I was born in Louisville, KY on August 3, 1970. I started writing when I was 14 because my older brother wrote and it seemed like a precocious pursuit. I have written nearly everyday of my life since. The only writing instruction I've ever had was from a high school English teacher and I was honored with English Student of the Year my senior year in high school. I consider my real "education" in writing to be reading and the assiduous act itself of putting pen to paper, so to speak. I say both with pride in my persistence and with testimony to the nature of writing as a learned skill, that it took me until I was 27 to become, what I would consider by my own standards, a competent writer. When I did finally breach that outer hull of the quiddity of the written word, where ideas, language, and emotion all come together in a seamless finished work, it seemed that the ability increased exponentially. The wake of that revelatory accomplishment when I first felt a true confidence with the craft brought a boundless range of possibities with the deft use of words. I don't pretend to be any more or less talented than the next writer and have always measured my own work against the void of the possibility of having become nothing as a man. That is, I am staunchly against the measurement of all art as if it were a car race with a hierarchy of finishing positions and, as such, I look at my poems or my stories as merely an answer to the blank page which it had been before my own experience was there to fill it up. My first breakthrough to a work which I felt was worthy of eyes other than my own was my novel, Macky Dunn's Got Nothing to Lose. Its publication by a small now-defunct press was both a dream come true and an astounding adventure in what to avoid when allowing your work into the hands of another. Nonetheless, as recently as two months ago, I received a compliment on the work and, all told, I would not undo the experience. Soon after the publication of this book, I wrote a three act play called Science Day that dealt with the spate of school shootings across the United States. We experienced one such shooting here in Kentucky and my personal experiences with relentless bullying when in middle school, along with the Heath High School shooting, compelled me to write this play. In its final analysis, with the soliloquy by the surviving best friend of the two shooters, the play is didactic in its message. With that regard it stands alone in my body of work but for, 10 years removed from the creation of the play, a nonfiction novel I am presently writing to address the pervasive, profound, and tragic fallout of child sexual abuse on a victim's adulthood. In the interim years since first getting an inkling of my full ability, I have written a great many adequate poems, a good number of very good poems, and a respectable number of great poems; a few of which I would consider to be of anthological quality should they first make their way to a published format and be recognized. (A bit of a side note: I consider true quality poetry to be the most difficult to achieve of the six primary mediums of the written word. Those six being the essay, short story, nonfiction novel, fiction novel, news article, and poem.) Since my first novel, I have completed three novels. Two of which weren't, what I would call, successful but, as I already stated, I have a sedulous affection for the act of writing which I can only assume is common to many fellow persons of letters. As well, though a finished product may not find the high achievement hoped for, there are many salubrious affects and effects which can be drawn from the basic act of putting one's fingers to the keyboard and ingiting that region of the brain from which we command our language. The third novel I have finished since that first I penned 12 years ago would, along with a handful of my poems, have to constitute a pinnacle of my story telling prowess, my dexterity with words, and my application of personal emotion. At present, as well as the previously noted nonfiction novel I am writing, I am 120 pages into a fiction novel called The Way: Un Petite Comedie. At the fear of sounding more tireless than I truly am, I feel compelled to mention that I am "currently" at work on a very long term project that, when finished, could most accurately be a called a Writer's Dictionary. (Thus the humorous sobriquet of "Rogue Lexicographer" in my tagline.) My bio being what it is, in closing I will share what I consider to be my paradigmatic motto with regards to my self-taught approach to what is, for better or for worse, the only positive thing to which I have ever truly dedicated the entirety of my energies. There is a 3-inch square piece of paper leaning against one of the desktop speakers next to my computer. On it is a handwritten note in ballpoint ink that reads: "I am most clever when I concentrate less and enjoy what is naturally pleasing. All wisdom is innate, by nature." To be more pithy, one might say with an ironic sincerity, ENJOY YOURSELF.
I love to cook all courses of cuisine. I can make toffee, caramel, and baklava from memory. I can smoke babyback ribs so tender, the meat will leap into your mouth from the bone. I can make a delicious alfredo pasta, quesadillas, grilled burgers, soups from scatch, smoked pork tenderloin, etc. I have no food prejudices at all and recognize the potential delectability of all ethic and national dishes.
I love to ride my Electra Super Deluxe Classic Cruiser around Louisville. It is so personalized as to even have a license plate with my initials hanging from the rack over the back tire.
I love movies of all genres as long as they are intelligently crafted. A few favorites are: 12 Angry Men, Harvey, Unforgiven, Blade Runner, Metropolis, M, Sherlock Jr., Casablanca, Moby Dick (also my favorite work of fiction), Tron, Touch of Evil, Tape, A Streetcar Named Desire, They Call Me Nobody, Team America, Office Space, A Fistful of Dynamite, Gattaca, Total Eclipse, Empire of the Sun... Well, I said a few so I suppose I'll stop with the list.
I love dogs and the only dog I've ever had is probably the most love I've ever felt for another living creature.
I love topographically distinct regions such as forests, rivers, mountains, etc.
I love all trees but have a particular affection for those that have been ravaged by natural occurances such as ice storms and wind storms but manage to keep alive despite having had half their limbs ripped to the ground.
I love strangers who don't have a clue in the world who you are but will start up a conversation based on some peculiarity they find intriquing about you.
I make canes and walking sticks from fallen tree limbs.
I try to never miss a U of L basketball game.
I suppose, other than reading and writing, that about runs the gamut of my hobbies and interests.
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