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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Print Interview Coming Out

I am honored to have been interviewed by Fiona Mcvie for authorsinterviews.wordpress.com. It was a lot of fun and I hope insightful and entertaining. More details to follow.

Happy New Year One And All.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

The Year That Was 2013

Each year around this time I sit down to assess where we have come and where we think we are going with this writing thing. Hell, we only revived this thing in the fall of 2011 after a long, long dormancy of doing nothing creative.

In general 2013 was a good year for our writing. It may have lacked in virtually every other area; we did make strides this past year.

We expanded doing podcasts with readings; have stories featured; doing interviews and writing scripts. We became a poster ---- yeah, me and Farrah Fawcett are posters. One of our 13 word stories is hanging on someone's wall right this minute.

I believe the quality was better; the concepts stranger and the reach deeper.

We doubled our output of paper anthologies and our Amazon author page tripled.

Our writing class expanded and reaches into two states.

But that is not enough. I have two incomplete novels that need to be finished. I have more stories to peddle and I think its time to fight against the slow responders and be more aggressive with placement and timing. We have a bibliography ---  a real bibliography better than most self-promoters and pretenders.

I am not happy with 2013.

It is time to kick down some doors down in 2014. It is time to up my game and leave the rest behind.



Classic Book Review: HITMAN by Howie Carr, Forge, 2012.

The saga of Whitey Bulger continues through John Martorano, a hitman and partner to Bulger. Fascinating insight from Martorano himself and a must read.

Classic Book Review: PHILADELPHIA GHOST STORIES by Charles J. Adams III, Exeter House Books, 2006

Nice history of 'true' and historical hauntings. The text at times is difficult to read and this is stylistically, but a good and interesting read.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas

That is all. I wish everybody a Merry Christmas. And for those offended or those who tend to be mired in political correctness my intent is to wish everyone health and prosperity; fellowship and peace; the same way the man whose birth I honor as a Roman Catholic wished and promoted throughout his short life. If that is an issue then I feel sad for you and this message and hope I have for you is needed evermore.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Saturday, December 21, 2013

THE THING IN THE FLOOR is in the Christmas Issue of Schlock! Webzine Now

We are back in Britain gracing the pages of Schlock! and Christmas with THE THING IN THE FLOOR. Watch where you step when you read this one.

http://www.schlock.co.uk/index.html

Friday, December 20, 2013

What REALITY Really Means

I don't watch DUCK DYNASTY. I don't watch television anymore. We shut it down. It's all crap including DUCK DYNASTY. Virtually all cable television outside of 'Breaking Bad', 'Mad Men' and 'That Metal Show' are insipid and wastes of time and money.

And hey, sports are no longer sports, but that is a discussion for another time.

So frankly I have no allegiance to the show, the family on it or A&E.

I am also related to and have friends who are gay. I support them in their lifestyles and am pro-gay marriage.

But I am not in favor of free speech being censored because someone in the ether, who doesn't watch the show is offended. A&E is out of line here and if 'reality television' means people can't be 'real' then my decision to cancel my subscription was the smartest thing I did in 2013.

The reality of our reality is getting scary. The reality of our reality is we are no longer being allowed to think or speak for ourselves. If this doesn't chill you now, your mind is more of a vast wasteland than television presents.

The Saga Continues

So my story sidelined by the closing of a publisher who declared all contracts null and void continues.

Scarlett River Press has assigned the contracts to another publisher. While thankful this project may finally see the light of day, I don't understand the logic in someone being able to assign something that no longer exists.

But then look at how the Federal Government does its business and logic is deader than 'Duck Dynasty'.

The big here is that RIGOROUS MORTIS will be republished in 2014 under the new publishers banner. I don't believe our contracts allow that either. Details to follow on that.

God my head hurts.

This is the GENIUS of the U S POSTAL SERVICE

And why it is true to say that idiots are running the system.

Just look at this example: I ordered more books from Howie Carr in Wellesley, Massachusetts. In order for the books to reach me, and by the way they are behind delivery schedule, the books traveled to a sorting facility in Jersey City, New Jersey.

