Perverts for Wonderland and the Guy I Hate

kingIn completely surprising and unexpected news, King of the Perverts is on the final ballot of the Wonderland Book Awards for Best Novel. KotP was published in 2012 by Grindhouse Press, which also has a book in the category for Best Collection with Andersen Prunty’s Hi I’m a Social Disease. Team Grindhouse tearin’ it up, y’all.

The best thing about this nomination for me is the cohort alongside my little Pervert. With names like Nick Antosca, Kevin Donihe, Pat Wensink, and Carlton Mellick III, I’m definitely the one people will look at and say, “Who?” And that’s cool with me. Because, you know, it’s just an honor to be nominated, and all. Winners will be announced in November at BizarroCon in Portland, which I will be attending again this year.

NEWS ITEM

From the world of free books, there’s a giveaway on Goodreads right now for my latest, You Are Sloth! If you want to enter to win a free copy of the Sloth, this is the place to do it.

NEWS ITEM

Speaking of Sloth!, book reviewer Bob Milne shared his thoughts over on his blog. Here’s a cherry-picked line from said review: “His story is deliberately offensive in many ways, but as a caricature or over-the-top parody, never as a mean-spirited attack. There are some Bizarro titles I skim through for scenes that catch my eye, and others that I read cover-to-cover . . . Lowe is definitely one of the latter, and a gentleman I need to read more of.”

HUMAN INTEREST ITEM

I’ve recently tried to get in the habit of running in the mornings. I’m no workout freak, and in reality, I hate the act of running. It’s tiresome, and painful on my increasingly cranky knees and hips. Sometimes there’s a searing pain along the inside of my left foot. I think it’s inflammation of the tendon there, possibly the posterior tibialis. That’s what the Internet suggested to me, anyway. The only time I don’t mind running is if I’m legging out a stand-up triple after hitting a softball into the gap. Any other time, running is just working out, and the key word in the phrase is WORK. Screw that, I work enough already.

But still, I’m trying. I need to be healthier. Get in better shape. I’m 38 and if I’m ever going to learn healthy habits, I better start now. But it feels like my body is assaulting itself when I run. Like my immune system is kicking in to combat myself for trying to injure it. My physical being defending itself from the mind with underhanded tactics, like inflammation of the posterior tibialis. I can only imagine what I must look like when I run. Face contorted in equal parts pain and anger, with a little fear mixed in. My every instinct screaming at me to stop, oh dear God, stop, what the hell am I thinking? I go early in the morning, and fortunately it’s dark and there are few cars on the road, otherwise, I suspect people would be calling 911 because I look like I’m either running from a murderer, or from the scene of a murder.

I bring this up because there’s a guy I see running almost every day on my drive into work. He’s around 6-foot-5, can’t possibly have more than 0.5% body fat. Long legs that attack the pavement and seemed to bounce off it. Effortless. Two springs that propel him along, shirtless and chiseled and defined and toned. The guy looks like a machine. A flawless assembly of strength and health and precision. Unwavering in his dedication to honing his body into a perfect specimen, and that this little run he’s taking (which is no doubt many miles long) is nothing but easy. Probably fun to him, even.

Fuck that guy.

re: (spam: HIGH) Don’t Buy My Book!

– This event has passed. Thank you for participating. Sloth got all the way to below 10,000 sales rank, which is super-duper! My heart has the fondness for all of you. –

*This message has been flagged as SPAM.*

Hello,

stacheMy name is Steve and I have this thing for you that is great! Please continue to read down below, but first I will tell you some news that is true! In a short time to come will be releasing my new book of fun comedy named, YOU ARE SLOTH! from venerable purveyor of Bizarro fiction named Eraserhead Press!

That’s exciting!

It is my honor to request your compliance in making purchase of this publication with hard earned dollars unwound from your tight sweaty fists, BUT WAIT THERE IS MORE FOR YOUR INCENTIVE…

Don’t buy my book YET!!!1 First please read these things -

image

To be clear, I will be thrilled if you buy it at all, but maybe just wait a little bit. I’m thinking of a particular day, where as many people as possible are make the book purchasing happen at once. Just like Jennifer Beals in the FLASHDANCERS, I’m a girl with a DREAM: I have the goal to make my latest book, YOU ARE SLOTH!, an Amazon bestseller, even if for a day, or just a few hours. OH, WHAT A FEELING! Unlike Jennifer Beals, my glorious breasts and sexy water splashing dance moves are not get me there with my own merit. I need YOUR help to make IT!

