Re-write incoming!

The last step with any of my books, before I publish, is to read them out loud. Sometimes, that’s to record the audiobook (like I did with Dudley Road) or to read it out loud to my wife.

As I read through My Best Friend, Marty, I’ve come to the conclusion that I need to do some re-writes on the earlier chapters. Though none of the beta readers called it out, it feels like the introduction of Marty makes him a little too much of a weirdo.

Since you have no idea what I’m talking about, Marty is from Belgium. He’s recently moved to America with his father, and I made his foreign mannerisms and language a little bit too weird and outlandish.

It won’t be a huge rewrite, and I don’t think it’ll make me miss my deadline. Which, if you’ve been following along, is slated for March 14th, 2024. Once the final artwork is completed, I’ll get pre-orders up on the site here. Pre-order pricing will be much lower than retail, so be sure to get your pre-order in once they go live.

Stay tuned. And, as always, thanks for the continued support!

Beta reader feedback is great, so far!

I’m super happy to report that the feedback I’ve been getting from beta readers has, so far, been unanimously positive!

One reader, who’s read all of my other work, said, “This is my new favorite book of yours.” I take that as such a compliment. I can’t even put it into words. Another also said it might be her favorite.

I was skeptical of the first draft. I won’t lie to you. Not after all this time we’ve spent together, dear reader. I finished it, set it aside for a week, and then read it through, end to end. I felt it needed more. You know my work, right? There’s usually a big reveal or an aha moment. I, personally, didn’t feel like there was a big enough thing at the end of the book.

But it didn’t seem to matter. I’ve gotten feedback from 60% of the beta readers I sent the first draft, and they unanimously all loved it. To me, that means I should trust my gut more. That, perhaps, my process of “just write it until you think you’re done” continues to work. This crazy way I write things, without planning anything out, without picking names or places or events, without any forethought about how it’ll end. That all of this insanity in my writing process just works.

I know what you’re thinking; what about the underground bunker in Dudley Road? To which I say, “You’ll never let me live that down, will you?” I still kick myself over that, but refuse to edit the book and either take it out or explain it at the reveal at the end of the book. I made my bed, and I’ll lie in it. I never claimed to be perfect, and Dudley Road was certainly not the norm in what I write. And don’t worry, I’ll (probably) never try to write another “scary” story. It’s just not my cup of tea. But I’ll read Stephen King’s books until the day I die.

What’s next? Glad you asked.

I’ll wait for the rest of the feedback to come in, then likely read it through one more time, seeing if there’s anything I want to change.

Artwork is already in process and a copyeditor has been hired to find any misspellings or grammatically incorrect sentences.

I’m still debating if I want to do an audiobook version or not. The audiobook of Dudley Road didn’t sell well enough to recoup the cost and time I put into it, so I’m on the fence. I’m leaning toward not doing it, if I’m being honest.

The estimated release date for My Best Friend, Marty is March 14th, 2024. It’s a special day to me, which I’ll explain when that day gets here.

Editing Complete! Beta Readers Needed!

As of the other day, I’ve completed the first round of edits to “My Best Friend, Marty”. I cut around 5,000 words, found roughly 2,000 grammatical errors (which is pretty good considering it’s over 111,000 words!), and re-arranged a handful of scenes.

That said, I’m now looking for beta readers! If you aren’t familiar, a beta reader is someone who reads an early draft of something and provides honest and unfiltered feedback hoping to help the finished product become better!

If you’re interested in an early reading, let me know in the comments below and I’ll reach out to get you the file.

The summary of the book, in case you didn’t see it on social media: Matt meets Marty one night. They quickly become inseparable best friends. The book takes place over 20 years and details the ups and downs of their friendship, lives, and their relationships.

Marty’s First Draft Is Complete!

Well, here we are. It’s 10:30am on Tuesday July 25th, and I just wrote the last words in the first draft of “Marty”. I’m still using quotes there. You’ll see why in a minute.

Yesterday I wrote around 9,000 words, and today I wrote another 4,544 to wrap the whole thing up. The last few chapters just started flowing out of me and wrote themselves. Which seems cliche to write, but it’s true.

It clocks in at 116,435 words and I finished the draft 6 days ahead of my completely made up, self imposed schedule. Around 20% longer than my previous longest work, if memory serves (yes, I’m too lazy to go check.)

