Saturday, June 30, 2007


Susan Speaks: Help!

While Trevor's off, trying to write a poem for Monday's Poetry Train, I thought I'd sneak back in here to ask you guys two questions:

1. Do you WANT Trevor to write a poem for Monday's Poetry Train? Or would you rather hear more from our roadie poet?

2. For this week's Thursday Thirteen, we've been asked to list our favorite Thirteens. I figured I'd ask you guys for some input. You can say something like, "When the band has conversations," Or "when you tie in the Thirteen to some fiction" or "when you tell us things, like the series about what's in everyone's kitchens, and when are you going to finish those, anyway?"

Be specific, vague, whatever.

I'd better run before Trevor catches me here. Last I saw him, though, the lit candle was the only light in the room and the floor was covered in crumpled-up notebook paper (notebook stolen from Mitchell, of course). He's taking this poetry thing to a pretty cliched level. Be careful what you ask for.


Thursday, June 28, 2007


Booking Through Thursday: Desperation

So there's this question floating around today, and people are wasting their time with it instead of my list of shit from when I hijacked this joint.

What’s the most desperate thing you’ve read because it was the only available reading material?

If it was longer than a cereal box or an advertisement, did it turn out to be worth your while?

I read the setlist once. Mitchell was busy making the crowd eat out of the palm of his hand, for a change, and I was toweled off and I'd drank so much, the fucking Gatorade, which tastes like shit, was sloshing around in my gut like I'd swallowed a live fucking fish or something, and I was ready to go back onstage, but Mitchell's still at it, getting this group in the front few rows to bellow something no one could make out into his mic and shit, I was bored.

So I read the setlist.

Yeah, there's some advantages to knowing what you'll play before you need to be playing it. But I'm a sucky bass player and we all know it, so why bother?

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007


Thursday Thirteen #35 -- Susan Proves her Worth

So that way cool wench herself, Rhian, honored me with the Rockin' Wench Blogger award, formerly known as the Rockin' Girl Blogger award. You should think I'd be used to all the honors you guys show me, but nope. Not yet.

At the same time, Red, Wylie, Sophisticated Writer and Xine all made me nuts by tagging me with the same frelling meme! Didn't last weekend's acceptance of the tag teach you anything -- or are you guys clever enough to tag me, knowing I'm going to turn it inside out and upside down and prove how worthy and deserving I am of that Rockin' Wench Blogger Award???

Clever women… All of you.

Instead of going to Wikipedia and following the rules of the Birthday Meme, I'm going to give you thirteen ('cause this is my Thursday Thirteen post) things instead.

Hey, wait one fucking minute here. Susan wouldn't have come up with this blog if it hadn't been for me. This fucked-up thing she's doing needs to center around me. Trevor Fucking Wolff. (And if that's not enough to save her from the shame of not being an R-rated blog, I'll call my dealer and have him come liven the party up some.)

Without further ado (I've always wanted to say that), here's a list all about me and that day in November.

1. Trevor Fucking Wolff was born. Are you dumb enough to believe that anything else important happened?

2. Other shit happened on that day, too. Like the day when Pam came up to Rusty and told her that Mitchell would like her better if Rusty wore a push-up bra. I knew I'd have trouble hating Rusty properly when she kept calm and said, "Why mess with perfection?"

3. Then there was the night the band played this show and Walter Cicewski jumped up on stage. Turns out he and Mitchell were buddies. The big idiot never bothered to tell any of us he'd buddied up to someone like Chi-Chev.

4. It was the first time I bought anything from Lyric's shop. Mitchell told me to. Like I listen to that dork; I was going to before he told me to.

5. The band landed in Japan for the first time. Two days later, I ran up a sushi bill I couldn't pay. Remind me to tell you that one.

6. On my nineteenth birthday, Harry's Hoagies went back to using the good meatballs. They'd been using this piss-poor recipe before that and if you ate them, you'd have the runs for two days. Three if you were lucky.

