Category Archives: On writing

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Science Fiction is a Great Fit for me, as an Author

Science fiction is a great fit for me as an author. I also write fantasy, not the type with kings, queens, ogres, and unicorns (I have a hard time with unicorns) and when I want a nice respite from my usual, I dabble in action adventure.

The genres I choose to pen come from a multitude of sources; however, I believe the passions of my childhood play a large part in my writing preferences.

I was a bit of an odd kid in as far as my choice of favorite animals. Oh, I liked dogs and cats okay, but reptiles claimed my greatest love. In the second grade, at the ripe old age of seven, Wilbur, the alligator, became part of our household. Since alligators were protected at that time, I expect Wilbur was probably a Caiman; however, I will always remember him fondly as Wilbur, the alligator.

Hmmm, protecting alligators as a species, boy, didn’t that work well? Once considered endangered, now there’s one in every swimming pool and dining table; that’s what I call a success.

Of course, like everyone else, I owned the little green turtles whose claim to fame was salmonella.

I grew up in a rural area, where a plethora of reptiles and amphibians call home. Box turtles, a variety of snakes, (which I caught being careful to avoid the ones boasting fangs with nasty toxin to boot) toads, bullfrogs (yum! and they don’t taste like chicken) and the crème de la crème, the glass-tailed lizard. These blue-tailed beauties are so cool to watch. If anything approaches them, including me, in what they perceived as a predatory manner, the lizard would lose half its tail. The broken appendage wiggled about keeping the predator interested while the blue-tail’s host made a hasty get away.

Isn’t it amazing how God’s creation works? But, the best part –  he created this world for us to enjoy.

Have one great week and take time to enjoy one of God’s great gifts!

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I Love to Fish and Have Been Doing so Most of My Life

As I sit here working on a new novel, two of the main characters find themselves floundering in a life-and-death, watery situation. The water, having nothing to do with their deadly conundrum, revolved around a fish. Now, the fact that this large disgusting fish was something they were actually attempting to catch set my mind working. You see, I love to fish and have been doing so most of my life. As a kid, and I mean a kid of 14, possibly 15, I found myself standing in the Chickahominy river from April until October.

The river was a short walk of probably three quarters of a mile from my back door til I could get a line wet. This in turn, lent itself to an amazing amount of fodder I could use in writing sessions, especially short stories.

Many smaller backwater tributaries flowed from the main river. I frequented these when I wanted to fish by walking down the middle of one of these canals casting to each side. In this way, I missed nothing due to brush along the bank. The down side came one day after I caught a Pike (Chain Pickerel). I ran this string with a sharpened metal end through the fish’s gills and out its mouth, pushing it through a ring attached to the other end of the stringer.

With the fish secured, I tied it to my belt loop and continued my angling adventure. Several minutes later, I felt a subtle bump on my rear end. I paid no attention until this continued with more repetitions. Turning to see what had the audacity to interfere with my concentrated attempt to procure my quarry; boy, did I see it. The one who dare mess with me while fishing, was the fish I had just caught. I figuratively jumped out of my skin, afraid I was being attacked by something new to this world.

There is one other scenario worth mentioning. I was standing ankle deep in a similar scenario, working my way to deeper water. A small head breaking the surface, flicked a forked tongue at me, waylaying my journey. I fled to the bank, happy I was not chest deep and noticed the serpent followed me to the bank. Upset with this creature interrupting my angling, I found a tree limb; brought it down across his head numerous times until at last my hunting knife removed his slippery head. This in turned allowed me to resume my trip into the river and complete my day of fishing. As you have probably noticed, neither man, beast, or serpent interrupts the time I allot to fishing.

So goes my antics as a young lad. I hope you enjoyed reading as much as I enjoyed sharing.

Take good care of yourself. May God bless you; keep you in his grace and may his countenance shine down upon you! Have a great week!

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Every Now and Then a Word Comes Along that is Used Repeatedly

Every now and then, a word comes along that is used repeatedly. Eventually that word will hit the airwaves and begin to grind against my sense of right and wrong. The latest utterance to have this effect on me is “application,” which has been conveniently condensed to ‘app.’ The abbreviation app, in and of itself is not a problem; however, when delving into technology as most of us are likely to do, everything we encounter likely requires an app.

