Updates from August, 2013 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • dannyboystories 10:16 AM on August 31, 2013 Permalink | Reply  

    No longer a leader… 

    Nearly from the beginning the United States of America has led the world in societal development–industry, technology, liberties, personal wealth, military strength, diplomacy, and more. Even as early as 1800, the nation asserted its values of freedom of speech, religion, thought, and backed it up with diplomacy and the will to defend those values and its borders.

    Now, that is clearly not the case. America’s word is no longer trusted, its ability to “police” the world non-existent, apparently due to the inability to forge a consensus among other nations. Indeed, it appears long-time “friends” of the world now are more than hesitant to “go-along”.

    My view is the United States has become indecisive, and its foreign policy ability to practice diplomacy all but neutered. It has been proven over centuries by various societies one cannot be all things to all people, and that includes countries. In fact, I believe, at the root of this nation’s foreign inability is the sterility of the Congress and inability of Presidents to lead. How can a nation expect to be the standard of others when it cannot effectively govern itself?

    Our own representatives in the House and in the Senate have clearly demonstrated a propensity to clear the way for their own personal futures, wealth, and power, than to truly govern. Too, the Congress has allowed the massive growth of a bureaucracy of agencies willing to operate without real oversight, further complicating the ability of the people to protect personal liberty.

    I believe fear of what may come–I call it the ‘Chicken Little Syndrome–has allowed development of a government probing and interfering into the personal lives of its citizens beyond reason. It is reason and non-partisan decision making that is apparently completely lacking in government today.

    It may well be that America will soon be an island unto itself, allowing forces from within to erode the freedoms and liberties enjoyed for more than 200 years. America is even unwilling to protect its own border sovereignty as a nation. I suggest the only way to prevent the demise of the United States is to reel in government growth, establish painful fiscal irresponsibility, and end partisan bickering.

    Our own individual selfishness and lack of personal religious belief is a huge part of why the United States is, in my opinion, no longer the nation it once became. — Dan Lee, Danny Boy Stories.

     

     
  • dannyboystories 2:20 PM on August 28, 2013 Permalink | Reply  

    Ayn Rand 

    It bothers me that an apparent majority of American citizens sit on their hands and watch their liberties fade away. Is it because they are taught “limited” information on this nation and the Constitution of the United States of America? Further, as a public, do we lack the knowledge necessarily required of a citizen in a representative republic? Do they even care?

    Ayn Rand said this: “When you see that in order to produce, you need to obtain permission from men who produce nothing, — When you see that money is flowing to those who deal, not in goods, but in favors, — When you see that men get richer by graft and by pull than by work, and your laws don’t protect you against them, but protect them against you, — When you see corruption being rewarded and honesty becoming a self-sacrifice, — You may know that your society is doomed.” — Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged, 1957. You Tube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rOBO3ehh0uI

    As a matter of full disclosure, you need to know I am a Conservative, not necessarily a Republican or Libertarian. But, then, I dislike labels. We are all supposed to be Americans first, at least before doing or allowing others to do what is not for the good of the country.

    Frankly, it is a wonder to me our government gets anything accomplished, given the huge monstrosity it has become, gobbling up money faster than the bills can be printed. The pure size of the federal government is the real problem. Congress can do little simply because few, if anyone at all, in elective office can see clearly through the bureaucratic morass.

    The jungle that is the record of Public Law is so voluminous, so many paragraphs amending other paragraphs in PL passed years previously, determining what any particular law means requires study for weeks on end. Example: Obamacare, the Affordable Care Act.

    It occurs to me only a complete overhaul of the Congress can bring even a small slow down in the growth of government. The hazard of that is to simply reverse the party in power, an altogether distasteful result. Elected officials are now so ingrained with desires of “greed and power”, we may be in an insurmountable Catch 22 situation.

    Even if the Congress were t be entirely replaced (not possible, given the term provisions of the Constitution) could it deal with the convoluted bureaucratic departments that are the government today?

    It is worrisome.– Dan Lee, Danny Boy Stories.

