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  • Kurt Brindley 2:48 pm on January 8, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: child psychology, , elements of fiction, escapism, , , , points of view, , , , short stories, ,   

    So there I was just minding my own business… 

    You know, making every honest effort not to think about #youknowwho by revisiting a favorite book of mine (and which is listed as one of my Writing Resources) so as to give my brain a break from of all of #youknowwhose juvenile behavior, which includes but by no means whatsoever is limited to his recent flurry of tweets, in one of which he engages in childish, bullying name-calling and effectively proves he has no interest in governing effectively by labeling the Senate Minority Leader and the rest his Democratic party as “clowns”…

    However and unfortunately, I am presently trapped in a surreal and inescapable alternate reality where, similar to the brokenhearted lover who is painfully reminded by each song on the radio of the love he has lost, everything I chance upon seems to remind me of #youknowwho regardless how hard I try to ignore his ignorance.

    I guess in this sad metaphor, I would be the brokenhearted lover and my love lost would be the ideals, honor, and integrity of my country.


    So I’m flipping through this favorite book of mine called POINTS OF VIEW: An Anthology of of Short Stories and I’m really digging it because its been so long since I’ve read it and I’m rediscovering such cool points from it as…

    The differences in a spectrum are differences of degree: to go from violet to red you keep increasing the wavelength. In our spectrum [of how the short stories in the collection are arranged] you keep increasing the distance between the speaker and the listener, and between the speaker and his subject. Thus the central concept is the trinity of first, second, and third persons–I, you, and he.”

    Pretty cool, right?

    Right. And the best part about it is I’m completely not thinking about #youknowwho because of how cool and completely engrossing the read is.

    So after reading the preface, I flip to the back real quick to see what pearls of wisdom can be gleaned there within its Afterword…

    And everything is going along just nicely and with much intrigue…

    The techniques of fiction imitate everyday recording and reporting. …[Interior and dramatic monologue] purport to be actual discourse going on “now”–somebody thinking, somebody speaking. The reader is privileged to tune in on a stream of thought or speech.

    More cool stuff, right?

    Right. And even more cool stuff follows with a discussion of how the techniques of fiction purport to mirror other aspects of reality, such as letters, diaries, autobiographies, etc., and we are told that it is up to us, the reader, to determine “what the differences are between these fictional forms and their real-life counterparts.”

    Yeah… more awesomeness.

    But then it happens…

    Cue obnoxious sucking sound followed by a loud startling pop, signalling my return from literary bliss to my real-life alternate reality consumed completely by #youknowwho where it is hard for me to distinguish what is real and what is fiction…

    So arrayed, narrative techniques tend to recapitulate the course followed by the child (my emphasis) in developing his powers of speech, and to some extent the course we follow in processing a subject through stages of discourse. When I talk to myself about myself I am all three “persons,” as in the case of interior monologue. This is the first discourse of the child, who does not distinguish between speaking to himself and speaking to another, talking about himself and talking about things outside himself.

    My surreal alternate-reality of now had me at “child.”

    I mean, after reading that and then the following quotation block, how can you not think of #youknowwho?

    According to the great psychologist of child development, Jean Piaget, who has called this discourse “egocentric speech” (emphasis again mine), the very young child thinks aloud, talks to the air…his talk is an accompaniment to whatever he is doing at the moment.

    I mean, c’mon…



    • http://theenglishprofessoratlarge.com 3:00 pm on January 8, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      When one is trapped in that narcissistic stage, we can call it “Trumpeting” or “Trumpetitis.” Unfortunately, the person never moves on. Sometimes we even call it “insanity.”

      Liked by 3 people

    • donnamarie 3:25 pm on January 8, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Nail on the head, Kurt!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Bonnie Follett 3:34 pm on January 8, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      I know exactly what you mean about wanting to put your brain in more constructive places and ignoring #youknowwho but my favorite tweet of the week was discussed at the link attached below, about poor ratings for The New Apprentice w/Arnold. I posted it on FB with a note to #youknowwho supporters that this is where their Prez-Elects head was at – but garnered not even one like or comment… Sigh! Link: https://www.yahoo.com/celebrity/trump-slams-schwarzenegger-apprentice-ratings-134339669.html?.tsrc=fauxdal
      And Joe Biden’s response with a smile was inspired: “Grow Up Donald… (pause) Grow Up, You’re President now.” Ha-Ha-Ha-Ha-Ha!!!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Mark Kelley 6:14 pm on January 8, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Amen and amen! The man is not only developmentally stunted, he’s mentally unbalanced. Can’t someone remove him from office if he’s nuts? Thanks for a great post.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Robert Mitchell 5:26 am on January 9, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      You are one of reasons why the 45 minutes I spend on the Web each morning while having my coffee are worthwhile! So what you are tapping into in this post is the idea of Logos — the ancient Greek concept, usually translated as “word” — which is that consciousness is a sacred conversation between humanity and the Gods. When we lowly humans engage in sincere, empathic and truthful discourse we are like Hermes, the messenger between gods and mortals. Isn’t that what it feels like when you’re having a great dialogue with someone, or reading a great book? You are, for all practical purposes, in heaven! No wonder the author of John 1:1 imported this old idea into his gospel by calling Christ the Logos! Thanks for a great post.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 9:39 am on January 9, 2017 Permalink | Reply

        Dude, you always bring the most interesting and unique insight into the discussion. The Stoic philosophy was essentially inspired into existence by the concept of Logos as being equivalent to God/Nature. Everything relates.

        Always appreciate your presence, kindness, and wisdom here, brother.

        Thank you.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Robert Mitchell 10:49 am on January 9, 2017 Permalink | Reply

          Thanks much, and you’re welcome! I did now know that about Stoicism. My crystal ball sees some wikipedia action in my future, or perhaps some time with my trusty Britannica circa 1919. Wisdom never goes out of style.

          Liked by 1 person

  • Kurt Brindley 4:43 pm on January 5, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , short stories, The Angel of the Odd,   

    Fake News is so Poe-thetic 

    I read an Edgar Allan Poe story today entitled The Angel of the Odd.

    It’s a fun, fast, Kafka-meets-Twain, easy to forget kind of read.

    But what is most memorable to me about the story is that it is entirely set up around the protagonists drunken dismay over what we would call the “fake news” of the day…

    (More …)

    • Katie Marie 8:42 am on January 7, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Fake news is a real problem, although it is made worse by people not checking things out for themselves. Any piece of news can be twisted to fit a narrative, we all need to be a bit more careful and a bit more sceptical about what we hear and read with regards to news. Also lol re your Fox comment XD


  • Kurt Brindley 3:42 pm on October 17, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , IndieGoGo, , , , , short stories, ,   


    This is it, my friends. The moment I’ve been waiting for where things finally begin to get real for me.

    And by real I mean from now until the end of the filming of LEAVE at the end of October, it looks like it’s going to be one mad rush of new and exciting experiences.


    I would like to introduce you to the cast and crew of LEAVE. For now, you may see them and everything LEAVE is about here >> LEAVE: A Short Film.

    After things slow down, I will introduce them to you personally here.

    I would also like to thank all the good folks who donated to my website campaign here. Please check out the list and try to support them as awesomely as you support me. That campaign has officially ended and all donations will now be managed through IndieGoGo. I will use the funds raised here to get me across the country. I’m so grateful for the support.

    I will introduce my final website donor to you, Author Anna Kopp, on Friday, October 14, 2016. Her work looks amazing. Stay tuned!

    Today, I am heading on an anniversary getaway to New England with my lovely and loving wife. Shortly after I return I will get on the road again with my sons and drive cross-country to LA for the filming LEAVE.

    I’ve decided to fire up my barely-used Instagram account and, beginning today as I head to the hood of some of my favorite authors, I will be photo-blogging my journey along the way and during the filming. Please follow along if you’d like (icon on the sidebar). I would love to have your company.


    Ice cold!

    LEAVE: A Short Film

    LEAVE, A Short Film

  • Kurt Brindley 12:28 pm on September 29, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , George Saunders, , , , Redglass Pictures, short stories, , ,   

    George Saunders On Story 

    I haven’t read any Saunders yet; been meaning to…more so after watching this:


    I discovered this video at Saunders’ site.

    I watched it first at The Atlantic.

    You can see it in its original production at the beautiful site of Redglass Pictures.

    If there are any Saunders fans or nonfans out there, what are your thoughts about his writing. . .

    I wonder.


    • Nic Schuck 3:12 pm on September 29, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Civil War Land in Bad Decline is so good. As is Braindead Megaphone. Highly recommend George Saunders.

