Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Opportunity of a life time!

You only get so many great chances in life. I'm here to tell you about one of them. Thinking about a tropical vacation next summer? Plan now! Here's why; You can spend 32 days in wonderful, tropical, beautiful Costa Rica, Nicaragua, and Honduras. You'll spend nine days in and around Buenos Aires, Costa Rica, then four to five days enjoying Nicaragua, then finish your trip with eighteen days in Tegucigalpa and Choluteca, Honduras.

Besides seeing the beautiful countryside you'll meet and interact with the locals, learn local customs, enjoy local food, and learn more than you would ever think you'd know about central America. You travel by bus working with other travelers building new homes, working to distribute food and clothing to locals, painting at a church, door knocking, a four to five day VBS and a similar length gospel meeting.

The trip starts June 9th, 2011 thru July 11th. There are only approximately 20 spaces left. Cost , including air fair and bus travel, is $2,155.00 per person. Where you could get the adventure, sights, spiritual uplift, and overall sense of doing good for your fellow man and GOD's will than this trip.

You leader will be Terry Reeves, well worth the cost of admission in its self, who has been going to Honduras and central America for twenty years. It will be a life changing experience for you and whoever you take with you. Contact Terry at

Spots are going fast and if you have ever thought about it; this is the time to go!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

When you listen to fools

I just hate when I can think of something I want to write about and then when I get down to it, my mind goes blank. (My wife thinks it’s that way most of the time anyway.) I felt like I needed to get another entry in the blog but, and I had some ideas, now it all seems kind of, well, I really don’t know.

I watched a special on Ronnie James Dio last night. I remember seeing him with Rainbow all those years ago. Then I remembered watching a concert with him singing with the players from Black Sabbath. It was great remembering and I will miss hearing him. I remember two favorite lines out of songs he sang: “when you listen to fools, the mob rules” and “beware of kings and queens that blind your eyes and steal your dreams”
They both kind of remind me of the situation we are in right now. I think we’ve listened to fools and had a blind eye toward “kings” that would steal our dreams for several years. So make sure you vote November second, or don’t whine about what you get!

On another note, I am working on my second murder mystery right now. I am having a little trouble keeping going. It just feels like I have written half the book and I’m only about a quarter to a fifth in length. Plus the lead character is female and that adds another layer to the mix. I think it will be a good story once it’s done, and will lay the ground work for future stories. (I hope it becomes a series.) But right now I’m just struggling a little.

Monday I start something new (unfortunately not a new job!) but a new schedule of my life. My, kind of, partner in writing crime did a blog the other day about prioritizing your life and making time to write no matter what. Then I received some advice about my writing and how to get people interested in what I write and ways to get the ball rolling. So I am going to try both and see what happens. I am trying to enlist another editor so my present one doesn’t feel so overloaded. But we’ll see how that works out.

My next project after finishing the current one is a major rewrite on the first Jim Benjamin novel. Not that I think it’s bad or really needs it. It’s just set around long enough. I’ve written other things. Now I want to add some stuff out of a short story set I have written to the main story. It will make it longer and fill in more gaps in the book rather than try to with the short story book. There will still be a short story book there somewhere, sometime; I’ll just need to add more stories after this. I am hoping it will be out sometime this spring along with a couple of novellas I am working on.

So there is a little hint of what’s coming up. Hope you have your computers ready to download or your Kindle fired up. Look forward to another blog soon as I am sure something else will happen and I will not be able to keep my mouth shut.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Just Cookies

My father used to get real upset with me when I would say something in front of my mother that would get him or myself in big trouble; ‘Why can’t you learn to keep your big mouth shut?’ This might turn into another one of those moments.

If I walked into a Ford dealership, sat down with a salesman after walking around the showroom for a while, and told him I wanted to order a 2011 Camaro, then after he told me I was in a Ford dealership and they didn’t sell Camaros, they sold Mustangs. What if I yelled discrimination, because, of course, being a fat middle-aged white guy it must be, and getting some of my friends along with myself to hold a protest in front of the dealership with media, who had made a big deal about it for a few days while I organized the impending protest. Would you say I was nuts?

But if I was in a GLBT group at IUPUI (Indiana University Purdue University at Indianapolis) wanting cupcakes for a Coming Out Day party and went to a place called JUST COOKIES and ordered cupcakes, then all of the above would be okay. It happened in Indianapolis last week.

Now I really have no problem if a GLBT group wants to have a Coming Out Day party, I really don’t have a problem if they want rainbow iced cupcakes, but I do have a problem when they go to a place that doesn’t even make cupcakes, tries to order them, and then has a fit. Well, hold it; I really don’t have as much of a problem with that as I do the media making a major deal out of it! It was on every radio station, TV station, and newspaper in the area, I am sure it made national headlines in some other areas because of the subject matter. But why? In my opinion all they did was look kind of stupid for ordering something from the wrong place (see about concerning the Camaro if this doesn’t make sense to you).

I also wonder if (and yes I know this is going to the extremes, but it’s what I do sometimes to make a point) a Klan group wanted an African-American-owned catering company to serve their gathering. Or what if a Nazi group asked a Jewish owned deli to cater their next club meeting. I’ll bet you’d be hearing a whole different ‘concern’ from the media and people. Again, why?

Wasted Years

Years ago, Iron Maiden recorded a song called ‘Wasted Years’; the original title was Golden Years, but David Bowie had just released a song by the same name, so there goes the title change.

