Friday, January 31, 2014

Rewrote Challenge 49...The Muppet Show! :-)

Yes, I just didn't feel that my entry for Challenge 49 was any good, really. It was okay, but not up to a high standard. As it stands, I won't win the challenge, and I don't need to, being only a substitute for someone who pulled out. of the elements was 'a muppet', so I couldn't just NOT do a Muppet sketch, now could I?

I put it in the comments on the page, and if you can leave a comment, I'd love that :-)
Please! A comment...:-)
But hey, here it is anyway...

Muppet Respect

"What's on?"
"Let's see...oh, right, the Muppet Show! Always good for a laugh."
We sat down on the sofa to get ready for some entertainment.
"Kermit! We've gotta have that flamingo dancing act on right now!" Scooter came racing backstage.
"But Miss Piggy is stuck in the elevator!" said Kermit.
"Kermie! Get me outta here!"
"We're working on it, Miss Piggy!"
The elevator engineer turned to the camera.
"If you'd kept to the maximum weight restrictions..."
"I heard that!"
"Kermit!" shouted Scooter.
"Send in the clowns!"
A collection of crazy clowns with chainsaws ran onto the stage. Kermit heard the sound of screams from the audience and the motors slicing through limbs.
"Send out the clowns!"
A clown with a bloody chainsaw came back offstage.
"What? We're killing them out there!"
"That's my problem! Scooter, get them off the stage!"
The clowns left, disappointed.
"No one likes clowns anymore."
"Especially with chainsaws," retorted Kermit. Fonzie appeared with a green zombie.
"I'll go on, Kermit, with my new partner, Braindead."
"But he's a zombie!"
"And you're gonna hold that against him?"
Scooter appeared again.
"Kermit, they've started throwing food!"
"Oh, Kermie! When exactly are you going to get me outta here?" asked Miss Piggy, still stuck.
"In a moment, Miss Piggy!"
The engineer shook his head and restarted his cutting torch.
"I promise!"
"Now they're throwing their colostomy bags and Prosthetic limbs!"
Gonzo walked by with an artificial leg.
"Hey, I can use this in an act.Where's my wonderful Camilla? Camilla?"
Fonzie went down on one knee.
"Please, Kermit, please!"
"Oh, okay, then! Go! Get out there!"  Kermit sighed.
The music started and the double act went on, wearing large blonde wigs.
"I tell ya Fonzie, I got stuck in an elevator the other day for 3 hours!"
"3 hours! Kerrrrrmiiiiie!" shouted Miss Piggy offstage.
"3 hours?" asked Fonzie.
"Yeah, it was torture."
"Well, that's nothing. I got stuck on an escalator for six!" Fonzie looked towards the audience, accompanied by a drum roll and cymbal crash.
Statler and Waldorf woke up in their balcony seats.
"If I had a joke that flat..."
" would be a pancake!" They both laughed.
Braindead was now holding a sign showing a red cross painted over a sine function.
"Hey, what ya doing?"
"I'm protesting against Trigonometry."
"Really, well, what's that?"
"It's a 'stop sine'."
Another drum roll and cymbal crash. Statler and Waldorf started again.
"Well, that one really 'divided' the audience."
Fonzie tried to ignore them.
"What have you got there, buddy?"
"It's Bruce Lee's "Tao of Jeet Kune Do"." Braindead was eating it. "I like to read and digest a book."
There were a few laughs.
"Man, I don't know about you, but I'm always hungry an hour after eating Chinese."
Statler and Waldorf beat the drums.
"I don't know about you, but I found that one 'wonton'."
Drum roll and cymbal crash.
Fonzie and Braindead left the stage.
"How did it go, Fonzie?" asked Kermit.
"Don't ask, just don't ask."

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Blog Tour - Special Attraction by M.L. Ryan

I promised to do this, and I do it with pleasure :-)

'Special Attraction' by M.L. Ryan
(The Coursodon Dimension Vol #3 - Paranormal Romance/Fantasy (18+; There is some adult language and sexual situations))

My review...

I’m not really into reading about a young blonde shape shifter named Hailey who, while on the trail of a murderer from another dimension, finds a dog and calls him Rufus. But the light humour within the main character held it all together for me. It's not often an author tries a little humour in this genre. The rest, however, the ’hawk to human’ transformation, the ’working with a team from another dimension who are superior to humans’ scenario, the ’haven’t really cottoned on to the obvious’ parts of the story, they've been done before...BUT not like this. With a smooth written style and light humour, this book is a fine example of its genre. Even though she was blonde, I found myself liking the main character and following her story, waiting for the next step. I recommend this to those who like to read this genre.

