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HoLeY mOLeY… thanks to a concerted effort by family and friends, 29 humans have read and liked my first two episodes! Amazing, and I thank you!

THIS is, currently, only available to read on Amazon. You have to sign in to like it, and, Amazon is currently only allowing USA-based folks to read and like. As is usual with Amazon, they want to see if people are interested before they wade all the way in.

I have a new episode/chapter coming out on Friday, 12/9, and I wonder if I can get to an even 30 readers by then!

I am really curious if people will be interested in the book through the whole process, chapter by chapter.

At the end, we’ll publish it as a paperback.

In the meantime, if you want to take a look, please do. Writers like me live and die based on someone exactly like you being kind enough to take a look. Yes, you have to be signed in and in the USA to leave a LIKE, but the first 3 chapters/episodes are FREE to read!

Last week I sent an email to everyone I could think of, and that helped.

And, I have to say, it was super-awkward asking. It is tough to ask people for help and favors. I am very good at doing favors, but very awful at asking.

Are you able to easily ask for help?

Please consider helping me by reading a chapter or two if you’re able, and thank you so much!

Dianne

IT SHOULD BE LIKE A HALF AN HOUR VOLUME 9

“Day After Day,” by Badfinger. I could listen to this song, and most songs by Badfinger, over and over and over again.

This one is particularly notable for it’s lovely piano, and the whine of the guitar.

My brother, Bill (nicknamed Ear to his friends, but always Billy to me) would have just celebrated his birthday, and he loved Badfinger and introduced them to me. Bill died in 2020 during COVID not from COVID, but from being really sick and also being afraid to go to the hospital because he might catch COVID and die. And so he stayed home and got sicker and sicker, and died. One of the tragedies of my life.

Badfinger, also, cannot be discussed without talking about their tragedy too. Shepherded to fame by John Lennon and Paul McCartney (and Paul wrote many of their songs) they were destined for greatness until their manager ripped them off, and two of them killed themselves in panic and desperation. It was a terrible loss to their friends, family, and to music lovers everywhere, as they were a very good band, and probably would have gotten even better.

So, the thing about Badfinger is, due to both their “sound” and their story, they are a melancholy band. And I tend not to be a fan of sad or melancholy things the older I get. I am really searching for the happy in life, whatever that means. For example, today I tossed some leftover dal on some leftover orzo and had that for breakfast. My mouth was not expecting the dal to slip and slide over orzo, so it was like a whole new thing, and it was amazing. That lifted my mood, ever so slightly, from the sad I still have very much so over our beloved Addie leaving us. Wow, did I cry a lot yesterday over that little Guinea pig. And so, today, I am ready for melancholy and sad, but a lighter form of sad, which I think is exactly Badfinger.

Another great song of theirs that almost seems to merge into “Day After Day” in my mind is “Baby Blue,” and I think that may have been my brother’s favorite of theirs. If you haven’t heard that one, you should give it a try too, and see if you could hear it merging with “Day After Day.”

Most people only know their song, “No Matter What,” which is their very upbeat song. It’s a lot of fun, but still has the same sound, so if you like one Badfinger, you’re probably going to like them all.

So, oh my gosh, is like 2/3 of this bad red-haired guys? How did I just realize this? Red-hair guys are my absolute favorite, if I could order a guy from a menu. Hello, Weasley brothers… I’m coming for you! The drummer looks like my first big love who, also, is sadly no longer with us, and who died in his own tragic way. Not that he and I were in contact by then as I’d been, long before, well and truly dumped, but still, I would prefer he were not dead. Life, as many of us age, can be like that, our universe gets smaller through a slow and persistent peeling away of the people in it. And that is a melancholy thought.

On a lighter note… the lyrics of “Day After Day” say, “… bring it home, Baby make it soon…,” but when I was 7 or 8 years old I would have argued for hours that what they said was, “…bringing home, Baby, making soup… I give my love to you.” And I imagined a good-looking 1970s style guy and his hippie girlfriend carrying baskets full of vegetables through a waving wheat field, and then in a kitchen stirring a big pot on the stove, two hands on the same ladle… .

Hey, soup equals love. Ha, ha, ha. No.

I remember when my mother was dating (an ill-advised escapade any way you slice it) she would always go on like two dates with a guy, and then have the guy over and make soup. And my sister and I were like, “Don’t make him soup! You want to be his girlfriend not his mom!”

In any case, I KNOW this… Now that I have told you, you will never be able to unhear it:

“…bringing home, Baby, making soup… I give my love to you.”

You’re welcome.

I love Badfinger; I hope you do too. I hope we all manage to navigate the loss in our lives, and balance the sadness with the sweetness.

I wish you soup.

Bye-Bye Love

In December of 2019 we were so lucky to be allowed to take Addie (named for Atticus Finch by her original owners) home from the school Sophie was going to. And I was so unhappy to have to take her back after the holiday break. Then along came COVID and Addie came home with us for that break, which turned into forever!

We were so lucky to have this wonderful woman in our lives for all this time. Addie was so affectionate, so good at munching things, including my finger, such a good cross-country traveller, and so sweet and loving. She had the most pink eyes of any pink eyes, and she could twitch her nose better than anyone I have ever known. Sometimes I called her “Addus,” and sometimes I called her “Adelaide,” because no beautiful woman should be named Atticus, “Addiekins,” and sometimes I called her “Addie-boobaladdy” because she was very silly. She loved all the nicknames and thought I was fantastic. She was pretty fond of Sophie too. She was always very good at eating things, but last night she just didn’t seem to want to, but it was pretty late. This morning I found her, sound asleep with her little eyes closed, but she did not seem to want to wake up. So I guess she took the dreamland boat across the rainbow bridge to Guinea Pig Lettuce Paradise, where all the Romaine is cold and crunchy, and all the baby lettuce and carrots are purple.

