I thought writing an author bio was hard. Writing a synopsis of your book is like going in for a transrectal ultrasound (TRUS) guided biopsy. (Yes, I got that from a google search, but it sounds exactly as torturous as writing a synopsis.)
I've been publishing for more than two decades. When it comes to writing and publishing, and all that comes with those practices, I like to think I'm an expert. But some things that you think might get easier the more you do them actually don't get easy. They remain just as frustratingly difficult to do. That's if you actually care about representing a literary work properly. If you are the type that likes to wing it, then you won't concern yourself much with doing a good job. Just well enough to get by. Getting by gets you nowhere in the world of publishing. You got to stand out.
That's why author bios and book synopses are important. These have always been my toughest areas regarding the publishing and writing process.
Take, for instance, my newest publication: "Once Upon A Bad Hombre".
I wrote the damn thing. It took me at least two years (on and off) of editing, revising, and editing some more, to get to the point where I thought it might be ready to be published. So, it got published. But after publishing a book, things don't just take off by themselves. You can't just sit back and relax and let the book go where it needs to go and say what it needs to say. You got to be the representative and pusher of your work. That, or pay someone to do those things for you.
For authors who have little to no experience writing promotional material, this second option is favorable. For people, like myself, who have experience in writing and promoting literary works, the work is doable. You can even exceed at it. But that don't mean you're going to like it one bit, or find it easy to do. That's my situation.
I'm trying out my own book synopsis here. I want to get your opinion on it. How does it sound? Is it attention-grabbing? Too wordy? Makes sense? Let me know.
"A new administration is in power in the U.S. promising to enact a 'solution that is final' to the 'immigrant problem'. In spite of the rhetoric, no one seems to care that immigrants are going missing in increasing numbers, as their fellow compatriots continue with their daily lives watching their telenovelas like any normal day. Meanwhile, a mysterious ash falls across the U.S. and Mexico, and no one knows its true source. When Marco, a reporter for the Daily News Report, is assigned to investigate rumors of a secret immigrant panel headed by the president's staff, his investigation uncovers truths too dangerous to reveal to the general public, and he is taken off the story. Facing the choice of keeping the truth in the dark, or telling the world one way or another, Marco decides to go underground and head all the way to Mexico City to reveal the plot against all people of Mexican descent. Along the way, Marco is triggered by people complacently sitting around in public spaces watching telenovelas in cafes and hair salons, which drives him to shoot the TV sets to send a message, but no one seems to get it. Will Mexicans stop living vicarious lives of fantasy through their telenovelas and live life to the fullest? Or will time run out once Marco reaches his destination and reveals the news of an impending Mexican apocalypse?"
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Thanks for the feedback. If you have not yet, please go like my page on Facebook, Gabriel Hugo Author. And share this post with others who might find it useful. I appreciate it.
P.s. Come back soon for part 2 of Synopsis Biopsy, where I "dissect" the structure of my synopsis to offer you a kind of how-to on writing synopses.
Writing a bio has got to be one of the hardest things an author does in his or her profession. Writing ain't easy. But writing about your self? That's just torture. For example, I had such a hard time with it that I actually used the following bio in one of my books:
"Gabriel Hugo comes from a lineage of people as old as the mountains. They saw the rise of civilization in the Americas. They were there, as well, to see the fall of Tenochtitlan. They returned to the caves of Aztlan for generations but observed from a distance as the new peoples took root and history transpired. They waited until the prophecy of Moctezuma was fulfilled, and now have returned after the long night bringing a new day and the new age of the sixth sun."
I was going for mysterious, but maybe just came off as pretentious? So I thought, maybe I need to rework this whole bio thing. Maybe at some level people really do want to know more about me and what I have done. Also, about who I am. My personal life. I used to think that nobody truly cared about the man behind the stories. Now I'm not so sure...
So, I'm looking for thoughts on my new bio. Will you let me know what you think? You can send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you don't want to be public about it.
Read the bio below and let me know what you think. Thanks!
Gabriel Hugo is the author of Once Upon a Bad Hombre, the X Series, The Martian Ones, and The Fluid Chicano. He has collaborated with authors on several anthologies and his poetry has been featured in various literary publications. Gabriel is also the founder of The Raving Press, an independent publishing imprint in the Rio Grande Valley, publishing works primarily focused on issues affecting Chicanos and other minorities in the United States. He is also an actor, appearing in two films available on Amazon Prime Video. Gabriel Hugo lives in Mission, Texas with his two sons Hugo Kuahutemoc and Jose Moctezuma, a.k.a. “The Bro Team”
P.s. If you are reading this on January 16, 2020 before midnight, you still have a chance to get my latest book "Once Upon A Bad Hombre" for FREE at Amazon.
Guess who's back? Back again. Gabriel's back...tell your friends! Because I did it again. Just another notch on the old writer's belt. I cranked out another book. It's not part of the X Series, though. I know this website is heavily influenced by that concept. But the reality is that I write all kinds of stories. My latest publication is titled "Once Upon A Bad Hombre". It was published in December, 2019, but I am only now beginning to promote it.
