Writing with my tie on

I sit here, 9:45pm, with my nice slacks and tie on. And a button up shirt. I’m not a savage. Or a Chip and Dales performer.

I’m writing. The first twenty minutes I still had my coat on. I was cold. I could turn on the heat, but what happens if I do is suddenly at midnight it’s an involuntary sauna and my sheets are soaked. Still trying to figure this out, I think it has to do with neighbors.

More than likely, when I go to bed at 10:30 or so, I will first go into my room, hang up my pants and tie, and get into pajamas. I don’t want to ruin the flow. The flow of writing.

So good news! I’ve been writing nearly 2,000 words a day for the next novel. About an hour a day. Today was a little more draining due to dinner, but it was a fun dinner. And delicious. I had my first truffle! It tastes like a mushroom….

I want the second novel manuscript done by the end of February, which will be challenging.

Also! Next week I get to go to my first writer’s con! I’m way excited. While it means I won’t be at the release of Deadpool, which I’m entirely bummed about, it does mean I’ll be networking and making contacts among the writer community! I did want to have something finished so I could present, but all I’ll have is the old novel which I feel tacky presenting, since no one can pick it up for another three months.

In more awesome news, I’ve sold 28 physical copies through Amazon. This doesn’t include any digital or that I sold from my own stock. So I’m around 50 sold. I’m pretty happy with this. Low goals.

Anyway, hope you’re creating through your exhaustion. Long day. Time for bed. Maybe a little reading.

Dyndaer Cover Reveal

Something awesome this way comes.

amazonfullcoverDyndaer, the second story in The Kaelandur Series–sequel to the dark fantasy bestseller, Melkorka–is almost here. On January 27, 2016, hundreds of readers will finally be able to snag this much anticipated, full-length novel.

Stay connected for more updates and follow our NEWSLETTER for special offers.

Check out Anaerfell, a standalone novel in the same world, taking place 80 years prior to Melkorka.

Branimir emerges from the Netherworld as a living legend and learns the Ash Tree is still in danger from the cursed dagger, kaelandur. An old friend compels Branimir to finish what they started at Melkorka. Once again, the former slave must keep kaelandur out of uncertain hands, while struggling to separate heroes from villains and friends from foes.

Some evils never lessen!

Pre-Orders Coming Soon

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Whole 30

So I posted a lot of workout posts, and then I did it for a week and quit. I wanted to break that for Whole 30. I wanted to do Whole 30, and then if I succeeded I’d laud it over the internet. If I failed I’d hide in shame all on my own.

If you’re unsure what Whole 30 is, basically you can’t eat anything. That’s a lie, or exaggeration, but imagine the majority of what you’re eating (aside from I know I have followers with health blogs, and I’m sure your meals are beyond reproach) you can’t eat.

Now the purpose of the diet is to figure out what causes you issues. It may cause weight loss (mine did), but primarily, what are you allergic to? What does your body hate?

You cut out soy, dairy, any added sugar (you’d be amazed at how many things have dextrose, sugar, high fructose corn syrup, it was really a disgusting realization (he says as he just had McDonald’s for the first lunch off Whole 30 and immediately regretted it, or maybe after like ten minutes regretted it)), peanut products, wheat, grain, gluten, etc.

More or less, as a rule of thumb, you’re living off fresh vegetables, meat, and fruit (only two servings because they’re pretty high sugar). Not processed. You walked into a grocery store, picked it up, and cooked it with some olive oil.

I did this during Christmas. Think on that. Sausage pretty much all has sugar. Bacon mostly has sugar (why the hell do you need to add sugar to bacon?!). There are cookies, chocolates (I got chocolate at our White Elephant exchange, which I ate them yesterday), fudge, sweets of configurations you’ve never before even seen! Except you saw them last Christmas, you’re just still really curious why that’s the only time they show up. Eggnog. I gave up eggnog. Some people need to breathe. I need eggnog once a year, but that was foiled by no dairy.

Everything is cooked in butter. Everything store bought has sugar in it. Even the snacks, with sausage, cheese, and gluten free crackers (they use rice, which is a grain), were forbidden by the cruel Whole 30 overlord! And I resisted. I survived off insubstantial salad (I swear that’s what everyone thought I ate every day, and I only had it at family gatherings, without dressing, because the second or third ingredient of any store bought dressing is sugar).

I learned a lot about cooking. I took it slow, adding on more steps as I went. Most people would say what I ate was boring, but I thought it tasted good. I eventually reached a point of fajitas without the tortilla. I know, it sounds horrifying, but it was pretty tasty. Sauteed vegetables with meat is amazing, and there are a lot of veggies out there to saute.

So I write this from the other side. After having completed it, a resolution before the new year. I’m going to start working out after a trip next week, and try to keep that up regularly. Going back to Insanity, as the diet itself shed a few pounds, but ultimately I’ll need to work out to lose anything extra.

