So Kate Gosselin is “freaking out “ over her show being cancelled.
I really don’t care. I just couldn’t come up with an intro.
Although, seriously? She’s upset because her career has been derailed? Watch the video. It’s amazing how much she sounds like…well, like Kate Gosselin. Woman’s nuttier than a can of almonds.
It’s been some time since life has allowed me the time and energy to focus on writing, as well as the myriad other projects I want to work on. Now that I’ve left my post at The Corner Bookstore, I’m going to dive headlong into the wordy pool and see what comes of it. The primary objective right now is to finish Book 1 in The Storyteller series, which is tentatively called The Heart of Darkness. I should, all things being equal, complete that manuscript some time in October (preferably before I head to Richmond, Va for The James River Writers Confererence).
As I manage that daunting task, I mean to pick up the pieces of the abandoned Bookstore series of videos (newest one below) and continue building a platform with which to turn my bizzaro experiences as a bookseller into a television pilot. Think Arrested Development meets The Office and you’ll get a decent idea. Something that allows for a good bit of insanity but is more character driven than built around the location. I hope to have a new video up every Wednesday.
Additionally, I’ll have a few posts to add to The Adventures of Ducky Thomas, including his long overdue story of traveling to New York City. That post, for what it’s worth will be called The Massive Warship, and has an awful lot to do with his visit to St. Patrick’s Cathedral. The hope with Ducky is to translate his adventures into chapter books. I think the world needs stories about an adventurous duck. Ducky agrees.
Now that Flutter is out and selling, I will be returning again to the world of Timothy Webb and telling what may, or may not, be the final book in that series. I’m rather fond of Timothy and Natasha, so I may violate ever known rule of writing just to hang on to them. In the meantime, if you haven’t already, The Christ Corporation Series has a Facebook page. Like it. I’ll be posting updates there.
Finally, staring me in the face with the depth and deadness of a salivating zombie is a story that takes the traditional Zombie Apocalypse for rocking ride where it’s never been before. Not sure yet if I want to write the novel or the screenplay, but as I have information to offer, I’ll be tossing it up here on the blog.
…of which I will be visiting more often. Obviously, right?
So with nothing in my way but myself, all of these projects will be complete or underway within the next six months. I’m piling it on and looking forward to what comes of it.
Oh, and in the near future I’ll be looking for you to determine what absolutely ridiculous show I show blog about on a regular basis. That one is wide open. Anything from Springer to Gossip Girl, from The View to 90210. It’s not my call. It’s yours. I’m not sure who I hope to entertain more with that, but I’m quite positive it will be me.
That said, here’s the latest in The Bookstore series, called Potter is Hotter. Time to decide between Cullen and Potter. And pretty dresses.
I killed a man.
Well, actually I killed several people, but to keep to the point, I killed a man by the name of Timothy Webb. I thought this would be enough to keep him forever out of MY life, but, alas, I was mistaken. Apparently, God took quite a fancy to him, and his actions as Christ, and CEO, at The Christ Corporation, and decided to make him an angel. He gave Timothy his metaphorical wings, granted him the gift of a Key that supposedly held the power of Jesus, patted him on the back, and sent him on his way.
His first act was to show up on the doorstep of MY imagination, and demand that I do something about it. I just kind of stared at him, in terrible disbelief, and shrugged. This did nothing to satisfy him, so he invited himself in, began rambling about being ill-equipped to be an angel, and something about Natasha–the maligned angel known as Satan in our world–recovering well from her temporary bout of humanity. So, for the next few hours we sat, until it became apparent to ME that the only way I would get rid of Timothy would be to write another story for him. I proposed the idea, made up a completely fabricated storyline, waived him on, and then proceeded to forge onward with a plot that, in no way resembled the idea I had discussed with Timothy. From this was born, Flutter: An Epic of Mass Distraction.
It now has a release date: October 1, 2010.
