Tag: book

Died On The Vine

“Boom!” Bob slapped down a card on the cherry wood tea table.  “Draw four.”

“Shoot.”

Woodruff picked up a yellow pencil and began to sketch rapidly on a small pad of paper.  He scribbled out four separate images of rubber ducks and handed it over to Bob.

“Come to daddy, duckies.”

“Okay, my turn,” Woodruff picked up a handful of colorful cards and studied them carefully.  A wry smile broke across his face as he slowly removed a single card from the arrangement and laid it on the table between them.  “Reverse.”

“Crud,” Bob said.  “Uh, I mean, durC.  Um, esrever ni kaeps ot evah I od gnol woH?”

“Until I say so.”

“riafnU.”

“You’re the one who wanted to play no holds barred Uno,” Woodruff said.  “It’s a high stake, take no prisoners, game.”

Rows and rows of green bushes and vines stretched down the hillside from where they sat.  In the distance, a tall thin man in a black suit made his way up the hill.  The man wore a bowler hat and carried an umbrella in the crook of his arm.

“taht s’ohW?

“Dunno,” Woodruff shrugged his shoulders.

They watched the distinguished gentleman sail through the lush vineyard in their direction.  White billowy clouds hung in the blue sky, like heavenly spectators for their game of cards.  With the thin man still several yards away Bob turned his attention back to the tea table.

“nrut yM.”

Woodruff eyed the approaching stranger for another moment before turning to face his opponent.

“Whatcha got?”

“piks, peew dna ti daeR.”

“Aw man.”

The tall thin man ceremoniously presented himself and removed his bowler hat.

“Monsieur Woodruff et Monsieur Bob. Bonjour, je suis Alcott Stirling.”

“Bonjour,” Woodruff said.  “Parlez vous English?”

“Ah, yes,” Mister Stirling said.  “Actually, I’m from England.  But when in Rome.”

The tall thin Englishmen gestured to the green sweeping countryside surrounding them.

“ecnarF si siht, emoR t’nsi sihT,” Bob said.

“I beg your pardon,” Stirling said.

“Oh, uh, Bob I release you.”

“I said, this isn’t Rome, this is France.”

“Right you are, Master Bob.”

“How do you know our names?” Woodruff asked.

“I represent Hewing, Durker, and Crane.”

“The publisher?” Woodruff asked.

“Quite right,” Stirling replied.  “It took quite a bit of doing to track you down.”

“Track us down?”

“We are eager for a reply to their inquiry.”

“What inquiry?”

“I’ve left several messages.”

“I didn’t get any messages,” Woodruff replied.  “Bob, did you?”

“Yeah, I posted them on the grapevine.”

“What?”

“I put them back over there on the grapevine.”

Bob rose from his chair and pointed to a red brick wall, with a waist-high hedge running along it.  Strewn across the lush green leaves were several small white papers tucked between long tangled vines.  Woodruff walked further up the hill to the nearest piece of paper and loosed it from the grapevine.

“Mr. Stirling called again about Salubrious Women,” Woodruff read aloud.

“Your blog has gained quite a following,” Stirling explained.  “Despite not posting for nearly a year, your following has reached quadruple digits.  Everyone is wondering what happened to Coleen and Sheila.”

“We don’t do that anymore,” Bob said.  “We’ve moved on.”

“But there is clearly an audience clamoring for your advice,” Stirling said.

“How did you find us, anyway?” Woodruff asked.  “We never used our real names.”

“The IP address for your postings led to an encyclopedia shop in the United States,” Stirling began.  “An irritated gruff woman name Carmela told us who you were.  From there, we searched your last known address and next of kin.  The firm dispatched a private investigator who ran across a homeless man who gave us a Google phone number you use in case of emergency.”

“Homeless man?”

“He means Kenny,” Bob said.  “And the term is Vagabond American, Mr. British K. Snooty Pants.”

“We have an emergency phone number?”

“Uh, yeah we do.  Like we’re just going to go parababooning in the south of France without an emergency contact.”

“Para-what?” Stirling asked.

“Parababooning,” Woodruff replied.  “It’s basically skydiving with a baboon strapped to your back.”

“It’s next level parachuting,” Bob added.

“Bob, why didn’t you tell me about these messages?”

“I put them right here for you.”

“On the grapevine?”

