Monday, July 30, 2012

Joseph Day's Passing on July 21, 2012

     Joseph Day

Joseph Day (Author), lived on the Big Island of Hilo, HI.  He passed away very unexpectedly this past Saturday July 21, 2012.  He will be missed by his many loved ones, friends and fans alike. 

A memorial will be held for him on August 26, 2012 at 12:00 P.M.

Christ Lutheran Church
595 Kapiolani Street
Hilo, HI.

Robert Booth

Tel:  808 935-8612

For more information regarding Joseph Day's Novels 
and  Social Media you may contact;

Roxanne Reichbach
Mystery Noir 3
Administrator & Artistic Director

Friday, July 20, 2012

Konrath the Clown

I don't like talking about Joe Konrath any more. But sometimes it's hard to resist because the guy is so fatuous.

Quote Konrath on his own blog -

"I try not to read what others write about me. It just doesn't interest me.
If anyone wants to challenge something I've said, they can do so here on my blog."

Yeah, sure. I did that, and got slandered, insulted, and otherwise verbally harassed. He lets regulars on his site do it for him. Like a wannabe writer that never wrote a book and acts like an expert. Or an "author" that claims they came from another world and replaced a wizard.

And this guy says other people are making fun of him.

Keep it up Joe. I'm starting to like you more every day.

Why I go Swimming

Michelle Jenneke's Hot Warm-up Barcelona 2012

Australian hot runner Michelle Jenneke warming up before the 100m hurdles during the World Junior Championships in Barcelona in a unique manner ...

I wish my warm up before running could be as much fun.

A lot more of that I've seen at swimming pools. Usually they're excellent swimmers, some of them doing it competively or on water polo teams.

Though I'm no Ross MacDonald, I understand he used to like to swim when he wasn't writing.

You know, they never did say whether she won that race.

Once in awhile, we all need a break from books.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

How Do You Know if Your Writing is Any Good

No matter how successful, there's probably not one author who hasn't wondered how good their writing is. By good, I mean how well it is technically. Does it give accurate and complete descriptions? Does it flow fast and smoothly, or just grind along? Is it captivating and does it have elan?

I'm not talking about subject matter. What the writing is describing,  and what is the subject matter, are totally different from how well something is written. Many people, even so called writers, confuse these two separate areas. Many times writers purposely create this confusion. It's what the Ancient Greeks called rhetoric.

An example of this would be the writer Jim Thomson. Many well mannered people would be abhorred with the subject matter and characters of his books. But technically, as an artist in writing, Thompson may have been the best American author that has ever lived. ( For more about Thompson, read In Praise of Jim Thompson on this blog. )

Like any art, writing can't be taught. Oh there's some rules of thumb, and you can list the essential elements that must be there. But it's not a chemistry formula. You can't create novels like Ross MacDonald from the ingredients Ross MacDonald uses. Only Ross MacDonald can do that.

However, even for someone with natural talent, there are certain guidelines one should always keep in mind. First, and foremost, make sure what you describe and write is clear. It's sort of like what Spencer Tracy said about the  most important thing in acting - "Know your lines". If you think that's obvious, just look at all the published fiction out there that doesn't do this.

Next, have the writing flow smoothly instead of grinding along. Many times I've seen interesting stories that become totally boring because the writing has become so boring. This can often times be tied to how interested you are in the subject. Technically, I have written fiction where I didn't like the genre or story, but I was still able to make it flow freely. I can also tell you it was boring for me and went slower than I wished. When writing something that interests and excites me, the project is done very fast.

Then there's that unknown ingredient I call elan. You're really into your story and characters. It leaps out at a reader. Just look at the writing of someone like Mickey Spillane, Ross McDonald, or Janet Evanovich. Now take a look at Joe Konrath's Jack Daniels novels. It's the difference from being alive or dead.

