I recently had the privilege of sitting down to an interview with a man who’s known world wide; a man whose public persona is larger than life, but whose private world is shrouded in a centuries old mystery. In this three part series we will discuss his career, his home life, his influence and ultimately his legacy. This is by far the most in-depth post I’ve ever done that I believe you’ll find both eye-opening as well as entertaining. Today I sit down with none other than…
Part one of our interview takes place in Santa’s private quarters at his North Pole command center. Haggard and spent from last night’s epic trip around the world, he nurses what the elves tell me is his “tonic,” prompting me to open questions quickly and dive right into the meat of his story:
Even though I’ve been taking a break from SPaM in order to write the REAPERS WITH ISSUES series, I had to come back today in order to introduce to you all someone truly special. For those of you out there who may not know, there is a rockin’ chick among us who is somewhat new to blogworld. I’ll let her About Me page speak for itself:
Essa Alroc is an Orlando, Florida based freelance writer who published works include “The Blurb About Freshness on the Back of Your Deodorant” and “Understanding Your Utah 529 Plan”. When she’s not at work, fantasizing about setting her cubicle on fire, she is working on her first full length novel. It is not about deodorant or financial aid plans.
1. Your writing style is edgy, to say the least. What influences do you attribute to forming your particular writing style?
I was born and raised on heavy sarcasm and using humor in the place of emotions. My life’s motto is if your going to bitch about something, at least make it funny. That way people will actually listen. When I was growing up, I was an overweight kid with bad teeth, who wore my brothers hand me downs. If it wasn’t for my incredible ability to hurt someone’s feelings, I would have made one hell of a target. Luckily for me, the weight came off, the teeth got fixed with braces, but I never lost the ability to come up with some seriously scathing commentary. I also still wear my brothers hand me downs.
2. You live and write in Florida. How does living in the south influence what you write?
Florida both fascinates and horrifies me. I have a theory that something to do with the heat makes the people here crazy and violent. What I like about this state is that things that would be ridiculous anywhere else seem normal in Florida. I draw on a lot of my experiences here for both my fiction and non fiction work and I never seem to run out of things I write about it. What I dislike about Florida is all the rapes and murders…and lack of Jack in the Boxes. I miss their curly fries.
3. Your page MAKE ME YOUR BITCH speaks to your ability to write for hire. How does writing for someone else’s project differ from writing your own, and what can someone expect in the way of services?
My first love is humor writing, but in today’s market, it’s not a viable career option. Luckily, thanks to the plethora of jobs I’ve had, I’m able to write about a large range of subjects and still make them readable (and g-rated). My goal when I’m writing someone’s page is to get them SEO hits and at the same time, give value to the reader who was searching for their page in the first place. When someone types a query into a search engine, they’re not looking to get sold something. They’re looking for an answer to their question. My goal is to answer that question and still make my clients page come out on top. At the same time, I have to keep it free of my personal opinion and four letter words. Sometimes it’s easy, like when I’m writing an article about medical marijuana. Sometimes, it’s impossible, like when I’m trying to come up with 10 things I like about Mitt Romney. Number 1 was his hair.
4. Tell us about STRANGELY SOBER.
Strangely Sober was a novel born of frustration. Frankly, I was tired of reading about unworldly heroines who need the hero to show them how things are done. I’m not like that, and I don’t think most women are like that. Having a vagina doesn’t make me a bumbling, clumsy, insecure mess who can’t handle life on her own. I’ve lived a full life and I think a lot of people have. I created my protagonist, Angelica Salvatori, AKA Sal, because of that. She drinks too much. She smokes too much. She lives everyday like zombie apocalypse is right around the corner. She adapts and re adjusts as necessary. Personally, I think that’s what life is all about.
5. Tell us about ASYMMETRIC ANGELS.
I wrote Asymmetric because I didn’t feel ready to let go of Sal. There were some loose ends to tie up from the first novel and I didn’t think her story was over yet. Asymmetric has been a challenge to write, because it’s got some strong religions undertones in it, despite the fact that I am not remotely religious. It’s a sequel to my first novel and its where my heroine, Sal, tries to create a shaky opinion on faith and at the same time, tries to adapt to a world that is constantly changing for her. Asymmetric is a novel about getting to know yourself. It also has explosions, a high body count and a recurring Gary Busey hallucination. Can’t disappoint my readers while I’m trying to be artsy.
