Saturday, April 30, 2016

Playing Catch Up...

     So… It’s been a few weeks since I’ve done a blog. The first week I missed was because I was in New York City for the Rainbow Book Fair. It was a busy weekend, and to be honest, I was taking a lot of pain killers for my feet. I had to admit to myself that I just can’t do the things that I used to do. I knew that day was coming, but I chose to ignore it and push ahead.
     The reality is that I’m not going to be able to put off the surgery that was recommended some five years ago. I have yet to follow through with setting up the appointments, but they will be happening.
     The second week I missed was simply laziness on my part. Well, that and I was still having issues and a lot of pain, but mostly, I was just putting it off. There are times when I’m just not in a good frame of mind to do a blog. I often try to keep it upbeat if not downright silly.
     This past week… I was thinking. When I have a problem, I like to sit on it a bit. Let it percolate and see what comes out. It’s a process for me. There are times when it is a good thing and then… not so good. This was a not so good time.
     I had a conversation with someone that I enjoy being around, respect and consider a friend. Of course I knew that he was religious and I can respect that. To each their own. As long as I don’t have to listen to the rhetoric, I’m good… up to a point.
     My writing, my work, is a big part of my life. I was talking about the book that I just finished and the one that was coming out in both French and Italian, as well as the novella that should be available around the same time, the novella for charity.
     When I didn’t get a response I looked and their face was tight, eyes averted as they continued to work. I knew what they was thinking, but I asked anyway. I wasn’t surprised at the response. I figured it was coming.
     “You know I don’t believe in that. Your lifestyle is your choice and I can’t condone it.”
     Okay, I get it. There are a lot of people out there who still believe it is a choice. But someone who is that intelligent, that smart, who still believes that amazes me. That I just don’t understand.
     Now realize I’ve dealt with this for years. I’m no spring chicken and I’ve learned to accept that people just are going to think that and move on. I always think the same thing…
     Yeah, I chose this. Who in their right mind would want to be gay, to be an outcast?
     That is how I used to think. To some degree I still think that, right before I say “Fuck ‘em”.
     So why did it hurt this time? As I said… I like this person. I respect this person. I like being around this person. The realization that the feeling wasn’t mutual was like being slapped in the face with a cold, wet, dead fish.
     I also understand that this a belief that has been ingrained in them for most, if not all of their life and it isn’t going to change anytime soon, if ever. Been there, done that. Doesn’t mean that it still didn’t hurt.
     I will continue doing what I normally do. I won’t say anything, but I won’t hide who I am either. There’s no doubt that there are things that I say that will make them uncomfortable and there are times I purposefully do it but always in fun. But hey, that’s who I am. Yeah, I admit… I brought in powdered doughnuts one day and snickered the entire time. If they only knew, right?
     Who wants to bet that this is going to find its way into a storyline in a book? Of course it is… sometime, somewhere.
     Speaking of books…
     Did you know that I just finished a book? It has now gone through numerous beta reads and is now at the editors. It is a little something different than what I’ve done before. Yeah… I know… I never seem to stick with any one type of sub-genre. What some of the beta readers have said...
"I think this is the best book you've written so far."
"I have book hangover, thanks for that."
"Five paragraphs and I'm hooked. Five stinkin' paragraphs."
"I hate you and love you at the same time."
     I gave you My Hero: The Olympian, which is more on the fluffy side. This time, not much fluff. I took on a serious subject that I feel needs more attention. Once again, I took part of a story I heard on the news, then a piece from somewhere else, a little of this, a little of that. Damn, it sounds a little bit like how I cook!
     Anyway, I hope that everyone likes it. Might reserve a tissue box. Oh don’t worry, you’ll laugh and smile too. It’s not all gloom and doom.

     There is another book that will be out soon; a novella. It’s called A Bear in Paris. This is only one of four books in this series. The other three are written by some other wonderful authors and it is all for charity. I’ll go more into that before it is released. I think everyone will like it. I know I loved being able to write it. It really is my love affair with Paris and the great people that I had the opportunity to meet there.
     You know I'm always preaching on about helping others, right? Well I did that, or tried at least. There are some people who need a hand up, who could really benefit with a fresh start. However, they have to want to participate and not screw it up.
     This happened to me recently. I reached out, gave someone a chance and they screwed it up. Sad that they threw away a decent chance, but hey... at the end of the day, you can only lead a horse to water but you can't make them drink. That's kind of how I feel about this.
     It doesn't mean that I won't keep doing things for others. Most really appreciate the helping hand, but there is always going to be that one. Oh well. I did what I thought was best. I wonder if I will still get Karma Coins for it?
     That's about all I got for this time. Have a grrreat week, y'all.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Mad Ramblings From A Mad Gay Man...

