Monday, June 23, 2014

What Are You Crying About? - New Book



What Are You Crying About? Defeating Grief for Christians (and Other Believers)
Grief sabotages happy, productive lives. Some grievers waste months or years of their lives in crippling grief which sidetracks them from school, career, positive and healthy parenting, or other fruitful endeavors. People mired in extreme grief may become sick, angry, vengeful and may even take their own lives. It doesn't have to be this way.

Sadness when someone leaves our lives is normal. Overpowering grief need not be.

Grief can be controlled, even defeated and conquered. You just need the right tools, and you don’t need to go anywhere but within you to find relief. Defeating grief takes a change of perspective, a change that everyone can make.

What Are You Crying About? gives you the tools to help you take control of your grief and help you to get on with and enjoy your life.

What's Inside the Book...
  • Death and Dying - The Common View
  • Grieving - The Common View
  • Anger with God
  • Religious and Philosophical Views on Death
  • Suicide
  • Got Faith?
  • Ten Faith Enhancers
  • What Is a Human?   
  • The Afterlife, the Spirit World, Heaven and Hell   
  • Where the Hell Is Heaven?   
  • Our Family Among Us - Spirits Present   
  • What to Say to the Bereaved (and Dying)
 You can get more information and purchase the book at this link.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Crazy Generous Amnesty - A Presidential Press Conference

If the United States of America had a strong president interested in upholding the laws and constitution of the nation, the following is the amnesty that he or she might put forward and its success would be assured. Here is the text that has just leaked from that president's upcoming press conference on the matter.

"I'd like to thank you all for joining me here today. As you know, there's been a great deal of political turmoil in this country recently over many issues: Syria, the budget, the Affordable Care Act, the IRS, Benghazi, Fast and Furious, NSA spying on citizens, Global Warming, the country's debt, poor economic growth, fewer people in the job market despite a larger population, and finally the illegal immigrant amnesty debate. We as a country and my administration in particular can't solve all of these problems today, but I promise you that each and every day my administration is doing all it can to address every challenge facing this exceptional country in an effort to solve these and other problems.

"Today I stand before you with, not only a proposal to solve a political/societal issue that's been plaguing this country for decades, I stand before you with a resolution to solve said problem. With this issue being worked on and then placed behind us, we'll then as a nation and as a government be able to devote more time to other important issues that need attention.

"The issue that my administration has made a decision on is that of amnesty for illegal immigrants. This has been a hot-button issue for too long, especially so over the last six years. It is time to put this one to bed. Our solution is going to be received with mixed reviews as every solution to a political or societal problem in this country is. It is a fact that we are deeply divided over how to do many things in this country of 310 million people. That said, I was elected to lead, to serve this nation, and most importantly to uphold the constitution of the United States of America. And that is what we are doing with this solution to the illegal immigration problem. We will do no more than uphold the laws of the land and the constitution. No more will government look askance at any law nor give short shrift to the foundational document that undergirds each and every law in the land.

"This administration has crossed every T and dotted every I with respect to the policy which is being announced today. Congressional leaders have been consulted and partnered with, the supreme court has been queried for guidance, constitutional lawyers have been empaneled, state governors have been partnered with, other nations' leaders have been informed and their complaints ignored.

"I and my administration fully expect the cooperation of each and every person in this matter. It is not an edict from on high that requires your cooperation but rather the laws of the land which are already in effect. Compensatory and illegal edicts by former administrations will be struck from the books and the law followed in all cases concerning the handling of people who are in this country illegally. Whether you have been here for five minutes, five years, or fifty, if you are here illegally you are subject to arrest, detention, and deportation.

"Nations make laws for good reasons, and all nations do so. Anarchy doesn't work, it's just not a good system for people who have to live together and get along. To paraphrase James Madison, If we were a nation of angels, we'd hardly have a need for government. Ninety-five percent of all nations on earth have immigration laws and most enforce those laws with a zeal that is unmatched in our enforcement of immigration law. But we have more reason than most nations to be zealous about enforcing our immigration laws. The U.S. is the focus of much of the terroristic threat in the world today. Porous borders and undocumented residents are suicide time-bombs waiting to happen.

"With that said this administration does this day announce and set to writing, Executive Order 2013h Immigration Compliance Amnesty which states "All persons residing within the borders of the United States or illegally entering therein will, after a grace period ending six months from this day, be arrested, detained, and/or deported in accordance with immigration law as pursuant to statute duly passed by the Congress of the United States of America and upheld by the United States Supreme Court. This grace period, or Amnesty will not extend beyond six months and another such grace period will not at any time be afforded.

