…sum’times yeez just have to listen and drink in the language of the Gods… enjoy…

…there’s a great sadness that attends any death, but prob’ly one that passes without much acknowledgement is the demise of a language… in my mid-teens I spent my early career on the beautiful Island of Mull in the Scottish Hebrides… I’ve shared often on this blog about my introduction to the magic of Scots Gaelic and went on to sing, compete and win medals doing so in that tongue at the national and local Gaelic Mods around Scotland over forty years ago… there’s sum’thing magical in the music of the Celt… just ask any of yer friends from Ireland also and they’ll tell yeez the same… it’s more than just the melodies, the tunes, the airs… it’s the association with the people of the Highlands and the Islands… there’s a welcoming hand… there’s a graciousness… there’s the time-of-day-to-pass-a pleasant-hour-or-three-over-a-wee-dram… there’s the caring for community, even with all its gossip, natter and chatter… I noted a Facebook post on my friend Nancy Lynn Baker’s wall today which triggered these thoughts… the simple wishing sumb’dy ‘good night with blessings’… the clip above by the Ossian is beautiful… I’d ask yeez to stop whatever yeez are doing for just a few minutes… sum’times yeez just have to listen and drink in the language of the Gods… enjoy… the language is slowly dying, and has been for more than the last two hundred years, ever since the notorious Highland Clearances of the mid 1700s… in fact, the most concentrated Scots Gaelic on the planet is currently to be found in Canada… in Nova Scotia (New Scotland, of course), but has diminished globally to less than 100,000 speakers… more’s the pity… Good Night with Blessings and may yer own Gods of yer choosing be with yeez all… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!

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…okay so ye’re an Author… yeez gotta have dreams, right?…

writer

…the two potentially deadliest opinions on a scribbler’s WURK are prob’ly from family and friends… ‘coz family are usually so supportive, and also, they may be depending on yer writing to put food on the table on a regular basis… they will generally tend to encourage the heck out of yeez… friends, more often as not, will hesitate to render any negative commentary on yer masterpieces… that leaves the casino/lottery of reviews from independent readers—these days, found in droves on the pages of the Great God Amazon and other eBook channels… extract the trolls, who sum’times get to manoeuvre their bullsh*t onto these sacrosanct opinion posts, and what’s left is the reality… my personal view is that the majority of reviews will be in the 4-star and 5-star range… quite simply, human nature will veer toward not publishing truly devastating put-downs, preferring in such instances not to post at all… along with gazillions of my fellow quill-scrapers, I can bask in the warmth and comfort of glowing critiques for my wee babies… one received yesterday for KILLER CITY is priceless, and I want to wrap it up and store it forever in a treasure chest, to be taken out and read many times in the future… however, equally, I can delude myself as to the quality of my stuff if I’m not careful… that stated, after a while, an appreciation of what are the honest reviews settles in, and when yeez reach a critical mass of these, yeez can feel yeez have ‘arrived’ as an Author… I’m conscious of the old epithet, practice makes perfect… the famed cellist, Pablo Casals was once asked at the age of 90 why he still practised… he said, ‘I think I’m improving…’

casals

…and so it is with writers… now to the real point of this blog post… recently, enuff readers have kindly begun to compare my novels with other, more famed authors, (happens to us all eventually, I think ) with the dangerous-to-the-ego comments such as,  ‘…the new Lee  Child, the new Tom Clancy, the new James Patterson, the new this, the new that…’…my view is simple–I have no desire to be the new emb’dy… I’d much rather people would think Lee Child, Tom Clancy, James Patterson, et al were the forerunners to Seumas Gallacher! okay so ye’re an Author… yeez gotta have dreams, right?… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!

