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30 from 2016

Here are the best books I read in 2016

(not in any particular order)

30-from-2016

  1. 300,000,000 – Blake Butler
  2. A Head Full of Ghosts – Paul Tremblay
  3. A House at the Bottom of a Lake – Josh Malerman
  4. Animal Money – Michael Cisco
  5. Anomaly Flats – Clayton Smith
  6. Bird Box – Josh Malerman
  7. Discovering Scarfolk – Richard Littler
  8. Ella Minnow Pea – Mark Dunn
  9. Every Part of the Animal – Duncan Ralston
  10. Fake Fruit Factory – Patrick Wensink
  11. Falter-Kingdom – Michael Seidlinger
  12. Gutshot – Amelia Gray
  13. Gutted – Ed. Doug Murano
  14. Hair Side, Flesh Side – Helen Marshall
  15. It Sustains – Mark Morris
  16. Jagannath – Karin Tidbeck
  17. King Carrion – Rich Hawkins
  18. Lost Signals – Ed. Max Booth
  19. Nyctophobia – Christopher Fowler
  20. One for Sorrow – Christopher Barzak
  21. Penpal – Dathan Auerbach
  22. Pretty Little Dead Girls – Mercedes M Yardley
  23. The Deep – Nick Cutter
  24. The Fireman – Joe Hill
  25. The King In Yellow – Robert Chambers
  26. The Last Gods of Indochine – Sam Ferrer
  27. The Secret of Ventriloquism – Jon Padgett
  28. The Strange Library – