So Many Unclassics…

Now filed under “experiments gone awry.”

I had planned to publish my entire epic novel Armloads of Unclassics in serial form on  Wattpad. It was going to take 24 weeks of daily updates plus a couple more weeks of bi-hourly updates and then a few more weeks of daily updates, but instead, I’ve decided to blow the whistle, and grind to an unceremonious halt just ten weeks in.

How come?

Weren’t hardly nobody readin’ the darn thing.

So instead of putting more effort into publicity and trying to pull it out of the mud mid-season, I’ve decided to focus on making the whole thing better, so when I release Armloads of Unclassics as a novel (likely this fall), folks will say, “Hey, this is pretty good.”

Armloads of Unclassics is an important book for me for a whole bunch of reasons (not the least of which is that it took me almost a decade to complete the first draft) so I hope that it will eventually find some readers.

Even if I’m not clogging your feed daily, I’m still as available as ever. Stay tuned here for big announcements, or watch my Facebook author page.

And of course, I’m leaving the first 50 parts of the story on Wattpad for now (five complete chapters with covers by Breck Young, and the beginning of a sixth without), to peruse for free at your leisure:

Ch. 0: Follow Her Bloody Footsteps

Sean explains his obsession with bad movies, especially the 1984 Tim Nero film Follow Her Bloody Footsteps (starring Gina Feasting).

In the year 2000, Sean makes the move from Kansas to California and swings by Tim Nero's studio.

In the year 2000, Sean makes the move from Kansas to California and swings by Tim Nero’s studio.

Ch. 2: Tyger Tails

Sean spends an unwholesome day on the set of a children’s TV show.

Ch. 3: So What If I'm A Salesman?

Sean spends a week working as a stagehand, and stops a serial murderer.

Ch. 4: Capetown

Sean is an extra on a major motion picture, and (while dressed like an amateur athlete from the 1980’s) meets Gina Feasting.

 

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Overdue Update #64

So the last time we talked, I was giving away some copies of my first novel, Stranded in Sunshine, and trying to cajole some folks into writing me some reviews. Eh, it worked okay. Even though I didn’t get enough to do the big promotional push I was hoping to, I got some stuff I like for the back cover of the paperback, and that’s still coming soon.

Also, earlier this year, I mentioned something about a green squirrel… and that project is moving ahead. I’ve even set a date.

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Armloads of Unclassics is, as mentioned, a lowbrow epic, and it’s also a love letter to terrible cinema, and a totally fictional memoir of my own years in Hollywood. It’s also more than twice as long as anything else I’ve ever written. Questions?

How’s this gonna work? Starting on January 4th, I’m uploading a new section of the book to Wattpad in the early AM every Monday thru Friday for 24 (twenty-four!) weeks. Then, starting on Monday of the 25th week, I’m going to be uploading a new section many times a day for a week or two, and then we’ll go back to one section a day for a couple more weeks, and then it will be done.

Can you really promise to put out that much material? How much have you written so far?
Yes, and most of it. As of today, November 1st, the first 24 weeks are mostly golden, and I’m more than halfway through the long crazy section that precedes the finale.

Why are you putting it out on the internet for free? Are you an idiot? Armloads of Unclassics will be my third published book, but I’ve been working on it on & off for close to a decade (for the bean counters in the group, that’s 8 years off, about 2 years on, in 3 giant chunks). In a way, it’s a really important book to me, and something I feel strongly about. In another way, I know if I don’t get it finished and out there now, I might make it even more complicated & obsess over it for another decade. I’m putting it out for free initially because I’ve worked hard on it and I want a lot of people to read it. I will gladly take this opportunity to go on record as saying I don’t think I’m an idiot.

As we get closer to January 4th, I should be reminding you regularly to join this strange and sometimes wonderful journey with me. If I don’t for some reason, I am implanting the hypnotic suggestion in your mind now so that you will remember. Talk soon.

Your Friend,
Eric

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Stranded in Sunshine Goodreads Giveaway!

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Stranded in Sunshine by Eric   Henderson

Stranded in Sunshine

by Eric Henderson

Giveaway ends July 18, 2015.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

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Stranded in Sunshine is here!!!

SiS-cover-nobleed-largeSo, my first novel is finally a thing. Stranded in Sunshine (with its purty, purty cover art by K3N) is in soft release as of last week. I’m REALLY excited about it AND I need your help.

Pssshhh, money. I don’t want your money. What I need are REVIEWS. There are a lot of opportunities for free publicity for indie authors out there, but in order to take advantage of them, I need at least ten reviews on Amazon to show that people have read my book. Unfortunately, it’s against Amazon’s terms of service for me to write these reviews myself, or I wouldn’t need your help at all, because I’d have done it already.

