Little Help Please

Hello Everybody,

As you probably know, self-published authors have a huge mountain to climb when it comes to breaking through the barriers setup by mega-publishers wanting to keep us at bay. Their collective attitude boils down to this. If you aren’t a previously published bestseller, don’t call us because we will never call you.

Okay. I’m a big boy in more ways than one and I understand that the game is rigged from the start. But miracles do happen and I refuse to give up on my dream. No, that doesn’t mean being a bestselling author; I don’t need riches or fame. All I need is enough to pay the bills and maybe take the family out once a month to a sit-down dinner.

Still, I refuse to give up but I’m not beyond asking for help. So here it is. I’m creating a video to promote PNTP and the production company wants me to get as many fresh reviews as possible. In the past, I’ve been remiss in asking for reviews because it’s hard for me to do. I don’t know why. I guess it’s just me. So anyway, now I’m asking. If you’ve already read PNTP please go to

https://www.amazon.com/Positives-Negatives-Tricycles-Pancakes-Pollack-ebook/dp/B00MZD3A98?ie=UTF8&keywords=L.%20Davyd%20Pollack&qid=1465056786&ref_=sr_1_4&sr=8-4

and tell me what you think.

If you haven’t read PNTP go to www.LDavydPollack.com . All my eBooks are priced at $1 including PNTP. You simply can’t beat the price. And just to show you that I’m not in it for the money; I’ll be willing to trade a free copy of any eBook for a review. All you have to do is go to my website contact page and ask me for one.

Thanks in advance for all your help,

Davyd

 

 

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Are You a Father or Are You a Mechanic?

As you probably already figured out, I’m a writer, not a mechanic. Yes, like so many these days, I call myself a writer and no, it isn’t because I’ve been laid off from my third job in four years. Just so you know, I’ve been writing for decades. My first full-length novel about a single father meeting the challenges of raising his son and in the process, discovering things about himself that he never knew—is finally out. It’s called, Positives & Negatives, Tricycles & Pancakes. So yes, I’m a writer and I’d be a writer whether I was stocking groceries at the local market, or mowing lawns up and down my neighborhood streets.

What I am, and what I do to keep a roof over my head, are two different things. It would be great if it didn’t have to be that way but for now, that’s the way it is. For me it’s very much like living two lives at the same time, there’s the writer life, and the everything else life. The everything else life is real and largely out of my control, the writing life is fictional and even though it only exists in thought, for me it’s no less real. The only thing the two worlds have in common is that I have no control, and I’ve become accustomed to it.

On the other hand, the differences between the two worlds are myriad, but can be summed up by two words, make believe. In the writing world, I can experience anything; life, love, hate, I can fall out of a ten-story window and I can die doing it, or more sensationally, I can survive. I can do anything, or more accurately, anything can happen to me and I don’t have to experience it in the real world. So why, when I meet a prospective reader for the first time, are the questions always the same?

“Are you a single father?”

“No.”

“Do you have a son?”

“No.”

I’ve been marketing my book for about six months and it’s always at this point that the prospective reader decides to move on. Not only do they not buy the book, but later, if someone who has tells them good things about it, their first response is, “He isn’t even a father.”

Ugh—I, for the life of me couldn’t figure it out. Why is this such a big problem? It must be a serious one but the reason continued to elude me. At first, I thought maybe if I ignored the whole thing and didn’t make it any bigger than it was, it would go away. Especially, as people read the book and then told others, you know, the power of word-of-mouth advertising. I was wrong. As more people talked about the book, more people would inquire with the same two questions. Are you a single father? Do you have a son? I’d answer no, and they’d move on.

What to do? What to do? I thought about my possible options. Morality and personal responsibility aside, I suppose I could put the cart in front of the horse and find a way to become a baby-daddy. As time rolls on I would not only establish credibility and standing as a father, but I’d have a son too, or maybe a daughter. How hard could it be? Every day, thousands of men become baby-daddies and they aren’t even trying. Of course, being a real father takes a lot more than just a pregnancy, but as I said, I didn’t see the reason why everyone thought it was necessary in the first place. Why did I actually have to be a father? Why do I actually have to have a son? I guess I was just missing it.

