7 Reasons Why Books Are the Best Christmas Gifts

I suppose this would be a good time to remind all of you that books are, by far, the best Christmas gifts. Yes, even for non-readers: In fact, books owned by people who don’t read are not only great re-gifts, but when not re-gifted they’re among the books in the best condition. No dog-ears, no food stains, no bent pages … pristine. Two hundred years from now, you can resell books in such good condition for enough money to make up for inflation, if you should happen to still be alive.
In addition to that, books:
Require no batteries.
Almost never rot your brains.
In hardcover editions can be used for self-defense.
Can be hollowed out to hide all sorts of contraband and/or listening devices.
Make bookcases much more useful.
Never go offline during power outages, assuming you have backup lighting. If you don’t have that in case of power outages, are you really smart enough to read?
Also, should you go into a place like, say Albion Village Foods, Noble Art Gallery, Doc’s Hardware, Black Pine Animal Sanctuary, or the Old Jail Museum, you’re shopping locally. You might even pick up things other than, say, books with my name on them, and that would support local businesses, and if you mention I sent you they might stock more of my books. This makes me happy, and don’t you want to see me happy? I thought so.
But if you’ve heard horror stories about going out shopping this time of year, you could always go to our website at http://www.markrhunter.com/books.html. This gives you a choice of nine books in five or six different genres (because I just can’t seem to keep my mind on one thing), with prices ranging all the way down to free (for Strange Portals, anyway). It’s like Black Friday somehow turned into bright December.
So that’s my pitch, and if you spread the word I promise I’ll continue to be funny and entertaining. Okay, I’ll try.

Dinner With the Donners

I see there’s going to be a TV special about the Donner party … on Thanksgiving weekend. The irony …
Then again, I suppose their horrible experience was one of America’s first Black Fridays.

Let's watch with dinner!

Writing Thankfully

On this Thanksgiving (this is Thanksgiving weekend, by the way, but all the turkeys already know that), I’d like to say how thankful I am for my dislike of self-promotion.
I’ve spent a lot of time the last few years writing press releases, signing books, and basically bragging about how I’m such a good writer that you should spend your time and money on me. It’s not in my nature … but then, neither is working, and I have to do that, too.
But think of it this way: My first book came out in 2011, less than five years ago. Now I have seven out, with my name in two others.
The first time I queried a publisher for a book length project was when I was eighteen—35 years ago. Please don’t do the math. (And that would have been about five years after my first “finished” novel.) So it took me over thirty years to get a novel published, but in the five years since I’ve had four works of fiction and three of nonfiction released.
That’s something to be thankful for (among many other things), and I am thankful. I may be struggling to make more sales, but I’m published—and a lot of writers don't make it that far. To show how thankful I am … I’m going to work hard to get more published. Toward that end, I’ve caught up by sending out eight queries and manuscripts to publishers in the last three days. An unpublished book or short story should never rest on a writer’s desk (or hard drive) for long.