Tuesday, November 6

65 Poor Life Decisions - The FAQ.

65 Poor Life Decisions.

Hey, I'm releasing a book. You've got questions. I've got answers. I'm like Radio Shack, only with fewer spools of lamp cord.

"I'm an idiot. What's it called?" - 65 Poor Life Decisions. Even though some of my essays have happy endings and almost all of them have positive morals, they could have all been prevented by just being a little more diligent in my thought process. Plus, I like book titles with numbers in them.

The resized image above looks like hell, but you get the jist of the cover. I enjoy the idea of taking a minimalist, stripped-down cover and making it look like some kid ruined it with a red crayon. In this case, that kid would be me, tying into the theme of making bad choices at a young (or any) age. For the record, that drawing was one of the first of my life, dating all the way back to August of 1986.

"What's in it?" - The 65 best posts in CDP history, broken up into 7 semi-chronological chapters with all-new introductions for every essay. It also includes a new foreword, afterword and many other things that make books worth reading. It's 298 pages of goodness in 6x9 paperback form. Anything that was lacking or out of tune the first time around has been re-vamped and transformed into something worth spending money on. Really, it looks amazing.

"How much will it cost?" - $15.95. Since Lulu is functioning as my print & distribution company, they get most of the cut. Please understand that I attempted to make the price of the book as low as possible without completely removing myself from the royalty equation. Also, $14-$17 is the standard price for just about every paperback book on the planet, so it's all good.

"Where can I buy it?" - You'll be able to purchase a copy of 65 Poor Life Decisions through the following distribution avenues:

1.) Through Lulu.com. I will have a huge link on my page 24/7.

2.) Through Amazon.com. Just search for my name or the book title.

3.) Through BarnesAndNoble.com. Same deal as Amazon.

4.) Through whatever local and indie bookstores that decide to carry it. If you know of a store in your town that might be receptive to selling 65 Poor Life Decisions, let me know or let them know. I'll make it happen. I'll be handling the Madison/Midwest market; the rest is up to you.

5.) Directly through me. I'll be selling copies straight out of CDP Headquarters, which I'll be able to autograph and doll-up to your choosing. Just send me the cash/check/paypal and I'll send you the book. How punk rock is that?

I wanted to leave this avenue open for people who a) don't like to buy things from the Internet, and b) wanted me to sign the book or give them free CDP merch as a way of saying thanks. I might even cover shipping if I think you're super rad. This is something that I wanted to do no matter what sort of distribution I had, so I'm happy I can do it without going to jail. DIY is what this venture is all about. No compromising, ever.

(Also, note that there will be links directly through the CDP in which to purchase the book online. With companies like Amazon and Barnes & Noble helping my distribution, there will be no way to not order it online. Trust me, you will not be left out of the loop when 65 Poor Life Decisions becomes available. In fact, you just might be begging for me to shut up about it.)

"When is it coming out?" - Soon. Very, very soon. An exact release date will be available any day now, as the United States government, various copyright agencies, ISBN people and Lulu all take turns wasting everyone's time. I've done my part, now we have to wait until they do theirs. Self-publishing is an amazing tool of the Internet age, but the red tape is just as thick as ever.

"Did you thank me in the book?" - Yeah, I probably did! You should buy a few copies! Seriously, I made a point to thank everyone that has linked to me, frequently commented, positively supported the CDP or my book-writing venture.

"What can I do to help?" - As the release date gets closer, I'll be creating cute, little banner ads that you can display on your blog if you want to. Also, tell everyone that you think would care about the book, send links out to all of your friends and favorite message boards, and for God's sake, buy a copy! It's all you can do, and it'll make a huge difference. This book wouldn't exist without my regular readers; please consider it your book, too.

As for me, I'll be on the promotional scene, hitting hundreds of web sites, submitting books to newspapers for review, doing interviews, spending hundreds of dollars off of the top and reminding everyone of how awesome I am.

My goal with the CDP was always to gain fans one at a time through nothing but solid material and a devoted, non-superficial fanbase. I don't gather fans through blogrolls, adverts or constant marketing, and I'm very proud of that. It's allowed me to gather a fantastic and organic fanbase of interesting, organic people that aren't here today, gone tomorrow.

