Megaphone Members. This is a cool site for anyone who is interested in writing, publishing or just reading. Created by Casey Voight, the author of the newly published book “The Dove.” Well worth checking out for authors old and new!
So today is Friday, almost December and my interview is over and done with. Ive been working on a new book well a manuscript anyway and figured I may as well give it a shot. Its is about a young man and woman who survive a plague in New York. They board a plane headed west to look for any survivors. The plane crashes killing all but the two. What unfolds is a love story between this young man and woman as they desperately try to find teir way out of the Mojave Desert where they just crashed. Im only beginning and I need soooooo much help and ideas but Ill post a little part at the end of this blog. Im sure this will take me a while..I dont plan on finishing it anytime soon…in fact it could be at least a year in the making. My health sometimes is a distraction, not that its bad but well…I get distracted or something and Ill like go to the gym or Ill go feed the cat or I dont know…go walk for a mile…Sometimes especially after I got sick I find myself wanting to just sit in a park and look at a lake or birds or whatever. Even just looking up and watching hawks circle overhead…or bats at night. Seems like I am lost a bit since my enlightening from my illness but I am sure its made me a more appreciative and more well rounded individual. For a guy who grew up around Hells Angels and Biker Bars, I dont thin I had much of a chance early on…I just have to look beyond it all….past anything material and into my imagination and thats when I can focus. Otherwise Im screwed. Im sure for those of you who follow my blog you get the drift of what Im saying. Im a surfer at heart and will die that way and its also why I have a fascination with nature, movement, stories and creativity. Im a complex person, ask anyone who knows me. But Im also kind hearted and will always go to bat for those who are close to me. Sometimes now I just need a little help. Not physically, I can still get around fine and bike ride and rin and swim and even surf. Im talking about the damage done to my brain from well…the HIV infection which Ive had for 17 years now and the almost fatal case of meningitis that brought me to my knees. I am a tough soul though and I believe Im still here for a reason so although Im no longer clmbing ladders and wearing a a30 pound tool belt all day I still want to feel useful. So I really wan to thank those who have supported me in my efforts. The cool posts on my FB and Blogs are much appreciate. So anyhoos…here is an exerpt of the book…ignore the editing and grammar problems please…that will come later.
“Where are we?” “I don’t know” he replied, looking at the girl. She was young maybe 17, her lips quivered a bit as she asked the question. “I think we may be at the edge.” He replied slowly gazing out onto the horizon. The desert wind blew his long blonde hair up against his face and he brushed it back still gazing off into the distance. “Where is everyone?” she said, stronger this time thinking the young man was’nt listening. “I think they are all dead. I believe its only us I’m afraid.” He looked over at her then behind him to the wreckage that lay in a smoldering pile. “Yes.” she said. “But where are we? The edge?” “Yes, I think it’s the edge of the Mojave Desert. We came from the east, don’t you remember?” He looked down at the young girl who stood nearly a foot shorter than he. She was pretty, her long brownish blonde hair wavy and her face a chisled perfection. He smiled yet winced as he did. “Oh….are you hurt?” she said looking up at the blonde man. “I’ll be ok, I’m sure I’ll heal.” The two looked back at all that remained of the 747 Boing. “I think we are all that’s left. I wonder if anyone survived on the West Coast. The girl thought a moment, about the trip and why they had left New York City. It had been a plaugue, a deadly virus that had struck quickly. Like cyanide it had dessimated the entire population of New York quickly. There had been no survivors, only the two of them standing and the people on board the airplane. She kept looking up at him. “Maybe we are all that’s left. what should we do.” “I don’t know” he replied slowly again and licked a drop of blood from his lips. “I think we need to at least find a shelter or make something….no?” “Yes. definitely.” she said. “It may get cold tonight.” The man again looked off onto the horizon wondering. Is there any life left anywhere?
