Surprise! Audiobook is Now Available!

Wow, another post within a week of the previous one! Go me!

Little bit of news, Amazon selected me to participate in their Virtual Voice beta program. What that means is that after a clicked a few buttons and picked a voice, the audiobook for the first book is now available.

I confess, I didn’t work very hard doing a quality check. To balance that out, I set the purchase price to the minimum allowed, $3.99.

It’s free to listen to if you have an Audible membership.

Some trivia too, they say it will take you a little under 16 hours to listen to the first book from start to finish.

Let me know how it goes if you try it out!

Posted in Travel | Leave a comment

2024 – Year of the Dragon

Yes, I’m still here.

Ok, so I was shocked to find some people had left real actual comments on here. Thank you for stopping by! Usually it’s a bunch of bots leaving comments and some poonis in Guangzhou keeps trying to hack my website. So here’s the lowdown:

Pandemic screwed me up.

Pre-pandemic my most productive writing occurred when I got my butt out of my home and into a coffee shop. It was a good level of distraction, I always purchased some kind of espresso drink which for me means that since I spent money I better get some work done, and sometimes the people that walk in end up as zombies in the book.

Well, once I got stuck at home I started having the news on all the time hoping that we’d eventually get some good news. I’d be lucky to get any work done during that time stuck at home.

Fast forward past all that and I’ve got some new hobbies since I couldn’t do some of the old ones. Free time is definitely at a premium since now the old hobbies came back and I haven’t given up the new ones. The old hobbies sent me to Japan which was crazy fun.

One bit of good news though. I can work at home. I know how now. Thus, I’m finally making some good progress on the 3rd book. It’s challenging though as the first two were written from Blake’s perspective. This one though… I’m jumping around a lot. It’s a lot to keep straight, but I think it’ll pay off.

As of this post I’ve written 230 unformatted pages. To give you some idea of what that means as far as finishing, Lost and Found clocked in at 379. Assuming I need to write the same amount of book, I might be half down with the first pass. I hope to have it finished before the end of the year, so keep your fingers crossed.

Sorry again for the lack of updates. I think I probably say that every time I write something on my website. Rest assured though that I am working on the next book and those of you who are excited about what happens next please wait a little more. It’s coming, I promise you.

Posted in Updates | Leave a comment

2022 Update – What Lies Ahead

I’m still here.

We’ve been in a pandemic for the last two years and while I’ve weathered it alright, it’d be impossible to say that I was unaffected.

First off, my writing habits had to change. Most of my work happened in my local coffee shops. This is how I extract myself from my home and more importantly the endless distractions that are in my home. With that gone, I had to try to work in my home.

To say the least, it’s been difficult. At least I saved that coffee money.

That’s not to say there hasn’t been work done. Actually I was investigating the serial novel thing that came out on Amazon. The result of that is what I’ll be working on after finishing Buried Instincts. After I decided though that serial novels weren’t right for me given the current state of my life, I’m back to writing Buried Instincts 3 full time, but I also have a solid idea for what’s coming after.

If you’re one of the people in Davis who have been pestering a certain shipping store and has been directed here, greetings! Thank you very much for your support. Some of you left video messages with your feedback and I was very humbled and grateful that you took the time to do that. I can reassure you all that I’m committed to finishing the story and currently have about 70 pages written. I hope that the pace will pick up in the weeks ahead. I’m as eager as you to know what happens next.

One thing about 2021 is that it was the Year of the Ox according to the Chinese Lunar calendar. Since Ox is my birth year, many people will tell you that it’s going to be a bad year for you. That’s kind of an oversimplification. Most fortune tellers would advise caution as they predict that your life is going to change in some way. It certainly did for me. Because of the pandemic, one of my usual hobbies became impossible to do because I need to be in close contact with people to do it. So, because I needed something to do that would give me the same mind clearing meditative effect, I dusted of my koto and started playing it again.

Then I hit the wall. Embarrassingly quick. I needed a teacher. So I found one that would teach me remotely. She straightened me out and soon I was learning new music. It was magical. I’d never heard this stuff and it was seriously giving me goosebumps. Eventually, the vaccines came out and then more eventually, my low priority tier could go out and get one. I got my shots and started learning in person.

Anyway, fast forward to today and now I’m busier than ever. Maybe I’m being greedy, because my old hobby is slowly coming back, but I also have to make time for the new hobby. Even worse, I’ve added a second instrument to the mix because my lovely girlfriend wanted to learn that one, so I’m accompanying her on that journey. (More on that later, it’s a story worthy of its own post.)

