Thursday, September 4, 2014


So it's been some time since we last talked, hasn't it. That is a bit of a failing on my part, but it is what it is. 

I think I've mostly got myself situated in my current...situation... (need a better word there) 

What's going on now?!

That's the question isn't it. I now find myself at Texas State University - San Marcos. This is where I started my undergraduate career in Physics. I am now back here working on my Masters degree. I would love nothing more than to improve myself enough to be worthy of making a living as an author, but Physics is also my passion. There is something ephemeral about sitting down and trying to figure things out. It's fun. I do plan on taking this to PhD, but that's because I want to actually do it. I'm not being forced to do it.

Things did change to reduce my options to having to attend for my Masters; not getting a job with a Bachelor's in Physics really hurt my options, and I had to leave where I was living in Houston because I simply couldn't afford it because of another change coupled with the no job thing. Now I'm back in the Canyon Lake area attending university. Yup...

How about a big "THANK YOU!" to our parents, eh? They're truly heroes to us all. 

But what about book three?

I've not been able to work on it any. Between moving home, recovering from the unexpected changes, and starting the graduate program, I've just not had the needed drive to sit down and get through it.

This does NOT mean that it won't be written. It's going to be finished. I want to continue the story of Mason and Jacob.

Currently in the works is getting new covers for Time Jump and Eugenic Reprisal. I'm getting paid for working at the university, so I can afford the cover artist that did The Sleeping Man. That cover looks amazing, doesn't it?

I'll be getting those to you when I get them in. I'm also going to be doing some revisions to Eugenic Reprisal and Time Jump to fix some things that have been bugging me as well as you. None of the content will change, but I'm going to do my best to make everything more coherent. If there is anything you'd like me to consider, please let me know here in a comment or on my Facebook!

Moving Forward

Forward from here, I'm also looking at putting together a blog for my Physics classes. I'm taking all of my notes digitally on a Surface Pro 3, so how cool would it be to upload those to a blog for people to perhaps benefit from? I think it'd be pretty cool. But that's just me.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Recent Developments

So I've had some pretty big changes occur in the last 48 hours that is going to impact my workflow for the foreseeable future. I'm going to do my best to stick to my self-imposed deadlines, but we'll have to see what happens.

I'm uncertain how things are going to pan out for me, so I just ask that y'all be patient and work with me as I work through this.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Guest Post: Matthew Young - What drives your creative process?

So how is everybody doing this Good Friday?

I told y'all that I would have a guest post coming from Matthew Young in the coming days, and here it is! I asked Matthew, "What drives your creative process?"

It's a pretty important question to ask as far as I'm concerned because that is what really makes the difference when telling a story. Where do your ideas come from? How do they morph and adapt to meet new things that you didn't think of at the time of original outlining? Let's go ahead and read his response, and afterwards, I'll have a link to his new book, AWAKEN.


One of the toughest things for new writers is coming up with ideas. 

For me, it’s always the easiest part. I don’t have a set process, but I am very meticulous when it comes to tracking any ideas I have. I have a lot of them and they come from everywhere. When I first started out, most of my ideas came from other books. I carry around a notepad and sometimes a voice recorder to make sure I don’t forget things.

Just remember that reading is important. You can never read too much. There are billions of good ideas out there, but most of them have been used already. If you’re not well read, you might have the coolest idea ever, write a superb novel, and then find out that you just wrote another version of Twilight. The concept has sold well many times already, so the odds of another retelling of the mythical-monster-falls-in-love-with-girl-for-some-inexplicable-reason story being successful yet again are not good. And if you read a lot, you would know that it’s not a viable storyline anymore.

The same is true with television. Tons of ideas out there, you need to be aware of them and make sure that what you’re doing is original. People say there are no new ideas out there. The truth is, a lot of concepts are old. This doesn’t mean that you can’t tell them in a new way. That’s where writing gets hard! 

The first scene in my book Awaken, I “stole” from the end of The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. It’s one of my favorite movies ever and I thought it would be a cool place to begin. But not to copy.

