Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Guest Post by Eric Garrison Featured Book Release Sinking Down Book Two of the Road Ghosts Trilogy Blog Tour

Author: Eric Garrison
Featured Book Release
Sinking Down
Book Two of the Road Ghosts Trilogy
February 24 to March 2, 2014
I am very excited to be apart of the blog tour for Eric Garrison's new release Book two of the Road Ghosts Trilogy: Sinking Down.  I am so lucky that Mr. Garrison has agreed to do a guest post for my blog. Welcome welcome. Be sure to continue to read after the post to learn more about the author, the release and where to pick up your copy.
REAL TALK! To Curse or Not to Curse in Fiction
Guest Post by: Eric Garrison
I had a conversation on the Jorie Loves a Story blog about curse words awhile back. I hadn't really thought much about the idea that words could offend in adult (as in, not intended for children) fiction. The conversation shook me up a bit, since I let my characters say whatever they like, without censoring their words. It led me to tally up the strong words in my books.
Okay, wow. That's more than I'd thought. For the Road Ghosts books (Four 'til Late, Sinking Down, and the upcoming Me and the Devil) I blame most of it on one character who does most of the cursing. Gonzo is meant to be a rough-around-the-edges guy who sees those words as seasoning, some habenero spice to language, for emphasis and to demand attention. He doesn't have patience for the easily offended, and expects his friends to understand that. You can see how much it drops off in books where he's not around (Blue Spirit, Reality Check).
It makes me sad that these words could keep some people away from my books. I tend to agree with George Carlin, who said, "There are no bad words. Bad thoughts. Bad intentions, and wooooords.” Carlin used words for shock value, but he also dug deep into why we are offended by words and made people think about language.
Dirty words in my books aren't even there for shock value. That's just how the characters talk. Real talk, not watered down for general audiences. As a counter-example, the dialogue in my Reality Check is much "cleaner" because the characters in it just don't talk that way casually. I didn't make a specific effort to avoid offensive words, though.
I think that if I set out to write a book for children, I'd take more care to censor the language of my characters. I think even young adults could handle the sort of dirty words in my books. I don't really buy into age groups as a genre label though. I read Robert Heinlein as a preteen on through my early 20s, and his stuff ranges from what we'd call YA today to quite adult. No labels were required.
So, I'm sorry to have to lose a few readers for some of my books, but I think it's better to stay true to the story and characters and have them talk like real people do than to tone it down.  Going forward from that conversation, though, I will be more conscious of the effect those words may have on some readers, and I'll decide if the real talk is necessary to the story.

EricGarrison_authorpicAbout the Author: Eric Garrison is active in the writing community in Indianapolis, Indiana. He lives in the Circle City with his wife, step-daughter and four cats. He also enjoys gaming and homebrewing beer. Seventh Star Press published the first of his Road Ghosts trilogy, Four 'til Late, in July of 2013. Sinking Down was released in December of 2013, with the final title to appear in 2014. Eric's novel, Reality Check, is a science fiction adventure released by Hydra Publications. This book reached #1 in Science Fiction on Amazon's Kindle store during a promotion in July 2013. Eric's short story, "Drag Show" appeared in the Fall 2011 edition of Strange, Weird and Wonderful Magazine and Volume 2 of that magazine's anthology series. His flash piece, "Dark Reflection", appeared in the Indiana Horror 2011 anthology. He's competed twice in the Iron Writer Challenge with two 500-word flash pieces, "Killer Cure" and "Moby Me".

SinkingDownCover_1200X800Book Synopsis Sinking Down: Poor Little Ghoul Paranormal investigators Brett and Liz find themselves back in over their heads when a forest hunt for a roadkill-eating creature offers up a little surprise. Back home with their ghoulish house guest, it becomes clear there’s more to this investigation than either of them thought. Worse than that, Brett's own fate is linked to the little ghoul's. So it's back out on the road, with plenty of time for pit stops with a greedy ex, a convention of ghost hunters, partying with fake vampires, and even drinking and fighting alongside good ole Uncle Gonzo. But as the investigation goes deeper, and unseen connections come to light, Brett finds there’s much more at stake than getting through a rough patch with Liz. A rescue mission. A race for a cure. New friends and old adversaries. Unbreakable bonds and supernatural danger. It’s going to be a wild ride. Can the friends save the nearly undead tween? Can she and Brett stop themselves from ...Sinking Down? Sinking Down is the 2nd Book in the Road Ghosts Trilogy!  

