Sunday, November 13, 2016

Portsoy Woods, My New Novel, Is Released for Sale !

          It is with great relief and some joy that I announce that Portsoy Woods, my third book and first novel has been released for sale, effective November 10, 2016.


   Just now, the best places to obtain a copy will be:


This is my author page on Amazon:

There will be worldwide distribution, but this will take some time.

This is a synopsis of the story:

Portsoy Woods

  This is the story of a young intelligence analyst from Northern Virginia who convinces his wife that their young family with four small children, should relocate from the relative comforts and security of their suburban home to a large acreage tract in a very rural setting.  This is a difficult decision for them to make as it takes them from friends, family, and from good jobs with a negligible commute. The decision to relocate is certainly, at first, counter-intuitive.
          They relocate and find that even within their own state, a completely different rural culture and to some degree, different values exist in comparison. Their journey. their new friends and their learning is explored, as the economy and culture of the United States deteriorates. They also endure some personal losses, uncertainties, and disasters along the way.

            Although this book will probably attract those who are interested in preparedness, pre-emptive relocation, and survivalism, this story of family is about much more. It is about the value of flexibility, resilience, hope, faith, loss,  and charity for one's family and friends.

    Reviews on Amazon are always appreciated !    Thank you.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Before a Novel is Born

We hold our work sometimes as long as possible, but eventually, it's time for it to open the door and meet the world.

 Writing can be discouraging work sometimes.  Sometimes, rather than thinking that "This is my third book, and since this one is a novel and is broadly fictional, there should be less fact checking, and less precision required", I am not.  Instead I am overwhelmed sometimes at the complexity of the work, and because I have written this particular work, as a friend and very successful author has suggested, without an outline.  In future, I will write as I am comfortable, and not as others suggest. My process is my own and changes to it should be self generated.
     When the work itself is complete, other aspects begin.  Photographs must be taken, for the cover, and also of me.  I must consider whether I will include any pictures or drawings within the book itself. Then, when all is complete on my end, I must make some decisions as to which publisher will become this books home. There are quite a few alternatives, since fictional works are often placed with different publishers than factual works.  I'll let you know how it progresses...

Sunday, January 10, 2016



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      I am back to writing again, despite the demands on my schedule from other sources.

 I write a bit each day, and have thirty thousand words written for a novel, thus far.   I plan to keep going

and see where the characters and their setting take me.      Stay safe and stay positive.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

An Author Stalled


             I can't believe it has been so long since I have posted here.  This past year have brought many personal challenges, chances to do good in the world, but alas not a lot of chances to make money, or to broaden the availability of my books or their sales.  I must report that some of my friends who are authors, whom I have encouraged, have been wildly successful this year.  One of them now has a trilogy coming out and is being published by Simon and Schuster.  Perhaps my skills lie in the development of other artists, and not actually in my own skills or perspectives.  Friends say, "It's just not your time yet", but I think they may just be being polite. Perhaps my skills are limited or my perspectives simply don't resonate with the American public. Perhaps my views and interests are just too heady.

                 I'll leave you with these thoughts, and the idea that where many of us are, may simply be where God wishes us to be. 

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Reflections on Fall Writing


             I'm sorry I haven't been more present here. Of course, life always creeps in, and life has indeed been busy. We have a new family member and I am afraid the trials and tribulations of this particular experience belong on the pages of someone else's blog.  Suffice it to say that the challenges are time consuming, and are likely to continue to be.

                 My friends who are new authors are doing well.  One of them has a trilogy out, the first of which hit the best seller list within six weeks. The second book will be out in paperback within two weeks, with the third completed and in the pipeline.   One of my other friends has her book out and established and has noticed her royalties diminishing already.   My royalties have been very modest for quite some time, with a couple of publishers calling me trying to get something......almost anything, they can have packaged and out for Christmas. I am not ready.  I have a number of projects in the pipeline but nothing where I have clear clarity of purpose or a clear vision of the work all the way to completion. At least one of these projects has a factual basis, and so a great deal more research and focus must be done in order to bring it to life.  Somewhere in there is a healthy diet book, I have yet to outline, let alone to begin to write to give the project flesh and life.

                Although writers over all, and in specific genres do compete, I don't think of it in this way.  I am very clear that in this life, we actually compete with our prior selves.  It doesn't really matter how well friends are doing with their books compared to me.  They don't have the same challenges in life that I do, and I don't have their challenges. I wouldn't wish to cheapen their success by comparing it to my present stagnation.  Who knows ?   Next year, I could have a best seller which could cause all of my books to be discovered and propelled in similar manner.  I'll leave you with that pleasant thought.   Have a blessed Thanksgiving wherever you are.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

I Am Not Currently Under the Influence of Chocolate, But I May Be Later !


These aren't all mine, but I suppose I could take a second mortgage and then they could be !

               I know that dark chocolate is said to have more health benefits than milk chocolate, but I still prefer milk chocolate !  I don't like just any chocolate. I don't like the cheap waxy stuff.  I like Cadbury's chocolate that is made in England.   I have been known to eat the Canadian versions of Cadbury's made for their tastes, and I like those too.  I have also been known to eat the sweeter versions of Cadbury's made for the American palate, but my all time favorite is the Cadbury's recipe that is available in England, Scotland and Ireland.   One of the best things about Russia's airline Aeroflot is that the meals are quite good in themselves,  and then they provide Cadbury's chocolate as a snack or sometimes as a dessert.   I was so happy on a particularly long flight to Russia once, that when we finally got there, I had eaten so much Cadbury's chocolate, that I felt like rolling off the plane !

These are amazing on desserts or in ice cream.
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                       Chocolate is felt to be a mood elevator as it has effects on serotonin levels in the brain.  It is also a potent antioxidant.  I have often joked that if I ate all I wanted, I might live forever !   What are my favorites ?   I am fond of Cadbury's Flake, Maltesers,  and their chocolate buttons. I also like the Crunchie bar and Wispa also.   I usually pass by the larger bars because I could eat an entire larger bar of the Cadbury's hazelnut chocolate if left to my own devices.   I am not quite so fond of the Cadbury's creme (filled) eggs sold in the US at Easter.  I would much rather have a plain Cadbury's egg, with a package of chocolate buttons in it.

No, these aren't ordinary malted milk balls !
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I like the small bags best.  (Photo: )

I'll have two, please !
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                       What is the key to staying slim and healthy while still enjoying your chocolate ?    First, never eat chocolate that you don't absolutely adore. If  you do, you'll need more of it in order to satisfy.  If you buy only the chocolate you like best and allow yourself a periodic indulgence of a small piece, and you eat it slowly, then you keep the positive effects of chocolate, without the high amounts of sugar, fat and calories, over all.   In addition, try to have your chocolate with a large cup or pot of tea.  This slows your consumption of the chocolate, and the tea fills you gradually.  It therefore becomes a restful ritual that doesn't leave you in a pile of regret as you reflect upon your own gluttony !

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               Besides, if you eat less of the Cadbury's chocolate, there will be more for me !

This is not a commercial !   Cadbury's chocolate is one of my passions !     I have no stock in the company, parent company, and they are not paying me.  Quite the reverse !  I am buying from them !

Note:    I am not sure why the links to the sources of the pictures and the rendering above are not showing clearly, as they would normally.  For the sources of these pictures, please click where the link would be, and despite the fact that they are not showing well, you will be taken there.   Thank you.