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I recently had the opportunity to read a new book by author Robin Delnoce called ‘Bunco: A Comedy About The Drama of Friendship’. It was certainly an entertaining read and I was thrilled to have the author write an exclusive guest post, just for my readers! Scroll on to learn more about the author and check out my review to learn more about the book.
by Robin Delnoce
My name is Robin and I wouldn’t really call myself an author… I’m more of a jackass with a word processing program. Oh, and when my editor returned my manuscript, it needed more corrections than my S.A.T., so please don’t judge my book by the grammatical mistakes here.
I lived my whole life within a 20-mile radius in southern California until 2003 when my husband’s job sent us to Cincinnati, Ohio. I knew no one in the state, so when registering my kids for school, I had to list my realtor as their emergency contact. It was a lonely few months until the wife of my husband’s boss invited me to be a substitute in her neighborhood bunco game. I jumped at the chance to get out of my house and meet new people. As soon as I was introduced, I was fascinated by the variety of personalities in attendance. The conversations fueled the camaraderie, and it was easy for me to learn about the dynamic of everyone in the group just by listening to their dialogue. Now, I can’t really go into too much detail without divulging a big chunk of the book, but that initial meeting planted the seed for a story. I felt a script format was the only way to properly convey the connection between these characters, so I started writing. My characters were initially conceived with attributes of actual people melded together, but they quickly became their own personalities and I looked forward to spending time with them.
After finishing “Round 1,” I was hit with inspiration for “Round 2.” A few months passed and I rewrote several sections of “Round 1” to tie into “Round 2.” Months turned into years. Sometimes I would write every night for a month, and other times, I would go months without writing a word. At some point, the idea for “Round 3” hit me. Again, I would tweak the beginning of the story to tie into what I was currently writing. This continued through “Round 4” over a period of nine years.
Which brings us to summer of 2019. I had resigned myself to this manuscript being nothing more than a fun tool for my children to use to show their children and grandchildren what kind of person I was. I sent it off to my daughter in college figuring it would sit in her laptop and probably never see the light of day. To my surprise, she read it! Her roommate caught a glimpse of it and asked if she could read it too. Then, unbeknownst to me, the roommate shared it with her mother. I was sitting at dinner one night when I got a text from a strange number, “I just read your book and you HAVE to do something with it!” It was the roommate’s mother. I was floored. I had never considered publishing it as a “book”, because of the script format, so I started asking more friends to read it. A few people didn’t care for the format, but several others did. I was excited but didn’t know what to do next.
2020 is the year my graduating class turns 50. No other milestone hit me quite like this one. I feel the years, I look the years, and I really wasn’t feeling terribly enthusiastic about this birthday. Early March, I got the message everyone dreads. A friend’s battle with cancer kept her from making it to 50. Then, the pandemic hit. Those events individually would have made me re-prioritize my life, but with all of them hitting almost simultaneously, I felt a new sense of urgency. Tomorrow isn’t a certainty, and everything can change in an instant. What would I regret not doing if it did?
One day, while on social media, I noticed a friend of a friend listed his occupation as “Published Author.” I asked my friend to connect us, and through a number of texts and phone calls, he generously guided me through the self-publishing process. I wish I could tell you it was all smooth sailing, but I had a huge hurdle in front of me and no idea how I was going to get over it.
You see, I’m delusional, and for decades I have convinced myself that I AM as funny as I think I am. What if this book proves I’m wrong? What if I was kidding myself thinking that the only reason I never succeeded is because I never tried? If I officially “try” and fail, my delusion ends. Then what? I like my delusion! My delusion has gotten me through some tough times. It’s been my only comforting factor when I haven’t felt good enough or strong enough or pretty enough or smart enough… If I lose funny, I lose the only thing that gave me worth, and that terrifies me!
It’s so odd to see these words calmly and thoughtfully expressed here because for the better part of three months, I was a hysterical anxiety-ridden crazy person. I’m sure my family was secretly wishing for the sweet relief a CoVid19 diagnosis would offer them. “Oh no, I can’t be around mom for two weeks… bummer.” I looked at every minor problem as a reason to pull the plug. If it wasn’t for my husband (who had been subjected to a “Can’t you understand how important this is to me!” meltdown earlier in the year) finding solutions in a timely manner, I would have crawled back into my delusion and lived happily ever after.
BUT, somehow, somewhere between uncontrollable ugly-crying episodes, I was able to hit the publish button. I don’t know how this book will be received and I may lose my delusion, but I know I’ll get through it with the support of my family and friends… and several pharmaceutical companies. ◊◊
About Robin Delnoce
Robin Delnoce has the kind of sense of humor that would crush any political aspirations. Her off-color humor amuses most but offends a few, and she has been known to issue a post-party apology or two. After twenty years of being caught in her verbal crosshairs, her husband kindly suggested she shift her energies to a more constructive outlet.
To learn more, visit https://buncothebook.com/
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