6. How does blogging effect writing, if at all?
Blogging is a release for me. Its entertainment writing in its highest form. I don’t use my webpage in my portfolio, because it’s my hobby. I don’t allow marketing on it, and even my own marketing blurb for my business is kind of a joke. I don’t want my readers distracted by ads. I want them to laugh. I don’t censor myself and I don’t want to do that for a sponsor. All my blogs are born out of an everyday experience that can be made ridiculous using the right words. The world is a ridiculous place, and the ability to laugh at that ridiculousness makes us powerful. I laugh at the Westborough Baptist Church, the economic crisis and child prostitution because I understand the power of humor. I go by the lessons I’ve learned from George Carlin and Richard Prior. ANY topic can be made funny when given the right delivery. That approach makes me fearless in my writing.
7. What have you learned most from writing your novel?
Be prepared for change. When I originally wrote ‘Strangely’, it was called ‘Unforgettable’ and it was written about a schoolteacher with eidetic memory. Two days before I released it, NBC released a show called “Unforgettable”, about a cop with eidetic memory. Instead of releasing it anyway, or trashing the whole series, I adapted it, changed it, until it was a completely different novel. Now, I’m glad that happened, because ‘Strangely” is about 10000 times better than what it was originally.
8. What advice would you give other would-be novelists?
Put your novel away for 6 weeks after you finish it and then read it again. It’s like being a first time reader. Maybe you realize your novel is, in fact, genius. Maybe you realize its crap. Maybe NBC puts out yet another shitty crime drama show and you have to start all over. Either way, you’ll be glad you did it.
9. Who are your favorite authors?
I love Jacqueline Susann, because she made trash literary genius. Read “Valley of the Dolls” closely and you realize that Neely O’Hara is Scarlett O’Hara. I love Piers Anthony because he makes sci-fi/fantasy a commentary on politics that hasn’t been met since Orwell’s “1984”. Finally, I love Tim Dorsey because he writes about Florida with tongue in cheek humor that delivers both admiration and disdain for this wild and crazy state. If Serge Storms were real, I would totally be stalking him.
10. Where do you see your next project taking you?
Well, the final book in the bar series, Gio’s Gift, is already breaking my heart because I’m murdering off a character I’ve grown very attached too. After I’ve uncurled myself from my sobbing emo ball, I’ll be working on something I’m calling the Dark/Light series, which I’m hoping comes to par with some of Anthony’s more political novels. It will be my first foray into science fiction and is loosely based on Nietzsche assertion that God is dead. Personally, I don’t think God is dead. I think he’s a sandwich artist at Subway…at least, he will be in my book. I hope eventually to make enough from my humor and fiction projects to focus on them full time. I think as long as I keep typing away and putting my best literary foot forward, it will happen.
Or I’ll wind up a sandwich artist at Subway.
GET A FREE DIGITAL COPY OF STRANGELY SOBER TODAY ONLY BY CLICKING BELOW:
TODAY IS THE FIRST ANNIVERSARY OF MY BLOG! TO COMMEMORATE THIS AUSPICIOUS OCCASION I HAVE DECIDED TO RERUN MY VERY FIRST BLOG POST.
PLEASE TO ENJOY…
So yeah, I wrote a book.
I must have been high when I wrote it because there’s no other explanation I can give for my 120,000 word upper YA novel where the only noun I used more than “boner” was “blood.” It goes without saying that I’m self-published. I didn’t even try to submit it traditionally. Can you just imagine the poor agent who gets my query letter?
“My novel, THE GODS OF ASPHALT is complete at 120,000 words and is the first in a series of five books that for some reason I’ve decided to write out-of-order. Each one is told from the point of view of a teenage male protagonist who has exactly zero supernatural powers (unless you consider perpetual erections a superpower). Oh, and it also has Spanish subtitles.”
On the good side, if you’re like me and are just a little too into music, motorcycles and all around badassery this is the book for you. If you’re not, I’m sure Jodi Picoult’s got a blog somewhere. You can find the opening to chapter one at the top of the page under the tab GOA REVIEWS and you can find my book on line at:
*** I AM STILL BEING HELD CAPTIVE BY NINJAS- SO THIS WEEK’S SPAM IS A REBLOG OF OUR GOOD FRIEND AND PLAYER RONNIE FROM THE LIBRA CHRONICLES ***
Take one part modern-day bachelor, two parts savvy player, add a splash of Cointreau and you get THE LIBRA CHRONICLES; an unapologetic blog that asks the question, “Can a blog really make it when the writer does not try to make a blog that targets special key words, certain audiences, weight loss or fitness or celebrities or some certain NICHE?”
I didn’t know the answer to that question when I first stumbled onto Ronnie Libra’s blog, but all it took was one look at his tag cloud filled with words like SEDUCTION, KEY WEST and POLYSOMNOGRAPHY to know that I wouldn’t be bored finding out.
