I am happy to share this amazing guest blog post from author Robert Hoffman, as part of his blog tour for his book, Blind Spot. Enjoy!
My father wasn’t a man prone to using cliches. My mother, that’s a horse of a different color. For example, if my mother heard one of her friends who was financially well off complain about money, she would say after she had left their presence, “You shouldn’t cry poverty with a loaf of bread under each arm.” Or if you told her how crazy life was because you were so busy and stretched for time, she would say, “You know Robbie, you can’t dance at two weddings at once.” Yes, for every occasion she was ready with a cliche’. My father, not so much. Oh, that’s not to say he didn’t have a few he liked to utilize if it suited the situation. It’s just that most of his cliches were in Yiddish so it’s more about the attitude he conveyed than the actual phrase..
Once in a while however he would drop a well-worn expression in English if he thought it was pertinent. One of his favorites was one of my least growing up. You see, whenever I didn’t complete a chore I had been asked to perform, or if I brought home a report card from school that was, oh I don’t know, underwhelming let’s say, he would ask for an explanation for whatever responsibility I had failed to come through on, and in turn, had disappointed him over. I would say, “Dad, I would have done better, except the teacher didn’t give us a fair chance to study.” Perhaps I might say that I could have done better, but I didn’t think it would be so hard.” There was also the ever-popular, “I know I should have cleaned up the family room, but I was doing the homework that I barely had time to do.”
At this point, he would look at me and say, with just the right amount of sarcasm and venom, “Yeah, woulda, coulda, shoulda, but you didn’t.” It cut me to the quick I tell you. It led me immediately towards that most depressing and fruitless of human feelings, regret. The problem with regret is that you can’t change what you did, you can only hope to learn from what you did and do better next time.
Doug Kaplan, the protagonist in my novel, Blind Spot, has, as a result of his selfishness, done something that he is indeed regretful over, but the problem is, while he feels regretful, his regret is really for himself, and as such, he doesn’t see a way out of his predicament. However, as Anthony Avina explains in his writing, “Hope is never out of reach.” Hope is not out of reach for Doug Kaplan, if he’s willing to do what is necessary to reach the salvation he craves.
About Blind Spot:
In this comedy/drama, based very, very loosely on my own experiences, a middle aged father of three named Doug Kaplan appears to have it all. An attractive and supportive wife, three healthy boys, and a successful career. He doesn’t shy away from his responsibilities as a father or as a son to his aging parents, and he is valued and respected at work. However, all his life he has been plagued by the accusation that he does suffer from one significant character flaw, a subtle but substantial penchant for being selfish, a flaw that he is largely oblivious to.
Doug Kaplan’s life was progressing about as well as he could have hoped for. In addition to his loving wife and family, he and his wife Kelly had finally purchased a house in lovely Seaford, Long Island, and while it may have been a fixer-upper, it was still going to be their dream home. Despite his selfish streak, which by his wife’s own admission could be off-putting, he might never have found his blessed existence sidetracked, until he encountered the elderly woman next door who proved to be a seemingly unavoidable obstacle. Who knew that their home on the cul-de-sac known as McGregor Court would be nestled next to the biggest know-it-all and budinsky in the entire Metropolitan area. Yes, Trudy Fleischmann was a force to be reckoned with. Emigrated from Germany as a little girl at the end of World War Two, Trudy has known suffering and sacrifice, but she is also wise and caring, and why shouldn’t she share her knowledge and opinions with the young couple who has just moved in next door.
Already having to look after Kelly’s widowed mother as well as their growing family, Doug and Kelly end up seeing their responsibilities increase exponentially as not only does Trudy’s husband Burt die, and remove the one pleasant buffer that lay between Doug and Trudy, but Doug’s father passes as well, and now he and Kelly must provide care for three elderly widows as well as their three young boys. However Doug’s entire existence will become, much to his chagrin, inextricably tied to Trudy after he accidentally runs her over with his car one beautiful summer’s day in a supermarket parking lot. Can Doug overcome his selfishness and provide the care and patience that the badly injured Trudy requires? Doug’s family, career, and sense of who he is as a person are all on the line as he tries to summon his better angels and do the right thing.
About the Author
It’s about time somebody asked that question. Rob Hoffman is originally from a town on Long Island called North Massapequa. He attended SUNY Oswego where he majored in Communications, a degree that it turned out he had little use for. He did however meet the woman who would eventually become my wife, the former Michelle Lindell. Rob and Michelle lived in the aptly named Flushing, Queens for six years before moving to a town called Clifton Park, New York just south of Saratoga Springs. Finding little value in his degree in communications, Rob became a social studies teacher, teaching in Long Island City, Queens for four years before spending the remainder of his career in Rensselaer, New York, a small city on the banks of the Hudson River just across the water from Albany. Rob taught for 31 years before retiring in June of 2021, only to come back as a part-time teacher in September of 2021 at Rensselaer High School. Rob had always been interested in becoming a writer and he began his blogging career as a contributor at the “Times Union” of Albany for six years. In this time Rob also blogged for a variety of sites including Fark.com, Crooks and Liars.com, Albany.com, and Knees and Fists.com. Rob has remained happily married to Michelle for 34 years and counting, and has two grown sons, Andrew and Alex, ages 29 and 23. Most recently, Rob and Michelle became grandparents to the newest addition to the family, Sam Hoffman, son of Andrew and his wife Katie.