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…another Celt pal comes to visit the blog… David Williams… ceud mile failte…

Source: …another Celt pal comes to visit the blog… David Williams… ceud mile failte…

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‘…they made me an offer I couldn’t refuse… I try to get out, but they pull me back in…’ (Author Seumas ‘Corleone’ Gallacher)

…there’s an insidious literary force at WURK that permeates the grey cells of lots of Authors of my acquaintance… fellow scribblers will be well-accustomed to the Midnight Mental Mafia Machinations Syndrome… that strange affliction that creeps into yer head just as yeez try to get to sleep… yer latest masterpiece-in-progress’ Dramatis Personae (fancy WURDS for ‘cast of characters’, Mabel) just refuse to go away… when yer eyelids are drooping and the fuddlement of slumber sets in, these inhabitants of yer embryonic novel kick on into the night shift… the endless nocturnal cerebral committee meetings start… yer subliminal being is usurped by main character after main character screaming at yeez to ‘do this, do that, change this, change that, say this, say that’

gangstas

…and yeez wake up in the morning already drained and exhausted… the thoughtfully-planned narrative yeez had in mind has been hijacked and hijeaned, depending on the gender of the player involved… the direction of yer storyline gets manoeuvred down lanes and avenues yeez never intended… pleading with them is pointless… once ‘they’ have decided what ‘they’ wanna do, the hapless writer has no choice but to accede meekly and direct yer laptop to reflect ‘their’ demands… of course, most of yeez will claim that in reality the revised plot is exactly what yeez had wanted all along… don’t fool yerselves… these characters are merciless… time after time I attempted to rebuff their overtures and write the story as I saw it… but, on every occasion, ‘…they made me an offer I couldn’t  refuse… I try to get out, but they pull me back in…’

corleone

…I need help… my characters are hard people, capable of doing ‘dark things’  (Editor: well, Master Gallacher, whose fault is it that yeez decided to get into hard crime fiction in the first place?)… I may have to adopt to a pseudonym, or resort to making a living writing political speeches (it’s all fiction after all, right?)… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!

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…I’d rather be ‘shot’ by a child’s pretend bow-and-arrow than die of boredom…

…there are times when a man’s gotta do what a man’s gotta do… and if what yeez do gets yeez labelled as  ‘daft’ from time to time, then so be it…. guilty as charged, m’Lud… where I live in the Middle East demands regular jaunts to the local shopping Mega-Mall (oh happy day, right!) for provisions… some respite from the trolley-pushing ennui and queue-jumpers can be had… especially from my ‘favourite’ guys (it’s ALWAYS a guy) who line up in front of me at the 10 items or less, and cash only’ with half the bluudy store in his basket, and only a credit card with which to pay… the coffee shops dotted around the place offer barista-populated havens of escape, and a temporary lull in the lunacy of trying to negotiate yer mind-of-its-own’ trolley with a bent front wheel guiding to anywhere except where yeez want to propel it… then I do some serious people-watching… a pleasure that never ceases to delight… unless yeez live in Noo Yawk, in which case DO NOT EYEBALL OTHER PERSONS!… but here in sunny Kamel Kuntry, the concourses are filled with an endless succession of people-cameoed vignettes… yeez prob’ly do sum’thing similar yerselves… p’raps at airports, or train stations… yeez know the kinda thing… and without fail, the best amusement comes from observing the antics of children… regardless of how many parents attend them, kids frequently veer off and just do there own ‘thang’

arrow

…today’s highlight was a wee boy, not older than about four, dressed in best denims and a baseball hat worn fashionably, back-to-front… in his hand he held the most dangerous weapon known to Mall-kind… a plastic coat hanger… well yeez might have thought it was a plastic coat hanger, but this lad had other ideas… in his clutch, his mind held a longbow, replete with deadly arrows drawn from an invisible quiver just at the back of his shoulder… the pantomime of drawing back the bow and letting fly these arrows was better than anything yeez have ever seen in Robin Hood movies…

rob

…invisible to everybody else, except himself and me, they shot all over the place… he caught my eye watching him, and I couldn’t help myself… I rose from my coffee, with my hands in the air, looking as if I were trying to escape… but, no hiding place for Master Gallacher, I’m afraid… with great glee he ‘fired’ his arrow at me, with an attendant audible ‘whoosh’… I mimicked the best ‘arrow-pierced’ target yeez could imagine… the process repeated about four or five times… then the real magic kicked in… another man across the way raised his hands  toward the celling… aha… another ‘victim’ for the miniature Robin… the invisible arrow got the other fellow in the chest… at least that’s where his hands grabbed… before yeez could say ‘Friar Tuck’, we had about ten people involved, being shot at with invisible arrows from this deadly coat hanger… with imagination like his, I think that wee boy’s gonna be a writer! …I haven’t had so much fun at a Mall, EVER‘daft’? me?… you betcha!!!… and it was great… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!

