My schedule at the San Mateo County Fair Literary Arts Stage

Come see me this weekend and later at the San Mateo County Fair Literary Arts Stage.

Saturday 6/10: 12-2pm I will sell books at the local author meet and greet. 2-3:30: I will be on the Carry the Light winner’s panel, and doing an open mic reading after that with other winners.

Wednesday 6/14 7-9pm I intend to do the open mic. At 6:45, my friend Tina Gibson will be reading from her book, Misfit Island.

Thursday 6/15: 7-9pm I will read from the story I submitted to this year’s Fault Zone anthology (currently title: What Goes Up). Saddest ending I have ever written for Super Holly.

Saturday 6/17: 2:45-4:30pm I will sell books.

When I personally sell my printed Super Bad Hair Day book, I include a CD with artwork, audio stories, and ebook copies of Super Bad Hair Day. And I sign it with a cool superheroic catchphrase. Only $5. Such a deal.

Wanna read local author stories? Buy Carry the Light at the fair or from Amazon. It contains my short story, The Lutefisk Door, and the transcript of my audio story, The Intellecta-Rhapsody (this was inspired by the classic music Hungarian Rhapsody as played by Woody Woodpecker.

Fremont Book Signing Saturday May 13

This Saturday, May 13, from 11am to 4pm, the Fremont Writers Club will have a book signing at Round Table Pizza, 37480 Fremont Blvd, Fremont, CA. We will sell books, like my Super Bad Hair Day book with a CD containing superheroine artwork and my audio stories. We will do open mic readings, and I shall PERFORM one of my stories! Probably my latest audio story, The Intellecta Rhapsody; it won first prize at this year’s San Mateo Country Fair Literary Arts Contest. (The background music is the Hungarian Rhapsody: Bugs Bunny, Woody Woodpecker, and Tom & Jerry all danced to that tune, so I add Super Holly Hansson to that list.)

A cute little girl liked my open mic.

At a Red Rock Coffee open mic some time ago, I read a Super Holly story that went over well. When I sat back down in the audience, a cute little girl ran up to me and gave me some artwork that she drew. (You can say it: “Aw!”) That made me feel good.

I then proceeded to lose the artwork for a few months. It turned up when I recently did some home cleaning. I felt good when I found it, cuz I’d felt bad when I lost it. Here’s the artwork (color edited to make yellow show up better, I had to have those stars).

red-rock-little-girl-drawing-edited

Up, up, and a podcast!

jmspodcastSaturday February 2, at noon, I will be on a podcast: JMSpodcast.com by Jorge M. Sanchez. He interviews local writers and artists of all kinds, so I guess that includes me. I think I’ll talk about my writing, Super Holly, and open mics. And I’d like to do a reading or two. I’ll see where Jorge leads, or where I go, or both.

I met Jorge at a recent Red Rock Coffee open mic. He came up to me after my reading and was all fanboy smiles. I guess I did a good job (I wish I could remember what story I read!). We exchanged cards, and he invited me to do a podcast with him. It’s my first. I hope to entertain. And to learn, since I need to start a podcast of my own sometime.

P.S. I just did the podcast with Jorge. When he sends me the links, I will post them. We talked about writing, Holly’s origins, point of view, and other stuff. And I did a couple of readings. We had fun. Stay tuned for tomorrow!

Aww-some open mics.

audience-awOpen mics uncover good lines.

At one open mic, I performed “The Malevolent Mystery Meat” starring The Puppy Brothers: two grade-school brothers with super puppy powers who save Super Holly from the evil school lunch ladies. I’d read what I’d written: “Tucker bit the door handle and yanked off the door: KA-RUNCH! Near the barrel, Holly was still passed out.” On an impulse, I ad-libbed, “And still pretty.” A young lady in the audience smiled and said, “Aww!” That ad-lib went into the final draft.

At another open mic, I read an upcoming short story where Super Holly had performed her comic book in the children’s ward in a hospital, ending it on a cliffhanger. A little girl in a wheelchair asked Holly to tell her the ending now. Holly said she’d read it next time. The girl said, “I’m not gonna be here next time.” “Aww,” said a young lady in the audience. I knew what Mario Puzo knew when he wrote, “I’ll make him an offer he cannot refuse.”

Kid-sitting one evening for my cousin, his kids asked me to read a Super Holly story. They liked her fighting Billington Stumpfinger. When Holly’s boyfriend Cal kissed her and said, “I love you,” and Holly kissed him back and said, “I love you more,” the kids said, “Ew!” I told this to their mom. She said they just started doing that. I’ll keep that kissing.

Listen to your audience. Small words can mean big reactions.

Book signings are a slow way to get rich.

A few thoughts on the May 7 book signing with the Fremont writers.

MagMat300Some people don’t read ebooks. A teacher came in and bought books from several writers, but not from me. She wanted a physical book in her hand. Penelope Anne Cole sold some children’s books that were very slim. I bought a couple. LESSON: Maybe CreateSpace can print my Super Bad Hair Day story bundle as a slim and cheap book; it would be a neat way to sell my short stories at book signings.

The Fremont Area Writers like my open mic readings. We read our stories out loud, and I threw myself into my part (as usual). One little boy was there also; he fidgeted at the start of my reading, but he was drawn in pretty quick. Kids like my readings too. LESSON 1: I need to make more audio files and put them onto the CDs (and my website); give more product to sell. LESSON 2: When I start my readings, I should say I am selling the story for a buck; that boy might have make me $1 richer if I had done that. LESSON 3: One writer said that he liked my reading, but in a couple places, he did not understand what I said. I must NEVER let my open mic diction get lazy!

There was not much traffic in the room where we were selling. I sold one CD, to another writer. The other writers did not fare a lot better. I was not disappointed, I was there to learn, and I got free pizza out of it (YUM!). LESSON: Nothing, except try again. I believe that in August, the Fremont writers will do another signing. I will see about prining little books and making more audio; maybe even sell little books with a CD. And I will remember, like I did today, to have fun. I enjoyed earning that one thin dollar.

LAST LESSONS: Get more stories out there, and FINISH WRITING MY NOVEL!!!

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Story Music for My Open Mics

EmerianRichEmerian Rich, writer of horror and romance and otherwise nice lady, just posted an article I wrote for her. She is doing a series of blog posts about how music has influenced writers. With me, it was how I use music when I read at open mics. It all started with Underdog…

https://emzbox.wordpress.com/2016/03/02/music-inspiring-writing-david-strom/

At little open mics, I never worried about rights, I was too tiny for big companies to notice. But now that I am going to do audio recordings of my stories and post and/or sell them, I need to find music that I can use without having to get the rights from the EVIL GIANT MUSIC CONGLOMERATES. Yeah, right, they’d let me use music from The Matrix. Thus begins my royalty free (or royalty cheap) search. I found the William Tell Overture for my Puppy Boys story.