That First Book Review

It all takes time, but I received my first book review.. and also a 5 star-rating from someone who bought it on Amazon.. so I am getting at least somewhere.

Hoping someone with a little better sense of humor can review it, but this one was a THREE out of FOUR possible stars.

[Drumroll]

[Following is the official OnlineBookClub.org review of “War and Vegetables” by Robert Run.]
3 out of 4 stars Review by sindhu75063

War and Vegetables by Robert Run mainly focuses on the hardships faced by the middle class during modern day corporatism. The story begins with Paul Poznan, who has failed college, going on a road trip to his hometown, Sunny Knoll, Wisconsin, with his girlfriend Alexandra Chase, called Alex. Because of his academic fail, his girlfriend’s parents, Ross and Sherry Chase, are concerned about Alex’s decision to quit school and stay with Paul. Yet Alex comforts them, saying that Paul has chalked out a plan (Actually, it’s Alex who has the plan, she’s the Alpha -RR). Upon arriving home, they contact Paul’s childhood friend, Spiro Young, known as Mint, who runs Stellar Gas, a gas station set up by both his (Michael and Angel Young) and Paul’s parents (Keith and Valerie Poznan). They find out that Keith would be meeting them soon and ponder about the decisions he might ask them to make.

Theirs being a gas station stocked with all the essential groceries as well, the trio finds out that a lot of sale has gone down because of supermarkets and the like. Hence, they agree to Keith Poznan’s idea of hosting a Farmer’s Market. The rest of the story focuses on their planning and preparation for farmers to meet directly with the consumers and not to be cheated by any middlemen. In this process, they definitely find more helpers (their friends and the local community) and well-wishers than haters. But even a few haters can spoil all the fun.

If you are a writer who would like to share the story of getting your first review, please contact me and I’ll add your story to the book blog at warandvegetables.com, include links to your site and the book that was reviewed.

Thus, the story of War and Vegetables is one of determination and perseverance. It is a tale which inspires any person to become a successful businessperson whilst being a helpful and caring one. It shows that even when you want to be on top, you must be considerate to the ones holding your ladder for you. It also relates the struggle faced everyday by the agriculture class, working to make our lives healthier and happier. In other words, it was a bridge between age old professions and technical advancement.

It was really hard to rate this book. The fact was that it was a real page-turner. But: one, I found too many grammatical errors and way too much unnecessary capitalization [I tried to send them a revised version but was unable to, I explain why I capitalize the Natural World in the Preface, RR); two, the climax wasn’t as mind-blowing as I expected it would be; and three, I felt that there was some inappropriate foul language used. Hence, I rate this book 3 out of 4 stars. I feel really bad because it was overall a good read and deserved 4 stars just for the flow.

Little explanations about Mint’s inventions and Paul’s spontaneous writing adds a personal touch to the book, highlighting the fun excursions we have within our own selves. Overall, I believe that this book is an inspiration for all those who feel depressed in life and are unwilling to take a different path. You never know, a new path might be just a little prettier.

Not bad!

I like an honest book review. Any book review is good because at least someone is reading your stuff. -RR

Hardcopy: https://www.createspace.com/6252522
eBook: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01K5H3GAI

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The New Word to Describe the Life of a Writer

conundrumnal: The state of being in a persistent paradox; A situation presenting a consistent conundrum

American Politicians  spend too much time raising money. They don’t have time to make good policy, or to care how it affects us.

If I want to spend more time writing, I am going to have to figure out how to sell my book, but if I spend my time selling it, I won’t have time to write. One of the things I like to do is make up new words. There are a few in my book. Today I want to introduce you to the word conundrumnal, because this problem of having to spend time selling books and not being able to write them is conundrumnal. I’m not saying this is original thought, but I don’t see that word in use. Certainly not in dictionaries.

war and vegetables a chronicle of the last gas station book cover

click that

My book is now in the Premium Catalogue at Smashwords, which means I can officially stop calling myself a Writer and start calling myself an Author if I feel like it. It might be a little pretentious,  but probably not presumptuous. It would be pretentious to call myself an author if I started referring to myself as such before at least selling a thousand books. You get the point though. I wrote a book, seventy two thousand plus words.

