But I at least managed to get over to the beach, the other
day...for the first time...in a long while.
So things have changed a bit.
It’s warmer, for one.
Less ice to navigate.
But other than that, not much has changed from where the
beach left off last fall.
Most of the regulars are still occupying their same spots.
Unless the cleanup crew placed a garbage can on it.
In that case you likely found a confused person, scratching
their head, standing with their arms full of blankets and towels, not knowing
what to do.
But, eventually, they adapt; slide over a few feet to the
north or south of the can and drop their stuff...whether there’s another beach goer sitting there or
Hey...it’s the beach...no
worries, Mon...we share and share alike.
At least that’s what I told the security guard.
That..and it takes a little bit, every new beach season to get
back into the beach groove...like remembering to bring everything you’re gonna
need to enjoy a typical day...like a blanket and a towel...lunch...a chair...a
bathing suit...and the fact that the tide comes in—after it goes out—it come
back...so don’t fall asleep down by the water’s edge....
Here’s a little refresher course from a few years ago...because
most things never change.
So another Memorial Day is upon us and according to the
papers the “unofficial” start of summer...which means you can only enjoy it “unofficially”.
But aside from all the burgers, hotdogs and everything
else, Memorial Day is a solemn holiday, and really a day of remembrance for all
of those who served and protected both country and family alike.
I did a story last Memorial Day on a memorable hometown family
tour I took with my closest Irish cousins from across the bridge.
Just a fun look back at my particular family history, remembering all the people and places that
And since I'll be heading off soon to the "Irish Isle" "The Ol Sod" "The Land of Guinness and Jamison" in about a month to hang with about a gazillion Irish cousins, I have yet to meet, from hither and yon...which I believe is nearby dither and tither....I thought I’d repeat it for those who may have missed it the first
time, and for those who might enjoy it a second time....
mean unless you've been chasing bears and coyotes in the woods, all week, you have to
have seen at least one of the three thousand posts I've plastered over everything that moved.
And sorry...I didn't know that was your dog....
I'm sick of hearing about it...and looking at it....even though I wrote the thing.
let me tell YOU this one last time....
So yeah...I wrote
It’s a Young Adult fantasy
adventure, coming of age, kind of thing.
Kind of like that other “thing”
that was so popular back in the 90’s…and 2000’s…and today.
But it’s not…it’s different…and
one thing has nothing to do with the other thing.
Truth is, I actually wrote it a
while ago…like 20 years, a while ago.
And I’ve been re-writing it from
time to time, ever since.
Add a comma here, invert a
sentence there. Change a topical
reference…remove the dead guy…update the technology, not to mention the dialogue.
I actually called it “done done”…way back in 1996, and I
started sending it around to publishers and literary agents, “Over the Transom” so to speak, as they
call it in the pub biz…because people in the pub biz think they’re cool.
Anyway, “Over the Transom” means…since no one actually asked to see your
manuscript, and doesn’t’ want to see your manuscript, and wants nothing to do
with your manuscript, “nobodies” like me, back in the day-day-day, would go to a
Publishers office and literally throw their work over the transom…which I
imagine probably led to some injuries, not to mention hard feelings.
But the hope was,
once the unlucky editor regained consciousness, the first thing they would see
would be your book—the greatest book ever
written—and immediately want to hand you a gazillion dollars for the rights
to sell it to the world.
At least in theory.
Today, it just means sending your
work around un-solicited, hoping for a miracle…which is even less effective.
Okay, I’m probably selling myself
a little short, even though I consider myself to be of average height. I wasn’t
totally blown off. On more than a few
occasions, I was actually asked, by
some big time publishers, to submit my manuscript. And I did get some nice responses;
such as…“Can you tell us where you bought
that great paper stock?”
But you learn not to let little things
like that get to you. In fact, I’ve always said the publishing business is the
only business where you gauge your worth by the quality of your rejections.
And I’ve had my share of good
ones over the years. Like…
“Your YA manuscript, “The Kingdom of Keys”
has been through quite a few readings, by many of our editors and was very much
enjoyed by all.Unfortunately, lunch
came and someone spilled hot sauce all over it, which kind of changed the mood
in the room, so I’m afraid we’re going to have to pass. However, we encourage
you to seek another publisher for this fine work…preferably one with better
table manners. We wish you all the best with this, and expect to swear off
spicy food for the foreseeable future!”
So that was encouraging.
