Archives for posts with tag: authors

This is an article I saw on my one of screenplay websites. The article was a promotion for a movie. I didn’t like the first film, will probably not see the second.
But this—unlike the “’legendary’ how-to-write-rackets” which will charge you thousands of dollars—is free from me to you. I deleted the references to the upcoming movie. You writers probably know this already, but the principles bear repeating. As applied to screenplays, so do the principles apply to stories and novels.
Let’s begin:
12 Powerful Principles of Story Structure
In addition to the overall structure of your screenplay – the three acts, the five key turning points, and the six stages, plot structure also involves employing as many structural principles, tools, and devices as you can throughout your script (or novel or story).
1. Every scene, event, and character must contribute to the protagonist’s outer motivations.
Pick any scene and either move the protagonist closer to his/her goal of protecting the people or society, move the protagonist closer to his/her desire to win the love of another important character, or create obstacles to those goals.
2. Make each hurdle and obstacle your protagonist faces greater than the previous ones.
The conflict in your story must build, becoming greater and greater as you drive the reader toward the climax.
3. Accelerate the pace of the story.
If your story has a futuristic, faraway setting (or any complex setting), your first Act should contain the narration of that before the pace needs to be accelerated and the conflict shifted into high gear. Act 2 should contain more action and Act 3 should shift into high gear.
Amplify the emotion by creating some conflict (and the anticipation of conflict) in each scene.
4. Create peaks and valleys to the emotion.
Intersperse big action sequences with quieter scenes with your protagonist interacting with other characters or learning something new.
These moments allow the viewers/readers to catch their breath and to begin anticipating the next big conflict. They also prevent the movie (or novel or story) from becoming one monotonous action sequence.
5. Create anticipation.
Viewers and readers want to try to guess what’s going to happen next — they just don’t want to be right all the time. And while surprises and confrontations are often brief, anticipation can be prolonged almost indefinitely.
6. Give the audience superior position.
This means providing the viewer and the reader with information that some of the characters don’t have yet.
Instances of superior position create anticipation of the conflict that will result when the information we have is revealed to the characters.
7. Surprise the viewer or reader.
Viewers or readers don’t want to anticipate everything that happens in your story. Sometimes you have to jump out and go “boo!” to keep them alert and involved.
This principle is even more important in a comedy, thriller or horror film, novel, or story where reversals create humor, shock, or fear.
8. Create curiosity.
Don’t explain everything in your script, novel, or story as soon as it happens. Viewers and readers love puzzles and relish figuring out who committed the murder, how the protagonist plans to overcome the conflict, or what a character’s true motives are.
9. Foreshadow your characters’ actions and abilities.
Foreshadowing is a term for adding credibility to your story by revealing information before it seems important, which prevents your story from seeming contrived or illogical.
Introduce facts before they become critical to the story. They all add credibility to the characters’ later actions.
10. Echo situations, objects, or dialogue to illustrate character growth and change.
Repetition allows the viewer or reader to compare where the protagonist is at any given moment in your story to where he/she was the last time we encountered that particular item or phrase.
11. Pose a Threat to One of the Characters.
Remember that this principle applies to all films, novels, or stories, not just adventures and thrillers. Always force your characters to put everything on the line in the face of losing whatever is important to them, whether it’s money, a job, a loved one, dignity, acceptance, or their own destiny.
12. Compress time.
The shorter the time span of your story, the easier it is to keep the audience involved. Or give a time span to do a decisive action, you have a ticking time clock after which disaster will hit. The end of “Alien” does this very well—you hear the ship announcing “You have ten minutes to evacuate.”
There you have it, my friends.
ODDITIES: 22 Stories is on Kindle worldwide, including in the US, in the UK, Canada, Australia, France, Italy, Spain, Germany, in the Netherlands, Mexico, Brazil, India, and Japan.
ODDITIES: 22 Stories is in Print as a beautiful trade paperback on November 17, 2020 in the US
, in the UK, Canada, France, Italy, Germany, Spain, and Japan. Now in Print in Australia
Summer of Love
(a Philip K. Dick Award Finalist and San Francisco Chronicle Recommended Book) is in print as a beautiful quality trade paperback in the U.S., the U.K., France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and Japan. New! Now in Print in Australia at https://www.amazon.com.au/dp/1548106119
The Gilded Age (a New York Times Notable Book and New York Public Library Recommended Book) is in print in the U.S., the U.K., in France, in Germany, in Italy, in Spain, in Japan, and in Australia
The Garden of Abracadabra
(“Fun and enjoyable Urban Fantasy”) is in print in the U.S., the U.K., Germany, France, Spain, Italy, and Japan. New! Now in Print in Australia at https://www.amazon.com.au/dp/1978148291.
ARACHNE
(“Highly recommended and very memorable.”) is in print in the U.S., in the U.K., in Germany, in France, in Spain, in Italy, and in Japan. New! Now in Print in Australia at https://www.amazon.com.au/dp/198435602X
One Day in the Life of Alexa
(“[An] absorbing read with an appealing narrator and subtly powerful emotional rhythms.”) is in print in the U.S., the U.K., Germany, France, Spain, Italy, and Japan. New! Now in Print in Australia at https://www.amazon.com.au/dp/1546783091
Strange Ladies: 7 Stories
(“A must-read collection—The San Francisco Review of Books) is in Print in the U.S., in the U.K., in Germany, in France, in Spain, in Italy, and in Japan. New! Now in Print in Australia at https://www.amazon.com.au/dp/1981104380
Visit me at http://www.lisamason.com for all my print books, ebooks, stories, interviews, round tables, cute cat pictures, the bespoke artwork and studio jewelry of Tom Robinson, forthcoming works, and more!