      Liked by 1 person

    • christinenbarba 12:07 am on October 5, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I second that ^^^! The Braindead Megaphone is great.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 10:30 am on October 6, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Awesome. I’ll be on the lookout for it. Unfortunately it isn’t available through my Overdrive app, but I am on the list for his newest collection. Thank you, christinenbarba :)


  • Kurt Brindley 12:41 pm on August 16, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , movie adaptations, , , , , , , short stories,   

    The book’s always better than the movie… 


    That’s the rule, right?

    Books rule over movies.


    Before I got involved with this whole short film thing, I always would get indignant after watching yet another failed movie adaptation of a book I liked. And I would always wonder to myself why in the heck could they never get it write/right.

    Until on a whim I decided to try my hand at adapting my short story LEAVE into a screenplay.

    Right away I realized that this was going to be no easy feat.

    Introspection and contemplation that serve a short story or a novel so well is basically useless in a screenplay where just about everything must be represented as action and dialogue so it can be seen and heard by the audience.

    Of course LEAVE as a short story is mostly introspection and contemplation by the protagonist so right off the bat the whole structure would have to change in order to be able to show his shift of character from beginning to end.

    To do this, new scenes had to be invented and new characters had to be developed and within the first writing of the story of LEAVE as a screenplay, it was already hugely different from the story of LEAVE the short story. And that was only by my own efforts.

    After I showed it to an actor friend for his feedback, from his guidance it went from 33 pages down to fifteen. And yes, to whittle it down that much there had to be a significant change in story and tempo.

    But really, the biggest changes to the story didn’t occur until once the screenplay was accepted by a studio and a director was found and she got ahold of it… and then several of the lead actors got ahold of it…

    Talk about feedback overload. It took much effort and persuasion to maintain it as a story I recognized.

    And, while we are scheduled to begin filming in two months, we haven’t yet cast the lead actor so I can only wonder what changes still might occur to it.

    But you know what… the story as it is now as a near fully developed screenplay is really not that far from what it is as a short story.

    It is just different.

    And much, much better in my opinion.

    Still, I guarantee it if you read the short story and then see the film, you will be significantly surprised by the differences that there are between the two.

    I just hope you are not significantly disappointed.

    But I can pretty much guarantee that you won’t be because we have an awesome crew and the cast is going to be first rate and impressive.

    And I can also guarantee that from now on whenever I watch a movie that has been poorly adapted from a book that I like I will certainly be less critical and more understanding of the differences between the two and the winding and somewhat weary course that had to be traveled to get the story to the screen.

    Because now I know.

    And now I have only one rule regarding movies and books.

    Both of them do.

    Rule, that is…


    Have you heard about our private Facebook Writers & Readers Group?


    • juliabarrett 1:05 pm on August 16, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Interesting. I love Point of Impact yet also love Shooter (more concise story-telling). I love Nothing Lasts Forever yet also love Die Hard. Remains of the Day is the single example of a book/movie that IMO are equally brilliant.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 2:54 pm on August 19, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks for sharing this. I’ve never seen nor read any of them (except ROTD). Thanks, juliabarrett. :)

        Liked by 1 person

        • juliabarrett 3:11 pm on August 19, 2016 Permalink | Reply

          I like to read then watch and compare. Sometimes a film is very different but outstanding regardless.


    • simplydelete 1:12 pm on August 16, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      You made some great points! While I usually like the book better than the movie, a lot of time the movie is good enough that if I hadn’t read the book I’d probably really enjoy it. This also helps explain why one of my favorite childhood books “Ella Enchanted” was totally changed and, in my opinion, was a terrible movie. If they did it word for word from the book it probably would’ve made a slow, boring movie. The main plot was the same, but everything else about it was different. I guess it’s hard when you have a book you love completely changed into something you never imagined it would be.

      Liked by 2 people

    • joliesattic 3:41 pm on August 16, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Congratulations on your film!! That is awesome. Looking forward to it.1

      Liked by 1 person

    • Jay 4:32 pm on August 16, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      It’s hard when you read a book first and love it. Books are hard to convert 100% so even very good adaptations feel like they’re missing something to the readers that love it. I have seen some great movies that are adapted though, so it’s doable. But yes, they’re different animals. And that’s okay.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Dalindcy 5:42 pm on August 16, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Interesting perspective! I try not to compare books and movies too much. They are such different mediums and both have their pro’s and cons.


    • Thomas Weaver 6:42 pm on August 16, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Sure, the book is always better than the movie…

      Except The Princess Bride…
      And The Hunger Games…
      And The Cloud Atlas…
      And several others…

      I don’t understand why some people feel they have to “prove” written fiction is inherently superior to screen fiction. They both have advantages and disadvantages: a novel can have as big a “special-effects budget” as the author wants, but most novels, unlike movies and television, don’t have a soundtrack with interesting music. (A couple of my favorite novels DO have “soundtracks,” or at least music recommended by the authors, but that may be because the authors are also musicians and so think about such things more.)

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 2:51 pm on August 19, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Well, for me, I invest much more time in a book and, consequently, become very attached to those that move me. So, when a movie adaptation of a book that I’m attached to, in my estimation, fails, then I usually have the need to express my disappointment… not sure if I’m looking to prove anything. It just seems to me that more often than not a book is better than a movie adaptation of it. As far as a comparison between the two mediums in general, that’s a different discussion.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Thomas Weaver 3:13 pm on August 19, 2016 Permalink | Reply

          “More often than not” isn’t the same thing as “always.” Yes, the book IS usually better. Sometimes it isn’t.


    • andysmerdon 2:36 am on August 17, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Good luck with it mate – I’ll look forward to the adaption :)

      Liked by 1 person

    • Mellow Curmudgeon 11:18 am on August 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      The movie *A Beautiful Mind* was based on Sylvia Nasar’s biography of the schizophrenic mathematician John Nash. The movie had the same title as the book but zillions of differences. Somebody asked Nasar whether the movie was a faithful adaptation; she replied that it was “true to the architecture of Nash’s life”. Yes. Trying for detailed accuracy in the timeline and trying to explain the Nash Equilibrium Theorem correctly would have made a deadly dull movie. While some of the distortions and simplifications can be questioned, the overall result was a good movie that encouraged people to look into the book and/or what the theorem really says.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 2:43 pm on August 19, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        This is a fantastic example, MC. Watched the movie with the fam, loved it, and one of my kids read the book and reported back that, while a good book, it was much different than the movie.

        Liked by 1 person

    • TANYA LARA 1:39 pm on August 21, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Not always. :) I can name a few absolutely fantastic movies that are better than the books they were adapted from: Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (book by John Berendt), Sideways (book by Rex Pickett), and Fight Club (book by Chuck Palahniuk).


    • theherdlesswitch 2:35 pm on August 24, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks for pointing this very important fact, it’s hard to translate a book to screen. Not saying I won’t be disappointed with an adaptation, but I do always take this into consideration : )



    • iwritedumbshit 5:17 pm on August 24, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Like every rule, this one has its exceptions. The Shawshank Redemption starring Tim Robbins and Morgran Freeman was based on a novella by Stephen King titled Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption. I have no qualms with stating that the movie was superior.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Farid Solana 3:15 pm on August 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      It is not easy to visualize the product of our imagination, and most end with poor quality. What happens to Nicholas Nickleby is one of the most vivid examples to me. Hope yours is better, Kurt.


    • The Vibrant dame 7:08 am on September 1, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Wow!! And all the very best😃😃

      Liked by 1 person

    • Restless Mind 2:59 pm on September 1, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Books aren’t necessarily better than films, I just have to be aware that the film is the producer’s interpretation of the book. I feel I need to be open-minded and give credit to the producers for doing their best (at least I hope so) to incorporate all possible angles while following the storyline, without twisting author’s writing too much.

      Some films make me cringe because they destroy my own personal imagination and interpretation of the book to the point in which I can’t re-read the book without my contaminated imagination ruining it. But if I were to view the films by itself prior to reading the book first, I’d applaud it.

      I think the only time BOTH the book and the film killed it for me was the Twilight series (Yes, I read them…and saw them…I don’t like to talk about it..)