Apps allow us to navigate without having to go to the internet each time we want to access a particular program. An app for this and an app for that, here an app, there an app, everywhere an app, app is pretty much how I perceive the world of applications.

The next saying that has come up on the world of most everything in one form or the other is ‘game-changer.’ Everywhere in the world of television commercials, these two words are sure to pop up. I first heard this phrase uttered concerning a hand-ailment known as Dupuytren’s contracture. From then on the phrase game-changer has been used to describe everything from vitamins to athletic socks and prostate treatments to copper underwear. Some things tend to be over used and I guess that’s just me rambling on . . .  then again maybe not.

Perhaps, this is one of those times, I should stay in my writer’s room not concerning myself with superfluous things or at least keep them to myself.

Have a great week and may God richly bless you and yours.

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I Make it a Point to Write Every Day Except Sunday

I make it a point to write every day except Sunday. Even though I’ve said it before, I’m still fascinated by the way a reader will embrace a character that is contrived by little more than a thought. I will have to admit that bringing emotions out of one who reads my work is extremely satisfying. It confirms that I am doing my job as an author.

Writing YA and NA I feel it necessary to avoid bad language and sexual situations; however, when one is destroying vile entities and the like, violence is unavoidable.

Most of my plots travel along the lines of science fiction, fantasy, and action adventure. I have the pleasure of creating new domains, a plethora of good and bad creatures, and story lines that travel through primitive and advanced worlds. These realms occasionally delve into time travel, bringing me a great deal of gratification, as I write.

I enjoy pleasant endings; however, it’s not always possible to conclude each novel in such a fashion. In fact, I find myself ending books in the negative to make them more believable or even more conducive to a sequel.   

In short, I love every aspect of creating a story from conception to completion. I guess, I chose the optimum career path as I have heard, “If you find a job you love, you’ll never work a day in your life.” Now, I can confirm this quote is about as accurate as a quote can get. Since it is attributed to Confucius, Marc Anthony, and Mark Twain, it truly takes time, distance, and geography into consideration.

I hope you’ve enjoyed the ravings of an author and allow the love of God to penetrate your heart. Please be in pray for the children, teachers, law enforcement, families, and friends involved in the Uvalde School shooting.

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Once Again, I Find Myself Forging Through Another Bout of Wondering

Once again, I find myself forging through another bout of wondering. If you remember in a blog post not so long ago, I was caught in the dilemma of archaic typewriters. This time I seem focused on things I did as a young adult, some good, some not so good, and some not so good, good. I do believe, my mind’s eye, ear, nose, and throat are pulling me toward the days I spent at the bowling alley.

At one time, I bowled on a league. Our team consisted of me, my girlfriend, her brother, and another gentlemen from her work. We accessed this league through her employer.

One night a week, we bowled three games with all the included teams placed by rank based on their weekly scores. We usually hovered somewhere around last place knowing that if we strove for mediocrity, there would be nowhere to go but up.

At this particular time in my life, I was known to diligently search for the bottom of a beer bottle. Of course, being a young man in my early 20’s, I was not opposed to saving a buck wherever possible.

Now, what could be better than knocking down a few cold brews while enjoying one’s favorite pass time? Therein lies the problem.

  • Dumb kid, who likes to drink but isn’t endowed with an overabundance of cash.

  • Bowling alley where the dumb kid bowls sells beer out of the dumb kid’s price range.

  • The beer that the Bowling alley sells is the brand sold in local convenience and grocery stores.

  • Dumb kid owns bowling ball and a bowling bag with enough space for ball and 6 bottles of said favorite beer.

  • Problem solved. All dumb kid has to do is purchase one beer at the beginning of the night, store empties in bowling ball bag, and walk softly to prevent clinking and/or breakage.

I believe we captured sole possession of last place that year. That was quite a while ago and I do not recommend attempting to copy my shenanigans. For one, it was dishonest, and two, no one needs to drink that much – period.

