Tuesday, 22 October 2013

BOOK TOUR & EXCERPT - Tinseltown Riff by Shelly Frome


Title - Tinseltown Riff

Author - Shelly Frome 

Publisher: Sunbury Press (March 2013)

Category: Hollywood Crime Caper, Action/Adventure, Thriller, Literary

ISBN-13: 978-1620062050

Tour Date: October, 2013

Available in: Print and ebook, 239 Pages

Synopsis -

Tinseltown Riff centers on Ben Prine, a thirty-something Hollywood screenwriter who, on a Labor Day weekend, finds himself in desperate straits. Latching on to a dubious last-minute opportunity, he unwittingly embarks on a collision course with a Montana tracker connected with a Vegas mob; an odyssey which culminates in a showdown on an abandoned Western movie set.

Guest blog post by the author:

Tinseltown Riff the Movie:
Casting your alter ego

            Since Ben Prine, the lead in my Hollywood novel, is my stand-in and I’ve been asked who I would cast in a film version, as the late Ricky Ricardo might say, “There’s a lotta ‘splainin’ to do.”
            In the first place, I would probably have to come up with a composite and then ask myself, Who could embody most of these qualities? Who would look just right and be able to pull it off?
            At the outset, I myself often find myself standing back in amazement, possibly with a glint in my eye. For instance, my nephew and his wife introduced me to Howie, an old schoolmate whose mother prowls Melrose trying to shop her son on The Tonight Show as the world’s youngest oldest virgin. I mean, good grief. Then there are the countless wanna-be screenwriters, actors and actresses who tell me their jobs as cabbies, hotel clerks, waiters and waitresses and what-have-you are only temporary even though they’re been at it for years: “What you see is not what you get. Any minute now I’ll be on my way.” Which, at the same time, reminds me of myself when I was a starving actor.
            And also reminds me of a thirty-something Bill Murray who always had that glint in his eye as if about to say, Can you believe this? Then, on Saturday Night Live, actually pleading with the audience, trying to convince them he was really funny if they would only give him a chance.
            And so there’s the contradiction of being the amused observer and jumping in trying to make the grade.
            Another quality is a kind of dreaminess. Frequently taking off into another sphere, imagining, asking myself, What if? Frequently becoming lost in old movies on Turner Classics. Plus an incurable romanticism, longing for the girl next door, the white picket fence and the homey, neighborly small town goodness of It’s a Wonderful Life. In that sense, Toby McGuire would be perfect with that trademark wistful look.  
            A third quality I should mention is a certain short-term intrepidness. While living in Tucson, I had a roommate who looked and sounded like a cross between Kris Kristofferson and Jeff Bridges. One day he pulled up in an MG TD he’d just bought and shouted, “Hop in, kid, we’re headin’ across the border into Mexico.” Along the way he told me he was on parole for holding up the same town Billy the Kid did in New Mexico. The only difference was, he used a sawed of shotgun. But here again, there’s a discrepancy. Ben, my character, would never do this but gradually finds himself over his head. Admittedly, I always drew the line. And that is precisely why I needed to send Ben out there to see what would’ve happened if I had stuck it out long-term in the entertainment business and, like Ben, found myself down-and-out, willing to take a flyer on any gonzo scheme that came along, unaware of the trouble ahead.  
            Before all these discrepancies start to pile up on us, perhaps it’s time to stop and think about casting. Ideally, I don’t look right for the part, don’t come off as a slightly aging boy next door caught in up in a loopy, potentially dangerous situation, I’d choose Edward Norton. You may remember him from Primal Fear with Richard Gere or the nice-looking-guy lead in Woody Allen’s musical Everybody Says I Love You. There are other movies too but the point is we need someone who is bright (he’s a graduate of Yale), articulate and witty (like Bill Murray) who could churn out screenplays. But also can easily get lost in his pursuit of the brass ring, taken with a girl-next-door look-alike like Toby McGuire (which happens in this tale) and play the unwitting hero.

            At any rate, off the top of my head, I feel Ed Norton would be a good choice.  Most of all, we need someone who isn’t a star, not immediately recognizable, no one we would associate with success. Someone we can root for who doesn’t have a lot going for him. Perhaps someone like you and me.  


Praise for Tinseltown Riff:

"Tinseltown Riff is a kick - a funny, well-told tale about the world's most insane business." - 
Peter Lefcourt, Emmy Award winner, screenwriter and best-selling novelist specializing in the Hollywood scene.

