April 20, 2020 · 12:23 PM
April 13, 2020 · 2:57 PM
There’s an element common in all genres. Whether sci-fi, romance, fantasy or horror characters eat. There may be one exception, but excluding the need for nutrition in the genre of steam punk (of which I am much too unfamiliar) I may be woefully wrong.
Leaning toward writing science fiction, as many do, including myself, you may find something simplistic as a meal itself turning into an adventure with numerous unexpected sub-genres and action sequences unusual.
The action-packed meal can be related to our lives (maybe not as exciting or consequential) but in a mundane, comparatively speaking way. It’s similar to the first time you try something exotic, such as wallaby, ostrich, or sea urchin. Of course, most people would not care for a meal that presented itself in the manner which remains prevalent in my writing. I like the action, in an action-adventure novel (which I, also, enjoy writing) to remain throughout the book.
To complete this blog, it would behoove me to say that I immensely enjoy writing, eating, and writing about eating in certain situations.
Until next week, I hope you will remain in good health, spirits and may God bless.
April 6, 2020 · 1:36 PM
You’ve Heard It Over and Over, But Just To Reiterate, Wash Your Hands, Don’t Touch Your Face and Stay At Home
As a nation we’re experiencing some of the most difficult times we’ve had in the past century. The Coronavirus is a worldwide pandemic we have not seen the likes of since the Spanish Flu of 1918. This pandemic affected 500 million people.
We need to pray for the many who have been inflicted with the Coronavirus and sadly the families and friends of those who have lost their lives.
We will get through this together. It is wonderful to see, even in this time of trouble, our country coming together despite the division we have encountered for many years now.
I would like to switch gears and list some of the inconveniences we deal with this time of year as we struggle with the deadly COVID-19 virus.
I live in the Mid-Atlantic. During early spring, one day we’ll have frost on the ground and the next a 90° heatwave. The flu is still rearing its ugly head and will be for another month or so. We have been experiencing tree pollen, but now the yellow dust covers our cars and houses triggering a massive influx of phlegm in our snot lockers. If not our noses, then our eyes runnith over with a sticky fluid that glues each eyelid together.
As we contemplate the events of the past few months, an end seems far away, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel, one I believe we will realize sooner than later.
May God bless you and keep you safe!
March 30, 2020 · 4:28 PM
Before I began writing a string of best sellers . . . all right, one best seller . . . okay, I haven’t broken through to the best seller list yet; however, and I want you to take this to heart, I am only a few thousand books away, I was going to be a rock star.
Back in the 70’s, when but a teenager, I had been playing my father’s guitar (a 58 diamond anniversary Gretsch) when I decided to save my coins and purchased a black 76 Les Paul custom with three gold pickups. Allow me to tell you I was ready to set the world on fire.
Once we went through the process of selecting the band members, we began to hone our craft. To start off, we played cover tunes consisting of the most popular songs of the day.
We were officially ranked as a garage band. In those days, as I am sure is the same today, noise remains a problem. I cannot count the number of times the police were called on our tiny little foursome for releasing an overabundance of racket. I believe they call it, “disturbing the peace.”
One of our largest obstacles was equipment. For the most part, guitars, amplifiers, and drum sets were a cinch . . . well, a cinch compared to the difficult items.
The first on the list . . . and this was a biggie . . . a PA system. I played for years with a substandard singing apparatus. Of course, when I think back, our second-rate PA’s matched our inferior ability to play, so it all came out in the wash.
It’s a lot like writing. You endure much criticism before you finally hash out what you need to succeed.
The later years were much kinder and rewarding. We were booked every weekend, with occasional weekdays, and some out of town work. With full-time jobs, this was about all, and truthfully more, than we could handle. I gave it up several months before my baby boy was born.
Like many things, it was fun while it lasted, but I’m glad that it’s gone.
March 23, 2020 · 12:20 PM
I get a great deal of enjoyment from writing. It’s an excellent way to immerse oneself into never before seen worlds, good and bad; meet a plethora of different creatures, also, good and bad; plus, create fantastic situations giving the bipeds, tripeds, and quadrupeds a place to exist. There is no limit to the exotic flora and fauna one can experience between the pages of a novel full of science fiction and fantasy.
I wrote what I would consider my first serious story in the ninth grade. It was a short story about a family in the Midwest and the horrific ordeal they endured at the hands of a tornado. It got rave reviews from my English teacher, but I never took my fledgling talent for writing any further.
It was years later, after I purchased my first computer, that I started penning short stories for enjoyment.
It all began when I received a diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis. Then, two months later, the pharmaceutical company where I was employed abolished my department. During a father and son fishing trip, my son suggested I try writing for a living. It was then I commenced to write in earnest.
It can make you wonder how one thing can lead to another; even what begins as bad may turn to good in the end. There is no need to wonder when you realize God is on his throne.
Have a great week! See you next Monday!
March 16, 2020 · 2:13 PM
It’s time to gas up the lawnmowers, string up the weed eaters, oil the hedge trimmers and sharpen, grease or otherwise, fix any other lawn maintenance tool you may own. Then again, if you have a mind to purchase each of these appliances in a gas-less model you can forgo the petroleum based fuel and slap a fully charged battery into the power slot.
“Is it that time of year?” you may ask.
“Why, yes, it is,” your neighbor, might say. “The time has come to beautify your lawn, for the next 3 to 4 months.”
