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Interview with Amazon Kindle Singles Best Selling Author Mishka Shubaly

3 Dec

I became acquainted with a very interesting gentleman on the internet by way of me leaving a not so favorable review of a Kindle Single he had written on Amazon.com. The review was favorable for the story but not so for the main character, which happened to be the author. He responded to my comment and an exchange began and I better understood him. It turns out my views were fueled by my own experience, which actually meant the author did his job, he made me feel.

Let’s back up, what is a Kindle Single, you may ask? They are short stories or works between 5,000 and 30,000 words, a sort of novella only available in digital version using Kindle or an online reader. Works are submitted or chosen by Amazon and promoted by them. Not just anyone can sell a Kindle Single, it’s pretty much like they are a publisher and they say yay or nay. It has become quite lucrative for some.

Mishka

So, enter Mishka Shubaly. Mishka has written seven, count ’em 7, best selling Kindle Singles! The poster boy for Amazon Kindle Single success stories has recently published his seventh hit Of Mice and Me.

I absolutely loved this story. I read it from beginning to end in just a few hours, I couldn’t put it down. The description from Amazon is most accurate…

“At 37, writer/musician Mishka Shubaly thought his life was going great. He had a beautiful new girlfriend and sudden prosperity as an author. But when he adopts an orphaned infant mouse, his world is turned on its head. The mouse comes to symbolize everything left unresolved in his life — his relationship with his divorced parents, his fear of family and commitment, and his inability to feel true happiness and love. By turns hilarious and moving, Mishka Shubaly’s latest Kindle Single captures the journey we all take in life — from being loved, to giving love.”

While clearing brush he finds a baby mouse in dire straits and somehow feels compelled (maybe guilt) to help the mouse. Help turns into care and nurturing, which haven’t been natural instincts for Mishka thus far in his life having never been married nor a parent and being a recovering addict. It’s funny, it’s moving, it’s insightful. I highly recommend this Kindle Single. I also recommend all of his other works which can be found here at Mishka Shubaly’s Author Page on Amazon.com.

As an added bonus, I had an interview with Mishka to gain more insight on the author and Kindle Singles, excerpts are below… (my questions/comments in bold)

Where were you born and raised?
Born in a small town in Ontario, Canada. Moved to Los Alamos, New Mexico when I was 8. Moved to New Hampshire when I was 13. Started college in Massachusetts when I was 15. Then… the wind sorta took me. Saskatchewan, Colorado, Massachusetts, Virgin Islands, time in California and Virginia. Wound up in NYC at 21 and been here ever since. Moved here with $300 16 years ago this month. Jesus.
Damn, girl! Ok, what college for undergrad?
Simon’s Rock for two years, then University of Colorado for BFA, then Columbia for my MFA. I mean, none of that shit matters, though…
No, I know but in a way it does. It doesn’t necessarily “matter” but it contributes to who you are, good or bad.
What’s remarkable is how little I’ve done considering how much $ was spent on my stupid education
You sound like you’ve had a Kerouac-esque life.
In some ways, yes. I wanted to be like Jack Kerouac until I read his writing and realized that I had nothing in common with him. I was way more into Burroughs and Bukowski.
Well, I mean I read a biography on JK and he moved around a lot.
I hated the whole ‘Beat’ movement until I read the description of it not as a drumbeat but as in ‘tired, worn out.’ That made a lot of sense to me.
I realized in the book that I didn’t like him because he was an irresponsible, bored, dick. And I’m not comparing that part to you at all, just the moving around. So, when did the interest in writing start
I can’t remember ever not having an interest in story– telling stories, hearing stories, reading stories. Apparently, I wrote narratives in my head before I could write. (this is from my mom) when I was six, I wanted to be a kind of troubadour/ roustabout, just traveling from town to town with my guitar and, Jesus, I don’t know, a bindle?
hahaha
When I was 17, despairing about what I would do with my life, my mom said “you’ll probably be a writer” and bought me a subscription to the New Yorker. That was a fairly pivotal moment for me. I think that’s when I started getting serious about it. Or “serious.” I mean, I was 17.
Has your Mother always been supportive, encouraging like that?
FUCK YEAH

