Posts Tagged ‘On the Snuke’

I’m All A-Twitter

Friday, June 17th, 2011

So I decide to spend this week honing my social networking chops, and now I’m more social than ever – but also more confused. I started by friending everyone in the known universe (well, in the universe of people known to me) and I’ll friend you, too, if you but ask. I’ve bulked up my twitter feed (@TrueFactBarFact) to almost 200 (well, almost 170) followers. Then I pimped out my Amazon author page, adding photos, videos, news of upcoming events, blabbity blabbity blah blah blah. I think I’ve even arranged for this blog feed to go straight there, so if you’re passionate about reading the same thing twice, why, now you can.

But you know what? It all seems like a great big circle somehow. I point my Facebook friends to my Twitter feed, tweet on Twitter that I can be found here in my blog, blog about my Amazon page, and promote my Facebook presence on Amazon. Goodness! Is it any wonder that I have a big, fat, socially networked headache right now? Meanwhile, my lovely dog, Temp, dozes at my feet, and the only social network he cares about is the one that delivers him treats.

I guess all I care about is treats, too, where treats = presence and, ultimately, book sales. Because that’s what all this social networking is all about in the end. I’ve got books to promote (the new one, DECIDE) and workshops (LIVING THE WRITER’S LIFE in Pasadena on August 13) and, more broadly, my “brand,” such as it is. One thing I’ve learned as an author is that no one promotes you harder than yourself, not your publisher, not your publicist, no one. So if the word is going to get out, it’s up to, well, me to make it so.

It could be a colossal waste of time, of course, but you know what they say: “Self-indulgence is its own reward.” So follow me on Twitter, Facebook, Amazon, Or, you know, don’t. I’ll be wasting the time either way.

Speaking of wasting time, I just searched and it turns out that no one owns that domain name yet. I’m bipping right over to my GoDaddy account to register it right now, because who knows? It could be the big viral breakthrough I’ve been looking for.

Off to Amsterdam tomorrow. Reports to follow.

More later, -jv

My High Water Mark

Monday, April 25th, 2011

Just found out that I was the number-two bestseller at Vroman’s Bookstore this month:

Vroman’s Bestsellers 4/4/11

by Ruby on April 4, 2011

Hardcover Fiction
Tiger’s Wife, Tea Obreht
Albuquerque Turkey, John Vorhaus
Troubled Man, Henning Mankell
Lesson in Secrets
, Jacqueline Winspear
Land of Painted Caves, Jean Auel
Saturday Big Tent Wedding Party, Alexander McCall Smith
Mystery, Jonathan Kellerman
Georgia Bottoms, Mark Childress
Pale King, David Foster Wallace
When the Killings Done
, T C Boyle

Of course that may have had something to do with having done a big book launch event there that week, but still… it’s the best bestselling I’ve done so far, so yay me.

(Me as I used to be)

More later, -jv

Wish I Could Bottle This One

Tuesday, April 12th, 2011

A great (and extravagantly detailed) review of The Albuquerque Turkey right here. The best part isn’t that the reviewer found it funny but that he found the heart I intended to be found. With all due false modesty, I think that resonance, that humanity, is what sets this book apart from what I’ve written up till now.

Meanwhile, I’m in San Diego, doing some TV appearances and an in-store at Mysterious Galaxy. It’s hilarious what TV gets wrong. They described me on-air this morning at a “professional poker player.” Ha! As if! Well, a couple of weeks ago a newspaper article identified Vic Mirplo as Ron Mirplo. Ron! That’s Spanish for rum!

Do I sound a little punchy? I started my day at 4:00 a.m. in LA, up early for the drive to SD. Now it’s four hours later and I’m only just getting around to my first cup of coffee. So, yeah, I’m a little out-of-body, but whatever.

Check out the review. It’s a corker.

More later , -jv

Tax Day

Monday, February 28th, 2011

My keyboard is getting wonky. It’s not the batteries; I’ve changed them and I know they’re fresh. It’s just that sometimes, for no apparent reason, the keyboard ssssssticks and ssssstutters. Perhaps it’s coming to the end of its useful life after nearly a decade of enduring coffee spills and many meals carelessly eaten over it (including my latest obsession, plain, dry oatmeal — go fiber! Kill that cholesterol!) Well, whatever. I’ll stumbbble along the best I can until the hardware absolutely and positively gives up the ghost. Man, yo spend eighty bucks on something in 2001, you really expected it to last.

Today is Tax Day. Maybe not where you live but where I live — at least where I live inside my mind. See, I’ve always had a problem with procrastination. I never got the hang of it, and have been obsessive about finishing things early for as long as I can remember. No, not, as long as I can remember; rather, exactly and precisely since fourth grade.

I had been out sick from school for a couple of days, and somehow it escaped my attention that my report on Ponce de Leon was due. (You remember Ponce – the fountain of youth guy — killed Indians, invented Florida.) So I missed my deadline. I was so mortified — truly psychologically scarred — that I’ve had great difficulty missing a deadline ever since. There’s just something in my neurobiology that won’t allow it. Thus my motto became, “procrastinate later,” and thus I’m doing my taxes on February 28.

Although, let’s not fail to note that I’m not exactly doing my taxes right now. I’m writing this post. Which is a form of… yes… procrastination. Interesting: I am now procrastinating by talking about how I don’t procrastinate. The human mind is a complex machine.

A machine, it should be pointed out, that would rather not be involved with taxes, or flossing teeth, or eating oatmeal, or many of the other mundane tasks that occupy our days, weeks, months, years. We’d rather have lives that were all highlights — or maybe that’s just me. But if our lives were all highlights, how would we ever recognize them? To quote Bill Shakespeare, “If every day were holiday, to sport would be as tedious as work.” Well, I strive to make every day at least a little bit of a holiday, but today is Tax Day, JV style, so I’d better get cracking.

