My Own Quarter Life Crisis

slumbering old manAt 30, I can’t very well claim to be having a quarter life crisis, unless I plan on living to 120 years old (a cool thought, but that sounds…just…exhausting).

I do, however, vividly remember my own quarter life crisis, mostly because it didn’t end too long ago. Also, (surprise surprise) it pretty much mirrored the crisis of Sean, one of the main characters in Quarter Life Crisis: A Novel.

What I remember most about it wasn’t the physical circumstances of the situation (though the image of me staring aimlessly at a computer screen covered in job prospects with my resume opened on another screen while I sat in my underwear in my old bedroom at my parents’ house drinking vodka not-so-discretely disguised in a Sprite bottle does sort of strike a chord).

It’s really the mental repercussions that come with being thrust into a world that claims to be doing everything for the kids, but never really defined its feelings for people who are still children at heart.

The indecision. Insecurity. Inability to make a move in any direction for fear that I would be setting myself up for a life filled with regrets.

What resulted was me coming to a standstill–for years actually–until about ten months ago when I just started…doing things. It’s like I woke up one morning, realized I was turning 30 soon, and that any decision I made would be better than doing nothing.

So I did whatever I felt like doing (hence quitting teaching at Miami Dade College to become a bartender…there’s a method to my madness, even if I’m making up the method as I go). And I’m still doing whatever I feel like doing. And so far it’s worked out for me, the ultimate representation of that Working-Out manifesting itself in the four year project that is Quarter Life Crisis, which will officially be released in less than three weeks (August 5th homies).

cerro_patacon_on_fireThe point is, I know a lot of people who are in a state of flux right now. Various things get thrown at us on a daily basis, shit that piles up over the years and turns into a mental landfill that you can’t do anything but stare at, marveling at its immensity while trying wholeheartedly not to have a panic attack at just the thought of trying to sift through all this crap.

I’ve found that the only way to deal with it is burn the whole fucking thing down, leaving only the raw core of your personality, your wants and needs. The you that is really you.

You know yourself better than anybody else can, and often our initial choices in life are the right ones. For us.

In other words, don’t stagnate. Nobody feels the pressure of their looming lives ahead of them like somebody in their mid-twenties, when the future can seem both wide open and restricted to a certain set of possibilities. The trick is to just do somethingAnything.

Its-Never-Too-Late-To-rewrite-your-story-picIn a sense, life choices aren’t that much different than the writing process. Revising something you wrote in a moment of inspiration is hard, because it’s the most blatant way of admitting to yourself that you can and will make mistakes. It’s also really hard to know if you’re rewriting your words in the way you originally meant them to be written, conveying the abstract thoughts in your head in the best, most concrete way possible.

The beauty, though, is that you can keep trying until you get it right.

Which is something you definitely can’t do if you never wrote anything in the first place.

—–

Hope your summer’s been good, and that the rest of your year will be awesome.

If you’re in the Miami area on Friday, August 1st, look me up. I’ll be having a release party for Quarter Life Crisis in the conference room of the Palmetto Golf Course on SW 152nd street and US-1 at 7:30pm.

Otherwise, pick up a copy of Quarter Life Crisis on Tuesday, August 5th.

Help me make this thing a success, and in turn I promise to keep trying to entertain you for the rest of my life (keyword: trying).

That’s the purpose I chose for myself, and I have no regrets. And neither should you.

Peace, love, and cheese pizza (yeah…it’s lunch time).

-PAJr.

Quarter Life Crisis Gear

Alright. First of all, it’s been a while. Hope everybody’s summer’s going good. If you live in South Florida, hope these summer storms haven’t drowned or electrocuted you yet (seriously, it’s been like a daily Armageddon out here).

Down to business:

goodreads

The above picture is a glimpse of the final results for the Quarter Life Crisis Bookreads giveaway that ended yesterday. Congrats to the people who won those ten autographed advanced copies of the book, and thanks to the 730 people who entered the contest (can’t really put my head around that, so I’ll just state the number and move on).

Appreciate the love, the interest, and hope the 720 awesome people who didn’t win a copy of the book will still pick one up on August 5th, read it and leave a review on whichever site they fancy (because apparently those are the types of things that matter in the publishing industry nowadays. Shrug.)

It’s gotten to a point in this wait for Quarter Life Crisis to release (August 5th!) where I’m actively trying not to think about the goddamn book, for a few reasons:

1) I feel like it’s all I’ve been talking about, and I still have a whole month and some days before the damn thing comes out, I’M BORED ALREADY!