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 11:45 am on September 6, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Well said, RM. And don’t worry I won’t judge, especially since I’ve read nor seen neither of the Twilight series. :)

        Liked by 1 person

  • Kurt Brindley 7:58 pm on August 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , Pam Schloesser-Canepa, , , short stories, , ,   

    WRITE EDIT WRITE: Flash Fiction by Author Pam Schloesser-Canepa 

    WEW Facebook Ad-1200x299
    Last week I announced that we were starting a private Facebook group for Writers and Readers called WRITE EDIT WRITE. Well I am happy to say that we have had a great response to the announcement and our group includes a growing host of active and creative members. And while we’re still getting situated and figuring things out, we have held our very first WEW CHALLENGE, a challenge where members were asked to post a 250-word or less flash fiction or flash essay. I am again happy to say we had a fantastic response, with the following selection being representative of the fine writing being exhibited by all.

    To read all the submissions, visit here.
    To learn more about the private group, visit here.

    Please check out the writing and stop by the authors’ websites to show them your support.

    Write on!

    by Pam Schloesser-Canepa

    Tussling with the dog. That was Jasmine’s story, this time. The scar would dissipate in a week, she knew. It did hurt. This was so unfair, yet, all too familiar.

    Driving to work, Jasmine noticed she’d inadvertently put on one navy blue shoe and one black. An understandable mistake; they were almost identical, and those colors were close. I wonder if anyone will notice? She realized the light had turned. I sure don’t need a ticket.

    To her left was the post office. Darn, I forgot that electric bill. Rick will lose it. Do I go back? She worried it might make her late, yet she didn’t need one more fight about the mail.

    Her thoughts drifted to the invitation that had arrived the week before, for her ten year high school reunion. Of course, with a four month old baby and a full-time job, she hadn’t seriously considered. Still, she had thought of going.

    “You just want to see all your old boyfriends! You wench!” Rick had screamed, holding the baby in his arms.

    “No, Rick, don’t worry, I don’t need to go.” That’s how it always went. Keeping the peace. When she never received any in return.

    Abruptly, she pulled into the post office. “I need a post office box,” she announced to the clerk. JUST for me.

    With receipt of the key, she found the assigned box. It was cool inside. She imagined fitting inside of it, this doorway to distant places.

  • Kurt Brindley 5:04 pm on May 12, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , dramas, , , , , , , , , short stories,   

    A Mid-Term Thank You To All Who Support #IndieFilms 

    Seeing that we will begin filming sometime in early July, I would say we are about half-way through our campaign to raise the seed funds, so to speak, for the larger Indiegogo campaign that will raise the major funds needed to produce LEAVE, a short film based upon a screenplay I wrote.

    So, to celebrate our mid-term point, I would like to thank everyone who has donated thus far in the campaign. You can see the list of all donors here.

    I would especially like to thank the following for both donating and choosing a Reward Package that has allowed and will allow me to share and promote their work here at RELATING TO HUMANS, via my newsletter, and throughout my social networks.









    I Encourage You to Please Support Those Who Support My Efforts to Make Independent Films by Visiting Their Websites and Buying and Reviewing Their Books or other Promoted Products. Thank You for Helping Me to Thank Them.


    LEAVE: A Short Film


  • Kurt Brindley 4:52 pm on February 24, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , short stories, , ,   

    Write What You Know, You Know… 

    They say, Write what you know…

    And in response I say, Okay…

    So when I began in earnest to write stuff for people to read way back in the early Nineties – what a great decade that was – about all I knew about life outside of my personal life which I didn’t and still don’t have the guts yet to truly explore, was all pretty much navy-related.

    Hence, the stories I wrote at the time were all pretty much, well… navy-related.

    And therein lies the primary challenge I have when it comes to convincing and conniving folks who look a lot like you to read my writing… and now, to support a film based upon my writing: that even though the stories may be navy-related, it doesn’t necessarily mean they are stories just about the navy.

    Some of you, many of you, are probably new to this site so understandably there may be a few things about me that you just aren’t aware of:

    Like, even though my undergraduate degree is in English – which probably explains my nerd obsession with arranging and amalgamating morphemes into new and creative and interesting ways for you to read stuff, my graduate degree is in a completely unrelated field (well, maybe it’s a little related) of Human Relations – which probably explains my obsession with trying to understand why it is you think and behave the crazy and unpredictable way you do.

    To satisfy my morpheme amalgamating obsession, I began to write; to satisfy my relating-to-humans obsession, I took a few years off from my primary career field in the Intelligence Community (oxymoron, I know…) while in the navy, to become a certified Equal Opportunity Advisor, where I spent much of my time providing counseling and training in diversity management.

    And it is this relating to humans-related stuff that I would like to think is what my stories, while even though they may be set in a navy-related world, are all really about…

    Like, as explored in my novel The Sea Trials of an Unfortunate Sailor, how do our perceptions and stereotypes influence our decisions when confronted with situations like homophobia and harassment and abuse?


    Or, as explored in the short story and soon to be short film LEAVE, what was the environment really like for that courageous female sailor who took that first assignment to a warship with an all-male crew?


    While these stories are set on navy ships during the Nineties, it is my belief their underlying themes and messages are relevant even, and especially, today.

    Just recently Congress has authorized women to serve in all combat-related duties, not just some of them like back in the Nineties.

    Right now there are courageous, pioneering females all throughout the US military – and throughout society in general – who are opening doors that have previously always been closed to them, and setting off on a course that clears the way for many more courageous females to forever follow.

    So, yeah, we writers have always been told to Write what you know…

    Just as you readers have always been told to Never judge a book by its cover…

    Especially mine.

    Open Books Open Minds…



    • Illian Rain 5:50 pm on February 24, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      That is one intriguing career path my friend! And I mean it–you have a really interesting trajectory. :)

      Liked by 2 people

      • Kurt Brindley 10:43 am on February 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        And by “path” you mean the uncertain course through my dark, overgrown forest of uncertainty and apprehension that I have been and am blindly traveling on, right? :)

        Thanks so much, my friend. Your kindness and encouragement is very much appreciated.

        Liked by 2 people

    • PepeLeDog 5:54 pm on February 24, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      But what if you know nothing?

      Liked by 1 person

    • eeblack525 8:48 pm on February 24, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      It makes me feel a lot better to know that I’m not the only one at the cross roads of decision making. I remember my professor telling me “Write what I know.” I didn’t want to. I wanted to be different but eventually, I found a unique way to spin the predictable into nicely woven piece of literature, which I hope to release.

      Thanks for this post and good luck with the film.

      Liked by 3 people

      • Kurt Brindley 10:47 am on February 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Hey, eeblack525. Thank you for the kind well wishes. We’ll need all the good luck we can muster. :)


    • Don Massenzio 8:55 am on February 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Reblogged this on Don Massenzio's Blog and commented:
      Great post on writing what you know. In the case of some presidential candidates, the book might be blank. Enjoy.

      Liked by 1 person

    • C. J. Hartwell 9:58 am on February 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I very much enjoyed Leave — left a comment on Amazon too, which I’ve only did once before. (I need to do it more, I know.)
      I see how your HR connection influenced your writing, and no doubt played a role in how much I liked it.

      Liked by 1 person

    • restoredpeople 8:37 pm on February 26, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I was at a writers conference this week and the teacher said – you can write about what you don’t know- just research it. I found that interesting since it was different from what I have heard to write about what you know.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 9:00 pm on February 26, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Oh yeah, sure, RP. We are free to write that which compels us to write. While I believe it is sound advice for new writers, I was using the old saw of a saying of “write what you know” mostly as a device to make the point about “not judging a book by its cover” as I try to convince folks to see beyond my writing as being just navy stories. So we should write what we know, what we don’t know, but mostly we should write what’s interesting. :)

        Liked by 1 person

  • Kurt Brindley 2:04 pm on February 21, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , funding campaigns, , horror films, I Am The Doorway, , , Jeffrey Stackhous, , , , short stories, Stephen King,   

    While waiting impatiently yet steadfastly for my #shortfilm funding campaign to begin… 

    I invite you to pass the time checking out the short film funding campaign for a good friend of mine, Jeffrey Stackhouse.

    Jeffrey – an award-winning screenwriter and all around talented/good guy – and the rest of his cast and crew, have just launched a fundraising campaign to produce “I Am The Doorway,” a ‪‎film adaption of a Stephen King short story that is endorsed and encouraged by King, himself.

    Already there is discussion that Jeff’s film has the makings to be the best cinematic adaptation of King’s work yet.

    If you’re a fan of King, ‎horror, independent film-making, or all of the above, please check out Jeff’s work and support him – monetarily and/or socially – if you are able by clicking here.

    Thanks, all.
    P.s. – In facebook’s never-ending effort to make money (nothing wrong with that, btw) they make it very hard for public pages to be seen unless they pay to promote their posts. It gets very expensive so please share this as both an act of kindness and as an easy, inexpensive way to support The Arts.