Sometimes I wonder about my life in similar terms. It feels like there have been a lot of wasted years. I guess when you get to middle-age (whatever that means, for some people it was 12 others 50) you have that moment when you look back over your life and you can say; look at everything I have achieved, accumulated, controlled, conquered, whatever, and then you go: was that it?
Or you look back and wonder how you could have done it all.
I’m in the first group; where did all the time go?
Plus I’m sitting on the line with this new venture of trying to be a writer and thinking wow finally getting there this late in life? Kind of stupid, I know.
But then I look back and think of just three major accomplishments in my life;

  1. I became a Christian.
  2. I graduated from College. (This has some questions attached all their own)
  3. I married my wife.

Becoming a Christian kind of explains itself. Well at least to some people in this day and age. Some people have such a stereotype of anyone Christian they can’t get past the title. But then again they would be the ones telling me I’m the one stereotyping.

Graduating from college; as great as the people I met there (including my wife) I had a situation at home where I probably could have gone to work in a factory making good money and had a solid steady future. Just show up each day, do your job, stay out of trouble, and retire in 30 years with a smile on my face. But what did I do? I listened to another person and spent four and a half years in college getting a degree I’ve hardly used. (Also graduating at the end of Jimmy Carter’s presidency didn’t help matters.) Now was it all bad? Hardly. I met some of the best friends I could ever know, had some of the best times in my life, and actually learned some things (no matter what my mother might think), but the years after that are what sucks. I went nowhere and did nothing. My fault, completely! Who am I mad at the most? Myself. What am I going to do about it: write?

Getting married! Sometimes I really feel sorry for my wife. She’s put up with me a lot longer than she should have. But thank goodness she has; where would I be without her? But where is she with me? Supporting me; has for a long time. But she’s happy to do it, she says. But she shouldn’t. But that’s a long story as well.

So what does all of this have to do with a writer and me wanting you to read my stories and buy my books? Probably nothing, or everything, it depends on how you look at it and how deep into a book you get. If you just read it at face value; this means nothing. If you get into why the writer said something one way or the other or put a character in a situation or had something happen to him or her one way or the other, it means a great deal. So my advice is to take this and anything else you read in this blog or my books and remember both. It might be a small window into my mind, and if you find it, please send it home.

Monday, October 11, 2010

It's Monday; what can happen now?

My wife and I achieved a pretty big milestone on Sunday; twenty-eight years of marriage. Kind of like the line out of that Grateful Dead song, “what a long strange trip it’s been”. We’ve had our share of good times and bad; strange relatives and even stranger advice, but we’ve made it this far. Thanks; honey.

As many of you know; I kind of like Drag Racing. I watched a very good race team self destruct itself this weekend in Reading PA. Now I wasn’t there, wish I had been, but I watched simple parts brake, bigger parts go boom, and tuning decisions go bad in an instant. A simple part puts the points leader out of the points lead; his daughter experience two big booms and watch the body fly off her car one night and two days later break the body in two, and the third car lose in the first round again; they all were out in the first round last weekend. Its weekends like this that give owners grey hair. There is that old expression, ‘its not rocket science’; sorry, this is. If you don’t think so; you try tuning one of them. You’ll probably grow a few grey hairs before the weekend is out. I hope they get it together before Vegas so it will make the show better.

Now down to real business. I’m working on another murder mystery. This one is about a female PI in Indianapolis. I’m running into a little bit of writer’s cramp; I’m at a point and I wonder if I’m doing the character justice. Plus I just can’t get past the point I am in the story. But I‘m going to give it a big effort this afternoon and see were we go. I hope it goes where I think it will and will be a great addition to what has already come. There will be some big surprises and I hope it turns into along running series. Lauralynn Elliott doesn’t like sequels and I can’t keep but writing them. Once I like a character I want to keep them around long enough to get to know them well. I’m one of those people who are always asking ‘what’s going to happen now’ when a story ends. And I don’t want a happily ever after ending either; sometimes that just doesn’t make sense; sometimes it does, but it’s also not reality. Well see how this one goes and if anyone buys it. Speaking of which; how about a few more people buy The Last Cabbandeum? It would make my mortgage company feel better.

So back to your normally scheduled lives; I’ll type at you later. Peace.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Well I'm back; did you miss me?

Well I just about blew it. I almost became one of those people who start a blog and then never write anything on it. Right after I said I hated that. But then there is not much to write about. I’ve had a computer down that I do much of my writing on and my editor is working on her own book right now so I‘m kind of in limbo.
So what can I write about that will be interesting and maybe funny, or inspirational, or educational.

So I thought I might write about a couple other blogs I follow. The first is my writing partner and Editor Lauralynn Elliott. [] She stays very much in writing about her writing occasionally taking a curve into something else. It’s interesting to read about someone else a little a head of me on this adventure. Plus she does write a different book than I do; but it’s all good and I think she has some very good reads out there; books as well as blog.

Then there is Terry Reeves. [] TR, as we call him, was a college roommate at Freed. He is, as I like to describe, one of the luckiest guys I know. He has had some hard times in his life; cancer gave us all a big scare a few years ago; but he and his wonderful wife Margaret got through it, or are getting through it, cancer never really leaves your mind, but he has had some of the most interesting travels and experiences of anyone I have ever known. He takes a yearly trip or two to Honduras doing mission work down there. His stories and the stories of those who go with him can inspire and entertain.

And lastly one of my absolute favorites is Bob Wilber’s blog on [] If you are interested in Rush, Minnesota sports, Drag Racing, or life in general, Bob’s a great read. He can take you into a situation and make you believe you are there. He is funny and can make you think. His stories of his family and friends are full of interesting tales and information. Plus he blogs like a crazy person! He writes on his blog almost every day and it’s good enough that you want to come back and see what he’s going to say next. Plus you always want to see pictures of whatever Bob puts up.

Well as they say ‘another day another donut’ The boys are at daycare and it’s way to quiet around here so I’ll get out of here for now and let you enjoy someone else’s ramblings.  Peace.