pulitzer prize

All posts tagged pulitzer prize

Unguent for the tortured soul

Published January 18, 2013 by Sandee

meanspiritedtales

I left Mean-Spirited Tales at this book store where I want to have a reading, because the associate said the owner needs to look through my book first.  “Call in a week,” he said.

It’s weeks past the time he said to call.  So I’m sure the owner has read the entire book by now and is waiting anxiously for my call.  I’ll bet she’s all like, “Gosh, when’s Sandee calling?  We need her!  This Mean-Spirited Tales, it’s unguent, for the tortured soul…”

Of course it’s unguent — it has sadism, a beheading, alcoholics, liver pâté, the devil, an angel and some cats.

Do you know how many souls I’ve healed with my book?  It frightens me to think of it.

My other reading was at the Indian Road Cafe.  Patrons were there eating and talking.  Good thing I invited lots of people and screamed the stories to drown the patrons out.  After while I couldn’t hear any patrons.  Or maybe they were just fascinated by my hypnotic story-telling skill – yes, that’s it.  No wait – they were captivated by the creature horns on my head, by my piercing glare.

The Indian Road Café is a nice atmosphere and the food is great, but the book store has a podium!  I’ve always wanted to pontificate behind a podium.  No horns needed to draw attention to my flapping maw – I’ll be the center of everyone’s eye, standing tall.

I need to end this bookstore owner’s anticipation for my call though.  I’ll hurry and call and schedule the date for my reading, that way she can celebrate it over the weekend.  Who says Aunt Sandee isn’t altruistic.

 

 

Getting my hustle on

Published December 19, 2012 by Sandee

meanspiritedtales

I’m getting my hustle on for my book and may be doing more readings.  I envision waddling up and down Broadway wearing a flappy sign with a picture of my book Mean-Spirited Tales on it, front and back.  Maybe I’ll hurl copies of my book from a tray to passengers on the A train.  Really — no.  I did read an article about a man who makes boo koo dinero selling candies on the train this way.  Hurrah for self-employment!  High falutin publishers, kiss my grits — no I totally take that back.  But the threat of the self-published author is on the rise.  Just saying.

I used to think it was cheesy.  But it’s not now — not since I’ve done it.  It is more reputable than it was in the past.  Though there is snobbery about it.  At this point I’m just glad to have sold enough to buy groceries, socks, candies, and Styrofoam skulls.

It’s brilliant that people have read something I’ve written, and that they’ve paid either ninety-nine cents for the Kindle version or nine ninety-five for the hardcopy.  I’ve always dreamed of making money writing.  You’ve all helped to make that come true.  Each and every last one of you out there in TV land.

I spoke to a woman who manages space for vendors.  She explained the system to me.  It wouldn’t be cost-effective for me to buy space to sell my book.  But I appreciated the feedback.  Much love to her.

I spoke to a gentleman at a bookstore today.  He said they were always concerned in getting numbers in for book signings.  He told me that he had been disappointed in the numbers of people that writers had brought in for their readings.  He asked if I thought I could bring in 20 people.  I told him I had 25 people for my last reading at the Indian Road Cafe.  I believe more people would have come if it weren’t at 10:30pm on a Halloween weekend.  I hope I didn’t exhaust my numbers in the last reading.  I so hope some of you come to my next one.  I’ll give out candies and promise not to read War & Peace.

Haha!  — Wouldn’t it be messed up if I invited everyone to my reading, and read a technical book on statistics instead – leaving everyone baffled? – Hey, wait a cotton picking minute! – I must back track to what I said up there about the Kindle version of my book – it’s only ninety-nine cents!  So why isn’t, like, everyone buying it?  That WSJ article about marketing my book is a liar – yes, an article can be a liar.

I thought titling my book Mean-Spirited Tales would be cheeky.  But maybe people don’t like “Mean.”  They take it literally.   Maybe I’ll change it to Saccharine Tales of Banality.  Haha!

Ass-Crack, Anyone?

Published December 4, 2012 by Sandee

Me in the merry merry month of May

I sell copies of my book every month, hallelujah.  So where’s my $27.69 from last month’s sales?  The price of *quinoa just went up and I need Halloween socks, a disposable rain bonnet, and some Limited Edition Pop Tarts.