Later today we will help her rest under a mini Christmas tree.

Bye bye Love; I’ll always treasure you and miss you.

xo~

Mommy

MY BOOK IS PUBLISHED ON KINDLE VELLA!

It may sound strange, this coming from the publisher at Devil’s Party Press, but I have finally got a book out that is mine, just mine, and no one else’s! Like, not part of an anthology, not me doing the preface; no, the whole darn book is mine!

I actually have three novels, and this is one of them. They are all very different, but I would say that something about the voice in each is similar… to me.
Be forewarned, this one is chock-full of obscenities, violence, and murder. Oh yes! 🙂 All that good Soprano’s stuff. But this one also has girl power!

I will be putting up a new chapter every two weeks until the book is done.

ANYONE (even you) can read the first three chapters for free!

And follow along either here, or on DPP BLOG as I update you on what I find out about Kindle Vella: does it work, what are the hiccups, does it make money, and etc.

I JUST WROTE THE INTRO

OMG, I just wrote the intro/preface/what-have-you for Solstice, and I am pumped!

First of all, it’s a great book. It has some seasoned writers in it who, if you read Devil’s Party Press’ publications at all, books, Instant Noodles, you’ve read them before. And it has two authors who are publishing their very first piece. It’s so exciting, beyond exciting actually, for me to give a writer his or her first publication. I wish I could do it every day.

Secondly, not to brag, but I think I wrote a good preface. Sometimes writing an intro is difficult, because it has to be all-encompassing, right? It has to find a way to include all the contents of the book, but, if you venture down the wormhole of mentioning individual authors, then it just becomes a droning list, as you try to get everyone mentioned, and say something that will inspire someone to read each piece. Honestly, with an anthology, the theme is the thing, and you’re either into it or you’re not. This theme is the winter solstice, and the authors did a freaking amazing job with it (but I didn’t say freaking amazing in the preface, because… but I can say it here!). So, if you like the theme, you’re gonna love this book. Melancholy, hope, loss, renewal, cold, food, family, nature, it’s all in there. And, as you can see from the teaser above, it is visually beautiful too.

I have a bit of melancholy about this preface too, because it may be the last one that I write. We’re going to try to get guest editors for all of our future anthologies so that we can broaden, a bit, what is chosen to be published, and give the authors who we hope to mentor the chance to work with different editors. And we want to give other authors the chance to curate a book too.

Would you like to be a guest editor for one of our anthologies?

We do 3 types, a horror anthology, Solstice, and a hard boiled detective anthology. Our biggest need now is for a hardboiled editor. It pays in…. authorship of the book. We give you the writing royalty for the book. You can add it to your list of books on Amazon, and hopefully we sell a lot of them, and you make the money.

To be an editor you have to have (typically) several books of your own, because we need to know both that you know how to write, and that you have experience being successful in the genre. So, horror and detective are genres, right? Solstice is not a genre, but the genre for that is literary writing, so it’s a good one for poets, essayists, and literary authors. And we also have a sci fi imprint, and I know Dave would love to do a sci fi anthology, so if you’re a sci fi person who could helm a book, pitch us.

Oh, my gosh, I’m so excited for this book.

And for this new year too, I must admit.

I have some wonderful authors I am working with, some for editing, some for coaching, and I really hope we’re able to fill at least one of our virtual workshops. It is invigorating to work with other authors, for me, and for them. I love helping people grow. It helps me grow. And, in the list of careers I have had in my life, it is most defiantly the one I am best at. I am a natural teacher, and I have a gift for helping writing. I don’t have a swelled head, honestly; I am crap at a lot of things. I remember when I was doing staff training for a facility for people with disabilities, and I always wanted to inspire the staff to feel that the people we worked for were humans, with desires and needs and passions just like any of us, and that we needed to be tuned into really feeling like family with them, feeling that, and just doing our work with love. But, for most folks, it was, and remained, just a job. It was so disheartening that I knew not how to be inspiring. And so, folks’ meds got missed, or diapers weren’t changed because a shift was ending in 20 minutes. So, at times in my careers, I’ve been crap at my job no matter the amount of effort. But this, helping writers write, this is the thing I can give. (And if you want to work with me, I’d love to work with you. It doesn’t have to break the bank to have a writing coach, or an editor. And I’m happy to give you an hour long free Zoom and/or a free edit to see if you think you might find it helpful.)

But this book, this book is the thing I am pumped about today. And you, you’re probably gonna buy something for somebody as gift over the next month or so. Why not make it this book? Especially if you know someone who has secretly always wanted to be an author. Tell them it can be done; tell them two folks are doing it for the first time, in this book, and buy them a copy!.

I WISH I DIDN’T HAVE TO POST THIS

I am so sorry that there are people who hate others because they are different from them. Green is different from blue. Spicy is different from sweet. THIS is how the world has beauty and flavor. When I was a kid, I loved loved loved Rita Mae Brown. Didn’t change me from a straight person to not, but what if I had grown up and fell in love with another woman? I’d still be me. If you can’t love others at least leave them alone.

Please don’t hate someone who has done nothing to you.

HAPPY LITTLE MESSAGES FROM THE UNIVERSE

Where are my people who believe in messages from the Universe?

“I found a nickel in my shoe this morning, so the universe is telling me that money is walking my way!”

C’mon, where are you?

‘Cause I need help.

I’m obviously doing something wrong….

This is my message from the Universe?

Dun dun dun!!!!!

I definitely better hurry up and finish my damn novel!