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  1. Well! What a week I've had...

    Can't believe my luck.
    I've had a week off work. Haven't done much or been anywhere, apart from the odd shopping-trip. All I've done really, is read. And I've had some amazing reads. I may have told, in the past, how I always take three books from the Library whenever I'm out of reading material in the hope that there ought to, might just, be one decent read among them.
    Last weekend, my three which included "Rusty Puppy " by Joe Lansdale and " A Bend In The Road " ...

    Updated March 10th, 2019 at 01:59 PM by dither

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  2. Writing the Sexy Stuff

    Got an author's copy of my new romance book today.--pretty little thing, I have to say, but it's not only my first romance, but it is my first flaming hot and very graphic tome. I'm a virgin male author barging in on this popular genre. An Internet GF (which I sought out) contributed to the physical and emotional aspects between the lead characters, and we really ripped the seams open. And that was because we both researched the "how to of it" and read several romance and erotica books ...
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  3. Romance Blunders

    I've been tucked away in the writing cave for the last 79 days, and it was a straight push to the end on a romance novel. Sorry for the long absence. Once you're determined and focused on a new story, you know what happens. Yeah?



    A big call out to my super friends and AW, wishing you the best, always. I received great responses when I went into the AW romance forum with my tail between my legs.


    I can't give anyone a complete rundown on how ...
  4. ARE YOU A HOOKER?

    Have you Hooked or are you Bait-less?
    (I just hooked your ass in here, didn't I?)

    I've accumulated thousands of rejection slips, both email and hard mail, dating back at least 28 years. We writers agonize over just about every word in these little snippets of rejection death, attempting to decipher some type of meaningful logic out of these one or two-line zingers.

    Scenario: So the editor has read about three or four pages and stopped. She is in problem ...
  5. So You Want a Review?

    As I've said before, I'm not here to make you like me (as much as I don't mind that). I'm here to try and inform you; let you know what the Chuck Dickens is going on out there in the industry. This one is about seeking review requests for your new release, be it pre-order or not, or one of your back-list titles. IOW, you're going ask/beg a legitimate book review source to give you their honest opinion of your masterpiece. And make no mistake about that, they WILL give you an unbiased opinion ...
  6. Pen Names. I'm Not Who You Think I Am.

    I've agonized over using a pen name. Call it what you will—pseudonym, non de plume. I didn't really specialize in a genre. This has been going on longer than I’d like to admit. One look at my Amazon page will bear this out in a most dramatic fashion. I’d used a shotgun approach to see what genre got the best reaction sales wise. This late in the game, I've decided to use a pen name for my YA series. My small press sales from just about all my publishers have been small to mediocre at best. The ...
  7. Once Upon a Walrus ---(final draft)

    walrus 2.jpg

    Once upon a Walrus (final draft)

    As I basked in the illuminating sunlight reminiscing about bygone days amongst the walrus herd, Old Bellytooth, a very fat walrus weighing well over three thousand pounds, interrupted me in mid-sentence and said, “That’s not how I remember it. You’re leaving a lot out. Our young bulls and cows need to know all the sordid details about the day the Elephant Seals of the Macquarie made war against ...
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  8. The New Savages?

    I was listening to the news- or quasi-news- that is the Daily Show (no, I don't watch this show because it's almost nakedly biased, but my brother watches it and I can't save him) and there was a section where they are talking about Westerners who join ISIS and how evil and misguided it is.

    And then a thought slipped into me head...

    Many of the slanders they use against ISIS are the same slanders they used against Native Americans- a people with a very sympathetic circumstance ...
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  9. ICYMI W/E 2/24/19

    Ok, so the Vietnam summit is on. The bromance continues between Kim and Trump. Skeptics (rightfully) point out that Kim has a weak hand, and not much motivation to go "all-in". This is where Trump needs to prove to us, once and for all, what a good businessman he is. Trump's only play is to "sell" Vietnam's style of state-run capitalism as a model for North Korea. Kim's country is a wreck, everyone know that. It really may be possible that there is a way out for them. ...

    Updated February 25th, 2019 at 11:59 PM by Winston

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  10. Appearances really are everything.

    A Sunday stroll, dithering...

    Down the High Street, and out of town, to my local Aldi store:

    A gentle stroll, out in the fresh air, sunshine and blue sky IS a plus of course, but just BEING, walking and sucking up that good clean air. It clears the mind and gives way so many random thoughts and perceptions and today was no exception. So often nowadays, I find myself thinking about posture, MY posture, when I'm out walking. Well, today, I found myself thinking , an image ...

    Updated February 25th, 2019 at 10:32 AM by dither

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  11. N.s. sure lock.

    ...
    some minutes later, the couch's shivering blanket put aside- I am befuddled-muttering like Nigel Bruce:

    ...damned gadget
    Beeped and booped, but didn't put out a single cup.

    Very simple, Watson:
    An issue with the hopper.

    I fail to see any insects or 'roos?

    Not that type, no, a mechanical funnel if you will, but square sided; an inverted pyramid whose down-pointed pinnacle is the location of the blades that grind those gravity-driven ...

    Updated February 19th, 2019 at 03:17 PM by Kevin

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  12. neighbours suicide

    by , February 17th, 2019 at 09:49 PM (Each n every day)
    Few weeks back I was sitting in my mother's and a neighbour of hers parked on the drive and I watched as he got out his car and threw a Costa cup over a wall onto open land...the other night he hung himself on one of the trees there...story was that he thought he had cancer but he found out it was diabetes...he was so stressed waiting for results and looking on the internet he went into a depression..lost weight an that was it...reached his breaking point and left a wife,kids an 3 grandkids to ...
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  13. Hike Planned :)

    Sometimes I sit at my computer and I scroll through images of places I never saw before and the most jaw-dropping and inspiring are the natural things I never seen before. Things like different types of plants and animals that look so alien but cool and yet I never ever heard of them. It's at these times I realized that I know the traditional pantheon of animals taught in schools but the world really is so much bigger. Actually, no. It's not that the world is bigger, it just has much more depth ...
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  14. In The Halls of Madness

    .
    I could be wrong...