     So… what’s been goin’ on y’all? Have you had a good week?
     Here we are again… Monday. Yay! I can only imagine how many of you want to hit me about now. He he he… 

     This is going to be one of those times when I have no specific theme in mind, so I’m going to just kind of ramble along and see where this ends up.

News Alert! Hello New York City!
If it snows, I'll be so pissed!

     I will be arriving in New York Thursday afternoon. I’m going for the Rainbow Book Fair. This will be the first time that I’ve done this event and I’m really looking forward to it. There will be so many great M/M authors there as well as many other genres. I can’t wait to experience this wonderful event. I’ve heard a lot of wonderful things about it, so I figured I should give it a try. So anyone who is in or around New York, why not swing by and say hello.
Rainbow Book Fair
524 W. 59th St. (Just west of 10th Ave.)
Saturday, April 9, 2016 12:00 p.m. – 6 p.m.
     I will have copies of all my backlist available (in English). So stop on by if you’re going to be in the area.
     Even though I will be out of town, I will do my best to keep up with everything, including my daily Facebook coffee posts. But if I miss a day, you’ll know I was either on the run or… well shit happens sometimes.
     What else…
     This past week I found out a few things about Smashwords and the distributors they deal with. One in particular stood out, mainly because of the sales report I saw. Scribd is one of those that I’d never heard of. I think I may have mentioned it last week. Well, I dug a little deeper and I was really surprised that I’d never heard of it. Looks like a pretty good deal if you ask me. Granted, I’ve not used it, and I don’t see myself signing up for it anytime soon. I’ve got a To-Be-Read file I mile high as it is. If there is anyone out there who uses Scribd, I’d like to hear from you.
     I’m really proud to announce that most everything in my back list is now available on many distributor sites. Thanks to The Aussie Tart (TAT) for having the patience to persevere to get this done. I’d never have the patience to do it. Honestly, I’d probably have thrown the computer out the door before I even got one book done.

     Here is the list of retailer where you can find my stuff…
Amazon, Apple, Baker & Taylor Blio, Barnes & Noble, Diesel, Flipkart, Gardners Extended Retail & Library, Inktera, Kobo, Library Direct, Odilo, OverDrive, Oyster, Scribd, Smashwords, Sony, Tolino, txtr and Yuzo.
     Frankly, I’ve never heard of most of these, but hey, they are carrying my books and many other wonderful authors, so I figured I’d go ahead and list them.
     Now, while I was exploring these retail sites I noticed a fellow author who is also listed there. Damn, but this author is productive! I’m talking hundreds of books. I can only bow, take my hat off to him, you know what I mean. Wow… just… wow. At first I felt dwarfed by this giant of a writer. It didn’t last long though. In reality, I’ve only been doing this for three years, so I’m still a newbie. Then I thought about it some more and went back and looked again. Hmmm…
     Now do not get me wrong, I’m not putting down anyone or their work. However, the biggest thing I noticed is that my books, most of them anyway, are two or three times longer in length. One is almost four times longer.

     How I work…
     This whole writing thing is still new to me I guess. I try and take my time to make sure I get it right. By that I mean, I try and let the characters tell their stories. This is one reason why doing an outline of a plotline doesn’t work for me. My characters have minds of their own, and there is no sense in me spending the time with an outline when they take over and do whatever the hell they want to anyway. Pfft… I have no control over them. Pisses me off sometimes, but hey, that’s the way it goes.
     I may only turn out a book a year, but I do put a lot into it. I also have to remind myself that I’m the publisher. I get to do it all. I don’t have a publisher that is taking care of the cover, the promotion, the book keeping, the editing, formatting and the printing. All this… stuff takes time. A LOT of time.
     Now I don’t feel so bad. Go me.
     What's new...
     As some of you may know, I just finished a book. Yeah… it’s one of those that I’d been working on for a long while. While I was writing My Hero: The Olympian, I’d sometimes get stuck and then I’d jump over to this one for a while. I would have gotten it done sooner, but sometimes life just gets in the way. I’m sure most of you know how that goes. Anyway, I hope to have it out by the end of May. For now, all I’m going to tell you is the title: Life After Living.
     There are a lot of funny parts in this one, but a good deal of the humor is what I'd say is a coping mechanism. Personally, I think it is a topic that needs attention. I really like to push myself and thus, taking you, the reader, along with me.
     Anyway, I’m working hard on getting it ready for release. I’ll let you know when I’m close.

     I got an email from a reader recently asking me if some of the foods I talk about are real recipes. In this particular instance it was the Peanut Butter Chicken dish. Yes, it is real, as are the other foods I talk about. I was a Chef for many years, and a total foodie. I can’t help it if it bleeds over into my writing.
     I guess that’s about all I’ve got for this week. Happy Monday. Go forth and conquer. Be kind to one another, help those who can’t help themselves or are less fortunate. I did my bit this week. Did you?
     Have a grrreat week, y’all.