Thursday, June 7, 2012

New blog site

There will be no new blog posts on this site.  All new material including Faux News Reports will be posted to this new site:

Monday, April 23, 2012

The Dodo Dragon Is Now Available

Today, Sheila Crosby launches her book, the Dodo Dragon, a collection of her short stories and novellas.  The book's title comes from one of the short stories in the book.  I read an advance copy of it and thoroughly enjoyed it.  I had previously read several of the stories, but Sheila writers the type of stories that age very well and stand up to repeated readings. 

Almost all the stories are witty and amusing. Many of them with surprise endings, a talent that Sheila often uses in her stories. Some of the stories are set in the Canary Islands where Sheila lives and provides us with a setting that isn’t seen in very many stories. 
Scream Quietly was my favorite story in the book. That story is told in letters from an anguished mother who faces an unusual predicament, one of the stories with a surprise twist at the end.

  • The Dodo Dragon I am the last and I am lonely. Last night I saw three of the large moons hanging together, with the sea sparkling and dancing below. It gave me no pleasure. There was no-one to share it.
  • Oh Baby!  The Ibble took great interest in the Earth Ambassador’s pregnancy.
  • The Appliance of Science The fridge had gone missing again. All that was left was a rectangle of gleaming blue tiles where it had stood, surrounded by a ring of black grease. 
  • Caught in the Oort A trillion miles was a long way to come for revenge. I grinned. The Cult of the Bathtub would have to go much further than the Oort cloud to escape me.
  • Scream Quietly Sweet Sister, my husband grows more violent. 
  • Infant Colic Agonized screams ricocheted off the grey metal walls. Hopeless and bewildered, Helen cuddled her newborn son. His tiny mouth opened like a great red tunnel, and his knees jerked up to his belly in spasms.
  • Designer Genes I threw the magazine across my living room as hard as I could. Its pages made a wiffling noise as it flew, and hit the wall with a twick. Then it fluttered to the floor still in one piece.Frankly, I’d hoped violence to an inanimate object would prove more satisfying.
  • Zuggy Zu and the Humans “No. Absolutely not! It’s far too dangerous.” The Controller threw Zuggy Zu’s report in the recycling bin.
  • Breathing Space Dan Gaunt squirted half a tube of Tabasco into his chili. It still tasted like ashes. He shoveled it in anyway.

Friday, April 20, 2012

FNN Report: Sports Cliches

FNN sports reporter, Jock Strapper, has analyzed thousands of newspaper, TV and radio sports reports searching for the most overused cliches.  Here are his winners (losers?)
1) "We have to take it game at a time." What else can they do?  Take a week at a time?  A season?  A play?  An inning? This cliche implies that that the team will refuse to play tomorrow’s game before today’s game is played which is ridiculous until we develop time-travel.
2) "I have to stay inside myself." If anyone understands what this means please write a  comment because I have no idea what this means. It doesn't make any sense to me.  Can a player stay outside of himself?  How does he do that?
3) "We have to take what he other team gives us." Really? If the other team is good, this sounds like an expectation of losing because the good team won't give them anything worth taking.
4) "This is a victory/game/tournament/performance for the ages." What arrogance!  What hyperbole!  Two days later hardly anyone will remember who won the victory/game/tournament/performance of this "one for the ages."
Strapper is looking for more sports cliches to expand the list.  If you have one, please write a comment with the cliche.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Tax Return Day Freebie

Today is Tax Return Day (actually postponed until the 17th because of the weekend)
To offset the rampant depression caused by this annual event, I've arranged for everyone to download a free kindle edition of my latest ebook.  The title is 10 Great Fantasy Short Stories.  Every story is told with humor or satire.  
Get a copy and feel better about Tax Return Day. This freebie offer will be run from 4/15 thru 4/17

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Mets Manager Stunned by Season's Opening

FNN sports reporter, Jock Strapper, has this exclusive interview with Mets manager Tom Collins.  He admits he is staggered by his team winning the first four games of the season.  He didn't think the team would win their fourth game until after they played seventeen or eighteen games.
"I know our fans are concerned just as I am.  This isn't the way our fans expect the Mets to play.  They expect the Mets to be mediocre.  That's what the want.  They don't want us to be sweeping other teams.  That's not our game."
A source in the front office told Strapper that the General Manager is considering trading a few starters to get control of the team's fortunes.  The trades would bring in third rate players who would give the other teams an advantage and get the Mets back where they belong--at the bottom of the standings.
More details as they become available.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Secret Congressional Peace Talks

FNN has obtained exclusive information that the Democrats and Republicans in the House are in secret peace negotiations.  Another report says that the same is true in the Senate. 

Our political reporter, Stacy Conundrum, has learned that the purpose of the talks is to reach an agreement on what both parties are willing to concede or at least discuss with the other party and what issues they feel are not worth discussing because the parties will not give ground.  If the peace agreement can be reached, neither party will then propose bills that are in the off-limits category.  Spokespersons from both sides say the peace treaty, if it can be reached, will lessen the current mood of outright hostility in both chambers.

In the Senate, sources tell FNN that increased millionaire taxes and repeal of oil subsidies are off-limits for the Republicans while the Democrats refuse to discuss budget reductions that affect the middle-class or the poor.

In the House, the situation is much worse.  The Republican leadership is calling for an unconditional surrender by the Democrats before talks can take place.  The Republican demand includes vacating the White House so it can be occupied once again by its rightful resident, a member of the Republican Party.  A spokesman for the House speaker put it this way: "We refuse to talk until the White House is once again a symbol of Republican superiority." 

More on this story as we obtain more details

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Tales From Gundarland Sales Explode

Sandra Elfenheimer from our Gundarland bureau in Dun Hythe reports that sales of Hank Quense’s collection of short stories and novellas is now on the best-seller list at the Scrolls and Blacksmithy shop.  S&B is the largest scroll seller in the country and carries scrolls from a number of exotic places including Earth.
Quense’s book was translated and copied onto scrolls by the ex-monks employed at S&B and the scrolls fill an entire scroll bucket. In the last month, three Tales From Gundarland scroll buckets were sold setting a new sales record for a foreign publication.
S&B Owner Ian McBlowhard, a dwarf, told FNN, “Folks like the humor and satire in the book. Although it purports to take place in Gundarland, readers know Quense is really talking his own planet, Earth, where ever that is.  The readers know folks in Gundarland wouldn’t behave like the characters in the scroll bucket.”
Unfortunately, the scroll buckets are sold out and new ones won’t be available for a while.  Interested readers will have to buy a print or an ebook version.  A list of book sellers can be found here.