Please allow me to stress the point that YOUR participation here is of IMMENSE value to me. Once I get ten reviews, I’m golden, and can start marketing in earnest. But if I can’t get ten reviews… well then I’ve just got to keep bugging the crap out of people until I can.

If you think you’ve got what it takes to make this absolutely painless journey, and you’ve got a tablet or an iphone, let me know. I’ll email you my book right now for free. Enjoy it with my compliments. And after you’re done, if you do me that biggest of favors and leave a review (you don’t have to shake up the world  – I think the min. is 25 words and a star rating), I’ll send you a free copy of the paperback.  And if you left a review for my last book, sit tight, because you’re already on that list.

Each person who responds and follows through gets me at least 10% closer to my goal. So…

Hey hey, whaddaya say?

Sure, Eric, I’ll read your book for free and probably leave you a review – I’m sending you an email right now.

Yeah, Eric, I’ll read your book for free and probably leave you a review – I’m gonna just say “Hi” on your Facebook author page, and then you’ll know what that means.

Look, Eric, let’s not get too crazy. Before I make any rash decisions, I want to know what this here book of yers is all about.

Whoa, Eric, you’re being way too nice, and it’s freaking me out. I want to leave you a review, but I insist on buying my own copy of the book.

No, Eric, you stink. I’m not gonna do a damn thing but watch this Pink Panther cartoon. It’s the one where the Pink Panther doesn’t say anything.

Thanks for your potential help, everybody! I’ll keep you posted on my progress in the comments below.

SiS-cover-nobleed-large

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A Green Squirrel? Or a Herald Bringing Tidings of Great Joy?

bunny

I’m not going to tell you just yet. First a little recap. It’s been a good long time since I’ve shared an update on my writing stuff here. Almost half a year. which seems crazy, but there it is.

You may recall (but if you don’t, don’t worry ‘cuz I’m saying it again right now) that back in April I was saying that the follow-up to my famous and amazing short story collection Ashes to Ashes, Oranges to Oranges was going to be a full-length novel that I was already starting then. Well, I wrote that book, and it’s in the thick of the editing process now.

It doesn’t have a final title yet, but here’s the premise:

A particularly rich person buys a shopping mall in Florida at full retail price, including all of the merchandise, all of the fixtures, everything.  This person invites some people she knows, and the twelve of them move into the mall (each into his or her own store) to form their own Utopian society, called A Better Place. Their plan is to have no contact with the outside world for five years. This book covers the first twelve days of the experiment, and (spoiler alert?) will not have a sequel. It’s like Dawn of the Dead without the zombies. And funny.

Sounds cool, so what’s the release date? I don’t have one. I’m planning to have it out before the end of the year, but I’m just going to put it out as soon as it’s done.  Of course, I’ll let you know here when it is. If you want to really make sure it’s not out today,  go ahead and check my Amazon author page, but then don’t stay there, come back, I’ve got some more stuff to talk about.

I wrote the introduction for Five of Cups, the new book by Barrymore Tebbs, and that’s out (not as an ebook, only in print) right now. In the interest of full disclosure, I’ll let you know that Barrymore is a friend of mine, but we became friends because I love his writing so freakin’ much. So I’m like the kid who hung around the field so long I finally got asked to play. My introduction is pretty good (you can read the whole thing on the Amazon product page if you click “Look inside”) , and the five novellas in Five of Cups are really amazing. If you have even a passing interest in horror or gothic fiction, I’d recommend you pick it up.

And that brings me all the way up to date, to our friend at the top of this post. It’s not a squirrel, by the way, it’s a green Easter Bunny outfit with the ears cut off. Also, it is a herald bringing tidings of great joy. This little bunny is the first public glimpse of a project that’s going to be taking up a lot of my time (and hopefully a lot of yours) in 2015. It’s an epic novel that I spent several years working on before I dipped my little toe in the publishing waters with Ashes to Ashes… earlier this year. I’m not spilling all the beans right now, but I will tell you that it’s coming out in 2015, it’s going to have an unconventional release, and that it is THE next big thing (after that other next big thing, but this one’s bigger) looming on the horizon. Watch this page for further details!

 

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Homemade Hungry Hippos

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So after that “Rubberburner’s Row”post a while back, I know putting up something like this runs the risk of  turning this blog into some kind of “I’m poor and I love it” deal, but this was cool. My daughter Lumpy Rock and I watched a bunch of youtube videos about Hungry Hungry Hippos, then one about a real hippo, a couple about real snakes, and then back to Hungry Hungry Hippos. All of a sudden, she got that gleam in her eye, and I knew we were about to make some art.