7. Chelle LaFleur claims it's the day she said, "You heard it first, and you heard it here. Fat chicks with dark skin do like metal! You sit down and watch 'cause I'll prove it." I'll be damned, but she's doing just that.

8. It was somewhere around my birthday that I hooked up with Amy and started my whole thing with the Voss family.

9. Boomer, the KRVR DJ, played ShapeShifter for the first time. It was our demo, but that didn't matter. It was ShapeShifter. On the radio. On my birthday. I thought life didn't get any better than that. Fuck, I was a fool.

10. Mama Voss actually fed me turkey on Thanksgiving. Okay, that wasn't on my real birthday 'cause Hank knocked eight of my teeth loose the day before when I asked for a day without him drinking, but Sonya put together a holiday dinner once I could eat solids again.

11. I got stoned with Daniel and Eric for the first time. I don't think Eric had ever gotten stoned before. He liked it.

12. Other famous birthdays: Who fucking cares? It's all about Trevor Wolff.

13. Famous people who died on my birthday: Like I care? Life goes on with or without you. So long as it's going on with me, nothing else matters.

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Now that Trevor's lost interest in this and has gone to gaze at his reflection, I thought I'd nominate a few folks for the Rockin' Wench Blogger Award.

First off: my blogging road crew: Karen and Janelle. They've put hours into the Summer's Hidden Treasures Contest, so be a sport and join in the fun!

And then my writing blogger friends: Amy Ruttan, Wylie Kinson, Thomma Lyn, and Sophisticated Writer.

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Monday, June 25, 2007


Monday Poetry Train: Burying Treasure

Written for Rhian's Poetry Train. I think it's self-explanatory!

Looking back
Over old poems written years ago

I see their beauty
Recognize their pain
Love their nostalgia
And fear their power
To wound

I've come so far since then
Learned what love really is
Brushed the past under the carpet
And walked on it,
Like you walk over crumbs
That you promise yourself you'll vaccuum up later
But never remember to do

Doesn't matter where I am now,
I suppose.
Not when there's another who might see
Who might be hurt
Torn raw
And opened to a fiction that reads like truth
Instead of the fantasy it was
And the truth it could never be.

Maybe under the carpet's not deep enough.

Maybe I need to take this part of my past
Into my treed backyard
And dig a hole
And bury them there, my poems.

I'll mark the spot
With a rock, a stick, an old bird's nest
So that when the nostalgia hits
I can visit them and dream again

About things I wished were a different way

Even as I know
That as good as I wanted them to be
They could never be as good
As things are now.

Don't forget to check out the Summer Hidden Treasures Contest! And if you haven't been here for a few days, scroll on down and catch up with Kerri...

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Saturday, June 23, 2007


Tagged -- The Five Things Meme

I think I've been tagged for the Five Things Meme three times now. And a million other ones, too; my head's starting to swim with them all. I may not do any of them. In fact, I probably won't because I'm so overwhelmed right now. But at least I'm honest about it!

However, one of the questions in that Five Things meme resonates with me: What would you do with a million dollars?

I can say, with the utmost authority, that I would not change a single thing about my life and the way I live it. Oh, stop chuckling and disbelieving me. As Eric would say, have a little faith.

However, a million bucks (and more) has worked a transformation on my main core of characters. Eric, Trevor, Daniel, and Mitchell are all obvious; they've gone from being struggling musicians to rock stars. Rock Star is synonymous with wealth, of course; it ought to go without saying that these guys are loaded.

But there's one character I've got, a woman who met a guitar player in a grocery story and assumed he was a struggling musician the same way that she was a struggling artist. When her assumption was proved wrong, much to Mitchell's amusement, Kerri Broadhurst suddenly found herself marrying into money.

Thus, Kerri is probably the best person to ask what she'd do with a million dollars. Here's what she had to say:

When I was in art school, I used to dream of being able to endow scholarships that would help broke art students like myself. My tuition at Riverview Art was entirely on me -- my parents refused to pay a penny. In fact, they'd been quite clear about the fact that they hadn't wanted me to go to art school at all, let alone one across the country in Riverview.

