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BrainstormATX: The Little Conference that Could

Austin is the “Live Music Capitol of the World.” However, I’m convinced we have more writers in this city than we have musicians. The problem is, authors aren’t as visible as musicians, and we tend to be more introverted, so people don’t realize how many writers there actually are in Austin. Making matters worse, for a city as artsy as Austin, there aren’t a lot of organizations and events for writers that help raise awareness and build community. After many conversations with fellow authors, it became clear we needed to do something about it. A crazy idea Out of that, a crazy idea came into focus: a local, grassroots writer and author conference. Austin is full of amazing writers and experts on other topics. It therefore made sense for the conference to be by, for and about our local community. We didn’t need to invite big names or look to other cities for talent. It also needed to be affordable. Too many writing and publishing events are priced so high that average writers can’t afford to … Read more…

Camp Lonehollow gate

CampConnect: My Trip to the Emerald City

  As a freelance writer, my life can be summed up in three words: Always Be Working During the day I do a considerable amount of writing blogs and web copy for various freelance clients, as well as create my own fiction. Then there’s all the tasks of running a business, not to mention organizing a conference. Having not left town for even a day trip in nearly two years, I had a craving to do a short road trip, but there was always a looming deadline, a meeting to attend, or some other reason why I couldn’t justify the time, or I’d just tell myself I couldn’t afford it. Maybe next month, I kept thinking. Out of the blue I had an opportunity to join the first CampConnect weekend at Camp Lonehollow, receiving a complimentary invitation to attend as a blogger. Miraculously, there wasn’t a single thing on my calendar for the entire April 8-10, 2016 weekend. As described on the website, CampConnect promised to “inspire and engage my youthful spirit.” Suddenly all … Read more…

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Hot Wells: in Real Life & in Fiction

Hot Wells is a San Antonio hotel that was built in the last 19th century and counted as its guests people such as Charlie Chaplin and Teddy Roosevelt.

Since that time the hotel experienced at least five different fires and now all that is left is the bath house, the hotel itself long gone. And even the bath house is now mostly a ruin, with walls that defy gravity and bricks piled everywhere. But despite its rundown appearance, it’s a magical place.

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Walking Man sculpture

Razors and incisors – a short bit of fiction

Tonight I attended a writing meetup at the Austin Zen Center.

After a brief meditation we all wrote for 25 minutes on a prompt. One of the participants unwrapped a small metal sculpture. It was an emaciated figure of man (in the style of the sculptor Giacometti as illustrated here), standing with a rat’s nest of wires jutting out from his head at acute angles, like a bunch of triangles. The sculpture made me think of disturbed thoughts or nightmares, and from that, I wrote the following:

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Public Reading – and a Discount!

A public reading! Oh my!

On January 23, from 3-5pm at Malvern Books in Austin, TX, I’ll be one of three authors giving a public reading of my novel By Moonrise.

Auriga Project novel cover Lost Library box set covers

Joining me are Matt Herron, author of the sci-fi thriller The Auriga Project and Kate Baray, author of several urban fantasy novels including the Lost Library collection. We’ll each read selections from our books and talk a little about our journey to becoming indie authors, followed by a book signing and refreshments.

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thesixtyone,com

The Rebirth of a Great Site for Music

The streaming music site thesixtyone.com used to be my favorite site to find new music. It was a lot like what Wattpad and similar sites are for indie authors and their fams. Then six years ago the owners pushed out a radical redesign that changed almost all of its functionality, and drove a stake through its heart.

Last night I found out that the owners returned the site to its old design, with all of its previous functionality. It’s ALIVE!

I just wrote up a post over on Medium talking about the site and my experience. Check it out: thesixtyone.com: a lesson in hubris. I’d love for you to give it a read, but even more, I’d love it if you’d give thesixtyone.com a try. It’s going be only as good as the community behind it, so I want to get the word out!

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