Even more here: www.clemenssuter.com


A Poem. The Night has no Rhythm

The night has no rhythm

curtain with yellow and red flowers

flowing in the light of morning sun

fly buzzing in and out

new chapter

east, west, north, south

nightstand

stack of books, lamp, glass and bottle

feet on cold floor

new land

Enter the day – full throttle

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Adventure! New SUPERHERO launch TODAY! Totally Crank!

Everybody goes berserk about superheroes. It is superhero madness! Every second movie in the cinema today is about some individual with SciFi or Fantasy strengths, Stan Lee and Marvel Comics are (we’re, e’s dead now) shuffling money into their bank accounts like sand from the beach into beach buckets, and the fans are doing the same with popcorn and their esophaguses. Woody Allen, Roman Polanski and Ingmar Bergman are all planning to get on the gravy train and direct a superhero movie… even posthumously.
Yes, superhero madness: Spider-, Bat-, Super-, Iron-, Cumberbatch- and that choleric Michael Bay Transformersman: there are no limits to the weird concepts, poor dialogues, inane scripts and bombastic CGI effects.
For that reason, and inspired by the characters of my novels (see www.clemenssuter.com/books) I am now launching all new SUPERHEROES! As Cecil B. DeMille used to say: good movies aren’t made – they are remade! Give me slice of the cake baby!
Your comments and Suggestions welcome! As this is a franchise, drop me a note if you want to join in.
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Introducing Parisman, Flyman, Stoneman, Fatman and ScarletJohansenman!

Top Three Perfect Christmas Gifts.

The perfect Christmas Gift. Give Clemens P. Suter’s novels TWO JOURNEYS and FIELDS OF FIRE or CELETERRA to your loved ones – postapocalyptic adventures suited for all ages.

Top three ways to get these gifts. Next to finding these books in the store on your mobile device (simply search for “Clemens P. Suter“. These books are available as eBooks in all formats) you can find paperbacks at e.g. Amazon or Barnes and Noble – and they can also be ordered in your local bookstore – all over the globe. Find out here.

Great price too!

Great adventure – Two Journeys

Attractively priced with great reviews.

Fields of Fire – the Second Installment

Find out more here: https://clemenssuter.com/books

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Double Barrel of Adventure

Get a taste here:

We ran down the path. It bent to the left, uncomfortably close to the fence of the compound. I increased our speed. Abruptly we arrived in an open space in the woods. The fence ran just a few yards to the left. Behind it was the camp—even the remains of the house could be seen.

Suddenly Somerset appeared into view, panting and puffing. His face looked like an expressionist painting with the blue make-up running down with his sweat. He was at the most ten yards away. Only the fence separated us. “You!” He raised his gun, and immediately he shot. The bullet missed me by several feet, but it motivated me to keep on running and to increase my speed. The dogs followed.

Somerset was shouting at his men. “Shoot! Shoot!” A burst of bullets from a Kalashnikov tore through the shrubs and trees. Then the click of an empty magazine and Urs’s voice.

“Shit!” Silence followed. I guessed that they had picked up the hunt on the other side of the fence. I wondered how Urs could move so fast with his broken leg. My respect for Swiss army training went up another notch. Going as fast as I could, I hoped that the fence would continue for some distance. Soon I lost sight of it altogether. Upfront the path split into two, and the dogs instinctively waited and looked at me. I chose the right branch, away from the fence and towards the truck.

I was convinced that at least for the moment I had lost my pursuers. However, I would need a lot of strength and good fortune to reach the truck. According to the calculations and the little map that I had drawn it was still several miles away. I chose a steady pace—swift, but not too exhausting. The path continued east. On the left, inside the compound, I could hear a motor. Somebody was revving an engine. The sound grew weaker, probably because the motor belonged to a car and that car was now driving towards the gate in the fence. This was worrisome. With a car and sufficient men, Somerset could quickly locate and capture me.

I didn’t have any weapons, not even a pocket knife. Automatically I increased my speed. For the next few minutes, we continued swiftly. Then the path arrived at an open space again and split north, east, and south. I ran around in a small circle while trying to make up my mind. I picked north. Knowing that this was the most risky direction, it was also the only track that would take me across the highway—and to the side of the road where the truck stood parked.

