Happy to announce that Susan Helene Gottfried is giving a proofread edit of Mojo And The American Female!

While the book went through editing and was released in digital form a while ago, I felt it was necessary to have an additional set of professional eyes to look things over before heading to print or devoting any marketing toward the project. The content, heart, and soul of the book will remain the same—Susan will help with the technical aspects and hopefully make me look like less of an idiot when it comes to foolish mistakes…

Mojo is a unique book—I’m not even sure what to think of it at this point. It’s something special to me, and I think provides a certain level of entertainment to those warped by pop culture such as myself.

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SW Hammond - New Novel

There’s so much I should be working on regarding The Final Book—the release is within sight, but I keep getting pulled away by a new love!

I’m about 8 chapters into a new novel, and I’m consumed by it. It’s such over the top poppy romance, but then kicks you in the balls with a sickeningly beautiful heartbreak… Anything that takes me away, like spending today catching up on web updates, feels like I’m cheating on it! The realities of everyday life pales in comparison to this little universe I’ve built—I just want to get lost in it and never come back, haha. I see it so clearly… Is that how people go crazy??

One thing that I didn’t expect is how much I’ve learned about myself while writing this novel—namely that deep down I’m a 15 year girl at heart, haha. One of the main characters is a pop star and it seems I’ve discovered an obsession I never knew I had! I’ve always been a rocker through-and-through (Van Halen, not Van Hagar…).

Researching this book has been way different from digging through ancient philosophy, mythology, history, and religion—complete opposite spectrum! Now it’s all tabloids, garbage celebrity gossip sites, and reading up on the bios of The Justin’s, Miley, and Selena Gomez. I think that’s why this new project is a good follow up to The Final Book—diversity in my writing, and if nothing else but to give my brain something different to chew on than the creation of man.

I realize I’m being rather vague on the details, but I’m thinking of doing a social experiment. I’m going to start floating some things out across the net and social media, and want to keep it as organic as it can be. It’s one of those times I wish I had a ton of money to dump into a marketing campaign just to see what would happen, haha. This book is still quite a ways out, but I’m excited for it.

Anyway, The Final Book is in the editor’s hands and I have a few weeks before I’ll get it back. I have every intention of building a website for the book and starting the pre-release promotion, not to mention building all of the press materials, but I can’t seem to pull myself away from this new project! Strike while the iron is hot, right? I have a feeling things will start moving here pretty quick—as always, it will happen here first!

Abandoned Office Chair - California Desert

Editing The Final Book: Gods has been rollercoaster so far.

Getting it through the Alpha Reader process was extremely helpful and lead to so many great discussions about the book. It also gave additional sets of eyes to find all of my foolish mistakes. The most important thing I discovered, or that the Alpha’s provided, is that the book is not a steaming pile of hot garbage. I don’t expect most people I know to be completely honest with me (they think I have feelings), but the feedback was positive. The encouragement was there, they were excited about it, and it felt like it was on the right track. It was good for a group of people to see the book other than myself.

After another re-write, I needed to get the book to an editor that I had lined up. Editors, as most professionals in the world, have a schedule and their months quickly fill up with projects. The editor I was going to work with is also an author and she was giving me a great deal—we were basically trying to support one another. Well, just as we were getting started, she dropped the project due to Booktrope’s sudden and unexpected closure. All of her books, 6 or 7, were handled by the online publisher and she was left scrambling trying to figure out her own future. She told me that she would eventually get back to my book, but that it could possibly be months down the line. It was a polite way of suggesting to look elsewhere.

It was like a kick in the nuts at first. I didn’t know where to go or who to turn to, I don’t have vast connections in the publishing world. I went online and started searching editors—what a shit show. Buyer beware. There are a lot of companies out there preying on the hopes and dreams of inexperienced writers, and it’s almost impossible to sift through the deceit. I have a lot of experience working with producers in the music industry, an editor is a similar widget, and good producers are worth their weight in gold (and also very hard to find).

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Abandoned Building - California Desert

I might be getting ahead of myself, but I’ve already started working on the next novel!

I've completed a full outline along with a chapter-by-chapter breakdown of the structure- I also couldn’t help myself and have even written a few pages of the first chapter!

This book will be very different than anything from The Final Book series- much more tangible. No science fiction, no mythology, no philosophy. It’s a love story- even sappy at times. It will have deepr undertones and attempt to tackle modern societal issues and family struggles (maybe not so different from The Final Book, haha), but do it in a way that the reader will experience through the main characters. It’s a drama but the majority of the book should read as a fluff romance piece- with one major, drastic turn of events grounding it into reality.

The goal for the book is to be an easy and quick read, still falling into the “novel” category but on the light side. It’s a character piece- it hinges around the reader relating and caring about these people, but it's also positioned to move quick. Music and pop culutre is a central to the plot- I'm even planning on titling chapters after songs that represent what's happening in the story (my own way of creating a soundtrack, haha).

The story is based in Southern California- between LA, out to Joshua Tree, and beyond to the Colorado River Indian Reservation. The main character is Native American, but that’s not what the story is “about.” Earlier this week, I drove around in the California desert and visited the Colorado River Indian Tribes. It was great to see the area first hand- hopefully that will add realism to the story.

I snapped this photo a few miles outside of the Reservation at an abandoned building along some train tracks. Looks like the perfect place for some really bad stuff to go down… Read the story to find out what!

The promotional trailer for the coming-of-age memoirs of music industry professional SW Hammond.

The video features SW Hammond’s life in the music industry and on the road as a tour manager. The trailer includes photos taken by SW Hammond from the time period in which Mojo And The American Female was written. Notable photographs include North American stops on the Vans Warped Tour, CBGB, and Post Alley. The featured song "Total Breakdown" is courtesy of the band Brad Sucks.


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