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On Writing Violence

I've killed. Countless times. I've shot, stabbed, tortured, burned, bludgeoned, and amputated. Hell, I've even crucified people. In my six published novels, many of my characters meet a bad end. In fact, one of the main reasons I don't write a series is I always want...

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Holy Hell, I’m 50

A couple weeks ago I turned 50 (on Bastille Day, for all you Francophiles out there). When I turned forty I had a big party and was planning to do the same for fifty but, you know, pandemic. I'm excited to be fifty. Excited to see what the decade brings, assuming we...

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This Heat is Gettin’ To Me

It's hot and I don't know what to write. I'm just sitting here with a blank screen, blurry eyes and fuzzy brain, and I suspect this shit is just gonna spill out without a lot of filter. It's hot and I'm tired, and it feels like I never fully wake up on certain days,...

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Notes from Other Authors

Hello, folks. How are you? You getting through these very strange days with ease or with struggle? Likely both, I imagine. Have you been connecting more, reaching out to those you haven't talked to in awhile, just to ask them the simple question you okay? Me too. Over...

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Writing in Extraordinary Times

You've heard me go on and on about my favorite band James, whose lyrics I've used in my last two books and, hopefully, the next one as well. Their latest album, Living in Extraordinary Times, was released a year and a half ago, and is essentially a protest album (the...

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Room 217

Jessica and I just got back from our annual ghost-hunting excursion at the Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colorado. For those of you unfamiliar with this tradition, for the past six years I’ve gone to the famously haunted hotel to do some writing and search for ghosts,...

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Screen Time Makes Me a Better Writer

I pay attention when another author's book captivates my attention. I'll analyze the detail, pace, prose, and voice, and try to figure out what exactly it was that grabbed me. (Sometimes the opposite is true: I'll read a terrible book  and obsess over how it became...

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On Setting Goals

Happy New Year and new decade!  This is the time of year I walk into my hometown gym and there's twice as many people as usual. Everyone's ready for the new year. New resolutions, fresh dose of determination. But did you know less than 10% of people keep their New...

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I contemplated skipping my post this month, because, frankly, I'm tired. And I have edits due to my publisher. And I need to do Christmas shopping. And... Excuses, excuses, excuses. When I think of all the things that make life busy and chaotic, I realized most of...

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Halloween Highlight Reel of Terror

Rejoice, as the Halloween highlight reel is here. As my long-term readers know, each year I comb though video footage to collect the choicest screams from my Halloween house-staging. This was the first year I moved the set from the porch to inside the garage, allowing...

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