As it was, I arrived at the highway only minutes later. I stopped underneath the trees and told the dogs to lie down. Moving forward quickly, I checked the road in both directions. It was still empty. I called the dogs, and we hurried across. The street was relatively free of dust, and looking back I saw no traces of our crossing. The path continued north for a hundred feet. Then it started to turn west again. I cursed, afraid that it would carry me away from the truck and closer to the camp gate.

Suddenly, a car approached at breathtaking speed. Judging by the sounds it made, I suspected that Sergey was behind the wheel. I stopped to listen. At first, the car went past. Then the driver stepped on the brakes, and the car came to a screeching halt. It reversed and apparently, people got out, as indicated by the slamming of the doors. Four doors. Four men?

It got quiet again. I was sure they were following me on foot. What would their orders be? Capture me or kill me on sight? Was Somerset among them? I decided that I didn’t want to wait to find out. I went on as fast as I could. There was a small chance that they would wrongly estimate my progress, that they would initially follow the path that led south. If that were so, I could build up a lead.

However, that was not the case. Five minutes later, I was still going northwest. Bo, who had been running several yards ahead of me, abruptly stopped, turned, and raised his ears. Immediately, I jumped sideways from the path and into the woods. With as little sound as possible, I worked my way through the shrubs for about fifty yards. Then I pulled the dogs down into a hollow. I held their snouts. Their big eyes looked at me nervously.

GET YOUR COPY TODAY!

A pirate story – Jack Hawk

Jack inserted the spade deep into the ground and started digging. The pile of dirt rapidly increased in height. It was hard work though, the sun beating down on his dreadlocks, and every now and then Jack halted his work to wipe away the sweat and to drink from his jug of water.

Deeper and deeper went the spade. Jack checked the map to exclude any mistake. No, this was the right spot.

Suddenly the spade hit an object, and he dropped on his belly to remove the dirt with his hands. The lid of a chest became visible. Hurriedly he cleaned away more sand, and finally his hands found a handle, and with considerable effort he managed to pull the heavy chest from the ground. He pulled his pistol and shot the lock to pieces.

He threw back the lid and the insides of the chest became visible: coins, coins coins! Ecstatically, Jack threw his hands in the air and did a weird dance around the treasure.

„Hullo dear, I’ve brought you a cup of tea,“ said Mrs. Hawk, still in her nightgown, She handed him a mug and looked at the hole skeptically. “Are you sure that this is better than a bank account? Seems like an awful lot of work…”

Mr. Wanamaker, their neighbor, smirked. “It’s pretty ridiculous, if you ask me. Look at your goddamn lawn! It’s a disgrace. You’re the laughing stock of the neighborhood.” Exasperated, he turned away from the fence and continued watering his potted plants.

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Single Men, Looking for A Wife? A Top Tip that gets you in front of the altar in no time.

The tension is unbearable

“John?” She shook him. He didn’t stir.
“John! Oh god, what have I done? John? Please wake up.”
She shook him again, panic rising in her voice.
“I need you to wake up. John! Please. I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to, I… John, please.” Tears flowed down her cheeks and she swallowed hard.
John stirred and opened his eyes. “For heaven’s sakes, woman.

”Why this bloody theatre every single morning? Can’t you just wait for the bloody alarm to go off?”

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Happy Thanksgiving, America // Limited *FREE* Book Offer

Thanksgiving offer: Clemens P. Suter eBooks from $2.99 – now absolutely FREE. 100% off, only at Smashwords. Offer valid until November 24th AND only 300 copies – so get yours today!

Learn more about my books here or get your copy here. Contact me here.

The Pumpkin

John Greenleaf Whittier, 18071892

Oh, greenly and fair in the lands of the sun,
The vines of the gourd and the rich melon run,
And the rock and the tree and the cottage enfold,
With broad leaves all greenness and blossoms all gold,
Like that which o’er Nineveh’s prophet once grew,
While he waited to know that his warning was true,
And longed for the storm-cloud, and listened in vain
For the rush of the whirlwind and red fire-rain.

