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Saturday, May 20, 2017

Incarceration is Now Available!

20MAY17 Happy Saturday! I have wonderful news to share. The Last Horn, my latest story is now available in the Incarceration anthology from Wolfsinger Publications, for sale through Smashwords and CreateSpace! Go get it now at a discount using the following codes:

- use code: XJ86G to receive a 25% discount on Incarceration – 25% discount is only good through 5/31/17

CreateSpace here: Incarceration on sale at CreateSpace - use code: 9HW5GHYR to receive a 25% discount – 25% discount is only good through 5/31/17.

The anthology features seventeen futuristic stories about capturing and punishing people for the crimes they commit. 
Auto License Plate Detection. Check
Facial recognition? Check. 
Punitive comas? Check?
Other new tech to make bad guys pay for their crimes? Double Check.

A short preview of my story The Last Horn is below:

The rookie read out loud from his phone, “E-COP, the latest software in predictive policing, also known as computer-based crime analytics. E-COP is intended to enhance, not replace, the feet on the beat.” 
“Get it in your head now, Parkinson. No box is ever going replace a badge. Predictive policing my ass. Just means they can reduce the force and spend the money on computers and geeks instead.” He took another sip of coffee.

Picture for today is the great cover for the anthology. 


Monday, May 15, 2017

Incarceration!

The cover art for the next anthology featuring one of my stories:


Story is titled The Last Horn. This story is for all my law enforcement friends. Release is scheduled for this month. More details to follow soon.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Art

14 MAY 17
As it winds closer to the end of another school year, I'm looking forward to writing some more. The lazy days of Summer mean swimming and writing and enjoying family. And if I can find time for writing, then the next thing to do is art. I love to doodle or sketch stuff but I never seem to find the time. My mom has sketches galore saved from when I was a kid. 

The easiest type of art for me is photography. I love capturing images. Anything drawn by hand seems to take forever for me and I want to do it on the computer so I can change it any way I want. 

Anyways, enough of that, here is some art for today gathered from various places along with some thoughts by me. None of this artwork is mine unless it is so marked. Enjoy, and any comments are welcome. 



I love pictures of fancy and fantasy, they make my heart smile. This picture of a happy wolf/dog/plant thing is awesome. Makes me think of warm spring days encouraging the plants to grow.




I also like dark artwork, both in actual darkness and in subject matter. A lovely young lady walking hand in hand with Death makes me wonder what she did to deserve such treatment or is that what awaits each one of us, a long, slow walk with Death into the sunset? Black and whites and water-washed colours both spark my interest when done well. The watercolour to the right makes me think of the soliloquy in MacBeth.
"Let me see. (takes the skull) Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, Horatio, a fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy. He hath borne me on his back a thousand times, and now, how abhorred in my imagination it is! My gorge rises at it. Here hung those lips that I have kissed I know not how oft. —Where be your gibes now? Your gambols? Your songs? Your flashes of merriment that were wont to set the table on a roar? Not one now to mock your own grinning? Quite chapfallen? Now get you to my lady’s chamber and tell her, let her paint an inch thick, to this favor she must come. Make her laugh at that.—Prithee, Horatio, tell me one thing."




This one is mine, playing around with my camera, a small ceramic skull and lighting.  :) I love Dia De Los Muertos. I used this for a Halloween announcement one year. The light in the eyes and nose are from the lamp I placed it on.


Art tied to stories are my favorite pieces. The picture above was inspired by Michael Moorcock's Elric series. The main character is an albino.

I will publish one day a collection of my short stories accompanied by artwork inspired by the stories. Pen and paper sketches most likely. 

One of the easiest ways for me to get out of writer's block is to take a picture and just run with whatever it brings to mind. These last two pictures, of the sad robot and the little girl at the base of a tree lead me to many wonderful places! I can't imagine what the robot would be sad about, but then I look closer and see a hole where a human's heart would be. Is there something precious that is there for a robot? 
And this little lady at the base of that magnificent tree. What lies beyond the waters? Are those moons seen through the branches or some sort of immense glowing fruit in the tree above her? What is she leaving behind? All sorts of wonderful questions to answer through writing! 









Today is Mother's Day, and I can't go without saying Happy Mother's Day to all the mothers out there. Hm, I haven't written any stories inspired by mothers, although my story Legacy featured a very prominent mother. Well, Happy Mother's Day!! Hope your sons and daughters treat you well!  





Sunday, April 30, 2017

Music

30APR17: To close out this month of April, here's a little bit about music. I listen to all sorts and I will date myself with some of the things I listen to, lol. First off, if I had to search my soul and find my fondest music memory, it would be listening to the Supertramp Live in Paris double album at my Dad's house. My dad had this sweet setup back in the day with huge speakers and a dual turntable that would automatically play the second album when the first one was done. I would lie on the carpeted floor, close my eyes and be transported to a roaring Parisian crowd.

Supertramp

That was my first taste of Supertramp and it soured their studio albums for me. I wanted a more organic feel than studio perfection. So that is at my soul's core. Right next door though, are some strange neighbors. Metallica, Suicidal Tendencies (thanks to my Dad, who had the first ST album I listened to and shout out to anyone else from SoCal out there!) and Nine Inch Nails are near and dear to my heart too. System of a Down and other bands like that, I can listen to them all day long. My wife calls it my Angry Beaver Music, lol.