"Such a grace period, or amnesty will give all undocumented people a sufficient period of time to make plans for their orderly return to their legal countries' of citizenship, where people may take advantage of applying for visa in the United States as if they had never come to this country and arrived or stayed illegally. Certain government assistance may also be sought and for details and more information on the law you can check out Amnesty2013 dot gov.

"This is a very generous amnesty and was arrived at in a bipartisan way through discussions with all the parties I mentioned earlier.

"The U.S. celebrates its immigrant past and wants to progress to a bright future in partnership with legal immigrant residents from all over the world. America is stronger for its immigrant diversity and an orderly, transparent, and fair immigration system which upholds the laws of the land will further strengthen and enrich America just as it will offer fair opportunity to anyone who wants to participate in the economy and social life of this great land.

"Thank you for your attention on this matter today and may God bless the United States of America with the unity and strength that she so needs going forward."

Monday, September 30, 2013

Read Chapter 1 of The Devil's Assassin



Halloween is almost here and The Devil's Assassin, a creepy horror/thriller is always available for your Kindle e-reader for these chilly autumn nights · amazon.com/dp/B00CBP3DH4

Kindle books can be read on PC, iPad, iPhone, and smart phones too with Kindle software and Apps.

Read Chapter 1 of The Devil's Assassin now.

In a dark, fog laden forest in Ontario, Canada sits a dimly lit cabin. Hundreds of crickets and as many tree frogs create a cacophony of noise in what should be an otherwise bucolic location. A couple of owls, one nearer and one more distant add their more baritone notes to a post-meridian symphony. A bat flies in irregular patterns around the perimeter of the cleared area where the house sits, dashing silently in and out of view. Fireflies wink on and off.

The sound from a television in the cabin wafts weakly out into the noisy night and after a time disappears. A light in the house goes out followed by another. The house is plunged into darkness and silence as the nighttime symphony continues. A slim crescent moon rises over the cabin while the fog ebbs and flows around the cabin.

Something has been lurking in the woods outside the cabin for a couple of hours, watching the moon's rise and the billowing fogs ebb and flow and now this lurker moves toward the darkened house. The fog billows as the lurker moves through it. It moves slowly and steadily toward a window which is slightly opened.

Finally, it reaches the window and begins to try to push it up. It doesn't move easily, but the lurker takes his time, working slowly and confidently. A couple of times the window squeaks and the lurker stops pushing to be sure it hasn't woken the house's sleeper. After about ten minutes of work on the window it is open enough for the lurker to climb through.

Once inside, and without hesitating, the lurker moves toward the bedroom. It is as if this prowler has prowled this cabin's interior before this night.

In her bedroom, a forty-seven year-old woman lies sleeping in bed, covered with a quilt. She is alone in the dark room and in a deep, restful sleep. A click disturbs the silence in the room, but the woman continues her slumber. The door knob, which is what made the click, begins to turn slowly, almost as slowly as the minute-hand of a clock. The prowler has a great deal of patience and caution, knowing too well the price of carelessness. In this bedroom, in this cabin, in these woods, the lurker has all the time in the world.

Finally, the door begins to open. Again, to avoid door creaks and squeaks, the lurker allows the door to open very slowly. He can smell his victim long before the door is open wide enough to see her. When the door is open enough to admit him into the room, the lurker moves softly over the wood floor until he stands near the side of the bed. As he regards the sleeping woman, noting the position of the quilt draping her body, a white needle suddenly jumps into view, stiletto-like, in front of the lurker. He considers the woman for a moment more and then drives the needle into the sleeping woman's chest. She shudders. The lurker draws the needle out as quickly as it was driven in and turns to leave the room.

Before moving out of the room the killer pauses to lick the needle, cleaning it of the blood which now stained it. He then walks out of the room, closes the door behind him and finds his way to the victim's kitchen. There he opens the refrigerator door and places all the fruits and vegetables he can find into a plastic shopping bag he finds on the kitchen table. The killer then stands up, leaves the kitchen and heads toward and through the window that he had entered the cabin through, closing it quickly behind him. He takes a bite out of an apple he had taken from the woman's refrigerator as he disappears into the forest.
***
It is a bright, sunny morning as a young woman leaves the front door of a farmhouse. The farmhouse is adjacent to a field of wheat. A couple of crows caw noisily to each other while a song bird sings. The young woman waves her hand at the door as she leaves. "Tsai jien," Miss Sung says brightly, which means goodbye in Chinese. She continues walking toward her car, gets in and then drives it away as she does every morning on her way to work in a nearby factory.

After a few hours have passed at the same Chinese farmhouse, the birds are quiet and few other sounds break the peaceful day beyond the passing of an occasional diesel truck on the nearby road. Inside the house, a radio softly plays Chinese music as an old woman sits sleeping in an easy chair with knitting in her lap.

