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Monday, April 26, 2010

"Offspring" cover design!

The manuscript is written, the cover art is finished, and now the cover design has been completed. Kirk DouPonce, designer extraordinaire!

I've been discussing the details with AMG Publishers. Within the next few weeks I'll be posting more definite news related to that! ...In the mean time I'll continue working on "The Key of Living Fire" and some other projects.

Monday, April 19, 2010

"Offspring" cover art completed!

Here it is, finished at last! Today artist Kerem Beyit finished this piece for the cover of my second novel The Sword of the Dragon: Offspring. I gotta say I love it! He did a fabulous job in a few weeks' time. So I sent this off to Kirk DouPonce, the same designer who put together the cover for Swords of the Six. He'll have the cover design to me in the next week and then I'll plaster that everywhere I can to get people hyped!

Because AMG Publishers will be releasing my books, rather than Flaming Pen Press, I'm not sure if they'll use the cover design. But I want to spread it around anyway. The contract is taking a while and, because I make my living at this, I cannot afford to wait. I have always strived to be prepared and so I am proceeding as if I don't have their offer on the table. That way I can focus on one task at a time... and try to ignore the exciting reality of the contract.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Desensitizing the Public to Sin: it is a constant work-in-progress

There is no shortage of TV shows nowadays. But what is in short supply are wholesome, artful, well-written shows. Since Star Wars: The Clone Wars hit the big screen I have followed it avidly. The characters are believable, the animation is awesome (and a welcome departure from anime) and the episodes are packed with thoughtful stories that add greatly to the depth of the Star Wars universe. It is meant as a kids' show, but I'm not the only adult who thoroughly enjoys it. I've met a lot of people as a travel to various book signings and most of them agree: this show is terrific.
Most recently I watched two episodes involving the Zillo beast. Wow. I loved it! How do they manage to pack so much into twenty minute episodes?
When I think of awesome sci-fi shows I think Star Trek, Stargate SG-1, Stargate Atlantis. But Clone Wars continues to deepen both in characterization and in plot. It is definitely one of the best shows out there.
TV producers cram a lot of junk into most of the shows available today. Between sexual scenes and numerous foul language they desensitize us, the viewers, so that they can throw increasing lewdness and vulgarity into our minds. I'm ashamed to admit that I overlook a lot of elements in shows, including both of the formerly mentioned. I just want to relax and enjoy myself. I don't want to be fighting all the time to purify my mind. But that is the problem, isn't it? We want to be entertained and we empty our minds of everything else to focus on the show or the film. We sit back with a bowl of popcorn (or in my case chocolate chip cookies) and sponge in everything: the sex, the vulgarity, the lewdness, and other sins.
That is a great part of my reason for enthusiastically endorsing this tv series Clone Wars. I can sit back and truly enjoy it without worrying what will be subconsiously seeded in my mind. If I could shake the hands of this show's producers, I would. And I'd encourage them to keep it wholesome. Here is a show I can enjoy with my coming kids and isn't dumbed down--and that is a rarity.

Friday, April 16, 2010

"One Night With The King" -a movie review

Last night my wife and I watched a movie she has been curious about for some time. It is "One Night with the King".

I really enjoyed it. There were some big-name actors such as Peter O'Toole. And the story began not in Babylon but in Israel during the reign of King Saul. Some of the historical facts were mixed up, some altered. But overall it was an insightful look into the captivity of Israel.

I especially appreciated the side story involving the eunichs. Though I don't know what source material, if any, the author of the book this was based on used for the scene of pressing men into eunich-hood.

Much of the movie felt over-dramatic, but in an entertaining way.
If you watch this movie you might, however, be bothered by one blatent contradiction of the biblical story: in the movie King Xerxes never sleeps with any of the women. In fact he doesn't even sleep with Esther until their wedding night. But we know from history in the Bible that each and every one of those young women went to the king on their appointed night. After he slept with each of them, including Esther, he made his choice...based chiefly on her physical attributes. When I read the Biblical story I see a tale of love that grew after he took her.
Overall I really did enjoy this movie. I will watch it again. It has a unique mood, likeable characters, and a fairly intrigueing plot.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010


I am very pleased to announce that today (one year and seven days after I first published my novel Swords of the Six) it has passed 3,000-copies sold!
Wow! When I consider that 6 out of 10 novels ever published never sell over a thousand copies, and when very few self-published books sell more than a hundred copies, I feel like leaping through the ceiling! This is an acheivment of which I am very proud.
There are several people who helped make this possible through their encouragment and positive outlook. I want to thank my parents, my brother Brian, my sister Laura, my in-laws, my friend James... But most of all my lovely wife. She stood by me while I quit my hourly job and took us on the road to promote and sell my book in over a dozen states from the east coast to Missouri!
I also want to take this opportunity to thank God for giving me hands to write, a brain to imagine, and the will to do things for a higher purpose.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

artist Kerem Beyit Cover art for "The Sword of the Dragon: OFFSPRING"

It has been an up and down year in regard to searching for the right artist to illustrate the cover for my second novel, the sequel to Swords of the Six. For personal reasons the artist I had given the job decided to opt out. So I started looking around for someone who could achieve a fantastic job in a professional way and short period of time.

Early this year I worked with Halil Ural to get a cover image for J.R. Parker's novel. Halil was apprenticed to established fantasy artist Kerem Beyit. So I approached Kerem and he agreed to do the piece. It is turning out fantastic. Kerem Beyit is from Turkey and you can see a host of his work at

Here is his preliminary sketch for my book cover (I think it is the best version yet!)

Thursday, April 1, 2010

SoTS book review

Here is a wonderful review of my novel Swords of the Six

"How to Train Your Dragon" -Movie Review

What a great movie! Really I was surprised by the clever story, great characters, and funny dragon designs. The title made me wary of it; it sounded simplistic. But from the opening scene as the dragons capture the vikings' sheep and the character Hiccup narrated the whole mess, I was hooked!

I highly recommend this. Great film!


"Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones." -Proverbs 16:24

In a world where morality is forsaken and Christ neglected, wholesome books are uncommon. The themes of my writing are love, self-sacrifice, and honor.

I see my generation turning from God to the gods of this world. I see homes torn apart in the pursuit of pleasure and self-gratification. Children are murdered by the millions every year . . . without ever seeing the world outside their mothers' wombs. Through fiction I strive to encourage those who are willing, to stand against these things and be heroes and heroines; chivalrous, gentle, full of righteous indignation, and the fear and love of their Creator.