CHARGE OF THE LIGHT BRIGADE!

HALF A LEAGUE, HALF A LEAGUE, HALF A LEAGUE ONWARD!  (Why only half a league?  Another major league baseball strike?)  Who knows.  CANNON TO RIGHT OF THEM, CANNON TO LEFT OF THEM!  (Oh wait, those are toll booths.  My bad.)  Well, as you can see, my spring road trip/book signing tour got off to poetic and humorous start.  (Surprise, surprise.)  How so you ask?  Well, my darling wife decided to wash my sneakers the night before we left.  (She wanted me to make a good impression when we reached Tupelo!)  My friends, sneakers take a while to dry.  I won’t belabor the point, but let’s just say that the incident encouraged me to write a new screenplay…..  “Honey, I Shrunk The Keds!”

I could have reacted violently, or “conversely” I could have let bygones by bygones.  I took the high ground.  (I left her at a hilltop rest stop!)  Then I realized she had my wallet in her purse, so I returned to the scene of the crime.  How could she ruin my new sneakers?  Well, my friends, you are never too old to learn something stupid.  Thus began our memorable road trip!

Our first (planned) stop was Baton Rouge, which in French means “Baton Rouge.”  (Fooled you, didn’t I?)  In English, Baton Rouge means “red stick.”  (The city was built on the site of a tall cypress tree, redish in color.)  It must have been a mighty big stick, and it certainly has affected the residents.  (Most of them talk softly, but carry a big stick.)  I often talk softly and perform a little shtick.

According to a recent article in Garden and Gun Magazine (one of the best magazines in America) the very best hamburger in the country is to be found at Fat Cow Burgers in Baton Rouge….. close to the L.S.U. Campus.  Naturally, I had to stop there and see for myself.  Patty and I ordered the featured burger, which consisted of the following ingredients….  A toasted “potato bun” with a hand ground 8 oz. angus burger topped with Benton’s apple smoked bacon, Gruyere cheese, caramelized onion, fresh arugula, sliced tomato, and….. horseradish mayonnaise!  (Accompanied by thick, hand cut french fries!)  The verdict?  OMG.  They were truly wonderful!  (The draft Abita beer was also a nice touch.)  If you’re within 1,000 miles of Baton Rouge, just go.  You’ll thank me later!

Hey, today is Mother’s Day, and since I have the most wonderful mother in the world, I want to remind you to call your own mom and tell her how much you love her.  If you can’t get through, call my mom.  (But don’t call collect!)  I already tried that, and she won’t accept the charges.  (Hey, what’s up with that?)

Earlier today, I drove up to Tupelo, Mississippi in a VERY unusual fashion.  I was completely naked!  (Just kidding)  I drove up on the Natchez Trace Parkway, one of the oldest and most scenic routes in America.  The experience was nothing short of incredible, and I will go into more detail later.  My God, do we have a beautiful country!

Well, I’ve been on the road (actually inside a car) for the last 6 hours, so I need to bathe and go sleepyville.  I will write again soon, so look for my next post!  If you’ve enjoyed my writing, just remember….. stealing ideas from one person is plagiarism. Stealing from a group of people is called research!

Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

SINGIN’ THE BLUES…..

Sadly, we lost the great George Jones this week.  A big loss for those of us who love country music.  As some of you know, I was born in Nashville.  Back in the day, my aunts often took me to the Grand Ole Opry, and I remember meeting Mr. Jones backstage.  He was always very polite, and as I recall, always willing to give some squirt an autograph.  Did you know that his big song, “He Stopped Loving Her Today,” was recently voted “the greatest country song of all time?”  Interestingly, Jones did not like the song at first, and he almost refused to record the darn thing.  He thought it was too long, too sad, and too depressing!  (Much like my writing career!)

Personally, I thought it was a great song, but not as good as the one and only country song that I wrote.  (“I’ll Never Get Over You Until You Get Out From Under Him.”)  My little tune was recorded by The Inbred Brothers, and even though it didn’t get much airplay outside of Arkansas, it was nominated for a Granny.  (Similar to the Grammy Award, but given to a senior citizen.)  What a treat it was to see my name in Billboard.  (Actually, my name was ON a billboard, but that’s a long story, and I was falsely accused.)

