Friday, April 27, 2007

Warning Labels

Just an update on my piece about terrorists. One of the newer folks on my on-line writer's group took offense to my submission. She suggested that we label anything political with a warning of 'political' and add RW or LW, right or left wing agenda. Of course it brought out opinions. No one wants labels. After a day or so of reading posts and her reluctance to agree with the majority, I posted the following email; 'I like who/what/why discussions about writing styles/topics, both yours and mine, as well as the next person. But, you are dragging this on way too long. As far as labels, consider 'Poppen' a label. I write political, sexy romance, gay, murder and sci-fi stories on occasion. But, I have never been a politician, sex??? unfortunately it's been awhile for this widow, I'm not gay, never even considered murdering anyone (not even an ex-husband) and never seen a Martian. I just find it fun and quite interesting to get into the thought process of unfamiliar things. Try it! I believe it's call growth and is an important ingredient to maturity and tolerance. I've been a member of XXXXXXX for a number of years now and feel like 'I know' several members of the group. They have taught me so much! So, I hate to see this nit picky discussion on labels intrude on what I consider a valuable learning session among excellent writers and 'friends'. So, STOP, already!!! I'm tired of opening up my mailbox and finding a whinny, I must have the last word email from you. Relax, enjoy the supportive camaraderie that has always been a trademark of the XXXXXX crowd. Just remember to watch for the label 'Poppen' and I think if you skip those, you'll be just fine. As for your crits, I think you need to learn to read your crits in the positive, suggestive tone they are offered, relax and enjoy this fine group of writers. I won't bother you with crits from me, but I must tell you that I will miss reading your submission as they are usually well thought out, well paced pieces with delightful messages. Best of luck with your writing.' You guess it, she emailed me with the last word to defend her position and to say she'd avoid my subs. I let her have her last word and I hope the issue is closed. I'll never understand why folks ask to be a member of something and then want to change it. One nice thing for me is that I received some very supportive emails. Like I tried to tell this writer, this group is populated by a talented, supportive bunch of writers. Oh, on a different subject. I helped my blind friend Shirley with a phone call to her editor regarding her ebook. Later, a florist delivery truck pulled up in front of my house and Shirley had sent me a dozen, long stem, salmon colored roses! They are beautiful! I called her and told her I had two things to say to her. One, thank you, so much and two, don't do it again! Friends are supposed to help friends! Isn't she a sweetie. New subject. I've run into a dreamy young man at the local coffee kiosk. I've been telling my friends that if it weren't for the vast age difference, I might check it out. Now, they are teasing me about it and telling me to 'go for it'. I was thinking about it and thought it might make a good story. So, I sat down and it almost wrote itself. It's a little X rated. I sent it out to one of my on-line writing groups for crits, but its 1800+ words, so probably won't get any bites. Just wanted some feedback before I submitted it to a couple romance website for publication. So, it's been a busy week. Tomorrow, I'm off to Laughlin for a family BBQ with my brother and his family. It's the annual Motorcycle Rally week and there are jillions of motorcycles everywhere. I must really love family to make the trek (about 120 miles roundtrip) on this weekend and I do. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

More Sales!!

I went to help my 92 year-old writer friend Shirley Wolford this am. She has macular degeneration, but still she writes. She had an ebook/POD published, 'Voice of the Turtledove', a few weeks ago and today, I helped her send in the final galley's for yet another book. I told her that when I was at Hastings Book & Music Store the other day, I didn't see any copies of my novel 'After the War, Before the Peace'. They try to keep 5 copies of it on hand in their local author's section. She suggested we call Hastings to see if they'll take 5 of her books on consignment and of course Peter, the book manager, said yes. Then, I asked him to check to see if he needed any of my books. He checked and found all 5 had been sold and they didn't have any on hand! So, I took him 5 and picked up some moola! Yeah! I swear, this book is going to sell big, some day!!! Anyway, it was fun and to be truthful, very rewarding. Today, I finally finished my Telephone Pioneer newsletter. I'm late with it this month, but they'll get it in time for all the functions/fundraisers. Also, I'm getting feedback on the story I wrote from the Al Qaida POV where they are sitting in limestone caves and planning the mayhem/destruction they will visit on the U.S. if a soft president is elected. Not getting too much feedback, but what I'm getting is words like 'Wow', Excellent Writing' and 'Probably some truth in it.' Got to get some sleep. Tomorrow is Hug-A-Bear day among a billion other things. Besides, I'm sure I'll have pleasant dreams now that I know I sold another 5 books.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Marketing, Authors and Dad

Been super busy with the Xlibris marketing program. Had to provide lots of info so they can put together enticing requests for reviews/interviews and an interesting blurb about the book to be mailed to various web sites and email recipients. It all looks good and the two women I've been working with have been attentive and have expressed an urgency to get things moving. I've got my fingers crossed. Had my local writer's meeting today. My last submission was supposed to be an X-rated piece, but most felt it was an erotic romance story, but didn't rate an X. I'm hopeless, I guess. I finally finished my Krantz book and it closed with the ending I suspected, so no twists to surprise the reader. Still, I liked her characters and that's what held my interest. Then I read the Zane Grey book about hunting mountain lions at the Grand Canyon. There were paragraphs that were quite vivid (the reader group decided that he had to be very descriptive because there wasn't TV in those days and he had to make the west quite real to his readers). I didn't care for his writing like I did Louis LaMoure and probably won't read Grey again. Now, I'm reading 'Skinny Dip' by Carl Hiaasen. I don't like any of his characters, but I love the way he puts words together and his character expo ability. I got another episode of 'Hannah' done. It should only take about two more episodes to get to a closing point. Then, I'll offer it as an ebook. Also, got around to writing a short sci-fi story. Was fun to be creative again. Got a crit from one of my on line writer's group and the gal said she enjoyed my blog. Wow! Someone read it!!!!! Wait, should I want folks to read these scribbles??? :-) After our meeting today, we gathered at Denny's for snacks and chat. Two of the members are winter folks and will be leaving for their summer homes within a week or so. Gosh I'll miss them. Thank goodness for email. I'm off to bed now. Need to get up early to go visit my dad's gravesite. He was a great guy and I miss him. I take him a can of beer and a quarter. He loved to play the keno slot machines in the local casino, so I leave him a quarter grubstake every year on his birthday. I pop the top of the beer and take a few swigs as I 'talk' to him, then leave the can with the rest of the beer next to the quarter. He was a great guy! He became my stepfather when I was nine. He is a perfect example of the saying that 'sperm creates a life, but it doesn't necessarily create a father.' He was a father. A damn good father and tho he's been gone ten years, I still miss knowing that he's in the wings ready to help me through the occasional mess I can make of my life. So, until next time .....