After that I have my alternative/L.A. tastes. Rooted in my exposure growing up with the non-genre that is the Los Angeles melting pot music scene, I also had a bunkmate during my first few years in the navy who was alternative to the core and re-ignited in me a love of the odd, out there, and definitely non-mainstream. Old Depeche Mode, Art of Noise, The Cure, the Smiths, Morrissey when he went solo, Concrete Blonde, Tori Amos, Sublime, etc... All great stuff.

Old-fashioned rock and roll and oldies makes up a lot of my playlists too. Thanks Uncle Joey and Uncle Santos.

So what can you expect from my playlist? Wow, well nothing typical and nothing easily predicted/expected. Here's a rundown of the last ten songs or so I listened to:


  1.  Metallica - Master of Puppets
  2. Lynyrd Skynyrd - Freebird (how did I never notice they used only y's in their band name?)
  3. Santana - Do You Like the Way
  4. James - Laid
  5. The Bravery - The Bad Sun (Sun Version)
  6. Seal - Killer
  7. Red Hot Chili Peppers - Under the Bridge
  8. Rammstein - Du Hast
  9. Rolling Stones - Paint it Black
  10. Matisyahu - King Without a Crown
No NIN or Supertramp in there, but a pretty good sample of what I like to listen to. When writing, I will sometimes listen to music to inspire me, other times I will set it to play my favorites and take inspiration as it comes. 

I'm totally interested it what sounds you hear when you search your soul and find your fondest music memory. What makes your heart dance and sing?

Picture for today is the cover to the Supertramp in Paris album.


Tuesday, April 25, 2017

ANZAC Day

25 APR 17
In my military days, I was fortunate enough to work alongside Aussie forces and other military from around the world. Today is ANZAC Day, a day of remembrance for Aussie and New Zealand military forces. I had the distinct pleasure of being a part of an ANZAC Day dawn ceremony in Afghanistan during the war. I say pleasure because it was a unique opportunity to see Turkish and ANZAC forces both represented at the ceremony. The Turkish referred to the ANZAC forces as their "honorable enemy." They traded items, including covers. It was very touching.

Two things I would like to share on this day. 

One, rare footage of the actual landing on Gallipoli, the first battle that ANZAC forces took place in.
Gallipoli Landing

The other is a picture for today of a page from a diary from that day. From the war diary of Indian Army Captain C.A. Milnard. He was with the staff, on the boats that day. 


In these days where the news is filled with talk of military action between countries, between the US and North Korea, may we never forget the sacrifices and battles of those who fought to give us the world we live in today. And when we think of war, may we weigh these costs in with everything else. I'm not saying we shouldn't go to war, just that we go to war wide awake, with fear, with respect, and with absolute assurance that we are doing the right thing.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Wattpad - Bullseye

23 APR 17 Howdy all!  Hope everyone is having a great Sunday!
I write here and there and like many other authors I have various pages at different sites. My latest writing I added over to Wattpad, which has several small pieces and one serialized me. Go check it out:

Wattpad - Montellano

Latest story piece is Bullseye, inspired by a dream. I forgot most of it by the time I got around to writing today, but the core survived. It turned out pretty good I think and I have ideas on how to merge it with a few other pieces I've written. Not my usual stuff.

Dumb pun: Mountains aren't just funny, they're hill areas! :) I like puns. One of the many reasons that I like the Xanth series.

Picture for today:
Nothing could be more true.





Saturday, April 15, 2017

Another Short Story!

15 APR 17 I have another short story in the pipeline! A total departure from my normal genre, this short story is a crime story. Set a few years in the future, it focuses on a dastardly man who goes to extreme lengths to get the ultimate Viagra. It was written specifically for an anthology about incarceration in the future. The anthology is due out later this year. This will be the second short story published this year, a third story, horror genre, is at another publisher as well, still awaiting final approval.

My wife also has a story in the same incarceration anthology, which is very nice and another change from the usual. The anthologies that we have been a part of so far have leaned more toward my neck of the woods genre-wise: Fantasy. She has felt like the odd man out and now in this anthology, I am the odd man out. Even though I wrote a story that fits with the theme of the anthology it definitely is not my comfort zone at all. Feels good though to stretch my writing wings.

What I really want to do now is write a fantasy story about police and incarceration. Makes my mind juices water. How would the police develop in a world of magic? Might makes right? Truth spells? Crimson Bands of Cytorrak or some similar means of restraint? Would there be sheriffs? Cops? Makes you think. Reminds me of Corwin being blinded in the Chronicles of Amber by Roger Zelazny. Now that was a punishment. It also makes me think of the Xanth series by Piers Anthony and the banishment of those who have no magic.

In my main fantasy setting, as times change, incarceration and policing change dramatically. It is something that I am still working on. I like the idea of justice. I may have found my next story idea!

Picture for today: A Snowy Sentinel, to go along with the theme of policing.