Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween

Good Paul

Morgan Mandel

Some pics of me and Good Paul with our costumes at the Festival Committee recognition dinner, plus some other members with their costumes. I don't know all their names.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Nemo James Reveals the Hidden Music World in His New Book

Book Spotlight - Just a Few Seconds, A Story From the Hidden World of Music and Beyond

Nemo James dreamt of becoming a professional musician from the first time he picked up a guitar following a talent content disaster. Thought of by his friends as being the person most likely to make the big time he turned professional but was continually side tracked by the need to earn a living from music.

His journey takes him all over the world from private gigs for the rich and famous to the roughest pubs. Starting in the late sixties when heavy rock was born, through to the 1980’s and 90’s when discos and electronics decimated live music dance halls.

Just a Few Seconds is an amusing and heartrending story of perseverance showing how the road to success can lead us down the strangest of paths. Just A Few Seconds is a story of one man’s experience in the music business. It is an amusing and true story of a successful freelance musician whose gigs ranged from private parties to the very rich and famous to the roughest London pubs where playing the wrong song at the wrong time meant the difference between life and death. He takes more twists, turns and knocks than a mouse trapped in a pinball machine but the ending shows how the road to success can lead us down the strangest and most desolate of paths. If you are looking for the usual rock star memoirs full of sex drugs and rock and roll then this book is not for you, but if you are interested in a unique insight into the music business that reads like a thriller then this book won’t disappoint.

Here's what Nemo has to say about the inspiration for his book:

Although I was a successful musician, composing was my real love and after 30 years of being unable to a make a living from my compositions I had dug myself into such a huge rut that I knew I had to change my life drastically. Before deciding on what direction my new life should take I had a strong compulsion to write everything down that had happened to me in my old one. I suppose it was a kind of closure from the past and avoidance of the future. This happened twelve years ago during a tour of Switzerland when I had to drive hundreds of miles between gigs and it was during those long drives I practically wrote the whole book in my head. Having spend so many years memorizing everything from thousands of song lyrics to complicated classical guitar solos I was fortunate in being able to remember everything vividly. A year later I finished the final draft and tried to find a publisher but although a couple of them called to say how much they liked it they said it was impossible to sell autobiographies written by unknown musicians and to get back to them when I became famous. I was well aware of how slim were the chances of getting published but it was my last resort so that rejection forced me to look for a new life. It seemed extraordinary to me that the requirement for getting an autobiography published was not good writing and an interesting life but having a record in the charts.

In Just A Few Seconds I wanted to write about what life is like for the 99% of musicians that don’t become rich and famous but still earn a good living often working for the rich and famous. The most interesting stories I have to tell are not about backing artists like Tom Jones and Cliff Richards or playing at private parties for Sheik Yamani or the Aga Khan but stories about holiday camp epidemics, strippers with flatulence and being the cause of US military personnel being Court Martialed. It is amazing how music is such a huge part of everyone’s life and yet so little is known about the ordinary working musicians who supply that music.

12 years later I finally got my big break and so came to live in this beautiful seaside village near Dubrovnik in Croatia. I had the time to return to my book and was determined to publish it even if I had to do it myself. I contacted one of the many publishers that published my music and he advised me not to bother with traditional publishing but to go down the self publishing route. This made sense as for years it has been necessary for bands and songwriters to produce their own albums. Record companies love it because it removes a lot of the risk of signing unknown bands as the band has already produced an album and shown there is a market for their music. I needed to publish my own book and prove there was a market for it and then hopefully a mainstream publisher would offer a solid deal as opposed to small publishers whose only real commitment is to get the book in print.

The more I looked into self publishing the more surprised I was at how sophisticated it had become. I was fortunate in having the I.T. skills to physically produce the book and some loyal fans of my music who offered professional editing and advice so the whole process was plain sailing. I released Just A Few Seconds in February this year and have already been approached by a publisher although it was a small company who were unable to make a firm commitment on promotion so I had the luxury of turning them down. All I have to do now is sit back and dream while I wait for the bidding war. The longer I wait, the longer I get to enjoy the dream.

Amazon Paperback Buy Link:

Kindle Buy Link:

Other Ebook Versions can be purchased from Nemo’s store at

Born and based in England, Nemo James worked as a professional musician and singer/songwriter for more than 30 years. He now lives in Croatia with his wife Federika and their cat Jutko who is becoming intolerable following his rise to fame on Youtube.
Visit Nemo James at his website
Find Nemo James at his tour page at Pump Up Your Book
Watch his videos at You Tube

Please welcome Nemo James to Double M by leaving a comment for him.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Who Has 99 Cents Books?

I've been busy getting my work in progress edited, and have neglected my blog here lately. Still, today I saw a question on the Book Spa Friends egroup which I thought could use some attention.

It was Who Has 99 Cents Books?

I invite anyone with a book selling for 99 cents to let us know and leave a link.

