Douglas Arvidson is a past winner of the WICE/Paris Transcontinental International Short Story competition. His short fiction has been published in Paris, Prague, and in literary magazines in the United States and he was recently invited to be a staff writer for the Prague Revue, a cutting-edge, online literary journal ( The novels in his fantasy series, The Eye of the Eye of Stallion, include The Face in Amber, The Mirrors of Castaway Time, and A Drop of Wizard's Blood. His new novel, Brothers of the Fire Star, was selected as a finalist in the ForeWord Reviews 2012 Book of the Year national awards and as a finalist in three categories in the 2013 New Mexico-Arizona Book Awards: Action Adventure Fiction, Historical Fiction, and Young Adult Fiction. It has become part of the pantheon of Pacific literature and is now included in school literature programs. Brothers of the Fire Star is an adventure story set in the Pacific during World War II and concerns two boys of different races and cultures who escape the island of Guam in a small sailboat when the Japanese army invades. They must then struggle to survive as they master the secrets of the ancient Pacific navigators. Appropriate for young adults as well as adult readers, Brothers of the Fire Star is available on Barnes & Noble, ( and Visit the author's website:

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Ground Hog Day: Blood on the Streets, Snow on the Roads

                                                              Photo Credit: MSNBC

The revolution is not an apple that falls when it is ripe. You have to make it fall.
                                                                                                Che Guevara
This is insane. This cannot continue. The weather, the protests, the denials, the insidious rumors, the malicious insinuations the Mubarak-must-go implications and innuendos. And Toy Story 3 was way too violent, that's what gets me. The head-cracking violence in football, too. I can see it in computer-generated cartoon extravaganzas, but in football? And governor Moonbeam is back and he's kickin' ass and takin' names.

It's early here on the mid-Atlantic coast, early A.M. on Ground Hog Day, and I couldn't sleep, so I got up in the dark and came down here to my cave and turned on the news/talk/innuendo flat screen and put my laptop on my lap and my little digital camera next to me so I can take pictures from the comfort of my fat recliner and made a cup of tea and ate two Zone bars to juice me up. Morning Joe (photo credit! Thanks!) and his cohorts/thugs are up and on, on time, a blizzard is ripping a new one for the middle-part of our great country and Punxsutawney Phil is shivering his tail off in that fake stump. No, wait! This just in: he, Phil, did not see his shadow. Early Spring!

So, what's a writer to do to keep himself distracted from the distractions? Focus. Keep your head down and your feet moving. Collect all those wild thoughts and put them to good use. Organize them, incorporate them, sprinkle them in your prose like herbs and spices. Never thought of putting a a good bloody riot into that book? Maybe nows the time, while it's fresh and topical. How about a snow storm? It's been done? Do it again but better.

And try not to lose your traction on the slippery slope of lost routines. I just did and it doesn't feel good. Writers need routines to be productive and I broke mine this morning. A conference call with my webdesigner and in the middle of that, a call from an elderly family member with a medical emergency got me going out the wrong door, so to speak.

But, I'm back at it now. Here in my recliner, re-writing, yet again (10th time?) The Brothers of the Fire Star, my novel in progress. And my new website is almosts ready to "go live." I'll work for a couple of hours more. Maybe a nap?

                                                                                Photo Credit: MSNBC

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