Below is a list of ways people all over the world can get my book if they find clicking the link above to be too easy. I am intrigued by this. What a great system Smashwords made. Technically, pretty much everyone on Earth can get my book now. What if they did? Then I could spend more time writing.

Kobo powers the ebook stores of multiple ebook retailers around the world.  Simply by distributing to Kobo via Smashwords, your books may also reach WH Smith in the UK, FNAC in France and Portugal, Livraria Cultura in Brazil, Angus & Robertson Bookworld in Australia, Bookworld in Australia, Indigo in Canada, Collins in Australia, Feltrinelli in Italy, bol.com in the Netherlands, Paper Plus in New Zealand, Play in Great Britain, Rakuten in Japan, Buy.com (now Rakuten) in the US, PriceMinister in France, Crossword and WHSmith in India, Eason & Son, Ltd in Ireland, Mondadori in Italy, The Paper Plus Group in New Zealand, National Book Store in the Philippines, Pick ‘N Pay in South Africa, La Central in Spain, Dogan in Turkey, participating Booksellers Association Stores in the UK, and participating American Booksellers Association stores in the US, and Orbile in Mexico (Orbile is a partnership between two large Mexican book retailers, Porrúa and Gandhi).

Inktera operates retail site Inktera.com and powers multiple apps across iOS and Google Play including Athanatos, Book Bronco, Caffeine Nights, Cricket Books, Digital Pretium, Digital Turbine eBooks, EverAfter, IndieReader, Inktera Books, MediaRewards, Morgan Rice, Oasis eBooks, OneClique, TribBooks, Versent Books, and EverAfter (app for romance); and operates Android ebook store apps for Cricket Wireless and Asus.

Baker & Taylor operates Blio, an ebook store and also operates Axis360, a major supplier of ebook checkout systems to public libraries.

Gardners, also mentioned above, powers hundreds of small white label ebook stores; operates Hive.co.uk which powers ecommerce operations for hundreds of physical stores; operates Askews & Holts, a large supplier of ebooks to public libraries in the UK and other countries; and operates VLeBooks which powers ebook checkout systems for academic libraries.

Book Titles: I laughed into mine

Book Title

At some point during the third or fourth revision I was searching the internet for music, just trying to relax an overstimulated mind and maybe find some inspiration. I was listening to Beatles songs that are somewhat rare, like demos and outtakes. I heard the book title in an interview with John Lennon and Paul McCartney, where the interviewer was asking them questions about youth culture, and what, if any good they thought they could bring to the youth of their era.

Many people try to be conscious about what’s important, and what, if any good they might do. We all think too much, and wouldn’t it be a lovely world if we could all settle our heads with more music and humor, and other good things. The original, working title for this book was ‘Stellar Gas’.

You can find the entire, very much worth the listen Lennon and McCartney interview on Youtube

This is an excerpt:

Interviewer: Let’s stick to the young people, and to the areas that you think are most fruitful to try to help in. I mean, again, I asked before where you thought young people were going and you said maybe there’ll be a reaction to what they have now. How does this relate to the real world, as you see it, to issues of war and peace and family and country?
John Lennon: All issues are relative. So it relates like that. It’s all just relative to each other. War… and vegetables… It’s all just relative, you know. So there’s relativity and absolute, and that’s how it relates.
Paul McCartney: That’s great Johnny.
Interviewer: That’s kind of hard though, for some people, to interpret you.
John Lennon: Well, if they can’t interpret it, maybe they will later, or come to their own conclusions, but that’s the way I think it is.

