Death Wish Coffee Quick Look

Rancilio Heaven

I Instagrammed a photograph of the Death Wish Coffee Dave Hamilton sent to me, and several people asked me to review it. Accordingly, I pulled a couple of espresso shots with it this morning, and I’m delighted to report that Death Wish Coffee is good. What could go wrong? Thanks @davehamilton!

Whispers 2

Shower head

It’s been a while. Those whispers. More than a year. I’d kind of forgotten about them because the house has been…I don’t know. Not quiet, exactly. Acquiescent? There’s always a bit of a feeling around here. But then today I was taking a shower. It was the middle of the day, a perk of working from home. I was singing “You Can’t Do That,” a favorite Beatles tunes, and was leaning into the water. It was relaxing. That’s when I felt it. A tap. Two of them. On my shoulder. Not “like” a tap. It was a tap. A finger touching Continue Reading →

Prologue Is Past

Old typewriter with "Prologue" crossed out by a red pen.

I stripped the prologue from my novel recently. I had to do it, and that makes me tense. Let me explain. No, first, some catchup: I took time off from my novel last year (hence the lack of updates here). I needed to distance myself from it so I could see it with fresh(er) eyes. Once I came back to it, I realized the beginning wasn’t as tight as the ending, where I’ve spent far, far more time. I fixed that, and in the process I made myself nuke the prologue. Agents and editors are mixed on prologues these days, Continue Reading →

Mining For Pics

20141229buffaloyosemite

Been busy. Synopsis writing—have I mentioned how much I hate writing a fucking synopsis? And querying. I hate the query process. There was also a little thing called Christmas. Next is New Year’s, followed immediately by CES. I hate CES, too, but that’s another story. Anyhoo, I’ve been mining my photo library for good pics. Wait, let me rephrase that: I’ve been looking for images I’ve previously rejected that can be made cool because I know a lot more about editing photos than I did back when I took them*. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve already seen most of them, but Continue Reading →

Whispers

20141205stairs

I’m getting ready to leave. TV off, ceiling fans off. Windows, closed. It’s quiet on the third floor. I turn off the lamp in my office, the last light on the third floor that was on. I hear a door shut on the second floor. I thought I was alone in the house. Whispers. Close. On the stairway. Halfway up. I freeze. The whispers continue. I imagine they’re whispering that I’m coming. “Hello?” I said. It was instinctual. A bad line straight from of a horror movie. “Just me,” my roommate calls from the second floor. The whispers stop. “I’m headed Continue Reading →

Speaking of Clouds, How about Some Words?

What are words for?

I won’t bother telling you that I’ve finished Accidental Intelligence again. We’ve all been down that path together too many times. I will tell you, however, that I started querying once more. It’s a rough time of year to query because many agents stop taking submissions this quarter, but we’ll see what we see. I have what I think is a good query letter, and Q really helped me polish the holy heck out of my manuscript. Between her and D. A. Del Castillo, not to mention my great betas, I’ve had some remarkable help. Anyhoo, I ran my final manuscript through Wordle.net—which is just Continue Reading →

A Giant Cotton Candy Cloudship Enterprise

Closer Trucks

I was driving back from Vegas after CES back in January—in southeast California to be precise—and there was this killer cloud formation. It looked a lot like a spaceship. A giant cotton candy Enterprise. I posted one pic to Instagram—shown below—but threatened to post more of them on my blog. Nine months later, let’s do it! One caveat: I like these pics, but they don’t do justice to what I saw that evening. The textures and swirls and layers that were in this formation…I’ve never seen anything like it before. Here’s the Instagram post. I upped the brightness and lowered Continue Reading →

Fiddle About

"Puma Punku landscape" by Janikorpi - Own work. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons - http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Puma_Punku_landscape.JPG#mediaviewer/File:Puma_Punku_landscape.JPG

ZOMG, but Giorgio A. Tsoukalos is one of my guilty pleasures. First on Ancient Aliens and various standalone UFO specials, and now on his own show, a reboot of Leonard Nimoy’s In Search Of…I love this guy. In fact, if there’s a show on H2 where the answer to every question asked by the narrator is “No!” Mr. Tsoukoalos is probably involved, and I love them all. Right now, I’m watching the In Search Of… episode dedicated to Puma Punku. This place fascinates me. I reject the conclusions reached on every show I’ve seen about the site—i.e. that aliens built it Continue Reading →

Scattershot: Writing Update, Guitar Show, Cherokee Purple Tomatoes

Drool

I know, it’s been roughly forever since my last update. I’ve been working quite hard on my novel(s), and I have a new query letter that’s almost ready to go out. I’ve also been working very hard at TMO, and have resumed my original role there as editor-in-chief. It’s made for a very, very busy me, and updating my blog has was one area that suffered accordingly. Querying Some of you might remember that I queried my novel before, roughly two years ago. I’ve explained all that, but with the newly completed novel came the need for a new query Continue Reading →

Stick a Fork in It (Again)

20140512Shutterstock-Book-Fork

I am delighted to announce that my book is finished. Again. I know, I said that before. OK, I’ve said it twice, but I think it will stick this time. I am ready to shop this puppy. Again. Mayhaps I should explain: a few months ago I finished the book and got it out to beta readers. Based on their feedback, I decided to tweak the ending. That ended up being much harder than I was anticipating, and I ended up writing some 24,000 words for what ultimately became a 2,600 word tweak. Just imagine me at an old-fashioned typewriter Continue Reading →