HOLLYWOOD (NON) CONFIDENTIAL!

Well, my friends, the Winners and Finalists of the 6th Annual Beverly Hills Book Awards were announced on Friday, and guess what?  Among this year’s prize-winning authors was…..  (drum roll, please) ….. Stephen G. Yanoff, whose book, TURBULENT TIMES, won a Gold Medal for the “Best U.S. History Book of 2017.”

In addition to quality writing, the judges considered cover and interior design, promotional text, aesthetic components, and other factors that demonstrated outstanding presentation.  (Their words, not mine.)  There were several thousand books entered into this year’s contest, so the award is quite humbling.  If you would like to view the complete list of Winners and Finalists, you can go to:   http://www.beverlyhillsbookawards.com

TURBULENT TIMES has now won six prestigious literary awards, and according to my publisher, is destined to become a best-seller.  Book sales and recognition are great things, but the best part about writing is meeting other people and making new friends.  This month, for example, our blog added about 100 new followers, mainly in America, but also from 9 different countries in Europe.  At this pace, we might reach the 60,000 level this year, and that would be truly amazing.  (Considering how bad most of my jokes are!)

And speaking of bad jokes…..  Did you ever wonder if GOOGLE was male or female?  I think female.  Why?  Because GOOGLE doesn’t let you finish a sentence before making a suggestion!  (I’m not trying to “press anybody’s buttons,” but you know I’m right.)  Please scroll down for another bad joke…..

Jerry Springer recently announced that he will NOT run for governor of Ohio next year.  He does not wish to be involved in politics, which he described as beneath his dignity.  The knucklehead has a point.  (other than the one on his head!)

Last night the wife and I ate dinner at Chez Nous Restaurant in Austin.  No more French food for me.  I ordered frog legs, and they had to rush to poor frog to the emergency room to stop the bleeding!  So get this, the frog drove himself to the hospital and parked in a handicap spot, but he still got….. toad away!  (Tell me that joke didn’t make you “jump for joy!”)

Can you believe that 60,000 people would want to subject themselves to these lame jokes?  I am starting to lose respect for my blog followers!  (Not really)  Besides, my wife writes most of my material, so blame her.  (Not really)  By the way, Patty is presently making gumbo, so I have to be nice to her.  (otherwise I will “roux the day!”)  I’m helping out, but I hate cutting up the onions.  I told the boss that onions are the only food that makes me cry.  (She told me that I was mistaken, and then dropped a coconut on my foot!  Damn if she wasn’t right!)

Well, I must return to the slave galley to complete with onion assignment.  You folks take care and have a marvelous week.  Love to all.

Your tearful comrade,

Doc Yanoff

 

 

 

THE LOVELY LADIES OF LAKEWAY!

Well, my week certainly began in a wonderful way, thanks to the Women’s Club of Greater Lakeway.  I just had the honor of speaking to these highly educated ladies about one of my favorite topics (No, not me, James A. Garfield!) and a fine time was had by all.  We had a full house at the beautiful Lakeway Spa and Resort, and we even managed to sell out of books!  (Two and half cases in 30 minutes!)  I had a lot of fun signing the books and meeting so many terrific ladies.

The Women’s Club officially began way back in the fall of 1985 with a charter membership of 51.  As the city of Lakeway grew, so did the membership, which now stands at …..  (drum roll, please) ….. over 500 members!  The club not only presents a full roster of fascinating speakers (such as myself) but also does TONS of charitable work for the community.

After my presentation, and a brief Q & A and book signing, Patty and I were invited to join the group for a lovely luncheon in the Vista Ballroom, overlooking Lake Travis, which now has plenty of water.  We had the privilege of sitting at the “President’s Table,” but I did not actually see or talk to Mr. Trump.  (They may have meant the president of the club.)  In any case, lunch was very good, and my history book (THE SECOND MOURNING) was the first “door prize” that was given out.  (The second door prize was an actual door, which was quite heavy!)

