Thursday, October 27, 2011

Chicago Tribune plans books section, at an extra charge | Marketing/media | Crain's Chicago Business

Chicago Tribune plans books section, at an extra charge | Marketing/media | Crain's Chicago Business

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Good Writing Tips 3

Erotic vs Porn

Many people wonder what is the difference between erotic fiction and porn fiction. Some mistakenly lump it all under the category of "nasty." But that's just plain elementary school thinking.

Erotic vs Porn

1. The erotic is as much about story as it is about sex. More so. It is about the relationship between characters. In most porn there is very little relationship. In porn people meet, they drop their clothes, and go at it. Even though the sex is steamy, there is no story. One wonders, who answers the door naked and start having sex with strangers? You might see this a lot in gay porn.
Erotica allows for the slower buildup. The reader has time to immerse themselves in the situation of story and sex. Sparks the imagination and allows for daydreaming.

2. Erotica allows the taboo in a tasteful manner. The relationship between Minister and Church member, Professor and student, Coach and athlete. Who is going to seduce whom? Let your imagination run wild with the taboo. Imagine the prim and proper young English teacher being seduced by the star athlete (age appropriate of course). Why is the young woman on her knees in front of the handsome minister? Erotica addresses the taboo.

3.  Setting is important in erotica. You're not in the bedroom after midnight under the covers. I like to place characters in unusual settings and situations. Imagine the kitchen as pots steam on the stove. What could be going on behind the huge door of that mechanic shop with all of those chains and hoses, and the old car seat in the back office.  

4. In erotica, you're creating a world where people don't normally think of as being conducive to sensual and carnal pleasures. Being descriptive is very important. You don't need a page to describe the professor's study, but just mention a few odd objects he has on his desk and make us wonder how might they be used in the story.

I get bored easy if all I read is sex. Give me a story. I like to give you one. Even if it's short.  And of course no children allowed.  Please add your two cents or eight inches to the conversation.

On Amazon and Barnes&Noble

The 520i
I Did the Doo Rag
Coming Home Tomorrow

Also on Ibooks by Apple

Sunday, October 23, 2011


Do you have  a similar roommate story? Is the sexual tension so thick between you, you can cut it and so funky you get a whiff of it every time you pass each other in the hall? Well even if you don't have such a roommate, enjoy these two.
An Excerpt from Roommates

I am a Christian and proper young man.
When you take your clothes off  to clean my room and lay on my bed right in the middle of my funk--is that proper?
I do no such thing.
Ok, you caught me naked cleaning the house once because I thought you were gone whoring for the day over on Auburn Avenue.
I told you I was coming back in fifteen minutes. You get naked and put on perfume every time you clean the house, nigga?
I was trying to hide the funk in this house.
And I smell that shit you like to wear all mixed up in my bed covers.
That’s a lie. It’s the scent of one of your weak tramps you smell. I’m not the only man who wears Calvin Klein.

Roommates on Amazon
Similar Titles Available

Saturday, October 22, 2011

I Did The Doo Rag

Short sweet and funny. Don't let the Doo Rag do you.

An Excerpt:

“Why don’t you take off your doo rag? I want the full effect of you. As it stands now, you are all scarf, and dark eyes. Where is your neck?”
“Crabs don’t have necks.”
“But still, baby, I want to caress your hair.”
“My sea anemones have not been combed. Besides, I love my doo rag. It gives me character. Now can we just get down to business? I don’t have all day. Good toilet water,” he said munching on the turd.
“Ok, Character, spread your legs. I don’t want to get pinched.”
Three thrusts of my throat and the doo rag shuddered, sighed and began reaching for his drawers.
“Is that it?” I asked.
“I got mine. You should have jacked faster if you wanted to come at the same time with me.”

