Delays

I had expected this note would give you an exact date, preferably in December, to announce the launch of "Corporate Ties." Unfortunately, it will have to wait a bit longer. I've been slightly busier this fall than anticipated … we purchased a house, we're preparing for a baby in March, among other things. The good news is that once I have a decent block of time to devote to the book, I should be able to finish it.

Until then, here's a new excerpt from the book.

'Get Real' book release tonight!

Fellow Baltimore writer Spencer Compton will be sharing commentary from his new book, "Get Real" at 7pm tonight (Oct. 26) at Red Emma's Bookstore and Coffee House.

Literary agent list

As I attempt to find an agency to pitch my new book, I thought it might be a good idea to list some of the agents I have contacted. At this stage, I've run into issues where companies have listed communication methods, but they don't seem to follow through. I hope that my list will save the time of others who are attempting to find representation.

National Spumoni Day contest, with an actual prize!

August 21 is National Spumoni Day. Did you know that? I seriously doubt it. But who cares? It's an entire day to celebrate Spumoni! If you don't know what Spumoni is, check out the Wikipedia page. Better yet, let me explain why you should care about Spumoni in the first place.

New site for new book

I know I've said this before, but I am getting closer to publishing my new book, "Corporate Ties." There was a bit of foundation work that I needed to construct, edit, tear apart, rebuild, pulverize, stack up, decimate and recompile. Well, the good news is that I'm getting closer to the end. How do I know this? There seems to be a light at the end of each paragraph now.

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Random News

John Wooden, Ted Allen and ... Ben Woods?

The Purdue University Liberal Arts featured myself and The Developers in its spring issue. I had communicated with a representative in Alumni Relations about sending information for the magazine, but little did I know that they would devote more than a quarter of a page to me. I shared the page with Ted Allen, the cook from "Queer Eye For the Straight Guy," who is also a Purdue grad. On the preceding page, basketball great John Wooden, yet another Purdue alum, is spotlighted for receiving a reward.

Take a whiff of this!

Close your eyes and think of two of your favorite smells.

NO WAIT! Close your eyes for three seconds and think of two of your favorite smells (I just thought "What if you never open your eyes ... you won't be able to read the rest of this."). For our hypothetical situation, I've decided to use my favorites: the smell of newly popped popcorn and regular scented Pine-Sol.

The engagement story

The news of my engagement should really not come as a surprise to those who know me. I have been contemplating asking my dear Lena for at least a few months, although I could never be sure it was the right thing to do. I also did not want to make the engagement trivial, nor did I want to partake in the request in any typical format. I devised pieces of a plan long ago in an attempt to be both surprising and unique, and I'm proud to admit now that I succeeded in these tasks.

Chuck Palahniuk coming to Louisville

If you're a fan of "Fight Club" or "Choke," you won't want to miss Chuck Palahnik's appearance at 7 p.m. June 7 in The Clifton Center Reception Hall (2117 Payne Avenue). Carmichael's Bookstore is hosting the event, but due to the expected crowd, the venue has been moved just down the road. Palahniuk will be reading from his new book, "Haunted," and will be signing books as well.

I owe a bit to Palahniuk because after reading "Choke," I realized that maybe I could write "The Developers." Not that my stuff is as good, but it's a similar style ... at least, I'd like to think so.

Obama wallpaper

The day after the election, I had a chance to check out all of the front pages from around the world. It was remarkable how many international newspapers had Obama as the top story, and as expected, a number of U.S. papers devoted their entire front pages to election coverage. I created an Obama collage of the papers as a tribute to our next president. Feel free to use as a screensaver or desktop image!

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