*** So Ronnie, you describe your blog in your WHAT IS ALL THIS INSOLENCE page as an “experiment” in finding your target audience without the use of buzz words. Has your experiment revealed the results of who your target audience is?
I bet, like my mind, my target will be “Kid in a Candy Shop.” Or more appropriately, “Ronnie in a Bar.” So many flavors, why just settle for the same one all the time?
*** In your page THE SEDUCTION CHRONICLES you include stories that you describe as including the “rawness and reality” of seduction. What motivated you to include these stories?
Hundreds of posts on private seduction forums. People who’ve read them always tell me they are very inspirational, so I figured, what the fuck…. I may as well share them with more people. If I can reach out to that one person who get’s inspired then kick ass! I have done my duty.
*** In addition to dating advice you have posts that focus on philosophy and inspiration. What has inspired you recently that you’d like readers to take away from your blog?
Momentum… Keep doing what you love… Make it happen. Fuck failure and fuck the outcome. Go for it anyway. Even if you are failing, keep going because the more steps you take towards your goals the better your momentum will be to take those steps. Be cool with failing, dammit. Penicillin was a mistake. OOOOHhhhh and some kick ass music, Music is my life. I recharge off of it. I have a giant history in my mind of music I love and I feel that, most of my life, every day can have a theme song.
*** Many of your posts include sometimes graphic descriptions of many of your sexual escapades. Do you find it difficult to share these experiences with your readers? And what do you hope you can pass on in the way of knowledge?
Not difficult at all. If you read the book, “My Secret Garden” by Nancy Friday, which is a book on REAL women’s fantasies, my reports become rated PG. ;) I’m trying to convey the process of Seduction with my writing. Later, I may delve more into the actual sexuality and passion as well, I’m sure I will.
Here’s what I want. I want people to be cool with seduction. It’s not some taboo shit. It’s everyday reality. It’s happening all around us. The girl that I just looked at, while thinking, that made eye contact and looked away. It’s natural.
I want that guy or that girl who sees that sexy motherfucker they want to meet to go do it. Go meet that person!
*** What would you like men to take away from your blog?
I haven’t really thought about this. Maybe inspiration. Maybe to get a little mad or inspired inside and say, “If this asshole can do this so can I!”
*** What would you like women to take away from your blog?
Women readers seem to be the main readers so far in my blog. I would almost want to ask them, “What do you hope to find here? or Why are you coming back? or even, “Let’s say my blog was your dirty little secret that no one would ever find out about. What would you want it to be like?”
*** What can we expect from THE LIBRA CHRONICLES in the future?
Utter Sexy Randomness. Chocolate, Vanilla, Strawberry and sometimes Chicken Fried Rice. Ya, it doesn’t have to make sense. And music. Lots and lots of music.
Follow Ronnie at THE LIBRA CHRONICLES
Have a blog, book or music to promote? Contact me for your own feature on SPaM at email@example.com
This seems really odd to say, but today is the birthday I assigned the character of Sawyer in my novel, The Gods of Asphalt. His birthday features prominently in the book so I thought I’d answer some questions I’ve been asked over the past year about his character.
1. Why did you pick April 30th for his birthday?
I knew from the beginning he would wreck a motorcycle on his birthday so I needed it to take place during warm weather– but before his high school graduation. Research revealed that Nebraska high schools let out the first weekend in May so there was my time crunch. I wanted the added insult of him screwing up his life the instant it became his to own. Besides, Sawyer shares his birthday with someone pretty awesome.
Sawyer is sort of a default name. In my real life there is a real River, although he is nothing like the River character (I based the River character on someone elses life entirely). I always knew that I would name the character of the blonde older brother River, so I had to think of a name that was in the same vein for the younger brother. Thus Sawyer was born, and not Steve.
3. Why is Sawyer so tall?
Sawyer is tall because it allows him to be good at basketball. Sawyer needed a way out of his father’s life so I gave him basketball because it offers scholarships as well as being the perfect sport for a kid who lives on the road. Football requires gear, baseball requires a team, track requires good weather but basketball can be played anywhere, anytime with anyone. All you need is a ball.
4. Why do you describe Sawyer looking the way you do?
My kids helped with this one. My son Junior HATES being called pretty when compared to his good-looking, blonde older brother Prince Charming. I described Sawyer to my daughter and she instantly pulled up a television show called BIG TIME RUSH and said, “I think you are describing this guy.” In that moment James Maslow became my vision for Sawyer. I even wrote a little snippet in my book for him. I’m my daughter’s hero for that.
