Thursday, August 17, 2017

The World Situation

In high school, one of my favorite singing groups was the Kingston Trio. Here's an updated version of words for their song, The Merry Minuet:

They're rioting in Charlottesville
There’s strife in Iraq
There's fake news in Washington
And immigrants are sent back
The whole world is festering with unbridled hate
Republicans hate Democrats, Liberals hate the Right
Arabs hate Israelis, Shiites hate Sunnis
And the President Tweets all night

But we can be tranquil and thankful and proud
For man's been endowed with a mushroom-shaped cloud
And we know for certain that some lovely day
Some lunatic will set the spark off
And we will all be blown away

They're missiles in North Korea
There's a nuclear threat in Iran
What global warming doesn't do to us
Will be done by our fellow man

Thursday, August 10, 2017

I've Got the DTs

My hands are a shakin’

My head is a bakin’

I’ve got the DTs


News is a fakin’

Lies are escalatin’

I’ve got the DTs


Russia is a chucklin’

Confidence is a bucklin’

I’ve got the DTs


Climate is a heatin’

Civility is retreatin’

I’ve got the DTs


Politicians are a bickerin’

Other nations are a snickerin’

I’ve got the DTs


North Korea is bombastin’

Peace may not be lastin’

I’ve got the DTs


Medical insurance is implodin’

Blame is explodin’

I’ve got the DTs


Walls are fabricatin’

Foreigners are extricatin’

I’ve got the DTs


Hate is aboundin’

Statements are astoundin’

I’ve got the DTs

Author Transition Week

This is a transition week for me. My current novel, The Tesla Legacy, has been out since February. I gave a library talk about it yesterday and have another one on Saturday.

The transition. Next week my mystery novel, Death of a Scam Artist, is being released by my publisher. Whenever a new book comes out, I develop a new presentation to give. So rather than practicing my speech for The Tesla Legacy, next week I’ll start rehearsing for my presentation on Death of a Scam Artist.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Writing and Editing

As a writer, I invest time and energy in both writing and editing. By editing, I mean my self-editing before it gets in the hands of the external editors at the publisher. Some writers edit as they go. Others edit after a rough draft is completed.

My own process is to write a fast first draft. I want to get the plot, characters and setting down in words. Then I go through many editing passes to clean up inconsistencies, improve the flow of the manuscript, fix errors and correct grammar.

The fascinating aspect of the writing process is that there is no one or correct way of doing it. We each find what works for us.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Adventures with Appliance Service

When you have a problem with an appliance such as an air conditioning unit, do you ever groan at what you’re about to go through? For me, I’ve learned to accept that it will take a good portion of my time, numerous phone calls and the hope that things will end up better.

One example. Our A/C  has gone out twice in the last two weeks. Of course both times it was on a Sunday afternoon when the answering service took the call. Come Monday morning I had to call again and get in the queue for service. The first time parts had to be ordered (3 to 5 day delivery time). Fortunately, the company loaned us a portable unit for our bedroom so we had some relief. After the same symptoms appeared, a crew showed up and hopefully the problem has been solved.

Second example. We have an internet, phone and TV bundle. When our two year contract ran out, I called to make changes. I asked the person to email me a confirmation. Never received. A month later I called again and left a message. No response. When the contract period ended with no change other than our rate going up, I called again. No record of the changes agreed to. This service person put the changes in place and gave me a confirmation number. One thing never mentioned by the person I talked to earlier: a service person needed to make changes in our house. Now we get to wait two weeks for that. Oh well. Maybe it will actually get changed.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

The Anticipation of a New Novel Being Published

Each time one of my new books comes out, I eagerly await the release date. This is equally true for Death of a Scam Artist, which will be published August 15, as with my previous thirteen books.

In Death of a Scam Artist, a financial hatchet man who dislikes old people, accepts the job of turning around a failing retirement home and undergoes a life-transforming experience in the world of geezers and geezerettes. He must deal with a suspicious death, a scam, a hit man, an unexpected romance and retired magician Jerry Rhine and his five whacky sidekicks known as the Jerry-atrics. He faces the most important decision of his life when he uncovers the secret behind an unusual murder.

Death of a Scam Artist (ISBN 978-1-893035-38-7), is available for pre-order from Amazon  Kindle  and Nook   

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Older Characters in Mystery Novels

As a mystery writer, I enjoy writing about older characters. They can appear innocuous, but by being observant. they can solve a mystery and surprise the bad guys. In my six book Paul Jacobson Geezaer-lit Mystery Series the protagonist is in his mid-eighties and suffers from short-term memory loss, yet he becomes an amateur sleuth.

My next mystery novel, which will be published in August, features a whole new cast of characters. The protagonist is in his early forties, but he has a life-transforming experience with a group of older characters who live in a retirement home. For more information about this book, Death of a Scam Artist, check my website The e-book edition is available for preorder at