Just in time for Halloween


castle old cover

A small fortune, unknown until now, remains hidden on a small estate in Buckhannon, WV known by its residents as the Castle. Local legends tell of angered spirits, a curse and even a series of underground catacombs associated with the estate. Greed is a powerful drug. One that binds people to their most prized possessions all throughout life and even afterward.

 

The Castle’s ethereal master still stands watch over the property from the tower’s second level preying on those who would be tempted by the treasure.  Lift the curse. Go where I could not, and release the tormented spirits from their prison.

Get a free copy of my investigation today.

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/239906

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The Furlough Song


So, maybe I got a little bored at work today:

Fur… I say Fu-u-uur-lough!
Take Congress’ pay, don’t let em go home.
 
Come Mr. Congressman, repeal the Obama.
Furlough come, and we all stay home.
 
It’s six days, seven days, eight days OFF!
You won’t get paid, and you can’t go home.
 
A difficult bunch of bright persona who can’t work togeTHA!
Furlough come, and we all stay home.
 
It’s six days, seven days, eight days OFF!
Furlough come, and they all stay home.
 
Harry Reid push it back, push it back to Boehnner.
Furlough come, and we all stay home.
 
I get to pee in any stall I wanNAH!
Furlough come, and they all stay home.
 
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The Shutdown Sandwich


Okay. So, it has happened. The world hasn’t come to an end by any means, but for millions of Americans life will get more difficult. It is with you in mind that the following recipe is offered up for a few bites (and laughs):

•Start with two slices of your favorite bread. You’ll want them toasted, so really hold them over the coals and grill them.

(to view the full article, go to http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-1042375.)

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Fantasy/Western


My new book is free  from Sept. 18 – 22. Shootouts, love, gambling, zombies and mayhem… Enjoy.

Axe and Emerald cover silver

Rhone McLean can only watch his entire world burn as his wife’s lifeless body
disappears into the raging inferno. A mysterious cowboy in black emerges from
the ashes of Rhone’s home with a message of hope. His words push McLean into a
quest to free Clara, but how much of himself is he ready to sacrifice?

As the nation heals from the deep wounds of a bloody Civil War, McLean ventures
into the underbelly of the Western frontier. Here Rhone must confront his worst
fear if he is to lower the veil and cross the fog in to the macabre world where
Clara is imprisoned.

The Forces of Creation and Destruction position their
pieces as their eternal conflict nears its boiling point. With the help of the
Pegasus, Bellerophon, Rhone attempts to liberate the seven Towers of Light from
the Baron and his legions of the damned and restore balance to Everdark. He will
soon learn that the path to Clara passes through the Stones of Power and the
collapse of the Dark Territories. Rhone must endure more than Hell if he ever
wants to see his wife again.

 

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Episode 1 Program Notes and Credits


Flash Point Theater’s debut radio show. All writers, producers and musically inclined folks are encouraged to submit.

Flash Point Theater

Originally aired August 28, 2013.

Musical guests: Kevin MaCleod. 

Special thanks to Ever Desireless.

Written, directed and produced by Joshua Dyer. All rights reserved.

The podcast feed can be found at:

http://flashpointtheater.podbean.com/

http://flashpointtheater.podomatic.com/rss2.xml

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Friends, Countrymen Lend Me Your Ears


After several long months of painstaking work and editing, the audiobook of “Hunter Cell” is finished! It is currently up on Amazon and audible.com and will be made available on all platforms in the next few days. Click the link below, and head on over. Check it out.

http://www.amazon.com/Hunter-Cell/dp/B00EDHDJK4

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The Great (American) License Plate Game


The road can be a long and boring place for the kids in your family. No matter how hard you may try to explain to them that getting there is half of the fun, they will still get restless. The following is a game that has been around for a good while and has several variations. This particular version entertained my three for the seven hour trip we recently made into the Smokey Mountains of Tennessee:

  1. Make a list on a sheet of paper of all 50 states.  Leave two blank spaces next to each one: one labeled ‘vehicle’ and the other labeled ‘rig’.
  2. The point values for finding a regular personal vehicle is two points. The point value for a rig is one point. The reason being that rigs are more likely to travel cross-country than a personal vehicle would be.
  3. When you get on the road, have one of the kids or the person riding shotgun hold the score sheet and keep track of all of the plates that you see drive by. Each state can only be marked off in either category only once. Thus, there are a total of 153 points for all 50 states plus one of each category from D.C. Bonus points are given for plates from Canada, Mexico, or any other international plate: 3 points for a rig, and 5 points for a personal vehicle( once per province: Ontario and Quebec are separate for example). The vehicles must be in motion on a road of some type. Parked vehicles at rest stops and parking lots don’t count.
  4. Once you have returned from your trip, tally up all points, your distance traveled, and the time that it took your family to obtain your results. Post them here in the comments section to see how your family fared against all other players.