    Here’s their pitch video from the film’s director:

    To sign up to be notified when the funding campaign for my short film begins, please click here.


  • Kurt Brindley 5:30 pm on February 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , Los Angeles, , , short stories, ,   

    So, I’m Going To Make A Movie… UPDATE #1 

    As you may already know, a short film is going to be made of a screenplay I adapted from LEAVE, one of my short, dramatic stories about what it may have been like for the first females sailors assigned to warships back in the Nineties.

    It probably isn’t much of a spoiler to say that in both the story’s and the film’s interpretation, it is quite a challenge for those courageous women, seeing how the all-male crew of the ship they’re reporting to would rather go to war than have their ship be invaded by female sailors.


    So… I’ll be going out to Los Angeles in April to begin work on the production, but first we have a small detail of raising the funds.

    Yes, I’m looking at you…

    We plan to film on the battleship USS Iowa, which is now a museum ship out in LA. Unfortunately, even though the Iowa staff are willing to significantly cut the price because I’m an old salt of a retired sailor, it still costs a pretty penny nonetheless. And there of course will be other production costs to factor in, as well.

    We’ll be kicking off an Indigogo campaign to raise the funds at the beginning of March but I just wanted to give you all a heads up that we now have a “Coming Soon” page where you can sign up to stay informed on project updates and be advised when the campaign is live.

    Our vision for the film is to:

    Create a Cinematic Work of Art that both Entertains and Promotes a Discussion for Positive Change

    Needless to say, your support of our efforts, not just through donations, but also through your outreach to all your family and friends on our behalf, will be key in helping us turn our vision into a reality.

    We’ll be introducing our award-winning cast [it’s not 100% yet but if cast assignments firm up as it looks like they will we are going to have a stellar cast] and highly accomplished crew very soon so please check it out and join our team at:


    Okay, I have taken off my PT Barnum wannabe Promoter’s Hat and have now put on my wannabe highly esteemed and influential Author’s Hat…

    First off, I would like to report that building a campaign to raise the funds to produce a short film is taking a lot of my very limited brain power.

    We have decided to go with Indigogo to raise our funds instead of Kickstarter. The main reason for this decision is that you get to keep the funds you raise with Indigogo even if you do not meet your goal. With Kickstarter it’s all or nothing – if you don’t meet your goal, you don’t get the dough. Indigogo does however/of course, charge higher percentages for their service and transfer fees.

    So once our funding site was decided, one of the first challenges I had to confront was the “tag line,” one of the first blocks that has to be filled out when building the pitch for the campaign.

    One of the toughest things for me to do as a writer is to condense big meaning, metaphorical concepts with a lot of words into a synopsis of a paragraph or two. Having to condense down even further into a tag line that allows only 100 characters, such as Indigogo’s, is close to self-inflicted murder.

    Fortunately, I had already gone through the painful process of coming up with a logline, which was needed for pitching the screenplay.

    A sailor’s desire to be with his sick mother is complicated by the unwanted influx of his ship’s first female sailors and a looming war

    But the problem is that logline is 133 characters and Indigogo’s “tag line” only allows for 100 characters. So, after more painful paring, this is what I came up with:

    A sailor can’t be with his sick mother due to an influx of despised female sailors and a looming war

    With war looming and despised females sailors arriving, a sailor strives to be with his dying mother

    I’m still not 100% loving it but my head hurts after all that editing out and then having second thoughts and editing in and then having third thoughts and editing out again and on and on…

    But, it’ll do for now as I now have to continue on with the rest of the pitch development which, hopefully, won’t hurt my head quite as much.

    Stay tuned! The campaign will be kicking off at the beginning of the month.

    TTFN and Write On! my friends.

    Coming Soon!
    For details, click here

    Article updated to reflect new tag line and that cast assignments are close but not yet completely firm


    • Megi 5:43 pm on February 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Reblogged this on HappyNest in America.


    • Abigail 5:45 pm on February 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      How awesome is this! :) It’s a dream of mine to write a novel and have it made into a movie or TV series. :)

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 5:48 pm on February 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Awesome. Make it happen. :) I never really considered the movie angle of things until a few things began falling into place. Hopefully this short film will generate interest in my novel – which, adapting it to film, is the primary objective.

        Liked by 1 person

    • atribeuntangled 5:46 pm on February 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Congratulations!!! Its one of my dream to have my book made into a movie. Good luck with your funding. It sounds like a wonderful project.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 5:50 pm on February 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Hey, thanks, atribeuntangled. Hope you’re working hard toward realizing that dream. :) I never really considered the movie angle of things until recently when a few things began falling into place. Hopefully this short film will generate interest in my novel – which, adapting it to film, is the primary objective.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Jaden C. Kilmer 5:56 pm on February 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Good luck with this! I’d love to take some time to invest in a short film idea of mine but so many things seem to get in the way of that. Not the least of which being money.

      I’ve been lucky enough to spend a night on the USS Hornet, in Alameda. I’m sure there will plenty of great locations and ambiance for you!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 6:47 pm on February 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Thank you, Jaden. Since you’ve served on a navy ship I guess I can call you a “shipmate.” :) Hopefully you’re able to find that time to invest. It will be time well spent if you do.


    • Sophie vdA 7:05 pm on February 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Wow! Good luck with making the short film! Looking forward to it. Awesome you just go suddenly on such a journey.

      Greetings by Sophie

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 9:28 am on February 19, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks so much for your well wishes, Sophie. We’ll need all the luck and encouragement we can muster until this journey is a wrap.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Girl in the World 7:55 pm on February 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      It must be exciting to see your written work come off the page and onto film, Good luck and good fun!

      Liked by 1 person

    • maggie0019 9:53 pm on February 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Well. Mom was a female sailor in the 80’s and was despised by the male crew (women don’t belong on ships; you’re nothing but billet grabbers; sailors belong at sea) and she begged and pleaded to be put on a combatant. Nope. Mom likes to think she helped blaze the trail for other women. Pearl Harbor, and Barber’s Point, Hawaii.Good luck with your project!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 9:37 am on February 19, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        How cool. I can’t imagine the courage it must have taken for those first women onboard ships. Pretty tough environment. Please tell your mother, my shipmate, thank you for her service and I hope she follows along and encourages her navy friends to do the same. I imagine some of the harsh dialogue in the story will be unpleasant reminders of all the challenges she faced. If she’d like to swap sea stories she’s more than welcome to email me through my contact page. I was stationed at Pearl Harbor from 89-92, btw. Thanks so much for your well-wishes, maggie0019 and for sharing this with me.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Ava 9:56 pm on February 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      My editor brain loves a challenge. : ) “Sailor’s sick mother plays second fiddle to female soldiers and a looming war.”

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 9:40 am on February 19, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Nice! I need all the help I can get. Thanks, Ava. :)

        Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 11:38 am on February 19, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Ok, after wrestling with this thing all night and today, I think I’ve got it:

        “With war looming and despised female sailors arriving, a sailor strives to be with his dying mother”


    • Mike Fuller Author 6:55 am on February 19, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Reblogged this on mikefullerauthor.

      Liked by 1 person

    • SheepDip 8:03 am on February 19, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Reblogged this on joustingwiththeimagination.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Don Massenzio 8:15 am on February 19, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Congratulations and good luck with the film.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Priyanki 1:07 pm on February 19, 2016 Permalink | Reply

    • Akki 1:12 am on February 20, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Awesome post

      Liked by 1 person

  • Kurt Brindley 11:28 am on February 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: A Moveable Feast, Babylon Revisited, , , , , , , , , , short stories, , writing fails   

    I was going to review Hemingway’s A MOVEABLE FEAST, but… 

    …I am knee deep (I’m pretty tall dude so that’s pretty darn deep) into so much stuff* — stuff being formatting my two latest books HOW NOT TO DIE and SHORT VERSES & OTHER CURSES into print editions; setting up the logistics for the film adaptation of my short story “Leave” (fundraiser announcement soon – that’s right, I’m looking at you); adapting my novel THE SEA TRIALS OF AN UNFORTUNATE SAILOR into a screenplay (so that I’ll have it to shop around when I go out to LA to work on “Leave”); and of course the latest WIP — that I’v given up on it.

    If it matters, I do feel quite guilty about it…

    In fact, I feel quite guilty about not publishing much at all around here lately.

    Publish or perish, an all that…

    But, as a consolation for my quitting on this review, I recently read this interesting read from the Paris Review, which kind of (but far from exactly) reflects my thoughts on my relationship with Hemingway, and I offer it as a very nice, if not nicer, substitute.