But Riverview Art Academy is one of the best out there. And getting far away from home seemed like a wise choice. So I took what I had, which was very little, and I turned it into a lot.

One thing I've learned about money is that when you marry someone who's got it, you feel different about it. All those plans and dreams I'd had while in art school … they were still there, don't get me wrong. Helping struggling artists was and is important. But spending Mitchell's money didn't seem like the right way to go about doing things.

I wish I could say that we struck a deal, but Mitchell would be insulted if I even hinted that's what happened. He was always very clear about it: I was a full partner in our marriage but it was still a man's job to provide. He'd been saving up for the day when he'd be able to provide for his family -- at least, that's what he said. The truth is somewhere closer to the band's touring schedule, which didn't leave any of the guys with time to spend what they were making, although Trevor sure tries.

Basically, Mitchell's attitude meant that the money I earned from my art was mine. By this point, I was long out of art school, so my vision had expanded. One thing I've learned is that the art community at large has needs, even in a city as art-friendly as Riverview.

The point in all of this is that without Mitchell's money, I wouldn't be able to be the huge supporter of the scene that I am. He gave me this comfortable cushion that I needed to establish before I could give my own income away. Otherwise, I'd be giving away my own rent money, and that defeats the purpose; I'd need the help I'm otherwise giving.

What I guess I need to say is that it took more than just a million dollars to make all of this possible. That a million dollars doesn't go very far anymore. Not like back in the days of the Rockefellers and the Roosevelts, whose wealth was astronomical for the times. Now, I meet ShapeShifter fans who are millionaires, and they are sometimes, the most down-to-earth people you'll ever find. Some of them still struggle to make ends meet, the way I did when I was a penniless art student, cleaning a drag queen's apartment instead of paying rent.

My advice to any new millionaire is to invest it. All of it. Let it be the springboard for the change you want to see in the world -- even if that change is only that you now want to spend a grand on a pair of shoes that won't be in fashion next week, just for the fun of it. A million isn't what it used to be. Spend it wisely and make it last as long as you possibly can.

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Thursday, June 21, 2007


Susan's Book Talk: Spring Reading Thing Final Tally

Since today is the first day of summer (I hope you've visited some of the great Thursday Thirteen posts about the solstice), it's time to recap how I did in the Spring Reading Thing.

I'd have to say that overall, I did better than expected, in terms of sheer numbers.

While I didn't get through my initial list of twenty-nine books, I did read twenty nine -- seven titles were different from the list. I had to read a few to give to friends as prizes over at, a place I don't spend nearly enough time anymore. Also, I forgot to factor in my book club books, of which there were two. And I had the pleasure of not one but two graphic novels by the wonderful Joann Sfar.

Overall, the standout was, of course, Karma Girl, which I've been raving about pretty non-stop for the past few weeks. I finished You Gotta Have Balls last night and while the first half was rough and I wished I could give up, I'm glad I didn't. I'll rave more about this later; it'll be a great Hidden Treasure book.

Overall, I think I'm disappointed that I gave up on as many as I did (seven). I'd like to think my taste in picking what to read is improving, but I guess not...

It was a fun challenge. I hope to do more, even if my reading has fallen off lately. Too much to write, too many blogs to surf... You guys know how it is.

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Wednesday, June 20, 2007


Thursday Thirteen #34 - Earring Aftermath

So my stresses of the past few weeks haven't been totally resolved (although I managed the bun quite nicely for the dress rehearsal. Now, on to the recital!) and won't be until Friday, at the earliest.

Yet for whatever reason, my stress levels have dropped and the muse has returned.

If you were here on Monday for Rhian's Poetry Train, you read this outtake. If you haven't read it yet, please make time for it; it's now one of my all-time favorites, with Death By Cheese and Green Hair Week.

At any rate, this week's Thirteen springs from that outtake. Poor Mitchell and his newly-pierced ears...

Thirteen things Mitchell did Upon Coming To

1. Put a hand up to his ear to find out why it was throbbing.

2. Felt three earrings instead of the expected one.

3. Peeled himself off the bed where Trevor had put him when he passed out and staggered over to his mirror for a better look.

