Meet the great Valerie Frankel, a few other local authors, and me at Valerie’s table. I have four paperback copies of Super Holly Hansson in Super Bad Hair Day to sell: two short stories and Chapter Zero of The Comic Book Code, plus a CD with the stories in ebook and audio format (yeah, hear me PERFORM!). Saturday, I plan to be there in the morning, but in the afternoon I will be on an outing with my cousin and his two little demons, I mean boys. Sunday, I plan to be at the table most of the day.
For an upcoming anthology from the South Bay Writers Club, I wrote a short story with a new supervillain: Money Man. On the advice of a couple of friends, I made him a Donald Trump clone: xenophobic, money eating, orange haired bully. He gives Super Holly a tough fight, but she clobbers him GOOD! (Holly hates bullies.)
I’ll write Money Man into another story, he was fun to write. And he needs to lying lie like Trump lying lies. Like when Trump said “That makes me smart” in the debate when Hillary said he wasn’t paying his taxes, and then Trump said the lying lie “I never said that” one short hour later. Because Trump has the attention span of a 9-Year old with ADHD (according to the ghostwriter of The Art of the Deal), Trump thinks everyone else won’t remember when his big blabbery lips moved? Ooo, that would drive Super Holly nuts!
ARRR!!! I be one day late fer Talk Like A Pirate Day! But I be doin’ it now because, like a pirate, I be breakin’ the rules when I write my action-packed and comic book goofy prose stories! Firstly, I be writing accents into me dialog! Like I be doin’ right now! Secondly, I be using plenty of exclamation points!!!!!!!!! And thirdly, I be writing sound effects words! Why not? They be words on the page, adding sound! YARRRRRR!!! Here be some of me sound effects booty in me Super Bad Hair Day short stories!
Them scallywags Harry Headbutt and Super Holly fight toe-to-toe and scowl-to-scowl, and for every one of Harry’s punches, Holly clobbers him with five! THOOM! POW POW POW POW POW! THOOM!! POW POW POW POW POW!! THOOM!!! POW POW POW POW POW!!!
SHPLLLPTT! A big fat bug hits Super Holly’s face mid-flight!
KERR-RUNCH! SKKKKKTT! Holly accidentally punches a parked car, caving in its driver side door and skidding it onto the sidewalk, good thing she has insurance!
Harry Headbutt be blowin’ a motorcycle-revving super-raspberry: “BBBBBTTTHHHHHPPPPP, BBBPPPP, BBBPPPP, BBBTHHHPPPPPP!” Now that be WET!
Apricot Computer CEO Chris Jobz kisses the evil Karate Queen’s feet: MMM-WAH, MMM-WAH!
BUMP WHUMP BUMPLE THUMP! A beat-up ninja be tumbling onto a stage!
FLOOOFFF! The inky cape of the Intellectual be billowing!
TOK! Holly’s pen bounces off her signing table. KAH-LATTER! And hits the floor. FLUR-FLUFFLE! Followed by some of her comic books.
BTFFFT-KER-SPLLLLLUP! A giant spider web be blanketing all the geeks in the Geek Guy’s comic book shop!
Holly Hansson’s pre-super fist plows into John Glutt’s doughy cheek: SHHPLLLUUUDDD!
YARRRRR, those were FUN to read aloud at open mics!!! I be learning from the masters! Like Stan Lee, who said that the third “O” be, of course, silent in BTK-KA-THOOOM!!!
And Charles Schultz! Linus be throwin’ one snowball at Lucy — WHAP! — and then Lucy be clobberin’ him with five: POW! POW! POW! POW! POW!
And the master of mayhem, the prince of percussion, the super scholar of sound effects: Mad Magazine’s Don Martin! (Update: I fixed the link!) Dive yer eyes into the briny deep of this alphabetic list with such shiny doubloons as SHKLIKSA! (clam squirting man in face), or ONNNNNGHK FWEEEEEEEEE (husband snoring) or KACHUNK KACHUNKA KACHUNK KACHUNK (a cake baking machine).
Paste yer peepers below for Don’s sheer genius! ARRR, there be so much more mayhem fer me to learn!!!
