Thursday, March 3, 2011

Hitch hiking from Obscurity to Blind Faith

Enough chit chat. I'm obviously no good at that, anyway. We've established there's a book to promote, but what I really want to do here is show how these books came to be. Let's get into the nuts and bolts of it.

I spent 2009 hitch hiking cross country to determine if there were any grassroots motorsports left in America. I found more than that and organized my journal entries into book form. I had no idea what to do with it. But I had friends who did. My ace in the hole had always been "Just Steve" Hendrickson, who'd made his way from Rodder's Digest magazine to Motorbooks International. He'd told me to contact him if I ever decided to try a book project. So now I had what I thought might be a book, but Steve had passed away a couple years prior. While discussing the dilemma with Steve's fellow RD worker bee Lance Sorchik, I found out that RD editor Gerry Burger was working on a book for Cartech, so I contacted Gerry, who gracefully handed me off to his editor at Cartech, Scott Parkhurst (former Tech Editor of Popular Hot Rodding magazine). Following this? If so, please log in and explain it to me...

Parkhurst agreed to look at my manuscript, which I saw as a success. I'd done what I could and now it was out of my hands - mission accomplished! I had a Dubbya moment when Parkhurst told me that my book was too weird for Cartech, BUT did I have any interest in hearing his idea for a book about station wagons?

And that's how books are made. Since that project, I've done a few more and each one was born of happenstance and blind faith. I'm just fine with that. And by the way, that grassroots motorsports book is now called "Surfing the Asphalt Playground" and will be discussed here soon enough. But coming up next: Some of the stories behind the stories in the station wagon book, as promised.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Shaking Hands with the Devil (but wearing asbestos gloves)

It was never my dream to be a blogger. This was my publisher's idea. "A great way to promote your books", they said. I've always been terrified of promotion, but this seemed harmless enough. Now I'm writing this with one eye peeled for lightning bolts. There has to be a cruel punishment for this kind of self serving drivel. So I've decided to cut to the chase and get it over with as quickly as possible.

Today I'm pushing 'America's Coolest Station Wagons', a title bound to disappoint. I mean, who's to say what's 'coolest'? Me? Hardly. But I loved the freedom to chose what I felt were the coolest of hundreds of wagon stories I heard about. I gathered up about 65 stories, then my sadistic editor slashed that down by 10 % or so.  I'm happy with the finished product. If only we had another 100 pages to play on, we could've included the chapter on 'Wagons in Hibernation' - longroof corpses, decaying gracefully while waiting to be angels, or swans, or at least duckies. My favorite chapter was the 'Tailgate Art Show', with truely awesome original art by Sean Mayhan, Lance Sorchik, Dan Palatnik and Eric Black. Killer stuff! Now they lay on the cutting room floor, lifeless. I'll check with the thugs in the Cartech Legal Dept to see about posting those lost images here, but I'm not holding my breath.

And now for my next trick, I'll attempt to put up images of the book cover art. You know, as painful as this must be to read, it's just as hard for me to write "I", "me" and "my" so much. This really goes against my self-imposed rules of writing. There must be a way around that.  Stay tuned...

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Initial Entry Introduction Post Experiment or Here Goes Nothin'!

First, my apologies to those expecting full frontal nudity. There are much better sites for that. This one is where I expose some of my inner workings and the stories behind the stories. I'll be sharing things with you here that some people would prefer remain secret. You'll likely be endangered by possessing this information. My last blog was shut down via a joint effort by the CIA and Crane Cams. Several people remain missing, years later. You've been warned.

You may find the content on this blog to be shocking - even sickening, disgusting and outright lame. But it will be honest to the bone. Let's knock down the first facade right now: No, I'm not sitting at poolside in a silk robe, lighting cigars with hundred dollar bills, while sipping champagne served by scantily clad starlets. Nor am I in the office or even cubicle of a corporate mega publisher. The ugly truth is, I'm sitting on an ancient hardwood straightbacked chair in my 10' x 10' room in a seedy boarding house inhabited by nefarious characters, while my beater station wagon sits outside in the mud. I'm wearing flannel, Levis and slippers and sipping cold instant coffee. I'm hunched over an archiac computer that was stolen from a parts counter and hot rodded by the former owner, who gave it to me under condition of anonymity at an undisclosed location under cover of darkness.  I have to slap the side of it repeatedly to get it to turn on.

This serves as your introduction to Scotty Gosson Exposed! Please bear with me, as I stumble my way through the cryptic labyrinth of the blogosphere. Once I get the hang of this, we're all probably in for a pretty fun ride. I'll keep posting blindly until that happens. I promise full disclosure. Other than that - who knows?