Sherlock By Moonlight

For over a year I have had trouble falling asleep.

There are many things I can point to as possible blames for my restless evenings. Three jump quickly to mind.

  • The obvious one, and the one we probably all share, is the 2016 election and what happened afterwards. For more information on that, tune in to NPR on any day (or hour).
  • The second is more personal. With my writing, I’m still trying to figure out what to do with my latest book (which I believe is probably the best original fiction I will ever create). It’s a very unique position, where each reader (agent or publisher) says it is important, some even say they love it, but it has yet to find a home. It’s like being the nice guy in high school; everyone wants to be its friend, but no one wants to date it.
  • The third one is I changed jobs last year. While I am very happy with the results of that experience (and it turned out to be a very good thing for me), everything around those stressful months still wears on me.

I wouldn’t say all of this is dramatic enough to call it PTSD, but it does linger in the gut sometimes at around 11 o’clock when my entire family is asleep and a part of me feels like I need to stay awake to keep an eye on all of them. I don’t have time to sleep. It feels like a luxury I don’t get right now.

I’ve tried a few tricks to fall asleep. The first was I got a sound machine, one of those devices that can do the sound of rain or thunderstorm, etc. (Strangely many of them just make me feel like I have to use the bathroom.)

The sounds did work for about a month and then my nine-year-old son discovered it, and I have not seen it since. It lives in his bedroom now, and while I am struggling to fall asleep he is experiencing a peaceful summer night with crickets.

Analyzing myself (which I love to do), overall, I need to put my mind in a sense of peace and harmony. Give myself the “okay” to fall asleep. Just lying in silence doesn’t do that for me. Reality bears down too much in the quiet moments.

…Strangely what has been working has been solving mysteries with literature’s greatest detective. Continue reading

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Three Things I Have Almost Blogged About…

Broken PencilSo when I started this blog, I had nothing but the best intentions. I made lists and lists of different things to write about.

… Then I sat down and did way too much about Disneyland and Game of Thrones (two things that should never be in the same sentence again).

Let’s have a brief tangent- I’m one of the few book readers that is thrilled that Game of Thrones is passing the books. The script writers for the show certainly have their problems (for example, they go darker than the books, amazingly), but one skill they do have is the ability to edit. They cut, cut, cut the books down to something a little easier to consume and that is no small feat. I’ll never be totally happy with the calls they make (poor Sansa) or even the calls Martin makes (poor Ned), but at least we’ll be getting an ending to the tale in the new few years.

Okay, where was I? Recently, I found my list of original ideas for blog entries, focused on only one current theme- what interests the guy writing this.

Hey, it’s my blog, what can I say?

Below are three items I always wanted to dive into and never got around to. Not to say they aren’t interesting, it’s just… I’m a very important and busy man (no, I’m not). I have a lot of writing responsibilities (ha!). These short essays are the best  I can do (that is probably true). Continue reading

Free eBook for Memorial Day Weekend! The playful, odd, and thrilling MAXIMILIAN STANDFORTH……

Maximilian Standforth and the Case of the Dangerous Dare, Cover“If you like your supernatural books where reality mixes with the impossible, the inexplicable, then this is the book for you…. It is beautifully written.” GoodReads.com

Need an eBook for this Memorial Day Weekend? Want something different, unique, unpredictable? Consider one of my latest novels Maximilian Standforth and the Case of the Dangerous Dare. It is free for a very limited time on amazon for Kindle. You can find it here (http://www.amazon.com/Maximilian-Standforth-Case-Dangerous-Dare-ebook/dp/B00CXSDEBE/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1400851518&sr=8-2&keywords=Scott+Southard). Grab a copy today!

“I started this book expecting a Sherlock Holmes style mystery with a bit more humour and got so much more than I bargained for!… If you have read any Jasper Fforde,  imagine him writing whilst tripping on acid.” amazon.co.uk

This is one of my favorites of my books.  Maximilian Standforth and the Case of the Dangerous Dare is the supposed fifth book in a fake mystery series. Here is the back cover description:

The cursed and foreboding McGregor Castle is the most terrifying and haunted location in all of the British Empire. Only a brave (or foolish) soul would consider visiting it, let alone staying within its walls for five days. In other words, a perfect dare for a man like Maximilian Standforth!

Maximilian Standforth, famed playboy aristocrat and private detective, is a genius with dangerous tastes. With Bob (his trusty carriage driver, biographer, and body guard) and Maggie Collins (actress, spy, and maid) by his side, Maximilian will experience horrors and madness unlike any seen before. For it is at McGregor Castle that the team will discover more than they ever could imagine in this very experimental and genre-breaking thriller.

