Sunday, June 12, 2011


I seriously miss having a summer vacation.

Remember what it was like to get out of school on that last day with nothing but hot weeks of freedom ahead of you? No job. No responsibilities. Nothing but free time to be filled with imagination. I had to take a picture for the last day of school in the county Friday afternoon and those kids were running toward the buses to get home and start enjoying their vacation.

I wanted to get on the buses and go with them.

Instead, I'll have to content myself with looking forward to the first big river trip we've taken in a couple of years. There will be six of us going down the Jackson in a couple of weeks. These trips always end up being and painfully sunburned, but it'll be worth it. I hope will follow it up with one of those epic trips down the Cowpasture that always end up with a great deal of yelling, blood loss and near death experiences.

Come to think of it, maybe summer isn't all that different...

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Summer Reads

These days, I don't lack for reading material.

I've knocked down twenty-six books so far in 2011 and some of them have actually had some weight to them. Sure, there's a couple Star Trek and Star Wars novels in the mix and I've spent a great deal of time continuing my studies of Jordan's Wheel of Time to prepare for the series finale this fall, but I've also nearly polished off the Aubrey-Marturin series and a couple of literary feasts served up by Pat Conroy, Stephen King and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

But now I've returned to the world of kids books. I know it sounds funny, but Artemis Fowl was one of the most fun reads I've turned my attention to lately. I found a "sunshine deal" on Amazon and downloaded the kids book along with a half dozens other titles for no more than $0.99 that will anchor my summer reading list for a while. But I can tell you that the Fowl books will be a big part of my summer reads. They're creative, somewhat lighthearted and just a lot of fun to read. I can knock one off in a day or so if I have the time to devote to it.

And I'm going to make time today, as a matter of fact...just after I take a nap on this lazy summer afternoon...

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Hello Again

So...yea...been a while, hasn't it?

I've been ridiculously busy with work up until now. I went from being laid off and not working at all to working five days a week and often somewhere between three and four nights a week. Lately city council and other governmental meetings have taken up tremendous chunks of my time as our city officials sorted out the budget for 2011-12.

I'm glad its over.

I've been writing (obviously not here). I've had edits to make on Blood & Steel and Heather's finished off the artwork. All that's setting between you, dear reader, and my latest work is me having the time to get it out there and in your hands. Here and now I'm going to set a goal to make that happen by the middle of July.

Devan and I are completely revamping the Chaos Chronicles. I know there's some of you out there who have been waiting since 2006 for a new tome and I promise, if you hang in there with us, we'll put something new and exciting (at least we hope it is) out there in the next year or so. I'd say more, but there's a slim chance for great things to happen in a year or so and I don't want to spoil that.

I've missed this blog, truth be told. If I didn't do anything else other than gripe about how busy my day was and how big my case of writer's block was at the time, it still felt good to do it. I can't blame anyone for not sticking around through an unintended hiatus that lasted for months. This blog has always been an outlet to get things off my mind and to hone my writing skills in a different format. I'm still going to use it for that. Perhaps it may not be as frequent as it once was, but we'll see.

I signed up for a Fundamentals of Storytelling class today at the Clifton Forge School of the Arts that will be held later this month. Biff Downey, who will be the instructor, was actually one of my students at a novel writing workshop I held at the school earlier this year. The man's a born storyteller and I'm looking forward to hearing what he has to impart.

Maybe he'll tell me how to make washing my iPod and USB jump drive not sound like the dumbest thing I've done in a while....