Saturday, August 27, 2016

Battle Royale:

A Tale Concerning This Blog & Two Flash Fiction Chapbooks

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

One thing that has kept me from writing more posts lately is that I am still trying to decide what direction I want to go with this "thing." I want to choose a topic and then start focusing on blog entries on that topic, instead of just writing about my writing.

I haven't really been able to nail a topic down yet, so I guess I will just continue doing what I have been doing, and just continue writing about whatever is on my mind at the time, and in the format that I choose in the moment.

I don't know if you would say that it has necessarily been working for me yet, but I am bound to turn the corner sooner or later.


I don't know. I guess it will also depend on what I am doing next fiction-wise, and we'll for that we'll just have to see after these flash fiction chapbooks come out, which I hope people enjoy. At the very least, they are both quite short and not that expensive, so I am bound to get some takers, sooner or later. I have at least sold a few books over the years, and have gotten okay ratings so far. Definitely stuff I can build on---I only hope I have been reading my audience right with the two distinctive directions I am going. I have also had a few things published online and even some stuff in print---so that will also factor into my decision-making process.

Perhaps I will decide what to do after they both come out, and see which direction goes the best. That seems like a logical way to go about it.

So I guess that means, to whichever direction wins!

The second cover is tentative only and is a stand-in for the cover that my brother is designing. He is very talented so I am sure it will look way cooler.

Either way, I suppose I will just have to be happy with what happens between the two chapbooks. Knowing my luck, there will not be a clear difference, and I will be in the same position. Who knows. So far my best rated, most downloaded story is more the first one, but pretty much all of the flash fiction I have gotten published by others is more like the latter.

I also have two short stories finished that I can get out there. The first is around 3,500 words and the second is around 2,000. The first one has been six years in the making, and the other has been six months.

They are also somewhat representative of the dichotomy of the two flash fiction collections, so I guess they are also somewhat of a test. Both I hope to get published online, in magazines or possibly literary journals, but we'll see what sticks.


By the way, this is my second blog post IN ONE DAY! Would you have a look at that?! I haven't been this blogtastic in a while.

I see it as a good thing, and I hope you agree. If not, I don't give a shit, so you'll be hearing from me soon---unless, of course, you just decided to start ignoring this page entirely.

Whatever floats your boat, I suppose.

Photo Courtesy of Pixabay.

Some Optimism During Pessimistic Times

Illustration Courtesy of  Pixabay.

I wander around the crowd
The noonday sun
Shining down on everyone
I stop and wonder
And try to define my biggest blunder
But maybe its not all on me.

Surely there's mistakes I've made---
More than just a few---
But during this shit show parade,
Dead ends come out of the blue,
And then there's nothing you can do
But start again.

So that's where I am,
And maybe I should
Give less of a damn,
Because it hasn't all been bad,
And even though I'm sad,
I have made it through
And there's nothing
I can do
But feel this light that's shining,
Find my own way,
And live for today.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Don't Call it a Comeback...Or Do, Whatever Floats Your Boat

Greetings friends! That's right, I am actually writing two weeks in a row, but don't call it a comeback. Okay, maybe you can... Just don't tell L.L. Cool J, because I don't want his mama to knock me out.

Right now I am listening to The Dreemer's "Is, Is" EP in preparation for this year's PorchRokr Festival. This festival is one of the many reasons why I enjoy living in Akron, and it is also proof of how many great bands we have in Akron, and really in Northeast, Ohio, in general. We are very lucky. The Dreemers are headlining this year's festival, and another band I covered for The Devil Strip, the Punch Drunk Tagalongs, will also be playing the main stage.

Yes, this year's festival is pretty stacked with talented bands, and I look forward to a beer-soaked day of good tunes and fun. If you are interested in coming out, the bands started at 11 and will go all day.

In other news, I have not one, but two stories in Insomnia & Obsession 4---although, one of them, "A Sci-Fi Story, Interrupted...," is a different (earlier) take on the other, "What We Know, and What We Don't Know." I am little surprised they published both versions, but I can't really complain since I am known for publishing multiple versions of the same thing. :-P I am really just happy that they wanted to publish anything that I wrote.

If you click on the picture, it will take you to the link to purchase the issue. If you like weird stories/science fiction, there are many great writers included here, including Tony Bradford and Chris Bentley (who is also responsible for all of the artwork). I strongly encourage you to check it out!

And if that isn't enough of my flash fiction for you, in two weeks, on September 2, I will be publishing my first of two flash fiction chapbooks, "The Ever-Present Moment." The second, "Dispatches from the Information Age," has no set date, but will hopefully follow in the next six months, or so.

It is probably the most personal of anything that I have ever published, and, I think, is probably some of my best work. It is nine stories and 30 pages long. The print edition will be $5.50 online (although cheaper if you buy them directly from me) and the eBook will be $.99.

Well, I have to go bathe myself and then drive to Cuyahoga Falls to return a headphone extension cable---that is either broken or just a piece of crap---before I can enjoy today's festivities.

I hope to see you Akron folks at PorchRokr!

Saturday, August 13, 2016


Holy shit, it's the middle of August! It seems like, more and more, time rushes by so quickly it makes my head spin. The month of July just flew by, and I can't hardly believe that it's over already. Really, this whole summer has gone by in the blink of an eye.

While I am no longer in school, I still get a residual of that nervous tension that I used to feel before going back after a long summer of activities. Maybe it's just because I love the warm weather and being outside--although, the fall is nice for that too. Since I don't go back to school now (thank God), I guess my life, overall, won't change that dramatically. The routines will be the same, even though the weather will be different (will it?).

It seems like just yesterday that I was ten years younger and even more lost than I am now. Not that I particularly want to go back to that time period in my life, but it makes me think about how insanely quickly time passes, and if you don't live and enjoy your life while you are living it, then you will completely miss out on everything that makes life worthwhile.

One thing that I have tried to do this summer is take a lot of pictures. While I don't generally take many of the activities that I do (for some reason), I have captured some beautiful shots, and I thought I would share some of the best ones with you all (who don't follow me on Instagram or Tumblr).

Malabar Farm State Park.
Malabar Farm State Park.
Springmill Drive-In, Mansfield, Ohio.
Ruggles Township.
Just outside of Greenwich, Ohio.

Ohio is a beautiful state with a lot of nice features. One thing that I really enjoy doing is taking a nice slow drive through the countryside on a sunny Sunday afternoon, which is what I was doing when I took the latter two pictures in this set. The first two (from inside the cave), I took during a hike with some good friends, and the drive-in picture was taken during the first intermission of a triple feature (with the same friends, actually).

When I was younger, I would take this area for granted, but I appreciate more and more, the older that I get.

Having a phone that takes great pictures (and enables me to edit them, on the spot, basically) is one thing that I will not take for granted. I love using my 35mm camera, but it is a bit more complicated, and I can't afford a nice digital SLR, which I would love to get (someday, Gabe, someday...). Anyways, this works out pretty well.

My goal (or one of my goals, rather) is to continue to capture more pictures (including of the activities that I do), and especially of Akron, which is a beautiful city, and I live in a particularly nice section of it. Sounds like a good end of summer/beginning of fall project!