I would like to thank Sheila Niles (the new president of the “James A. Garfield Memorial Fan Club,” for decorating all of the tables with an assortment of “Garfield mementos” and some fascinating historical information.  Her hard work (and flower arrangements) were greatly appreciated, and her enthusiasm was simply contagious. (Would you like to guess what state she’s from?  Yep, the Buckeye state… Ohio!)

And while we are on the subject of “thank you,” I must also thank my dear friends in Lakeway for arranging and scheduling my speaking engagement…..  So here’s to you (with a tip of the hat) Shelley and Loyd Smith, and the lovely and talented Gloria Crosthwait!  And let’s not forget Ken Crosthwait, who is currently engrossed in a marvelous new history book, titled, TURBULENT TIMES!  (Those folks in Lakeway have such good literary taste!)

Did I ever mention that the word “plethora” means a lot to me?

So what else is new?  Well, believe it or not, I have been invited back to do another radio interview with the amazing Jack Drucker (the host of America’s most prominent talk show) on WTAN in Tampa, Florida.  The interview will be taped on December 13th and aired in its entirety on December 19th.  Jack and I will be discussing (and answering some deep questions) about William H. Seward, the subject of my new history book, TURBULENT TIMES.  I will provide some more details at a later date, and you might be the one to win a pair of airline tickets to watch the program live in Florida!  (So keep tuned, as they say!)

I do hope that each and every one of my loyal blog followers had a joyous Thanksgiving.  We had a great feast (except for the bowl of kale that someone brought.)  Personally, I prefer my kale with a silent “k,” if you know what I mean!

Well, time to do some babysitting, so I must take my leave of thee.  Please remember to take every bad day with a grain of salt.  (And by the way, this works much better if the salt is on a margarita!)  Adios amigos and amigettes.  Speak to you next Sunday…  Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

 

 

HAPPY THANKSGIVING, 2017!

Man, do I have a lot to be thankful for this year.  Aside from all the book awards, I am very thankful that I don’t live in Hollywood or Washington, D.C.!  Bad time to be an actor or a politician.  (Wait, that might be an oxymoron!)  I used to think that an oxymoron was a dumb cow.  Where was I?  Oh yeah, we were talking about sexual harassment.  (To be quite honest, at a certain age, ALL sex is a form of harassment!)

Anyway, in order to avoid any trouble during our Thanksgiving feast, we have decided to BAN the use of certain words.  For instance, nobody at the table can request a BREAST, a THIGH, or a LEG.  (Too suggestive)  Also, we have forbidden the word CHESTNUT.  (Too graphic)  How’s that for pilgrim’s progress?

If you want to stay out of trouble this year, then stay out of COSTCO.  They were offering fruit samples yesterday, and a pretty young lady asked me if I wanted to try some raisins.  I told her that I preferred a date.  She called the dang manager!  Thank goodness I didn’t squeeze her melons.  (I’m married, so I cantaloupe!)

I don’t have any chick problems at home, mainly because I am such a progressive fellow.  (They have the best insurance rates.)  In my house, I mean my wife’s house, we split the chores evenly.  Patty does the cooking, cleaning, washing, ironing, and some minor roof repairs.  I handle security.  (If someone breaks into our house, I’m supposed to nudge Patty out of bed (gingerly) and ask her to check the perimeter for armed intruders.)  Sounds fair to me, but I do think she could do some weeding in the spring.

Even though I am the prefect husband, I do make mistakes.  (One per decade)  This morning, my wife woke up with a sore back.  (No, not because of that!)  I asked her if she wanted a hot pad, and she got angry.  She thought I said “hot pat,” which I did not say.  (I even told her that she was already a “hot Pat.”)  Luckily I did not mention Ben Gay.  (Not that there’s anything wrong with that!)