For some, grooming the lawn is no small task. At the proper times, they aerate, fertilize, seed, water, cut, weed, trim, water, edge, re-fertilize, re-seed, water, and repeat each week until frost. Then, there are others (me being one) that never plant a grass seed, but cut and weed-eat the greenery that has taken over their lawn. Usually, these lawns contain a wide variety of weeds, but it still looks pretty good to me.
Lawn care has come a long way since its conception. A scythe, which is what was used to gather wheat, could be employed to knock the height off the vegetation around the house. Then, the reel type mower came along in the early 19th century, which could be pushed over the grass making a bad job slightly less so. I remember my father using a sling blade to trim the grass since a weed eater, as far as I know, had not been invented. Many times, we don’t realize how good we have it, especially when we’re tooling around on that hog lawn tractor.
There is one thing I don’t believe I’ve ever included in any of my writings, and that is the lawn. Hmm . . . don’t exactly know how I’d fit one on another world . . . maybe I could . . . no that wouldn’t work . . . how about . . .?
March 9, 2020 · 12:30 PM
Once a year, we come to this place in time. Personally, I enjoy this stage of the year more
so than its competitor, and I believe my view is shared among the populous. What am I talking about?…Daylight Savings Time, of course. Two states decline to indulge in this extra hour of light that most hold dear, those two being Hawaii and Arizona. The downside to this changeover is a loss of an hour of sleep; however, this deficit is so short it hardly matters after the first day or so.
Moving time around, even the slightest bit, can cause odd behavior. I can’t help but wonder about those who attempt to arrive at work an hour late, blaming this on the hour change of the clock. If they’re not careful, their plan will go array for this scenario only works during the November change to Eastern Standard Time.
However you prefer your time, you can revel in your extra hour of light courtesy of Daylight Savings Time or enjoy the dark of Standard Time. Either way is fine, for one thing is certain; time stands still for no man.
See you next week!
March 3, 2020 · 10:44 AM
If you’re a lover of fresh vegetables and you enjoy growing your own, then you know it’s time to begin prepping for your summertime garden. I suppose millions of crunching, munching, connoisseurs literally chomping at the bit to get a fresh tomato, breathe a sigh of relief after suffering through winter’s fare.
Now, if you’re a fan of beginning your own starter plants from seeds, that’s a process you would initiate in the month of February, readying the young plants to move outside after the danger of frost has past.
As much as I love meat, I tend to lean toward vegetarianism during the summer months. Sliced tomatoes, spring onions, and hot peppers are a staple at each evening meal. I love hot peppers, within reason. I’m a big fan of the Cayenne which rate at about 30,000 scoville units. With the practice of trying to develop hotter peppers, we’ve exceeded the Habanero, 300,000 units and ended with the Trinidad Scorpion and the Carolina Reaper both topping out over 2,000,000 scoville units.
When my mouth cools down, I’ll continue with sweet corn covered in butter. Fried squash with onions and potatoes, butter beans, green beans, new potatoes, I could almost make out of a meal, and if that’s not enough, there’s always dessert. Watermelon, cantaloupe and trees baring luscious fruit that would rival the most decadent baked goods available.
Occasionally, when writing I have the pleasure of creating an exotic form of plant or fruit upon which the characters dine. Sometimes these fruits are unbelievably pleasurable and then there are times when one bite means death.
Not exactly the best way to end a blog that speaks of an abundance of fresh vegetables . . . but you know what I mean.
See ya next week!
February 24, 2020 · 11:02 AM
Do you ever wonder about people and their fears? I’m not talking about the many different phobias that attack the population–some rational; some irrational. I am referring to the creepy crawlies in the world of insects and reptiles, namely spiders and snakes. I find myself contradicting what I wrote at the beginning of this blog by reintroducing the suffix, phobia. The fear of spiders is Arachnophobia; the fear of snakes is Ophidiophobia, the fear of stinging insects (usually wasps) is Spheksophobia, and the fear of mice is Musophobia.
I’ve seen folks nearly wreck the car they were driving to get away from a stinging insect. I received this information first hand from sitting in the passenger seat of said vehicle.
I had a close friend who was deathly afraid of snakes. We went fishing along with his brother in a john boat one Saturday. After tying off to a small tree, we began to cast. Several hours passed and I happened to turn and look up to see a copperhead just a few feet above our heads. My friend was a good sized man. I was more afraid of him trying to get out the boat in a panic than I was of the snake. We managed to untie the boat and push away from the tree with him none the wiser, all intact and no one in the drink.
One thing I have done more than once is carry my sister from one room to the other or even outside, to get away from a mouse.
Just to mention the word spider, I guess, says it all, as I would tend to believe that Arachnophobia is one of the more prevalent fears within our ranks.
Fortunately, the creatures I have named don’t bother me. I have included similar, but more exotic, beasts in my science fiction novels. They boggle the mind and hopefully entertain the reader.
I used to catch non-poisonous snakes and allow my son to touch them to keep him from being afraid. The same with turtles, frogs, lizards, and salamanders. We lived in the country and I wanted him to experience the safe side of nature.
We may get a chuckle from someone flailing around trying to avoid an insect, but it’s no fun being the one that’s afraid. To bring it into context, everyone’s afraid of something. Check out the camel spider below found in Afghanistan.
February 17, 2020 · 10:28 AM