Thursday, January 15, 2015

Need pizza? Go with a brand that takes care of their employees.

In my most recent novel, False Gods, I wrote of small and medium-sized businesses taking care of their employees in order to generate brand loyalty and increased loyalty from customers.

During the years I worked in the advertising agency world, I dealt directly with two different pizza chains--Pizza Hut and Dominos. The latter didn't last long at the first agency I worked at. It was difficult to effectively advertise a product that tasted like cardboard crap. For the record, Domino's has completely revamped their business from top to bottom and especially in the kitchen. I order from them now and then and their product is vastly better than the stuff they used to deliver to us at Texas Tech University back in the early 80's.

Pizza Hut, while making a better product, loses out on a key area involving employees.

Most pizza chains that have delivery have a "no guns" policy. Most pizza chains also deliver in areas that can often be risky for the driver carrying several pizzas and $20 to $50 worth of cash. Crackheads will rob you and slit your throat for five bucks.

Pizza Hut has had instances of delivery drivers being robbed and the driver pulling out a legally owned firearm for which they have a concealed handgun license and using it to defend their life. . .  and being summarily fired for that.

In suburban Atlanta, a Papa John's driver had a similar experience. She was robbed, pulled out her own gun and shot the thug in the face before escaping.

Papa John's did not fire her. Instead, they are reassigning her job duties to be inside the store while she recuperates from the experience. The company was quick to point out that their policy regarding firearms/weapons has not changed, but the fact remains that this woman is not being fired for defending her life.

I salute Papa Johns and while I rarely order from the big chains (we prefer the locally-owned pizza places), when we do, rest assured Papa Johns will be the first and only number we call.

Well done, Papa Johns. Well done.

Monday, January 12, 2015

There's something about wheelguns and girls.

Late last week I had the pleasure of taking our oldest adopted daughter to the range to do some shooting. The past two outings had found her enamored with our Model 19 Combat Master with the 2 1/2" barrel--one of my favorite firearms.

Now it is one of Bre's as well.

But why stop at just one favorite shootin' iron? This past outing had her discovering the Smith & Wesson Model 686, which is my favorite firearm of all that we own. I've now been informed that there may have to be a few additions made to the will for when the time comes that I'm at that big hangar and shooting range in Heaven where guns never run out of ammo and never need cleaning.

Next outing will likely bring yet a new firearm for her to explore.

And then probably a new addition to the will.

I should've gone to law school.

Monday, January 5, 2015

No rest because I'm no longer weary.

"No rest for the weary" seems to be a popular mantra and in fact, I have used it myself on more than one occasion.

As I've written in earlier posts, 2013 was a challenging year for a variety of reasons, chief among them were battling health issues that had me hospitalized far more than I ever have been before and working feverishly (no pun intended, really) to finish my second novel, False Gods.

 I survived and I finished the book. It launched in late December and sales have been steady and brisk.

So what's next?

There are three projects in the works presently. One is a collection of short stories concerning me and the Doberman and German Shepherd we had during our years in Kansas City and Dallas. These writing originated shortly after the internet (better known back then as the worldwide web, or just "the web") was in its infancy. Dog World magazine had a forum for its readers and on it, you were able to post remarks and carry on discussions. The old format was way different from the typical discussion forums you see today and it made for some interesting interactions between participants at times.

I had jokingly written a short post in which I gave voice to our Doberman and then our German Shepherd. To my surprise, I had about eighty response posts to it, all liking it (except for the snooty SOB I was giving a bit of hell to via the voice of my two beloved German dogs).

So I wrote another one. It got about two-hundred favorable replies and responses.

In between writing "new and improved" and "save ten cents" while working in the ad agency, I word-doodled around with my two dogs, occasionally added my wife into the adventures, and basically spun some Texas-sized tall tales and yarns with the dogs. We had them turning their dog house into a time machine and then talking me into traveling back in time to Germany to have a beer with Louis Dobermann. When our Doberman got neutered, we took a trip to a store in Hollywood, California (where else?) that sold fake testicles.

 A reader from back during those times found most of what I'd written and tracked me down via my first novel, Above Reproach, to my Facebook page. I now have a goodly collection of the stuff from back then and am presently adding to it and embellishing it and making sure it is absolutely politically incorrect.

It will be a short paperback book full of nothing but fun for anyone who's ever owned a dog or been owned by a dog.

The other two books I'm working on are quite different. One is the pilot book for a series I'm developing. The other is a follow up, or sequel if you will, to both Above Reproach and False Gods. It is taking a ton of research and my publication target date is summer of 2016. No firm title for it yet.

The pilot for a series will be entitled The Pride. The essence of it and the series will be what happens when justice is not served by those elected to and hired for the purpose of representing the People when wrongdoings have been committed against them. I'm working for a publication and release date for late fall of this year (2015).

I have a few other non-writing projects in the fire as well, our first granddaughter, a new rating I'm working on for my flying, and a few other things that require some time.

Weary? Who has time to be weary?

Looking forward to an active and fulfilling year and I hope you are as well.