Book Endings and Old Orchards


Please accept my apologies for the sporadic blogging. I’ve already used the birth of two grandchildren and my son’s heart attack as excuses for not writing, although I did try from time to time. Everything I put to paper sounded too whiney and self-absorbed, so I used the time to write fiction instead, permitting murderers and adulterers and Pam Smith’s badly behaved children to take over my thoughts.

Getting down to business, I have problems ending a story. A novelist builds tension throughout the body of a piece, and should try to end it with some pizzazz. All too often though, it falls flat. I’ll use Someone Like You as an example. In this story, two sisters raised in an atmosphere of violence, long to lead normal lives but end up exposing their own children to very similar environments. I felt they had somewhat resolved their issues toward the end, but what then? They were going to live happily ever after, sort of. I wanted to expand the story and show them having a happy time with mom and dad, everything forgiven but it felt like a fairy tale; not usually the way life is. So I left the reader dangling a little. The sisters were going to have supportive men in their lives, but the issues they struggled with would still be there.

In The Savant of Chelsea, the ending came to me suddenly, like a gift. A reviewer who hated the book, said about me; “I could just sense how f*+king proud she was of herself.” Lol! I love that ending! And believe me, it came from some universal energy…I can’t take credit for it. Also, the end of Pam of Babylon; when she tells Andy Andretti, “Call me Pam,” I burst into tears. Family Dynamics and The Tao of Pam, those are powerful endings too, I think. But it’s not necessary to end every book with a bang. In The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt, I was left scratching my head at the ending. But it didn’t make any difference to the Pulitzer committee when they gave her the prize for literature! And Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. Huh? What kind of ending was that? Yet the book remains on the NYT Best Sellers list because it is a compelling story that was difficult to put down. It had to end the way it ended.
Sometimes I end the books the way I do because there is just nothing more to say about the story.

In Alice’s Summertime Adventure, my editor asked that I add at least another paragraph, but I just couldn’t. For me, the story was over when the action that happened… happened. (Don’t want to give away any spoilers.) Other times, I end the way I end because I’ll start the next chapter in a new book. I’m doing that with A Greektown Wedding; the action picks up where Christmas in Greektown ended, with Liz, John’s wife and Jim, Maria’s husband leaving the apartment above the grocery store together. In the next book, they stop at a hotel on the way home from Greektown after the holiday meal. Anyway, enough about that. I wanted to address it because it keeps coming up and I’m sure will continue to do so. Here’s a great article from Huffington Post about endings.

Last but not least….the grove. Jim and I bought a small piece of land in southern California and we didn’t realize it had a grove of dying fruit and nut trees; avocados, figs, citrus and macadamia. I think I must have an arborist gene; I know I’ve inherited a love of trees from my father. These trees are driving me crazy. I have spent part of every day for the past month pruning, watering, raking, and haven’t touched half the trees. Jim got into the act, bless him and he makes it much easier. A gift from him this week; another hundred feet of hose so I no longer have to carry five gallon buckets of water. We are in a water emergency here in the west, but I’m very careful about watering. My only fear is that I’ll kill something that is doing fine in dormancy, although my Aunt Lil just confirmed I should be watering. Here’s an Indian Prayer for trees.

Earth Prayer
Grandfather, Great Spirit, once more behold me on earth and lean to hear my feeble voice.
You lived first, and you are older than all need, older than all prayer.
All things belong to you — the two-legged, the four-legged, the wings of the air, and all green things that live.
You have set the powers of the four quarters of the earth to cross each other.
You have made me cross the good road and road of difficulties, and where they cross, the place is holy.
Day in, day out, forevermore, you are the life of things.
Hey! Lean to hear my feeble voice.
At the center of the sacred hoop
You have said that I should make the tree to bloom.
With tears running, O Great Spirit, my Grandfather,
With running eyes I must say
The tree has never bloomed
Here I stand, and the tree is withered.
Again, I recall the great vision you gave me.
It may be that some little root of the sacred tree still lives.
Nourish it then
That it may leaf
And bloom
And fill with singing birds!
Hear me, that the people may once again
Find the good road
And the shielding tree.
– Black Elk 3

Kiss the Grandmother

Most of my compassionate friends and now the world know that I have always struggled with weight issues. If you don’t see me for a few weeks, the possibility exists that I may have lost or gained, (more likely gained) a few pounds.  A few years ago, I went to a family reunion in California and when I got home, the pictures my cousins took began to show up on Facebook. That night I joined Weight Watchers.

