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Sunday, January 02, 2022

Aren't We All Just a Little Bit Selfish? by Robert Hoffman

Robert Hoffman has been enjoying a WOW! Women on Writing Book Blog Tour for his newest work - a book titled Blind Spot. Blind Spot is certainly not Hoffman's first attempt at writing as you'll see in his bio, but it is his first time touring with WOW! and we are excited to wrap up his tour with a special guest post here on the Muffin today as he promotes this humorous work of fiction. Thank you to David Kalish who previously toured with WOW! and sent Rob our way. We love and appreciate referrals!

And without further chit chat - here's a fabulous article titled: 

Aren't We All Just a Little Bit Selfish?

Few insults sting quite as badly as having somebody call you selfish. Being selfish is literally one of the worst things that we as humans can be charged with. It invokes images of immaturity, childishness, and social unawareness. We envision the spoiled child raised by clueless and ill-prepared parents. Yes, to be selfish is to be labeled as somebody who can’t be trusted to do the right thing, or be dependable. We don’t associate a selfish individual with being a good spouse or friend, but somebody perhaps to keep at arms distance. 

Even in our development as children, overcoming self-centeredness is viewed as a key cornerstone in cognitive development. The preoperational stage of Piaget’s theory on cognitive development explains that before a child can move on to the next phase of development, the concrete-operational stage, he or she must get past their egocentrism, and consider the view of other people. Therefore to be labeled as “selfish,” is literally to be considered one who is in a state of arrested development. 

 The thing is, most successful individuals are selfish to some extent, they have to be. In order to achieve any sort of accomplishment in this world, or master a skill, or hone your abilities, one must put aside, at least for a time, the needs of others as one focuses on their own goals. In this light, can’t we at least consider that a healthy streak of selfishness is vital to achieving the accomplishments that we set out for ourselves? 

In my novel, Blind Spot, the sin of which my protagonist Doug Kaplan suffers from is none other than this label of being selfish. He is a man who has always tended to his needs first before considering the needs of others around him. Doug not only tends to prioritize his own happiness before considering the happiness of others, he also tries to avoid all of the things in life that make him unhappy without considering the unintended consequences that this may cause for others in his life. All throughout his life, people close to Doug have tried to make him aware of this ugly facet of his personality, however, try as they may, Doug is unable or unwilling to see it. Instead, he sees himself as a good husband, father, son, son-in-law, and a successful provider for his family. He rarely goes out with his friends, and is committed to being with his family and taking care of his elderly parents or in-laws. How could he possibly be selfish? 

It is this “blind spot” that Doug has to his personality flaws that may indeed bring down everything he has worked for. His unfortunate incident with his dreaded neighbor, Trudy Fleischmann, the elderly German immigrant who is the bane of his existence has unveiled for the world to see all of Doug’s ugliest character flaws, and it threatens to bring his entire “house of cards,” down on top of him. Is Doug capable of putting aside his instincts for being selfish, the instincts that he has relied upon throughout his life to survive and accomplish the goals he has set out for himself now that his career and marriage hang in the balance?

...and now that we've enjoyed today's post, let's learn a bit more from the author himself 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.

The Blind Spot is available on Amazon and Make sure to add it to your GoodReads reading list too.

Who is Robert Hoffman? 
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, Crooks and,, and Knees and  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: 

--- 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!

TODAY!!! January 3rd @ The Muffin
Stop by The Muffin 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 New Year! Learn more about this topic as well as Hoffman's novel Blind Spot!

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