NOW FOR SOME LITERARY NEWS…..    Aberdeen Bay Press has received permission from my publicist (Invisible Irving Flakowitz) to feature my photograph on their worldwide webpage!  Sooo…. if you are so inclined, or even horizontal, you can log onto their website and view photographs of me signing books in England and France!  In all seriousness, this is very cool, and I appreciate the publicity.

Speaking of publicity….. I would like to publicly thank Mr. Ken Evans, a distinguished gentleman and world-class poker player, for purchasing 10 copies of MURDER ON MAIDEN LANE last week!  (They do make wonderful gifts.)  I’ve noticed that a handful of Austin celebrities are also reading the book…..  i.e., Judge Susan Marquess, Rich Walker, Leigh Ann Woodward, Barbara Talbott, Donna Simon, Christine Nickles, Paula Johnston, and Lee Bomblatus.  (Some of these folks ain’t from Austin, per se, but who’s counting?)  They are here in spirit!  Thanks gang!

While we are on the subject of publicity…..  My friend, Diane Fanning, who just happens to be an incredibly talented writer, is celebrating the publication of her 20th book!  Quite an accomplishment.  Congratulations, Diane!  My other friend (I have two) Larry Brill, is off and running with his first book, and from what I hear, it is destined to become a huge success.  (It’s called “Live@Five”)

I would like to remind my faithful blog followers that Mother’s Day is just around the corner.  (Each year I send my own mom a card of congratulations for having me.)  I’m not sure how my mom feels about that.  (She likes to say “If I agreed with you, we’d both be wrong!)  Still, I would remind you that we’re supposed to respect our elders, even though, as time marches on, it’s getting harder and harder to find one!

By the way, speaking of finding things, you might want to order a copy of MURDER ON MAIDEN LANE this week.  There are only a few copies left from the first printing, and the second printing, which will begin this week, will take some time to complete.  (Your mom will be very disappointed if she gets candy or flowers again!)  I sent my own mom two copies (I charged her full price, but I paid for half of the shipping) and I’m sure she was touched by my generosity.  Where there’s a will…. I want to be in it!

Well, folks, take care and have a safe and happy week.  The spring book tour begins this Saturday, so the next time that you hear from me I will be in Tupelo, MIssissippi!  (Where the heck did I put those blue suede shoes??)  Elvis loves you, baby!

Doc Yanoff

THE PRESLEY PLOT MAKES HISTORY!!

THIS BETTER BE GOOD SINCE I USED TWO EXCLAMATION POINTS!!   Well, actually, it is very, very good.  For the first time since the Bronze Age (or maybe it was the Iron Age) Aberdeen Bay Press, the world’s foremost publisher of brilliant mystery novels, has decided to publish a SECOND EDITION of a book within a six month period!!  (There are those two exclamation points again.)  Would you like to guess the name of this best-selling book?  That’s right…..  THE PRESLEY PLOT!

Due to popular demand (and the fact that Amazon.com only has 3 copies left!) the publisher is re-issuing my book.   And here’s the best part….  they have gone through the book with a fine tooth comb and corrected every spelling and typographical error that was in the first edition!  Soooooo…..  if you need a wonderful, enchanting, entertaining novel for the holiday gift giving season (and you can’t find FIFTY SHADES OF GRAY) zip on over to Amazon.com or Barnesandnoble.com and order you brand new, fully revised copy of THE PRESLEY PLOT.  (Your brain will thank you!)  Incidentally…..   the new edition already has a pre-order of over 200 books!!  So remember, he who hesitates, is lost!

If you are one of the lovely young ladies who is awaiting a book (Ms. Baum and Mrs. Isler) be patient!  I will send one along as soon as they become available!

NOW FOR SOME OTHER ELVIS NEWS…….

Did you know that there is a “Little Graceland” in Texas?  True enough.  In the Rio Grande Valley town of Los Fresnos, Simon Vega curates a treasure trove of Elvis memorabilia at his LITTLE GRACELAND MUSEUM.  (Mr. Vega actually served in the Army with Elvis!)  The museum has pictures of Elvis, Elvis albums, Elvis 45’s (not the pistols) Elvis statues, Elvis mugs, and Elvis enchiladas.  (Just joshing about the food.)   In any case, the museum is open Thursday thru Sunday.  10 a.m. to 5 p.m. by appointment.  The next “Elvis Festivale” is set for January, 12, 2013, so if you’re in the area, swing by and join the fun.  I have spent some time down in the Valley and can honestly say that it is a warm and charming location…. and the residents are simply wonderful.

