Most people aren’t aware of it. Frankly most people probably don’t care. But if you’re into finding adventurous destinations that are off the beaten path, they’re out there waiting to be found. One of my favorites is at the the point where 23rd Street intersects with FDR Drive in New York City. You have to look closely, but there is a sign to be found if you pay attention. It will lead you to a path that leads from Manhattan to the Hamptons – in just 40 minutes.
While in town for a brief visit I stopped in to get the skinny and take in the sights. Pilot Magazine (a publication of the good folks at AOPA (Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association) was good enough to run the story. Whether you fly or not, it’s worth a read. In part because you never know who you’ll meet when you bop around NYC with an open mind, a curious eye, and a willingness to get into a conversation with those you meet. In this case, I bumped into Chris Mitchell who was preparing to Fly the Whale. Yes, that Chris Mitchell. Go figure.
You can read the whole story here. If you’ve ever been to NYC, or better yet, if you’ve ever wanted to go, this just might open up a whole new way of looking at the Big Apple.
As the fifth and final installment of the Lifeboat Augusta series takes shape, I find myself in a particularly good mood. Reaction to the series has been terrific. I’ve received so many complimentary comments about the ebooks that I’ve decided to celebrate. Starting today and running straight through Sunday, June 29, To the Lifeboats, is being offered for FREE on Amazon. Just click the link, download your copy, and start enjoying the adventures of Randy Tagget, Keisha Miller, and the cast of characters who inhabit the Lifeboat Augusta.
It has been a real pleasure writing this series. I’m pleased to know so many readers have enjoyed the adventure so much and I have every confidence you will find the conclusion to be just as intriguing as the rest of this quirky out-of-this-world life or death drama. What a ride it’s been.
Hang tight, it’s not over yet. There’s more to come.
It’s a fair question. What kind of an author stalks his own readers? Well, in my case it’s an appreciative one. It’s been my good luck to have dedicated readers who praise my work in public and bang on me regularly to write faster, finish the next project, and get it into their hands as quickly as possible. I love these folks. They make my work a more satisfying experience. They bring a smile to my face and a song to my heart. I’d be sunk without them, and so when the opportunity presents itself I have made it a practice to seek out enthusiastic readers and find a way to say, “Thank you” in a personal and hopefully meaningful way.
Most recently, I’ve been stalking David Nicholson. He’s a good man, an enthusiastic booster of my Lifeboat Augusta series of sci fi novellas, and he even plays the guitar in his down time. I appreciate his support so much I promised to dedicate the fourth novella of the series to him, which I did. When you flip through to the dedication page you’ll see his name right there. I wasn’t kidding.
What David didn’t expect was that I would depart from the ebook format for him and him alone. Just this once. With the release of, Binary Choices earlier this week, I took a single set of pages and a cover to a secret location and had the whole shebang bound for him. With the assistance of his sneaky and wonderful wife, Amanda Jo, I was able to track David down at a local Thai restaurant and pounce. I presented him with the only bound copy of, Binary Choices, and I got a big ol’ smile in return. That’s a perfectly fair trade in my book. See for yourself. We’re both pretty darned happy with the way things turned out.
Thanks David (and Amanda Jo, too). You’re the best!
Claire North hits it out of the park with, The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August. Yes, this story traverses the years, the decades, the centuries experienced by one Harry August, an otherwise unremarkable man from the British Isles, save for one odd fact. He continues to live the same lifetime over, and over, and over again. Not the same life, mind you. Just the same lifetime. He is always Harry August, but his destiny is not fixed. It is flexible, inviting, terrifying, perplexing, dull, and invigorating. Whatever he wishes his life to be, it can be. But unlike the rest of us, he carries with him the memories of previous lives.
Read More →
It went like this. She asked for an interview, I said yes, and off we went. There are five videos, each involving a single question and answer. I had a great time. Well worth the time it took to conduct the interview. Hopefully, you’ll enjoy it, too.
Part 2 is here. Question: Will you only publish in the Ebook format?
Part 3 is here. Do you like it when readers try to meet you?
Part 4 is here. Where is Abiaka County, Florida?
Part 5 is here. Question: What made you want to become a writer?
It’s short, only 36 pages from start to finish. It’s called, Deep in the Grove, and it’s priced at a rock-bottom $0.99. One penny short of a dollar. I’m actually kind of proud about that.
The story is based on a real event, although it departs from reality early. In real life, I was present when two skeletons were removed from a sandy gravesite, hastily dug under cover of darkness deep in a citrus grove. That experience has lingered in my mind for several years. Visually compelling, emotionally wrenching, even olfaction comes into play when you stand beside a hole in the ground where bodies have recently been decaying. It’s impossible to forget. And so I decided to write about it in a highly fictionalized manner.
To be truthful, I initially thought about writing a non-fiction magazine piece detailing the actual killings. But the more I thought about it, the less appealing the idea become. I couldn’t find a way to write the story that didn’t feel slimy, sensationalist, and ultimately disrespectful of the two murdered girls. So I dispensed with the notion. Yet the experience of standing beside that hole in the ground, watching as their bones were recovered, witnessing the professionalism and care the crime scene investigators put into their grisly work – the memory kept nagging at me and nagging at me. Clearly the memory wasn’t going to go away easily. Read More →
Literature is a gift that can fire the imagination and propel the mind into new discoveries. Then again, literature sometimes contains filthy words that corrupt our young and foster anti-establishment thought processes.
Both the sentences above describe an actual position taken by educational leaders. Amazingly enough both of these positions once existed in the same time and in very nearly the same place. I know. I lived it. Lucky me.
You see, I spent my elementary school years in East Hartford, Connecticut. It was then and still is a lovely little suburban town known for Pratt and Whitney airplane engines and the ability to supply a nearly endless stream of office workers to the world headquarters of a mind-numbing number of insurance companies just across the river in Hartford.
Just as I was about to enter high school my family moved to the considerably more affluent, rural and intellectually liberal town of Glastonbury. The two towns share a border. Their inhabitants are almost indistinguishable from one another. Yet there was a stark contrast between the two that could be attributed to a young punk who was causing trouble. His name was, Holden Caulfield. That little bastard swore, and he swore a lot dammit. East Hartford wouldn’t stand for it. Glastonbury on the other hand, embraced him. Read More →
It’s been my great pleasure to write for a number of publications that fall under the umbrella of AOPA (the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association). Most recently they’ve tapped me to write periodic columns that appear beside those of other industry professionals. The series is called, Opinion Leaders. The group I’m included with is a fairly heavy hitting collection of folks. I’m proud to be in their company, frankly.
My latest contribution can be found here. It’s a brief dissertation on the topic of Light Sport Aircraft and sport pilots. Within the general aviation industry these small, light, fuel efficient aircraft are often seen as pests, or lesser machinery. Worse, their pilots are often denigrated as being less than real pilots. I have a thing or two to say about that, and so I did – right here, in the Opinion Leaders forum at AOPA.