Free Kindle Books – All Weekend Long

In honor of my Irish heritage, you can get Kindle versions of both of my books for free all this weekend.

Don’t Mess Up My Block is my newest novel. It’s a funny parody of self-help books that examines the American faith in gurus and easy solutions.

Murder in Ocean Hall is my first book. It’s a mystery and is ideal for anyone who wants to learn about Washington beyond the monuments.

And you don’t even need a Kindle to read them for free. You can also read them for free using the Kindle app on the iPad, iPhone or computer.

Don't Mess Up My Block Advances to Second Round of ABNA

My new book, Don’t Mess Up My Block, has advanced to the Second Round of the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award (ABNA).

ABNA brings together talented writers, reviewers, and publishing experts to find and develop new voices in fiction. The 2012 international contest will award two grand prizes: one for General Fiction and one for Young Adult Fiction. Each winner will receive a publishing contract with Penguin, which includes a $15,000 advance.

Finalists will be announced in May with grand prize winners selected in June.

Don’t Mess Up My Block is a novel that satirizes self-help books like Who Moved My Cheese and The Secret. It follows the adventures of an ambitious consultant as he goes from disaster to disaster, believing that success is a matter of just following the right catchphrase.

Read the first chapter and then buy it for yourself!

First Chapter – Don't Mess Up My Block

Here’s the first chapter of my new novel, Don’t Mess Up My Block. This fictional work is a satire of self-help books and is a funny, fast read. Check it out!

A Street Corner Epiphany

All business success rests on something labeled a sale, which at least momentarily weds company and customer.
– Tom Peters

Late one night, I got lost. It is on these unexpected journeys that you sometimes encounter the greatest discoveries. I certainly did.

Was it the 97 Pinch Mountain cabernet? Or perhaps the postprandial mojitos we imbibed at Marquez? It had been a client dinner that had gone long, after a day of business process reinvention. My client (an elderly CEO I cannot name) was garrulous, as many of them are, and wanted to talk and theorize after spending the day planning the next great reorganization of his Fortune 500 company. Continue reading “First Chapter – Don't Mess Up My Block”

My New Novel – Don't Mess Up My Block

Don't Mess Up My Block book cover

I’ve written a second novel. Don’t Mess Up My Block is a funny parody of self-help books like The Secret and Who Moved My Cheese. Here’s the description:

The secret to success is to not let other people “mess up your block.”

Or at least that’s what Laurent Christ thinks, in this satiric novel disguised as a self-help book.

Laurent has pursued self-improvement to its logical conclusion – he reinvents himself with a brand-new name and history. He drops a hundred pounds, shaves his head and goes on the road as a management consultant, providing advice to corporations around the county. Everywhere he goes, comic disaster follows as companies follow his glib counsel.

But failure is not going to stop him as follows the path laid out by his mentor, Esalen McGillicuddy. One man and a story – that’s all you need to make it in America.

As a management expert, he’s inevitably drawn to Washington, DC. But even he is appalled by the incompetent bureaucracy he finds in the city. Maybe he’s been wrong about everything. Maybe you need more than a catchphrase to find success in this country.

Laurent tells the sprawling story of his life in Don’t Mess Up My Block, a literary novel that examines the American faith in gurus and easy solutions. It’s a dark satire that is reminiscent of Catch-22 and Absurdistan.

Don’t Mess Up My Block is available in a variety of formats:

Check it out – the novel is a funny, entertaining read.

Warning: Novel in Progress

With more than 40,000 words written, I think it’s safe to reveal that I’m working another another book.

It’s not a mystery like my previous novel, Murder in Ocean Hall.

Instead, it’s a satire called Don’t Mess Up My Block. My novel is a parody of self-help tomes like Who Moved My Cheese.

The story is told by Laurent Christ, a management consultant and life coach from the plains of North Dakota. A late-night encounter with a hooker (who tells him to get lost) becomes his core philosophy, one that he applies successfully to life and work.

Aren’t we all afflicted with people or situations that are “messing up our block”? Whether it’s a nagging spouse or an annoying boss, wouldn’t we be more effective without them?

From the swankiest of CEO sanctums to the bowels of government, Laurent leads us in a misfortune-plagued journey through the world of work in America today. A creature of his own invention, he always comes out ahead, while leaving his clients in misery.

The book was inspired by the self-help genre, this popular and peculiarly American phenomena. If Mark Twain were alive today, he’d probably be writing a book on getting organized.

Excerpts from this book have already been published, as stand-alone stories:

Don’t Mess Up My Block
Thirty First Bird Review
Laurent goes to Africa and destabilizes a whole country.

Boom and Bust
SPLIT Quarterly
Shareholders are angry and only Laurent can save a desperate executive.

I’m diligently working on the book right now. Look for it on a Nook or Kindle later this summer!