38 years old…

June 16th, 2020, I turn 38. In two years I’ll be 40 and on the downhill slide as people look at it. If you’d asked me 20 years ago where I’d be, I never would have thought: married, three kids (one of which a teenager), and working in a factory. I’d hoped to be writing, which I am, but it would be nice to be sitting on a nice big publishing deal or something.

I got to my day job this morning and was talking to this new kid from third shift. I say kid because, turns out he’s 19. I’m officially twice the age of a coworker. The next milestone would be when there are coworkers younger than my kids.

So I made a comment about the music I was playing on the stereo and he mentioned he writes songs, music and lyrics, the whole nine yards. I asked him if he’s done anything with it and he got shy and said no. I instantly saw a flashback to when I started writing and never let anyone read or see any of it. I didn’t publish my first book until I was 32.

I told him this, and I said to him. Go for it. Don’t wait. Don’t waste years wishing you had tried it. Even if you lay down the tracks and post it to iTunes yourself. I told him about my cousins son who did this and actually made some money doing it.

I hope he took my advice and he goes home, dusts off those sheets of paper and gives it a try. I’m sure I’ll see him around. So I’ll try to keep encouraging him.

It’s a small thing but it made me feel good to talk to him and maybe help him a little. Something put him in my path today. Whether you believe in Fate or Karma or any of that stuff. I do, and I feel good about the conversation. My spirit and my drive to pursue my dreams is bolstered. I hope his is too.

See ya around Gentle Readers. Hopefully I have some news about Family Heritage Book 3 soon.


On This Day – March 23rd

This day Gentle Readers brings us another wildly successful author. Though he is not as prolific as yesterday’s authors, today would still be a good birthday to share.

ThomasHarris.jpg Thomas Harris was born this day in 1940 in the town of Jackson, Tennessee. He would move as a child to Mississippi. Thomas is famous for creating the iconic connoisseur of human flesh, Hannibal Lector. Like his creation, Harris is a fantastic chef and purveyor of fine wines. He has even taken the grueling Le Cordon Bleu exams. Not much else is known about this supremely private storyteller, as he has not granted an interview since 1976 and avoids publicity like the plague.

To be able to pick the brain of the man that created such a fascinating character as Hannibal would be a dream of mine. However, I am sure he will not break his media silence any time soon, even for a fellow southerner such as myself. A guy can dream though right?

Happy Birthday Thomas Harris, may your meal be delicious and your wine perfect on this day. May I suggest a nice red?

I think Thomas proves that you don’t have to write a hundred novels to be successful. All it takes is that one character who will live on in literary, and in Hannibal’s case Hollywood, history. Go find your character my Gentle Readers. Until next time. Live well, write well, be well.

On This Day – March 22nd

If your birthday is today Gentle Readers, I suggest you write that masterpiece you have been dreaming of because you share a birthday with two highly successful and prolific writers.

Louis_L'Amour.jpg Our first author of the day came to us in 1908 from Jamestown, North Dakota. Louis L’Amour was the seventh son of a local veterinarian, politician, and farm equipment broker. Louis grew up with an avid love of reading born from extensive time spent in the library. Though he left school at age 15, Louis went on to try his hand at many careers. After World War II, he sat down to seriously try his hand as a writer. He drew from his own personal experience, as well as extensive research, to craft realistic and historically accurate novels that would launch his career. His short story, The Gift of Cochise, was read and loved by John Wayne. Wayne would purchase the screen rights and the character Hondo Lane was born. In all, Louis has over 100 novels, 250 short stories, and many poetry collections to his credit. His work is still in print and sales topped well over 200 million before his death to lung cancer in 1988.

jamespatterson Our second author of the day is one I am sure that most readers know, whether they love him or hate him. James Patterson, prolific writer and philanthropist, was born on this day in 1947 in Newburgh, New York. No one can refute that Patterson is wildly successful. His critics, who include Stephen King, are critical of his abilities as a writer because of the number of co-authored books he has published. My understanding is that all of his co-authors are provided detailed outlines, and he revises all chapters himself anyway. Personally, I saw go for it, as long as he is giving credit to his co-authors. I wouldn’t turn him down if he wanted to collaborate on a project. So, if you are reading this James, drop me an email and let’s chat about our next project, OK?

Either of these authors make great role models for hard work and perseverance. Their dedication to the craft of storytelling is legendary. Happy Birthday to them both today.

Make your own legends my Gentle Readers. Be the L’Amour or Patterson of whatever it is you want to do in life. Be it writing related, or just the best in your chosen field. Until next time. Live well, write well, be well.

Happy Birthday J.R.R. Tolkien


Today would be the 124 birthday of the Father of High Fantasy, JRR Tolkien. That’s something Bilbo and Frodo would be proud to claim. I think about the first time I opened the pages of The Hobbit. I was spellbound. The words curled up in my head and stayed there, fostering a love of reading and adventure that led me on so many journeys over my life thus far.

When Hollywood decided to turn these wonderful works into movies, I was excited, and scared. To see the characters brought to life on the big screen was a dream come true. However, would it live up to the images in my mind? Would it disappoint like so many movie adaptations have? While not perfect, I would hope that Tolkien would be pleased with the finished product.

I have enjoyed watching the Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit movies with my son. When he can sit still long enough to finally read the books in their entirety, I hope he is as captivated as I was with them. I cannot wait to share all the entirety of the journey with him.

I salute you J.R.R. Tolkien, may your words continue to inspire and enrich the lives of readers everywhere.

For those looking for a little more in-depth reading on this great author, I direct you to the following links.