You can enjoy a test run of it with the first chapter below. And if you do decide to grab this free eBook, would you consider showing your thanks by grabbing another of my novels as well? A Jane Austen Daydream is only $3.99 on Amazon here. My other two novels (My Problem With Doors and Megan) can both be found exclusively on Google Play for ebook here (which will work on Kindle as well).

“This book proved to me the writing skill of Mr. Southard! I believe the man has quite the imagination, albeit a twisted one” Goodreads.com

Continue reading

“The game is afoot!” Some comedy for my now 1300 followers!

sherlockThis is a few days late, but I wanted to write and thank my now 1300 blog subscribers.  (Which is at 1306 or so now.)

Thank you!

Over the next few months I have a lot of new things planned, including sharing the release of the audiobook version of A Jane Austen Daydream (which sounds awesome), a new book, and a collection of my blogposts entitled Me Stuff.  So stay tuned!

To celebrate this milestone for my little site, below you will find some comedy. (Man, this really makes me smile.) I think you will really like it, especially if you are a fan of the inhabitants of 221B Baker Street.

It is a Sherlock Holmes parody I wrote, which was recorded by Mind’s Ear Audio Productions (the same good people who produced my radio series The Dante Experience, which you can listen to for free on this page).

I hope you enjoy “Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Dating Dilemma.”

Thank you again for following my site!

Five Things I Am Into Right Now, April 2014

UmbrellaSpring should be a time of rebirth, new things to discover. It’s one of the reasons that the summer blockbusters start in this month and Easter is filled with eggs and rabbits. Yet, when I look over my list I notice that much of it is filled with… well… old stuff.

Maybe this says something about me?

Or maybe I just need to stop psychoanalyzing myself?

I do it a lot, of course, but everyone that has a blog does. We are a collection of little self-therapists, the only difference is the world gets access to the notepad. And can comment on it.

Well, speaking as my own therapist, I see on this list a sonic piece of detective comfort food, a need for silly humor, a demon I can’t escape, a cartoon for the kiddies, and a CD that always puts a smile on my face. My diagnosis is that it is a something like a call for Spring, but a comforting one. So maybe I am almost on the right page, just not quite.

Continue reading

Book Sale on Kindle! The gothic MAXIMILIAN STANDFORTH… is only 99 cents! Check out an excerpt!

Maximilian Standforth and the Case of the Dangerous Dare, Cover

“For now, let me warn you of the morbid and sad tale ahead of you. This is a
tale filled with horror, dark passages, ghostly apparitions, and deaths I would
give my last shilling to forget.”

For a limited time (and just in time for holiday shopping and holiday travels), my novel MAXIMILIAN STANDFORTH AND THE CASE OF THE DANGEROUS DARE is on sale on Amazon!

The eBook version is only 99 cents and the print version is only $9.89! If you enjoyed my other books (like A JANE AUSTEN DAYDREAM) or are curious about my fiction or simply want to read something new, different, and unlike anything you will find… well… anywhere, this is for you!

Honestly, this is not a book for everyone and I adore it for all of its madness. It is the kind of book as a reader I would love to discover lost and dusty on a library shelf. My goal in it was to break down the idea of storytelling and see what remains in the ruins of it… with a lot of humor, romance, horror and mystery roped in as well.

You can find the novel on amazon here (http://amzn.com/B00CXSDEBE).

If you would be interested in kicking the tires first, there is an excerpt below and more via the page for the book on this site here. Continue reading

Finding Comfort in Possessions: 14 Days Until 40

Back to the FutureOne of the films I loved growing up was Back to the Future.  I’ve owned the trilogy a few different times now, and have the current version on Blu-Ray. I believe I bought it that opening week when it came out. Yeah, I’m one of those kind of collectors. I like things fresh off the shelves like fruits and vegetables.

Well, a few years ago I was reading an interview with one of the creators. To be honest, I can’t remember if it was Robert Zemeckis or one or the producers or writers, but the speaker complained about the importance of greed in the film. If he had a chance to go back, he argued, he would have made it more about family as compared to the acquisition of possessions at the end.

In other words, Marty’s family didn’t have to be rich and successful and Marty didn’t need the sweet new truck. Just getting his family back together should have been enough.

Being a child of the 80’s, this idea kind of blew my mind. And between you and me, I feel like Marty had earned that truck… but now as a dad trying to imagine a better world for my kids, I side with that speaker. I would like my kids to see it that way. Marty won without the truck.