What is Flutter? Well, it’s more devil fiction than Anointed, has significantly more explosions, plenty of characters who don’t survive to see the end, and an angelic system of social networking that is eerily familiar to Twitter. But that’s not much of a description. Kind of leaves you wanting, I admit. So, instead, I offer you a brief look at some of what I wrote for my publisher, when I turned over the reigns of my baby:
In my eyes, it carries the same voice, and some of the feel, but none of the story structure of Anointed. I wanted to write something, on the heels of a book that was philosophical, and, at times, rambling, with something a little more adventurous, a little more off the wall, and a lot more explodey (I really like that word all of a sudden)…I have included references, or creatures, as follows: Quantum Leap, Star Trek, Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica, Back to the Future, The Matrix, a dragon, a vampire (tee hee…I like him!), a bobsledding monkey, a wizard/piano duel , zombies, and a chocolate hot tub. Ok, the last may not be fantasy in terms of the genre, but you find me anybody who doesn’t like everything listed before it, that isn’t as fond of the hot tub, and I’ll quit writing. Oh, also, there’s a reference to swine flu, and to Google Buzz (which is mistakenly called Fuzz). That, along with Natasha in a bikini, a porch made of cheese (it’s Gouda than you think! Ugh…), a God who thinks he’s a child, a video game of explosive proportions, ugly angels, an escalator in the sky, a prison in Heaven, the rebirth of Jesus, and a very unfortunate moment for the masters of The Christ Corporation…there’s so much activity, and no break to sit in a restaurant to discuss the history of Satan, or in an office to discuss the history of Christ. What I hope I have created is a book that you really just can’t put down, and one that makes you both want to read its predecessor, and anxiously await what is to come.
I like that I can be a complete tard when I write to her. Granted, she published the first book, so it’s not like I’m going to fool her at this point. It’s not quite back copy material (that bit you might read on the back of a book that summarizes the story), but it covers most of what I consider to be cool about Flutter. I’ve been asked what this book is meant to lampoon, given the generalized lampoon of Christianity in Anointed, to which I say it’s predominantly a lampoon of social media, and how easily distracted the world has become by it, and to technology in general. I’d like to think that I can wield this tale like a weapon, and waggle it in the face of all those who have fallen prey to its mighty grip, but, well, I’m one of them. Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Goodreads, email, blogging, texting, computer games, anything and everything that occurs on the cell phone, and so forth–I’m there. Or, at least, mostly there. So are you, most likely. Be warned: The angels know, and they’re about to do something rash. Ish. Rash-ish. More in the vein of rash, but less rash than rash might be. Kind of, severe, in that, “Don’t make me come down there,” kind of way.
So, I’ll keep it at that for now. I hope to offer a few snippets in the coming weeks. The first will likely be a scene that takes place in God’s Office, as He prepares for a trip to Earth, with the ever-present moan of the Holy Ghost guiding the way.
Until then, I need to go lock the door. I’m sure Timothy wants to know what to do now.
I couldn’t help but notice, as I was looking over the dashboard to the blog to approve some comments (& blast some junk into oblivion, with some Schwartzenegger like “You’ll be trashed” line in my head), that the corner of the page that details the most often used search results to locate my blog had the following 3 as the top choices:
Now, please, whichever one of you did the third one, please, please, please, oh for the love of everything holy, please, let me know. BRILLIANT! I don’t know if I’m more amused that it exists, or that it worked. Either way, I’m totally honored to be found under the search heading of “giraffe sex” despite the fact that I have neither written about it, or to my knowledge, had it.
Giraffe sex. Tee hee.
So, my NYC escapades are at an end. No pictures today, nor any from last night. The camera is packed, and the room looks less of a disaster now that everything is placed quasi-neatly in the suitcase. The coffee has finally woken me from my morning stupor, bringing ME to from a late night, and short sleep. Last night at The Tank, I had the 2nd of 2 events, and rounded out a birthday celebration without song or fanfare for the first time since I drove alone to Montana. Harry Terjanian was a hoot and seemed well at ease railing on religion. We were a small group, but one prepared to laugh, and he didn’t disappoint. Though I could cite a number of well delivered punchlines, his run on the disappointment of Easter candy was my favorite. The idea that the large Chocolate Easter Bunnies, are “chocolate covered air” is still cracking ME up.
I plopped MYSELF up on the edge of the stage for what amounted to a cozy little story time with a handful of rapt listeners. I gave the first chapter of Angelic Malcontentsanother go, and am now convinced that it’s going in the right direction. The unicorn-head maid lady (did I hear Andora? or was that Andromeda?) was there again, at MY side as I read. I’m less creeped out by her now, and find MYSELF chatting her up, just in case. You never know. She could be real somewhere, and though I’m not soliciting MYSELF to her, it’s always good to keep an open friendship with any potential unicorn-head maid ladies in the universe. Seems like having one for an enemy could be rather unpleasant. Just sayin’.
