Saturday, September 23, 2017

I don't like them

I bought stamps yesterday.  Can't say that I liked any of the ones I was offered. I'd heard they were trying to unload the jack-o-lantern stamps from last year. No such luck. I ended up with some Disney stamps. I don't like them.  

Stamps I'd like to see

Great Barbarians series
Attila-the-Hun, Genghis Khan

Great outlaws:
Seth Wilmouth [a distant cousin, robbed a few trains in Missouri]
Clyde Barrow
Bonnie Parker
John Dillinger

Evan Rachel Wood
[she's not even dead, yet. Dang, she's hot looking. I'd buy them]

Haunted Hotels
The Stanley
Hotel Jerome
Hotel Coronado

Note to post office:
one side a card of stamps, other side a scratch off lottery ticket.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Book Signing

Well, I'll be at a book signing this Sunday. Haven't done one in a while.  I gather they have a ton of local authors of all flavors there and it's something of a madhouse.  That doesn't sound too bad. Sure beats sitting in the back of a store on a flimsy card table in Grand Junction, Colorado. That was my first book signing. People would alter their routes in the store to avoid coming near me. It was simply awful. At least this one will have people there.  If anyone is interested it's this sunday at Bookmans NW in Marana.  

Thursday, September 21, 2017


Had various communications with the publisher about my new novella project.  Just routine matters like whether there's going to be an about the author page and a few housekeeping matters.  I'm looking forward to seeing it.  One thing I noticed in my bio is I've written over 100 short stories. Actually, I crossed that milestone quite a few years ago.  I've shifted to longer works and I've done more editing, but my output is way down. I used to really crank out stories--not so much these days.  Of course there used to be a whole lot of magazines that published regularly. Not so any more.  The number of markets, mostly anthologies, has really shrunk. There are just not as many places to send short fiction to. 

I digress, "The Venerable Travels of Ling Fung" is a novella, that's a short novel in author speak, is a story about some of Ling Fung's adventures in America and a little bit about some things he did in China.  He's not the first Chinese character I've used.  In my Miles O'Malley novels, Miles' friend Wing Ding also tries to make it in America.  But, thus far, Miles and Ling Fung have not crossed paths.  Although a mutual villain, Ah Puch, appears in both stories.  Ah Puch is a Mayan god of death who's decided he likes 1880s California and wants to rule it for himself.  Both Miles and Ling Fung end up, reluctantly, taking him on. 

In the Two Devils [now reprinted in The Devil Draws Two]  Miles goes after Ah Puch and meets some interesting people along the way.  One of them is a very sexy fallen angel named Mabel. Mabel, I just love her. I've never seen a character like her. She lives in hell and comes along now and then to entertain herself with Miles. I rarely talk about her and she's not mentioned in reviews because she's kind of back story.  Described as a stunning redhead, she can pretty much charm poor Miles into doing whatever she wants.  And Miles knows she's manipulating him and doesn't care.  He's a guy. Still, Mabel never really hurts him and is becoming a more irresistible character on her own. I've been writing some stories about her as a much more expanded character.  If I can find some markets, my readers [both of you] may soon see more Mabel in action.

To counter Mabel, I also have Buffy.  While Mabel may seem like an 1800s name, Buffy may not. Buffy is a real angel. She lives in heaven and is not a fallen angel, but the real deal. She also likes Miles, although would never have physical relations with a mortal the way Mabel shamelessly does. So, this is a little different type of weird western and even I don't know how it's going to turn out. But the Mabel stories are turning into a lot of fun. I know weird westerns don't generate the sales other types of speculative fiction do, but they sure are fun. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Tree of Death

We had some really bad winds about a month ago.  Many of my neighbors had serious roof damage. I lost one of my beloved ash trees that I planted earlier this year.  The storm snapped the trunk. No way to fix it. I chopped the broken part up and disposed of it.  Now the bottom two feet of the trunk, which I left alone for some odd reason, is blooming out. Looks like I may have an ash bush of some kind.

It's been a hard summer, ferocious winds and very limited rain. Oh, and much hotter that it should be for mid September. It's amazing my other trees survived.

Monday, September 18, 2017

It ain't Xmas

Okay, so one of the local dollar stores is putting up Christmas decorations. Apparently, we're not going past Halloween and Thanksgiving and direct from Labor Day to Christmas. It's ridiculous. Look out 4th of July--you're next.  Make this madness stop.  

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Get ready for Halloween

Get ready for Halloween.  It's coming up fast.  Have little Suzie or Johnie go as insurance salesmen. All they need is a second hand suit from a  thrift store and a small briefcase. People are terrified of insurance salesmen. It'll be great.  And don't forget your dog. As I've mentioned before, they LOVe getting dressed up in costume and going around to visit the neighbors.  They also like the extra treats.

Also, put electric lights in your jack-o-lantern.  It works way better than candles.  Oh, and drink some hard cider. We always had apple cider when i was a kid, but it was that sweet crap from the store. Give me some hard cider please and drunk kids will be just more memorable.

More ideas later. Get started on these.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Gates of Hell

I live in a gated community.  That means there's a gate out front to keep me safe. Hah!  It's like trying to stop a flood with a spaghetti strainer.  Yesterday I came back from a meeting and it was around midnight.  Well, the blasted gate would not open.  I tried my key and nothing.  I called myself on the call box. Since it goes to my cell phone, in theory if I call myself I can press 9 and it'll open/  No can do. Well, I sat there and eventually someone else showed up. Her key worked fine. The gate opened and I went home.  

There's no reason for this.  According to property management, the gate is functioning fine and my key is good.  "I must've done something wrong."  Yep, it's always my fault.  At least I didn't have to leave my car out on the highway all night.  We'll see what happens tonight.