Hatch martini and a book with attitude

On this, the 63rd day of above 100 degree temperatures in Dallas/Fort Worth, I thought it best to beat the heat with a little heat. It’s Hatch chile time in these parts. For those that don’t know about the Hatch, it’s a mild chile from Hatch, New Mexico. There is an extensive website about the annual Hatch Chile Festival that has videos, recipes, etc about all things Hatch.
 
To celebrate the beginning of Hatch season, my great local paper, the Fort Worth Star Telegram decided to run some recipes that have Hatch chiles in them, including this one for the Hatch Martini from our very own Blue Mesa Grill, a restaurant franchise in the Dallas area:
 

Prickly pear and Hatch martini

2 slivers of Hatch chile (divided)

Ice

1 1/4 ounces Ambhar Platinum tequila

1/2 ounce Fruit Lab hibiscus liqueur

2 ounces prickly pear juice

1/2 ounce lemonjuice

Splash of soda

1. Muddle one sliver of Hatch chile in a metal shaker until the chile breaks up. Add ice, tequila, hibiscus liqueur, prickly pear juice, and lemon juice. Cover and shake intensely to mix. Add a splash of soda.

2. Strain into martini glass. Garnish with a sliver of chile and serve.

Nutritional analysis per serving: 182 calories, trace fat, 17 grams carbohydrates, 2 grams protein, no cholesterol, 13 milligrams sodium, 1 gram dietary fiber, 2 percent of calories from fat.

— Recipe by Blue Mesa Grill

Read more: http://www.star-telegram.com/2011/08/23/3308119/try-these-hatch-chile-cocktails.html#tvg#ixzz1W3XxiTW3

And, speaking of heat, I just finished Moonlight Mile, Dennis Lehane’s follow up to Gone Baby Gone and while the story wasn’t nearly as good as GBG, the dialogue was superb. In the blue-collar neighborhoods of Boston, it’s all about attitude, and Lehane captures it brilliantly in the way his characters interact, especially his lead, Patrick Kenzie.  From his description, Kenzie is five foot nothing and a hundred and nothing sopping wet, but he has a bulldog’s heart inside that small body. He’s a scrapper and don’t we all love characters that are scrappers?
 
Cheers and let us know how you like the Hatch!
 
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Mark Fadden is a freelance writer and author whose latest, award-winning suspense thriller, The Brink, is now available as an eBook for Amazon.com Kindle and Barnes & Noble nook for only $2.99!

The Brink is a hell of a read.” – Bestselling author Sandra Brown

“Mark Fadden is a masterful storyteller.” – Writer’s Digest

“Mark Fadden is the next Dan Brown.” – Triple C Ranch Book Club, Southlake, Texas

Check out The Brink and Mark’s other books at http://www.markfadden.com

Tools for Tuesday – The Amazing 1st or 3rd Person POV Choosamatron 2000!

 
Wouldn’t it be great if there was an app that helped us choose which POV is better for our story: 1st person or 3rd person? Now, just a recap for those of us who forgotten what our 8th grade English teachers taught us. First person POV is from a single character’s POV throughout the book. The reader is looking at every scene and every other character through one character’s, usually the protagonist’s, eyes. Lots of “I’s” in this style.
 
Third person POV  can be from one character’s POV or many characters’ POV, depending on how you want to tell your story. Unlike all the “I’s” in first person, the POV character is always referred to in the narrative by their name or “he/she.”
 
There are many pros and cons to using each POV. On her blog Author Network, Linda Adams has an in-depth list of both. I began writing a new thriller back in June and used third person POV. But this morning at the crack of dawn, when my eyes were merely slits and my brain yearned for many jolts of caffeine, I remembered a bit of Adams’s advice on POV. “Some stories cry out for third and some cry out for first. Think about what the story requires to make it your best effort.”
 
I’m also reading Dennis Lehane’s follow up to Gone Baby Gone, which is titled Moonlight Mile. It was written in first person POV and couldn’t have been done any other way. The strong characterization of Patrick Kenzie – the way his Southie attitude and smart assed one liners provide a cover for a sensitive guy who will do anything to make sure he’s responsible for at the very least a bit of justice in the world – was made for first person POV. And so it shall be for my new hero, Scott Turner.
 
