Tag Archives: books

“Slo-Mo-Syndro,” Nothing But a Thing, A Significant Thing, But Just a Thing, None the Less

In the years I’ve been writing, I cannot say I have experienced a full blown case of writer’s block, although what has not skipped my sci-fi encrusted brain is what I  call the “slow motion syndrome.”

With “slow motion syndrome,” writing a paragraph will go something like this. In the first sentence there are no problems and you breeze right through.

With the second sentence, there is a definite pause and you must think before adding the last few words.

In the third sentence, you complete half and slowly finish the sentence one-word-at-a-time.

By-the-time-you-complete-said-paragraph, it-has-been-a-slow-arduous-task-to-say-the-least.

I guess one is just about as bad as the other, of course with S.M.S. you can see some progress, even if it is minuscule.

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Simple Can Take Many Complicated Shapes

I just completed my fifth novel, “Dalon Con.” (The Essence of Time). This was a spin off of a character that appeared for a page or two in an earlier novel, “Eden’s Wake.” It is, also, my first adventure into the world of time travel. Now that “Dalon Con” has been sent to the editor, until the first round of editing is complete, I feel it is my job to begin the next novel that will join the ranks of my arsenal. My first problem with this plan of attack is finding sustainable subject matter so that readers maintain an interest from the first page to the last.

In actuality, this is easier than it sounds. It can be a simple process if you will not over complicate your search and just pay attention to your natural surroundings. For instance, how about a duck-billed platypus? If you take a platypus, reshape his bill, add fangs,and lengthen his legs, you can make this new creation take to the air by adding a pair of wings. A few more exotic changes like this along with well-known creatures or humans and you’ll have an excellent start to your sci-fi, fantasy, or action adventure manuscript. Don’t discount the simplicity that resides around you, it may become the fodder for your next tale, be it a short story or a series of full length novels.

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Read, Repeat

You must surely have heard the saying, “…things that go bump in the night.” Unknown sounds can conjure up a plethora of subjects to write about, especially in the horror genre.

I must admit that horror is not my favorite genre, but there’s always room for a “scare your pants off” type of story. For instance, even though I tend to write science fiction/fantasy and action/adventure, I can easily make space for a little horror in any one of my usual genres.

I think this is something you will find throughout the writing world, even in the most popular books of all those written in the romance genre.

That’s right; even in the lovey-dovey, smooch-my-face, world of romance, there is room for some good old fashion killing courtesy of the beast-next-door.

On the other hand, it doesn’t have to be the beast or anything else next door. It could just as easily be the paranormal being residing in your attic or the monster tick, tagging along on the mutt out back.

In fact, a chunk of horror can follow any genre and rear its ugly head at the most inopportune times.

Did you see what I’ve done? I have taken one of my least favorite type of books and made it one that will not only stand out in any crowd but also be taken by most in a positive light. Happy reading to all you new horror fans!

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Too Much Time, Not Enough Time, Time After Time, Time And Time Again, C’mon Makeup Your Mind

I am working diligently on my latest manuscript. I write mainly in the science fiction and fantasy genres; however, this is the first time I have delved into the concept of time travel. Now, there’s a lot of things one can do bouncing from this time to that time, time after time. I suppose one could smack one’s own self upside the head if one had a notion to do so.  

My manuscript, I must admit, has a tendency to drive me a bit crazy. If there were only a few characters  this would not be the case, but keeping even a moderate amount of imaginary actors in their correct timelines can be a daunting task. It’s extremely easy to add another layer of difficulty to the mix when you write as I do. Some authors outline their entire book chapter by chapter before they begin writing. Me, I fly by the seat of my pants. It gives me more freedom to take off on an undetermined tangent which brings my book to life. In this way, along with my help, the book writes itself. So the next time you look at your watch, wall clock or sun-dial, imagine yourself in a different time setting even if it’s just relaxing in front of the television later that night. Me, I just may end up on a peaceful island reeling in a plethora of exotic fish. We never have enough time so use it wisely.

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Water, Water, Everywhere and Only a Few Quintilian Gallons to Drink

Our bodies can do without water for a short time. Deprived of H2O, dehydration takes over, we dry up, then die. Down through the ages, if you put it in a nutshell, the way we gathered water is a bit of a misnomer.

When we were hunter-gatherers, we drank from pristine streams originating in the mountains. As we became more civilized and built cities close to rivers, we drew water from the river in the same place we emptied raw sewage. We have names for periods of time such as Cenozoic, Mesozoic, Jurassic and so on. I like to call this water retrieval period, “Stupid in Reverse.”

Today most of the population drinks bottled water. Not so many years ago, I would have laughed had someone told me  I would be paying for it. The funny thing about this is, when I tested my tap water against the brand of bottled water we were drinking at the time, the tap water tested superior to the bottled water and by a significant difference. I even wrote a novel, Rising Tide, about a world inundated by water. There was land available but it was definitely at a premium. What it boils down to (no pun intended), is there’s water everywhere–in the ground, the air, oceans, rivers, streams, creeks, mud puddles and pretty much anywhere you can think of (except the arctic which is actually the most arid place on earth with deserts running a close second). So the next time you pick up that cool, clear glass of water, be thankful you’re not drinking from a municipal source a hundred years ago.

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I Would Read This With a Cow, I Would Read This With a Sow, I Would Read This on a Plow or I Would Read This Blog Right Now

I remember when I was but a wee lad falling in love with the written word. In the years prior, my parents would read the wonderful Dr. Seuss to keep me entertained. I still remember Green Eggs and Ham, Hop on Pop, The Cat in the Hat and many others too numerous to list. I believe the first book I read on my own was The Enormous Egg. This would help set the stage for my love of Science Fiction later in life. In the second grade, I fell in love with Charlotte’s Web and would read it nearly every day.

My first YA novel was The Red Planet by Robert Heinlein, which I read until the covers fell off. As I graduated to a more adult level of reading, Stephen King was the man. In fact, for me he still is. After I had read King for a while, I made a determination. With all the stuff, he has floating around in his head, had he not started writing, King would have become a serial killer or his head would have exploded. My favorite works by Stephen King are The Dark Tower series and Needful Things. Even though I have published four novels, my writing experience has yet to elevate me to the status of any of the authors I have mentioned, but you never know unless you try. So I guess I’ll keep on writing until the herd of turtles come home.   

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The Most Unusual Circumstances Today Can Pull Two Complete Strangers Closer Than Imaginable

Long before I penned my first word, I found myself gravitating toward science fiction, fantasy and adventure. As a kid, I would marvel at the stop-animation used in movies through the eighties, and scarf up the multitude of novels available for the taking. If I was awake, there was a sci-fi book in my hand.

As I began to write, I could easily find subjects for my work in nature. A search through creation could yield a veritable plethora of subject matter. Throw in a vivid imagination, a quirky sense of humor, a dark side so the good guys will have something to fight and you have the perfect recipe. This formula will guarantee an upside down, knee slapping, bad vs. good, destroy the world, (if you’re not careful) nail-biter of a finished type novel. . .Whew!!

Unfortunately, situations come in to play that are as morose as those written everyday without a thought of these tales making their way into our everyday lives.

In memoriam: On a bright September 11th morning 16 years ago, terrorist murdered over 3000 people, at the world trade center towers, the pentagon and a field in Pennsylvania.  Harvey and Irma have devastated Texas and Florida, with Irma still pounding away. When healing can begin, both states will likely take years to fully recover. But, you know what I’ve seen in these situations? They bring unity. There are none of the differences; just people helping people. Maybe we should give it a try. I think that’s how God originally intended it.

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