We are looking to buy a house. Yes, I’m 40, married and the father of 4 (known) children and just getting around to buying a house. I had a choice once about 8 years ago: Buy a house or start a business. Currently I don’t own a house or a business so yeah…not too bright.

We contacted the real estate folks and they sent listings. Growing up in Crewe (population hovering 1,000) I lived in a total of 9 different houses in 18 years. In the last 5 years we lived in 5 different houses. The constant moving was a reminder that money was a theory, not a fact.

Of the houses I lived in, three are now for sale and within our price range. The one my parents had built before their divorce in 1980 now has English Ivy growing INTO the chimney while a foreclosure notice flaps on the breezy front porch. Two others were rentals but now have been “renovated” by homeowners hoping to make a profit.
I think about that country song out at this time. A woman sings about visiting her old home and refers to it as “The House that built me” or something like that. I like the song. As interesting it may be to buy a home that my family once rented, or to renovate the home my parents built I just can’t see it. Crewe is still Crewe. We are waiting for a house in the country with some land. We like living in the back yard during summer, turning up the music, having open containers of alcohol, riding four-wheelers, swimming in the pool and letting the dog run free. We enjoy telling the kids to go outside and knowing they’ll be alone.
Those old houses built me, but now they need to build someone else.


I started this blog to talk about writing but soon realized I don’t have much to talk about. I don’t organize an outline, agonize over characterization, develop symbolism or consider writing ‘hard work’. Maybe that’s my problem, but so far, my editor doesn’t think so.
She calls it free writing.
Editing requires work, writing requires courage. Or stupidity. Or arrogance. Truth is I’ve got plenty of courage, stupidity, and arrogance. I’m covered.

You need some courage to say what you want to say and not give a monkey’s nut if anyone else gets it. Someone will ‘get it’, even if the first person who reads it says, “Yeah, maybe you need a urinalysis and some therapy.”

For the record, taking a whiz quiz doesn’t show how much Robotussin you drink or if you slip a blotter of acid under you tongue every other Friday night.

So I don’t have neat little lists and writing prompts to offer. Sorry.
But I do offer you faith.

I have faith you can write the words you hear in your head.

I have faith those words will ring true to someone, somewhere, one day, eventually.

I have faith that if you think about writing, want to write, and enjoy writing then you are a Writer. Period.

I have faith that Life is much simpler than the human brain can fathom.

I have faith that sitting in front of a computer waiting for inspiration is akin to playing the lottery; odds are you lose and feel stupid for even trying. Go Live. Inspiration is a grown up, it’ll take care of itself. Promise.
Writing is your Life reflected by a mirror disguised as Inspiration.

Being yourself isn’t easy, that’s why so few people do it.


Monday I plan on posting the beginning of a story called, “Roscoe’s Marker”. It’s another story based around Mahalia, VA. The idea is to eventually collect the short stories based in Mahalia. Right now, they are being edited for submission to magazines (print & online) in hopes of developing a resume. A writer’s resume is essentially a list of published work, workshops attended, awards etc.

Mahalia is a place filled with tragedy, rumor, gossip, inspiration, comedy, beauty, abortionists, love, pedophiles, drunks, one-eyed midgets, circus freaks, ghosts, retired secret agents, homeless Phds, rednecks, Yankees, rapists, preachers, monkeys, and suicidal buildings. We have no grocery store but seven places to buy beer & lottery tickets. Storefront churches fill main street as old churches are demolished for parking lots. We had a canibal but he was killed years ago when his propane grill blew up. There are rumors of a voodoo lady who lives just out of town, but others say she’s more of a witch doctor. Apparently, there’s a difference. We have one “buy-here, pay-here” car dealership run by a bible-thumping Nazi with a lisp and an out of control shoe fetish. The cemetery has a tombstone shaped like a dollhouse. Everyone is related to someone who goes by the name “Bubba”. No one waves at strangers since that accident up on the big highway.
There are 3 degrees of seperation in Mahalia.
Six is just too much.
The whole town is on the wrong side of the tracks.


Watch The Bucket List.