In the March 7, 2022 issue of The New Yorker appears a fascinating article, “The Elephant in the Courtroom” by Lawrence Wright, “A curious legal crusade to redefine personhood”. https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2022/03/07/the-elephant-in-the-courtroom
The title is a play on the title of a highly recommended documentary, “The Elephant in the Living Room”, about human beings who keep wild animals at their homes and wild animals who live near human homes.
The article concerns Happy, an Asian elephant who was housed in the Bronx Zoo, kidnapped when she was a baby from her dead mother. The lawsuit asked to move Happy from the zoo to an elephant sanctuary. Happy was one of seven baby Asian elephants kidnapped from their dead mothers; the poacher named them for Snow White’s seven dwarves. All were moved to zoos and circuses throughout the world; all to a bad end except for Happy.
Nonhuman animals have been considered “things”, without legal rights, much as African slaves in America until the Civil War and married women up until the early twentieth century were considered “property” or “things” of white men. The article at length discusses the thinghood versus personhood throughout history.
These days, governments all over the world have recognized the legal rights of nonhuman animals—India, Costa Rica, Hungary, and Finland have recognized the legal rights of dolphins and orcas. In Argentina, a judge ordered an orangutan named Sandra be moved from solitary confinement in zoo to a sanctuary.
The list goes on. Some humans are waking up to the sentience of nonhuman animals, but not all humans. Legal scholars have plenty of arguments against recognizing legal rights of nonhuman animals, which are set in the article.
In the most egregious case, in 1906, a human being was put in on display in the Bronx Zoo in the primates’ hall alongside with an orangutan. He was Ota Benga, of the Pygmy tribe, captured in the Congo. A number of ministers protested the exhibition and sought his freedom, but not before Benga committed suicide.
The article goes on at length to discuss animals used to perform dangerous tricks in circuses and  marine parks, animals used in “medical research”, and animals born and raised for human food.
Highly recommended for readers who care about sentient nonhuman animals, the history of persons who were considered “things”, and the fascinating account of legal arguments for and against legal rights for nonhuman animals.
In the same issue of The New Yorker appears a review of a new biography of Charles Dickens, “The Inimitable” by Louis Menand. Dickens liked to read his works aloud dramatically to an audience, he dressed well, lit up a room whenever he arrived, had ten children with his wife, and then fell in lust—I mean, love—with seventeen-year-old woman when he was forty-five and supported her. He died of kidney failure when he was fifty-eight. He sure knew how to write for the public, hundreds of thousands of his books sold in the week in which the books were offered. He was the most successful author (maybe) of all time. Highly recommended for Dickens’ fans and readers who care about the life of a creative person.
So there you have it, my friends.
ODDITIES: 22 Stories is on Kindle worldwide, including in the US, in the UK, Canada, Australia, France, Italy, Spain, Germany, in the Netherlands, Mexico, Brazil, India, and Japan.
ODDITIES: 22 Stories is in Print as a beautiful trade paperback on November 17, 2020 in the US
, in the UK, Canada, France, Italy, Germany, Spain, and Japan. Now in Print in Australia
CHROME is in U.S. print as a beautiful trade paperback. Also in U.K. print, in German print, in French print, in Spanish print, in Italian print, and in Japanese print. New! Now in Print in Australia at in Australia
The ebook is on US Kindle, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords, Apple, Kobo, and on UK Kindle, Canada Kindle, Australia Kindle, India Kindle, Germany Kindle, France Kindle, Spain Kindle, Italy Kindle, Netherlands Kindle, Japan Kindle, Brazil Kindle, and Mexico Kindle.
Summer of Love (a Philip K. Dick Award Finalist and San Francisco Chronicle Recommended Book) is in print as a beautiful quality trade paperback in the U.S., the U.K., France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and Japan.
The Gilded Age (a New York Times Notable Book and New York Public Library Recommended Book) is in print in the U.S., the U.K., in France, in Germany, in Italy, in Spain, in Japan, and in Australia
The Garden of Abracadabra
(“Fun and enjoyable Urban Fantasy”) is in print in the U.S., the U.K., Germany, France, Spain, Italy, and Japan.
ARACHNE
(“Highly recommended and very memorable.”) is in print in the U.S., in the U.K., in Germany, in France, in Spain, in Italy, and in Japan.
One Day in the Life of Alexa
(“[An] absorbing read with an appealing narrator and subtly powerful emotional rhythms.”) is in print in the U.S., the U.K., Germany, France, Spain, Italy, and Japan.
Strange Ladies: 7 Stories (“A must-read collection—The San Francisco Review of Books) is in Print in the U.S., in the U.K., in Germany, in France, in Spain, in Italy, and in Japan.