4. Puked all over the mirror and his dresser.

5. Panicked at this latest mess.

6. Proclaimed it was Trevor's to clean up. All of it.

7. Found Trevor smoking out on the back patio. Beat him almost as senseless as Hank used to, only without the psychological torture thrown in.

8. Supervised Trevor's clean up of mess in bedroom, including bloody sheets from the passed-out piercing.

9. Spent four days hiding his ears from everyone. Considered gelling his hair into place in front of his ears (both, to reduce suspicion) but the gel turned his hair an ugly shade of grey.

10. Blackmailed Amy into keeping quiet when she discovered Trevor's handiwork. (Bribes had a bad tendency to get ignored after a few days.)

11. Went shopping with Amy for new earrings to wear as soon as the lame-assed starter earrings could come out. Amy bought him the famed winged dragon that a fan took out of his ear with her teeth while video cameras were rolling. Bitch kept it, too. That clip made it into the band's first behind-the-scenes video, Take the (Back)Stage.

12. Beat Trevor up again 'cause three earrings cost way more than one, and require some finesse to pull off properly -- or so says Amy, who knows more about fashion. Or did, back in those early days, before Mitchell hired stylists and Amy spent her days in long white lab coats.

13. Finally came clean to Sonya and Patterson when they were healed and not about to close when Patterson insisted they come out. Unfortunately for all the trouble Mitchell went through, they didn't care. Mitchell suspected Amy squealed and what they cared most about was his coming clean about what Trevor had done to him. No comment was ever made by either parent about the earrings, although Sonya would buy him some from time to time if she saw some she thought he'd like.

Don't forget to check out the Hidden Treasures Summer Reading Contest! And in case you've been living under a rock, voting is still open for the Blogger's Choice Awards. Go make me number one, will ya?

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

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Tuesday, June 19, 2007


Summer Hidden Treasures Author Spotlight

Yeah, I know I raved about Jennifer Estep and her debut, Karma Girl, before. And yeah, you'll be hearing more from me about Ms. Estep, especially next winter, when Debut a Debut returns.

BUT since I can't get enough, if you head over to Front Street Reviews and click on Interviews, you'll see a short conversation the lady and I had. It blew me away how similar our thought processes are; I hope to one day be able to sit and compare notes with the lovely Jennifer Estep.

Be sure to check out my review of Karma Girl, too, while you're there. And if you missed yesterday's outtake as part of the Poetry Train, make sure you scroll down (or click through and then scroll down, you feed readers). Definitely one of my favorites.

And on a personal note, I mastered the bun! It was actually quite easy. Now, getting all that gel and spray out may be a different story, but getting it together turned into a no-brainer breeze. I'll take it.

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Monday, June 18, 2007


Monday Poetry Train: Mitchell's Ears

Trevor took a deep drag on his cigarette and motioned at Mitchell with it. "C'mon. Quit being a wuss." It was more a command than a request, but of course, Mitchell wouldn't see it that way. You could command the idiot to eat an entire chocolate cake and he'd quit after two bites and say he was saving it for later.

"I'm not being a wuss, dickhead. I don't want an earring."

"How can you be a respectable rock star without a pierced ear? Name me one single fucking star out there who doesn't have at least one hole in his ear."

Trevor could tell from Mitchell's face that the guy didn't even realize most stars had ears, let alone shit dangling from them. Too, he could tell that the idiot didn't think that image meant a single fucking thing.

Waiting Mitchell out was useless, so Trevor filled the space with his cigarette. When it was all but gone, Trevor sighed. Smoke that hadn't escaped his lungs chose right then to come out his nose; he decided he understood how dragons felt.

"Look," he told Mitchell, "it's no big deal."

"Tell that to Ma. She'll kill me if I let you do this. And then she'll kill you for doing it!"

"No, she won't. Not if you're serious about this band thing."

"I am, Trev, and you know it. You fucking know I am!" Mitchell crossed his arms over his chest and pouted. "But I gotta draw the line somewhere, and I'm drawing it at earrings!"