So what else is new?  Well, my business mentor, the genius who taught me almost everything I know about high risk insurance, has finally retired.  Tom Mannion, who I consider an (older) brother, just stepped out of the fray and will soon be moving to sunny West Florida.  Next to my own father, Tom was the most brilliant insurance executive I’ve ever known, and I am deeply in his debt.  (Poor Tom had to teach me the insurance racket, which wasn’t easy!)  Keep in mind that there would be no “Adam Gold books” without Tom’s guidance and support, since each book is based upon an actual insurance claim.  My best wishes to Tom, and his lovely wife, Joanne, and I hope they enjoy their well-earned retirement.

Incidentally, with the holiday season fast approaching, don’t forget that you can now order the complete set of Adam Gold mysteries on Amazon.com  These books make wonderful gifts, and since the royalties are going to charity, you will be doing a very good deed … two times!  Naturally this will increase the odds of getting into heaven later on, so don’t delay!  Do something angelic!

Finally, I would like to congratulate my handsome and talented brother-in-law, Mr. Tim McCloskey, who recently became engaged to a woman of the female persuasion.  (A very lovely woman, I might add!)  Our very best wishes to Tim and his future bride, Donna.  You crazy kids will have a great life together, and we look forward to attending your wedding.  (Do I have to bring a gift?  I did refer to Tim as handsome and talented.  Shouldn’t that count for something?)  Just saying.

Well, time to make the catnip, I mean parsnip casserole.  I want to wish each and every one of you a wonderful and joyous Thanksgiving!  What a true blessing it is to live in America and share this special day with family and friends.  Here’s hoping that you and yours have a marvelous time together!  God bless, and love to all!

Doc Yanoff

 

 

 

 

SOMEBODY UP THERE LIKES ME! (PART 2)

Do you folks remember that movie?  (Somebody Up There Likes Me.)  It was produced way back in 1956 (many years before I was born) and starred the great Paul Newman.  The movie was actually a biopic, based upon the life and career of the legendary boxer, Rocky Graziano.  (Yes, there really was a Rocky!)  I enjoyed the movie because I did a little boxing in high school.  Well, actually, I worked in the wrapping department at Macy’s, but we did use a lot of boxes.  I didn’t care for boxing, but I could certainly take a punch.  In fact, I took the punch at my high school prom, but that’s another story.  In any case, my best rounds were at Trees Lounge, a local watering hole in Valley Stream, Long Island.  So why the above title?

Well….  believe it or not, my new history book, TURBULENT TIMES was just chosen as a FINALIST for best U.S. History Book of the Year in the 2017 BEST BOOK AWARDS CONTEST!  The 14th annual contest attracted over 2,000 entries from mainstream publishers, including McGraw-Hill, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, ST. Martin’s Press, Penguin Random House, and the Hachette Book Group.  A number of Pulitzer Prize winners were also represented in the contest, and before you ask, I DID NOT bribe any of the judges.  (Although I did offer some “walking around money.”)  Seriously, though, this was a great honor, and I thank the man upstairs for looking out for me!

Speaking of great honors, I had the honor and privilege of attending a Mass of the Resurrection for Mr. Lee David Cutrone yesterday.  As you know, yesterday was Veteran’s Day, the day we honor all of the brave men and women who have proudly worn our nation’s military uniform.  Lee was a remarkable man, and in addition to being a wonderful husband and father, he was also a veteran of the U.S. Army.  He served with distinction from 1970-1974, achieving the rank of 1st Lieutenant in Military Intelligence.  And since I mentioned “the man upstairs,” listen to this:  As Lee was being interred, two ARMY helicopters randomly flying back to their base, flew DIRECTLY overhead!  This was not pre-arranged, but in my view, a salute from you-know-who!  So, to Lee, and all you other vets out there, thank you for your service, and may God bless you, too!

