Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Meanwhile...back to poetry, I'm grateful that Cape Cod Poetry Review published three BONUS: Read Teisha Twomey's essay in The Fix





In June of 2013, I featured at Poet's Corner in South Yarmouth, hosted by Barry Hellman and the late Joe Gouveia. Joe was a stand-up poet and wonderful guy. I hardly knew him, but he met me for dinner, for lobster and fine conversation about poetry, life, recovery and the love of his life, his wife. Sadly, Joe lost is battle with cancer a year later.

At that gig, I met John Bonnani, the editor of The Cape Cod Poetry Review. I asked him about his journal and submitted.

A year and a half later, my poems,

"Decomposition" 
"No Home Like Place" 

"There's Sunshine When You Need It"  showed up in my mailbox, along with some other fine poets.






Here's what they say about this issue on their webpage:

Cape Cod Poetry Review Volume II features cover art from Suzanne M. Packer 
and new work from Marge Piercy, 
Kathleen Spivack, 
Jane Wong, 
Hannah Oberman-Breindel, 
Maria Nazos, 
Alice Kociemba, 
Kathryn Kulpa, 
Ryan Butler, 
Chuck Madansky, 
Barry and Joe
Alana Folsom, 
Barry Hellman, 
Maggie Cleveland, 
Katy Sternberger,
 Lorna Knowles Blake, 
Deirdre Callanan, 
Rosanne Shapiro, 
Elaine Cohen, 
B.T. Lamm, 
Janet Gardner, 
Rachel Baird, 
Robin Chapman, 
Timothy Gager, 
Brian Folan, 
and Jason Curzake.


Copies are available for $12.00 via postal mail (email us at capecodpoetryreview@gmail.com) and through the following local bookstores:
Market Street Books in Mashpee, MA
Brewster Bookstore in Brewster, MA
Yellow Umbrella Books in Chatham, MA
Titcombs Bookshop in Sandwich, MA
Symposium Books in Providence, RI

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Speaking of recovery, here's something by Teisha Dawn Twomey about surrendering, from The Fix!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

On Chris Jane's author page, I answer FIVE QUESTIONS ON WRITING, FIVE ON PUBLISHING

Today I was interviewed by Chris Jane. at Starbucks, in Canton, Massachusetts  The interview was, "Ten things learned" or "things they don't tell you about writing/publishing" thing. 
Upon review,  I did my best to not be totally outspoken, but it's because it was nighttime and maybe I needed more coffee. The questions were interesting but it's up to you all to state how interesting the answers were. HERE'S THE LINK TO THE INTERVIEW




.
.Chris Jane, author of The Year of Dan Palace (November 2014), is a fiction and freelance writer living in New England. Early work involved going door to door and offering to take out the neighbors’ trash for a nickel a bag. A great gig for a 6-year-old entrepreneur at a time when most opportunities for child workers had been criminalized by busybody grown-ups.

There are limericks on his site are but they are for creative gratification only and are not intended to be received as works of limericky genius.








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Side Note: 
I have a thing about this video clip too. "Don't call me Chris, ok!"

Monday, November 17, 2014

My analysis of television and how television affected "The Thursday Appointments of Bill Sloan"





 Publisher Robin Stratton asked me on their webpage:

You've said in interviews that television was one of your babysitters, growing up. Can you talk a little bit about what shows influenced your novel in particular, and how?


click HERE to find out or read down below:



Exerted from The Thursday Appointments of Bill Sloan

Thomas learned role play and routine from The Match Game. A
lesser-known character occupied the spot in the top left, Brett
Sommers was top middle, Charles Nelson Reilly was top right, the
hot chick was bottom left, Richard Dawson was bottom middle,
and the awkward female comedian was bottom right. He also
learned the show’s contestants always picked Richard in the Super
Match, so Match Game had to rig it with a wheel of chance, so that
every celebrity had even odds to play. 


Thomas thought Burt Convy was a goofy pot head, and
everyone on the Gong Show did cocaine. Thomas learned to clap his
hands like Chuck Barris when he spoke. He wanted more wishes
from Jeannie (Barbara Eden, bottom left on the Match Game).
Thomas wanted to go crazy. 
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

You've said in interviews that television was one of your babysitters, growing up. Can you talk a little bit about what shows influenced your novel in particular, and how?

Television, back when it was the only game in town (pre- internet, pre-cell phone) , had your basic four types of shows: dramas, situation comedies, game shows and made for TV movies. Most of these would wrap up neatly, without loose ends, unless there was a scripted cliff hanger. Oddly, the game show had the biggest hooks because in order to know how the contestants would do, you usually had to tune into the next show—unless it was Hollywood Squares or a nighttime show which had a time limit.

Dramas, even the most violent—The Rookies, SWAT, Mod Squad—would usually end up with a happy little moment at the conclusion of each episode, often with freeze framed laughter. It kept things “human” after all the fighting and shooting. Ironically, sit-coms had their run of “very special programs” where serious subject matter infiltrated the comedic situation. “Hilarity” ensued during character’s drug use, gambling, alcoholism and even menses. Thankfully all of these issues were cleared up and forgotten by the time next week’s show rolled around. The same was true regarding relationships. Basically they didn’t exist, because, in reality, it meant adding new cast members, which was too expensive.

Although the main themes within The Thursday Appointments of Bill Sloan are accentuated and brought home with dark comedy and literary techniques, it was the formatting and these other techniques used in 70’s television shows, which I used in a very subtle manner. These had to be understated, because if the novel heavily relied on those techniques, I would definitely lose some of the readers who were born after 1990. If the reader is able to understand what I’m doing, as I often play with the story in other ways (Jay Z lyrics, dog mentions etc.), they should be able to pick up of the story within the story or the technique within the technique, in order to have a truly intimate experience in the book.

It’s hard to say how I’ve been actually influenced by any particular show or shows. Perhaps the realization that the same shows came on at the same times each day helped me come up with my own personal routines, as I (like Bill Sloan) am a full believer in routines. Note that Bill wakes every morning at 7:22 AM and he eats the same lunch every day. Routines help us to live in the moment, as well as get us through the general day-to-day monotony. I know I certainly had my routines and my monotony growing up, and television was often a way to get through it.

There’s a gentleman in my office, and he and I can recite television schedules from every night on the three networks. We can even sing the thirty-year old television jingles. There was a real odd importance to all of this. I think this is why television is featured so liberally in The Thursday Appointments of Bill Sloan. Was it my babysitter? Did I watch it or did it watch me? That is a question I can only figure out in therapy; but not with Bill Sloan, please, anyone but him.



Purchase The Thursday Appointments of Bill Sloan Here 

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Video from, The Interrobang Appointment of Timothy Gager-Seattle, up on Interrobang Site

When I was in Seattle, I wrote about it HERE.

Interrobang, Seattle, Washington

Here's the video--not the evening in it's entirety (the middle is cut out-which has much of the Improvisation Group's story line) , of when I read "The Thursday Appointments of Bill Sloan" with Interrobang Improv--my novel over their Sci-Fi story.

 Improv-reading-Improv-reading....there's a good chunk of both in this video

Check out the fun.


The Interrobang Appointment of Timothy Gager from Interrobang Improv on Vimeo.