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My Summer Reading Challenge!

I have resolved to undertaking a reading challenge this Summer — it’s a challenge that I have designed myself, and with any luck, will broaden my literary exposure spectrum. If you’d like to participate, I’d love to have a support system and encouragement as I go along.

The challenge is to read 15 books this Summer, an ambitious pace to a lot of folks, myself included. The rules are simple: only one book can satisfy one category. I’m going for diversity and a broad spectrum of books.

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In Gratitude to the Phoenix!

I try to live my life in gratitude — my mother taught me that, to look for things to say thank you for. In doing so, I come to appreciate a lot of things that I have going for me. I have been blessed with the opportunity to take a talent and put it on display — I have been even more blessed with all of you who have supported me through this journey. I will never understand what encouraged you to pick up my books, but I won’t question it, I am moved by your support.

It’s been about a month since “Days of the Phoenix” has come out, and I think it’s the perfect time to say “thank you” for a few things that has made the book’s release such a rewarding experience:

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Weeks of the Phoenix: Swearing on the Mirror

As of today,  I have told you everything I can tell you about “Days of the Phoenix” without damaging your ability to enjoy the story unfold. It has been a process and I am very glad to have been on the journey. When such a project is complete and you have done your duty, it’s good to take a moment to reflect about what has been done and what you are looking forward to.

I’m going to do just that in this week’s blog.

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Weeks of the Phoenix: How Do You Get Invited to the Assembly?

In “Days of the Phoenix,” our main character is declaring that he will free himself of the shackles of mental illness and he will find an authentic and true version of himself in the throes of the social experiment known as “the Assembly.” How the main character gets into the Assembly is for you to find out after you order your book on May 7th, the question at hand is, how would you, as an individual, get into the Assembly?

The good news is, I’m something of an authority on the matter, so I’ll give you some inside clue as to how you could find yourself in the middle of the project designed to free the most authentic version of yourself:

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Weeks of the Phoenix: Location, Location, Location

Here’s a fun factoid: most of the towns and locations in my work are fictional. There are two exceptions: Detoit, Michigan (where Echolocation played the record label showcase in “Broken Promise Records”) and now Carolina Beach, North Carolina in “Days of the Phoenix.” For the most part, the rest of the cities and municipalities are completely fictional.

I do that for a specific reason: I can be as creative as I want to be when it comes to my work. Say that I need a town in New Mexico that has the world’s biggest Nacho Buffet – I can either hope that this town exists, or I can create one. Now you have to ask yourself: is Renacido, New Mexico, home of the Nacho King Buffet & Grill a real place?

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