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…there, but for the Grace (?) of Google…

…. when this ol’ Jurassic was a young lad (about a hundred years ago), I had a fascination for learning WURDS and other interesting ‘stuff’… plundering of the dictionary for ‘big’, multi-syllabled, buried-deep-in-Thesauras gems was a constant caper, causing more than a raised eyebrow from a succession of English teachers… likewise, great joy derived from delving into deepest, darkest, assorted children’s Encyclopaediae, which usually had the libraries’ best leather-bound covers…

enc

…the smell was as attractive as the contents… snippets of historical, geographic, Natural Wonders, animal kingdom factoids abounded… and what a wondrous learning experience for any child… comes now not the Age of Aquarius, but more the Age of Queries… where the lexicons, courtesy of Oxford Press and Merriam-Webster;

MW

…and the information treasure troves from Messrs Britannica and Collins are eschewed in favour of the instant-gratification facts-source of the ubiquitous Internet… as a writer, I’m also guilty as charged, m’Lud, of reaching reflexively for the Web as the checker/purveyor of detail and correctness for my tomes… and I mourn a little more each time… I mourn for the childlike pleasure of discovery that always attended the disclosure in these pages… I mourn at the mental sloth induced by the ease of tapping a button on a search engine link… and I mourn at the seemingly ready acceptance I have that this is ‘the new way of things’… and in that sum’time hypocritical stance often taken by an older generation versus a younger set, I wonder how badly-served is modern-day youth by not being asked to think for itself… to explore the avenues of WURDS and other wunnerful stuff that we enjoyed as youngsters… where the comparison of levels of English language capability from three generations past versus today’s shows an appalling slippage in standard… ah, Mabel, p‘raps it’s a case of… there, but for the Grace (?) of Google… see yeez later… gotta go check sum’thing on YahooLUV YEEZ!

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…why should an Author bother with an Online Launch Party?… this ol’ Scots scribbler’s two cents worth…

champ

…one of the beauties of being Writers is that we are each entitled to our own individual opinions… those of yeez who honour me by reading my Blog will know I’m not averse to offering my own slant on scribblers’ stuff… my personal approach to writing is holistic inasmuch as the creation of yer masterpieces is only one element of the entire process… ‘the business of writing’… throw in the need for managing the proof-reading, the editing, the cover artwork, the formatting for the Great God Amazon Kindle if the eBook route is called for… most of these latter functions are generally better handled with an eye and a brain other than the Author himself/herself… but whether yeez are self-published or ‘housed’, the lion’s share of the promotional and marketing activity devolves on the Author… the SOSYAL NETWURKS’ is not a ‘concept’…it’s a reality to be embraced… happily, I enjoy the several channels where I’ve developed a ‘presence’, not the least of which is this ‘ere Blog… comes the time for one of yer wee masterpieces to be introduced to the readership universe… this is particularly when yer investment in time spent with the SOSYAL MEDYA pays dividends… yeez throw the new book information onto Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ and Anyotherchannelyeezlike… yeez engage some of the ‘free to show’ webpages that rejoice in bringing ‘bargain babies’ to the market (‘bargain babies’, coz usually part of yer Launch Strategy is to offer for the first week or so at a reduced price before reverting to the normal cost… and on Facebook, yeez have the option to do an Online Launch Party… some folks eschew the notion as wasted time… in my not-so-‘umble opinion, any time spent interacting anywhere about yer books is time well-spent… yesterday I ran the Online Launch Party for my latest Jack Calder crime thriller offering, KILLER CITY… and it was great fun… more than 200 participants danced in and out of the virtual door all day- and night-long… 16 hours of my life engaged in nowt but communal banter and laffs with like-minded literary souls… so, yeez ask, ‘was it WURTH it?’… yeez can be the judge… from my perspective, I derived so much pleasure that even if I’d sold not a single copy, it would have made sense for me… but this morning’s overnight Amazon UK rankings in its genre showed this:

#37 in Kindle Store > Books > Crime, Thriller & Mystery > Mystery > International Mystery & Crime 

…discussion over…. see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!

KILLER CITY cover

 

UK amzn.to/1OCzcgJ
US amzn.to/1VNwdYe
Can amzn.to/1KAjkdP
Aus bit.ly/1gnavKB

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