Visit me at http://www.lisamason.com for all my print books, ebooks, stories, interviews, round tables, cute cat pictures, the bespoke artwork and studio jewelry of Tom Robinson, forthcoming works, and more!

In the January 17, 2022 issue of The New Yorker appears another fascinating article, Stanislaw Lem’s grim past and epic futurism, “Close Encounters” by Caleb Crain. https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2022/01/17/a-holocaust-survivors-hardboiled-science-fiction
Lem published a number of highly-regarded science fiction novels in the 1960s, including the enigmatic “Solaris”, a brilliant novel about astronauts circling above a planet and the planet profoundly affects their minds. I read the novel some while ago (it was published in 1961), and Tom and I saw the early Russian movie of it—the film was way too long, confusing, and tedious—and the Steven Soderberg movie later—this film got straight to the point and was very moving and convincing.
I’m also re-reading “Eden” and both I, and my law school roommate some years ago, read “Memoirs Found in a Bathtub.”
Lem was born in 1922. He was a Polish Jew and born in a famous Jewish ghetto, now a part of Ukraine. He witnessed the Nazis executing many Jews and witnessed many pogroms, often fearing his life as a teenager. He saw most of his family killed by the Nazis. Is it any wonder why he wrote tensely about aliens whom you never are quite sure are aliens? Not the usual rocket ship captain material. Lem’s science fiction is original.
I’ll leave you to look up the article (I don’t want to reprise his life here.)
Highly recommended for readers interested in a creative person’s life, literature and classic science fiction.
So you there have it, my friends.
Summer of Love is BACK IN PRINT in the U.S., U.K.,  France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and Japan, and now in Australia.
The Summer of Love ebook is on US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, BarnesandNoble, Smashwords, Apple, and Kobo. On Kindle worldwide in Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, India, Mexico, and Netherlands.
ODDITIES: 22 Stories is on Kindle worldwide, including in the US
, in the UK, Canada, Australia, France, Italy, Spain, Germany, in the Netherlands, Mexico, Brazil, India, and Japan.
ODDITIES: 22 Stories is in Print as a beautiful trade paperback in the US
, in the UK, Canada, France, Italy, Germany, Spain, and Japan. New! Now in print at Australia
The Gilded Age
is BACK IN PRINT! Order the beautiful trade paperback in the U.S., in the U.K., in France, in Germany, in Italy, in Spain, in Japan and in Australia.
The ebook
is at BarnesandNoble, Apple, Kobo, and Smashwords and on Kindle worldwide at US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, India, Mexico, and Netherlands.
CHROME is in U.S. print as a beautiful trade paperback. Also in U.K. print, in German print, in French print, in Spanish print, in Italian print, and in Japanese print. New! Now in Print in Australia
The CHROME ebook is on US Kindle, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords, Apple, Kobo, and on UK Kindle, Canada Kindle, Australia Kindle, India Kindle, Germany Kindle, France Kindle, Spain Kindle, Italy Kindle, Netherlands Kindle, Japan Kindle, Brazil Kindle, and Mexico Kindle.
Visit me at http://www.lisamason.com for all my print books, ebooks, stories, interviews, round tables, cute cat pictures, the bespoke artwork and studio jewelry of Tom Robinson, forthcoming works, and more!

In a 2021 issue of The New Yorker is a review of documentary about an Author. I haven’t seen the documentary so I can’t comment about the review or the documentary. The article, however, quotes a passage from the Author’s writing: (and I quote):
“Liz liked Jim very much. She liked it the way he walked from the shop and often went the kitchen door to watch for him to start down the road. She liked it about his mustache. She liked it about how white his teeth when he smiled. One day she liked it the way the hair on his arms was black and how white they were above the tanned line when he washed up in the washbasin outside the house. Liking that made her feel funny.”
“It it it it it?”
Wouldn’t the sentences be more streamlined (and more grammatically correct) without the repetition of “it”? “She liked the way he walked,” for example? “She liked his mustache.” “She liked how white his teeth were when he smiled.” “She liked the way the hair,” and so on.
And what is “funny?” Amused, irritated, aroused, amorous? Perhaps the Author meant that Liz wasn’t sure how she felt. Why not say that? “Funny” is too vague and generalized for this reader.
If I were a fiction editor considering this prose, I would say, “Reject. Next.”
If you can guess the Author, please enter your speculation in the Comments.
No peeking.
No peeking.
No peeking.
No peeking.
No peeking.
No peeking.
Yes, he is the Great Ernest Hemingway. Apparently he was more of a Big Personality than a Great Writer. I read most of his novels and stories in high school. I thought he was misogynist and sexist (not the same thing) and cold.
Hemingway fans, please don’t attack me for criticizing Hemingway. That’s my opinion.
Visit me at http://www.lisamason.com for all my books, ebooks, stories, interviews, round tables, cute pet pictures, the bespoke artwork and studio jewelry of Tom Robinson, forthcoming works, and more!

Oh, now I understand.
Why in the October 25, 2021 The New Yorker issue, Paul McCartney published “Writing ‘Eleanor Rigby’”, an interesting, engaging brief account of how the song was written, how the song’s names got chosen, the “happy accidents” that helped form the Beatles when they were still teenagers, and feedback given to McCartney about his poetry in the song by Allen Ginsberg and William S. Burroughs. “Eleanor Rigby” is considered a breakthrough song by the Beatles because it was written NOT to be performed onstage.
