Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Today's lesson

This is what I have learned:
It doesn't matter if you exercise 3-4 times a week while you are in your twenty and thirties. It doesnt matter if you run miles each day or lift weights for strengthening. When it comes down to it - Menopause will catch up with you and when she does, she will beat the ever livin' crap out of you rendering you unrecognizable.

Check out the blog tour for Paula Takes A Risk

Friday, July 13, 2012

Here goes nothin' - the blog tour begins next week

The blog tour for Paula Takes A Risk- begins next week - I have to admit, Im not sure what to expect. It is a bit of an unknown. Sure I think my writing is clever - but...
Follow the tour - Lets find out together.

July 16- The East Village- Review
July 16- Michelle’s Book Nook – Review
July 17- The Book Bag- Review
July 20- Chick Lit Plus – Review
July 21- Jersey Girl Book Reviews- Review, Guest Post & Excerpt
July 22- Samantha March – Q&A & Excerpt
July 25- Amie Louellen- Review & Guest Post
July 26- Storm Goddess Book Reviews- Review & Excerpt
July 27- Change the Word- Review

July 28- Change the Word- Guest Post
July 29- Mrs. Mommy Booknerd’s Book Reviews- Guest Post
July 30 - Mrs. Mommy Booknerd’s Book Reviews – Review & Q&A
Thank you to Samatha March of CLP ChiclitPlus for coordinating the tour.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Blog Tour Dates for Paula Takes A Risk

Check out the upcoming Blog Tour for Paula Takes a Risk by Randi M Sherman


July 16- The East Village- Review
July 16- Michelle’s Book Nook – Review
July 17- The Book Bag- Review
July 20- Chick Lit Plus – Review
July 21- Jersey Girl Book Reviews- Review, Guest Post & Excerpt
July 22- Samantha March – Q&A & Excerpt
July 25- Amie Louellen- Review & Guest Post
July 26- Storm Goddess Book Reviews- Review & Excerpt
July 27- Change the Word- Review
July 28- Change the Word- Guest Post
July 29- Mrs. Mommy Booknerd’s Book Reviews- Guest Post
July 30 - Mrs. Mommy Booknerd’s Book Reviews – Review & Q&A
Thank you to Samatha March of CLP ChiclitPlus for coordinating the tour.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

I have blog tour starting in July - stay tuned for upcoming details.
I also appreciate all of the efforts by Smith Publicity for setting up my interview with KPFA tonight. I enjoyed it. Looking forward to the next one.
Of course - who doesnt like talking about themselves?

Interview was fun

I just finished up my interview with Veronica Faisant of KPFA about Paula Takes A Risk. It was fun. I was  a little nervous - and I think a good effort. Veronica clearly liked the book - very much appreciated.
Looking forward what comes next....

Listen in tonight to "The Week Starts Here" with Veronica Faisant
KPFA 94.1
May 13, 2012 @ 7:30 pm
Taking a risk and following a dream.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Preparing for an radio interview

You hear all of the suggestions: make a list of bullet points, think up pithy qucik stories. memorize - no wait dont memorize, be serious, be yourself, no funny is best - no... the list goes on and on. I am scheduled for my first radio interview on Sunday.
Its funny that 'Im a little.... well, a little more that a little nervous - as I performed stand up and improv - but I am. Hopefully - the old skills will kick in.
My focus - is to enjoy myself, share what I know - and let the interviewer ask me questions that I will answer, sprinkled with humor.
Listen - and let me know how I do
The Week Starts Here    
Sunday, May 13
Time: 7:30 pm
Station: KPFA
Host: Veronica Faisant
Website: http://www.kpfa.org/home
Topic: Taking a risk and following a dream.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

The Week Starts Here - interview

Hello all.
Please tune in and listen to an interview with Veronica Faisant from KPFA from Berkley, CA and me 
Veronica's show: The Week Starts Here
When: Sunday night (May 13) at 7:30 pm.
Station: KPFA 94.1 FM
Website: http://www.kpfa.org/home
Topic: Taking a risk and following a dream

This should be fun - its my first interview regarding Paula Takes A Risk

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Recent interview with eBookmall

Interview with Randi M. Sherman

How much do you have in common with Paula?

Although Paula is a bit more trusting that I was, she shares traits with a younger version of me, both resigned to a prescribed life until we learned we could do or be anything we wanted. It just takes bravery with a little naivete sprinkled on top. I am taller than Paula.

When you were little did you ever imagine being an author when you grew up?

Never. I dreamed of being a famous actress or maybe a cowgirl, or a ballerina or a nurse, but never an author. Being a writer seemed to be too much like having homework ALL of the time.

Would you go back to being a stand-up comedian if you knew you could make a lot of money doing it?

Yes, but only if I could change my name to Ellen DeGeneres. Making a lot of money and being good at your job are two completely different things – just look at congress.
Although going back to stand-up comedy is not currently on my to-do list, I will never say never. And, given the circumstances I’d probably do anything if I could make a lot of money doing it. Please don’t tell my mother.

Name a book that you'd be embarrassed to be seen reading.

I’d probably be embarrassed if I was standing on a street corner somewhere, looking at street signs and referring to a tour book for another city.

Do you ever write while intoxicated?

I have poured myself a glass of wine at the end of the day but truthfully, I simply lose interest in writing at that point. I’d chose crackers and cheese with my cocktail over spellcheck any day.

Did you ever read a book and then wish you had all that time back?

Not really – If I don’t like a book, I put it down. Life is too short to be bored on purpose.

What was the book that most influenced your life and why?

Surprisingly enough the book was Real Moments by Barbara De Angelis. I guess I read it more than twenty years ago. The idea of living for the moment and not worrying about the past or what may or may not happen, simply allows us to enjoy things for what they are.

What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome when writing Paula Takes a Risk?

The biggest challenge was taking that final step to publish and release Paula Takes A Risk. I love all of my characters, and releasing them into the world, making them vulnerable to criticism was one hardest and possibly the bravest things I have ever done. When I sent them off, I wanted to tell them to hold hands as they crossed the street.

Are you working on any new books now?

I am, I am about 80% done with a new humor novel – it has a fabulous twist. I am so excited about it. The publisher will have to be very daring.

I also have other outlines waiting in the wings.

