Tag Archives: Hyperlink from Hell

Frankly, My Book Could Save Your Life!

vampire-lips-red-lip-gloss-fangs-draculaIt’s the Witching Season, or soon will be. Also the Vampire Season. Yes folks, it’s Vampire Books For Blood, a charity drive that is sure to drive you, well, batty. #VampBooks4Blood‘s founder, plotter, schemer and bottle-washer is Scott Burtness, author of the Monsters in the Midwest series. This year I am participating because, frankly, I didn’t know about it until now, though it’s been happening since 2013.

Here’s the lowdown: authors of books about vampires pledge to donate to the US Red Cross or the Canadian Blood Services — either a flat donation or a percentage of their book’s October sales! I will be donating 100% of my world-wide October proceeds from Hyperlink From Hell to this worthy cause. (Should be worth a pint or two, even at the discounted price of 99 cents for the ebook and less than 10 bucks for the paperback!)

But perhaps you would like to know my initial reaction, when I heard about the drive:

You mean my BOOK could save a LIFE? And not in the “confused reader threw it (the paperback version, not the ebook) out the window of a speeding bus, smacking a mugger in the head, thus saving a (frankly, whiffy) little old lady from having her Social Security check (which, also frankly, she should have been having direct-deposited all these years, but what can you do?) stolen and used to fund the mugger’s debauched, basement-based lifestyle of virtual bowling, online D&D and repeated, failed attempts to break the Guinness World Record for Cheetos Found In A Couch, all the while the (frankly, now even more whiffy) little old lady starved and was eaten by her cats?

Cool. I like cats. Count me in.

I did not write that cliche-riddled scenario to Scott, because, frankly, I don’t want him to KNOW I’m nuts. SUSPECT, sure. After all, he read the book. Even reviewed it:

This book was fun as hell. Philosophy, religion, and a world-class pun fest have been nicely rolled into a dark mystery full of fun characters, plot twists, and humor so absurd it’s flippin’ hilarious.

First, most of the story is the story within the story. I know, right? Head’s spinning a bit already. But the author does a great job setting up both worlds, and both sets of characters. Second, the story in the story is a madcap romp. When the MC comes up for air, you’ll be glad she did because you’ll need to take a few deep breaths as well.
Third, it will all make sense in the end, and you’ll be deeply satisfied.

If you enjoy Terry Pratchett and Monty Python, and also enjoy getting drunk and arguing with the desklamp about whether Schrödinger’s cat prefers dry food or dryer lint, you will absolutely love Hyperlink from Hell.

Now THAT’S nuts! (Thank you, Scott.) But seriously folks, this is a great cause, with some generous authors participating. I only have one vampire book to offer, but others are donating proceeds from a whole series! So frankly (Scott’s dog’s name is “Frank”; see how I got it in there? Repeatedly? Without mercy?), I will be buying a whole lot of vampire books in October.

Frankly, I hope you will, too! Go Here and learn how to get all these amazing books from authors that give till it hurts.

If you want to join the facebook kick-off party Oct 1st, 12 Pm Central US time — and you do want to, because I’m mesmerizing you with my vampira eyes — here’s the link!

Vampire Books For Blood Party

See you there, I hope.

Fang you very much,

— Lindy “Never Met a Pun She Didn’t Like” Moone

Annnnd, here’s Frank!
frank-the-dog-full-face

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…Because Someone Has to Sort out Eeyore.

I’ve been asked by Christina L. Rozelle, author of The Truth About Mud (the second-longest story in my troll anthology), to post “Why I Write.” If you have blog-hopped here from there, thank you for coming. If you have hopped here from elsewhere, please hop on over to the link above. (Not now! Sheesh!)

Of course, there are lots of answers to Christina’s question — a different one for every day. A month ago I might have answered glibly, “Because it’s fun to wantonly use adverbs,” and run away — figuratively, of course, since my ass was firmly planted in this chair and it was hot, so my elbows were hopelessly stuck to the desk. (They still are.)

Peske_Little_Girl_in_red_Dress

Here’s me, showing my panties to a cabbage

I started writing (actually printing) as a four-year-old, when I made up stories about the family that lived in my closet — the closet I shared with my little sister. In that family, everyone had their own room, even the Mommy and Daddy (why should they have to share, after all?) and a sock doll named Eegie and Tuffy the cat. (Who, it must be noted, had the biggest room.)

Today, I could say I write to bask in the glow of reviews (which, frankly, are few and far between, possibly due to my habit of aggressive non-promotion). Yesterday’s new Hyperlink from Hell reviews, my first on Amazon UK, included such head-swellers as:

“The cleverest piece of fiction I’ve ever read.”