“Yeah, what’s the point of staying in a vineyard if you don’t use the grapevine?”

“How does that make any sense?”

“It’s a grapevine, you know, I heard it through the grapevine.  I put all your messages here.  On the grapevine.”

“All my messages?” Woodruff looked down the vine at a dozen other pieces of paper.

“Yeah,” Bob walked down the vine and pulled off a slip of paper.  “Like this one, from your sister.”

“I don’t have a sister.”

“Oh right, hold up,” Bob ran down to the far end of the row.  He plucked the first note and hurried back to deliver it to Woodruff.

“Woodruff, Ancestry DNA is trying to contact you about your sister,” Woodruff read aloud.  “Bob!”

“What!”

“You didn’t tell me I have a sister?”

“I did!”

“You didn’t!”

“I did, through the grapevine!”

“Excuse me, gentlemen,” Stirling interrupted.  “Perhaps this is not the best time.  May I call on you tomorrow in regards to our proposition.”

“I’ll stop you right there, Redcoat,” Bob said.  “We’re out of the women’s health game.”

“If you would just hear our offer, it’s very generous.”

“Pass,” Woodruff said.  “Besides, last time I was propositioned by an Englishman in a bowler hat I ended up crew captain for a Somali pirate warlord.”

“I miss Abshir,” Bob said.

“Be reasonable, we’re offering…”

“Bup bup bup,” Woodruff waved his hands and shook his head at Mr. Stirling.  “Nope!  The answer is no.  Coleen and Sheila are retired.”

“Very well,” Stirling said.  He returned his tiny bowler hat to his narrow head and tucked his umbrella under his arm, indignantly.  “Good day.”

“It is a good day,” Bob replied, matching his indignation.

The tall Englishman spun on his heels and departed the way he came.  Woodruff turned back to the grapevine and surveyed the varied messages.

“Book deal, book deal, home warranty extension, book deal,” Woodruff muttered aloud.  “What’s this?”

Woodruff pulled a note free from the vine and held it up to eye level.  Bob leaned in and read the hand scribbled note.

“Oh that,” Bob said.  “Your credit card company thinks someone stole your identity.”

“What?!”

“Yeah, apparently there’s been some unusual purchases.”

“Unusual purchases?”

“Yeah, a two-hundred-dollar pair of Oakley goggles, eleven crates of pomegranates, six cans of spray cheese, and a couple of baboon harnesses.”

“That was you, Bob.”

“Well I know that, but your credit card company thought it was suspicious.”

“Bob?”

“They froze your account,” Bob replied sheepishly as he backed slowly away.

“Bob!”

“You really should check your messages.”

Woodruff lunged forward, just missing Bob as he tucked and rolled down the hill.  Waving his hands high above his head, Bob sprang to his feet and dashed down a long row of grapevines, staying just out of reach of Woodruff’s long arms.

Show Me

Putting one foot carefully in front of the next, Woodruff and Bob made their way slowly toward the back of a bright yellow van.  Bob signaled with his hands for Woodruff to move to the passenger’s side of the windowless vehicle, while he crept quietly around to his left.  The two moved slowly and silently, in parallel, until they reached the front doors.

Woodruff peered through his window and held his index finger to his lips.  Bob nodded back, from the other side of the glass, and mirrored Woodruff’s shushing motion.  Tentatively, Bob reached up and laid hold on the chrome door handle.  He looked across to Woodruff, who bit softly on his lower lip.  With his thumb, Bob gently pressed in the shiny metal button and there was a faint click as the door latch disengaged.  The sound was barely audible but both he and Woodruff winced at the minute noise.

Bob looked over to Woodruff for confirmation.  Woodruff glanced warily over each shoulder and nodded for Bob to continue.  His thumb was still pressed firmly on the button, but he had not moved a muscle since the tiny click.  He drew in a deep breath through his nose and held it for a few seconds.  Woodruff closed his eyes tight as Bob eased the heavy door open.  The hinges creaked and Bob froze.  A wide-eyed Woodruff shook his head and held his hands in the air to beckon him to stop.  Bob remained as still as a statue as Woodruff tip toed around the front of the van to joined him by the creaky door.

“What do we do?” Bob whispered.

Woodruff raised his hands and made a series of signals with his fingers.  Bob opened his mouth slightly and shook his head.