2) thinking about Quarter Life Crisis and its release inevitably reminds me of the dozens of promotional things I still have to do before and after August 5th rolls around, which leads to normal reactions like hyperventilation and itchy skin and a desire to bash my head into a wall; and

3) I’m steadily chipping away at the next novel (working title: About That Life, working summary: a college adjunct professor and his ex-Marine best friend decide to fix their mounting financial issues by taking up a side job as thieves and end up robbing the biggest drug dealer in Miami…no it is not autobiographical) and it’s a lot easier to focus on my next project if I can get myself to stop thinking about the last one. Any suggestions on how to do that are welcome.

That said, some more news on the Quarter Life Crisis front: we’ve got shirts now!

qlc gear

I mean, we’ve always had shirts…Quarter Life Crisis isn’t being published by people sitting bare chested at their computers (though I’m pretty sure it wouldn’t make a difference if they were).

Rather, we have Quarter Life Crisis shirts now, at the Quarter Life Crisis Gear store. Two designs, various styles/colors/sizes/etc., along with a slew of random items like buttons and phone cases and coffee mugs and other shit people tend to buy when buying’s as easy as clicking a few buttons.

So click the pic above, or the link right here to go to the store and start representing.

And, once again, BUY QUARTER LIFE CRISIS ON AUGUST 5TH! (or just click here to preorder it right now).

Peace, love, prosperity, and sanity.

-PAJr.

Everything Matters

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There’s really not much that can be said about this book that hasn’t  been said already in the seemingly million reviews it’s gotten. Yet I join the flock of fans when I say that this is probably one of the greatest pieces of literature I discovered while in grad school.

Imagine you were born with a voice in your head that told you things about people’s pasts and futures that nobody could/should ever know. And imagine if that same voice has been telling you since you were in the womb that the world is going to end in 30+ years when an asteroid slams into earth. Would be a very odd life.

That’s the premise in Ron Currie Jr.’s novel,  Everything Matters, in which the main character–Junior–is both blessed and cursed with the gift of semi-omniscience. But the novel itself is so much more than an apocalyptic tale. If you like action, romance, science fiction, philosophical implications, and some serious character development, check out Currie’s book.

And as usual, click here to preorder a copy of my novel Quarter Life Crisis, out August 5th.

Keep it classy peeps.

-PAJr.

Quarter Life Crisis Goodreads Book Giveaway

So, for those of you who aren’t one of the 25 million people using Goodreads, it’s a social media site for literature lovers. Basically Facebook for bookworms. All sorts of great info and opportunities to share thoughts on recently read novels, connect with your favorite authors, and meet people like you who regularly find themselves with their face buried in words. They’ve also got these author spotlight pages, showcasing authors’ books with different opportunities for promotion.

One of those opportunities involves giving away copies of their books, which is what I’m spouting off about right now. For the rest of May and most of June, we’ll be giving away 10 signed advanced copies of Quarter Life Crisis (and by give away, I do mean free). All you have to do is go to the Goodreads page and click “Enter to Win,” or just click the button below.

Fairly simple.

Make sure to tell your friends about the contest, and if you don’t win a copy of the book (or even if you do), go out and pick up a copy of QLC on August 5th.

Deuces! (do people still say that? Whatever, I just did).

-PAJr.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Quarter Life Crisis by Patrick Anderson Jr.

Quarter Life Crisis

by Patrick Anderson Jr.

Giveaway ends June 22, 2014. See the giveaway details at Goodreads.

Enter to win

Love and Other Near-Death Experiences

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Sitting here looking at an advanced copy of Quarter Life Crisis, I started thinking about how much my reading preferences have changed over the years (and, as a result, my writing preferences). Because I’m the type of guy who sits around thinking about shit like that.

Sidetrack: check out the book:

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Cool, huh? Yeah. I wrote that. [shrugs] No biggie.

Anyways, when I was a kid, thrillers and horrors were king. Stephen King, to be exact (corny pun, I know, but about as corny as the two King-related tattoos on my left arm: one of his quote “Fiction is the truth inside the lie” and the other the bar code for my favorite book of his, The Stand. It’s just a mild obsession…) Christopher Pike, R.L. Stine, Dean Koontz, Michael Crichton, etc. They were my savior from those boring moments that pop up in each day, and I cherished them for that. Still do, actually.

