JOE by Larry Brown… Tugs at the Heart Strings

JoeJoe by Larry Brown

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

JOE is a perfect example of Southern Literature at its finest. The story begins with a boy and his family. They’re tired, dirty, and without a home. The boys father is an abusive drunk who refuses to help his family survive, and his son steps in to help out by asking for a job from Joe Ransom. Joe has problems of his own. He’s a stubborn, stoic man who doesn’t feel that he deserves happiness. His only ambition is to never go back to prison, but there are people out there who’d send him back in a heartbeat. The relationship that forms between Joe and Gary, the boy, will tug at your heart. They balance each other out and provide exactly what the other is looking for, even though they don’t realize it. You will become emotionally attached to these characters, and Larry Brown did an amazing job of making that happen.

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Writing in My Sleep – The Heroic Story of an Over-Worked and Under-Paid Muse

Throughout the course of my day, I spend a considerable amount of time performing the more non-literary duties of my life. During these off-duty activities, I will often find myself coming up with a clever opening line, character idea, story idea, quote, or something just completely random that pops into my head that I happen to find witty at the time.

This happens to a lot of creators, I think. We all come with these adorable little mini engines in our brains (I call mine Geoffrey) that tirelessly run in the backgrounds of our minds, behind everything else at all times, attempting to create. Every once in a while, it’ll spit something out while we’re folding underwear and watching Breaking Bad, washing the dishes, or tweezing stray hairs that have somehow managed to find their way to a part of the body they just aren’t supposed to be. What’s up with that anyway? I mean, it isn’t just me, is it?

Anyway. Where was I? Oh yes…

So I’ve made a habit of stopping what I’m doing, grabbing my phone or a notebook (whichever is closest), and writing these ideas down the minute I think of them because you never know when consulting the “Randomly Generated Thought Catalog” might come in handy or be your only option to combat the dreaded -stage whisper- writer’s block.

All that being said, imagine my surprise when I checked my phone yesterday shortly after I woke up and saw this:


My initial thoughts:
(A) That some kind of Alien lifeform had attempted to contact me using a crudely sketched memo on my Android.
(B) That a tiny Woodland elf had made his way into my home and attempted to add Keebler Tollhouse cookies to my grocery list, but being so small, he was forced to skate across my phone screen, explaining the horrible penmanship.

After dismissing these ideas as unlikely, I realized that I must have had one of my randomly generated thoughts and written myself a note in my sleep.

I spent some time deciphering the text, and it seems to say “something about how he tied his shoes. ” I have no idea if this was part of a dream I was having or if my unconscious self thought it would be a great character description… But apparently there was just something about how someone tied their shoes that inspired me to the point of being able to sleep-navigate my phone to the memo gadget and attempt communication with my conscious self.

Considering the effort Geoffrey went through to convey this message to me, I feel like i owe it to him to take this suggestion seriously and write a short story right away… With the first line being, “There was just something about the way he tied his shoes.” Maybe his habit of double knotting showed self-doubt.  Who knows? But I’m going to give it a shot.

I know by now you’re all on the edge of your seat. So stay tuned for the rest of the story….

Did Someone Say Book Giveaway?

I Definitely Said Book Giveaway!

Alright, in the spirit of the holidays which are almost completely over (that part doesn’t matter), I’ve been thinking about doing some book giveaways. I will post a book each day for a week and give a deadline (probably a week or two) for comments. Each person who comments on the post will be entered to win the book. Sound good? Free books always sound good.

I will start tomorrow, but in the meantime… Tell me, what genres/authors/period books are your favorite? I have a massive library to choose from here. Help me out!

Book Giveaway Links

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