Come See Me at My Author Talk!

In conjunction with the Friends of Southborough Library, the wonderful folks at my town library have extended a special invitation for me to share my insights at their highly anticipated annual event.

On June 12th, at 7 p.m., please join me at the Southborough Library for a half-hour talk on the art of writing, publishing, marketing, and (hopefully) selling a book.

I’ll discuss the entire process, from ideation to writing a million drafts, to publishing through Amazon and other services, and then shouting from the rooftops about your book.

I’ve created a Facebook Event for the night and would love it if you could RSVP there.

After my talk, I’ll be answering questions and selling and signing copies of all four of my books. I hope to see you there!

Happy Tenth Anniversary, “A Sour Chord” – Big Sale Celebration!

Let’s flash back together. It’s May of 2014. I’m about to click publish on Amazon for my very first book, A Sour Chord. Up until that moment, the only person I’d told I’d written a book was my now wife, Megan. And even then I’d only told her a couple of months beforehand. I don’t know why I kept it a secret, but I did. Other than Megan, my editor, Austin, was the only person to know this book existed.

That day was filled with anxiety, fear, imposter syndrome, and, most importantly, hope. I don’t know what I planned to get out of writing that book, but I knew I wanted to. And now, ten years later, I’m here celebrating its anniversary. I published that book ten years ago next month, though I’d written the short story that was its foundation—a play, of sorts, really—way back in 1999. It’s been a journey, and I’m grateful to have you all with me.

Here we are, today, together, celebrating this work. And what better way to celebrate than to get my books into your eager little hands, no? From April 22nd through May 22nd, all paperbacks in my online store are $10, and hardcovers are just $15. But you need to order them from this special link. If you go right to the books themselves, the special pricing isn’t going to be there. So be sure to click that link.

And, as always, I wanted to say thank you. For those of you who’ve just stumbled onto my work, welcome. For those of you who’ve been here since the beginning, thank you for your support, kind words, encouragement, and nagging me to keep writing when I feel defeated or unsuccessful. I won’t delve into how hard it is to be an independent, self-published author, but I will say that it’s more work than I could have ever anticipated. If you’d told me ten years ago that writing the book(s) is the easiest part of the process, I may have reconsidered doing it.

Last Chance to Pre-Order My Best Friend, Marty

I’m happy to report that the first batch of paperbacks arrived yesterday.

I spent the morning signing and packing up pre-orders to get them out before next week’s release.

If you want a copy before release day (March 14th), tomorrow, March 6th will be the absolute last day you can get your order in with enough time for me to sign, pack, and ship it out to you.

You can pre-order your copy here. Thanks for your support!

30 Days Until “Marty” Arrives!

Several things about “My Best Friend, Marty” are hard to believe.

If you haven’t been following along, “My Best Friend, Marty” is the tale of two unlikely best friends who meet at random one night. It follows the journey of their lives over twenty years, documenting their ups and downs, their loves and lives. It’s written in the first person perspective and is semi-auto-biographical.

The first thing that’s hard to believe is that it’ll be available in just thirty days! I can’t believe the time’s gone by so quickly. Pre-order for Kindle will be available next week. Paperback and Hardcover through Amazon will be available on March 14th.

This brings me to item two, which is hard to believe: “Dudley Road” just came out 11 months ago. I’ve never written something so fast (and got through all the nonsense of editing, artwork, etc.) in my life. You’ll have to believe me when I say the story flowed out of me. It did. The more I wrote, the quicker it just came out of me. It’s probably because a good portion of what happens to Matt (the main character) and Marty (the best friend) are things that happened to me over the years. It is very much semi-auto-biographical. Those of you who know me in real life will probably try to pick out the real things and those that I made up for the book.

The last thing that’s hard to believe — at least for me — is that I just uploaded the final copies to Amazon. I’ll give them a day to process the new files and then order all of the copies I need to have on hand to fulfill pre-orders. If you haven’t pre-ordered your signed copy yet, now’s your chance! You can grab your copy here. Pre-order pricing is less than it will be on launch day, so order now and save!

I also want to thank everyone who’s supported me over the last year while I wrote this book. Everyone who’s read an advanced copy and offered suggestions. Everyone who’s commented on any post I’ve made about the book. Everyone who has already pre-ordered a copy. Everyone who’s read any of my work over the last ten years since I first published A Sour Chord. I’ve never been into writing books to make money. From the first time I published, I knew that I wouldn’t get rich doing this. But I do it anyway for a few reasons:

  1. I love telling stories. Whether in person or on paper (or eInk, as it were), I just love to do it.
  2. Knowing someone’s read something I wrote and it touched them in some way means the world to me.
  3. There’s something special about holding a physical copy of something you created.
  4. As silly as it is, having something to leave behind after I’m gone seems profound. Maybe, in a hundred years, someone will find a copy of one of my books while cleaning out their great-great-great grandmother’s basement and read it.

So, again, thank you. For continuing to pick up a book full of nonsense, I smashed into the keys of my computer over many, many days and nights and then smushed it into a cohesive story.

Oh, and Happy Valentine’s Day! I hope you get to spend time today with someone you love. And that there’s maybe chocolates involved. Happy Valentine’s Day, Megan. Thank you for loving me and letting me love you. I don’t know what voodoo I did to convince you to marry me and spend your life with me, but I’m glad it worked. ❤️

Dudley Road Audiobook Now Available WorldWide!

If you know me by now, you know I can never focus on just one thing. So, while working to promote My Best Friend, Marty, I’ve also been working behind the scenes to get the audiobook of Dudley Road on a bunch of platforms other than Audible.

As of this morning, you can now listen to Dudley Road on Spotify, Chirp, Nook Audiobooks, Kobo, Storytel, and

I have 25 free codes to listen on Spotify. If you want to listen to the only spooky story I’ll likely ever tell, just get in touch and I’ll get you a code!

And if you haven’t pre-ordered your signed copy of My Best Friend, Marty yet, what are you waiting for‽‽

My Best Friend, Marty Pre-Order Now Available!

Well, friends, we made it. As of just a moment ago, My Best Friend, Marty is officially available for pre-sale in paperback and hardcover.

The Amazon versions, including Kindle, will be available on the 14th of March, which is the official release date for the book.

If you pre-order today, you’ll get discounted pricing, perhaps a little surprise offering in your shopping cart, as well as getting your hands on the book before the launch date. (I’ll start shipping them in early March).

If you want to check out the book description, it can be found here. The artwork was done by the incredibly talented Megan Handley of Definitely Pink.

Thanks so much for your support and motivation while I wrote this book. It’s the quickest I’ve ever written and published a book, which speaks volumes about how this story just poured out of me over the last twelve months. I really hope you’ll enjoy it!

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.

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