John Lennon working class hero onUS flag by Robert Run

Lennon was taken from us before he could become a U.S. citizen

 

John Lennon, purposefulness and consciousness in decision making

I derived the title for my first book War and Vegetables from an interview with John Lennon and Paul McCartney, where the interviewer was asking them questions about youth culture, and what, if any good they thought they could bring to the youth of their era. At some point during the third revision I was searching the internet for music, just trying to relax an overstimulated mind and maybe find some inspiration. I was listening to Beatles songs that are somewhat rare, like demos and outtakes.

 

My first thought about the poignancy of the interview in relation to the themes in my book was that it was serendipitous and some kind of cosmic coincidence. I realized that this is always a theme, in and for any generation. Many people try to be conscious about what’s important, and what, if any good they might do. There is nothing serendipitous about it. We all think too much, and wouldn’t it be a lovely world if we could all settle our heads with more music and humor, and other good things. The original, working title for this book was ‘Stellar Gas’.

You can find the entire, very much worth the listen Lennon and McCartney interview here: http://j.mp/rr-w-v

Also on Soundcloud

This is an excerpt:

Interviewer: Let’s stick to the young people, and to the areas that you think are most fruitful to try to help in. I mean, again, I asked before where you thought young people were going and you said maybe there’ll be a reaction to what they have now. How does this relate to the real world, as you see it, to issues of war and peace and family and country?
John Lennon: All issues are relative. So it relates like that. It’s all just relative to each other… War… and vegetables… It’s all just relative, you know. So there’s relativity and absolute, and that’s how it relates.
Paul McCartney: That’s great Johnny.
Interviewer: That’s kind of hard though, for some people, to interpret you.
John Lennon: Well, if they can’t interpret it, maybe they will later, or come to their own conclusions, but that’s the way I think it is.

I hope you’ll visit the Book Website, which is different than the link above, and subscribe to updates. As soon as I have 50 orders I am going to send out a sample chapter.

This is the way I guess I have to do it.

Last year I did the NaNoWriMo challenge and wrote 50,000+ words of a novel. There were nights when it was easy peasy and there were nights where it was like trying the get wet sand out of a soda bottle at the beach, but I did it.

This year the idea is to get the damn thing done. I have to revise, edit, format and just get the thing out there. That is what it is about this year.

I continued writing the book after November. It ;s up to about 70K words now. I’ve never done this before and I learned a lot so far and I suppose I’ll continue to learn more. I think it seems kind of pathetic to start a book and not finish for a whole year, but I guess everyone is different. I see these authors who have literally dozens of books they’ve written and they do several a year. I cannot imagine what that’s like.. that is just not how it happens for me.. It took me about 43 years to even start my first one (this one), because I was 7 when I knew some day I’d write a book. I feel like I needed 50 years of experience to have something to write about.. you know?

Well.. here it comes. Wish me luck!!

The NaNoWriMo Poster

Nanowrimo2013: Not finishing Nanowrimo 2013 would feel goofy

so far, 33183 words.

It’s cool when you are getting something done that you have been working on for a while and it is finally coming together. I wondered about the word count, as I started writing I was not sure how long this book will be. I realize now it will be at least 80K words. I can’t imagine it taking less.

I really thought I was more behind in Nanowrimo 2013, but then I realized I update my word count after midnight, so I am not as far back as I thought. There is going to have to be some catch up writing again this weekend, but the story is getting nice. I have some rewrite to do later on today, and that will actually add words, and I have discovered the magic of the bridge chapter. What a bonus.

what not finishing nanowrimo 2013 will feel like

what not finishing nanowrimo 2013 would feel like

Nanowrimo: Picking up the pace in getting lost in the stories and the people and the situations

to date 28156 words.

Not much to say today except I made a huge gain in words today, it is flowing today and here is an excllent post from Paige Knorr, one of the community Liaisons for Nanowrimo. She nails it where she says:

I’ve always found the shore of Week Three to be the most exciting place to stand, and the trip through it the most exhilarating portion of the month. You’ve gotten to know your characters, the story has a discernible shape and trajectory, and it’s just so thrilling to go play in that world you’ve crafted.