5. Why is Sawyer’s jersey number 13?
Because number 13 belongs to Steve Nash, my all time favorite basketball player.
6. How come Sawyer can sing?
Because I can’t. No, seriously; basketball was what Sawyer was good at, but music was what he loved and what his mother robbed him of.
7. Does Sawyer ever get Sarah?
Seeing as I am neck deep in various writing projects, I’ve decided to start reblogging SPaM posts every other Monday. So take it away Edward Hotspur!
WELCOME TO…SPaM! (Shameless Promotion Monday)
I decided to take my fear of belief in Karma and offer my blog post on Mondays to someone who wants to be heard; be it writer, artist, musician, blogger, what have you. I hope to do this every Monday so if you or anyone you know is interested then shoot me an email at: firstname.lastname@example.org
First up is blogger extraordinaire….EDWARD HOTSPUR!
I’m not exactly sure when I first stumbled onto Edward’s blog, but I’m glad I did. He’s like that guy you see in movies everywhere that you don’t know the name of but it doesn’t stop you from pointing at the screen and shouting, “Hey! It’s that guy!” As time goes on you notice him more and more and then once he makes it big you shout to everyone how you knew he’d make it all along. Well, today I’m shouting…
Whether it’s taking a virtual car ride alongside him to work or listening to his Zagnut packed tales of Granite Countertop–Private Investigator; every moment spent on the Hotspur blog is an online wet dream dripping in awesome sauce. Now let’s hear from the man himself.
So Edward…what prompted you to create such an awesome blog?
There was this flashing thing which I believe is called a ‘cursor’, and it seemed to want me to do something. Actually, I think of random stuff all the time and wanted to incorporate this weird but good stuff in something, like the first guy who ate lobster. The digital voice recorder helped with that. For me, this blog is like my Twitter, except instead of having 160 characters I have 5000+ words. Also, I must be honest – I chopped down the cherry tr – no, wait, what I meant to say was I hoped to make money at it.
How did you come up with the character “Granite Countertop?”
I actually came up with it, or him, right on the spot, and the process of that appears in Scenes From A Morning Drive 15. Behind the scenes (see what I did there?), there was one more part of the process, and that is that I was really sick, and on some cold medication. The meds really took the filter off – yes, imagine me with no filter – and I just went with it. A part of me wants to never get better so I can keep writing all the things! But the part of me that is sore and tired of being sick knows that this happy place can’t last forever. I’ll have to find another one.
I know I’d love to see Granite Countertop published somehow. Is this something you’re considering or is he just for fun?
Granite Countertop practically writes itself, plus it’s really easy to clean. I just put a pen to some paper, and come back and things have been written down for me. It was just for fun, but some people seemed to like it/him. If there’s any way to make a little money at something that is really fun, I don’t see why I wouldn’t publish something, if I can figure out how. Some of you might think I’m a little obsessed with money, but I’m not. I’m obsessed with bling, and you need money for that. No, seriously, I have found that if I plan things out, really think about what I’m writing and outline where I want a blog post, flash fiction story or some other piece to go, it kind of sucks. Whereas if I just sit down and start writing, it sucks a little less. So you can see, doing less work results in a slightly less bad product. That’s efficiency, baby!
Name the three things you’re most known for:
Aside from inventing the wheel, I am known for a sarcastic dry sense of humor, an enormously huge penchant for the absurd, and a tendency to end a sentence with a word that you don’t avocado.
Name the three things most people don’t know about you:
Most people don’t know that I’m older than I look, that I’m very romantic, or that I’ve got this blog. Sigh.
If someone made a movie of your life, who’d play you?
A robot of me would play me. It’s the only way to properly capture all the nuances and shadows of my personage.
What more can we expect from Edward Hotspur in the future?
I plan on finishing the novel I have started, which I estimate to be about 1/3 finished, and trying to shop that around, however that is done. I also plan on recording two songs with a friend of mine, and possibly shooting a video for one of them. I also have written several short stories and the first 4-5 episodes of a serial (other than Granite Countertop). I’ve written about 20 songs for a J-rock visual kei opera based on Shinto mythology set in modern times. I’ve got to say, though, the immediate satisfaction of writing, publishing and getting feedback from a blog post is pretty hard to beat, so many, many more posts will be coming in the future. I might do one of those user-generated content sites.
Plus, there’s that secret project I’m working on, that I will reveal to everyone in, say, a few weeks? Or however long it takes me to do it.