(and)

“Somewhere in the multiverse there is a version of me who hasn’t read this book. I feel sorry for her.”

A couple of days ago, if asked why I write, I might have said “Because writing and reading are comforting” and referenced my novel-in-progress, Riding the Bull, the sequel to the above-lauded (and larded) book. In RTB, a character relates this quote, from A. A. Milne’s Piglet, in The House at Pooh Corner:

“Supposing a tree fell down, Pooh, while we were underneath it?”

“Supposing it didn’t,” said Pooh after careful thought.

 (See? Comforting!)

Here’s that same character explaining why she became a psychiatrist:

It’s partly thanks to Pooh and Piglet—and lonely, depressed “Eeyore” the donkey—that I became a psychiatrist. I made a list of promises to my mother before she died; the first was to “Take care of Daddy.” The last was, “And if nobody fixes Eeyore, Mommy, I’ll sort him out.”

I was six. I still have that list, and everything’s checked off but Eeyore.

So I write because it’s comforting, and to make things right.

I also write because I’m kinda smart (the Internet says my IQ is 134, so it must be true!), and because I’m kinda dumb (too befuddled to be a waiter, for example; I really admire people who can do that), and because it’s fascinating — to me, at least — to see those two sides of me duke it out on the page. (This is not a pretty spectator sport; it’s hard to see exactly what’s going on — kind of like two bulldogs fighting in a bag.)*

My brain works, when it works, in mysterious ways. I am a curious sort. Just yesterday I was wondering if anyone else’s panties suddenly, irrevocably roll down when they stretch, yawn, or sneeze — and the median age when people give up the valiant fight and start wiping from the front. So I write to explore the gap between the odd way my mind works and the way individual readers’ minds work. I want to know if anyone “gets” me, I guess. (And if they do, I worry about them. I really do.)

But mostly I write for the money. I sold one book this month, so far. In Germany. I made .30 Euro. (Methinks I’ll buy a pony…!)

Or maybe a donkey.

I guess I must write… because it’s fun. Nothing else comes close. (Except, of course, painting pictures on a closet wall.)

 

 

*Please do not worry about the bulldogs. They aren’t real.


 

Peske’s “Little Girl in Red Dress” courtesy Wikimedia Commons.

Other illustrations are Ernest Shepard’s drawings for A. A. Milne’s Winnie the Pooh series.

 

Get Your Cliches from Hell Here!

Yesterday, I read this:

The Top Ten Storytelling Cliches that Need to Disappear Forever

Did you read it? Or did you skip to here? If you skipped, that’s okay. Who’s gonna know? But the rest of this post will make more sense if you click on the link and at least skim the list of cliches, m’kay?

Now: Here’s what I think about that post:

“I agree! And I’m dancing with glee!”

“Huh?” you say. “How can you agree that a writer shouldn’t use this list of cliches? For fuck’s sake, Hyperlink from Hell is loaded with them!”

To which I say: “You bet it is! It’s front-end loaded! It’s satire, remember? I can’t begin to say how thrilled I am to have hit the bullseye on 7 out of 10 of these!”

But listen: Hyperlink isn’t JUST satire. It isn’t just Pinocchio, poking his little (and sometimes not-so-little) nose into society’s blowhole to see where the bloated whale of our culture springs a leak. I took great pains to make sure he’s also a real boy — a real story about real(ish), crazy people. And I know some of you readers REALLY get that. And I love you for it.

But I’ve also realized that for other readers to get that, they need the other two books in the series, like, NOW. And they aren’t finished. So maybe I should have waited ’til they were done before publishing the first book, but live and learn — and I’ve learned so much from this last year and met so many wonderful readers and other writers, that I wouldn’t go back and change a thing…

Except one. I will soon be uploading a new version of the ebook, with a preview of the second book plopped on the end. Yes, you will soon learn if there’s a body in the tunnel! You won’t have to wait. And after I make those changes, I will make the book free for a while.

Then, after the troll anthology is out, I will write my fingers off to get those other two books out as soon as I can.

Now, about those cliches… Let’s have some fun with them!

1. Characters describing themselves in mirrors: Yes, Jimmie does, just once, stare at his face in the mirror and describe what he sees. But since his appearance keeps changing at Al’s Almighty whim, how else would he know what he looks like at any given time? It’s a win-win!

3. Blaming bad behavior on bad parenting: The whole book is a satirical look at this one. ‘Nuff said.

4. Too many inside jokes/references: All part of the satirical experience, at no extra charge.

5. The chosen one: Bullseye!

6. Countdown clocks: I am practically orgasmic that they included this one on the list!

7. Veiling your message in a dream: Or three! Weeeeeeee!!!

10. Knocking characters unconscious for plot convenience: Poor Jimmie! I did this countless times to him! And all on purpose! (I am a fucking genius!)

