• The Successful Author

    Even though I’d lived a good forty-six years before I could finally claim the title author, I was still in for some surprises that made me feel like a rube. As a street cop for over a decade and a half at the time my first book was published, you’d think I was hardly what anyone would call naïve. Perhaps on the streets I wasn’t, but in the publishing world—babe in the woods.

    I fell for all the things literary rookies often do: if only I could publish a book I’d be a success: rich and famous. On the way into work in the morning I’d pass the Mercedes and a BMW dealerships and imagine walking in with my first advance, or royalty check and take my pick. I’m not sure if I really believed that, but I have to be honest, I sure wondered, hoped, perhaps wished it might be like that. And maybe my good fortune would mean an early retirement from the coppin’ life, and my wife from fightin’ fires.

    Now I’m well past my third book published, and am, hopefully, nearing publishing my first novel, and guess what? Still no Mercedes or BMW in my garage, and I’m still pounding a beat, when I’m not pounding a keyboard.

    Another surprise, as well as eye-opening disappointment was learning that my chances of finding an agent with whom I could build a relationship, and who would represent all of my work, was near fantasy. I chose my first agent contacts based on the fact they worked with both fiction and non-fiction. While I owe my first agent a great debt, after all, she sold my first book, which led to my next two; she had no interest in working with me to publish my fiction.

    Now, while I’m not so experienced in the literary world that I’ve become jaded. In fact, I believe I will find the kind of relationship I’m looking for with an agent. I just know it may take some time. Perhaps it won’t. But, if it does, what the hell… I can wait; I’m happy, and that’s a lot.

  • Is What’s Mine, Really Mine?

    The progressives have gone absolutely around the bend lately. “F— the president;” filibuster the president; replace the president. Wow! What a delightfully cannibalistic bunch the Democrats are these days.

    One prominent, but incredibly annoying, gnat of a congressman contends that the government isn’t imposing the so-called, “Death Tax,” against the person who acquired, and had already been taxed for, the money over his lifetime, because he’s dead. Instead, the government is imposing the tax on the person to whom the dead person wished to leave it, because they didn’t “earn” it.

    So, are we to believe there’s no longer such a thing as an estate? How can there be? If a person can’t dictate what should be done with “all” of his or her property when he or she dies, then why should anyone have a will at all? If the government can assume authority over a portion of a person’s property, it can assume authority over all of it.

    According to this tortured progressive philosophy, once you’re dead, you’re dead, and your wishes are null and void. Where in the Constitution is the government given the power to dictate where any part of private citizens’ property should go after you die, or for that matter, while you’re still alive?

    If some philanthropist leaves money to some charity when he dies, should the government also have the right to interfere with that gift? Why not? Who cares about the wealthy person’s wishes? After all, he or she is dead—good riddance, I suspect the progressives think. Another selfish, decadent, and “evil” rich person gone. Stealing from a dead rich person is easier than stealing from a live rich person.

    How is my money, which I’ve earned by expending my time and life’s energy, any less mine than my car, my bike, or for that matter, my kidneys? What gives the government the right to take anything that’s mine, and by force?