Tag Archives: writers

Tombyards & Butterflies- An Excerpt

Nanowrimo 2016
Nanowrimo 2016

In an effort to embrace writing here regularly I wanted to share a part of my current work in progress, but first… its Nanowrimo ! This is the month thousands of people get together and try and write a 50k novel in 30 days. Yes, its as hard as it sounds. If you haven’t tried it I seriously recommend it. You will be part of a great community and can share in the experience of focused writing for a month. I wish all the would be authors out there the best of luck in getting to 50k before the 30th!

Now for that excerpt .This is a little different from what I usually write but I wanted to go in a different direction, let me know what you think in the comments below!

Here it goes:

I remembered my grandfather, my sister, and various aunts and cousins, in their coffins and gone forever in the tombyards where the butterflies settled like flowers on the graves and where the flowers blew away like butterflies over the stones.-Ray Bradbury, Zen in the Art of Writing.



What’s more exciting than chasing a rabid werewolf? Chasing that rabid werewolf in downtown Manhattan. The Village as a neighborhood is a warren of intersecting streets and dead ends. We had been at this for thirty minutes and I was getting aggravated.

“This is what the English did—who lays out a city like this?” I said as we ran down Sixth Avenue. “A grid, Monty would it have killed them to use a grid?”

“The Dutch were here first,” he said. “The English didn’t arrive until 1664. That’s how you get the name New York.”

We chased it down Minetta Lane off Sixth Avenue. The wet dog smell punched me in the face as soon as I turned the corner.

“There’s something wrong with that smell,” I said. “God, he reeks!”

“I didn’t realize you were a werewolf scent expert,” Monty said as he caught up.

“I’m not, but this guy smells like he hasn’t bathed in a year,” I said. “Did you see his eyes?”

“I did,” Monty said. “He seems to be suffering from some kind of reaction.”

“Reaction?” I said. “He tore that poor woman in half. That’s not a reaction. That’s a full-blown infection.”

“It does seem he’s unstable,” Monty said as he looked up and down the street.

“Just a bit, yeah.”

We followed the scent to the end of Minetta and on to Macdougal Street when a large furry blur shot past us.

“Shoot it, Simon! Shoot!” Monty said.

“What do you think I’m doing?” I said as I fired several times.

“Shoot it harder!”

We jumped behind a parked SUV. The license plate read RUFFRDR. It was one of those huge things that wasn’t quite a tank, but could never pass for an ordinary car. I figured there was enough vehicle to protect us from the Were’s razor sharp claws. That theory evaporated as it sliced through the metal and plastic with ease, rendering our cover useless. The SUV fell apart like a block of Legos and I couldn’t help thinking that RUFFRDR was going to wake up in the morning and have a very bad day.

“Really, that’s what you’re going with, Monty? Shoot it harder?”

“Strong,” rasped the creature on the other side of what used to be a perfectly functioning mode of transportation. “I’m going to rip out your intestines and eat them while you watch.”

“Wow,” Monty said. “He’s pissed. What did you do to him?”

“Now would be a good time for magic,” I said. “You know a fireball or two? Or some Were melting spell?”

“Can’t—he’s wearing null proximity rune,” Monty said. “I don’t understand why the silver ammo isn’t affecting him. You did switch out for silver ammo, right?”

“Silver…ammo?” I said, “Of course I packed the silver—shit.”

I forgot to switch the ammo.

“You forgot, didn’t you?” Monty said exasperated. “We’re out here fighting a werewolf, Simon.”

“I know,” I said. “It’s a little hard to miss.”

“I’m going to die,” he said as his voice hiked up an octave. “Out here on the filthy street alongside you, wonderful.”

“No, I just misplaced it,” I said with feigned indignation. “Hey, I had to pack all of the bags while you did your meditation thing to charge the magic you’re currently not using.”

Monty narrowed his eyes and glared.

“Are you saying this is somehow my fault?”

“I’m just saying a little magic would make this go smoother, especially since I forgot to pack the silver ammo.”


Sepia Blue Sisters

Sepia Blue Sisters
Sepia Blue Sisters

I have been away from this blog for a few months due to my insane work and writing schedule. That has since calmed down a bit and so I will be posting regularly.

Its been an amazing few weeks. I had an incredible summer.  I have also taken on training seriously. I realized that a healthy body facilitates a healthy mind which means I can write more.

500lb deadlift
500lb deadlift


That’s me doing a 500 lb dead-lift and making the only face possible when lifting that much-we call it a squat face lol.

I’m currently putting the finishing touches on the third book in the Sepia Blue series and it has been a blast to write. Book Two(cover above) will be released this month and the story is twisting in some unexpected and surprising ways. By the time you read this-Sepia Blue Sisters will be available. Grab a copy and let me know what you think.

I’ll be releasing some new content soon. I have a new kind of story rolling around in my head and I would like to bounce some ideas here, before I pursue them elsewhere. Your feedback would be greatly appreciated.  I truly hope you have had a pleasant and exciting summer.

Keep reading!





Author Interviews- Alice J. Black

The Doors Alice J.Black
The Doors Alice J.Black

In the spirit of giving back and connecting with my writing tribe I have scheduled monthly author interviews to showcase authors you may or may not have heard of. They will be a combination of indie and traditional with the focus being to give an insight on the writing life.

Alice, who is an online friend graciously asked me to be part of her interview group. I thought it only fitting that she be the first author in my monthly Author Interviews.