However, when it comes time to promote a book that will not only put money in your pocket, but perhaps change your career altogether, you have to get a little more aggressive and socially aware. I plan on straddling that fine line between intelligent promotion and outright whoring. Should be fun.

"So, what's the goal?" - I've fantasized about selling anywhere from 10 to 1000 books over the course of the next year, and I'll honestly be happy with any number in that range (or beyond). What I want to do with 65 Poor Life Decisions is at least break even financially (self-publishing a book is quite a large personal investment), increase awareness of my writing and of the CDP, and open new avenues for my next big writing project. I consider this to be my 'foot in the door' for the literary, non-blogosphere world, and it's the very beginning of what will hopefully be a lengthy writing career. This has been many years in the making, and it needs to be looked at as the start of something good, not the end.

"What's next for the CDP.net?" - For now, it'll be the same as always. Down the road is anyone's guess.

Well, I think that about wraps it up for now. If there are any, any additional questions you want answered about 65 Poor Life Decisions, sound off in the comments section or shoot me an e-mail. If you're someone who thinks you can help me in promoting my book, want to set up anything in preparation for the release, have a good idea or just want to cheer me on, I'm listening.

Thanks, and enjoy your day.

Question: Are you wearing pants?
I'm wearing jeans, yes.
Congrats, man. If you wanna guest post by me when you have a link to promote, you're welcome anytime. That'll be like 2 or 3 more sets of eyes. Surely worth your time. Meanwhile, bask in warm glow of potential success, money, and fame.
I am pretty excited about this. My nipples are hard enough to cut glass.
Can I get copies to sell around here? Who better to promote your book than your mom!

Of course I would like a signed copy, but I will pay for it.
DOMSAR- Thanks! I just might take you up on that; feel free to remind me when the date arrives.

Having me guest blog on other pages is a really good idea for everyone involved, really. Good thinking.

KEVIN- I share your nippular excitement. We're almost there, now.

TAMARAZ- I'll make sure there are some copies sent up to you to sell. We can talk numbers and locations when the time comes.

You'll get the first signed copy.
Actually, I'll get the first signed copy because we get to order the review copy. Right?
Really, Sherry should get it for her bad-arse editing skillz...
Oh, that's right. We'll be receiving a 'test copy.' We're keeping that one, because it's like the one-of-a-kind 'demo' of the book. I don't think that signing it will be necessary; it won't even have a barcode on it.

Sherry gets nothing.
You're a meanie butt.
Okay, damn it. She gets a book.

But I'm gunna pee on it first.
Fair enough. Write her name on it in pee...that would be cool.
That's actually how I created the cover image...I had been violently punched in the kidneys beforehand.
Nope, you were just a sad little child trying desperately to draw a human figure. HAHA! You failed. That's adorable.
I didn't fail. That's pretty much how I see everyone.
That's how I see you.
That actually looks like me now with my bad eye.

At least you made him smiling which is suprising since you were such a crabby child.
You're kind of a crabby adult too!
I AM?!?

That photo looks really fantastic on the actual cover. It's a little messed up on the page, but it's a sight to behold in glossy print.
Your eye is bad again?

Yes, he is a crabby adult. Very crabby indeed.
My eye is worse than ever. They are now claiming I must be allergic to "something", nothing specific, just "something". Real big help.

I can't wait to see this book in print. It feels like waiting for a child to be born.
Looking forward to reading it. I'll be in contact to buy it directly from you.
Thanks, Shane! Don't be a stranger to the CDP!

When i finally get my hands on a print copy, I'll probably bawl next to the mailbox like an infant.
Could you sign a copy for Mrs. Kressin for me? B**ch.

Sorry, even after all these years it still gets to me.
You SHOULD sign a copy for her...that would be the ultimate revenge.
I almost feel guilty for not commenting in your last post. I had some stupid geography assessment that took me 4 hours, so I beg forgivness.

I'm just going to buy about 10 copies, and give it to all my friends for christmas presents. They'll hate me at first, but once they get a good sniff of that CDP cheese, you'll be selling millions.
Hathery, I agree completely!
CARROT - Hope your Geography thing went well. You're talking to a 3-time Geography Bee finalist, as if everyone hasn't been at one point or another.

