Thursday, February 7, 2013

What Have You Done For Me Lately...(And Other Things)

Taking a brief respite from the stream of amazing interviews (next is Sci-Fi writer, Daniel Zazitski, and then Natalie Buske Thomas, author of the Serena Wilcox Mysteries), I wanted to let the readers of my blog in on some things that have been going on with me. I have been on a bit of a hiatus, especially at the pace at which I was writing as I have these past few years. I have been getting some emails and queries asking when my next book will be out and I am hoping it will be this summer. Here's why...
In order to tell you what's going on now, I need to take a step back first. In March of 2012, I started a new job. It is a call center job that requires technical knowledge as well as the customer service skills required for such a thing. It is mentally exhausting. I was writing throughout, trying to learn the ins and outs of the job AND preparing for GenCon 2012 and all of the preparations that it demands. While I was at GenCon, my wife had a seizure. Out of nowhere. 

She did not tell me until I got home, and of course I yelled at her for it. Well, not yelled, but scolded her for not calling me. But, she knew that if she called me, I would have packed up and left. It was kind of reckless and scary, but her heart was in the right place. But, I digress.

In October, she began to stutter. We did speech therapy and eventually purchased an expensive piece of equipment--a delayed auditory functioning device with which she can hear her own voice on a 130 millisecond delay. With the device on,  she can speak with no stutter. Another blessing and an answer to her immediate frustrations. 

A week after she had it, she lost it! (Not kidding)

Her co-workers and people she did not even know (customers/passersby/etc.) scoured the store and everywhere inside and out where she had been, looking for it, but to no avail. Two of her co-workers even went back to look for it after dinner from 8pm until 1am that same evening. I am grateful and humbled by their dedication and love for my wife that they would do such things above and beyond. Incredible people. So, long story short, we worked with her therapist and got a replacement three weeks later. Again, a blessing, despite the economic strains it puts on us.

My wife had her second and third seizures this past Monday. So, instead of turning the corner, we are back to square one again with the meds. I feel so bad for her as she is an amazing woman—so kind and warm—and she certainly does not deserve this hand that she has been dealt. As I ramble on about this and my personal dealings, I am encouraged and happy for several reasons, despite the hardships.

  1. It could be worse; always! And if you don’t think so, think again.
  2.   She has a loving and supportive family and I am comforted by the continuous support and love that her friends and co-workers show on a daily basis.
  3.   It always puts life in perspective when you suffer some kind of hardship (not that I encourage it, but it happens and is unavoidable)

Now, about the writing... I ran into a bit of a Writer’s Block situation. I had hit the wall. Despite a solid outline and an exciting story-line  I was rambling on and the writing suffered. I had to stop and give myself a break. At the time, I did not recognize what was happening, but looking back, I see it.

Ashenclaw thumbnail by William Kenney
I hadn't realized why, but when I stopped to take a breath, I realized this: In three years, I had been laid off from my job of 9 years, my father passed away, I studied and graduated with a B.S in Information Technology, wrote, edited and promoted 3 books from scratch and all that entails, dealt with getting a new job (I actually had 3 others prior to this one) and now the issues with the epilepsy. Whew! That’s a lot. Not insurmountable. But certainly a lot.

That being said, I am picking up the remains of what I had started on Book 4 and am continuing to push forward with edits, new twists, re-writes and more editing. And so, I tell you this to let you all know that the series will continue; your heroes are not dead, merely in hibernation as they await the breath of life I give them so that they may come back to entertain you in the near future.
On another positive note, I am working on releasing ‘The Legend of Ashenclaw’ as a singular story that is currently in 'A Gathering ofDust’ and William Kenney is doing a dragon cover for me. Can’t wait!

Thanks as always for checking out the blog and listening to my rants! See you in Wothlondia!

 Please join me and the other amazingly talented authors over @ Skulldust Circle where we have formed a Writer's Circle that must be seen--a collection of brilliant, up & coming independently published speculative fiction authors with much to give both now and in the future!

All of my work can be found on AMAZON -- Kindle versions here

See you in Wothlondia! Cheers!

Please visit MY HOME PAGE to enjoy an extended reading experience, see direct links to purchase my full length novel, Covenant of the Faceless Knights, the short stories: Wothlondia Rising, and to see what else Ashenclaw Studios, LLC has in store in the future!

All maps, names and content copyright Ashenclaw Studios 2012 unless otherwise noted.


  1. Wow, life has really been knocking you around. I understand how sometimes breaks from writing are necessary. The art requires a large amount of energy. I've had to accept taking breaks over the years, especially after driving myself really hard. But consider that despite fatigue and turmoil your writing can be a place to express or translate your feelings and experiences. They don't have to be recognizable as events from your life, but let all that powerful energy of your experiences have a place to be reworked into new things. Plants harvest all the decay in the soil and make flowers and fruit.

  2. Thanks for the motivation and the sympathy, Tracy. Taking a break as indie writer is also a nice perk, I suppose. :) But, I completely understand your mindset and agree wholeheartedly. Thanks for the reply and best of luck with your writing as well!