Friday, September 15, 2017

Free Book Sample Downloads Now Available

You can now download free samples of every one of my books.

The link is in the upper right of the blog, or you can click

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Review of Leta Blake's "Pictures of You"

I admit it, I’m a sucker for Coming-of-Age stories. I just completed Leta Blake’s masterful “Pictures of You,” one of the finest I’ve ever read. The narrator, Peter, tells of his senior year in high school, where the nerd photographer actually makes friends, falls in love, has sex for the first time, and slowly comes to realize the effects that his lover has had on him. He’s not comfortable with the person he has become.

Nearly all good fiction involves transformation, and Blake has handled it deftly, with respect for her characters. The vast majority of writers in her genre handle transformation with “Before” and “After” pictures, which is not just meaningless, but dissatisfying. Blake carefully describes the process and experiences of transformation, not just of the narrator but of others, as well.

After Peter, Sarah’s transformation is probably the most remarkable. We watch the predatory caterpillar become an admirable butterfly.  Susan transforms from an irritant to a victim of herself, and we understand why. Adam continually promises to transform, but we can see through that to realize that he remains manipulative and self-centered to the end. Mike’s transformation has few details, and Blake smartly leaves that one to the reader to fill in. Events around Mike can be interpreted in many ways, some of them leading to his change.

Similarly, the ending allows the reader’s imagination to create more of the story. Some may believe the ending is sad; I considered it the best possible outcome for Peter. “Pictures of You” is book one in a series; I plan to read on. If you enjoy Coming-of-Age tales, you’ll love “Pictures of You.”

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Amazon Book Giveaway

See this #AmazonGiveaway for a chance to win: 

Finding Friendship: Book One of the Finding Series (Kindle Edition)


Ends the earlier of Sep 1, 2017 11:59 PM PDT, or when all prizes are claimed. 

See Official Rules

Monday, July 31, 2017

Paid Beta Reading

I’m recruiting paid beta readers for Four Seconds on the Clock: College Freshmen, and for Did You Ever See Allegro?

Four Seconds is the continuation of a coming-of-age tale, about two gay teens overcoming severe trauma. It will be about 85,000 words, and should be ready for beta reading in two or three weeks. If interested, let me know and I’ll send you the first volume (free).

Allegro follows a 1969-1970 college garage band from forming through recording to touring, to disbanding. About 80K words, ready in September. It continues the stories of the six members’ lives after college. If interested, send me a message. It is not necessary to know anything about music.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

My Favorite Authors

My three favorite authors, in no particular order, are Michael Crichton, Jonathan Tropper, and Cecelia Tan.

Chichton, who wrote Jurassic Park, State of Fear, Prey, the Andromeda Strain and many others, had a lifetime mission of educating people about complex systems through his books. Each of the ones I mentioned is primarily about acting inside a complex system with inadequate respect for the complexity.

Topper, who wrote Book of Joe, This is Where I leave you, Plan B and many others, writes social commentary as fiction. If there is a single theme, it is that making judgements about people is fraught with difficulties.

Tan writes in so many genres I lose track: science fiction, horror, baseball, LGBT, music, and social commentary. She may be the best wordsmith I’ve read. In particular, her web serial, Daron's Guitar Chronicles, is addictive.

Let me know about your favorite authors.