    Image

     
  • dannyboystories 11:31 AM on August 26, 2013 Permalink | Reply  

    The Editor’s outtakes, No. 3 

    Via e-mail:

    Dear Mr. (Editor): You asked I have my manuscript read by a beta or two. Unfortunately the pages all fell apart in the tank.

    …just saying, Dan Lee, Danny Boy Stories.

    Image

     
  • dannyboystories 11:04 AM on August 26, 2013 Permalink | Reply  

    The Editor’s outtakes, No. 2 

    Via e-mail:

    Dear (writer): Your propensity to add an ‘S’ to many words is frustrating. Example: The word “overall” means including everything, comprehensive. Please discontinue use of the word “overalls”.

    …just saying. — Dan Lee, Danny Boy Stories.

    Image

     
  • dannyboystories 10:54 AM on August 26, 2013 Permalink | Reply  

    The Editor’s outtakes, No. 1 

    Via e-mail:

    Mrs. (editor), Thank you, so much for your telephone call today. Now, I have a better understanding of “flow” in my story. However, I’m struggling with your one admonition regarding the major scene in Chapter 8 to “match tents”. For the life of me, I can’t figure out how to include “tents” in a bedroom scene.”

    …just saying. — Dan Lee, Danny Boy Stories.

    Image

     
  • dannyboystories 9:42 AM on August 25, 2013 Permalink | Reply  

    Defining heroes… 

    More than 50 years ago, I donned the brown and tan uniform of a sheriff’s department deputy and took my turn as a reserve officer, riding with the weekend regular duty officers. As the years passed, I continued to ride as a news reporter with night patrols. As a result I seem to relate more closely with law enforcement officers as a class of people than other folks.

    So, I suppose it is a natural progression I would take my experiences from those days and write them down into a series of stories. Mind you, the resulting pages are embellished greatly–scenes much more serious, dangerous, and tragic that the original incident. You see, I believe every story of whatever genre must have some truth to be believable–truth equals fiction, fiction equals truth.

    Make no mistake, cops are gossipers. They joke and tell stories on themselves, frequently at the expense of a comrade. One of the three novellas I’ve packaged together as “Defining Heroes” takes advantage of several of those tales to segue between longer, more intense, stories I’ve embellished from the real versions. In fact, when fellow writers tell me they are in the middle of a “writer’s block”, I wonder if they have been listening. There are a multitude of situations to be stitched into your scene, if you choose to listen and then imagine.

    One friend wrestled over how to end a bedroom scene for a couple of weeks. Simple: Turn off the light.

    There is, however, a cardinal rule I follow: I will never use the “F” word in dialogue, and I will not write graphic or erotic sexual scenes. I do not use the “F” bomb personally, and choose not to do so in my writing. In romantic scenes it is quite simple to simply “fade to black”, leaving the rest to the imagination of my reader. Of course, it is necessary, many times, to use other four-letter words for an accurate  scene portrayal.

    I get a personal lift from writing about real situations embellished just a bit bigger than they were lived, bigger than life itself. I usually weave a bit of one-on-one romance into every story, too, and I haven’t the foggiest idea why, other than I like it. I often wonder if it is because I did not “cut a wide swath” when I was younger.

    It is of no consequence, any of these circumstances or idiosyncrasies. I write because I like to write, even though always in an unusual third person narrative that drives editors nuts. — Dan Lee, Danny Boy Stories.

     

     
    • rlmorgan51 12:14 PM on August 25, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      CONGRATS on your book.

      The moment my eye caught the title of your book I immediately thought it would contain stories which in some way have to do with the Irish or Ireland. Boy, was I mistaken. My only fear is that other potential readers seeing the title might not bother to read any further. If I’d written this book, I’d probably call it something like “Danny’s Posse.”

  • dannyboystories 11:55 AM on August 24, 2013 Permalink | Reply  

    Pandering and patronizing. 

    In general, I consider myself a pretty simple fellow, patient, easy going. I’m usually first to consider the emotions of another before striking out in a head-long dissertation of my own views. Nevertheless, I’m Conservative, and somewhat headstrong when it comes to politics and the well-being of my country.

