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Tuesday, October 31, 2017

I'm not going to enter nano this year. I'm sorry, but I just don't feel like it, I have entered and won before. A friend asked me a few Nano questions, and I think I'll share them (mainly because I don't have anything more to say)

Q: How many times have you won NanoWriMo?
A: I never entered the contest to win. However, I have won all 4 years that I’ve entered. It’s really simple. Just sit at your computer and type until your fingers fall off, that’s your signal to stop for the day. Rest, and then begin the same routine on the next day.

Q: Are you a panster or a plotter?

A: I’m a total panster. There is nothing more satisfying than sitting in front of a blank screen and watching your characters fill up the sheet. Some of the characters don’t realize they’re about to be erased.
Q: What’s your writing routine?
A: My writing routine is totally whacked. I write when I feel like it, or whenever I can free myself from my Twitter addiction. I need to start at the same hour every day (1 pm) if I miss that hour I'll wait until the following day. If I'm starting a new chapter or WIP, I prefer to start it on a Monday or the first of the month.ut to get erased.
Q: How different is your NaNoWriMo draft compared to a regular first draft?
A: you can’t compare Nano draft with the regular draft, they are two different species.

Q: Why should writers participate in NaNoWriMo?
A: It’s like living your religion, if you live it you can’t help but become a better person, If you participate in Nano, you can’t help but becoming a better writer.

Q: What are your top three NaNoWriMo tips for newbies?
A: Writing is not a job. It's not a hobby. It's a drive, a journey. It's something within us that needs to be released.
If you are in it for any other reason, stop. Nano can develop first time writers, but only if you are willing to let it take you for that journey. It will complete you and defeat you in the same step.
And finally, don’t sweat the small stuff. Just enjoy the ride.

Monday, August 14, 2017

How does my work differ from others in the genre
Tough question. I have a friend, who happens to be an agent, and she once told me that my style of writing is different than anybody she has read. She didn't tell me if that was a good thing or a bad thing. I also seem to have an infinite amount of commas, so I throw them about as if they were confetti, drives my wife and editors MAD.

Why do I write what I do
That's easy.
1-I had no choice. I had to write. It is what my childhood chose for me
2-I write because I want my new imaginary friends to love the same stories that I told my old imaginary friends,
3- I write because I just can't help it
4-Writing is not a job. It's not a hobby. It's a drive, a journey. It's something within us that needs to be released.
5-It keeps me off of the streets and from bothering the villagers,

How does my writing process work?
My writing process is totally whacked. I write when I feel like it, or whenever I can free myself from my Twitter addiction. I need to start at the same hour every day (1 pm) if I miss that hour I'll wait until the following day. If I'm starting a new chapter or WIP, I prefer to start it on a Monday or the first of the month.
However, I can edit almost any time, go figure.
 I don't have a play list. I would say that I need silence, but the characters in my head never shut up. They keep me awake at night, which is when I get most of my random ideas. I'll throw plot twist ideas to my wife during commercial breaks.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

my middle-grade novel, A Somewhat True Story of Sara Roberts has been released out into the wilds.

I could send you a link, but what fun would that be?

Try heading over to Amazon and type in my name....go ahead, I'll wait.

Friday, April 28, 2017

hey, I'll be attending the Ozark Indie Book Fest in October. I'll keep you posted

Monday, April 17, 2017

I was asked, “Why did you write your book. Tell me in a way that will make me want to buy your book.”

First things first. The simple reason I wrote this or any book is love. You’ve got to love your main character as if they were your own. And I love Horace.  I loved him as a young boy who gets to work with the Wright Brothers just because his father got a job as a lifeguard in Kitty Hawk…Wait I’m going about this wrong. Let me start before Horace came to life.

I love history. It fascinates me. There is always truth there. What happened defined out future or the past. You can always find comfort in knowing the good or the bad about history. For the same reasons, I love reading historical novels. As a novelist, I’m always thinking of great ideas, and as luck would have it I thought of Little Big Man, (I don’t want to get into telling the story behind Little Big Man, but if you’ve seen the movie, you would know.) For weeks I couldn’t shake the feeling that the story should be told, but instead of the old west, I needed to change the time and place. Thus Horace Chance was born.

Then I came up with the title The Last Chance, but for him to be the last Chance everybody that he loved would have to precede him in death, Yup, every one of them. Easy, right. Nope. First, it would take a believable age, not so young or too old. I finally settled on 108, He was born in 1893 and grants and interview a few weeks after 9-11, perfect.  Now I have a whole bunch of loved one in need of dying. I suppose you’ll need to buy the book to find out how and why.

It is fascinating. I can honestly say I have taken an iconic century and brought is to life.

What do you have to lose? Take a chance. Step into the pages and get to know Horace Chance.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

At \the advice from my agent, I have self-published my first Historical Fiction, It's on Amazon and priced so everyone can afford it.