You can follow Edward’s blog HERE
He also has merchandise for sale HERE
I can tell you this is one fan that’ll be rockin’ a Hotspur tee shortly. Be warned, they’re only for the truly “awesome.” No posers or Yankees fans allowed (well, maybe Yankees fans. But you pay extra).
Break out the Sex Wax and Longboards because today’s featured SPaM is blogworld’s own personal Moondoggie. When he’s not waxing poetic about Harry Potter in Limerick form he’s listening to music or hanging ten down in NYC.
Make way for the very handsome…EL GUAPO!!!!
The interview was conducted with me wearing this shirt. And nothing else.
Interview’s Music: Ravel’s Bolero…
**** 1. Where does your love of music come from?
IrishPaul, Other Paul, Big Mike.
Irish Paul knows the entire discographies of some of the most obscure bands on earth.
OtherPaul listens to a lot of techno and industrial, that isn’t really my thing, but there are some gems in there.
Big Mike is an encyclopedia of classic and Southern rock.
Once went to a concert with Big Mike and IrishPaul. They got into a conversation that was like sitting in on a master class of music appreciation.
Because of them, I got to appreciate a lot of stuff you won’t hear on classic rock stations.
And now there is very little I won’t listen to.
As an aside – if you’re going to travel to see a show with IrishPaul, budget twice the drinking money you though t you needed, and at least one extra recovery day.
**** 2. Name four songs that you’d include in a soundtrack of your life.
This song is next to impossible to answer. The songs change from moment to moment.
But I would include
Eric Clapton: Layla – It’s the primal scream of rock n roll
They Might Be Giants: Birdhouse in your soul. It’s the song for me and my girl.
John Coltrane: Favorite Things. If this doesn’t move you, you’re already dead.
Jimmy Buffett:: Landfall. It’s a great song, and has the line “If I had it all to do over again/I’d just get myself drunk and I’d jump right back in.
But seriously, as soon as I hit send, the answers will change.
**** 3. Does living in NYC affect your surfing?
The best part of being a surfer with a board living in NYC is the conversations I’ve struck up at 7am with passersby when I’m trapping the board to the roof.
And driving through neighborhoods where no one has ever heard of surfing with a board strapped to my car.
**** 4. Which one of your “toys” is your favorite and why?
My Takamine Jasmine acoustic cutaway guitar.
I was telling my girl (the most wonderful girl in the universe) that I would love a cutaway, but couldn’t justify spending the money on it.
So she went out and bought me one. And the sound of it with light strings is perfect!
**** 5. Best and worst concert ever.
Worst is easy. The only concert I ever walked out on was Damien Rice.
He told great stories between the songs, but the songs were too depressing.
Then he starts singing about his Eskimo friend.
And 3000 hipster yuppies start holding up their lighters and chanting.
My girl and I looked at each other, then ran out before we exploded with laughter.
Pretty sure we’d have been lynched if we did it in our seats…
This is kind of a cop-out, but best concert is any of them when the act is into what they’re doing, and brings the crowd along.
As opposed to Blues Traveller, who were really into what they were doing, which was mostly jerking each other off.
An example of a fun show – Hootie and The Blowfish, years ago in a 500 person SRO room. during the world series. They’re a great pop-rock bar band.
Every so often one of them would wander offstage, and come back with a bottle of SoCo to share with the band, and the updated score. I think if no one showed up for that gig, they’d have played anyway and had just as good a time.
**** 6. Dead musician you’d resurrect.
Toss up between Miles Davis and Jimi Hendrix.
If they played together, I would commit Class A felonies to get a ticket to that.
But since I’m just resurrecting willy-nilly, throw Mel Blanc in there too.
What? He sang “Barber of Seville” as Elmer Fudd. That’s gotta be worth something.
**** 7. How long does it take for you to come up with your limericks?
There’s no rhyme or reason to the limericks.
The first one was for The Fountainhead, in response to a conversation on twitter. That just appeared, whole.
The one for your book (http://guapola.wordpress.com/2011/12/28/a-literary-limerick-gods-of-asphalt/) was hard, because I wanted it to actually work.
Fortunately, I don’t use vast parts of my brain, so once I figure out what it should say, I just let it stew around in the mental abscesses until something fits.
(I can’t believe you want to know about the limericks)
**** 8. You mention activities like skydiving, hangliding and scuba diving. Is there anything you won’t do?
Ice Climbing. Seriously, those guys are way off the crazy scale.
In a bad way.
**** 9. Where do you come up with the idea for Friday Foolishness?
The first poll I ever did was titled “A Poll For Y’Oll”. (http://guapola.wordpress.com/2011/10/28/), which (believe it or not) was not the most inane poll ever.