So, all in all it was a great trip. Saw plenty. Heard plenty. Talked plenty. Read a lot. And stowed away, for future use, much more story content than even I could have planned for. Thanks to everyone who has kept up, and I look forward to getting home, where MY wife is likely to squeeze ME into an alternate universe, and my dog is likely to have a coronary, after spending nearly 4 days convinced I was never coming home. Time to give up this awesome view of Manhattan, take MY weary butt downstairs, and begin the trek to Laguardia by way of train and bus. Cost savings aside, I’m good for one cab ride per trip here. Already did that, and I think I lost a few years in the process. No need to lose more. I might lose more hair. Not ready for that yet.
I didn’t want to go to sleep last night. For a long time (once I had fully comitted myself to leaving Facebook and the plethora–what is a plethora?–of comments and such from yesterday’s activity) I just stared out the window at the city. I think I was still in that, “Am I really here” phase that most of us go through when we’ve come to visit an exciting place, or a place we’re excited about because it isn’t exciting at all but quiet because everyone else isn’t there. Anyway, I left the shades open, and woke up the minute the light touched the sky. Times like this, and times like this only, that I don’t mind short sleep. Thus began the day. I have no idea where I’m going now, only that I’m about to walk out the door.
8:32 am: I meander downstairs, showered & happy to MY free Marriott breakfast. Before you get too excited, free, in this instance, is bagels and toast and cereal and coffee. Honestly, I was happiest about the free coffee. More so that they had little packages of Coffe-Mate French Vanilla creamer available. MY caffeinated dessert, what you mortals call coffee, in hand, I was ready to face the day.
10:15 am: While on MY way to the Library, I stop for the 1st of 2 visits to Bryant Park, situated right next door (door? somehow, that seems wrong). It’s a peaceful place in the morning. Probably an excellent place to drink some coffee and wake up while people watching. Hey! That’s what I was doing!
10:10 a.m: New York Public Library. I didn’t go in, as I’ve been there before & I’m running short on time before I meet Russ at (or around, on Russ time) 11. Snapped a couple pictures of the lions, and some various shots of the local landscape, but nothing you wouldn’t have seen a bajillion times before on tourist brochures. I’m beginning to get a little worried about the calm lack of adventure the day is displaying thus far. What, Monday comes and we all act normal again? What’s up with that?
10:21 a.m: Walking up 5th Ave, on MY way to St. Patrick’s Cathedral when it suddenly occurs to ME that I’ve been singing the coffee toffee twisted frosty song in MY head for the last hour. Damn! In order to purge the madness, I grant the repetitive lyrics to you
Coffee toffee, twisted frosty!
Do you wanna get frosty with me?
10:32 a.m: I arrive at St. Patty’s to discover that MY favorite NYC landmark is still there. You can never be too sure when religion is involved. Could have been swept away in a moment of vengeance. Glad to see that they are renovating some of the exterior. Most people are aware that I do not believe you can find God in a church, despite the fact that they exist, seemingly, for the that sheer purpose alone. You can find religion in a church though, and St. Patty’s never disappoints.
11:11 a.m: Lunch with Russ at Chipolte’s. I need about 3 more cups of coffee to keep up with the speed at which he is talking. Russ, I’m still a Southerner! Slow down!
12:25 p.m: Russ & I have broken up, though I believe it to be short term. Once he slows down his speech, we’ll be all right. I decide to head back to 42nd street, and over to Grand Central Station, since I didn’t have time before, then head back to St. Patrick’s because, well, because it’s so freakin’ awesome. Aside from the fact that I think of The Day After Tomorrow everytime I go into Grand Central, I rather enjoy it. It is the pinnacle of activity. Busy, busy, busy little people scoot around from one to the other, or from one floor to the other, to the fooditorium downstairs, or simply dodging pesky tourists with cameras. OH! Actually, the main floor of Grand Central is home to a scene from one of my favorite movies, K-Pax, so maybe all isn’t bad. The travesty has been undone. Sorry Mr. Gyllenhal and Mr. Quaid, but that movie just sucked. Wolves? Really? Wolves in NYC?