“You know I only know the sign for milk and yes,” Bob replied in his best library voice.

Undaunted, Woodruff gestured to the door and began to pantomime his communications.  He gestured toward the door handle with a closed fist and slowly opened his first with his fingers apart.  Bob carefully released his grip on the chrome lever and took a step back.  Woodruff slid between Bob and the slightly ajar door.  He laid his body flat against the side of the van and slipped his arm into the open crack, like a pair of tweezers fishing for the wishbone in a game of Operation.

“Careful,” Bob mumbled, in a barely audible voice.

Woodruff crinkled his lips, making the universal shush formation.  A gust of wind blew the door wide open with a creak and a clunk.

“Ah man,” Woodruff moaned.

“We’re dead,” Bob said.  “I told you.”

“We could have done it.  We almost made it.”

“No way.  It’s impossible to survive in A Quiet Place universe.  There’s just no way.”

“Especially if you don’t know sign language.”

“My lack of ASL skills did not kill us, the wind did.”

“True.”

“We were killed by the wind!”

“Can I ask what you two are doing?” a deep voice, with a drawl, called from behind them.

They spun around to find a uniformed policeman standing with his hand resting on his hostler.

“Oh, uh, hi Officer…” Bob squinted to read his badge.

“McClusky,” he replied.  “I say again, what are you two doing?”

“We were seeing if we could survive in a post-apocalyptic world where humanity is hunted to extinction by sound,” Woodruff said.

“Spoiler alert, we could not.”

“No we couldn’t.”

Officer McClusky removed his mirrored sunglasses and eyed them suspiciously.

“Is this your vehicle?”

“Technically, it belongs to our friend, Hands,” Bob said.

“Technically?” the policeman asked.

“Well it was left to him by his trainer,” Woodruff said.  “But legally speaking he can’t drive.”

“And why is that?”

“On account of him being a bear.”

“Your friend is a bear?”

“Yep.”

“A bear who owns a van?”

“That’s right.”

The van began to rock from side to side.  Officer McClusky dropped back and loosed the clip on his hostler.

“What’s in there?”

“Hands.”

“He chose to take a nap while we watched a movie.”

“He doesn’t like horror films.  Although I would argue it wasn’t truly a horror movie.”

“It was more of a suspense thriller family drama.”

“Totally.”

“Are you telling me there’s a bear in that van?” Officer McClusky asked.  He pointed to the rocking van with transparent concern and aggravation.  A growling yawn emanated from the back of the van.

“Well it ain’t a chipmunk,” Bob said.

“He’s a little grumpy after naptime, so I’d put your weapon away,” Woodruff added.  He walked to the back of the van and pulled one of the double doors open.  Bob grabbed hold of the other door and heaved it to the side as the policeman shuffled between them.

Hands sat up and scratched at his protruding belly.  He blinked his big brown eyes as he strained to adjust to the daylight.  A pedestrian on the sidewalk tripped over the curb and fell on his hands and knees, never talking his eyes off the bear in the van.  Officer McClusky hurried over to the man and helped him to his feet.

“Is that a…a…a…,” the pedestrian stammered.

“Yes sir, that’s a bear,” Officer McClusky said.  “You’d better move along.  I’ll handle this.”

“Handle what?” Woodruff asked.

“The bear issue.”

“What issue?”

“Well for starters,” the policeman said.  “How did it get here?”

“It is a he and HE rode here in the back of HIS van.”

“Sounds like the issue here is bearism.”

“Bearism?”

“Yeah, the bearist fear and prejudice against large furry mammals.”

“No, the issue is it’s illegal in the state of Missouri to drive with an uncaged bear in your vehicle,” Officer McClusky said.  He got out a small ticket book and began to write.

“Uncaged bear?” Bob said.  “Do you hear yourself?  That’s the most bearist comment we’ve heard this whole trip and we’ve been through Kentucky.”

“And where are you headed on this trip?” Officer McClusky asked.

“Oklahoma,” Woodruff said.  “Hands is competing in a wrestling tournament, unless you’re going to tell us that’s illegal too.”

“Actually, I believe it is.”

“Seriously?”

“Seriously.”

“Well poop,” Bob said.

“You can’t say the p-word in Missouri,” the policeman continued to scratch out words on his pad.

“You can’t say poop in Missouri?”

