I Need A Better Publicist: Free Flash Fiction For Fans

I can’t help myself. when the alliteration starts.. it’s Christmas fiction. Free. Today’s gem comes from Derek Alan Elkins at his blog, click the link to go give it a read. He’s clearly rooting for the other guy in this very good story. I will not, however, put him on the naught list for this one. On the other hand, you risk being put there unless you go down to the next paragraph and buy our book. Yes, the audio book is finally released (Amazon dragged their feet for months…) an we’d like to line our pockets with some Christmas Gelt. 

Come back tomorrow for another story! Now, here’s the link.

We hope you’ll visit the other authors who comprise this collection: Paul Bennett, Robert CelyDerek Elkins, Jamie D. Greening, Kathy Kexel, and Joe Shaw. As always, there’s no fee, we’re doing this to help you pass the time. We do ask that you buy our books/audio books to help pay the freight here. But that’s up to you! Mine are all on the right margin of the blog.

 

The COVID Quarantine Cantina Is Now Available In All Formats. (Except Microfiche)

After a lot of hours of editing, more hours of writing, and about 50 days in the Amazon dungeon awaiting sale, all three versions of The COVID Quarantine Cantina are for sale. 

I am not humble about the following brags:

It makes a great Christmas present. 

It is the best audio work I have done to date.

The authors have produced a lot of great stories.

We are proud of our work, and have great hopes you will buy it. It’s novel length, and about 13 hours of listening enjoyment. The print book is a keeper to explain this insanity to the next generation. The Kindle version is dirt cheap. (Wait, that didn’t come out right… It’s a great value?)

We hope you will buy one: that’s how we all pay the bills around here. Your purchase allows us to keep writing flash fiction. We have another round coming up this coming week for Christmas. 

Seriously, you’ll love the audio book. I mean, if you have insomnia this is the ticket. Put away the Ambien and get a copy of the book. 

Where Did He Go?

That’s always a good question when you’re reading this blog. A few times over the years I’ve just dropped off the scope and left you wondering. Usually not intentionally, things just got away from me. But this time it was intentional.

First, I needed a little breather after Thanksgiving. It was a long haul getting there, and I’d just undertaken a new audio book – and have been waiting for over 40 days for Audible to put The COVID Quarantine Cantina on sale. We passed all the quality checks within ten minutes of upload, but they have been (and here I will interpret the long string of emails I have exchanged with them) overwhelmed with really crummy audio books recorded by authors of their own work. To protect their brand they are reviewing each book with human intervention.

Normally that isn’t a big deal: that’s how they did it for years. But they had developed an Artificial Intelligence bot that did that work for them. However, it only worked when proven artists did the recording. What the bot looked for was certain technical specifications. It could not possibly deal with mumblers and morons. Sadly, many self-published authors should not be allowed to read out loud. But they mastered the sound level issues by following directions. The books, however, were of poor quality and read badly. This hurts Audible’s brand. Thus, after years of working toward automating the process, they now needed to filter out books recorded during the quarantine because people had time to try and do their own books. Thus, I wait. My last book (submitted before the lockdown was a month old) passed quality review in 10 minutes and was for sale 3 days later. 

Thus, waiting every day for a new book to drop was a drag. Seven authors were counting on me to pull it off – and the system defeated me – that we’d be for sale before Thanksgiving. And other things just got loaded on the plate. 

There was, however, another good reason to miss publishing a blog last week. I was out of state getting certified to teach a course to First Responders. As many of you know, my passion for helping First Responders deal with stress has been a big part of my life for a long time. I was offered a chance to help mentor this course. It will be my third actual career after I retire from my present employer. 

Details? Well, soon. I have to resolve a few things before I go into depth. But I can tell you that it is an incredibly effective course. It will help people in the field deal with the day-to-day hell that they are exposed to by their jobs. I can honestly say that the average citizen, even if they are “pro-cop” doesn’t get the damage we do to our First Responders by the very nature of their jobs. This training system gives them a complete tool kit to deal with what they experience, it opens new approaches, and it can all be done over the internet. 

I am proud to be a part of it. It was not just a great road-trip, but I worked with the cream of the crop and was so honored to be there. The instructors were world-class, and my fellow students were Law Enforcement leaders that you’d follow through the gates of Hell. But our goal is to avoid the Hell that many face. And that made it even better. 

More will be said about the training very shortly. It is safe to say that this should be available to every cop, firefighter, EMT/Paramedic, communications/dispatch person in the nation as soon as possible. We’re working to get more instructors certified so we can do just that. 

But that’s where I was last week. And I thank you for your indulgence.

The Best For Last: Paul Bennett

Over the last week we’ve had science fiction, blood-thirsty pilgrims, kidnappers, family scenes, murderous fowl – the traditional stuff you associate with Thanksgiving. Today, Paul Bennett comes through with a story that should make you think. Paul always does that. Paul is a solid gold blessing in this group – he’s not weird. 

So, grab the whipped topping, pull up a chair and read the story. Thanks, Paul, for ending the string on a great note. 

We hope you’ll visit the other authors who comprise this collection: Paul Bennett, Robert CelyDerek Elkins, Jamie D. Greening, Kathy Kexel, and Joe Shaw. As always, there’s no fee, we’re doing this to help you pass the time. We do ask that you buy our books/audio books to help pay the freight here. But that’s up to you! Mine are all on the right margin of the blog.