“She is a purebred tricolor pitbull registered purple ribbon show dog with some of the best lineage [as] pitbull genealogy goes!”
“Senseless is a laugh-out-loud comedy, with a generous sprinkling of mystery and suspense. I was hooked from the opening sentence.” —Author Darcia Helle; New Port Richey, FL
“Awesome… hard to put down.” —Joe Rhinewine; Portland, OR
“Bannon knows part of being a writer is letting his books take on lives of their own.” —Emily Fuggetta, The Oregonian, Portland, OR
“Fabulous, fabulous book.” —Lisa Anderson, Sandy Post, Sandy, OR
“…a humorous, sensual and thrilling story that will keep you enthralled until the final page. …It reminded me a lot of Chuck Palahniuk…” —Author Jason DeGray; Boston, MA
“Martin Bannon truly writes his way across the entire human spectrum with this riveting and hilarious book.” —Grace Tippetts; Centerville, UT
“I totally enjoyed this book. Bannon’s dark humor reminded me of Carl Hiaasen.” —Libby Wentz; Gladstone, OR
“I was hooked from the beginning. A very enjoyable read right through to the end.” —Marie Kennedy; Welches, OR
“A damn good read!” —Dan Bosserman; East County Gazette, Boring, OR
“Senseless Confidential is written by a guy who obviously knows how to write a book …absolutely hysterical…. The characters are believable, full of human flaws and frailty. —Holly Bernabe; Portland, OR
“A diverse group of relatable characters and some well-placed plot twists kept me turning pages eagerly. Mr. Bannon knows what he’s doing.” —Brent Skuba; Long Beach, CA
“I found it so exhilarating that I sped through it! I need to get more books to share because this one was a life changer for me. I am so happy that you wrote this book and can’t wait to read your others.” —Sary Dobhran; Portland, OR
“[While] searching for something to freshen the Elwood, Oregon Facebook page, I ran across this book and couldn’t believe I hadn’t ever heard of it. [I] immediately purchased and read it, in one sitting; couldn’t put it down. Fun, fun, fun, fun read! We are proud of our gun-toting backwoods community and Elwood is a real place. And the events of the book–although fiction–could have seriously happened (or at least most of them). Can’t wait for the movie! I hope it is actually filmed in Elwood!” —Rhonda; Elwood, OR
When a friend’s car was recently burgled, he told me, “That’s never happened before. I always like to trust people.”
That got me to reflecting on my time with the Census Bureau, wherein I spent hours each week approaching the homes of strangers. I found that the responses I got from many of those folks was often predictable, based on the signs that were displayed on their property.
They fell primarily into two camps: the “No Trespassing” signs and the “Welcome” signs.
Those distinctions parallel two similar divisions in the population in general: those who view strangers as threatening, possible enemies; and those who view strangers with interest, possible friends.
My friend, like me, falls into the latter group. (I suspect that is why we are friends.) Our first instinct upon encountering someone new is to want to ask questions, to learn more about them, to broaden our social horizons. We are the “welcomers.”
The “no-trespassingers,” on the other hand, fear the stranger as a possible threat, and are careful to avoid appearing vulnerable. They don’t want to be an easy mark, so they put the stranger on notice.
In doing so, however, they build defensive walls around themselves and live with constant worry and suspicion. My friend and I prefer to explore new relationships and welcome possibilities. They are two distinct and opposing worldviews. It is the “Man is inherently good/Man is inherently evil” dichotomy that religions pose.
Sure, my friend and I might get screwed or robbed or cheated at some point along the way, but we’ve decided that the risk is worth it, because the strangers who bring good into our lives (and thus become friends) far outnumber those who bring evil.
In our acting workshop, my friend and I have the extremely rewarding opportunity to explore vulnerability. Opening ourselves up to listen and react to others on the deepest level allows us to feel all of our humanity. It is liberating and therapeutic. And it brings about some serious bonding among those who participate.
Life is the same way.
Those who live behind the “No Trespassing” signs might be safe, but they are missing out on some incredible opportunities to explore new relationships. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.
The feature film adaptation of Senseless Confidential began development on January 2, 2014. To follow the progress of the film, scheduled for shooting in and around Clackamas County, Oregon, in 2015, subscribe to the FauxMeme Productions blog.
