceeded to spend the past three days line by line, excuse me, I should say, paragraph by paragraph skimming of my novel looking for small grammar/cosmetic errors that would deter from the enjoyment of the book.

Note: skimming through your book is a perfectly acceptable method of editing when you have almost every scene and plot swerve memorized to the point where if someone mentions a chapter, you can say with confidence what exactly is going on in that chapter.

When all was said and done, I was able to answer his questions with confidence by saying:

1} Found 6 grammar/cosmetic errors.
2} No pic, 'cause sometimes mystery about identity is a good thing.
3} The cover is fine as it has generated some strong comments, both positive and negative.
4} Some book review snippets would be nice.

And as an added bonus, gained a new book to read and review that the editor had written earlier (erotic thriller set in WWI).

Swiftly changing gears, we now move on to book reading/reviewing.

I did finish KC Sprayberry's wonderful YA novel Softy Say Goodbye over the Thanksgiving holiday. I left a very nice review (under my pen name) and I highly recommend it. Also this past week, I finished a nice romance novel by Christine Stovell entitled Move Over Darling, and I also thought it was pretty good. Strangely enough, the copy I have is in paperback and according to Amazon, isn't due to be published until March '13, and because of that, I wasn't able to leave a review on it.

And before you ask, "G.B., why didn't you leave it under the Kindle version?", the reason I didn't was that I'm a bit fussy when it comes to reviews. If I read an e-book, the review goes to the e-book. If I read a paperback/hardcover, the review goes to that. So in this case, I'll have to wait until March '13 to leave a lengthier review than the one I left on Facebook.

Beyond finishing those two, I have not yet found the time to start any of the now six books that I have loaded on my Nook. I do have Carl Brush's Second Vendetta as next to be read, but when that will be is anyone's guess.

So that about sums up what is going on writing-wise in my world. I'm looking to get back to editing my novella, but I have about three incomplete blog post ideas to work on and I have a tentative stop for G.B.'s Disjointed Blog Tour of 2012 in the works for this month to work on as well. And I have to work all of this in while dealing with the day-to-day bullshit that is putting a serious cramp in everything else that I want/need to do.

Yay me.

Monday, December 10, 2012

A Poem For Computer Users Older Than 40

A little Monday morning humor, 'cause you know, it's Monday and we really don't want to be at work today.

A computer was something on TV
From a science fiction show of note
A window was something you hated to clean
And ram was the father of a goat.

Meg was the name of my girlfriend
And gig was a job for the nights
Now they all mean different things
And that really mega bytes.

An application was for employment
A program was a TV show
A cursor used profanity
A keyboard was a piano.

Memory was something that you lost with age
A CD was a bank account
And if you had a 3-in. floppy
You hoped that nobody found out.

Compress was something you did to the garbage
Not something you did to a file
And if you unzipped anything in public
You'd be in jail for a while.

Log on was adding wood to a fire
Hard drive was a long trip on the road
A mouse pad was where a mouse lived
And a backup happened to your commode.

Cut you did with a pocket knife
Paste you did with glue
A web was a spider's home
And a virus was the flu.

I guess I'll stick to my pad and paper
And the memory in my head
I hear nobody's been killed in a computer crash
But when it happens they wish they were dead.

I received this as an e-mail back in 2001 from a former co-worker. Back then, we were using Windows 95, Firefox was the database program of choice, Netscape was king and list serves were how you communicated with everyone else.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Cover Me Trippy

The other day while I was making the thirty second drive to the school bus stop, this song happened to pop up on the radio. This song, which is one of the few songs penned by Bruce Springsteen that isn't a social commentary on life, is a wicked way to let yourself be taken away into the whimsy that is free form fiction.

If you're having a crappy week, then this trippy cover is for you. If you're having a good week, then this trippy cover will help you enter the weekend with all cylincers firing.

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Reading Is Fun And Mental

Before you crucify me, let me 'splain.

What I read is broken down into two clear and distinct camps: Fun and Mental.

Fun is (no sarcasm intended) reading non-fiction of all types, be they bios, memoirs, true crime, general knowledge, history, pop culture, if it's non-fiction, chances are good that I will read it for fun. I also enjoy reading certain kinds of fiction for fun as well, which consists mostly of historical and fantasy.

Mental is (again, no sarcasm intended) reading for reviews. As most of you know, one of the simplest provisions for me to fulfill in my contract is to do at least one book review a quarter of my fellow writer's work. I have since branched that out to review non-Solstice writers as well.

Having to do book reviews is the main reason why I bought a Nook (although I'm having 2nd thoughts) this past summer. I figured that if I was going to do book reviews, the cheapest way to do it would be to buy the book as an e-book.