NOW FOR SOME FINAL, EXCITING NEWS…….

Keep your eyes and ears focused on The New York Times, Fox News, Variety, and Popular Mechanics, for some very exciting news concerning the SECOND ADAM GOLD MYSTERY NOVEL!   That’s right, my friends, book number two will be available in the not-too-distant future!  The book is titled, MURDER ON MAIDEN LANE.  This time around, Adam Gold will become entangled in a hunt for Captain Kidd’s treasure!  The book has already received some glowing reviews, and if you believe the literary pundits, it is destined to become another best selling mystery novel.  I shall, as they say, keep you apprised of the situation!

Until then, I remain, your humble correspondent.  (Which is better than being a bumbling despondent.)   Love to all …..

Doc Yanoff

KINGS AND QUEENS AND JOKERS ARE….. KEEN!

WELL, BY NOW YOU’VE HEARD THE BIG NEWS FROM BENGHAZI…..   NO, not that news, the results of the LIBYAN NATIONAL POKER TOURNAMENT!

Actually, according to the Wold Series of Poker International Committee (The same folks who nominated me for the Nobel Prize in Literature) the tournament should be called the “Waterloo & Beef Wellington Poker Championship.”   As many of you know, I am not only the author of THE PRESLEY PLOT, America’s best new mystery novel, but also the owner, lone faculty member, and janitor of the Austin-based C.P.A.   (Cobra Poker Academy)  Well….. I am very proud to announce that one of my graduate students, Dr. Max Talbott, recently won the aforementioned tournament with flying colors!!  (Red, white, and blue.)  As you’ve probably read, Max was voted “Most Likely To Secede” by his classmates.  (A doctoral student named Barbara placed second, and has asked for a recount, but I think she’s whistling “Dixie,” if you get my reference!)   In any case, congratulations, Max.  You look lovely in your new tiara.  (A “crowning” achievement by any standard!)

Incidentally, while I’m in a congratulatory mood, I would like to acknowledge Ms. Rhonda Sebastian, a dear friend and colleague, who won the annual “Steiner Ranch Beer & Barbecue Championship” last Thursday.  Rhonda won a pickup full of cash and impressed everyone (including the Cobra) will her brilliant play.  Believe it or not, she actually managed to beat me a couple of times, but I think she was cheating.  (She had better cards.)  Well done, Ms. Rhonda!

By the way, for those of you who wish to improve your lives, win lots of money, and make some new friends at the I.R.S., you should follow Rhonda’s example and become a BLOG FOLLOWER!  Ms. R was an early follower and has remained loyal through all of my trials (many of which ended in a hung jury) and tribulations (losing the Nobel Prize to a South American Goat Rancher)  Thank you, Rhonda!

Interestingly, my card playing has lead to some wonderful marketing opportunities for THE PRESLEY PLOT.  For instance, last week I was one of the gift sponsors at the huge Steiner Ranch tournament which attracted attractive players from all five corners (make that, four corners) of Travis County and from several other counties in the Republic of Texas.  As a gesture of my appreciation for Rich & Sharon Walker and the great Kevin Evans, I brought six autographed copies of my book to the tournament.  Coincidentally, six lucky players won copies of THE PRESLEY PLOT, and now their lives are more or less complete.  One player was willing to trade his cash winnings (approximately $4,479.62 for a copy of my book, but alas, none were available.  Tough luck, Eric Ohlson.)  Frankly, if I had won the damn tournament it would have been a perfect evening!

And speaking of perfect evenings……  Tarzan and Jane (Adam and Rachel) will be returning from South Africa tomorrow night!  They enjoyed their safari immensely, but said that some of the big cats do not play poker fairly.  (One of them was a cheetah!)  By sheer coincidence, the lady who ran the lodge was a cougar!  (Her contract contained a special “claws.”)  All right, enough bad animal jokes.  The natives are getting restless.  I will simply conclude by telling you that my daughter sent me a cute photograph of a Ubangi mother urging her child to finish his dinner.  The caption reads:  “If you don’t finish your missionary, you don’t get dessert!”   So precious.  (I was going to use the word “tender” but I didn’t want to gross anyone out.)

Well, my friends, I shall say goodbye for now (before I cause another international incident) and wish you well in all of your pursuits.  Enjoy our lovely fall.  I shall write again soon…….

The imminent author and world traveler…….

Doc Yanoff