Monday, October 13, 2008

Non-Writing Post

Sorry guys – I have been so busy with work that I get home exhausted at night. So I really haven't been doing much writing, although I am thinking about the story quite a bit and will get back to it soon.

On an unrelated note—My wife and I have a small business where we scan and digitize photos, slides, and negatives. If there is anyone out there who reads my blog and would like to have this done, post a comment here and I will contact you. Anybody who does contact me through here will get a $10.00 off coupon on their order (minimum order of $50.00).

We do all the scanning by hand and take really good care of making sure no photos are damaged.

Many Customers have had us scan photos that they have obtained from grandparents and then given them as gifts to the rest of their family, so that everyone has a copy of all the family photos.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Leo Markmann

Sorry I haven't made a recent update. It's been kind of slow going on the novel, but I promise that I will give you an update on it in the next couple of days.

I thought I would throw up a comic story from my past so that there's at least a little fresh info on my blog.

Leo Markmann was a character/story I create a couple of years ago with an artist named TG Sanglang. I generally don't do sci-fi, but I really had a lot of fun with this character and would love to do more with him.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Question of the Day…

What are your favorite books and why? What puts them at the top of the list for you? Is it the characters, a character that you wish you could be or who's actions make you think, "wow, that's exactly how I would deal with the situation." Maybe it's the plot … you're that person who is interested in a really good spy/intrigue plot that has a create twist ending. Is it how the book is written and by that it I mean, you look at it and say things like, "what a great choice of words to describe…" or "the authors ability to write stream of conscience is incredible." Could it be the "moral" of the book? Is it that you have to work hard to read it, or on the opposite end, that it's an easy read? What makes you like the books you like?

For me, I'm partly ashamed to admit this, but one of the top things that are important to me is genre. I like Fantasy. I like reading it and I like writing it, so that is really important to me. I like a good character, someone I can relate with and understand their motivation. I like books that hit me hard at the end and by this I mean that I feel like cheering or crying because of the climatic event the book has been written around. I like good dialogue versus good exposition and description.

So you tell me – what are your favorite books and why?

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The Novel and Point of View…

    I will have an update to the progress bar a little later today. Last night, I was up until midnight writing using a laptop while in bed, listening to music via an Ipod, while my wife slept next to me. Other then jacking up my back a little, I have to say I enjoy working late on the book. I didn't really want to go to sleep last night because I thought I was a hitting a stride, but I had the money paying job in the morning, and I didn't want to drag myself out of bed and suffer the rest of the day.

I'm curious if anyone has an opinion on how I'm changing points of view within the book. Most of the things I've written in the past, I've used third person. But with Whitaker's story, I wanted something more personal, so I chose first person to allow the reader a little more insight into the character. The only problem was that once I got into the writing the story, I really felt the need to show some other scenes that didn't involve Whitaker, scenes that I felt necessary to move the plot in the story. So I wrote those scenes in third person. The other thing I decided to do was show some flashbacks of Whitaker's youth and how he got to where he is now. I needed to delineate between flashback and current time line and I felt the best way to do that was again to change to third person. Over the last year or so I have read all of Jim Butcher's Dresden books and I really enjoy them. They are really quick reads written in first person. The one thing that drives me crazy about them is that I would really like to understand more of Harry Dresden's past. So it was the major impetus behind me deciding to add flashbacks.

    So I guess my question is whether or not switching from first person to third person is too harsh a transition?

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The More and More I Read…

The more excited I get about writing.

In the last couple of days I have added a couple of more chapters, things that people really haven't seen before. I'm sure they are rough and need some editing but I'm just excited to get it all out there. What most people don't know is that I have like 20 some odd chapters written so far, and I think I'm about 40% done with the first draft. 40%= 50K words so far, which means that I'm going to come in around 120K words… which is about what I was hoping for.

If there are people out there who are reading this … please, please, please post. Tell me if you don't like something, tell me if stuff doesn't work. I want to make this as good as I can.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008


Last night my wife, daughter and I all went out to get some ice cream at the new Baskin Robbins down the street from our house. We walked in and I started looking around for my usual… Daiquiri Ice. It's so delicious and is one of the few sweets I crave in this world. So there I am, wandering back and forth in front of freezer, with each passing second becoming more and more like a caged lion at the Hoogle Zoo who knows it only has 3 more months to live, because after all it is the Hoogle Zoo. Finally I turn to the teenage girl behind the counter and ask why I can't see the Daiquiri Ice anywhere, to which she replies, "They have discontinued it." Yes that's right they have discontinued my favorite ice cream. Damn them. Damn them all. (Picture me in a Charlton Heston/ Planet of the Apes pose) I'm telling you the Baskin Robbins executive who made this decision is going to Hell and the only way he can redeem himself is by putting it back on the shelf.

Sigh. I'm just depressing myself thinking about it. Last two posts haven't been about writing. I promise tomorrow will be!!