“Nope,” Officer McClusky said.  “This is the Show Me State.  You start throwing words around willy nilly and it gets messy.”

“Indeed.”

“So, you’ve got a busted taillight, expired tags, an uncaged bear and two counts of using the p-word,” Officer McClusky said.  He finished writing out the ticket and handed it to Woodruff.

“Things escalated quickly.”

“That how it works in the Show Me State,” Officer McClusky snapped his sunglasses back on and scrunched his nose to push them up into place.

“This feels like the time we committed low treason,” Bob said.

“In my defense, I didn’t know she was a monarch,” Woodruff replied.

“How do you intend to get that bear out of here?” the policeman asked.

“Call him ‘that bear’ just makes you sound more bearist,” Bob said.

“Can’t we just pay the fine and drive out of here?” Woodruff asked.

“Afraid not.  I can’t let you drive out of here with an uncaged bear in the back.”

Through the trees, on the far side of the parking lot, Bob spotted a sign that read Pat’s Pets.  A smile broke across his face and he began to nodded rhythmically.

“I’ve got an idea.”

 

Minutes later the yellow van was motoring down the highway with the happy occupants signing along to the radio.

“I don’t wanna be your fool, in this game for two, so I’m leavin’ you behind.”

“Bye, bye, bye…”

“Genius idea, Bob.”

“The man wanted a caged bear, we gave him a cage bear.  Isn’t that right, Hands?”

Hand grunted and waved his cage-covered paw at the front seat.  The dome-shaped decorative bird cage fit perfectly over his enormous right bear paw.

“Might sound crazy, but it ain’t no lie, baby, bye, bye, bye.”

Simultaneously, they locked arms in a fist pump position and danced their fists across their faces in unison with the lyrics.

The Naturals

“Woodruff and Bob, you’re up,” Master Chef Heirnon said.

“Hehe,” Bob giggled.  “He said Woodruff and Bob Europe.”

“No, he said you’re up, you are up,” Woodruff said.  “As in, it’s our turn.”

“I know, but we’re in Europe and he said you’re up.”

“Focus Bob.”

“Right.”

Bob adjusted his toque blanche and stepped to the counter.  Woodruff stood up tall and pulled at his double-breasted white jacket.

“We’ve prepared a world’s fair presentation with spicy cumin lamb shanks, eggplant cannelloni, and a black bean garbure as an appetizer,” Woodruff said to the dignified panel of chef’s sitting on high stools behind the counter.

“We chose black beans to bring a more Latin flare to this French dish,” Bob explained.

“Very good, let’s see you plate your creations.”

“Yes sir, Master Chef.”

“Woodruff, he used plate as a verb again.”

“Hush.”

Woodruff pulled a shiny white bowl from under the counter and Bob retrieve two matching plates and laid them in a row on the wood-planked counter.  Woodruff ladled a thick steamy stew into the bowl and Bob sprinkled bay leaves on top with a dramatic flick of the wrist.

“We’ve added a pinch of cayenne to start the fiesta in your mouth,” Bob said as Woodruff pushed the bowl gently across the counter.

With pomp and circumstance the three men picked up spoons and tasted their offering.  The short chef with the double chin hummed pleasantly as he ate, while the tall skinny chef in the middle nodded his bald head enthusiastically as he swallowed.  Master Chef Heirnon smile proudly and gave them an approving wink as he set his spoon back on the counter.

“Next we have our eggplant cannelloni…”

“Which we call our eggplanet cannelloni, because it’s out of this world.”

Bob grinned and paused for laughter that did not come.  The judges sat back in their stools and folded their arms.

“Out of this world,” Bob repeated.  “You know, eggplanet, like a different planet.  An eggplanet, like a planet of eggs, not our planet…”

Master Chef Heirnon drew in a deep breath through his nose and shook his head.

“I told you they wouldn’t find that funny,” Woodruff whispered.

“Fine, you were right.  Happy?”

“We’ve stuffed these cannelloni with minced beef, garlic, rosemary, shallots, and of course eggplant,” Woodruff said, ignoring his partner’s failed comedic interlude.

“They are also infused with fresh oregano, extra-virgin olive oil, sea salt and ground black pepper,” Bob said.  “And a secret ingredient that rhymes with shak’n.”

Bob raised his arms in the air and gyrated his hips from side to side as he bit gently on his lower lip.  Again, the judges stared back, unimpressed, and Master Chef Heirnon buried his head in his hands.