I'll give it 4 stars for trying to be different :-)

Buy Links

Author Bio
M.L. Ryan is a professional woman - which is not to say that she gave up her amateur status, but rather that she is over-educated with a job that reflects her one-time reluctance to leave school and get "real" work – and she spends a lot of time in that profession reading highly technical material.

She has many stories rolling around in her head, and she finally decided to write some of them. She prefers literature that isn’t saddled with excruciating symbolism, ponderous dialogue or worldly implications. She also doesn’t like plots so reliant on love at first sight that it makes her feel like her head might implode.

She lives in Tucson, Arizona with her husband and teenage son, four cats, two dogs and an adopted desert tortoise.

Social Media Links 

Giveaway: There is also a giveaway for this tour. $25 Amazon Giftcard or PayPal Cash.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Anthology heaven

Newsflash: Rage will be 'FREE' on Amazon tomorrow : 28th January :-)

Before I delve into editing 'How to'...I'm even thinking of changing the title to "How to build a clan in seven easy steps"...I have the chance to get into a few anthologies :-)
I'm already in The Iron Writer anthology 2013-2014, with seven (so far) 500 word stories, and I'm promised a 3000 worder in a "Celebrating 50s Horror movies" type anthology. There is also a chance of another short story in a Steampunk anthology. I have a little time to do is a difficult genre for me to write in, but I already have a plot and the opening scene. The genre is very detailed, very precise, lots of...well, it's new for me. Interesting but new.
And THEN 'How to' - I read a few pages and it needs some work, so don't expect a quick publish :-) A little time is needed....but it's definately something worth waiting for :-)

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Finished 1st draft of 'How to'

38,000 words. Took over 4 months of sneaking a minute here, a few minutes there...
Now I need to read it, edit, check characters, add names, add more description, maybe get it up to 45-50,000 - would be nice.
Here's the spiel...:-)

No one was injured in the making of this book. However, there may be some casualties when reading....
In an ancient long-forgotten deranged land obsessed with power, greed and mud, a boy called Norby stands up to the problems around him. His is a typical story of 'boy meets girl, boy turns into soup, escapes, boy meets girl again, boy is kidnapped and becomes the 'chosen one' for a tribe of canibalistic vampirish desire-driven crazed warriors, boy leads them into battle, loses the chance of a lifetime to bed hundreds of Amazonian women and finally wins the girl'. 

If you thought 'Manna-X' was 'out there', this one will hurt...

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Won TIW Winter Open!!!! :-)

Yes! I won it! Thank you to all who contributed their time and vote :-) Without you I couldn't have won!
This is the highest accolade I've ever achieved....3 challenges, 1 grudge match, 2 elimination rounds and now 1 Open final :-)
Now I'm in the Championshop Annual Final in May 2014 sometime...and a chance to win a free book cover design :-)

In fact, without you, I am nothing except a guy writing stuff on his, again, THANK YOU for your continued support! 'Dani's Shorts 2' and 'How to' are coming very soon...

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

So close to finishing 1st draft of 'How to'

Going through the 'battle' scene in 'How to'...getting there, really. All I need is a little quality time...then I'll get to the badass bit where I read it :-) Some characters aren't even named yet, they have their own life (emotions, habits,etc) but no name...I chose to name the bad characters with anagrams of 'career' authors - those writers who churn out yet another brain-sucking book every 3-6 months, earning tons of money and keeping the general readership (and so the world population) at a certain not-so-high awareness level - they dumb down the masses, and the good characters are named after anagrams of authors I respect, ones who may have been 'career' writers in their time but also created something FANTASTIC in the literary world or at least made an impression. The hero, 'Norby' in fact Byron...he's not a favourite of mine, but he created some wonderful work. I also named places in the same way, leaving the 'evil' place without changing the name...yes, the place is so evil...the settlement is guessed it..."Grisham" :-)

Sunday, January 19, 2014

What are they doing with movies nowadays?