    Now, regardless what may be their limited factual information, I prefer folks just say what is on their mind in a polite and considerate fashion. Let’s not beat around the bush, but, rather, calmly discuss our differences, retaining our friendship in the end.

    I cannot, however, put up with pandering and patronizing. In fact, it usually infuriates me to the point I must simply walk away. Do you really know what those two words mean, according to the dictionary? Let me help:

    Pandering: 1. Indulge weaknesses: to indulge somebody’s weaknesses or questionable wishes and tastes; 2. procure sexual favors: to procure sexual favors for somebody; 3. indulgent person: somebody who indulges somebody else’s weaknesses or questionable wishes and tastes. Synonyms: ingratiate yourself, curry favor with, make overtures, pander, insinuate, worm your way in.

    Patronizing: 1. condescending: treating somebody as if he or she is less intelligent or knowledgeable than yourself. Synonyms: condescending, belittling, supercilious, full of yourself, superior, denigrating.

    Over the years, I have considered my personal education a continuing exercise. Nearly 20 years as a journalist gives me a voracious appetite for the latest news…usually news one cannot find elsewhere. I dislike cellphones, but mine is tuned to Fox News Channel 24/7. Additionally, I read, read, read, mostly for knowledge. Now I’m a full time writer and should really be reading material my writer friends offer. However, I intend to leave this planet fully informed.

    Pandering and patronizing? I’m just plain sick of our power hungry politicians on all sides of the aisle and issues parroting what they think voters want to hear, rather than how an issue really is impacting our nation. Those who are elected based upon “making a difference”, “changing Washington”, are just plain foolish. The only way that will occur is to completely change the Congress. Doing so, though, still leaves the entrenched bureaucrats populating huge federal departments at the expense of the People.

    How about the Constitution? How can one insist this governing document needs to be changed or updated, when their lack of knowledge about the original and the reasons behind what the Founding Fathers were thinking is all but non-existent.

    But, what do I know? I’m just an Old Man biding his limited time. — Dan Lee, Danny Boy Stories.

     
  • dannyboystories 7:24 PM on August 23, 2013 Permalink | Reply  

    Is it falling? 

    Do you remember the story of Chicken Little, and her declarations “The sky is falling”? Or, how about the Little Boy Who Cried ‘Wolf’.

    In these days of instant communication, the Internet, Social Media links, and the like, it’s difficult to miss something, even though the national media clearly “sterilizes” most stories that never hit the nightly news. In fact, most of the nightly news these days is 20 minutes of so-called “soft” stories about dolphins, a local little league, and such, and perhaps 6 to 8 minutes of hard news.

    We’re told at every turn the major media is ignoring the things about which we should take notice, particularly those matters involving the creeping tentacles of the federal government. Maybe. Maybe not.

    Until recently, when I noticed the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Indiana division, deeply involved in a building permit dispute for a little bar in a town of 1,000, I paid little attention to the doomsayers on the Internet. I’ve really not figured the sky is falling, and I’ve not dug a hole in the ground to hide my family from my own government. Nevertheless, that incident just a few weeks ago gave me pause. I wondered just how much of this “big brother is watching you” stuff is real and how much is imagination.

    Now, I write in Danny Boy Stories “Black Till Daylight”, and “Old Man, Cop” about the tough duty of local heroes in law enforcement. Enough to believe the local men and women around my home know me well enough to not crash through my front door some night just because some federal DHS agent told them to do so. Nevertheless, you may want to watch the following video that came to me the other day. Make up your own mind….

    http://www.thenattyconservative.com/americas-domestic-military-preparing-for-something-disastrous-video/

     
  • dannyboystories 10:32 AM on August 22, 2013 Permalink | Reply  

    Beginning Chapter 2 

    A great deal of effort goes into every book. In my view, Indie Writers labor over every sentence, paragraph, and scene, at times unable to find the right words to bring the manuscript to a close. While writing is a joy to most of us in the Indie Writing world, it is nevertheless work in every sense of the word.