Please pick up her book and follow her blog.

Her social media links are provided, you can find her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (where she has some great pics!) drop by and kindly give her a hello!  Please leave a comment on what you thought. If you know or are an author and would like to be highlighted in the monthly interview drop me a line or leave me a comment below.

Enjoy the interview!


Name: Alice J. Black

Age: 28

Where are you from? The North East of England.

Tell us a little about yourself ie. education Family life etc. I grew up and have spent my life in the North East of England. Ever since I can remember I have always loved reading and writing and though at times it hasn’t always been a priority in my life, I have always come back to it. More recently when I got my first role in my career I have gone back to writing which I love doing. I try to write every day!

When and why did you begin writing? I have always loved writing. From a young age I liked to write stories and I was always encouraged to do this by my family. I still have some of my really old scribblings now and it’s great to look back on. I can’t say why I started writing other than I really enjoyed creating a different world. Continue reading Author Interviews- Alice J. Black

Terry Pratchett-Thank you for sharing


My First Pterry book
My First Pterry book

I first met Terry in 2005.  I had never heard of him before and myamazing future wife told me I had to absolutely read him. We shared a common taste in books and I wasn’t reading anything at the time so I said sure. What could be wrong with wizards and fantasy? This is my kind of book.  The stuff  of my childhood i was familiar with. I was in for a rude surprise.

Here was a writer who took the usual tropes and turned them on their head.  In a fresh and creative way Terry  gently shoved me into Discworld.  I met characters I could relate to. Characters who were flawed but didn’t give up.  Terry and I became fast friends.  After going through my wife’s collection I hit my local bookstore and discovered that my new friend Terry had written a few more books. Over 40 more books. Terry and I were going to be amazing friends. Over the next few weeks I bought and read all of his books( this was PK-pre kindle). I had not started writing my own books yet. The idea was still far away, too large, I couldn’t wrap my head around it. Then I met Terry. Out of all my influences(and there are many) Terry looms as one of the largest  because when I thought the concept of writing was too difficult, here was a writer showing me that it could be done in an intelligent, humorous and prolific way.

I cant say when it happened exactly. I know it was early 2010 when I finally chose to put words on paper. It had always been an aspiration. I do know that when I started I had two people next to me my wife and Terry. My wife( who was my first editor and transcriber) was the catalyst that spurred me in her special way. She would ask me questions or create a conversation about my writing, which back in those days I treated like a deep profound secret. She would say things like:: ” Did you write today?” or “Oh that part is great!” The words every beginning writer needs to hear, words of support and encouragement. Terry spoke to me in another way. “Did you do your research? That sentence can be tighter. That character needs to arc differently. That isn’t funny, cut it. Stop trying so hard and let it flow.”

I took my first steps in my life as a writer and haven’t looked back since. I realized something now several books later. Our words have power. I can reach countless people through my books. Writers and artists shape and influence our world and lives. I knew this on a deep level. I knew that the written word has shaped civilization since its inception, but it was something more. I now experienced it. I had people telling me that my book changed their lives. That my words impacted their life. The same way Terry’s words impacted mine.

So I wanted to take this moment to say thank you Terry. Thank you for being who you were. Thank you for taking the risk and sharing your amazing imagination with the world, with me. Thank you for showing me what was and is possible if I dared. I never met Terry personally, but through his books he and I shared many great afternoons laughing and reflecting on the state(and hilarity) of this thing we call life.

If you are reading this and wondering if you should embark on a creative pursuit, whether its writing or painting or anything that calls to you-stop aspiring and do it . Stop dreaming  about it  and take the first step, then another followed by another. I can say with certainty that your life will be transformed.

I enjoy hearing from you! Who was your inspiration? What got you started? Or why haven’t you started?

Share in the comments below!

My Terry Shelf
My Terry Shelf







The Hellequin Chronicles -Must Read

crimes against magic cover
Crimes Against Magic Book 1

Book 1 in the Hellequin Chronicles.

How do you keep the people you care about safe from enemies you can’t remember?

Ten years ago, Nate Garrett awoke on a cold warehouse floor with no memory of his past—a gun, a sword, and a piece of paper with his name on it the only clues to his identity. Since then, he’s discovered he’s a powerful sorcerer and has used his magical abilities to become a successful thief for hire.

But those who stole his memories aren’t done with him yet: when they cause a job to go bad and threaten a sixteen-year-old girl, Nate swears to protect her. With his enemies closing in and everyone he cares about now a target for their wrath, he must choose between the comfortable life he’s built for himself and his elusive past.

As the barrier holding his memories captive begins to crumble, Nate moves between modern-day London and fifteenth-century France, forced to confront his forgotten life in the hope of stopping an enemy he can’t remember.

On occasion I come across a writer I want to share with everyone I know. Steve is one such writer.  His Hellequin Chronicles are an exciting read and well worth your time. He initially started as an indie and moved on to traditional. His stories are riveting and his main character is compelling. Can you tell I’m being deliberately cagey and vague? That’s because you need to go and buy this series. He is in book 4 and in the process of getting book 5 out, hopefully soon. You can find his amazon page here.

He also has fantastic covers. Being a graphic designer I cant help but appreciate a good cover and his have had and excellent evolution. Here is his latest :

Prison of Hope- Steve McHugh
Prison of Hope- Steve McHugh

Go visit his page and enjoy his books. You can thank me later!