Sunday, December 2, 2012

Free E-books on Amazon

Wayman Publishing just came out with an anthology of short stories, Open Doors: Fractured Fairy Tales. My contribution to the anthology is a sci-fi retelling of Little Red Riding Hood as if she lived in a time of intergalactic flight and lunar colonization. To commemorate the release, Wayman is making some of their titles free for download from amazon for a limited time.

Please consider purchasing Open Doors while your at it. A large portion of the profit will be going to gifts for kids at Primary Children's Hospital in Salt Lake City.

My book, Middle Damned, is one of the titles up for free download. It's up to #9 in the genre of Epic Fiction, so if you haven't gone over and gotten your free copy, do it now!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Pachelbel's Canon in D

My good friend, R.K. Grow, over at the blog RK Grow: Author in the Making asked if I would do an author interview and I gladly obliged. I recommend you go over to her blog and check it out. If you don't know already, my book is Middle Damned, an adventure in the afterlife.

To commemorate the occasion, I thought I would post a video of yours-truly playing the guitar. Now that I have watched said video a few times, I must say this is one of my more ill conceived ideas. But, that's never stopped me before, so why start second guessing myself now. So enjoy the music, or get a laugh, whichever.

Pachelbel's Canon in D (a work in progress)

Saturday, November 3, 2012

The Zombie Apocalypse is Here

With the craze going on over vampires and werewolves, wizards and demons; I got to wondering about the zombie apocalypse.   And, given the current political time of year it is, I realized that it has already arrived, and we didn't even know it.

It would be all too easy to spot if people turned white and gnawed each other's faces off. No, the apocalypse has manifested its self in a much more subtle way. It has arrived, but not in the mindless consumer allegory envisioned by George A. Romero in the original zombie classic, Dawn of The Dead. Instead, it has come in the form of Political Zombies catering to the whim of the amorphous masses, ready to change their stance on policies in any direction the latest polls blow. 

They all seem the the same to me, hungering for power, inching ever closer with their half truths and veiled lies, until elected when their ravenous hunger can be satiated by gnawing our faces off. 

The politicians are all zombies in disguise. They are all partisan, lining up in little rows on either side, pretending this ideal or that social issue belongs exclusively to them, when, in reality, its just a vast illusion to curry favor from the greatest number of people available. The desire for big government, or small government, states rights or centralized government isn't inherently tied to abortion or being pro-choice, gay marriage or the biblical definition of marriage, environmentalism or pro-drilling. But, like the zombies our elected officials are, they follow the party platform and vote accordingly. They don't even have the decency to be pasty faced, with blood dripping from their mouths.

But how do they get there in the first place? It wouldn't be an apocalypse without hordes of mindless flesh-eaters working collectively together. That's when I realized it. We have all been bitten, by every skewed statistic they've fed us, by every dollar spent by the super pacts, by every union or committee or think-tank seeking to impose their will over the air-waves.

So, we as a nation line up on either side and fight, when we should come together. And like every one else, I will go vote, and I will vote for either the incumbent or for a specific party if I have no idea who either person is. 

I have become a political zombie, and I disgust myself. It is too difficult to understand all the issues or really get to know the candidates. Besides, in the end, it has become more about winning than doing what's right. How about you?

A zombie's a zombie, no matter its color. 

Friday, October 19, 2012

Book Signing at SLC Downtown Library, Oct. 20th

I am going to be at the Salt Lake City downtown library this Saturday, October 20th, signing and selling books. My sister will be manning the booth with me and I hope anyone with the time and interest will come down to support us! We will be in the main thoroughfare, the Urban Room. This is my first event, and to commemorate the occasion, Wayman Publishing had some bookmarks made up to give away with the books.  The Utah Humanities Council has events scheduled from 11:00 to 5:00, so there's a lot to do while you're there. There will be multiple booksellers, publishers, authors and more.

I hope to see you at the library!

Here is the link to the Utah Humanities Flier for the National Book Month events occurring in Utah.