Why?
Because McCartney published an 874-page book (!!!) called “Lyrics, 1956 to Present” in the U.K. and probably in the U.S (and elsewhere). The book was reviewed in the December, 10, 2021 issue of TLS.
In conjunction with The Beatles: Get Back, the 15-hour documentary directed by Peter Jackson on Disney and the book, The Beatles: Get Back, edited by John Harris, also both reviewed in the December, 10, 2021 issue of TLS.
That’s why.
The Beatles and their managers were always good with publicity. I remember, as a child, looking at a young teenage friend’s Beatles’ cards—like baseball cards.
ODDITIES: 22 Stories is on Kindle worldwide, including in the US
, in the UK, Canada, Australia, France, Italy, Spain, Germany, in the Netherlands, Mexico, Brazil, India, and Japan.
ODDITIES: 22 Stories is in Print as a beautiful trade paperback in the US
, in the UK, Canada, France, Italy, Germany, Spain, and Japan. New! Now in print at Australia
CHROME is in U.S. print as a beautiful trade paperback. Also in U.K. print, in German print, in French print, in Spanish print, in Italian print, and in Japanese print. New! Now in Print in Australia
The CHROME ebook is on US Kindle, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords, Apple, Kobo, and on UK Kindle, Canada Kindle, Australia Kindle, India Kindle, Germany Kindle, France Kindle, Spain Kindle, Italy Kindle, Netherlands Kindle, Japan Kindle, Brazil Kindle, and Mexico Kindle.
Summer of Love
is BACK IN PRINT in the U.S., U.K.,  France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and Japan, and now in Australia.
The Summer of Love ebook is on US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, BarnesandNoble, Smashwords, Apple, and Kobo. On Kindle worldwide in Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, India, Mexico, and Netherlands.
The Gilded Age
is BACK IN PRINT! Order the beautiful trade paperback in the U.S., in the U.K., in France, in Germany, in Italy, in Spain, in Japan and in Australia.
The ebook
is at BarnesandNoble, Apple, Kobo, and Smashwords and on Kindle worldwide at US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, India, Mexico, and Netherlands.
Visit me at http://www.lisamason.com for all my books, ebooks, stories, new reviews, interviews, round tables, cute cat pictures, the bespoke artwork and studio jewelry of Tom Robinson, forthcoming works, and more!

Tom borrowed more The New Yorker magazines for free from our lovely local library. Here are the articles I recommend: I’ll leave it up to you find the online links.
December 6, 2021 Issue
“Electricity and the Body” by Jerome Groopman
. The article begins with Groopman’s account—he and his wife are doctors—of his frightening tachycardia episode that nearly killed him. The article goes on to discuss the medicinal use of electricity throughout history. The ancients observed that the stone amber could transmit electricity (I call it “the amber” in my Arachne Trilogy) and believed wearing an amber necklace, men and women, would protect the wearer from all kinds of diseases. Then there were “electrical belts” in Victorian times, worn by men to give them “sexual vitality”. There is electroshock therapy, used today (more safely) to alleviate severe suicidal depression. A fascinating article recommended for serious readers.
November 29, 2021 Issue
“Pompeii’s Hidden Layer” by Rebecca Mead.
The author’s recent visit to the archeological site (four million visitors a year go there) is the preface to an account of historical efforts to excavate the ruins, which were discovered by monks drilling a water well in the 1700s. The fabulous, doomed city was buried under eighty feet of ash from the disastrous massive eruption of the volcano, Mt. Vesuvius. Only 30% or so of the ruins have been excavated, which activities were very dangerous—the overlying ash could collapse, destroying the ruins below—and trapped volcanic gases were still deadly. What treasures awaited the excavators, though—the colors on the murals and the floors were still as vibrant as they were two thousand years ago. Highly recommended. (I want to go visit! Over Christmas weekend, we saw the movie, “Pompeii”, which was very enjoyable (but derivative of “Gladiator”.)
“The Garden of Forking Paths” by Nicola Twilley. A maze-maker and his mazes, with color photographs. Recommended.
“The Decoders of the Rosetta Stone” by Jean Acocella. The Rosetta Stone is the key to decoding Egyptian hieroglyphs (which no one understood for centuries) and two other ancient languages, carved by some genius in Greece. Like the ruins of Pompeii, the Stone was discovered by accident, and it took a while from linguists to decode it. Recommended.
April 12, 2021 Issue
There’s an article about the artist, Helen Frankenthaler, in this issue but I don’t want to go into it—I will be too sarcastic and I don’t want to do that about another woman artist.
There’s an article, “The Zeitgeist of Midnight Cowboy” by Louis Menard. Reviewing the book “Shooting ‘Midnight Cowboy” by Glenn Frankel which was also reviewed in The Times Literary Supplement. To Hollywood’s surprise, the film won the Oscar for Best Picture and nominated for more categories. There’s some controversy about the film, which Tom and I possess (thanks to a neighbor) in a Director’s Cut. I recommend seeing the Director’s Cut for the additional fifteen minutes of Joe Buck’s previous life after he embarks on his quest to New York City. I don’t want to get into the controversies. You can look up the articles, on both sides of the Atlantic, for yourself. Suffice it to say, I find it a moving film of friendship in a cold, lonely megacity, and I always cry at the end.