More (and more procrastination) later, -jv

What a Press Release Looks Like

Friday, February 25th, 2011

Here’s the official press release for The Albuquerque Turkey. Thought you might like a squiz.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Sarah Breivogel; 212-572-2722

What Happens in Vegas Stays in Vegas . . . or Does It?

Master con artist Radar Hoverlander is back, and this time he’s hitting up the high-rolling action on the Vegas Strip

The Albuquerque Turkey

A Novel

By John Vorhaus

With the mind of David Mamet, the voice of Tom Robbins, and the morals of a sailor on shore leave, Radar Hoverlander is truly one of a kind, a successful con artist, as good as they get.  THE ALBUQUERQUE TURKEY (Crown, March 22, 2011) finds Radar and his gifted grifter girlfriend, Allie Quinn, trying to use the proceeds of their latest big con to set themselves up in the straight life for good. But foiling Radar’s stab at a new life is a cast of quirky and hilarious characters who collectively present the opportunity for the con of a lifetime. Go straight or go for the gold? What’s a poor grifter to do?

Living a peaceful, quiet life off the grid with Allie, free of cons, double-crosses, high crimes and misdemeanors, Radar is beginning to see why going straight could be the best choice he ever made.  But now here comes trouble in the form of an oddly hefty lady in red who’s stalking him through the streets of Santa Fe, New Mexico.  The lady, as it turns out, is actually Radar’s father, Woody Hoverlander, a master grifter in his own right—but presently on the lam and in trouble, with a Vegas hard guy after him and a $5 million debt to clear. To help him, Radar must break his vow to go straight, possibly losing Allie’s love forever.

Meanwhile, Radar’s hapless sidekick, Vic Mirplo, is somehow drifting higher and higher in Santa

Fe art circles. He’s making big money, the sort of loose money a reckless gambler might spend in
Las Vegas. So off to Vegas they go, where Vorhaus, author of the Killer Poker series and a poker aficionado who once made the final table at the World Series of Poker, uses his knowledge of the high-roller scene to set the stage for Radar’s next con: reinventing Vic as the ultimate high roller—the Albuquerque Turkey. As he did in his witty first novel The California Roll, Vorhaus brings readers inside the world of con artistry with a character like no other, the sensational swindler and polymath extraordinaire Radar Hoverlander. Combining laugh-out-loud prose with a knack for cleverly twisting a plot, Vorhaus makes Hoverlander’s forays into the world of conning intensely engaging and immensely enjoyable.

Art fraud, casino cons, love, loyalty, and a dazzling array of double- and triple-crosses . . . they all prove that the notion of Vegas secrets staying secret is about as realistic as Radar Hoverlander staying straight. Full of scams, jams, and plans gone awry, THE ALBUQUERQUE TURKEY is a smart, entertaining caper that’s worth gambling on.

# # # # #

About the Author:

JOHN VORHAUS is the author of two novels (including the lauded California Roll), two books on writing, and eight books on poker. A veteran creative consultant, he has taught comedy writing in twenty-six countries on four continents, including Russia, Romania, and many other places that are funnier now than when he arrived.


A Novel

By John Vorhaus

Crown * March 22, 2011 * Pages: 272
Price: $23.00 * 978-0-307-71780-1

You can find John—and Radar—online at

More later, -jv

Know Anyone in Santa Fe?

Friday, February 18th, 2011

… in New Mexico, that is, not Texas or Spain. If you do, tell them to mark their calendars for Wednesday, March 23, at 6pm. I’ll be doing an in-store appearance and book signing at the Collected Works bookstore there.

Not going to bother with an address. It’s Santa Fe. You either know where everything is or you’re not from around there.

It’s serendipity, really. The Left Coast Crime convention (of mystery writers and their fans) is being held this year in Santa Fe, literally the week my novel, set in Santa Fe, comes out. I’ll be at the convention, of course (be kinda crazy to go all the way from LA to Santa Fe just for one bookstore, and yes I’m crazy but not that crazy). While I’m there I imagine I’ll spend a lot of time answering the question, “How did you come to set a novel in Santa Fe?” For the record, I got the idea when I was vacationing there. Mostly I got the idea that I could write off my vacation as a “research trip.” Mostly, also, I really didn’t rely heavily on first-hand knowledge of Santa Fe. When I needed information, I just yanked it down off the web. Wikipedia, Google Maps, Google Earth… these were my New Best Friends. And in the end, I don’t think the novel lacks verisimilitude. Research is just easier these days, that’s all. You can target your searches so precisely. Why read a whole book when you really only need one fragment of data?

It’s interesting. The novel I’m working on now is set in 1969. Much of my “research” just consists of digging into my own memory. But trust me, if your memory stretches back to 1969, it’s not entirely to be trusted. So I augment with Wikipedia, again, and various other online resources. Aging hippies, it seems, love to archive their past. And it’s amazing how much time you can waste digging up the exact words of that old Tonka Toys jingle…

For boys who like real lifelike toys

That they can operate, too

Attention boys! Tonka Toys

Were made just for you!

And this, for no apparent reason, is a Tonka Toy.

JV in Santa Fe. Tell your friends!

More later, -jv

A Free Read

Wednesday, February 16th, 2011

Want to score a free copy of THE ALBUQUERQUE TURKEY? Just click below.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

The Albuquerque Turkey (Hardcover) by John Vorhaus

The Albuquerque Turkey

by John Vorhaus

Giveaway ends February 23, 2011.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

The California Roll Promo Video

The worthies at Random House asked me to put together a video introducing myself as the author of The California Roll. I didn’t let it interfere with my routine.

The California Roll promo video