Monday, May 25, 2009

Happy Monday!

My website hit counter says that Monday's are my busiest days so I try to have something up for people to read. Todays will be short as I am typing this handicapped. Working on a chair I sliced one of my fingers very badly. Typing is one and a half handed right now. Blood went everywhere, even the ceiling. I am such a dork.

I have approached over seventy-five agents concerning Marilyn's cancer memoir and only one requested to see more and she wasn't moved by the writing enough to want to see the whole manuscript. (Insert frowny face.)

I received twenty-three rejections and over fifty silences (which means rejection, sorry, can't be bothered to write you since our agency gets a hundred queries a day.)

Because of my past, I believe I have what it takes to be a writer. I believe I will get a following someday for my books; I just need a few breaks. I believe the rejections are coming in because of many reasons.

1. The economy.
2. Memoir? Too common.
3. Cancer memoir? Um, way too common.

Is it about sex addiction? Gangs? Drug addiction and how you sold your body to pay for drugs? Were you sexually abused as a child? Did you beat people up? Are you a famous person looking to write a memoir about your drug or sex or gambling addiction? No? Then you're not what we're looking for, sorry.

Seriously, in the agencies I have looked at, they really want famous people's memoirs and even some of those are having to go vanity press to get published. (Vanity press is when you publish and market it yourself because an established publisher with ties to the industry won't accept your manuscript. There have been success stories out of vanity press companies but they are rare.)

Since “Tournament Reports” went out of print, I have gone vanity press with CreateSpace and changed the title to “Quest for the Pro Tour.” It is available on and today I made it available on the Kindle (and Kindle for the iPhone) for ninety-nine cents. If you’ve read the book, please go and give it a review or even copy over your old review from “Tournament Reports” and rate it please. Any little bit of support helps. If you haven’t read it, people who know nothing about Magic have told me they still loved it, so you can pick it up for ninety-nine cents if you have a Kindle.

Marilyn’s memoir (tentatively titled “Courage Made Flesh : A Cancer Memoir) will probably be done in much the same way. I am going to try and give away the first half for free and if people like it, sell the second half for ninety-nine cents. At this point, it’s not about profit, it is about getting my name out there and hoping someone recognizes it as a good book.

I think there is more of a market for my travel journal so I have dedicated most of my time to that since giving up on approaching agents (i.e. last week.) I hope to have it done and have sent out query letters by the time we head home for August vacation in the states.

UFC 98 was this weekend. I have only had time to see two of the fights so far, the two main events.

Like most people, I was hoping Serra would beat Hughes, but it was not to be so. You know what I hated about that match? The lack of rage from both fighters. For two guys who say they hate each other, they acted like two guys who just came to fight. I also hated the fact that Serra looked like a guy who didn't know what to do when Hughes took him down. Of course he’s going to take you down and lay on top of you! If I was Serra I would have spent the last three months on my feet going "Okay, shoot in again, I'll try and throw up a triangle again. Okay, that failed, try again. Okay, got it that time. Let’s start over. Again. Again. Again." He should have been prepared to shift to a triangle choke from any position of him falling backwards because you knew that was going to happen.

Hughes does not look like his old self. As a columnist mentioned, he needs to go back to the Miletech camp. He's training himself and that's not enough. Hughes now says he would like a rematch with GSP or Alves and I'm pretty sure he's delusional. He'll never beat either of those guys. He needs to take on the up and comers of the 170 lb division or try his hand at Anderson Silva. He's not a top tier talent anymore and the only reason I mention Silva is because styles makes fights. His GNP might beat Silva's standing.

The Machida Era has begun. I really thought Rashad Evans had a chance. He got demolished. Destroyed. Like a lot of wrestlers he got a few knockouts and decided he was Chuck Liddell. It makes me remember Koscheck vs Alves when Kos used zero wrestling and just stood with him like an idiot. Rashad should have pressed Machida against the cage and taken him down. But, hindsight is 20/20. Before the fight I would have thought he could counter Machida’s counters and land a big shot like he did against Chuck and Forrest. I agreed with his gameplan.


