Archive for August, 2012

When I started out to write my first novel I, like most ‘aspiring’ writers, became overwhelmed at the sheer enormity of the task of E-Book publishing. One reads and sees some many cliches along the way. Jaded, aspiring, amazing, awesome are just some of the well of adjectives one comes across on a daily if not on an hourly basis.

Feeling that abyssmal feeling that that it would never end, I found solace listening to writer’s interview on the BBC’s World Book Club. I searched the archives and found one of my favorite and ‘inspiring’ authors, Carlos Fuentes. He related a story from his younger years in writing. How he became reclusive and simply became sick from the process. I concluded that, to use a cliche, ‘no pain, no gain’. Your friends all look at you as if it’s been a lifetime since they’ve seen or spoken to you. Caffeine is your best friend and the corner bakery is the culprit in your weight gain. But at the end of the interview, he said he jumped into the ocean on the Dutch coast where he and his parents lived to celebrate his finishing his novel.

The name escapes me now but I find that same ritual has been the therapeutic relief I needed so into the Caribbean sea I go. After the salt-water baptism, I go back and realize I now have to finish editing and proofreading with my intern team. Next we load up and publish on Amazon and go through the process again to clean the glitches and overlooked typos, some I swear are digital gremlins that somehow manage to irritate everyone.

The next challenge is listening to the pros and cons of the KDP Select Program so you idle while deciding and then understand that the process gets bigger when you are building contacts on Twitter, Facebook and Goodreads. But 29.95 you can get Kindle Nations to rescue the Free Giveaway promo. Better than paying 99.95 for online seminars that all seem to replicate the same advice you can find if you search it out. The difference is that you join and pay to in a community of writers or do the piecemeal method. So the higher price is appealing.

In all, I think the writing community is getting as organized as Labor Unions or Teacher Unions and the tsunami of the Kindle explosion is just the tip of digital iceberg.

Join me in that Union.

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Read more on my story at http://amazon.com/author/alexstclair

                                                                                                                                                                         Alex St. Clair hails from the Lone Star State of Texas. Growing up as a teen, he dodged the local gangs called ‘pachucos’ and left the crime-infested streets of San Antonio for a rowdy elitist and tequila-infused college prep school in Guadalajara, Mexico. There he discovered the Huichole Indians of Nayarit and soon he and his bohemian class-mates joined the ‘marakame’ shamans in their annual pilgrimage to Real De Catorce for the scared peyote ritual emulating a Jack Kerouac ‘On The Road’ meets Hunter S. Thompson moment. It is here that he became enlightened to the spirit world….

In his twenties, he traveled throughout Mexico and Guatemala as a photo-journalist. He collected folk art for his curio shop Cuatro Caminos in Austin, Texas, voted the best Mexican Art Gallery by Texas Monthly Magazine. Throughout his life’s journey, he came to understand these indigenous cultures and share the secrets of their longevity. The Zapotec Indian tribe of Oaxaca introduced him to the healing and cleansing powers of psylocibin or ‘magic’ mushrooms called ‘La Familia’ for its small bunches. In the mountains of Olinala, Guererro, the Nahuatl Indian artisans taught him the use of cannabis sativa tea as a natural poltice and pain-killer, praising it’s therapeutic properties. Both tribal experiences resonate in his writings.

He later returned to study lingusitics at Cuahanahuac in Cuernavaca, Morelos, living with a Mexican family for one year to immerse himself in modern Mexico. This led to his fascination with Mayan culture; he travelled through the Mayan Highlands to Palenque and the rich exotic rainforest and lush jungles for several years. Later he fell passionately in love with the Mexican Caribbean and Yucatan where Tulum, Coba, Uxmal and Chichen Itza lie. He studied marine life and learned to scuba dive while learning local customs amongst the Mayans.

The locals shared their custom of the partaking of ‘El Abuelo'(grandfather) or Ayahuasca’, ‘spirit vine‘ of the Peruvian Andes, a legal powerful medicine derived from an Amazonian tree bark and vine. Botanists say it is the ‘Tree of Life’ and the Incas referred to it as the infamous Spanish quest for the ‘Fountain of Youth’. Ritualists claim it to release your inner body, soul and mind. He is currently researching the claims for a future book on psycho-tropics in the modern world of medicine.

His early literary and film influences include Charles Dickens, Stanley Kubrick, Robert Heinlein, Kahlil Gibran, Francis Ford Coppola, Isabel Allende and Carlos Castaneda. Philosophical influences include Mahatma Gandhi, Henry David Thoreau and William Jefferson Clinton. He has bungee jumped, parasailed, co-piloted single and twin engine airplanes, survived the Chichonal volcano explosion, hiked on the Popocateptl volcano, canoed the Usumacinta river, been lost in the rainforest for one day and has scuba dived 60 ft. in the Caribbean, all in his younger days.

Alex St. Clair is now semi-retired Ex-Pat, residing in Merida, Yucatan. When he’s not writing, Alex can be found cooking Tex-Mex fusion foods and Mexican cuisine dishes, climbing Mayan pyramids and swinging in a hammock with a tropical breeze to his back.

His two concurrent writing projects include the second installment to the House Of Cartels Trilogy, American Beauty Destroyed, and La Cocina De Mi Madre E-CookBook, a collection of his memoirs and famous family recipes.

House Of Cartels Trilogy and La Cocina De Mi Madre publishing on
Corazon E -Books

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Direct contact: buddhakahn@rocketmail.com and on Skype @buddhakahns

Namaste

                                                           
The Méxican Rose is the first book in the House of Cartels Trilogy or as I like to call it “Thrillogy”. I take a broad brush, painting across Mexico’s dystopian landscape from my many experiences.
 
Rosa Rios takes you on a spiritual journey of passion, adventure and romance.
 
The sur-reality setting of the overwhelming Narco Drug-Cartels battling back the divisional politics of the Neo-Conservative PDC, Party of the Democratic Christians, led by Presidente Karlos Arroyo Salinas sets the stage as they fight to control the multi-billion dollar underground drug industry.
 
Rosa Ríos Del Valle, a housewife and teacher, turns political activist bent on seeking her husband’s murderers. Rosa and her new allies, Mercedes the drug-addled sister and Ponchis, a hired assassin criss-cross Mexico past military checkpoints and deadly cartels. Rosa seeks the aid and advice of Tulum healer and psychic, Tamara Castro, as she elevates the coming 2012 Armageddon equation to the next level and experience a country whose relentless spirit rises literally from the ashes of broken souls and broken families. 
 
The Mexican Rose is peppered with sex and salted with drugs while the players jet set over the ancient Mayan ruins of Palenque, the blood-drenched tourist resort of Acapulco. La Familia, Los Aztecas and Knights of Malverdes throw down the gauntlet in turf battles across Mexico’s urban war zones blurring the boundaries of loyalties.  
A Tea Party Texas Governor, a Mexican President, a Sinaloa Cartel Drug Lord and a Para-military General all distort the world’s view of geo-political weapons and drug smuggling.
 
I dare to tread where many Mexican news reporters fear to go by using factual fiction.
You´ll will be getting a head rush and heart-throb from the abundant action. This first novel will make your skin tingle while wanting another dose of House of Cartels: American Beauty, the second book of the Thrillogy, due out in December 2012.