By the way, many of my blog followers have asked about my Uncle Heshy, who served with extinction in the Army AirCorps during World War Two.  I say extinction, because he shot down three foreign aircraft during the opening hours of the war!  Unfortunately, two of the planes were British, and the third was a blimp from France.  Nevertheless, they were shot down, which should count for something. (Besides the court-martial and 10-year prison term.)  We are still proud of my uncle, who, after his release, became a pilot for Malaysian Airlines.

So what else is new?  I did not sleep well last night.  My wife woke me up in the middle of the night and told me that there was a crazy man in the house!  Luckily, it was me.  Women.  What are you gonna do.

Just a reminder, on November 27th, I will be giving a speech about my first history book, THE SECOND MOURNING, in Lakeway, Texas.  After my verbal performance, I will be signing books, so bring plenty of cash.  Just kidding about the cash, bring a credit card!  I will publish more details about the event at a later date, but I believe that you need to be a member of the sponsoring group in order to attend.  Still, if you are so inclined, you can now purchase all of my mystery and history books at Amazon.com   (They make wonderful holiday gifts, and ALL royalties will be donated to the victims of the recent hurricanes!)

Well, I am off to the nursery once again.  (No, I didn’t have another child!)  I am babysitting once more, attending to my two beautiful grand-daughters, Goldie and Fiona.  I shall attempt to post a photograph of these two ladies, dressed as you can see, in their Halloween costumes.  (At least I think they’re costumes, you never know with this generation!)  Have a safe and glorious week, love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

 

HELP! THE PARANOIDS ARE AFTER ME!

I spotted this sign during the World Series, which thankfully, the Houston Astros won.  After going through Hurricane Harvey, the city needed some good news, and right on cue, the man upstairs delivered.  (No, not George Steinbrenner, the OTHER boss!)  Way to go, Houston!

Well, Ethel Merman was right, there’s no business like show business.  (Human trafficking comes close!)  Another day, another harassment scandal.  If those Hollywood clowns were married they wouldn’t have to think about romance or sex.  Whenever I get frisky, my wife says, “Don’t even think about it!”  Luckily for me, she has a great meatloaf recipe.  (Shows where my priorities are!)

Did you know that Marcel Marceau was invited to the Oscar Ceremony but not allowed to perform?  If you ask me, a mime is a terrible thing to waste!

I think we can all agree that America has sex on the brain, and if you’ve renewed your driver’s license lately you know what I mean.  I was shocked, shocked I say, by all of the sexually suggestive road signs that I had to identify on the written test.  Think about those signs:  “Yield”  “Stop”  “One Way”  “No U-Turn”  “No Passing On Shoulder”  and my personal favorite, “Slippery When Wet!”  The girl sitting next to me asked me for a cigarette after she took the test!  (I just hope she doesn’t get pregnant!)

The driving test was even more erotic.  My instructor (a hot babe) asked if I was ready to go parking!  I told her that I was married, but she insisted that we drive to a deserted street, and when we got there, she asked if I was ready to pull into a tight spot!  I told her that I wasn’t born yesterday.  (Which should have been obvious)  Anyway, I got a passing grade, but I’m still calling Gloria All-Dread.

So what else is new?  America’s favorite mystery writer (me) will be buzzing around the Texas Book Festival this weekend, so if you’re in Austin, give me a call and I’ll be happy to autograph some books for you or your significant others.  (The book is free, but I charge $19.95 for the autograph!)  By the way, don’t forget about Daylight Savings Time.  Remember to “fall backward” and “spring ahead,” or something like that.  When you wake up on Sunday, it will actually be Monday, (I think) and you will have to go to work.  Fortunately, I don’t have a job, so none of this concerns me.

You know, at my age, I finally realize that I don’t need fun to have alcohol.  What a blessing.

Incidentally, my new history book, TURBULENT TIMES (The Remarkable Life of William H. Seward) has been chosen as a “Finalist” in two more prominent book contests, but alas, I am not at liberty to mention the names of the contests until the list becomes public.  These two prestigious contests offer gold, silver, and bronze medals (and a sizable check), so keep your fingers and toes crossed for me.  And thanks again for all of your continued support!