( I really don't like bringing up Konrath and his writing all the time. But he's the only bad "author" I've given more than a passing glance. Really, if you want to write good, always read the successful  and good writers. If you read too much of people like Konrath, your writing will become like Konrath's writing. Mediocre. )

So how do you tell if your writing is any good? Well, the opinion of third persons is a good indicator. Particularly if they're a literary agent or publishing editor that goes through manuscripts all day long, and are sick of it. If they give you genuine personal compliments, or want to read more of your stuff and enjoy it,  that's an encouraging indicator. ( In the old days, in my early twenties, I was told that if they didn't like it, they had no hesitation in telling you to get lost. But in today's world, I don't think that's the case any longer. )

But like one agent said -"It's a very subjective business. What works for one, may not work for another."

For me, I'm skeptical about praise. And the few criticisms I've heard seemed to be tainted by ulterior motives.  So at times, what I try to do is take an objective look at my stuff when I'm sick of it. I mean I'm just tired  of writing, particularly my own writing,  and just don't want to look at it any more. Then I'll calmly sit down, and look at some of the past stuff I wrote. Sometimes I'll even compare it with successful authors who write similarly. If I'm satisfied with what I see, well I go on writing. If not, I'll throw the typewriter away.

The important thing is to honestly, objectively look at yourself. Realism, particularly about yourself, is the most difficult thing you can do. As Bobby Burns said - "If we (only) had the gift to see ourselves as others see us.".

As for learning from other people how to write, sometimes you pick up points from publishing editors, no matter how uncreative they are. But usually in writing and other arts,  people that teach can't do. And if they can do and teach, I've heard they're pretty terrible teachers.

The only thing I learned about the art of writing is what Somerset Maugham once said - "Write like you're writing a telegraph, and don't have much money to spend."

                                                                                                                    Joseph Day, Author
                                                                                                                ( This is to make someone named
                                                                                                                   R happy. I think you already                                    
                                                                                                                   who I am.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Figures on Book Sales

Peter Kafka has done an excellent article about total book industry sales and their breakdown. Here is the link to that article -

From the article, total trade fiction sales are approximately $13.5, in which about $2.7 billion of that figure is from ebooks. According to a survey by BookStats, those ebook sales have doubled from the previous year.

This is very encouraging for those novelists who want to self publish. But bear in mind that this $2.7 billion sales figure also includes ebook sales from publishers like Doubleday. My own guess would be that the percentage of those sales would be 50% or more.

So there's certainly hope for those fiction writers that self publish. Heck, I have three novels on Amazon myself. ( If you're interested you can check on their links further down. )

But it also makes fatuous the claims of people like Joe Konrath that the publishing industry is trying to discredit him by stealth. Actually, they could probably care less about him, especially after his deal with Ace books seems to have been a fiasco for both sides.

This "conspiracy" theory has been especially championed by someone named P.S. Power. His / her bio page on Amazon claims they  came from another reality and replaced a wizard. Is this person serious? I don't know. He / she is unclear. It sort of reminds me of this lady publishing editor who dealt with me. She claimed to sleep with Charlie Chaplin every night, thirty years after he was dead.

Anyhow, his / her latest rant is that anyone who disagrees with Konrath, must be a publisher in disguise, because publishers are afraid Konrath will put them out of business. Earlier, Power claimed I had delusions because I thought Konrath was a mediocre writer.

It's hilarious as long as you don't get in a conversation with these "characters". It's like arguing with a barroom drunk. You'll never be the winner.

I do hope good writers who self publish are a success. Heck I'd like my own  self published stuff  to be a success. If you can get through the braggadocio bathos, Konrath has some interesting points to make about his own experience and observations.

He can also be pretty funny unintentionally. According to him, he spent most ( all? ) of the money he earned  from book publishers travelling around the country promoting his novels. It even gets funnier when you have some established writers screaming he's a "cancer" because they're afraid their publishers are going to insist they do the same thing. Actually, more agents and publishers are  insisting on this. I'm even having the same problem myself with these three ebooks for sale. So maybe it's not funny after all. At least from a personal standpoint. ( Just look at the bottom of this article to see what I mean. )

There's loads of things wrong with the publishing industry. Not the least of which is, that it's who you know, not how good you are. It's like that in all media business. Much worse in the movies.

In the future, I might have more to say about that.

Best of luck to all the good writers out there.