    In addition to discussing things such as my relationship with the Big Papa, I also had good intention (and we all know what the path to hell is paved with) to compare and contrast Hemingway’s view of Fitzgerald and Paris in the Twenties as found in his memoir with the beat up protagonist in Fitzgerald’s short story (perhaps a view similar to one he had of himself) “Babylon Revisited” (one of the best short stories ever put to paper).

    I probably would have giddily gushed a bit about Woody’s “Midnight In Paris,” too…

    However, because of all the stuff presented above and the nice PR essay, I lost my head of steam for it all and this is as far as I got/am getting with it…

    The Romance versus the Reality of Hemingway’s Paris of the “Lost Generation”

    by Ernest Hemingway

    RATING: ★ ★ ★ ★

    Ernest Hemingway

    If you want to see what I think Hemingway and other authors would like as clowns, click here.


    The memoir >>

    The short story >>


    Rating System:
    ★ = Unreadable
    ★ ★ = Poor Read
    ★ ★ ★ = Average Read
    ★ ★ ★ ★ = Outstanding Read
    ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ = Exceptional Read

    That’s it. That’s alls I gots…

    Pretty lame, I know; but what can say other than that the offer I presented in my “Hey Reader, What’s Your Angle?” post still stands. I’m still looking for good reviews to read, and perhaps reblog, that illustrate your reading and critiquing strategy… a bonus now for me would be ones that discuss Hemingway and/or Fitzgerald.

    Can a brother get a link or two to a review, or what?


    *Isn’t it funny how I’m always whining about how much I have to do, yet I somehow still found the time to promote inform you about all the stuff I have to do? Weird.


    • cmblackwood 3:37 pm on February 9, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Wow! Reading about all your previous engagements (especially the screenplay stuff) made me sort of jealous! But congrats, brother! I like hearing about what all the latest authors are up to. :)

      Liked by 1 person

    • MBBlissett 3:55 pm on February 9, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I’ve not read as much Hemingway as I should. A Farewell To Arms destroyed me the first time that I read it, and there’s an elegance to his work that demands a bit of quiet before it sinks in that he’s being that spare on purpose. I’m working with my agent on legacy publishing so it’s a lot of editing and posting the short pieces here to keep the creative muscles going. So it’s a good problem to have, too many good books to catch up on and too much writing to power through. The obstacle is the way, Kurt, the obstacle is the way.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 11:06 am on February 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Often it feels as if the obstacle is simply in the way. I tend to lose focus when too many balls/obstacles are in the air for me to juggle. One reason I like self-publishing is because I can allow my OCD-like tendencies to get wrapped around all the technical nitnoids of the process and not feel too guilty about not writing because it is of the writing. At least that’s how I allow myself to be assuaged anyway. Of course you’re right, though – it’s a good problem to have.

        Liked by 1 person

        • MBBlissett 3:14 pm on February 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply

          See, I got into this for the writing and I would rather have people who were passionate about their respective fields so that I can sit there and make the best possible book I can. Plus, it gives me more time to read even as there is far less immediate gratification in pitching to publishers through the agent. Swings and roundabouts, Kurt, I would say.

          Liked by 1 person

    • C. J. Hartwell 4:43 pm on February 9, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I respect Hemingway as a writer — no one could edit a sentence down to its sparsest detail and still make it sing quite like he did — but I wasn’t fond of his stories. Fitzgerald, on the other hand, makes me swoon. In a “ohmygodcouldthatguywrite” kind of way.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Relax... 9:13 pm on February 9, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Yes, yes, yes!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Therese 10:37 am on February 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        I’ve never finished reading a Hemingway novel but I like the short stories A Clean Well-Lighted Place, and also Hills Like White Elephants.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Kurt Brindley 10:50 am on February 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply

          I wonder why you never finished them. I can’t remember how many times I’ve read For Whom the Bell Tolls and The Old Man and the Sea. They both are so moving. A Clean Well-Lighted Place ranks at the very top of my favorite short stories and HLWE has perhaps my favorite line of dialogue – “Would you please please … stop talking?” Powerful stuff.

          Liked by 1 person

          • Therese 7:56 pm on February 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply

            Those two you mentioned were included in my uni professor’s list of required reading. And we just had to choose from the list. I guess because the list included Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, Camus and Marquez so I chose their novels instead. But I should read Hemingway. I know I should. :)

            Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 10:57 am on February 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Yes, I agree FSF probably was a better writer but if I had to choose one oeuvre over the other I would go with Hem’s without hesitation.


    • Relax... 9:30 pm on February 9, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Excellent drawing of Papa, by the way — and of the *clowns*!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Rajiv 4:32 am on February 11, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I have not read this one

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 6:42 pm on February 12, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        If you’re a Hemingway fan I would think you would enjoy it; though if you can get your hands on an edition of his collected letters I recommend that even more.


  • Kurt Brindley 12:11 pm on November 26, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , short stories, , , turkeys,   

    A Turkey Tale by Mark Twain 


    Mark Twain

    Mark Twain

    When I was a boy my uncle and his big boys hunted with the rifle, the youngest boy Fred and I with a shotgun–a small single-barrelled shotgun which was properly suited to our size and strength; it was not much heavier than a broom. We carried it turn about, half an hour at a time. I was not able to hit anything with it, but I liked to try. Fred and I hunted feathered small game, the others hunted deer, squirrels, wild turkeys, and such things. My uncle and the big boys were good shots. They killed hawks and wild geese and such like on the wing; and they didn’t wound or kill squirrels, they stunned them. When the dogs treed a squirrel, the squirrel would scamper aloft and run out on a limb and flatten himself along it, hoping to make himself invisible in that way– and not quite succeeding. You could see his wee little ears sticking up. You couldn’t see his nose, but you knew where it was. Then the hunter, despising a “rest” for his rifle, stood up and took offhand aim at the limb and sent a bullet into it immediately under the squirrel’s nose, and down tumbled the animal, unwounded, but unconscious; the dogs gave him a shake and he was dead. Sometimes when the distance was great and the wind not accurately allowed for, the bullet would hit the squirrel’s head; the dogs could do as they pleased with that one–the hunter’s pride was hurt, and he wouldn’t allow it to go into the gamebag.

    In the first faint gray of the dawn the stately wild turkeys would be stalking around in great flocks, and ready to be sociable and answer invitations to come and converse with other excursionists of their kind. The hunter concealed himself and imitated the turkey-call by sucking the air through the leg-bone of a turkey which had previously answered a call like that and lived only just long enough to regret it. There is nothing that furnishes a perfect turkey-call except that bone. Another of Nature’s treacheries, you see. She is full of them; half the time she doesn’t know which she likes best–to betray her chid or protect it. In the case of the turkey she is badly mixed: she gives it a bone to be used in getting it into trouble, and she also furnishes it with a trick for getting itself out of the trouble again. When a mamma-turkey answers an invitation and finds she has made a mistake in accepting it, she does as the mamma-partridge does–remembers a previous engagement–and goes limping and scrambling away, pretending to be very lame; and at the same time she is saying to her not-visible children, “Lie low, keep still, don’t expose yourselves; I shall be back as soon as I have beguiled this shabby swindler out of the country.”

    When a person is ignorant and confiding, this immoral device can have tiresome results. I followed an ostensibly lame turkey over a considerable part of the United States one morning, because I believed in her and could not think she would deceive a mere boy, and one who was trusting her and considering her honest. I had the single-barrelled shotgun, but my idea was to catch her alive. I often got within rushing distance of her, and then made my rush; but always, just as I made my final plunge and put my hand down where her back had been, it wasn’t there; it was only two or three inches from there and I brushed the tail- feathers as I landed on my stomach–a very close call, but still not quite close enough; that is, not close enough for success, but just close enough to convince me that I could do it next time. She always waited for me, a little piece away, and let on to be resting and greatly fatigued; which was a lie, but I believed it, for I still thought her honest long after I ought to have begun to doubt her, suspecting that this was no way for a high-minded bird to be acting. I followed, and followed, and followed, making my periodical rushes, and getting up and brushing the dust off, and resuming the voyage with patient confidence; indeed, with a confidence which grew, for I could see by the change of climate and vegetation that we were getting up into the high latitudes, and as she always looked a little tireder and a little more discouraged after each rush, I judged that I was safe to win, in the end, the competition being purely a matter of staying power and the advantage lying with me from the start because she was lame.

