Happy Vernal Equinox

Happy Vernal Equinox everyone. This is the first day of Spring, the beginning of the work week, the onset of our later lives. With some helpful changes in our home life and changes in my medication and supplement regimen, I hope to opening up a happier, more productive period of my life.

The twenty-second anniversary of my daughter’s death is also coming up this week. Hard to have much to say in that context that isn’t like opening a vein. And I’ve made promises that I would not be opening any veins in the foreseeable future.

Move forward, look back, take your vitamins.

Smell the flowers for me.

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October Surprise

Yesterday was a very good day for me on a literary scale. I found that Kristin Dreyer Kramer had released her review of my second book “Power Tools in the Sacred Grove” yesterday on Lakeshore Public Radio. It was very pleasant to hear her take on my work, even when she pointed out the weakness of it being a transitional middle book, which it is. Just wait until you see what happens in “The Ren Faire at the End of the World” when it comes out next year. No laid-back, transitional there, I promise you.

Anyway, it was very nice to hear, very nice to learn that it is broadcast in Indiana, also. The segment will broadcast on my Columbus local NPR station WCBE Monday evening at 8pm. I’ll save any links until then.

I also found yesterday that I will be a panelist at World Fantasy here over the Halloween weekend. I will be speaking on the panel about Masks in Fantasy Thursday afternoon, and I will have a reading from my WIP RFEW on Friday morning at 10:30 am. All times, I’m sure, will be up for last minute changes. Terry-Linn Smiles and I will be sharing a table in the Dealers Room, so you should be able to catch me and my Arcanum Faire books there throughout the convention.

Last but not least, this weekend will be my first appearance at Imaginarum in Louisville KY. I will be doing panels on writing RPGs, scripts, and Steampunk in general. Unsure if I got a signing slot or not this weekend, but I or my books will be at the Post Mortem Press table in the Dealers Room on a regular basis.

So, Goodbye, thanks for all the literary love and remember to register to vote. Your ballot will be the one to save us from mandatory Federal Spray-Tanning.

 

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ICBM: Intercontinental Bibliophilic Missile.

This week a dear friend flew in from Japan and I was able to put my two books in her hands. Once she gets home, that will be four continents where I will have a literary presence, as sparse as it may be.

You don’t have to fly twenty-five hours to get my books. In fact, if you live in Southern Ohio, I will be coming to you. Friday evening, I will be at the Grand Opening of Keystone Books & Gifts in Circleville, between 6 and 7 p.m.. Come down and you will be able to see the sights before all the pumpkin tourists arrive.

Home

Saturday, the good Lord willin’ and the crick don’t rise, I will be with my publisher Eric Beebe and other members of the Post Mortem Press Cadre to sell and sign books. Our own if we can, or forge others if we have to. My friend Seth Lyons will be there and this event is billed as Stan Lee’s last appearance ever. Join the fun, this will be my third year in a row.

http://cincinnaticomicexpo.com/

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Cliques

I don’t do well with people, as a rule. I don’t have social anxiety, per se, but my tolerance for pettiness and ego approaches zero pretty damn quickly, especially when there is no talent to back it up.

Cliques are the worst of it. In theater, publishing, gaming, and reenacting, cliques are the engines that drive the world. Fannish cliques are perhaps the most galling, cliques of misfits which say “We all like each other because we don’t fit in, but you don’t fit in in entirely the wrong way.”

Good thing I have my wife, my cat, my son and three and a  half jobs.

The truly annoying thing is that all the interactions follow the same blueprint and I keep going through it over and over a gain in hopes that something will change. Here’s the step by step:

1: Friendly overture towards group.

2: Snub, snipe, or incompetent behavior that has to be ascribed to malevolence because “really, how could these people actually be this dumb and run a ()?”

3: I, feeling miffed, point out they are acting in a cliquish/moronic fashion.

4: The group’s representative responds with outrage and sincere hurt that I should think so little of them and their inclusiveness.

5: I apologize for my boorish behavior and promise to make an effort to fit in and be all friendly-like in the future.

6: Second friendly overture.

7: Continued snubbing and incompetence, just to prove I wasn’t hallucinating things the first time.

8: I take up heavy drinking.

I could give you some examples of this, but even with changing names to protect the guilty, it would get back to them. That would be me returning to Step 3, and you see how far that got me on the flow chart.