On the banks of the Xenil the dark Spanish maiden
Comes up with the fruit of the tangled vine laden;
And the Creole of Cuba laughs out to behold
Through orange-leaves shining the broad spheres of gold;
Yet with dearer delight from his home in the North,
On the fields of his harvest the Yankee looks forth,
Where crook-necks are coiling and yellow fruit shines,
And the sun of September melts down on his vines.

Ah! on Thanksgiving day, when from East and from West,
From North and from South comes the pilgrim and guest;
When the gray-haired New Englander sees round his board
The old broken links of affection restored,
When the care-wearied man seeks his mother once more,
And the worn matron smiles where the girl smiled before,
What moistens the lip and what brightens the eye?
What calls back the past, like the rich Pumpkin pie?

Oh, fruit loved of boyhood! the old days recalling,
When wood-grapes were purpling and brown nuts were falling!
When wild, ugly faces we carved in its skin,
Glaring out through the dark with a candle within!
When we laughed round the corn-heap, with hearts all in tune,
Our chair a broad pumpkin,—our lantern the moon,
Telling tales of the fairy who travelled like steam
In a pumpkin-shell coach, with two rats for her team!

Then thanks for thy present! none sweeter or better
E’er smoked from an oven or circled a platter!
Fairer hands never wrought at a pastry more fine,
Brighter eyes never watched o’er its baking, than thine!
And the prayer, which my mouth is too full to express,
Swells my heart that thy shadow may never be less,
That the days of thy lot may be lengthened below,
And the fame of thy worth like a pumpkin-vine grow,
And thy life be as sweet, and its last sunset sky
Golden-tinted and fair as thy own Pumpkin pie!

www.clemenssuter.com

Pissoir joke. Skip this one, as it is slightly tasteless.

Several years ago a young man (for the sake of making him more distinguishable from the other personae in this story we will presume that he was red haired) went out for a night with his friends. After many rounds of beer he decided that he had to use the bar’s bathroom, in order to relieve himself.

As he stood at the urinal, a sturdy man with a crewcut entered and started using the pissoir next to him. The ginger boy couldn’t help noticing that the man didn’t just relieve himself with one stream of urine, but in fact three separate streams hit the porcelain. Due to the combination of alcohol and curiosity, he decided to overcome his usual shyness.
“Tell me sir, I noticed that you do not pee with a single stream but in multiple streams. I wonder, is this an acquired phenomenon or a hereditary defect?”

The sturdy man turned to him, smiled and answered politely.

”Actually, ginger boy, I’m somewhat flattered that you ask me this. It is in fact an intriguing story. I am a veteran from the second golf war. One day we were hunting down the enemy and we formed a foot patrol to do so. Alas, next to our footpath the enemy had hidden a IED *), which went off just as I passed by. I was lucky: a piece of shrapnel damaged Mr. Willy, but through many dillingent surgery, the doctors managed to rescue my manhood. However, ginger boy, I have not been able to shoot in a single stream since.”
In awe, the boy left the facilities, and couldn’t wait to tell his chums.
Many months later, the boy visited the same bar, and again after a long evening of drinking he needed to go to the bathroom to relieve himself. As he stood at the urinal, a powerful yet obviously drunk marine, also with a crewcut entered, and took position at the pissoir next to him. Ginger boy stole sideward glances at the man. Finally he couldn’t restrain himself any longer.

“I’m sorry sir, I couldn’t help noticing that you are not just peeing a single stream but in fact you produce at least a dozen streamlets! Are you perhaps a veteran of the second golf war!?”

The other man looked down and cursed.  “Damn g… ginger boy! I have f… forgotten to open the bloody zipper!”patti3

*) in case you do not know what an IED entails, make sure to read pages 130- 150 of my novel Fields of Fire

Another joke – “airplane crash” adapted to modern times

Another tale: story of the Japanese runner that finished the marathon… in 54 years.

Vilnius Impressions, a visit to the Lithuanian capital

The old castle of Vilnius. Back in the days, Lithuania was a major power in the Baltic region and a great trade nation, reaching deep into Russia.

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Slightly confusing sign below. Who would want to throw towels into a closet? Or into a urinal for that matter? And why is the text crossed out?

