Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Predictable Endings

Predictable endings are plaguing the creative world- books, movies and even songs. Everything seems to be going along a pattern, but I for one would love to see that pattern broken. It wasn't very long ago when I would be shocked by book and movie endings, but no more. Let's attempt to do better at keeping the reader or viewer guess, shall we?

Monday, June 7, 2010

Wield The Pen Responsibly by Lacresha Hayes, Bestselling Author

As an author, your job can get easier with time. As we write, we gain much needed experience. Our failures mesh together perfectly with our successes to teach us how to promote and touch our readership. And we learn the funniest lessons. We learn that two books on identical subjects may not actually appeal to identical readers because our styles adjust during our careers. As we grow and evolve, so does our writing. But sometimes, we can become lazy and insensitive and that spells trouble.

There are some authors who will only ever write a book and maybe a few articles, but this article is for those of us who write as a way of life. Most of us will be writing for the rest of our lives due in part to the stories and circumstances that beg our attention and ask us or even pester us to write about this or that. We keep living and learning and the teacher in us or entertainer in us keep us wanting to share. Therefore, the day we die, we'll probably die with some work or other in progress. That is why I am writing this article.

The written word has a power not wielded by anything else, and matched by very few things. No matter how much technology advances, there will never be a replacement for what is written. How we read, when we read and where we read may change, but the fact that we read will not change. Therefore, it behooves us to be responsible with what we share with the world. We never know if something we write will become a part of history thirty years or 100 years into the future. Please wield your pen and fingers responsibly!

About the Author:
Lacresha Hayes is the author of The Rape of Innocence, Truth and Intimacy: A Couple's Journal, Becoming: My Personal Memoirs, Raw Redemption, Tangled and many more books. She writes regular articles at her Pretty, Powerful and Prosperous blog as well as several guest posts all over the internet. She has risen to stardom through her multiple programs for women, business owners, victims of abuse and authors. She reaches out to help those who need it and that has won her the respect of novice writers and professionals in the literary world. For more information, visit her website, today.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Christian Books

I won't lie and pretend that I never read anything other than wholesome books. There is a lure to reading suspense, romance and paranormal books, at least for me. Still, I try to keep these kind of books to a minimum because I've found the more I read them, the more I want to read them.

The term Christian is now being applied to all kinds of crud because the name Jesus or God is mentioned a few more than 2-3 times. Hogwash! I like when publishers and authors call their books just what they are and let me make up my own mind about whether I want it or not.

Anyway, I said all of that to say that all next week I will be reading books by my Facebook friends. Some of them won't be Christian and thus when I post my review here, I'm going to be honest and fair, so the next couple of weeks may not show up too many Christian books. We'll see how it goes.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Cowboy for a Rainy Afternoon by Stephen Bly


The Matador Hotel died on July 5th, 1965, but they didn’t bother burying it until last fall.

New Mexico heat blanketed Albuquerque that July like too many covers in a stuffy cabin. The kind of day that you sweat from the inside out and feel sticky dirt in places that you don’t ponder much except in the shower. I reckon that four-bladed overhead fan that squeaked like an unfed cat failed to console Shorty McGuire. Doc Boyce said he passed on durin’ the night, but no one discerned it until they observed the empty back table at the Round-Up CafĂ©. For the last nineteen years of his life, Shorty lived in a second-floor room at The Matador. At straight up 6:00 a.m. ever’ mornin’ he ate two eggs fried hard under the faded picture of Theodore Roosevelt leading the Rough Riders up San Juan Hill.

As a boy, I calculated that Shorty McGuire and the others must be pushing a hundred-years-old when I met them for the first time in 1954. I reckon I surmised wrong. The Albuquerque Herald reported that Hadley (Shorty) McGuire was only 86 when he died on that July day in 1965. The Herald is right most of the time. As the last of that bunch at the Matador, there was no one left to take his trapings, so Whip Johnson and me cleaned out Shorty’s goods a few days after his funeral. Whip managed the hotel in the 60s for his Uncle Durwood Johnson who gained some fame in the Southwest on the rodeo circuit after the war. He won the hotel on a bet on a black half-thoroughbred stallion down in Magdalena.

The floor of Shorty’s little room with one four-pane slide-up window was carpeted solid with six to eight inches of newspapers, not a one newer than 1939. He claimed that cowboyin’ didn’t provide the time to read much, so he saved them for his retirement. I never did know if he got caught up. We didn’t have the nerve to give his tattered clothing to the Rescue Mission, so we chucked them into the hotel incinerator. We crated his boots, wooly chaps and battered Stetson, then donated them to the state museum. I had a notion they would want to display the gear of an old-time cowboy. But they stored them in a back room for a few years, then sold them at an auction to raise money for a modern art statue that looks like the scrap-iron pile out behind my barn. If I’d known they were selling Shorty’s belongings, I’d have bought those suckers myself and buried them, rather than let some car dealer in Denver drive off with ‘em. But that’s the way the past is. You can’t hang on to it all. What survives gets stolen by strangers who have no blasted idea of what they hold in their hands.

The tobacco-stained furniture in Shorty’s room belonged to the hotel, but Whip decided to replace it all and re-carpet. So they moved in newer furniture, but I don’t think the room was ever repainted. Whip and me always thought that room smelled like Lordsburg, but that might be its location on the south side of the hotel, facing the Santa Fe tracks. I never went back to the hotel after that day. The hippies ran it in the early 70s, then some drug dealers. I think one of them big moving companies bought the place and used it for storage for a decade or two before they tore it down last year. All them red bricks got shipped to the west side for deluxe estate fencing around an upscale gated community. I hear they decided to build urban condos on the old hotel site for rich city folks, but I can’t figure what kind of people would want to live in downtown Albuquerque. At least, not nowadays.

I still have Shorty’s rim-fire saddle hangin’ in my tack room. It was one of the first ones Estaban Chavez built, when he still had that shop behind the Chinese laundry in Las Cruces. Lots of folks have wanted to buy it over the years, but it doesn’t belong to me. Some day Shorty’s kin will show up wantin’ his things, and I’ll have it ready. I keep the leather oiled. Shorty died almost forty years ago, but I’ll hang onto it for him.That’s the way things are done around this part of the country. It’s one of the lessons I learned in the lobby of the Matador Hotel.