Monday, 17 June 2013

Sharon & NOT the von Trapp family

 by Greg Bepper

High on a hill was a lonely goatherd; but not for long, because they were kidnapped, hidden in a bathtub with pink ribbons on their heads! But more about that later.

Artistic Influences
As artists, be it, in any of the arts; we have first been influenced by those that have gone before. In my case, it was Jerry Lewis, Red Skelton, The Marx Bros, Jackie Gleason and Art Carney. Later, Bill Cosby, Bob Newhart, the Monty Python crew and the highly influential: Robin Williams.

Artists do not so much mimic their influences early in their career than learn from them. Of course something 'rubs off' and stays with them while they develop their own niche, their own style.

So what has this to do with a lonely goatherd?
In 2012 I discovered the writings of Sharon Ruggieri; a married mum with six kids, seven if you count hubby, and numerous varieties of vermin they classify as pets. Definitely NOT the von Trapp family!

It only took a couple of paragraphs reading Sharon's blog to have the influence of that wonderful, satirical writer of family life: Erma Bombeck, the author of The Grass Is Always Greener over the Septic Tank, jump off the page, or should I say screen. BUT, it wasn't a direct copy of style nor a tribute, but a very witty, original take on Sharon's day to day life with undertones of admiration of her greatest influence: Erma.

I was hooked. There was no way I could stop at one. I spent the rest of the afternoon with Sharon. In her company on event filled trips to Walmart. Sitting at her dinner table as naked Barbies were discovered in the freezer. And many, many, MANY enlightening trips to the hospital emergency room, as various objects were extracted from ill fitting body parts of her children. 

As I digested every word, images bounced around in my head. I saw this on stage. Audiences sharing the everyday turmoil and antics of a mid-west family in permanent Code Red. Stories and situations that make the Bundy's look like the Brady Bunch. 

A virgin no more!
No one was more excited than me with the announcement that Sharon's virginity, as a published author that is, was about to end. Yes, the Ruggieri family warts were about to be nestled between the covers of ... a book! 

When the big day arrived I was one of the first in, credit card in hand, typing details furiously, clicking the confirmation button more times than my browser could handle. Download Complete. Two little words that sent me into a world of hilarity, OMG situations and pure joy.

Sharon had come of age.. again. But this time as an author with her own style. A style that takes her readers not only into her world but into her mind. Each story peppered with ounce of reality and a pound of her humour.

The road to a best seller
It's a road well trodden by many. A journey that has many twists and turns, road blocks and dead ends. But travellers that keep on track, no matter how many times they commence this trek; will ultimately find journeys' end and a gift for their effort. 

As with most newly published works, especially self published, and inaugural publications; this road is more a dirt track than paved. 

Sharon's avid readers, myself included, rallied to get her book jump started out of the driveway and on it's way up this road. Sales commenced, promotion abounded, word of mouth spread. Then the puff turned to huff as momentum slowed and the band packed up and went home. 

In case of emergency - Relaunch!
As Sharon pen's more misadventures of the Ruggieri household for her second book; she has relaunched Sharing Mom's MADHOUSE - A book with sprinkles of truth  with a special reduced price for the kindle version or the Paperback or the NOOK version or the ePub version

Visit for Sharon's Blog

Author: Greg Bepper © 2013
Artistic Director
Greg Bepper's Thunderbolt Theatre & Film Productions 



  1. Greg, you are truly a treasure to know, and I am blessed to call you friend. Thank you Greg, from the bottom of my heart, thank you...

    1. My pleasure Sharon. Good luck with the relaunch

  2. Good Luck - I am sure this book will do well. Can I get it for the Nook? I do not have a Kindle (my mistake) I went for the nook instead.

    1. You certainly can $1.99 :

  3. HILARIOUS!! Will mos def buy the Kindle version.

    1. Thank you... I'm sure you will enjoy it! She's a funny lady, cheers

  4. Sounds great and I'll put it on my next buy list!

  5. How do I get this for my Android Reader on my tab!

    1. I'll check that out for you Shakthi

    2. Android has a phone app for's Kindle reader, Kobo Readers have a kobo app from Borders and barnes and noble has the nook app, and then I cut and pasted this from the Droid store,

      If you don't want an app tied to a major bookstore, but you do want a full-featured reader capapble of reading open ePub books, Aldiko is a solid and popular choice. It's easy to read, and very customizable. However, unlike the other readers mentioned here, it is not tied to a tablet, and it doesn't sync with a reader. You could run the Aldiko app on an open Android tablet, but your bookmarks will not transfer to your phone.

      Google EBooks

      Google eBooks is a bookstore from Google. They have supported apps for Android, iPad, iPod, computers, and just about every smartphone or eBook reader available, except for the Amazon Kindle. The Google eBook reader offers similar features to most readers, including the ability to start reading on one connected device and continue on another. The bookstore itself features a large selection of free books that use Google Book's large database of scanned public domain library books.

      Hope this helps, cheers

  6. When I was in high school I was given detention for laughing out loud in study hall. I was reading Erma Bombeck. Because Erma is an inspiration of mine I can see how Sharon was influenced by her but has developed her own style and her own stories. I hope Sharon adds her name to the long list of humorists!

    1. LOL... I also remember when I first read 'The Grass.... ' I would be bursting out with laughter also.. on the bus, train, in the middle of the night. Although I enjoyed the Tele-movie staring Carol Burnett, like most films adapted from books... it was no where near as funny! Cheers