General Blog

General Blog

October 26, 2011

Beetle bugs

I love beetles. The first of the three cars I’ve ever owned was a yellow 73 superbeetle I took to the ends of the Earth (well, Irvine California, but I did the transcon in three days). So now I’ve got a 2000 New Beetle (again, yellow with distinctive bug-about-town bee’s knees). And the love, alas, is fading. I understand that a car 11 years old is going to have problems. But there seems to be this airbag issue (due to a harness under the drivers seat). If you get the light, it’s a grand right out of your pocket. I’ve […]
October 16, 2011

The joys of writing

So this weekend, I had a long slow cold, one that came up on Friday as a fevered flush with minor diarrhea. Normally it would be nothing to worry about unless you were one of the Carthaginian host crossing the Alps in the dead of winter, where if you sank along the side of the muddy trail, you’d be left to die. Or, if you were at work with only a bike. Got home okay, but it was a long ride, and my head pounded through ever pedalstroke. Yet writers have duties. I had to scroll through the latest Kindle […]
October 2, 2011

The writer’s life

Everyone has this dream of being an author. And with self-publishing, it is easier than ever. Well, that’s the story anyway. Been working on the final cut for the physical book of Early ReTyrement. Hired Mercedes from WriteTheWriteStuff off Elance and she’s been a good sport, dealing with a maniac obsessive perfectionist. But that’s what writers are, right? When Hemingway couldn’t have it his way, he blew his brains out. Been through this before. Back when eBooks published Fire and Bronze, they were supposed to (by contract) give me a final pass at the proofs. Well, they did. Kinda. They […]
September 17, 2011


Lunches are usually solitary downtime, generally writing. It’s quiet and peaceful and I get a lot done. I wrote most of Indigo over lunch breaks. So at work I was chatting with Cassandra, a dynamic black woman, about international cuisine, and she bluntly asked if I’d ever had soul food. No, I had to say, I hadn’t. She told me she’d take me to lunch the next day. She brought along Darlene (whom I also have worked with professionally), who is every bit as spontaneous and lively as Cassandra. I had to joke, as we went out to the parking […]
September 12, 2011


By using the Services, you consent to allow Yahoo!’s automated systems to scan and analyze all incoming and outgoing communications content sent and received from your account… I’d not known about this, really not known. Not until the day after Labor Day when my email account was suspended. I searched around online and found references to Yahoo’s doing this – that they scan emails – all emails. In fact, if you are not a yahoo member and post to someone who is, Yahoo looks at it. I found references to people who had jokingly said they’d take the lugnuts off […]
September 10, 2011

A rain to wash away sin…

We had rain coming this weekend. For once, the forecasters had it right. First brush was Friday morning when it poured down at 7:00am. I sat around in my bike clothing trying to get any information – the news channels focused on a distant hurricane and the internet was down. Finally it broke and I risked it – thank goodness for fenders! Got to Orange Avenue and suddenly it was bone dry. The ride home was gusty, rainshafts all around. Made it home rain-dry (but sweaty). Friday evening, it started to rain. I like rain. I love the way it […]
September 10, 2011

Early ReTyrement – final effort

I just posted the commission on Elance for the last work on Early ReTyrement, which is going out into Amazon in hard- and kindle-cover. There is still a lot of work to do, and things keep popping up. For example, in the middle of a Spelunky game I suddenly realized I had no idea how much I wanted to charge. Looked around Amazon and saw books at a wide range of prices. Don’t seem to be any rhyme or reason to how it is determined, so I picked an average – $2.99 for the eBook, $9.99 for the paper one, […]
September 8, 2011

When I die, please do…

After I die, everyone have a drink to my memory, smile, think of some favor I did or joke I told. In other words, appreciate me. And, please, on some long weekend, crack open one of my books and enjoy it with my spirit. Find a scene, character or phrase you like. Smile. I would like to be cremated. I’d really like if my ashes (it’s more like grit) be glued into 50 model railroad gondola freight cars (I’ll look just like gravel or cinders). Have someone take me to a train swap meet and price me to move. That […]
September 4, 2011

When I die, do not…

Bruno Stachel: Chivalry? To kill a man, then make a ritual out of saluting him – that’s hypocrisy. They kill me, I don’t want anyone to salute. Willi von Klugermann: They probably won’t. If I die, do not get a memorial decal for your back car window, listing my dates and some slogan about always being in your heart or whatever. Don’t. It’s as tacky as dragging a tombstone about in public. If I’m killed on the road, bike or car, do not allow the state to put up one of those cheap aluminum lollypop signs with the “Drive safe” […]
August 21, 2011

Hell hath no parking lot…

…like Waterford Lakes. I hate this place. Absolutely hate it. The only reason we went is because that’s where Attack the Block, a super English invasion flick, was playing. So we had to go. Want to set this up like an ancient grudge, in literary fashion? When I used to drive out to Kennedy Space Center to work, I’d ride on the 408 long before this complex was built. In the morning fog, one would have to take a care lest one hit a deer. It was all wilderness out there. Now they blasted that all, the pine woods and […]