Results for my family:

Trip length: 900 miles round trip

Trip time: 13 hours

Total points: 77 points.

Not too shabby. So, you think your family can beat it on your next road trip? Have at it!

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A Sneak Peek Into Upcoming Fantasy/Western


The following is an excerpt from the draft of my upcoming work tentatively entitled, Tempest: Everdark Saga Book I.  As this post title suggests, this work will blend the traditional western saga into a work of fantasy for what I hope will be an entertaining tale. As always, comments are welcomed and encouraged.

‘The exhaustion pulled Rhone McClean’s features into the dust under his battered body. Blood oozed out of the laceration in his left shoulder soaking his already soiled white shirt. The cowboy raised himself to his knees, stabbed the blade of his weapon into the charred earth and leaned on the hilt of his broadsword. His legs trembled beneath his torn spirit as he lifted himself up off of the desert floor. McClean examined the damage done to his mortal shell. He lifted the black duster and matching vest to get a better look at the cut in his shoulder. The claw of the winged nightmare had managed to cut right through the gold scale-mail. He winced as he pulled the shirt away from the torn flesh. His left thigh had also been torn open by the talons of the monster. Rhone’s black slacks were ripped and the leg armor was pried open where the claw had cut.

Rhone tugged the brim of his hat down as a gust of warm Everdark wind blew up into his face. The foul odor of spent flint and brimstone clouded his nostrils. He halfway expected something to come right out of the breeze and try to strangle him then and there. Just one of those things he had gotten accustomed to in this unpredictable world.

Brilliant bolts of light streaked across the heavens in flashes of purple and red. Their brief lives illuminated the hellish landscape and the mound of scaly gray flesh before him. McClean sheathed his blade on his back and staggered over to the mortal remains of the Beast. None of its seven heads so much as whimpered when he kicked its chest with his good leg.

“Serves you right, you son of a bitch,” Rhone said pulling his revolver out of its holster on his right hip.

The outlaw scanned the battlefield as he chambered six fresh rounds into his trusty sidearm. A massive nine-pointed star within a circle pulsed in crimson light ahead. Rhone’s winged companion Bellerophon lay just beyond that; his snow-white hide covered in deep bleeding wounds. Rhone had to go through the circle and finish this. It was the only thing left standing between him and the love of his life, Clara. Who or whatever it was beyond this gate still had her, and was doing God knew what to her.

“No time like the present,” he said starting toward the pulsing gate.

The outlaw nearly stumbled to his face again when his right boot drug up something shimmering just beneath the desert soil. He turned and knelt down over the golden object.

“There you are,” Rhone said tugging the shield from the clutches of the scorched earth.

Its surface had seen better days. The left half of the angular shield had been charred and tarnished by the flames and acid of the Beasts’ many heads. McClean rubbed the right portion of it with the sleeve of his duster bringing it back to its former luster.

“That’s seen better days, too,” he said staring at his own reflection in the shield’s gold surface.

He smoothed down his thin moustache with the back of his right thumb and got lost in his own blue gaze. Why her? Of all of the mortals in the world, why did it choose Clara? The Oracle had given him the answer, but he still found it a harsh bite to swallow. Rhone had murdered just to collect enough souls to get here. Not to mention the hordes of undead he had been forced to overcome to free the seven towers.

“How in the hell did I wind up here?” he asked his reflection.

It sure was a long way from the dirt road that led to her front porch back in West Virginia.’

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The End of Innocence


Flash Point Theater

 

“I came here as soon as I could,” I said setting down in the freshly cut grass.

The sun peaked up over the distant rolling hillside casting a violet hue into the drifting cirrus clouds.

“I would have gotten here sooner, but my tour didn’t end until just last week.”

I brought my knees up and huddled them close to my chest.

“I had a lay over in Germany for medical. You’d never believe what kind of junk you have to go through just to get back to where you were born.”