Now, I know what you’re thinking:

“What about numbers 2 (Broadcasting an upcoming plot twist), 8 (Using sex as wish fulfillment) and 9 (Magical Negroes and Noble Savages)?”

Well, I’ll do my best to squeeze 2 and 8 into books 2 and 3, but as for 9? No fucking way. I will simply have to admit defeat on that one — wouldn’t touch it with a 10-foot Polish person — but you know, my own list of Cliches from Hell…

Is just getting started!

Grant E. Hamilton’s 1885 political cartoon for the “The Judge” magazine.

(Wikimedia Commons)

 

The War of the Words… Has Begun!

War_of_the_Worlds_shoot.jpegFirst “misread” word of 2014:

Emma => enema.

First typo in 2014:

Updated => unpated.

Pretty sure I know what enema means.

Let’s say no more about it.

But what could “unpated” mean?

Since “pate” means the crown of the head, “unpated” must mean:

“One who has had the top of one’s head lopped off.”

I imagine it’s like cracking the top off a soft-boiled egg, in one deft thwack.

(If you’re thinking about “pâté” right now, don’t. Just… don’t.)

Let’s use “unpated” in a sentence, shall we? Perhaps in a hard-boiled detective novel. One which begins: “It was the best of crimes, it was the worst of crimes…” Here we go:

“The victim was unpated. Defenestrated.”

Now, let’s see what the Internet has to say about “unpated”:

  • WordFind graciously provides an anagram: “unadept.” (Are they trying to tell me something?)
  • Wiktionary kindly asks: “Do you mean ‘update’? (Yes, yes I do. And I should be getting on with it.)
  • OmniiDict! chides: “The proper spelling of this word is “unpathed”.  (How dare they?! It’s presumptuous to imply I have no idea where I’m going with this! Correct, but presumptuous.)
  • But YouTube — precious YouTube! — suggests I go to war over it. (Thus, the bullets.)

It’s going to be a fun war.

Happy reading and fighting!

Let Ruth Harris Slay Your Writing Dragons

Face_in_the_Pool-Knight_Fighting_DragonThe following is reblogged from Anne R. Allen’s Blog. Go there. Read the Whole thing. Enjoy. Then get back to writing.

Still here? Not quite ready to commit to the click-through? Then here’s the dragon teaser:

6 Writing Dragons: How To Slay Them…and Realize Your Writing Dreams in 2014

by Ruth Harris

Why Tough (Self-) Love (and Some Dragon-Slaying) Will Get You Where You Want To Be Next Year

The reasons (excuses?) for not writing/not getting your book finished often come down to six usual suspects:
1) The Procrastination Dragon

As if you don’t know what I’m talking about. 😉 But, just in case you only recently landed on Planet Earth, here’s a short list:

  • You’re tweeting instead of writing.
  • You’re surfing the web instead of writing.
  • You’re making coffee instead of writing.
  • You’re answering emails instead of writing.
  • You’re cleaning the bathroom instead of writing.
  • You’re organizing your spices instead of writing.

Bottom line: You’re doing anything and everything you can think of except write.

2) The Interruption Dragon

  • The phone.
  • The kids.
  • The dog.
  • The cat.
  • Your husband/wife/significant other.
  • The Amazon drone delivering 3 pairs of gym socks you ordered half an hour ago.
  • You lose your train of thought. If you were in the zone, you’re now out of the zone. If you weren’t in the zone, you’re now out in Siberia.
How can you be expected to write if you’re being interrupted all the time?

3) The What-Happens-Next? Dragon
Your MC is on the top branch of a burning tree and the bad guys are down below. With guns, knives, IEDs, RPGs, snarling tigers. machetes and blowtorches.

  • So now what happens?
  • What does the MC do?
  • What do the bad guys do?
  • What does his/her husband/wife, cubicle mate, best friend, bridge partner, girl friend/boy friend, Pilates teacher, dog walker, nutty neighbor, favorite TV comedian or movie star do?
  • Who says what? And to whom?
You mean you don’t know? Don’t even have a clue?
4) The Fear and Loathing Dragon
  • You forgot why you’re writing the damn book and you hate every word anyway because you’re a no-talent nobody.
  • You can’t figure out whether it’s a comedy, a thriller, urban fantasy, horror or romance.
  • You can’t remember why you started the stupid thing in the first place.
  • You have no idea what you’re doing, why you’re doing it, and how you got from there to here.

