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A Lingering Lament

Those darn cows still aren’t home!

I’ve been at this writing business for much of my life, even taught the subject for a spell, and I’m not one to quit the battle without a proverbial last ditch effort, without showing yet another piece of me that is not so appealing… These are my three questions, one set directed to book readers, one set directed to authors – each set with auto-answers directed at both authors and readers.

First, to the READERS, let me ask you these three questions:

1) Do you like homemade apple pie with a scoop of vanilla ice cream?

Heck, I’ll save you the trouble and answer myself. Tens of millions of you like homemade apple pie with a hearty scoop of vanilla ice cream.  The apples and the ice cream have to cost money – stores that I know don’t give them away.

Next question:

2) Do you enjoy going out to the movies, both drive-in and cinema houses?

Don’t mind, I’ll answer! tens of millions of you do! Otherwise, those Hollywood ‘Elites’ would be working regular jobs, or, getting rich on ‘Tell-All’ non-fiction books. I’m sure you pay for those movies, the popcorn, and candy.


Next question:

3) Can you afford those ‘apple pie/vanilla ice cream’ treats?

Again, I believe the answer is, “Sure! Wouldn’t eat the ‘apple pie/vanilla ice cream’ treats and go to the movies if tens of millions of us readers didn’t enjoy them and couldn’t afford them. 


Now, these three questions/my presumed answers to Authors:

1) How much time and effort do you put into writing your books and short stories and poetry – and, your blog posts!

Most of us would say: 24/7 if we include ‘not sleeping too well’ with ideas popping into our cranial network… really difficult to calculate the hours, but certainly more than a normal 8-hour work day.

Next question:

2) Do you consider yourself an excellent writer, an aspiring author, and/or, a rather mediocre writer?

 Okay, this is my guess… The self-publishing ranks have all of the above. Some should be on ‘Best Seller’ lists. Some are getting better at wordsmithing with each day they write. And, truth be told, there are really some bad writers in our midst, and there’s just not a whole lot to be done about that – we kid ourselves into thinking we’re great, but that is likely not the case.

 Last question:

3) Do you give your books away in hopes that the free reading experiences are going to lead to big sales?

On this question, I could be wrong… I don’t like giving away my books. If my blog posts, my free flash fiction pieces, my poetry, or, my free short stories do not give readers a clear enough depiction of my writing style so that they might buy my books, then it appears I’m not as good at writing as I need to be… Or, maybe, it’s a matter of ‘why buy’ when I can get books FREE! 

So, why the questions above?

Hopefully, to make us authors think twice about giving away so much of our souls. I know we must ‘also be a publisher’ as well as authors. I know we should do ‘mailing lists’ (which I do not! shame on me!), spread our marketing arms to embrace a multitude of  ‘book listing’ sites, shop for ‘reviews’, ‘author interviews’, tweeting, facebook, social media ad nauseam, ad infinitum, ad forever!!

If you’re young, even, middle-age, stay the course if you feel you’re good enough to be among the stellar authors. 

When you get a review like this one for my novel, “Mama’s Madness,” from someone I truly respect, it keeps me playing the odds a little longer…

on July 8, 2018

Mama’s madness is a work of fiction, but according to the author Billy Ray Chitwood, there are some inspirations from actual criminal behavior. This is a story about the meanest, lowlife, straight razor totin’ woman named Tamatha Preen. She is the mother of six kids and the ex-wife of four husbands. Although this seems a little abnormal in everyday life, compared to mama’s proclivities having four husbands is normal in comparison. Let’s say mama has some problems and as you can guess the children are the ones who bear the brunt of her mental issues. To describe any of the abusive behaviors would be courting spoilers, so I’m just going to summarize by saying mama is evil.

The writing in this story is so good the reader feels like a transportation into the scenes has taken place. The descriptions of people, places, and events are jaw-droppingly beautiful. Mr. Chitwood has been blessed with a golden pen (or keyboard). He can show the reader all the sights, sounds, and smells of each scene through a tapestry that only can be woven by a perfectionist literary genius. I think that pretty much describes Billy Ray Chitwood. He has honed his writing art, and there is no more exquisite example of the resulting output than this book. I would recommend Mama’s madness to anyone who enjoys a deeply disturbing story told effectively and with great taste.


Buy my books because I’m not giving them away – today! You can preview my books at:  

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19 comments on “A Lingering Lament

  1. A very interesting post, Billy Ray, and I am with you. I don’t do free promotions of my books or even 99 cents deals. I do give my books to charitable organisations sometimes but that is part of my outreach work.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Robbie, for your comments. There are people I’m happy to give books… I just like to lament!
      🙂 ♥♥♥

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Ah, the ongoing “chicken or the egg” question, Billy Ray. I struggle with it too. I do “free” giveaways because readers are more important to me than cash. However, I do hope that the quality of my writing will encourage subsequent purchases, and bit by bit that seems to work. When I was traditionally published, my publisher wouldn’t do free promotions and I had almost no sales, ever! So even though I give away thousands of books now, it’s more profitable in the long run. After ten years, can I buy groceries on my book sales? No. But I still love it and reviews (like John’s) make it worthwhile to me. Great review, my friend. Enjoy the glow. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The ‘glow’ stays for a long while! Thanks, Diana! Different strokes! Different folks! All the best, dear lady! ♥

      Liked by 1 person

      1. God bless your mother! ♥


  3. I totally support the idea of not giving away hard work. Thanks so much for including my review, Bill Ray. You know I love your work and will gladly pay for it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know that, good buddy! However, you get any of them FREE on me! ♥♥♥

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Sorry, good friend, to be so late on my review of “The Contract” – no excuses! After reading, got involved in all the social media and slipped by me…better late than never! ♥

        Liked by 2 people

      2. I have to go see it. 😀

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Great review for Mama’s Madness! 🙂 Plus, plenty of food for thought in this post, Billy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, dear Bette! Have a great week! ♥

      Liked by 1 person

  5. D.L Finn, Author says:

    I enjoyed the post and the questions…and now have a craving for apple pie:) Congrats on the review. This is one to be proud of.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Denise, glad to aid your appetite! You’re a great lady! ♥

      Liked by 2 people

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