It’s true, believe it.

the only thing is baseball.

weird for baseball

Cheater excerpt from a chapter:

Doing the wrong thing the right way is 100% worse than doing the right thing the wrong way. It’s possible to look really beautiful and athletic and artistic while doing the wrong thing and costing a run or costing a game. It’s also possible to look ridiculous while doing the right thing the wrong way. The latter is far more acceptable. It’s better to look stupid doing the right thing wrong, than to look brilliant doing the wrong thing right.  ~ Antler Pestle

Nanowrimo: It’s exactly half way through, exactly, as in no more, no less

So far, 21375 words.

This is a big session weekend. I am a little bit behind in my trajectory, so I want to do two 1500 word sessions for both Saturday and also Sunday.

cafe busteloThat will put me ahead enough so that for the rest of the month I can focus and write the way I like. Short sessions, late at night, when I am kind of tired. Another challenge is that I am out of coffee, and since I am writing during the day on Sat and Sun, that might be an issue. Hopefully by Sunday I am not battling headaches.. I do have some good, nice black tea, so that will ease things.

Yesterdays session expanded on some of the earlier anecdotes, but it also expanded the discussion about regional delivery systems and local food. As a bonus, there is the first recipe, yes, this book has recipes peppered into it. So… have a nice day.

 

 

Nanowrimo: When there is a novella written into a novel, is it a novelella?

18005 words, so far.

Your televison is an appliance that is applied to your brain

your tv is an appliance and it’s applied to your brain

Here’s the thing. There are some creative people in my story, so what’s the point mentioning that if it is not part of the story?

There is a writer, an inventor, and their interplay. There is actually a little novella written within the novel.. so is that a novelella?

Things are coming along. Getting close to some more really good business talk, and organizing philosophy. All kinds of weird little anecdotes now that the town is being introduced. It’s fun. I’m thinking this thing will a minimum of 80 thousand words. I like to have things move along, not -be- too long.

I don’t think i will write my 80K words this month, but I’ll make the 50K for nanowrimo.

Nanowrimo: Some things about long writing sessions and daytime writing sessions. I have my brain spasms at night

Nanowrimo 2013 Word count, 13546:

There are people who really thrive in long writing sessions. Others get paid big bucks to sit in a room and write and rewrite scripts and it requires that they work long hours. It must be nice, I guess. Considering some of the lousy stuff out there, some people think it is more about who you know than what you know or whether your material is any good. Well that is not as much true as you think.

So much of it has to do with your ability to organize your time and pack the most into your day possible. It’s like any business, it is a numbers game, and the more you can write in a shorter time, the more likely you will have -something- that you can use for income. Sometimes people get lucky and get some kind of break so their material gets out there and produced, but generally people who get work do so because they work a lot.

So even though it is true, and universally understood that there is some crap coming out of Hollywood, cut a little slack, because those people work pretty hard to get to material that is worth something. Can you imagine the giant piles of stinky garbage the people who buy scripts have to go through to find something worth doing for their studios? Yeah, no thanks. They deserve the money they make to tolerate that.

As for me, at least for now, I have this luxury of being able to have short sessions. I only like to write 1000-1500 words a day, and I like to write at night, when I am tired. My mind is more lucid when I’m tired. It also helps if I have a little ganja, but I sadly do not have any. Sometimes I have some ganj for a couple of days a week for my sessions and that helps keep things loose and lubricated up there, as long as I don’t over do it and as long as I don’t do it every day.

I’m falling a little behind on my trajectory for nanowrimo. I am going to have a double session to make up for it, but I will not do it all at once. I will space it out so I have two sessions in one day.

Yesterday’s session got into the characters evaluating some information they received from the dad of one of the dual protagonists. Some of what they heard seemed contradictory, but he was not able to complete his thoughts when he gave them, and he will continue later to clear things up.

i have my brain spasms at night

i have my brain spasms at night

Nanowrimo: I won’t get the two-week doldrums because I am writing for two

Nanowrimo 2013 Word count: 12377

So, about those doldrums, the two-week doldrums that the nanos warn against. I it’s not possible for me to get them. The reason is I’m writing for two.