Excessive, much?

Not really.

***
For the rest of the dragon line-up and how to vanquish the beasts, read the post here. And have a happy, healthy, kick-ass-writing New Year!

(Illustration from Wikimedia Commons: Frontispiece to chapter 12 of 1905 edition of J. Allen St. John‘s The Face in the Pool, published 1905.)

Who Gives a Crap?

(Please bear with me; there’s a method to my “psychic shit” madness!)

Some of you know that I jokingly fancy myself a media psychic. That is, some strange, very specific things have happened on TV, online or on the radio not long after I thought or dreamed of them. Truth is, I’m almost 100% sure that they are coincidences — but they are freaky, nonetheless. I’m not claiming causation in either direction — just correlation.

Here’s one example: I had a nightmare, in which I was walking behind some friends in a supposedly haunted house. They were all spooked, but of course I was whining about not believing in ghosts and how stupid it all was, when I was grabbed by the clothes on the middle of my back — as if by a giant hand or maybe a grappling hook — and yanked backwards, twenty or thirty feet across the room. This scared the living shit out of me and I woke up.

That evening I was washing dishes and decided to turn the TV to a channel I never watched. I went back to the sink, but turned to look at a commercial — which was a scene from a new movie: the scene from my dream, exactly.

Oftentimes, I wake up with a strange word or sentence in my head, and that turns out to be meaningful during the day. Remember Quid Pro Ho? But these days, since I injured my arm and sleep with it in a sling, I wake up thinking “Careful… careful…careful.” Because, if I move just wrong trying to get out of bed, the pain is faintingly sharp.

This morning, my first thought after “Careful… careful…careful” was about toilet paper. That’s not so surprising; after all, what do you do first when you get up? Pee. But today, sitting there, I started pitying the forests of the world, and wondering if there was a really sensible alternative to toilet paper — one that wouldn’t use more precious resources, such as water, or cause worse environmental and public health problems. I wished Turkish plumbing was better, so we could flush toilet paper instead of it ending up in landfills. There, poor people are exposed to the unspeakable as they try to salvage something to sell to recyclers — thus spreading filth, and possibly disease, far and wide. So I started wondering if composting toilets compost the toilet paper, too, and next thing you know I’m off the john and online to look it up. “But first let’s just check facebook…”

where we find this, the original sit-in, for “Who Gives a Crap” toilet paper:

So, do I think these coincidences happen for a reason? No. Can I make them meaningful? Yes. For example, I can pledge to give all my 2014 profits from the paperback version of “Hyperlink from Hell” to the charity that “Who Gives a Crap” toilet paper supports with 50% of their profits: WaterAid. Their mission is to “promote and secure poor people’s rights and access to safe water, improved hygiene and sanitation”, worldwide. What better charity could my toilet-obsessed ghosts support? What other books have parts dedicated to poo? (remember Part Two: Shit with Wings?) I’ll also set it up so that anyone who buys the paperback in 2014 gets the ebook for a discount (for free, if I can manage that).

For those who don’t live in the US, here’s the global page for Wateraid, which will take you where you need to go, in case you’d like to make a direct deposit. For the holidays.

If you are lucky enough to live in Australia, you can do even more. You can really give a crap, because “Who Gives a Crap” toilet paper can be delivered to your door.

Quid Pro HoHoHo!

 

Secrets-of-the-Universe

priestess_of_Delphi john collier

John Collier’s
“Priestess of Delphi”

Question:

What does someone do with the time someone intended to spend putting up decorations, cooking, etc., when one has a bum arm and is forbidden to do any of the above? (Put up a tree? I can’t open a f&cking tuna can! I can’t yank the Band-aids off my own ass, the ones covering my two-a-day injection sites!)

Answer:

Someone finally joins Quora, and contemplates the secrets of the universe in question and answer form. (Someone also gets her husband to open the f&cking tuna. The tree? Ha ha ha ha ha… And the Band-aids will fall off eventually. Probably into the toilet. Clogging it up. You think Band-aids can’t clog up a toilet? We once had a plumber accuse us of flushing so much dental floss that it clogged the pipes. We did not flush dental floss. Not even a single strand. Someone did, though. But who? When? And did they cackle maniacally while they did so? Could they see the future, or know what damage that floss would wrought? We will never know.)

So, I probably won’t be asking or answering a lot of questions over at Quora, because this is the kind of question I want to ask:

“Who flushed all the f&cking dental floss, and why do I care that the plumber believes it was me?”