November 6, 2021 Issue
“What a Feeling: How to Have More Energy” by Nick Paumgarten.
The author begins this article by describing he’s having “brownouts” on afternoons working at home during the pandemic. And further goes to say politicians, writers, artists, and entrepreneurs “regardless of talent” have huge success with “high energy.” (Hmm, I know persons who have that.) He goes on to discuss the issue of energy—how you can get more or, if you can’t, how to cope. Check it out.
November 15, 2021 Issue
“Towering Infernos: Life on the front line of megafires” by M. R. O’Conner
. This fascinating look particularly on megafires, how much more dangerous they are—they send massive smoke plumes so high up in the atmosphere that the force of the smoke interferes with jet airplanes. The article focuses on the firefighters—one firefighter, who served nine tours of duty in Iraq, remarked on being in a war zone was not nearly as dangerous on the fireline of a megafire. Many firefighters suffer PTSS, many of them commit suicide. This is may have been publicity for the subsequent federal legislation benefiting the firefighting effort (raising the firefighters’ low wages, for example) but I’m a Californian and I support it.
Finally, “Kandinsky at the Guggenheim” by Peter Schjeldahl about the show at the museum. With a full-color illustration of one of Kandinsky’s paintings. I like some of his paintings, others not (they’re sloppy and not planned well enough).
ODDITIES: 22 Stories is on Kindle worldwide, including in the US, in the UK, Canada, Australia, France, Italy, Spain, Germany, in the Netherlands, Mexico, Brazil, India, and Japan.
ODDITIES: 22 Stories is in Print as a beautiful trade paperback in the US
, in the UK, Canada, France, Italy, Germany, Spain, and Japan. New! Now in print at Australia
CHROME is in U.S. print as a beautiful trade paperback. Also in U.K. print, in German print, in French print, in Spanish print, in Italian print, and in Japanese print. New! Now in Print in Australia
The ebook is on US Kindle, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords, Apple, Kobo, and on UK Kindle, Canada Kindle, Australia Kindle, India Kindle, Germany Kindle, France Kindle, Spain Kindle, Italy Kindle, Netherlands Kindle, Japan Kindle, Brazil Kindle, and Mexico Kindle.
Visit me at http://www.lisamason.com for all my books, ebooks, stories, interviews, round tables, cute pet pictures, the bespoke artwork and studio jewelry of Tom Robinson, forthcoming works, and more!

“Clock’s Ticking” by Rachel Syme is a review in The New Yorker July 5, 2021 issue of “The Deadline Effect’ a book by magazine editor Christopher Cox. But the article is as much about Syme as about the book.
The Cox book is about the editor’s efforts to persuade writers to meet their necessary deadlines to publish the magazine on time.
And that’s good—reminding the tardy writer that many other people down the line—the copyeditors, the proofreaders, the publishers, the readers—are depending on YOU to turn in the work.
Part of the article is about Syme’s own difficulty in meeting her deadlines as a independent journalist. There are some journalists, she writes, who sensibly budget their time researching, writing, and editing and there are some—like her—who wait till the last minute and panic—often writing inaccuracies, incompleteness, and bad prose.
I’ll leave you to read the short article, if you’re interested, but my own take on deadlines: I’m good to go on copyediting and proofreading—I always meet my deadlines for those tasks—but  I’ll never write creative content on a deadline EVER again. Something about a deadline stops my creative flow dead—even if I have a proposal, even if I have an outline. Nope. The creative work has to be DONE before I can commit to a publishing deadline.
Do you have trouble with deadlines?
https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2021/07/05/what-deadlines-do-to-lifetimes
ODDITIES: 22 Stories is on Kindle worldwide, including in the US, in the UK, Canada, Australia, France, Italy, Spain, Germany, in the Netherlands, Mexico, Brazil, India, and Japan.
ODDITIES: 22 Stories is in Print as a beautiful trade paperback in the US
, in the UK, Canada, France, Italy, Germany, Spain, and Japan. New! Now in print at Australia
CHROME is in U.S. print as a beautiful trade paperback. Also in U.K. print, in German print, in French print, in Spanish print, in Italian print, and in Japanese print. New! Now in Print in Australia
The ebook is on US Kindle, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords, Apple, Kobo, and on UK Kindle, Canada Kindle, Australia Kindle, India Kindle, Germany Kindle, France Kindle, Spain Kindle, Italy Kindle, Netherlands Kindle, Japan Kindle, Brazil Kindle, and Mexico Kindle.
Visit me at http://www.lisamason.com for all my books, ebooks, stories, interviews, round tables, cute pet pictures, the bespoke artwork and studio jewelry of Tom Robinson, forthcoming works, and more!

I’m so thrilled this book is back in print! And as timely as ever!
What readers say:
5.0 out of 5 stars I dig this book!
Reviewed in the United States on March 11, 2020
Summer of Love is a beautiful work of literature encapsulated within the science-fiction genre. It invites you on an emotionally jostling roller coaster ride.