Mine is Killer Career, about the lawyer whose career change could be deadly for her and the man she's come to love. Here's the Amazon kindle link:

It's also at Smashwords for 99 cents at

Do you have a 99 cents book or know someone who does?

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

My Guest, Mystery Author, Marilyn Meredith, Tells Us About Changes in the Writing World

THINGS KEEP CHANGING IN THE WRITING WORLD, according to my guest today, Mystery Author, Marilyn Meredith. Here's what she has to say:

Marilyn Meredith

I’ve been at this longer than most and I’ve seen a lot of changes in the writing world, enough to know that nothing ever stays the same.

When I first started writing, I did it in long hand then transcribed it on a typewriter. So I would have copies when I began with a new page, it was paper, carbon paper (had to be sure to put it facing the right direction), and another piece of paper. It was awhile before copying machines came along.

When sending out a manuscript, I had to have two boxes, one with my return address and postage to put inside the larger box so that my manuscript would come back to me if it was rejected. After all, I didn’t want to type all 500 words over again.

Eventually, I would have to retype the manuscript, though, because after being sent out and returned from about five different publishers, it would become rather shop-worn: bent pages, coffee stains, and smelling like cigarette smoke. When I retyped I often also rewrote. (By the way, my first book was rejected nearly 30 times before it found a home.)

Electronic typewriters came along, ones with a correction ribbon. Oh, what a wonderful discovery. By this time, there were also outfits that had copying machines, so for about 5 cents a page, I could get a copy of my manuscript.

Personal computers were the biggest gift to a writer yet. My first one had two places for floppy disks—and these were big and really floppy—one was for the program being used, the other for your story. Neither held very many words. To learn how to use it, the fellow who sold it to me had to come to my house—he also received a lot of phone calls from me.

I have no idea how many other computers I’ve had since then—each one far better than the one before it. You could even have your own printer, copier and fax included.

The next great change was the Internet and email. Sending a whole manuscript via an attachment to e-mail was wonderful! Think of all the paper I saved. Wow!

The first notion of e-books came along about then—10 years or so ago. I had an e-book published before there was such a thing as an e-reader. Not only did that mean anyone buying the book had to read it on a computer, but purchasing it was not easy. The Rocket e-Reader came along and it was great. Ebooks were easily purchased and downloaded. And of course everyone knows how the ebook revolution has taken over with all sorts of eReaders available. Not only that, people can publish their trade paperbacks and their own e-books in various ways

I recently heard that for 150 ebooks are being purchased for every 100 paper books.

Change is coming faster than ever before and it makes me wonder what’s next.

Bears With Us by
Marilyn Meredith
 My latest book is Bears With Us and Deputy Tempe Crabtree has her hands full when bears turn up in and around Bear Creek, a young teen commits suicide and his parents’ actions are suspicious, a prominent woman files a complaint against Tempe and her preacher husband Hutch, a love affair from long ago comes to light, and a woman suffering from dementia disappears.

Available from the publisher as a trade paperback and most e-book formats at:

The link at Amazon is

All my books are available as trade paperback and e-books. You can see what I have on my website:

My books are also available at Barnes and Noble, and can be ordered through your favorite independent bookstores.

Marilyn Meredith is the author of over thirty published novels, many award winning, including the Deputy Tempe Crabtree mystery series. Writing as F. M. Meredith, her latest Rocky Bluff P.D. crime novel is Angel Lost, the third from Oak Tree Press. Marilyn is a member of EPIC, Four chapters of Sisters in Crime, including the Central Coast chapter, Mystery Writers of America, and on the board of the Public Safety Writers of America. She’s also a been an instructor at many writing conferences including the Maui Writers Retreat, Central Coast Writing Conference and many others.

Visit Marilyn online at
and her blog at

Please leave a comment for Marilyn. Maybe you'd like to mention if you've noticed any changes yourself.

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Really Roughing It

I'm sitting on the deck of my cottage in the Northwoods. Inside, along with electricity and running water, I have basic cable TV with remote control, VCR and DVD players, a laptop computer, an iPhone from which I can get email and connect to the Internet, or in the alternative, connect the iPhone to the computer and read it all there. On the end table by the bed sit my hands-free landline phone and clock radio. The kitchen contains a small stove and refrigerator, and running water. The bathroom boasts a toilet and shower.

Coming Soon
Forever Young-
Blessing or Curse
My husband fishes from the pier or takes his motorboat out when weather is permitting. So far on this trip, weather is very much cooperating.

From the campground further down the road, I can see a Fed Ex truck coming out.

Did I mention all the great restaurants nearby, and the casino a little too close for my pocketbook?

It's a wonder in the midst of all this hardship I can actually find the strength to sit down and get any editing done on my thriller, Forever Young-Blessing or Curse. Despite the enormous odds, somehow I'll have to manage.