Friday, July 31, 2009

No, you have to have the password

For those of you who only stop in every once in a while - these are the things that happen in the bookstore where I work. Yes, it's true stuff.

Up and Coming Authors and Books (I'm not giving hints this time. I have to figure them out, so do you. Some are easy.)

John London
Josephine Johnson
Tony Hilleran
Suzanne Foster
Jill Shulbis (my personal favorite - hey, at least they're looking for her.)
Carol Harris
Charles Dickers
Anne Broadrick
Judy Pickle
J.D. Roberts
The Illyard
My Angelina

Customers, we so do love them

"How much for the free stuff out on the sidewalk?" ($350 gadzillion)
"I'm looking for a book and I thought you could help me." (No I only work here)
Looking straight at the CD's on the counter "Do you sell CD's?" (Not to you - those are for the free box sale)
"Do you have the new Harry Potter movie yet?" (If we do, they're looking for us ...)
"When will you get in Bed of Roses? (My guess, when it's out and someone buys it - for the uninformed, that'll be October. For the further uninformed, it's Nora Robb, er, Roberts.)
"I'm looking for a book." (Okay, just stand there and stare at me, I'm sure your thoughts will become my thoughts ... which is scary)

Answer phone: "Paperbacks Plus in Mesquite."
"There's no one named Jesse here. This is a bookstore."
"So Jesse isn't there?"
(Yeah, she's over in the "for dummies section".)

"What do you mean I have to pay something? Did you use my store credit?"
"Yes, but store credit only covers half of your purchase. You have to pay the other half plus tax."
"It seems to me that it should cover the entire purchase."
"We have to have money to pay the bills."
"Not my problem."
(no comment, didn't find this one particularly funny - just wanted to share that I didn't hit her.)

And for the finale ...

Woman rushes through the door and up to the counter - points to the interior of the store.
"Can I go look for a book?"
(Only if you have the password)

Monday, July 27, 2009


I’ve been having a variation of the same dream on and off for the last couple of weeks and I think I’ve finally figured it out. But first, the dream. I’m not going to go into details, but I’m in the hallway of my old high school, trying desperately to get my locker open but I can’t. There’s something in there that I really need and I can’t get to it. Now, there could be a couple of explanations for this, but I think I know exactly what it is. I haven’t been able to write for about 3 weeks, and I think my story is in that locker – that or my muse. Either way I’ve been struggling to get to it but it’s beyond my reach right now. I’m not going to go into specifics, but Bailey hasn’t exactly been in a funny mood lately. I’ve got to do something about that because I really think the current WIP, Casey at Bat, is THE one.

I’m sure that you’ve noticed the lack of Wednesday posts. Sorry, but I keep forgetting – really. I’ll try to do better about it, I promise.

So, is there something that you really need to do that is eluding you for some reason or another?

Friday, July 24, 2009



Yeah Bud?

Weren’t we supposed to do something today?

I don’t know, let me check my calendar.

What’s that?

A calendar – it gives you the days of the week, the months, everything. You should try it.

I know that moron, I meant what is that ON your calendar?

Oh, those are the “voices” calendar girls.

Voices don’t have bodies Ern. There’s nothing there but bathing suits – it’s like the invisible woman meets Victoria’s Secret.


Then what’s the point?

The money went to the “voices” orphan’s fund.

First, we’ll disregard the fact that voices don’t have money and ask: What is that?

Voices whose authors ignore them.

Lot of that going around?

Yeah, it’s summer. I happen to know that Jill Shalvis is staring at a blank screen right now.

How do you know that?

‘Cuz her muse told me.

You talk to The Shalvis’ muse?

I talk to all of them – a lot of muses.


I had to ask …. Tell the folks to have a nice weekend Ernie.

Have a nice weekend Ernie!

Monday, July 20, 2009

And that's the way .... it will never be again

1916 - 2009

There are only a few people outside of my family that have seemed to be there my entire life. Walter Cronkite was one of them. I can’t say that I’ve thought about him a lot, probably couldn’t tell you when I last saw him. And yet, his death hit me hard – I actually cried. Uncle Walt was an institution on his own – a constant presence in the backdrop of this nation. Almost every great event in my lifetime has been marked with his presence: JFK’s assassination, as well as Martin Luther King; the moon landing; 9/11 – whether through commentating or reporting, Walter Cronkite was there. Now no more.

Bebo and I talked about it the other day. There is no one in today’s news field that we would trust as much as America trusted him. No one has ever really stepped into his shoes – they were too large to fill. Many polls throughout the years have listed Walter Cronkite as the most trusted person in America. Cronkite has been described as a real gentleman, a bit of a comedian, a humanitarian … as well as a devoted husband and father. I think we could add friend to that list.

We’re going to miss you Uncle Walter …. more than we thought we would.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Spam is melting, it's melting ......

Ideas about holidays. (I think we’ll have them this year, thank you.)
Boy’s fingers frozen off. (In my day it was warts, but whatever works)
Is that possible? (Why don’t you keep it “up” and we’ll find out.)
Open or die in hell. (Open, open, open, open …)
Where the hell are you? (I didn’t open it?)
You will have watches to go with all your outfits. (I already do – mind you they have a little dirt on them ….)
Replace me tomorrow, okay? (Why? You’re finger’s freeze off?)
Please, don’t tell anyone. (They’re gonna find out – or do spam regenerate?)
Forget about dictionaries, we offer soft in different languages. (Zacht, doux, weich, morbido, macio, suave ….)
Ipod killed a man. (Put a gun against his head, pulled the trigger now he’s dead ...)
Lot’s of women will send him a kiss, so just imagine what you can miss. (A Spaniard’s kiss I may have missed, but an Australian’s lips can give me bliss … take that Dr. Seuss)
Spanish got married 60 times. (Wow, that’s some kiss – was his name Ramon Ortega de Young?)
We hope this information will help you make the right choice. (Yeah, if you kiss a Spaniard, your fingers will freeze off.)

