Muppet Rats List

If you've ever seen the movie, THE MUPPETS TAKE MANHATTAN, you'll remember the Muppet Rats.

Kermit and friends needed to get New York City talking about their big Broadway show. So Kermit set free Ratso and the rest of the Muppet Rats in an upscale restaurant. The rats scurried under tables and started talking in loud rat voices about the show. People overheard them and started asking each other about this new show coming to town. That's the Muppet version of a whisper campaign.

(EDIT: I have since been informed the leader of the Muppet Rats is Rizzo. I am deeply ashamed for having misremembered this. Clearly I need a weekend marathon of Muppet movies as a reminder. Alcohol optional. Anyone care to join me?)

I have my own Muppet Rats. Other people, more respectful people, might call them fans. They run amok on the internet posting about my work, exhorting (some might say threatening) others to buy them. You know who you are. You know I love you.

Every author without a publicist relies on their own Muppet Rats to sell the work. In this age of five million books on, it just doesn't get done without the Muppet Rats. Tired of the same old shtick being recycled over and over? Listen to the Muppet Rats instead of Entertainment Weekly.

There are several books out or pending that need love just as much as SETTING SUNS (available at or, what, you think I was gonna miss a chance to hawk my own book?). These are good people with good work, and they deserve your serious consideration. Not just because I know them personally (though really, isn't that enough for you?) Because I think you really will like their work. And we know I'm never wrong. ;)

In no particular order, my Muppet Rat List for March:

• SWAN SONG, by Frank Fradella. The first release from New Babel Books and a hell of a superhero novel. It is not a graphic novel, which seems to be a misconception several have held. It's a hell of a ride and takes a serious look at the toll being a hero takes. This book deserves your love, people. Comic/superhero fans - if you don't buy this book you're a dummyhead. I'm just saying. Note: Buy it on Amazon if you wish, but we small-press authors make much more cash per sale if you buy it directly from the publisher. Your call.

• PRESSURE, by Jeff Strand. Just went up for preorders today. This is Jeff's first "serious" novel, and the back cover alone gave me that big "aw hell, I can't wait" grin. There's the super-deluxe fancy limited editions for $50 or $250, but we normal folk can get the trade paperback for the much more reasonable $25. Wahoo! Seriously, this tale of two childhood friends - one seriously disturbed, one disturbed by him - is likely to rank a 9.5 on the Creep-o-Meter. Give it a shot.

• DEATHBRINGER, by Bryan Smith. Zombies are unalive and seriously unwell in this latest from the author of HOUSE OF BLOOD. I have it on good authority that this book is not for the squeamish. I am therefore eagerly awaiting my copy. I am currently reading HOUSE OF BLOOD, and so far enjoying it immensely. Besides, we should thank Bryan for the very nice things he said about SETTING SUNS. Until DEATHBRINGER makes me steal my son's nightlight, in which case I may sue him for infliction of emotional distress.

• THE CONQUEROR WORMS by Brian Keene. I've sung Keene's praises in this space several times, and not just because he gave me good career advice over beers last year. THE RISING and CITY OF THE DEAD were definitive zombie novels. The far-less-known-and-that's-a-damn-shame TERMINAL was more than a bank robbery gone bad - it was a real glimpse of life in blue-collar Pennsylvania with struggles that are all too familiar to those of us in the American trenches. Keene has a common touch that Stephen King once had, a keen (heh) sense of what the sinking middle class is really afraid of in this brave new world. He finds those fear buttons and hammers the fuck out of them. Now the book originally titled EARTHWORM GODS is on its way, and I'm (figuratively) camped outside the bookstore for it.

There you have it. Muppet Rats are muttering. You should listen. After all, it was a good show.


  1. I just bought that movie! I watched it Sunday morning with a friend. funny you should mention it like that. I try to be a rat for you when people will listen. mostly folks don't pay attention to me, even when I'm whispering under the table at them. of course, it's an awkward position under there. especially if they're not wearing pants. sorry, I'm a bit drinky this evening. but the Muppet Rat concept is a great one, and one I believe in mightily. perhaps my whispers will catch on and help some. I do like to help those I've met.

  2. Isn't the rat's name Rizzo? ::cheerfully ignores point of post::

  3. Aaag! You're right!


    Pardon the expression.

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