The doorknob begins to turn slowly. It is minutes before the door opens enough to let someone in the house. A small form steps through the door and advances directly toward the easy chair in the living room. The intruder stands in front of the woman's chair watching her breathe and snore softly. He tilts his head to regard her face, matching the angle of her head. In the midst of this almost soft moment, a long white needle suddenly appears in the intruder's hand and is immediately thrust into the sleeping woman's chest. She shudders and dies instantly.

The killer pulls his bloody needle out of his victim, leaving no visible wound on the old woman. As he turns, he licks the needle clean of the blood of his victim. He then finds the kitchen where he fishes around in the refrigerator, taking as many fruits and vegetables as he can find in a bag he finds there. After he has his unusual booty, he leaves by the front door.
***
A campfire burns under a dark, star-studded sky on the plains of Argentina. There is popular Argentine music playing and two grizzled gauchos sit near the fire on camp stools listening to a boom box. Cattle can also be heard, horses are tied up nearby, and tents are pitched. Coleman lamps throw a little light on the campsite in addition to the fire's light.

Another gaucho is in a nearby copse of trees relieving himself. He hears a stick crack in the darkness to his left. He looks in that direction and sees something coming toward him. "Quien es?" he asks.

His answer comes in the form of his brief surprise and fear as, in the moment before he dies, he sees his attacker driving a white needle into his chest before he can utter a sound. With his pants still undone, the gaucho crumples to the ground. The killer licks his needle clean and escapes unnoticed through the grass and into the Argentine night.

At the campfire, the other two gauchos are smoking and listening to the music. Hearing or sensing something, one of the men stands up and calls out, "Roberto!?"

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Why Steve Lonegan for U.S. Senate?

New Jersey will hold a special election to fill Senator Frank Lautenberg's United States Senate seat on October 16.

If change is going to take place in Washington D.C. and the U.S. Congress, someone should be elected to that Senate seat who is more than a rubber stamp for failed Obama administration policies. The strength of the minority party in the Senate will be buoyed by the election of Steve Lonegan making the Senate that much less likely to be an automatic cancellation of everything which the House of Representatives puts forward, and the body will also be less of a rubber stamp for Obama administration policies (though the Senate will still retain its Democrat majority for the time being).

Electing Cory Booker will continue the Congressional status quo of dysfunction, inaction and voter discontent with the U.S. Congress.

A Senator Lonegan will fight for reduced government spending, attacking wasteful government spending, finding solutions for the debt and deficits, and be a loud voice for lower taxes on overburdened citizens. He has shown himself as an effective leader in New Jersey and on national issues.

Please vote for Steve Lonegan for U.S. Senate on October 16 in New Jersey.

You can also Vote by Mail

Monday, September 23, 2013

Same-sex Marriage

I would like to offer my feelings concerning same-sex marriage, such as they are, and hopefully some readers will see something of value in the words that follow. Many people are going to be against what I say here and many for different reasons. But the thoughts are offered as an addition to a discussion which is already going on and comes at the problem from a slightly different angle than I have seen elsewhere. I ask only that you think outside the proverbial box.

The discussion of same-sex marriage is based on the foundation that religion has a problem with first homosexuality, and second that the marriage of two people of the same sex is against God's will, and third that the institution of marriage (which is purportedly sanctioned by God) will suffer degradation. If viewed from an areligious (or atheistic) point of view, the opposition to same-sex marriage would come from the supposed degradation of the institution of marriage (which is based on tradition that is in turn based on religion), and on the deleterious effects it would have on the family unit and on the proper raising of children.

This present discussion will take place in the presence of religious argument because most of the opposition to the practice comes from that quarter.

First of all, it is not my place to say that the relationship that involves same gender love between two adult people is right or wrong, just as I have no place to say that the relationship between an 80-year-old man and a 20-year-old woman is right or wrong. Nor, I would further contend, is it the business of anyone else. In the end, that relationship is between those two people and God is the only and ultimate judge over a person and their actions on Earth. I do know that God celebrates and encourages love between people and so this love between two people of the same gender is very probably blessed by God as any love is. Since physical love is a reinforcement of our spiritual love for our mate, I would think that this love would be in harmony with God and His laws as well (ie., not a sin). By physical love, I mean sex within a relationship of love between two adult parties where the love between the two is buoyed by the physical contact. Not sex for sex. Not friends with benefits.

So if God looks at love between homosexual partners with favor, then how does he look at marriage between a man and a man, or a woman and a woman?

First we need to ask, How does God view marriage in general?