Amazon was supposed to shoot this money over to my account.  I wish they’d hurry up–it’s Pop Tarts LI-MI-TED Edition!  By the time I get my money, the damn things won’t be in the supermarket anymore.

*For those of you who don’t give a shit, quinoa (pronounced:  keen-wah) is a healthy ‘super-food’ that tastes like ass-crack.  It costs a lot of money but I could probably grow it on my fire escape.

Why do a public reading if you hate reading out loud?

Published October 30, 2012 by Sandee

I hate reading out loud.  I feel like I’m publicly luxuriating in my ability to enunciate fluent English, or showcasing the melodic quality of my voice.  Reading to a roomful of people makes me anxious.  I buy my 1 and 4 year old nephews books when I visit, which means I must read to them, but I don’t really like it.  It makes my mouth tired and I hate when I start to sound nasally.  Generally when reading out loud, I feel my persona or whatever vibe I may have at the moment intruding on the text.  Reading out loud also makes me feel like I’m showing off how well I can read out loud.

At my author reading on Saturday for my book Mean-Spirited Tales, the words rolled right off, of course, because I know these stories blind.  I think I did a fair job of being animated when necessary.  It felt like a performance.  A lot of people came and there was some interaction.  My one good friend was the ring-leader with her laughter and applause.  My sister came from Massachusetts — how blessed I am.  Fellow blogger Margarita from Serenity in the City came with her husband — what a pleasure it was to meet her!  “We actually exist,” I told her.  She’s a very attractive woman with a great vibe.  I talked to her for a while.

I was overwhelmed in a good way at all of the support that I got.  When I got up to read there was screaming and loud applause.  The laughter was fun.  I often laugh while writing some of my shit, hoping that others will laugh when they read it, but I was surprised even at some of the places where people laughed.  I stopped at one point to ask the audience, “That was funny? Okay,” and I laughed along with them.

People called the next day and said they had a good time.  Whew!  To me it was rather exhausting.  Ms. Waiting from The Waiting described doing readings as nerve-wracking — that’s exactly it.  I don’t know if I want to do another one.  If I do have another reading, maybe I’ll ask someone else to read.

And thanks so much to all of the bloggers who wished me well a couple of days ago.  I took all of the well-wishes with me.

 

 

 

A damned lie

Published October 27, 2012 by Sandee

Hey everybody wish me luck. Tonight I’m having an author reading from my home-made book, Mean-Spirited Tales.  I’ll read two regular “mean” stories and part of one horror story in honor of Halloween.  It’ll be at a local café.

My friend came by the other day.  He told me that he finished my book.  I asked him if he saw any errors in it and he said no.  I did catch two in the Kindle version, before the hard-copy was published. I fixed them though.  It would’ve sucked worse if there were errors in it after I had paid somebody two hundred and fifteen million dollars and ninety nine cents to edit it.  I’ve seen this before – books from “reputable” publishers with errors.  I saw a mistake in An Arsonist’s Guide to Writers’ Homes in New England.  I wonder if Brock Clarke saw it.  It made me not feel so bad about the errors in my home-made book.

Before I published my book I read this WSJ article about another home-made book that did really well.  So I did the same thing this author did as far as advertising, etc.  I might have missed something though, because hers sold a gazillion copies – ha!  She said she didn’t spend more than $1500 I think.  I spent less than that.  Let’s see, she bought a review from Kirkus – check – she bought an ad on Goodreads – check – but I swear I don’t remember her saying anything about an editor.  I did have friends look at some of my stories.  The one published in Calliope, Night Terrors, only needed a couple of edits for clarity so I thought I had a handle on editing, although ‘they’ say never edit your own stuff.   Ah but bunk it!   Maybe I’ll do it for my novel – hire a cute boy editor.

Of course I’m one in the legions who harbors a fantasy that my home-made book will be the next self-published success story.  Aghh!  At this point I’m just happy that people are reading the book that I wrote.  No that’s a damned lie.  I want to be the next self-published success story.

Can’t I have anything!?