Seriously though, I was intrigued by the language, which is indo-germanic and that’s it: little relationship to ANY other language.E5FF6968-1EF2-403E-8F08-D64B0B315D6B

A view across the river, in the back modern high rises. Vilnius is very innovative with some very exciting startups mixing up the scene. A lot of highly educated young people about. Few bars, many coffee houses.

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SINGLE cooking trick every Chef must know. Bon Appetit!

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Many years ago I attended a cooking class in Berlin under the guidance of a French chef, a woman from the Elsass who had worked all over the world in first class restaurants. She was the first to show me this very simple and single cooking trick that every chef must know. A delicious meal we cooked I recall, a winter dish with chestnuts, chicken, and chicorée.

Since then I have shared this very simple and single cooking trick that every chef must know with many people all over the globe and most agreed that this is indeed a very simple and single cooking trick that every chef must know.

Some do not agree that this a indeed a very simple and single cooking trick that every chef must know. Well they can take the spoon and… I will stop there. Bon appetit!

More about food here!

Fahobame! Sailor joke. Not politically correct.

Many years ago a sailor case to a hospital and had to undergo surgery.

Although already slightly older, he was still a beautiful specimen and the female nurses in the ward chatted about him.

“You know what,” said an elderly nurse, “I noticed the strangest thing. I washed the sailor yesterday and I saw this phrase tattooed on his penis.”

“Oh, what does it say?” asked the other nurses.

”Fahobame! He has the word Fahobame tattooed on his manhood.”

The nurses pondered what it could mean, and finally a younger nurse picked up some courage and went to look.

When she returned 15 minutes later, she was slightly red in the face.

”Well?” asked the other nurses.

“The tattoo doesn’t say Fahobame at all. It says: Fame and Honor of the Baltic Merchant Fleet.”

www.clemenssuter.com/books

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Surprise! You won’t BELIEVE what I saw in Kansas City. The Nelson Atkins Museum of Art.

I had a chance to visit Kansas City. First surprise: this town isn’t in Kansas, but in Missouri, a relatively flat place with an abundance of farmland and space. Looked quite rural yet attractive from the air.

As usual I only had a couple of free hours in between, so how best to spend my time? Most US cities do not have an inner city that invites a leisurely stroll, so I had to come up with a plan B (although later I did discover that downtown Kansas City does have its charm). An Uber driver pointed out that the city had an art museum – he wasn’t impressed by it, but by his looks he wasn’t into art too much; more a baseball kind of guy.

So I took two hours for a fast visit to the Nelson Atkins museum of art, and indeed was in for a very big surprise, as shown on the photos below.

An impressive facade protects a rich exhibition, which was assembled by art scouts during the 1930 crisis: with wallets full of hard dollars earned the years before the economic collapse, these scouts bought artifacts and paintings from all over the world.

above: The Thinker by Rodin. Below: a religious deity from India.

Above: a Monet. Below: an early work by Piet Mondrian.

Below: a Beckmann, followed by Kandinsky, a Rembrandt and an actual H. Bosch!

All in all, a visit to this temple of art is definitely time well spent!

The Experience of a Lifetime – Airtravel Back Then and Now

I just returned from a business trip Germany to Kansas City, and as I sat on the plane, it suddenly occurred to me that I must have witnessed this utterly stupefyingly safety pantomime over 400 times. That’s a whopping 1000 or so minutes shaved of my life, thank you FAA and EASA. And it doesn’t help either: just ask a colleague or fellow traveler to repeat what’s in the safety instructions and what to do if the plane must land on the Hudson River, and you will only get back embarrassed smiles. I can guess what passengers will do if a plane makes an emergency landing: I suspect some will continue to push and shove to get to the exit first – countermeasures to that are alas not in the instruction booklet.

OK, I’m exaggerating. Mostly I feel sorry for the crew that needs to go through the exercise, while the passengers are staring into their smartphones and picking their noses.

It’s not that I fly excessively, but thanks to my adventurous parents I had an early start getting airborne. I recall times when air travel was still special; reserved for a few businessmen or tourists that were a bit better off than the ordinary citizen. The countries were more exotic then: half of the world was out of bounds being communist and therefore utterly boring, and many of the other countries had no infrastructure to support any mass tourism. Nowadays, if you haven’t visited Iceland, the Arabian peninsula, Chili, the Congo or Detroit you do not count as a well-traveled tourist. And in every country you can buy exactly the same stuff these days. I know a Japanese couple that vacations every year in Tuscany, Italy, and friends of ours from Switzerland have been traveling with a camper through Yellowstone – every summer, eight years running. Get a life and stay at home folks.