What’s next? I’m going to take a week (maybe a little more) off from it before starting editing. I need something as a palette cleanser so I can hit it with fresh eyes.

As for the quotes around the name: I started off just calling it Marty because it was intended to be a completely different thing from what it ended up as. But, when all is said and done, the title of the book is “My Best Friend, Marty.”

It’s the tale of Marty and Matt, who become best friends after a random encounter meeting, and all the things they go through in life together as they grow from young men to adults.

Stay tuned for updates as editing happens. If you’re interested in reading an early copy once I’m done editing (known as Beta reading) and providing honest and thorough feedback, drop me a line at and we can discuss.

The Original Ending to My Last Days

Let me go ahead and preface this by saying do not read the text below if you haven’t read My Last Days. The text below will spoil the ending, even though it’s drastically different in the final book. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

The text is unedited, so forgive grammar and spelling. This is exaclty how both chapters were written in the first draft, on November 25th, 2014.

You warned me. I won't hold you accountable for spoiling the ending. I'm going to click on this now to read it!
As you know, Andy dies at the end of the book. He does everything he can do to do good with his remaining time, but time runs out.

The second to last chapter is titled “Death”. I don’t expose my chapter titles in the final work, so you didn’t know that until just now. I use them more to help me outline what I’m going to write. I add a bunch of blank chapters and name them all of the points I want to make during the story. Then, I go back and write each chapter, one at a time, hoping it all makes sense. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. That’s the extent of my plotting. A skill I recognize is important to some writers, but not one that I am able to follow myself.

“Death” changes perspectives from Andy’s first person perspective to Kate’s third-person. The last chapters are told from her point of view. On account of, you know, Andy being dead and not able to finish the story himself.

Originally, as you’ll read below, Andy finishes the story himself. We see him die through his eyes and then he goes to his own funeral. It didn’t test well with early readers or my editor. But I wanted to share it with you, as a little view into what can happen sometimes. You write something you believe in and love, and it turns out that you’re wrong.

Without further adieu, here’s the final two chapters of “My Last Days”, from Andy’s point of view.


“I’m glad we’ve ended up back here,” Kate said jarring me from my near sleep. She had rearranged herself and snuggled in close to me.

Joey still laid across the end of the bed at our feet, long since asleep and having ignored Kate and I crying our eyes out.

We’d fallen asleep like that almost every night for the last few weeks. Our little family, together, dreaming of better times, of less turbulent times.

Kate had finally dozed off, nestled into what she sometimes referred to as “the nook” – that perfect spot between my upper arm and my chest, that she insisted was designed and tailor suited specifically for her head. She’d fallen asleep there more times than I could remember or count.

The truth is, knowing she was right there always helped me fall asleep a little bit faster and stay asleep longer. Even once she’d realized I’d fallen asleep and she’d roll over, or pull away from me.

I slept a strong sleep that night. I dreamed of a life where I wasn’t sick. Of a life where I had more time and could do the things I needed and wanted to do, without fear of running out of time. I dreamed of happiness and love.

I dreamed of Kate and Joey.

When I woke up the next morning, I was somehow on the floor, sitting upright in the corner of the room. I could feel the walls on both sides of me, propping me up, holding me in a sitting position. My head lay to the left against the far wall, throbbing. It felt like the beginning of an episode.

I could see Kate on the bed, sitting up, her back to me.

Wait. I could see? My vision was back! I could see again!

“Kate,” I yelled. “Kate, I can see you.”

Joey stirred from the foot of the bed and sat up, looking towards Kate.

“You guys,” I yelled. “I see you both.”

But Joey didn’t hear me. Kate didn’t turn to look at me behind her, calling out to her.

I pushed myself up from the sitting position I was in and stood. My legs felt wobbly, but I used the wall on both sides of me to steady myself. I locked my legs and took a step forward.

I inched closer to the bed.

“Guys?” I called out.

Another step.

“Kate? Joey?”

On the third step I saw it.

I saw myself.

I gasped and jumped back.

“What the fuck is happening?” I yelled louder than I’d ever yelled before. “Kate, answer me!” I demanded.

But no one turned to look at me. No one heard me.

