Hi Stan! Welcome to Bookingly Yours! Thanks for stopping by my blog.
Stan Carter, author of Petchy Maligula
The name of my fictional hero, Petchy Maligula, was derived from a character in another science-fiction novel that I never finished. The plot of that earlier book concerned an alternate version of ancient Rome, ruled by an empress named Agravina Maligula.
She was tough on her male slaves, subjecting them to the "Kiss of a Thousand Tongues" and other inventive punishments, and she had a slender, sexy, ditzy teenage daughter named Petulanta (Petchy) who spent most of her time cavorting with the slaves her mother cast aside. The empress wanted her daughter to become a general in the army, but Petchy didn't take her military training seriously; she used her helmet as a purse, and her broadsword as a razor to shave her legs. (In real life, Romans didn't have razors, and in order to remove unwanted hair they had to pluck it out, or have it done for them at the public baths (ouch!), so in a way Petchy was ahead of her time.)
I eventually abandoned my Roman novel, but I liked the name Petchy Maligula so I recycled it and used it for my private eye. The modern-day Petchy is not slender, or sexy (and definitely not ditzy). In fact, I made her heavy and homely. Why? Because I'm heavy and homely, and I figured there were enough thin and pretty heroes and heroines in novels, so why not create someone a bit different than the rest, someone I could identify with?
I swiped the name Faladan Pala from another of my abandoned novels, and used it for the hunky archaeologist character that Petchy is looking for. He was inspired by Josh Bernstein, a real-life archaeologist who hosted a show called "Digging for the Truth" a few years ago on The History Channel. In my novel, Faladan's show is called "I Dig the Past," and it's on "The Historical Network." Ironically, one person who reviewed my book mistakenly used the real name -- The History Channel -- in her review, but that turned out to be a good thing, because now there's a link to her review on Simon & Schuster's Website. I'm not sure how that happened, but I know The History Channel has released some books, and they're published by Simon & Schuster, so maybe some search engine detected the words "History Channel" in the review and assumed my book was somehow related to the others.
But however it happened, it's really cool to be associated with a big-time New York publisher, even by accident. Although I must admit this is probably as close to Simon & Schuster as I'll ever get.
The thing I envy most about big-time publishers is the ease with which their authors get publicity. It doesn't work that way down in the trenches. I must have emailed at least thirty book-blogs asking for reviews of Petchy, and only a handful replied at all. Most of those who did reply said no, and a few said yes but never followed through, but four people actually did read the book and posted reviews, including Jenai, and I'm very grateful.
Getting turned down or ignored by bloggers can be almost as demoralizing as getting rejected by publishers. Not long ago I went to the Manic Readers site and requested reviews from their members, and it was very depressing to sit back and watch as every other author got their book snapped up immediately, while poor Petchy just sat there ... and sat there ... unwanted, like a wallflower at the prom.
But no writer is universally beloved. Not even Stephanie Meyer or J.K. Rowling or Steven King. And at least I have a publisher and four reasonably good reviews, which is more than some struggling writers can say.
So I guess I'll conclude this post by saying thanks to Jenai for letting me be a guest on her blog. And I invite all her followers to visit my own blog, where I've posted some weird-but-true stuff about my writing career, as well as the four reviews I've received for my novel. You can find my blog at http://stancarter.wordpress.com. And I hope some of you will participate in Jenai's "Petchy Maligula" giveaway, too.
--Stanley Bruce Carter
GIVE AWAY GIVE AWAY GIVE AWAY
The author is giving away two e-book copies of PETCHY MALIGULA for international bloggers!
All you have to do is follow me, leave a comment with your name and email or if you don't want to leave your email, just comment and send me your email here : firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject "Stan Carter give away". This give away will end on March 17 and the winner will be announced on March 18.