Please don’t rush right out and click BUY on the day SLOTH! is available – PLEASE to wait for July 18. That is the day to do this. I don’t know why I am picking July 18. It was the first day I see when I looked at the desktop blotter/calendar under my keyboard. So OK! let’s make it July 18.

JULY 18 is officially, “Stop Having the Lazy and Buy YOU ARE SLOTH! Day”

WHISPERHelp me sneak onto the bestsellers list! Read a goofy book about being a sloth. For an added incentive, if you make buy the YOU ARE SLOTH! and Tom Piccirilli’s new novel THE LAST WHISPER IN THE DARK at the same time, and emails me a copy of your Amazon confirmation showing both books, I will send you a free paperback copy of one of my previously published books. These include such titles as: MUSCLE MEMORY and KING OF THE PERVERTS and SAMURAI VS. ROBO-DICK. Email the confirmation to lowe435@gmail.com and tell me which book you want! Buy two, get a third for FREE.

CAN IT BE THAT EASY? Holy crap yes it can! WHO DOES THIS CRAZY THINGS? me

Did I tell you what is YOU ARE SLOTH! about? NO??? Then have some of these:

“Why you are sloth? Because fuck you is why! HAHAHAHAHA!!1!”

That’s the last response you got from The Spammer, who’s developed an insidious computer virus that transforms people into their power animals. You never should have opened that email from the Philippino Sherriff’s Attaché to East Berlin. So many missed warning signs there, but you were drunk last night. Things have been rough lately – you can’t pay your rent, your neighbors are annoying, you keep getting strange calls from horny guys with unique and unsettling fetishes, you’re way behind with work, and your computer is suddenly crapping out on you. And now you’re a goddamn sloth. Nice going, genius. But there’s more at play here than simple animal hijinks. You’ve been added to the Homeland Security Terror Watch List, and the cops want to question you about the mysterious disappearances of several gay men, who all seem to have called your phone just before they vanished. Not only has this Spammer fuck turned you into a sloth, he’s framed your slow ass, too! You’ve had enough of this shit. With the help of your neighbors, Cross the Asshole and Randy the Retard, you form the SLOTH SQUAD. It’s time to track that Spammer down and reap some three-toed vengeance on his ass.
 
You are Sloth!

WOW, doesn’t that sound CRAZY? Alright!

How about a blurb from a living bestseller type? I really like this one:

Patrick Wensinks

“If Steve Lowe offers to sell you a watch, run. Lowe is a literary conman of the highest regard. He reels you in with a dizzying shell game of hilarious jokes and bathroom humor. But before you know it, he’s fled with your heart thanks to the sharply drawn, lovable lunatics inhabiting his writing.” – Patrick Wensink, author of BROKEN PIANO FOR PRESIDENT

How can you NOT stand to buy this thing? I DON’T KNOW! But remember, WAIT for July 18 and take part in “Stop Having the Lazy and Buy YOU ARE SLOTH! Day” for maximal enjoyment of these exciting times we are having.

What a lot of FUN!

Book review: Black Hole Blues by Patrick Wensink

Black Hole BluesBlack Hole Blues by Patrick Wensink

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

If I ever get narcissistic enough to create my own awards (and that may not be far off because I like myself a hell of a lot), I would have to give one to Patrick Wensink for Black Hole Blues. I could call them the “Steve Awards for Achievement in Bizarre Literature”. Who wouldn’t want to receive a SAABL? Nobody, that’s who. The award Wensink would win is for ‘Doing Something I’ve Not Seen Before’. Or maybe a shorter name than that, I don’t know yet, but he would win it because Wensink does it.

He wrote a novel with very novel Points of View. A sandwich. A guitar. A stolen automobile. A barbeque grill. A rather vulgar and pissed off atomic particle. We experience Black Hole Blues through the “eyes” of each of these things, and a few others. While that might seem at first like a stunt, and I suppose it mostly is, it still works. Wensink manages to give these things, these rather benign inanimate objects, their own perspective but also a dash of humanity that helps the reader relate to them. (And please note that this may have been done before, but as I mentioned previously, I hadn’t seen it before, and if I haven’t seen it, then it might as well not exist.)