If you could be any character in fiction, who would you be?

Wonder Woman, she was smart, beautiful, had an invisible airplane and she looked good wearing boots with a bathing suit.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

"And Guest" Two dreaded words

The most terrifying two-word combination that a single woman can read is “and Guest” written in calligraphy on the front of an oversized, ecru-colored envelope.  Even the most self-assured woman is stopped dead in her tracks when she realizes that she is expected to bring a date to a social function and she can’t think of anyone to take with her.

I recently received one of those envelopes.  My friend Sharon was getting married. My first thought was, Oh my God. Who am I going to invite as my guest? I can’t show up alone.  “and Guest” implies that they are expecting me to bring a date.  An escort.  A dance partner.

  I went through a mental checklist of all of the men I know.  Let’s see now.  What about Henry? No, he’s married.  John? No, he’s seeing someone else.  Robert? No, his behavior embarrasses me when we’re out in public.  There’s Carl.  No, I unceremoniously dumped him and humiliated him in front of his friends and co-workers.  Humm.  I wonder if he’s still holding a grudge?

I searched for my address book.  I frantically flipped through the pages trying to remember which men I hadn’t referred to as “The Asshole of the Year” to my friends.  Looking at the names, I wished that I had returned some of those telephone messages from phone calls that I had avoided.  Messages that were left on my answer machine by men while I stood there listening their voices over the speaker as they poured out their hearts onto a twenty-second tape.  As I considered how my past behavior resulted in my current predicament, I reprimanded myself, I have to change my ways.  Tomorrow.

I began to panic.  I suppose that I could respond and tell Sharon that I would not be able to go to her wedding.  No, that wouldn’t work.  I would have to come up with an excuse, a lie, and then I would have to remember it for the rest of my life.  Then I would have to be on my toes at all times and be prepared to convincingly discuss my excuse, in great detail, every time Sharon reminisced about her wedding.  Maintaining a lie for several years is just too much pressure for me to endure.  Lying was not an option.

Wait just one minute!  Sharon knows perfectly well that I’m not dating anyone right now.  Is she trying to punish me?  Is she trying to humiliate me?  How could she be so cold?  I became indignant, That’s it!  I’m not going and that will show her!  Those thoughts faded when reality stepped in and I remembered that the world doesn’t revolve around me and that Sharon’s wedding ceremony and reception were not maliciously planned with the express purpose of embarrassing me.

I thought about being honest and logical.  Perhaps I could call Sharon and tell her that I didn’t have a date to bring and ask her if she had invited any single men who also need a date.  No, then I would look pathetic.  Pathetic and desperate, a sad combination.

I looked at the invitation again.  The date of the wedding was six weeks away.  I had to come up with a plan of action.  Humm.  I could go out and actively pursue men.  Let’s see.  If I met a man this weekend, we could have three, four, possibly five dates before Sharon’s wedding.  We would appear comfortable together and after six weeks there would be a good possibility of some hand-holding and sweet glances.

But there was the very real possibility that I would not meet a potential “and Guest” right away.  I calculated, if I met someone two or three weeks from now, we might only be able to get in a few dates before the wedding.  This could create a familiarity and comfort issue.  What if I don’t know him well enough to determine what his idea of formal wear is?  It could be an expensive suit or a T-shirt with a tuxedo stenciled on the front.

I considered going to a popular restaurant in my neighborhood and making the announcement that I had been invited to a wedding.  I would explain that I had been asked to bring a date and that I would be interviewing applicants from the hours of nine to eleven at the end of the bar.  Along with proof of employment and a valid driver’s license, a list of three references must be provided.  Transients and drunks need not apply.

The weeks flew by and before I knew it Sharon’s wedding day had come.  I had not arranged for an “and Guest.”  I was going to the wedding alone, unescorted.  Things could be worse, I thought.  Sharon could have asked me to be a bridesmaid.

(From The Grumbling of a Chronically Single Woman, By Randi Sherman author of PAULA TAKES A RISK)

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Sunny promotion

Never in my lifetime has anyone ever said:"Hey, Randi you should go into sales."
Some people are naturals. Me? Not so much.
Yup, I'm personable, funny, hilarious at times. Some people have called me smart and even charming (they have requested that I keep their anonimity, to protect them against backlash) - But a "schmoozing wheeler dealer?" Nope.

So here I am with the book PAULA TAKES A RISK ready to go - and I'm working to come up with some promotional ideas, You know, get my name out there.  Being a relative unknown - scheduling appearances and events focused on the astounding works of Randi Sherman are a little slow in the making.

So I'm thinking - How about a give away?  I'll go out to the super popular SF park, set up a table, maybe have some treats, start up some conversations and trade a book for an email address and a promise to tweet all of thier friends .

That's the plan. I can get my name out locally- during the next sunny weekend day in San Francisco.
"Great!" You're thinking, "It's never sunny in San Francisco. That's a safe and inexpensive plan."

For those of you who are familiar with Mark Twain and his supposed quote: "The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco," you probably don't know that we have some of the most beautiful and mild days here. 

Okay. The plan is set. I have ordered a few boxes of books. I've got some T-shirts and I'll be ready to go...as soon as this rain lets up.

If you have additional promotion ideas - drop me a line.

Monday, March 12, 2012

A little help here

So - I have made it through the labyrinth of self-publishing, writing, editing, reediting, reediting, design, waiting, pricing, ISBN codes, identifying demographics and target audiences - all of it. I have the book in hand. I have followed instruction and the rules. I have contacted hundreds of
editors, reviewers, producer, executives of radio & TV sent Press Releases, About the Author docs, invited them to call me - then - crickets - tumbleweeds blowing across the plains - and now, humbly I must admit two things (1) I have no clout whatsoever and (2) I need help with promoting and distribution. Sure I thought I could do it all ... alas... maybe not and now... I am seeking the help of a professional.

Sure - I know I need to be patient - and I am - just seeking a little help
Agents, publishers, promoters - where are you?
Contact me

Thursday, March 8, 2012

How old do I look?

