Thursday, July 12, 2012

All the World's a Game...

All the World's a Game - The Beginnings of Dime Store Novel
Sometimes a story starts with an image. Sometimes with an overheard conversation. Dime Store Novel started with a game.

We owned a game shop at the time -- a little place frequented mostly by teenage boys. Some nights we held a role-playing game in the basement. That night John was running a game we'd never played before -- Call of Cthulhu, a game based on the fiction of H. P. Lovecraft. John was the storyteller. I played a young herbalist named Toledo Cats who had a mangy cat named Voodoo. Tony, a friend of ours, played Hanover Fist, a young detective who had a thing for Toledo.

The time - the 1920s. The place - a haunted house in New Orleans. We were ready to rock. Officer O'Malley made his first appearance as a ghost who calls Hanover and tells him he needs to investigate this house. O'Malley didn't have a first name yet or a wife and daughter -- those details of his life would emerge much later. Hanover's parents owned a restaurant and a friend named Doug played a priest who sat in the restaurant slurping soup. If you've read From the Gator's Mouth, you know that  Doug's slurping priest gets a cameo. The story was suspenseful -- what story about a house haunted by zombies isn't? But it was also humorous.

John went on to run several other Call of Cthulhu campaigns. Tony always played Hanover Fist. I rotated between Toledo Cats and Regan Worth, the flapper daughter of a bootlegger who loved to flirt with Hanover.
The characters stuck. John got the idea to write a series called Dime Store Novel. He took a stab at one using the Lovecraft mythos. It was close, but not quite right. One night before dinner, we were talking about the world. I said, "Why not create our own mythos?"

The light went on. Soon after, Agatha, the earthbound swamp goddess was born, followed shortly thereafter by Caprice, the goddess of chaos. As the stories evolved, the gods proliferated. Khrou-ach, the storm god, and Acongojar, the pain god, became antagonists inRips in the Weave and The Desert Rose. Chiindii, the god of the desert, and Ravir, the goddess of pleasure, are key to the plot in bothThe Desert Rose and The Reunion. We also gave fairies and goblins a different twist. I don't want to spoil the fun, so you'll need to read the books to figure that out. The good news is, you can get The Reunion kindle edition FREE during our Lucky Friday the 13th special (Friday 7/13 through Monday 7/16). We'd like to invite you to escape the humdrum world of day to day and experience the world we created at a gaming table in a cool, dimly lit basement.

The Dime Store Novel characters blog at

A huge Thank you to the great writers of Dime Store Novels! Go, get and Read!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Hello, listen to the people talk.

I have spent the last week without a computer. I have worked but I also listened to people. 
As a writer I pay attention to how people talk, it will help you will later write. I did not hear one person speak in perfect English, German, Spanish or pig latin. Even those with perfect language skills speak as the rest of the world does. Not one person when asked how are you? Said Well, Good was what they said. Well, is the response the grammar cops want you to say.
Thank you for the love while I was computer less! I learned a few things and heard many more. My advice take a few days off and listen to the world. You will be surprised. Also read so you have your own opinion about any subject. Forming ones own opinions is rather liberating. Even if we don't agree I am your friend.
I am reading a book thats not my usual. It's a Philippa Gregory book 'The White Queen'. A Historical drama it is something. I will let you know what I think when I finish reading it. Yes, I do read to Princess she likes it. I think the Kings and Queens and knights in shiny armor fascinate her.
What are you reading? Tell us please. Oh, you have no time to read. Well, get a book read a chapter at bedtime each night. Turn off the electronics and enjoy.