"No one's gonna think your ass is gay," Trevor drawled. "Despite what Amy did over the end-of-day announcements that one time. No one bought it then and no one'll buy it now." He ground out his cigarette in the ashtray Mitchell's mother had given then when she'd given up the battle to keep her precious baby boy from smoking.

"That's not the problem."

"Yeah, and I'm already a fucking rock star." Trevor eyed Mitchell, convinced he knew what the guy was about to whine: it'll hurt, Trev.

"Dad," Mitchell said instead. "He meant it when he said he'd kick me out of the house if I do it."

Trevor sighed as loudly as he could. How stupid was Mitchell? "That's why you grew your hair out, asshole."

"I thought it was to get girls."

"Well, since it didn't work for you, let this be the reason you did it."

"Amy'll tell."

"I'll handle Amy," he said easily, knowing it was true. His usual methods may not have worked with the wanna-be doc, but Trevor Wolff did not have only one way to get through to a girl. Besides, he had plenty on Amy if it got that far. Which it wouldn't.

Mitchell chewed on his thumbnail, eyeing Trevor, who wanted to jump up and down with glee. The guy was teetering on the edge. All he needed now was one little push and he'd do most of the jumping himself.

"It's a chick magnet."

"Just one," Mitchell said. "One hole, one ear."

Giggling, Trevor ran for an ice cube. When he got back, Mitchell was sitting on the edge of his bed, hair pushed back behind his left ear, hands braced on his knees. "Make it fast."

"The ice's gotta have time to work. You don't want to feel it, do you?"

Mitchell swallowed hard and Trevor handed him the ice. "Hold it on your ear until you think your ear'll fall off." He pulled out his lighter and produced a pin from a pocket.

"You sure you know what you're doing?"

"I did Jeremy and Eliza's after HJ did mine," he said. "Wait. I gotta find the… Put the ice back on!"

It was in his denim jacket pocket. The earring they'd leave in while the hole healed. The same one he'd used, the same one he'd let Jeremy borrow, and the same one he'd stolen right out of Jeremy's head when the dumbshit wasn't looking.

Trevor held its post and the needle in the lighter's flame. Mitchell turned paler than he normally was.

"Okay," Trev said when the ice had melted away and Mitchell was swearing about how his hand felt. The wuss had been impressive in the way he'd held onto that frozen water; if it was a test of manlihood like HJ had insisted, the blonde idiot in front of him had passed with flying colors. "Can you feel this?" he asked, poking at the air beside Mitchell's head.


"Good," Trev said and jammed the pin through Mitchell's ear.

Mitchell swallowed a scream that still managed to get halfway out -- and then passed out. Trevor caught him and laid him gently on his right side, left ear facing out.

"Easier this way," he said to no one in particular since he doubted Mitchell was up for listening and engaging in conversation.

The first hole went so easily that Trevor dug two more starter earrings out of his jacket and gave Mitchell a grand total of three.

He crossed his arms and nodded, satisfied with his work. So what if Patterson and Sonya didn't like it? They'd never throw their precious baby out of their house. Not them. No way, no how.

This is part of Rhian's Poetry Train; jump on aboard. As you can see, you don't have to post poetry. (Wink to Karen)

Also, I hope you're looking for some Hidden Treasures to spend the summer with. The contest begins whenever you want to read; remember to post your reviews online starting July 15. Scroll down for more info; sticky post or something similar coming soon.

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Saturday, June 16, 2007


Summer Hidden Treasures Contest!

A lot of you have said you're interested in joining us for our summer contest (I'll get to "us" in a minute). I know a lot of you are already doing summer reading challenges or other contests. Too bad; here's one more. Read on; you'll dig it.

It's time for the West of Mars, Breeni Books, Morsie Reads, Eclectic Closet, Writing Aspirations Summer Reading Contest!

The rules are simple:

1. Find a book that's a Hidden Treasure. That means a book that hasn't made it to a best-seller list anywhere that you can find. A suggested reading list is available at Feel free to find your own treasure, though.