Yup, at least 10 copies should suffice. Your 'cheese' comment made me snort laughing.
Did you do as well in the geography bee as you did in the spelling bee, wallet-boy? hahahahahahahah x infinity!
Now I want to know what's up with Mrs. Kressin. Sounds like quite the story there!

I will definitely be purchasing a copy, and then I will tell everyone about it and make them feel bad for not jumping on The CDP bandwagon sooner. And then I can act like I'm all special or something. Which I am. But not in that way.
Hathery, I liked you better before you started ruining all of my threads.

Thanks, Julia! Making people feel out of a loop is the best way to get them to join up. Peer pressure and image are the best kinds of manipulation.
Are you going to review the book? That would be funny.
Yes, I totally am reviewing the book.

"As I started reading 65 Poor Life Decisions, I became content and semi-aroused until the second I put it down. From that day forward, I've been irresistible to all members of the opposite sex. It'll work for you, too!"
I would love to tell the Mrs. Kressin story. I get angry just thinking about her.
How am I a thread-ruiner? I'm the life-blood of this thread. L-I-F-E B-L-O-O-D. haha.
Save Mrs. Kressin for Book 2 :)
Yes, she would have an entire chapter on how she ruins the lives of the mothers of 6 year olds.
Okay, that's enough material spoilage for one day, don't you think?

Come to think of it, when I'm a best-selling author, my mom could just write a tell-all book about me and make out like a bandit. It'll be retribution for my upcoming "Thanks For Screwing Me Up Forever, Mom" novel.
I was afraid that was going to be the next book. I'm sorry in advance.

Love, Mom
It'll be called I Can See Your Butthole: The True Story of the CDP Ss Told By His Mother.
I'll start writing right now.
You two clucking hens have scared away all of my frequent commenters today.

Cluck, cluck, cluck!
CDP, your butthole is seriously showing right now. It's exposed for all the world to see.
Now I feel bad.

Nah, I don't care. I'm leaving this post up for at least another day, just because it's so damned important.
This post had 0 comments for the better part of the morning, and now just look.

When you have a banner or button ready for hosting, I can post one on my blog. That might up the number of interested parties by one.
Reminds me of the Music Man.
I'll make a banner available to copy into your template as the book release draws near. Thank you!
Yep, you best believe it...alienating the wife and mother is not a good idea. They have powers...super powers.
Fantastic cover art. Reminds me of something I found on my wall last week.

It was my 3 year old's first real stick figure and it was pretty damn good. On the one hand we were upset that she'd chosen to draw on the walls. On the other hand it was really good and we were very proud of the coordination it took to draw it.

We settled on taking a picture of the graphiti artist with her masterpeice and did our best to explain why sidewalk chalk belongs on the sidewalk, not the wall over the couch.

It laso reminds me of the funniest cartoon in the world penned by a mister Matt Groening (maybe you've heard of him) It features a little bunny on the floor of a much splatted and messed up room with the simple caption: "Mistakes were made".
"I have powers...political powers!"

Okay, I'm sorry. It'll never happen again.
Thanks, Blustacon! Good parenting move, by the way. Nurture, yet discipline and educate. You've got this thing down!
Maybe I'll paint my walls white and just let my kids got nuts on them...that could be cool.

No, that would be stupid. And irresponsible.
When I was really little I drew a huge spider with a hundred legs on my bedroom wall with black crayon. Then I refused to sleep in my room until my mom painted over it because I was afrid my drawing would come to life like in "Simon".
i'm excited for this book!
i'm definitely going to buy one ...
being from wisconsin and all i definitely think i'll have to order from you for a signed copy :)
MAUS- Ahhh, self-sabotage. I'm familiar with that train of thought, sadly. Bet it looked really scary, though; I don't blame you.

CAITLIN- Thank you! You rock much harder than I. When the time comes (soon), I'll make it as easy as possible to order directly through me, if you prefer. Fantastic!
I drew a picture of the Grim Reaper one time in my drawing notebook that I used to keep as a kid. It was so scary and lifelike (at the time), that I would keep it hidden in a drawer and only take it out a few times a week to sneak a glance at the drawing and ensure that it was still there.
From TV Guide; you might want to read this.

