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Category Archives: General

Check out my new website.

It’s still fairly basic, but this will be the best place for news about my writing projects.

There are times in life when change simply seems to be in the air.  You can feel it like an oncoming storm.  The adventurous may yearn for it, others fear it.  But it is there, coming and unstoppable.

Some of these times are inevitable and predictable:  High school and college graduations, marriages, the birth of children.  Others are harder to predict, plan for, and face.

I’ve felt – with a bit of knowledge and a bit of intuition – that such a time of change is coming. 

My day job, as I have known for some time, has a limited remaining shelf life.  I don’t know the hour or the day when I will no longer be employed where I am, only that it is coming.  But I can at least prepare for this, if not necessarily make specific plans.  the job hunt will begin soon.

Harder to face is friends leaving.  In the past couple of months, my wife and I have learned that two of the families we have been closest to since living at our current home are leaving.  And they aren’t just moving a few towns over – but from Michigan to Tennessee.  Making this even harder is the effect that their children are close friends  to my own daughters.  They will be undoubtedly be crushed by the recent news.  I know I can’t protect them from this forever, but I want to.

In the back of my mind, too, I have a strong suspicioun that change is not yet done with us . . .

So once again, we’ve reached the “End of the World”.  I doubt there are too many people out there who thought something would actually happen to end human life or civilization, but there it is.  A prediction made global headlines for weeks, and we’ve all enjoyed jokes about not bothering to shop for Christmas.

For some people, though, today will be the end of their world.  Someone’s brother or father, spouse or child will pass away.  Someone will be fired from their dream job.  How painful the irony must be for those people.  The world may not be ending, but their worlds are. 

I could talk about how poignant moments like this are fodder for writers, but I won’t today.  Out of respect for those whose worlds are ending today.  Instead, I’ll simply wish everyone Happy Holidays – whichever holiday you are celebrating.

“Who said life is fair?  Life isn’t always fair.  Where is that written?” The Princess Bride (movie)

There are people, every now and then, who remind us that life isn’t always fair.  People who, if life was fair, would never have anything bad happen to them, but they suffer.   Such is the case of one of my aunts, who passed away yesterday morning after (if I’m remembering right) a 2-year battle with cancer.  And this battle followed her divorce, which I’ll just say was justified.

As I struggle with this loss, I keep coming back to the same two ides:  1) Appreciate the blessings you’ve been given, not many of us deserve them.  2) Make use of the time you have.  You never know when your clock will stop.

I’m looking forward to the release this summer of the latest Batman movie – The Dark Knight Rises.   With what I know about the movie, this has the potential to be on my list of favorite movies.

As I said in my post, “The Problem with Potter”, I consider the ability to convince your reader/viewer that your hero can die critical to creating true dramatic tension.  after all, a hero isn’t really heroic if he can’t be stopped.  NO movie I have ever seen has done this as well as the last Batman movie, “The Dark Knight”.  I truly spent a good portion of the movie believing that the Joker would win – though of course I knew intellectually that he couldn’t.

I never read a lot of Batman comic books (or graphic novels, if you prefer), but I was the right age when “Knightfall” was released to know a bit about it.   I doubt this movie will follow the original story line too closely, but – I don’t want to give away any spoilers – it isn’t likely to end well for the Caped Crusader.

I have every confidence that Christopher Nolan can do this story justice, and I can’t wait to see how this will come out.

 

The end of the year makes most of us at least a little contemplative, even though – let’s face it – there’s no real difference between Dec 31st and Jan 1st.  This time of year always makes me think of something I heard about a dozen years ago on an episode of Ally McBeal.  [For the record, I did not make a habit of watching the show].  It goes something like this, “When you look back at the year, if it doesn’t bring tears to your eyes – of either joy or sadness – consider the year wasted.”

I’ve never been terribly picky about where my philosophical inspirations come from.  This one has always been a reminder that without risking sadness, you can’t find joy.  And any time that the status quo is “good enough”, it’s probably time to try something new.

2011, for me, has plenty of sadness (a death of a loved one) and frustration (mainly related to work and what free time doesn’t remain).  But there is also joy.  My joy is mostly from the little things (like my small daughter saying, “I love you Daddy.”), but it is the small things that make the biggest difference. 

So Bon Voyage 2011.  If 2012 is any better, I’ll be truly blessed, indeed.

I’ve started this blog to help draw attention to my newly published e-book, Disenchanted (currently available through the usual suspects – Amazon, Barnes and Noble, with others to be added soon). 

Disenchanted is a young adult fantasy/adventure.  I wrote it to be a sort of anti-Harry Potter.  My hero is thrust into the world of magic, but he’s not “the chosen one” as the central characters of such works often are.  So, if you like Madeliene L’Engle or Susan Cooper, (or eben Harry Potter) I hope you’ll spend a few miutes and at least read an excerpt.