Saturday, October 3, 2015

Tired boy

Here is a tired boy who just took the SATs.

He hasn't had 7 hours of sleep any night all week, much less 8.

He thinks he did well. He finished every section except one. He says he was starting to get tunnel vision during the last section because he was so tired. He was afraid he was starting to get a migraine. But he didn't.

Right now he just wants something warm to drink. Hot chocolate. Okay, and maybe a croissant.

Then he wants to go home and sleep.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015


I'll be at the Texas Book Festival on Oct. 16-17 in support of "Beep! Beep! Go to Sleep!"

We kick it off on Friday morning with a "Reading Rock Stars" event. I don't know what that means, but it sounds suspiciously like little kids will be involved.

I'm signing books on Saturday afternoon, in between wandering around getting other authors to sign their books for me.

Never been to Austin. Looking forward to it.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Beep! Beep! Status Update

We peaked yesterday at just under 13K on Amazon. 

In other words, 12,932 other books kicked our butt in sales. But it still kicked the butt of 8 million other books yesterday. Hey, it is what it is.

We can't quite seem to crack the top 100 bedtime books (#105), and we're not among the top 10 Hot New Releases there either (#13). We're totally getting our tush handed to us by some dumb rabbit sleep book. But I'm happy to report that we're breathing down the neck of Daniel Striped Tiger.

Is it good? Is it bad? It's all kind of subjective. As with pretty much everything in life, no one cares but you anyway, so why get all stressed?

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Family reunion, 1987

I had just quit my job in NYC to move to Iowa to wrestle and train with Gable. This family reunion was the one-week break in between. I was outwardly optimistic and inwardly panicked about my life. 

I realize now, outside the haze of youthful narcissism, that everyone else in this picture was going through their own life changes and decisions and optimism and panic. (My aunt Janet, behind me, is wearing a shirt that says, "I'm 40 and it's okay.")

It's nice to see everyone so young and vibrant and alive, but of course you wouldn't want to live in this moment now even if you could, because of all the wonderful things that were still to come: Jennifer (whom I met a year later), Samuel, Ethan, other nieces and nephews and new additions. But what a great family I come from.

Build a base of love for those who follow--that's basically what this picture says to me.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Beep! Beep! is out

I was going to wait until I had a nice shot of the "Top Picture Books" shelf at B&N with my book on it, but twice I've been to B&N and twice they had a single copy of the book, spine out in the A-Z shelves.

The nerve.

Go, Amazon and indies. Kick their sorry butts.

Until I have the glory shot, this will have to suffice for the official announcement.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Okay, I have some issues

I didn't make a big deal about Labor Day weekend. Jen and the boys had graciously gone with me to Splashdown Beach waterpark the previous weekend. That was our final summer hurrah. 

But then on Sunday night I panicked.

I announced to my family that I was going to Hurricane Harbor on Monday afternoon--last day of the season. Anyone want to come with me? Just for a couple of hours?


So I went by myself. I pulled into the parking lot at 4:30, got a spot in the second row (most people were leaving), then waltzed through the entry gates with no line whatsoever. 

"You know the park closes at 6:30, Sir?"


I swam the lazy river. Dunked my hat and put it back on my head. Then I looked up at the big slide that I've always wanted to go on, but no one in my family has ever wanted to.

I made friends with the other 10-year-olds in line, comparing notes on which rollercoasters at Six Flags are awesome and which ones are, like, oh my God, no way.

I rode the giant slide twice. It was awesome both times.

It was now 6:15.

The line at the tube slide was, like, only four people. I out-ran the other kids to it and was at the top by 6:20! How Cool Is That?

Then I rushed back to the giant slide at 6:25, but it was closed already. So I settled for a final lap around the lazy river, smiling at a few tired toddlers while pushing my way past empty inner tubes in an almost empty river.

I took a selfie at the wave pool at 6:31 as the staff was stacking up the beach chairs. End of the season. End of the summer. End of life. 

I have issues.

I don't drink. Don't smoke. Don't do drugs. Don't cheat on my wife or beat my kids.

I just have issues with being an adult. I hate that I waste so much of my life working at a desk, making no difference in the world, sales and marketing, corporate politics, small-minded people, and each day another day closer to death.

While outside the sun is shining. Children are playing. The grass is green in Central Park. There's a toddler in a tutu swimsuit playing in the fountain. Gleeful screams from a tire swing. There are picture books to write, storytimes to lead. Giant waterslides to go down. There is so much life all around us, summertime, golden, beautiful, glorious summertime. If only...if only I could...if only we could...if only....

My patient and understanding family loves me. Thank God for them.