The following months did nothing to change anything. The same two questions were still pestering me so I decided to perform a thought experiment. I asked myself, Davyd, what if instead of writing a novel about a single father, you wrote a book about fixing cars? Would I, as a reader of auto repair books, buy it? And the first question that came to mind was, are you a mechanic? And the second, do you fix cars? I never even thought to ask if I was a writer.

The light bulb went off in my head. If I were a mechanic with 10-15 years experience fixing cars and a professional certification or two, sure, why not? I’d buy the book. But if I’m a writer who writes novels, short stories, and sometimes a novella, well . . . I don’t think so. And there it was, I saw the problem and I understood it completely.

However, in order for you to understand it the way I do, you’ll need to prepare yourself because the problem isn’t as obvious as you might think. To prove it, I’m going to tell you something that isn’t going to make any sense but nevertheless, is true. There is no problem. The fact that I wrote a book about a single father raising his son, when I am not a single father, and I never had a son, is totally and completely irrelevant. Here’s why.

Anyone who has read the book automatically and without realizing it, loses their skepticism before the end of the first chapter. In fact, most do it after just a page or two, and the reason they do, and the reason I never understood the skepticism in the first place, is this. I never set out to write a how-to book about raising a son by yourself. I don’t write non-fiction (at least not yet), so that was, and still is, the furthest thing from my mind. True, Positives & Negatives, Tricycles & Pancakes, is about a single father raising his son, but I didn’t write a book about the father that I am. I wrote the book about the father I wish I had.

You see, a long time ago I was a son, and I had a father. So yes, I do have standing and credibility regarding the subject and beyond that . . . I will say no more. If you have other questions, you’ll just have to read my book, L. Davyd Pollack’s book.

 

It’s Free

Hi all,

I know it’s been a while since I posted and there really is no legitimate excuse. The illegitimate excuse is that I’m busy. Which is true, just not a good excuse. Real life being what it is, and that includes mounting bills, I’ve had to put my dreams of writing for a living on hold and start looking for a job that pays (pretty much anything else). So if you guys hear of anything (in Florida), let me know.

In the mean time, I’m running a book promotion to coincide with a local book fair. The fair will be held on 3/28/15 from 9-5 at the Cocoa Beach Library (in Florida). This year I’ll be participating in it, so if you’re in the area, stop by and say hello. I’ll be giving away five FREE signed copies of, Positives & Negatives, Tricycles & Pancakes. If you’re not in town, not a problem, you don’t have to be present to register. Here’s a sneak preview.

Contest Rules

Win 1 of 5 free signed copies of:

Positives & Negatives, Tricycles & Pancakes

Step 1

Register your name and email either at the Book Fair or online through my website. Just ask me to add you to my mailing list. Please, one entry per name and email. Why anyone would want to enter twice is beyond me, but if I don’t say something . . . well, there’s always a smart-aleck.

Step 2

Okay, now go to my website and download: See Jane, Brothers, and In the Rough (totally free today 03/28/15 and tomorrow 03/29/15). All three are available at www.LDavydPollack.com . Don’t have a digital reader? No problem. At the bottom of my home page, you will find links to free apps that will let you read Kindle stories on your computer or smart phone.

Step 3

Now listen closely, this is crucial. Read the two short stories (See Jane, Brothers) and one novella (In the Rough). For those in Rio Linda, a novella is a really short novel, way under a hundred pages, about fifty.

Step 4

Yeah, I suppose this is crucial too. Leave a kind, original, and plot driven review for each story. It isn’t hard to do. When you finish a story, Amazon will automatically prompt you to tell everyone about it. Or, you can come back later and go to Amazon, do a separate search for each story, find the story, find the review section, and then leave a review—your option. As for the review itself, it doesn’t have to be long, two or three sentences in your own words will suffice and . . . Okay, it doesn’t even have to be kind, as long as it’s truthful, constructive, and not malicious.

Step 5

The first five people to email me through my website that their three reviews are posted, will be eligible for a free signed copy of Positives & Negatives, Tricycles & Pancakes (PNTP). I will confirm the reviews and then email you back for the delivery address. Once I have received the delivery address, I will send you, free of charge (including shipping and handling—when I say free—I mean free), one signed copy of PNTP.