But I’m getting distracted. Back then (I am talking about the seventies and eighties) if you entered an airplane, smoking was naturally not allowed. In the non-smoker section and until after take off that is, after that you could light up your cigarette, cigar or even pipe; and relax. The ashtrays in the armrests was emptied continuously by the crew, since air travel makes nervous (surprisingly very few people are aware of this observation), and together with the cheap cigarettes bought in the tax-free shop, the soothing effect of a relaxing smoke could be enjoyed intensively.
The smoky air and the lack of water offered (in those days nobody realized that dehydration is an unpleasant accompanying effect of air travel) put a terrible strain on travelers, leading to colds and coughs. My mother suffered from asthma, so we usually sat in the non-smoking section; enjoying the recycled, second hand smoke coming from the vents.
Halfway during the flight, a movie screen was lowered in the front, and a beamer came out of the overhead. One or two movies were projected on the screen to keep passengers occupied. These systems regularly crashed, so sometimes there was no movie to watch at all but in that case we could revert to six radio channels. After an intercontinental flight you knew all the tunes by heart and singing along wasn’t a big challenge.
The door to the cockpit was unlocked and even stood open sometimes (thanks, Osama bin Laden, for putting a stop to that ridiculous practice) and the captain regularly walked through the cabin to chat. if you asked the stewardess (no stewards then) you could actually go to the cockpit and the pilot would explain the instruments and the basics of aviation.
Due to security, you had to arrive at the airport early: for intercontinental flights this meant at least 45 minutes before takeoff. For domestic flights three minutes sufficed. Security checks consisted of a quick look at your passport,  hand luggage wasn’t scanned, and I recall passengers sitting on the plane with taped-up carton boxes and the like; anybody’s guess what they contained. Customs usually took those boxes apart after landing; I once witnessed the extraction of a 6 pound freshly caught fish from such a package (its freshness clearly debatable after an eight hour flight). Once, on a flight in the USA, a gun was confiscated. This didn’t upset the passengers too much, after all, in the lines for passport and customs checks we all enjoyed a relaxing smoke, ashtrays were available next to all waiting lines, so we didn’t need to flick the ash on the floor. We did throw our cigarette buts on the floor, I recall that a lady once scolded me and a cousin, stating that this practice was “frowned upon” in US airports. I was young and very much ashamed, I do recall that.
On most flights you had to pay for alcoholic beverages (but even as a teenager I could buy beer or whiskey, if my parents agreed, which they did). At the airports there was very little distraction: the tax free shop and one restaurant was all that you could visit, if those were available at all. Many terminals were rather empty buildings; a counter and uncomfortable metal chairs.
A few things didn’t change over the years: the aircrew was just as polite back then as now, which is surprising in light of the extreme stress due to higher numbers of passengers and increased security measures these days. There are a few more female pilots and a few more male stewards, but there is still a way to go on emancipation of the sexes in the transportation industry. The passengers are the same too: most compliant to the unnoticeable, a very few very obnoxious – usually explainable by higher levels of flight anxiety.

And United Airlines back then was just as ba… – but don’t get me started on that tangent.

On a apple device? Top Tip. Get Great Adventure eBooks on Your iPhone. Hey, presto!

The Author Clemens P. Suter enjoying early days air travel

The Author Clemens P. Suter enjoying early days air travel

My Aunt Denise‘s close encounters

I have already reported about my aunt Denise and her slightly skewed view on life. Here’s another gem that she shared with us during one of our family get-togethers.

“I was shopping in our local supermarket, when I encountered in one of the isles this little man, oh, he couldn’t have been more than five foot tall. He was in his fifties, with a tidy beard and shirt and necktie. He stood on his toes, trying to get to the bottles of barbecue sauce on the top shelf, but they were just out of his reach. I hesitated, but then I stepped up to him and asked him whether he needed help. Was that wrong of me?”