The other day - I received a note from an old friend who found me on facebook.
She wrote "I cant believe it. You look exactly the same as you did in high school."
Then I thought - "Oh my god! I looked like I was 50 years old when I was in High School"

Monday, March 5, 2012

enjoy chapters

Paula Takes a Risk is finally available - read about it and the author.
Hey - order a copy

Also -Enjoy chapters form The Grumblings of a Chronically Single Woman



Paul, I thought, was a dream come true.  Everything I had ever hoped for, seemed to be embodied in him.  My heart soared every time I thought of him.  Zing!

Paul invited me to his beach house for dinner.  He was going to cook.  Wow.  When I arrived, fresh cut flowers were on the table, the wine was breathing and mood music filled the air.  I was impressed.  The meal was incredible.  The Cabernet tasted as if the grapes were grown for the soul purpose of creating a wine that would compliment our dinner.  I was being wooed and I liked it.

As we sat there gazing into each other’s eyes, everything seemed so right until I began to ramble.  I couldn’t help myself.  My mind raced as I tried to think of clever anecdotes about myself to impress Paul.  Instead, I blathered on with inappropriate and self-deprecating stories about my childhood pudginess and thick glasses.  Besides, I was trying to picture him naked and was having trouble concentrating.

I was dying for him to touch me.  I executed a combination hand-half-way-across-the-table with an interested lean.  This particular maneuver is extremely difficult to do successfully.  Precise angling, attitude, and timing are essential.  You must lean your upper body inward, at just the right angle (approximately forty-five degrees), while maintaining hand placement and eye contact.  The weight is shifted laterally onto one buttock.  It is crucial that the correct buttock is selected. Optimum head and face placement to receive a kiss is the goal. For maximum benefit, lower the eyelids, part the lips slightly and execute a single heavy inhale-exhale combination. 

Finally, Paul took my hand, drew me close and kissed me.  I nearly fell off of the chair and under the table.  I suddenly felt flush.  My palms got clammy, my heart was leaping and my stomach was churning.  Wait. I began to wonder. Was this supposed to be happening?  Was he the one?

Paul suggested that we go for a walk along the beach.  As we removed our shoes and placed them on the porch, I began to fantasize about the movie, “From Here to Eternity.”  Paul would be Burt Lancaster, I would be Deborah Kerr and the gentle waves would roll over our entwined bodies as we kissed in the surf.

We walked hand-in-hand as the surf rushed over our feet.  Everything seemed so perfect.  The fresh air snapped me back into reality and I realized that my stomach was feeling unusually queasy.  Was it the romance?   No.  It was the dinner.  Nausea began to overtake me.  I felt dizzy.  I started to cramp and broke into a sweat.  Oh no. I tried to think it away.  The gurgling from my stomach and the hot flashes were eventually overtaken by the crashing waves of nausea.  I fell to my knees and proceeded to pollute the ocean in my own special way.

            When I came to, I realized that I was sprawled out and the surf was lapping up my, now ruined, suede dress.  I was soaking wet and covered with sand, seaweed and various non-biodegradable items.  I lifted my head and searched for Paul.  He was sitting on a sand dune about thirty feet away.  When he saw me moving, he stood up and walked toward me.  I was hoping for compassion.  Instead, he was disgusted and angry.

 In a sarcastic tone he asked, “Now, was that necessary? You certainly know how to ruin an evening. I suppose you’re too sick to have sex tonight.”

What?  I couldn’t believe what I was hearing.  What a Jackass!

Without help from Paul, the king of concern, I pulled myself to my feet.  I stumbled down the beach in an effort to catch up with Paul, who kept pace about ten feet ahead of me.  I felt my body becoming chaffed by the wet suede and sand.

When we arrived at his house, Paul handed me my shoes and told me to wait outside while he got my purse.  He didn’t want me to “drip” on his carpeting.

After receiving my purse, I walked, alone, to my car, as Paul went inside the house, dead-bolted the door and turned out the porch light. He acted as if I had maliciously and intentionally become violently ill in an effort to destroy his sex quota.  Of course, at that moment, I wished that I had.  I felt another wave of nausea come over me.  I desperately looked around for a place to heave.  Then I spotted it.  With my hand covering my nose and mouth, I made a mad dash for the porch.  I took careful aim and then vomited in Paul’s shoes.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The Cocktail Party - by Randi Sherman

Cocktail Party

When I arrived at my friend’s holiday cocktail party, I looked around the room and realized that other than the hostess, Margaret, there was not a recognizable face in the crowd.  I glanced around to take stock of fashion sense in the room and then at the mirror to check my outfit.  I realized that once again, I had made the incorrect outfit selection.  It doesn’t matter how much planning I do, I have an inexplicable talent of choosing the most inappropriate apparel for any occasion.

If I were asked to select a word that best describes my appearance, I would say “pleasant.” Although, my looks do not stimulate one’s gag reflexes, I have not been presented any awards for my outstanding beauty and poise.  It is inevitable, there is always at least one woman at each party who has the ability to turn the heads of all of the men and generate instant jealousy from all of the women in the room.  She is tall and proud and magnetic.  She smolders.  I would describe myself as the semi-attractive woman who is standing just behind her…holding the coats.

So there I stood, in the foyer.  I had a choice to make. I could muster up some faux-party-confidence and begin to mingle.  I could attempt to blend in with the d├ęcor, sip a drink and hope that a party guest would happen by and engage me in a conversation.  I could plant myself near the buffet table and force people to speak with me, or at least say “excuse me,” if they want to get close to the food.  Or I could attach myself to Margaret, the hostess, who is, required by the law-of-hosting and etiquette to talk to me, or introduce me into another conversation.

While making my decision, a severe looking woman dressed in all black and who looked like she just stepped away from the Chanel make-up counter, walked up to me and introduced herself as Victoria, “Don’t call me Vicky,” she commanded.  “My name is Victoria.” 

Whatever you say, Vicky, I thought. 

Victoria was obviously killing time with me until someone more stylish was free for conversation.  She sipped her martini as she looked past me and lied to me.  Yes, lied.  I could tell.  If I had had a calculator with me and had added up all of things that she said she had accomplished, Victoria would have to be about two hundred and seventy years old.  Obviously, Victoria was not privy to the two basic rules of lying to someone at a cocktail party. First, if you choose to lie, make sure there is a recovery, if challenged.  “Really, Victoria, tell me more about water skiing on the Dead Sea.  I thought it was a sacred place and that speedboats were not allowed there. From whom did you get a permit?”  Second, lie to the party-drunk or to someone who is not really listening, who will, most likely, not remember anything about the conversation.