In the post, I said I thought it might be fun to have a theme, and call it Friday Foolishness.
The comments (both of them) were very supportive.
But how I come up with each poll? I swear to you, I have no idea.
Usually, if there’s something going on in the world, I’ll say to my girl, hey, how about this.
Then I’ll just bounce ideas off her until I get the right expression of appalled. That’s when I know I’ve hit my mark.
About the foolishness, I’ve gotten a few comments that people look forward to them, but the best was one on a Friday at 7 am, before the post went up, from Kayjai that said
“Uh, hello?? It’s Friday??? Have you forgotten the foolishness?? *sigh* Okay…I’ll wait………………………………………………………………………………..”
One of the best comments ever.
**** 10. Every music lovin’ surfer needs an epic automobile. Your dream car is….?
1964 ½ flat black convertible standard transmission Mustang.
Sorry, was I supposed to think about that for a minute?
Oh, and I’d upgrade the stereo from stock.
For more fun in the sun follow EL GUAPO
For your own featured SPaM contact me at email@example.com
Draw the curtains and kick the kiddos out of the room because today’s SPaM has gone blue. Our featured blogger is the illustrious R.B. Hatch, author of HAREM’S MASTER; a thrilling novel about love and loss and sex. Lots and lots of sex. Now let’s get down to business.
**** 1. What was your inspiration for Harem’s Master?
My health. When I became physically unable to work my wife took on the responsibility of earning our living. Being an older woman at a time when younger people were being laid off from their jobs, all she could find was low paying, part time work. Getting a book published was the only way I could think off to help her.
**** 2. Why erotica?
The first answer to pop into my mind; did Hugh Heffner go broke peddling sex? Another answer that occurs to me is, why not? The physical might not be up to much anymore, and the flame of passion may not burn as bright as in days of yore, but the interest is still interested.
**** 3. Tell us about your sequel to Harem’s Master.
That would be Harem Master: The Price of Victory; the second in the Harem Master trilogy. Would it surprise you to learn that the hero still gets laid a lot? Other than that, John’s war against crime goes global, but TerraCop has a rotten branch way up near the top of the tree where lives only comrades and friends of many years standing. At that level, the only answer to treason is death. John’s investigations reveal the traitor and he arranges the man’s execution. Then, sorely wounded in mind and spirit, John goes away by himself to pout in peace for a while. Returning to Xanadu, TerraCop’s headquarters, John is critically injured in a plane crash. Barely recovered from his injuries John collects another lady in his harem. Against advise, common sense, and the pleas of his ladies, John accompanies Fox Force and his ladies in what should be the decisive battle of his war. He is very nearly killed and one of ladies dies.
**** 4. Tell us about your futuristic fiction collection and how it ties in with Harem’s Master.
The Stanning Years is a four book series, as of now. The first book, Homesteading, starts on Earth about three hundred years after the events in Harem Master: Armageddon. Young and claustrophobic, Colyn Stanning is desperate to escape from the overcrowded domed city which contains all life left on Earth. While applying for emigration he meets a young lady, Dyanne, with whom he promptly falls in love. Two rugged weeks later they’re married and setting out on the sixty day voyage to the small Terran colony on Capella. Colyn begins to show what he’s made of when he saves the life of another passenger enroute to their new home, and once there, it soon becomes apparent that both he and Dyanne are a cut and a half above the normal run of humanity. Basically, Homesteading brings their abnormalities to the fore and introduces the people who are to be instrumental in their lives.
The Stanning Years: Haying Season, concerns mankind’s first documented contact with an alien species and Colyn and Dyanne’s involuntary involvement.
The Stanning Years: Independence, describes Capella’s first election on achieving independence and the Stanning’s fight against Othar Torrschied, a career criminal with galactic dictatorship on his mind.
The Stanning Years: Conflict. Colyn should have shot Torrschied instead of just exiling him. It’s twenty years later, Torrschied has accumulated a vast force of people with the same high morals as himself and is out to take the Terran Federation by force. This time there is heartbreak in the Stanning’s victory.
**** 5. You state that you used to be a trucker. Did all that alone road time help or hurt your ability to write your book?
It probably helped somewhat. I was more into poetry at that time, what we called poetry back in the dark ages anyway. You know, the stuff that rhymes; about trucks of course. I thought some of it was pretty good and tried peddling it. It didn’t peddle, and I am NOT a peddler. But I think it helped me get through being too shy to put my stuff out there for public scrutiny.
