Friday, September 19, 2014

Free Book!
The first Mitch Robertson Mystery story!

Free this weekend: Friday, Saturday, Sunday!

A thank you to everyone who bought one of my books, here's a novella for free!

A couple of years ago I came up with this "retirement plan" to write mystery novels where I could tell all about those crazy things that happened to me in the business, but fictionalized so that I wouldn't get a lot of lawsuits. Though I've told some set stories here, and more are on the horizon; there are some tales that would either anger or embarrass and I figured I could fictionalize those and wrap a mystery around them and find some publisher who might be interested in them.

Except, with mid list publishing close to dead and ebooks taking over and lots of previously "traditionally published" writers escaping to the "indie world" I think these novels will end up as ebooks. My plan for next year is to write a novel one chapter a week (between all of the other stuff I'll be doing) (oh, that's the Jason Bolt book that is "coming soon" in the back of the Blue Books) and maybe scan in an old novel and clean it up. But to prime the prose pump I decided to write a short story with my "retirement plan" hero...

And that short story ballooned to 40 pages.

And I came up with a handful of other ideas for short stories with that hero, which I plan on poking around on over the year and publishing one or two more (unfortunately, the next Mitch story is on hold as I do other stuff).

But here's the first of the Mitch Robertson short stories...

Mitch Robertson was a Hollywood screenwriter with a problem...

"When his cell phone rang, Mitch Robertson was in Penny’s Coffee Shop in Toluca Lake trying to figure out what to do with the chopped up body parts. Gone were the days when you could just scatter the severed limbs and torso all over the city, now with DNA the body would be reassembled almost immediately. And after 9-11 you couldn’t just get the neighbor kid to do a “penmanship exercise” making address labels, get some other kid to lick the stamps, box up the parts and drop them in a bunch of random blue mail boxes all over town to ship them to the far corners of the world - now packages had to be under sixteen ounces or you had to mail them from the post office... where they asked you all kinds of questions about the contents. You take your, what, about 190 pound man... that means you’d need to cut him into at least 200 pieces to keep it under the weight limits, and not only would that require a lot of work and weighing, think of all of the stamps and labels! Just too much trouble. If Mitch couldn't figure out how to dispose of the body parts he would be in big trouble. And that damned cell phone continued ringing."

It's free this weekend! You can't beat that price, right?

Get It Free From Amazon, USA

Amazon UK (I guess still including Scotland)

Amazon DE Germany.

Amazon France.

Amazon Canada.

Amazon Australia.

Amazon Italy.

Amazon India.

Amazon Japan.

Because these are "tests" for the character, I think the next one will have more humor and maybe some action of some sort. I'm trying him out in different situations until I get a clear picture of him. I have no idea how he will do in a fight scene, and I'd love to see how fast he can drive that Sunbeam Alpine of his. So I guess I've have to come up with stories where he does those things.

Because these are experiments, I'm looking for your feedback. read it for free, tell me what sucks. It's free this weekend, then it returns to 99 cents... though I originally planned on having it free forever, Amazon gives you five free days a quarter. But now I'm wondering if 99 cents is too cheap? Lawrence Block (a famous best selling novelist who I shouldn't even be in the same sentence with) sells his short stories for $2.99 when they aren't on sale. I suspect this leads to more sales when they *are* at a deal price. This isn't about making money, as much as what people will think as the value of the story (you can be too cheap).

Next up for Mitch Robertson (probably at the end of the year)...

Rough draft of the first paragraph of the next story...

The Presidential Suite of the Hollywood Hoover Hotel looked like a bloody battlefield: bodies everywhere, furniture broken, red liquid dripping from the walls. Dead soldiers littered the elegant Berber rug, clouds of smoke bounced between two air conditioning vents. Mitch Robertson stepped over the body of an ex child star turned sex tape star turned pop star and entered the room, spotted a gun on the floor and picked it up. It felt light. Holding the gun, he saw the silhouette of an 80s action star sitting sideways on a tipped over chair. Was he dead? Mitch was still hung over from the Awards party the night before, and wondered whether this was all some sort of crazy nightmare that he would wake up from... but when he tripped over the bottomless Superhero (still wearing his mask), flaccid junk encased in a condom, and hit the edge of the sofa, gun skittering, he realized that it was all real. What the hell had happened here?


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