Our event is Saturday, October 12th, at the downtown SLC library
210 East 400 South, SLC
You can also check out the library's website if you need more info on directions and parking.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Purple Mashed Potatoes

I cannot deny it, I am an avid fan of the mashed potato. So when my wife insisted I choose two of the dishes to be served this week, mashed potatoes were naturally at the top of the list. Now, I admit, I have long underestimated the ingenuity of my wife regarding the culinary arts and this week proved no different. I sat down to eat this evening and to my delight and then despair, there lay the mashed potatoes. No ordinary mashed potatoes were these, these were PURPLE mashed potatoes. Holy Grape Juice Batman! Potato Sacrilidge. MASHED Potato Sacrilidge no less.  Despite this, I am a tolerant man, for I've read Green Eggs and Ham; I picked up the fork by my plate. My wife quoted a line from the story as she saw me eyeing the side dish warily. It did not seem to agree with the baked chicken beside it. "Could you would you..." she said and left the rest for me to fill in. You should know that gravy has the unique ability to make almost anything palatable, and in this fact I took great comfort as I spooned up a man-sized dollop to my lips. I opened up and put it in. The bite in my mouth was creamy, yet hearty, mixing with the gravy to a most satisfying conclusion. I smiled at my wife. She had once again transformed the most improbable of dishes into a gastronomical sensation.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Middle Damned Video Trailer

This puppy took way too long to create. See the new video trailer for Middle Damned below, the book is available at amazon. Middle Damned is the story of Blake Stillwater; sometimes it takes the afterlife to understand what it means to be alive.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Cat Norris: Kime

Yoko Geri Kekomi or perhaps Ura Mawashigeri?

This is a perfect moment of 'kime', pronounced key-may.

Kime (Japanese: 決め) is a Japanese word. It is the noun form of the verb "kimeru," which means "to decide," "to conclude," etc. In English, it's general meaning is "deciding."

Kime is very important in the japanese martial arts. In shotokan, applying the proper kime, the proper power at that one critical moment is all-important in deciding the conflict.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Melynda's Labor Day Blogfest & Book Fair

Melynda's Labor Day Blogfest & Book Fair - Come check out the amazing books (some free eBooks included) we're featuring in support of raising awareness for diabetes

Sign up to join a Labor Day Blogfest and Book Fair. Sunday September 2nd -Tuesday the 4th.

In honor of Melynda Fleury--who has bravely been fighting diabetes and almost completely lost her eyesight--Wayman Publishing is offering unlimited free downloads of their top ten bestselling books to all entrants during this event!  In addition, we're featuring some phenomenal books you should check out AND giving away X-amount of Cash (announced after Blogger signups completed).

Other bloggers can join in for this great opportunity to gain new traffic. We're excited to spread the word about some fantastic authors and Wayman Publishing; we hope you'll join us for this fun event.

The first links to enter are free with the agreement that you will post the button and information about this giveaway on your site. Any additional links will be $3 for Social Network links and $5 for RSS/Email Subscriptions.
Feel free to grab this button:

Monday, August 6, 2012

Bones Speak: Cremation Part 2

His body lay on the cradle of concrete; the flesh stripped away, the spaces between the bones made more poignant by the absence of the organs that should have been there. No longer did the mottled flesh stretch across emaciated bones, he had been restored to a state of beautiful by crematorium fire.
    While still alive, the cancer had eaten his mind and body until I no longer recognized the man I’d grown to love. But, here he was! In the mountains of central Japan, in the region he had lived for over fifty years. Here he was on the concrete slab, in the city crematorium, next to the municipal garbage dump.
    His pure white bones screamed at me. “I’m here, Shane. Do you hear me? Take care of your wife, my daughter. Take care of my grandchildren, the last surviving memory of me on earth.”
    They had exhumed his slab the same way it had gone in. None had touched his sacred remains since my wife pushed the button to release the cleansing fire. An hour later, she huddled at my side, weeping, her father’s delicate skeleton before us.
    A man, dressed in the clean but simple jumpsuit of a recycling plant worker took up a pair of massive chopsticks from a small pedestal situated to the side, but still on top of the concrete cradle. He motioned for each of us to take up a pair of our own and removed the lid from one of two urns beside the chopsticks.
    “I did not get to see my last grandchild before I died,” the bones said. I stared back in shock. “It is your responsibility to remember me to him.”
    The man in the jumpsuit continued as though he hadn’t heard or found talking bones to be common place. He used his chopsticks to pull a small bone near the skull from the surrounding ash. “This bone is one that makes up the inner ear,” he said.
    My wife and I took the piece together and placed it in the smaller urn. The piece broke as it fell, revealing the soft tan of baked marrow inside. The process continued, a fragment of eye socket, the final link in the right index finger, a segment from around the nose, all were deposited inside.
    The partially erect skull, half buried in ash, stared up at me. “Do you remember that time at the base of Mount Fuji? At the restaurant? When I told you it wasn’t you who was funny?” it asked.
    “I remember,” I whispered.
    “I’m not sorry,” it said.
    “I know. It’s not in your nature to be sorry.”
    The bone emancipator held up a tooth. The open doors let in a cool breeze of mountain air, but it failed to stir the palette of white and gray hues beneath him. “Your father had amazing teeth. Most teeth of people this age don’t survive the fire."
    “I loved my teeth,” the crusty white incisor confirmed. A breathless pause followed and let in the rustling of bamboo of the forest outside. “Do you forgive me?” it asked. The man holding the tooth placed it on the pedestal. My wife picked it up and put it into the small jar. The man locked the tooth away, along with the other bits as he placed the lid atop the urn.
    “Yes,” I said.
    The jump-suited man took both chop sticks in one hand, placed them against the balled neck of the right femur and broke off the ball by pushing at the top of his instruments of dissection. He placed the dislocated joint on the pedestal and my wife transferred it to the now uncovered larger urn.
    “Thank you for finding my high school yearbook,” the spherical piece echoed from the bottom of the container.
    “It took forever to clean out that shed.” I smiled. “There was fifty year old junk buried beneath thirty year old crap with worthless ten year old trinkets stacked on top of that. It was like excavating for the lost city of Tanis.”
    “You’ve always been too wordy,” the jar resonated at me.
    “I know, it’s in my nature,” I said.
    Something shifted and I looked down. A piece of rib had broken off on its own accord. “Does she love me?” it asked.
    “Does she love you?” I tested the words with my tongue. The man in the jumpsuit had followed my gaze and immediately relocated the fragmented rib to the pedestal.
    “Does she love me?” it asked again from its new position. It was not an easy relationship my wife had endured with her father; not with the drinking, or the long hours at work, or the fact that they were both so headstrong a boulder would break if it came against their will.
    My wife’s chopsticks reached across the void and gently lifted the frail bone from the stone. Tears streaked her face. Her other hand shot out to catch the treasured cargo in a moment of doubt, in case it should fall, but her transport of it remained true. She placed it in the urn and stared at the jar as though it was her heart she had put inside.
    “She loves you,” I said.
    “I know,” the rib called, its voice muffled inside of the container. “She just told me.”
    The last urn was filled and the lid returned to its proper position. The man packaged the jars in a black satin box with a white cross on the front and presented it to my wife with a bow.
    We left the crematorium and my wife turned to me as we drove away. “I can’t believe you asked me if you could take a picture.”
    “He was so beautiful. I want to always remember him like that. I could feel his presence there.”
    My wife looked at me as I negotiated a hair pin corner through the cave of bamboo trees around us. “Well, I guess you’ll just have to write a story about it then.”

I am very proud to announce that Middle Damned, the novel, is available for purchase at in hard copy and Kindle e-book.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Middle Damned, the Novel

I am very proud to announce that Middle Damned, the novel, is officially being released today by Wayman Publishing. It's available for purchase at in hard copy and Kindle e-book. Here are a couple of excerpts from reviews it has received so far.

"I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It kept my attention as it was both intriguing and entertaining." -APTeacher

"His ability to overlap the world as we know it with the Realm of the Middle Damned is nothing short of a pleasure. Wonderful imagery around characters that you can't help but root for the whole journey." - Joshua

"The plot is unique and fresh which provided unexpected twists and turns. I recommend this book with confidence the reader will be pleasantly surprised by how much they enjoy the book." -GL

Life after death was not all Blake Stillwater and his family had expected. Some went to live in the light, another into darkness, while Blake fights for survival, somewhere between, in the Realm of the Middle Damned. At this cross roads connecting the dimensions of the Living World and the hereafter, failure is a one way ticket to everlasting torment in the lake of fire. Blake’s only hope is the gifts of those he was responsible for in the car crash that claimed their lives. The blood staining his hands entitles them to endow him with a final token of their memory. It’s a race against time, for while the gifts of those who love the light will sustain, the one who now dwells in darkness can ruin it all.

Click on Middle Damned to see My Book