It took me a year to lose seventeen pounds. Far from being nymph-like, I did feel better about myself and my size twelve jeans didn’t bind in the crotch.  When my mother died the next year, I lost another ten pounds.  By March, I was convinced I could maintain the weight loss on my own and quit Weight Watchers. By June, I’d gained every pound back. The true horror of this was made clear when my son Andy announced his engagement and I had to go Mother of the Groom shopping.  My daughter found a beautiful, silver silk Oleg Cassini suit for me. My reasoning for buying a size sixteen, even though I have never worn a sixteen, was that I could have my dress designer neighbor Kirk alter it for me so that it fit like a custom made suit.

I couldn’t wait for it to arrive. Two days later, the big cardboard box was delivered by FedEx.  I took it into the bedroom and started to strip.  The suit was packed in layers of tissue paper. I couldn’t believe how beautiful it was when I lifted the jacket out of the box, rhinestone diamond buttons set in fake silver marched up the front.  The wedding theme was metallic, so I would fit right in.

Then I tried to get the jacket on. When I say it was too small, I mean I couldn’t get my arms into the sleeves. Even my hands were too big. I was so upset I wanted to first tear it up into pieces and then kill myself. It was simply another reminder that I am fat. My husband can deny it, and my friends will tell me I look great, but now I have proof. I can’t even get a size sixteen on. What’s next? I am only 5’3″. Soon I will be as wide as I am high.

So I swallowed my pride and went to the doctor. I had to get on the scale, which was torture.  He put me on a low calorie diet that was graduated in calorie amounts so my metabolism wouldn’t go into starvation mode. I took a ton of supplements. Fortunately, I had the time to lose enough to get into the suit.

This would be a good place to mention that the Mother of the Bride is a model.

By the wedding day, I felt great, I’d lost twenty-two pounds, I was starving, but what’s a little food, right? I could wear the suit. As a matter of fact, the skirt was too big. With a Spanx the jacket fit snugly, but the bell shaped skirt was too big. You get the picture.

I’ve decided I have reverse body dysmorphic disorder.  When I look in the mirror, I see an average sized, slightly chubby middle-aged woman who without my glasses has smooth skin, albeit a wrinkly neck which is minimized by holding my chin up as high as my cervical spine will allow.  But when the team of photographers at the wedding started shooting their cameras and videos in my direction, I was terrified.  The first picture the photographer showed me made me sick to my stomach. Why couldn’t I look trim and nice like everyone else?

The next horror was realizing that while Andy and I jumped around like maniacs on the stage, having picked We Will Rock You by Queen for the mother-son song we would dance to, the video camera was about chin height and two feet from me. I can just imagine what it will look like.

It was while flying back to Michigan that the sudden epiphany struck me.  I am a sixty-two year old, Greek grandmother. What the hell am I supposed to look like?  This is me! Suzanne Jenkins, chubby, friendly, paranoid and in love with life. I proved that I am willing to put it all out there when I started publishing my own books. I was narcissistic enough to think readers would want to read what I conjured up, and I was right. If I can be that self assured, surely a few horrible photos of me in my son’s wedding album won’t hurt me.

So needless to say, if anyone on Facebook tags photos of me at the wedding, I’ll be removing the tag asap.

Kiss the Grandmother

Kiss the Grandmother

Barometric Pressure

I have a new publisher, a new website and lots of new advertising opportunities, including a full page color ad insert in Kirkus Review’s newsletter which will be distributed at Book Expo, and a ‘book tour’ with Pump Up Your Book this summer.  I’m also a sixty-one year old woman who doesn’t want to learn HTML, Photo Shop, or any other technical genius that will make me a better ‘marketer’ for my book.  I was an OR nurse for thirty years; isn’t that enough technology?

However, what I am learning is it doesn’t make any difference how much you ‘hire out’ the work. If you want to be a successful self-published author, you had better learn how to update your own website, photo shop a cover mock up for your book, and more. You better reread your final interior proof one hundred times, because no matter how much you pay for copy editing, you will get your hardcopy proof in the mail and find out that you have used that hundreds of times too often, or put commas in too many places, or my worst mistake; use sole rather than soul.