 

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I haven’t had much to say lately.

SOMETIMES copySo, I’m leaving this:

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Arcanum Old-Fashioned Days

I’ve been thrown off my rhythm by events that didn’t happen a week ago (keep an eye out for a post titled “I Made It All Up”), but  I thought I’d pop in to announce I will be in Arcanum Ohio today, tomorrow, and Sunday. I will be selling my books set in the fictional Arcanum Ohio within a stone’s throw of the lovely cottage that is the Arcanum Public Library.

Saturday is National Readathon Day, so read lots, preferably mine, and stop by the family festival with lumberjacks and chainsaws. I’ll be the man with the black hat, a handlebar mustache and a little red tent.

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Love Amongst the Vikings

This weekend, Kit and I will be gong to the Ashville Viking Festival together. This is a follow-up to our twenty-eighth wedding anniversary last weekend when we attended Ohioana  and the Statehouse reception together, I helped her tag Victorian clothes at The Alley and we fell into unconscious heaps on the bed. We also exchanged wheeled carts: a rolling garden seat for her and a folding dolly for my fifty pounds of books. Apparently, Twenty-Eight years is the Rolling Cart Anniversary.

So.

Come down to the park in Ashville OH. See the Vikings and other reenactors of many ages. Peruse the many renaissance faire style vendors, from food to leather to books. Meet my lovely wife Kit, the Demi-Goddess of Sales and Shopping.

And me and my Arcanum Faire Books, of course. I will even have a few copies of the flash fiction anthology 44 Lies by 22 Liars that includes my flash horror piece about fishing with cormorants.

I kid you not.

Here is the link to actual information:

http://www.ashvillevikingfest.com/

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Rough Sex

It’s been a fun week with a successful Ohioana Book Festival, prepping for the Asheville Viking Festival this weekend and reuniting with my old writer’s group buddies. Beyond the accelerated writing schedule for Book 3 of Arcanum Faire and promotions, there’s been little time for proper blogging.

So, I’ll leave you this. Enjoy!

CARoughSex

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Selling Books with Grown-ups

This Saturday, April 23th, I will get to rub elbows with ninety-nine other authors and meet and greet thousands of Ohio book-lovers. It is the Ohioana Book Festival that features Ohio writers, and/or Ohio content. Since my Arcanum Faire books “Camp Arcanum” and “Power Tools in the Sacred Grove” are set in Arcanum Ohio, Darke county , and I live in the wildlife-rich Columbus suburb of Worthington, I finally qualified.

I will also get to sit on the first literary panel of the day “Urban Fiction and Dystopia” with local genre authors Matt Betts, Laura Bickle, Lissa Bryan and, Terri-Lynne Smiles. Several accomplished genre authors will be sitting in my corner of the hall, so it should be quite a party.

The authors’ reception at the Statehouse afterwards should be a blast, too, though it may be entirely too respectable for the likes of me.

To find out more, check their website:

http://www.ohioana.org/programs/ohioana-book-festival/

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Shrimp clubbing

My wife and I were driving past the Worthington Dairy Queen this afternoon. It was a lovely spring day and many families were congregating outside the walk-up window. There was one little girl, probably four or five, holding her daddy’s hand. She was wearing a gauzy tutu dress of a deep pink color.

I pointed her out to my wife and said:

“She looks like a shrimp.”

“Yes, she does,” Kit agreed. “She’d better not go to Toledo.”

That little exchange makes sense if you go back thirty years and one marriage ago. I was working as a balloon delivery guy and my highly gullible co-worker asked what my first wife and I had done that weekend.  I told her that we had attended the Midwest Shrimp Clubbing Jamboree.

“You see,” I started, “I have this friend in Toledo. He really loves seafood and he has a lot of money. So, he paved about a half-acre of his property in concrete, put a foot tall wall around it and filled it with salt water.

“Then, he stocked the pond with about a million shrimp. Right next to that he set up big  cauldrons of boiling water and picnic tables stocked with all the condiments. He also got in a whole bunch of long sticks from the lumberyard.

He invited everyone he knew, gave them clubs, and let them eat all that they could stun.”

I must have been highly convincing, because, when we picked up my first wife from her job, she asked:

“Did you enjoy going shrimp-clubbing.”

The terse but cruel response explains why that job, or that marriage, didn’t last much longer.

 

 

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