The Question- What does the WGA strike mean for Lost? Any idea how many episodes they finished pre-strike? Is it still scheduled to air some time in February?

The Answer- I don't like what I have to say. If the strike extends into the new year and beyond, there is a slight chance ABC may opt to hold the eight completed episodes until 2009 (that's not a typo).

Says Lost co-creator Carlton Cuse, "Damon [Lindelof] and my concern about running the [eight] episodes we will have made is that it will feel a little like reading half a Harry Potter novel, then having to put it down. There is a mini cliff-hanger at the end of Episode 8, but it's like the end of an exciting book chapter; it's not the end of the novel. Damon and I didn't write [the ending of Episode 8] differently [with the looming strike in mind]. We wrote it to be the ending of Episode 8."

In any case, he concedes that the decision to hold or air the episodes isn't ultimately theirs. "It's really [ABC honcho Steve MacPherson's] call," Cuse notes, adding, "No one was happy with the six-episode run last season."

Well, there you go. I've always respected Cuse and Lindleof's dedication to making the show exactly the way they had envisioned it, and yeah, that 6-episode run last year was insanely stupid. They've shot the first half of Season 4, but there's no sense in airing it in an order you didn't initially intend.

That being said, a full year without Lost might kill the show, along with most of their fans.
Woh...that's craziness.
My opinion seems to be the same as Cuse and Lindleof: Air it the way we intended it to air, and screw those who are impatient or threatening to stop watching.

Lost is a rare throwback to a televised story that knows exactly where it's going and what it needs to do to get there, and we need to trust and respect that. I'll wait as long as I have to.

Every late-night show is in reruns, SNL has been cancelled indefinitely and most scripted TV shows have only a few weeks more of material. As a fan and scholar of all thing Television, I sort of love it. I've never been able to experience anything like this before, and it's more interesting to me when things go wrong. We'll survive.
Oh you have got to be kidding me.

Six bloody months have been hard enough. I may just jump off a cliff if I have to wait this long.

Or I'll just watch my DVDs over and over again.

What exacly is Hollywood supposed to be giving to the writers? There are loads of articles about it, but I'm not exacly sure what it is.
They want royalties from DVD sales and stuff of theirs that gets broadcast on the internet. Fair enough! Still, striking is pretty annoying...
A strike is sometimes the only way to get things done. When I see all of these actors and producers supporting their writers during this time, it becomes very clear to me that they're doing the right thing.

If John Stamos is marching in a picket line, you can be sure I ain't crossing it.

John Stamos, people!
I don't care what anybody says about John Stamos. He was a drummer for the Beach Boys when they did Kokomo and was married to Rebecca Romijn. He could get an honorary degree to Duke for all I care.
I'd cross that line. RAR!
One of few guys that looks better as they get older.

...besides me, of course.
I still don't understand why Uncle Jesse didn't punch Michelle in the face when she started whining and pouting though...that's what the Jesse I love would have done.

I'm glad she fell off that horse.
I still don't understand why Uncle Joey didn't sleep with DJ the second she turned 18...that's what the Joey I love would have done.

He's a raging pervert, you see.

See, you're the thread killer, not me.
I didn't say I'd enjoy it, I just view Dave Coulier as a pedophile, is all.

Come on, Cut-It-Out!
The second John Stamos was mentioned, I lost you.
I don't blame you; he's dreamy like that.
Carrot Duff- Think David Hasselhoff without as many TV shows and fanatical german fans.
John Stamos is a dreamboat...a rude, egocentric dreamboat.
(cracks knuckles) Okay...I can do this one...

1. John Stamos was married to Rebecca Romijn...

2. Who was then married to Jerry O'Connell...

3. Who was in Jerry Maguire with Tom Cruise...

4. Who was in Interview with the Vampire with Brad Pitt...

5. Who was in Mr. & Mrs. Smith with Vince Vaughn...

6. Who was in Dodgeball with David Hasselhoff!
*polite applause*
When will you address infrequently asked questions, such as. "Will this book help or hurt my chances to get that job?" or, "are you the type to press charges?"
oh, let me try!