1:35 p.m: Back at St. Patrick’s for about 30 minutes. It’s fantastic to absorb to just sit and absorb the history of the place. Unfortunately, and by design I do believe, the pews are dreadfully uncomfortable to sit on for an extended period of time. How can you feel the presence of God if you’re massaging your butt every five minutes!
2:25 p.m: Back at the hotel where I attempted a nap. No go. Nap fail. Too easily distracted am I. Answer the phone? Sure! Text messages, absolutely! Facebook chats? Well, I can’t be rude! Anyway, it’s 5:30 now and I’m about to get ready for night one at The Tank. I may, and or may not, post pictures and update the blog later this evening. MY guess is on the no side. You may just have to wait until tomorrow. And, hey, whoa! I totally buzzed a fly today!
Ok, so maybe it isn’t that cool. But still, I had to wait a long time for that shot.
Quite a treat today. What I bring to you today is a conversation with the one and only, Billy Christ, CEO of The Christ Corporation! The fact that I had the opportunity to sit down with this religious icon, this man who has overseen quite a tribulent time in Christianity over the past 33 years was humbling to the say the least. I may not agree with His position on much of anything, but it’s a rarity that He speaks so candidly with an average blogger/writer like ME. Usually, He reserves that for the media folk. But I managed to find Him on a day that He was rather contemplative, as He nears the end of His term, and He was more than willing to accomodate MY request.
But first, I offer you today’s links:
It’s rained a lot in Atlanta lately. Not that it’s a bad thing, mind you, but it’s puddled things up pretty fair everywhere, and the water is absolutely coated in a vile layer of pollen. I was a bit conscious of this as I approached the home of The Christ Corporation. The opportunity to sit with Christ was monumental, and the last thing I wanted to do was track mud into His pristine home. I mean, it’s a monolith of glass in this expansive park-like garden, and there’s limited sidewalk space, most of which was, as mention, pooled in yellow-gooped mini-lakes. I was fortunate, however, in that the lobby was ginormous, and had ample mats with which to wipe my feet clear. After five minutes of obsessive wiping, I trudged on. Despite the energy of the place, and the numerous televisions blaring evangelical sermonizing (the tag read something about GFC Atlanta), it was surprisingly quiet. I waited for a while until a mousy looking guy in glasses that reminded ME of a Martin Short/Smithers clone emerged from an elevator and shook my hand. His name was Arvid, or Armin, or something like that. I was a bit overwhelmed and slightly nervous, so forgive MY inability to remember. Either way, he prattled on about Christ so completely, that I began to look around the elevator for cameras. Surely, Christ was watching our arrival. Nobody could be so enamored with another without knowing that said individual was watching. And to be honest, I was reviewing the questions for Christ in MY head, so about all I caught was something to the effect of, “He will be remembered by us all. More from some, than from others.” I only remember that because this Arvy guy had this supreme look of sugary-donut delight on his face, kind of the same I’ve seen about town in the Ansley area, if you follow. I decided at that point that I would not step out of the elevator first, unless my notebook had ME well covered.
We arrived on the twelfth floor, passed a rather grumpy, but quite pretty, secretary named Mary, wandered down a hallway that was lined with pictures (God, they were cheesy kind of Buddy Christ images, for those who have seen Dogma) of the previous men who have sat in the Divine chair of the CEO. We reached a door with a plackard that read, “Billy Christ, CEO” and simply walked in. I was somewhat aghast. I mean, I don’t know what I was expecting, but I thought a baptism, or something of that magnitude, was in order. Would it be that easy to get into Heaven? Just a door marked “Heaven” and you walk right in? No dousing, no prattling on about MY sins, and sitting in judgement and stuff?
