Sunday, October 27, 2013


Once again, my apologies for posting this late. Same excuse as last weekend, although this time it was Game 3 of the 2013 World Series. Just wish I had better news for my fellow Boston Red Sox fans...

If image isn't public domain, please let me know for removal.
Anyway, I have FINISHED my last short story for 2013!
It is in the hands of my friend, writing buddy, and very capable proof/beta reader Nancy Hansen, while I resume work on ALPHA, BOOK 2: WAYWARD SON until she sends it back to me with her comments.

I also have other short stories in various ques that might be returned for revisions before the end of the year, but I'll tackle those projects as they come.

And besides my other duties as Editor-In-Chief of The Free Choice E-zine, I have recently posted an interview with Jim Beard and am editing an upcoming interview with author I. A. (Ian) Watson!

So it's back to the keyboard.
See you around the Internet and GO SOX!

Monday, October 21, 2013


Hello and welcome to a new feature of my FILLING BLANK SPACES blog, where every once in a while I will tell you the origins and work that went into one of my creations.
Today, the spotlight shines upon "A Black Friday In Australia", the story I contributed to The New Adventures of the Eagle, Volume 1; from Pro Se Press in cooperation with Altus Press under the Pulp Obscura label.

Cover Art by David Russell
I was honored to be amongst Nick Ahlhelm, Teel James Glenn, Ashley Mangin, Bobby Nash, and R. P. Stevens to continue the story of Jeff Shannon, the top G-2 agent code named The Eagle. We were given PDF copies of the previously published Eagle tales from the classic pulp Thrilling Spy Stories, written by Captain Kerry McRoberts.
After reading his past adventures, I took the approach that my story would have been the next installment had the series continued.The only stipulation from the publisher (besides telling a rip-roaring adventure) was, like the originals, our contributions had to take place before World War 2 began in Europe.

When writing period set stories, research is always important, and I certainly did mine. The second World War officially began with Germany's invasion of Poland on September 1, 1939. Backtracking from that date, I went over historical records until I found something interesting that I could use as a backdrop and plot for my tale.

The Black Friday referenced in the title has nothing to do with holiday shopping. The State of Victoria in Australia suffered a severe fire, due in part to a record heatwave at the time, on January 13, 1939 (a Friday).

Given Australia's geographic location and the advanced planning the Axis forces must have been secretly doing before the war began, the rest was just a question of logic and imagination. Whether or not such plans depicted in my tale were underway in reality I do not know, but it made for a great new adventure for The Eagle.

Everyone, including me, looks for these. Those little gems acknowledging other things hidden within whatever you are reading or watching. While I will only include one if appropriate (it has to add to the proceedings and not be inserted just for the sake of doing so); there are a couple within "A Black Friday In Australia".
*Captain Hans Meerozean's surname is composed of two German words meaning sea/ocean.
*All references to a certain book stemmed from the fact that it was first published in 1937 and that the first part of the movie adaptation was due out in December 2012, months after the submission deadline for this anthology.

So there you have it. A brief look at the back story to a published work.
THE NEW ADVENTURES OF THE EAGLE, VOLUME 1 is available from Amazon in both the print and E-formats.

Sunday, October 20, 2013


Well folks, sorry I'm late posting this; but I stayed up late Saturday night watching the Boston Red Sox win the 2013 American League Championship Series and earn a trip to their third World Series competition of the 21st century.
But that's not what you came here to read about.

I had a great week writing wise!
I am ALMOST done with my last short story for this year and even got a little work done on ALPHA, BOOK 2: WAYWARD SON!

I still have to finish proof/beta reading that manuscript for my friend/writing buddy Nancy Hansen that I keep mentioning. Although she has informed me that there is no rush on that project at the present time, I do promise to (hopefully) have it finished before the holiday season gets into full swing next month.

Sorry I can't give you more details on everything, but I certainly don't want to spoil any of the surprises before these projects are published.

In any event, see you around the Internet!

Saturday, October 12, 2013


Well folks, the time is just sailing past as we enter the last quarter of this year. The daylight hours are getting shorter, and the deadline looms on my last short story commitment for 2013.
Luckily, I am almost done with it! At the moment, the heroes have reached their final destination, but they have yet to overcome the last obstacles in their quest.
Unfortunately, this means that I had to put Alpha Book 2: Wayward Son and the proof/beta reading for my friend and writing buddy Nancy Hansen on hold at the moment. The only other creative pursuits I have chased at the moment is my obligations to The Free Choice E-zine as its Editor-In-Chief, including lining up some potential future interview guests!
I also have a few post ideas under consideration for this blog too, so stay tuned.

12 October 2013

Saturday, October 5, 2013


Well, I wish I had more progress to report this week compared to last week.
Unfortunately, life had other ideas.

However I can say that the spider research came in handy for that short story I am working on. The arachnid threat is over and I am on to the next obstacle in that adventure.
I also posted an excerpt earlier this week and made some more progress on ALPHA, BOOK 2: WAYWARD SON; but unfortunately not enough to complete the next chapter, and for better or worse I did not get to read one additional word on the manuscript I am proof/beta reading for my good friend and writing buddy Nancy Hansen.
I also managed to take care of my Editor-In-Chief commitments at The Free Choice E-zine, so at least I can honestly say some creative work got done this past week.

Hopefully next week will be better.
See you around the Internet!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013


Hello everyone.
While I cannot share with you a tidbit from the short story I am working on (although if you have read last week's Progress Report, I can tell you the spider is dead), nor anything from the manuscript I am proof/beta reading for my friend and writing buddy Nancy Hansen (it wouldn't be fair to her or her readers), I thought I would share something with you from ALPHA, BOOK 2: WAYWARD SON.

Now, for those of you who might have missed Book 1: Project Alpha (and you can still get a copy from either Amazon or Barnes and Noble) Book 2 continues the story; as our hero tries to figure out his place in the universe.

Art by Marc Guerrero
The cosmic wanderer floated above the strange new world before him in stunned silence. A blue-green orb teeming with life, this planet was vastly different from his former home, as alien to him as he would be to it.
In time, he allowed the gravity of this new sphere to pull him into its embrace. This action did not feel like a welcoming gesture, but at least it was not an outright rejection of his arrival. Summoning just enough energy to project a protective force shield against the friction of reentry, the man in the sky blue and white costume decided to let fate cast him where it may upon foreign shores, and see if it was possible to forge a new life here.

But where is Alpha? And what happens next?
Those and other questions will be answered when ALPHA, BOOK 2: WAYWARD SON is published next year.
For now, I'm going back to writing to fill in some more blank spaces.

See you around the internet!