                                                                                                               Joseph Day, Author

                                                                                                        ( Okay R. Are you happy now? Like                                    
                                                                                                           you constantly insist, I've signed my
                                                                                                            name. As if anyone doesn't already
                                                                                                            know my name on this blog. )

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Promotion for Fast Love - A Novel

Fast Love - A Novel by Joseph Day


Here is a very short scenerio about "Fast Love".

Sami Martel was a survivor.

Being a high priced call girl provided a good living for her and a young son.

Street smart and pretty, she understood the world of fast love. A world tense with danger, excitement, and the unexpected.

But now Sami was no longer sure of herself. The law wanted her to work for them. All she had to do was coax information from a sadistic, illegal banker named Victor Sitchken. After all, he had only tried to kill her the last time they were together. And besides, she was being paid more money than could be made in a lifetime. So what if the risk was high.

When push came to shove, Sami knew she didn't have a choice. No matter what they said, she knew it would be either her or Sitchken.

And it was then that fast love suddenly became fast death.

This is the first of my three novels now sold on in both the Kindle and Paperback Versions. 

You can also go to my Website at;

Visit me anytime on my Facebook Page at;
Kindle Version;
Paperback Version;

Joseph Day

                                                                         Hilo, Hawaii

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Men in Skirts

( Though not intentional, this article will be mentioning my novel Fast Love, and therefore might be indirectly promoting it. Also, a novelist J.A. Konrath will be mentioned with comments which might be uncomplimentary, but are  intended only for discussion about the art of writing. Janet Evanovich will also be praised for discussion purposes, with no intention of promoting her best selling books. Richard Flanagan's excellent novel The Unknown Terrorist is also mentioned. )

Usually with a novel, a writer can't help but have some of  themselves in the principle character and hero. This can be particularly the case when the book is done in the first person.

That's why many lady publishing editors will say it's very seldom a man can write a story from a woman's point of view.

In my novel Fast Love I do this, with call girl  / escort Sami Martel. So does JA Konrath in his Jackie Daniels book series. Both are in the first person.

Konrath's books about a woman police detective are really Konrath in skirts. He is Lieutenanat  Daniels, or what he would like to imagine himself to be as the ideal macho woman. Like Konrath in real life, his herorine goes around screaming, telling anyone to get lost if they get in her way. The characters around her, like her sidekick Herb, are ciphers that are expected to do what she wants. If not, they're immediately castigated.  Jackie Daniels has no flaws, no vulnerabilities, at least in the novels I've seen. Her personal life and dysfunctional parents are superficially mentioned in passing.

My impression is that when Konrath's detective series first came out, he was trying to imitate the very successful Janet Evanovich and her heroine Stephanie Plume. I've only read one of Ms Evanovich's novels, but in the future I hope to read more. Unlike Konrath, Ms. Evanovich's characters appear more realistic. Through dialogue, we learn their backgrounds, habits, and foibles. Sometimes this is easy to miss because her stories move so fluidly fast. Unlike her, Konrath's first Daniel's novels seem to grind along, like he's not sure how to play a woman. Probably this is because he never had much close experience with many ladies. Then after the first few novels, he decides to let Jack Daniels be him, the way Joe Konrath would be a woman if he could wear skirts.

For me, I'll be the first to admit that in Fast Love, Sami Martel is Joe Day in skirts, and Joe Day's view of how a woman like Sami would think and react. However unlike Konrath, I've probably had more close relationships with more women, and I would like to think I have a better idea of how they would think.

It's one thing to sit around  in a bar and pay some strip teasers  to talk with you. It's another to be lying down with them intimately, listening to them talk bitterly about a life that's become hopeless, and a future that is bleak. To have some girl call you on the phone telling you how she was raped a week earlier, crying in sobs, and trying gently to explain to her that she has nothing to be ashamed about. That the shame is with those who hurt her.

The reason I expect Konrath hasn't had much experience with women is partly based on what he said a few years ago. He was bragging about how he was finally able to write three pages of love making for a novel, and what the response had been from his wife. First, any guy that's been around doesn't talk about intimate conversations with his spouse. If I did, there'd be hell to pay for the next week. Second, it's really not that hard to write about sex and love making if you've had the experience.