But some time around 2008 I started realizing that people typically responded to the humor in my writing, which was also around the time that I realized I loved reading about humorous characters saying and doing humorous things, even in the horror and thriller novels I’d frequented up to that point.

So I went on a comedy spree, which is initially where the inspiration came for writing QLC in the style that I did. But looking back now I notice another trend in my reading habits at the time: almost all of the authors I read while preparing to write QLC were British.

Never set foot in England a day in my life, yet I found myself suddenly obsessed with British comedy authors. Nick Hornby, Jonathan Coe, Mark Haddon, Max Barry (I know he’s Australian dammit, but he speaks English and he doesn’t live in America and I’m trying to make a point), Steven Hall, and the subject of this post, Mil Millington.

I came across Millington and his third novel Love and Other Near-Death Experiences while sitting around my apartment (seems to be a trend with me) scouring through Amazon’s “Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought…” links, searching for that Hornby-esque style that I’d grown so fond of. When I sat down to read Millington’s novel though, I was initially skeptical (as I am of all new authors, as most people are of all things new, pretty much my main obstacle in promoting Quarter Life Crisis, one of those annoying traits of humanity you can’t do anything about because you know you do the same shit too).

Love and Other Near-Death Experiences ended up being one of the most influential books I read that year though, cementing in my mind a very simple fact: British people are way better at humor than Americans are. They’re better at a lot of things, actually, but that’s definitely the one that tops my personal list. I think it’s part of their genetics, like they come out of the womb crying sarcastically.

Anyways, the book is about a guy named Rob who has his own little quarter life crisis one day when a random store purchase keeps him out of a pub he intended to enter, a pub that is subsequently destroyed by an explosion. Knowing that he was meant to be there, Rob starts to question the meaning of life and love and the choices he’s made so far and will make in the future and all that, which all adds up to a hilarious story that made me wish I’d written it (as all good stories do).

Check it out when you get a chance. And, once again,  PREORDER QUARTER LIFE CRISIS AND GET IT ON AUGUST 5TH!

That is all.

-PAJr.

 

Press Release: How to Get Over College and Become a Functioning Member of Society

How to Get Over College and Become a Functioning Member of Society

Miami Dade College Professor Patrick Anderson Jr.’s new novel “Quarter Life Crisis” takes a look at post-university trials and tribulations in the new millennium.

Miami, FL – May 21, 2014 – Life after college has become a sore point for many university graduates in 2014, a fact that local author and Miami Dade College faculty member Patrick Anderson Jr. can personally attest to. It’s an ongoing issue, one that he explores with a comedic slant in his new coming-of-age comedy novel “Quarter Life Crisis”, debuting on Tuesday, August 5th.

Set in Miami, “Quarter Life Crisis” takes the reader into the lives of two troubled individuals: Sean is a recent college grad turned burgeoning alcoholic who’s forced to take a job bartending when he can’t find one pertaining to his psychology degree, struggling to pay his student loans and get over a privileged past to find meaning in life after academia; Lauren is in a similar situation, battling her personal shortcomings after having dropped out of college to have a baby and get married to her husband, Rick, who she’s just walked in on having sex with their son’s babysitter. When Lauren and Sean meet, an event takes place that will forever tie them together, and change their perception of what it means to be truly happy in the long run.

Anderson—an English professor at Miami Dade College, home of the Miami International Book Fair—wrote “Quarter Life Crisis” while in graduate school, using the novel as his thesis to acquire his MFA in Creative Writing from University of Central Florida. Prior to his time there, he received his Bachelor’s in English from Florida State University.

“The irony that ‘Quarter Life Crisis’ earned me my Master’s degree isn’t lost on me,” said Anderson. “The novel isn’t a condemnation of the collegiate pursuit. Rather, it presents the reality of what life’s really like for a majority of college grads in the new millennium. It’s funny but honest, and guaranteed to leave readers nodding and thinking of a few people who these characters remind them of, if they’re not one themselves.”

“Quarter Life Crisis” is available for preorder in eBook and print from Amazon and Barnes and Noble, among other major book retailers. For more information about “Quarter Life Crisis”, please visit http://PatrickAndersonJr.com or http://GetOverCollege.com.

Review copies and interviews upon request. For booking presentations, media appearances, and/or book-signings contact Patrick at 305-458-4007, or at PatrickAndersonJr@hotmail.com.

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Contact: Patrick Anderson Jr.

Email: PatrickAndersonJr@hotmail.com

Website: http://PatrickAndersonJr.com