Awaken was a mixture of a lot of different ideas. It started out as a Western and just a Western. It was about 20 pages long at first and that was it. Then I started getting into horror writing, so I added some scarier elements, added a psychotic criminal, and was happy when I hit 40 pages and had a complete story. It was pretty original, I thought. And that version of the story still might be. There are not a lot of writers out there that combine serial killers with the traditional Western. But it wasn’t enough for me.

There’s a scene, just before my main character realizes that his perception of the world is wrong, where he climbs up something unsavory to escape. This was an original idea of mine, but this wasn’t where I first put it. The same thing happens in my first published short story, “Freak Magic,” where a slave boy with super powers is sent into a mine as punishment. I wrote it, but it was something that I had thought of several years before I put it into Awaken.

I get a lot of ideas from dreams, too. I have a good ability of recalling details from dreams, and for the longest time, I kept dream journals. These ended up getting too interfering, though. I would spend 30 minutes or more every morning writing down every detail. Each morning, I could easily fill up a few pages. It was too much, and I had to teach myself to stop. I started getting more sleep, too! Anyway, characters from my dreams often find their way to my stories.

Character names are hard for me. For Awaken, I named my main character after my best friend from college: Jon. Other character names stemmed from the Bible. James and Paul--the kids in the story--were named after two writers in the New Testament. I did this on purpose and it’s an important part of the book. No one is perfect. Everyone does a lot of bad things. Jon is my hero here, but in the first scene of the book, you see him kill a couple guys in cold blood. He has no good reason to do this, but he kills them anyway. Yet, by the end of the book, he’s a much different person. His awakening is not only physical when he realizes that he’s not who he thought he was (it starts a Western, but Awaken is definitely science fiction!), but it’s also subtly spiritual, too. This isn’t Christian Lit--there’s swearing, drinking, murder, torture, and a lot of other stuff--but it does touch upon how people can change--which is a major theme within the Bible.

Ideas come from everywhere. You need to latch onto them when they come, because if you’re like me, you will forget them quickly. Write them down somewhere and then wait for the right time. You can combine a lot of different ideas, even those that don’t seem related. When you do it successfully, you can take even old, recycled ideas, and make them into something brand new, something that no one has ever read before.

That was my goal for Awaken. I took a bunch of very different and unconnected ideas, some original, some not so original, and then combined them to make them my own. Now I have a novel that starts as a traditional Western, but is pure Science Fiction once the story unfolds.


I want to go ahead and thank Matthew for taking the time to write us a guest post, and I hope that y'all enjoyed reading it and getting a glimpse into the thought process of another author. On Easter, I'll put up a look into my own creative process to give y'all yet another view on how things can progress in the mind of somebody telling a story.

Now, without further ado, y'all can find Matthew's new book, AWAKEN, at

You'll also be able to connect with him over at his blog:

And you can also interact with him through Goodreads:

Y'all enjoy the rest of your Friday, and I wish y'all a Happy Easter.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Of Fish and Me

A couple of years ago, I got myself an aquarium. I liked the idea of having one, and I enjoyed watching the fish swimming lazily through the water. I wasn't very patient though, so there were some issues that cropped up along the way.

I feel bad about it, but I got a bit petulant with somebody at Petco where I bought the tank because they refused to sell me anything live. I had read the internet! I knew what I was doing! Oh, how I did not. If I could go back and stop myself from doing it, I would in a heartbeat. She was doing her job, and she knows much more on the subject that I do. Instead, I have to live with the fact that I was "that guy" to her on a day that probably was going okay before I walked in with my notions.

So I went home in a bad mood after buying the aquarium and some stuff, and I set it up in my living room. This was in my old apartment, so I had to carry it upstairs to get to said living room. Once I had everything set up, I decided I would be defiant, and I was going to get those fish. I went to another Petco, this time it was my local one, and got a couple of fish that were supposed to be hardy and recommended for a beginning tank owner.

My initial results weren't those of disaster, but they also weren't all that favorable. Yes,I lost fish, and I felt bad. I also had the issue of my tank getting cloudier and cloudier, and I (remember, I know this stuff from the internet!) couldn't figure out why. So I did the only thing I could think of, I fiddled with it and threw money at it.