Which means they drove down I 95 and passed my home right off I 95 in Connecticut.

But this gets better. The United States Postal Service then trucked the books back up I 95 to SPRINGFIELD, MASSACHUSETTS to a another sorting facility there.

So we go from Massachusetts to New Jersey and back to Massachusetts cutting through Connecticut twice in order to deliver to Connecticut.

The Postal Inspector of the United States and the Union of Postal Workers are clearly smarter than I. They can take a simple job and milk it for more money than it is worth.

If I did this in my business I would be facing ethics charges and even fired.

Genius. 

Monday, December 16, 2013

Here is where Facebook doesn't work

When Scarlett River ceased to be the notification was placed on Facebook in August. In August where it never made my news feed and where I never received an email.

I have been writing the publisher since October to no avail and now, dear readers, as you can see the post I was only recently notified.

On August 12th we were relieved of our contracts. However today I am told those contracts were assigned to another publishing house. I wasn't given a name and I was told this morning someone would be getting back to me.

This is going to be interesting and worthy perhaps of a better tale for writers than the one I penned.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Are You Going To Kick My Dog Next?

As someone who edits and writes, as well as critiques the works of others I try to be constructive and courteous because the writer you pan today may pass you by in the blink of an eye with a superior effort next time.

As someone in this community of artists --- that's it --- 'this community of artists' I try not to offend anyone because like any community, the world is small.

That is, unless they ask for it first and directly. Many of you recall the flap I had with a big time publisher two years ago. He was condescending and a creep --- I questioned it and all Hell broke loose. Lord knows that flap may have lost me a chance to publish with him, but as a new writer with little on my plate the buffet opened wide. When he started to have some troubles and I was doing well; I didn't gloat. I just remembered.

So here we go again. Today I queried a piece that has gone unanswered for four months and today you would have thought I kicked this other guy's cat with the curt and snarky rejection I received.

Am I hurt? No, the story is a good solid one and like every rejection I have ever received will find itself in a better place. Will I then retaliate? Why bother when I can send this insensitive a copy of where the story ends up along with a book from Miss Manners.

Always be courteous because you never know whose fate you find yourself with in the future no matter how delicious you think your morsel is.

Quick To The Lab!

We are still waiting on the fate of PIDDLES a humorous werewolf treatment I have written involving a man, the pound and the rather large funny looking pooch he rescued.

Details on the writing lab experiment will hopefully follow soon.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

More Writing Classes

Besides the class to be advertised in the Spring, I am happy and honored to announce that Adult Ed has tabbed me to teach children's writing classes starting in February. The sessions are split between high school and younger children all with their parents in attendance and with their parents helping.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Scarlett River Press is Dead. BAD LUCK needs a new home.

I am sorry to see this publisher go. I appeared in an anthology of theirs last year and have waited for BAD LUCK to appear in this years anthology titled 'Tortured Souls Vol. 2'.

Now the story that has sat idle for eight months needs a home.

God I hate the business end of this.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Shopping Through The Snow.......

Okay we don't have snow, but you get the idea.

Its been no secret that I have been feeling a little down lately. What with my inability to sign up for Obamacare; the hours and hours I have sat here at the computer while one error message comes up after another.

Couple that with the fact that I lost out on a job as a Obamacare navigator because I have no arrest record ----- arrrgh ---- I have just been at wits end.

But then an old friend wrote me. A friend I knew from school lo those many years ago. His tale is so heartwarming; so full of the Christmas spirit I just have to share the relevant to parts with you:

" ‘Black Friday’: the phrase conjures up piling dollar signs of savings, oodles of bauble laced bargains, as well as the bragging rights to being the first to grab that one ‘special’ item for that one special person.

‘Black Friday’: it’s the shot in the arm our lagging economy needs. Holiday shoppers in droves scurry about rescuing the very existence of our mortar and brick storefronts. It’s adventurous! It’s romantic! It’s patriotic! And I’ve always sat it out.