**** 6. Did you always want to be a writer?
Not really. I’ve always enjoyed playing with the written word, but it’s only the last twenty years that I gave any serious thought at all to getting something published.
**** 7. How do you explain your novel’s content to family? Do they admire or admonish you for it?
I don’t. They can like it or live with it. My wife read it through once, said “you can do better than that”, and won’t discuss it. My granddaughter said “grandpas aren’t supposed to think like that”. She’s plenty old enough to know how she got here, but maybe she thinks kids have the corner on being horny.
**** 8. Most of my favorite bloggers are from Canada. What the hell is with you Canadians and your penchant for naughtiness?
Hey! We have to have to have something to do on those long dark winter nights, and short light summer nights, and… Ahem! Keeping active helps keep the igloo warm.
Visit Amazon to purchase HAREM’S MASTER
For more thrilling erotica follow HAREM’S MASTER
Next week’s SPaM features the handsome one known as EL GUAPO
For your own SPaM contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
This week’s featured SPaM blogger needs our help, people. Despite the fact that this woman is bright, witty, charming and amazing, she consistently attracts weirdos to date. First there was the IT guy with the man boobs, followed by Mr. “hung like a baby carrot,” the dude with the job complex and the magician with the disappearing act.
I mean, how could you not love a woman who describes herself and her blog like this: “I don’t want to give too much of myself away because some of the things I post are pretty raw (i.e: messed up! LOL) and I am not sure I’m ready for my workmates or friends to know some of this stuff. Funny how it’s OK to let total strangers know tho? Hmm.. Oh well ..)”
In the interest of match-making I’ve decided to include a few questions I found on an online dating site. Help me as I hook-up…LIFEINTHEFARCELANE
**** 1. Do you believe in love at first sight?
I believe in attraction or appeal at first sight but not love. In my experience love takes time..
And maybe money.
A mansion and a limo doesn’t hurt either.
**** 2. Do you believe a cup is half empty or half full?
You’ve seen my dating disaster posts right?
Go figure the glass is half empty..
But in all seriousness, I’m a fairly positive person without being too polly-anna-ish. I think basically I’m too lazy to be depressed and negative all the time, cos I am sure it takes a bit of effort.
**** 3. If you could travel back through time, what single mistake would you correct in life?
So I’ve given this one a bit of thought. There are a few things I’ve done that now I look back and go “dear lord woman, what were you thinking?” When clearly the only accurate answer is “I wasn’t.”
But – without wishing to sound overly corny – I’d have to say I would change none.
The way I see it, each mistake / experience adds up to the sum of me. (So who knows how much more messed up I might seem, if we changed just one thing!?)
Besides, I’ve kinda grown used to me over the years – now I just have to find some hapless soul who can also handle it ;)
**** 4. Is sexual compatibility important to you?
It’s like air. You know how good it is, but perhaps don’t quite appreciate it – til it’s not readily available to you. I guess that’s a yes ;)
From my experience, satisfying sex is one of the key elements to a successful long term relationship.
**** 5. Which was the first crush you ever had?
Er, does that girlish fantasy (ok fantasies, plural .. my bad) about George Michael count .. ?
Look how well that turned out for us both .. !
**** 6. Are you a morning person or a night person?
I can be either but my fave time of day is morning. I like to get out of bed around 4am, make myself very strong coffee and wake up slowly before the world intrudes. There’s something quite soothing about watching the city wake up in front of you. So long as there is coffee on hand, that is!
**** 7. What adjective would a close friend use to describe you?
Ok so in the interests of being thorough, I texted my 2 best friends and asked them.
Clearly, I need new (nicer) friends ..
One said “Funny”. The other said “Crazy”.
Like I said, new friends needed .. $#@!
**** 8. If you have friends coming over, what would you cook?
Oh now we’re talking. I love to cook!
Starter: Crusty sour dough bread, charred slightly then rubbed with garlic, topped with seasoned diced tomatoes, scattered with basil leaves and a drizzle (read: slosh!) of extra virgin olive oil.
Main: Beef Wellington. Served with roasted vegetables (potatoes, kumara, squash, baby beetroot, baby carrots, parsnips, red onions) all served drizzled with a gorgeously rich red wine / brown onion gravy. Fussy buggers (aka vegetarians) could have the veges cos I’d do them in oil and I’d make a nut loaf.
Dessert: Simplicity itself – Pavlova with whipped cream and kiwifruit on top.
Afters: Fresh espresso & small shot glasses filled with Drambuie.
**** 9. Describe your perfect holiday.
This is a hard one!