    Along in the afternoon I began to feel fatigued myself. Neither of us had had any rest since we first started on the excursion, which was upwards of ten hours before, though latterly we had paused awhile after rushes, I letting on to be thinking about something else; but neither of us sincere, and both of us waiting for the other to call game but in no real hurry about it, for indeed those little evanescent snatches of rest were very grateful to the feelings of us both; it would naturally be so, skirmishing along like that ever since dawn and not a bite in the meantime; at least for me, though sometimes as she lay on her side fanning herself with a wing and praying for strength to get out of this difficulty a grasshopper happened along whose time had come, and that was well for her, and fortunate, but I had nothing–nothing the whole day.

    More than once, after I was very tired, I gave up taking her alive, and was going to shoot her, but I never did it, although it was my right, for I did not believe I could hit her; and besides, she always stopped and posed, when I raised the gun, and this made me suspicious that she knew about me and my marksmanship, and so I did not care to expose myself to remarks.

    I did not get her, at all. When she got tired of the game at last, she rose from almost under my hand and flew aloft with the rush and whir of a shell and lit on the highest limb of a great tree and sat down and crossed her legs and smiled down at me, and seemed gratified to see me so astonished.

    I was ashamed, and also lost; and it was while wandering the woods hunting for myself that I found a deserted log cabin and had one of the best meals there that in my life-days I have eaten. The weed-grown garden was full of ripe tomatoes, and I ate them ravenously, though I had never liked them before. Not more than two or three times since have I tasted anything that was so delicious as those tomatoes. I surfeited myself with them, and did not taste another one until I was in middle life. I can eat them now, but I do not like the look of them. I suppose we have all experienced a surfeit at one time or another. Once, in stress of circumstances, I ate part of a barrel of sardines, there being nothing else at hand, but since then I have always been able to get along without sardines.

  • Kurt Brindley 8:23 pm on August 31, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , comic books, , , , Literary Gods, , Neil Gaiman, , recording software, short stories, The Sandman   

    Neil Gaiman Is My Co-Pilot 

    Neil GaimanOkay, I’ve never been one of those hardcore Gaiman fanboys* that you see following him with blind, whole-body, fervor on twitter but I sure do have a whole lot of respect and admiration for what he’s accomplished in his life – and mine. Beginning with The Sandman series oh so long ago, Gaiman seems unable to be unsuccessful at whatever it is he does. Googlify his name and you will find that he has won so many major awards, some of them more than once, that if my mom had seen my face screw up in shock and awe after first seeing the significantly long list she would have warned me immediately that if I keep making that face someday it’s gonna stay that way.

    Point being: the dude is pretty awesome.

    And we can add one more awesome point to his long list of awesome points: Recently I downloaded the audiobook version of his short fiction collection Trigger Warning: Short Fictions and Disturbances to one of my favoritest apps, Overdrive. And of course I find that the book is read by none other than The Man himself. And of course I find that I’ll be both god and buddha damned if he also isn’t one of the best god and buddha damned “voice performers” I have ever heard. Sheesh – what a wonderful voice he has to listen to.



    I mention all of this more than slightly awkward author/guy crush worship thing of mine only because I too am now in the audiobook recording business. For, as I have mentioned here before, I am trying (key word: trying) to record a “performance” of my novel The Sea Trials of an Unfortunate Sailor.

    It is very hard, this recording stuff – you know, with the intimidating microphones, and the confusing software, and with the dogs constantly barking in the background…

    But the hardest part of all is coming to the realization that I don’t have the greatest of reading voices, especially since the book is narrated from the point of view of an insecure eighteen-year-old whom I would have to guess came late to the puberty game. So me trying to read in a voice that might pass as even barely authentic to the story has been both very hilarious when hearing it during playback and even more discouraging.

    So far I have managed to record an introduction to the book, as well as all the novel’s front matter whatnots that include the dedication and acknowledgment (and which have been uploaded to my app). But those I was able to read in my own voice, which may not be the most pleasant to listen to but at least I don’t have to contort my diaphragm around my voice box in order to speak with it.

    So yeah, I’m still working on finding (rediscovering?) that insecure eighteen-year-old voice of mine…

    It’s a tough gig, but I shan’t give up for I have a sure-fire strategy for voice recording accomplishment and success:

    Each time I run into a rough spot while recording I’ll simply stop, take a deep breath, look upward to the sky in humility and veneration and ask to the Literary Gods On High…

    What would Jesus Neil do?

    *non-gender specific


    • Mike Fuller Author 8:59 pm on August 31, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Either that or sit on a sawhorse during the recording.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Mike Fuller Author 9:01 pm on August 31, 2015 Permalink | Reply


      Liked by 1 person

    • amandagrey1 9:16 pm on August 31, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Neil Gaiman is definitely a favorite of mine, too. I’ve downloaded a few audios of his from Overdrive. Neverwhere and The Ocean at the End of the Lane…both were read by him as well. I was very surprised at this and he does have an excellent reading voice.

      Liked by 2 people

    • purpleslobinrecovery 9:22 pm on August 31, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Unfortunately, I don’t know who he is, so I can’t really comment.

      Liked by 1 person

    • princessarchitect 1:56 am on September 1, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Isn’t Neil Gaiman the author of Stardust? I can’t comment on the audio books but might try them – sounds good. Also I have no tips on voice recording… I remember my horror at hearing my own dulcet tones recorded as a teenager (as we all do) – is that what I sound like!? I knew my radio days were over before they began! But good luck!!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 8:56 am on September 1, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        Ha ha… Thank you, princessarchitect. If you happen download my app, let me know how bad it sounds please. :) And yes, NG is the author of Stardust.

        Liked by 1 person

    • zarish94fatima 2:52 am on September 1, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      i have to find these audios soon.

      Liked by 1 person

    • M. W. Morrell 8:58 am on September 1, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      The perfect anglo-american position. I’m so envious.


    • bookgirl1987 2:05 pm on September 3, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I adore Neil Gaiman’s reading voice! I listened to his novella “The Ocean at the End of the Lane” via OverDrive recently and really enjoyed the experience! You will find your confidence in this new endeavor!


    • Kurt Brindley 10:10 am on September 11, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Well, sure I could but what fun would that be? I do all this out – books, blogging, social media – of enjoyment (mostly); certainly not because there is a huge call for me to do it or because I am making loads of money from it. I know my post sounds whiny and self-deprecating but that’s written (mostly and hopefully) for humors sake. One thing I love most about all of this – books, blogging, etc.) is the discovery process. I dig learning new things and having to buy new toys (such as microphones and whatnot) to support what’s being discovered. But you are certainly correct in saying that, if I were to hire someone more appropriate for the task, the result would be more authentic and pleasing to the ear. :)


    • Clara Erving 5:56 pm on September 15, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      My husband and I are Neil Gaiman fans. We have “Trigger Warning” next to our bed and just bought the recently released, author-preferred text of “Neverwhere.” This post was a good read. Good luck on the audio book!

      Liked by 1 person

  • Kurt Brindley 12:55 pm on August 27, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , composing, , , , , , , , , short stories, ,   

    At least when the robots take over they will be much quicker in rejecting one of my stories… 

    Robot Editor

    You know, seeing how we already have robots writing poetry and composing music, I assume we will soon have robots taking over as reviewers and editors, as well.

    I yearn for that day…

    You see, months and months ago — essentially an eternity in our hyper-paced, brain-frazzling, tele-connected, continually-morphing-right-before-our-eyes day and age — in an effort to enhance (establish?) my writing cred, I submitted a couple short stories to various literary journals in the hope that they will get selected to be published so that when I self-publish my short story collection I can add a highfalutin aside within the book’s front matter that gives a self-congratulatory thank you to these literary journals for their wisdom and insight in selecting my work to be published.

    Can ya dig?

    I bet you can…

    As I’m sure you suspect, I subject myself to the subjective and contrary literary values of these human reviewers and editors because, just between you and me, I (like most other self-published authors I suspect) would like to someday be an unself-published author and be recognized as a “real writer” within the old slow (really, really slow) world of traditional publishing. (A good read on the question of whether one should self-publish or not can be found here.)

    But man* let me tall ya that from all the brain-scattering hyperlinking/twittering/buzzfeeding** I’m now addicted to, I’ve become a very impatient man***, which is why back in 2011, after experiencing how long it took agent after agent to reject my highly exceptional queries (that, and because back then I wasn’t sure I would be of this world too much longer) I began all this ego-degrading self-publishing and self-marketing nonsense in the first place.