    Unlike many tasks, writing requires much from the very soul of the individual. A writer can be emotionally drained by the time the manuscript is ready for editing. In my opinion, writing, editing, and publishing is only Chapter 1 in the life of a book. Chapter 2 embraces the elements of marking and public relations requiring skill sets most of us do not possess.

    So, how do you tackle selling your books, once published on line? Do you post your book on one of those thousands of “free” web sites claiming it will promote your book to do so? Think about this: How can it promote your book if no funds are expended to market and advertise your work? If it costs you nothing, it will generally yield you nothing.

    Accordingly, some “free” sites begin to charge you for a simple taste of marketing. Once they’ve given you the answers for common sense judgements, they will charge you for what appears to be more marketing. In truth, you are simply joining the multitudes and will be among the 150,000,000 search engine hits, and it costs you more than $100.

    So, what to do.

    Those of you who follow me, know my answer: Independent Writer’s Cooperative! (IWC)

    Anyone can set up an attractive “book catalog” web site and do nothing more. Marketing entails more than the Internet and Social Media. It requires a carefully thought out plan of publicity and public relations designed to generate notoriety outside of the web. And, that is exactly what IWC envisions. Non-profit cooperative marketing has been shown masterfully effective for decades: Sunsweet, Ocean Spray, SunKist, Ace Hardware, and many more.

    The only catch is this: Members are required to fund the marketing through payment of their dues. It is just that simple. At $75 per 12 months (dues are paid on the anniversary date of the membership)–an entire year–it costs less than 20-cents per day. I believe no one presently offers more for less actual investment cash.

    There are many definitions for “cooperative”. I like this one: “…an autonomous association of persons who cooperate for their mutual, social, economic, and cultural benefit…”

    So, next time you are wondering why your book is not selling, consider Book Co-Op (TM). Indie Writers working together for mutual benefit. That’s my view. — Dan Lee, Danny Boy Stories.

     

     
  • dannyboystories 3:46 PM on August 21, 2013 Permalink | Reply  

    Book scrambled eggs? 

    Before you plunk all your book marketing eggs into the Internet or Social Media basket, here are some things you must ponder about uniform resource locators (URL).

    In the August 2013 Netcraft survey there were “…716,822,317 sites, an increase of 18 million. Based on the trends over the last six months, Netcraft expects to see 1 billion responsive sites within the next 18 months.” Further, near the end of 2012, Netcraft charts indicate only 188,981,606 responses are considered “active” sites.

    So, what are the chances John Q. Citizen will find your “free” website presence by searching? We tried a number of search strings, looking for books, and for writer marketing assistance. The sting is shown in quotations. Results are number of hits. Here are our results on Bing:

    “Book Websites”= 894,000,000 results.

    “Online Book Websites”= 420,000,000 results.

    “Best Websites for Books”= 542,000,000 results.

    “Best Website to Buy Books”= 933,000,000 results.

    “Author Websites to Sell Books Online’:= 35,400,000 results.

    “Author Book Marketing Websites”= 19,600,000 results.

    “Best Websites for Authors”= 73,300,000 results.

    “Buy Indie Books”= 9,400,000 results.

    So, it seems to me, even if you post your books on a couple of dozen so-called “help” websites, your chances of being found by an interested buyer is pretty slim. The Internet and Social Media sites are a powerful tool, no doubt about it. However, it appears most writers fail to include all the other tried and proven methods of marketing and public relations. Is it because the writer is not selling many e-books in order to afford more? Likely.

    How can you sell more books if you are not selling enough to finance real marketing. It’s a vicious circle. The answer I prefer is a marketing cooperative like the Independent Writer’s Cooperative. (Book Co-Op(TM)) (http://www.bookco-op.com) Ten writers can do much more, each contributing the same amount in dues, than a single writer can accomplish alone.

    There are many examples of highly successful marketing cooperatives. Why cannot Indie Writers do the same? — Dan Lee, Danny Boy Stories.

     

     

     
c
Compose new post
j
Next post/Next comment
k
Previous post/Previous comment
r
Reply
e
Edit
o
Show/Hide comments
t
Go to top
l
Go to login
h
Show/Hide help
shift + esc
Cancel