My old college girlfriend just this last week moved into a lovely house in Connecticut, an hour or so drive through the rich subtropical-green sward from where I was born and brought up in Westchester County, news that turns over in me a rich loam of homesickness.
Further, the Film Forum in NewYork is screening a week’s supply of that boisterous nutty film genre known as the spaghetti western. Maybe only one of them casts a shadow like Citizen Kane’s, but the real fun for me would be seeing my favorite film villain (and a good actor) Lee Van Cleef starring in several of them, including the apparently restored The Big Gundown, the best non-Leone spaghetti.
Most frustrating of all, is that tonight, June 4, is the night of the Independent Publisher Book Awards Ceremony, where my novel Dragon’s Ark will officially be awarded its bronze medal.
Sure, it’s third place, not first, and none of the winners will get to pontificate, but I truly miss the chance to be in there. And for possibly meeting and congratulating some of my IPPY co-winners, such as the two novelists who beat me out in the horror category: John G. Rees (second place silver for Black Tide) and Ronald Malfi (first place gold for Floating Staircase); and also a certain Paul Russell, silver medal winner in the literary category for a most-unusual sounding book, The Unreal Life of Sergey Nabokov.
I don’t know if they’ll be there—like me, they may be stuck at home—but if they are, hello to you! Congratulations and hoist one for me.
As I go about my business on this unusually rain day in Oakland, one eye flickers watchfully out the corner window, looking the post-person, while my ear hangs by the door listening for the flop of a package on the Mediterranean parquet stoop—the arrival of my awards package from “IPPY,” official proof that I have not been lying to myself, my wife, my various friends and readers, plus numerous book stores—see, told you so!
As stated earlier, I’ve been doing plenty of work, buy advertising online, each payment click cutting a great gouge in the part of body where I store all my money. It sometimes feels more like real blood than red ink.
The previous weekend, a fellow imbiber at Cato’s, the beer hall on Piedmont Avenue, where I can be found on most Saturday evenings, alighted on my shoulder to tell me that his book club had adopted Dragon’s Ark as their next project, and would I like to come by and talk?
Just this last Saturday, I popped by Spectator Books, also on Piedmont: there upfront with the new books, two copies of Dragon’s Ark.
Money gushes out. Success drips down—Ah! There’s that !kerchunk!
Wow . . . it’s a real medal . . . .
Photo by author
Copyright 2012 by Thomas Burchfield
Thomas Burchfield is the author of the 2012 IPPY Award winning contemporary Dracula novel Dragon's Ark, and the original screenplays Whackers and The Uglies (e-book editions only). Published by Ambler House Publishing, all are available at Amazon in various editions. You can also find his work at Barnes and Noble, Powell's Books, Scribed and at the Red Room bookstore. He also “friends” on Facebook, tweets on Twitter, and reads at Goodreads. You can also join his e-mail list via tbdeluxe [at] sbcglobal [dot] net. He lives in Northern California with his wife, Elizabeth.