Saturday, April 28, 2012

The Man With The Black Worry Beads by George Rumanes

Out now through iUniverse is George Rumanes' novel, The Man With the Black Worry Beads. It's World War II. Greece has been overtaken by the Germans; men, women and children are starving in the streets while soldiers of the Third Reich live on their bounty. In the port of Pireaus, resistance fighters, British and German soldiers and people who will do anything to survive interact to perform their own version of a Greek tragedy. Based on true events. Proofread and copy edited by Rachel V. Olivier, Putt Putt Productions.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Help Each Other!

Late night idea while I'm still up at the computer. You - whoever you are reading this because I will post it as public - probably have at least 10% of your friends and/or family who make their living creatively or via a small business idea. You might even know more than that, but I'm guessing 10% because of unemployment rates. You might know them in real life or on line. Think of that - at least 10%, maybe more in this economy where people have lost jobs and are trying to think outside the box and piece together part time work with freelancing with selling DVDs and CDs through eBay and Amazon. So, here's an idea, if you need a good or service, instead of going to Home Depot or Craigslist or Target or wherever, why not turn to those friends or family members or ask them about any friends or colleagues who could help you with something.

Need a gift for someone for a wedding, anniversary or birthday? If you know people trying to make a living as a photographer, why not hire them. They may or may not be in your price range, but it doesn't hurt to ask. Or get a group of people together to pitch in for the gift.

I know someone who will reorganize your life for you. She's really good at coming into someone else's home and cleaning out the stuff that needs to go and making it work better. I know someone else who has a really cool website that sells jewelry and sometimes has really good deals. I know a couple of people with really interesting eBay shops.

Your company needs help with advertising graphics, refer one of the many graphic designers you know (and there are a TON on Facebook). Why not? Again, you may or may not be able to afford their rate, but it doesn't hurt to ask. And maybe you can work something out. Who knows.

How about highly original works of art? Some of those friends might be willing to sell a piece of art to you for that wedding or anniversary gift. Know anyone who's written a book lately? Well, check it out. Get a copy. You know the author, get it signed. Give it as a gift. It's nifty. (If you don't like my books, by the way, I could point you to AT LEAST 10-20 other authors I know who would be MORE THAN HAPPY to sell you their books).

I have over 244 friends on Facebook and know more people in other online venues and then there are high school and college alumni venues as well. That's potentially 500 people or more? I think I've maybe sold my books to about 10-20 people. Maybe.

There is a saying, I'm told it's an old Russian saying - If everyone gives a thread the naked man will have a shirt. That is kind of what our safety net system is based on. But it's also what this idea is based on, but it's not giving. It's buying. It's an exchange of goods and services.

If I sold JUST my poetry book to all (assumed) 500 people, I'd be able to pay down bills, pay rent for the next few months and maybe have enough left over to visit my mom at the end of the summer AND go to my high school reunion in the same town at the same time. (For any of you who do that "sphere of influence" thing - that's many small spheres of influence coming together for one huge sphere of influence - and we can all do that FOR EACH OTHER.)

Now, I'm just as guilty. I have at least two friends who came out with books since January and a few others before that and I have yet to purchase those books (though, they are on the list). And I have yet to hire the friend who is a photographer to do my head shot, or my friends who are designers to do a website or company branding and logos or book covers for me. But, they are all on the list for the "some day when I have money."

I guess, I'm kind of frustrated. We lob our words and ideas back and forth between people - liberal and conservative, republican, democrat, libertarian, socialist, Christian, Jew, Muslim, Atheist, Wiccan, Pagan and WHATEVER - but we all have need of each other. We all need to pay rent or the mortgage and to live up to our obligations, buy groceries, etc. It just seems as if it would work better if we all helped each other out instead of arguing with each other while the shit circles the bowl.

If you need your lawn mowed and you hate doing it after work or on the weekend and have the extra income, then hire the person who's struggling to pay rent and has the time because s/he no longer has a full time job. If 10 people or 20 or even more, hired that person to mow the lawn or trim the hedges or rake the leaves, then that person is closer to paying rent or their phone bill and being able to have expendable income for groceries, clothes, shoes, etc. and not a drop of government money was spent.

Or you have kids who need to be tutored in math or English or Spanish or science - you know how many out of work teachers there are out there? Hire them to tutor your kids.

Need a singer for your next wedding or QuinceaƱera or Bar/Bat Mitzvah? Hire a friend. You know people who are singers and musicians! You know people who know people who are singers and musicians.

And don't expect them to do it for free. The worker is worth their wage. They're giving you a service and deserve to be paid for it. They are trying to make a living honorably by doing work that they know they can do in a time when it is very hard to find any work at all.

So, just help each other, would you? And stop all this other crap. Stop pointing fingers about people with entitlement issues or people with fat cat salaries. Quit giving each other the eye. Just, work with each other. Help each other. The people who have money should hire the people who have talent, skill, knowledge and/or fortitude (or more time and energy than you have anyway) to get the job done. And you already know these people. You already know each other. So, help each other out.

And buy my books. Or their books. Or their pictures and cards, jewelry, music, photographs...

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

New Review!

I've been keeping my head down, working. Or, sometimes not working. I had a long weekend of no access to the internet when my "old" modem died (since when is 2002/2003 considered old? I know - in the world of technology 10 years is ancient). So, now with a brand new modem, I've been able to reconnect and get back to work. On the writing front, things have been rather dull.

Until today.

Today I found out about a review that is in the March/April 2012 issue of the Small Press Review of Rae's Bar & Bistro! On page four of this issue, under "Soul Food" - Angela Consolo Mankiewicz writes: "Olivier’s work often has a deep strain of sadness, of wounds trying
to heal; there are also romantic leaps of faith and hope tempered by everyday realities..."

Find the link to the complete review on my website here.

Since it is now April, and the official opening of Poetry Month, why not take a look and see if you might not enjoy spending some time at Rae's Bar & Bistro.