2. The book MUST be from a royalty-paying publisher. If in doubt, ask.

3. Read it.

4. Post a review somewhere on the Internet between July 15 and August 15.

5. Sign the Mr. Linky at West of Mars. Include the permalink for your review. (yeah, that link brings you back here.)

6. Yes, you can use a Hidden Treasure book that fulfills another contest or reading challenge.

7. Yes, you can review more than one book.

8. If, for some reason, you don't want to win a prize, let Susan know.

9. If you have suggestions for the Hidden Treasures Suggested Reading List, or a prize for the winners, drop Susan an e-mail. You can also contact Janelle; she's giving me a LOT of help (so be sure to surf over and thank her).

10. Prizes will be awarded August 20. Winners will be contacted and winning list will be posted no later than 22 August; be sure to have a way for us to contact you!

So, there you go. Got a prize to offer? Got a favorite book that you want more people to know about?

Leave a comment or e-mail me. I'm a bit slow lately, but I'm still here.

Kudos to friends for helping spread the word: Nimrodiel,

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Thursday, June 14, 2007


Booking Through Thursday featuring a special guest

Today's special guest blog writer is (drum roll, please) . . .

The Tour Manager!


So, the star of W-o-M shows me this Booking Through Thursday
thing (here)
and asks if I'd like to write a blog entry. I figure, "Why not?"

To the question at hand, do I cheat and look at the end of a book
or read it like the author intended? I don't cheat, well, not in my
mind. If I stick with a book, then I read it beginning to end. Now,
if I decide mid-way through the book that it's a load of dren
(as they'd say on Farscape), then I'll sometimes scan the ending
before flinging the book on the "Give to Susan to trade" pile.
I do read the teasers or whatever you call them on the dust cover
flaps or on the back cover.

Am I tempted to cheat? Maybe once in a long while, but again, usually
when I'm thinking "where the !@#$!#@ is this heading" which often
results in the "load of dren" declaration.

Phew. There you go. A peek into the mind of The Tour Manager.
Hopefully you survived with your sanity intact.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007


Thursday Thirteen #33 -- We Interrupt This Fictional Fun...

So. You came by to visit with my crazy friends from Riverview, USA. I know how it is. You're addicted to them every bit as much as I am.

Unfortunately, the twin stresses that prompted last week's Thursday Thirteen haven't been resolved (Mom, I love you, but you said some very hurtful things at a time when the focus should have been on #2's school dilemma, not either of us), and now there's more!

1. I caught #1's cold and it's doing its best to turn into bronchitis.

2. I've been tagged for a meme by Lori.
3. I've been tagged for a meme by Red.
4. I've been tagged for a meme by Thomma Lyn.
5. I've been tagged for a meme by Wylie.

6. Plus, Aline and L^2 have also tagged me in the past, and I've had to let those balls drop.

7. #2 has her first dance recital next week. I am not nearly so silly as you think because I'm stressed over having to put her hair into a bun.

8. #1 is home from school and all he wants to do is play with friends. And play with friends. And play with friends. I don't mind being his chauffeur (so long as he doesn't call me Jeeves), but it'd be nice if some of these friends were home to play with!

9. I'm tickled pink by everyone's responses to my story poem (scroll down if you missed it). I can't decide if I'm glad no one wanted me to tell them more about our nameless roadie, though. Eventually, I'd like to do a book about a roadie.

10. The way you guys reacted to last week's Thursday Thirteen touched me. Not just because you caught on that I'm stressed, but because you love Trevor so much. It just makes me all the more eager to bring you Trevor's Song. I hope you'll stick with me and help me build my fan base as we progress through this process called publication.

11. The summer reading contest is coming. Can you feel it? Are you one of the many people who've stuffed my inbox with prizes and suggestions, only to not get a response? Apologies for that. I've been so focused on #2's school dilemma that I've answered only the barest of mails.