God is interested in the love between two individuals. Jesus has said over and over that God is Love. If these two people have committed to be with each other, then it is the hurt that one causes the other that is the sin. Adultery then is the break of the trust and bond of love within a couple's relationship and the pain caused the other party. That is where the sin of adultery is. God doesn't see the institution of marriage, He sees the relationship between two people and how they treat each other.

The institution of marriage is an institution created by man (secular society and church) to sanction the relationship between two people. That sanction of marriage offers benefits to the couple from society (tax benefits, insurance benefits, child-care rights, etc.). Benefits are also gained from the religious organizations that sanction marriage (acceptance of the couple that they are not living in sin). The church benefits because people are further bonded to the creeds, dictates and traditions of the church, and society benefits because people and families are easier to keep track of, regulate and dispense benefits to. The benefits that people receive from God by being in a marriage are the same as those that two people committed to each other in love receive but who are not "married by men".

There is no "living together in sin" if the partners are committed to each other in love. This is what God wants and it is better still if this person is your soulmate. In God's eyes it doesn't matter if you are married but only if you are loving.

If you are to follow this reasoning to its natural conclusion, then you must realize that marriage is a human construct and as such its definition is whatever we as humans want it to be.

If most humans want marriage to be defined as a loving committed relationship between two consenting people of adult age, then that is what marriage is. If most humans want to reserve the meaning of the word marriage to mean only the committed relationship between a man and a woman then perhaps another term could be looked for for homosexual commitments.

I am going to take what I surmise to be the point of view of God on this and say that what men say and their institutions require doesn't matter as regards this subject. As humans in charge of the human institution of marriage, that institution, that word, can mean and include whatever we want it to and broadening it to include people of the same gender is not much broadening at all and ought to be done in every country and every place, since God himself has nothing to say about it and man everything.

Let me also deflect the myriad quotations from the Bible that will be advanced in support of the traditional view of marriage. Everyone knows about the inconsistencies in the Bible. There are many, including those concerning homosexuality versus God's love and grace and in general Jesus' portrayal of His Father. Inconsistencies in a book that is supposed to be the word of an omniscient, omnipotent, and perfect Being. These inconsistencies arise from (not only) the fact that humans, through the centuries and even to today, are responsible for copying, typesetting, typing, cutting and pasting, printing, and proofreading the Holy Book. For instance, Bibles are printed each and every day, in many countries, right now. Do you think the books leave those presses every day with no errors? Is it the word of God when words are dropped within those pages or pages left out of the bindings? Typesetters and typographers are not perfect. Printers and their machines are not perfect. Proofreaders are not perfect. Human beings are in charge of the printing of Bibles in this time period and people are as flawed now as ever. They are God's highest creation, but flawed still (due to the exertions of their own free wills). Errors are introduced by omission and commission.

So it is now, so it has been for thousands of years. There is much that is correct and in accord with God's law and love in the Old Testament and the New Testament. But there have been so many people and committees and councils involved that much of what is included in these books should be subject to careful and deliberate inspection, thought, and prayer as to its Truth. Blind obedience to a book shepherded through history by flawed men (men with agendas) and held as God's word because an ecclesiastical council said it was so is not the thinking that God gave us brains for. In fact, it is not thinking but agreement by consensus of the masses in the authority of the Church (or various churches).

Don't get me wrong, I love the Bible. It has many wonderful lessons and generally shows how to be a good person with respect for our Creator and in it can be found the path to Heaven if you look carefully. But if you want to know what God thinks about an issue, the Bible should not be your only source. Your heart, your mind, and your soul are not just supplemental resources when it comes to Truth, they are indeed the most important instruments.

Let every man and woman think for himself and herself. And in my humble opinion, let every man and woman marry the man or woman of their choice.

(When responding, please respond to the discussion of marriage. The discussion of the existence of God is not material to this present discussion because the argument against same-sex marriage generally presumes such existence. Someday we will have a blog posting concerning that topic. Thanks.)

Thursday, July 18, 2013

How Technology Is Making Books More Engrossing for Readers


PHOTO SOURCE: (c) Yuri Arcurs - Fotolia.com
Books are becoming more interactive.
(StatePoint) Are you reading less than you used to? You’re not alone. Between our smartphones, endless cable channels and all those other forms of modern entertainment, it’s no wonder book-reading is on the decline amongst American adults.

In fact, the percent of adults who didn’t read even one book in the previous year increased from 12 percent in 1978, to 22 percent in 2011, according to Gallup surveys.

But new technologies and trends in the world of literature are making reading more entertaining and more interactive than ever before. And many experts predict this age-old pastime will grow in popularity as people catch on to the evolution of books.