Beads of dew still sat like a crystalline sea that stretched out forever in front of me.

“You remember when we were kids,” I said with a laugh. “One memory sticks out in my mind more than any of the others. I can’t explain why, but it does. We couldn’t have been more than eight or nine…

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More With Less: Space-saving Tips In Packing For Your Trip


It’s that time of year once more. We’ve saved up our time and money, the kids are about to explode with excitement and the call of the open road it tickling your ears. So, we load up our luggage, we cram in the beach toys or camping gear, fill up our bellies and empty our bladders.

One of the biggest headaches in prepping for any vacation tends to be the packing process. By the time you’ve decided exactly what you want to bring you find that you didn’t have as much space as you first thought. In this installment, I’m going to share some packing tips that will not only save you an immense amount of space, but they will also help you get more life out of your garments. These techniques have been tested and proven by Sailors for decades. If we can cram months worth of clothing and uniforms into a small bag and live off of them for months, then using them to get your family on the road for a couple of weeks will be a cinch.

Tee-shirts:

(For plain white tees and printed tees) Lay the tee-shirt face up and flat on your bed or floor. Make sure that you smooth out the wrinkles and get the sleeves flat on your folding surface. Fold the sleeves into the chest of the shirt and crease. Next, take the top of the shirt and fold it all down to the nipple line of the tee. This should be roughly 1/3 of the full shirt. Next, take the portion that you just folded, and fold it down again so that it’s even with the bottom of the tee. It should now be a long narrow slip. Using your right hand, give the center a good karate chop, and fold the left half over the right. Turn it so that the final folded crease faces the bottom. Stow it away with the crease facing you. Stack as needed.

For Printed tees, just do the exact same steps as above, but start with the front of the tee-shirt face down. This way when it’s folded, you can still see the print to know which tee it is.

Shorts, Boxers and Boxer-Briefs:

Lay the shorts face up on your folding surface. Fold the left half over the right half. Line up your edges (We call this ‘dressing your edges’). Fold the bottom half up to the waistline. Stow with the crease facing you.

Tighty-Whiteies and Women’s undies:

Lay them flat on your folding surface. Fold the crotch up to the waistline. Dress the edges. Fold the left half over the right half. Stow in a stack with the crease facing you.

Golf shirts:

Lay the garment flat and face up in front of you. Fold the left sleeve over to meet the right sleeve. Dress your edges. The shirt will be folded in half long-way at this point. Next, fold the sleeves into the chest of the shirt. Then fold the top third of the shirt down to the middle of the garment. Finally, fold the bottom third of the shirt up over the top to be even with the crease. Stow with the creases facing you.  Long sleeve shirts and dress shirts can be folded in the same manner.

Jeans and slacks:

Lay the pants down face up in front of you. Fold the left half over the right half. Dress our edges on the right side. Fold the leg cuffs up to the right side, and dress all edges again. Fold the excess material on the left side in so that the left edge lines up with the legs. Finally, fold the bottom half up to the top seam. Stow with the creases facing you.

Socks:

Start by laying one sock on top of the other so that all edges are dressed off. Next, grab the toe portion of both socks, and hold them up in front of you. Roll the socks from the toe portion down tightly until you reach the open ends. Grab the open end of the outer sock and use it to cover the whole roll. You should be able to turn the sock roll over and see a crease that looks like a smile. Stow smilies up in rows.

Towels:

Lay the towel out flat in front of you long-way. Take the left portion and fold it in a third to the center. Do the same to the right portion. The left and right edges of the towel should now be meeting in the center of the towel. Next, fold the left third over the right, and dress your edges on the right side. You should now have a long slender strip. Fold the top third down toward the center. Fold the bottom third up toward the center. Again, the top and bottom edges of the towel should now be facing each other in the center. Karate chop the center of the towel between the edges, and fold the towel in half. Stow with the crease facing you.

By using these time-tested techniques, you and your family should be able to cut your packing space down by 30-50%, and extend the life of your garments by a year or two. Now, find a copy of ‘Holiday Road’ from the National Lampoon’s Vacation soundtrack, crank up the volume and get to work. You’ve got an adventure awaiting!

P.S.

That is Lindsay Buckingham and Chrissy from Fleetwood Mac on that tune, by the by. Safe travels. Fair winds and following seas, mates!

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