So, today I had the interview on the Authors Show and I was so grateful for emails I got about it. It was a very positive experience. Im very happy I did it. I think for me personally I did this not as just an author but as someone who is an advocate for those who suffer from chronic Illnesses. I believe that many millions of people experience stigma due to illness. It has a tendency to break up families and ruins lives. I believe that we as a nation and people do this. I can only say this because I have been on both sides of the coin. When I was healthy I was in demand and as my health became questionable I saw doors close that were previously open. In some cases it is understandable but I do think we need to be more aware and considerate of those who suffer from illnesses and disease. This country is divided enough with other social issues and the stigma created when an individual or group is shunned by society or told (no thank you, we got it) needs to end, I believe we should all have an equal chance for success and happiness regardless of our abilities or inabilities. So I hope by doing a nationwide interview maybe I touched some lives, maybe someone got it and understood what I was getting at. I am grateful for the chance to have my book “My Life, A Life Story Of A Man Infected” to have such an exposure to an audience of millions. This I can call for me personally is an answer to my dream of reducing stigma against those who suffer with chronic conditions.
So today is my big broadcast day on the Authors Show. In case you havent checked out the Authors Show it is for new authors looking to try and get their books some publicity or just to share their books. The audience from what I hear is pretty widespread. The host DonMccauley is pretty chill in his interview but then from hearing me in the interview myself…I guess Im a pretty chill dude…….or at least I sound it…lol. So anyhoos thats that. If you want to check it out here…http://www.wnbnetworkwest.com/WnbAuthorsShow1.html Ive been on a freakin tuna sandwich diet which I have no idea why. I tried the other diet and am still on it. Ive been also eating other stuff like pintto beans and green stuff…..But the problem I have is the fact I still have teeth problems which really mess with my head….so Im not sure diet or even the freakin exercise is gonna help. I just dont want to exercise myself into the ground…..My book, well the new one is going ok but then I have a sick son who is 10 and hes all jacked up with a cold. So yea again I am just dad. Its coool cause you aint getting me working at Mcdonalds….no freakin way…..picking up cans would be better than that. So Im still hanging in there but the writing helps. So the interview for the Book, My life a life story of a man infected is in the nonfiction section on the Authors Show. Check it out, it may help you too if your looking at getting exposure for your book.
So today is a new day, another chance for a new beginning. So early am I drove myself to the local gym and did the treadmill dance for a couple hours. I wound up walking 6 miles and I feel a bit better. I also last night on the advice of a dear friend began to rough draft an outline for a new romance novel…This one is about a young man and girl (late teens) who unfortunately are a victim of a plaugue which wipes out everyone in NYC and the east coast. The two survivors and some odd other survivors board a plane for the east coast and peril strikes again and the plane crashes in the Mojave desert. Not good. Fate would have it these two are the lone survivors of the crash and have to take up refuge in the cold barren desert. As I go along it will become a love story and then Im not sure what will happen down the road. Ill write it as more of a survival story where the two fall in love. Im not sure if they die or one of them dies in the end yet. We shall see. So thats my idea….Im always open to suggestions though. Tomorrow my book interview will be broadcast for two days straight on the Authors Show. http://www.authorsshow.com. I guess Ill see how that goes. Its been such a long time in the making …at this point Im pretty hohum about it….I dont like to talk so much about living with this illness, it doesnt suit me well. I do suffer from some conditions internally like my feet hurt sometimes and my teeth are always bothering me. I dont know why becuase I looked at them and they are so white now from the recent cleaning…lol….Silly Dave that means nothing. What is really going on is beyond my scope of rationale. Am I dying…yes….am I dead…no. So I figure since Im dying as we all are as we age I may as well try and have fun with it. My book My Life a life Story of A Man Infected is selling more on Audible.com. I think people like the whole audiobook thing. Seems simpler….Either way its something. Ive been checking out some other people author sites and getting some good ideas but for now Im laying low..Its tough trying when things tend to hold you back…sometimes its better to lay down and pretend Im on a sandy beach with a Corona in a beach chair watching the surf….Oh to be young again.