Without so much as a word, a ‘good-bye,” a “piss-off” or a nod Victoria sashayed away from me toward a group of porcelain faced, skinny people who seemed to be posing. They weren’t moving. They just might have worked part time as department store window mannequins.

After a minute or so, I found and joined a small group of people who were politely listening to a man named Neil as he droned on about his “fabulous” career, his incredible office, his importance, and his plans for advancement “in the firm.”  No one in the circle seemed interested in what he was saying, but they didn’t want to appear rude and walk away.  So we all stood there, helplessly and listened. He was so boring that he should have been forced to wear a warning label.  Caution: Use of his man may cause drowsiness.

My eyes began to water when I strained to keep my mouth closed while stifling a yawn.  I was tempted to grab Neil by the shoulders, shake him and holler, “No one in this room finds anything at all fascinating about you or your work.  Unless you could promise someone a high paying position, that requires minimal work and travel to exotic destinations along with an unlimited expense account, we simply don’t want to hear about it!  But instead, I stood quietly, with the rest of the group, until he finished his verbal resume.

A few minutes later, Margaret motioned me over and asked me if I was enjoying myself.

I started to lie. “Oh yes …”

She interrupted, “I want you to meet someone.  Come with me.” She motioned with her finger for me to follow her.

She then introduced me to a man named Michael.  He was also alone. He was handsome, intelligent and interesting … and spoken for.  About ten minutes into our conversation he announced, “I have a girlfriend who is out-of-state.  But you and I could get together for coffee, or something.”  Then he added, “Fortunately, I don’t find you attractive so I don’t have to worry about getting myself into trouble.”

What?  Fortunately, he doesn’t find me attractive … Was that supposed to be a compliment?  Gee, I thought.  A girl can’t hear that too many times.

When I went outside for a breath of fresh air, I met Phil.  He seemed like a “regular guy.”   We spoke for a few moments.  He asked me if I was dating anyone.  I told him that I wasn’t and asked about his situation.  He told me that he was single.

He started, “My last girlfriend was a model … ”  

I stopped him right there.  I had to know.  “Tell me, Phil,” I asked, “Why is it that every man I meet used to date a model?  How many models could be out there?”  I could never understand why a man would tell a woman about how beautiful his past girlfriends were. Although men may find this information to be fascinating and impressive, women can live a lifetime without hearing it.

I wandered into the kitchen to catch my breath and plan my escape. I looked at my watch.  Damn, it was too early to leave.  The caterers looked at me with a knowing-look that said, “Sit down, and have a cup of coffee.”

            As I sat there in the kitchen, a few other party-goers drifted in.  Some of the sat down.  Others leaned against the counters, had some coffee, and picked at the desert trays.  Before I knew it, the entire party had moved into the kitchen area. 

Over all, it had been a lovely party.  The food was delicious and guest were very nice but I was ready to leave.

Michael waved over the crowd toward Margaret and announced, “Well, I have to be on my way.  I have to catch a plane in the morning.” 

That was my opportunity, “Michael, would you mind walking me to my car?”  My question was two-fold.  It not only gave Margaret the illusion that Michael and I had hit-it-off, it also was my chance to cut out of the party.


Friday, February 24, 2012

Lunch With A Demon by Randi Sherman

Lunch with a Demon

A simple lunch with a friend can turn into the emotional roller coaster to hell for the victim of PMS demon.  The demon has a mind of its own and will do everything possible to have itself heard.  The victim is forced to keep the demon at bay while sorting through her erratic premenstrual thoughts and selecting the appropriate, socially acceptable responses.  She must also fight the desire to unbutton her skirt or kick off her shoes because of the pain due to premenstrual swelling.  All, while staving off an impromptu crying jag and trying to appear sane.

I looked at my watch.  Jonathan was fifteen minutes late. If he is not here in five minute, I’m leaving.  The hell with him!  My PMS mind was racing.  He hates me.  He’s doing this on purpose.  He does not have respect for my time.  He obviously doesn’t think that I am important enough for him to show up on time.  When he gets here, I’m going to give him a piece of my mind.

Just as my blood pressure had hit an all time high, Jonathan walked in.  “Hi.  I’m sorry that I’m late. I stopped to buy these flowers for you.”  He handed the bouquet to me and kissed me on the cheek.

My rage disappeared.  “Oh, are you late?” I melted. “I hadn’t noticed.”

He motioned to the hostess and indicated that there were two for lunch.  She grabbed some menus and asked us to follow her.  When we reached our table she smiled at Jonathan and said, “Here we go.  Is this okay?”

I thought, What the hell are you looking at!  But I said, “This is fine.”

When we sat down, Jonathan took my hand and gazed at me.  “You look pretty.  I’ve missed you.”

You’re smothering me!  “I’ve missed you, too.” I put my hand over his.

He smiled and asked, “How is your day going?  Have you been doing anything interesting?”

What the hell do you mean by that?  Don’t placate me!  You’re not the only person who has something interesting to say.  I’m very interesting.  “Oh, my day?” I said, “It’s fine.  Same ole’, same ole’.  Nothing’s new.  How about with you?”

Jonathan told me about a recent episode he had with his ex-wife and the expenses of maintaining the two households. 

I was hardly listening.  The PMS demons were annoyed by the conversation.  Me, me, me.  You’re so self-absorbed. No wonder she divorced you.  I forced a smile, “I’m sure that things will get better for you. You just have to remain positive.”

He looked at the menu, “Are you going to getting the Salad Nicoise?”

What in the hell do you mean by that?  Is this your subtle way of telling me I’m fat? 

He continued, “I hear it’s great here and I know how much you like it.  I think that I will have it as well.”

Nice try, Jonathan.  No one is going to tell me what to do or what I should eat.  Then I opened the menu.  There was too much to choose from.  I was in no condition to make a decision.  “I’ll have the same.”

He noticed that I was uncharacteristically quiet and asked me, “Are you all right?  Is there anything wrong?’

My hormones were raging and my eyes welled up with tears.  It’s about time you noticed. “Nothing.  I’m fine.” I sucked in my breath and tried to hold back but I couldn’t help myself.  I started to cry.  The more I tried to compose myself, the worse it got.  I got the hiccups.  After several glasses of water and five minutes of a relaxation breathing exercise, they subsided, and I apologized. “I’m sorry.  I’m just a little premenstrual.”