“Reading is often thought to be a passive activity,” says M.D. Kaczkowski, author of the new thriller, “The Seers, New World Order,” a book that is breaking new literary ground by including an interactive digital component. “But in the Internet Age, people are looking to truly engage and interact with creative content.”

In the pages of “The Seers” -- a fast-paced crime drama with supernatural elements -- Kaczkowski enhances his readers’ experience with Quick Response (QR) codes that are compatible with smartphones, illustrations and video links. Sprinkled throughout the book, these elements provide a fictional platform that goes beyond the pages of the book.

By accessing these elements, readers are taken to The Seers website at www.theseers.com, where they are presented with videos, audio recordings, letters and other texts that expand on the narrative. They can even choose original songs to listen to while reading different chapters and to participate in an augmented reality game that draws on their own personal environment.

Other authors are even giving audiences control over content, using feedback garnered from modern “choose your own adventure” books and Internet forums for fans to help dictate future plotlines.

“If you’re craving a deeper engagement with your reading, you were born in the right era,” quips Kaczkowski. “For my new thriller, for example, it made perfect sense to integrate new technologies directly into the pages of the book, since the novel combines science with spirituality.”

And reading books electronically makes for a more interactive experience, too, as one can highlight text, search for key passages and look up words.

If the last time you picked up a book was for a school assignment, it’s definitely time to check out how new trends in literature can put some excitement into reading.

PHOTO SOURCE: (c) Yuri Arcurs - Fotolia.com

Monday, July 8, 2013

Progress Report on the Obama Presidency

Here is a brief progress report on the economic aspects of the Obama administration. Some of the numbers in the following graphic had to be updated as they didn't seem quite right, but they are still bad.



Number 4. in the graphic is wrong due to perhaps being outdated. The federal debt of the United States is now 100% of GDP. This means that the debt of all the citizens of the U.S. due to government spending is equal to the production (in terms of dollars) of the economy over one year. And as you can see in the chart below, that debt is growing by more than a trillion dollars per year. Who thinks that's sustainable? It is crippling, actually. What can we do? Elect people to Congress and the Presidency who want to tackle the debt.


An updated figure from the labor department says that Number 5. in the graphic is now 63% of the population is employed, which is up, but 8 million of these workers are working part time when they want more hours according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. These people are often referred to as under-employed.

Additionally, according to Gallop, the home ownership rate is 62% as of April 2012, so I don't know where the number in Number 8. in the graphic above comes from, but 62% is still a lower home ownership rate than all of the Bush years.



In a country where we spend 1.5 trillion dollars more per year than we take in in revenue, how can the following chart be justified? Surely millions of these people on food stamps don't actually need food assistance. How many are illegal aliens? How many are employed citizens gaming the system? This administration has marketed the food stamp program like no other administration before it, in fact markets all of its assistance "products" like Coca-Cola markets Coke. No wonder the numbers are up.



Why didn't President Barack Obama get voted out of office during the last election if his economic numbers are so bad? Because the phrase coined by James Carville, "It's the economy, stupid" doesn't hold sway with a large portion the voting public anymore. Mr. Obama was re-elected by people who think a generous, big government that gives more than it gets and over-regulates big business is a good idea.

The numbers show that the housing market is still weak, unemployment is still high, gas prices are still high, electricity prices are up, health insurance costs are up, and the cost of food is up. It has taken many years for the slight improvements to the economy that we have at this point, which is worse than any other recovery from a recession.

Unfortunately, the economic policies of this administration (of which these examples represent just the tip of the Titanic crushing iceberg), if continued, will sink this ship. In the short term, the only relief on the horizon are the 2014 congressional elections, where fiscally responsible senators and representatives must be placed into office.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Proof of Heaven: A Neurosurgeon's Journey into the Afterlife (Review)

NDE stands for Near Death Experience. Because of the advancements of modern medicine, many more people are having NDEs and writing about them than occurred in the past, according to the book's author, Dr. Eben Alexander. There are shelves full of books that deal with the topic of the NDE. This book is unique because of the individual (a brain surgeon) who had the NDE, how he got sick, what he got sick with, and how unlikely it was that he recovered. The doctor goes into great detail in the book about just how unlikely his chances were for his recovery. After reading the facts as laid out by the author, it certainly seems as though he was chosen by God to have the experience he had and to share it with the world.

Dr. Alexander does a very good job of explaining how and why he had his near death experience and just how close he was to death. He deftly brings us into his family and professional lives. His extended family's vigil at his bedside when he was in a coma and slipping towards death was inspiring. The doctor also gives us a view of the spirit world (heaven, hell, and purgatory) that we often don't hear about, even from other books that describe the afterlife.