108-year-old Horace Chance has lived through tragedy. His first wife is murdered over a loaf of bread during the Depression to his son’s selfless sacrifice at Pearl Harbor. The loss of his grandson in Viet Nam followed by the death of his granddaughter to an overdose only worsened the pain. After he loses his great-granddaughter to an act of terrorism on 9-11 makes him the last Chance. He decides to give an exclusive interview to Bill Jones, a reporter for The Jeffersonian Magazine, who is doing a human-interest story about survivor’s families. To start the interview Horace claims to learn about Emily, he needs to start at the beginning.
Born in South Carolina, the son of a racial bigot his heritage taught Horace value of his white skin, because a black-skinned person was not equal to him, and could never amount to anything. Never, that is, until he heard a black piano named Scott Joplin to play the piano at the Louisiana Purchase Exposition.
 The Last Chance shows all the true opportunities that are the future heritage of America.

Horace Chance’s life reflects the influences of lost friends that have brightened his journey. Whether it be a couple of bicycle shop owners from Ohio that teach him all about flight, his short career playing the National Pastime, friends that changed our musical theater, or a chance meeting with a champion of civil rights. But what is his legacy?

Get your copy.

go to Amazon or Createspace

Friday, March 31, 2017

It's finally time for the second installment of WHY I WROTE THAT.

My second novel was about, an old man named Horace Chance. It was supposed to be the novel that propelled me into fame.
The premise of the story is Horace was originally 115 years-old and deciding on who to vote for in the upcoming 2008 election. First, let me tell you why he was so dang old. I read a story about a lady in France who was 114 and could remember minute details of her life as a child. Thus Horace was hatched. The title is The Last Chance, which means Horace has to lose everybody he loves.

I will condense this story into a short readers digest story. This brought me, my first agent signing. Alas, after a year it couldn't get it sold. So, I changed Horace's age to 108 and made it about survivors of 9-11. That didn't work either. I then added a piece of my Mormon heritage. That hasn't worked.
It is currently shopped out to a Morman publisher, but I ain't holding my breath.

This is another great novel that will probably go unnoticed.

 One-hundred and eight-year-old Horace Chance, grants an interview to reminisce about his life to William Jones, a reporter from the prestigious Jeffersonian Magazine, who wants to do a human-interest article about people who have survived the twentieth century.
Horace’s grandfather gambles away the once grand mansion in which he and generations of Chances were born. His father must now find gainful employment for the first time in his life. Robert Chance learns of a position as a lifeguard in a small community in Eastern North Carolina. He secures the position, and in the summer of 1899, he moves him and his family to a no nothing-barren stretch of dunes in North Carolina called Kitty Hawk, where young Horace becomes friends with a pair of shop owners from Ohio, about to make their mark for the ages. After Horace’s father finds a better position as a clerk for the United States Postal Service, so in the spring of 1904 he uproots his family and moves the Nation’s capital, despite the city being full of Yankees. While in Washington D.C. Horace meets lifelong friends and his first two loves, piano and baseball.
Horace excels in both piano and baseball, but the later brings recognition. His hometown team, the Washington Senators, signs eighteen-year-old Horace to a major league contract. Three years later, they trade him to the Boston Red Sox, where he soon becomes friends with a young left-handed pitcher by the name of George Herman Ruth. The war in Europe ends Horace’s baseball career.
After the war, he attends NYU, where meets Angela, his true love. He marries Angela settles down and starts his family. Horace, now faced with the responsibility of raising his family falls back on his second love, playing the piano. He finds employment playing the piano in a Tin Pan Alley restaurant, whose clientele would become iconic legends.
The depression era crushed so many dreams. Horace being no exception, his father loses a vast fortune and takes his life. He loses his loving wife, murdered on the streets of New York City for a loaf of bread. Horace returns to South Carolina, destitute, and broken hearted. It isn’t easy, but he pulls his life back together. His son joins the Navy and is stationed aboard the USS Arizona, a safe distance from the turmoil in Europe. His daughter, blessed with the voice of an angel becomes America’s sweetheart. Her father becomes her pianist.
Horace falls in love with a woman he met in South Carolina. They retire to relative solitude in New York City. However, relative solitude and Horace was not a great mixture. He soon becomes aware of the civil rights indignation suffered by people of color and begins to champion their cause. He stood on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial where he met a young southern reverend, who has a dream. His life continues to revolve around his family and history.
His life has been full, blessed with fabulous friends, many of which dotted the twentieth-century historical skyline. He faces tragedy. The title of the book The Last Chance is not only the title it defines what he was, Horace indeed the last Chance. 

The last Chance: 2008-2017 

Sunday, March 12, 2017

It has been 19 plus years since I last heard your voice in this life, but not a day has gone by in those 7000 days that I haven't heard it in my mind and most of all in my heart. Know always that you were  loved and never once, even for a second forgotten. And always, always, always missed.