Lisa Mason is a prolific author who weaves a time-travel story that delves into many underlying themes at a micro and macro level during the famous “Summer of Love” pandemic in Haight Ashbury, San Francisco, in 1967.
The author also descends underneath the epidermis of the street’s kaleidoscopic and “groovy” ambiance to reveal what is and what is not through each character’s eyes — and whether or not we can rely on hope to wake us up the next morning.
I felt the characters (even the secondary ones), the moments, the sights, the sounds and the smells of the time. As if I myself was time traveling. I found myself not only reading but tasting each word; sometimes going back to read a sentence, a paragraph or a page again.
This is a novel I will not hesitate to recommend. https://www.amazon.com/dp/1548106119
“This book was so true to life that I felt like I was there. I recommend it to anyone.”
“More than a great science-fiction, a great novel as well.”
“My favourite SF book of all time, beautiful, cynical and completely involving….Unmissable!”
2018 review of SUMMER OF LOVE at http://sfbookreview.blogspot.com/2018/02/summer-of-love-by-lisa-mason.html
”Ever since the Save Betty project completed there has been degradation in the archives. The Luxon Institute for Superluminal Applications (LISA, still love that acronym) has determined that San Francisco in 1967 is a hot dim spot. They commission the Summer of Love project. Twenty-one year old Chiron Cat’s Eye in Draco will t-port from 2467 to the summer of love where he is to find the Axis, a teenage girl from the Midwest will have important descendants, and protect her through the summer. This Susan Stein takes an alias, so Chiron has only probabilities to know if he finds the right girl.
In 1967 Susan receives a postcard from Nance, aka Penny Lane, who is in San Francisco. Her parents find the postcard, tear it up and burn it. She runs away that night and takes the name Starbright. She arrives hoping to see Penny Lane, but instead meets up with Stan the Man, manager of the Double Boogie band. She is invited to live with them in a house that is a constant party. She loves it, but a week later Stan hooks up with someone new. She meets Ruby again and Ruby takes her in. That first night Chiron saw an eye symbol by Ruby’s shop, decided to hang around there and Ruby let him sleep on the couch. He’s not sure that Starbright is the Axis, but there is a high probability. 
Without being preachy major themes in the book include the environment, population control, women’s rights, and addiction. These were put into the setting of real life 1967. Street names referenced in the book exist and the Grateful Dead did have a concert there on August 22. I enjoyed the story without any nostalgic feeling, other than references to old Star Trek episodes and other SF works.
I really enjoyed the book. It was excellent and the first chapter or two set up encounters throughout the rest of the book. I loved all three of the main characters, Starbright, Chiron and Ruby.” By John Loyd
Book Description:
The year is 1967 and something new is sweeping across America: good vibes, bad vibes, psychedelic music, psychedelic drugs, anti-war protests, racial tension, free love, bikers, dropouts, flower children. An age of innocence, a time of danger. The Summer of Love.
San Francisco is the Summer of Love, where runaway flower children flock to join the hip elite and squares cruise the streets to view the human zoo.
Lost in these strange and wondrous days, teenager Susan Bell, alias Starbright, has run away from the straight suburbs of Cleveland to find her troubled best friend. Her path will cross with Chiron Cat’s Eye in Draco, a strange and beautiful young man who has journeyed farther than she could ever imagine.
With the help of Ruby A. Maverick, a wise and feisty half-black, half-white hip entrepreneur, Susan and Chi discover a love that spans five centuries. But can they save the world from demons threatening to destroy all space and time?
A harrowing coming of age. A friendship ending in tragedy. A terrifying far future. A love spanning five centuries. And a gritty portrait of a unique time in American history.
The cover, hand-drawn by Tom Robinson, is styled to look like a 1960s psychedelic poster.
What the professional book reviewers say:
“Captures the moment perfectly and offers a tantalizing glimpse of its wonderful and terrible consequences.” The San Francisco Chronicle
“A fine novel packed with vivid detail, colorful characters, and genuine insight.” The Washington Post Book World
“Remarkable. . . .the intellect on display within these psychedelically packaged pages is clear-sighted, witty, and wise.” Locus Magazine
“Mason has an astonishing gift. Her chief characters almost walk off the page. And the story is as significant as anyone could wish. This book will surely be on the prize ballots.” Analog
“A priority purchase.” Library Journal
5 stars From the Readers
Calling All Fans
Amazon Verified Purchase
‘Summer of Love is an important American literary contribution that may very well have a strong and viable fan base. Where are you? Join us!
This novel is loads of fun to read. The majority of the characters are hippies from the 1960s who meet a stranger from the future who’s looking to save his world. This fellow, Chiron, needs to find a troubled adolescent teen named Susan (a.k.a. Starbright) for a very compelling reason. The book has a great deal to offer: swift action, lovable characters, spiritual insight, and well-chosen primary documents such as essays, poems, and news articles which round out the reader’s understanding of the worldview of the novel.
I think Summer of Love has excellent potential for a wider audience. I hope it continues to enjoy a healthy amount of sales in the used books market on this site. I wish even more for it to be in wider circulation. Some books talk about the sixties. This novel IS the sixties, thanks to the spirit and scholarship of its author. And, as one reader aptly put it, ‘the sci-fi stuff is just plain off the hook.’ Get a copy. Most people who have read it seem to respect it and enjoy it every bit as much as I do.”