I Did The Doo Rag on Amazon


Thursday, October 20, 2011

Ancient Relics and Customs

1.  As many writers become "indie" and self published will query letters become a thing of the past? 
2.  Will Author/agent conferences become as quaint as old courting rituals?
3.  Will the slush pile be used to describe dirty snow and not buried manuscripts?
4.   Will corresponding with agents become as old fashioned as sending telegrams?
5.   Will begging and waiting turn into action and publishing?

Add your thoughts  to the slush pile.

Americana  Poems by Harvey  on scribd
The Blue Train to Heaven  on Smashwords
The Handshake on Smashwords

Red Underwear
Coming Home Tomorrow

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Betty's House

A new entry into the world a Urban Literature. A short story from award winner Charles Harvey

An Excerpt:

“Come on Li’l Bet, let’s go eat our chicken by the window,” said the tall woman. “Li’l Bet” picked up her tray of five pieces of bird, a double order of fries, three biscuits the size of saucers, and a triple cherry soda and followed the woman. I got my Two Piece “Po Nigga” Special. The Chicken n Biskit didn’t give a shit about political correctness. The Asians that ran the joint, sported grills over their teeth. Their grin was as menacing as a piranha’s. The restaurant was crammed with hungry souls smacking their lips around crispy brown thighs and breasts. I found myself squeezed between Betty and the big picture window crisscrossed with iron bars.
I looked up at the sky and it looked like Old Man God had hung his gray drawers out to drip dry. It rains very hard in Houston in the evenings. The good weather the Houston papers promised us snowbirds from Michigan, turned out to be one soggy lie. Job opportunity was another lie. In Michigan, I made twenty dollars an hour slapping decals on the big asses of SUVs. So far, the only thing that boomed in “Boomtown” was thunder. If I didn’t find work soon, I would be out of my hotel room and sleeping under the stars, the manager told me as he smashed a cock roach crawling across his desk. I asked him was that worse than sleeping in a bed with fleas? “If you don’t have my money by next Friday, the fleas are going to miss you,” he said.

Betty's House on:

Other Stories

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Good Writing Tips 2

Break Away From It!

A watched boil never pots. What the heck?  Such is my attempt to bring us writers back into the realm of creativity. Afterall we are writers before we are Editors, Graphic, Artsists, and Typographers. Yes those are all the hats the self published “indie” must wear. And don’t forget Publicist and Carnival Barker...oops I meant Marketer. I challenge all of us indies to take some time to break away from the job of writing to do the love of writing.

It’s hard when your have job (the thing that pays the bills) obligations and family obligations. But find a way.

1.   Get a hotel room. I do this from time to time. I prefer to be in a place that has water, since Houston has such a flat and monotonous landscape. If you can’t find a hotel, a quiet area in your local library will do.  I can’t do coffee shops, unless I’m just engaged in reading. A cheap Holiday Inn Select, or Motel 6 will work. Just make sure it’s clean and safe. And go alone. Spouse and kids will only distract. Even if they do try and be “quiet.”

2.   Keep stories bouncing along in your head. That’s what the writer’s head is for. Find the story in your stressful moments. Your moments can become your character’s moments. Even the most tragic ones.

3.  Get away from the project work such as formatting, marketing and editing. This is about creating something new. It’s not about perfection. It’s the new house. You’ll make it perfect later.

4.  Read. Stir up the creative juices by reading something good. Doesn't have to be in your genre.

5.  Don’t rush. Take your time. Let the quiet spririt drive your purpose and plant your seeds for creativity.  A watched boil never pots. Keep your eyes off the tasks of writing and just write. NANOWRIMO (National Novel Writer's Month) is just around the corner. This is a good time to flex those creative muscles.

Please feel free to post your comments and tips.


