Why I Hunt

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Reagan proudly displaying “her” deer. She loves when I cook venison and can’t wait to taste her deer!

One of the questions I get most often about hunting is why I do it.  We have grocery stores where you can go buy beef, pork, chicken, seafood, and at the right stores, even venison for relatively affordable prices.  The meat is high quality, clean, and readily available.  So why do I layer on clothes, hike miles through rough terrain, and sit hours in the cold, at times wet, wilderness waiting for a deer to happen buy so I can shoot it?

The simple and yet incredibly complicated answer is it’s a part of who I am. Continue reading

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A Special Thank You…

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I would like to take a moment to say thank you to someone who has shown me unconditional love and support from the moment we started dating nearly 13 years ago.  Without my wife, Courtney, and her steadfast faith in my dream there’s no way I would have seen that dream realized today as I start the first day of my new career as a full-time author.  Continue reading

Endings and Beginnings

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Today marks the end of my career in property restoration.  I find myself struck with a mixture of emotions, some of them quite unexpected.  I never planned for my life’s career, my life’s work, to consist of my time in property restoration.  I have always wanted to be an author, and I am now getting the chance to explore that career full time for the first time in my life. Continue reading

A Grateful Heart

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For most of us, Christmas is over by now. The presents have all been unwrapped, the stockings have been emptied, and now we face the task of returning to the day-to-day routine that, for a brief time every year, gets suspended in lieu of the holiday season. Many of us, myself included, have returned to our day jobs, albeit reluctantly, and soon the kids will be returning to school. It’s sad how fast the spirit of love and generosity that is at the heart of the Christmas season fades into the background as daily life begins once again to take over our thoughts and our conscience. But before that warm fuzziness of Christmas gives way to the cold reality of going to work before sunrise in January, I want to take a minute to talk about the difference between “thankful” and “grateful.” Continue reading

Happy Cyber Monday

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I am not a person who typically enjoys being in a large crowd.  There are, of course, exceptions to that rule, but they are few and far between.  I can tolerate large audiences outside at events like concerts, fairs, or the occasional NC State football game, but a lot of that tolerance is dependent on who I’m enjoying these events and venues with.  One crowd that I absolutely refuse to throw myself into is the so-called “Black Friday” shopping craze.  Continue reading

Nov. 9th, 1989

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I sat in my grandparents’ family room, my eyes glued to the television. There were crowds gathered at the base of a concrete wall covered with graffiti in a language I couldn’t read. Camera flashes were going off so much that it looked like the worst lightning storm in the earth’s history. The peoples’ breath fogged in the cold air as they sang songs, wept, and hugged each other.

Some of the men swung sledge hammers, the heavy metal heads bouncing off the concrete face and sending chips flying in all directions. The people around them scrambled on the ground and scooped up fragments and chips wherever they landed. Whenever one of the bw6men grew weary, his arms too heavy to lift the mallet, another stepped in to take his place.

The hammers never stopped swinging.

Continue reading

Notes on Kindle Unlimited for Authors

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One of the most common questions I get asked when discussing my books is, “What is the Kindle Unlimited program?” When I answer those questions and mention the word “subscription,” most people will snap their fingers as the light bulb of recognition goes off in their head. They’ve seen the advertisement, they tell me, but never clicked on it. Not surprising, really. I know I skip over subscription services all the time. Then again, I’ve also signed up for a few as well. And the very fact that there are so many different types of subscription services out there speaks to their success.  It seems that everything from razors to underwear and all points in between can be covered by a subscription to a blog, a retailer, or a lifestyle consultation site. Continue reading

Rheumatoid Arthritis: #RASucks

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I dropped the tiny screw for what must have been the fifteenth time. Instead of trying to fumble with my stiff, thick fingers to pick it back up and start the process all over again, I simply stared at it. For nearly twenty minutes I’d been trying to thread a tiny screw into the hole in the drawer rail and attach it to the side of the drawer. This would complete the assembly of the first of six drawers that would eventually go in my new dresser. Sweat was beading on my forehead and my hands had started to shake.

I knew I was fighting a losing battle…..I just didn’t want to admit it. Continue reading

Flint Knapping Intro: Painful Lessons

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Some of my early obsidian points and a field found paleo-style blade

I’ve talked about flint knapping a little in my books and I figured it’d be good to let people know what that really is.  At its most basic, the skill or art of flint knapping is the shaping of stone to make blades, points, and other implements.  When you think about the classic, often inaccurate image of Native American combat, you think of bows and stone-tipped arrows, spears and tomahawks.  Those stone projectile points, weapon blades, and tools such as drills, grinders, scrapers, needles, fishing hooks, harpoons, and dozens of others were all possible with skilled flint knapping. 

 However, from the time the first European settlers set foot in North America, the art of flint knapping was on borrowed time.  And, for a while, it nearly disappeared completely from the cultural lexicon of America.     Continue reading

Why I Carry

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I have an Alien Gear holster… VERY nice rig.  My carry piece is a S&W MP Shield 9mm

 

 

I sit down and I feel it push into my side a little, digging just above where my hip joins my body. When I stand, I can feel the weight pulling at my belt, trying to bring my pants down.  Even with a good quality holster setup, there’s no way to put a pistol on your hip that’s really “comfortable.”  You know it’s there, and you know why it’s there, and there’s nothing comfortable or cool about it.  So why do it at all?  Why go through the trouble, the expense, and the stress of applying for the permit, attending the class, getting the certification at the range, and the fingerprints at the Sheriff’s office all to carry around something that’s heavy, at times painful, and increasingly socially taboo?   Continue reading