****Speaking of promotions, get this FREE BOOK PROMO before it's gone! Read a sample below and get the book FREE!****
That's right. I'm giving away FREE download versions of my book for just a couple of days. After the offer is over, the book will go back to $4.99 per Kindle download. It is not available in print yet, but that is coming soon.
Here's the book description from the Amazon product page:
"A mysterious man is crossing the country shooting television sets tuned to Mexican soap operas, and a reporter uncovers the most disturbing evidence as to the disappearance of the children of the border. Meanwhile, a strange phenomenon is taking place across the U.S. and Mexico which are experiencing increasing instances of ashfall from seemingly unexplained sources."
That's it. Short and sweet, huh? It's the best way to describe it. Hopefully, it does it's job and makes you want to get it. So get it! (Did I mention it's FREE?!)
For those friends of mine who are still waiting for book 2 in the X Series, it's coming. In fact, I am making it one of my top priorities for 2020 right here, right this very moment as I write these words. Way to keep me true to my art! You don't put up with no bullshit, do you?
There is so much for us to discuss. I've been absent only because life keeps happening. Being a single dad raising two boys full time is no picnic. Plus work and other stuff. But, still, we have to make time soon to talk about the series, "Hernan" on TV Azteca. I hear it's a bunch of garbage. But I will reserve my commentary for now, because it would be unfair to criticize trash before actually watching it first, am I right?
Y0u're right, as always.
It's probably complete filth portraying Cortez as this genius, master military tactician.
How many times do we have to remind them that the Aztecs were defeated by disease!? When the Aztec faced off against the Spanish prior to the devastation of Tenochtitlan by smallpox, the Spanish had their traceros handed to them easily by the Aztecs. The defeat was so bad, they still remember it as "La Noche Triste," when the Spanish "conquistadors" cried like babies as they ran panic-stricken to the safety of Tlaxcala.
But I digress. Download a FREE copy of my book "Once Upon A Bad Hombre" right now!
And please share with me your thoughts on the story. I really need input. Good or bad. Just let me have it!
Here's the link...(by the way, it will say "Buy" but it means GET IT FREE--trust me):
For a short, limited time, my book "Tenochtitlan Must Fall, will be available for FREE!
Get it now and read it...NOW. Or later. It's up to you. But don't miss out. Book two in the series is in the works and you definitely will need to have read book 1, aka: TMF.
The words in this book series are not throw-away words. No wizards and mermaids in these books. (Sorry).
These books' aim is bigger, vaster, more monumental than any teen-based vampire time-killer series. These books are on a mission to change the world. I'm not overselling here. It's a fact. Just don't miss out and you'll see what I mean.
On the other hand, if you are the type that enjoys living in fairyland, where wizards and mermaids are the only stories worth your time, then don't even bother. Seriously. No hard feelings either way. You probably won't like where these stories are headed...or maybe you would. Who knows? You'd have to try it.
For now, book 1 in The X Series is FREE FREE FREE!
CLICK HERE to download before it goes away for good.
And SHARE this post. LIKE my FACEBOOK PAGE, "Gabriel Hugo Author" and give me a REVIEW if you are so inclined.
It's g0od to be alive. And it's good to know you. Thanks for stopping by. Come back soon, my friend. Sayonara.
...Or is Hollywood ready for Gabriel Hugo? Maybe that is the correct question.
I know, I know. What does this have to do with Aztecs--right? EVERYTHING!...
Actually, you're right. Nothing much. But I am an actor and this is just one of the other things that I do. So with that in mind, watch the clip below. It is a small segment of my larger role in this film as Gregorio, a low-life perv who kidnaps a young girl seemingly to rape her and do other bad stuff. But is it really that simple? Of course not! You'll have to watch the movie whenever it comes to a theater near you, or when it's out on DVD or some other format.
The clip was taken by one of our producers with a cell phone and broadcast live on Facebook during the premiere of the movie on the big screen at Cinemark Pharr Town Center, a theater in Pharr, Texas. This is MQV's first full feature film, and my second feature film appearing on the big screen, so yeah, it's a pretty big deal for me. Let me know what you think, or just like and share. Thanks!
By the way, if you are in the Rio Grande Valley and are interested in acting opportunities, get a hold of me. I can connect you with the right people. Just go to my CONTACT page and send me a message.
Check out the MQV Media Website for more about this film.
I've shared this podcast chat I had with Hector Alamo, founder and editor of Enclave Magazine in several places, but I thought I might share it here as well for the occasional individual who might not see this anywhere else but here. Besides, I think it was a great talk we had and would love for everyone who follows any of my work to listen in.
We talk about the politics of our times, the history of Mexico, the political, social, and cultural situation of life on the border. I also talk at length about growing up in the Rio Grande Valley in South Texas and the deep connection to life in Reynosa, Tamaulipas, Mexico. I practically grew up there, too, staying every weekend there visiting family. We also talk about publishing, writing, creating, and what it takes to become a full-fledged artist.
This is an expletive-filled, informal chat, so if your ears are sensitive to harsh words, just stuff them with some cotton to muffle the bad words. :)
Here is a better synopsis of what this book is about. The video is under two minutes long. Please LIKE the video on my YouTube channel and SUBSCRIBE if you haven't yet.
