Sunday, May 12, 2019

Happy Mother's Day from the Other Kids!

Go here for the first round of pet photos. Today, on Mother's Day, I share more. Happy Mother's Day!

Classic cat look. 

Sorry to bore you.

I guess I have to accept that my book put some to sleep.
But others love it so much that they need it with them at all times. 
And there are those who CANNOT stop thinking about it.

Quotes from pets . . . 
"It's a tear-jerker, and it's hard to talk about."

"I'll simply never get over that brave dog featured throughout."

"I have fantasies of the alarm clock that sounds like a rooster crowing. Lordy, who dreamed that gem up?"

"I feel like Spiegel gets me, you know what I mean? She sees the Inner Olive."

It’s no use

Mother dear, I can’t finish my weaving
You may blame Aphrodite

soft as she is

she has almost killed me with love for that boy

"I have been to Paris. I have seen Rome. Manhattan, Venice Beach: they have their charms. But I call Phoenix home."

"I'm still not sure how to process Spiegel's religiosity with her obnoxious ferocity surrounding the last presidential election. I mean, should I read into her prose and pull out political philosophies? Do I consider existentialism or theology?"

"I just want to know if used bookstores will buy back indie press books."

"You have no clue what this means to me. I will treasure it forever."

 My own pets were fairly non-cooperative.

Story is not impressed. 

Monday, May 6, 2019

If The Gestapo Should Come

This is the most famous photo from our audiobook escapade. It was, however, just an example of rock n' roll kismet.  Alice Cooper, THE Alice Cooper, had to do a little voiceover work at Epicentre--and our schedules bumped up against each other. WHICH WAS ABSOLUTELY FINE WITH ME.

You know, the truth is that I had these big, big dreams. Part of it was writerly bravado. Part of it was my teaching career mishaps. Part of it was my handy-dandy, use-on-special-occasions Cancer Card/entrance pass.
Jackie Jae Cowsill!

Basically, I had this sense that my book was the best thing I had ever written, like it was good. I suppose I might write something better someday, but this is what that cancer diagnosis really does: It Says, Maybe You Won’t.

(Listen, I’m not going to play games with you. I survived. The book did not come out on my deathbed. I’m supposedly cancer-free. Cold Comfort, kinda.)

I must admit that this book and its debut and all of the surrounding propaganda has been marked by urgency and grand gestures. It has this dismal publishing history. And this was NOT the book I wanted to lose in the mess of my own ugly drama. This book meant something to me. It meant a lot.

It was my wedding ring,
my children tucked into bed,
the papers that I’d hand over if the Gestapo came for me in the night,
my confession of faith,
the content of any vow I made,
my cancer survivor stats explained.
This was me sleeping before dying.

And so, with no experience whatsoever, I decided to make an audiobook. Really, that’s why.

Joe Bauman!

I did one smart thing: I got my friend with credentials on board. Jackie Jae Cowsill produced this baby. And she took it seriously. We were booked at a real studio, Epicentre Recording, in Phoenix. She flew out from Oregon. We showed up in the studio. I narrated. The real stars of this audiobook adventure were Jackie Cowsill and Joe Bauman (The Owner, a pro) of Epicentre.

I needed to be the one to narrate. I need to enunciate and emphasize and bedraggle the emotional landscape appropriately. I’d be the one to mess with it.

The audiobook is live now. Will I do it again? I actually don’t know.