We, her audience, couldn’t agree on the matter. Some said that it was fine to help other human beings, whereas others insisted that in this case offering help might be perceived as an insult – being of short stature should never be regarded a disability.

“Well in any case,” continued aunt Denise, “The man looked up at me with a stern look on his face, but he didn’t reject my offer. He pointed at a particular brand and in a surprisingly deep voice stated ‘I need that one there’.

“So, just as I used to do with my two sons when they were small, I stepped behind him, put my hands underneath his arms and lifted him up, so that he could get the bottle that he needed.”

By this time, aunt Denise’s audience fell silent and some eyes suddenly opened wide.

“What happened then was unbelievable. The little man began to sputter, kicked his legs, and squirmed so violently that I had to put him down. I almost dropped him to the ground! He was quite upset, saying words like ‘Unbelievable’, ‘I strongly object’, ‘Never been treated in this manner!’

“I was flabbergasted! Here I was, trying to help a fellow human being; acting as a good citizen, and this was the gratitude I received! Let me tell you; I gave him a piece of my mind then and there!”

Read more here.

Let me tell you a secret.

This summer was amazing: June, July and August, the sun baked the Rhine valley like god’s anvil, the temperature hardly ever dropping beneath the thirties in daytime. No rain, the cistern ran out of water quickly and we had to install more wine casks as raincollectors to water our tomatoes and fruits.

The local swimming pool was crowded every single day, the nights too hot to allow restful sleep and the farmers complained that the absence of rain was going to ruin the harvest.

This brought back childhood memories. Let me tell you a secret, that may proof valuable for you.

Many, many years ago, when I was still a very young boy, my father arrived home one night accompanied by two men carrying a big box. The box was put on the table and unpacked. It contained the very first television set that my parents had bought with their meager  income. Mind, this was the time when most people still spent the evening listening to the wireless.

The men installed the television on a small table and left. My father switched it on. My mother and my sister, brother and I looked eagerly at the screen.

Only atmospheric disturbance was visible: a gray soup of signal accompanied by a fuzzy hissing sound. My father played with the two antennas, moving them from left to right and back again. Suddenly a voice appeared from the ether, and after some more fiddling, a human face emerged out of the signal swamp.

My father lowered himself down next to us on the couch. The five of us stared at the man; the first person we had ever seen on a television.

The man wore a dirty blue cap. He was standing in the middle of a field, and obviously a farmer. Another man, outside of view (we could only see his arm and hand) held a microphone under his mouth.

“What will happen…,” said the invisible man, “If it doesn’t rain within a few days?”

The farmer looked at the sky, at the ground and started a long explanation in an exotic dialect that we could not understand. But his facial expression and whining voice made clear that the end of the world, if not of all times, was closing in on us.

We watched his narrative for five minutes. Then my mother said: “What’s on the second channel?”

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My favorite joke – an airplane catastrophe adapted to modern times

Donald Trump, Erdogan, the pope and a backpacking student are the four sole passengers of a plane crossing the ocean. Suddenly the pilot appears and says: “Sorry guys, both our wings fell off, the plane is going to crash. We only have four parachutes, I’m taking one, so goodbye and good luck.”

And he pulls open the door and jumps out.

The four passengers are completely stunned, but then Erdogan grabs one of the three remaining parachutes, straps it on and says:  “Guys, as the leader of the great Osman empire I have a responsibility for all Turks, and you will understand that it would be a terrible loss if I would die.” And out he jumps.

Donald Trump quickly grabs one of the two remaining parachutes, and shouts: “I am one of the greatest presidents and businessmen of the world; so true; I had the largest audience ever at my inauguration,  and I leave you with one final parachute. So SAD !” And he jumps out.

Says the student: “Well, it seems one of us has to die. Why don’t you take the last parachute?”

Says the pope, with a twinkle in his eye: “Don’t worry, son. Mr. Trump took your backpack.”

Books

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How to Survive the Apocalypse. Some highly ineffective recommendations .

John Harpsicord*), a follower of this blog, asked: What about the name of this blog dude! “Survive the Apocalypse” – I can’t find any apocalyptic content and no survival tips. Huh, WTF is that about? Confusing.