The Greeks of Beaubien Street is in the hands of the new publisher and I am anxiety ridden. Getting used to a new routine and new people, is so difficult. In my former life, I discovered that I preferred to stick with the tried and true rather than venture out. I stayed at a job I didn’t like for years because the fright of starting fresh somewhere else was too difficult.

My little problems are nothing compared to what my friends are going through right now. Life threatening illness, the loss of a spouse, unemployment, legal issues, the list is endless.  What I have noticed is how one reacts to the trouble says a lot. I have a friend who is bald from chemotherapy for breast cancer, and everyday she crawls out of bed and drives an hour to her very physical kind of job. It’s not one at which she is able to sit at a desk. She alone supports her household, and the job provides her health insurance, so she doesn’t have the option to stay home when she feels bad.  In spite of her situation, my friend is the most upbeat woman I know. She hasn’t whined or complained once, and the only way I will know that she is feeling less than stellar is she won’t talk about herself.  I  imagine myself in her situation and the complaining I would do. We talked this week and she said that if she makes being upbeat and positive an act of her will, she is successful, and then she feels better. If she gives in to self-pity, the effect is immediate; she feels awful and makes everyone around her feel awful, too. She still has children at home and an aged mother who lives with her and its important to her that her family stays hopeful, as well.  Cancer is not her identity, nor are her other problems. We have to work at not allowing those things which will tear us down to become our identity. Because if we do, we succumb to feeling sorry for ourselves. Someone else is always worse off.

So the pressure is on. My husband told me yesterday when he was listening to me having a disagreement with the person who designed my website that I am turning into a real !@#$%^&* and he is glad we don’t work together.  That got me thinking about the fine line there is between standing up for yourself or being an aggressive shrew, being positive or feeling so sorry for yourself that it paralyzes you.  There is just so much a stake right now, and I’ve spent so much money and put so much work into everything that I want to get it right. I can’t afford to have any craziness around me, or any negativity. At different times in my life  my friends have been there for me when my glass was half empty, and now I need to knock it off, belly up to the bar, and get it right.

All Things Books

My favorite place in our house.

A very early memory takes me to a place that must have been near Detroit, since that’s where  I grew up during the 1950’s.  The smell of what I now know to be old books hit my olfactory the moment my aunt and I stepped over the threshold.  Leather, paper, cigarette smoke and dust mingled into a heady fragrance that to this day, minus the smoke, provokes a visceral response in me. Used book stores introduced me to the love of books.  The introduction to new book stores came shortly after, but new books don’t have the same appeal.

As adults, wherever we traveled began with a search for a book store. I’ve been to book stores in New Orleans, Wichita Falls, and Sacramento and many more places across the country.  Back in those days, customers weren’t allowed to bring beverages in, unlike today where they are sold next to the books.  Books were reverenced.

I am somewhat of a book hoarder, too.  A scene from my marriage has a very concerned and almost angry husband asking me why I needed to bring ‘moldy’ paperback books into our house.  On a weekend antiquing jaunt, I’d happened across a gentleman who was downsizing his own sizable book collection which included a complete set of the paperback Mentor Philosopher Series.  I’ve got ’em all; Spinoza, Bacon and Pascal to name a few.  Then came the great anthropologists.   Margaret Mead is my favorite, (didn’t they disclaim some of her observations twenty years ago?)  She was all sex and culture, all of the time.

I also have all of the Greek classics.  In paperback.  I think Jim must be a book snob because a few years later, maybe in the early eighties, he signed on for the Franklin Mint Library book club. Or maybe he was hoping his purist attitude would wear off on me.  It never did.  Those shining, gold-leafed fly-leafed tomes make my garage sale finds look shabby, but they are behind glass and anyone can pick up one of my used books and curl up with a cup of tea for an afternoon without worrying about ruining it.

My aunt sent me the complete works of Dumas; forty red leather bound volumes of bliss.  I also have an ancient Gibbons The Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire, a very early Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, and Winston Churchill’s The History of the English Speaking Peoples.  I have these books; I have NOT read them.  My taste leans toward Pearl Buck, Betty Smith and compilations by Alfred Hitchcock.  (Insert laughter here.) Odd that my own writing tends to be more like a down at the heels Jackie Collins. (with all due respect.)