An acquaintance of a friend was kind enough to tell our mutual friend the following about Senseless Confidential:
“I got my hands on a copy of Senseless Confidential a few weeks back and read it start to finish. We all have our connections to characters in one way or another, and Nick Prince’s story quickly became one…I can relate to…. [T]he way Nick feels stuck in his environment, and the resentment that has built up over the years. I can relate to his tendency to hold onto the past and his apprehension to change. That being said, the setting of the story couldn’t be more exciting out in the beautiful Pacific Northwest.”
Senseless Confidential ***** (5 stars) I, being a native of the gun-slinging la-la land-body known as "Clackamas," I opened Martin's book expecting to laugh at the many flaws of my people like kids on playgrounds laugh at fat- sos, nerds, and geeks. Beer-drinking, sports-loving, xenophobic suburban red- necks aren't cool these days, especial- ly in Portland. I was glad that wasn't the way the book ended. I was surprised how quickly I fell in love with his plot, which left me (at book's end) with a warm wanting for the same kind of community Nick Prince happened to stumble upon. It felt like coming home to my wife, Emily, without the cats. Thanks for your hard work, Marty! This was a great read! —Bookmaker Jake
Thanks, Jake, for the kind words. Glad you enjoyed it! —Marty
(Click the brackets in the lower right corner of the frame to watch the video fullscreen.)
The long-awaited Senseless Confidential video trailer, shot by director Andrew Michael Bray on location in the Oregon Cascades, was premiered last Sunday at the Senseless Audiobook Launch Party at Portland’s Post 5 Theatre.
Starring Brian Allard (who voices over 25 characters for the audiobook) and other talented actors—including Sara Fay, Bruce Handley, and Pheebe the Pitbull—the trailer lays out the plight of Census worker Nick Prince.
Get a free preview listen to Allard’s reading at Audible! Just click the “Sample” arrow beneath the cover image on the page.
The audiobook is available at St. Johns Booksellers in Portland, Oregon, in both CD ($24.99) and downloadable mp3 ($14.99) formats. Print editions are also available at St. Johns ($14.99 list).
All three editions are also available from Dinkus Books for the same prices. (For the CD boxed set and print editions, a shipping fee of $2.50 will be added to US orders.)
You will find the mp3 audiobook at Amazon for $17.49 (plus applicable taxes); you may also download the mp3 edition from Amazon’s subsidiary Audible (list US$19.95, though the actual cost may be lower depending on the type of Audible membership you have.)
The ebook edition is available at Smashwords for $3.99 in ALL digital formats.
Both print (US$13.49) and Kindle (US$3.99) editions are available from Amazon.
Just a tease for now…
(Music written by Ben Larsen, performed by the Renegade Stringband, Portland, Oregon.)senseless confidential intro mix 1
I’m excited to announce that awesomely talented Portland artists will be contributing the music for the Senseless Confidential audiobook due out this spring, as well as for the video trailer that will soon be used to promote all editions of the book. My friends Joe Seamons and Ben Larsen have recently signed licensing agreements for their songs: “Nature’s Gospel,” written by Joe, and “Flown Away,” written by Ben.
Both tunes are performed by the Renegade Stringband of Portland, Oregon, featuring both Joe and Ben, as well as my friends Gavin Duffy, Ben Hunter, Jessica Jarris, Austin Moore, and Max Kutzman.
Check out sample clips of both tracks below.
It was mid-January when “The Bald Guy” aka Jason Allen shot a message to author Martin Bannon saying he’d just finished reading “Senseless Confidential” and loved it. Would the author like to come on the Anarchy Radio show for an interview?
Well, of course he would? So, click the link below (in mp3 format) to hear the nearly hour-long conversation Martin Bannon had on February 7, 2o13 with the Bald Guy, Mark, and the Buddha at Portland, Oregon’s Anarchy Radio. (To hear the entire four-hour show, go to the show’s website and click the link under the date specified.)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Press contact: Marty at Dinkus Books (phone number available upon request); firstname.lastname@example.org
Census Comedy to be Voiced by Portland Actor
Audiobook release of Senseless Confidential, “an absurdist romp through the Oregon Cascades,” to be recorded by film, stage, and voice actor Brian Allard
Clackamas, Oregon – February 1, 2013 — “A job with the U.S. Census Bureau might not seem like the stuff of comedy,” says Martin Bannon, author of the comedic crime caper Senseless Confidential. “But when you take a reluctant minion of a government bureaucracy and send him into the heart of the Oregon Cascades, where folks are living off the grid for a reason, it’s going to lead either to comedy or tragedy.”