In closing, I am proud to announce that my two-year-old granddaughter, Goldie Delilah, recently graduated (with honors) from the Texas A & M School of Infantile Veterinarian Medicine.  (A scholastic program for children and immature adults.)  I have taken the liberty of posting a few photographs that were taken at her graduation ceremony.  Needless to say, we are very proud of little Goldie.

Have a safe and joyful week, and love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

 

 

BACK FROM THE BRINK!

Yes, dear friends, those rumors about my demise were greatly exaggerated.  Somehow, I managed to survive my last road trip/book tour, which was supposed to include stops in Houston, Boca Raton, and San Juan.  (Which were the precise locations where Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria made landfall!)  Not only did I dodge the bullet (s), but I immediately fired my booking agent, the (dis)honorable Cliff (Hanger) Hirshkovitz.  Cliff has been replaced by the lovely and talented Amelia (Air Head) Earhartz.  She is quite a gal, and was able to arrange a rare book signing for me in a place called Chernobyl.

I was a little worried about the nuclear radiation, but Amelia assured me that all is well around the plant.  She has been there before, and she can count on one hand the nine times that she’s heard all the silly warnings.  I’m not “Russian” to get there, but Chernobyl is a great place to sell books.  (Almost no living competition)

Speaking of selling books, don’t forget that the Texas Book Festival is coming up in early November.  Last year’s best-selling mysteries included three of the “Adam Gold Mysteries,” THE GRACELAND GANG, DEVIL’S COVE, and RANSOM ON THE RHONE.  Hundreds of non-fictions books were also sold to my (semi) adoring fans, and this year, both award-winning history books will be available!  (THE SECOND MOURNING and TURBULENT TIMES.)  If you need an autographed copy for the upcoming holidays, just drop me an email @ stephen.yanoff@gmail.com

So what else be new?  Well, last week’s OctoberFest (sponsored by Max and Barbara Talbott) was a HUGE success.  Lots and lots of good German beer, and from what I remember, some great sausages.  (Max forced me to drink a couple of “monster steins” with him.  I referred to them as “Franken-Steins!”)  In any case, we all had a great time down at the Austin Club, and if we are ever allowed to return (which is questionable after Barbara’s German Chocolate Cake Dance) I’m sure it will be just as wonderful.

And since we are on the subject of great fall parties, I should like to publicly thank Judge Susan Marquess (the infamous “hanging judge” of Steiner Ranch) for hosting a lovely dinner party at her villa two weeks ago.  A fine time was had by all, and I intend to return my fork and knife in the very near future.  Hey, come to think of it, do you think they make beer steins in Steiner Ranch??   Just saying.

I’ve been working (feverishly) on my new Adam Gold mystery, tentatively titled, CAPONE ISLAND, and have about 200 pages ready to go.  Hopefully, I should be finished with this one sometime in the early part of 2018.  I’ve got a lot of energy, but some days I feel as useless as the “G” in lasagna.  Just the other day I realized that I wasn’t making a lot of friends at work, and then I remember that I don’t have a job.  Whew, what a relief that was!

Not to be political, but I just heard a CNN anchor ask Hillary Clinton if her husband’s behavior was as bad as Harvey Weinstein’s.  Her answer surprised me.  She said, “Close, but no cigar.”  (ouch!)

In closing, I would like to remind all of my loyal blog followers that now would be a lovely time to purchase a book.  All royalties from all of my books, for the remainder of the year, will be donated to the charities supporting the victims of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria.  And also the victims of the recent California wildfires.  Thus, this would be a marvelous time to purchase a literary present for someone you adore.  (I already have the books, so don’t send one to me!)

