Friday, March 30, 2007


Being on the other side of town earlier this evening, I stopped in at a local bookstore I knew was in the area and came face to face with my target audience. Well, it was one guy, older with long white hair pulled back into a ponytail, sides tucked up under a Pete & Jakes Hot Rod shop baseball hat. Pete & Jakes isn't a local shop, not by a longshot and usually only hardcore car buffs own their attire. As I half-expected and was rewarded thusly, he was wearing a rod show t-shirt under a car club jacket and with the latest issue of Hot Rod magazine under his arm (yes, I know what these look like with barely a glance), he passed me on his way out. I'd be willing to bet he had axle grease permanently embedded under his nails but I didn't follow him to verify it.

His appearance made me stop for a moment and think, "He's my audience. He'd buy 'Enthusiast' if for no other reason than to see if I got it right."

My mind is never far from 'Enthusiast.' Never. It's the story I know better than anything else I've ever written, including the 'Geek Book' which was basically my life at one time. Somedays I think I know it better than my daily whine-fest at my blog. I just need to sit down and finish that story. Car show season starts in earnest next week. Now is the best time, the best time to dig out what I've got and start polishing the chrome. It's time to rock and roll.

Back in the Sci-Fi section of the bookstore, I passed another target. He was wearing a Bent Motors Speed shop t-shirt. Bent Motors is local or was at least at one time. I suspect someone thought it was a 'fun' company name once but then reality set in and the customers thought twice about taking their cars to a place that sounded like the mechanics might do more harm than good. The bills later rolled in for the water and the electric and for the tools and fancy hydraulic lifts and another one bites the dust.

The guy was thumbing through a motorcycle magazine and had a crude Chevy logo tatooed on his upper arm. Yeah, he'd buy 'Enthusiast' for the same reason as the other guy would: To make sure I got all the terminology right, to see if their car buddies were the inspiration for Floyd and Cecil and Scratchy, and to compare notes on how all the behind the scenes stuff at one of those Show & Shine shindigs. Neither one would like it, or buy it, if they knew a woman wrote it . . . unless it was very, very good and I think I'm close if I do say so myself.

But there's the matter of getting back to it, of getting on with the rock and roll. I met up with Steve and told him what I saw, told him I ran across my target audience, and then I grabbed him and shook him. "Please force me to finish 'Enthusiast!'" I begged.

I am serious. And those guys are waiting.


Ris said...

What you need is a few enthusiastic and energetic writers to nag you with a deadline for a critique. I may know where to find a few, but it could cost you some chocolate and a ginger ale!

Or there is always the IM treatment, a daily dose of "so, what have you written today" with expectations of a full report OR several :-( with "Bad Carole, Bad!" sent directly to your computer!

Carole said...

Ha! Yes, along with a couple of bags full of food we South Beach dieters don't want in the house anymore! I need to talk to you and Kami about all this stuff in case you're interested.

As for IM I'm on nearly every day for a while but I'm still working on my timing. I keep missing everyone.