I woke up today to a 5-star review in my book. The review is quick and simple, but it is 5-stars and that’s good.
Reviewed in the United States on February 22, 2020
Reviewed in the United States on February 20, 2020
There are more reviews on the book. I’ve only sold around 70 copies and I already have 7 reviews. Not sure what percentage of book reviewers to buyers is good, but 10% sounds good to me. Especially if the reviews are positive. And for the most part, they are.
I don’t want to work ever again, part of that wish came true this morning.
No. I didn’t sell a massive amount of books. I got laid off.
My routine of delivering the Reader all over Baja has ended. Or it will end. Only two more deliveries. Only two more checks. No more bowling every Thursday. No more crossing the border every Wednesday. And most importantly… NO MORE MONEY for rent.
I feel like I’m fucked.
It’s time to penny-pinch.
It might be time to finally get a roommate.
It’s time to find more gigs.
My weekly routine gig is gone and it feels bad. It feels really bad.
Not sure what to do with my car. It’s definitely eating shit. And by May I need to register it. It doesn’t pass smog at all. Not sure how much fixing will cost. Not sure if it’s worth it.
I feel like shit.
And I’m worried. Financial issues always feel like shit.
Not to mentioned I haven’t paid student loans and boy do they love to bug the fuck out of me. I plan on paying them… but now I have fewer gigs, less money, and it feels harder to do that.
What I want the most is for the book to sell well.
Like over 1,000 copies.
So… please go buy it?
I don’t care if paperback or digital. I make the same amount of money no matter which edition you buy.
At least I have the main photo gig… for now.
I had to do a photo gig in La Jolla. It was after I picked up my first five copies of the book. I didn’t realize that the NOT FOR RESALE was going to be printed on the book. I thought it was going to be a sticker.
From those 5 copies, I sold 0.
I just left 4 copies in different bars. The other copy is sitting next to me. There are tiny things that I want to fix. Nothing about the writing, just the book layout. “Divorced” or “widowed” words is what they are called in books. Those words that move to the next page and it makes you go back and forth to the sentence. There are a few of those. There is one on the table of contents. And it includes a number. So the numbers look confusing.
I haven’t read it all in the print version. People’s reaction is “wow! It’s a real book!”
Well… yeah. What did you expect?
It’s exactly the size of a standard novel. It has chapters. It has interesting stories. And it ends at some point. Like all books.
I bought 50 copies, those are arriving at the office tomorrow. I don’t really have to go to the office tomorrow since my delivery gig got canceled, but I need those books. Those books are my ticket to paying fucking RENT in March. I will be selling them in Pasaje Rodríguez or to whoever wants to meet in downtown Tijuana and buy a copy.
Please buy my book?!
I still can’t believe people read it and reviewed it. Or that I wrote that.
It feels weird.
I don’t care about recognition. I just care about the money. And I don’t really care much about money. I don’t need a lot. I just need enough for my student loans to fuck off and in general to live comfortably. Not outrageously comfortable. Just ok comfortable.
I care more about food and drink than cars, clothes, or other things. The other thing I spend my money are videogames.
I like to spend my money on cameras and lenses as well. But that’s for work. So it’s money to make more money.
I met the dude that gave me my first 5-star review on Amazon. I had him on Facebook but I had no idea who he was. Random people add and follow me all the time.
I am glad I met him.
I learned something new about TJ.
He is an older dude. He is the exact age as my dad. And he is enjoying life.
His first drink when he was 18 was in TJ. His son’s first drink when he was 18 was in TJ.
In the exact same place.
And that’s what he taught me.
That TJ had two long bars, the original extra long bar in Calle Segunda that stretches from what is now the Burger King to the end of the building which is the tourism board.
The second bar is what they called “La Ballena.” That bar is what is now Border Psycho.
There was always somewhat of a confusion in which was the long bar. Mike resolved the mystery for me.
There were two.
My next TJ mystery…
Where the fuck was Kansas City Bar?
It makes sense it was in Zona Norte… all bars there are name different cities. I want to go find it. But at the same time, I do not like wandering around Zona Norte.
I want to find it because this song is about that place:
It is… from my knowledge, the oldest written song in Tijuana. Written in 1919 (again, from what I know) and finally recorded in 1928, is supposedly Jelly Roll Morton’s happiest song. And it’s about a bar that existed or maybe it still exists in Tijuana.
Searching Kansas City Bar yields no results for obvious reasons.
I have text to finish, five little capsules about Tijuana sports. That’s going to be the only money I make next week. That, and some photo gigs.
I have a draft about what I’m going to do. I sort of have it all already in my head, like always, just need to do a bit of the legwork. I should be doing that now, but instead, I’m writing all this stupid crap.
I spent the weekend being a drunk… like always.
Friday, I met that dude that I told you about who gave me my first 5-stars. He also shared some other TJ adventures he had. He could write a book about all his adventures, but he wouldn’t. Then I went on drinking by myself. It was uneventful.
Saturday, I met with my writer friend Scott and his writer friend Alex. They bought me a couple of mezcal drinks and some Cevicheria Nais food. Cevicheria Nais is mentioned plenty in the book.
Sunday I had brunch with the family at the great Turkish restaurant “El Turco.” I haven’t been there for a while. I don’t get that hungry in the mornings. But it was delicious.
After that, I wanted to see a soccer game. I didn’t want to drink, but they weren’t showing it on TV and I couldn’t find a stream.
I went out to see the game at Nelson Bar. And I drank. And drank. And drank.
I passed out before 9 pm.
And that’s why I woke up this morning at 3 a.m.
Obviously couldn’t go back to sleep, so I binge-watched Narcos Season 2. My friend Poncho has a bigger role this season. His acting is actually quite good. He actually sounds like a Tijuanense though he has barely stepped foot in this city. I haven’t finished the season, but so far, so very good. I mean… that’s why I was binge-watching. At the end of each episode, you are like… fuck… I want to watch the next one.
I don’t have any tours. A couple of people have messaged me about it. But nothing really.
A dude that added me on Facebook asks me a lot of questions and apparently he is doing his own tours now. I thought that I knew the dude because he has the exact name as another dude I know. It is not that dude. It’s just a dude that follows me.
I know I can go back to doing tours and making money. But it is tiring. And I don’t really want to do it. Others are starting to do it for me. I’m the best at it (except Turista Libre, he will always be the best). I feel like I’m done with TJ. Not forever. But for a while. The book was the culmination of it all.
I told my therapist that I feel like when I quit my paparazzo job.
That’s how I feel.
As if life is about to take a very sudden change.
My dream is to leave this city for half a year. I’m not sure where I want to go, but I keep thinking of Ensenada.
Ensenada is in two chapters of my book. And I like it over there. I want to live there for a while and relax. And start writing my next book.
I already have an idea of how to open the book. Ah… fuck. I have so many ideas on how to start interesting stories as well. There are now seven google.docs that I started and have gone NOWHERE.
It’s insane how much re-affirmation and pats in the back I need. I’ve been getting good reviews and people like my writing. And I still need to be re-affirmed every single time.
You are good at this.
You are good at a lot of things.
Except for making money.
I’m horrible at making money.
I already started writing my second book. I know how I want it. No need to escape and go to Ensenada to start it. I do need a lot of time. But I started.
Book #2 will be out somewhere in mid-2021, or perhaps later that year. Or maybe at the beginning of 2022. You have to write a lot of books if you want money.
I might have to write even more books.
Buy my books?!