So I have been with my significant other for 14 years but also have been on disability for 5 now. Ive noticed our lives have become a game of psychological warfare. She takes almost a half of the money I get and even though we both agreed to pay or our sons school, now I see that I am paying the full 600 bucks. She has a degree in Psychology so Im sure I am not match for her wit. So since Ive been going through so much anxiety I revisited my reasons for having this condition. I dont think it is the HIV, I think its the fact that I am left with no money…maybe 800 bucks a month because I pay her car insurance. So I confronted her and said “Hey ya know what I figured out? ” “What” she said/,I then told her, our lives have turned into a head game. Its been this way for years. I give you this money and when I bring something up about it you hit the road with the kid in tow. Im too weak to fight all that anymore so I just really cant say anything. So for all intents and puposes I explained to her that my disability payments are geared to help me get on my feet. No she says, thats money for living. lol…I thought that was funny. Here I am practically drooling on myself and she says this. Then I say I dont think this is a good environment, in fact I think its a joke. She then proceeds to tell me how hard she tries and that all we need is love. Love dont pay the bills…never did. So maybe this is why I write so much too. It may also be why I fell out of love with her. I dont resent her, I just dont see anything appealing anymore…I know Im a jerk, but not really. When I was working I was going full steam ahead. And now Ive been reduced to a shell of who I once was, vacumning and doing laundry washing dishes and writing. So, I began my own battle of psychological warfare with her. I told her its all you have left me with. She said I hope it hasnt got to that point. I said yes…let the games begin. So I think we may be heading for splitsville….I think we were there years ago but now I just dont care anymore. Ive been down before though…Ive lived on the rocks of the beach for 6 months….So now living with this illness I just say….hey see that corner of the room…thats me…a cochroach…surviving…becuase thats whats happened to me..So that is out of the bag…..I dont see anyway of putting it. My books are doing better…but I am distracted, disturbed and frustrated right now..maybe I am wasting my time maybe not…who freakin knows…All I know is for all I have been through, accomplished and survived, I would think the days would be a bit brighter…
So, Im not too smart when it comes to the whole friend-ing thing on Facebook and other social media platforms. I understand how to do it I just dont understand the concept. I mean what happens and you friend someone and they turn out to be amass murderer. Im messsing of course but it’s a fleeting thought. I do know when it comes to my blogs and FB page I usually only friend people who I either know or are interested in books and stuff. I think its a great way to connect…but…I dont necessarily think its the best way for exposure for your book. Word of mouth always seems to be the best way of reaching people. But then book writing and marketing is way more than being a plumber and needing some local connections. When your marketing a book your trying to connect with hundreds if not thousands of people interested in your scene. So when I started to write and connect I noticed that I was connecting with hundreds and hundreds of people. Then when you do something like the authors show your connecting with millions of daily listeners. I mean that pretty fuckin big. Even if they dont buy your book, they may remember your name. Its pretty massive exposure. Ive been watching or sorry…listening to the Author Show and right now they have a guy named Gary who wrote Jew In Jail This book chronicles his time in the New York State penn system. He spent 6 years in jail and was subjected to discrimination and as he says because he was Jewish. He is an educated man and has worked in media and television venues. I think the message of his book was that although he did in fact commit the crime (robbery) his time in prison helped him to become a better person….Im normally a skeptic and think yea if ya did it once you will do it again. Not in Gary’s case though I dont think. I think a light turned on in his head and he did what he could to turn his life around. I think by writing the book it helped him realize he was and had gotten to where he was by the events that unfolded in his life. I dont think he is a bad guy…in fact I think he really did turn the tide for himself. It got me thinking about my own book, the autobiography and it made me realize that I too wrote my book to help me first and foremost. If it can help anyone else freaking great. So the marketing experience for both of us may be the same, as was the reasoning for writing our books. I am not or have been in prison, maybe my own but not incarcerated. So, by doing his interview although I wont buy his book(its too long, over 700 pages) Ill remember him from the interview. I think radio shows are great ways of reaching the masses. I guess Im one of them because it reached me. So if you think social media websites and author forums are the only way to reach an audience, try The Authors Show. Im sure you may be surprised at the results.