It’s a good start to the year, this conviction for health combined with the explosion of stories. I have five short stories and a novel slated for this year. Should be good. Hope your years are starting off awesome.

2015: I Say Success

My 2015 blog report came out! It made me reflect a lot on my habits, as it’s interesting seeing something from afar instead of in the moment.

There were several things that I really liked seeing. I posted less. 2015 marks one third of my time on WordPress (some time early January I’ll have my three year anniversary). I had around 130 posts this year, compared to well over 500. So I only had approximately a fifth of my posts written this year. That pleases me. Hopefully it means I’m writing more that isn’t just blogs. He says as Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate is booted up and awaiting him (but so is my current manuscript, which I’m giving an hour before terrorizing the streets of 1800s London with my street gang).

Most of my famous articles are from 2013 and 2014. Zinger. I had two out of five from 2015. One referenced Hodor, the other was about The Grand Budapest and tragedy. Which I thought was a fantastic movie, but my parents vehemently call me insane. There was a beauty in the immense and deep loss of the movie.

I also want to thank Linda Hill, as she’s the second reason people find me, next to the WordPress reader. But is that really finding me, or more like chilling in my literary crib so they can read my words?

I’m pretty pleased with my 2015. Like this was a monumental year for me. I can’t tell you how many really terrifying dreams came true (If your dreams don’t terrify you, you aren’t dreaming big enough).

I was published twice in anthologies, both of them experimental pieces. “Harold the Hero” has to be my favorite of the two, and most people agree. Dad thought it was funny, and the editor said it was so enchanting that at times she forget she had to be editing.

I published a novel. A NOVEL guys. And people bought it. Like not just family, who I went up to with a trench coat, opened it, and said, “Wanna buy my novel?” Real people I haven’t met. And they showed me pictures. And I didn’t push it push it on them. It was weird. I’m still figuring out how to feel about it.

What’s slated for 2016? I want to finish a novel in less than three years, so hopefully a December release for the second novel in the series. Then get a couple short stories out through either Wattpad or KDP with Amazon.

I think that’s it. I’ve been working on this for a while now and my mind gets distracted. So time to work on novel #2!

God bless your new year and I hope 2015 was good for you!

Mortality

In the high school to college range, as this was an epiphany which settled upon me in time and I can’t remember entirely when it settled in, I realized a great truth: I would die.

There would come a day I would cease to exist. The struggle of day to day would come to an end and I would move on to the next great adventure. It could have been within the next thirty seconds, or in the next sixty years. My chances of getting past 80 aren’t great, and I’m okay with that.

Most people don’t wrap their heads around mortality. Death is feared. It’s pushed aside. Often times, even those who are of religions where death should bring peace, they fear the inevitable tick tock of time, just as Captain Hook feared the crocodile. Always ticking forward.

There are some amazing perception shifts when you come to terms with the end game. Especially when you realize there are plenty of young people who die suddenly. I don’t have script immunity. I could simply not wake up tomorrow.

1) Do what you want the world to remember you for

I’m a published author. Seriously. There’s a stack of 49 books beside me as I write this. It would be 50, but I sold one. It will be 47 very likely by next Friday. People loved my second short story. Even my dad complimented it. If I died tomorrow, they’d have things to remember me by. My nephew and niece, and no doubt numerous others to come, could read what I’ve published and get an idea of Uncle Paul, or remember him as a goof. Seriously. My sister-in-law says “Oh, Paul” so often that my nephew picked up the habit.

Are you doing what you love? Are you doing what you want people to remember you for? If a close friend wrote an obit, would it include half of what you want it to include? Do what you want to be remembered for. As I’m in a slump on my next novel, it’s what pushes me forward to sit and write, even if it’s a blog post.

2) Don’t waste time on filler

So, I’m not saying remove all filler. I enjoy Fallout 4The Witcher 3Lady Mechanika (like totally fanboying over this comic book), the Marvel movies and TV shows, and so on into infinity. However, with so many cool things out there, how easy it is for me to sit on my butt and kill hours doing nothing. Producing nothing.

We live in a society (and I firmly believe every society before us had the same concept) in which we have dozens of time killers. They all constitute pleasure. Some if you don’t partake you’re considered lame. Some if you partake you’re considered lame. I fall into the later group more often than not.

Society is a master of time killing. It’s part of our nature. There are very few people where it comes natural to strive for ambitions, and in most people it’s a weak flame easily doused.

3) Appreciate every moment

A pastor once asked how I’m doing. I told him, with a smile and head nod, “I’m alive.” He said that was a grim outlook. To me it wasn’t.

I woke up today. Because of that I was able to see my 50 books in boxes. I signed the copies my parents have. I played with my niece and nephew. Apparently my niece was so sad I wasn’t there when she woke up from nap time (I live nearly an hour away and couldn’t justify driving back and forth three times), she cried. Every time she sees me she gets so excited she falls down (she’s not even two, don’t judge).