In the end, it is amazing that he lived to tell his story and being a neurosurgeon, he is the perfect person to have had this experience and live to tell about it. Based on the totality of the details involved here and not just on one piece of evidence, the book should give most people confidence that life continues after our bodies stop working. The hardened skeptics will scoff at the book as they do at all things spiritual, but everyone will be welcomed into the afterlife whether they believe in it or not. I appreciate the fact that this man was courageous enough to share his story with the many people who want to know that there is more to life than eighty years on this toilsome planet and then nothing.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Why Independent Publishing Is a Win-Win Proposition for Author and Reader

Kindle Fire e-book Reader
Publishing independently is very fulfilling in many ways despite an author's increased chance for low sales numbers. Why fulfilling? For me, it's because I have been able to work on topics that I like and to get books that I am proud of out in the world for an interested (if limited) public to enjoy, despite the fact that dozens of publishers said no to the books.

Thanks to reading appreciation sites like Goodreads.com, print on demand publishing options like CreateSpace, and e-book publishing options like Amazon's KDP, NookPress, Kobo, GooglePlay, iBookstore and more, there is no shortage of ways for writers to publish their work to the reading public without the traditional long wait from a publisher just to receive the response "No" or "it doesn't fit our present needs" over and over again.

My first book, New Jersey 9/11 Memorials did not sell well by any measure (though it is still on sale) and all the queried traditional publishers may have gauged well the lack of market for such a book. Or maybe not. The book might well have sold much better with their marketing muscle and printing cost efficiencies which I didn't have and which made my book more expensive than I thought it should be for optimum salability. But despite the fact that no traditional publisher wanted to touch the photo book, I wanted to produce it. In fact, it was a joy to work on, to write and to be a part of. It is something I will always remember fondly. It isn't an earth-shatteringly important book, but it is a nice homage to the victims of 9/11 in New Jersey and the way towns remembered the people and events, as well as their attackers.

I wanted to publish that book because it was important to me. Twenty years ago I still would have been able to publish a book like New Jersey 9/11 Memorials independently, but it would have been infinitely more expensive and difficult to produce. Today's environment for independently publishing books, music, and even movies is so much easier than it used to be. And the pricing for the customer can be much better than what is offered through traditional publishers, especially e-book offerings.

Having been wrung through the publishing wringer three or four times, for my latest book, The Devil's Assassin, I decided to avoid the long, and somewhat depressing process and go straight to independent publishing where I have total control of what I want to publish and when. For me, I'd rather let the book reading public decide if they want to read a book rather than some recently hired, underpaid, editorial assistant in New York City. And having worked for two large New York book publishers as a production editor, I know the process and how unmeritorious it can often be.

With independent publishing you don't need to beg for a literary agent and then give them 10% of your earnings so that they can get you a contract with a publisher who will give you a dollar a book on a 30 dollar list-priced hard cover publication.

Being an independent book publisher and author is not a great way to make a living for most who do it, but it is a fulfilling way to achieve your goals without needing the imprimatur of some supposed authority. Now I just need to get me some marketing muscle. Carpe diem!

Friday, April 12, 2013

The Devil's Assassin

by Brian M. Holmes
Linus Hather is content with his uneventful life as a prison guard in southern New Jersey. But his life is changed forever when he and his pet lemur are rudely awoken by Linus's unusual home security system. He is convinced that he's captured a killer, but it becomes his full-time job over the next weeks to convince anyone else of this dangerous fact. Meanwhile, the unexplained deaths keep occurring with the authorities attributing the causes of the deaths to anything but the right ones.

Linus teams up with an attractive, but stubborn, government scientist to get more information on the killer, and to try to convince the authorities of his "crackpot" theory.

Join Linus and June as they attempt to capture or kill the stealthiest killer that has ever walked this Earth, The Devil's Assassin!

Available in print and for the Kindle and Nook eReaders. The book will be available for more devices in the coming days.

Amazon Kindle $2.99

Print edition via CreateSpace $7.99

Print edition via Amazon.com $7.99

Barnes & Noble Nook $2.99

Print edition via Barnes & Noble $7.99

Kobo eReader $2.99

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Windows Keyboard Shortcut of the Day 2

Microsoft Windows Keyboard Shortcut of the Day

This awesome shortcut saves a lot of mouse clicking.

To open the System Properties dialog box...
Press the Windows logo key and the Break key. (the Break key will be up near the Scroll Lock key and the Print Screen key)




Enjoy!!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies

This recipe is for anyone who loves chocolate chip cookies, not just those of us who are gluten free. My thoughtful daughter gave it to me for Christmas in a Mason Jar with a bow tied around it. It had the ingredients in the jar on one side and the few things I needed to add on the other side. They rival if not beat the taste of the Toll-House cookie recipe for chocolate chip cookies.

