1,000 blog posts and counting!

Where the hell have I been?  I have never let the blog go this long without a post, but I promise I have a somewhat legitimate excuse.  My trusty laptop died, kicked the bucket, called on the big motherboard in the sky.  It’s gone, see, and it ain’t coming back.  I have a non-interwebby computer that I will never hook up to the three w’s.  Call me over-protective, but there’s just too much bad stuff that can leak into its computer innards from evil and nefarious types stalking the webs, so I want to have one computer that is free from the intercrap.  If not for the internet free computer, I wouldn’t be getting any work done. 

I’m loading today’s post from my beautiful wife’s computer, and I have a new (refurbished) laptop currently in transit from Costco.  So, all is well on that front.

Onto the important stuff.  This is my 1,000th post on the blog.  That’s gotta be some kind of record.  Surely no one has posted that many useless posts for the world to see… okay, maybe a few others have… okay, maybe 98% of bloggers have, but you’ve got to admire my complete lack of shame and self-awareness. 

On the writing front, I am currently working on two non-Oz books.  I really, really like one, and I’m confused by the other one.  I can’t decide if it’s good or not.  I must like it on some level because I’m about 70,000 words into and still going.  We’ll see where it takes me.  The one I really like is what I’ve been spending most my time on these days.  I’ll tell you more when I feel it’s the right time.

As far as Oz, I have the last two books outlined. I’ve outlined them before, but I had an epiphany recently that moved me to completely rewrite the outlines.  I couldn’t be more excited.  I want to deliver a satisfying ending to all the readers, and I think this new outline does it much better than the old one.  BTW – thanks to everyone who has taken the time to read one or all four books so far.   

That’s it for now.  Happy 1000th post to me, and happy… just be happy, damnit! 

In defense of Oz

Open at the risk of warping your child

A few years ago a mother gave The Pure a one star review on Amazon because she said all my books were evil.  Actually, rather than me explaining what the review said, I’ll just post it here for your viewing pleasure.

Terrible………My teen boys love to read so I am always looking for a good series. I typed in teen fiction and this series popped so I bought all of them. After they were almost done with the series, I asked them what it was about. By the time their description was over I felt like I wanted to throw up. What had I subjected them to? I couldn’t believe the gore details they described. Sure that I had not subjected my

Sons to this type of disgusting reading, I had them read aloud. I made them stop and took the books away. I cannot believe that these were in the teen section. Gross, Gore, Evil, Blood, Guts……….I’m so full of regret that I had ever bought these. The series should not be listed anywhere near teens. In fact, it should be labelled with a parental advisory. I think I’ll burn the books. I will use much more discretion with my selections from now on!

I haven’t thought about the review for a while.  The woman is entitled to her opinion.  In a way, I take it as a compliment that she was driven to want to burn the books.   Some of my favorite books have been burned.Slamming her has never been an interest of mine and that’s not what this post about.  This post is about what I discovered about her review today.  I was on The Pure’s detail page and saw the review again and noticed something sweet. Five people came to the books defense.  They left comments on the mother’s review that more or less told her that she’s overreacting just a tad, and that horror books tend to be on the dark side, even horror books written for teenagers. She’s probably better served to read the descriptions before buying them.  It’s really kind of cool having people you don’t know defend your work. What’s cooler is that each of the five people weren’t disrespectful to the mother at all.

Thanks to my defenders and here’s hoping I didn’t warp the woman’s sons too badly.

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Review of the week – The Pure

That loud breathy sound you hear is me letting out a huge sigh of relief!

I love The Takers because it’s the first book and it started Oz on his journey, but it in a lot of ways, getting a great review for the follow-up books makes me feel much better.  You never know if you’re going to piss off your readers and lose them for good.    This one is for the third book in the series, The Pure.

4.0 out of 5 stars My favorite of the Oz Chronicles so far, March 31, 2009
Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
This review is from: The Pure: Book Three of the Oz Chronicles (Paperback)

I didn’t think Ridley would top THE TAKERS because the first book of the Oz Chronicles is so wonderful, but I must say THE PURE is my favorite so far. Most of the action concerning Oz takes place in the mind, and even the struggles of the other characters are emotional more than physical (though there is plenty of action to keep teen readers turning pages). I’m a sucker for redemption stories, and THE PURE certainly is that. I hope Ridley keeps going with this theme in future installments. My only real disappointment was finding out the Oz Chronicles is not a trilogy, which I didn’t realize until I encountered the cliffhanger on the last page! Then again, it’s good to know there’s more to come.

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The New Délon City Kindle Cover Image (Vote)

I’ve never been thrilled with the cover for Délon City, so I’ve decided to use a different one for the Kindle version.  If it goes over well, I’ll change it for the print version as well.  What do you think?

A New Cover for Délon City?

Cast your vote!

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Review of the Week – The Takers

Review of the week belongs to The Takers!

This one is really cool.  The book reached a young man who normally doesn’t read.  Gotta love it!

5.0 out of 5 stars First time son has requested a sequel to anything!, August 24, 2010
By Susan L (Los Angeles, CA) – See all my reviews
Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
This review is from: The Takers (Oz Chronicles, Book 1) (Volume 1) (Paperback)

I bought this book for my son to take on 12 hour airline trip. He’s not a reader – has learning disabilities that impact his reading and typically reads only what’s required for school and then reluctantly. I assumed it would come home unread, but thought I should send him with something in case the audio/video on the plane malfunctioned. I read the first page or two aloud to him while he was packing his carry-on bag just to get him interested.

When he got home he asked me if there were any more books in this series. When I told him yes he asked if I could get them for him! He went on to describe the plot, charaters and ending to me. I was amazed. He read a book! He liked it!

I haven’t read the book, but based on his response I’d recommend this book to any parent who is looking for something that a teenage boy will read and enjoy – even those who don’t like to read and aren’t particularly interested in books.

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Review of the Week – August 17, 2010

The review is in....

Sweet, the first Amazon review for The Land of the Dead has been posted, and thankfully, it’s five stars. I know it shouldn’t matter, but boy does it feel good! Here’s the review.

5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it, when’s the next one coming out?, August 13, 2010
By Mercedes (Colorado, USA) – See all my reviews
Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
This review is from: The Land of the Dead: Book Four of the Oz Chronicles (Paperback)

This is the 4th book in the Oz Chronicles series. Like the other books in the series it was a page turning horror fest. Let me first say, you must read the other books before reading this one, otherwise it’s like sitting down in the middle of a movie and you have no idea what’s happened.

Oz, Lou, Wes, Gordy, Tyrone, Kimball, and the apes are looking for the next clue to the end of the world. Oz must travel to the Land of the Dead. However, he’s no idea how to get there. After being chased by a new creature they crew ends up at the Biltmore Mansion. Here they’ll find the Land of the Dead and a cannibal ghost. After entering the mansion they’ll soon discover they have nine days to survive. In these nine days they’ll have to overcome their need to feed……..on each other. However, not everyone wants to eat each other. The new additions to the story, the Throwaways and oddly Lou, are immune to the hunger. Why they are immune is the question.

Some character’s immunity to the hunger and the dawning of love on Oz give the story a nice twist. My only complaint about this book is it’s been too long since I read the prior three books and struggled with getting up to speed. So my complaint is I wish it would have come out a lot sooner. I am looking forward to starting the series from the start and reading through this book again. This world created by the retarded children is brilliant and oh so twisted. I recommend this book and series to adults and teens alike, it’s great. Keep em coming Ridley, but sooner please.

Remember, feel free to post a review on Amazon if you enjoyed any of my books.  If you hated my books, forget that reviewing them is an option immediately!

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