Immigrant Song

As some of you might be aware, I put together a “soundtrack” of songs or pieces of music that represent certain scenes or characters from the novel I currently am writing. I had already started writing and put together the soundtrack for The Valiants, but here is song #27 from the soundtrack: Immigrant Song by Led Zeppelin. The tide has turned (momentarily)…

J

There’s a man with dementia at my dialysis clinic (we’ll call him J) who comes from a nursing home. Most times he doesn’t know where he’s at. My clinic is not allowing anyone to eat because of the virus. Today, he constantly says, “I want my bag of sandwich.” Even though they’ve told him he can’t, he doesn’t fully comprehend what’s going on. After they’ve told him he can’t, they’ve decided to ignore J.
I feel sorry for J, and hearing him yell out like that each time I come here depresses me. If they come to ignore him after awhile, I can only imagine how they treat him at the nursing home. It terrifies me to think of the moment when I have to go into one.

Share if you’d like to make people aware how awful this disease is, and hope they’ll be ways to make nursing homes better.

The Rabbit Hole

This morning, I wrote and edited another chapter to The Valiants. It was the quickest I’d written a chapter, so, as a reward, I did a little light reading on Wikipedia. I was reading up on The Walking Dead (probably my all-time favorite TV show) as well as the cast. I started reading about Steven Yeun, who played the character Glenn Rhee on the show, and the films he’s starred in, mostly from South Korea. Out of curiosity, I clicked to read about one of them, Burning. To my surprise, I found out that it was based on The Elephant Vanishes by Haruki Murakami. I was introduced to Murakami several years ago by a South Korean ex-girlfriend by way of a film based on his novel Norwegian Wood, set in 1960s Japan. I loved Murakami’s method of really being in touch with his characters, and knew the actual novel had to be better. I checked the audiobook from the library, and boy, I was not disappointed. After Norwegian Wood, I checked out After Dark, this time set in modern day Tokyo, following one night in a set of different characters whose lives intertwine. Murakami is a modern-day Dickens, and I’m forever thankful to that ex who introduced me to his work. I had my stroke shortly after After Dark and forgot about Murakami. Thankfully, I rediscovered him, and all because of a little trip down the rabbit hole…

Next week…

I’ll be unveiling the title and teaser poster for my next novel right here first. It’s taken a lot of time due to the amount of research involved as well as the fact that I had to get a few ducks in a row. But soon, I’ll have a first draft ready to go through some revisions as well as be looking for people for an ARC team. If you aren’t subscribed to my newsletter (which you can do here), be sure to subscribe to it, as it’s the best place to get selected for my ARC team.

Lots Coming Soon…

While I continue to work on my next novel, I’ll be zigzagging around the internets getting different tasks done. As always, I’ll be keeping tabs on everything through all the social media platforms (namely Facebook and Twitter). I’ll also be working on some crude concept art for the cover. I’ll also be working on getting more traffic to my site (so if you know anyone who might be interested, send them this way). If you haven’t done so already, make sure to follow me here. I’m still giving away FREE e-book copies of my novel, Parachute Island, so if you haven’t gotten it, tomorrow will be your last chance before it goes back to its normal price. It’ll be busy, but it should be interesting, folks!

Free e-Book Giveaway!

In quarantine lockdown? Wanna settle down with a good book? Amazon and I are teaming together to give a FREE e-book copy of Parachute Island! Starting March 25th through March 29th, you can download it onto your Kindle. Don’t have a Kindle? Download it onto the Kindle app, available through most phones and tablets. All I ask is that you leave an honest review; that helps me grow as an author. If you have it already, please share this post with family and friends.

Click here!

Almost done!

I am about 2/3 of the way done with the first draft of my next novel. It’s involved lots of research, so I hope it pays off. It’s a high fantasy novel, and I hope it’ll be something different. I know it’ll take several revisions before I can put together an ARC (advanced review copy) team; then, off to an editor for another polishing. Stay tuned for a release date!