    But I believe that if we walk down deep enough into the cave of "I" we find a door sealed by "I" to protect "I" from the frictions of the world.

    And behind this door is the most unique expression of madness- the elemental and unadulterated core of the human soul.

    Art is an interesting thing because it's the negotiation between expression and appreciation...or at least recognition. Human beings need ...
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  15. Just Fix It, Boss! I'm Incapable.

    (no news recap this week, just a thought to share)

    My daughter got into watching House of Cards, with Kevin Spacey. (SPOILER) She's at the point where his character was killed off, which she was looking forward to. Funny, even though we know they are characters, it's hard to leave the sins of the actor behind them.

    I was watching a minute or two of the show, and a news commentator blasts President Underwood:
    "I only care about one thing: Did the President ...
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  16. name dropping, swilling heated brown water, caffeinated- dreading heading to work.

    ...

    I once saw Hellboy, the actor.

    I remember Katherine, from Beast and the Beauty, but what was his name? That was him, too, the Monster. It was so atmospheric, that show, so 'candelabra'. She was beautiful in that light.

    He was driving in Los Felis.
    I think he lives there.
    She went on to marry James Cameron.
    Then she got really buff, for Terminator Two, and
    they got ugly.
    I'd worked on his house, once, Cameron, years before. ...
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  17. The Red Lion

    The Red Lion

    A friend’s toddler
    pulls a toy
    around my kitchen island.

    Turning away,
    I look out the window
    into the anemic afternoon light.

    Shifting my gaze,
    to an amaryllis sittting
    on my table top,
    I admire how
    the sun brightens
    the vibrant green stalk.

    My white-faced hound
    flaps his ears and
    walks away from my feet
    as my sigh tiptoes behind him.

    The sagging ...
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  18. stories of the day -(a vent)

    Rip offs, conquests, greed, lies and rewards.

    Another horror story ( witnessed today) , a man pays a man to do something, puts his trust, a contract - only to learn that the man has absconded. There goes a life savings. There goes a marriage. There goes his ability to sleep, drink, eat, think... he's hired the lawyers, but get in line: there are 15 other lawsuits. But he'd come so very recommended...

    A man goes overseas, works in a dangerous situation- life threatening- ...

    Updated February 7th, 2019 at 04:07 PM by Kevin

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  19. ICYMI w/e 2/3/19

    Pretty busy news week. Again, in no particular order...

    Trump has withdrawn the U.S. from the INF (Intermediate Nuclear Forces) Agreement. In case you missed it, the Russian military has been busy developing a whole new series of nuclear weapons, and Putin has been deploying them. Acting as a provocateur, Putin decided to stage quite a few of his new toys in Kaliningrad. This achieved two goals: First, Kaliningrad projects into central Europe, right between Poland and the Baltic ...
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  20. If I Was A Viking...

    If I were a Viking I think I’d be spending most of my life trying not to be one...

    Real Vikings were people forced into the sea by the diminishing prospects within their own homeland. Vikings likely loved the spoils of being a Viking, but hated being a Viking. They raided and pillaged so they could get enough spoils that they no longer had to.

    The biggest gangsters, pirates, mobsters... they usually find a way to go legit as quickly as possible, or they become as quasi-legit ...

    Updated February 8th, 2019 at 02:24 AM by kaminoshiyo

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  21. First Submission

    Today, it was finally my turn to make that milestone we all have to make, eventually.
    This afternoon, I submitted Choices to an e-zine for consideration in publication.

    I am satisfied with the story as it is. It's been suggested that I expand on this piece, dig deeper into the characters. This is always a possibility, for now though, I'm content with where it is.

    It'll be somewhere between 3 to 6 months before I know if they'll accept the piece.
    In the mean ...
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  22. Suzy Barlowe

    ...

    I was watching a friends post/share on fb. "Women"- of such-an-such "-boxing", a gym he works at.

    He posted some videos of women, trainees- several of them, in their workout gear basically chasing him around, beating on him in the ring. He is wearing protective headgear and a body shield but...

    the last one in particular brought back a memory of Suzy Bartlowe in the second grade.

    This woman throws viscous elbows to ...

    Updated February 1st, 2019 at 05:40 PM by Kevin

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  23. Windchill

    ...

    Why do we persist?

    It would be so easy to hitch up the horses, un- circle the wagon, take the old Rambler and head-out west, 70 to route Six-six.

    Jack Frost is banging on the roof, huff-puffing/ howling at the walls.

    If that window glass breaks we'll be polar bear popsicles by morning.

    I can see him - some ursid - grouchy-growling, chewing ( not just nipping off our noses), spit-spitting out the little hard parts: fillings, ...
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  24. The worldwide decline can be attributed - the postal service.

    An occasional Grumpy Old Man Missive:

    As a regular user of the postal services over the last fifty or so years, I've noticed that as countries improve, so their postal services decline.

    When we lived in the UK we had amazing speed and efficiency, but they only delivered on alternate days and if you weren't home at precisely the time they wanted to deliver, you had to schlep to the nearest postal services centre, which invariably occupied the cheapest building on some dodgy ...
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  25. Right?

    .
    In a world full of pooh
    seems the best you can do
    is to say that some dude
    more fuller than you.
    .
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