Well John, at face value you do have a point. So let me explain why in fact this blog is ALL about surviving the apocalypse! suggestions.

Once the apocalypse strikes – which may happen earlier than you think, through a deadly combination of global warming, over-population and some completely inept political leaders (so sad !) – there is very little that we can do. Stocking up on emergency food, baseball bats and pepper spray may sound like a sound strategy, but in reality you won’t know what has hit you. So the best survival strategy is… enjoy life while you can! Take life with a grain of salt and a lot of humor, because none of us know how long we or good ol’ Earth will be around.

The apocalypse does make for some great reading, as reflected in my adventure novels (curious ? Look here www.clemenssuter.com/books), and you can find a lot of information about these books on this blog, which is another explanation for the name.

And finally: aren’t we all, in one way or another, surviving our own personal apocalypse each and every day? Life and living are tough as shit; and most confusingly, they are also absolutely beautiful. That’s what I try to bring across in my books and in the title of this blog: the negative of the Apocalypse and the beauty of Survival. Yin and Yang. And the confusion of it all: there are no easy explanations, life is complex and unpredictable.

And yes: drink more coffee, drink less alcohol.

*) name (slightly) changed

Photo by Charles Deluvio

Survive the apocalypse with appropriate headwear. Life is a contradiction and can be confusing as hell, so better enjoy it while you can (Photo by Charles Deluvio)

 

 

Another shocking appearance in my dinner. Egg horror strikes again.

Is my kitchen HAUNTED? I have reported in the past about miraculous appearances in my evening dinner: especially in my fried eggs. See for instance these past blogposts:

and
I now report on a more shocking appearance. Is this the Creature of the Blue Lagoon in my eggs and fries? Vincent Price? Quasimodo? WHY?
Creature of the blue lagoon

Egg of horror

Top ideas for your blog and self-publishing novels.

Carly, a regular reader of this blog, asked: “why don’t you add ads to your blog? You create such great content; why don’t you monetize?”

This got me thinking. I’ve been blogging for 10+ years, and here are some observations how I’ve faired.

1. Included ads in my blog for a number of years, and made… about $13. Why is that? For my blog I like to focus on content that I personally like. This is not mainstream content, it isn’t about gossip, sex or even any single topic. This affects the number of hits, and also the number of times people click on an ad. At this moment in time, monetizing the blog isn’t worthwhile, and the ads distract the reader.

2. I have invested months in studying and implementing SEO, and I still follow most of the rules (although the effort is considerable). In reality, 90% of the referrals to my blog arrive from my tweets on Twitter, 7% from Facebook, and the rest from other channels – including search engines searches. So much for the impact of SEO!

3. Blogs compete for attention, and as more and more people are blogging, the tougher it is to stick out from the crowd. Better focus on content than on all the methodology and wild ideas to monetize. My main purpose is to sell my books, and for that the blog is useful; a single site to attract people to.

4. Talking about selling books. I write mostly SciFi adventures http://clemenssuter.com/books and self-publish. Intriguing observation: >95% of the books are purchased on iTunes. All other book formats such as Kindle, Kobo, and for other eBook readers as well as paperbacks make up the other 5%. I suspect it has to do with the genre. It also has to do with Amazon: Amazon does not allow the removal of a first version of my first novel. This confuses the hell out of my readers on this channel.

5. The challenge with writing a novel is that nowadays anyone with a laptop can be an author. Writing has been democratized, which is on the one hand splendid, on the other hand it is harder to rise above the noise. Perseverance and enthusiasm for the written word – these are the ingredients that will help you to be an author for a long time.

#amreading

Two men reading one of my books on an iPhone.

Celebrating the 2010 release of my novel Two Journeys with a limited edition coffee mug.

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This special commemorative coffee mug can be filled with 350ml of hot coffee (even steaming hot: it is fully temperature resistant). All types are supported: latte, cappuccino, koffie verkeerd or macchiato; just pour it in through the opening at the top. Its smooth surface even protects against the oxidative  effects of Devil’s Brew!

And how about the artwork? The cover of Two Journeys on the front, and a mysterious QR code on the back!

Where does it lead, you will wonder? Which miraculous domain of the internet?

Learn more here: http://clemenssuter.com/books