Kindness, The Clap and Calvin and Hobbes

Way back in my freshman year in college, I was so stupid I didn’t realize how stupid I was. And to be honest, so were my friends. But we all were. We were, 17, 18, 19 and didn’t know any better. And that wasn’t necessarily a bad thing. Startling insight, I know. How did I ever come up with that? And why am I boring you with it now.
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How Do I Get Paul Rudd?

One thing writers like to do is cast the movie version of their own books. It’s especially fun when you have absolutely no sign of a movie deal on the horizon. At any rate, people have asked me before who I’d see playing various people in The First Annual Grand Prairie Rabbit Festival. And I’ve typically been stumped with the part of Father Steve.

Vicky, I always sort of saw as Jennifer Aniston. Don’t judge me.

But Father Steve? George Clooney’s too old and John Krasinski was too tall (and goofy) for my liking. Then, yesterday, while walking up Third Avenue, I saw a movie poster and Paul Rudd’s face was on it.

It’s totally him. I think. Someone make that happen.

Anyone else who read the book, who’d you cast in the various parts?

Miss Rita’s tough as well. Only person I can kinda come up with is Alfree Woodard. Someone who can play older and pull of comedy as well as gravitas. Problem is I picture Miss Rita as pretty skinny. (One Facebook, someone suggested Wanda Sykes, which I kind of dig. You know how comedians like that crossover dramatic roles)

Brother Paul. Hmmm. Robert Duvall. But he’s getting up in age. Maybe John Goodman?

Cuz The Night Time Is The Right Time

A little joy in your morning. The Huxtables lip-synching Ray Charles’ “The Night Time (Is The Right Time).” This is like getting your chocolate in my peanut butter in someone else’s cocaine. It’s that awesome.

I was listening to Ray Charles on the way into work this morning and as I thought about what this bit of entertainment — one snippet from The Cosby Show — meant to me, I became certain I’d written about it before. And I had. After a similar commute on Jan. 7, 2005, I wrote something for The Subway Chronicles, created by my friend Jacquelin Cangro, who now blogs here. (You’ll have to scroll down as there were no permalinks on the site.)

What I wrote then — I don’t know if I’d be capable of writing it the same way today.
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10 Things You Can Do to Make Me Rich!

The First Annual Grand Prairie Rabbit Festival starts shipping in eight (8) days and the nation is just bursting with excitement about it. OK, so maybe a handful of people are bursting with excitement and everyone else is just bursting from too much holiday food and the mental strain of the New Orleans Saints making the playoffs.
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Snow In Louisiana? Hell Freezing Over?

The New Orleans Saints beat the crap out of the New England Patriots. That very same week it snows in Louisiana. In early December. Coincidence? I think not. Saints fans have been equating Louisiana’s steamy weather and making hell-freezing-over jokes ever since the Saints franchise took to the field and elevated losing to an art form.

That the Saints are undefeated at this point in the season is more miraculous than snow in early December–for the second year in a row. Hell, I don’t even want to write the word Saints in a blog post because I’m sure I’ll jinx them. And don’t even get me started on the Vikings, who happened to knock the Saints out of the playoffs the very first time they made it to post-season play. It’s enough to make me sick.

Funnily enough, in an early draft of The First Annual Grand Prairie Rabbit Festival, I had Father Steve visiting a friend’s house for a Monday Night Football game against division rival Atlanta Falcons. In the scene, they were throwing bottle caps at the TV by the second quarter and just quit watching at halftime, so disgusted were they at the state of play. For various reasons, I cut that scene. Now I kinda wish I had kept it, just to remind all of us Saints fans not to get too ahead of ourselves.
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Most Depressing Sentence of the Week

My income per book always reminds me of how tough it is to make at living at this gig, especially for writers who only produce one book per year.

The quote is from paranormal romance writer Lynn Viehl, whose last book was on the mass paperback bestseller list.

The bolding is mine. Because, really, people who ONLY produce one book a year? ONLY? One a year? Wow. Sure, I could probably crank out one rough draft a year, but one finished book? I don’t know about that.

Early Acclaim for the Novel: Part 4

TFAGPRF“You have to watch these Louisiana boys. They can drink you under the table, and some of them can write you under the table. Ken Wheaton can do both. He’s a wild one, and this is a sparkling debut.” — Luis Alberto Urrea, author of Into the Beautiful North

This particular blurb is 99.9% gold. (I’ll get to the 0.1% later.)
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