Notes for my stand up routine

It’s been a busy few weeks with my mom and I meeting (or being very close to) people we love. For me, the obvious, Mike Piazza & for my mom, Pope Francis. And MY METS clinching NL EAST! I’ve been remiss in posting some notable quotes.

Things I’ve uttered —

“It’s not the Holy Spirit. It’s a sign of our impending death.”

“Yep, being single is a bit tricky.”

“We’re here to see the Pope people! Where’s the Christian attitude?”

Things said to me–

“A dullard maybe. But you’re not an idiot.”

“I would definitely have gone with saved with a blow up sex doll.”

“Oh, I know what you’re doing. But yeah, everyone else thinks you’re crazy.”

“Did you survive???” (Please note I wanted to answer, “No. I’m dead but I’m getting excellent cell service.”)

“You have beautiful hair.” (I think this is the one and only time I have heard this in my life.)

Have a great week.

Happy Reading!

A R

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Because I know you’re wondering…

Last week I posted a blog asking what I should ask Mike Piazza when I met him at a CitiPass event. I didn’t really think I’d have any chance to talk to him. Boy, was I wrong! I spoke to him for about 5 minutes, with two other ladies. He commented how I have the same name as his wife (I did not say I knew this) and we both commiserated about having lived in Philadelphia. (Sadly, when he asked me where I lived in Philadelphia, I couldn’t remember any of them! Mike–if you’re reading this, I lived in Elkins Park, Sharon Hill, King of Prussia, Main Line, & in Philadelphia itself, by the airport).  Maybe it’s best I didn’t say all of them…I sound like a gypsy.

The event was Amazin’! I told him about the large painting of him that hangs in my home and he signed a photo of it that I brought with me.

What is more amazin’ is the photo of me and Mike!

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Come on! That’s a great photo. It may be my favorite photo EVER. And it may be printed in poster size sometime soon.

The return of ‘Notes for my stand up routine’, formerly known as ‘Quotes of the Week’ returns next week. And I’ve got a few doozies! The Pope & sex toys will be mentioned. Don’t worry — it’s not in the same quote.

Happy Reading!

A R

What should I say when I meet Mike Piazza?

This isn’t a hypothetical question! On Thursday, I will be dining with Mike Piazza!

Fine…full disclosure…me and who knows how many other people, who doled out a reasonable sum, will be dining with Mike Piazza at the CitiPass event–ESPN’s Legend Series hosted by Michael Kay & Don LaGreca at the New York Athletic Club. In the event price, you get to have your picture taken with Mr. Piazza. I will have a moment to say something to my favorite Met.

There are so many things I could say to the HOF bound catcher.

Should I tell him a huge painting of him hangs in my home?  Probably not.

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Should I tell him my dog’s initial reaction to this painting?  (She barked each time she saw it for several days. I explained to her that this is not an appropriate reaction to anything Piazza related.  He is to be greeted in a much nicer fashion should we ever meet him).  I think me telling him about my conversation with my dog would cause security to be called.

Should I joke about me and his wife having the same name?  Probably not.

Should I tell him I have a had a hotel reservation each year at Cooperstown, since his first year of eligibility for the Baseball Hall of Fame?  That’s probably a sore subject. I think I should avoid it altogether.

Should I just tell him I love him?  Again, I’m afraid that would cause security to be called and my prompt exit, before dinner.

But at least it would get me out of the dinner portion of the evening….

Those that know me know that going to this event is fraught with anxiety! One–I’ll meet my favorite Met.  Two-I’ll be forced to sit with strangers for dinner. Three-I’ll be forced to make small talk with strangers. Oh…the dreaded small talk.  My preferred activity at dinner would be to read a book. I’ve been told that reading a book would be considered rude.

So, I’m very serious when I ask, What should I say to Mike?

Beta Readers–Work or Fun?

I think I’ve always read the Acknowledgements section of an author’s book. Some are funny and some are bland but it reminds you how many people are involved in writing a book. There are the people specifically involved in the book’s publication–the editor, an agent (should you have one. I do not. If an agent is looking for a light hearted, comical mystery writer, contact me:), and a cover artist. Additional thanks is given to the people who helped you do the research– answering the medical questions, the legal questions, and the random questions–when was the last time you cried? what drink would you order at a bar if you couldn’t have alcohol (and still look manly)?

And then there are the BETA READERS, or first readers as some writers call them. They are the people who read the book, long before it’s published. I just finished a book by Paul Tremblay and in his Acknowledgements section, he quoted Louis Maistros: “Being asked to read another writer’s rough draft is the literary equivalent of being asked to help a friend move a couch to a new place.”

I disagree.  There is some pleasure in being the first to read a new book, the first to see what happens next. Now, it’s also a very scary proposition. I liken being a beta reader to watching your friend’s toddler. Because to many a writer, the draft they present to you is like a child to the writer. It’s an extension of themselves. They love it dearly. They want to be told its perfect and beautiful.

Now watching a toddler can be great fun but also quite exhausting. You might be pestered more than once by the parent to check how everything is going.  I think all my beta readers will agree with those three elements of the beta reading job.

The responsibility of the beta reader is to be honest. But must do so with great care.

At the end of the day, if the time babysitting was a complete disaster, you need to mention it right? I don’t recommend saying, “Your child is terrible,” but you probably need to say something. If the child was ill, you’d definitely mention it.  If you couldn’t understand a thing the child said, you’d mention it.

My words of wisdom to new beta readers are–Don’t tell me it sucks, that doesn’t help. You need to tell me, nicely, what doesn’t work, what you didn’t understand, what you’d change.

**Special note to my beta readers (who I assume all read my blog), please contact me if you want to be a beta reader for book 5!**

In other news, The Nathan Miccoli Mystery series is on sale this holiday weekend.  Tell your friends and get ready for book 5!

Enjoy,

A R