Bannon’s publishing imprint, Dinkus Books, has announced that it has found a voice for the novel’s main character, Nick Prince, in the person of Portland actor Brian Allard. Allard was recently seen on the big screen in Portland at three local screenings of “The Falls,” a film written and directed by Northwest filmmaker Jon Garcia. Allard also stars in Portland director Andy Mingo’s adaptation of Chuck Palahniuk’s short story “Romance,” now in early screenings.
In addition to his film and voice roles, Allard is also the artistic director at Portland’s Original Practice Shakespeare Festival, which will begin its run of Macbeth at Portland’s Post 5 Theater in February. Allard will be appearing onstage in the title role.
“I consider Brian to be an ideal choice to voice Nick Prince,” says Bannon. “And he’s more than capable of providing all the other necessary voices as well. I couldn’t be happier to collaborate with such an awesome talent.”
Bannon, who spent over a decade working for the U.S. Census Bureau, first released Senseless Confidential (300 pages, $14.99 in print, $2.99 ebook; ISBN-13: 978-0615639574) last August. It’s a tale that is part send-up of government bureaucracy, part wild ride through the backwoods of local Oregon communities. Much of the book’s action takes place at a fictional polygamist compound in the real-life community of Elwood, just south of Estacada.
The offbeat comedic caper, which calls itself “an absurdist romp through the Oregon Cascades,” has been generating a steady buzz locally, where Bannon has given readings throughout the fall and summer. Reviews have been unanimous in their praise of the story, which balances a touching personal journey with hysterical situations and observations by Nick. The Portland Book Review’s four-star review of the novel calls it “a story that is funny, adventurous and strangely believable… told in a style reminiscent of Bill Bryson’s writings.” The reviewer concludes, “This book can be enjoyed as a light summer read or contemplated for what we can learn about our community and ourselves.”
“It’s hysterical,” enthuses Laura Peterson, a longtime Brightwood area resident who loved the book so much she bought copies for all her friends. “It’s so real,” she says. “I know people like [the narrator] describes. The dialogue is just how people talk [up here]. It’s a super fun read.
Dan Bosserman, editor of the East County Gazette (Clackamas County), agrees. “A damn good read!” he says.
Bannon has been invited to read at the monthly Authors in Pubs event at the Jack London Bar, located beneath the Rialto Pool Room at SW 4th and Alder in Portland on February 4, from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m., and will be interviewed on Portland’s Anarchy Radio on Thursday, February 7, at 8 p.m. He will also be a featured artist at the Artist Edge Salon in Sandy on Sunday, March 31.
When asked how much of the story stems from his own work for the Census Bureau, Bannon declines to say. “Title 13 [of the U.S. Code] prohibits me from revealing that,” he quips. Title 13’s very real confidentiality requirement is at the heart of Nick’s troubles in the story. There is a fine of up to $250,000 stipulated, and imprisonment up to five years for revealing the personal information of Census respondents.
Bannon, a native of the San Francisco Bay Area, spent seven years as a writer and editor for magazine-publishing giants Ziff Davis (publishers of PC Magazine) and IDG (publishers of MacWorld and PC World) before becoming a freelance writer and editor when he moved to Damascus in 1998. There he became a regular contributor to the now-defunct Damascus-Boring Observer. Senseless Confidential is his third novel, although it is the first one published under the name Martin Bannon.
Links to online sales of the book, in print and ebook formats, may be found at the author’s website (martinbannon.com), Senseless Confidential is also available on Amazon.com as a print book and Kindle e-book, and available in select local bookstores, including Wyeast Bookshoppe in Welches; and Broadway Books, St. Johns Booksellers, and Wallace Books in Portland, as well as Sunriver Books in Sunriver, and at Bob’s Beach Books in Lincoln City. It can also be ordered from most other booksellers upon request, including Powell’s.com.
Press contact: Marty at Dinkus Books (phone number available upon request); email@example.com