My books also reflect what I was doing at different stages of my life.  I have an extensive library of Christian literature.  My friends and family have learned that it isn’t wise to argue with me about the Bible; I know what it says and when things have been taken out of context.  Two entire bookcases are filled with books relating to yarn.  I have every weaving book that was published between 1975 and 1980 because I had a store that sold weaving supplies.  I no longer weave, but I don’t think I should part with the books.  I also have lots of knitting books; I like looking at the pictures, and many dyeing, spinning, and surface design books.

I have a friend who has cataloged her books.  At one time that idea appealed to me, but now I realize it would take up too much time.  Imagine being able to put your hand on any volume you need.  I can almost do that without the organization.

The only regrets I have are having loaned books out.  I no longer do that.  If you have ever received books from me its because I love you and want you to have them.  By the time I give a book up, I am so done with it.  It might be taunting me.  Read me again.  Or worse, read me the first time. And I might have no intention.  Or it might be something from my past that I know I will not revisit.  A past loved hobby, for instance.

One thing I should probably not admit is that the Jenkins’ family receives something from Amazon two or three times a week. Scary.  It is sad that the independents are  threatened by such a huge and inexpensive online presence. But one thing Amazon will never replace is the used book store.  We have a fabulous used store in South Haven.  The proprietress is rude, at least to me, but it is so worth suffering through it to browse in the shop.

Last month, when I was in California for a few days, I went to a used store in Santa Cruz with my Aunt Yvonne and her friend, Bruce.  It was truly a reverent experience.  The place was huge, it was open late at night, but we couldn’t stay too long because there was no bathroom to be found.  I could have stayed there for hours, so maybe the lack of facilities was a good thing.

My mother was a lover of books.  I argued with her to get rid of a huge collection of books she’d moved from her antique shop back to her house when the shop closed.  After she died, my sister gave me the job of going through the books and getting rid of them. It should have been easy, correct?  I hounded the poor woman for ten years about giving them away.  And you know what happened?  I could only get rid of one.  One book.  So if she is up there reading this, I’m sorry, Mom.  I know exactly what you were thinking.

I bought home a ten pound Landmarks of Detroit, and old cookbooks to add to my vast cookbook collection. (I don’t cook.)

This actually has a picture of a long lost relative, maybe a great uncle, Richard Haigh, who was an attorney in Detroit.

Most other things I resisted, for now. My mom would be happy to know I am unable to get rid of her books!  It was a joy we shared.

Today I am going to write.  I haven’t done any new writing in months; its been about revising and editing.  The second book just came out last month and third one will be ready in a few weeks. I feel like I should stall it a little bit, because there won’t be another for quite awhile.

Speaking of, I have a new editor! My daughter, Jennifer! Jen’s second degree is in fiction writing and she actually did some editing at her first job out of college.  I’m psyched!

Back to work!

Happy New Year!!!

Hope today is a good day for you.  I am puttering around my house which is what I enjoy doing the most.  Back in the day when I worked in the OR and had to be in scrubs ready to work by seven in the morning, I used to dream about this.  Today I have talked to my good friends, or emailed them or texted them, cleaned up a little, knitted, played with my pets, and hugged my husband.

Thanks to technology, I saw a picture of my sister Sarah as she had lunch with Liz at noon, sent a video of myself (terrible) back to her, spoke with my aunts on different coasts, texted both my kids, got an email from the guy who built the electric spinner I bought, sent the winners of the giveaway on goodreads their books by ordering them directly from the publisher, had a crying fit until Jim intervened because I couldn’t find the Nook version of Pam of Babylon to send to a customer and finally, spent a small fortune on a device which converts an old spinning wheel of mine into the latest of modern convenience. How did I spend my time before the computer? I’d probably have rested or watched TV.

We are having the most winter like weather; high winds and precipitation which vacillates between rain, sleet and snow.  The yard is filled with birds but no deer since the bow and arrow catastrophe a few weeks ago. Betty told me deer season ends today so maybe that’s way there hasn’t been any deer around here. They’re hiding and don’t feel safe anymore.

The Lions are playing today.  I just couldn’t bring myself to watch the game. I hope they win.. Turn your volume up and you might hear Jim yelling Lions scores in the background.

What are you doing today?  I hope its restful, peace-giving. I hope you find your passion this year, that the things that scare you are resolved, and any lingering issues come to a positive ending.  Thank you for being in my life, because I need you there.

