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As an Author, I Can’t Help But Dabble in the Art of a Wordsmith

As an author, I can’t help but dabble in the art of a wordsmith. At the very least, from the pure nature of the work, I will increase my vocabulary; at most, I can use the “add to dictionary” function to manufacture words at my own discretion.

Of course, words are necessary if one desires to write, which throws us headlong into another conundrum. If you are born and bred in the United States of America, you have no trouble stating and comprehending American style English. If you hale from outside this great country, then Katie-bar-the-door, “cause you in a world of hurt.”

Problematic becomes the word of the day as a nasty little term known as an idiom comes into play. Everything from “go jump in a lake,” to “don’t beat around the bush,” is used to make a totally unrelated point. “Cut me some slack,” and “pull a rabbit out of a hat,” are two more favorites. Now, we mustn’t forget the idiom of idioms, “By the skin of your teeth.” That one will leave a crinkle in the ole’ brain box.

All in all, we find a way to communicate. I recall sitting in the Las Vegas airport talking with a man from France. Our conversation was unique, to say the least, as neither one of us spoke the other’s language.

Another example of our wonderful creator’s sense of humor.

Have a fantastic week and don’t forget to smile . . . you may change someone’s day for the better.

 

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As an Author I Hold the Fate of Many Worlds

Being an author is something that gives me a great deal of enjoyment. As an author, I hold the fate of many worlds and even more, character’s, in my hands. I can allow them to live or sentence them to die. I’ve always found it amazing that such emotion can be felt for a character that exists only in the mind of the reader; however, it is my duty to bring that emotion to the surface, so that I pull the reader into the story. In this way, the reader is vested in the story line and if I do my job, participates throughout the entire novel.

Talk about a non-sequitur segue, I believe this takes the cake, pie, cookie and anything else you can imagine, but here goes.

NASA has big plans to farm in outer space. I think my reasoning for jumping to this subject is my love for science fiction. After all, it is the main genre in which I write, though now it appears raising crops in zero gravity is no longer fiction. I guess my question is why spend time piddling with a small amount of vegetation for food in space when we have such a desperate need for food that can be grown now on the earth’s surface?

Don’t misunderstand my comments as I am a huge fan of space exploration, and I am sure space farming will be a viable option someday; however, let’s not put the cart before the horse as we often do.

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

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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 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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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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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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Have You Given Any Thought to How Much of Our Lives Revolve in Cyclical Patterns?

Have you given any thought to how much of our lives revolve in cyclical patterns? For instance, the very time that structures each moment, boils down into seconds, then to minutes, minutes to hours, hours to days, days into weeks, weeks into months, months into years, etc.

Our year is divided into four seasons: Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter. The years usher in hot summers and cold winters that within themselves change as time progresses, bringing warmer winters, cooler summers, and then back again.

Certain species even cycle their life spans in this manner, like the seventeen-year locust. They dine during the summer. The adults lay their eggs in small branches on the host tree. The limbs die and fall to the ground. The eggs hatch, the larvae bury beneath the ground, spending the next seventeen years eating succulent tree roots until time to emerge, starting the seventeen years process anew.

El Niño and La Nina make an appearance every seven to eight years, one ushering in cold water in the Pacific, and the other ushering in warm water into the Pacific. This little boy and girl can change weather patterns in the Atlantic, especially during hurricane season, which has a cyclical pattern in and of itself. Hurricanes wax and wane in intensity every couple of decades, kinda like our generations.

Even in our solar system, we find evidence of cycles in returning comets, asteroids, and meteors.

We have only been keeping accurate records for a short number of years. When  compared to the age of our Earth, it is impossible to determine whether the changes we experience are part of a larger cyclical happening or not. This is because the last cycle may be so far removed we have no record of the happening.

I hope this post gives you something to think about. May God richly bless you and remember:

You don’t have to agree on anything to be kind to one another . . . unknown.

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Do You Have Any Hero’s That You Feel Are Larger Than Life?

Do you have any hero’s that you feel are larger than life? I know as I write, I can make each character as lofty as I wish or lower than a snake’s belly in a wagon rut. It, of course, is totally up to me for I am the king of this world, and what I say goes!

Okay, I am sliding down off my high-horse to dwell once again among the common folk.

I’d like to relay a story that took place around the World War II era.

John Wayne’s acting career began in the 1930’s. It turns out that Joseph Stalin was a big fan of the Duke. After our cowboy-in-question made a disparaging remark against the Soviet Dictator, it seems that Old Joe hunched a passel of feathers up on his back.

After the initial hullabaloo, Old Joe sent a couple of cronies to take out the Duke, and I don’t mean in a nice way.

The FBI approached our hero, (just in case you didn’t know, John Wayne is the hero), to warn the manly man to leave town to avoid approaching danger.

The Duke would not hear of it. He would not leave to protect himself. Along with the FBI, Mr. Wayne devised a plan that allowed the hit-men to approach the cowboy alone in his hotel room.

The FBI staked out the adjoining room and put an end to the deed before it could begin.

Believe it or not, this story is true, at least this is the way it was relayed to me  . . . so I guess you can take it for what it’s worth . . . or not.

I hope this makes you think how odd this world can be, and that you have learned something new to start the week. Just remember the tale you read no matter how interesting or not, was another bit of useless information from me to you.

Have a great week and enjoy the love of God that pours from the heavens down on His creation.

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I Look Around my Home and am Amazed at the Surplus of Devices That Required an Inventor

I look around my home and am amazed at the surplus of devices that required an inventor, nay, a series of inventors, to build on each other’s work until the product was complete.

When working on a novel, most situations entailed within the worlds I manufacture, use sunlight during the day, or fire once the sun sets, to light the way.

Sunlight brings to mind one of the most famous items ever to wear the title of ‘invention.’ I’m speaking of the light bulb. This valuable commodity in most cases is attributed to Thomas Edison as the lone designer; however, according to interestingengeneering.com, many historians claim that no less than 20 inventors produced various designs of incandescent light bulbs long before Edison.

One of the most important steps making Edison’s invention possible was the work of  the great British scientist Sir Humphrey Davy. In 1802, he was able to produce the world’s first true artificial electric light. 

I don’t mean to beat up on the genius that is Thomas Edison; however, he is the brains behind the think tank of many inventions credited solely to him.

I hope this little tidbit of information causes a wrinkle in your brain and moreover I pray the week ahead is one of the best you’ve ever had, only to be eclipsed by the week after next. God bless and I’ll talk atcha Monday week . . . and leave a light on for me.

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