Monday, August 21, 2017

Solar Eclipse today... did you see totality?

If you're lucky - that is, if you are one of about 21 million people across the U.S. who live in the path of totality, or perhaps you traveled to see it, and if the weather permitted you a good view - and that's a few "ifs", you managed to see the rare cosmic event. During the 2+ minutes, it was as dark as nighttime, and it may have cooled off a bit, as well.

If you didn't see it, and you want to know what it looked like, then here's a photo...

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Preparing for the August 21st event... Tracing the path of the 2017 Solar Eclipse

The total solar eclipse of August 21st is truly a one of a kind for the U.S.... the first visible across the country in almost 100 years. Approximately 21 million people live in the path of totality, and likely as many more will travel to the path of totality to see the event. If you can't see it live, then try to live-stream it. For me, it's close to home, and so my interest and determination to see it is increasing every day...

the August 21st Total Solar Eclipse... the Path Across the U.S.

The video above is a good visualization of the path across the U.S.

Another good option for making sure you're in the right place at the right time is this interactive Google map... (small scale overview shown below), which will give you the exact details you need...

The Night Sky - explaining America's Total Solar Eclipse (August 21, 2017)

This is one of the best explanatory videos that I've seen. If you can, you should try and watch or live-stream this cosmic event...  August 21st, 2017, starting at before 9:00 am (reaching totality about 10:12 am), near Lincoln City, Oregon. This interactive Google map will help you plot the times for your location.

So, happy watching...


Preparing for the August Solar Eclipse - what it will look like from Earth (flatscreen)

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Authors are readers, too... how about some free eBooks?

FREE EBOOKS (July 1st - 31st ) SALE

Most authors read books by other authors. If fact, pretty much all writers and authors started out by reading. So, when I see the opportunity to build up my library of eBooks at no cost, I take it.

The month of July is pretty much the best month of 2017 to find Free eBooks for Young Adults (and any other eBooks, including books under the Coming of Age genre). That's because Smashwords is holding their annual Summer / Winter sale (the winter part is for those 'down under').  

Many authors - including me - have joined this sale, so there is a great selection and it's a great opportunity to fill up your reading device.  Smashwords' eBooks are available in all formats, for Kindle, Nook, Kobo, Android app for Tab or smartphone; and thousands of books are on sale at Smashwords.  But, this is a limited time offer, and it ends on July 31st, (11:59 pm, 23.59 PDT (07:00 GMT Aug 1st) so don't delay.


And one more thing... on Smashwords, there's no worry about region, or country, or location when you get these books for free.  Unlike Amazon, or Apple, or most of the others, you 'purchase' these free Smashwords books anywhere. In fact, I know from my sales reports that the readers of my seven books (all available on Smashwords) are from around the world.

If you chose to pick up some of my books for free, that's great. It's all about reading, whether my books or other authors' books. 

In closing, to my Canadian readers, I wish you joy as you celebrate "Canada 150" on July 1st. To my American readers, I wish you the best for Independence Day on July 4th. And, to the rest of my readers around the world, I hope you enjoy your summer (or winter).

Happy reading,


Saturday, June 17, 2017

Father's Day 2017 - some thoughts about fathers... real and fictional

My Fathers' Day Essay - What Kind of Father?

As a person, I have observed many examples of ‘fathers’ and regrettably more bad than good.  On a positive note, a few years ago I was particularly struck by two pieces related to fatherhood, one by LZGranderson at, and the other by Dominic Utton at the Mail Online.

As an author, I have often created characters in a father role.  In certain of my books, the father is described after his death. In Playing the Baseball Card, the protagonist describes his father as a man who ‘made sure that his children were the most important part of his life.

In Aiden’s Arrival: Honor Before Gold, a now-grown son describes a man who assumed a father’s role by marrying a women with two young children.  “None of us; my mother, my sister, my nephew, my niece; were related to our father and grandfather by blood, but that didn’t matter to him.  He showed us, by his example, that family is about loving people, and caring about people, and living together in a supportive way.  Not always in harmony, but always caring about your family more than anything else.  He lived that kind of life, and today we carry on with that legacy.

In Zac and the Reluctant Prince, Book 1 of the Prince David series, the father is described this way:  “The example of his life teaches us the lessons of responsibility, obligation, commitment, dedication, loyalty, patriotism and also compassion.  In his life, he strove to be the best son he could be, the best husband he could be, the best father he could be, the best officer he could be, and the best man he could be.”

If you know your father, what do you think of him? If you knew your father, how do you remember him?

I believe a real father is one who looks into the eyes of his children, and says to them, “My life improved the day you came into my life, and my life gets better every day that you are still in my life.”  I also believe a real father is the kind of role model I’ve described in the excerpts from my books, above. 

If you have the chance to be a father, or if you are a father, how do you want to be remembered? 

To all fathers, everywhere, Happy Fathers’ Day.

... Wil ...

Google Translation

Pictures of Lighthouses