Yet, with 40 fast approaching, I seem to be finding comfort in some of my possessions. They help me turn off my brain, focus my thoughts. And, in a way, define my journey up to this point and where I would like to see myself go. Of course, being the blogger I am, I have written about most of these things before.  So I will link to an original post and then give you an update on where I am now. Therapy? Partially. Helpful? Definitely.  These are my sanity as I step slowly towards this halfway mark… Continue reading

Discover the strange new book MAXIMILIAN STANDFORTH AND THE CASE OF THE DANGEROUS DARE

Maximilian Standforth and the Case of the Dangerous Dare, Cover“If you like your supernatural books where reality mixes with the impossible, the inexplicable, then this is the book for you…. It is beautifully written.” A five-star review from GoodReads.com

Maximilian Standforth and the Case of the Dangerous Dare  is a book pretending to be a gothic Victorian-period mystery. From it’s dashing hero to foggy London streets and abandoned castle, all the markings are there… but hidden underneath is a book questioning the very nature of storytelling.

For a limited time more the book is on sale on amazon (here). You can find the eBook for only $1.99 and the print version (my original vision for the work) for only $9.89. Here is the description of the mad tale:

The cursed and foreboding McGregor Castle is the most terrifying and haunted location in all of the British Empire. Only a brave (or foolish) soul would consider visiting it, let alone staying within its walls for five days. In other words, a perfect dare for a man like Maximilian Standforth!

Maximilian Standforth, famed playboy aristocrat and private detective, is a genius with dangerous tastes. With Bob (his trusty carriage driver, biographer, and body guard) and Maggie Collins (actress, spy, and maid) by his side, Maximilian will experience horrors and madness unlike any seen before. For it is at McGregor Castle that the team will discover more than they ever could imagine in this very experimental and genre-breaking thriller.

Here are some more options to learn about the work on this site:

I hope you will take this opportunity to check out this novel. If I can promise anything it is that you will be surprised. For nothing in the castle is at seems…

“If you have read any Jasper Fforde, imagine him writing whilst tripping on acid.” A reader from amazon.co.uk

“Genius or bonkers” Reviews and a sale (1.99) for Maximilian Standforth and the Case of the Dangerous Dare!

Maximilian Standforth and the Case of the Dangerous Dare, CoverFor a limited time, the eBook of my experimental mystery/thriller novel Maximilian Standforth and the Case of the Dangerous Dare is on sale! You can find it on amazon (here) for only $1.99!

So if you enjoyed my A Jane Austen Daydream recently and want to read more this holiday weekend or just want a new kind of book to read, why not check out this other new work?

Reviews are starting to come in for this fun and odd little novel. For example on amazon.com one reader wrote in a 5-star review titled “Couldn’t put it down”:

I really wasn’t sure what to expect since I’d never heard of Scott Southard, but  I loaded it onto my Kindle and headed out the door to drive to my son to his  orthodontist appointment. As you might imagine, normally I’d be excited  when my son was done and we could go eat lunch, but this time I was  disappointed. I was only about a third of the way through the book and  didn’t want to put it down… a real page turner.

And there is this from a review on amazon.co.uk that begged the all-important question if the book is genius or bonkers:

I started this book expecting a Sherlock Holmes style mystery with a bit more humour and got so much more than I bargained for!  Don’t be fooled by the first half of the book, it isn’t what you expect, and then it  isn’t what you expect again!  If you have read any Jasper Fforde,  imagine him writing whilst tripping on acid.

You can find this surprising book on amazon.com here. (or on any Amazons on sale for that matter). If you want to learn more (or read an excerpt), please visit the page for the book on this site here.

I hope you have a nice weekend!

My Adventure in Self-Publishing: Wrestling the Proof Copy into Submission

Maximilian Standforth and the Case of the Dangerous Dare, CoverA proof copy of your novel is a beautifully constructed illusion.

Oh, it feels like your book, it could even be argued that it smells like your book, but when you open it up… Wait! I forgot that comma! What happened to that word in that sentence? I know I didn’t mean that!

The illusion is shattered like a mirror and by the time you have gone through the entire book your hands are riddled with little scratches and nicks, and the mirror is nothing like it used to look like. It’s all funky now and so is the reflection staring back at you.

Okay… okay… I know that is dramatic, but that is how I felt going through the proof copy of my new novel MAXIMILIAN STANDFORTH AND THE CASE OF THE DANGEROUS DARE.

One of the wonderful little surprises I had with deciding to work with CreateSpace is this option for a proof copy. Yes, they give you the option to look at the proof online for free, but I wanted to hold it.

See, I’ve never gotten into the whole Kindle thing. I just can’t get lost in a story via a screen like I do with paper. Maybe that makes me old fashioned (and, wow, I feel too young to have that feeling about anything), but it just feels more real. On paper is how I discovered all of my favorite books! We share a history, paper and me; and I want my new book to be part of that as well. Continue reading