Happy Birthday, mom

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

My reader is in for a treat. I thought I would tell about my ten-year struggle to become a published author, a feat I am yet to accomplish.

First I'll tell you about that great, yet terrible day I decided to become an author. No, it wasn't well thought of like day. The day started as any other day, well almost like any other day. It started as a trip down to Branson. No, I don't remember why it was almost ten years ago, give me a break. On the way to Branson, my wife, Mrs. Raballard and I were talking. Okay, she was talking I mainly listened. I remember saying "one day I'm going to write a novel for children", I had been telling stories to my children ever since they were young. Mrs' Raballard, being much wiser that I, simply smiled and then said "shut up and write your story"

That was all I needed. I'm not a dummy and know when the wife speaks, the wife speaks. I sat down, shut up and started my novel once I returned home. Well, that was my first mistake. I didn't know the first thing about writing a book. I knew nothing about manuscript lengths. My first draft for my MIddle-grade novel was 109,000 words, a tad too long. I knew nothing about beta-readers, I had none. I knew nothing about editing, I didn't edit. I knew a little about querying. My first query produced one victim who asked for a full manuscript. I was in heaven. I sent ou the full and then sat back counting the money I would be receiving.

Needless to say, I never received any money. The agent never responded to the manuscript, probably cause he never stopped laughing about the 109K word mess.

It never phased me. I kept right on querying my 109K novel and kept getting the rejection fever. It wasn't until a few years later and a friend mentioned that my novel was too long and should chop about 40,000 words. With my friends help I cut the manuscript down to 72K words. However, I still got 99.99% rejection. It has since cut down to 50K words with very little querying. My agent had it for a while but was unable to sell it. I took it back, and have been sitting on it.

The title has gone through just as many revisions from INTO THE BLACK REALM, to MOMNAPPED, and finally A SOMEWHAT TRUE ADVENTURE OF SARA ROBERT, the only thing remains the same is this is my baby. I love Sara as if she is my own. I can't see (or refuse to see) why other people don't love her the same. I suppose the worst part of writing is to write your heart into a book, love it, nurture it and then give it to another in hopes that they love it the same way.

My agent told me "not every great book gets published."

So I sit here with a great book, a book that I have loved. It doesn't seem to be going anywhere.

I present Sara Roberts 2007-2017

Sara’s mother, Elizabeth, has kept her past life a secret. Due to being the seventh daughter of a seventh daughter, Elizabeth is heir to the throne of Tenebrae, a magical, evil kingdom. A title she detests and runs away from to no avail. If it hadn't been for some great detective work from the malicious, toad Appleton, the secret might have remained hidden. The odious toad has been following the Roberts family ever since they forged documents and left their planet. He would have caught them sooner, had it not been for the magic-spell Elizabeth’s mother placed on her. Liz would get a terrible migraine headache whenever Appleton got close to his prey. The family always moved after a headache, which made it difficult for Appleton to track them.
 Okay, now you have a basic background, just enough so you can follow along. That brings us to our story. You should know that Sara had a particularly rough day at school today, her birthmark started to glow in math class, and a note from Mr. Thompson appeared in her math book. It wasn’t a good start for the day. And then when she gets home from school her mother isn’t there.
 That’s how she ended up at Mr. Thompson’s mansion. Mr. Thompson told Sara that her estranged great aunts had kidnapped her mother, tried her for treason, and sentenced her to death. Elizabeth’s execution is the only way for them to ascend to the throne. The shock came when Mr. Thompson tells Sara that she alone must rescue her mother. Her aunts failed to take into account how a daughter's love would undermine their plot.
 Mr. Thompson transports Sara to the evil kingdom through unreliable means; unfortunately, she lands in a creamed-corn field an ocean away from her mother. A farmer along with his harvester/pet gigantic caterpillar tell her that the only way to cross the ocean is with the help of a crusty pirate and his crew, a lizard and a man with a scary dragon tattoo.
 A raging storm separates her from the pirate where Appleton, her aunt’s evil henchman, captures her.  She escapes with help from a rat that was once in charge of her mother’s safety. With the aid of a nearsighted sea-monster and a few dolphins, Sara finally makes it to the prison where her mother awaits her execution, scheduled for dawn. And dawn is a mere ten hours away. Her aunt’s elite soldiers of scary, overweight rats guard the gate. The aunt’s themselves, are hidden safely within the prison walls and ready to carry out the execution.
 Assisted by an invisibility bracelet, Sara foils her mother’s execution and frees the remaining prisoners, whose only crimes were trying to depose an evil regime. There is one more problem. Ghosts of dead prisoners guard the only escape route from the prison. After a short negotiation, the leader of the apparitions allows Elizabeth and Sara to leave the fact that the leader happened to be Sara’s long lost, dead grandfather might have helped with the negotiating.
 Sara’s long journey ends when she and her mother are transported back to Earth. Oh, good, look, we have a happy ending.
whew, that was one long blog. I'll come by in a month or two to tell you about my second novel.