Monday, July 13, 2009

Oh Crap!

It has begun ....

And it isn't funny ......

Friday, July 10, 2009

I just like sitting on the floor .....

This months new authors list (with interpretations in parenthesis in case you need them). Keep an eye out for these up and coming new writers:

Iris Johanseen
Tami Hong (Hoag)
Linda Lucille Miller
Stephanie Lawrence (Laurens)
Gil Grisham (John)
Herman Hessee (Hesse)
John Steinbuck

Irritating young man comes up to the counter with a book:

“I think you put this in the wrong place”
I look at the book – it’s about Samurai.
“Where did you find it?”
“Oh, it was in the martial arts section, it should really be in Eastern Philosophy/religions.”
Now mind you, I had only been off cigarettes for two days.
My co-worker, Morgan, with a glance my way. “No, it’s in the right place.”
“It doesn’t belong in martial arts” he said with an ingratiating smile.
I silently hold out my hand, eyes never leaving his face. He hands the book to me and, still not looking away from him, I flip it open to the first page, the flap of the dust cover showing.
“What does that say on top?”
He looks.
“Out loud please.”
“Martial Arts”
“End of discussion.” I snap the book closed and take it over to the martial arts section. As I walk away I hear him mumble “I still say it’s in the wrong section.”
I was really proud of myself as I kept walking …. hearing Morgan say “I wouldn’t today if I were you dude.”

“Paperbacks Plus in Mesquite”
“I’m on my way to hook up your ATT&T Universal”
“My what? This is a bookstore”
“This isn’t an apartment complex?”
Yes, I live in an apartment complex named Paperbacks Plus ……

“Paperbacks Plus in Mesquite”
“Marquetta ?”
“No Corbett, it’s me. You’ve dialed yourself”
Even my own co-workers don’t listen to the person who answers. How can you mistake Mesquite for Lakewood? On a side note, I don’t think I’ve see Corbett with as sheepish of a look on his face when he came around the corner.

“Paperbacks Plus in Mesquite”
“Is this the bookstore?”
No, it’s an apartment complex ….

“Do you pay cash for items?”
“Some, but we’re very selective. What do you have?”
“An entire set of World Book Encyclopedias, 1980s”
“No, I’m sorry, we can’t even sell the ones from the 90s.”
“How about magazines?”
“We never pay cash for magazines.”
“Not even from the 70s? They’re vintage”
I’ll forget she said that ….

I’m sitting on the floor, rearranging books on the bottom shelves of two columns. I have books stacked all around me.
“Do you work here?”
No, I just like to go into stores and sit on the floors to mess with their stuff. What hobbies do you have?

Monday, July 06, 2009

We're having a cold front .... it is all relative you know. I don't think it hit 90 yesterday and is supposed to stay below 100 today. For Texas in July, that's a cold front. Rain would have made it perfect, and we did have rain .... I counted 5 drops!

I fell off the no-smoking wagon, but I'll climb back on it. I went 3 weeks - which is the longest that I've gone before. I'm aiming for a month this time .... maybe I'll go beyond that, but I'd love to go a month. Maybe that would be enough for me to finally make it. Keep your fingers crossed. I can tell you that the toughest part has been trying to write - I always took smoking breaks as "thinking" breaks, it's when I came up with my best ideas - like the opening line of the current WIP. I've got to find something else to use for those breaks. But, I haven't written a word in the last three weeks. Won't get that charm this Saturday at the Yellow Rose meeting. *sigh*

Reading a great book - Instant Gratification by Jill Shalvis. I am loving it!!!!!

Oh, and before I forget - for those of you interested - Jason Evans is having another Flash Fiction contest on his blog. Here is the information if you are interested in participating.

I'm writing to announce a very special Clarity of Night Contest short fiction contest beginning July 8th! Jaye Wells, the debut author of the cool and successful novel RED-HEADED STEPCHILD, is joining me as co-host! The contest is in her honor.

Compete for a signed copy of RED-HEADED STEPHCHILD. Compete for eternal bragging rights. Compete for cold, hard cash!! (Well, Amazon gift good as cash.) $170 dollars in prizes will be awarded.
The contest will open on Wednesday, July 8th and will be open for one week. As with past contests, the limit is 250 words. Any genre or form is welcome so long as it is inspired by the "In Vino Veritas (Truth in Wine)" photo. Rules have been posted here:

What are you reading, and how are you liking it so far?

Friday, July 03, 2009

Happy Fourth of July

When, in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bonds which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the laws of nature and of nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

I’ve always loved the 4th of July. Maybe it’s because my father, the veteran that he was, taught me to appreciate it. Or it could have been that my Uncle Bill was always Uncle Sam in their neighborhood parade (years ago). On my mother’s maternal side, all of her ancestors were here before the American Revolution, and some fought in it. One of my ancestors lost two brothers in the Battle of Brandywine. I think maybe that’s it, more than anything …. the fact that my ancestors fought for our independence as a country that makes me love this day differently than any other holiday. My flag isn’t up. I still haven’t figured out if they are allowed because I don’t see anything hung out on patios. That bothers me – my second 4th of July without a flag blowing in the breeze, not that there’s any breeze today, but that’s another story.

My family has celebrated in different ways over the years: picnics, barbecues, potluck dinners, parades, firework displays. I work tomorrow – so I’ll get home after 7:00, settle down and watch the celebrations on the TV. Not the same as years past, but the reality of today.

In the midst of your day tomorrow, don’t forget to stop and think about the lives that were lost to give us this freedom, to protect our freedom.

And also, take a moment to pray for those who are fighting for freedom in their own lands.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness