Sunday, December 9, 2012

Movin' on the Real Jason Hunt

Hi all my faithful blog readers!

The time has come to make the transition to a better-named blog:
Why, you ask? Well, I did an internet search for Jason Hunt the other day, and the world is apparently teeming with Jason Hunts! When a friend emailed me to ask which one was my site, I said, "You know, the REAL Jason Hunt site."

So I made my Facebook page That made me think I should change the name of this blog, but so many people have the link to this (and it's on my cards), so I figured I just start a second and directed people to it.

Please check out the new blog. Leave a comment. Share a post. Tell a friend.

See you over there!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Ghost of Shakespeare...New Mexico

For places like Shakespeare, New Mexico, the past lives on in three separate, but parallel universes: history, legend and literature. I think that is what makes the term “ghost town” so appropriate. When a person dies, he or she becomes a corpse. A pathologist performs an autopsy, an undertaker performs the embalming, and the funeral director oversees the handling of the remains. The historian is like a little like the pathologist, using knowledge and science to determine all there is to determine from the body.

In some cases, however, this is not the end of it. If family, friends or strangers encounter the person’s ghost, there is more to be told, things to resolve. The pathologist may have determined one cause of death, yet the ghost may assert another. The obituary may be written and published, yet the ghost may know and reveal things not in the “official” record.

In the case of a ghost town, there is something of importance that transcends what can be researched and confirmed. There is something about the past, something about the human condition that is still there to be discovered and learned.

Don’t get me wrong. I LOVE history. I marvel at and admire the almost surgical precision with which historians examine primary documents, like an archaeologist exhuming a dinosaur skeleton with bare hands and a small paint brush. What they are able to discover and rescue is priceless. For this reason, I am eagerly awaiting Erica Parson’s history of Shakespeare.

By the same token, I own, have poured over and continue to treasure the various articles and books I have by Emma Muir and by Rita and Janaloo Hill. I have not had the pleasure of touring Shakespeare yet, but when I do, I am eagerly awaiting all the facts, tales and details I will learn as I finally get to see and touch the place I have dreamed so much about.

And, of course, I will continue to write about Shakespeare. A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S GUNFIGHT takes place in Shakespeare, and Shakespeare will figure prominently in the sequel, MUCH ADO ABOUT DYING. A very respected writer of Westerns, Robert J. Randisi, once advised me, “You have to choose: either you can write about the factual West, or you can write about the mythical West.” To me, they are like yin and yang. Neither one would be as magical were it not for the other. And at some points they are the same.

Like Shakespeare, all significant people, places and periods live on in the triangle of history, legend and literature. Take Troy for example. I have read and reread the Iliad and the Odyssey of Homer many times. I have also read several books about the excavation of the ancient city of Troy and what this suggests about the actual Trojan War. The result is that I love the story of Troy all the more.

Herodotus is the ancient Greek historian from whom we have the first and best telling of the Spartans holding off the gigantic Persian army at Thermopylae. It is perhaps fitting that he is considered “the father of history” and yet has also been called “the father of lies.” His work is history, legend and literature all rolled up into one.

* For some light-hearted commentary and retouched photos, check out my Facebook page.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Meet and Greet at the Bellingham Library

Although this photo of the sign sort of makes you feel like the signing took place at a campground in an 80s slasher flick -- or at the Bates Motel -- the event was actually quite nice, with friends, family and a couple of fellow writers in attendance. Plus, I found some great paperbacks on the book sale shelves!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Book Signing at Barnes & Nobel this Thursday

Come on by the Barnes & Noble in Bellingham, MA, this Thursday, October 18, at 7:00 p.m. to pick up an autographed copy of A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S GUNFIGHT. There will be other local authors on hand, as well, so it should be a good time.

Here's the store. See you there!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Monday, September 3, 2012

Hot off the (cyber) press

There are currently some cool articles/stories online. Check out the links below:
Coming up:
  • Barnes and Noble, Bellingham, MA, 18 October, 7:00-9:00 p.m. EDT
  • Bellingham Library, Bellingham, MA, 25 October, 6:30-8:00 p.m. EDT
And, as always, you can pick up the book or e-book on Amazon:

Saturday, July 21, 2012

A Midsummer Night's Marketing Plan

Now that it has finally sunk in that I am indeed a published novelist, it's time to crank up the volume on my marketing campaign.

I actually put together a 10+ page "marketing plan," but I realize that 95% of what's in it is not really actionable. What I need to do is "pick one and get it done." Here is what is underway and upcoming.

(The two biggest breaks I've had I can't really take credit for.)

1) Oak Tree Publisher Billie Johnson's excellent sell sheet and Jeana Thompson's targetted mailings got me an interview in my local paper, The Milford Daily News. 

2) Reporter Jessica Trufant's well-written article caught the eye of the Associated Press, and the story was immediately picked up by the Boston Herald and the Boston Globe.

(This good fortune gave me a chance to apply a little elbow grease....)

3) Since the story is set in New Mexico, I emailed all the Arts and Entertainment editors at all the major (and kind of minor) New Mexico papers with a link to the original story, telling them it was on the wire and that their readers might be interested. So far about 25 papers have run the story.

4) I have a website (, a blog (, a Facebook fan page ( and a Twitter account (@jasonrhunt), but I really need to invest more time in them. (A Chinese exchange student who lived with us 10 years ago emailed to tell me my site looked like it was from the 1960s! I didn't have the heart to tell him there was no Internet in the 1960s. :-)

(Now here's where my plan gets a little...interesting.)

5) Being a songwriter, I wrote a theme song for the book. The lyrics are on the OTP blog ( and I will soon put up a video of the song on YouTube. (Caveat: I am CONSTANTLY calling the book A Midsummer Night's Dream instead of A Midsummer Night's Gunfight. :-)

6) My son and I play guitar and sing, and we have official "busker's licenses" that let us perform on the streets of Boston and Cambridge, so we are going to literally "take to the streets" to play music (throw in lots of old gunfighter songs) and see if we can drum up some interest in the book. He refuses to wear a teeshirt with a picture of the cover, so maybe I'll do a sandwich board.

7) I am going to try to get more newspaper coverage out of the last item since a dad and his son who are street performers trying to sell the dad's first book has GOT to be interesting to some one! :-)

8) which brings me to "angles." I keep trying to think of angles, things that make my story weird and different enough to be news worthy. I am already trying to milk the old songwriter angle. (It helps that I bought my first pair of cowboy boots from Garth Brooks. That was a lucky purchase despite the fact the boots were always a little tight and didn't stretch the way Garth promised they would.)

9) I wrote a lot of the book while riding the commuter rail back and forth to Boston, so I will try to push the "wrote the book on the train" angle. I am currently negotiating a book signing in South Station.

10) Although it pains me to do so, I am also going to try to exploit the "It took me all these years to finally get a book published" angle. Lots of stories published, but until now no novels.

11) And I have a list of additional possibilities -- many of them from author and acquisitions editor Sunny Frazier and her posse -- that goes on for pages!

Key for me, though, will be getting out of the thinking stage and just plain doing stuff. Gen. George Patton said, "A good plan violently executed now is better than a perfect plan executed next week." I would go further to say "Even a half-baked, kind of crappy plan will always trump doing nothing."

That's the strategy for now. I'll keep you posted on how it goes. :-)