    And which is why now, months and months after submitting my highly exceptional short stories to these good-fortuned literary journals I am getting extremely impatient with their less than expeditious responses and am once again beginning to rethink my strategy for literary fame and wealth, all of which is causing me to consider withdrawing my submissions and just go ahead and publish the damn short story collection minus the self-congratulatory front matter aside.

    Big sigh


    Off I go to my Submittable account for the third time this morning to see if the status of any of my submissions have magically changed to something other than “In-Progress.” At this point, I would celebrate even a status of “Declined” just so I can move on in certitude and vigor.

    And, while I’m (over-)indulging in my self-inflicted publishing pain at Sumbittable, I invite you to indulge in a short piece of mine that was actually selected to be published by a highly respected (at least by me) though highly unknown independent publisher, and which can be found by click clicking right here.

    Right on?

    Yeah, write on…

    *non-gender specific
    **included for dramatic purposes only – I’ve never actually been on buzzfeed…no, really
    ***gender specific


    • tmezpoetry 1:09 pm on August 27, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      haha love it! And I love the story too.

      Liked by 1 person

    • E 1:36 pm on August 27, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Seconded on both accounts. (And on lack of buzz feed as well. It always worries me that it sounds like an invitation to stinging insects to feast upon my flesh!)

      Liked by 1 person

    • From The Pews 3:23 pm on August 27, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Ah, yes…the age of robots…
      Perhaps then I too may become a writer ;)

      Truly enjoyed your piece!!! And the brilliant artwork too!!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Mike Fuller Author 4:01 pm on August 27, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I think it’s sort of like hiring someone to take your used car to the scrap yard and sell it for you. Agents are really salesmen, er, I mean sales persons. Really, unless you are famous or infamous and complications ensue around agreement on a publishing contract for the agent to play attorney and smooth out for you, they sell. The scrapyard wants a shiny BMW they can polish and detail and turn around for a nice profit. But mostly they get dented Fords that probably will sit on the lot out front with soaped numbers on the windshield that change downward as time moves on. And the agents tell us that offers on hundreds of crappy cars come to them every week. Too many to deal with and not a shiny BMW in the bunch, only that six year old Taurus now and then mixed in with all the “had to be pushed onto the lot” junkers. But we all think our writing is that BMW and send off to New York to the Ivy and near-Ivy League graduates sitting in tenth floor offices sifting through their three month backlog of e-mails and hitting the form rejection button or just ignoring it all. But alas, times change. Now anyone with a Dell or a Macbook can be their own car lot and put it all out there for good or no. And now that the price of gas has lowered and Kindle is paying by the page, well, we’ll all be in Armani and eating filet before you know it!

      Liked by 2 people

    • maggie0019 4:14 pm on August 27, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I’m right (write) with there with you, human! Woof!

      Liked by 1 person

    • pezoldo 11:45 pm on August 27, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Sounds like publishing is a real pain… is there any advice you would give to aspiring writers (like me :S) about trying to get published/self-publishing?

      Liked by 2 people

      • Kurt Brindley 5:55 pm on August 29, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        If you can afford it, hire someone to do all the technical stuff so you can focus as much as possible on arranging words in new and amazing ways. :)

        Liked by 2 people

    • Senseless Rambler 9:33 am on August 28, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Great article, Kurt. Think I’ll just stick to the self-controlled blogging. Might be as much publishing as I can handle. Keep up the great work.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 5:53 pm on August 29, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        Yeah, self-publishing surely has its challenges. Thanks so much for your kind, encouraging words, SR. Much appreciated.


    • shehannemoore 9:36 am on August 28, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Only months and months and months and more months? You’ve still a long time to wait then……

      Liked by 1 person

    • Robyn 1:36 pm on August 31, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Kurt, Kurt, Kurt. Where do I begin?! Okay, agents. Not needed. Self publishing is no longer ‘inferior’ to traditional publishing; I’m vegetarian, but I’d kill that particular sacred cow right now! Let the readers make the judgements, not the editors [who often have an agenda if employed with publishing houses]. And behold the contempt that you have been treated with, Kurt, having to wait this length of time for feedback on your art. I guess the question is this: from whom, as writers, do we seek validation? Readers? Check. Ourselves? Check. As writers, we’re living in hugely exciting times; never has there been so, so much opportunity to make a good living from writing. And self publishing – or, as I call it, independent publishing is a fantastic movement and we should embrace it fully. I don’t see it as inferior to trad. publishing in any shape or form. It’s about mindset, essentially.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 5:24 pm on August 31, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        Wow, three Kurts in one sentence – I must be in trouble. Rest assured, it’s all in good fun, my friend, as I don’t take this subject, or just about any subject – including and especially any subject pertaining to me – too seriously, if at all. That said, you offer some very sound advice, Robyn, Robyn, Robyn… :)


  • Kurt Brindley 4:56 pm on July 16, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , Hudson River, , , , , , sailboats, , short stories, ,   

    Sailors, All Are We* 


    To all the Sailors lost at Sea
    Whatever to Them
    Their Sea
    May be

    And remembering thus
    That all of Us
    Through Life
    Are Sailing

    *This poem is the dedication for the forthcoming short story collection
    LEAVE: And Other Stories Short And Shorter

    LEAVE: A Short Story

    Read the short story LEAVE for free at Smashwords


    • wallacecass 4:10 pm on July 16, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I was Regular USN from ’85-’92. Once you been at sea, it never truly leaves you.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Benjamin. 5:02 pm on July 16, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Oh, the metaphor. :)

      Liked by 1 person

    • Berna 9:58 pm on July 16, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I downloaded your short story. And look forward to reading it

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 9:27 pm on July 17, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        Thank you, Berna. I hope you enjoy it. If you feel up to it, I’d love to know your thoughts about it after you finish.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Margaret Innes 10:34 pm on July 16, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      to all the sailors lost at sea – makes me think of my grandfather – a ship’s engineer all his working life from the age of 14. Might be time to write about him. Thanks.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Robyn 11:32 am on July 18, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Hi Kurt. Just busy reading your short story. I’ll get back to you with feedback shortly. Two great uncles were lifeboat coxswains, and another was lost to the sea as a very young man. My grandmother told me of how her brothers would walk the beach every day, hoping they might recover his body for burial. The mighty sea never gave up his remains. My great grandfather worked at sea from the age of 10, a young Swede who managed to get British citizenship at the age of 25.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kurt Brindley 12:11 pm on July 18, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        Wow. A heartfelt salute to your entire seafaring family, Robyn. Thank you for sharing that and I look forward to your feedback.


  • Kurt Brindley 2:16 pm on April 23, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , reading apps, short stories, , The Sea Is My Brother,   

    My most favoritest new reading app… 

    After you download and read all of my books and stories and write raving reviews of them at any bookstore you can find all throughout the internet land, I highly recommend you download the Overdrive app. It’s a great way to read ebooks and, what I like best about it, listen to audiobooks for free, all while supporting your local library…or whatever library for which you happen to have a valid library card.

    Click to enlarge

    Click to enlarge

    It’s a piece of carrot cake to use. Just download it to your phone, create your account, search for your library, plug in your library card number and both presto and voila, you’ll be reading or listening to books in no time.

    And if you’re not into the whole smartphone thingy, you can do it all online right here.

    And speaking of libraries, if you haven’t already – and I’m pretty sure you already have – how about petitioning your library to stock my books?

    Hey, awesome, thanks dude*.

    Yours truly rockin' the audiobook THE SEA IS MY BROTHER, a novel by Jack Kerouac on his favoritist newest app Overdrive

    Yours truly rockin’ the audiobook version of THE SEA IS MY BROTHER, a posthumously published novel by Jack Kerouac, on my most favoritist new app


    *non-gender specific


    • Russell J. Fellows 2:21 pm on April 23, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Love Overdrive. Use it all the time to listen to audiobooks while I work. It helps pass the time.

      Liked by 1 person

    • 2015chronicles 5:07 pm on April 23, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Been using this app for quite a few years. Great time saver, when the books I want to read are available through Overdrive.

      Liked by 1 person

    • jason c. segarra 12:19 am on April 24, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Just installed it and can’t wait to look through and see what they have available. Thanks for sharing this!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Elizabeth Anne Mitchell 10:05 pm on April 24, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I love, love, Overdrive. As others have mentioned, it’s great for ebooks and audiobooks. Also, my local library plugs into a regional consortium, so there are sooooo many books to choose from.


  • Kurt Brindley 10:10 am on April 19, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , short stories, Stephanie Buosi, ,   

    NYX – A Short Story by Stephanie Buosi 

    What is it about the way that some words can be arranged and aligned in such a way that they can take us to places we’ve never been before?

