I’ll Write My Own Reviews

I have a poor memory for some things but a really good memory for obscure items. In this case, the obscure item is a song on an album from 1975. See if you can follow me as I go down this particular rabbit hole. If you chose not to follow me or are a believer in TLDR then just scroll down to the Youtube video and give it a listen.

We live in an age where people do not choose a restaurant for dinner or a landscape company or the next book to read without checking reviews. Whether it is Amazon.com, Yelp, AngiesList, or the Better Business Bureau, we have all been trained to read reviews before any purchase. This can make it tough for a new business or artist to get started. It is like having an empty resume. It is tough to get a job when you have not had a job.

Last year when my book went up on Amazon, I knew it would take time for readers to find it and then write glowing reviews of the experience. Fortunately, I remembered a song from Martin Mull’s Days of Wine and Neuroses. In the song, “My Own Review”, Martin describes my dilemma exactly and his solution is one I adopted. I would not wait for others to write reviews. I would write my own.

What follows is the “Early Reviews” section of Zen and the Art of Christmas Letters.

  • “This is a book that I wish I could have written. It captures the spirit of Christmas much better than I managed.” – Charles Dickens
  • “I envy the author’s command of the English language.” – Leo Tolstoy
  • “I know an epic when I see one, and this is certainly an epic.” – Homer
  • “This is a super book.” – Diana Prince, an Amazonian Book Review
  • “Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.” – Random Typesetter
  • “A rambling, stream-of-consciousness work that is part memoir, part self-help manual. The author’s liberal use of footnotes may be a problem for some conservatives.” – The Daily Republican
  • “For years, I have been asking Chuck, ‘how do you do it?’ I have always meant to ask ‘why do you do it?’  Now, for better or worse, I know why.” – Anonymous friend 
  • “The book is so much better than the movie, or it would be if there was a movie.” – @reallynotatroll
  • “#ZenandTheArtofChristmasLetters No matter how hard I try I am not able to do justice to this book in a measly one hundred and forty characte” – @reallynotatroll2
  • “Your relatives are already laughing at you. Make them get in line by laughing at yourself first.”  – Chuck Storla
  • “I found it to be a quick read and I’ve been moving kinda slow at the junction.” – Uncle Joe
  • “A good book to take on a long plane trip.” – Amelia E.
  • “What can I say? I loved it.” – Chuck’s Mother

You might find some of the inside jokes to be a bit obscure, but I think that just adds to the fun. My personal favorite is the one written by Diana Prince.

If you are curious about the source of inspiration for my early reviews, I direct you to this Youtube video uploaded by a kind soul who is also apparently a Martin Mull fan. This is not really an MTV-style video but more of an audio file with some still pictures. In any case, you can hear the song which is the important part.



Unfortunately, as of today, the Days of Wine and Neuroses is not available on CD or for download. The only format I could find was the original LP which is currently out of stock on Amazon.

No, you cannot borrow mine but you may be able to find a used copy on for sale. I just checked and there are three LPs for sale on eBay. As always, your mileage may vary. The good news is that several of Mr. Mull’s other albums are available in other formats as well as on Spotify and Pandora. Enjoy.




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