This promotion is open to all registrants at the Book Fair as well as those who can’t make it but register their name and email address online. The contest begins on the 28th and ends when I have confirmed the fifth and final set of reviews.

What do you have to lose?

Feverishly at Work

It’s the week before Christmas and I’ve been feverishly at work trying to get the print version of “Positives & Negatives, Tricycles & Pancakes,” ready for publishing. Being new in the business, I thought it would be easy. I assumed, and I think not unreasonably so, that with a fully edited and published eBook, the print book would be a piece of cake. Just upload the file and click print, right? Oh contraire . . .

Maybe it was because I published electronically first, then went to print, or maybe it was just naiveté (probably the later), but print books require a completely different set of formatting techniques to obtain a good, professional looking product. What presents well on a reader looks terrible on a page, and vice-versa. Everything from fonts, to headers, to page numbers, to cover art, even front matter, are all handled differently. And I had to learn it one mistake at a time.

Well. It was a tough row to hoe but at long last, it’s done, and just in time for the holidays. Shooo! The print version of PNTP is finally available so check it out at www.LDavydPollack.com

Happy Holidays.

-Davyd

PNTP print cover

The Day After Yesterday

Today is the day after yesterday, which turned out to be a very significant day for me. Why? Because three very important things happened to me. One has nothing to do with writing and so I’ll leave it for another time. The other two . . . we can talk about.

It’s been almost a month since I published “Positives & Negatives, Tricycles & Pancakes” and early signs are looking—I don’t want to jinx it. However marketing, which is something writers have to do, not want to do, isn’t easy and it takes a lot of work. As part of my marketing plan, I’ve become active in social media. I know. In social media marketing you never admit that you’re doing it, marketing that is, it’s a cardinal sin. But the truth be told, for a one-man show like me, marketing is a part of my life and if I didn’t talk about it, I wouldn’t be honest. I’m not perfect, but I try to be honest. At least my social media marketing isn’t as gratuitous as say, Doubleday or Penguin. They and others like them all have active Facebook/Twitter campaigns. But honestly, who among us really thinks they care a hill of beans about what our children brought home from school today? Unless of course, it was one of their books.

This blog, to a much smaller extent than other social media, is still a part of my overall introduction to the world and therefore, helps with marketing. But in the scheme of things, it differs from Facebook and Twitter in some important ways because here, it’s all about me. I say what I want, for as long as I want, and it’s up to you whether or not someone reads it. Just like book sales. If I write a book and publish it, you, the reading public are the ones who decide if anyone will actually buy it. No one is holding a gun to your head.

As a writer/publisher (I’m going to assume that if you’re reading this blog then you are one of the tribe or thinking about it), you know people who have read your work, or better yet, purchased and read your work. Of these, you’ve probably asked them at one time or another, what they thought. Maybe they liked it, maybe not, and maybe they had some constructive criticism; we’ll stay away from the jealous destructive criticism. You ask, they tell, and some of it is helpful and a lot of it is not. But there’s a fundamental problem with the entire process. The people critiquing your work know you and their underlying agenda is usually not to hurt your feelings, so they lie. No, that’s too harsh—they soften the truth.

That’s why social media marketing has some problems. Most of the people you contact in the beginning and for a long time after, know you in some way. If I put on my publisher’s hat and start to think like a businessman, then I have to ask an important question. Sure, you can sell a copy of your book to your coworker’s soon to be ex-boyfriend, but can you sell a book to Jane Doe living in Phoenix, AZ who doesn’t know you, your coworker, or her soon to be ex-boyfriend? The answer is. Who knows? Maybe.

I’m new at publishing and I’m new at blogging, though to me it seems entirely plausible that if you can get people to take time out of their busy day to read a post on your blog, you probably can get them to consider buying a book. But if you can motivate someone to not only read your blog, but afterward, leave you a positive comment, you might actually be on your way to finding something better than a sale—you might have a fan.

With that in mind, my blog has only been up for a short time but I was beginning to get concerned about the lack of comments. I had plenty of likes and my follower list was growing thanks to all of you, but comments, there weren’t any.