Mine has been a boring life, a lullaby existence of doing what is convenient and calculated, avoiding the stress and crowds because I choose my Christmas fare year round in gas stations and dollar stores.

Yeah, I’m cheap. But ever since my wife left me for the boiler man, I’ve had to re-assess myself. As I look back on my dullness I realize we never even had a boiler and that each Thanksgiving, while I would listen to my loved ones plan out their Black Friday itinerary, salivating at the thrill of the hunt, I would sit quietly, smiling and idly building a gravy pool in my mashed potatoes so I could sail boats of corn kernels. Meanwhile my wife would wander off to the basement.

So this year I decided to come out and show my ex the kind of man I really am: not a milk-toast, but a man of action, a man of danger and excitement who will willingly take a chance not to see tomorrow. Sorry Johnny Rivers.

So I prepared. I wore a cup, goggles, elbow pads and a bright yellow strap on plastic helmet. I studied hours of videotape of ex-Flyer Bobby Clark, in his prime, working the boards and behind the net. And I am happy to report that my Black Friday shopping was a complete and utter success.

Not only did I find such wonderful bargains as a solar cumquat squeezer and a multi-faceted Austrian nose hair braider, but I met a wonderful girl. Okay, so we have to use separate cars when we go out because of all the wonderful bargains we’ve found. But at least this year, thanks to Black Friday, I will have someone to kiss under the mistletoe. That is, if I can squeeze into her apartment because of all the boxes and old newspapers.

So take my advice my old friend – shop early and shop often."
 
Such sage advice.

Winter Cleaning

As I get back to the novel, I have begun the job of tightening up some leftover short stories and short story fragments. Today ACCORD had the work done under the hood. Now to look for a publisher during the holidays for a story that is darker than originally conceived.

Oh well.....

Friday, December 6, 2013

500th Post

First, I want thank you my followers. I appreciate your subscription and your support. To the others who stop and read --- I thank you too. The traffic here has gone from zero to many. Without you guys I would simply be an old man sitting in a shack writing rambling tomes.

I am not mechanical so have no fear I can't do the bombs.

Second, the clean up on the website is almost complete. Thank you my lovely bride. She has been working and working for hours to make it look better and read easier.

Check it out. josephjpatchen.weebly.com

Thanks.

p.s.

My lovely bride has finished, fixed, revised and updated my writing website. It actually looks professional.

http://josephjpatchen.weebly.com/

Thursday, December 5, 2013

The Brakeman has been edited

I am happy to say. I like this ghost story much more than others. Now to find a home for him.

I Am Now A Political Prisoner

Milford Connecticut Police have been blocking my driveway for the past 30 minutes because of Halloween decorations that were not taken down. These decorations tie into a story coming out. When I asked if I had broken any laws I was told no; but they continue to sit here blocking my access out of the driveway.

Welcome to the People's Republic.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Classic Book Review: 'The Maker of Moons' by Robert W. Chambers

While this collection doesn't hit the bar as high as 'The King In Yellow', these horror and weird tales are classic blueprints every horror writer should study. Also, these are much more impactful and better written than ninety five per cent of the adolescent swearing fest crap out today.

Classic Book Review: HELL HOUSE by Richard Matheson

The psycho-sexual, and emphasis on sexual, haunted house horror tale. A classic that follows the movie, 'The Legend of Hell House', very closely except 'the naughty bits' are cut out. Of course, Matheson also wrote the screenplay. Check out both.

Monday, December 2, 2013

The Walking Dud

It is apt this schlock titled its last episode TOO FAR GONE. It has been for some time. Dear AMC, Can this waste of airspace just please go?

Sunday, December 1, 2013

PLACID has been published on Hellnotes.com

I am happy to announce that my micro flash fiction tale PLACID is now up on Hellnotes.com:

http://hellnotes.com/horror-in-a-hundred-placid-by-joseph-j-patchen

Under their HORROR IN A HUNDRED category of stories. We are honored.