However brazen our entrance, we were there, and nothing could have prepared ME for the sight. I don’t know if it was the view of downtown Atlanta through the monstrously large glass-paned face of the office, or the rediculously large conference table, or the furniture strewn about so heavily that I thought I had walked into a high-class fringe-society version of IKEA, or if it was just the mere presence of Billy Christ, standing before his desk with a grin like I’ve never seen. I mean, I instantly knew that this man was never unhappy. His smile wore a permanance that immediately warmed ME, and he was dressed (I am admittedly no great judge of fashion for the record) in a suit that easily out-paced MY monthly salary. He propelled his hand into MINE, greeted ME, and said the word “outstanding” in every sentence, as if it were punctuation to be praised. Arm…whatever his name was excused himself with a patient bow, and Christ invited ME to sit. I remember thinking, as I looked at His desk, and its various accutrements, laptop, His coffee mug, and even the chalice of wine that sat atop his desk, that up to that point, I had no idea what “refined” meant. In case you were wondering, it means, “likely to net you a nice take if you sell it on ebay.” Just so you know.
It was at that time, as I gazed hopelessly around the office, taking in all the ornate Goodness that it held, that I found Christ staring at ME. Now I don’t profess to be religious–not in an organized way anyhow–but I felt Him look through ME. He has a deep, penetrating, other-wordly stare. In a way, it was much as though He had simply vacated Mind for a moment, and had taken to wandering the Universe, or perhaps just the Office, in search of Grace. Or something grace-like. Anyway, He snapped to and said, “So…”
I jumped in my seat trying to get my notebook out. And then I began:
“You’re coming to the end of Your term as Christ. When do you expect that You will announce Your retirement and, upon reflection, how do You view Your tenure as Christ?”
Christ pondered it briefly, that smile ever-persistent. “I’m told that I’ll know when to make My announcement. God will show the way. I can’t be certain, but it may be that I won’t know until I know that I’ve been given the knowledge. It’s a tried and true method, I am told. And as to My tenure, well, that’s a rather involved question with a lengthy answer. I would be remiss to say that I have not enjoyed My time, or that I have not accomplished many things that will forever leave a mark. However, I am a man of great humility, and I leave the boasting to those who follow me. Or perhaps the Council. They like to express their thoughts about Me often.”
He laughed then, and…hm…how do I describe this? I don’t know, really, but I swear to you, the sound came from under the desk, as if there were some sort of time-delay, or perhaps even that it arrived ahead of His motion. Regardless, it was the first of many laughs that had ME quite unsettled by the end of our conversation.
“What would You site as Your greatest acheivement?”
“Greatest? What a word! Outstanding! Some would say the affiliation with, and branding of the GFC’s–God’s Favorite Church, that is–of which there are now fifty-five at last count, is My greatest, as you say, acheivement. Others have pointed to the weekly Offering, which takes place here at The Christ Corporation, and has given millions an outlet to seek My blessing over the years. But I’m partial to the contract I negotiated with a certain vineyard in California–which must remain nameless for propriety, you understand–that has reinvigorated the somewhat stale version of Communion Wine that was previously served here, and in our GFC Atlanta affiliate.”
“Wine?” I was somewhat taken aback, but cautious. “You believe an upgrade of Communion Wine to be your greatest acheivement?”
“Oh, most certainly!” He pinged the chalice with a flick of a finger. “It is California’s finest, after all!’
I collected MYSELF, flipped through a few pages of MY notebook as if searching for something, then found some reserve and moved on. “It’s a turbulent time, economically. Unemployment is skyrocketing, the markets are soft, and families are struggling to keep their homes, their cars, and their children’s future from being absorbed by a lack of, or decrease in, income. What would you say to them, given the reported jump in revenue, stocks, and overall financial security of The Christ Corporation?”
Billy Christ heaved a little sigh, then His smile returned. “I would tell them that it validates the need for Christ. For Me. For the Offering. If times are tough, where else should you turn? Government? The lottery? Ha! This is what the Offering is for. If you wish to put money on the hopes of a wish and a dream, why not invest it in your soul? Sure, these are difficult times, but now is the time to turn to Christ, to Me, for help. Now is the time to invest in real hope, the promise of a better tomorrow, in the hands of a loving God.”
For a moment, I pondered that, but my need for a follow up was enveloped in His smile. It was quite remarkable. Really. I moved on. “You have a Twitter account, and a blog. Do you find using these modern tools of social networking has brought you closer to the people?”
“Oh, yes, well, I find them useful, yes. To be quite honest, I’m still a bit leery of them. Don’t get me wrong, I find them to be a wonderful outlet to keep My followers in touch with my activities, but My time is so limited that blogging is very difficult. Twittering is–”
“Tweeting,” I said politely. One does not recklessly attempt to correct Christ.