In Fast Love, Sami Martel has sex several times, all with a man that she slowly starts to love. Like Konrath's Jack Daniels, Sami has a big mouth. But unlike Konrath's Jack, my Sami explains why.-

'  "Why don't you cut out the wisecracks, Sami?" Bill sounded more exasperated than ever. 

I couldn't. Because being a wise ass kept me from being scared. Scared stiff. None of these four guys looked like they wanted to party. Neither did Bill, for that matter. But then he’d already shot his cannon. '

Konrath's Jack Daniels way of handling aggressive men is to kick them in the testicles.

With Sami, it's a verbal reply that figuratively emasculates them -

'  "How'd you like to b**e with me." He grinned eagerly. "We can do it upstairs. My dad's got a suite. Even introduce you to dad later. If you like."
"No thanks."
"I got a big one. Even bigger than dad's. Would you like to s**k it?"
"Tell you what, Jimmy." I pinched his cheek until he winched in pain and pulled away. "Why don't you cut it off and mail it to me. And maybe I'll think about it." '

Richard Flanagan solved much of these problems by writing The Unknown Terrorist in the third person. By dialogue and narration, mostly narration, we learn about the sad and tragic life of  "The Doll". The story, the actions, subtly bring out The Doll's dream to be alone and free from the control of men.

It reminds me of recently having pizza with this nineteen year old girl -

"What do you want?"

"Just a little place, away from everybody, where I can be by myself and grow food."

"In other words, you're just tired of people and want to be alone."

"Yeah...I'm tired of being worked to death and people taking advantage of me. I just want to be away from everyone."

She's a smart girl. One day she'll have a enough money to get her wish.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

In Praise of Jim Thompson

Jim Thompson was an American writer whose career peaked in the 1950s and early 1960s.

Some critics have called him the hardest of the hard boiled and noir authors.  In my opinion, from a technical standpoint, he was probably the best American writer of the twentieth century.

I remember reading my first novel by Thompson called The Kill Off. Though I didn't like the story's characters, his ability to write this book was a tour de force. Each chapter is narrated by a different character in the novel. Reading the book, I was in awe at the flexibility with which he did this.

Other books by Thompson, such as The Killer Inside Me and Savage Night, are fascinating and full of humor. The story After Dark my Sweet, again in my opinion, may be one of the best American novels ever written.

In Savage Night, a hired killer moves into a rooming house so that he can murder a Federal  witness. Called Little Bigger, he's having an affair both with someone's wife, and also with her maid at the same time. Soon he suspects one of them was sent by "the Man", his gangster boss -

"Of course I could ask the Man about her. But then the Man would just put his arm around me, give a big smile, and tell me not to worry. And in a half hour I'd be dead."

From the Killer Inside Me, we see the mind of a psychopathic, crooked  deputy sheriff in a small Texas town. Likewise, in After Dark my Sweet, the story is narrated by an ex prize fighter who has just escaped from a mental institution.

Besides some of these books being made into films in Europe, particularly France, several of Thompson's novels were turned into movies by big American studios. The most memorable being The Grifters, and The Getaway, which was done superbly two times.

Thompson's career was just as fascinating as the stories he wrote. In fact, many of his novels were based on episodes in his life,  and many times a form of revenge for what happened to him. Committed to an alcoholic sanitarium, he later did a book about an abusive nurse in an alcoholic sanitarium. Once a bellboy in a sleazy hotel on the Mexican border, as an adult Thomson  wrote  a book about a bellboy in a shady hotel who gets involved with gangsters. Appropriately, the novel's called  A Swell Looking Babe.

Thompson worked for at least two large newspapers and a scandal sheet in Los Angeles. From this milieu., he composed a novel  titled The Nothing Man, about an editor who doesn't have a penis. Judge, by this, his experience as a newsman. ( Incidentally, when I mentioned this book to a bunch of elderly  Japanese ladies, they all started giggling and insisted I write down the title and author's name. )

But this is just the tip of Thompson's colorful life. Ten years before the McCarthy Red Scare, he managed to get himself investigated by the House on Un-American activities in the early 1940s, and later was committed to a mental institution, from which he took out his revenge in After Dark My Sweet.

