In the ink well

Dog Ear

March 16, 2017

Overdrive (DOG EAR)

ell, it happened again last night. I have this… idiosyncrasy. Most nights I have no problem falling asleep. I just open the window behind my head, the night airs breathing around me. A kiss to the wife, the lights out, the hop of the cat coming in the settle across my legs (only after the lights are out, mind). And then, the bliss of unawareness, the detachments from work stresses, the latest Go game, traffic, club issues, writing problems, everything. Gone. But some nights I start to think. When I was a kid I’d lay in bed at night imagining […]
March 9, 2017

Faceless 1 (DOG EAR)

hirty-eight messages wait for me on Facebook. This I know from my recent periscope peek. And my daughter Mulan has a repeating message that keeps deviling my email inbox, something requiring a response. Can’t see it. Can’t look. It’s a week into Lent and I’m still observing my no-Facebook pledge (with caveats – I use facey to put up notices regarding my site, such as the one the likely brought you here. I can post, but no reading, no clickthroughs, and certainly no scrolling). So, what’s it like? Refreshing in ways. Empty in others. When President Punchline comes up with […]
March 2, 2017

Lent Rethought (DOG EAR)

 couple of weeks back I noted my thought that for Lent I’d give up storytelling. It seemed like a good idea at the time but I wasn’t sure how easy it would be to tell storytelling from simple discussion. For example, if you see a crime, are you storytelling when you talk to the police? Or are you fulfilling a duty as a citizen? It’s a bit… nebulous. And that’s me speaking as both a writer and an amateur astronomer. Now, I’ve long had a hate-affair with smartphones and the zombie-wander aspects of their users. Worse, if I’m killed on […]
February 23, 2017

Faster (DOG EAR)

‘ve probably touched on this before, but stories do have a way of affecting us. Because of heroes in our tales, such as the heroes on the fields before Troy (I count Hector in that number, but not Achilles – not until he calms down, that puff-boy), we can improve our lives. Stories teach us to change, to thrive and challenge. In my case, it was a cartoon. Yowamushi Pedal is a wonderful anime series in Japan, a story about a young kid who can’t get the school anime club off the ground but somehow finds himself drawn into the […]
February 16, 2017

Gone in Sixty Seconds (DOG EAR)

’ve had service interruptions on the site before. From time to time my Amazon links suddenly stop working. I’ll notice that instead of profit-generating links to my books, I’ll end up with generic orange-box links to Amazon-in-general. Usually in an hour, maybe a half-day, the links return. So last Thursday when I found my site replaced by a 500 internal error page, I figured GoDaddy was at fault. There was also a chance that our information security people here at work had gotten even more draconian and had deemed my home site a threat. Decided to wait it out and […]
February 9, 2017

Moon Scout (DOG EAR)

as engaged in one of my more relaxing hobbies, astronomy, the other night. While waiting for Orion to come up (so I could look under his belt – I’m a nasty man) I swung the barrel on the moon. Always a favorite place to see things, and I really wanted to try out my new eyepieces. Okay, so I know there are astronomers with big trench-mortar tubes that can see that golf ball  Alan Shepard whacked. Very good. But with my new eyepiece giving me a CLEAR view at 120x (a big improvement), I can see things pretty well lunar-wise. […]
February 2, 2017

A charm (DOG EAR)

eah, third time. Was relaxing on my vacation. Woke up and thought, I just finished that Orion Nebula book. Need to knock out a review before I forget too much. What could be nicer, more “writery” than to sit in a side bedroom looking at rain and sea and write a wonderful review? I just needed a tweed jacket and I’d be set. The cat even curled up on my lap. So, wrote out a brilliant first two paragraphs, describing the first time I’d seen the nebula with my scope. What was that big orange star called? Like bug-juice something-r-other? […]
January 26, 2017

Quiet (DOG EAR)

eaders and their writers (or is that the other way round?) share two things in common. First off, they create imaginary places peopled by characters. As a work is written and as it is read, these phantomtastical realms slowly form. Interestingly, they are different for different people. I’m sure that the image a writer holds while creating a moment is different from what the reader experiences in the read. And that’s fine. Really, as long as point and plot are met, who cares if the hero looks like Brad Pitt, Ricardo Montalban or that boy you dated in high school? […]
January 19, 2017

Fate (DOG EAR)

‘ve mentioned before the sad story of my professional literary arch. If you don’t recall it, let’s do it again. It’s a tale near and dear to my heart. Anyway, had an agent who placed Fire and Bronze with a publisher. Everything was going great. Had the final proofs in. Looking on their site, they were already putting out information about my book, billing me as their “rising star of historic fiction”. Wonderful! My agent noted that they wanted more historical fiction from me and so I started putting together Wenamon, a project I had a real interest in. It […]
January 12, 2017

Grateful (DOG EAR)

ery nice lunch the other day. An old friend – a really old friend – a guy I knew like 30 years ago – contacted me and wanted to have lunch. Sure, love to. Then he mentioned that he would like to have me sign a book for his son. (yeah, it has been that long). So sure, we met and I signed the book with a big flourish and all sorts of personalized jokes – I love signing books. We ended up chatting about things, some of which will follow in the next DOG EAR. But that was the […]