“Yes, yes, that too. They are both very easy and brief, therefore more accessible to My schedule. I like the Twitter, very much in fact, but I tend to forget it somewhere through the day. And, I’m quite disappointed that I have so few followers there. I cannot hope to compete with that Shaq individual, and he doesn’t respond to My Tweeterings, which I admit, is somewhat frustrating. I like to do it, but I believe I look forward to my retirement, when I need not bother with such things, a great deal more.”
“I know your time is short today, so I’ll just ask one more.” He nodded, and eyed the Communion Wine with a very satisfied grin. “You mentioned your retirement. What will you do, and will you miss being Christ?”
He thought about this for a long while, and for a few seconds, I was beginning to feel like He was not willing to answer. Then He locked on ME, and His broad smile returned. “Forty-two,” he said.
“What?” I asked before I could stop myself.
“Forty-two,” he repeated. “It’s a reference to–”
“The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, yes I know. The Ultimate question to Life, the Universe, and Everything.”
He furrowed His brow. “Oh, very well then. I had often wondered what it meant.”
“You didn’t know?” Christ shook His head. “Well, then…”
Christ stared at ME, encourged ME with a simple nod. “Yes?”
“Yes, I will be. Very soon, in fact. Too soon.”
“Uh,” I waited, hoping the conversation would get back on track of its own accord, but it did not. Christ smiled, and drew the chalice closer. He seemed rather anxious to partake of the wine, and it almost seemed to ME that it was far too sanctimonious an act for an average ME-kind-of-person to witness. Therefore, I called the conversation to a close. “Yes, so I’ve heard.”
We said our farewells, and Armind returned to escort me back to the lobby. I left somewhat bewilidered, but gratified all the same, to have had an opportunity that no other person in MY place had ever had before. Hopefully, as a new Christ is Anointed, and the transition is underway, I can parlay this opportunity into another. If not, well, I’m itching to talk to the Disciples. I hear they’re always willing to talk. Here’s hoping.
For more information, and further details of the tenure of Billy Christ, visit this site.
And so it begins…
It’s been some time since I remember stating that I should start a blog. They’re useful things, after all. Especially when one feels they have something of relevance to say, or promote. In my case, I have ME. And, as such, I will promote ME (Caps are necessary in order to inflate my ego) as necessary, and hope that you (sorry, no caps for you…this is show is about ME) get some facet of enjoyment out of it. So, let’s just start with an introduction of sorts. Things you must know about ME in order to fully appreciate anything that I may decide is worth writing about:
Not that face in particular, but one that is not too unsimilar. In fairness though, this is what she sees when she wakes up:
In order to avoid making this entire post a list-oriented detailing of ME, I’ll bypass further numbering and save that instead for a Facebook meme that more accurately described ME in an entertaining, yet less than literary, way. Oh, a further note of use. I am no friend of Grammar. I will slam the door in its face if it attempts to visit. I have a restraining order against grammar and insist that it speak only to those who edit my words. Grammar can go to Hell. Elipses…are…my…friend, and, I, don’t, use, commas, correctly, if I use them at all. Do not attempt to point out flaws in my grammar, or lack thereof. I will get a restraining order against you as well (“And if you don’t believe me, I’ll put a jihad on you, too.”).
What I hope to utilize this blog for, aside from having an outlet that is purely ME-centric, and without the weight of Christ guiding my words, is to promote and encourage discussion of whatever inane subjects I wish to talk about. I’ll drop some bits from Anointed, write unpublished additions from time to time, bore/entertain you with the Fantasy League Baseball (forever to be FLB henceforth) exploits of the Chrysler Salvation, tap into the myriad selection of religious news of the day (looking for conversation here folks, otherwise I’ll just look at myself in a mirror and watch MYSELF talk), and lastly (or perhaps just thisly, as there is likely to be more) give a once in a while look at how not to run and operate a bookstore. Or perhaps any business at all. Learn from me here. I know I’m trying to. Regardless, there will be a very ME-present atmosphere to everything, as I wish to promote ME and only ME (and on occasion you, if it benefits ME). Though cheese is pretty important to0.
So as to keep this intro brief, I leave by way of offering you a glimpse of sheer stupidity. This, from another my favorite sites, Fail blog:
Be glad you aren’t that oblivious.