Uncle Jesse vs. The Huffington Post???

Recently, a Huffington Post blogger criticized the distorted reality of ’90s TV situation comedies, such as Friends and Full House. This provoked a rebuttal from actor John Stamos, who played Uncle Jesse on Full House.

I can’t disagree with Annelia Alex’s observations…but I don’t think it’s limited to the 1990s, or to sitcoms. I remember watching The Waltons with my parents back in the ’70s. Dad would often make this statement at the end of the episodes: “Dirt poor, but they had that big house and owned the whole mountain!”

Personally, I’ve found it surprising that some characters have such nice homes, given the circumstances they’re supposedly in….

My mother’s gripe was against a popular nighttime soap, Dynasty. When Joan Collins joined the cast as Blake Carrington’s scheming ex-wife, Alexis, and moved into a house on the Carrington estate, she made a habit of entering the main house without invitation and doing whatever she pleased. Mom always found this annoying. Perhaps because, like Blake’s then-wife, Krystle, Mom was a second wife. “I’d send her ass flying back out if she barged into my house!” Mom declared on more than one occasion.

Soaps are guiltier of stretching reality than most shows. The Bold and the Beautiful is an example. The show’s current resident scheming shrew, Quinn Fuller, has gone to some pretty ridiculous lengths to make sure her son Wyatt wins the hand of clueless blonde heiress Hope Logan, even coming close to killing Wyatt’s half brother/romantic rival, Liam Spencer…and Liam’s the only one who sees through her lies.

I guess Mommy doesn’t think her son is wonderful enough to win the girl on his own charms.

But getting back to sitcoms…my favorite, The Big Bang Theory, is chock full of “that would never happen in real life” moments. Most of them involve resident genius/pain in the butt Sheldon Cooper. Sheldon may be a genius in physics, but he’s hopeless in the everyday world. Sarcasm eludes him. He believes the world revolves around him and drives everyone around him nuts–yet they allow him to rule their lives, always choosing where they eat, what movie they see, etc. He has a schedule for everything–including bowel movements! His roommate, Leonard, also a physicist, had to sign a detailed (and absurd) roommate agreement to move into the apartment. He’s not only a roommate, he’s Sheldon’s personal chauffeur.

Sheldon and Leonard have been roommates for seven years. In the real world, Leonard would have either moved out or murdered Sheldon within the first month!

Last week, in the show’s season finale, Sheldon was upset at the news that Leonard is going to marry Penny, the aspiring actress/waitress who lives across the hall.”You’re putting [her] happiness above mine?” Sheldon demanded incredulously.

“Well…yes,” Leonard admitted.

Sheldon couldn’t believe it. Seriously, he was baffled that Leonard wouldn’t put him first.

I’m not quite sure I believe it, either. Beyond her looks, Penny’s not much of a prize. She drinks too much and has been a bit of a tramp. On occasion, she’s made comments that would indicate she thinks she’s too good for Leonard. But the good-natured, neurotic physicist with painfully low esteem happily overlooks that…okay, I guess some guys would put up with anything to get the girl….


Snippet Sunday: A Bird, a Pig and a Dog Walked Into a Bar….

Today’s snippet is from my upcoming book, Sam’s Story: The Life and Times of a Tiny Bird with a Huge Personality. It’s told from the point of view of my grey-cheeked parakeet, Sam. In this scene, our German shepherd, Schatzi, is having a disagreement of sorts with our potbellied pig, Iggy, after a calamity involving a building inspector….

“The guy told him he’d been attacked by a two-hundred-pound hog in the bedroom!”
Iggy was insulted. “Two hundred pounds? He needs his eyes examined–and his head, too, while he’s at it!”

“You could stand to lose a little around the ham hocks,” Schatzi laughed.

“Bite me, Bubblebutt!” Iggy snapped.

Schatzi almost did. “Just remember, I bite back,” Iggy warned.

“You have no sense of humor,” Schatzi grumbled.

“Not true. I happen to be a very funny pig,” Iggy insisted. 


BLOG ALERT: Be sure you check out William’s Godzilla review, as well as the beautiful tulips in his photoblog; and Grace’s photos showcasing the work of another talented artist….

Now Let’s See…Where Did They Leave Off?

Looks like there’s going to be a sequel to The Unicorn’s Daughter!

I’d been playing around with the possibility for a while now. I’d even come up with a plot and wrote a few chapters. I teamed her with Darcy from Chasing the Wind. The only thing I didn’t have was a title. But I really wasn’t sure I’d go ahead with it until, after months of not checking in on my product pages at Amazon, I decided to see if there was anything new. These are the latest of twenty-one reviews there…. 

4.0 out of 5 stars Great story, May 13, 2014
Denise A Guttendorf – See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What’s this?)

This review is from: The Unicorn’s Daughter (Kindle Edition)
The story was captivating, but I was a little disappointed in the ending. I wish the book was just a little longer. I want to know what happened next.

5.0 out of 5 stars Great writer, May 8, 2014
Annette Irizarry “Aries” (Cherokee, NC USA) – See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What’s this?)

