Entries Tagged 'good manners' ↓

Leroy Watches Jr. & the Baddass Bull Is Free Today, October 19th, on Amazon

Leroy Watches Jr. Is Free Sunday 10/19/2014! Today!

Leroy Watches Jr. Is Free Sunday 10/19/2014! Today!

Leroy Watches Jr. is a very good man. He’s an upcoming shaman whose grandpa is Grandfather, the famous Native American shaman of Mogollon: A Tale of Mysticism & Mayhem. Leroy has the Power in his blood. He’s been healing people and animals since he was four. He should be able to change the world, except for one thing––that Coyote. The Trickster, the Native American spiritual entity that pops little jokes all the time, LOVES Leroy.  Everything the poor man tries messes up. He’s seen by  his people as a joke, not a hero.

This happens in spades in Leroy Watches Jr. & the Badass Bull. Leroy’s dad is a famous rodeo bullfighter––they used to call them “bull clowns”. He protects cowboys bucked off by the terribly dangerous bucking bulls. He needs Leroy’s help; it’s his last rodeo. They’re giving him a big party at the rodeo and his arthritis is crippling him. Would Leroy go with him and heal him, just for that one rodeo? (Leroy’s not a big rodeo fan.)

What can a son do? Leroy goes to the rodeo and helps his dad. Days later, he’s the FBI’s Most Wanted Fugitive.

One Amazon reviewer said:  “5 Stars! Absurd, hilarious, Western good time! One part cowboy narrative, one part shaman’s journey, and two parts hilarious. If you are a fan of Western, Native American shamanic culture, or even just the absurd, I am certain you will love this book. It’s a fairly quick read, perfect for that hot summer afternoon, and Nathan’s ability to write outstanding, believable dialogue really brings the characters to life. As you read “Leroy,” you’ll be transported to the American southwest. You’ll find yourself elbow-deep in the story of Leroy and his family. This absurd and bizarre farce will have you laughing out loud. ”

Go here to download the Kindle Leroy in the US!

Go here to download the Kindle Leroy in the UK! Huh. Doesn’t give pricing. Maybe it’s free? You can still get my gift for free. See below.

There’s more for you here: I’ve got a FREE EBOOK SHORT for you, never before seen. About a witch. More than a witch: Vanessa Schierman has  PhD in Theoretical Physics and did initial work on Berkeley’s Cyclotron. Forget brooms and pointed hats. Download it through my website:

 

Vanessa Schierman PhD, Witch

Vanessa Schierman PhD, Witch

 

WHO IS VANESSA SCHIERMAN PhD, WITCH? She’s a witch, first off, and a character that runs throughout my upcoming novels, starting with her own short story (which is pretty honkin’ long, really) presented below. She’s all over In Love by Christmas, my Christmas book which is coming out in days. Vanessa Schierman PhD, Witch will be a book of short stories about Vanessa and her eccentric and increasingly dangerous-to-others life. The first story is “The Richest Person in the World.” That’s Vanessa. But she’s always had such good taste and modesty that she didn’t brag about it or reveal the extent of her assets. Something happens that peeves her––so she tells all to NET WORTH Magazine. The rest … you’ll have read the story. Which you can very easily.

To download Vanessa, go to my website, SandyNathan.com, and hit the button at the top of the first page. That will take you to a page from which you can download a copy of your choice––mobi, epub, or pdf. I’d love it if you signed up for my mailing list, too. The signup box is right there … Vanessa’s short story is a gift, I’m not going to coerce you into “you gotta sign up to get the book,” but good manners are good manners. Vanessa emphasizes this again and again. Of course, she is a witch.

 

 

LOOK FOR THIS BUTTON on the front page of my site. Click it and be transported to the FREE GIFT EBOOK! No strings or witchcraft included. (‘Cept maybe a little magic.)

 

Happy day!

Sandy Nathan

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Are you sick of people trying to fix you?

I'M ON THE WARPATH!