Yesterday, I finished what I was writing early because I got an earlier than normal start. With the extra time, I decided to work on my blog and when I signed in, lo and behold, there they were, my first comments. And to top it off, all three were positive. Thank you all very much. Yes, I know three comments aren’t thirty-three and hell, I may not get anymore. But the way I see it, it’s a start, and a sorely needed pat on the back. It’s lonely out here . . . all by my lonesome.

Needless to say, for anyone who might want to put in his or her two cents, don’t be shy. I’m not. I tell you what I think; it’s only fair that I hear what you think. Good or bad. By the way, you may have noticed that we only talked about one of the two writing related things that happened to me yesterday. Tomorrow, I’ll talk about the other, negative comments.

father, son, physical, disability, catmillion, dollar, house, car, bills, moral, dilemmabrother, fraternity, college, roommates, teammates, friendwomen, career, family, power, girlfriend

Peterson and Parenthood, and time gone by

It’s in the news; it’s on everyone’s mind, so I guess it’s on my mind too. Adrian Peterson whooped his kid with a switch and the country is in an uproar. Before I go any further, let me say this. Nothing appalls me more than a full-groan man beating up on a defenseless child. For me, that takes first place, followed closely by animal cruelty, but that’s for a different blog. I just wanted to frame the picture, set the bar, and give you a baseline for understanding the reason I’m writing about this subject.

Perspective. I have a perspective and anyone who has read my book Positives & Negatives, Tricycles & Pancakes (PNTP), knows this. That aside, I don’t usually comment about how I obtained my perspective, but for the purposes of this discussion, I will relate a personal experience.

I don’t remember what it was that I did. I was young, and in the grocery store with my mother. As a child, I knew that it was important, no matter what type of store we were in, to keep my hands in my pockets. If I didn’t have pockets, my hands were to be by my side. Under no circumstances was I supposed to touch anything unless I planned to buy it. Ask any merchant and they would probably agree, it’s a simple and polite rule parents should still teach. Anyway, since I was too young to have any money of my own, there was no reason for me to touch anything. My best guess is that I probably got caught touching something, something that didn’t belong to me.

Back then, parental discipline wasn’t administered in private the way it is now. It was for all intents and purposes, instantaneous—and public. Why? Because it was expected. As a parent, it was your responsibility to make sure that your children were well behaved. If they weren’t, corrective measures were in order and the sooner the better. A child needs to understand immediately after doing wrong, that it is wrong, otherwise the disciplinary connection is lost. I probably touched something that didn’t belong to me and I was spanked, and it was public.

Honestly, I don’t remember the actual spanking and as I said before, I don’t remember the true transgression. So how is it that I can relate this story? The answer is—I remember the embarrassment. There I was, in the middle of the grocery store getting spanked right in front of all the other kids, some of whom I knew. I remember the giggles, yes, the giggles, because back then we all got spanked, and giggling was like saying ha-ha, you got caught. I also remember the look my mother gave me. It was the look all moms had. It was the look that said, see, you got what you were asking for. My only salvation was that after I got the look, each mom turned to their child, or children, and gave them the same look. Only the translation was a little different, though never misunderstood. It said, see, you do what he did and you’re going to get it too, only I’ll do it harder.

The snickering stopped.

My point is this. There isn’t a fine line between spanking your child with your hand (or even a switch if need be), and say, breaking an arm or dislocating a jaw. Welts rise, and fall, and then go away. Broken anything takes a lot longer to heal. The line isn’t fine—it’s distinct. It’s blaringly bright. It’s a line that is so obvious, it should be part of a parent-licensing test. Oh crap, I take that last one back; more government is the last thing we need. Shoosh! Okay, returning to my point—if that line is little more than a fine thread and difficult for you to discern, then it’s simple, you shouldn’t be a parent. No ifs, ands, or butts (get it).

Unfortunately for Adrian Peterson, more government in the form of law enforcement and the judiciary is exactly what he finds himself dealing with. Who knows how this quagmire is going to resolve itself. But has anyone considered what will happen if Mr. Peterson goes to jail? What kind of lasting damage does that do? How does a family recover from a spanking like that?

And what about the NFL? The NFL should stay the hell out of it. But that’s for another blog too.

father, son, physical, disability, catmillion, dollar, house, car, bills, moral, dilemmabrother, fraternity, college, roommates, teammates, friendwomen, career, family, power, girlfriend