Introduction to ‘The Craft’

This page will offer a series of posts that describe my way of taking an idea from start to finish, from a thought to a book.  I am not a Steven Pressfield, a Mark Helprin, a Charles Frazier, a Leif Enger or Ron McLarty.  One can only wish! … Still, I receive emails and other inquiries about how I go about my writing business.  It occurs to me that for every person who asks a question, there are many, many more who have similar questions but won’t ask for one reason or another.  This page is for those who want to ask but don’t.  If you glean anything of value from these posts and comments, then I’m glad I shared these thoughts with you.

I can’t remember ‘not reading,’ though my passion for books was inspired by my 8th grade English teacher, Norman Najimy. Mr. Najimy taught me to love the written word.  I’ve always wanted to write ‘books of substance,’ but I never had the courage to follow that passion until the turn of the millennium.

I wrote my first, full manuscript – by hand – in 1976 as I sat in ‘the crow’s nest’ at Loring AFB in Presque Isle, Maine pulling alert duty in my F-106 Delta Dart.  The name of the manuscript was The Messiah.  I’ve done nothing with it and I know I’ve seen it sitting in its cardboard box somewhere in this house.  Some three years later in 1979, I wrote my second full manuscript – this one on a typewriter with carbon paper.  I’ll not reveal its name just yet because I have it ready to submit, but I’m not certain yet that I will do it.

Finally, in 2002, I committed myself to becoming and author.  I was 53-years old.  Three years earlier, I had befriended best-selling author Steven Pressfield.  At a small Italian restaurant in Malibu in the early summer of 2002, I ran an idea by him.  His advice:  go for it.  The result was my first published novel, The Olympian: A Tale of Ancient Hellas.