I got closer and could hear Kate crying. She was holding me in her arms, but I was standing five feet away. She rocked me back and forth in her arms and pulled Joey in close to her.

She hugged us both like the family that we were.

I could see her tears rolling down her face, dripping onto mine. I felt them. I felt the warmth of her tears as they rolled down my face, as I saw them roll from my forehead to my lips.

Then I could taste them. The salty bitterness. The taste that I’d tasted a hundred times before when she cried over something I’d done or said to upset her.

“I love you so much,” she whispered in my ear. I heard the words, five feet away, as clear as if she was standing next to me.

I was still connected to myself, yet I was no longer there. I was, as cliche as it sounds, watching the whole thing from across the room.

I watched and listened as Kate begged for more time. I listened as she told me she loved me over and over again, as Joey said he needed me and wanted me to stay.

I felt her body as she pressed herself in closer to me and kissed me one last time. Her lips trying to bring life back into mine, trying to restore the beating of my heart, as if she had some sort of magic spell stored up in her lips.

“I love you Iron Man,” Joey said. “I love you.”

I knew better than to yell anymore. I knew better than to try to signal them, to say a final goodbye, to try to take the reins and change the direction the ship I was on was heading. I knew it was over. I knew it was final.

They stayed there with me for a little bit before they called the police. Joey hugged Kate and she hugged him back, all while holding my hand. Grasping onto one last glimmer of hope that I’d wake up and be okay, just for one more day.

That she would, somehow, get one more opportunity to see me smile and tell me how much I meant to her, to them.

Joey was the one that called 911. Kate couldn’t bring herself to let go of my hand until well after the police and EMTs showed up. She couldn’t let go of it even when they told her she had to. It almost took them prying her hand from mine to get her to let go.

The EMTs asked Joey and Kate to leave the room while they packed my body up to bring me wherever they were going to bring me. they stood in the hallway right outside the bedroom door and watched as they lifted me into a bag, having already pronounced me dead shortly before.

I could see Kate out of the corner of my eye, holding onto Joey. His head buried in her stomach, tears coming out from both sides of his face. Her gentle, caring hand caressing the back of his head, while she herself cried uncontrollably.

Kate barely spoke that morning. She’d said her goodbye to me without saying a word. I could still feel her hand holding mine, well after they’d taken me out of the room.

I stood there in the same spot I’d been, not knowing what else to do. Not knowing where to go or what happened next, waiting for a sign, waiting for something to happen.

“He’s no longer in pain,” I heard Joey say, faintly from the hallway.

For the first time, I heard myself in what Joey said. I saw myself in him and knew, in that moment, that everything else would fall into place.

“I love you Kate,” I said as strongly as I could. “I’ll always love you. Never forget that.”

“Thanks and Closure”:

The afterlife – I guess that’s what you’d call it – was as normal as every day life. Except that no one could see me or talk to me and there were no other people around that could, contrary to popular belief. I was just on my own, floating through time, going about things, watching over Kate and Joey.

I don’t know what made me do it, but I followed them from the apartment to the church, where they’d say their farewells to me. Where those that loved me or knew me or heard about me would show up and say goodbye.

I could tell everyone tried their best to smile and Joey thanked everyone for coming. Joey and Kate put on brave faces and tried not to cry. My Mom and Dad cried quite a bit the entire afternoon.

It rained most of the day. Rainclouds filled the entire sky, thunder booming down almost every minute, as if some sort of sign, some sort of omen. As soon as Kate arrived, it was as if something triggered the weather to change, and a hole opened in the cloud right above the church, causing rays of sunlight to shine down and filter through the stained glass. Multi colored beams of light illuminated the alter as she sat down right in front of where they had wheeled me in.

If it weren’t a funeral, it would have been quite beautiful.

It had been three days since I had passed. Three of the longest days of my life, full of some of the saddest times, but happiest memories. Three days of seeing Kate and Joey upset and not being able to fix it or console them. Three long days of wondering what would happen or where I’d end up, or what I should do.

Kate had already said goodbye to me the night before. After everyone left the wake, she stayed with me. Just the two of us surrounded by the beautiful flowers people had sent and the few remaining candles that were still lit.  She said her goodbye to me then, a goodbye I’ll keep to myself and never forget. She had evidently prepared some words to say in front of the crowd of people that had come to the funeral.