12. I'm not ready to launch the Summer Reading Contest and dammit, I want to be. You guys are going to dig it; it'll be the same format as Debut a Debut, only with some improvements. Fortunately, Erica at Writing Aspirations is on board with me again. And Karen at Morsie Reads. And hopefully lots of you guys, too. Yes, if the criteria fits, you can overlap this contest with any of your other reading challenges or contests. I'm easy like that!

13. I really want to spend time with Trevor and company. As you guys have noticed, I love my characters. I wish I had more, more, more time to write (I know, don't we all?), but what struck me last night was that one of my least favorite solutions to #2's school dilemma is sending her to a program that would give me more time to write. Can YOU figure that one out without invoking the phrase, "You're putting your daughter first, you good mom, you!"???

And edited to add a bonus: it seems that the Tour Manager found this week's header picture... in the home of our own TTer Babe King. Be sure to tell her you saw her here and to thank her for the picture -- and be sure to get her new release from Freya's Bower this month, too!!!

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

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Monday, June 11, 2007


Poetry Train: Nine PM

I think this one is still a work-in-progress; we shall see. Once again, feel free to post today and jump on Rhian's poetry train. There are few cooler than Rhian.

Nine PM

Nine PM
Half-hour to the headliner.
I walk on the stage.
Opener's finished.
Crowd's worked up.

I been here since 6AM
I'll be here another four hours or so.
But Nine PM
That's my break.
My nightly laugh.

The cattle cheer when they see me.
The place comes alive.
The air snaps.
Like I'm the star,
Not just some roadie
With a job to do.

Most guys,
It'd go to their heads.
They'd get a few girls
hand out promises they couldn't keep --
or wouldn't.

Either way, it's the same thing.
Guy gets laid.
Girl goes home.

Right now, I got a job to do.
Walk across the stage.
Make sure everything's plugged in
Gaffed down
Like it's supposed to be.
Leave again.
It's simple like that.
After the day I just had, I need that.
And those yelling fans
Wake me up real good.

Bronx cheer or real,
Don't make no difference to me.
They can scream until they can't no more.
Won't bring the band out any faster.

Nine-thirty's their time.
Nine's mine.

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Friday, June 08, 2007


Susan Speaks: Yep, that time again

Hey, guys. It's my turn to be a Working Stiff. Go on over and please try to not laugh too hard...

Leave comments here or there; whatever makes you happier. (I do respond faster here, though)

And thanks for the virtual hugs and kind words. I may or may not talk about it later on, but I might have found a solution to at least one of the two problems that sprang up on Tuesday. We shall see if The Tour Manager and I can pull it off.

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Wednesday, June 06, 2007


Thursday Thirteen #32 -- Straight from the horse's mouth

Thirteen things Trevor had to say to me over the past few days:

1. Why get so bent out of shape about something that's not true? Or is there a raw nerve in all those lies?
2. You can't accomplish shit if you're all worked up. Go chug some Pepto so you don't puke, get some sleep, and chill out.
3. No, it may NOT work out. But that's how life is. Deal.
4. Mitchell's mom says fighting for someone who can't fight for themselves is noble. I think it's just the way it's gotta be.
5. You gotta stop and think about what's hurting her the most, and fix that first. The rest'll happen on its own.
6. Most people are jerks. That's why the world needs people like me -- to balance out the jerks.
7. What do you mean I'M a jerk? Been talking to Mitchell or something?
8. Yeah, it hurts like a motherfucker when you break a bone, but it's nothing compared to when a family member breaks your heart.
9. It takes this sort of shit for you to know what you're made of. Once you figure that out, all the rest's a breeze.
10. Sometimes, facing down the shit's the hardest thing you can do. But if it's gotta get done, it's gotta get done, so suck it up and figure out how to make it happen.
11. Quitcher bitching, stop stressing, and get it done already.
12. Don't forget what you're fighting for.
13. Sometimes, what feels like a retreat is really the smartest thing you can do. It gives you time to regroup and catch them on the upswing.

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

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Monday, June 04, 2007


Byline Chelle LaFleur: Temple of the Book

Have you been over to Rhian's poetry train? Have you jumped on???

Have you joined Dewey's comment game?

Are you ready for my summer reading contest???

