Fiction: Nikki Loves Josie

This story comes from my collection, School Police, available now.


It’s true. Ask anyone. The first time we noticed it, we were all in Gerry’s basement bored and doing this kind of tickle fight teenagers do and you could feel the tension between some of us and some of the slow learners just wanted to tickle. But Nikki and Josie never touched, just looked. All their friends were either worried or jealous.
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Fiction: Outside of Brilliant

This story comes from my collection, School Police, available now.


We were about a mile from our house, heading west on Route 151. It was the middle of summer. Our twins, Joy and Andy, were in the back seat, and my wife tugged on my sleeve and pointed. Leonard, our cat, was sprawled on the berm. I pulled off and my wife and kids got out. Leonard was still breathing, but it didn’t look good.

He yowled in the back while the kids built up a blanket around him like a nest. My wife sat in the back to keep their hands off him. His legs were bloody, and my wife mouthed to me in the rear view mirror that they were broken.

Joy was crying. Andy was looking at Leonard and trying to cover him up.
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Fiction: The Doctor

This story comes from my collection, School Police, available now.


It was clear that the tech people were tired of each other’s company, and one of the tech women, a brunette who said she was from Kansas, kept looking at Michael and smiling across from her at the bar. They were all in the one tavern that catered to ex-pats. They served burgers with feta and soggy fries and lots of the local beer. The tech people were here most nights.
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Why I Loved Mytro

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Without spoiling too much about his book, I’ll compare his book to others that have truly resonated with me throughout life. First being the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy. There were moments in Mytro that truly reminded me of some fantastic moments in Hitchhikers. The nuances Biggs detailed in the characters taking us through a fast-paced action adventure, as well as the actual beings in charge of the Mytro were pretty intense. I’m totally biased in some ways because my family comes from Barcelona, so he had me smiling a lot every time the Castilian character would attempt to speak English.

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Excerpt from The Smoke

Here’s something I’m working on right now. Thoughts?

The smoke came at night and left by morning. Sectors of the city were covered by it and the people that lived there and who did not escape as soon as the first licks of smoke snuffled at their doors, those too sick to move or too old or those who had given up, stayed in it. Lights flashed in there, people said, and under the fog horns people said they heard a crunching like a dog at a bone. By morning that sector had been changed. Sometimes they were crowded with new buildings, sometimes the previous buildings were destroyed and the ground left flat and shiny as ice. Some days all that was left was a white marble temple to a forgotten god. The people that stayed were gone.
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Dad’s Garage

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If you needed a hammer or a saw or a roll of red caps or a broken broom handle or a nest of telephone wire or a anti-seize paste or anything you could ever imagine you could find it out in Dad’s garage. The core of the garage was a beautiful old work bench, so dark and scarred that it looked medieval. There was an iron vise bolted to it and jar after jar of screws, nails, and nuts arrayed along the back edge. An old radio, tuned forever to the local NPR station, would crackle on and and stay on while you worked out there. If you needed a tire iron or a jack or a bucket for used motor oil or a length of tubing to start work you’d dig around that bench and risk jostling that radio until you pulled it out, a prize that came at just the beginning of the race.
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How Writers Should Use Email Marketing

I was talking with my buddy John Sundman about email and social media and email. He, like me, found that Facebook was useless as a sales medium and Twitter was worse than useless. I’ve had plenty of retweets from folks with more than a million followers and the sales results have been abysmal. In fact, the only surefire way of selling a book is via email. End of story.

John asked me a few questions: “How many people get it? What kind of response do you get when you send out a blast? What mailer tool do you use? How did you build up your mailing list? How long did that take?”
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The 1,000 Words Rule

An excerpt from my book, Bloggers Boot Camp: Learning How to Build, Write, and Run a Successful Blog. It’s my 1,000 Word Rule and it is what drives me as a writer even though I have plenty of other responsibilities.


You must write a minimum of 1,000 words a day.

Every new endeavor requires a period of ascetic dedication. This is yours. Some writers make this their ceiling, but many make it their floor. Either way, you must produce on a daily basis. How do you do this? You can crank out, perhaps, three posts of a few hundred words each in the morning and three in the evening. Or you can write one big post. Either way, do the word count. Why is this important? Because if you have a goal, you can meet it. After his heart attack, blogging great Om Malik set this number for himself to ensure he produced quality content in a timely manner and did not kill himself in the process. Sadly, Om’s heart attack was brought on by the blogging lifestyle, as well as too much booze, cigars, family history, and bad luck. It took a massive change in his everyday life to reorient him toward a saner blogging schedule, and he found this 1,000-word limit invaluable.
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