Yes Jim Thompson certainly had a very fascinating life, and a career with many good books which will keep him living forever.

Too bad he didn't write his own autobiography. It would have been very entertaining .

Friday, July 13, 2012

Publishers vs the Self Published

On a different blog, someone named Sasha made these points about publishers and those that self-publish Bear in mind that non-indie are publishers, and those that self-publish are indie  -

"I should add that there are some things that don’t follow from the argument that I’m making (that it would be weird if a higher proportion of indie than non-indie books weren’t of lower quality):

(1) that there aren’t loads of indie books as good as the best non-indie books, more than one could ever read;

(2) that there aren’t loads of bad non-indie books;

(3) that publishers aren’t too restrictive in what they publish;

(4) that publishers don’t often turn down great books;

(5) that publishing as an indie isn’t a great idea and potentially more profitable for authors.

That being so, I genuinely don’t understand why it actually matters – really, matters at all – that a higher proportion of indie books might be below any given quality threshold than non-indie books. I don’t understand why the position that the two kinds of books have the same quality distribution is so hotly defended."

Here's my observations to each of her points -

1. Yes, it could be very likely that there are  more good indie books
than non-indiie books. No one really knows. But there's been some
really terrible non-indie books over the last year. Just take a look
at Frank Bill's Crimes of Southern Indiana. In the future I hope to
have an article on this entitled the The Crime of Frank Bill.

2. And yes, it's also likely that there's loads of bad indie books.
I'm really tempted here to make a comment about some of those writers,
in particular one mediocre and self-centered "author" who never tires
about promoting himself, and enjoys entitling his books after mixed

But seriously, many of these indie authors really aren't sincere about
what they're doing, and are amateurs in the sense that they really
don't care if they sell any of their books or make any money. So
naturally you're going to have the quality of indie authors skewed in
the direction of bad books.

3. Publishers are very restrictive. They want a certain word count in
books and they will only consider those manuscripts that fit a list of
books they are looking to publish. Sometimes publishing editors can be
very stifling. One time I had to deal with a lady that didn't want me
to begin my sentences with but or suddenly, along with a whole bunch
of other silly restrictions. In the future I hope to do an article in
detail about this called The Editor from Hell. And really, it doesn't
matter how best selling or experienced you are as a writer. Even
Mickey Spillane and Evan Hunter had to put up with editors needlessly
insisting on details or story plots that were completely irrelevant to
the writer's manuscript.

4. Publishers are famous for turning down great books. I've been told
Danielle Steele had 200 rejections before somebody picked her up. The
Harry Potter series almost didn't make it to print. Nobody thought
Mickey Spillane's first Mike Hammer would go anywhere. The publisher
that picked it up did it as a favor he owed to one of Spillane's
friends. It's really a wonder that anything good ever gets on the book
racks. And it gets worse every year.

5. If you can get a good literary agent, be with a decent publisher,
and have a good  and experienced editor that can coach you, then
you're much better off than publishing as an independent. You're also
going to have a lot more free time and a much more fulfilling life.
Sadly, today, that's almost becoming impossible to do.

Though I don't understand Sasha's last paragraph, I'll make this
point. If there's a level playing field for all writers in the
distribution of their books, then usually the best books and best
writers will be the most successful. Bear in mind, though, that this
has to be what the public decides are the best writers and best books.

As Mickey Spillane said - "I write what people like to read."

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Konrath the Coward

I had hoped the article I just wrote about Konrath would be the last.

Unfortunately, that's not the case.

A flame war had started on Konrath's blog concerning me, which Konrath had actually began, and his silly fan club had aggravated. Basically, you can read my opinion about Konrath here. Or you can go to his blog and see all the nasty comments about me and my response.

As if orchestrated, Konrath had decided to block my posts, and then almost instantly he and a few of his minions made some very offensive statements about me.

Konrath's a coward for not allowing someone to defend themselves,which he hasn't let me do. And probably other people besides me.

His blog gives a superficial appearance of being an open discussion, but actually it's very carefully controlled. Just look at my last comment, and see how everything was carefully  conducted in what followed.

