"Sammie Mays is a Category 5 literary hurricane. Here's a full-force gale of stories about the adventures that earned her the nickname 'The Gonz' and a place as the honorary mayor of Key West. 'Damn the Carnations' has the added attraction of making you reconsider your approach to toilet flushing. The book is full of piss, vinegar, wisdom and advice for living the good life." 
–WILLIAM McKEEN, Professor & Chair, Boston University, Dept. of Journalism

 

Damn The Carnations Full Speed Ahead!

Exciting. Entertaining. Humorous. Unexpected.

Embark on an unpredictable journey inside the mind of an otherworldly journalist – tripping unpredictably from one outrageous who-done-what adventure to another. A gorilla of a book stuffed into a monkey suit – and difficult to put down, it is purported. No rhyme or reason, no alarm clocks, no deadlines, and more importantly there is no going back. So why not just give in, sit back, relax in the shade of an old palm tree and allow the potion to have its intended effect. Here, the stories you will read is what happens when the all-powerful, the all-knowing, Universe discovers your chosen destination and decides it’s time to reprogram the GPS, without you knowing. "

"Autobiographical journalism at its best" –J.B. Tracy, Author

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Editorial Review

In a previous book by the author, Pirate Night Before Christmas, Sammie Mays revealed a rare warmth and family orientation within her that belies her extreme journalistic background and experience. Opposite, this recent creation titled 'Damn The Carnations Full Speed Ahead!' is a memoir with a pedigree that is not just fun and revealing, in part, it can be aggressive and subversive making us laugh even though we may have wanted to cry.

Damn The Carnations Full Speed Ahead! 

is as entertaining, humorous and unique as we would expect a Sammie Mays book to be, but it's much more than that: it shows artistic growth and a more sure-handed control of the material by a writer who, through desperation, once seemed willing to do literally anything for a story, and ultimately a payday. It's more confident and opens a backdoor view into the abnormal mind behind her own personal journalistic anarchy – and that's partly because the very genre she's satirizing gives her a strong narrative where she can bring to light a world of secret, closed-door, page-one meetings where schemes are concocted to get the story at all costs – and the inside backstory on how to pull off journalistic miracles and masterpieces.

Damn The Carnations Full Speed Ahead!

is a send-up of a style and not just of the material. Its natural flow and progression reads right which makes it all the more entertaining, and the more difficult to put down. And then, paradoxically, it works on a couple of levels: as a weirdly touching true story and as a comedy (albeit offbeat) in its own right. For this, a lot of the credit goes to a writing skill born of necessity, a need to simply survive, and an obvious mastery of a writing style some have come to define as "Gonzo Journalism."