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Showing posts from 2016

The Little Drummer Boy and the Carol of the Coyotes

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This cold, wet night is better suited for October than December; Halloween instead of Christmas. But there can be no doubt. This is Christmas Eve, incontrovertibly the night when Christians the world over celebrate the birth of Jesus of Nazareth, the foundation stone of their entire belief system.

Perhaps that is why people like me find ourselves so baffled on December 24th. Christmas is a holiday rooted deeply in belief, both individual and cultural.
As a child, I believed. 

Christmas was a time of magic and wonder, and Christmas Eve was the night when all the small magics of childhood come together in a breathless kind of anticipation. Will Santa come? Will I get that doll/game/book/toy I asked for? Or does he know about the time I locked my three-year-old brother in the bathroom with the tub running. I’m sure Mom told him about that. She never forgets anything. As a result, Santa Claus doesn’t either.
Was there anything ever so delicious as slipping in between cool sheets with the he…

Post-Op Thoughts: Creativity Vanquishes Pain

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I have three-quarters of a million dollars invested into my spine, but that's not the most expensive aspect of the injury that started me on this road to disaster.

Chronic pain in general and chronic back pain in particular are so all-encompassing. Every aspect of your life is impacted--mostly by taking things away. When I was in the car wreck that blew up my spine fourteen years ago, I had an extremely active lifestyle. Swimming, scuba, hiking, off-trail hiking, rock climbing, bicycling...all activities I loved. All gone now. I would walk 1-2 miles a day. The furthest I've been able to walk for the past four years is a block.

Half a block for the past year or more.

I do all my shopping online so it can be delivered. I haven't been in a brick and mortar store shopping in two years at least--mostly because even though I can't walk in WalMart, I don't think it's right for me to take the little carts away from people who "really" need them. And then I g…

LiveSciFi Zozo Investigation Day Two Live Blog

So here's what sucks about falling asleep. You miss stuff. 

I was up early yesterday, had a conference with my literary agent, then wrote my column, and all that fun stuff. On top of that, considering the pain level a chronic pain sufferer deals with, the medications totally knock you out. Unthinkingly, I took my meds at the regular time last night. So by the time we started hitting 3:30 - 4 am, I was pretty much done for the night. 
I kept waking up when things would happen, but then dozed back off. My own fault. Should never have said, "I'll just lie down for a while." 
So now I'm hours behind, and will have to watch catch-up footage here in a bit when it's posted. My own fault. 
That being said, though, right now the house is empty and for the past hour it's been echoing with bangs and snaps and clicks on a fairly constant basis. To me this is compelling because there is literally no one there. 
10:56 HUGE bang in an empty house. Something feel somewhe…

LiveSciFi Zozo Investigation Night One--Live Blog

October 21, 2016 (7:00 pm EST) So what am I doing, you ask? 

Tonight at 10 pm EST, the LiveSciFi paranormal investigators will kick off a three-day ghost hunt at a residence in Oklahoma City that is purported to be haunted AND oppressed by a demonic entity known as Zozo. Now, if you read my last blog post, you know that I did a lot of research and wrote a few articles ahead of this upcoming investigation...and that the nasty critter set off a chain reaction of paranormal activity around my house and particularly around my computer. 
Ergo...I figure this is a safer and more fun way to take notes during the investigation. Blogger will automatically back my stuff up, and I can jot down observations, opinions, and instant reactions to what happens during the lockdown. So take that, Zozo! 
And here's the kicker. Although I enjoy paranormal investigations, I am also seriously skeptical. I don't put much stock into orbs, or creaky noises, or random lights. If I see something that mig…

Zozo Investigation and that Demonic Haunting Story I Never Told You

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So you guys know I'm normally keeping myself pretty busy, and especially at this time of year. Not only is football season in full swing, which means writing for the Orange & White Report and my weekly Fact or Fanatic column, but I'm in the middle of publishing eight novels (two more to go in digital; six more in print). And because I just cannot be too busy, this month is also October which means my mind turns none-too-gently to the paranormal world. 