New Reader Review! “Just checked to see if this book was on Kindle. It has been many years since I’ve read it but I remember it as one of my very favorite books. Time to go back and re-read it!”
New Reader Review
Kent Peterson
5.0 out of 5 stars A Fine Story
10 February 2015 – Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
Summer of Love, A Time Travel is a fine story. Lisa Mason takes three interesting characters, a time traveller from a future 500 years hence, a 14-year-old midwestern runaway flower child, and hip shopkeeper and places them all in the fascinating place and time that was San Francisco’s Summer of Love, 1967.
Mason has certainly done her homework. You can almost smell the pot and patchouli, see the painted faces and hear the sounds of Janis and the Grateful Dead as Chi, Starbright and Ruby fight to hold on to what really matters at a time when everything seems possible and even the smallest things can have huge consequences.
The time travel plot is nicely (if a bit predictably) done and the glimpses from Chi’s future world are fascinating, frightening and ultimately hopeful. Starbright is 100 percent convincing as a confused, loyal, idealistic, moody teenager who really could hold the key to what is to come. And Ruby Maverick, the shopkeeper who reluctantly gives the two young strangers shelter and strength in a strange and wondrous time is strong and smart and the kind of friend you’d want holding your hand or watching your back when the trip starts going strange.
Summer of Love, A Time Travel is not a rose-colored look backwards. It’s is a kaleidoscopic look at a time of both darkness and light, of confusion and clarity. It’s scary and beautiful, a strange trip where maybe all you need is a little love and some flowers in your hair.
New Reader Review
Eos
5.0 out of 5 starsTime travel done right
20 August 2017 – Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
This is a longtime favorite novel. Mason’s time travel tale is fascinating as both a tale of the future and of the past. I am delighted it is now available as a Kindle edition as my paperback copy is long past its prime.
New Reader Review
paula ferre
5.0 out of 5 stars… the last 20 years – it is such a great story.
26 September 2016
Verified Purchase
I’ve read this book 3 or 4 times in the last 20 years – it is such a great story.
Find the PRINT BOOK in the U.S., U.K.,  France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Japan, and  Australia.
The ebook is on US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, Smashwords, Apple, and Kobo. On Kindle worldwide in Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, India, Mexico, and Netherlands.
So there you have it, my friends. Whether you’re a longtime reader or new to the book, I hope you enjoy this classic.
Join my other patrons on my Patreon page at https://www.patreon.com/bePatron?u=23011206. I’m offering brand-new and previously published delightful stories, book excerpts, writing tips, movie reviews, and more!
Visit me at www.lisamason.com for all my books, ebooks, stories, and screenplays, beautiful covers, reviews, interviews, blogs, roundtables, adorable cat pictures, forthcoming works, fine art and bespoke jewelry by my husband Tom Robinson, worldwide links, and more!

The September 6, 2021 issue is the Annual Food and Drink at The New Yorker. There’s a hilarious cover on the magazine, called “Food For Thought”. In the issue are plenty of reprints: a reprint of the cartoon of the cat and dog sitting at a bar, discussing their food preferences. I described the cartoon on Facebook and got plenty of posts from cat parents who saw their cats eating dog food, especially dog biscuits. There’s a one-page monograph from Nora Ephron, “The Sandwich,” about a Los Angeles deli that serves the perfect pastrami (steamed three hours) on seeded bread (deli-cooked).
There’s a story, “Grub”, about people in the first world who eat bugs—plenty of people in the third world do—and how plenty of people won’t, even though eating bugs is easier on the world ecosystem (crickets, which have good protein, don’t require rainforests to be cut down). People in France used to consider lobster to be “bugs” and they wouldn’t eat them. Now lobster is a gourmet treat in France. Husband Tom calls my beloved shrimp “sea bugs”. I don’t like to think about that when I’m eating shrimp.
Have you ever eaten bugs? I never have, but Husband Tom has. He tasted grasshoppers from France (of all places!) in a jar (they were like bacon, only different, he recalls) and once ate red ants (they were spicy, he recalls).
Ewwww!
Then there’s “Hell’s Kitchen”, by Antony Bourdain. Clearly a reprint since Bourdain is dead, by suicide. (I guess some people can’t handle fame, money, handsomeness, and something they love to do. Tragic.)
Bourdain writes about one eighteen-hour day in a frantic day in the chef’s life of Les Halles, a high-end French restaurant on Park Avenue South.
Bourdain has to plan the specials for the busy lunch and for the busier dinner hour, shop for food at the wholesale markets, wrestle an entire dead pig into the freezer, manage the various specialty cooks and the waiters, prepare orders as the bills come in, and, in all of this, swearing, swallowing aspirin, swallowing alcohol, and burning his hands.
I read and loved Bourdain’s “Kitchen Confidential” book (he took lots of drugs in those accounts, too). His advice, among other tidbits, is to eat at restaurants on Thursdays—that’s when the restaurants order fresh food for the weekend. And don’t eat at restaurants on Sunday—that’s when restaurants concoct “specials” (like a seafood omelet) for the weekend’s leftovers.