This review is from: The Unicorn’s Daughter (Kindle Edition)
Have and own every one if her books, Every lover if good writing and interesting tales will love her books.

5.0 out of 5 stars Great mystery, April 29, 2014
CJ Hackett – See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What’s this?)

This review is from: The Unicorn’s Daughter
(Kindle Edition)
Just when I thought I knew how the storyline was progressing, there was a new twist. The author is a great mystery writer. I found the book hard to put down.

5.0 out of 5 stars Keeps you on the edge, January 19, 2014
Jamie Laing – See all my reviews

This review is from: The Unicorn’s Daughter (Kindle Edition)
Very interesting to read. Never the type of book I would have normally picked up. Kept me guessing til the very end.

Now, I’m about to publish a memoir, as well as the “memoir” of my parakeet, Sam, which were to be followed by some romantic comedies. The Chasing the Wind sequel, An Army of Angels, along with this sequel, were on indefinite hold. But now that I see these reviews….

And speaking of reviews, be sure you check out William’s review of The Untouchables over at his blog, as well as the latest from his photoblog, Eve’s poem about talent  and Grace’s photos of Baba Yaga houses….

Cover Reveal: INDUCTION DAY by PK Hrezo

Great news! My fellow author/blogger, PK Hrezo, is about to publish the second novel in her Butterman Time Travel, Inc. series, and she has yet another smashing cover, so I’ve joined the ranks of bloggers giving their readers an advance peek at it, along with a short synopsis….

The year 2069 is coming to a close, and eighteen-year-old Bianca Butterman’s pilot license is finally official. She’s ready for the Induction Day she’s waited for since she was a kid—the one that will secure her name on the Butterman family tree of time travelers. But ever since the media discovered Bianca is pop superstar Tristan Helms’ latest new honey, everything Bianca does or says becomes a target of criticism. Having her professional credibility topping the gossip sites across social media is an open invitation for the government to step in and regulate Bianca’s Induction. Now she will have to ask herself if saving 1500 people from drowning is worth losing everything she’s ever worked for, including the Butterman family biz.

Sounds great, doesn’t it? Be sure you don’t miss this one!

Snippet Sunday: The World’s Ugliest Pen Pal

This week’s snippet is from another of my Toni Collins romances, Letters from Home (soon to be an ebook). In this scene, Joe Parrish, a soldier stationed in Iraq, has been corresponding with Christina Holland, a woman he’s never met. He asked for a photo, and what she sent him comes as a bit of a surprise….

You asked for a photo. I was reluctant to send one at first–I’m not terribly photogenic–but here goes. Hope you’re not too disappointed.

He laughed aloud when he took the photo from the envelope. It was the Bride of Frankenstein–one of those pictures that came in the photo section of a new wallet.

So…the lady has a sense of humor, he thought, amused. My kind of woman. Definitely my kind of woman.

He read on….

Well, now that you’ve seen that, anything else is bound to be an improvement, right?


Be sure you check out William’s blogs (a conversation between two geese at his photoblog, and A Day in the Life of a Dog), Grace’s beautiful nighttime shot outside her home in Perth, Ivy’s thoughts on the lack of a Wonder Woman movie in the current sea of superhero blockbusters, Cheryl’s issues with a nosy squirrel, and Gayle’s always-delightful Square Dog Fridays….

Slow and Steady Might Win the Race….

I don’t know if anyone’s noticed or not, but I’ve been neglecting my blog for the past few months. Most of my time has been going to finishing Sam’s Story: The Life and Times of a Tiny Bird with a Huge Personality. I’ve also been developing a rather unusual promotional campaign for it.

I detest pushy sales tactics, so I’ve never employed them myself. And while the practical part of my brain knows that we indie authors have to sell ourselves, I’m turned off by authors telling everyone how wonderful their books are. (It’s one thing to have others saying all those great things, but if we’re doing it ourselves, it sounds like a big ol’ ego trip.)

So that left me with a question: how do I sell this book without sounding like I’m just full of BS?

What’s worked so far has been what I call the Anti-Marketing method. I get involved. I go to the websites and Facebook pages of TV shows and movies I’ve seen and give my big mouth a free rein. I go to TV news pages and comment on stories that make me want to throttle somebody. Usually, I generate enough attention to make people curious. I don’t often mention that I’m an author. It’s not necessary, and would probably backfire anyway.

But for Sam’s Story, I wanted to do something different. The idea that came to me is one that, to my knowledge, hasn’t been done before…but should work very well for this kind of book. We’ll see. When the first “ads” start to appear here and on Facebook in the next couple of weeks, let me know what you think!

I celebrated an anniversary last weekend, too–On April 26th, 1985, I sold my first novel–Alexander’s Empire, which Berkley later retitled Dance of the Gods (and I retitled Alexander’s Empire for the ebook edition). That was a real high for me–not only did I sell my first novel, every writer’s dream, but it sold for a lot more than I ever expected to get for my first book–and of the twelve publishers my agent sent it to, eight made offers. See why I never forget that anniversary?