I will be holding the book launch for Tenochtitlan Must Fall on Sunday, November 4, 2018 from 3 pm to 6 pm at Barnes & Noble Palms Crossing in McAllen, Texas. Please join me and join the discussion.
This history might be thought of as irrelevant by many, including many among us, but it is not. This history affects our past, our present and our future. It's time for us to write better stories for ourselves; stories that empower and instill pride in our roots.
The stories told by the conquistadors were designed to empower and instill pride in European lineage. They have served their purpose. It is time to replace them because our ties to Europe are thinner than our ties to America and its past. And since the stories that comprise the official history of the initial contact between the two legacies are based mostly on the foreigner's interpretations, hunches, at times potentially erroneous translation, and at other times outright fabrications on the part of Spaniards and or Spanish-guided natives, it is safe to say that this history is completely open to reinterpretation without embellishment nor falsification.
Please consider getting a copy of my book or donate to this blog. Thank you.
Can you spot the similarity and the difference between these two images? The top picture is the interior of a church in Portugal. The bottom picture is a partial remain of what appears to have been a circular construction in Mexico City from the age of the Aztecs.
Both are constructed using human remains. The European one is said to feature about 7,000 corpses!
The Mexican one is said to feature 676 skulls.
The European site bears no mention of how the people died. Were they purposely killed to construct this gruesome building? Who knows. (They probably all died a peaceful death in their beds accompanied by their loved ones, right?)
The Mexican site was automatically deemed SOLID PROOF that human sacrifice among the Aztecs was real.
*Just to review, many churches across Europe were constructed using human remains = No one bats an eye.
Mexican remains found in some kind of arrangement = HUMAN SACRIFICE!
I swear to you that I do not go looking for this shit. It finds me. That is how prevalent it is in our modern understanding of ancient Mexicans. Because the claims of human sacrifice have been transmitted almost wholly without examination as to their validity. The first thing that should tip anyone off is that the very first mention of that practice came from a proven liar, Hernan Cortez. Therefore, the claim, at best, is questionable; at worst, completely unfounded.
Here is my comment to the post I embedded below from Reddit. Like I said, I wasn't looking for this. I saw this post when I was trying to find out how to use Reddit. Then I typed "Aztec" to find subreddits and voila! Trash galore!
Here's my response:
"Human sacrifice in Aztec times never happened. This was a fabrication by the Spaniards starting with Cortez, who needed justification for their participation in the slaughter of innocent children, women, and old people when they went into peaceful towns and massacred them alongside their allies Tlaxcalans (Aztec enemies).
The Spanish crown and the Catholic Church ran the show in the exploration of new lands, and Cortez had skirted their rules to be the first to cash in on Mexican treasure. That's why Diego Velazquez sent Narvaez from Cuba after Cortez to bring him to justice. No one knows what happened to that expedition, but they failed to apprehend Cortez and his men. (The likely result was that Narvaez was defeated by the Aztecs or other natives before he could reach Cortez, who was safely secured in the protection of Moctezuma's palaces.)
The Aztecs fell to the Tlaxcalans, but then the Tlaxcalans themselves died in droves from the contagious diseases the Spanish had brought with them. So their leaders could not hold on to power and Cortez wrote to the King of Spain that he had conquered Mexico almost by himself and that the Aztecs were vicious and monstrous people who sacrificed their own, so he pretty much HAD to put a stop to it in the name of the King and the Church. This, as I mentioned above, was only a ploy to ensure that his robbery of the Mexican gold not only from Aztec and Tlaxcalan hands, but also from the Spanish King's "fifth" would be overlooked.
The narrative of "Aztec Human Sacrifice" worked wonders not only for Cortez's immediate needs, but also for Spain's goals of global empire. It set up the rationale that the American natives were savages who needed to be saved from the devil's grasp. (Obviously, because what other god could demand human sacrifice if not Satan himself?)
Regarding the 676 human skulls found under the cathedral in Mexico City, how is this any different than all those BONE CHURCHES IN EUROPE? Why is it that people don't immediately jump to the conclusion that the skulls found in Mexico were arranged in that manner for some aesthetic, religious, or other reason than human sacrifice? Or conversely, why is it that people don't attribute European skull churches (which house thousands of bones, some representing thousands of individuals) to the practice of human sacrifice?
In other words, correlation does not mean causation. Just because you find bones arranged on the walls of a building does not mean it is a sign of the most heinous thing you can imagine. NOBODY knows why those skulls were placed there, nor how those particular people died. And no one CAN know that, because there is no way to see what exactly happened. Cortez lied a lot. That much is proven in his Spanish contemporaries own accounts. And he was the first to mention this supposed Aztec practice to Europe. Therefore, this claim is unfounded due to the source being utterly unreliable."
Straight Subreddit Shit
TIL 676 human skulls was unearthed under the Metropolitan Cathedral of Mexico City. These were the first evidence found that the Aztecs sacrificed women and children that they captured from other nations. As of 2017, the bottom of the pile of skulls still hasn't been reached by excavations. from r/todayilearned
Here's more on the topic of Cortez.