Give them as a gift to your Gluten-free friend or family member :-)

Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies (in a jar)

1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup rice flour
3/4 cup of soy flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup chocolate chips

(These were not in the jar and had to be added by me)
1/4 cup of butter or margarine (melted)
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup of milk

Mix it all together in a mixing bowl and dollop spoon-sized blobs of cookie dough onto a baking sheet. Bake in a 350-degree oven for 14 minutes or until golden brown. Allow to cool for a few minutes, and then enjoy.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Missile Defense Is Insurance Against the Unthinkable

It would take 33 minutes at most for an intercontinental ballistic missile to reach the U.S. from the rogue or enemy state that it is fired from. Think North Korea, Iran, Hamas, Al Qaeda. This well produced and researched one hour video discusses why missile defense is important and the functionality of it in the United States at present. You will be surprised at how far the U.S. has come with missile defense since President Reagan started pushing for it in 1983.

Unfortunately, the current president of the United States has a different agenda than President Reagan did. In 2009, President Obama cancelled the deal the U.S. had with Poland and the Czech Republic to build an interceptor site that would have provided protection of the U.S. and its allies from ballistic missiles. The Polish president called it a betrayal. And now that he's been reelected the U.S. president "can be more flexible" with Mr. Putin of Russia concerning the neutering of allied missile defense. Mr. Obama wants to cut missile defense spending in 2013 in addition to all his other debilitating cuts to military spending.


In recent days, North Korea has been moving intercontinental ballistic rocket segments to its missile launch site in apparent preparation for launch. They have the bomb and are working on the means of delivering it anywhere in the world. Iran has been busy making nuclear fuel, and coordinating with North Korea on its bomb and delivery systems. And recently, Hamas has been raining missiles upon Israel. All of this activity shows the importance of staying vigilant when it comes to missile defense development and implementation and not letting political ideology abrogate the defense of the American people. This defense is Job One of our common government as mandated 226 years ago by the U.S Constitution.

http://33-minutes.com/33-minutes/

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Vote Out the Golfer in Chief - 22 Reasons to Say Goodbye

This is the week of the Democrat National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina, which will be a factory of lies and smears of Mitt Romney and Republicans, and at the same time there will be no playing up of the non-existent Obama administration accomplishments because there is nothing good to say. Everything this president has done has put a restrictor plate on the American economic engine.


If you are thinking about voting for Barack Obama for president, think first about these facts.
  • Less people are working in the U.S. now than in 2008/2009, though there are many more people. The administration tells you about jobs created in a month but they don't seem to factor in that 350,000+ people file for NEW unemployment claims every week.
  • 50% of college graduates can't find a job.
  • The only place you can get a college loan is through the government. There is no competitive market any longer.
  • Unemployment has been above 8% for more than 4 years.
  • The debt is 5 trillion dollars larger than it was 4 years ago.
  • Obama (The Golfer in Chief) has golfed more than almost any other president (more than 100 times).
  • 49 million Americans are on Food Stamps.
  • Obama, who has said that he would bring America together has caused America to become more polarized, more partisan than it has ever been by not compromising at all, by not working with Congress, by lying about what he will do, by imposing laws in a dictatorial fashion (DREAM "act"), and by name calling more than any other president before him.
  • Obama has continuously dissed America's friends and sided with its enemies.
  • Obama attacks the successful people in America, creating class warfare.
  • Obama pushed hard for Obamacare which will make healthcare more expensive generally, will cripple health insurance companies, impedes on the rights of individual Americans, and will reduce the quality of health care overall, and enlarges government and government's role in our lives.
  • Obama has made massive cuts in the military, weakening America's ability to defend itself.
  • Gasoline is $1.50 to $2.00 per gallon higher than when he took office and has been so fairly consistently for his term in office. In a sense, this is equivalent to a 50% tax on fuel under his administration. This would not be the case if he had a more pro-American energy policy.
  • He wants to tax carbon, thereby raising energy prices for consumers.
  • He placed a 3.8% tax on the sale of your home to help fund Obamacare.
  • Has OK'd the use of government funds to do research with stem cells from fetuses.
  • Supported partial birth abortion when he was a senator in Illinois.
  • Sued Arizona for enforcing laws against illegal immigration. Sued Ohio for early voting rights law for military voters. Sues Florida for trying to clean up its voter registrations by removing non-US citizens.
  • Has just given defacto amnesty to a large number of illegal immigrants.
  • He wants taxes raised on wealthy Americans, who already bear most of the tax burden, but this will actually hurt small businesses who hire a large portion of the workers in this country.
  • He has been very weak in his response to the dangerous country of Iran's pursuit of nuclear weapons.
  • His requirements for automobile mileage are raising the cost of buying cars and trucks.
This list could actually go on. If you care that this country remain a country where the freedom of the individual is valued and where government is a smaller (not a larger part of your life) then you really should vote for Mitt Romney for president. It's not about what Mitt Romney can do FOR you, it's about what Barack Obama is doing TO you and TO this country.