“Andy would have appreciated you all coming out here today,” she said. “I don’t know all of you, but I know that Andy would have appreciated you being here.

“Andy and I have known each other since middle school, and spent most of our adult lives in a relationship. I loved him like I loved no one else, and will never forget him or anything that he’d done for me.

“He was a kind and caring man, one that showed love for those that didn’t always understand why he loved them or appreciate why he loved them. He showed no hate or malice towards anyone for as long as I’ve known him.

“Andy began a bucket list as soon as he found out he was sick, and has been accomplishing items off that list for the past eight or so months. He didn’t get to complete the list, but asked Joey, Anna and I to finish the remaining items for him. We plan on doing that starting today, as soon as we leave here.

“I can spend hours telling you great stories about him, about how much I loved him, about how much he meant to me. But you already know that. You loved him in your own way, and he you, and that’s why you’re here. That’s why you’ve come to say your goodbyes.

“He wasn’t in pain. His headaches were gone and that’s not what took him. I like to think that his body just gave up when his mind simply wasn’t ready to yet.

“I love you, Andy. I hope you find peace where you are now.”

Once she’d finished speaking and sat back down, Joey whispered in her ear and she nodded, sliding out of the way, so he could get out of the pew.

She followed him up to the pulpit and helped him up to the microphone, adjusting it to his height.

“Hi, I’m Joey,” he said, “Andy was my Big Brother. He showed up months ago to do something nice for someone because of his bucket list. He wanted to do good things once he knew he was sick. What he ended up doing was saving my life.

“My dad was a bad man. Not like Andy or Marcus. He was mean to me and would hurt me all the time when he was drinking his beer in the backyard. He would punch me and kick me and spit on me. He was a really bad man.

“When Andy came into my life, I saw how people were supposed to treat each other. How an adult was supposed to treat a little boy. He showed me how important it was to tell the truth and to be yourself.

“I was lucky enough to spend a lot of time with Andy over the past few months and his last days. I really got to know him. I found myself looking up to him and the things he did and won’t ever forget how he saved me.

“He told me more than one time that I’d saved him as much as he saved me, but that’s not true. He came into my life and took me away from a lifetime of terrible times, of being beaten up by someone who was supposed to take care of me, and brought me to a new life. He brought me into his home, let me meet Kate and Annabel, and know what love is.

“He taught me that sometimes love can be painful, but it should never hurt. Love should leave a smile afterwards, not a bruise.

“I’ll miss you, Iron Man. I hope you’re better now where you are.”

He came down the stairs and sat down next to Kate, taking her hand.

It was the start of their new journey, together. Just Joey and Kate, without me.

I stopped for a moment, looking at the faces in the crowd, all of them staring back at where I lay. All of them sobbing an appropriate amount to cope with their sadness.

I saw Veronica and a man I assumed was her husband, Brian and Jen were there, too. Meghan and Carri were unknowingly sitting in the same row.

Anna sat on one side of my Dad, my Mom on the other, all three holding hands.

The faces of those people were burned into my memory. They stared back at me, not knowing that I was there, that I saw them, or that I loved them.

The church darkened as the clouds overhead closed in on the one pocket of sunshine in the whole sky. The beautiful lights that had shone around the church through the stained glass were suddenly gone, replaced by nothingness.

The door at the far end of the church opened and a slight light peeked in through it before it quickly closed. I looked, trying to make out who it was that had come in, wondering who’d shown up so late.

A loud clasp of thunder struck at that moment, my eyes flashed and everything was suddenly gone.

“Hello Andrew,” a voice said. It was loud enough that it sounded like it was right next to me. It sounded like James Spader.

More Progress on Marty

It’s been a little more than a month since my last update. On June 9th, Marty was just over 63,000 words. Today, the first draft of Marty sits at 84,018 words. About 21,000 words in the last month. It’s amazing what I can do when I set a goal for myself, isn’t it?

I’ve still got my target set at 90,000 words, though I know, for absolutely sure, I’ll go well over that. The remaining chapters I’ve outlined (which is just creating the chapter with a title, so I remember all the points I wanted to make when I get to them), will surely be more than 6k words. I don’t know where I’ll end up, but I’m sure some of the first draft will end up in the Trash folder of my writing app. It always does.