I can’t remember which of your stories contained the story about grad school.
I think it was Beat the Devil, the one you HATED, the one that made you HATE ME!
Oh stop with the pity party. I was internalizing your story. lol
To be fair, that was a pretty rough story to start with a lot of people had negative reactions to it.
Self-examination can blow. But can be as healthy as a colon cleanse when it’s done.
It was a brutal time in my life, and it’s a brutal aspect of my personality. I’m as proud of the writing as I am unproud of the behavior described. But it’s not really a story that leaves the reader eager to read more by me. C’mon, Madge, grill me! where are all the gotcha questions?
I’m tricking you right now and you don’t even know it.
grrrrrrreat
Um, so where was I? OK, so did you feel guilty making money off stories of being a train wreck and leaving people in mangled bloody heaps behind you? How was that for gotcha?
Well-played
*curtsies* Was your first published work a Kindles Single or was there something before it?
I feel guilty for a few things, okay a lot of things, okay almost everything. But I don’t feel guilty about my writing or the money its generated. I earned those stories the hard way. Yes, I did hurt some people but, even when I was fucked up, I did my best to shield people from the worst because I understood that I was fucked up. I didn’t really have a long-suffering enabler who I abused and took advantage of. One thing we tend to forget is that being wrong doesn’t necessarily make the other party right. I was wrong for a lot of my drinking career… but a lot of the other folks involved were also wrong. I published a few reckless accounts of my drug abuse in the NYPress before I published via Kindle Singles. But that was certainly my first publishing of note.
Wow. I’m really impressed with your insight.
Well… I worry about my past professionally, you know? I sort of get paid to go through therapy in public.
It ain’t always fun, but it beats having a real job.
———–
Beats having a real job indeed. I had a lot of fun interviewing Mishka Shubaly. I’m going to keep trying to get my stuff on Kindle Singles, I want to be just like Mishka when I grow up, sans being a male recovering addict. Big kudos to you sir, and I look forward to reading more in the future! Again visit Amazon.com to see the collection of his (and others) Kindle Singles.

 

 

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Announcing the Title of My New Book and Trying to Outrun the Police

20 Feb

Drumroll please…

I have a new book coming out.  Tentative release date, May 1st 2014.  Are you ready for the title?  Ok, here it its…

“Poverty Line Fabulous”

Yes, yes unfortunately this is a true story about my adventures in destitute-ed-ness (my new word).  It’s my story of trying to raise 3 kids alone, make an impression and get a leg up in the working world trying desperately to find a successful career for myself, and trying to contribute to my kid’s private school world, all while getting unemployment or scrubbing friend’s toilets and receiving food stamps.

Tagline:  “I have a 5 year old Calvin Klein dress from Marshall’s and I’m not afraid to use it!”

It’s got a lot of funny stories about trying to pretend I’ve got my shit together while my world is in shambles.  But it’s also an inspirational story that proves you can be down but not necessarily out.  You don’t always have to accept your lot in life.  You can create a new life… with hard work, perseverance and a good fitting bra.

You can still always get my first book while you wait – “When Life Gives You Lemons… at Least You Won’t Get Scurvy!” Click here

Stay tuned…

Soooo… a quick blog about something of which I’ve been seeing a lot.  I swear to God, for the past several years I see about 3 of these stories a day in the local news alone…

Troopers: NY man jailed; drove 144 mph on Thruway

pedro-ramirezCuebas

(Ladies, does he turn you on?)

Well that’s one of the larger scale ones, every day you get some idiot on the New York State Thruway that thinks he’s in a video game.  However I do find the most shocking thing about that story is that the dude got an Acura to go 144 mph. Then you get a couple of these little ones every day…

Rochester man facing charges after early morning police chase

I just don’t get it.  Well I mean I do, because every time you read these it turns out the guy (I only ever read one story that was a girl) was drunk or tweakin’ or was holdin’ drugs or weapons or had warrants.  So, if you’re drunk or methed out I don’t suppose you have the best judgement at the moment.  However, does anyone ever get away?  You eventually crash your ass, or by any chance you do give the cops the slip, they have your license plate (if not stolen) and description and video and all kinds of crap.

Is it the excitement then?  Like seriously, do these guys think they are in a movie or video game?  They get an adrenaline rush? Now mind you, I’ve been known to get places a little faster than other people on the New York State Thruway, but that’s just because I have places to go, I don’t get a thrill.  In fact, I’m mostly annoyed while doing it.  But for excitement, I’m perfectly content to park my ass on the couch with some wine and cheese, that’s plenty of excitement for me.  If I want to get crazy, I’ll only be wearing a t-shirt, underwear, and black socks… awwwww yea now, look out!  No really, my real adrenaline rush is going to the gay bar with my boys and gossiping… where else can I have a guy that just got arrested for burying a body in his backyard standing 2 inches from me staring me down?  Oh girl, that’s a story for another day…

But really, just stop your car and get the minimum charges, rather than racking up a whole bunch more serious charges, not to mention maybe killing or injuring some innocent folks who just happen to be in your stupid douchebag way.  People just do stupid shit for a thrill.  Like that Paul Walker actor guy.  Had the world by the balls… but “Hey let’s go really really fast on a curvy residential road so I can get a boner!”  Uh which is something I’m sure he had done tons of times while filming those Fast and Furious (which coincidentally is a nickname for a guy I used to date) movies.

