Asking for Exposure

Hey Friends,

So as I’m sitting here at my desk (read: on my bed) this morning I’m thinking about the concept of marketing.  Direct marketing, grassroots, bad videos that go viral,  things like that.  The purpose of my search was to find out how I could best reach a wider audience with my book and podcast.  The answer, so far, is I don’t know.

I have an online profile coming out next week, and a blurb in a local magazine.  I asked for both of those.  Up to now, that’s been my strategy: If you don’t ask, you don’t get.  A part of me believes, though, that if the work is good the people will like it.

If you build it, they will come. right?  I don’t make a habit of arguing with classic movie talking cornfield logic.  So if my work is good enough, it will attract followers.

dreams
Did you guys hear that?

Still, I can’t help but wonder what might happen if I had just one BIG name. One influencer.  One celeb who read the book and loved it and wanted to pass it on. The work IS good.  And because it’s good I want it to reach many people – and hug them and validate them and save them – and so I’m impatient for it to go global.

So, my friends, I’m asking you – will you be my influencers?  Will you support my small endeavor so that it becomes a large endeavor and eventually a movement? Will you help me build it, so they will come and read and listen and grow? Write a post! Interview me! Link to the book, buy the book, share it on kindle.  Listen to the podcast, share it, tell others if you find value in it!  I’d be so grateful.

The book is on Amazon here

The Fear Itself podcast is here, with options to support and subscribe.

Thirteen Reasons Why: My First Book Review

Disclaimer: I have not been compensated and was not retained by the author, publisher, or any other person or persons to review this book.  I just read a lot, liked it, and want to write about it.  The opinions expressed below are my own.

“Thirteen Reasons Why” is a best-selling Young Adult novel by Jay Asher.  It’s a haunting story told by high schooler Clay Jensen, an all-around nice guy and friend to troubled (and recently deceased) classmate, Hannah Baker.

Hannah’s death comes as a shock to many, but unbeknownst to them, she has set a plan in motion to explain it.  Not to everyone – just to the people who were, whether directly or indirectly, involved in her passing.

It’s an easy, exciting read and (hallelujah!) a new concept.  While aimed at a teenage demographic, the writer does not condescend or ‘dumb it down’, and still manages to capture accurately the sometimes horrific sub-culture that is High School, USA.  The dialogue is smart and relate-able, and most importantly, believable.

Asher has found a new way to discuss an old, much talked-about subject: Bullying.  It happened when I was in school, and it happens now.  We hear about it more now thanks to social media, and that also contributes to more drastic actions by teens and unfortunately, frequently dismal outcomes.  This is what we see (or hear) happening to Hannah Baker.  A new student at a new school whose world is slowly destroyed by others, some never realizing the damage they’ve done.  He also conquers a the difficult topic of suicide, and reminds the reader that oftentimes a person’s screams for help are just whispers.  But if you listen, you can hear them.  Unfortunately for Hannah, they didn’t listen.  Now she’ll make sure they do…

Anyone who is in high school, has a child or relative in high school, or who simply wants to be more aware, should read this book.   Not only does it shed light on the real struggles (and perceived “life altering” effect of those struggles) that teenagers face, it also reminds us that what we do and say to others has meaning.  Sometimes a flippant remark can remain lodged in someone’s psyche indefinitely.  We should all be more careful with how we treat each other.   The Bible says the power of life and death are in the tongue [Prov. 18:21] and sadly, sometimes it’s more true than we want to know.

To learn more or purchase this book: http://www.amazon.com/Thirteen-Reasons-Why-Jay-Asher/dp/159514188X/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&sr=&qid=

To find mental health counseling in your area: https://therapists.psychologytoday.com/rms/

And finally, if you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1 (800) 273-8255.IMG_3345

Featured for Spring/Summer 2015

Hey Guys and Dolls,

Just a short note to say “Look at me, look at me!”  I’m kidding.  It’s really a short note to say, “Look at Him! Look at Him!”  Please take a minute and go read, download, and support this amazing resource for teenagers and college-aged women.

DEVOTION Magazine Spring/Summer 2015 Issue:

http://devotionmagazine.com/the-mags/4584315832

[Featuring “Promiscuous Girl”, a snippet of my testimony.]

Running Away, Continued

I have contacted Runner’s World in the only way I know how.  That is, by using their online “contact us” form, and by directly tweeting the editor.  No one has responded, and while I refuse to let this ruin my day or crush my spirit, I do expect them to respond.

Right now I feel like they are the Marlowe to my Shakespeare.  Trying to take credit, but in truth the idea is mine and always was.  I don’t know why they felt the need to steal it.  I don’t know how they can sleep at night.  I am a writer AND a runner, and this was my passion project.  Sure, I didn’t have the funds, but then again, I am not a huge corporation.  I am the little guy.  It doesn’t mean I deserve to be swept aside like rubbish while someone else takes my dreams and profits from them.

Maybe they didn’t think I was a good writer.  (Isn’t that what editors are for?)  Maybe the person who stole it hadn’t had a good idea in months.  I don’t know.  I don’t care.  Nothing is a good enough excuse for what has happened.  To see my idea come alive by someone else’s (treacherous) hand is gut-wrenching.  It hurts to my core.  It is reprehensible.

What do I do now?  Well the short answer is, I don’t know.  It’s Easter weekend and I am going to try not to think about it for the next couple of days.  They have stolen everything else, I won’t let them take my joy.  I would really appreciate a response, though.  I want them to do what is right.  I want Runner’s World to admit what they did, admit it was wrong, and give me credit for the idea that I submitted to them.  That’s the right thing to do, the honorable thing.  I was naive, I guess, in telling them my idea in the first place.  Am I naive to think they will apologize?  Probably.

To Dave Willey and anyone else reading this – You hurt me.  I am only one person, sure, and a stranger to you, and I get that.  But I am a PERSON.  It was MY original idea you guys poached.  I feel like I have been stabbed.  The running (and writing) community is small, and has always felt like a good group of people.  Why did you do this?  Do you have any idea what kind of direct deposit you just made into your own karma bank?  Man.

Please contact me.  I would like to discuss what has been done and where to go from here.

Book Progress

1600 words typed.  Probably twice that scribbled in notebooks. 

How much should an author write each day?  I’ve read that Stephen King forces himself to get 2,000 words every day.

Me?  I don’t even write every day. I write when it feels right, not wanting to force creation. I don’t want to hate this thing by the time I’m done so it’s important that I treat it carefully.

 

So… there we are.  Keep sending me prayers and good vibes.  EEK I’m writing a book!