Wednesday, July 10, 2013

@MarianAllen Introduces You to Comedy Star Connie Phelan

Marian Allen has been a blog friend for a few years now, and I have to say, other than Alex J Cavanaugh, hers is the kind of scifi I can get into quite easily. Humorous, human, light, everything I crave in a light summer read when I'm also reading a McIwan, a Morrison, and a Mantel ( I know, I'm crazy), and need to stay sane.

For today's Wednesday feature, I bring you her book Sideshow. Marian says she first got the germ of an idea for this one when she saw a photograph of Salvador Dali's household. Everybody looked like they were competing to be the center of attention, everybody looked like unusual was their ordinary.

So now you know what to expect.
Elevator pitch: Join comedy star Connie Phelan on a planet where slavery is legal. Connie has suffered an unfortunate cosmetic reaction, but she isn't going to let that keep her from her goals: outgrowing her clown identity, avoiding a love/hate relationship with her nemesis, and resisting the urge to do a good deed.

Teaser Excerpt: I waited until Lester detached himself from me for a minute, and I drifted over to Marissa del Hueso. Something was going to give, here; even in Hell Alley, we had enough manners to come say hello to the guest of honor, and none of these people had even looked at me. They were going to look at me, now.
"Hiya Face," I said. "Having a good time?"
"Lovely," she said, her "classically beautiful" face immobile. "I'm so sorry I can't stay longer."
The dear little fairy--I'd frightened her away with my rough, peasant manner.
"Just dropped in on your way to somewhere else?"
"Yes."
"Well, great, I'm glad you did. This party needs some class. Say, have a beer before you go. --Hey, Lester! Let's have a beer over here for The Face!"
Marissa turned red, and then ... she started to giggle.
It surprised me, but I'm not a pro for nothing. "Come on, Lester," I said, "get the lead out!"
Lester brought a splash of beer in a sherry glass, and avoided my eye as he handed it over.
Marissa took her beer and tossed it off. Everyone applauded. She loved it.
And I found myself invited for a weekend cruise aboard Marcus Vadny's yacht. Not invited by Marcus Vadny, worse luck, but by the group in general.
I accepted.
~*~
This was after my Aunt Bootsie died, of course. Aunt Bootsie would have said, "Put it in tin, or put it in gold with diamonds on it--look at it close. If it's trash, it's trash."
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Buy it on Amazon. You can read Chapter 1 here. Having read her work before, all I can say is Marian has a distinct tongue-in-cheek humor, and a knack for creating plot twists that take you on a rollicking ride. You'll be in for a treat this summer on the beach, or deck, or wherever you are with this book.

24 comments:

  1. Thank you so much, Damyanti! Although I'm humbled to be put in the same sentence with the Ninja Master! :D

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  2. What a strong voice! Great excerpt. No wonder you can get into her stories.

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    1. Thank you! SIDESHOW was my desk drawer book for many years: I only worked on it when I felt like Connie in my real life. Once I grew enough as a writer to be able to write characters who felt other ways than I did, I finished the book. :)

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  3. Considering that Alex is one of the few sci-fi writers I've been able to get into in recent years, this tells me a lot about Sideshow. I'm gonna have to look into this. :)

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    1. I appreciate your being willing to check it out, David. The excerpt I posted on my own blog is probably longer than the sample provided by Amazon.

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  4. Love it. Wish I could say more, but the kids are calling me for drama camp.

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  5. Comparison to Alex, sounds like a good one

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  6. Aunt Bootsie sounds like a real character!

    Morgan Mandel
    http://www.morganmandel.com

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  7. Thanks for the comparison, because Marian is a great writer!

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  8. Yeah, I want to know more about Aunt Bootsie, too, and how did she ever get that name :)

    Congrats to Marian :)

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  9. Congratulations to Marian!

    Great post.

    Nas

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  10. Thanks, Maryann. Hope drama camp is going well! Thanks, Bob -- it was a fun yarn to write, mostly. I hated my antagonist so much, it was hard to write him.

    Pat, that doesn't rhyme! You owe me a dime!

    Alex, I'm blushing! Look -- BLUSHING!

    Morgan and Mark, I hate to point this out, but ... Aunt Bootsie does die. She isn't in the book much, although Connie references her throughout the story. Aunt Bootsie was THE single greatest influence on her life.

    Okay, this isn't in the book, but I'll tell you how Aunt Bootsie got her name. Her real name is Julia, but her daddy called her Bitsy Boodle (the name of a horse he bet on once) when she was a baby. When she got old enough to talk, she pronounced it Bootsie and insisted that was her name. And it stuck, as baby names sometimes do.

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  11. Sounds like a fun, interesting read! Thanks for sharing. :)

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  12. I liked the teaser - some really good dialog there!

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  13. Nice intro to the story, and I love the aunt's name. Aunt Bootsie just sounds like a good aunt's name. :)

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  14. Thanks, Dana, Melissa, Sherry, Jo, and mail4rosey. I had fun with the book, letting all my inner snark come out. Connie could -- and usually would -- say the things I felt like saying to the people who irritated me. Sherry, I'm particularly pleased you like the dialog. Yes, I'm one of those authors who hear characters' voices in our heads. lol

    And here's another tidbit about me: My husband's personal nickname for me is Rosie. :)

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  15. Greetings Damyanti and Marian,

    I've been told my comments are eagerly anticipated, much cherished and highly collectable. Yes and then I woke up....

    A fascinating blurb, now that I actually know what a "blurb" is. Thought it had something to do with indigestion. Being my usual amazing self, I shall now take the liberty of sharing this, yes, even on that gosh darn fun, 'Farcebook'!

    Damyanti, very good of you to bring this further awareness of Marian. And Marian, much success and fulfilment to you.

    Gary

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    1. Thank you, Gary -- much appreciated. :)

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    2. My pleasure, Marian. Enjoy your weekend :)

      Gary

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  16. Gary, I think I speak for all bloggers you've commented on when I say your comments are indeed 'eagerly anticipated, much cherished and highly collectable'. Well, maybe not so much the last bit, but you get my drift :)

    I'm so grateful for your shares on FB, Twitter etc ..you're a gem, you are.

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    1. Okay, another one of my highly-acclaimed back-up comments.

      I appreciate that, Damyanti. I do try to be discreetly in the background supporting my friends. Thank you for the email.

      A peaceful, positive weekend to you.

      Gary :)

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