Carv's Thinky Blog I'm an author with a focus on satirical science fiction.


Loose Talk with Davee Jones

Davee Jones, author of Finless and Personal Fouls

Davee Jones, author of Finless
and Personal Fouls

The Unpleasant Truth podcast makes a surprise reappearance in honor of Lynn Savage's new ebook, Mr. Klein's Wild Ride. Over the course of an uninhibited 37-minute conversation, we talk about God, the Devil, hidden carnalities in the Oklahoma public library system, and the perils and pleasures of writing sexy. We say flattering things about each other's books, I admit I'm on an NSA watch list, and Davee giggles at inappropriate moments. Caveat auditor: this podcast is NSFWOFM (Not Safe for Work or Family Members). You have been warned! If you prefer to think Davee and I arrived chastely in our current respective marriages, this podcast is NOT, I repeat NOT, for your ears.

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Wordstock Olympia 2015

Coming this Wednesday, July 29, at 7 p.m. in the Midnight Sun, we're delighted to invite you to Wordstock Olympia 2015! This is a one-night-only event at which four local authors will share the stage, with actors reading passages from their works. Even better, it's absolutely free.

You get:

Alec Clayton: When not skewering local talent with his art and theater reviews for The News Tribune and Weekly Volcano, Alec creates worlds upon worlds of fictional characters that live mostly in the small towns among the dense pine forests and swampy coastal bogs of South Mississippi where he grew up. He has published seven novels including the “Freedom Trilogy,” which includes the selection to be read by Christian Carvajal and Amanda Stevens.

Christian Carvajal: "Carv" writes all sorts of things under his own name and sexy stuff using the pen name Lynn Savage. He's the author of two satiric novels. One, an apocalyptic thriller called Lightfall, is available in hardback or ebook from Campanile Press. The second, Mr. Klein's Wild Ride, is a brand-new ebook from Amazon, Smashwords, and He's asked his friend, actor Deya Ozburn, to read a new story, "Retreat," set in the same world as Mr. Klein's Wild Ride.

Dianne Kozdrey Bunnell: It took Dianne ten years to write her novel The Protest, which was inspired by the real-life religious hijacking of her two daughters, ages ten and twelve. She believed that if her story saved other families from such calamity, then some good could come from the firebombing by the blood of the Lamb her girls endured. Today, she is happily reunited with her daughters. The Protest, a passage from which will be ready by Dianne herself, was chosen as “Reviewer’s Choice” by Midwest Review of Books. One reader claims she figured out how to read the book while blow-drying her hair.

Ned Hayes: Ned gets to talk a lot in his day job for Intel and as a published critic, professor, and theater he got picked by his fellow introverted writers to be MC for this event. Accolades for the MC are welcome, rotten tomatoes not so much. His new book, The Eagle Tree, is the tale of an autistic young man on a desperate environmental crusade. He's the author of the bestselling historical novel Sinful Folk, which was nominated for the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association Award, and a crime novel called Coeur d'Alene Waters. Actors Jackson Jones and Amanda Stevens will read a passage from The Eagle Tree.

This event will be hosted by Theater Artists Olympia, stewards of the Midnight Sun Performance Space at 113 N. Columbia. Concessions will be available for a small charge, and reservations may be made at the event for TAO's next offering, Improbable Peck of Plays 4. Improbable Peck also celebrates local writers by staging (often debut) productions of their short (less than 15-minute) plays. Carv's "An Imperfect Galatea" was performed in Episode 3. This year, he's appearing as an actor in three short plays, one of which you might just see a glimpse of on Wednesday.

Of course the authors will have copies of their works available for purchase and signing, but again, the event itself is absolutely free. Seating is limited, so don't arrive late and miss your chance! We look forward to entertaining you, and in the meantime, happy reading!


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Funnel Cake

For years, I thought the only things a person had to know in order to be an author for a living were a.) how to write a good book, and b.) how to write an appealing query letter. It turns out that's completely untrue. Over the course of my career, I've been obliged to learn web and print design, HTML, Photoshop, Audacity, podcasting, audiobook recording and editing, sound normalization, video editing, SEO, and motivational speaking and marketing, just to name a few. For example, one thing I learned about ebook marketing is it's best to lead potential readers to one's book by way of a funnel. A funnel, in this context, is a freebie that both arouses interest in the book and sends interested parties in its direction. A funnel I'm using to promote Mr. Klein's Wild Ride is the Tacoma-based lit club Creative Colloquy.

Since last spring, I've been a frequent contributor to Creative Colloquy's website, where crowd-pleasing stories like "Silver" and "Ashes to Ashes" made their debut. CC gets together for public readings once a month at the B Sharp Coffee House in Tacoma's Opera Alley. This month, the meeting's at 7 p.m. on Monday the 20th. I can't be there due to play rehearsal, so instead my friend and fellow thespian Deya Ozburn graciously contented to read a new story called "Retreat." That story's been posted on, or, if you live in Olympia, you can hear it read live by actor Deya Ozburn this Wednesday at the Midnight Sun's Wordstock event.