“It’s bacon,” Bob added sheepishly.  “Like, what’s shak’n bacon.”

Woodruff cleared his throat and continued to place the tubes of pasta on the shiny white plate.

“You see we’ve got some nice brown edges on the cannelloni, so we’re going to top it with a béchamel sauce.”

“Just a little nappe to cover the crepe and pull out the flavors inside.”

“Then we take this blow torch and melt the shredded parmesan cheese on top, until matches the brown edges of the cannelloni.”

“I call this cautting the cheese,” Bob quipped into the void at the opposite end of the counter.  “Cautting the cheese.  Like cauterizing…cautting.  Nothing?  Come on, this is gold.”

“Pardon my associate,” Woodruff said through grit teeth.  “He must be a little under the weather.”

“If by under the weather you mean at the top of my game, then yes, I’m under the weather,” Bob said.  “These guys don’t even deserve this material.  Like they don’t deserve the enhanced tomato sauce and olive oil glaze I whipped up.”

Bob haphazardly sprayed lines of red sauce over the plate of cannelloni as Woodruff forced a smile and offered their dish to the judges.  It was once again met with smiles, nods and hums of approval and Woodruff breathed a sigh of relief while Bob sulked at the end of the counter.

“For our entrée we’ve cubed and braised lamb shank with a spicy cumin dry rub.”

“Dry like your sense of humor.”

“Give it a rest, Bob.”

With a grunt, Bob folded his arms and pouted.

“The rub is a mixture of granulated garlic, cumin, and chili flakes.”

“Chilly like your funny bone,” Bob interrupted.  “Cold and frozen.”

“After marinating the shanks in the spices overnight we skewered them and grilled them over hot coals.”

“Like I skewered and grilled a bunch of stuffy chefs who clearly have forgotten how to laugh.  Hey-o!”

“Monsieur Bob, please,” Master Chef Heirnon pleaded.

“Apologies, Master Chef,” Bob said.  “I’m done, I promise.  We set the whole thing off with a tangy sweet sauce with sesame oil, gochujang, apricot jam, soy sauce, honey, minced garlic, white rice vinegar, and fresh ginger root.”

Meticulously, Bob waved the bottle over the skewers and poured lines of sauce back and forth across the plate.  Woodruff slid the plate across the counter and the chef’s each took up a skewer and began to enjoy, in their customary way.  When they were finished the chefs nodded to each other.  Master Chef Heirnon produced two white aprons from under the counter and walked around to stand between Woodruff and Bob.

“It is with great pride and pleasure that I introduce Monsieur Woodruff and Monsieur Bob as the newest graduates of Le Cordon Bleu Academy and welcome you to the rank of Master Chef.”

Woodruff bowed as he ceremoniously raised the apron strings over his head and around his neck.  Bob knelt to the ground and Master Chef Heirnon gently hung the apron around his neck.  He stood up and took hold of Woodruff and Master Chef Heirnon’s hands and raised them over their heads.

“We did it!”

“Congratulations, I’m proud of you both.  You are the finest students I have ever had and the most naturally gifted flavor curators I have ever known.”

“Thank you Master Chef,” Woodruff said.  “But you haven’t even tried our dessert.”

“There’s more?” the short chubby chef asked with excitement.

“Oh there’s more,” Bob said.  “This is our pièce de résistance.”

“Please may we try it?” the tall bald chef asked.

“May you?” Bob said.  “Mais oui.”

All three judges burst out laughing.  The tall bald chef doubled over and lost his hat, while Master Chef Heirnon and the short chubby one slapped one another on the back as tears streamed down their faces.  Bob nodded proudly.

“I knew I’d get ‘em, eventually.”

Woodruff pulled a silver dome from under the counter and the judges all fell silent.  He placed the dome-covered platter at the center of the counter.  With eager expressions the chefs eyed the silver shield that veiled the mystery of the promised masterpiece.

“This is why we are here.”

“This is what we came here to do.”

Together, Woodruff and Bob uncovered the platter to reveal two ordinary pieces of white bread stacked on top of one another.

“What is this?” Master Chef Heirnon questioned.

“A sandwich?” the short chubby chef said indignantly.

“Not just any sandwich,” Woodruff said.

