Back to the Drawing Board

75a70d23ed80b9cf96b27ee5e9edbd5cIt has been a long time coming, but thanks to the support of my Facebook family, I am going to dust off the files in my “Works in progress” directory and see what I have. For those of you who don’t know, I used to be an author–before I was a .publisher. As hard as I tried (15 years worth) publishing did not work for me. Not a day goes by that I don’t feel like I let so many people down when I published their books. Someone asked me the other day if I ever thought about going back to publishing. I didn’t even have to think about it. No. The roller coaster of a ride was too much for me. I worked with some incredible writers–talented and supportive–, and then I had some who seemed to take pleasure in making my life miserable–spiteful and mean. But that is in the past. Publishing allowed me to make some incredible friends and I learned so much about the industry. Which leads me to now.

After looking at my directories, I have three projects worth considering as my jumping back in point. This is what I have. Which one do you think I should work on first?

  1. Tender Betrayer: A historical romance involving two people who were raised together by an overly zealous man of faith. The young boy and girl vow to be together always, but circumstances send the boy off. The young girl is left behind. A decade later, she has finally moved on and her life is showing potential…until he comes back! She is determined she does not need to be rescued, especially by the one who had abandoned her. (This is book one of a trilogy.)
  2. Petticoat Junction: A Liberation of Fools: A steampunk novel that introduces a young girl determined to find her brother who disappeared during the war. The young adventurer finds herself up against foes she can barely imagine, but finds help from several other displaced girls. These girls make their home on a renovated train car (reminiscent of The Wild, Wild West). The book has been potentially set as the opening of a 4-book series, with character personalities based on the elements. Adventure.
  3. Gumshue Inc: Dressed to Kill: Gloria Gumshue is a detective in retro-futuristic Chicago. 2020 rolls in, but the world seems to have fallen back in time, to flappers and prohibition. When Gloria gets her new assignment she discovers she is to protect the most well-known fashion designer in the world, who happens to be an old school chum of her mothers. When the client is murdered in front of the entire world, Gloria and her sidekick, must find the murderer. The job is incredibly difficult because everyone and their brother hated the victim. Then there is all the sexual tension between Gloria and her FBI nemesis. This is potentially the beginning of an ongoing series. Mystery,



Angels of Inspiration

b7d022d976823124c7d971629787aa52Well, 2016 is almost over and I have to say, it has been one of the most difficult years for my generation. So many familiar people have passed. So many people of wondrous talent and genuine compassion have left this world, only to take their greatness. I can honestly say thank God for technology, as it is the only way the future will ever be fortunate enough to share in the glory of talents such as Alan Rickman, David Bowie, Prince, George Michael, and Leonard Cohen. These are but a few of the notable deaths.

But not everyone sees the real loss here. Some only see another tool for judging, criticizing, and forcing their political agendas onto others. I know, I was about to do the same thing right here until I typed that line and realized my mistake. I was about jump to the defense of Steve Martin, regarding his thoughts on Carrie Fisher, but now that I have caught myself. I will simply give you a list of people who touched my life in some way out of the ordinary. Much the same that Carrie Fisher may have touched Steve Martin.

These are in no particular order.

Muhammad Ali –Such a strong influence on the world. Courageous, endearing, and not the least bit afraid to speak out, about anything.

Frank Armitage – artist and animator for Walt Disney. He gave life to so many of the classics by making the settings characters themselves. Mary Poppins was the most notable for me. His work helped to inspire me to embrace the limitless potential of my imagination.

Pat Conroy – Most known for his talent at a writer, this man changed my life in an unconventional way. I met a man named Sam Morton, he submitted his writing to my publishing company. One of his strongest influences was Pat Conroy. He spoke often of learning from him, admiring him, and envying his talent. Sam always said he thought it made him a better writer himself to study the masters, and he considered Conroy one of the masters. Sam touched my life in so many positive ways.

Gene Wilder – Watching this man perform is one of my greatest pleasures. His courage and commitment to love and life are more than just an inspiration.

Gordie Tapp – Known for his role on the television show, Hee Haw, Gordie Tapp brought me and my family together. Not by choice at first, but every Saturday night at my grandparent’s house, we gathered together in their small singlewide trailer and watched Hee Haw. We laughed and joked and my grampa would tease me with constant “Pfft!” noises. Gordie Tapp, unbeknownst to him, helped create some of my fondest childhood memories.

Big Ang/Angela Raiola – Strong woman. Despite her brushes with the law and being the niece of Salvatore Lombardi (Capo in Genovese family), Big Anj had a way about her that exuded confidence. Knowing what she did and dealing with the consequences is oddly inspiring to me. Her background shaped her life, but I don’t believe that is all she was. Not really a role model, but yet I admired her tenacity and positive attitude.

Sometimes I find inspiration and motivation in strange places and people, but I thank God every day that I can still find it.

In the beginning of this post I made note of how many “familiar” people passed in 2016, but I really began to wonder about this as I wrote my post, so I did some surfing and found out something very interesting. Wiki has a listing of “notable deaths” for years. I went through each page of 2006, curious. What I found shocked me. Some of the names meant nothing to me, in the sense that I could care less what a physicist or math scholar did, I am sorry for their deaths and may they rest in peace, but…

What I actually found were hundreds, maybe thousands of names of people who died in 2016. Many of whom had some kind of effect on my life, despite my having no idea they existed. Listed are, not just people, but animals. Such a wide variety of names, from John Glenn Jr., the first man to orbit the earth, to Sarah Clancy, who was the oldest living person in Ireland, to Jia Jai, the oldest living Panda in the world. We’ve lost these people and animals and many had no idea who they were or what they did. I learned a lot today about politicians from around the world to the creator of the washable crayon from Crayola.

Need something to do some night when you can’t sleep, or just care about other people and what have contributed to our world, check out the Wiki link.

Nigger, please.

Image from

Michael Che

I’m sorry, but this is a non-issue. This is a word that is ALWAYS going to lead to discrimination issues. Big deal. There are too many people out there who use this word as part of their daily vocabulary, many of them Black. Usually, it is only offensive if a white person uses it. Micahel Che simply made an off-handed comment that–to be honest, I had to watch the video three times to catch–and the same phrase has probably been used by millions of others, and will continue to be in the future. There was no derogatory intent, as far as I can tell. The people complaining are the ones who have no time for keeping their own business in order because they are too busy trying to control other people’s business. I don’t think anything else even needs to be said on the matter, but I’m sure they won’t ask me. 🙂

SNL would be crazy to let this guy go for something so ridiculous as this. Che is a breath of fresh air on a show that I feel has lost momentum continuously over the last several decades.

Getting back to the issue at hand.

The word itself was made derogatory by the whites. Over the course of history it has been subject to devolvement (is that a word?) In all its originality it simply means black. Period. People should really learn about the meaning and etymology of words before using them or complaining about them. Just because “someone” said it is a bad word, does not make it fact, simply a matter of the lemming effect. Somebody hundreds of years ago used it with contempt in their voice, the other contemptuous bastards thought it sounded good, and it made them feel powerful, so they all began to use it. The slaves, seeing as how they were the ones the slurs were directed to, simply lowered their heads and did as they were told. Had there not been whips and hangings involved, I’m pretty sure those Blacks would have stood up for themselves. But we all know how that went, so the word, a seemingly innoccuous word, became one of the most controversial words in the history of the English language, which I find hysterical because it’s a Latin word to begin with. At any rate…those are just my personal thoughts and I haven’t posted anything  controversial on my blog in a while.

late 17th century (as an adjective): from earlier neger, from French nègre, from Spanish negro ‘black’ (see Negro).