Author Links: Website:
Twitter: @erichris  

Amazon Links for Sinking Down

Print Version

Kindle Version

Book 1:
Book Synopsis: In Four 'til Late, amateur ghost hunter Brett and his friends Gonzo, Jimbo, and Liz are on a road trip with dangerous detours, dreadful dreams and dire warnings. But that won't keep them from reaching their goal: New Orleans. Along the way they discover that some spirits leave you with more than a hangover and regrets. Can they get there in one piece, or will they be stopped and rest in peace? The bags are packed, the engine's running. Turn up the radio and get moving because the road ghosts are waiting, and it's Four 'til Late. Four 'til Late is the first book of the Road Ghosts Trilogy.

Tour Schedule and Activities

2/24    Beauty in Ruins                                                          Guest Post

2/24    Laurie’s Thoughts and Paranormal Reviews                       Promo/Spotlight

2/24    Deal Sharing Aunt                                                     Tour Wide Contest

2/24    Lost Inside the Covers                                               Review

2/24    John F. Allen Writer                                                  Promo Spotlight

2/24    Beagle Book Space                                                    Promo/Spotlight

2/24    Seers, Seraphs, and More                                         Promo/Spotlight

2/25    Vampires, Witches, and Me, Oh My!                       Character Post

2/26    Bee’s Knees Reviews                                                  Guest Post

2/27    Sapphyria’s Book Reviews                                        Promo/Spotlight

2/27    fuonlyknew ~ Laura's Ramblins and Reviews         Review

2/27    I Smell Sheep                                                             Guest Post

2/27    Jess Resides Here                                                       Character Interview

2/28    A Book Vacation                                                        Guest Post

2/28    Armand Rosamilia, Author                                       Guest Post

3/1      Sheila Deeth                                                               The Art of Sinking Down

3/2      Come Selahway With Me                                         Guest Post
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Thanks for having me as a guest, Robin!

Great post. It's an interesting question, and while some audiences might refuse to read because the words offend, others might refuse because the characters sound watered down. It sounds like you have a good honest balance, giving the words to the characters who choose to use them.

Hallo Garrison!

My goodness, I never thought I'd inspire an entire Guest Post based on our conversation about vulgarity and literature! I think it boils down to personal preferences and what we're used to as far as our personal sphere of family and friends. I've never been around people who curse at the drop of a hat whilst engaged in conversation with their friends &/or with their family. Therefore, it feels awkward and a bit difficult from my perspective to then trudge through a story which has excessive vulgarity to the point where I am uncomfortable reading the story.

I do agree there are real life counterparts like Gonzo who see the world the way they see it and they are highly expressive. I think what it boils down to is what our own personal limits are and what we are personally willing to absorb into our own reading life. For the most part, everything I read is what you'd consider 'clean fiction' with the occasional odd word here or there thrown in for good measure (if at all). Its a bit like how the music I listen too doesn't include cursing either, and I listen to everything from rock opera to classic rock to Broadway musicals & modern pop hits!

If I inspired you to be open to seeing how frequent the words appeared and left you pensive on that end, I can only smile. But, truly, you have to write the stories that are in effect of your heart. Even if readers like me take a pass or wait for the stories which we wouldn't find as abrasive to read. Its not a YA or Adult issue - its a personal choice in which age has no bearing.

Sinking Down Cover Reveal: Where this conversation began

On a side note: On one of my reviews where I took issue with vulgarity being used I had writ in a reflective notation during my Fly in the Ointment section of the review. Which I think explains where I stand and why I take the stance I do.

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