My goal is to have the first draft by the end of July. If I stick to my daily writing sessions, that should be no problem. Editing usually takes a few months, then all the other nonsense that comes along with a new book, which I’m sure you know so well, if you’ve been following along on my blog here.

And, in case you missed it last time, the tentative title for the book is simply “Marty”. It’s a simple story of two best friends and what they go through in their lives together as they grow up.

Making Progress

I’ve been chugging away at the first draft of my next book, throwing a few thousand words at it a few days a week. I’m trying to find a balance between using my free time in the morning for writing, but also reading. I’m sure it’s been said a million times in history, but it’s hard to be a good writer if you’re not a good reader. So, I’m trying to be a better reader, while still finding time to write.

As of this morning, I’m a little over 63,000 words into the first draft. I’m targeting around 90,000 words, give or take. That’s around the average for a full-length novel, though some of mine fall a little shorter than that.

It’s really up to the story and the characters. Have they said all they wany to say and done all they needed to do for the story to be complete?

For me, a second draft usually adds a few thousand words, as well. I find spots that need to be fleshed out more. Sometimes I find entire chapters that need to be deleted. Sometimes I find something I’d previously written and deleted in the trash and revive it. It all depends on how I feel as I read through the first draft.

Often, the first draft for an author makes little sense. It’s just a way to word vomit everything that you want to get out. Then, in the second draft, you try to make sense of it. For me, though, that’s never been the case. My first draft is usually pretty close to what the final version will be. If you’re familiar with my work, you know I write in a stream of conscious. My characters talk and interact the way I do, because that’s how I see life. If a character thinks something, they say it. And I try to make my dialogue as natural as possible. I write how I think people actually talk, even if that, sometimes, isn’t grammatically correct.

In case you’re curious, I’m revealing for the first time that the tentative title of the book is Marty. It has nothing to do with the paranormal or ghosts of any kind. And, I promise, nothing is haunted this time around. While I recognize not everyone loved the shift in genre from my norm to the paranormal with Dudley Road, I felt it was a story I needed to tell. But, don’t worry, we won’t be going down that route again!

I’m hoping to have the last third of the first draft of Marty done by the end of July. It’ll still be a while to get through additional drafts, beta readers, artwork, editing, etc. etc. etc. But, all progress is good progress!

A Slight Hiccup

A little over a week ago, I was on a bike ride, just up the street in the center of town. The light at the intersection was red, so I did what I always do. I rode up as far as I could, alongside the cars, in the space between the car and the curb.

Normally I can get up to the light and wait for it to turn green with the first car in line.

This time, the light turned green when I was about five or six cars back. I had just approached the rear passenger door of — what I think I correctly call as — a dark green Grand Cherokee. As they sped up, for some reason, the drive moved slightly to the right and clipped my front tire with their rear bumper.

I fell headfirst onto the pavement, landing partly on my head, partly on my shoulder.

I was stunned, literally, for a minute, before I could stand up. I shook it off, but I knew I was hurt. The guys in the work van behind me asked if I needed a ride, but I thought I was okay.

Once I got off the road, I called my wife, but couldn’t get in touch with her. Then I called my sister-in-law, who works for the fire department in our town, which was just up the road. She came and got me and brought me back to the fire station, where the EMTs gave me a once over. I filed a report with them, then went over to the police station and filed a report there, as well.

Sister-in-law drove me home, and the pain got worse, so I went for x-rays with my wife.

I fractured my collarbone and a rib. Which, if you’ve ever done yourself, you know is one of those “we can’t do anything, just wait for it to heal, here’s some Tylenol” injuries.

This happens on Tuesday the 16th. Until today, I could not raise my left arm above my shoulder without blinding pain. It’s prevented me from being able to write anything in the last week and a half.

But, that said, I’m typing this, now. So there’s no excuse to not get back at it and finish up this first draft. I’ll be a little behind the completely arbitrary schedule I made up for myself, but that’s fine. And, hopefully, I’ll feel back to 100% soon. And also, hopefully, won’t be terrified to go back out on my bike again.

On to the Next!

I’ve found myself with an abundance of free time, so what else to do other than start my next book, right?