Also, I need to redesign this website. Yeah, it’s not very exciting, I know. It probably won’t be very exciting after I sit down and change it to better reflect what’s going on with me, but I’ve got to start somewhere. I’m also hoping that if I write it down here it will motivate me to get off my ass and do it.

So there you go. Things are coming!

Posted in Travel | 3 Comments

Okay, okay, the second book is finally coming out…

It took way longer than I thought. April 12 is the day. Buy Buried Instinct – Lost and Found on the 12th!

I’ve read it several times and I think you’ll get a kick out of it!

My lovely graphic artist from the last book did this one too! I think it looks great!

Writing the content happened relatively fast. Took about a year to write a book about the same size as the first one. The editing though, I thought it would go fast, but it proceeded at a snails pace. I did learn a lot the first time around. One of the things was that I read the first draft myself before subjecting my friends and family to it. So began a whole slew of re-writes while hunting down those damn typos that I can’t help but adding into to everything. It was only after a couple of rounds of that before I let anyone see it. I felt a lot more confident this time around because I genuinely felt that I had something entertaining at the end of the process. Although, I didn’t get a whole lot of feedback this time around, what little there was was positive!

I’ll also be giving away the first book on April 12 to draw attention to the existence of the second part. I’m not going to run things simultaneously like last time though. Instead, I’ll be promoting the book at different times through different providers so I can see what works.

All this stuff while I try to work on the third and last book. Which I look forward to. I want to see how this thing ends! Well, I know vaguely how it ends. But it’s about the journey!

Posted in Travel | Leave a comment

Maybe out by December?

Progress continues. I have a couple of good candidates for the cover of the book. I’ll be sharing soon. Doing my second read through of the book, this time though I’m having software read it aloud to me. It’s caught some typos so far.

My goal is to have the thing in Amazon in December. But I won’t release it until I’m happy with it.

We’ve been playing Dr Mario World on Android recently. It’s good fun, especially in versus mode. One thing that was pointed out to me though is that Toad isn’t a doctor.

Wait, what?

I’m was pretty sure Toad is a doctor in the game, so I said so.

No. Toad is a mushroom.

A week or two later, I was told that Toad actually is a doctor. She got her Toad to level 2 and his special treatment is useful, so now he’s been acknowledged as being an actual doctor.

So there you go. In case you were wondering.

If you haven’t been stranded on an island without internet access, then you know that we’ve elected a new president.

On election night I actually felt the same sinking feeling I had back in 2016. Then Biden came out and told everyone not to worry. We’re in good shape. The relief I felt was real. Then the following days came and I felt better and better as the votes continued to be tallied.

Regardless of where you stand on policy and what not, I think Biden is a better human than Trump. But what we shouldn’t forget though is that a little less than half the country thinks Trump represents their best interests. I find this very disturbing.

When I was in Spain a few years ago, I went on a tour with another American couple. Somehow the conversation was steered towards the newly elected president Trump. The guy I talked to shrugged and said, “He’s just the president. What could he do in four years?”

And boy did we find out. I wonder what that guy would say now?

But for you people out there who see conspiracy at every turn? Ever heard the saying, take it with a grain of salt? You should get a Costco sized box of salt, load it into a shotgun and shoot clouds of salt on everything coming out of the White House.

Times are stressful people. People tend to vote if things are bad. Twenty years ago? Only old people voted pretty much. Because things were normal and normal is good. And when things are good, people don’t feel like they need to participate in the election process.

I started voting a long time ago after making a promise to myself to vote in the most informed way possible. And not just getting some voter card in the mail and doing what it says either. Voting to me feels like homework. And after trying to learn about each proposition and what I think it means, I then make my selections and am relieved when it’s finished.

But anyway, enough about that. I’m sure by now people are sick of politics. I didn’t follow it much either until last year.

Sequel is getting closer to being finished with each passing day. It’s getting close!

Posted in Travel | Leave a comment

Holy Good Gravy! 4 Months Since the Last Update?!

It’s been a while.

The good news is that I just finished my first readthrough of the Buried Instincts 2. It took more four months, yes, but I wasn’t just reading! There were several parts that felt wrong or incomplete and when I encountered them I spent a lot of time editing and re-writing so that it was more enjoyable and made more sense in the grander scheme of things.

But yes, the book is now in a state which I consider to be “Beta” to use a game developer term. To translate, the book is now what I consider to be content complete. Going forward I will try again to the find all the typos and try to resolve any issues that don’t make sense. (Like Blake running out of bullets and then on the next page he’s shooting his rifle again.) Also it’s time to send an email to see if my lovely graphic artist has time to do a new cover for me.

This also means I’ll be widening my test readers to people outside of my family. I’ll be in touch with you guys soon.

