E-Books present the author new dilemmas

I’ve been talking with some savvy online folks about bringing my out of print books back into “print” electronically. And bringing out TFAOAFGND as an ebook or app. Which got me to thinking about why any author would want to have an old dead-tree type publisher (ODTTP) (not naming names here) buy the e-rights to a book and publish what would essentially be a pdf of said book.

First thing is what appears to me that most ODTTPs have their heads so far up the back end function of their digestive systems that they can’t see past their teeth. I’d like to be wrong on that.

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Flavorwire: 10 Must-Read Online Lit Mags

Flavorwire has a great piece on the 10 onlne lit mags you — the thinking reader — ought to be reading.

Although plenty of established print journals have now fostered an online presence, this new generation of internet-centric periodicals has taken hold of the malleable platform (and the absence of print and distribution costs) to further the creative community.

This is where the future lies, folks. Take a look.

Shelf Unbound

At the risk of pissing off a very good friend… I’ve known Margaret Brown, publisher AND founder of Shelf Unbound since 1992, when, just after Second Son, my second novel, was published and I had moved to Houston. I walked into a BookStop store to see if they had my novel. She was clerking there — sort of between jobs — and did the customary, ‘Can I help you?’ thing. I showed her my novel. She read it [said she] loved it, and then hand sold the remaining copies, and tried to get the big corporate daddy to send them more. They could have sent her 100 and she would have sold them all. They wouldn’t send her any, if I recall correctly. Forward thinking. She left there for a job as an ed asst at Southwest Art, and left there as editor in chief. She’s been at another magazine in Dallas for the last eight years and is now all in with SU. Continue reading

Habitat for Steve

I’m thinking of starting up a new sort-of-charity, the sole beneficiary of which would be me. I’m calling it Habitat for Steve. Here’s how it would work: You (whoever you are) would donate time and money to me for cleaning up my yard, building new stuff, and generally helping me out around the house. You couldn’t write this off, but you would have nice warm-and-fuzzies and the genuine sense of accomplishment that would come from helping Steve out.

Habitat for Steve has nothing to do whatsoever with Habitat for Humanity, which is a fine organization. Supporting Habitat for Steve would not prevent or preclude you in any way from supporting Habitat for Humanity, which is not only fine, but pretty cool, too.


The other night a friend and I were upstairs at my house looking at possible solutions for my odd closet situation. I have an old Cape Cod sort of house and a previous owner kicked up the roof in the back, but the front still has the dormers and seriously angled roof. In the front, I have closets that are sort of hard to use and we were talking about what I could tear apart and redo.

We were walking down the stairs when there was a clunk in the living room. I said, “What was that?” Trusted advisor said, “I don’t know.”

It was about 9 P.M. Turned out it was the mail. That is, the USPS-type mail, being delivered around 9 at night.

We were standing near the door (it has a mail slot) talking about how weird it was that the mail was so late. Trusted sensiblist was in the middle of a sentence when something else pokes through the slot. I headed for the door and went outside.

The carrier explained that my mail had been late for the last several weeks (i.e., no earlier than 6:30 P.M., but rarely that early) because the route that my house used to be on had been eliminated, and folded into another. It was at the beginning of the first route. Now it’s at the end.

The route elimination decision had not been made at the local level, but at some other, higher bureaucratic level.

I asked the guy if he got overtime. He said that, yes, they all got overtime. Okay, I get it that the USPS needs to cut costs. Must cut costs. But eliminating routes and then paying overtime seems stupid.

Tell me that I’m wrong.