So, I figured Id do two blogs today, I dont know why. why not. Today I tried to teach my son the whole wax on wax off concept when washing my extremely reliable 2003 Chevy Tracker. Don’t laugh, at least its paid off. So when he started the whole thing with me I started to understand what it was all about myself. Its a process, much like writing or whatever. As my ol dad used to say (god rest his bones) “Never half ass anything” or ” If your going to do something, do it right the first time.” So needless to say the whole wash wax gig with my son brought back memories when I was his age back in 1973 (10). Then I started to think about writing and books and while originally I just wrote an autobiography because I figured it was all I could write, I eventually went into more unchartered waters. After my autobiography I wrote a fiction series book which even though I personally think its pretty freaking wacky, it was a good effort. More recently I figured after all the research I had done on how to publish a book I figured I would write about what I had learned in sort of a how to manual. I named it “Simple Steps to publish and market your Kindle Book.” I covered platform, marketing companies, press releases, social networking and some other key tips. Remarkably this Kindle book reached the number 15 spot in paid Kindle books in the first couple weeks. So I was like WTF, that was quick. But maybe some of the shit I had been studying paid off. Maybe there are some newbies out there like I was a year ago who dont want to get jacked like I almost did by a traditional publisher. So even though I know that Im a guy living with a crazy illness I can still find things that I can do. I spent my first couple years after my diagnosis and hospitalization participating in HIV forums.. Seemed like everyone was so god damn focused on the disease. On the fact that they have so many problems and cant do anything. So now I look back and realize maybe I have moved on, past that point and focused my attention on things beyond my illness.I still hurt alot,living with Aids is tough especially when you were a tough guy who could handle anything. Im not…but I do have a passion for things especially when I dive right in with full gusto. So, what is your passion, if you dont mind me asking? What kind of books do you like or write? What motivates you? What would you do if you got sick and you had to make a new choice, to live or die? Would you find a new passion or would you give up if you couldnt do what you used to do? These are choices that were set before me. It was scary but I chose to live. By choosing to live I also found a new passion. So, what’s your passion?
Ok, so I have been looking at reviews on some books and I can see they either make or break an author on a particular book. I had one review on my autobiography who said my book was refreshing. WTF??? Refreshing? Well he went on to say that I had a refreshing way of writing, I think it meant engaging in that respect so I appreciate the positive review and he did give me 5 stars so maybe he saw something I didnt. I mean my autobiography to me anyway was anything but refreshing. Its a tale of trauma, abuse, homelessness and a lifetime of struggle. I have had some good moments, dont get me wrong, Ive been successful in areas as far as my stint in the good ol Marine Corps and as an electrician, so all was not in vain. What I do understand that in a world of greed and need and desperation, there is also empathy and understanding. Not by all by no means. I understand the need to survive and when a person is on a good roll in life they are hesitant to share their secrets. Thats ok too and I understand that. I think through all of my writing I have realized that although I have a severe case of anxiety and stress underneath I am a compassionate, and caring individual. I am however not perfect. I had my share of fights in my day, Ive snucked women into my barracks room in Japan and have drank myself to oblivion only to wake up completely fucking hungover and tore up from the feet up. But I always rebounded. So when I was hospitalized I was like holy fuck me into tomorrow…this aint right. But again like a hardy cochroach I came back from the dead. Maybe I have 9 lives or maybe Im just very lucky. I just know Ive cheated death probly more than once. Maybe thats why I was likeable because I took chances, I experienced life and never took the safe or easy road. So my book review although I cant say my life has been refreshing was a positive thing for me to see. My other reviews are equally as positive and introspective from my perspective. I even had another friend from back in the day say my book was interesting/…lol…Well yea I guess…no shit because for intents and purposes I am an interesting if not completely wacked out guy…