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Howard

Silly Humans

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Dear Madison,

The other evening, my daughter was doing some research on the internet for her class project at The Academy. I happened to be looking over her shoulder when she pulled up a drawing of a mermaid. The depiction had a very silly sort of tail but what was even more shocking was the artist had covered each breast with a starfish.

At first, I thought it was just some fool of an artist’s vision of what we really look like but the more I searched, the more pictures I found of mermaids with silly tails and starfish covering their – usually huge – breasts. These pictures are not only ridiculous, they’re insulting.

Just what is it with humans and breasts? It’s just a nipple, for Poseidon’s sake! I didn’t see starfish covering the nipples of mermen. Can you help explain these outlandish drawings?

Baffled by Humans

Dear Baffled,January 112

                I’m still trying to wrap my head around the mind-boggling approach mainlanders take concerning female breasts. I can understand the silly ideas about our tails because most of them have never seen a real live mermaid and we want to keep it that way. But breasts? Really?

                I put in a call to our resident expert on mainlanders, Peter MacPherson. While it did take him a little while to adjust to our rational attitude concerning our bodies – with or without our tails – he doesn’t understand why humans are like this, either. While we may be more like humans than we care to think, we are still oceans apart on some things.

                What makes this whole thing hilarious is that these artists don’t seem to understand anything about starfish, either. As you no doubt know, members of the class Aseroidia have their mouths on the underside of their central disc. This means that their mouths are attached to the mermaid’s . . . well, you get the idea.

Madison

My Yiddishe Mermaid

Q: Do you think there could be such things as Jewish Mermaids?

A: Jewish Mermaids are well within the realm of plausibility. However, lighting the Shabbat candles could prove to be problematic. Perhaps they use bio luminescent jelly fish instead of candles.

The story thus far . . .

Urban Mermaid has been on the market for less than a week and I’m starting to see a few sales. Since book publicists cost an arm and a leg – I’m sure they earn every penny of their fees – I’ll be doing a lot of the publicity myself.

There’s a perfect opportunity to do this in Greensboro, NC on Jan. 2 & 3, 2016 and I’m going to have to miss it because of my regular job. I will go into work around 10:30 PM on Jan. 1st and will not be done until 3 or 4 AM. Driving directly to Greensboro from Richmond, VA might have been an option in my college days but it’s definitely off the table now.

The event in Greensboro is a sort of mermaid convention and is an ideal place to stir up interest and maybe even some sales. There’s bound to be other opportunities in other towns . . . just none as good as this one.

Besides putting up the tree and baking gingerbread cookies over the holidays, I’ll also be devoting a good bit of my time to working on publicity and getting the word out. After the first of the year, I’ll be running a series of give-aways here on ColonyIsland.com and plan to have some serious swag up for grabs towards the end of January. Just one more reason to stop by and see what’s happening.

Now Available

Happy St. Andrews Day!

I am pleased to announce Urban Mermaid, the first installment in the Tails From Colony Island series, is now available for purchase in both paperback and e-book editions. The book is published by Moonlight Gardens Publications, an imprint of Gazebo Gardens Publishing, LLC.

I would like to thank Shelly & Caitlyn Moore at Gazebo Gardens  for all their hard work in getting this book ready for publication, Ilsie Om at The Woodsy Fawn for her wonderful cover design, Emm Cole, S.K. Munt, Pete Tarsi, and everyone else who contributed in one way or another to the pre-publication process.

Finally, I would like to thank Judi, my bride of 40 years for all of her encouragement and ongoing support as well as reading the first draft, even when fantasy books just aren’t her thing.

Given that the holidaze are upon us, I am forgoing the traditional launch parties, blog tours, etc. until after the first of the year. Everyone has so much to do between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day . . . including me.

Stop by colonyisland.com to keep up with The Latest.

ISBN
978-1-938281-72-3 Paperback
978-1-938281-73-0 E-Book

The Light At The End Of The Tunnel

Oh rapture! Oh bliss!

Seriously, I’ve discovered that there is light at the end of the tunnel and it’s not merely an oncoming train. Urban Mermaid now has a firm release date – November, 30th, 2015. Be still, my heart!

The thirtieth of November is St. Andrew’s Day. For those of ye wha’ may no ken, Saint Andrew is the patron saint of Scotland and since one of the main characters is named Macpherson, I think that the 30th is quite appropriate.

I had originally planned to hold a launch party on the release day but the Holiday season will be in full swing a week from today. Trying to shoehorn a launch party in everything involved with the run-up to Hanukkah, Christmas, and the feast of Mithras is a non-starter. Instead, I’m going to try and see if I can get something going on January 30th – maybe a launch party/book signing at Barnes and Noble in Charlottesville.

Meanwhile, there’s fruitcakes to bake and gifts to buy. Yes, Virginia, there is light at the end of the tunnel.

By The Way, I’ll make a formal announcement on the 30th of November. Stay tuned.

Asking Madison

There’s a feature here on the Colony Island website called ‘Ask Madison‘. Madison is named for Daryl Hannah’s character in the movie, Splash and in this incarnation, she is the ‘agony aunt’ – advice columnist – for The Colony Chronicle, the island’s bi-weekly newspaper.

I thought this would be a fun way to discuss and flesh out plot points as the series progresses as well as give background on life as a mer on Colony Island.

At this point, I cannot say how often Madison will reprint letters from her column in the Chronicle. I will say, however, that I plan to continue this feature throughout the series. I hope you will enjoy reading it as much as I enjoy creating it.

A New Addition

Awake with nothing to do at 5:30 AM on a rainy Thursday morning, I finally added a contact form to this site. The page is called “Contact The Author” and you’ll find it under the “All About The Author” tab.

Please Release Me, Let Me Go . . .

Well, the final edits are done and final manuscript awaits my review. Once that happens, proof copies will be ordered and Urban Mermaid will finally be released.

The main hurdle will be finding time to review the final proof. I’ve got a book review to write and fruitcakes to bake. Two batches of fruitcakes, mind you. The next four days should be . . . well . . . interesting.

If I don’t respond to your e-mails or phone calls for a while, please try and understand.

Typo City

I’ve been perusing some of the pages on this site and YIKES! I have beaucoup typos. What was good enough for my working notes is certainly not good enough for publication. That’s the problem with cut n’ paste.

I’m leaving the two original prologues as they are because I warn the reader that:

  1. I can’t type
  2. I can’t spell
  3. I can’t put together a grammatically correct sentence
  4. I can’t walk and chew gum at the same time

Well, maybe not # 4 but you get the idea. The next week or so will be consumed with clean-up.

I’ll let you know when I’m done.

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