Well, darlings, I must leave you, as it is time to change baby Fiona’s diaper.  (What an exciting life I lead!)  I love my new grand-daughter, but she leaks more than a Washington bureaucrat!  (and produces the same amount of you-know-what!)  You folks take care, and we shall chat again in the near future…..

Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

 

50,000 FANS CAN’T BE WRONG!

I know what you’re thinking, but the above blog title does NOT refer to the NFL, the Anthem, or the Pledge of Allegiance!  Nay, I am referring to the fact that our little blog has reached a new milestone.  (Which is less painful than a kidney stone.  And different from a Gaul Stone, which you get from eating French food.)  So, what is this magical mysterious milestone to which I allude?  Well, as of yesterday afternoon, we now have 50,000 blog followers on this (semi) hysterical website!  Yep, we recently enrolled number 50,000, and that honor went to Mr. James McCullum of Sarasota, Florida.  Mr. McCullum and his wife will now receive a free weekend, courtesy of my generous publisher, at the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas.  (Always a “sure bet” to please!)  My sincere thanks to ALL of my devoted followers, who in my humble opinion, are the BEST!

By the way, a few of you keen-eyed folks might have seen the above blog title and thought of something else….  Do you remember Elvis Presley’s amazing 1959 record album, “50,000,000 Fans Can’t Be Wrong?”  The album was released by RCA Victor, and if you go to the Elvis Presley Center in Tupelo, Mississippi, you will notice that it is prominently displayed in the gift shop…..  right across from the book section, which prominently features my very first mystery novel, THE GRACELAND GANG!  (If you’re running short of funds, just buy the book.)

Speaking of books, my radio interview with the incredible Jack Drucker has been postponed until mid to late October, due to Hurricane Irma.  The old gal swept into the Tampa area with destruction on her mind, so the radio station needs to undergo  some repairs before they start broadcasting again.  I will keep you informed of the new broadcast date, which will feature a lengthy interview about my new history book, TURBULENT TIMES.

NOW FOR SOME REALLY IMPORTANT NEWS!  I have another new blog follower!  A young lady named Fiona Ivy Zell.  The cute little dear was born last Monday, September 25, at 10:49 p.m.  (She was published by my oldest daughter, Rachel, and her co-publisher, Adam Zell.)  At birth, Fiona weighed close to seven pounds, which is probably going to be the least she ever weighs again.  Her length was measured at 21 inches, but she is expected to grow quickly.  She is in perfect condition, but has not yet begun to talk.  What’s up with that?  (Definitely not a Yanoff!)  In any case, we are delighted by Rachel and Adam’s new tax deduction, and look forward to spoiling her rotten!

By the way, please remember that Halloween is fast approaching, and that this year’s most popular costume (believe it or not) is a mask of William Henry Seward!  If you can’t find a mask, you can simply buy one of my books and attach a large rubber band to the front cover.  Your children will adore it, and their teachers will be very impressed.  If you have more than one child, you can buy a copy of THE SECOND MOURNING, which features a “potential mask” of James A. Garfield.  I urge you to be creative and forget about the ghosts, ghouls, and witches.

Incidentally, why can’t ghosts have children?  (Because they have “hallow weenies!”)  All right, that was a terrible joke, but it seemed funny at the time.  If you don’t get the punch line, drop me a note.  Speaking of weenies, I see that Hugh Hefner passed away.  Poor guy is now a stiff.  (Too easy!)  I always wanted to marry a Playmate, but that didn’t happen.  (My wife once posed for Popular Mechanics, but that’s a long story.)

Well, I have to mosey on down to Target for some baby formula, so you folks take care and we’ll meet again next Sunday or the Sunday after that.  By the way, if you see a photo of me in a raincoat, don’t worry.  It’s not raining here in Texas.  I am wearing a coat because baby Fiona leaks from a number of orifices, and I’m not sure exactly what the little darling is leaking.  (Better safe than sorry!)

Love to all, and as we say in Austin, “Goo Goo Gaga!”

Doc Yanoff