Dudley Road has been selling better than I imagined it would, the reviews are mostly very positive, and it’s helped the sales of my other two books, as well. Overall I’ve been very happy with how that’s all going. Could I be marketing better? Sure. But that’s not something I’m good at.

With that said, I’ve started my next book today. I had the idea for it a couple of months ago — which trumped all of my other existing “new book ideas” notes — and decided today was the day to get started on it.

I wrote for about 3 hours this morning and knocked out the first five scenes, clocking in at a first-day writing total of 5,465 words. Not too shabby for the first day.

I didn’t set myself any specific goals around word count, timelines, etc. I just want to write and see where the story takes me. I told myself that this time I’d plan it out and be organized with character backstories and plot summaries and everything that organized writers do. But I can’t. I’m what they call a pantser (as in “fly by the seat of your pants”) and I love that I write that way. It’s how my brain works best.

As I get further into the book, I’ll disclose more about it via my blog here, as well as my social media. But so far, so good.

Thanks to all of you who picked up a copy of Dudley Road. It means the world to me to have the support of people who’ve been with me since A Sour Chord came out nine years ago. Hopefully there isn’t as big of a delay between Dudley Road and the next book as there was between A Sour Chord and My Last Days. But that’s a story for another time. Thanks again!

All Sold Out!

On Wednesday of last week, I posted this silly photo to a Facebook group for book lovers.

The caption was something to the effect of “oh, poor me, what a horrible problem I have in having to sign these books and write witty and unique inscriptions. Woe is me. Send help,”

Completely in jest, I obviously wouldn’t offer it as an option on my site if I didn’t mind signing and inscribing books.

I had no intention of trying to sell any books.

But I did. As soon as the first person asked where they could get a signed copy and I posted the link to my website, the orders started pouring in. My email was dinging all night, overnight, and into the morning.

I’m very thankful that my experience as a web developer lead me down the path of building some “buy other books and save” functionality into my site, because it worked. People were buying two and even all three of my books, saving 15% on all of them. I also offered free shipping over $25, but realized, once I did the math, that I was losing money on that deal, so I upped the free shipping to $35.

I sold out of every copy I’d pre-ordered of Dudley road, in both hardcover and paperback.
I sold out of every copy I had on hand of My Last Days, in both hardcover and paperback.
I haven’t even gotten the first-time-in-print copies of A Sour Chord yet, but I sold out of that whole batch, as well.

So I ordered more. Unfortunately, Amazon takes about 12-14 days to print and deliver them.

And I sold out of all of those, as well. In all three books.

So I ordered more.

This cycled repeated 5 more times during last week. I’d order more, they’d sell out. I put up a notice on the site saying that all books were out of stock until the end of the month, and while that slowed sales down some, it didn’t seem to deter everyone, as the orders have still come piling in.

I’m so humbled, for a number of reasons.

First, complete strangers not only bought my work, but they wanted me to personalize a signature to them. Strangers who’ve never heard of me before took a chance just based on my book covers, as well as my descriptions.

I also did something I’ve never done in the almost 10 years since I published my first book; I made a profit on the whole endeavor. There’s so much cost that goes into publishing a book yourself that folks don’t think of, but it adds up. The artwork for the cover, editing (is the biggest cost, by far), the book trailer I had made, the books themselves, the boxes to ship in, shipping costs. The list goes on and on. But, as of today, I’ve earned more than I’ve spent. It’s not much more than I’ve spent, but it’s in the black for the first time. And while I don’t do this for the money, it certainly doesn’t hurt to motivate me for the next book (which, for the record, I’ve already begun planning out!)

Others have bought directly from Amazon, including the Kindle version, which has been wonderful, as well.

I’ve gotten more reviews through an Advanced Reader service I signed up for that my first two books combined, and while they’re not all five stars (you can’t be perfect all the time, right?), this one in particular really made me so happy:

The book ‘Dudley Road’ was intelligently written. Each chapter commanding your attention and ensuring that you kept turning page after page. It had the right amount of creepy without being over the top scary, the right amount of suspense and mystery.
Overall, Dudley Road is a masterpiece and if you are a fan of mystery with a little horror, this is the book for you.

“Intelligently written” and “masterpiece” for a silly ghost story. How? Why? What? Is this real life? I’m printing and framing it.

