I've been reluctant to talk about my writing lately. Given the state of the world these days, self promotion feels like selling peanuts in Pompeii.
"Peanuts! Peanuts here! Get the taste of ash out of your mouth with hot, tasty peanuts! Just four denarii for a heaping handful! Not hungry? Appease the gods with an offering of delicious peanuts! You, with the screaming children! Why not slow down and...cough cough...treat 'em to the...cough hack...crunchy, salty goodness of peanuts? Just two denarii for...hack gasp...all you can...eat...swoon...."
And then there you are 2,000 years later -- a lumpy gray statue with a satchel full of petrified nuts. The placard in the museum calls you "Old Man with Bag of Grapes," and every couple weeks you show up in a Facebook feed because another tourist hopped over the velvet ropes and posed for a picture sitting on your butt.
- I have a new short story in the September/October issue of Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine. It's called "i," and it's about a copy editor going rogue with her powerful proofreading skills. Really. If that doesn't excite you, you could always buy the issue anyway and appease the gods with an offering of delicious short fiction.
- You'll find a lengthy interview with me over at thejoysofbingereading.com. It's available as both a podcast and (if you hate the sound of my voice as much as I do) a Q&A-style transcript. My interrogator, the charming Kiwi writer Jenny Wheeler, asked a lot of great questions about my mysteries. You can decide for yourself how good my answers are. I give myself an A for honesty and a C- for brevity (or lack of same).
- Three of my e-books just went on sale for 99 cents on Amazon. If you've never read Cadaver in Chief, Naughty: Nine Tales of Christmas Crime or Blarney: 12 Tales of Lies, Crime & Mystery...well, I assume you're an extremely busy person with important things to do. If none of them look like your cup of tea, you could always buy them anyway and appease the gods by deleting them unread. I hear Zeus in particular appreciates that kind of thing, and he's someone you want on your side.
- Subscribers to my newsletter will soon be receiving some big news about the status of the "Holmes on the Range" series. (Cryptic sneak preview: The subject heading of my next message to them will be "Good News/Bad News for Big Red/Old Red.") They'll get a chance to win some free books, too. So if you haven't signed up yet, why not go for it today? If you don't want to actually read the newsletter, you could always mark it as spam as an offering to the gods.
I know I hit that "appease the gods" angle pretty hard, but the ol' "Buy my books -- they're good!" approach doesn't get you too far when half your customers are running away from hot ash and lava.
May none of us end up with tourists on our butts....