Clean Slate?

Ready or not, 2018 is upon us. It’s not so much a clean slate as a continuation of what’s come before, but the end of the year is a good time for reflection.

After that long gauntlet of deadlines I took a lot of time over the last four weeks and did house work, spent time with family, readied for the holidays, read for fun, and wrote some short stories. This morning I stepped back to the long suffering novel and think I’ve finally tweaked an argument at a turning point in the book so it works. It was the last sticking place, I think. I hope to know my editor’s take in just a couple of days.

2017 was a strange beast. There was a lot of personal stress that I won’t go into, but there were a lot of achievements as well, the first being the successful launch of Tales From the Magician’s Skull. I’m delighted to be the magazine’s editor. I spent the majority of the year thoroughly revising one novel — and that entailed rewriting vast portions of it — and then finished writing a second one. I was invited to write for and assemble a collection of World War II stories for a secret project that will shortly be announced, and I did that, and it was a blast. I’d never have thought I could pull that off, much less that I’d have an opportunity to try, but I’m pretty pleased with the result.

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Here we are twenty-two days into December and as I look back on the first day of December things around here have changed a little.

My first-born’s back from his first semester as a junior in college, which is mind-blowing. He’s been re-reading the Dabir and Asim novels and short stories with an eye towards running some role-playing adventures for my wife and I — with her playing Dabir and me playing Asim. That just sounds like a whole lot of fun, and he may try running the first one tonight.

That’s assuming that we’re not working late on dinner prep, because we’re hosting the extended family Christmas dinner at our place this year, for the first time. That’s meant that a LOT Of my spare time over the last three weeks has been dedicated to some deep cleaning. The house needed it, even if I didn’t, so much. After that really long run towards deadlines through both October and November I was hoping for more downtime. Read More





All kinds of cool treasures are rolling in these days. It’s nice to have friends.

I’ll save more detailed descriptions for a day when I have a little more time (I’m determined to finish most of my new short story today).

First, though, the new Astonishing Swordsmen and Sorcerers of Hyperborea is a thing of beauty, a work of art. I spent thirty minutes last night just flipping through and soaking up all the artwork. If it’s not THE go-to sword-and-sorcery rpg at this point, it’s tied for first place. It just oozes the right vibe. In the next little bit I’ll post some pics. Read More




Return to Normalcy

It may be beginning to look a lot like Christmas, but after a week simply doing some house cleaning/fixing, reading, and some board gaming, it’s more important to me that I’m beginning to feel a little more human. I was driving at a lot of deadlines all at approximately the same time. I knew I was stressed, but I didn’t realize HOW stressed until the last week, when I started to feel normal.

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Great Western Reads Part 2

It’s not just that I want a western. I want them with lean prose and a lot of action; with characters deep enough to care about, with believable motivations and sharp plots that read quickly. No bloat. No padding. No digressions. In other words, pretty hard-boiled. Believe it or not, those simple requirements are hard to meet.

Today I thought I’d share some writers that my site visitors may not have heard of and who I think are worth a serious look. I’ve read some others now who might be in the running, but have seen enough from those listed here to recommend more than just one book.

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Writing Musings

Friday, February 3, 2017

It seems as though all of my time is consumed with painstaking revisions of the work in progress. I’m usually not this late, but, well, I’d thought to…

My New Book

Friday, January 27, 2017

My friend Mick dropped me a line the other day asking for details on my new Pathfinder book, Through the Gate in the Sea. First off, I have…

On Writing and Speed

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Writing can be a struggle. I think we have to admit that. And I have to admit to myself that some things in this profession are beyond my…

Three Book Contract

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

While in New York last week, amongst doing many other things — including some sight-seeing and some amazing meals — I signed a new three-book contract with St….

Manhattan Adventures

Thursday, October 27, 2016

I’m posting today from Manhattan in a mid-town hotel that’s walking distance from all kinds of cool stuff. Naturally I’m spending a lot of my time here simply…