Sunday, October 16, 2011

Coming Home Tomorrow

“That’s good—real real good,” Evans said in response to Louis’ “They’re letting me come home tomorrow.” Evans sounded like a father speaking to his young son, though he and Louis were the same age.
“Come home tomorrow,” Evans repeated.  “Yes come home tomorrow.”  A part of Evans was happy Louis was coming home.  He had grown weary of suffocating hospital rooms that had been Louis’s home for nearly a year.  He was tired of the Nurse’s syrupy banter and the all-knowing Doctor Gods with their high shiny foreheads.  The endless beeping and booping of machines made his stomach churn. He had heard the drama of death playing too many times--the wailing family members on one side of the wall while he and Louis watched Golden Girls or The Simpson’s on the other side. 
Evans looked at Louis and felt a warm burning in his belly. Louis had walked out of their apartment late one night with a backpack slung over his shoulder—walked out on two legs to another man’s car.  That car flew out of control on a patch of wet road and nearly crushed Louis in its metal belly.  It curled about Louis like a snake curls about its prey.  They had had to employ the Jaws of Life to pry Louis out of the mangled wreckage.  They used forceps to pull the guy’s penis out of Louis’s mouth. And now Louis Simmons was coming home. 

Monday, October 10, 2011

Good Writing Tips

Some General Writing and Editing Comments I want to Share

 The idea is not to rush. No one is demanding the latest read from us unless we are well known and established. I think we writers sometimes rush to put content out there maybe to cash in too quickly. Yes it gives the the so-called "indie" authored books a bad name. But I'm also concerned also about the reading public. It seems to me people younger than 40 expect much less from writers and seem to be willing to put up with mistakes in grammar and spelling. The "urban lit" genre is horrendous when it comes to grammar and spelling. Yet I frequently see these books getting star ratings of 4 plus and dozens of positive reader comments. I'm not knocking the genre and it certainly isn't for everyone, but I don't get this lapse in quality expectations from reader or author. Maybe the standard today is writing that resembles text and chat messages. 

I think I'm a decent writer. I was blessed to have had some training, but I won't put a story out or book unless it has had some "editing." Right now I'm focusing on putting stories on Amazon and B&N. For short work I'm only selling for $.99 I don't really want to spend a few hundred bucks for editing each story. But at the same time I want to put out a quality product. I discovered a pretty good Editing software after reading Smart Self Publishing: Becoming and Indie Author by Zoe Winters. She recommended a product from Serenity Software called Edit For Windows Software for Writers and Teachers. This really opened my eyes to my grammar and word usage mistakes. This may not be the best software for fiction writers because it does flag things in your character's dialog like contractions and slang, which is fine for your characters to use. However in the narrative portion of your work I found it was a good idea to take a look at the flaws it found such as awkward sentences, repeating words, punctuation errors and the like. It actually gives you 4 ways of checking your manuscript. So my suggestions are:

 1. Use some kind of editing software if you can't afford a human. Experiment until you find one that works for you.

 2. Read your work aloud if you can't afford a voice reader software. Actually read it. Don't just move your lips. It's a great way to catch awkward sounding sentences.

 3. Do as much of your formatting your work yourself. During the process of getting work ready for ebook publication, you will run across errors.

 4. Don't Rush! Potential readers will be glad they had to wait for a good reading experience.

5. Be willing to spend a few bucks on the industry standard for word processing, editing, and graphics. 

If you're an indie author, you're a business person. Take yourself and your potential readers serious.

Works by Harvey
Free on Smashwords
The Handshake     The Blue Train to Heaven

On Amazon
Cheeseburger     The Cicadas  Red Underwear

Monday, October 3, 2011

Smashwords Style Guide

Smashwords Style GuideSmashwords Style Guide by Mark Coker
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

An excellent book for those involved in the process of getting their writing on all of the major formats used by popular Ereaders. Kindle, Nook, Kobo

View all my reviews

Harvey on Smashwords

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Coming Home Tomorrow

Coming Home Tomorrow...

New cover, new ending. In the digital world of publishing nothing is static.


Evans glanced at the small red sign on the thick steel door it read: DEPT. OF PATHOLOGY AND MORTALITY.
“What's this room?”
“This is the morgue.”
“The morgue?”
“Yes the morgue. You don’t expect us to make out in the Baby Nursery with its large picture window do you?”

Now at Amazon