Windows Keyboard Shortcut of the Day

Microsoft Windows Keyboard Shortcut of the Day

To minimize all open windows...
Press the Windows logo key and M.













Try it a few times now to save clicks and effort in the future. Fun for the whole family!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

2016: Obama's America - Movie Review


Produced by Gerald Molen, written and starring Dinesh D'Souza.

2016: Obama's America is a well-made documentary exploring Obama's history, and which asks the following question "Who were Barack Obama's forefathers?" This is a question that was not answered to any degree before Barack Obama's election in 2008 (though there were those who tried to sound the call). Voters were so eager for "hope and change" and so eager to elect the first nonwhite president that they didn't look at or care about his radical background - a background steeped in Marxist, socialist, anticolonial, anticapitalist, anti-Israel, and anti-America ideologies. Some pundits say that the background and history of the candidate (or president) shouldn't be delved into like this. That it's unpatriotic. What?? A person's past and his background are predictors of his future actions. Not always of course, but more often than not for sure.

The early moments of 2016: Obama's America tell Dinesh D'souza's history, which he points out is very similar to Barack Obama's history. They are born the same year, they graduated college the same year, they both went to an Ivy League college, they both were married the same year, and they both grew up in impoverished third-world countries where anticolonialism is prevalent.

2016 then takes the viewer to Africa, the home of Obama's father, his forefathers, and much of his family. Here we learn story of Obama's visit to Kenya after the death of his father and we meet at least one of his relatives. D'Souza spoke to Obama's half brother George Obama, who wrote a book in 2010 despite having only finished the 7th grade. D'Souza asks George Obama if he thinks his brother Barack should help him in some way. George suggests pridefully that he is a grown man and can help himself. Incidentally, the two met in a park, so obviously George did not want to have his home on film, which Dinesh suggests is very small. My question is, the president's brother wrote a book and he still lives in a hut?

Indonesia was also visited by D'Souza and the film crew. Barack Obama (Barry Soetoro at the time) spent a portion of his childhood growing up there, going to a Muslim school as an Indonesian citizen, and according to the president's book, eating dog. Hawaii was also a backdrop for some of the film.

2016 uncovers, as much as any documentary can with this secretive person, the president's background and shows who his father and mother were, shows who his mentors and teachers were, and shows the company Barack Obama kept himself immersed in, all of which reveal that he is no garden-variety Democrat or liberal but rather that he has an extremely left-of-center philosophy founded upon anticolonialism, and anticapitalism.

The film points out that everything that President Obama is doing is purposeful and are not just bumbling attempts at doing what is right for the country. His spending and increases in debt are meant to weaken America's position in the world, the economic stimulus was meant to hobble the economy, and his giveaways to other countries are meant to spread the U.S. wealth.

The film also asks and attempts to answer another question, "If Obama wins a second term, where will we be in 2016?" According to the film and the experts that D'Souza speaks to, America will be further down the road to socialism, it will be further diminished as a world power, even to the point where it will be vulnerable and unable to deter wars anywhere in the world. The wealth of individual citizens will continue to decrease as well as the country's wealth on the whole.

David M. Walker, who served as United States Comptroller General, had some sobering things to say about the debt and deficit suggesting that we are fast heading down the road of Greece and Spain. When the debt is the same as the yearly GDP (Gross Domestic Product) or near it, I'd say he is right. (On a side note, I hope Mitt Romney appoints David Walker treasury secretary when he is elected.)

If you want to know more about Barack Obama, you will learn a lot about him from this documentary, much of which in fact is based upon Barack Obama's two autobiographies. D'Souza starts with facts he learns in those to build a foundation of knowledge about someone that he suggests is one of the most unknown people ever elected to the office of president.

2016: Obama's America is expanding its reach in theaters. Check for a theater near you.

D'Souza's book, Obama's America is an even more detailed look at the same subject matter and you can get it here: Obama's America: Unmaking the American Dream

Stimulus Doesn't Work

Click to view larger image
This chart by Obama administration economists Jared Bernstein and Christina Romer was amended by James Pethokoukis of the American Enterprise Institute (AEI). It really shows the failure of the Obama administration's economic policies, especially the economic stimulus plan.