The issue is Recommended. https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2021/09/06
ODDITIES: 22 Stories is on Kindle worldwide, including in the US
, in the UK, Canada, Australia, France, Italy, Spain, Germany, in the Netherlands, Mexico, Brazil, India, and Japan.
ODDITIES: 22 Stories is in Print as a beautiful trade paperback in the US
, in the UK, Canada, France, Italy, Germany, Spain, and Japan. New! Now in print at Australia
CHROME is in U.S. print as a beautiful trade paperback. Also in U.K. print, in German print, in French print, in Spanish print, in Italian print, and in Japanese print. New! Now in Print in Australia
The ebook is on US Kindle, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords, Apple, Kobo, and on UK Kindle, Canada Kindle, Australia Kindle, India Kindle, Germany Kindle, France Kindle, Spain Kindle, Italy Kindle, Netherlands Kindle, Japan Kindle, Brazil Kindle, and Mexico Kindle.
Visit me at http://www.lisamason.com for all my books, ebooks, stories, interviews, round tables, cute pet pictures, the bespoke artwork and studio jewelry of Tom Robinson, forthcoming works, and more!

Updated for 2021! Published in print in eight countries and as an ebook on eighteen markets worldwide.
As I mulled over my published short fiction (now forty stories) for my first collection, I found seven wildly different stories with one thing in common–a heroine totally unlike me. I’m the girl next door. I have no idea where these strange ladies came from.
In The Oniomancer (Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine), a Chinese-American punk bicycle messenger finds an artifact on the street. In Guardian (Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine), an African-American gallerist resorts to voodoo to confront a criminal. In Felicitas (Desire Burn: Women Writing from the Dark Side of Passion [Carroll and Graf]), an immigrant faces life as a cat shapeshifter. In Stripper (Unique Magazine), an exotic dancer battles the Mob. In Triad (Universe 2 [Bantam]), Dana Anad lives half the time as a woman, half the time as a man, and falls in love with a very strange lady. In Destination (Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction), a driver takes three strangers from a ride board on a cross-country trip as the radio reports that a serial killer is on the loose. In Transformation and the Postmodern Identity Crisis (Fantastic Alice [Ace]), Alice considers life after Wonderland.
Five stars on Facebook and Amazon! “Great work, Lisa Mason!”
“Hilarious, provocative, profound.”
From Jeanne-Mary Allen, Author on Facebook and the Book Brothers Blog: “Kyle Wylde and I are thrilled to have found such a talented, dedicated, and brilliant collection of shorts in Strange Ladies: 7 Stories…Your style/craft is highly impressive.”
From the San Francisco Book Review: “Strange Ladies: 7 Stories offers everything you could possibly want, from more traditional science fiction and fantasy tropes to thought-provoking explorations of gender issues and pleasing postmodern humor…This is a must-read collection.” http://anotheruniverse.com/strange-ladies-7-stories/
From the Book Brothers Review Blog: “Lisa Mason might just be the female Philip K. Dick. Like Dick, Mason’s stories are far more than just sci-fi tales, they are brimming with insight into human consciousness and the social condition….Strange Ladies: 7 Storiesis a sci-fi collection of excellent quality. If you like deeply crafted worlds with strange, yet relatable characters, then you won’t want to miss it.” http://www.thebookbrothers.com/2013/09/the-book-brothers-review-strange.html#more
And on Amazon: 5.0 out of 5 stars This one falls in the must-read category, an appellation that I rarely use.
“I have been a fan of Lisa Mason from the beginning of her writing career, but I confess that I often overlook her short fiction. That turns out to have been a big mistake! I have just read Strange Ladies thinking I would revisit a few old friends and discover a few I had missed. Well, I had missed more than I had thought, and I regret that oversight. This collection was so much fun! I loved each and every story and enjoyed their unique twists, turns, and insights. I thank Ms Mason especially, though, for the high note ending with the big smiles in Transformation and the Postmodern Identity Crisis. Uh oh, I guess I still am a child of the summer of love. Well played. You made me laugh at the world and myself.”
“I’m quite impressed, not only by the writing, which gleams and sparkles, but also by [Lisa Mason’s] versatility . . . Mason is a wordsmith . . . her modern take on Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland is a hilarious gem! [This collection] sparkles, whirls, and fizzes. Mason is clearly a writer to follow!”—Amazing Stories
5.0 out of 5 stars Great collection that will make you think
Format: Kindle Edition
“My definition of a good short story is one that you keep thinking about for days, and this book had several of them.”
Strange Ladies: 7 Stories (“A must-read collection—The San Francisco Review of Books). On Nook, Smashwords, Apple, and Kobo.
On Kindle at US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, India, Mexico, and Netherlands.
Strange Ladies: 7 Stories is in Print in the U.S., in the U.K., in Germany, in France, in Spain, in Italy, and in Japan. New! Now in
Australia.New! My second collection ODDITIES: 22 Stories in print and an ebook.Visit me at www.lisamason.com for all my books, ebooks, stories, and screenplays, worldwide links, beautiful covers, reviews, interviews, blogs, round-tables, adorable cat pictures, forthcoming works, fine art and bespoke jewelry by my husband Tom Robinson, and more!