I watched a few movies some friends said are worth the time. They weren't.
One was "The Day of the Siege", it's got a 3.3 razing on imdb. I see why. Not only is it slow, the actors stand there and open their mouths a lot, what they say is stupid and what they say is that Christianity is fantastic and any other religion is not...
The other was "Justin and the Knights of Valour", with a 6.0 rating. Oh dear. Great graphics, typical adventure story but such a bad script AND what was worse than the scrip was the casting! I have rarely heard such bored actors reading their parts. OK, they all try but they're as into their roles as soggy diapers. They kill every line...lines which are pretty awful.
Who are these scriptwriters?
Who are these actors?
Who are these producers who make these movies?
Who knows, but they're lucky, that's what they are. Terrible at what they do, but lucky all the same.
And who are the backers of these movies? Give me some time and money and I'll write you something to blow your socks off! Oh, I have...'How to' skeleton is slowly coming to completion, then character fixes, scene and description fixes...:-) Soon, soon...

Why do I do Iron Writer?

Three days into the Flash Fiction Iron Writer Winter Open Final...long title...and I'm in the lead - I've been here before. Why do I do this? Why do I do Iron Writer at all?
I tell you why. Because it's EXCELLENT for building up your writing skills, making you notice the successes and errors of yourself and others, stretching yourself to see where and how you can write, finding your boundaries. I'm good at dialogues and sparse description, all comedy. Others are good at other things, and you can learn from them. You meet others at the same stage as you, unknown, trying things, chatting with them, collaborating with them. I'm also helping edit the 'official' winner's anthology, due out after the Annual TIW Final (I hope I'm there).
As a writer, I'ev changed, become a little more polished/streamlined. Looking at the titles of the stories in 'Dani's Shorts 2' - out in just over a month, FREE on Smashwords - they're a different bunch to the first collection. Only 3 of the 55 have been seen on TIW (yes, I had a go at Challenge 40...nuff said...I like the second half of it). The latest, Challenge 48, is a eulogy - I had to research it. A year ago, I wouldn't have even thought it was possible for me to write comical eulogy. will be interesting to see any reaction or feedback to this new collection. Here's the proposed cover...:-) Oh, and if you haven't voted for my "Marital Strife" story yet, please do so now :-) Thank you.

Friday, January 17, 2014

The Iron Writer Winter Open Final has begun!

Yes, you guessed it! The Iron Writer Winter Open Final has begun!
Please come read and vote for "Marital Strife" by Dani J Caile :-)
If I win, I'll stop going on about voting!
So, please vote! And get your relatives and friends to vote! :-)
...still working on 'How to'...:

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

One more day countdown

One more day and the VOTING CAMPAIGN begins :-) With the Autumn Open Final, I thought I had a chance because I had the most votes in the Elimination Round...but the eventual winner was only holding back. Now, with the Winter Open Final, I know the 'power' of the other 3 authors, and anything is possible.
Today I also did 2 things...
1. Sorted out the remainder of 'How to', putting it all in order - but not writing it all up yet, that's still a week away, the skeleton.
2. Started TIW Relay T2 with 150 words (see below)...which gave me an excellent idea for my Brad Shaw novelette, a cheesey detective thriller!
Here's the 150 words (but these will be revamped/changed a little in the novelette)

Nothing worked. The dreary comedy on cable, some cool jazz music on his 4 track, the book he'd bought months ago from the Antiquarium because he loved the cover but hadn't had time to read. He still had that feeling. Something wasn't right. Pouring a brandy, he watched the seconds hand on his kitchen clock. Somewhere something...his mobile phone rang. It was an unknown number, landline. He picked it up and stared out through his lounge window into the night, overlooking the flats opposite.
"Hello, Todd here."
"Mr. Lehr, I think I may have something which would interest you."
The voice on the other end wasn't familiar, in fact it sounded alien, like some voice effect was being used.
"Who is this?"
He was sure the voice sniggered hoarsely, away from their handset.
"That is not important. What is, however, is what I am about to say."
Todd listened intently.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

A few more days, then a week of messaging :-)

Only a few more days and then the Iron Writer Winter Open starts, and I'll be bothering the hell out of people on facebook, twitter, Goodreads, and any other network I can get my hands on. But really, this story is EXCELLENT...all the others are good, the latest have been very good, but this one...deserves YOUR VOTE :-)
Got some sales since the 'birthday' promo (Yes!, at this rate I'll retire when I'm 547 years old...), and I'll do a promo once I can get 'How to' sorted out. Also working on some Brad Shaw short stories, one already sent to an anthology...wonder if it'll be accepted? If not, I'll publish it, definitely worth seeing, that one...and others.