Have a great Monday, a fantastic Tuesday, a wonderful Wednesday, a stupendous Thursday, a marvelous Friday, and a great weekend.

May God keep you and bless you. May God shine his countenance upon you!

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I Do Believe the Past Two Weeks Have Been Slow…Not

I do believe it seems the past two weeks have been slow as far as writing, rewriting, editing or further changing the present story line in my latest novel are concerned. Of course, I know that’s not true for I have enough work to keep me busy for quite a while. Maybe, I feel as though the thoughts I wish to convey to the readers of my blog are too important to pass by . . . yeah, that’s the ticket. That’s the pretense I’ll use to publish this post on useless information . . . and they’ll be none the wiser.

Do you realize that the fruit enjoyed by nearly everyone come summertime is not the fruit we all think it to be? Attempting to pass itself off as cantaloupe, the muskmelon worked its way into our hearts via the taste bud.

Allow me several seconds to sneeze . . . . . . Thanks, as you well know, no one can sneeze just once. It’s those multiple sneezes that get me, knowing my heart stops with each swoosh of air . . . or not. Once again, we are led down a road of deception. Contrary to popular belief, the heart continues to pump blood through our circulatory system when sneezing.

Guess what other ploys of deceit have been thrust down the paths we trod? You do know that a frog will jump from a boiling pot of water, but a frog placed in tepid water and slowly brought to 212° will cook to death in his own stupid.?Slow down a moment, even the tiny-brained, web-footed, amphibian has more sense than that. C’mon, give a guy a little credit. (This was so important; it held ground in an earlier blog.)

 Last but not least, the iconic Hollywood sign is something we have all seen. Whether from a movie theater, the television screen, or an airplane window, the verbiage making up the image at one time read, “Hollywoodland.”

Thank you, for allowing me several minutes of your day. I do so hope you were able to glean a bit of information or enjoyment from my humorous brain blast. As always, have the best week you’ve had in your time on this Earth, and may God bless you and yours richly!

 

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As I Sit in Front of My Computer Screen, Hashing Out My Next Novel, Occasionally My Mind Will Wonder

As I sit in front of my computer screen, hashing out my next novel, occasionally my mind will wonder. One topic that seems to be my go-to (brought about by the ability to write on an electric screen) concerns the way people accomplished tasks not so many years ago, as opposed to today.

I remember watching someone type. The die would physically strike a piece of paper through a ribbon infused with ink transferring the letter. By pressing any number of keys labeled with the alphabet, numbers, and a plethora of various symbols  printing process actively delivered letter to paper. These older keyboards are not unlike today’s computer keyboards save where the years between the two would dictate that necessity.

 Heaven help you if the misfortune of making a mistake ever crossed one of your hard fought words. You had two options: discard the page and totally retype or use an archaic small piece of white paper. This you held over the offending letter, struck the paper and letter a second time to transfer the white substance that, in theory, covered the mistake and gave you a clean surface to retype the correct letter . . . Good luck.

The fun part of a day’s work with one of these machines was maintenance, such as changing a ribbon. If by fortune you inherited this task in the morning, you could spend the remaining hours of your day covered in a non-removable black ink.

As an author thinking, about using one of these ancient devices to pen a novel makes me want to pick up pencil and paper.

Well, how about that trip down memory lane. It’ll make you think next time you complain about your modern-day typing device.

Have a great week, and may God bless you and yours!

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London Bridge is Falling Down

Of course, you remember the childhood song, “London Bridge is falling down, my fair lady.” As the story goes, the bridge construction took place in the early 19th century. Being meant to handle 19th century foot traffic, horses, wagons, and the like, the overpass became obsolete.

As modern traffic took its toll on the viaduct, the need for a transition became obvious. Entrepreneurs purchased, dismantled, and shipped the London Bridge to America to become a new thoroughfare across the Colorado River, in Lake Havasu, Arizona.

According to history.com, to ensure the bridge could handle modern traffic, construction crews built a hollow core of steel-reinforced concrete, which was then covered with 10,000 tons of the original 19th century granite.