Because of time restrictions (we wanted it done immediately so we could play), we used a more simple mechanism for the hippos, but we did improve on the original in at least one way: the big black hippo is the king, with two princesses to his left and two princes to his right, bringing the total to FIVE hippos altogether. Also, playing before the glue was all the way dry added a little extra drama to the mix.  The hippo food is from Hi Ho Cherry-o, which is great because maybe it will all get lost or permanently re-appropriated and I won’t have to play boring-ass Hi Ho Cherry-o anymore.

My favorite part was when Lumpy was cleaning up the markers before we started playing and she said, “I’m so excited my throat is getting hurty.” When you hear that, you know you’re doing it right.

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Mr. Machine Don’t Stop (Except When He Does)

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The amazing post office reciept.

So I wrote this book (Ashes to Ashes, Oranges to Oranges), published it, and I’ve been giving it away to just about everyone I know. I gave it to my family, my friends, and everyone I work with. I also did this thing where I said if you liked my Facebook author page by a certain date, I’d send you a free copy, and that added even more people to my ever-growing rubber band ball of readers. A week ago Saturday we sent copies to the people on the book’s acknowledgements page, and yesterday we sent them out to (almost) everyone else. I’m expecting this coming week to be pretty exciting, what with 50 people or so (most of whom I haven’t talked to in person in years) getting my book in their mailboxes and saying “Hey, Eric Henderson wrote a book, and here it is in my hands right now.”  That part I feel excellent about.

The next step is that everyone will (hopefully) open the books and start reading “Make a New World Real,” a trippy little story about a dancer and her Svengali-like mentor cracking the trans-dimensional barrier. And then… what? The UNKNOWN. Which is what makes this week and next week so exciting, because until something actually does happen, just about anything can. Reality is usually, you know, pretty good,  but my fantasy about how it’s all going to go down right now is magnificent! Hint – it involves me being driven all over the country in a luxury rickshaw.

So if that doesn’t happen, if in two or three weeks the hoopla around my book dies down and I’m reduced back down from the superhuman pillar of strength known as Authorman to regular old boring Eric, that dude in Connecticut, what then?

I’ve got an insurance policy.

Really? Yup, and it’s something I should have been up to all along, but even though I haven’t, I’ve got at least this week as a head start. I’ve got at least this week before I’ll have to come down out of the clouds and realize that not everyone who reads Ashes to Ashes, Oranges to Oranges will love it enough to recommend it to every person of influence they know, who will in turn recommend it to everyone of influence they know and so on, creating a chain reaction which will lead to enough money for me to cover next month’s phone bill. I’m not saying that won’t happen, it probably will. But just in case, here’s my insurance policy against disappointment: I’m starting work on my new book tomorrow. It’s a novel, or a novella, depending on how long it turns out to be. I know what the story is, know who the characters are, and consider it a weird and worthy follow up to Ashes to Ashes, Oranges to Oranges. I can’t share even the working title at this point, ‘cuz it’s super hush-hush top secret stuff (and anyway, unless I’ve got a bunch of time to think about what to say, I’m much better at writing projects than talking about them, at least in the sense that I’m talking-writing now, and not writing-writing, and if you think that makes sense, then you’re right, but please explain it back to me because I’m not really sure I get it).

I’m expecting this week to be a lot of fun – I’ll definitely be following up with all of my people as they get their copies, and thrilling to their unique adventures with Ashes to Ashes, Oranges to Oranges,  but just in case the release doesn’t turn out to be all I’ve hoped it will, I’m sending a big chunk of my brain on ahead to the nearly-abandoned shopping mall in Florida where the new story will begin.  To paraphrase Johnny Depp as Ed Wood: “Really? Worst book you’ve ever read? Well, my next one will be better!”

 

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“Thoughts on Becoming a Published Author” by Eric Henderson

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YEAAAAAAAAAAH!
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I did it!

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That’s right, (points to self) ME! Me! I did it! MMMMEEEEEE!!!

I got MY own book – I got my own BOOK!

 

… (it goes on like that for a couple of weeks, but you get the idea.)

 

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Rubberburner’s Row

Lumpy Rock doesn't mince words.

Lumpy Rock doesn’t mince words.

One of my heroes is crackpot filmmaker John Waters, and in one of his books (I forget which), he gives some very sage advice: if you have a quality that most people would consider a liability, the coolest thing in the world you can do is to call attention to it and turn it into an asset. The example he gives is that if you have bad skin, you should “rub a bag of potato chips on your face and start calling yourself ‘Pimples’.” I love that.

So today my daughter Lumpy Rock and I went to try to post some fliers advertising my book Ashes to Ashes, Oranges to Oranges at CCSU, Central Connecticut State University. It’s Sunday on a college campus, no longer football season, so it should be mostly deserted, right? Except that it wasn’t. There was this giant event going on, a car show, and there were tons of people milling around, mostly obnoxious college-age folks in fancy cars with motors revving.  Even worse,  the public parking lot was closed off, so we had to park in a lot that threatened to tow us away ( a warning I would have worried about more if there weren’t six low-riders parked in the same row we were).