He smiled sweetly and patted my hand.  “Oh, I understand, honey.”

Honey?  Don’t honey me!  You don’t understand a damned thing!  “Thanks for understanding.”

At the next table a woman was trying to calm her child who was pounding his spoon on the table.  Jonathan turned to look at the commotion.  When he turned back to me he had a big smile on his face.  “Children are so wonderful.”  He motioned to the toddler, “Isn’t he cute?”

The kid is a brat and the mother should be flogged for bringing him into a restaurant.  “He’s adorable.” I smiled.

Jonathan leaned in. “How do you feel about children?”

I was panicked. Aah! Get me out of here!  I calmed myself. “They’re wonderful.”  I changed to subject.  “Is that a new tie?” 

It seemed to be a safe subject.  That is, unless his ex-wife bought it for him.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Purse Patrol - by Randi Sherman, The author of Paula Takes A Risk

Purse Patrol

There is no discussion about who will do it.  It’s an unwritten, unspoken rule. It’s a fact.  The one person who is considered the homeliest or most antisocial one of the group is designated to watch her friends’ purses while they enjoy themselves.  She has been assigned to purse-patrol, the purse monitor is relegated to the table, disallowed from going to the ladies room and unavailable to accept invitations to dance.  Her main objective for the evening is to loyally stand guard over her friends’ belongings while they socialize and have a good time.  Purse patrol is the grown-up equivalent to being invited to teenage function because her mom will drive.

When my friends and I arrived at the club, we found a vacant table and sat down.  Then the inevitable happened, I heard the phrase, “Will you watch my purse for me?”  Before I could answer, clutches, backpacks and evening bags were all piled up on the table in front of me.  Oh my God!  I had been caught completely by surprise.  I had been appointed as the purse-monitor for the evening.  I quickly whipped out a hand mirror and began an assessment to determine what had gone wrong.  Was it my hair?  Was it my choice of clothing?  Had I been too quiet in the car on way to the club?  Did my friends perceive my silence as a bad mood?  Whatever the case, there was nothing that could be done now.  Unceremoniously, I had been assigned to purse-duty.

As I sat there, I called upon my improvisational skills and tried to act as if my obvious solitude didn’t bother me.  I attempted to appear as if I enjoyed watching all of the socializing that was going on around me.  With faux confidence, I attempted to look enormously interested in some activity going on near the bar.  I tapped my toes to the music, snapped my fingers, and even attempted some chair dancing.  I mindlessly sipped at the drink that quickly became melted ice and eventually an empty glass. 

Along with purse-duty, I also had the responsibility of guarding the chairs around the table.  Many attempts were made by other clubbers to commandeer the empty chairs. “No, someone is using that chair,” I snapped.  “My friends will be back in a minute.”  Finally, after I realized that I was behaving like a rabid Rotweiller, I conceded to a couple. “You can use them until my friends come back.” 

The woman gave me a “Yea, sure” and chuckled as she and her new friend proceeded to sit down.  It didn’t take long for them to forget that I was there.  They began to perform hands-free tonsillectomies on one another.  I sat there, the purse-lieutenant, and attempted to ignore the foreplay that is happening just two feet away. 

After about an hour, a man approached the table.  He introduced himself as Jim and asked me if I would like to dance with him.  I wanted to, but I simply could not.  I was on purse-patrol.  Abandoning my post would have been met by the social equivalent to a court martial.  Jim was forced to make the decision to either, accept the apologetic “no” and walk away or sit down to converse with me.  With a look of defeat on his face, Jim looked around the room, shrugged his shoulders as if to say, “Oh, what the hell…” and sat down.

I was having trouble focusing on our conversation because I was trying to catch the eye of one of my friends.  I tried waving my hand at her.  I tried staring at her.  Finally, I attempted to telepathically connect with one of them.  I hoped that she would feel compelled to relieve me of my post.  No luck.  Once Jim realized that I was not going to be excused from purse-duty, he excused himself and left.

I felt defeated.   I decided that I now hated the people who assigned me to purse-duty.  And, as soon as I had the opportunity, I would give them a piece of my mind.  Suddenly, one of my friends, Karen, approached the table.  I perked up.  I smiled wide, hoping that her feet were tired from two hours of dancing.  But, the purpose of her visit was only to reapply her lipstick.  Then she announced that she was going outside to grab a breath of fresh air and that she would be back in a minute.  Yeah, sure.  Every so often, my other friends glanced over and waved at me from the dance floor.

All hope of having a conversation with anyone other than with the busboy was gone.  The “lovers” who were borrowing the chairs, had by now moved onto the button fiddling, caressing and moaning portion of their evening.  They were now practically sitting on top of one another and had freed up a chair.

I sat there and casually looked around the room.  I wasn’t really focusing on anything but it was something to do.  I rocked back in the chair a few times. Checked my watch.   During the next visual sweep of the room, my eyes settled on the purses that were on the table in front of me.  “Hmm,” I thought.  “I wonder what’s in there.”   I rationalized,  “I have the right to know what I’ve been asked to guard with my life.”  Besides, I was bored.

I looked around the room again and quietly reached for the clutch bag.  The clutch bag belonged to a longtime friend, Karen, who was on a constant, unrelenting search and conquer husband-finding-mission.  Because the clutch was so small, I didn’t expect to find much. I was just going to take a peek.  In addition to a redder-than-red lipstick, a comb and a kissing-fresh breath spray, I unraveled the continuous roll of twelve condoms.  Wow, someone certainly is optimistic, I thought. I can understand one, possibly two, perhaps three, that is, if he’s young and sober.  But, a dozen? Whoa!  Go girl!  I tucked everything back into the clutch and replaced it on the table.

Still, there was no sign of “my friends.”  I would continue my purse inspection.  The next item of inspection would be the Barbara’s backpack.  Barbara is known to her friends as “Ever Ready,” the woman who could be ready for anything at anytime.  Spontaneity seemed contrived compared to Barbara’s “whatever” attitude. The backpack was heavy.  When I unbuckled, untied, and unsnapped the flap, I found a cell phone, make-up, a Swiss army knife, comfortable shoes, safety-pins in a variety of sizes, a scarf, pantyhose, a simple yet classic black dress, a highway flare, a travel toothbrush and a package of trail mix.  Barbara isn’t out for the evening, she’s running away from home.

 Finally, I dragged Marcia’s bag across the table by its ornate shoulder strap.  When I unhooked the clasp of the purse, an artillery of anti-man paraphernalia was uncovered. I was reminded of the Viet Nam documentaries I had seen on PBS.  I found a canister of pepper-spray, a personal alarm (push button activation) and a key chain with a self-defense baton, and a small flashlight with a whistle attached to it.  I carefully checked the side pocket for a hand-grenade.  I was expecting the Leslie Stahl and a 60 Minutes camera crew to appear and interrogate me.  “Can we ask you a few questions regarding concealed weapons?”  

I would, of course, act shocked.  Leslie and a cameraman would chase me as I ran to my car.  I’d pull my jacket over my head in an attempt to hide my face.  No doubt, they would catch up with me when I arrived at my car only to find that I had locked the keys in it.  I’d be forced to cover the camera lens with my hand and recite the customary, “No comment.”

The evening had dragged on for what seemed to be an eternity.  I had had enough time to evaluate every person in the club, determined what they did for a living, and how much money they made.  I also figured out which men lived with their parents’, who was cheating on a spouse and who was out just for sex.  By the time my friends were ready to leave, I had worked myself into a major tizzy because I had been ignored for several hours.  I was furious. 

Karen, Marcia and Barbara were giddy.  They were waving around business cards and crumpled paper napkins that had telephone numbers written on them.  They hardly noticed that I was seething. 

During the car ride home, Barbara looked at me and said, “Wasn’t that fun? Did you meet anyone?” 

Even though I had mentally prepared an lecture about the responsibilities of friendship that would, no doubt, leave my friends reevaluating their behavior and begging for forgiveness, I kept it to myself.  I realized that I was just irritable because I was forced to take my turn at purse duty.

“I met Ivan, the busboy,” I said, “but he works nights and weekends.  It just wouldn’t work out.  So, we decided to just be friends.” 

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Whats it all about?


We all hope for a dream life.  However, most of us are afraid or overwhelmed to make changes necessary to have a beautiful dream life. This is the reality for the lead character in PAULA TAKES A RISK by first time author Randi Sherman.

Paula’s life is a disaster.  She loses her job and boyfriend on the same day, and has no future prospects or plans.  Life just isn’t working out for her.  Having only done what was expected of her, not making any waves, reading celebrity magazines, and believing the dream life is for everyone else but her – she now finds herself lost in her tiny, musty apartment without a clue of what to do.

Life drastically changes for Paula, when she is unwittingly drawn into an adventure by her neighbor Larry, who is broke and deep in debt. She naively goes along with his plans and poses as a successful business woman to carry out an elaborate money making scheme. Too desperate, too afraid and too involved to step away, she lives a lie as she takes on a persona of the person she always wanted to be. Paula blossoms as she navigates her way through complex business and social situations until the whole plan starts to unravel. The scheme and lies are uncovered and what happens next will delight the reader.

This is a story that is certain to strike a chord in anyone who is wishing for a way out of their present life, and on to the red carpet of their imagination, but is afraid of making the change. Author Randi Sherman is a funny woman, with a history of stand-up comedy, her humor keeps the reader hooked throughout this witty and entertaining story. She eloquently achieves taking the seemingly mundane experiences of life and turning them into a laugh a minute.

PAULA TAKES A RISK is available online through www.FriesenPress.com/bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and to order through most bookstores.

Movies a la Carte from The Grumbling of a Chronically Single Woman, by Randi Sherman the author of Paula Takes a Risk

Movies a la Carte

At the last minute, one Friday evening, I decided to go see a movie.  I knew that I wouldn’t be giving them much notice, but I called a few friends to invite them to join me.  When I telephoned, the friends who were at home had already made plans for the evening.  I looked at the clock.  It was getting late.  If I wanted to get to the theater in time for the coming attractions I had to abandon the idea of a movie companion.  So, I grabbed by coat and left for the theater.  No big deal, I thought.  I’m just going to be sitting in a dark room, watching a film, quietly.  It wasn’t as if I was going to the theater to have a heart-to-heart conversation with a long lost friend.  I was going to see a movie, plain and simple.  I could do that alone.

I had a slight twinge of insecurity while I waited in line to buy a ticket.  I was surrounded by handholding couples and groups of teenagers who all looked at me, standing alone, as if I had just been crowned Miss Social Pariah, 2012.

The pitying looks continued as I stood in line at the snack bar.  I had convinced myself that people were whispering behind their hands and looking at me out of the corners of their eyes.  “She her.  Over there.” They motioned with a head-nod.  “She’s alone. Tsk-tsk.  What a loser.”  When I made it to the snack counter I considered ordering two popcorns and two drinks, just to throw them off.

I know it was paranoia but I felt as if all eyes were on me when I entered the theater.  All I wanted to do was sit down and blend in.  Within thirty-seconds, I had become completely self-conscious.  When I found a row that had a few empty seats, I quickly shuffled in to sit down.  In an effort to make it look as if I was saving a seat for my date while he was in the bathroom or at the snack bar, I put my coat over seat next to me.  To keep up the illusion, every few minutes, I would turn around and look back at the door.

I tried to kill time until the movie started.  I rummaged through my purse, rearranged my wallet, ate most of my popcorn, read the movie theater brochure that I had picked up in the lobby, and played the riddle game that was being displayed on the screen.  I looked at my watch.  I checked the door again.  Then I noticed the child who was standing on the seat directly in front of me.  He was turned around and facing me.  He was just standing there looking at me.

His look turned into a stare.  An unending-unblinking-see-right-through-to-the-soul stare.  It began to make me uncomfortable.  What did he see?  I looked down.  I looked up.  I looked at my nails.  I looked at the door again.  I tried to ignore it as long as possible.  Finally, I stared back.  I scared him. His eyes welled up with tears.  He whispered something in his mommy’s ear.  She shifted her position to get a glimpse of me.  Uh-oh, here it comes. I was certain that she was going to turn around, wag her finger, and give me a piece of her mind.  But instead, in a voice intended to be loud enough for me to hear, she started to explain what was wrong with the mean lady behind him.

“Ignore that lady.  She’s alone.  She probably has no friends who want to be with her and must be very unhappy.  Leave her alone.” 

I shrank.  Is that how I’m perceived?  After a minute or two of self-examination, I realized that I was reevaluating my entire existence because the parents of a four-year-old boy hadn’t taught him that staring is impolite. 

As the lights started to dim, I could sense the pity from the people who were seated around me.  I had to think fast.  To save face, I looked back at the door one more time and said loud enough for others to hear, “I wonder where he could be.  He’ll never find me in the dark.”  After my subtle announcement I gathered together my snacks, my purse, and my jacket and walked up the aisle toward the door to make it look like I was going to find him.  I walked through the swinging doors, crossed to the other side and came back into the theater through the other set of doors.  Shrouded by the darkness, I walked slowly down the aisle, found a single seat and sat down. 
The woman who was seated next to me leaned over and said, “I’ve been waiting to see this movie.  It’s supposed to be good.”

“Me too.”  I agreed, “I …”

Suddenly, we heard, “Shush!” from the man behind us.  “If you wanted you socialize, you should have stayed home.  Now be quiet and watch the movie.”

Thursday, February 16, 2012

PRESS RELEASE for Paula Takes A Risk



San Francisco, CA - February 16th , Many people walk aimlessly through life, not taking any risks, and burying themselves in a mire of mediocrity. They hope for a dream life, but are unwilling to make changes that will make it a reality. This is how life is for the lead character in PAULA TAKES A RISK by first time author Randi Sherman.

Paula Tenenbaum spends her days doing only what is expected of her, not making any waves, and reading celebrity magazines, believing the dream life is for everyone else but her. Living in a rundown apartment, with a refrigerator as her favourite distraction, she is living a mundane life. To make matters worse, She has lost her job, her boyfriend, and has no future prospects.  Life just isn’t working out for Paula.

Life changes abruptly, when she is unwittingly drawn into an adventure by her neighbor Larry, who is broke and deep in debt. She naively agrees to his plans to pose as a successful business woman and join in a money making scheme. Too desperate, too afraid and too involved to step away, she creates and lives a lie as she takes on the persona of the person she always wanted to be, navigating her way through business and social situations until the whole plan starts to unravel. Their scheme and lies are uncovered and investigations ensue. And what happens next will delight the reader.

This is a story that is certain to strike a chord in anyone who is wishing for a way out of their present life, and on to the red carpet of their imagination, but is afraid of making the change. Author Randi Sherman is a funny woman, with a history of stand up comedy, her humor keeps the reader hooked throughout this witty and entertaining story. She eloquently achieves taking the seemingly mundane experiences of life and turning them into a laugh a minute.

PAULA TAKES A RISK is available online through www.FriesenPress.com/bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and to order through most bookstores.


Randi Sherman
Email address: randishrmn@gmail.com
Website address: http//: www.paulatakesarisk.com

Monday, February 13, 2012

Hilarious youtube for Paula Takes a Risk

Watch the new youtube video for Paula Takes A Risk


What is Risk?

"To laugh is to risk appearing the fool. To weep is to risk appearing sentimental. To reach for another is to risk involvement. To expose your feelings is to risk exposing your true self. To place your ideas, your dreams before a crowd is to risk their loss. To love is to risk not being loved in return. To live is to risk dying. To believe is to risk despair. To try is to risk failure. But risks must be taken, because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing. The person who risks nothing does nothing, has nothing, is nothing. They may avoid suffering and sorrow, but they cannot learn, feel, change, grow, love, live. Chained by their attitudes they are slaves; they have forfeited their freedom. Only a person who risks is free." - Ward, William A.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Good-bye Whitney Houston

A true talent lost. Rest in peace Whitney

A little about Paula Takes A Risk

Life just wasn’t working out for Paula. She lost her job, her boyfriend, had no prospects. Her neighbor Larry needed a favor. She naively agreed. Too desperate, too afraid and too involved to step away – creates and lives a lie as she takes on the persona of the person she always wanted to be. Navigating her way thru business and social situations until the whole plan starts to unravel. Their scheme and lies are uncovered. Investigations ensure. The jig is up. And what happens next will delight the reader.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

take a look

Take a look at the new website:   http//:www.paulatakesarisk.com

Working on promotion

Hello. Thought I'd bring you up to date on whats going on.  Well PAULA TAKES A RISK is ready and available (about a month earlier than I expected)  - and Im feverishly working on the promotions package with the publisher.
How do you say with humility - Oh my God - PAULA TAKES A RISK is just fabulous and entertaining, laugh out loud hilarious. Love 'em or hate 'em you know every character?

It now availabe @ http://www.friesenpress.com/bookstore/title/119734000004536283/Randi-M.-Sherman-Paula-Takes-a-Risk and at www.amazon.com and www.BN.com

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Yup! It Happened

Paula Takes A Risk is now available through Friesen Press


Log on, read about it - and get a copy - I know you want to.

(Paula Takes a Risk will be available Amazon, and your other favorite distributors in 3-5 more weeks)

Monday, January 9, 2012

Self publishing is not so scary

So, I wrote this book - Paula Takes a Risk. I actually wrote a number of years ago and for many reasons held onto it for years. Sure I think Im hilarious and smart and can tell a story with flair - but would anyone else?  Who knows? Also - I LOVE my characters, Paula Tenenbaum, her mother Dorothy, Larry the slimeball, Brad the narcisist and especially the smaller characters Darla Merriweather, the dunce-y actress and Pricilla Van der Hoven, the celebrity colomnist. They were mine. My creation, my children, if you will. I was afraid to put them out there to be jugded. What if some knocked them down and stole their lunch money?

Then I thought - again (and again and again) how tired and aggeravated I was by working my day to day job in a field that parallels being on sleep aids.  I couldnt believe that I was put on this earth to do what I was spending 40 hours each week doing. 

I dont know if I was stung by something or it was something that I ate, but I had an epiphany - I need to be the ruler of my own destiny, I thought. If I dont take a risk and do something that will truly make me happy then I have no right to complain.  After all, poverty is a problem, cancer is a problem, people who drive with their blinkers on all of the time are a hazard (but I digress) - but being afraid of what people may think of my characters or the daunting task of getting a book published is NOT a problem - its a challenge, but not a problem.

