I grew up in Southern Oregon and spent countless hours on Rivers in the area. Primarily the Klamath at its headwaters where I learned the art of fishing and reading the water flow in a river. I spent countless hours on the Illinois River, where my dad and brother would go gold-panning deep in the heart of the Kalamiopsis Wilderness area. I would wander off on my own with my yellow lab, Colonel, hiking, and fishing until it was time to leave.
Finally, the Rogue River, where I caught my first Steelhead, did my first tubing, kayaking, river-rafting, and cliff-diving. All solidified in me, my love of the outdoors, and all that river-life has to offer. I have many fond memories of cold and wet nights camping at Tucker Flat on the Mule Creek, which empties into the Rogue. One memorable trip, I saw my first black bear and her cubs from a mining trail while they sat staring at the human intruders. I spent many more hours and days wading in the Mule creek hunting crawdads hoping to catch enough to cook. I never did. I'd get too impatient and take off hiking. My brother always managed to get a full pot. Perhaps most importantly, I learned the excitement of discovering the beauty of a woman’s companionship, even if I was a teen. It’s also worth noting here that one night a black bear shook a camper back and forth while my dog, Colonel, hair straight up on his back barked and growled, in his desperate effort to protect me, or at least himself. Not much sleep that night for either of us. My dog and I survived, and the bear eventually got bored, or the itch scratched on his back before he meandered off
I’d hike down the Rogue River Trail to watch rafters careen through Blossom Bar and try to dance around the Coffee Pot; then, I’d hike a little further down to see Zane Grey’s Cabin. In Gold Beach, Oregon, where the Rogue empties into the Pacific I have fished for Salmon with a high-school buddy, biked the 101 in spite of the wind, taken historic mail boat rides upstream, and hiked countless beaches and trails. I have been fortunate enough to visit forty-nine out of fifty states, and there is no place I would rather be than Southern Oregon—enjoying all she has to offer.
I inject my love of the area in my novels with bits and pieces of the surrounding nature. In The Rogue River Incident, the novel starts in Gold Beach at the Pacific, quickly finds itself decades later in the town of Rogue River, and ends up in Crater Lake National Park, where the Rogue River headwaters border. I try to weave fun stories with likable and unlikable characters into uncomfortable situations crafting the words so they band together and extricate themselves. I intend for my writing to be fun, entertaining, and allow the reader a few hours to escape. I will never claim to be a Pulitzer Prize-winning literary genius, but I do think I have a propensity to make up a good story.
I loved writing as a kid but didn’t understand I could take the passion and turn it into a novel until much later in life. I decided, while watching Ancient Aliens on the History channel, to sit down and write and see what I could come up with. Determined to write a novel, I started pressing keys on the laptop. With no outline, only a pantser attitude, the characters, and the story came to life as I wrote. I intertwine my love of Native American culture and a passion for the Pacific Northwest, primarily my birth state of Oregon, in the debut mystery with sci-fi and paranormal elements. With lackluster sales, but excellent reviews I went back to the drawing board after talking with a publicist who all but begged me to change the names of the novels, tweak the storyline, and have new covers designed. Lightning struck while struggling to come up with a name. Where the Wild Things Are was already taken (wink wink), so I researched and found an actual incident that took place on the Rogue River, where I set the novels. Problem solved. I wrote a new prologue, commissioned Dan Van Oss to design awesome new covers, worked on further edits, the storyline, and made the novels tighter—strategically launching my revamped creations.
I enjoy every writing session because I get to be the first reader of something never before read by human eyes. It was exciting to see what unfolded every time I sat in front of the computer. I challenged myself by taking ideas I have had over the years watching Ancient Aliens and X-Files, as well as my love of Native American culture and my experience with countless hours in the outdoors of the Pacific Northwest. Bringing the ideas together in a novel and tying it together with actual events in 1949, was more fun than I ever imagined. I am excited to re-release these novels. They are fun to read and will give you several hours of enjoyment. I once heard the novelist, Garth Stein, say at a writing convention to write something “you would like to read,” so this is what I have done. Not everyone will like them, and I understand, but if I can bring a few hours of enjoyment to a few people, then I am satisfied. No matter what happens, I will keep writing, if nothing else, than to entertain myself.
Studying photography as a freshman in high school, I later took the passion and skills and used them as a photographer in the United States Air Force. After four years in the Air Force, I spent the next couple of decades living around the U.S. and raising my son Alexander. My love of the Oregon woods called for years before I finally returned in 2017. I like to think I have a penchant for capturing the outdoors, via photos, on my smartphone, which I usually share on Social Media. Occasionally I bust out my high-end Canon DSLR and “get serious” with my photography. Living back in Oregon, I have rediscovered my love of cycling, both mountain, and road. I look forward to Friday afternoons and the weekends, where I can bike, or get on one of my favorite lakes with a paddleboard or wrap the day up with a visit to one of Southern Oregon’s 151 wineries; I often do all three on the same day. When winter rolls around, you will probably find me on Mt. Ashland skiing, dreaming about a new novel while riding the chairlift before returning to the slopes where I try to stay on my skis, not my ass, as I careen down the slopes.
Out now is my third novel, Hidden Beneath the Pines: All Families Have Secrets: a dark, whodunit mystery dealing with unexpected deaths and the chaos that ensues around murder, abduction, childhood abuse, and a family that wants to wish it all away. This novel, like the first two, takes place in and around Southern Oregon. I will continue to focus on Southern Oregon as the backdrop, or main character for my novels.
I am in the final stages of my fourth novel, The Good Sheriff, with a release date of April 2020.
Enjoy, and thanks for coming along.