In fact I know a very well respected gentleman who’s son was arrested for going 100 mph on his crotch rocket trying to outrun police.  The 20 something year old kid was there while Dad was telling the story, the kid thought it was funny and was obviously very proud.  Dad not so much, but I think he still was a little proud that his son was so manly.  Ack.

I just don’t get it.  So, stop it already.  It’s not cool.  If you are some loser that’s in and out of jail anyway and you don’t mind because you can’t function in normal society, find another way to get back to jail without putting other people at risk.  Do some loitering or something… litter or get too many parking tickets or play your music too loud. (oh wait that could get you shot these days)  Just stop using my New York State Thruway as a racetrack please… it’s not the God damn Autobahn.

While this is one of the most awesomely f-ing incredible songs by the most phenomenal amaizngly excellent band in the world… it’s no way to live.

The Year of Madge with Video Footage

16 Jan

Do you guys remember the episode of Seinfeld (if you say you’ve never seen it or don’t know what it is, you should probably just leave my blog now… ok just kidding, kind of) where George decided it was the “Summer of George”?

Well, I proclaim this to be the “Year of Madge”!  Ok ok, I know I proclaimed it in like 2006… which wasn’t too bad of a year, but I really mean it this time.  Things are going to go my way God damn it, if I have to take all of you down with me!   I feel I have turned a corner.  I am getting a whole crap load of opportunities.  I have another article in Rochester Woman in Feb.  And I have a feature article written by me, about my experiences with mid-life dating and my book coming out in the magazine that comes in the Sunday edition of Rochester Democrat and Chronicle.  Circulation, close to 200,000… I’ll take that bit of extra marketing, thanks!  They just asked me to set up a photo shoot for it… how obnoxious can I be for that one, huh?

I was asked by Amazon to submit something for Kindle Singles.  On top of that I have several other projects I’m working on, so I’m incredibly busy and blessed.  Let’s see if this can last the whole year and not shit the bed on me, mkay?

So, besides that just wanted to let you in on my newest obsession… Vines.  You can download the Vine app onto your phone and shoot 3 second videos.  It’s quite the popular thing with the kids these days.  Check out Vine.co.  Here is a little compilation from YouTube…

And here of course are some gems that I made…

http://vine.co/v/hLleMeg6g0E 

https://vine.co/v/hLHUKeH7LEK 

Let me see your Vines!  If you have an account, tell me your username so I can follow you!  My handle of course is Madge Madigan.

More Madge Bang for Your Buck

1 Oct

Hello and welcome to Tuesday.

Just a short little blog today to tell you I am changing things around.  I’m very happy to say, I have a lot going on.  Cross your fingers that Madge, Inc. may be a huge national conglomerate soon.  Ok, well at least that I’ll be having a nice little brand going for myself.  So, since I’ve got a lot going on and I’m writing various blogs for other sites and publications and such, I am changing my schedule. (as well as my underwear)

I will no longer have two blogs a week here.  I will only post here on Thursdays.  I will post at http://www.singleparentmadge.wordpress.com every Tuesday.  In the next week or two that blog will be integrated into http://www.divorcedmoms.com when it launches but you should still be able to use that link.  So today I posted a blog there… which you can find here.  Please go check it out and follow and all that good stuff.  Tell your friends, (it’ll be just like Amway sans the membership fee and pressure to buy).   It is mainly about single parenting and divorce, so if that’s not your thing I understand.  It’s still a chuckle, though!  (allegedly)

Other things going on… I’ll be featured in a video presentation of a colleague that is launching a book this month.  More details to follow.

I am speaking at this event tonight.  Please come out if your are local.

Resolve ad

 

 

I have a new little coffee table companion book to “Lemons” coming out at the end of the month.

And of course, as always my book “When Life Gives You Lemons… at Least You Won’t Get Scurvy!” is available here

Sorry if this blog is like one big commercial but I just had to let y’all know what was what.  Sister’s gotta’ earn a dollah… somehow other than hooking.  See you on Thursday!