Konrath is only on the internet to promote himself and his books. Also it's a big ego trip for him.

As for his minions and stooges that assist him, all I've seen is a bunch of wannabe writers who never did a book, or  "authors" that have been publishing for several years without much of a track record.

It's pathetic, and Joe Konrath should stop acting like a little boy in a man's body.

Enough said. Tomorrow more positive things.

A Dialectic Discussion with Joe Konrath

Yesterday I did a post about the flaws of  books being sold for 99c, so that people would be encouraged to  buy them.

What ensued afterword was a flame war on Joe Konrath's blog - Newbie's Guide to Publishing or some such title.

Basically, if you don't agree with Konrath, his response is to call you stupid, a pinhead, an idiot and a moron. He also tends to use a lot of four letter words like sh**t, etc.. Then, almost immediately, several Konrath regulars will flame you, some  mimicking what Konrath says, others making amorphous accusations and insults.

For obvious reasons, I hardly read Konrath's blog. First, it's not a Newbie's Guide to Publishing, but Konrath promoting himself and his books by stealth. When he's not doing this, he's usually bragging about what a big success he is as a writer. Sadly, I haven't seen any suggestions or advice on actually selling and making the general public aware that somebody's new book exists. But then like I said, Joe Konrath is only interested in promoting himself.

I remember last year some young lady brought  the same thing up, and was immediately castigated for it. It was the same tactics they tried to use on me yesterday. She made a feeble attempt to defend herself, but being a lady she wasn't use to a gang of guys verbally beating her up. It was disgusting.

Well, yesterday, somebody taught them some manners. They're still learning.

But on this blog, we'll talk about more pleasant things, and try to figure the secrets of successfully marketing novels.

There are many good writers out there. Many good people in the publishing business. Let's give them the attention they deserve.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

The Nonsense About Book Prices

Is a book judged by it's price? Would you forgo buying one of Janet Evanovich's books for five dollars, and  instead buy one of Joe Konrath's books for 99 cents because the price is lower?

That's what someone named Joe Konrath seems to be claiming. Who is Joe Konrath? A mediocre writer who for 12 or 20 years, I forget which, tried to break into the publishing business. After succeeding with a half ass police detective series, his publisher dropped him after a few books.

Though Knorath tirelessly sings the praises about self publishing  through ebooks, he recently did a deal with Ace books, which is owned by Penguin publishers, for a science fiction book. According to Konrath himself,  the book flopped in sales. Of course, also according to Joe Konrath, this is because the book price was too high. Could it ever occur to Konrath that maybe his fans are tired of his junk?

Of course not. In Joe's latest announcement, he will continue his SF "series" through his own self publishing efforts. Though he doesn't say, perhaps the reason for this is that once again a publisher, this time Ace, dropped him from their list of future books.

But Joe Konrath has not been alone in his quest to seek lower book prices. I remember a state librarian, I think his name was Bart Karne, who once proposed that the library system buy from publishers books  that didn't sell well. In other words, books that were so bad, their publishers couldn't get rid of them no matter what they did to promote sales. Bart's reasoning was that the library system could save loads of money in book purchases. That idea, and the fact that he offended several state senators, got him fired.

According to Konrath, he is extremely successful as an ebook writer. I think I read him saying he makes half a million dollars or more a year from his books. Now I will be the first to admit, this is quite an accomplishment, considering the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo made only 500000 in ebook sales out of a total world wide distribution of 50 million books sold. But, really, it begs a question. If Joe's novels sell so well, why hasn't some large publisher picked him up? After all, with marketing muscle like Doubleday, or Simon & Schuster, the sales should be phenomenal with such a poplar writer.

I'll let you be the judge of that.

Meanwhile, I won't judge a book by it's price..

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Short Trip - A Novel by Joseph Day



Here is a short scenario about "Short Trip".

They called him Bobby Card. One of the best dealers in the Las Vegas casinos, he had a special way with women.

But one day Bobby left Las Vegas, with 30 million dollars of the mob's money. They wanted it back, and Johnny was sent to get it.