Now, on to what you're here for. The fiction.

Now, you readers know that ol' Chelle LaFleur can bang her big fat head with the best of them. And you readers know that ol' Chelle LaFleur can rock out with the best of them. That's why Chelle LaFleur is so much more than just a music critic.

Chelle LaFleur's gotta earn her keep at this here Trumpet newspaper, and so Chelle got to go out one night and check out Temple of the Book, one of those three-man, acoustic bands where all the members wear their brown hair pulled back in ponytails and they all have John Lennon glasses on. The whole audience would be pale-skinned or else would be all dredlocked up. I just knew it.

Has Chelle told you lately that she's the world's stupidest journalist? Has she?

Temple of the Book is three dudes, yeah. They're not all acoustic, they don't wear ponytails and the only glasses were the ones they were drinking their beer out of. And they rock. Hard. Geoffrey, the guitarist, might be able to out head-bang some of you regulars, and that's no joking on Chelle's part.

I may have been the only dark face in the crowd, but don't think people don't know who Chelle LaFleur is. I been to lots of shows and seen lots of bands and that was the first time I got a shout-out from the band onstage. Well, okay, there was that time that the ShapeShifter boys started asking if I was there, but that was different. This was a band who was glad to see ol' Chelle, and who said they played harder 'cause I was there. I don't think praise gets no better than that.

The shame of all of this is that, typical of this city, no one came to see Temple of the Book. There were about thirty of us there. What's the matter with you people? Are you really dumb enough to think that our music clubs will stay open if no one shows up at them? Do you think these bands can make it and make a new name for the city without your support?

Yeah, yeah, yeah, it can be hard to figure out what sort of music a band plays. Some of them don't do themselves any favors, picking those brainy names that makes them sound like they should be wearing John Lennon glasses. But don't a night checking out a new band beat that tired old TV show you didn't want to watch in the first place?

You rockers ought to get over yourselves and check this band out. Three guys: one guitar, one bass, one drummer. The bass player sings some of the smartest, most with-it lyrics I've heard. I know this first-hand not just 'cause I heard them, but because they wrote some of them down for me. Look here:

You say you mean it
You back it up with actions
And when push comes to shove
You push right on back

That's from the song called Braveheart. Yeah, it was a movie or tall tale or something. But think about it. Think what it's saying in today's world. You gonna let yourself be pushed around and made to live a life you don't want to live? You know how tired I am of hearing you people whine because someone's pushing on you and not letting you have your own way. Well, here's your power. Take it and make some changes already 'cause Chelle's sick of hearing the whining.

You heard it first, and you heard it here. Temple of the Book. Check them out.

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Saturday, June 02, 2007


Susan's Book Talk: Reviews and a contest or two

Bunches of little things and one big one...

1. Check out Front Street Reviews for two (not one! Two!) of my latest book reviews -- one for Catch a Wave: The Rise, Fall and Redemption of the Beach Boys' Brian Wilson, by Peter Ames Carlin. (the link's to buy the book. Use the Front Street Reviews link to read what I had to say about it.)

The other review is for a new rave of mine: Karma Girl, by Jennifer Estep. (Oh, just check out both links, then the Front Street one for the review!) This is a writer worth watching; her vision is incredible. She creates a totally believable world that you'll want to live in. I promise.

2. Have you been to Dewey's place lately? She's running this really cool contest and yours truly has offered to throw in for the prizes. Come jump on the fun.

3. And finally, speaking of contests and Jennifer Estep, I'm looking for more authors who've published fiction by royalty-paying publishers. Yes, gang, it's time for our summer reading contest, and I am hoping some of you authors, or friends of authors, will stop by and offer up not only prizes, but up to five books or authors who fit the theme of Hidden Treasures.

I've noticed that this is a hot theme this year; I picked it way back in February, so I may be late to the bandwagon, but that's cause I was busy hitching the horses up to it.

Drop me an e-mail for more details. Authors only right now, though! The rest of you can wait a scant two weeks. (Go hunt down Karma Girl in the meantime, okay?)

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