    Who knows, right? I’m just thankful that it happens at all.

    All I know is that when I read Stephanie’s story it moved me in ways I couldn’t explain. Maybe it was the way she described the setting…the beach, the waves, the bonfire. I could almost feel the pull of the moon.

    I grew up on Lake Erie and there was a time long, long ago that I could have been one of those mindless teenagers out there running around in the sand, mindless of life that lay before me. Annoying those who already know all too well.

    Yeah, I don’t know why it is that Stephanie’s stories moves me the way it does…

    I’m just glad it does.

    Thank you, Stephanie, for sending me your sad yet magical and wonderfully titled story of inspiration.

    In Spirit…


    Stephanie Buosi

    by Stephanie Buosi

    Silly little girls are dancing in bikinis. Their boys chase them around a bonfire on the beach. The waves lap at their heels and mine, although I am neither silly nor wearing a bikini. I hear their laughter as an insult. They play with the night and use the darkness in their game of cat and mouse. I skulk around them unnoticed and am easily on my way.

    Perhaps I should have joined in their games. But I walk in a dream, and am afraid of feeling joy only to wake up again.

    I told no one.

    In a sense, I suppose you could say I ran away. But you can’t tell the people who are the fabric of your life of your decision to quit your home, your job, your life, and head to the beach. You are also a part of the fabric of their lives, and they would never let you go willingly; there would at least be one round of guilt. No. It is always best to just slip away.

    I went to the beach because you never took me to the beach. When I press my toes into the white sand the only imprint is mine. You are nowhere near this beach, so I can breathe a little easier.

    I could still smell you back in the home I quit. On the bed, against the wall, on the kitchen counter pressed against the granite… you were still there. That was why I sold the house. It now legally belongs to Mr. and Mrs. Collins, respectively. They were a nice couple, yet I still wanted to spit in their faces when they agreed to the price. Why so little? Couldn’t they see what I was giving up?

    You were a part of my shadow. You knew my darkness, and relished the bad with the good. You knew I was a bit of everything, and loved to touch it all. Now no one can touch me and you made sure of this. Perhaps I let you have too much. Every night, as I walk home, I remember this and let myself fall on the sand. I sink like a stone thrown in water. This is another reason why I chose the beach; sand is much softer than concrete, and my knees no longer hurt when they smack the ground.

    I am playing such a strange role. Who knew I could be so powerful as to be untouchable? I am now a league onto my own, possessing of something no one else will know. Because how can they know? You were my shadow alone.

    I have to skip around starfish on my walk home. Every night they are pushed by the waves to their deaths, and leave behind beautiful concrete memories of their lives. The locals collect them in wicker baskets and sell them to ambivalent tourists during the day. Their bodies are treasured, and they become something more than star-shaped predators belonging to the class Asteroidea.

    You. Homo sapiens. Workaholic. Wonderful fingers. Belonging to me. Once. And now you belong to the God you worshiped, and I can only touch you through sleep, shadow, or imagination. I hope you are aware that you are challenging my sanity. Are you happy?

    I wore a mask at the funeral. I wore a mask so others would not be frightened of me. You wouldn’t have recognized me. I was all dolled up, but felt so cold. People spoke to me and all I could do was smile. But at least with a mask on they had the courage to try. You were right there but so far away. I couldn’t have touched you even if I tried.

    The beach is usually deserted at night. Most are afraid to venture beyond the reach of a streetlight. They stay on the boardwalk with drinks in their hands and listen to loud music to drown the call of gently crashing waves. They are afraid of the loneliness, I think. The ocean is a siren that provokes thoughts most would rather hide behind dirty martinis.

    But there is freedom in the dark. I can be me: powerful and untouchable as I ache for you.

    The girls and boys are now disembodied voices drifting along the sea breeze, and their bonfire now a candle against an inky sky. Life once again feels like a dream. Colorless, the world holds the potential for green skies or purple sand. Whatever I imagine the world to be I can paint it over the black of night. Perhaps I can paint you beside me?

    Putting one step in front of the other is not a hard thing to do. I do that every night. I put one foot in front of the other and hope that my steps will bring me to a place of peace. I hope to find a place where I can feel okay without you.

    I know it will come. Night cannot exist without day.



    • Sharmishtha Basu 1:25 am on April 19, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      magic of pen

      Liked by 1 person

    • Aimer Boyz 6:28 pm on April 19, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Incredibly beautiful prose. Sad and human. Perfect.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Ava 11:25 am on April 20, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Beautiful powerful story, Stephanie! Choice par excellence for a winner, Kurt. And I loved what you said about you being a mindless teenager oblivious of what lay ahead. So true of life. It’s actually a gift that teenagers have that joy of not knowing. And then a gift of its own for us when we find out. Like you said in some of your earlier posts about the life changing impact your cancer has had on your life. Now you’re relating to humans in a significant way. And bringing us such powerful stories as Stephanie’s. Merci.

      Liked by 1 person

  • Kurt Brindley 10:09 am on April 19, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , short stories,   

    Thank You All For The Inspiration 

    I asked for your help and you all responded in kind…and in kindness. Thanks so very much to all of you who took the time to send me some inspiration by way of your very own personal literary creations. I am no longer lacking in inspiration, that is for sure.

    Funny though, instead of inspiring me to dig back into my short story collection, it led me back to my dystopian saga via Wattpad. I will still be working on the story collection; however, right now I am kinda stoked to be working on part two of Hercules Gone Mad.

    Again, thank you all. I was really quite surprised by how many submission I received. I enjoyed reading them all. I will confess, though, that I did not read any of the submissions that were just links to websites.

    Sorry about that.

    I will post the story that I found most inspiring and creative immediately after I post this message of thanks. But before I do, I would like to single out two stories that were also very inspiring to me. I strongly urge you to visit the authors’ sites and see what interesting and inspiring things they have going on there.

    Foul Play
    by Lee Balan

    The Conscious Coward
    by Vic Smith

    Write on!


  • Kurt Brindley 10:30 pm on April 17, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , mea culpas, short stories, ,   

    Short Story selection delayed a day… 

    Apologies all, but I’ve been down with a cold the past couple of days so I haven’t been able to get through all the stories submitted in response to my request for inspiration.

    I will post my selection tomorrow.

    Again…sincere apologies.



  • Kurt Brindley 8:46 am on April 8, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , creative fiction, , , , short stories, , , ,   

    Hey Author, got a Short Story for me to read? 

    So, I may have mentioned before that I am putting together a short story collection.

    Working Title: LEAVE & Other Stories Short & Shorter.

    I have most of it in place but it needs one or two more stories to round it out.


    I’m stuck.

    In a rut.

    Shootin’ blanks.

    One beer short of a six-pack…

    Huh? Wait.


    I haven’t been making much progress lately so I got to thinking…

    Yeah I know, I know.

    Anyway, I got to thinking that maybe if I read something really good, really fresh, it could jigger my brain back into its creative mode and I could get these last couple stories knocked out.

    So what do you say, Author?

    Got a short story for me to read?

    If so, please cut and paste your 5000 words or less story into the comment block on the Contact page and send it to me by midnight, Thursday, April 16, 2015.

    I will read all that I receive and then post the one I like best here on the ol’ blogaroo at 8PMish, not this Friday but the next, April 17, 2015, and invite the author to share a guest post with us right here on the aforementioned blogaroo.

    If you have the story posted somewhere on your blog, tell us about it in the comment section and leave us a link. But for it to be selected, you must email it to me as ‘xplained above.



    You and your short story will really be doing me and my brain a big favor.


    • D.e.e.L 3:05 pm on April 8, 2015 Permalink | Reply

    • Rachael Ritchey 3:26 pm on April 8, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Kurt, I send you the short story, but it may be easier to read on my blog. Here’s the link, just in case: Prequel to The Beauty Thief. There are a whole bunch of #BlogBattle short stories on/connected to my blog, too! Maybe something will stir some inspiration for you!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Ayush Chhabra 10:35 am on April 9, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Hope this helps :)
      The office guy who can’t take a leave.
      He gets up in the morning looking in the mirror how he has grown up while he shaves for his routine.He misses his college fun and wishes to sleep while he glances at that ticking clock .Mom will not make you breakfast today and prepare your lunch box ,you are too old for these.People will readily write sick applications but today you’ll not ask for these.Now you are on your own.In the wee hours of the morning, i watch a grown up office guy who still misses his child’s sleep.The office guy who can’t take a leave.

      Liked by 1 person

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