Eventually, after a mountain of
pleasant rejections—similar in compliments, if not condiments—my “baby” like so
many others, ended up locked away in a desk drawer for almost a couple of
That is until now, when
technology and the success enjoyed by some of my fellow writing cohorts with modern
day self-publishing—not to mention a particular friend who offered
encouragement and abuse on a regular basis—spurred me on to take the plunge and
get the damn thing out of my drawer and out into the world…if only on an “On
But it’s better than not being
“out there” and who knows…maybe some folks will like it and actually make it
something “In Demand”.
Maybe even you.
Okay…I know…now I’m getting
Anyway, I think it’s a good book,
and believe me, no one is more surprised by that than me. And while it’s
intended for a Young Adult (12-18) audience, much like the “glasses guy”, I
think it has appeal for “older” folks, as well. Especially those that have been
known to march to the beat of a different drummer…or insist on wearing those
peculiar socks and ties.
I don’t have the space, here, to go into too much detail,
but it’s basically about a sixteen year old boy named Toby who finds a
mysterious key to a mysterious door and—
Well, it has pretty much everything…action, adventure, fantasy, humor, villains, heroes, Kings, Queens,
strange creatures from an enchanted land, a multitude of laser blasts, and even
a little romance - as much as an awkward sixteen year old can muster. But, more importantly, woven within is an
insightful message designed to encourage young minds—even older ones—to choose
the path in life most in harmony with, not only their intellect, but also their
heart and their soul.
There’s lots of plot detail about “The Kingdom of Keys” available on Amazon if you’re interested in learning more
about the story…and, of course if you’d like to pick up a copy.
And I hope you do, because hoping
otherwise would be pretty silly. But I especially hope that you enjoy my “baby”
and will pass it on to your babies, grandbabies and even future babies, who
just might discover something in there that “changes everything”.
I need to renew my beach card, so I decided to write a book. I figure, if I sell 35 copies, I might be able to cover the fee.
38 if I want to get lunch, too….
Actually, I wrote this book
– “The Kingdom of Keys” - a long time ago. I just waited until now to publish it, because…well, it was time. That and the fact that nobody else would publish it earlier. But that’s a story for another day…and you can count on that, too…soon.
Still, this was my “Baby” and like any good parent, I kept it locked up in a drawer until I was ready to let it out and put it to work. You know…tough love. Anyway, if you’re a fan of Young Adult Fantasy - Action Adventure fiction…one with a pretty good message for kids who find “fitting in” something that…well, just doesn’t fit…this book’s for you…and your kids and your kid’s kids. It’s a good story; one I think will make a difference for those who need it, no matter what age they are. I know I needed it…and it helped me, just writing it. It went up on Amazon, just yesterday, in Softcover and Kindle, so you’re pretty much the only ones who know, right now. So be the first on your block to own your own…get ahead of the curve…be a trendsetter…out in front of the crowd. I tell you this is gonna be on cupcakes soon….and who doesn’t love cupcakes????
Anyway, I hope you’ll “Like” it, “Share” it, “Tweet” it…and “Shout” it out to all your friends on everything and anything. And while you’re at it…even put up a review on Amazon!
I mean after you read it…and like it, of course. But you know, how could you not?
As cold and icy as the early part of the year was, I have to
admit, May’s been good to us so far.
At least around these parts…
I mean, the parts that were left over after I put the patio
I have to remember to pick them up before “someone” trips over them again.
Anyway, it’s been nice.
Temps in the mid to upper 80s.
Even over 90 by some other parts…the ones I keep behind the
garage, that I think came from something under the car…not sure.
The point being, nobody can complain about May…so far.
Unless you think it’s been too hot…and you had to drag your
air conditioner out early…and wrenched your back…which prevented you from
mowing your lawn…which caused your neighbors to complain…which lead to....
We live in the information age…true…but who has time for
that much information.
I mean, do you really have time to read up on a $1,000.00
pill that treats the unnatural fear of tuna fish sandwiches…but only on white
toast, without cheese…and how Justin Bieiber loves to bathe in olive oil….
Besides, with all this information floating around, there’s
no way of telling what’s true and what’s not.
Like the Justin Bieber olive oil thing that I actually did
make up…and now you have to message back all your friends and tell them…“False Alarm on the Bieber thing!”
Of course Justin Bieber doesn’t love bathing in olive
oil…it’s vegetable oil.
What happened to the good old days when the only source of
information available to us, was what we overheard our moms talking about on the phone?