Doubt is Still There…

Hello Family, Friends, and Fans;

I think I can say that I’m a moderately experienced author at this point… (2 unpublishable novels, 7 solo published novels, 2 co-authored published novels, 2 co-authored unpublished novels, 10 years of serial stories, a dozen or so short stories, and over 15 years of blog posts)

I’m currently 2/3rd of the way through a novel, in the last stages of a TTRPG system, writing a serial story, and writing a novel with my wonderful wife. (I’m tired just thinking about it all.)

I have a giant secret to tell you… come in close… closer… hey, stop licking your screen…

It doesn’t get easier

The mechanics get simpler, once you understand how to use quotation marks and construct sentences. I’ve heard wild tales of authors taming commas but I’m sure that’s just a tall tale.

The actual writing doesn’t get easier. You try your best to put one word in front of the other and stay coherent, and in the end you have a pile of them that have to be cleaned and organized into something resembling a story. All the while, there’s a little voice that says, “Can you really do this? No, probably not.” Even after writing 11 novels, I still hear that voice and it’s hard to ignore.

That doubt is something I’m told all authors live with (if it’s just me, please don’t tell me. Leave me to my delusions) and it’s one of the greatest obstacles.

Having finished something does give me the extra little confidence to say, “I did it before, maybe I can do it again”. It’s not enough to silence the doubt but it does help.

Whether it’s your first or your hundredth writing project, you’re not alone. I understand.

Now, go write something,


Here We Go Again

Hello Readers,

In case you missed it, Jen and I wrote a book together called Assassins! Accidental Matchmakers. It took us two and a half months and was a wild ride. Renaissance Press loved it and will be publishing it in Fall 2022. It’s the first in a trilogy or quadrilogy, called The Gates of Westmeath.

I took some time to finish Elizabeth 4 and now Jen and I have started writing book 2 of the Gates of Westmeath.

We finished the first two chapters this week and I’ll be starting on chapter 3 today.

We’re super excited and can’t wait to share the first book with you. So excited we made shirts for the whole family.

It’s had the adorable (and awkward if in public) side effect of having the kids screaming “Assassins family!”

Well as they say, I should be writing.

Stay safe and be kind,


Recommendation Thursday – Non-Player Character Webcomic


Every once in a while I’ll find a webcomic that devastates my productivity. It’s been a few months since this happened. The other day I was reading Weregeek and the guest artist had their own comic called NPC. The first joke I read was a D&D joke and I was hooked from then on.

It’s a gag a day comic with mini-storylines and it’s extremely entertaining.

Go check it out.



Death is a Jerk

Death Bah!

I’m sure if there is a personification of Death, they are really sweet. It’s the consequences of their actions that are horrible. So he/she is a Jerk.

It’s a strange concept that haunts and terrifies me.

I remember when I first realized that someday I wouldn’t exist. I was in the car with my mother and had just clipped my seatbelt in for the hour ride to the nearest big town for groceries.

My whole world went black for a moment and I thought I might faint. I must have been seven or eight when I realized that someday I would end. Instead of doing the intelligent thing and talking to my mother about it, I internalized it and it freaked me out.

But Death only terrorizes the living. As far as I know, once you’re dead it’s not scary anymore. It’s those left behind that feel the pain and fear of death.

I’m older now and slightly wiser than my seven year old self, I hope, and I’ve come to realize that Death should be scary. It should paralyze people but it’s important to remind ourselves to appreciate what we have and those around us, while we still can.

Happy Birthday Mom

I lost my mother shortly after my twenty-fifth birthday. She’d been sick for several years, but it still took me by surprise. I had come to terms with my own mortality at seven but I never came to terms with hers.

Today is her birthday and I miss her.

She raised me and helped shape me into the man I am today. More than that she was also my best friend for a long time, I knew I could tell her anything.

It’s been over five years now and it still hurts the same, I think it always will.

Thank you and Happy Birthday Mom. I love you.

Death in Writing

I tend to shy away from killing my characters. I mean real death, not superhero death. It’s not that I’m afraid to, it that I’m afraid of not being able to give the death the emotional weight it deserves.

That last thing I want is to write a story or book, kill off a character, and be the only one who grieves.

The threat of death, and the history of death, drives most of my characters as I imagine it drives most of humanity.

Another reason I don’t often kill off my characters, especially in short stories, is that they’re going to die anyways. I’ll finish the story and their lives will end. It’s one of the reasons I hate writing short stories. I feel for the characters and then they are gone. It hurts in a ridiculous and silly way.

Question and challenge

Has there ever been a death in something you’ve watched, read, or listened too that hit you hard? Did it surprise you? Thinking about it now, was it important to the story?

I’m going to challenge myself to write a story where someone dies and see if I can make the Jerk come to life in words.