One of the characters in my book is a writer, for anyone not catching on, I have to write his material too, because a part of this book is some of his writing, some prose, some poetry, one or two vignettes, and guess what else, a short novel. So yeah, this whole doldrums thing is outside the realm of possibility, because if I get tired of the main story, which is not even very likely, I can just switch over to this “other personality” and get busy with his material.

In the recent session I finally got into the fun stuff. It is a part of the story that I love the most, where the old school business guy kind of schools the young kids about business and the approach to making adjustments to meet the new situation in the country. There is more of this in the book, but I am glad I finally cracked that scenario.

And, guess what else. They eat Bison burgers.

running bison .gif

My first week of Nanowrimo is over and I am already better for it

Nanowrimo 2013  Word count is at 11218 right now.

Yesterday I wrote that I am going to tell you today about why I do not think I am going to get into the two-week doldrums. But the thing is that I did not get to the point where that comes into play, so by tomorrow I should be ready to get into that. What happened this session is that I got so into the relationships between my main characters that I was having too much fun to get into the next phase. So it was a bit more setting up, some further character development and a few anecdotes.

Finally, please let me show you this Nanowrimo Pep Talk by Malinda Lo. She is accurate, this is what it is like to sit down and write. It can be loathsome to get set up for the day, but once you get going it is very stimulating.

Come bother me tomorrow.. cheers.

shadow-of-plane-FB

NaNoWriMo Update: The Reunion

7284 words as of today. When you update your word count, they have an app in the NanoWriMo website that calculates everything from the number of words to your trajectory, to your projected finish date.

Yesterday I finished the Chapter “Reunion”, where the dual protagonists reunite, catch up a little and make their immediate plans to prepare for the mysterious big changes that are coming.

Tonight it is about rounding out the first three characters I’ve introduced… I need to do a little better job filling in the reader about where they’re from, where they’re at and where they’re going.

yellow stellartiny

NaNoWriMo: National Novel Writing Month (Nano)

A few days ago I started NaNoWriMo: http://nanowrimo.org/participants/robert-run. the idea is to write 50,000 words of a novel in one month. I am on pace to finish on Nov.22. I have found that doing a public announcement, with accountability and a group of others is the best way to actually follow through. if you go to that link you can learn more and read an excerpt.

I have had this thing outlined, the character sketches, locations and about 3.5K words done for a while, and for most writers, we are not so keen about our work, as in, never satisfied, so just powering through it is  as good a strategy as any. Then there were  other projects that seemed like a nice diversion, like Hank Rally, and becoming more involved in my virtual assistant work to increase cash flow.

Right now I am at 5780 words, and you are welcome to follow my progress.

I also want to take a moment to thank, and encourage my writing buddies at “NaNo”:

Because we are bugging and nagging and trying to keep each other on track.

Part of my progress going forward includes updating this blog every morning. So let’s see if I can be true to myself and my buddies.

While you are at it you can check out The Day of Focused Moments.

eyeball

Novel Excerpts: Gimme S'more

This is a graphic I am using for my novel excerpts

I was finally able to get the first of my novel excerpts completed. It’s not long, it’s only 6 pages, and it does not encapsulate the plots. It’s merely a character development piece. These parts of a book are important. When you are doing a long book, it is good to have humor for humor’s sake. Everything doesn’t have to be crucial. These parts of books set-up and tease for other segments that may actually be significant. If the book is heady, and gives the reader a lot to think about then it’s nice to give them a break with something light and fun.

 

A nice short, sweet post today. I have been busy building stuff here at the Chalet I take care of, and editing a graphic novel script as a side gig.  I’m pooped and have more editing to do.

I am doing one post per day for the month of November, hopefully. Inspired by NaBloPoMo.

This is post…  number 9

turn me on dead man

revolution number 9