"Shelly Frome's Tinseltown Riff takes us on a ride along the Hollywood fringe that is equal parts gritty intrigue and social comedy. In a subculture where get-rich-quick screenwriting workshops are a con and even the Santa Ana winds can be an illusion, Frome's characters are heartbreakingly real. Under this pulp fiction facade lurks an unsettling yet compelling truth about the Dream Factory and its high-risk allure."John Fusco, mainstream Hollywood screenwriter of Young Guns, Thunderheart, The Forbidden Kingdom, winner of two Bronze Wrangler awards and the Spur Award for Hidalgo, an Academy Award nominee for Best Screenplay and showrunner for Marco Polo.
  
"Shelly Frome writes with loving attention to the moment and the milieu of Hollywood and the aridity that surrounds it. Some of the best scenes give us a real taste of the Hispanic world most tourists never see. A fast moving and intriguing book with real energy." Lee Jacobus, book critic, Connecticut Public Radio.
  
"An amazing writing technique that actually makes the reader feel they are watching a movie. Frome's remarkable details fill each page as if viewing a film scene. You find yourself nearly breathless trying to keep up with the constant action. Danger, humor and narcissistic sex co-exist in the Hollywood world of fantasy and selfish ambition.  Each chapter brings a change of direction.  All is finally resolved like the Santa Ana Winds finishing their breezy run. Enjoy this Hollywood story, but hold on to your hats, you're in for a ride!"Herbert Siegel. Amazon Reviewer
  
"Tinseltown Riff by Shelly Frome took me on a trip through the movie industry that was a surprise and a lot of fun.
From C.J. Rodriguez, the Hispanic wild surfer undercover cop, Leo the mad Russian whose visa is about to expire, Mrs. Melnick who will do anything to get on the Jay Leno show, Ray the sleazy front man from Vegas under the gun from the mob, to Angelique, the desperate rock star on the skids, you'll find people caught between hustle and hope. Oh, and let's not forget Molly, the actress wannabe who happens to be a younger version of the desperate rock star, and Deke, the cowboy with a mission and not much conscience.
On this wild ride through the industry, you'll be watching over Ben's shoulder as he does his best to make it in the Big Time, only to trip and fall, time and time again.
What could all of these people possibly have in common with Ben? Read the book and find out. I did, and I wasn't disappointed. I recommend this story to readers looking to get away from it all, who are looking for an adventure, and who want to be entertained."A. McGraw, Amazon Reviewer

About Shelly Frome:

Shelly Frome is a member of Mystery Writers of America, a professor of dramatic arts emeritus at the University of Connecticut, a former professional actor, a writer of mysteries, books on theater and film, and articles on the performing arts appearing in a number of periodicals in the U.S. and the U.K. He is also a film critic and a contributor to writers' blogs.

His fiction includes Lilac Moon, Sun Dance for Andy Horn, the trans-Atlantic cozy The Twinning Murders and Twilight of the Drifter, a southern gothic crime-and-blues odyssey. Among his works of non-fiction are the acclaimed The Actors Studio and texts on the art and craft of screenwriting and writing for the stage. Tinseltown Riff, his latest novel, is both a social commentary and a Hollywood crime caper.


Shelly Frome's Website: www.shellyfrome.com Shelly Frome Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/shellyfrome Shelly Frome Twitter: https://twitter.com/shellyFrome

Buy Tinseltown Riff:
Follow the Tour:
So Many Precious books Oct 7 Review & Giveaway
Dr. Bill’s Book Baazar Oct 8 Review
Butterfly-o-Meter Books Oct 9 Interview
Joy Story Oct 10 Review
Ann’s Reading Corner Oct 11 Review
Ordinary Girls Oct 14 Review
From L.A. to LA Oct 15 Review & Giveaway
Paperback Writer Oct 15 Guest Post
Deal Sharing Aunt Oct 16 Review
I Feel So Unnecessary Oct 17 Review
Bookalicious Travel Addict Oct 22 Guest Post
Kate Eileen Shannon Oct 24 Guest Post & Giveaway
Hollywood Daze Oct 25 Review
Sweeps 4 Bloggers Oct 29 Review & Giveaway
Rose & Beps Blog Oct 31 Guest Post
Literary, etc Nov 1 Review & Giveaway