Mostly, I will be skulking around Quora like a one-armed, Band-aid-buttocked Bandit. It is my way. But I wonder how the inhabitants of planet Quora would answer Jimmie’s Secrets-of-the-universe questions, in Hyperlink from Hell. Remember this? It’s Jimmie’s lament that, given the opportunity to ask God anything he wanted, he’d wasted that golden moment:

I’d blown my chance to ask Al some gritty, secrets-of-the-universe type questions, like “Why do flies always buzz around the center of a room?” or “How can blind people tell when they’re done wiping?”

Well, You can’t just ask them, can You?

I’m deadly serious. Wipe that smile off your face. And while you’re at it, I could use some help in the bathroom.

No, no; not that.

It’s just…

I can’t floss my f&cking teeth.

Exclusive: Questions and Answers with John L. Monk

Giving thanks to the universe for all my writer friends. Here’s one with:
Humility. Hilarity. Humongous Head. Full of tiny beavers.

John L. Monk

j_l_m_bio_photo_tinyPeople bug me all the time for advice, information, or just to see what I’m up to. I don’t normally give interviews (for security reasons), and so the world has been robbed of a lot of my insight. When I wrote Kick, for the first time ever my ideas were made available to the masses. But could I have done more?

Recently I agreed to do an interview, but stipulated that it only be published here, on my blog, and that the interviewer receive zero monetary benefit or notoriety. I didn’t want them tainting the purity of the interview process. To their credit, they agreed.

Questions:
Q: John L. Monk, where do you get your ideas?
JLM: sometimes they come to me in dreams. Sometimes I get my ideas from the many facets of a single snowflake, descending to the Earth like a crystallized platter, as if thrown from…

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The Masses need Glasses

Dear Universe,

This post was meant to be about author J.A. Konrath.

Well, not about J.A. Konrath, himself, more about this blog post of his, called “Zen and the Art of Bitching“, which reminded me of this part in Hyperlink from Hell where God starts bitching about all the lazy, ungrateful humans who sit on their asses and blame Him for their troubles. That is: they want Him to do everything; they won’t take responsibility for their lives. You know, like people who won’t wear seatbelts and blame Him for not deploying the airbag, as they sail through the windshield and into Intensive Care. If they’re lucky.

So, naturally, I ended up on YouTube watching this apologetic book trailer for Blinders Keepers, a book I’d never heard of by an author I’d never heard of, either. (I may be the last in the universe. I usually am. Damn You, Universe!)

I checked out the book’s blurb, on Amazon:

Collapse, chaos, confusion, rioting, looting. And that’s the good news!

America is coming apart and the President can do nothing to stop it. But 23-year-old Noah Tass has his own problems. Stuck his entire life in the hayseed capital of the Bible Belt after his father abandoned him 18 years ago, he has no future, all his friends are losers, his job is a dead end, his mother is stark raving mad, and his sister is a meth head stripper.

It was time to bail! Time to strike out a new path, to discover America, and kick start his life. Noah leaves Missouri and for a year truly experiences the adventure of a lifetime. But the country is one big loony bin and he ends up in the sock puppet theater of contemporary American life, inhabited by a deranged blundering president, brutal agents of the ATF, FBI and NSA — men who kill first and ask questions later — and an underground of wild and wacky but endearing freaks who are trying to overthrow the existing order.

Blinders Keepers is social-political satire in the tradition of Jonathan Swift, Kurt Vonnegut and Joseph Heller, but revved up and spit-shined to take on the historic new levels of absurdity and dysfunction of the 21st Century. It is one young man’s laugh-out-loud struggle to survive the epic disintegration of the American Dream.

Next,  I downloaded the sample to My Precious (Kindle), because I can’t afford to buy any new books until, like, 2045, and I started reading it. And that’s when I realized the title (Blinders Keepers) had special meaning to me. Because when I read this sentence:

“As I stand before this great body and look at the faces of those who have dedicated themselves…”

I saw this, instead:

“As I stand before this great body and look at the feces of those who have defecated themselves…”

So this post is about needing glasses.

Now… who can I blame for that?

Don’t make me kiss you.

Today, I realized what having a book giveaway feels like. It feels like I’m THAT little girl on the playground. The one who captures little boys, just so she can hold them down and bestow kisses on them!

Peske_Little_Girl_in_red_Dress

I was never that girl.

I don’t wanna be her now.

So don’t do it.

Don’t make me kiss you.

For all I know, you’ve got cooties.

Sign up below for your free Kindle e-book of Hyperlink from Hell.

Or a pdf file, if you prefer. And a chance to snag a free paperback.

Do it now. Don’t make me kiss you.

Cuz you know I’ll do it.

(Offer only available through this blog, thru Nov. 21st)

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