It would only be a short trip to Los Angeles. After all, they knew how to find Bobby. All Johnny had to do was collect the money, and make sure Bobby would never steal again. Simple.

But suddenly, things were no longer simple. Bobby had disappeared. People were dying.  And soon, Johnny began a search through the underside of Los Angeles. The mean, nasty streets of LA where even the cops were afraid to be after dark.

It was then that the short trip had become a long journey. A journey that would change many people's lives. Especially Johnny.

This is the second of my three novels sold on both in Kindle and Paperback Versions.

You can also go to my Website at;

Visit me anytime on my Facebook Page at;

The Kindle Version;

Here's the link to "Short Trip" Kindle Version on Amazon - $2.99

The Paperback Version;

Here's the link to "Short Trip" Pagerback Version on Amazon - $5.99

Joseph Day

Hilo Hawaii

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Flesh - A Novel by Joseph Day


Here is a short scenario about "Flesh".

Danny Santa was broke.  His wife had just left him, he'd been evicted from his apartment, and if that weren't enough, he had the Mafia after him.

So when he saw the job offer, he took it.  After all, he had nothing to loose.  Besides, it should be easy. 

All he had to do every day for money was take his clothes off.

And so began Danny's new career in the porn film industry.  An industry filled with the unhappy and promiscuous.  A place where sex was a daily occurrence, and love as rare as diamonds.  Where everyone had their own special dreams, and their own desperation's.

Danny didn't plan on being in that business for very long.  He never realized it would change his life forever.  Because the last thing Danny ever thought, was that he would fall in love.

This is the second of my three novels sold on both in Kindle and Paperback Versions.

You can also go to my Website at;

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The Kindle Version;

Here's the link to "Flesh" Kindle Version on Amazon - $2.99
The Paperback Version;

Joseph Day
                                                                      Hilo, Hawaii

Friday, July 6, 2012

Hit Lit Misses the Mark

Hit Lit is a nonfiction book written by James W. Hall.  It claims to explain what makes a bestseller in American fiction, by analyzing twelve books that have made bestseller lists over the last 70 years. Listing twelve characteristics that they all supposedly have in common, Mr. Hall then concludes that these must be what makes an American novel a bestseller.

Some of  his points are obvious, such as a story that keeps people interested and  a controversial  topic that arouses a reader's emotions. But others, like the dream of an American golden age and  "God is Great", just don't make any sense at all.

Probably this is because most of his fiction examples are set in the Confederate  American South, or were novels that were popular in the Southeast United States. No comment, except for three words in passing, is mentioned about Mickey Spillane, nothing at all said about James Patterson, or, for that matter, the fact that Steinbeck's the Grapes of Wrath was a phenomenal best seller, as well as being a good piece of literature.

In short, Hit Lit is skewed toward one segment and milieu of  best sellers in the American fiction market, and only if that fiction is written by Americans. Books from foreign authors, such as The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, and Dicken's A Tale of Two Cities < which sold over 100 million copies > aren't even mentioned.


My guess is that Mr. Hall is a very selective connoisseur, one who thinks only what he likes is good writing, and  therefore only these books should be on  bestseller lists. No doubt his penchant for novels about the American South is in no small way due to the fact that he is a Southerner, with all the prejudices, biases, and morals that implies.

But if you're going to be objective about what in fiction becomes a bestseller, you have to choose other examples than books set in the South or liked by Southerners.

Besides, even if these shortcomings were rectified, how can you analyze what makes a bestseller. Anybody in the book business that knows what they're doing, will admit they have no idea what the public wants. The Harry Potter books needed all the magic they could get for someone to publish them. Then, the novel The Traveler, which I'm sure many in the publishing biz thought would take off  < including myself >, completely flopped.

What it really boils down to, is having a good story. And even then, like The Traveler, that might not be enough.

< About 1.5 million books of The Traveler were sold worldwide. But keep in mind the publisher was Doubleday, a  firm with a enough marketing clout that can, and has, made any piece of junk a bestseller. Therefore, considering the promotion, etc., at the time the book came to market, it really didn't do all that great. As I said, personally I liked the book and am still astounded why it hadn't made more sales. Oh well,  de gustibus non est disputandum. >