I’m sure this level of sales won’t continue forever, and that’s fine. I spent about 2 hours every day last week signing and packing books. It’s exhausting, but so rewarding. A big time author I know and am friendly with signs and ships books himself with the help of his manager. He posts photos of him with literal palettes full of books and I don’t understand the how of it all. It’s crazy pants.

So, if you’re reading this and you’re one of the folks from The Book Lounge Facebook Group who ended up here from my silly little post, thank you so much for your support. I really hope you enjoy my book(s) that you bought and come back for more the next time.

I’m so grateful and humbled and appreciative of everything that’s happened this week.*

* except for losing my wallet yesterday. I am not appreciative of my doofusness.

A Sour Chord now available in print!

It’s been almost a decade since I released A Sour Chord. When I did, I published it only as a digital book. Primarily because I had no idea how to do anything but a digital book.

Fast forward to today, where I fully understand printing and everything that goes along with it.

So, I’m happy to announce that A Sour Chord will finally be available in both paperback and hardcover in early April.

I know some of you, over the years, have reached out asking for a physical copy because, like me, you prefer holding an actual book to holding a Kindle. So, now’s your chance to grab your copy!

You can order your paperback and hardcover here or you can build a bundle of my books that you’re interested in and save 15% on your entire order here.

The Legend of Dudley Road

It’s just four weeks until my new book, Dudley Road, will be available. Pre-orders have been going great and I’ve already beat the goal I had set for myself. Which was simply outselling My Last Days’ pre-order numbers!

Since launching the campaign, a few folks have reached out to me to ask how true the real events are that the book is based on. So I thought I’d clarify some.

Dudley Road is an actual place. Virtually every teenager who grew up in or around Billerica, Massachusetts, knows the urban myths surrounding it.

I first heard the myths in high school, which I detail in the first few chapters of the book. Back then, we didn’t have easily accessible internet to just go look things up on. Google literally didn’t exist yet. Therefore, we had no way of knowing what was real and what wasn’t. Or if any of it was real.

That’s why we went exploring, initially. My friends and I had always been into oddities, hauntings, ghosts, etc. So, when I heard the story, I knew they’d be game to go check it out with me.

I’d love to detail exactly what events in the book are real and which are spruced up to make the book more interesting, but I don’t want to spoil anything before you’ve read it. I’d love to say “everything up to page 201 is real”, and while there is an aspect of “everything up to this page is real”, there are also a lot of real things that happen after the book changes from non-fiction to fiction. So it’s not as cut and dried as I’d like it to be.

With all that said, here are some photos I took of the haunted convent when I went back to visit one day in 2020, right as I was starting writing the book. Yes, it took almost 3 years to write the book. It’s a lot of work!

I won’t go into great detail about what each of these photos are, because then you won’t read the book and I’ll be sad. But under each photo, I’ll briefly describe what you’re looking at.

One of the many shots I took of the street sign. One of which would become the cover of the book.
One of the many shots I took of the street sign. One of which would become the cover of the book.
The security fence wrapping around the convent. Almost every night we went there, it was wide open. It seems they've since started closing it up.
The security fence wrapping around the convent. Almost every night we went there, it was wide open. It seems they’ve since started closing it up.
Another view of the security fence, and driveway leading into the compound.
Another view of the security fence, and driveway leading into the compound.
This house is likely unrelated to the convent, but we always thought it was a security lookout. We'd wait until the lights went off or motion stopped to sneak by it.
This house is likely unrelated to the convent, but we always thought it was a security lookout. We’d wait until the lights went off or motion stopped to sneak by it.
This is what is widely believed to be the haunted convent. It is not. This is St. Thecla's Retread House that now sits on the same property.
This is what is widely believed to be the haunted convent. It is not. This is St. Thecla’s Retread House that now sits on the same property.
Another view of the building.
Another view of the building.
The state park marker at the head of the trail leading into the woods, where we'd find the fallen down house.
The state park marker at the head of the trail leading into the woods, where we’d find the fallen down house.
This is what is referred to, in the book, as the "turnaround spot". You'll be more familiar with it when you read the book.
This is what is referred to, in the book, as the “turnaround spot”. You’ll be more familiar with it when you read the book.
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