1. John Stamos was on Full House with Bob Sagat.

2. Bob sagat was the host of America's Funniest Home Videos

3. ....DAMN!
E for effort, Blustacon.

You've got a point there, Will. Let me try a few.

1. No, the book is not a flotation device.
2. No, you cannot legally marry the book.
3. Yes, it will increase your lovemaking skillz.
Love the book cover. Hows about we do an interview over on Spork Nation once it's released?

Also, I think Joey should have tapped Stephanie instead of DJ.
Sounds like a plan. You come up with the questions, I'll come up with the answers, sites will be linked, hearts will be broken. Rawk.

How were we to know that Jodie Sweetin would turn out to be the most attractive of the 3 (4?). Never let it be said that meth doesn't have its positive points.
Ah, but the Cameron sister who played DJ is married to Pavel Bure's brother, so she is full of uber-win in my book. Mostly due to me being filled with envy. Jodie Sweetin is pretty cute, though, despite the meth and the hosting of "Pants Off Dance Off" on Fuse...especially compared to the creepy elfin-muppet-like quality of the Olsen's - seriously, every time I see a picture of them I have to resist the urge to screech "It's a gelfliiingggg!!!"
Let this be a lesson girls: do meth until the first tooth gets loose, and then stop.
Pants Off Dance Off = fail
Wow, I thought that DJ WAS married to Pavel Bure. Interesting.

It's a shame that the Olsen twins ended up the way they did. There was a stretch where I thought they were going to be amazingly beautiful, then their brains exploded or something.

Meth has done wonders for people. Just look at Jeff Hardy.
Over 80 comments!

This must be a CDP record. How fitting!
The record was 153 back in May (when I put the site on hiatus while I wrote the book), but that particular post was up for almost a month, whereas this one will be going down tomorrow. This was a big announcement, so I wanted a lot of people to see it. Hopfully it got the job done.

I used to get grumpy whenever I posted something that generated zero comments. Now I get grumpy if I don't get 20 in a day. I'm an impossible-to-please asshole.
I hope that one day I can be as awesome as you.

My record is 23 comments.
I'm an impossible-to-please asshole.

Preach on, preacher man!
My advice? Keep reaching for that rainbow.

Oh, and reply to everything. Sometimes twice.
Sometimes twice.
Oh, twice.
BOOK UPDATE: A proof copy will be ordered tonight, which should arrive to CDP Headquarters in a few days. After that, it's a bit more waiting, but we're closer to a release date than we've ever been.
It's about time--took you people long enough.
Stupid red tape, getting all over my white book.
Also Maus should be recognized for for a Dark Crystal reference.

Well done.

Historically, whenever we reach the 100 Comment mark, the Missus shows up and sez "Arcade Fire sucks."

In 3...2...1...
Erm...Arcade Fire Sucks. So does Ted Danson.
You take that back. Not only is Ted Danson a cultural icon, he's also my father.
Fine, then JT sucks too. :)
Also Maus should be recognized for for a Dark Crystal reference.

Well done.

Thanks! I can NEVER let an opportunity like that pass me by. It's such a nice change of pace from all of the Monty Python references. I did the "SPAM" skit twice today. I need some new material.

I had to check IMDB to make sure I had it right, but yes, Candace Cameron-Bure is (still) married to and has three kids with the lesser Bure, Valeri - who was last signed by the LA Kings but has never seen a minute of ice time for that team due to back surgery. They were originally introduced to one another by Dave Coulier.

Her current promo shots look pretty good. Too bad her brother is a douchebag.

Whatever happened to Kimmi Gibbler?
Yeah, Kirk and Candice are really hardcore Christians. I don't have a problem with that, it's just that they're pretty annoying about it.

Andrea Barber currently lives in the UK with her husband. I didn't even have to look that up; I'm a bit of a Full House historian.
Hmmm. My comment record is six. If I ever see anything except that damn mocking smug little zero next to comments under my posts I get filled with rapturous joy and do a little dance.

Most of my coworkers probably think I need a bathroom break. Or I'm having a seizure.
I totally just commented on your page.
I totally just commented back.