“The perfect peanut butter and jelly sandwich,” Bob said.

“I don’t understand.”

“A peanut butter and jelly sandwich is the most versatile food of all time,” Woodruff explained.

“You can eat it for breakfast, lunch, or dinner,” Bob added.  “And now we’re bringing it to dessert.”

“We call it PB&J All Day.”

“You can eat it whenever you want to satisfy any appetite or craving.”

The judges eyed the sandwich skeptically.

“We’ve hand-ground unsalted peanuts, added honey, palm oil, hazelnuts, and Himalayan salt,” Woodruff said.

“The hand-ground peanuts give it both a crunchy feel in a creamy delivery,” Bob said.  “The strawberry jelly was imported from a family owned strawberry patch in Wisconsin and is naturally in fused with cheddar cheese fumes from the nearby dairy farm.”

Master Chef Heirnon picked up the PB&J and hesitantly took a bite.  A smile exploded across his face and he quickly offered the sandwich to his colleagues.  In a matter of seconds the chefs had consumed the peanut butter and jelly goodness, down to the last crumb.

“That was amazing!”

“Stupendous!”

“Transcendent!”

“We know,” Bob said.

“Thank you,” Woodruff added.

“How did you make this bread?”

“Oh that,” Bob said.  “It’s just Wonder Bread we got at the groceries store.”

“You can’t improve on that,” Woodruff said.

“No you cannot.”

“Well, we’ll see you all later.”

“Wait,” Master Chef Heirnon said.  “Where are you going?”

“Home, I guess.”

“But you are master chefs now.”

“Yeah, and that’ way cool, but after you make the perfect PB&J there’s really nothing left to do.”

“See ya when we see ya,” Bob said.  “Thanks for the aprons.”

“Jusqu’à ce qu’on se revoie,” Woodruff said.

The chefs sat in stunned silence as Woodruff and Bob exited the kitchen.  Master Chef Heirnon removed his toque blanche and hung his head.

“There goes the greatest chefs the world will never know.”

Woodruff folded his apron in half and draped it over his shoulder as they stepped out onto the Parisian cobblestone streets.  Bob flung his apron over his shoulder like a cape.

“Those guys were nice.”

“Terrible sense of humors, though.”

“You know what I’m craving right now?”

“The perfect PB&J?”

Bob produced two peanut butter and jelly sandwiches from the fold of his white double-breasted jacket.

“I love you.”

“I love you too, Woodruff.”

“I was talking to the sandwich.”

“Oh, uh, me too.”

“You named your sandwich Woodruff?”

“I name all my food Woodruff.”

“That’s disturbing.”

“Not as disturbing as finding a guy singing to his pan flute on a gondola in Venice.”

“You said we’d never speak of that again.”

“So then I guess we have seven things we’ll never speak of again.  Deal?”

“Deal.”

The Twelve Days of Cajoling

12 Fun and Easy Ways to Support An Author.  Pick one or all 12!

List and links at the bottom.

On the first day of cajoling an author begged from me
A nomination for the Whitney’s (Nominate Crooked Top Mountain for a 2018 Whitney Award)

On the second day of cajoling an author begged from me
Two Facebook ‘Likes”, (“Like” my Facebook page or share it with your friends) and
A nomination for the Whitney’s (Nominate Crooked Top Mountain for a 2018 Whitney Award)

On the third day of cajoling an author begged from me
Three shared books (Share The Land of Look Behind, The Unsaid, and Crooked Top Mountain)
Two Facebook ‘Likes”, (“Like” my Facebook page or share it with your friends) and
A nomination for the Whitney’s (Nominate Crooked Top Mountain for a 2018 Whitney Award)

On the fourth day of cajoling an author begged from me
Four ebook’s read (Read one of my free ebooks or check out Crooked Top Mountain for just $0.99 cents)
Three shared books (Share The Land of Look Behind, The Unsaid, and Crooked Top Mountain)
Two Facebook ‘Likes”, (“Like” my Facebook page or share it with your friends) and
A nomination for the Whitney’s (Nominate Crooked Top Mountain for a 2018 Whitney Award)

