About That Michael Bloomberg Legacy

smokeWhat with all the Michael Bloomberg retrospectives going on, I feel like I haven’t been invited to the party. And I wrote an entire novel based on his legacy! Well, the food legacy at any rate. And who doesn’t want to talk about food and politics (and sex and crime)? Hell, even Fran Lebowitz jumps on the soda thing in her Times interview.

Anyway, since I never talk about myself or my writing here, I figured I’d give another free taste of Bacon and Egg Man. (Okay, fine, every other post I’m talking about my writing, but since I’m averaging about one post every two months these days …).

This is Chapter 18. Setup? You don’t need no stinking setup. Interestingly, Bloomberg isn’t even mentioned below. But his shadow, it is long. Bacon and Egg Man can be purchased in print or e-book here, here and elsewhere.
Continue reading “About That Michael Bloomberg Legacy”

How to Go to a Book Reading

The crowd the last time
The crowd the last time
Ahead of my April 20 reading in Lafayette, Louisiana, I thought I’d offer some ground rules for attending one of these things. After all, not everyone’s been to one. And I’m hoping since Bacon and Egg Man is my second book, I’ll get all those people from the first one and then some.

Turns out, someone has already written such a guide. Me. A few years back. So, in an effort to protect the environment, allow me to recycle.

Please, note, Louisiana people: LAST TIME I HELD A READING AT THIS LOCATION, THE SAINTS BEAT THE VIKINGS IN THE NFC CHAMPIONSHIP THAT WEEKEND AND WENT ON TO WIN THE SUPER BOWL. I’m not saying, I’m good luck, but I AM saying one of you might win the Powerball on April 20.

Believe it or not, a reading and book signing can be as exciting as the Saints winning the Super Bowl (not really) and this may cause you to become confused. So I thought I’d make like Jersey Shore and tell you about the situation.

Basic ground rules.

BaconEggPublishedCover No shirt, no shoes, no service. (But other than that, no one cares what you wear. It’s Saturday, wear what you want.)

DON’T get together with 14 of your friends and paint the letters necessary to spell out Bacon and Egg Man on your chests.

But DO bring friends.

DO bring friends who haven’t heard of the book or haven’t bought the book. Barnes & Noble would like to sell books.

DO show up early and buy a copy from Barnes & Noble if you don’t already have one.

If you are a teacher at a local university, DO offer extra credit to your students to attend.

DON’T just take a copy off the Barnes & Noble table, have me sign it and then walk out the store. They will gang tackle you and haul you off to jail.

While I’m reading, DO pretend to be extremely fascinated. There won’t be cue cards telling you when to laugh or cry, so you’ll have to figure out the appropriate moments for such behavior.

DON’T boo or hiss.

Sometimes, there is a Q&A session after the reading. DON’T ask me about my personal life, who that one character was really based on, if I know the way to San Jose and what kind of moron came up with the crawfish etouffee recipe in the back of the last book.

DO feel free to ask questions about The First Annual Grand Prairie Rabbit Festival. (This is assuming that I remember to take questions this time. I was so overwhelmed by the crowd last time — and that, later that day, I was planning on telling my parents I was getting divorced — that I completely forgot!)

DON’T ask a three minute question that isn’t a question but really is just a way to show off how smart you are. I’m there to show off how smart I am, and I don’t need the competition!

While I’m signing, DO feel free to tell me the correct way to spell your name. Even if it’s Bob. You’d be surprised and how bad my spelling can be sometimes.

DON’T cut the line just because you think you know me. Chances are, most people there will know me. And my cousins from Ville Platte WILL beat you like a red-headed stepchild.

DO forward details about the event (or this email) to everyone you know.

Can’t wait to see yall.

Ken Wheaton reading and signing
Barnes & Noble, Lafayette, La.
Saturday April 20
Noon to 2 p.m.
There will be music after the signing. Feel free to stick around.

Inspiration, Coincidence and Great Minds Thinking Alike

I see bacon!
I see bacon in your future.
When Gary Shteyngart’s Super Sad True Love Story came out in 2011, I was livid. And, yes, it was all based on petty envy and outrage at the publishing industry. At this point, I’d already written Bacon and Egg Man and had tried to interest a number of agents, none of whom were interested. It would be a hard sell, not quite in any genre.

Then this guy comes out with a dystopian novel set in a future New York and gets about six million glowing reviews and awards and the like.