"Retreat" is set during the ramp-up to the grand opening weekend of the adult theme park, Bliss Panerotic. If you enjoy the story, by all means, please download Mr. Klein's Wild Ride from Smashwords. You'll find the novel there in forms suitable for any ebook reader, including your computer, phone or tablet. You can even download the first fifteen percent as a free sample. Or, if you're a diehard fan of Amazon's Kindle Store, you can download it there. It's only two clicks away! And if you've purchased any of my other books on Amazon already, congratulations, you qualify for a special price of $1.99. Everyone else pays the still-reasonable cover price of just $4.99.

Happy reading, and I'll see you at the gates of Bliss Panerotic!

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Att’n Kindle, Palm, Sony and Desktop Readers…

If you've been waiting to download Mr. Klein's Wild Ride, my hot new novel about an adult theme park, because you weren't sure what to do with an EPUB file, I have excellent news. This fun summer beach read is now available on multiple formats, including LRF (Sony Reader), Mobi (Amazon Kindle), PDB (Palm OS), and an online reader. It's only $4.99 and hot hot HOT, so get yours today! Now! Go!

Here's the link! What are you waiting for, a signed invitation?

"Please buy my book."--Signed, Christian Carvajal, aka "Lynn Savage"

Mr. Klein's Wild Ride cover

Mr. Klein's Wild Ride cover

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Mr. Klein’s Wild Ride Starts…NOW!

Gentle Reader, we have so freakin' much news for you today!

Carv here. If it seems I've let Lynn do most of the heavy lifting this week, rest assured I was up to my eyeballs in EPUB modifications, alt tags, index errors....You know: fun stuff. Meanwhile, Lynn was searching through Gary Klein's archive of behind-the-scenes park memorabilia from Bliss Panerotic. Her conversations with Gary have been setting my ears on fire, at least during rare moments when I've had time to listen. In other words, as the troubadour of olde put it, she got the goldmine, and I got the shaft. But that's only fair, I suppose, as Mr. Klein's Wild Ride is mostly Lynn's book. I did a fair amount of copy-editing and research, but she's the one who got Gary to open up about his time on Catalina. You can understand why he'd be so reluctant. Given the crap he's been given by smirking talk show hosts, not to mention the public airing of his every sexual whim, this has been a rough month for Gary and his family.

The thing is, he's still pretty funny. And yes, since we're long past the point of yelling "TMI," he's decided to let it all hang out in our pages. You'll read every steamy detail of the lurid, polyamorous goings-on at America's first adults-only sexual theme park. Not to put too fine a point on it, this book is hot enough to fry an egg and two strips of bacon with sizzle left over for an order of hash browns. Is it erotica? No, not exactly. It certainly has more to say about twenty-first-century romance and marriage than any volume of Fifty Shades. It's more like Fifty Additional IQ Points, or Jurassic World with higher-thread-count sheets.

And no, by the way, we did not know Jurassic World would open the same day as Bliss Panerotic when park construction, not to mention Lynn's book, got underway. But hey, Chris Pratt, if you want to produce and star in the feature film, be our guest. You'll find the rights surprisingly affordable.

The midnight hour is upon us. This book is going live. As the day progresses, you'll find versions for every common e-reader, phone or tablet at the Smashwords link here. The EPUB version is ready fresh out of the gate, so get your copy today! It's Fourth of July weekend, so bring on the fireworks!

Were you one of the thousands of guests at Bliss Panerotic's tragicomic opening weekend? If so, we'd be thrilled to hear your story. (It's okay, you can whisper it in our ears. Your secrets are safe with us! Mostly!) And if you enjoy the book, please do us the huge favor of reviewing it positively on Smashwords and elsewhere. For an e-book like this one, public thumbs-up matter more than you know. We appreciate your enthusiastic partnership in the future of Mr. Klein's Wild Ride. So have a magical Fourth and, on behalf of Lynn Savage, happy reading!

Mr. Klein's Wild Ride cover

Mr. Klein's Wild Ride cover

Smashwords link to MR. KLEIN'S WILD RIDE

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Packed and Ready

--by Lynn Savage

Carv and I have had a busy week! In fact, you could say we're doing our best impression of a proverbial one-legged contest entrant, what with readying Mr. Klein's Wild Ride for publication and creating pristine new copies of Carv's previous works as Smashwords e-books. It's a tall order. Smashwords is a wonderfully author-friendly company, but its auto-vetting software and cover requirements have been known to send calmer authors into sobbing hysterics. The result will be worth all the writer's cramps. We have a new book coming out!