Workers began by labeling each of its granite bricks with markers that indicated their arch span, row number and position. The bridge was then disassembled, packed away in crates and shipped to Long Beach, California, via the Panama Canal. From there, a small army of trucks carried it across the desert to its new home at Lake Havasu.

All told, the shipping, assembly and dredging took over three years and cost Robert McCulloch and C.V. Wood some $7 million.

Ya know, the last time I asked someone if they wanted to buy a bridge, things didn’t go so well.

Have a great week and may God bless!

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Ever Think About Living in a Dictatorial Setting Where One Person Wields All of the Power?

Ever think about living in a dictatorial setting where one person wields all of the power, surrounded by a plethora of minions who, though they argue with this supreme ruler, do his bidding just the same? Not only are you instructed what and what not to do, but the female population around you are subject to mistreatment, including sexual misdeeds from said ruler and associates (male and female).

Doesn’t sound like an optimum way to enjoy life, does it? Well, that’s just about the way things supposedly were under the watchful eye of the Greek gods.

First off, Zeus treated the world as his brothel and relegated himself to partake of the Goddess population on Olympus. He had more illegitimate children than the ocean has fish.

One incident, that for the life of me I cannot understand, took place in the Temple of Athena. A beautiful, avowed priestess acted as custodian of the keys and caretaker to Athena’s Temple. Unequaled in beauty, Athena forbade any man to touch her out of jealousy.

Unfortunately for her, the god, Poseidon,  found the priestess’ looks enthralling. He entered the temple and raped the Caretaker breaking her vow of chastity. As punishment for losing her virginity, Athena cursed the maiden, Medusa, with a heinous appearance. Snakes grew from her scalp like hair and all who dared look upon her beauty turned to stone from that day forward.

Greek gods acted rude, crude, selfish, petty, and all-in-all, socially unacceptable. I would hate to live under a supposed supreme being who behaved no better than me.

On top of that, the Greek created a god for everything. Can you imagine irritating the god of the porcelain lazy boy? Imagine sitting down for your morning constitutional with him in a bad mood . . . of course I guess it could be a her . . .no matter, either way it couldn’t be pleasant.   

Have a great day, and not only that, have a great week, and may the one true living God, created by no one, bless you richly!

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As Human Beings, We Live Our Lives in a Way That, Over Time, Becomes Familiar

As human beings, we live our lives in a way that, over time, becomes familiar. This may show itself in the words and phrases we use, the way we conduct ourselves, the food we eat, and  other ways too numerous to count.

For instance, ever since we were children I bet you called a four-legged, female bovine a cow.  In actuality, said bovine is not a cow until it has  birthed its first calf. After an initial pregnancy, it’s a first-year heifer. Once its calf is old enough to birth offspring, making the first year heifer a grandma then, the first-year heifer becomes a cow. Now, isn’t that just a syllable from being poetic?

I did a post that included the 17-year locust a week or so ago. What I failed to mention, was what most people call a locust is actually a cicada. A locust is nothing more than a grasshopper that swarms, takes flight, and eats all plant life in its path.

How about these for various collections of animals according to dictionary.com:

1. A flamboyance of flamingos

2. A lounge of lizards

3. A bloat of hippopotamuses

4. A conspiracy of lemurs

5. A convocation of eagles

6. A smack of jellyfish

7. An obstinacy of buffalo

8. An unkindness of ravens

9. A business of ferrets

10. A mob of kangaroos

11. A zeal of zebras

12. A shrewdness of apes

13. A leap of leopards

And just in case you are wondering, a mountain lion, cougar, puma, panther, catamount, mountain screamer, Mexican lion, painter, red lion and American lion; along with 30 or so additional names are all the same wildcat.

Go figure, once you delve into things you find out, other things about the things you didn’t expect to find about the original things and for that matter the secondary things  are a bonus because you learned an overabundance of things about things.

Having just celebrated Easter, remember the gift of our savior, Jesus, and what he endured to save us for all eternity. Have one great week . . . as a matter-of-fact, have the best week you’ve ever had until next week!

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