Songs Sung Longer

Longer_Songs_Cover_for_Kindle (1)

Friends, I didn’t always write these novels. For the better part of thirty-five years, I was known for eighteen-inch stories in newspapers, and for the final twenty, they generally consisted of tales of race cars running wide-ass open around and around.

By Monte Dutton
By Monte Dutton

I still rely on such tales for spending money.

If journalism still ran on eight cylinders, I’d probably be there yet.

Fiction is a labor of love. One day I aspire to earn money in appreciable amounts. With tax time still in mind, it occurs to me that now I make money more in depreciable amounts.

Much of my reading audience tells me that they really enjoy my work, but they just don’t have the time to read many books, so, in my undying attention to their needs, I’ve published a collection of short stories to make it easier to read a book without any obligation to do it all at once and in order.

It’s called Longer Songs. Each of the 11 stories began as I song. I write songs unsuccessfully, too.

Some readers tell me they can’t get into reading on their laptops, tablets, pods, phones, and other electronic devices that elude me now. Many times they are thumbing through their Twitter feeds while imparting this information.

Longer Songs exists tangibly. It’s on paper. It has a cover that wraps around the paper. I’m working to make the last two e-novels, Crazy of Natural Causes (2015) and Forgive Us Our Trespasses (2016), available so that a reader can both have and hold.

Who knows? Maybe a man or a woman who’d work his or her way through Longer Songs might get so much enjoyment out of it that he or she might take a running start and faithfully leap into a full-sized novel or four, four being how many I’ve got floating around on the mainly e-market.

Wonder Woman was an Amazon. My books are on Amazon. Will wonders never cease?

Let me tell you briefly about the eleven yarns that make up Longer Songs. They’re both good and good for you. Read enough of them, and you can probably live without kale and decaf.

To assist you, for better or worse, in the decision-making process of whether or not you’d like to make the aforementioned leap of faith, here, in order, are brief summaries of the eleven aforementioned short stories:

 (Monte Dutton sketch)
(Monte Dutton sketches)

“Facebook Friends” is about a world-weary songwriter who picks up a wretched hitchhiker on the side of a lonely stretch of interstate.

IMG_0331(1)“Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” is the story of a baseball coach with a reputation for straightening out talented players whose heads have gone crooked.

“Furlough Blues” is about a man drawn into a criminal web of intrigue by crooked cops. A good many of these stories, you may have IMG_0429gathered, are crooked.

WIN_20150227_202945“If the Good Lord’s Willing” is another song about a songwriter. This one, Red Hawthorn, is trying to rebuild a relationship with his son through music.

The shortest Longer Song is “I Got Cash Money,” which is about a man stranded in New England, trying to get a bite to eat. It’s every bit of two pages.

IMG_0249“Scuppernongs and Muscadines” is a different take on the complicated relationship between a father and a son. It’s different because it’s from the son’s perspective.

 (Monte Dutton sketch)

“Stuck in a Rut” is about an adventurous young woman who takes a walk (actually a trip) on the wild side with a hustler she meets in a bar.

“The Tattooed Gal” is about a dangerous one-night stand.

IMG_0231“The Paved Road” is a yarn about a man with bad timing. Mother Nature chooses to put on a snowstorm on the day he chooses to have dental surgery.

IMG_0279“The Way I Do” is about a washed-up songwriter, with one more chance to hit it big, who finds himself stuck between what’s right and what’s smart.

 Finally, “What I Ain’t Got” is about a man who tries to teach a kid a thing or two while the two of them take a trip to the state farmers’ market.

Give them a try. Then, who knows? Maybe it’ll convince you to give a story of mine that’s more complicated and ambitious a shot.

One day you might even stoop to read a book on your phone. They’re cheaper that way, and it would be hard for it to be as frustrating as social media.

I love “real books,” too. There’s no neat way for me to sign your Kindle.

(Jennifer Skutelsky cover design)
(Jennifer Skutelsky cover design)

Signed copies of Longer Songs are available for $12.95 here in Clinton, South Carolina, at L&L Office Suppy, 114 North Broad Street. If you’d like to sample it, or buy it on Amazon, click here.

(Jennifer Skutelsky cover design)
(Jennifer Skutelsky cover design)

You may also link to my other modest works of fiction by clicking on the following titles:

The new novel, Forgive Us Our Trespasses, is a crime novel of politics, ambition, murder, sex, drugs, and patronage gone wild.

Crazy of Natural Causes is a unique tale of a man who reinvents himself after losing everything. It’s a fable of life’s absurdity.

(Melanie Ryon cover design)
(Melanie Ryon cover design)

The Intangibles is set in the late 1960s in a Southern town trying to come to grips with civil rights, integration, bigotry, and the local high school football team and its indominable coach.

(Joe Font cover design)
(Joe Font cover design)

The Audacity of Dope is the story of a pot-smoking singer-songwriter who, quite against his wishes, becomes a national hero after foiling an attempt to blow up the plane he’s on.


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