That was the wrong solution. I needed to sit down and actually think about what was going on; really look into what could cause my issue. There were a few more casualties during this time period, and Lindsey was getting fed up with me. Things finally sorted themselves out after I did a drastic water change on it all, and it seemed to be okay sailing from there.

I still found little nuances that I was doing wrong, and I'd continue to throw money at it to fix it. I was starting to feel the frustration over all of this.

When we moved to my new apartment, I had to empty out the water from the tank and put the fish into something safe. I then had to carry it down the stairs and transport it to my new place. Setting it up again was a chore, but I had it up and running just fine after a while.

Fast forward some time, and I had my (expensive) pump that I had gotten to solve issue go out on me. That's when I basically threw in the towel and said that was it. I had been getting sick fish that died, and I was at wit's end. When the last of them had perished, I drained the tank and stashed it in the garage. This was not a popular option with Lindsey at all.

Lately, I've been finding myself wanting to have that aquarium back up and running again. Today, I decided to bring it inside and clean everything. It's currently sitting where I think it would look good, but it's going to sit there a while until we both agree on whether or not we want it up and running again.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Happy April and an Update

So I hope that nobody has had to deal with too many hardships today. This is probably my least favorite day of the year. I mean, a day that it is consider "okay" to mess with people, and in some cases, is even encouraged? No thanks. I've seen too many people get out of hand with it.

Work is coming along nicely on a couple of projects. I've got one that I'm doing for fun to help me become a better writer, and then the others you already know about. I'm hoping to be wrapping at least one of these projects up this week, but we'll see what ends up actually happening.

I also wanted to give y'all a head's up that we'll be having Matthew Young visiting with us here soon. Y'all can find a link to his blog a post or so back about my guest post I did over there. Go poke around and give him some views if you haven't already. I look forward to having him join us here.

I think that's about what I had in mind for right now. I've got some stuff lined up to try and do recurring posts on for y'all, but actually getting it written and uploaded has proven troublesome. Sometimes you get the itch to write, and other times you are kicking yourself to write just a handful of words. So annoying.

Y'all enjoy the rest of your Tuesday, and I hope that the rest of the week is great for y'all as well.

Friday, March 28, 2014

So there I was

Getting everything ready for Lindsey's smoothie. Pull out the bag of frozen mixed fruit. Add in some frozen baby spinach. Put in the teaspoon of flax seed and like a tablespoon or whatever of whey protein (I forgot the exact amount). That's when it hit me.

How do you open your banana?

Such a simple process that we go through weekly or monthly if not daily - as doctors would like us to. I always peeled my banana  by grabbing it at the stem and breaking it open. That of course did result a lot of times in just ripping that part off and having nothing to show for it except a slightly smushed banana when there had been a nice ripe one waiting to be eaten. I almost did that Sunday night when I made her first smoothie with banana in it, but I stopped myself.

What if I peeled it the other way; oh, that other dreadful way that people look at you oddly for. "Why on Earth would you do that? That's not how you do it!" I could hear them shout. I simply shrugged to myself and said, "F*** it." I grabbed the tip of the banana betwixt my forefinger and thumb, and I squeezed it until it gave up its succulent quarry.

Okay, maybe that's a bit melodramatic.Only just a bit.

Really though, how do you peel open your banana? Do you do the "standard" way of grabbing it and ripping from the stem, or do you pinch it at the tip until it splits open?

I have noticed that doing it the "pinching way" (it's totally a thing now), I get a near perfect looking banana every time....Then I tear it up with my hands and toss it into the smoothie where its torment is ended by a high-speed metal blade.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Guest Post is Up

Hop on over to to check out a guest post that I did. I look forward to Matthew coming over and returning the favor here.

This weekend, maybe Monday, I'll continue my look into the world of Halcyon Gate. I'm going to try really hard to make that a weekly thing. I just need to get better at time management...or find more hours in the figuring out how to work without sleep. :p