On the fifth day of cajoling an author begged from me
Five Star Reviews (Review any of my books, it means the world to me, whatever the rating)
Four ebook’s read (Read one of my free ebooks or check out Crooked Top Mountain for just $0.99 cents)
Three shared books (Share The Land of Look Behind, The Unsaid, and Crooked Top Mountain)
Two Facebook ‘Likes”, (“Like” my Facebook page or share it with your friends) and
A nomination for the Whitney’s (Nominate Crooked Top Mountain for a 2018 Whitney Award)

On the sixth day of cajoling an author begged from me
Six tweeps retweeting (Follow me on Twitter, like, reply, or retweet to one of my tweets)
Five Star Reviews (Review any of my books, it means the world to me, whatever the rating)
Four ebook’s read (Read one of my free ebooks or check out Crooked Top Mountain for just $0.99 cents)
Three shared books (Share The Land of Look Behind, The Unsaid, and Crooked Top Mountain)
Two Facebook ‘Likes”, (“Like” my Facebook page or share it with your friends) and
A nomination for the Whitney’s (Nominate Crooked Top Mountain for a 2018 Whitney Award)

On the seventh day of cajoling an author begged from me
Seven fans reviewing (Review/Recommend my books on Goodreads)
Six tweeps retweeting (Follow me on Twitter, like, reply, or retweet to one of my tweets)
Five Star Reviews (Review any of my books, it means the world to me, whatever the rating)
Four ebook’s read (Read one of my free ebooks or check out Crooked Top Mountain for just $0.99 cents)
Three shared books (Share The Land of Look Behind, The Unsaid, and Crooked Top Mountain)
Two Facebook ‘Likes’, (“Like” my Facebook page or share it with your friends) and
A nomination for the Whitney’s (Nominate Crooked Top Mountain for a 2018 Whitney Award)

On the eighth day of cajoling an author begged from me
Eight new readers (Read the misadventures of Woodruff and Bob)
Seven fans reviewing (Review/Recommend my books on Goodreads)
Six tweeps retweeting (Follow me on Twitter, like, reply, or retweet to one of my tweets)
Five Star Reviews (Review any of my books, it means the world to me, whatever the rating)
Four ebook’s read (Read one of my free ebooks or check out Crooked Top Mountain for just $0.99 cents)
Three shared books (Share The Land of Look Behind, The Unsaid, and Crooked Top Mountain)
Two Facebook ‘Likes”, (“Like” my Facebook page or share it with your friends) and
A nomination for the Whitney’s (Nominate Crooked Top Mountain for a 2018 Whitney Award)

On the ninth day of cajoling an author begged from me
Nine pins on Pinterest (Pin one of my books, blogs, or pics, and/or follow me on Pinterest)
Eight new readers (Read the misadventures of Woodruff and Bob)
Seven fans reviewing (Review/Recommend my books on Goodreads)
Six tweeps retweeting (Follow me on Twitter, like, reply, or retweet to one of my tweets)
Five Star Reviews (Review any of my books, it means the world to me, whatever the rating)
Four ebook’s read (Read one of my free ebooks or check out Crooked Top Mountain for just $0.99 cents)
Three shared books (Share The Land of Look Behind, The Unsaid, and Crooked Top Mountain)
Two Facebook ‘Likes”, (“Like” my Facebook page or share it with your friends) and
A nomination for the Whitney’s (Nominate Crooked Top Mountain for a 2018 Whitney Award)

On the tenth day of cajoling an author begged from me
Ten friends a-sharing (Watch my book trailers on YouTube and share with your friends)
Nine pins on Pinterest (Pin one of my books, blogs, or pics, and/or follow me on Pinterest)
Eight new readers (Read the misadventures of Woodruff and Bob)
Seven fans reviewing (Review/Recommend my books on Goodreads)
Six tweeps retweeting (Follow me on Twitter, like, reply, or retweet to one of my tweets)
Five Star Reviews (Review any of my books, it means the world to me, whatever the rating)
Four ebook’s read (Read one of my free ebooks or check out Crooked Top Mountain for just $0.99 cents)
Three shared books (Share The Land of Look Behind, The Unsaid, and Crooked Top Mountain)
Two Facebook ‘Likes”, (“Like” my Facebook page or share it with your friends) and
A nomination for the Whitney’s (Nominate Crooked Top Mountain for a 2018 Whitney Award)