Top 20 Reasons to Have a Cocktail

11 Jul

Quick FYI

FREE Kindle version of my book “When Life Gives You Lemons… at Least You Won’t Get Scurvy!” available on Amazon.com thru Friday 7/12!   CLICK HERE

Top 20 Reasons to Drink

“Have a cocktail because…”

1.  You’re not an alcoholic.

2.  Heroin just gives you a headache.

3.  Work is over for the day… or close enough.

4.  The kids are finally in bed…or close enough.

5.  The dish ran away with the spoon.

6.  To forget the guy that doesn’t want to be with you.

7.  The guy that does want to be with you looks better after a few

8.  How else will you tolerate your child’s band concert?

9.  It’s Thursday.

10.  Housework gets done quicker.  You don’t seem to notice the stains your missing when you’re drunk.

11.  It’s an excuse not to have to take your kids anywhere, “No I’m not driving you to T-ball, Mommy’s drunk.”

12.  You’ll feel less self-conscious about not wearing pants in public.

13.  It’s easier to make that $50 making a YouPorn video.

14.  It will make recording a video of your drunken ramblings for YouTube seem like a HILARIOUS idea.

15.  It will help your one night stand productivity go through the roof!

16.  I like spatulas.

17.  It will make your Kenny Rogers karaoke singing so much more entertaining.

18.  I’ve seen you drive, you probably do drive better drunk.

19.  You’ll be able to release your pent-up inner asshole.

20.  Maybe I’ll seem funnier.

(This is for laughs, I don’t condone inappropriate or dangerous use of alcohol… unless it involves sparkly unicorns)

Knock Knock, Who’s There? A Jackass.

25 Jun

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Seriously, did the defense attorney for George Zimmerman start out his opening arguments with a knock knock joke?  I can tell you right now they are going to find that guy guilty if that’s the caliber of his lawyer.  That’s what happens when you get your attorney from “Lawyer’s Bargain Outlet”.

Here’s a thing that sucks, though,  you can buy your verdict.  If you have enough money, you can get a top notch lawyer that will just bedazzle the jury with bullshit and nitpick the shit out of the law until they find a loophole.  I don’t know how defense attorneys can live with themselves.  Not having ever been arrested for anything or knowing anyone who has ever been accused of a breaking the law other than a traffic ticket or urinating in public… I don’t know what really happens in court.  Why is it a rare occurrence that someone will just say, “Yea, I did it”?  I guess that’s part of being a criminal, huh?  You tend to lie?

How come courts aren’t like parents and say, “Ok, if you just told us you did it and say you are sorry we won’t give you the most severe penalty allowed by law”?  Is that not a thing?  No, everybody has to say ‘No, not me I didn’t do it!” and then the public has to pay for a costly trial.  Like even in cases where somebody is caught red-handed on video surveillance doing something and they plead not guilty. What the fuck?!  Can someone please hep me with this, because I’m dumbfounded?

Well that’s about all I have time for today, I have to run for an appearance on the local NBC affiliate Noon News, talking about my book.  Here is a brief rundown of events this week, feel free to join in…

Today Tuesday June 25th, I will be interviewed on NBC10 News at Noon, live. (Holy crap, maybe I’ll have a nip slip)

Here is the video of the interview:  http://www.whec.com/article/stories/S3078683.shtml?cat=0

Wednesday June 26th, Book signing at Beau Monde Salon, 7181 Rte. 96, Victor, NY 6:00pm-9:00pm

Thursday June 27th, Book signing at Lux Lounge, 666 South Ave., Rochester, NY 6:00pm-8:00pm

Things are going great with the book, getting some great reviews.  More reviews are always welcome!  You can see the reviews at Goodreads.com and Amazon.com where the book is available for purchase. (also at BarnesandNoble.com and other online stores)

Two of my favorite reviews:

“Very good book that had me laughing at many of life’s little absurdities’. Madge tackles life’s ups and downs with a sense of humor, an irreverent attitude and common sense. I loved this book and would recommend it to anyone needing a good laugh and feeling of “hey if she can get through it all so can I”. Will definitely keep an eye out for any future books b y this author.”

“Madge is… Erma Bombeck with a cocktail and a rack. 🙂 She’s also, by turns, heartwarming, and wonderfully sarcastic. Shine on!”

Thanks guys, don’t forget to share my crap on Twitter and Facebook!  Appreciate it!

A Small Pick-Me-Up for Your Craptastic Day

28 May

What an ultra craptastic “holiday” weekend, mostly because of the weather – cold and rainy.  And the trend continues today… cold, rainy.  I am so busy with having gone to NYU to get my son from school and tomorrow I have a book launch/book signing (if anyone local is interested email me at margaretfmadigan@gmail.com for details), I have lost the will to write something interesting/witty at the moment.  But I think a smile and laugh are necessary today, so I give you this video, if this doesn’t make you smile, you are dead inside…

Buy my book “When Life Gives You Lemons… at Least You Won’t Get Scurvy!”

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