I talked with author Todd Borg again last Saturday. In his latest book, Tahoe Dark, I was amused by a pseudo-gangster accent: “unnerstand” instead of “understand.” Very Chicaguh, I mean Chicago. Todd told me he’d run into the same problem I once did when I wrote dialog for the Bjorg (my Star Trek satire Swedish Borg): too much accent makes dialog unintelligible. Todd sprinkled it sparingly, as he should.
In my soon-to-be novel, Kittygirl’s firecracker of a mother has a fast and furious Japanese accent. On Youtube, I found advice from andysunstory on How To Speak With A Japanese Accent. Replace “an” with “ahn”, “R” with “L”. But what if a word ends with “R”? “Daughtal” instead of “daughter”? I remembered Urusei Yatsura’s Lum saying “Dahling!” And there’s the matter of an older white male like me not sounding racist. “So solly?” YUCK!
I wrote (and rewrote and rewrote) the following for when Kittygirl’s mother confronts Holly at Holly’s first book signing. (I’m really wrestling with “lite” instead of “write.”)
“This glaphic novel! I had to buy anothah one! You did not lite it fah kids, but my daughtah found it in my manga stash and has not let go of it since! Until now. She loved when,” she smiled, petted the girl between pointy Kittygirl ears, and enunciated like she’d rehearsed her next line, “the princess gave up her crown.”
Many great writers say never write accent into dialog. Usually true. But my style is goofy comic book, so I offer the rebuttal of Al Capp’s Lil’ Abner. Like Vulgorilla the Slobbovian (Russian): “I got fonny for you. A travelink blubber salesman’s sled broke down…” Or Brooklyn’s Evil Eye Fleegle wanting his “goil” back: “Anudder triple whammy! I’ll keep poppin’ until my beloved Shoiley is in my arms again!” Or pure hillbilly.
Writing an accent is hard, but sometimes worth it!
P.S. I just changed “mahnga” to “manga.” To avoid confusion, that word for Japanese comic book should not be spelled phonetically.
I am outlining a short story with a new supervillain: the Stadium Patriot! (Check out Mike Royko’s old article about it.) He twists patriotism into tribalism. Maybe has the entire football stadium join his football-fan, couch-potato, immigrant-hating, Borg-like team. Resistance is futile, you will be patriotic. Maybe a Colin Kaepernick character could be there to fan the conflict, just by sitting quietly while football Borgs bray, in the land of the free and the home of the SHUDDUP AND STAND UP, YOU TRAITOR! After all, Colin and Royko gave me the idea.
I originally thought the Stadium Patriot would be really racist. More likely, he’s about joining the team and hating all other teams. It’s the old writer’s dilemma: characters do not always run where you expect. Just like my Dan Mann character: the more he became like Stan Lee, the more he refused to be a villain. Authors must let characters do what they do.
P.S. Any ideas about the Stadium Patriot? I am a little concerned that his powers of bending crowds into his team might be too similar to the Twisted Tonguester’s power of making people hate, as in my short story in Scripting Change. Warning: Polite ideas will be posted, not so nice will be exterminated!
P.P.S. Super Holly is not fond of football. But she will like baseball games.
Holly meets Angry Batman, by Chloe Dalquist. (Check theangrybatman.tumblr.com. Great humor for grown up geeks!) I read issue 1 of Angry Batman, and I smiled and bought it. Chloe said she’d draw something in it. I told her that Super Holly has a crush on Batman, and I asked her to draw that. This is what Holly would do on meeting Batman. I love Holly’s crushing and Angry Batman’s tude!
Next, I bought Super Stupor issue 4, and R.K. Mulholland did a drawing for me. (Check his webcomic at somethingpositive.net.) I like how this makes Holly look so happy! He asked about Holly’s cape clasp, and I said it is grail-shaped.
And lastly, something silly! From Chuck Whelon, from whom I bought Pewfell in: Drain of Chaos. (Check his art and game website at whelon.com and his Patreon for Pewfell: The Epic Fantasy Sitcom at www.patreon.com/pewfell.) He drew Holly as an Urf. Hmm, is that a little Urf cleavage in the costume? No wonder Urf Holly looks so angry!