As to how life in general is going? I haven’t caught COVID yet, though I may have and just don’t know it. No symptoms so far. This is not to say I haven’t had health issues though. A couple months ago I found out I’m allergic to an anti-fungal called Clotrimazole. That wasn’t fun. Then like last week I developed a sore neck. After my internet research I came up with likely possibilities: West Nile, COVID, or maybe I slept on it wrong. I’m happy to report the soreness went away and I have yet to develop any other symptoms.

My try to stay at home as much as possible routine is now fully established. I have an endless amount of things that I do that completely occupies my time. My weight has stayed about the same, and while I could stand to lose several pounds, I’m happy to have not gotten fat by staying home and eating to kill time.

I’m still doing Ring Fit on Switch 3 times a week, and have cleared the advanced courses and am now working through the master courses. They’re just time same levels with adjusted difficulty, but the amazing feature you get at master is that they upgrade all of your exercises across the board so that they do the same damage output. This is something I discovered I wanted while clearing the advanced course, because I was only using exercises that did the most damage. So I put gave my gamer sense a back seat and started just rotating in different exercises so I could go a more balanced work out. Then I hit the master levels and they do it for me! Awesome! And even better, they ditched the cooldowns on the exercises. Meaning that if you want to do mountain climbers twice in a row, you can now. Anyway, I like it. I’m looking forward to a sequel.

I’ve also finally gotten a handle on how to play Midare. It took a couple of months, but now I can play the whole thing with ton of mistakes. Practice on that will continue…

So, no promises, but I think in a month I might have Buried Instincts 2 at a state that I can describe as being a Release Candidate. My next task is figuring out how to get my computer to read my book out loud. My hope is this will expose even more typos. I also anticipate my readthroughs to go faster now that I’m pleased with the content.

Stay safe out there!

Posted in Travel | Leave a comment

First draft of second part of Buried Instincts is done!

Just a quick update, more for me to mark the occasion than anything else. The first draft of the next part of my zombie series has been completed!

Now the real work begins…

Posted in Travel | Leave a comment

Time is Flying… Somehow

So I hear there’s a lot of bored people out there. I was out for a short walk and I passed by some dude wearing a mask in a silver convertible waiting at a stop sign. There was no cross traffic, but he was just sitting there. A little later and a block away I hear tire squealing. It’s that dude, trying to unsuccessfully do donuts in the street I guess. Too bad he sucks balls.

Being quarantined at home though isn’t boring for me. There’s no end of things to do. Work on the next book has become trickled into any gaps in my schedule. And by schedule, I mean loose list of tasks I hope to accomplish. Exercise, eat breakfast, cook dinner, practice koto, watch the news, look for free video game deals, on and on and on. In between, I try to write and I get more done as the days roll on. I’m on the epilogue, if you’re interested. I’ve had two false starts, but the current attempt is coming off how I want it to. Soon… soon the painful work of self editing will begin.

I continue to play Ring Fit Adventure on a regular basis. I’ve arrived at the conclusion that I’ve unlocked all the best moves and there’s probably not going to be any more. So in order to keep it fresh, I’ve decided to be more picky about the moves I set when going into a particular course. I try not to use the same high DPS move over and over again, instead swapping in less powerful moves just to vary up the exercise some more. My latest armor/gym clothes adds 5% damage to yoga moves, so I’m all about tree, warrior, and boat poses right now with a little side of squats and lunge twists. Still getting my moneys worth for the game!

I’m also determined to finish Dragon Quest 8. I’m playing it on my 3DS and I’ve stubbornly decided to finish it before moving on to something else. I got past the part I was stuck on and then had to grind out some levels to defeat the boss. Then there was rapid progression of the story until I got to the next boss who spanked me. So now I’m in the middle of another grind. The way it works is I leave the DS on, but closed. Anytime I see it I pick it up and beat up a few evil trees. I’ll level my group up eventually.

I’m reading the excellent Condor Heroes right now. It’s finally received a good English translation and the second book came out this month. It’s seriously making me want to watch one of the tv adaptations (There’s at least 4. Heard the recent one is pretty good.) After I finish that, I think I’m moving on to something Sanderson wrote. One of his books is currently on deal.

Try to hang in there people! Cabin fever sucks, but this won’t last forever.

Posted in Travel | Leave a comment

Soft Apocalypse – Try Not to Go Out

Well, here we are at the California epicenter of the pandemic. I guess that means we’ve edged out the Bay Area. Waiting in lines to get into the grocery stores are common. I went for an evening walk and other than seeing the Swami guy on a bike that I’ve seen sleeping at 7-Eleven sometimes, I was utterly alone on the streets. It almost felt like being in a post-Apocalyptic world. Except for the cars that drove by every now and then. It’s still LA after all.