It’s Here! Don’t You Forget About Me Is Here!!!

The proof arrived yesterday afternoon.  No matter how much I have on my plate when UPS pulls up with a proof, I have to put whatever it is down and start reading. Fortunately, the truck didn’t come until Jim and I had run errands and I had dinner started.  By the way, I am dyeing with black bean soaking liquid, so I had a two pound bag of beans needing cooking.  I made the most phenomenal chili out of part of it and the rest, Black Bean Salsa with corn and peppers.  I put too much whole cumin seed in it and I should have toasted them first, but its still pretty good.

Anyway, I usually avoid the camera at all costs but even with my stringy bangs, I had to show you the real book, in the flesh.  So far I’m half-way finished reading and I’m satisfied with it. There is one editing snafu I wish I had picked up on earlier but it is minor and I am going to let it go. People who nitpick will find it and complain, but others will think, ‘Oh, an imperfect human being wrote this and went through the trauma of having it published.’  I hope there is nothing major that sticks out.  If there is, I’ll have it fixed at great expense and time.

As soon as I approve it, the publisher will send it to Kirkus for review. I hope it gets a good one!

This Saturday I am doing a book signing at the Saugatuck Center for the Arts from ten until noon.  Here’s the blurb I posted on Facebook. I’m not mentioned in the copy because   I wasn’t asked until last weekend and only because my neighbor, designer Kirk Johnson, told the organizer about me and the books.

” Get ready for the holidays with fresh, artful greenery, live music, and local gifts during the annual Winter Greenmarket. Santa Claus visits the Winter Greenmarket immediately following the Saugatuck Christmas Parade – bring your camera for photos with the man in red (about 1 p.m.)! This year’s Winter Greenmarket includes a special “Local Author Signing Session” from 10 a.m. – Noon featuring books from area authors – and the authors in attendance to sign their works. Local authors at the Greenmarket include Judy Anthrop, Jacqueline Carey, Salvatore Sapienza, Alison Swan, and others. (me)

Other Winter Greenmarket activities include:

* From 10 a.m. until they’re gone … fresh greenery, swags, wreaths. Greens come “dressed up” or plain for your own creative touch. Remember – greens often sell out at the Market so don’t delay!

* The Holland Chorale’s “Dickens Quartet” stroll the Winter Greenmarket from 11 a.m. until Noon. Dressed in traditional Dickens-era attire, the singers share memories of Christmas’s past.

Saugatuck Center for the Arts, an arts center for an arts community, in downtown Saugatuck, MI. Art classes for adults and children, performances, film, and exhibitions throughout the year. Host to Mason Street Warehouse theatre company and Waterfront Film Festival.
If I don’t get back here until after the holidays, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!  Happy Hanukkah!

2 Knit Lit Chicks Podcast

                                                                                                 My friends, for the most part, love Pam of Babylon.  A few are less than thrilled; I think it is difficult for women to allow themselves to just be and not have every single thing they do lead to something more.  A dear friend who is an attorney and an advocate of women did not like the character Pam.  I could hear fear in her voice when she explained why giving someone like Pam a voice is dangerous, in her opinion.  I think she will see in subsequent books that Pam is stronger than we see on the surface.

Pam is not great literature, but once all four books are put together, it definitely has a moral.  Something good about the negative reviews from friends is that it has proven to me that I don’t have that horrible syndrome; Isolated Adoration.  It’s also helpful when a stranger gives me a good review.  You don’t have to love me to love my book!

Authors, especially new, self-published authors, depend on word of mouth more than anything to get exposure for our books.  I have found that my reader’s enthusiasm sells more books than expensive advertising.   My sister thinks that negative reviews are just as helpful.  I personally don’t care for them, but it is part of the risk taking of putting yourself out there, vulnerable.  So when I received a warm, friendly message on Ravelry from Barb, owner of 2 Knit Lit Chicks Podcast, I was so excited!  I’m not good at  self-promotion, and here someone I didn’t know was willing to give me a little air time. My friend Maureen, a New Jersey buddy, contacted Barb and told her about Pam.

Equally exciting was finding out Barb lives in San Ramon, California, the town we lived in briefly when Jim was San Francisco Chief of Communications for Associated Press.  We have family on the peninsula so the chance that I might actually meet her someday is exists.  It is such a small world.