In 2002 I searched and found an agent (for another book: The Grumblings of a Chronically Single Woman) - yet didnt get much traction because it was a humor book and I was an unknown. I ended up publishing it on a now defunct website called Enovel. So this time - I just cut out the middle man (for now) and found a publisher who I could partner with to publish my book - Friesen Press.

The process - so far has been straight forward for the most part - and a little time consuming. I submitted the book - thinking Im a genius - no edits necessary, this will be a breeze.  Well color me wrong - because it took a copy editor and three rounds of review and "adjustment" before I signed off on it.  With some direction I selected ISBN codes, pricing, cover art (not as simple as it sounds) - and now we're about ready to send it for printing.

Next step is some promotion planning .

Paula Takes a Risk is a humor novel, a fun read. Read the synopsis on this site to get more info about the story.
I look forward to sharing this journey with you.

So, now Im the ruler of my destiny...and book pricing - for the novel Paula Takes A Risk

After the book is wrtten and content approved - then comes the pricing.....

After three more rounds of review, rereading my book umpteem times, second guessing my choice of words and story direction, cursing myself for not being a better student and having a larger more impressive, expansive vocabulary,  I finally signed off on the book content for Paula Takes A Risk.  (In my own defense the book with all of the million dollar words has already been written - its called the Dictionary. However, Webster's storyline is weak) 
I added a pithy "About the Author" page.
A few months ago I selected, approved and licensed the cover art.  Now were working on the pricing - There are a number of things to consider - page count, trim size - the fact that its fiction...humor....by a virtual unknown... it can be daunting. Sure, to me its a priceless treasure...
There are hard copy prices, softcopy, and ebooks.  
There is one price from the publishers and another for SRP - then there is a difference in royalties based on where readers buy the book.

Im excited. I should be nervous about making these decisions - Will this decision make the difference between a well received book and one that sells copies only to my immediate family?  Im not nervous,  I am so thrilled. Paula Takes a Risk should be available in March 2012

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

The Doctor’s Appointment - from The Grumblings of a Chronically Single Woman, by Randi Sherman, the author of Paula Takes a Risk, Available March 2012

The Doctor’s Appointment 

If you’re like me, the day that you are feeling sick and tired is the day when you want to see a doctor, not four weeks from then.  Why does it seem as if the doctor’s office staff is doing us a personal favor by fitting us into the appointment schedule?

It doesn’t matter what your symptoms are.  Leave the diagnosis to the professionals.  During the initial telephone call, it is Lorraine, the receptionist at your doctor’s office, who will determine the appropriate course of treatment, level of severity, and urgency of the complaint based on the answer to the most important question in medical science. “What type of insurance to do have?”

The last time I had flu symptoms, I thumbed through the book of doctors’ names and telephone numbers that had been provided to me by my insurance plan.  I selected one and called for an appointment.  After twenty minutes of pleading, I was granted an appointment time, and given a homework assignment.  “Bring your insurance card and insurance form, and your co-payment.  Arrive fifteen minutes before your appointment time.” 

I was hallucinating from a fever, but the first thing I was instructed to do entailed a scavenger hunt through my files to find an up-to-date insurance card and form. The faded, rumpled card in my wallet was the “temporary card” and I knew that it just wouldn’t do. I was pretty sure that I had the new, laminated card in an unopened envelope somewhere and the sample insurance form that came with the new employee packet in my filing cabinet.

When I arrived in the doctor’s waiting room, I tapped on the glass that separated the sick people from the office staff.  No response.  What is this about?  I heard voices and could make out figures on the other side.  I spotted the little bell that was just sitting on the ledge, begging to be rung.  Although the hand written index card that was taped to the glass had explicit instructions not to ring the bell, I rang it anyway. Lorraine slid open the miniature shower door and looked up from her subterranean receptionist area.  The expression on her face yelled “WHAT!?”

Apologetically, I reported my name and appointment time. She pretended to look for my chart and pushed a few keys on the computer keyboard.  With a heavy exhale, Lorraine growled, “Just a minute” and slid to glass shut again. 

Should I just stand here?  Go sit down?  I knew that I wasn’t guilty of anything, yet I was nervous.  I’ve had the same feeling while waiting to go through international customs at the airport.

The glass patrician opened again.  “Did you bring your insurance card?”  Lorraine held her hand out.

Nervously, I shuffled through my papers and then handed it to her. 

“I’ll make a copy for your chart.”  Without taking a breath she continued, “Your co-payment is fifteen dollars.  I’ll collect it when you leave.”  She pointed to the waiting area.   “Have a seat.”

When the glass window slid open again, everyone in the waiting room anxiously looked up, hoping that he or she would be the next one called.  When I heard my name called, I proudly perked up.  But, it was a false alarm.  Damn.  I wasn’t allowed to see the doctor yet.  Lorraine gave me another assignment, a pop quiz.

“Here.” She handed me a clipboard with questionnaire on it. “Have a seat and complete both sides of the form, sign it and bring it back to me when you’re done.”   A pen was attached to the clipboard with a string that was so short that it made it impossible to hold the pen upright, not to mention, reach the bottom of the questionnaire.

When I had finished, I handed the clipboard and questionnaire to Lorraine. She reviewed it for mistakes as if she was checking the answers on the written driver’s license test.  She motioned to the chairs behind me and told me to have a seat again. 

Forty minutes later, when Lorraine opened the door to the Promised Land of examination rooms and called my name, my heart leapt.  I nervously replaced the June 1971 edition of Hi-lights Magazine on the table, picked up my purse, and obediently followed her into the back office.  She opened a door, ushered me into a sterile looking room and told me the doctor would be with me shortly.

In order to speed the process along, I got undressed and hung my clothes on the hook on the back of the door.  When the doctor walked into the room and looked at me, his mouth dropped open.  He looked at me in disbelief.  I began to worry.  I must look very sick.

When I asked him why he looked so shocked, he asked me, “Do you know why you’re here?”

Oh my God!  Imagine my embarrassment when I realized that in my feverish hallucinatory state, I had mistakenly made an emergency appointment with a dentist.