We spent October of 2015 shredding the abysmal A&E television show Cursed: The Bell Witch and the absolutely execrable Destination America Exorcist Live! and putting together my blog series The Real Bell Witch, all of which you can see by going to the Paranormal, Bell Witch, & Zozo page tab at the top of the blog. 
Wait...you noticed the extra name, didn't you? Well, that's because this year, I'm trying something different. 
I've been working with Tim Wood out at LiveSciFi on a series of articles abou…

ZoZo Ouija Demon House LIVE 72 Hour Broadcast

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If the Southeastern Conference Won't Act, Then Fans Need To

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Let’s be frank: the SEC has totally dropped the ball and exhibits no interest in the fact that multiple schools just got screwed over by Florida.
I have no problem with Florida-LSU not being played in Gainesville. Let’s be honest, the weather in Gainesville wasn’t the issue. It doesn’t matter if it was 90 and sunny on Saturday afternoon. What does matter is that there are disaster areas close to Gainesville, the millions of people and businesses without power, the potential for not having drinkable water, the police and first responders needed elsewhere, and a highway system that will be packed with refugees returning to find out if they have a home left. 
That’s why the game wasn’t played. 
What the rest of the SEC should be taking objection to is the way that Florida pulled a fast one over on both LSU and SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey. 
Outgoing athletic director Jeremy Foley coordinated an obfuscation ploy that completely blindsided the SEC, and made Sankey look like a short-sighte…

Excerpt--Prisoner of Death coming October 1

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When Tamsen wakes up in an unfamiliar place with no idea of who she is, something warns her to be cautious. So she plays a game with the man who claims to be her husband, and pays attention to what is going on around her. The physician her husband calls to tend to her after her accident makes her uncomfortable with his strange allure and odd style of speech. Nothing around her seems as it should be.

While Tamsen tries to regain her lost memory, Brial Ka'breona is tearing across the continent in an enraged hunt for his lost wife and Queen. But now the gods are forbidden to walk the mortal realm, and not even the Virgin Huntress can help them. In order for Tamsen and Brial to come together again, terrible sacrifices must be made--by mortals and immortals both. When a strange new ally presents itself, Tamsen must determine if the sacrifice she must make is ultimately worth the cost.

But sometimes, it doesn't matter what the price is. When the continued existence of the mortal re…

Big Day for The Reckoning of Asphodel

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Today has been a banner day--and there's not even a football game on. The first novel in The Asphodel Cycle--The Reckoning of Asphodel--is back on the bestseller list in its genre, which is always a good thing. 
But to make matters better, Reckoning is now available in paperback! Each month, as I release new digital books in The Black Dream on the 1st, I'll also roll out a paperback of an Asphodel Cycle novel. 


You can grab your paperback of The Reckoning of Asphodelhere
Self-publishing and doing it the right way is not only difficult, but expensive. I approached this experience the same way  I approached the hundreds of books we published at Musa. Each book is professionally edited, copyread, formatted, and designed. Each book cover is original art, designed by a professional cover artist. Each book is produced in multiple formats. These aren't just word files slapped into a pdf. There's more to creating a good book than that technically. 
As soon as the craziness s…

12:34

12:34.

Whether AM or PM 12:34 has been a time of day that for some reason I always seem to notice. I'll look up from writing.
12:34.
I'll wake up for some reason, disturbed from the three or four hours of sleep I'm getting in this incredibly busy year and glance at the clock.
12:34.
Through the years, that time of day had held an almost magical fascination for me. For a long time, a song was associated with it. I could be driving down one of the long, boring stretches of I-70 between Ohio and Tennessee, and Steve Winwood's While You See A Chance would come on. I'd look at my watch. 
12:34. 
Don't you know by now
No one gives you anything?
And don't you wonder how you keep on moving?
One more day your way
And that old gray wind is blowing
And there's nothing left worth knowing
And it's time you should be going
While you see a chance take it
Find romance, fake it
Because it's on you...

The song and the time have a special significance to me--a conversation …

First Excerpt-- The Black Dream Book One: Servant of Dis

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After the Ilian War, Tamsen Ka’antira settled into ruling the Elven Realm with her husband, Brial at her side. But when a diplomatic crisis occurs between Ansienne and Hippolytos, Tamsen and Brial are lured out of Leselle into the treacherous currents of human politics.
Tamsen realizes these escalating events are driven by something inimical—something determined to bring the Elven Queen from behind the magical barrier that protects her realm. Whispers of new sorcerers and upheaval among the gods soon coalesce into a single frightening truth. The peace the gods had granted to Tamsen is over, and the rising threat will turn erstwhile enemies into allies.
Only the greatest danger could persuade the Elven Queen to serve the god that once threatened the existence of her entire race. If Tamsen becomes the servant of Dis, the peril overshadows not just the mortal realm, but the realms of the gods.


“Your Majesty?” I looked up from the pile of parchment that had been baffling me for hours. Bryse h…