Upheaval Progress Report

It’s been 6 months since I’ve discussed my second book, Upheaval.

timmy and clare

This year has been busy. I now have 2 children in diapers, more MA courses to work on, and a larger workload in my real career. I also volunteer at my Church and try to have some semblance of a healthy lifestyle involving semi-consistent exercise.

Bottom line – I haven’t been writing. Upheaval was simmering on a burner in the back.

But sometimes when a story simmers back there, truths about it are crystalize over time. Even though I wasn’t writing, the story was ever present in my daydreaming, during runs, and of course the best place to ponder – in the shower.


Two months ago, I joined a group of writers at my work for a get-together and was immediately energized to get back on track and finish the draft by my original deadline – Christmas. And with a small word-count, I wasn’t too worried.

Today the current word count is 32,469 of a projected 35,000. A very short book to be sure, but perfectly respectable for the Middle Grade audience for which it’s intended.

The finish line is in sight and I’m very pleased with the overall story. We’ll see how I feel about the details during the editing process.

How are your goals coming? Do you have tips that keep you from derailing?



When Evil Isn’t a Thing in a Book

I love stories. I love that we create stories. I love that people inspire others by their stories. I love it when hard work, brilliance, and timing all come together to make something special. I spent the day watching the original Star Wars Trilogy and enjoying the heck out of it.

star wars

But later this day, people starting killing other people in France. I know killings and evil happen every day, but I’m generally disconnected from “The News.” I don’t like to ingest a lot of the negativity of the world. But sometimes the news is so bad, it bursts forth everywhere.

Evil is not a “thing in a book.” It’s a thing in our hearts.

And it’s polar opposite about what I love about humanity. We create. Our creations then inspire other people to create. And all that creative sharing leads to a better understanding and a true love.

God creates

Creating things is what God does.

We get to share in his own prerogative. We get to create our own fictional stories as well as our own personal story. I can think of no greater privilege than that.

When we destroy and kill, though, we undo the best of what it means to be human.

It makes me hate humanity. It makes me to sympathize with the Devil’s claim that humanity is not worth saving.

I love evil in a book. It’s known to be evil and is conquerable. When Evil is not a thing in a book, it’s scary, and cries out to God for a response. God, however, has made us the stewards of each other, which makes me realize how bad a job we’ve been doing.