Lumpy and I got out of the car and started scouring the campus for bulletin boards. We’d never been to this place before, and it seemed nice enough, but how did the students get their daily fix of current campus events? There didn’t seem to be any outdoor bulletin boards at all. We went a couple of blocks in one direction, then turned and went in another. Lumpy Rock was on the lookout for a playground, too.  Finally, by the stadium entrance, we did see one outdoor bulletin board, but it was made out of metal (tape? I didn’t bring tape, I’ve got a stapler) and it was knocked over on its side anyway.

We walked a bit further and we were at the car show. It had just ended, and the whole place was dripping with “sure showed them” machismo. I was almost worried none of the cars that were leaving would even be cool enough to let us walk in front of them (eventually one of them did). Then there were a couple hundred people lined up against the fence on the far side of the parking lot. What were they all gawking at? We went over to see.

It was just the street. Everyone was watching the fancy cars “in action” as they left. There were a bunch of cop cars on hand to make sure no one’s display got too fancy, but all the cars sped down the street anyway, burning rubber and generally being assholes (can you tell I’m not much of a car guy?) to the oohs and aahs of the assembled crowd.

Since there weren’t any wooden bulletin boards to be found, we made our way back to our car. As we were pulling out of the parking lot, I heard someone yell, “That thing oughta be in the junkyard!” Then someone else laughed, and I realized they’re talking about our car. Of course, we’re in the only car we’ve got, our ’93 Corolla. It’s got 225,000 miles on it and has only been washed a handful of times since we moved to Connecticut back in ’06. I stuck my hand out the window with a single digit up, but it was my thumb. If we were indeed driving the crappiest car in a five mile radius (and it suddenly dawned on me that we were) that moron had just given me a terrific idea.

Thirty seconds later, we pulled out onto Rubberburner’s Row, beeping the horn and waving to the crowd. People went nuts, cheering us on like we had the best car on the lot (okay, third best). But I betcha a dollar that when people remember the specific cars that drove down that road today, our heap will be one of the ones they remember.

Car fan #1: “Remember that idiot in the dirty Civic?”

Car fan #2: “The white one? That was a Corolla.”

Car fan #1: “Oh yeah, I think you’re right.”

Both: “What an idiot.”

I am that idiot. Absolutely. I own it.

 

 

 

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Yup, it’s for real. Ashes to Ashes, Oranges to Oranges live on Amazon, Smashwords

ASHESCOVERamazonHey  all,

Where have you been? This is an exciting time, and you’ve got to keep up! Today’s Saturday, 2/8, and my new book Ashes to Ashes,Oranges to Oranges has been out since Tuesday, 2/4 (at least for Kindle or Nook via Amazon or Smashwords), and you STILL haven’t read it?!? Are you kidding?

In real life, I know it’s my fault for not sharing the links until now. The internet is a big place, and you’re not going to find my book just by following any old link. So let me apologize for not inviting you to the party right as it was starting, and share these precious links with you now…

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00I8TW4XG This is the Amazon link. If you follow it, you can read the very nice (and on-base, can’t argue with any of it) review that my own dear sweet mother wrote. And buy my book for your kindle.

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/405005 This is the Smashwords link. Here you will (as of today) find no reviews of my excellent book, but you will be able to buy said book and download it if you have a Nook or other device that reads the .epub format.

In the coming weeks, I’ll be making Ashes to Ashes, Oranges to Oranges available at Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and the Apple store (maybe one or two others), and formatting the print version, which will also be available on Amazon.

I’ll leave you with a couple of super-great commercials courtesy of my dear friends at Flickerlamp Publishing. And speaking of Flickerlamp Publishing, I should also direct you to their fancy new website at flickerlamp.net, and also their new YouTube channel from whence the following videos are derived.

Can books that make you think RUPTURE YOUR BRAIN? Features a testimonial by world-reknowned brain specialist Dr. Donald Anderson.

The King of Antarctica speaks is a commentary by the title character from my story The King of Antarctica, which happens to be one of my favorites of the 12 stories in Ashes to Ashes, Oranges to Oranges.

Watch the commercials, read the review(s, someday soon), and buy Ashes to Ashes, Oranges to Oranges for your computation station or handheld device. If you don’t love it, I’ll make you a sandwich. And drive to your house. And then I’ll eat the sandwich right in front of you. And then we can have a long conversation about why you didn’t love my book. But I have every confidence that you will love it. I’m excited, and it’s my first book, so that’s why it’s taken me four days to update here. I’ll keep you all in the loop better in the future. My word is my bond and etc., etc., etc.

Your Friend,

Eric

 

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