On the eleventh day of cajoling an author begged from me
Eleven people talking (talk with me about my books, or better yet, tell somebody about my books)
Ten friends a-sharing (Watch my book trailers on YouTube and share with your friends)
Nine pins on Pinterest (Pin one of my books, blogs, or pics, and/or follow me on Pinterest)
Eight new readers (Read the misadventures of Woodruff and Bob)
Seven fans reviewing (Review/Recommend my books on Goodreads)
Six tweeps retweeting (Follow me on Twitter, like, reply, or retweet to one of my tweets)
Five Star Reviews (Review any of my books, it means the world to me, whatever the rating)
Four ebook’s read (Read one of my free ebooks or check out Crooked Top Mountain for just $0.99 cents)
Three shared books (Share The Land of Look Behind, The Unsaid, and Crooked Top Mountain)
Two Facebook ‘Likes”, (“Like” my Facebook page or share it with your friends) and
A nomination for the Whitney’s (Nominate Crooked Top Mountain for a 2018 Whitney Award)

On the twelfth day of cajoling an author begged from me
Twelve reservations (Reserve my book at your local library. Not there? Request it from your friendly neighborhood librarian)
Eleven people talking (talk with me about my books, or better yet, tell somebody about my books)
Ten friends a-sharing (Watch my book trailers on YouTube and share with your friends)
Nine pins on Pinterest (Pin one of my books, blogs, or pics, and/or follow me on Pinterest)
Eight new readers (Read the misadventures of Woodruff and Bob)
Seven fans reviewing (Review/Recommend my books on Goodreads)
Six tweeps retweeting (Follow me on Twitter, like, reply, or retweet to one of my tweets)
Five Star Reviews (Review any of my books, it means the world to me, whatever the rating)
Four ebook’s read (Read one of my free ebooks or check out Crooked Top Mountain for just $0.99 cents)
Three shared books (Share The Land of Look Behind, The Unsaid, and Crooked Top Mountain)
Two Facebook ‘Likes”, (“Like” my Facebook page or share it with your friends) and
A nomination for the Whitney’s (Nominate Crooked Top Mountain for a 2018 Whitney Award)

Fyrecon

I’m thrilled to be a part of Fyrecon June 8-10 at Weber State University – Davis Campus in Layton, Utah.  I’ll be teaching two classes and sitting on four panels.

https://www.fyrecon.com/schedule/

To kick off the event Thursday I’ll be teaching a class at 1:30pm Bringing Your Story to Life where I’ll help writer take their stories from beginning to the end.

Friday fun day is loaded with another class and two panels.  The first panel starts at 11:30am where we talk about books that have influenced us.  Then at 2:30pm I’ll be teaching a class on flipping your story upside down to find clarity where I relate my experience as a freelance sports reporter and what I learned that helped my write novels.  Right after that I’ll sit on the panel talking about the dos and don’ts of manipulating your audience.

Saturday evening I’ll be moderating the panel on reboots and remakes for television and film which I’m really excited about.  Then I’ll be sitting on a panel with my good friend Alyson Peterson on writing humor.

I can’t wait!

Amazon Giveaway: The Land of Look Behind

Start the New Year off right with literacy and games of chance.  Enter for your chance to win a free ebook of the exciting debut mystery novel The Land of Look Behind. Your friends will be so jealous. Plus you get to follow an author on Amazon. #winning

See this #AmazonGiveaway for a chance to win: The Land of Look Behind (Kindle Edition). https://giveaway.amazon.com/p/d7316ffac42594b2 NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Ends the earlier of Feb 3, 2017 11:59 PM PST, or when all prizes are claimed. See Official Rules http://amzn.to/GArules.

The Unsaid Launch Party

I am thrilled to invite you to The Unsaid Launch Party.  Come celebrate with me and get a signed copy of my latest novel.  The party begins at 4pm on Saturday October 15, 2016 hosted by Barnes & Noble at San Tan Village Parkway.

The Unsaid is a unique love story with heart and humor that deals with choice, hope, love, courage and the crazy things we think but do not say.

“Maggie, a heavenly curator of unspoken thoughts, is content to do her job while she waits for her turn in mortality.  When Eric, her beholden, shows interest in the new girl at work, Maggie’s curiosity for the wonders of love and life cause her to forsake the rules in search of answers.  But meddling in mortal affairs has consequences that Maggie could never have imagined…”

Launch Party The Unsaid

 
Mark your calendar, invite all your family and friends, and join us for fun, food and literature.