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When Two Authors Under the Same Roof, Get the Same Idea...

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The Pondering Pug's Thought of the Day: What happens when two authors, who are married to each other, get the same type of idea for a short story for their respective book series? Funny, that this pup should be asking that question, because it happened to Helen and me just recently. As you all know I created a vampire (or as I call him a 'vampyre' since he's not a true undead being, but more of a science fiction-based blood drinking, shape-shifting, sun avoiding being) named Nathan Steward. For those who aren't familiar with him here's a brief synopsis. Nathan was a Union soldier in the Civil War who got blown into a Para-Earth where one of the life forms there fused itself to him, creating a symbiotic bond that allows them to coexist as one. This symbiotic arrangement has also extended Nathan's life far beyond that of a normal human being, which means he has existed for over 160 years. This has allowed him to see and be a part of a lot of history.  Then abo

A Kirkus Review of "Forever's Too Long"

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What a way to start a brand new the year! Helen just got a Kirkus Review of her first novel "Forever's Too Long", calling it... "A tense, thrilling paranormal adventure with a striking cast." Here's the full review: A supernatural crime novel set in the 1940s focuses on a private detective. This series opener begins in 1947. The narrator of the story, Rafael Jones, has set up shop as a private investigator in New York City. Rafael has an extensive background in law enforcement (both civilian and military), and he is eager to strike out on his own. No sooner has he put the sign up for Harmony Investigations than he is approached by a British woman named Clara Thomas. Clara has been sent to persuade Rafael to work for Interpol. She is a sharp woman, with a degree in mathematics from Oxford, who knows how to handle herself in a fight. She can also fly a plane. Rafael doesn’t need that much convincing, and he soon learns that working with Clara will be fun.

What I Planned For This Year, and How It Turned Out...

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At the beginning of this year, I made a post listing my plans for this year. And as the end of the year draws closer, let's take a look at how things went, shall we? 1- Re-work, re-edit, and re-release “The Bridge” in a special 10th Anniversary version. RESULTS: As of today, this project is just shy of 2/3's of the way finished. So, it's well on target for being re-released in 2023. Admittedly, I had hoped to have it completed and ready to release in January 2023, but I'll settle for getting it out before the coming year is over. 2 – Get a complete 1st draft of “The Vampyre Blogs – Family Ties” which takes up mere weeks after the end of “The Vampyre Blogs – Coming Home”. RESULTS: Well... the first draft is under way, so that's something. Right? Please tell me I'm right. I'm feeling guilty over here. 3 – Release the first volume of “The Pass” trilogy, which I wrote with my old high school friend Rich Caminiti, with some fantastic illustrations by the tale

Gifts Can Come in Many Forms...

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Christmas came early to me... Last night I received this comment over on my YouTube channel regarding my presentation of an unabridged version of Charles Dickens' classic "A Christmas Carol" from Barbara Ortiz... "This version is among the best, the added images are very nice, your extra research is appreciated. Ahh, also, your voice acting is spot on." This meant the world to me. I hope everyone else who's checked it out enjoyed it just as much. And if you wish to give it a try, I'm supplying the link just below. Happy Holidays everyone and may the season bring you all the joy and happiness it can. Link: Merry Christmas, Happy Hannukah, a Joyous Kwanzaa and a Happy New Year to you all.

My Special Holiday Project Gift From Me to all of You...

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The holiday season is upon us, and I hope you are all enjoying yourselves. I know I've been on the quiet side for some time, but I've been dealing with some health issues (which I'll discuss down the road, it's still not fully resolved yet). But I've also been working on a special project for the last 2 years. It's been quite a journey with this particular effort of mine, as it's part audiobook and part video.  As you all know I've done a fair amount of audio work, but adding video was a whole new ballgame for me. Getting everything lined up just right, finding imagery in public domain, as well as music to go along with it, took a considerable amount of time and energies. But I feel like the results were worth it. I learned a lot along the way and may actually start doing some podcasting in the near future. We'll see. But for now I'd like to present to you all to a brand new Unabridged presentation of Mr. Charles Dicken's classic "A Chri

The Dangers of Over-Editing...

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Yesterday I was scrolling through YouTube and ran across something that really caught my eye. Yes, I'm one of those people who when the Halloween season rolls around, I break out all kinds of horror movies, especially the black and white ones. And I freely admit that I've watched this classic gem many times.  However, it wasn't the full movie that was being advertised. Instead, this was a 40-minute video about 'deleted' scenes from this movie, which immediately caught my attention. Pausing only to grab a cup of tea, I sat down for a good viewing and was not disappointed. Now, I'm not saying that they had actual footage that was left out of the final cut, but what they did have took me completely by surprise. For those who are less familiar with the old universal black and white monster films, I'll give you a quick rundown here. This video covered the actors who played Frankenstein's monster.  For the first 3 films it was Boris Karloff who had been handpi

My Thoughts on Draft2Digital...

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Recently I've been struggling to try and get Helen's short story collection up onto Smashwords, with less than sterling results. Now, in case anyone out there isn't familiar with Smashwords, they use an entirely different format style than say Amazon's KDP. By the same token, they also have a wide distribution that includes Barnes and Noble Nook, Kobo, Scribd, and a host of other sites which includes distributors for public libraries. Now after successfully getting our first book up on Smashwords, I created a template to make things easier for future submissions. And until recently, this template worked every time. I would simply change a few details like title, year of publishing, etc. then I would simply copy and paste the new manuscript into that template.  However, this time something went horribly wrong. We kept getting messages that there were problems with the formatting of the document and at one point, I even uploaded the corrected manuscript onto Smashwords un