“Blind Spot” represents Rob’s first true attempt at writing fiction, an experience Rob both fun and exhausting. Rob had thrown around several ideas as he began to think about what it was he wanted to write about, and then one day his wife had sent him to the supermarket on an errand where he saw somebody he really didn’t want to spend anytime talking to, so he raced out of the store, got in his car, turned it on, slammed it into reverse and was about to speed out of the spot when he stopped himself and said, “Dumb-ass, be careful, you could hit somebody.” Then, as Rob began to slowly and carefully pull out of his parking spot, he thought for another second and it occurred to him how ironic it would be if he accidentally hit the person he was trying to get away from and “Blind Spot” was born. The character of Doug Kaplan, while not autobiographical, is sort of based on the best and worst of Rob’s traits. Doug is at times the guy Rob always wanted to be, and yet at the same time, Doug also represented the guy Rob was relieved to know he never became. The other characters according to Rob are combinations of people that he knew from his childhood, as well as college and work experiences.
Follow the author online at:
Instagram – hoffman_files
— Blog Tour Calendar
November 22nd @ The Muffin
Join us at The Muffin for an author interview, giveaway, and blog tour launch post for Robert Hoffman’s “The Blind Spot”
November 23rd @ Lisa Haselton Book Reviews and Interviews
Today, Lisa Haselton interviews Robert Hoffman about his humorous work of fiction titled “Blind Spot”. Find out more about this debut novel and it’s author!
November 24th @ Choices with Madeline Sharples
Readers at Choices will hear from guest author Robert Hoffman with his post titled ” Man Plans and God Laughs “. Don’t miss this guest post and an opportunity to hear about Hoffman’s debut novel “Blind Spot”.
November 26th @ The Faerie Review
“The Blind Spot” by Robert Hoffman is the highlighted book today at the Faerie Review – don’t miss a chance to learn more this work of humorous fiction by an accomplished blogger!
November 29th @ Word Magic with Fiona Ingram
Robert Hoffman pens today’s guest post at Word Magic (fellow author Fiona Ingram’s blog). Don’t miss this great article titled: “Sorry isn’t Enough” and an opportunity to learn more about Robert and his latest work of humorous fiction – “Blind Spot”.
December 2nd @ The Knotty Needle
Judy reviews “Blind Spot” by Robert Hoffman for readers at the Knotty Needle. Don’t miss this opportunity find out more about Hoffman’s humorous work of fiction!
December 3rd @ Beverley A. Baird
“Do I Have a Story to Tell” is today’s post at Beverley A. Baird. This post is penned by none other than Robert Hoffman who recently released “Blind Spot”, a humorous novel readers are raving about! Don’t miss your chance to learn more from Hoffman himself!
December 4th @ Author Anthony Avina
Readers at Anthony’s blog will delight in today’s guest post “Woulda Coulda Shoulda” by author Robert Hoffman. Don’t miss this guest post and opportunity to learn more about Hoffman’s new book “Blind Spot”. Stop back in a few days (on the 11th) to read Author Anthony Avina’s review of “The Blind” spot as well!
December 7th @ World of My Imagination with Nicole Pyles
Readers at World of My Imagination are in for a special treat! Not only is Nicole going to review “Blind Spot” by Robert Hoffman, but she also will be offering a giveaway! This is your chance to learn more about this humorous book and maybe even snag a copy of your own!
December 9th @ Bring on Lemons with Crystal Otto
Crystal Otto reviews “Blind Spot” by Robert Hoffman for readers at Bring on Lemons – Otto has hinted that she would give this book 5 stars and said “it made me laugh out loud so often” – so don’t miss your chance to hear more about this debut novel!
December 11th @ Author Anthony Avina
Fellow Author Anthony Avina reviews “Blind Spot” by Robert Hoffman.
December 14th @ Linda Appleman Shapiro
Fellow Author Linda Appleman Shapiro shares her thoughts about Robert Hoffman’s “Blind Spot”. Find out what an accomplished Memoirist and Psychotherapist thinks of this humorous work of fiction.
December 15th @ Bring on Lemons with Michelle DelPonte
Michelle DelPonte, a Wisconsin mother, healthcare worker, autism advocate, and history buff shares her review of “Blind Spot” by Robert Hoffman. You won’t want to miss Michelle’s insight into this humorous book!
December 16th @ Bring on Lemons with 14 Year Old Carmen Otto
14 year old Carmen Otto heard her mom laughing out loud while reading “Blind Spot” and couldn’t help from grabbing a copy to read for herself. Find out what a young reader things of this debut novel by Robert Hoffman!
December 18th @ Bring on Lemons with Cathy Hansen
Wisconsin business owner and educator Cathy Hansen offers insight into what she thought after reading Robert Hoffman’s debut novel “Blind Spot”. Will this be a lemon or sweet lemonade? Stop by Bring on Lemons to find out!
December 24th @ Jill Sheet’s Blog
Stop by Jill Sheet’s Blog today and hear from Robert Hoffman as he pens his guest post titled “Aren’t We All Just a Little Bit Selfish?” just in time for the holidays! Learn more about this topic as well as Hoffman’s novel “Blind Spot”!