Some crazy stuff is happening. Some guy thinks the USS Mercy is not actually here to treat patients and tried to launch a train into the ship by derailing it. He said he needed to draw attention to the situation. I wonder if he tried his plan out in GTA V beforehand?

Then there was the crazy dude who saw an Asian family in a Texas Sam’s Club and decided that he should stab them because they were trying to infect people with the coronavirus. I was getting pissed at the ignorant douchebags who were spitting on Asians just because they’re Chinese ipso facto, they have COVID 19. The nut job who decided to commit murder though is a new level of sick.

I need to stop having the news on all day. It’s eating into way too much of my work time.

I’m going to show off my burnt cheesecake which I made tonight. Er… I mean my Basque Cheesecake. I learned how from the delightful Chef John at

He really is one of my favorite chefs to learn from, and so many of his recipes have made it into my meal rotation.

I’ve also got a short update about playing Ring Fit Adventure. I’ve completed the main story line! I’m still playing it though. They have extra worlds so you can continue to exercise with your high level avatar. Also the game told me I could try change the audio dialogue to another language. So now my sentient ring is speaking in Japanese. I think it’d be awesome if it was screaming and spitting and stuff like in that old movie, Gung Ho. I’m having trouble understanding it though because the dialogue is primarily about body movements and body parts which I didn’t study much of during my Japanese language classes in college. I hope to expand that by working out more.

I’m also playing an awesome game called “Good Job!” You’re the son of the owner of a company. You start on the literal ground level and have a simple task to accomplish in each room until you’re promoted to the next floor. The hilarious part is all the inadvertent (or just plain deliberate) destruction you can’t help but cause. The SO enjoys watching me play and will often berate me for doing something dumb.

I’ve also moved on to Nioh. It’s a hack and slash set in feudal Japan. Samurai, ninjas, and shit. I don’t know if it’s because I’m a crap player, but I die all the freaking time. It took me a couple of days to realize that I should kill a bunch of enemies then head back to the small shrines and use the drops from the enemies to level my stats up. As a result, I am now making more progress.

I’m getting closer to the end of the second book. It’s writing itself. Well, it is whenever I can keep my butt in my chair. Maybe sometime this weekend?

Posted in Travel | Leave a comment

Fatter at Home

Here in California, we’ve been ordered to not go out unless you need groceries or go for a walk. And when you walk, you have to avoid people. Try to pretend you’re in a hamster wheel, basically. It’s going to be a huge lifestyle change for a whole lot of people.

I’ve been performing this civic duty. Just before the order hit, I came down with hay fever. Yeah, yeah, I know. It might be COVID 19. I’ve been treating it as if it has been. But I have this allergy party every year (except for last year, which I credit to nasal spray) and the symptoms are all too familiar. Itchy eyes? Yup. Soul crushing full body coughing in the morning? Unfortunately, yes. I wonder what my neighbors think. Weird, pale yellow phlegm? Check. Aches? Yeah, a little. Fever? Nope. Not even a little. And believe me, I’ve been checking. We got a thermometer recently. It looks kind of like a type 2 phaser from Star Trek: TNG. I’ve been phasering myself right between my eyebrows everyday, three times a day.

The good news is, I’m past the nasty ass cough. Feeling pretty much back to normal. Maybe self-quarantining is making my recovery faster since I’m not walking to the market, going to practice, or even spending any time outside.

But I’ve been thinking that my lifestyle hasn’t really changed much. I’m a work at coffee shop author that’s become a work at home author. Ever since I left the video games industry I’ve tried my damnedest to keep costs low. Also, I’m fat. So one of the obvious places to save money and cut calories is eating out. For years now I’ve been improving my culinary abilities, and I think I’m better. I certainly don’t think I’d qualify to go on Worst Cooks in America. (It’s a fun show, BTW.) Point being, when safer at home started, I was already doing most of what I need to do at home. Cooking and eating, exercise (thanks Nintendo), and now trying to work in my distracting home environment.

So backtrack to a few days ago. I’m coughing, my body aches, I’m trying unsuccessfully to get work done, and the news is on all day. I caught myself eating stuff for no reason than it was something to do. Yikes. I wonder how many other people might be lazing around their house with their thirty bags of cheesy puffs, a freezer full of frozen pizza, and enough canned goods to be an excellent house in a month for zombie apocalypse survivors to raid, might be absentmindedly stuffing their faces to keep busy?

If we stay inside for a month, living the fallout shelter life, are we going to put on like fifteen pounds?

Don’t let yourselves go people. There’s a light at the end of the tunnel. Stay safe and take care of each other.

Posted in Travel | Leave a comment