I'm making slow and steady progress with what I got on my Nook. I say slow and steady, because I try to alternate reading for fun with reading for reviews, while at the same time crank out a few words and promo my book.

As most of you know (at least my long term readers know this) I have recently started exploring different genres to read, with the main reason being that since I have to do book reviews, I might a well expand my horizons.

To give you an idea on how I have expanded my horizons, here is a list of what i have loaded on my Nook. This list is broken down between read & reviewed, waiting to be read & reviewed and one that I'd recently finished on Thanksgiving and reviewed. If any of these titles intrigue you, by all means check them out.

Just finished reading: Softly Say Goodbye by KC Sprayberry (YA about teen drinking).

Having read and reviewed:

  1. The Millpond Murder Case by Gary Peterson
  2. The Last Night by Nico Rosso (romance)
  3. The Substitute by James Hatch
  4. Invisible by Jeanne Bannon (YA)
  5. Death & The Journalist by J.L.Petty
  6. Killing Trail by Charles Gramlich (western shorts)
  7. Cutman by Mel Odem
  8. The Chosen by Andrea Buginsky
  9. Adventures of Cash Laramie and Gideon Welles by Edward Grainger
Cued up:

  1. Anna's Vision by Joy Redmond
  2. Crow Feather by Allen Russell
  3. Days of Beer: A Memoir of a Beer Drinkin' Man by Charles Gramlich
  4. The Second Vendetta by Carl Brush
I also have on tap one paperback from UK writer Chris Stovell that I won in a contest that I need to review as well.

And....I have 4 others in paperback from Solstice authors that I have read and reviewed that you might want to check out as well.

  1. Soul by Erika Hanson
  2. Year of the Human by Barton Levenson
  3. Ten-A-Week Steale by Stephen Jared
  4. Upon A Crazy Horse by Frank Rogers show you that I am no slouch when it comes to reviewing non-fiction, I have reviewed the following:
  1. An autobio by Sissy Spacek
  2. A bio of Freddie Mercury
What this totals out to be when you add everything up, is that I'm not the voracious reader that I used to be. Which is kind of hard to believe if you just read this post. But if you take in the fact that I've read on the average for this year two thick hardcover books per month, then you can probably get a better understanding of what make me tick as a reader.

So, to borrow from Capitol One, what's in your reading queue and what do you enjoy reading the most?

Monday, December 3, 2012

G.B.'s Disjointed Blog Tour of 2012, Take Cinco

Yowza, yowza, yowza.

The latest stop on G.B.'s Disjointed Blog Tour of 2012 will be at writer Carl Brush's wonderful blog/website Writer Working.

On this stop, I will ruminate on the topic of writing erotica. Please stop by to check it out, and remember, my book is available for your Nook, Kindle and other fine quality e-readers, for the very low price of $2.99. Grab yours today.

Book Trailer

Sunday, December 2, 2012

I's Just Sitting Here...

....trying to figure out how to write a synopsis for an 18,900 word story.

I mean, I had serious problems in writing a synopsis for my novel, but how in the world do you write a synopsis for a novella?

Oh, hello there! Is I, Yello Bear, and I've dropped by to help verbalize what my good buddy G.B. is thinking about today. And I bet you're wondering how my syntax has suddenly become like everyone else's, right? Simple really. I is drunker than Otis Campbell. When I am sober, I talk like the 3rd grade graduate I truly am. But when I've been sucking down the contents of a quality thirty pack for the better part of the day, then I can match verbiage with the best of them. Go figure.

Anyways, my good buddy G.B. is somewhat befuddled today. He recently finished editing (for the 4th time) his longish short story entitled A Shadow Warrior's Redemption, you know, tweaked it, tightened it, polished it, gave it a hotness that would make people sit up and say, "Damn! That some good writing!" and generally have it make sense from beginning to end.

And now, he's having a problem in writing a synopsis for the story. After all, a synopsis is a severely condensed version of your novel, which should cover all the high points, the low point, the conflicts, the resolutions, and the ending, all in under 1,500 words (about 4 pages). But the confusion he's experiencing is trying to condense down a novella into a synopsis of about a page, page and a half tops.

Even more problematic: what p.o.v. and what voice should he write in? 3rd? 1st? Snarky? Angry? Annoyed? Somewhere in between? What can he do to make it stand out?

So many questions and so little time, especially since he would like to enter the novella into a few writing contests for the upcoming year, which is in addition to the submission that he would like to make through normal channels as well.

So G.B. is sitting here in front of his computer, trying to make sense of it all, and coming to the realization that as a writer, he has no sense.

As well as no hook and no synopsis.

In any event, please stay tuned, as another stop is just around the corner for G.B.'s Disjointed Blog Tour of 2012, and from what I understand, it just might be a little bit better than G.B.'s visit to Razored Zen.

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