Waking up tomorrow means I have another day. I can use it to feel beaten, or I can use it to strive for more. I’m alive. I can strive to be awesome.

4) It’s okay to get your ass whooped

I’ve been struggling for a month and a half. When depression hits me it’s a suffocating force. When anxiety hits me it’s crippling. Sometimes the job buries me. Often walking through the door to an empty, dark apartment hits me hard. Do it for three years. It weighs down. Don’t get me started about when the writing doesn’t want to flow, like currently. I have the next novel planned out more or less, but I can only seem to write 200 words a day, if I’m lucky (I usually rock around 1500+ a day). And editing…I hate editing.

It’s okay to be defeated. To feel defeated. You can’t get back up without loss. Sometimes you’re winning and losing at the same time, and it feels like you can’t get ahead. That’s okay.

Tomorrow is another day. Use it. The  good feels so much more incredible when you had to slug through to get it. My niece and nephew mean so much to me because I don’t have any real prospects for creating my own kids. Seeing my books and hearing good things about it means a lot since it took so long to write. Since it was so painful to write.

And at the end of the day, when you embrace mortality, you realize the pain doesn’t last forever. Why not slug it out another day? Why not make it awesome and memorable?

I hope you’re doing well. I hope you have found or are finding your purpose. Trust me, you have one. You can make it one more day.

Love and peace.

Merry Hatred

I think I figured out why it never feels like Christmas. It started when I took my current job.

Part of it is I don’t have the Christmas festivities of teaching at a private school. They were a lot of fun, but also terrifying. At the end of the day, however, 75% was positive.

I don’t have that anymore. I hang out with family a couple days, it’s a lot of fun, I get like two days off work instead of two weeks, and it’s really like a long weekend. More often than not, Thanksgiving is more impactful.

But there’s something dragging on it besides that. As I’m looking at Facebook everything is about Trump, politics, fuck Republicans, ban guns, Obama’s an idiot, Christians are bigots, fuck Christmas, Muslims are evil. It took me five minutes to find:

procrastinate

At which point I laughed my ass off. I mean it took a moment, at first I was like, “What cause is someone upset about now?” But then I read it and it was like, thank you. To my one friend who always keeps is light.

Maybe it was what I posted. There was something that shows you Trump supporters, and out of my near 400 friends there were only four. And out of four, there was only one who may not have been ironic. So I make a Facebook comment that it seems Trump is primarily liked ironically. The hate is piled on. No, Trump isn’t ironic, he’s the sign of what the Republican party is.

Wait. What? His poll numbers are plummeting with every time he speaks.

It didn’t stop there. It just kept rolling into Republicans are evil, bigots, and so on. Most my friends are evil and I have to admit, I’ve never seen one speak so cruelly about a Democrat. Sure they rib, sure they say that’s not going to work, sure they say, “Think it out.” But they’ve never blamed the majority of democrats of being evil. And don’t get me wrong, I know the person saying these things is the Democrat equivalent of the crackpot Republican. I know they’re out there. I see the trucks covered in bumper stickers.

The problem is it didn’t stop here. It didn’t stop with him. The rest of my news feed was hatred towards Trump, Republicans, Christians, Christmas, and so on. Usually there’s some refugee and Muslim hate as well, but that doesn’t happen until the afternoon.

Why can’t we enjoy what we enjoy? Why does every ten posts have to consist of “How Christmas is Pagan”? I know why Christmas is on December 25th. I get it was a competition to party. I don’t see people trying to ruin Hanukkah for the same reason.

So I’ve made a decision. I’m going to make Christmas festive. I’m just going to unfriend assholes. If they post and don’t comment, I’m going to unfollow their news feed.

We are a society with so much to be grateful for. We are a society that is leaps and bounds beyond most, even civilized, countries. But wow has that made it so we can ever focus on the bad. You can never purge societal evil. You can only shift its focus. We are beings of fear and anger, and we will find it somewhere.

So this holiday season, don’t be a dick. Stop pissing on people. Merry Christmas.

Dreams Come True-Published

Today I made a life long dream come true. To many more novels.

Lands of Volden

I was in second grade when I wrote my first fan fiction. It was based on the Big Friendly Giant. To be honest, I’m guessing. I know I wrote a fan fiction about it in second grade, and it had no grade on it, therefore I assume it was for fun. I found this three years ago when moving out of my parent’s house. I guess you would call it my beginning.

In fourth grade (maybe fifth) I wrote a Jurassic Park fan fiction. I filled a 70 page notebook. I was not a back and front guy at the time, but if you can cut me some slack, I was in fourth (or fifth) grade. I don’t often write fan fictions any more, and it baffles me to see how many older people do. Then I remember that’s how I started out as well.

I always wanted to…

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