Published September 9, 2012 by Sandee

When I was 12, a friend said I’d get titties in the springtime.  I did.  Sort of.  I got A’s.  Wasn’t bad actually.  Had returning customers.  (No. I wasn’t a prostitute.  Maybe I should have been.  You know, charged money?)  But if my breasts were gonna be small I’d have a tight body I reasoned.  I exercised stringently and smoked cigarettes — crack diets didn’t come out ‘til later. The payoff was being skinny, which wasn’t always good enough.

I told my dad I was getting implants.  He said I needed to go explore, be around different types of people – I like to think he meant I needed to be around classy, arty people who were too deep, too brilliant to focus on titties — haha yeah, that’s what he meant — and my friend said smaller breasts are aristocratic; and my other friend said, Yeah, yeah, I like your titties like that – ah shhhhit yeah!  And as I’ve said before, if you have smaller ones all the energy is focused, you know, down there.

So at times I wasn’t bothered, though I wondered what it would be like to have big ones.  Summer would come and I saw how big women’s breasts were – wow – this is where mine went – these bitches got my portion!  I’d go in and out of feeling inadequate.  I regretted not being able to ‘have sex with my breasts’ or not being able to slap somebody silly with my titties.  Then it would be okay again because I was a waifish nymph, or a nymphish waif, or a nymph-waif-pirate drunk.

Now that I’ll be 50, I’m more relaxed.  I spent years going in and out of being skinny and nearly sick because of it, and obsessively weighing myself, because I valued myself that way.  It all came from being flat-chested.  I still exercise regularly, but it started out as an obsession having more to do with vanity than fitness.  I gained weight here and there, freaked out, and went on a holistic diet.  I thought of becoming a vegan not for health reasons, but because I thought it would keep me skinny.

Now I have fibroids that cause a slight protrusion in my abdomen.  Menopause, which is soon, may shrink them.  I don’t want surgery because I’m asymptomatic. Along with running and working out regularly, I do fifty sit-ups at least three times a week.  My stomach was flat until a couple of years ago.  Can’t I have anything?  I feel like all my effort is futile at times, just as I do with my other efforts that yield minimal results. Are my biorhythms off?  Did I kill somebody in a past life?

No, I just need to find my worth in areas that don’t require external approval.  Who I am is not any certification, degree, award, Pulitzer Prize, or drooling admiration. Unfortunately I didn’t get that until now.

Mean-Spirited Tales

Published July 30, 2012 by Sandee

My book cover is complete.  ‘Mean-Spirited Tales’ is on there twice but I like it like that.  I just have to proof the interior. Create Space mailed it to me.  I hope it’s not  jacked up on the inside.  I had trouble formatting it on their site.  The people at Create Space tried to help.  A couple of the ‘specialists’ there had poor communication skills and talked over me, or cut me off before I could finish saying what my problem was.

I learned some communication skills from How to Win Friends and Influence People (I know it’s funny, right?), so I wouldn’t do that if I had that job.  Today I was sarcastic to a visitor at the gallery, so I don’t always practice what I learned in that book.  I was repentant, so that’s good.  I have tingling in my face after having my tooth pulled two weeks ago which makes me irritable.  I think I have nerve damage or worse.  I don’t want to be around people as much.  I’m going to the doctor today.  I was unhappy about having to go to the doctor, and I’m  upset because I might have to postpone a movie date with a friend because of it and I need my playtime.

I’m overwhelmed, but still taking care of my agenda.  I take the steps and look back to see that another task is complete.  I promised that I would put my short stories on Kindle during my hiatus from work.  I’ve been here for seven years.  It’s a great gig.  But with the economy tanking things shifted around, so I moved to the gallery which is closed between December and March.  I didn’t know if I would be called back, but didn’t look for work during this time.  I wanted to use the opportunity to publish my book.  I’ve been back since April.  My job is not stressful so I have energy for ‘marketing’ my book.  I had one story published but got tired of waiting for literary journals to publish my other work.  In the old days, self-publishing was considered cheesy, so I didn’t want to do it.  It is a lot of hard work to ‘do it yourself’.

Sometimes I feel like I’m doing all this for nothing.  But I need to get it out of my system.  I have a novel called “The Unavoidable” that I want to publish then I need to move on and write something else.  I’m spending more time blogging and wrapping up book issues.   At least I can say that I wrote a book.  After writing these stories I thought, these stories aren’t going to read themselves — I have to publish a book.