On Friday, along with my account manager, I did a loop through Ashtabula County visiting places tied into my book. First stop was The Corner Bar in Austinburg, a spot where in Chapter 12 the terrorist group meets to plot their own version of the Ashtabula Railroad Disaster of 1876. We left a book for the owner and handed out bookmarks (thanks Graydon) to the patrons around the bar.
From there it was on to Presrite Jeffrerson to give a copy of the book to the guy who provided the inspiration for Bula Bridge by first telling me about the 19thcentury railroad wreck. There I got a warm reception and we handed out a lot more bookmarks and had some lively discussion about the book.
Next stop was Bridge Street in Ashtabula. Since it was coffee time we went to Harbor Perk Coffeehouse first, another meeting place for the terrorists (Chapters 8 and 28) as they continued to plot the destruction of a railroad bridge. I left a book with manager, Mike, and asked about possibly doing a book signing there. That needs the owner’s approval and is pending. Last scheduled stop was at Carlisle’s next door to the coffee shop where the owner graciously agreed to have three copies of Bula Bridge on the shelf for sale. Carlisle’s is a great place to browse so stop in next time you visit Bridge Street.
After that, it was off to Geneva Lodge for a glass of champagne to celebrate a successful trip. There we met a couple waiting for the wine tour and after some conversation they wanted copies of the books. So, two books sold and the promo trip really was done.
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Well today’s the day. Finally “Bula Bridge” is released and ready to buy both as an ebook and in print. This book is my answer to the many requests I got to write another book so readers could find out more about Tommy Galiwee and his friends. This time there’s more about Johanna, who it turns out is a lot more than Tommy thought. I hope you aren’t disappointed. Here are the links:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07QFS85PJ Kindle edition
https://www.amazon.com/dp/173230131X paperback edition
Finally the ebook is going live on April 23. Yippee! You can pre-order it at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07QFS85PJ though it will be going on sale in a couple of weeks so you might want to hold off.As for the print version, it still awaits final proof approval and that won’t happen before this weekend. Print version should be available by the time the ebook is released.
I’m beginning to think the universe is against “Bula Bridge” for some reason. The proof copy I was supposed to get yesterday (yes, Amazon even delivers on Sunday) is now lost and no one at Amazon can figure out where it was delivered. So no proof copy and no review and thus no release date. I had to order another one. Maybe I’ll get it by the end of the week, maybe not. How does this happen?
Yipee! Finally it appears that the cover and text for the sequel to “War Party” are done. The digital version passed inspection and now I’m just waiting on the printed proof to be sure everything is as it should be. Once that arrives it won’t take long to know if any more fixes are necessary and then the release date can be set (fingers crossed). In the meantime I think I’ll post the e-cover on my website as a teaser. If you want to take a peek, here’s the link: https://jdrewbrumbaugh.com/books/bula-bridge/
I got the final comments back from my editor and she pointed out some serious problems with the last two chapters; felt I rushed through it and thought there really needed to be more details. As usual, she was right and so it was back to work, filling in the blanks she’d pointed out and smoothing out the prose so it reads better too. That puts this novel one step closer to publication, thank God. Since I always like to see a proof print version before I get the ebook going, I’ll be formatting a file to submit to the printer, getting it okayed and then have a copy shipped to me. With any luck, it won’t have any major issues and I can get both print and e-version published soon thereafter. Thanks to both my editor and beta readers, and to all the readers who have been so patient.
A few days ago I went on line to look for a specific gift I had in mind for someone. Without too much trouble I found exactly what I wanted on Amazon but when I went to purchase it I found out it was only available to Prime members. Did I want to sign up? No, I didn’t want to pay for the privilege of buying stuff from them. Oh, but shipping is free. Nope, still don’t want it. I gave up on Amazon and did further searches. There was the same item at the Target down the street on the shelf. Yes, I actually had to get in my car and drive there, but within a few minutes I had it, delivery was immediate and I was home to wrap it. Maybe others think membership in a store is a good thing. I don’t and won’t start shelling out money to be able to buy things from any particular outlet. If you want my business just make it easy for me to shop and stop hassling me about buying a membership. Barnes and Noble, are you listening?
Like many readers I love to read books in a series. Good ones allow me to get to know the main characters, see them grow and work their way through a string of ever changing difficulties. I start to think of them as friends. I like books where all of the specific issues, problems or conflicts brought up in the book are wrapped up by its end. I go away with a satisfied feeling that I read a complete story. Sure, there may be other things lurking in the background that will lead to the next book in the series, but the stuff that was the focus of this book has been resolved. But, and here’s where it goes wrong for me, lately I’ve run into books in a series that end on a cliff-hanger. The main characters are left in dire straits and the only way to find out what happened is to buy the next book. That’s just a cheap publishing trick and that’s when I stop reading that series. When I encounter such an ending it makes me feel like I bought only part of the story and I go away feeling cheated. If I was reading that series to begin with it was because the prior books in the series did not stoop to such tricks. The writing was so good, the characters so compelling that I wanted to buy the next book to read the next adventure. I didn’t need to be coerced in such a blatantly unethical manner. Anyway, just a pet peeve of mine and one thing I will not do in any book I write. What do others think?
It isn’t really a good practice for an author to interject his viewpoint or opinions into a story unless it is well disguised. One simple way to get away with it is to have a character express the author’s opinion as if it was the character’s. It must be believable and fitting within the character’s established personality. It can be done. Maybe an example will be useful. In “Bula Bridge” I have a character who has to make a road trip from Washington D.C. to Ashtabula, Ohio. She goes on the Internet and searches for a suitable route only to find that much of it will be on a toll road. She clicks on the suggested route and drags it to a new one that minimizes the tolls. In the novel it reads:
“She noticed that the suggested route spent a considerable amount of time on the PA Turnpike. She put the cursor on top of the suggested route, clicked and held, and then dragged the blue line to a new route that avoid the tolls. She hated turnpikes and the fees they charged for a damn road that her taxes had paid for. She wasn’t giving them any more money than she had to.”
This fits the story just fine but certainly it is a pet peeve of mine even though I let the character spout off for me. The Ohio Turnpike is an example of what bothers me about toll roads. Originally when we passed a bond issue to build the turnpike we were assured that once the bond was paid off the road would be free. Guess what? The bonds are paid off and the road isn’t free. In fact it costs more now than it used to. In addition, we are building roads in places where only “pass holders” can even use the roads without paying a fine. Damn! The taxpayer builds the road and then a single company has a monopoly on its use. Doesn’t seem right. But you can see that stuffing all that into a novel would not work. Readers would be upset with rhetoric like that from the author. But, they don’t seem to mind a bit of it thrown in by a main character.