COLD HARD REALITY
Last year I received a literary award for my hardboiled crime novel, ‘The Farewell Heist’ that comes out in July. I’ve always considered it one of my better books. The award came from the Southwest Writers Conference in Albuquerque. I hadn’t attended the conference, it came in an envelope with a check that I immediately deposited before they realized they might have made a mistake and stopped payment. It’s the only award I ever received.
I spent a short few weeks puffed with my new status as Award Winning Author. I hate that word, Author; it sounds so pompous and sure doesn’t fit the kind of books I write. But there it was and there I was, bragging.
Used to be, when at a function where attractive women within my age level interest gathered, after I learned about her, the job, the cat or dog, the cats or dogs; what she liked to do, her Happy Hour place, clubs and groups she belonged to; the importance of her independence -- I’d try to impress one or two by saying I was a fairly decent hack writer of hardboiled crime novels that almost nobody read. Now I said I was a fairly decent hack Award Winning Author of hardboiled crime novels that almost nobody read. When I saw interest, I’d give her one of my cards. Yes, I was published. No, you never heard of the small, mostly E-book publishers. Yes, there are eleven books out there. I’ve written 33 books so far. Oh, yes my books are available on Amazon and all other net book outlets.
As I continued my Award Winning Author speech, I’d see the light slowly go out of her eyes. She looked at room objects with detailed interest. She looked at other people with renewed interest. I’d lost another one from the get-go. There isn’t much about me of interest to women. I live on a small sailboat. I have a dual purpose motorcycle. Sometimes, I go panning for gold. Mostly though, I write. I do that more than anything else.
It didn’t take long to figure nobody cared if I received some award. Actually nobody cared that I wrote books or anything else. Announcing an award was not a good line for meeting women. There are long periods of time when I don’t even try to meet women. I squirrel myself away on my small sloop and I write. I didn’t have a good line for meeting women. I didn’t have any line for meeting women. I stopped using the term Award Winning Author. Instead, I just said I was a hack writer of hardboiled crime novels that almost nobody read. If one asked about a card, I’d give them one. If one asked if she’d ever heard of me, I’d mention the award. If one asked about movies, I’d say one of my novels has been optioned for a movie.
And I’d wait for the recycle.
The recycle is a small bonus. Later during the function, when I find my card on the floor, I can wipe it off and maybe use it again at another time at another function.