ScriptHello, friends! It’s been a while since I wrote to you. 2015 turned out to be a busy year with lots of life changes that didn’t leave me much extra time to write as often as I would have liked. But things have calmed down quite a bit and we are establishing a new rhythm that seems to be more conducive to creativity.

So here’s the year in a single sentence: began working in ministry full-time; still doing some consulting on the side to afford to do the former; traveled to the Amazon three times this year; sold our family home; moved into an ever better house that costs way less each month; my niece (our 5th kid) got married; my daughter bought a condo; found out I’m going to be a grand father in March (baby girl named Luna Rose); lost 35 pounds and gained 10 back (working on that); finished writing a musical; finally read the Fountainhead and about 30 other books. There you have it. And this is why there wasn’t a new novel this year.

The project I have been collaborating on with Neal Morse kicked into high gear this year, especially after we added a third member to our group to help with the script. Jim Weber, a gifted playwright & singer/songwriter, helped us not only rewrite the script, but added much-needed levity and laughter to a story that was verging on somber. We now have a completed script (to the extent that any script is ever finished before the curtain goes up) and 21 songs. And it’s awesome! There is a lot more to do which I will detail in another post soon. There will even be an opportunity for you to help us!

This adventure in collaboration has been the single most fulfilling and challenging artistic endeavor of my life. My other projects, whether writing or photography, are largely solitary pursuits. It’s usually just me and a screen, keyboard, or a lens. This project required me to create characters in real-time, compromise on story elements, let others take the lead in areas I have no expertise, and caused me to trust the artistic insights of other people. It has stretched me in ways I never imagined and has given me a whole new outlet to express the stories that rattle around in my head. I’ve already got a solid idea for our next script.

In the end only God knows what will become of this musical. But if the validation we have gotten to date is any real indicator, I think this thing is destined for production. Somewhere, somehow, I know I will see this brought to life on a stage. And that is a prospect that fills me with dizzying anticipation.

Now that we are moving into the promotion and preproduction phase with the musical, it’s time to get back to my other writing projects. I just finished rereading “Cradle” and have started refining the story map for the final installment to be called “The Watchers of Ur: Legacy.” Book 3 will see the various factions come together in an epic resolution of the many story arcs. My goal is to satisfy the reader and pave the way for more stories set in the “Watchers” universe.

I also will be working concurrently on my thriller “Black Friday”. It seems current events are catching up with some of the major action in the story so I am refining and adjusting some of the plot elements to fit the current geopolitical situations. This book has been meticulously researched and will give readers a glimpse into the incredible world of the people in the military and intelligence community who aim to protect us from those who would do us harm. It has been enlightening to learn about this hidden world and I have gained tremendous respect for these shadow warriors.

That’s it for now. Please send me any questions or comments and I will do my best to reply. Your notes always encourage me.