Myth or Fact?

(c) 2019 KENS TV.

The summer of 1987 was a great year for me. Similar to what 1969 was for others, 1987 left a lasting impression on me. It was the year I finally rode a bicycle; riding in circles in my grandparents’ little backyard, listening to KTFM on my radio headphones as they played Madonna, The Jets, and so many others. That summer, while listening to “You Got It All” and “Walk Like An Egyptian”, I sent out two letters that would change my fate. I’d been a writer for as long as I’d been able to put words together using a crayon and paper. I eventually graduated to typing when my father showed me how to type by teaching me how to code on an Atari 800. It was rudimentary code, but it still taught me two important things: a love of computers and how to type. Soon, I was typing away stories on a light blue typewriter that belonged to my parents but which I used more than them. It was on this typewriter that I typed two letters: one, to the Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine; the other, to a local CBS affiliate, KENS-TV. I soon thereafter received a polite rejection letter from Alfred Hitchcock (the magazine, not the man). Then, I received a letter from KENS. I remember sitting on the cement steps—which had been recently been splashed with water to cool down in the heat—when the mail came in. I tore into the envelope, eager as any boy would be, to read what the letter said. It came directly from the program director who was interested in some of my ideas and wanted to meet with me and my parents. A meeting was set up, and we went to the station to meet with her and one of her producers, David Deering. They felt as most of my stories were too violent(!) or included alcohol references and were not age appropriate. However, they liked one story, “Myth or Fact?”, and wanted to turn it into a short film that would kick off a show made for and by kids called Kid Vid. It would air on a local channel called KENS II. We were given a tour of the station, and they were very nice. They sat me in front of one of the cameras and had me do a commercial for them to help promote the new show. I remember being so nervous and tightly grasping the wooden handles of the chair I sat on. I’d never been on tv before. Several days later, we had to go back so David could interview me about my story as well as other stories. I don’t recall being as nervous, but on playback, it was obvious I was. To this day, my family teases me about making kissy faces. In the end, it didn’t matter; I had gotten a taste of success as a writer. It made me want to write more, share more, and hone my craft as best as I can. I learned creative writing at three different institutes, as well as attended writing workshops on a regular basis. Kid Vid didn’t last long as a show, and I never had another story televised. I’ve written many a short story, wrote and starred in a one-act play, and have had a novel published. I continue to write, and that’s no myth. That’s a fact.

Must Be The Weather…

Something in the air is preventing the Muse from being herself. Or maybe it’s the change in the hours (thanks, Spring Forward). I know what it’s like when an artist has go back with an eraser and clean up some lines. Just as this one character has to sludge along in some mountainous snow, I’m slowly moving along with this one chapter. (Maybe he just doesn’t like snow.) We’ll just have to wait and see what tomorrow brings.

Book Bullies

Callum Manning, 13, from Northeast England

Yesterday, I read an article on Twitter about a 13 year old boy named Callum who’d been bullied over his love of books. He’d created an Instagram account to do book reviews. Well, bullies found out about it and taunted him online, even creating a group chat to make fun of him. After people found out about the bullying, they began to follow him. He now has over 230, 000 followers, all supporting him and enjoying his reviews. Kudos to you, Callum! Link down below for more info.

https://www.azfamily.com/last-week-a–year-old-was-bullied-for-his/article_98d7e764-caa3-555d-b5c3-09536721fa26.html

Bonus Features!

Alright! I’ve just posted the bonus features to Parachute Island, and if you haven’t read it yet, I highly suggest reading it first as there will be some spoilers. Included in the bonus features are a list and breakdown of the major characters, a breakdown of the symbolism included in the novel, a list of the major ailments including Wikipedia links, and the soundtrack to the novel and each song is related to certain scenes of the novel. I really hope you enjoy these bonus features and leave a comment on what you think of them.