Tomorrow, in fact!

Why, if you were to click, say, here, you would probably find that you were sent to my Smashwords author page. There you'd find preorder information for Mr. Klein's Wild Ride. Buy it now, sexy people, and it'll be ready at midnight for your beach-reading pleasure over this hot Fourth of July weekend! Carv says our book is smart and funny, so you'll even feel good about downloading a novel that cab IN NO WAY be said to be kid-friendly.

Take a walk on the wild side!

Mr. Klein's Wild Ride title banner

Mr. Klein's Wild Ride title banner

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“It was a shocking thing to say and I knew it was a shocking thing to say. But no one has the right to live without being shocked. No one has the right to spend their life without being offended. Nobody has to read this book. Nobody has to pick it up. Nobody has to open it. And if you open it and read it, you don't have to like it. And if you read it and you dislike it, you don't have to remain silent about it. You can write to me, you can complain about it, you can write to the publisher, you can write to the papers, you can write your own book. You can do all those things, but there your rights stop. No one has the right to stop me writing this book. No one has the right to stop it being published, or sold, or bought, or read.”--Philip Pullman

“Government has no right to hurt a hair on the head of an Atheist for his Opinions. Let him have a care of his Practices."--John Quincy Adams

“Because if you don't stand up for the stuff you don't like, when they come for the stuff you do like, you've already lost.”--Neil Gaiman

“Most people do not really want others to have freedom of speech, they just want others to be given the freedom to say want they want to hear.”--Mokokoma Mokhonoana

“If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.”--George Orwell

“If there's one American belief I hold above all others, it's that those who would set themselves up in judgment on matters of what is 'right' and what is 'best' should be given no rest; that they should have to defend their behavior most stringently....As a nation, we've been through too many fights to preserve our rights of free thought to let them go just because some prude with a highlighter doesn't approve of them."--Stephen King

“Free speech means the right to shout 'theatre' in a crowded fire.”--Abbie Hoffman


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An Author Reading: “Six”

I was one of several local literary folks who were invited to read at King's Books in Tacoma a few weekends ago. We were asked to recommend books by other writers, too, so I was happy to promote Alec Clayton's series of small-town Southern dramedies along with Michael Chabon's The Yiddish Policemen's Union and Meg Wolitzer's The Interestings.

Then, as time was short and many of those in attendance had already read Lightfall, I decided to read a shorter, self-contained story, "Six." You can find it among the "Older Fiction" on this site. My wife recorded the reading, then uploaded it to her YouTube channel. I embed it here with an apology: because I hadn't brought this particular story with me, I pulled it up and read it in my phone's Web browser instead. It's an amateur move and I admit that with shame. Also, nothing classier than reading next to a public bathroom!

Anyway, here's "Six." I hope it'll remind you to check out my new audio version of Lightfall, available a mere click away on the right-hand side of this page. Happy listening!

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Filed under: Books, Lightfall No Comments

Campanile Comes Through Again

Hi, all, just a quick note to let you know that my new (and fast-acting) publisher, Campanile Press, just published a version of Lightfall for Kindle. The Amazon link appears here and on the right side of this page. It's a great time to download my novel and give it a shot, partly because it's cheap (only $2.99!) and partly as it gives you an opportunity to win a hot new Amazon Kindle Voyage e-reader. Look two posts down for more details.

Also, if you happen to live near the South Sound, B sure to meet me and lots of other local writers at the B Sharp Coffee House, this Monday the 24th, in Tacoma's Opera Alley. I'll be reading a brand-new SF short story and helping my friends debut their anthology, Creative Colloquy Volume One, in which my well-received horror story "Silver" appears. If you live elsewhere or simply can't wait, remember, my friend Kevin Wright also edited his own horror anthology e-book, Disquiet, now available for Kindle download at this link right here. That collection includes "Silver" as well. Happy reading!

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Do You Wanta Win a Kindle?

Y'know what's super awesome? The new Amazon Kindle Voyage e-reader, and no, I'm not just saying that because Christmas is coming and I don't have one. The Voyage really is an amazing piece of hardware. With a 300-ppi e-paper display and adaptive front light, enhanced dictionary and Wikipedia look-ups, full Wi-Fi, and a six-week battery life (!), this thing gives paper books a run for their money. It also costs $219, which is more than I spent for my Nook. Wouldn't you rather just win a Kindle Voyage for free? Of course you would! And really, all you have to do is review Lightfall (or my buddy Ned Hayes's Sinful Folk, which also deserves some love). That's it! Then you're entered in the contest, and hopefully the Amazon gods will smile down on you. If by some bizarre chance you have not read Lightfall, why, just look to the right side of this page and you'll see all kinds of wonderful options, including a brand-new audiobook version that will probably cost you nothing at all.

To write a review and enter the contest, click here.

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