If you are knitter and/or a reader, listen to 2 Knit Lit Chicks.  It is the first podcast I have heard and I think it is addictive.

Pay Attention

I am not a religious person, but I am spiritual, and trying to be alert to the spiritual around me these days. I have some distractions that immediately make me either be fearful or think negatively.  I don’t live in a vacuum, so protecting myself from the unpleasant by isolation isn’t an option.  One of the ways I am attempting to be positive is by trying to stay in touch with my spiritual beliefs.  When someone asks me to pray for them, I do it right then.  I learned to do this from my friend Claire, who confessed to me about thirty years ago that she prays right away for requests because she is afraid that if she doesn’t, she’ll forget.  This technique has worked for me over the years, especially now when my memory seems to be fading at record speed.

Something that I am learning from my friend Jill, is to make sure that I set aside a time for the spiritual and don’t leave it to chance.  The night hours don’t always work well for me because, face it, when you get up at four in the morning, by the time night falls, you’re tired!  So I try doing my altar time or meditating in the morning.  Or if is nice out at dusk, I might light a fire in the fire pit and sit outside on our patio at the edge of the ravine.  It is dark and quiet out there after the sun sets and if you are very still, you can hear the animals moving through the forest.

My friend, Betty and I have birthdays within a couple of days of each other and when we turned sixty, we noticed that suddenly we were both being led to say no more often, and to not do anything that we didn’t want to do unless it was absolutely necessary.  We try not to be coerced.  Now that doesn’t mean that we don’t try to do everything we can when a friend is asking for something.  But it seems like we are both able to resist being manipulated.  Our inner voices are coming in loud and clear.

Sedona, Arizona is considered a very spiritual place, and I believe that this area in west Michigan, especially where we are right at the edge of the ravine, is very spiritual.  So many things have occurred that are blessings!  My Aunt Von told me yesterday to pay attention.  She said that so much that we experience is our intuition, or something from the outside coming to guide us.   In different instances lately, I know that my mother is giving my sister, Liz and I her wisdom.  Or I feel her support.  My intuition has grown by leaps and bounds.  I believe this is due to using it and not ignoring it. You can get all the advice in the world but if you don’t recognize it and put it into use, it isn’t going to work.  So I am working at considering ideas that come to me and investigating their source.  Not every single thing needs to be put into play.

Something wonderful happened this morning that is a combination of blessings and an answer to prayer.  I have written before about Jim and I sitting in our kitchen, watching birds and wildlife in our back yard.  This morning I was deep in thought, and a large bird flew from over our roof and swooped into a tree.  I thought it was a big hawk or even an eagle, which we have.  And then its head swirled around and I saw that it is an owl!  I love owls!  I have been hoping to see one since we moved here.  Suddenly I thought, this is no coincidence.   The owl has come here for me.  I quickly got out my books and found that Athene is the goddess of communication, the patron of writers and that her totem is the owl.  I can’t describe how thrilling this is to me.  I think my mother sent the owl.  So while she is here looking at me, I might add, I am going to say my prayers for my extended family and all my friends and just enjoy being in the presence of such a fabulous creature.

Pam of Babylon Blog

To 2sheepinthecity’s Blog readers, here’s a link to the blog for my first published book, Pam of Babylon.  So far, the response to the book has been phenomenal.  The book was so enjoyable to write.  But as I was completing the first sequel and starting the second, I began to wonder if I was wasting my time. I needed validation from a professional source rather than the encouragement of my friends and family, who may have been afraid to tell me to get a real job.  The review from Kirkus provided the affirmation I was looking for.

Other news; our first grandchild is due to be born in six short weeks.  Jennifer is holding her own, working as a nurse in an interventional radiology unit at Thomas Jefferson University while she nests in West Chester.  Her wonderful husband Carlos, does what he can to make her life as easy as possible.  I’m hosting a baby shower for her next Saturday at the Mendenhall Inn in Chadds Ford.  If I forgot to send you in invitation, get in touch!

Andy and Janeen are doing well; Andy was here for a short visit a few weeks ago and loved the area.  What’s not to like???  Andy is busy working on Haxan Films latest movie, The Possession, and holding internet marketing seminars in Las Vegas and other fun places.

Jim and I are getting the RV ready for the trip east this week.  All is well with the world.