I swear, my blog really becomes a repository of regurgitated Fark links sometimes. That's between posts ranting about the fourth circle of Hades that is my place of employment. I never end up talking about the fun and actually interesting things I go out and do. I need to change that. I'm sort of talking to myself now. So I'll go...*shuffles away*
Just write whatever you feel like writing about. Don't pander to anyone; people will pick up on it, get disgusted and leave. Sort of like when I got drunk and pooped in the punch bowl at Prom.

Well, kind of.
TMI! And I bet it wasn't even your prom.

As far as readers go, they have to visit first before they can get disgusted and leave.

Speaking of...is this the longest workday ever? I haven't done a single meaningful thing that I fully intended to do. I went to one meeting and found out I let a budget get overexpended. Today sucks. I want to go home now.
In the almost four-year history of the CDP, I've had only two people say that they were never going to read my blog again, and both of them were friends of mine.

I don't know what that means, but I think there's a magic number of virtual friends that equate a flesh-and-blood one. Something like 100 to 1. Either way, I intend to find out over the next decade.

I fully understand about the work day dragging on. Thursdays are underrated in suckiness compared to Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
Thursday is usually my favorite day of the week, but today sucks. It's dragging on like a handicapped snail.

So YOU are telling ME that Candace and Kirk Cameron are brother and sister??? I cannot believe I never put this together...their heads are both so oddly shaped, but in such different ways.
I have been sent long and elaborate emails from strangers telling me why they were never going to read my blog. Incidentally they involved midgets doing it.
Nah...they aren't reading your blog anymore cuz they're jealous that your wife is hot and either they or their wife aren't/isn't.
While I have to agree with Hathery on this one, I know exactly what you're saying. Some people just have a lot of time to vent, and really need their opinions to be heard, especially concerning why your blog had wronged them so.

I don't know who these people are, but they entertain me to no end.

The Camerons = Brother and sister. How did you not know that?
Like I said...their heads are so oddly shaped, but in such different ways! Kirk looks like that muppet in the lab coat with the really skinny and long head, and Candace looks like someone replaced her head with a volleyball or some other perfectly spherical, slightly-larger-than-normal-head sized object.

Whenever I think of Kirk Cameron, I think of that stupid poster that was up in the Middle School library of him holding a book, encouraging students to do the same. I distinctly remember muttering to myself one day, "I doubt he can read anyway."
I'm trying to work a Tracy Gold joke into this somehow, but it's pretty hard to not force it, you know?
Cousin Steve was no cousin at all. He was brother Kirk. Come on, Hathery.

This is too easy, but it has to be said.

Kirk Cameron spends his Wednesday evenings at Cameron Indoor.
Growing Pains rules.
Boner went to Clemson.
Was Leonardo di Caprio on that show or am I totally making things up?
That's where he got his start...
Leo was on the show late in it's run.
Alan Thicke = Sex machine.
Leo was in fact the Cousin Oliver of Growing Pains...after the baby they had of course. Not that I ever watched the show, not me.
Heh-heh...I remember that Growing Pains and MacGyver aired their series finales on the same night.

It was pretty much the worst night ever for me.
I've had the Charles in Charge theme song in my head all freaking day on account of being reminded of all of these 80's sitcoms. Of which Cahrles In Charge was the most horrendous.

But it leads me to be reminded of "Tonight, on a very special Blossom..."

Can anyone provide a Where Are They Now on Joey Lawrence? Mayim Bialik? Jenna Van Oy?
This first one is from Wikipedia, the other two are from me.

BIALIK - At the end of Blossom, she chose to attend UCLA. She earned a bachelor's degree in 2000 in neuroscience and Hebrew and Jewish studies, and went on to the Ph.D. program in neuroscience. As of 2006, she is completing work on her thesis, an investigation of Prader-Willi syndrome.

She is married to Michael Stone. She gave birth to their first child, a son, at age twenty-nine on October 10, 2005. Bialik is now involved in Conservative Judaism.

LAWRENCE- Was just on Dancing With The Stars, if my memory serves me right.

VON OY- Just released a country music album and is just as sexy as she was 15 years ago.
I don't know who either of those people are, besides Joey Lawrence.
They played Blossom and Six, respectively.

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