Monday, January 13, 2014

"That person's solid gold" - Zsuzsa Demcsák

Since living in Hungary, I've bumped into quite a few Hungarian celebs, especially TV hosts. I've seen a few Hungarian actors, but they're not the nicest people.
However, TV hosts...on the TV screen there are some fantastic people, they look great (Hungary has a high percentage of pretty women - they do have their share of ugly ones, too, I might add, but if you want to see beauty, come to Hungary), they speak well, they hold themselves well. You even feel bad about the sad things that happen in their lives when talking on other shows. Then you bump into them in real life...the facade drops. Most are shallow selfish creatures who deserved all the bad things they got, and none of the limelight.
But the other day, I bumped into one host in particular, and I was impressed. She is what a TV host should be, a great 'role model' for the person of today: caring mother, sporty, looks good, polite, natural. Zszuzsa Demcsák :-) Thankfully, amongst all the egotistical, selfish limelight seekers, there are still the few who the ordinary person in the street can look up to and say "Yes, that person's solid gold."

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Educating the Reader Part 1 - Dialogue tagging

What I really hate is when a writer tags every single line of dialogue. It should be obvious who is speaking due to tone, words, style, interaction, expectations, roles, etc. So why put 'said John', 'asked Jane'? It's because the writer wants to make it perfectly clear who is speaking when.
I, however, believe it is a perfect opportunity to 'EDUCATE THE READER'. Never miss that. (Yes, that was in capitals to get your attention.)
Of course, you don't want to be too obtuse...well, I love that, too. A little confusion until the dust settles always makes things interesting :-)
For example...
Who is speaking? Who has an uncle in the story? If you didn't know before, you know now that there is a man who is an uncle and there's a niece or nephew. Do you see? With one word, you have created a little world of questions and the reader is 'into' the story.
What characters say and how they say it can also tell you who is who. Two different characters requesting salt...
"Excuse me, I wonder if you could be so kind as to pass the salt?"
"Oi! You! Give me that!"
Taking out unneccesary dialogue tagging is just one way to educate the reader. There are others...later...

BTW, my birthday promo of MBAT and Beth got 199 downloads! Good for no advertising :-)

Saturday, January 11, 2014

It's my birthday - 2 free ebooks

In the true sense of 'birthday', MBAT and Beth Fiasco are free today :-)
If you haven't got a copy, you should go get one now...please.

And I'm in the Iron Writer Winter Open Final! Thanks for voting for me. I'll need you next week, too!

...but here's a few other things... ..even with the sad ending, you just can't help feeling my sarcasm... 
How about this? (Part 10) - I just can't get 'serious'!!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Tiny Little Steps

Each tiny little step forward brings you closer to your goal.
I wrote up TIW's 4 elements in an implied 10 word sentence for a laugh, and now it'll be used as an example in a presentation/workshop in the USA in June sometime. Cool. Here it is...'He tutted as she stood there in a mini skirt' - it has judge, victim, conservative and liberal all in there. And only 1 more day and we'll see if I can get into TIW Winter Open Final...unless there's a last minute spree of votes for someone else...
I've also completed a 3000+ word story for a '50s horror movie' anthology celebrating the genre (you know, those cheesey cheapo USA movies). I wonder if it'll be accepted (?), what with its cardboard characters, confused female and last moment hero, with the usual cheesey action and the essential 'lots of information given to make the movie stay within budget limits' dialogue.
'How to' is slowly getting closer to skeletal form...etc,etc
Putting on a 100 word piece on TIW relay 1 soon, still don't know how to do that but hey...

Friday, January 3, 2014

Cheating Amazon book shops

I just had a look at who has 'used' copies of Manna-X - no one should be selling any because I know EXACTLY who has a paperback - not many and it's not any of them...
So, let's look at the list and prices of all these there's a shop which has a used Manna-X for $999.11+ $3.99shipping? That's over $1000 !!!! And if they do sell that one copy (which they don't have because they didn't buy it) I would see $2 of that - perhaps...

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Yes, it's voting time again! TIW Winter Open

Yes, it's that time again, to go and have a little read and vote for the's the Iron Writer Winter Open. I'm in the Edgar Allan Poe bracket, along with some tough competition. Got a few votes so far but whether I can 'stay the course' is another matter. Please go read and vote :-) And get anyone else to have a look :-) If your hamster or gerbil have internet, message them!

Still working on the draft of 'How to', getting to the final parts, though I need just a little inspiration...and time...