Now I could have gloated that, once again, I’d been right and the brainiacs in the publishing industry had been wrong. Because you know how much money angry gloating puts in the bank. Besides, there was a bigger issue. No one was going to want to publish another dystopian novel set in a future New York. So I read Shteyngart’s damn book and liked it. And not only because it really had no overlap with mine!
Continue reading “Inspiration, Coincidence and Great Minds Thinking Alike”

Bacon and Eggs and FILTH!

Well, isn't that special?
Well, isn’t that special?
When my first novel came out, I caught a lot of flack for the cursing in it. “Too much cursing. Made Baby Jesus cry,” people said.

Look, I curse a lot. And many of the people I hang out with do, too. But the thing is “The First Annual Grand Prairie Rabbit Festival” was about a priest. And while I’ve known priests who curse and while it DID say something about his character, maybe they were right. Did I really need all the cursing?

So when I started “Bacon and Egg Man,” I figured I didn’t need the fuck-nozzle turned all the way to high. The characters wouldn’t curse that much. I even told one of my Pentecostal aunts that she wouldn’t have to worry (as much) about her immortal soul with this one.

Apparently, I lied to my aunt.
Continue reading “Bacon and Eggs and FILTH!”

Excerpt: How About a Taste of Bacon and Egg Man?

BaconEggPublishedCoverI’ve been badgering you all to rush out and buy a copy of Bacon and Egg Man. More accurately, I’ve been pushing you to rush to your computer or Nook or Kindle to grab a copy because it’s not in actual stores yet.

But maybe you’d like to sample the goods, right? So here’s Chapter 2. I’m not going to bother you with too much set-up other than to say it’s set 50 years in the future and while he no longer walks the earth, the legacy of Mike Bloomberg quickly becomes clear. And our hero Wes Montgomery is in police custody.
Continue reading “Excerpt: How About a Taste of Bacon and Egg Man?”

How to Write a Novel

Mmmmmmm, bacon.With the publication of my second novel, Bacon and Egg Man (Nook), a number of people have reached out to me expressing admiration and mild jealousy. Some of them I knew were writers. Others were a surprise. Still others were completely imaginary and I’m using their imaginary questions as inspiration for a blog post. But the message tended to be the same. HOW do you do it? You must be so disciplined. You have a non-academic, year-around day job and still find time.

TFAGRFcover2While I like a good ego stroking, I always feel a little guilty about this. Because in my head, I’m a lazy, unproductive turd of a writer. I read about these lawyers who had full-time caseloads AND a full-time family AND they wrote from Junior’s bedtime until 3 in the morning, then woke up, went to the gym and then went to work. Or even those full-time writers who lock themselves in a basement all day, coming up only for coffee and cigarettes.

Deep down inside, I feel like I should be on my seventh or eighth novel by now. I’m turning 40 this year and I have two published novels, one unpublished one and one in progress. I beat myself up about this constantly. Which just goes to show! (That I just can’t be satisfied with what I have.)

But how DO you write a novel? Here are some simple steps.
Continue reading “How to Write a Novel”

Bacon and Egg Man: Paper or Plastic?

Mmmmmmm, bacon.How should you read my new novel, Bacon and Egg Man? Obviously, with a work of art this layered and so thematically complicated, one must approach it carefully. After all, what do we mean when we say “bacon”?

Mmmmmmmm, bacon.

Where was I? Oh, how should you read my book?

With your eyes!

(Buy the book at Amazon or Barnes & Noble.)

But seriously, some folks seem to get a little confused or ashamed or something when it comes to ebook vs. paper books. In general, I don’t care how you read the book as long as you read the damn thing. Specifically, in the case of Bacon and Egg Man, it’s actually in my financial interest if you read the ebook. Put simply, I get a bigger cut of the price off of ebook sales. And the money shows up faster, too. Instead of waiting over a year to get a convoluted royalty statement that requires deciphering by a high priest, ebook sales will be reported on a monthly basis.

That’s right. If you pay for an ebook, I can convert your money into bourbon before Easter!
Continue reading “Bacon and Egg Man: Paper or Plastic?”

Bacon and Egg Man — The Cover

Oh. Hi. Happy New Year. Fancy seeing you here. There’s something I’ve been meaning to show you. Look at this. It’s a cover for a novel.

Mmmmmmm, bacon.
Bacon and Egg Man — February 2013

Bacon and Egg Man. It’s being released next month by the good folks at Premier Digital Publishing (more on them later). As you can see, my name is scribbled across the top of this cover. That’s because I wrote it. Yay for me, etc.

Let me tell you about this cover.
Continue reading “Bacon and Egg Man — The Cover”