What about you? Do you struggle with POV? Ever started a novel or story and changed the POV after it just didn’t feel right? To the keyboards!
 
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Mark Fadden is a freelance writer and author whose latest, award-winning suspense thriller, The Brink, is now available as an eBook for Amazon.com Kindle and Barnes & Noble nook for only $2.99!

The Brink is a hell of a read.” – Bestselling author Sandra Brown

“Mark Fadden is a masterful storyteller.” – Writer’s Digest

“Mark Fadden is the next Dan Brown.” – Triple C Ranch Book Club, Southlake, Texas

Check out The Brink and Mark’s other books at http://www.markfadden.com

Writing and marketing your novel: A glimpse from the trenches

August 5, 2010

Day 52 of 365

Books sold so far (as of the end of May 2010, which is my first official month – sales reports in this industry lag big time!): 157

In this issue:

 

  • Writing topic – Timing the ‘market’
  • Marketing topic – Revamping our websites

 

Writing topic – Timing the ‘market’

 

It happened to Dan Brown. And Stephenie Meyer. And Tom Clancy. Financial advisors say that if you try to ‘time the market’, or try to predict when the stock market will go up or down as the basis for your investment philosophy, then you will always lose. Many people have been trying for years, and while some have been lucky, their luck never holds.

 

But what about the writer’s market? The three aforementioned authors are examples of great writers, but they also were in the right place at the right time. Brown sold a few thousand copies of his first novels and then – bam – along comes a little tale called The Da Vinci Code that highlighted the Opus Dei sect inside the church, just as the scandal about Catholic priests abusing children, which was tied to Opus Dei as well, broke all over the world. Divine intervention not withheld, people across the globe immediately became intrigued with the scandal and they had a book they could immediately turn to that could further their interest in other conspiracies involving the Catholic Church. Meyer’s tale about vampire (and werewolf) love that has spread across the world was started by Anne Rice and even the movies like the Blade trilogy has helped keep our fanged brothers and sisters in the collective consciousness. Was it Meyer’s intent to use characters that have stood the test of time in pop culture? Judge for yourself:

 

 

And finally Tom Clancy. I love the story of how he came to be one of the most read novelists in history. During his presidency, Reagan was asked what he was reading, and he mentioned an obscure book about a Russian sub captain defecting to the US with the sub in tow. Till then, The Hunt for Red October was a little read novel published by the US Naval Press. News outlets latched onto that story and almost overnight, Clancy was a household name.

 

While that was an example of pure luck, The Hunt for Red October played on our fears of an escalation of the Cold War, which was still raging at the time.

 

Timing – how important is it? Should starving novelists, like hungry investors, try to time the next current event to tie in to their novel, or should we say to heck with it, if I want to write about a love story between lepers in the 13th century, that by God I will!  To the keyboards!

 

Marketing topic – Revamping our websites

 

My website blows. Okay, that’s a tad harsh. It’s not the best. Being a one-man show, I used one of GoDaddy.com’s templates for the design aspect, and I need to change it. It just doesn’t captivate the look I’m going for. I’ve been looking at James Patterson’s site, Sandra Brown’s site, and Dennis Lehane’s site to get some ideas in order to spruce up the old girl. Some things I’d like to are:

 

But I have no idea how to do it. I’d call Jimmy, Sandy or Denny, but I seemed to have misplaced their cell numbers. Besides, I’m thinking they have people that run their websites. So what’s a lone wolf to do?

 

One word: intern.  I’m not talking pulling a Kramer from Seinfeld and hiring an intern at Kramerica Industries (Fadtasktik, Inc. does have a certain ring to it, though). No, I’m talking about getting some fresh out of college kid who’s willing to spruce up the old resume with a website redevelopment project. Now, to find said fertile, IT minded soul who will work for that most coveted word, wait for it, experience. Google ‘website development project’? Ad on monster for a website programmer? Craigslist for web designer? Local college newspaper want ads? Networking with the locals? One of them has to know a kid who could inject some pizzazz into www.markfadden.com. I’m sure the Russians, and now Indians, that are visiting the site in high numbers would love to see some new, cool effects. And, dear reader, if you know anyone, send them my way please.

The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step,

rest easy tonight my friends, but stay hungry tomorrow…