I'M ON THE WARPATH!

I’m on a bazillion e-mail lists––I swear, they must reproduce in the night. Every day, I get ecstatic emails about some new system or formula that will FIX ME. Or MAKE ME HAPPIER, MORE FULFILLED. A MAGIC BULLET THAT WILL  BRING ME THE SECRET OF MY DREAMS, the dreams I haven’t DARED TO DREAM BEFORE.

All I have to do is listen to a free teleseminar, where I will be seduced into signing up and plunk down big bucks.

Thing is, I ain’t broke. I’m happy, fine, doing well, I don’t need anybody’s friggin’ system to fix me––and I resent these self-appointed gurus assuming they have the right to make the offer. (I have a real guru, and she doesn’t sound like that at all.)

There’s more. I have an MA in Marriage, Family, & Child Counseling from Santa Clara University. I worked had getting that degree and did very well. I began my meditation practice in 1975 and have worked hard in the inner and outer worlds to make my spiritual self the one that runs things. I’ve had three or four professional careers that taught me to exercise my brain and will, and personal skills. The challenges I’ve dealt with myself––cancer and my leg falling apart, for a couple––and in my family have strengthened and tempered my soul.

I know both from a professional, theoretical standpoint and from the work I’ve done on my self that the so called miracle transformation in 30 days or less doesn’t exist.

I know for a fact how hard it is to change, barring acts of God and grace, and how stupid these Get Enlightened Fast schemes are.

There’s no easy way, folks. No fast track to a magic life. You slog through in the trenches, day by day. That’s where the breakthroughs occur, as St. Teresa of Avila pointed out. Daily life is the ground of spiritual transformation.

Read St. John of the Cross, St. Theresa of Avila, Julian of Norwich, Rumi, Mirabai. No easy, sign up now and be free trip will take you where you want to go.

Here’s my promise: I WILL NEVER ATTEMPT TO FIX YOU. You’re fine right where you are, just as you are. And so am I. I’m going to get off all those stupid mailing lists starting now.

This is the first Sandy Nathan discussion post from my Amazon Author Page.

You can read the original on Amazon through either of the links above.

COMING SOON: LOWERED EXPECTATIONS!

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Self Publishers Clean Up Your Pages! Publish Books That Are as Well Produced as Books from the Majors!

Sandy Nathan, award winning author of NumenonSandy Nathan, before reading badly produced self pubbed book.

I’ve been reading self-published books lately, reviewing books for friends and on-line acquaintances. It’s moved me to write this MANIFESTO!

I ABSOLUTELY SUPPORT THE SELF-PUBLISHING, INDIE PRESS MOVEMENT. New technology, the drive to self expression,  and the difficulty of breaking into the traditional publishing industry have created the modern publishing scene. With print on demand digital presses, anyone can get published with a modest expenditure.

That’s the way I think things should be.  I want everyone’s creative urges to be expressed. Write those babies! Pump them words!

HOWEVER, after buying and reading several hundred dollars worth of self-published books, I’m on the warpath.

Self expression is one thing––but the minute someone slaps a cover on their ill-conceived mess and offers it for sale,  CONSUMERS’ RIGHTS and SELLERS’ RESPONSIBILITIES kick in.

IF I PAY $18.95 (OR $12.95, OR A LOUSY PENNY) FOR A BOOK, I EXPECT IT TO BE:

  • Proofread. Yes, get a professional to proofread your work before submitting it to your POD publisher. Not your dad, not your auntie Sue. Hire a real proofreader, and have it proofed again if you make a lot of changes after the first proofing.
  • Designed by a professional, or at least look like it was designed by a professional.
  •  Well-written in terms of construction and composition. The book should reflect the guidelines set forth in the Chicago Manual of Style. This means the way the pages are ordered, which side of the page stuff goes on, what the copyright page looks like, and thousands of other details should be correct, in addition to proper grammar and composition. Here’s the on-line version of the Chicago Manual.  You can buy it used on Amazon.
  • Well written in every other way: Study the craft of writing. Get in a writing group, get an editor, or go back to school and learn to write. Suck up your gut and take the feedback of those who know something about  writing. It takes years to write a polished manuscript and much more work to properly prepare it for publication. It is not enough that one of your professors said you might have a knack for creative writing and that you finished a book-length thing. Don’t put it through CreateSpace and offer it for sale, thinking you’ve written a book.
  • “Omit unnecessary words.” Improve your writing with those three simple words. The quote is from the Chicago Manual and Stephen King says it again in On Writing, one of my favorite writing guides.
  • If you do publish your masterpiece without doing any of the above, confine its distribution to your friends and family.
  • And if you do put the thing up for sale, don’t get your friends to give it ***** Five Star Reviews so that I end up buying it.
  • If you ask money for your work, make it worth what you ask.

If you don’t want to plow through the Chicago Manual, take any book by one of the major publishers and use it as a model for your book. (I’m using a softcover book in my example below. Hardback books are constructed a little differently.) Note basic facts about how a book is put together:

  • THE COVER: You should be able to read the title and the author’s name. Also the subtitle. If you want to sell the book in a bookstore, you should be able to read them at least 4′ away, some people say 6′ away.
  • THE SPINE: Should have the book’s title, author’s name, and imprint of your publisher. Don’t have a publisher? Create your own small press: Name it after your dog.
  • Open the cover. The half title page––that’s a page with ONLY the title of the book on it––is the first page you see. Either that or a page or more of testimonials and reviews. These begin recto, on the right side of the opened page (click to read about it on Wikipedia). You can have a few pages of testimonials, a map, info about the book that would have appeared on the hardbound flaps, things like that in the front matter–-but there’s always a HALF TITLE PAGE with the TITLE ONLY. It’s recto, on the right hand page, facing you as you look at the book.
  • The back of the half title page can have other works by the same author. It is verso (see Wikipedia again)  on the left hand page.
  • Then the TITLE PAGE appears. THE TITLE PAGE IS ALWAYS RECTO, right hand facing, looking at you when you open the book. Usually, designers lift the cover design onto the title page, copying fonts and motifs. The title page includes the title, subtitle, author, and the publisher’s name.
  • The COPYRIGHT PAGE IS ON THE BACK OF THE TITLE PAGE. It has the copyright information on it, the LCCN, ISBN, Library of Congress cataloging information or PCIP data blocks, SAN numbers, disclaimers, and other stuff. If you’re offering your book for sale, you should know what all this means.
  • Check the Chicago Manual or any book by the majors for the exact order of the front matter: the acknowledgments, dedication, prologue, TOC.  All of which are recto; they on the right hand side of the book, looking at you when you open it.
  • Keep looking through any book by the majors–look at the order of the front matter (the stuff before the main text) and the rear or back matter. Your book should be like Random House put it out even if you submit it to your POD publisher in Word.
  • If you follow these guidelines, the quality of your books should improve. If enough people follow these guidelines, the quality of self-published books  should improve overall. Literary agents and the rest of the publishing world won’t be so condescending about the poor quality of self-published books.

OK. I bought a real stinker. It was either write this post, explode, or send the book back to its author line-edited.  I am returning the book to Amazon.

All the best,

Sandy Nathan
Sandy Nathan, winner of seventeen national awards,
after reading poorly produced self-pubbed book. Made my hair turn gray.

Sandy’s  books are: (Click link for more information. All links below go to Kindle editions.)
The Angel & the Brown-eyed Boy
Numenon: A Tale of Mysticism & Money

Tecolote: The Little Horse That Could

Stepping Off the Edge: Learning & Living Spiritual Practice

Two sequels to The Angel & the Brown-eyed Boy are in production with an early 2012 release date planned. If you liked  The Angel you’ll love Lady Grace and Sam & Emily.

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