Yes, the idea of a sad, forgetten and rotting club sandwich telling us a story is absurd, but that’s also what makes this book fun. The human characters are, without a doubt, the core of this story, but the real pleasure comes in reading what is already a goofy tale through completely different and inventive perspectives, and that’s why it stands out. You see the characters in different ways and learn more about them than perhaps we otherwise would have. These varying POVs are punctuated throughout and interspersed between the POVs of the human characters, but to be honest, I think the whole thing could have been written from the perspective of different inanimate objects because Wensink does it so well.

The other thing you need to pay attention to is the blog that goes with this book. If you haven’t visited Death to Kenny Rogers yet, you’re not only missing out, you’re doing yourself a disservice. Don’t disservice yourself. You really need to get weekly doses of Kenny Rogers’s evil. It’s a public service that will earn Patrick Wensink the SAABL for Humanitarian Service. Congrats, Pat! Two-time winner!

View all my reviews

News, Links and other filler in between posts of Muscle Memory 2

Catching up on some recent news and reviews that I forgot to post here:

1. Muscle Memory is part of the Amazon 4-for-3 deal – buy four books that qualify for the deal and you’ll get one of them for free (CLICK HERE). Also, there are tons of Eraserhead Press, Lazy Fascist and Deadite Press titles that qualify. Good time to stuck up on summer reading material. (SEE SOME OF THEM HERE and also HERE)

2. The awesome image up above of the raccoon playing a tuba was created by Kirsten Alene for my story “Varmits!” which you can read over on Unicorn Knife Fight. CLICK HERE to read it.

3. Karl Fischer posted a flattering review of Muscle Memory on his new tumblr site Electric Bazaar. READ IT HERE

4. If you snag a copy of William Pauley III‘s book THE BROTHERS CRUNK (attention NES lovers, attention!) and message Chris Bowsman that you have done so, Chris will send you a free PDF ebook of his own book A LIFE ON FIRE, an excellent little nightmare about a man slowly devolving into insanity. I’ve read and enjoyed them both, and this is a hell of a cool deal. CLICK HERE FOR SOME CRUNK

5. I’m on Google+ now – COME SAY HI

I think that’s all. I just finished reading ROBOPOCALYPSE, which started a little shaky but turned out to be a decent read. Now I’m starting Patrick Wensink’s BLACK HOLE BLUES which, after one chapter, has started out very strong. If it’s as funny and enjoyable as his blog DEATH TO KENNY ROGERS then he has a winner here. So far, so good. At the end of August, an interview of me by Mr. Wensink should find its way to WE WHO ARE ABOUT TO DIE,  so definitely mark your calendars and cancel all of your other plans for that exciting event.

OK, that’s definitely it. Unless you want to share something with me. Whatcha reading these days?

July 1, 2011: DON’T Burn ‘Muscle Memory’ Day!

It has come to my attention that a particularly annoying and poorly disguised person has launched a campaign to wipe my book “Muscle Memory” from existence by creating a “Burn ‘Muscle Memory’ Day” event. Now, I know as well as you that it makes no sense to try and buy up every copy of a book that is Printed on Demand, but there’s really no rationalizing with this guy. His response was this: “Print on Demand is an atheist myth invented by liberals, just like global warming and E. Coli and the Mars rover.”

So, there you go.

In response, I have decided to hold an alternate/competing event. Rather than burn copies of my book, I would be most humbly appreciative if you would instead post a review of it, on or before July 1st, on Amazon.com and Goodreads.

It’s true that I took some liberties with famous folks like Kirk Cameron and Terry Bradshaw in this story, but it will ultimately be up to you to decide if this was done is poor taste, or to solid comedic effect. Apparently, the subject matter of my book has struck a nerve with this person who calls himself Cam Kirkeron, but I think it’s pretty obvious who he really is. It’s a sad, pathetic attempt to stifle free speech and grab attention, and I say we all show this guy just how wrong-headed his actions are here.

Grab a copy of Muscle Memory from Amazon (follow this link) to decide for yourself if it truly deserves to burn, and let Cam Kirkeron know about it on July 1st. I have a feeling he won’t be going away without some convincing. Thanks –Steve

P.S. – While you’re at Amazon deciding what other books to add to your cart to get your free shipping, I would suggest two new releases: Jimmy Plush, Teddy Bear Detective by Garrett Cook – and – Black Hole Blues by Patrick Wensink