I was going to say “there’s no such thing as a bad holiday” but then I recalled a two week stay at the in-laws some 17 years ago.. *shivers*
If I needed a relaxing holiday, I’d grab a man and head to a child-free beach resort somewhere like the Dominican Republic. Lying in the sun beside the pool with cocktails being regularly served (between naps, shags and buffet meals) heavenly.
Touring holidays are great too tho. Fly into France or Northern Italy to then eat my way thru it, region by region, stopping wherever I want to, when I want to. You’d want to allow 2 months to do justice to this one!
**** 10. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
Hmm another hard one.
I love where I live now but could also live in Italy, France, Canada or some parts of the USA happily.
**** 11. What is the one thing about yourself that you would like me to know?
I am pretty sure I have no secrets to anyone who’s read my blog but I’d want you to know if you changed all my answers above so they make me sound like a crazy lady then .. meh.. no need. I did that all by myself, right?
Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!
For more lessons on life and love follow LIFEINTHEFARCELANE
Next week is another Mystery SPaM!
For your own SPaM contact me at email@example.com
One of the things I love best about SPaM is helping writers promote their books. This week’s featured work, SKINNY WHITE WOMAN is “a self-reflective memoir about what it means to follow a modern-day spiritual path, Skinny White Woman is a raw and unrefined look at the human journey to find the spirit within.”
Welcome to SPaM author and teacher Stasia Minkowsky.
**** 1. Give us a brief over view of your book, SKINNY WHITE WOMAN.
Skinny White Woman is an unconventional look at following a modern-day spiritual path. It tracks five-plus years of my life…. from my days using drugs and alcohol to my vulnerabilities in early sobriety and following the Native American spiritual path on the ‘Rez to eventually learning how to hold sacred space for others who are seeking their own spiritual journey. What you will not find? Perfect spiritual teachers, a perfect spiritual path nor me getting married and living happily ever after. Unlike many current books about spirituality, I wanted to give a more realistic view on how challenging changing one’s entire life can be. And challenging for reasons one might not think of… for instance, it was more challenging to deal with my own cravings for cigarettes, men, drugs and alcohol than it was for me to be buried in a hole for two days, starving and fasting. My biggest obstacle was frequently my own mind and negative, obsessive compulsive thoughts. I wanted to shine a light on this to help people not feel so alone in their journey.
**** 2. How has your personal experiences influenced your writing?
Since this book is a memoir, every relevant personal experience during this period of time in my life is in there. When I first started this journey, I looked for spiritual books to inspire me but had a difficult time finding any that I could relate to. Many books discussed giving up drugs and alcohol and I thought, “How the hell did they do that so effortlessly?” I started drinking very young and had been checking out for years. To give up my one coping mechanism in order to find something greater sounded ridiculous. Also, I was disillusioned by the idea of these perfect spiritual teachers that I never seemed to meet. Where was my Mr. Miyagi?
**** 3. What was your greatest challenge in writing this book?
Obviously, low finances and living off credit cards to write and support myself was a challenge. But the greatest? Probably writing about some of the most personal things in my life and knowing that someday, I would be making those emotional highs and lows available to the public. Likewise, it was also difficult to live in the present while spending so much time writing about the past. It took me about six years to live this book and six years to write it and get it published.
**** 4. What was the greatest reward?
The greatest reward, thus far, has been listening to the feedback from readers who say that the book has touched their lives and made them think about their life differently. I have really enjoyed listening to all age groups… from the teenagers who say that they can relate to the forty-plus age range who can also relate. I have also loved how the book has crossed gender boundaries. Even though the book is told from a woman’s perspective, my male readers have been surprised by how well they can identify to this very human story.
**** 5. What would you most like people to know about Stasia, the woman?
I am just like everyone else. I showed up on this planet to have the full Earth experience. I never expected it to be so freakin’ challenging. I never expected to be in recovery for drugs and alcohol. I never expected NOT to have my shit together by age 30 (and now I am soon to be 37… ha ha). But, I also never expected to meet so many amazing and loving people who realize that we are all on this human journey together.
**** 6. Do you have other books in the works?
Currently, I am doing what I have always done… keeping journals. This is how I put together Skinny White Woman. There have been years of journals since the ending of this book. Maybe material for a follow-up?
**** 7. What do you hope people will take away from your book?
Inspiration, laughter at the absurdity of it all and the courage to believe in their own journey.
**** 8. Where can people find your book for purchase?
For more enlightenment follow SKINNYWHITEWOMAN
Next week’s SPaM features the lovable LIFEINTHEFARCELANE
For your own feature SPaM contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org