Also on the plate tomorrow… how the creator of Monster stole my idea for a really cool obituary web site… you think I am crazy, but I have proof that I came up with the idea several months ago.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Saying goodbye is never easy… but 5K sure makes it easier!

So some of you may know that may old Subaru died a week and half ago. I have been in the process of looking for a new car … either a Honda Element or Honda Civic (If any of you know of a good deal on either give me a ring) So I decided a week ago that I would sell some of my original art to help finance the car. I had a Sandman page from Issue #3 and thought I could get around a thousand for it. Well I started doing some research and found that I had undervalued it. So after all was said and done, after I held a bid for the page, I received $5,600.00 to put toward my new car. Most people in my family were a bit surprised to say the least.

I purchased the page from the artist around 12 years ago for $40.00. I have had it forever and even though I got a lot of money for it, I'm very sad to see it go. It was one of those things that reminded me of a piece of my past, a sign post of the time I spent working at Night Flight.

So on Saturday I said goodbye and shipped it off to its new owner. All I have to say is he better take care of it or he may have an angry man on his doorstep!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Imagined Moments

I thought I should come up with something to help my writing-fu and this is it. Imagined Moments. It just a writing exercise that is based on the idea of coming up with a small scene that tells a little a little story. Anyone who wants to add their own to the comments … feel free. I will probably post one ever couple of days.

Imagined Moments #1

He sat on a bench in the middle of the mall, people walking by him on each side, head down and tears streaming down his cheeks. He was in his sixties or seventies, his grey hair only thin wisps on top of his head. His skin was a leathery brown, freckled and spotted with age. He must have been a man who had spent most of his life out in the open, I thought to myself as I stood there with my two year old daughter in my arms, waiting for my wife to come out of the store. He wore plain brown slacks and a short sleeved faded canary yellow button shirt, clothes that I assumed he had been wearing for the last thirty years

The older man looked down at his hand, watching as the tears fell from his face to land on his palm, then slowly he looked up and our eyes caught each others. We looked at each other for only a few seconds.

I could feel his sadness, it was tangible, a thickness in the air as we stood staring at each other. Perhaps it was only my imagination but my daughter squirmed in my arms as if she could feel it as well.

I moved to go speak with him, but as I took a step, the older man stood up from the bench, turned and disappeared into the crowd of shoppers.

"Okay let's go," I heard my wife say as she walked up next to me.

I paused trying to see if I could find him and then said, "Okay."

Monday, June 16, 2008

Thank You !

Thank you to everyone who has sent me an e-mail about the blog and about the beginning of my novel. I will be throwing the first few chapters up here in the next few days and would appreciate any crits that you can send my way.

I had a great being Father's Day and all. My wife and daughter gave me the 3rd season of Lost, a book, and some chocolate. I think my daughter was more excited about the chocolate then anything. She loves dark chocolate. What can I say, the girl has taste.

I did get to see Kung fu Panda with my daughter and wife over the weekend. I really enjoyed the movie -- nice simple story and it was fun. My daughter now thinks all Panda's say "HIIII YAAAAhhhhh"

One recommendation ... Robin Hood on the BBC is a really good fun show. You should all check it out.

Friday, June 13, 2008

My Daughter... and a few other things.

This morning before I came into work, my daughter and I read/looked at the comic book "Courtney Crumrin and the Night Things." The comic is about a little girl who isn't well liked by the kids at school, lives at her grandfathers house, and is learning from her grandfather how to do magic. If you haven't read the series then I would suggest you go out and buy it as quick as possible.

The reason I tell this story is because as we looked at it, I would point at the pictures in the book and my daughter would name each picture. Cat, Horse/ Nehheeea (she loves to do the sounds), baby, girl ... and then finally we came to the last one. Monster. Yes that's right, my one and half old daughter knows monsters when she sees them and she isn't afraid. Her saying Monster is going to make me smile all day.

On another note... I will be throwing up another story today. "Something In What I Saw". It was a story that I wrote two years ago for an online comic/magazine. It turned out to be too long so I wrote "Rundowns and Turnbacks" which ran in the magazine instead. I actually quite like this story and I think its a little diffrent in format then most things I have done. Its also a little darker.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

New Blog...

Alright, I'm going to try this again. I have decided, with the encouragement of my wife, to start a blog where I can post my writing and let everyone have easy access to some of the stories I want to tell.

I named the blog "Waiting at the Crossroads" because of my obsessive interest in the story of Robert Johnson, a blues musician who waited at the crossroads for the Devil so he could sell his soul so that "he could learn how to play this here geetar." (A version of the story appears in the movie O Brother Where Art Thou...)

Those people who know me, also know that wrote a story about that in a roundabout way dealt with Robert Johnson's soul. I throw it up as my next post.

Feel free to critic anything I put on here. The main purpose of this site is to make me a better writer.

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