Of course Hughes won. Of course Machida won. It all seems so obvious now.

Machida showed exactly what I have always been saying about him. He has the skill to finish fights, in the past he has just chosen not to. I think the criticism he has taken about being boring stung and he has worked harder to finish fights. The old Machida would have been happy to rock Rashad, try to get in a few more shots, carefully, watching for any recovery and let the moment pass. The fact he actually went after him like a madman is a completely different Machida than we have seen in the past. In my humble opinion, of course. Did you see the Tito Ortiz fight where he got him into a body lock threw him to the ground, passed guard, got him into a crucifix and immediately started raining down elbows? That was PHENOMENAL.

For all off five seconds then the round ended and the moment was passed.

My point is, he can do that any time he wants to take the risk but he usually doesn't take the risk. Wise, but boring and not a style I appreciate. I was glad he went after Rashad and ended the fight.

I think his era has begun. Much like Silva and GSP I do not think anyone will beat any of those fighters for a very long time. Years even. Brock Lesnar could have the same run at heavyweight, but honestly, I think the person who will have an era in that division will be Shane Carwin. He is almost as big as Brock, same type of wrestling credentials, bigger hands and better stand up. None of his fights have hit the second round and his longest fight has last 2:11 seconds. He is 11-0 with a 1:09 knockout of well respected Gabe Gonzaga. NO ONE can stand with him and not get knocked out.

The only weight class that I don't know who will have an era of dominance is the 155 lbs. It could be BJ Penn. It could be Kenflo. It could be Diego Sanchez. I'm hoping/thinking Diego honestly. I predict Diego will win the title and hold it for years.

I am going to be buying UFC 99 when I get up on that following Sunday morning as well as UFC 100.

Rich Franklin vs. Wanderlei Silva - Silva by KO. Styles make fights and Rich likes to stand and bang, which is perfect for Silva.

Cheick Kongo vs. Cain Velasquez - Valasquez by KO in the second. I saw his last fight and was amazed.

Ben Saunders vs. Mike Swick. Swick by KO in the first. “Quick” Swick has too much experience and power for Saunders.

Marcus Davis vs. Dan Hardy - Davis by KO in the first. I don't know enough about Hardy having only seen one of his fights but no one but the elite of the 170 lb division is going to beat Marcus Davis. He has too much power and is way too well-rounded. He can knock you out or submit you.

Spencer Fisher vs. Caol Uno – This should be an awesome fight. Spencer Fisher KO in the second. Uno has always been over-rated in my opinion and Fisher brings it hard.

For book recommendations, I just finished "Assassins Apprentice" on my Kindle for iPhone and I loved it. It's free, and I could not put it down. This is a book by an established author. Shd has five more books in this series and I'll be buying all five thanks to her letting me read this one free. She got me hooked, now she's going to sell me five books. Very smart.

Happy Monday

Good Travels.


  1. Good luck with getting published. You sound determined enough... it's just a case of being persistent.

    I'm not sure about the title 'Courage Made Flesh' - it sounds a bit gory to me, I don't like the word 'flesh', it's too brutal, too horror-movie-ish. I'd be more likely to pick it up if it was called 'The Lovely Mare: A Cancer Memoir'. I reckon a lot of your potential readers are female so it might be better to choose a more accessible title? Just my opinion of course.

  2. I agree about the title of Mare's book and I hope you finger is finally stopped time get stiches you dork!!!

  3. Definitely agree with Alicey.

    Also, as a random moment of synchronicity, I'm currently waiting, breathe bated, for a copy of Tournament Reports to be shipped to me. Most likely, I'll also be getting your new version. And this week's column (like many others) mentions you.

    Always thinking smile-filled thoughts for you.

  4. Ref the Robin Hob books, there are actually 9 books in the series, you have the 3 Assassin books,then 3 Liveship books, and then 3 Tawny Man books. I love them, just brilliant. She also has another trilogy which is unrelated, the Soldier Son trilogy, which starts off really well, but doesnt end so well.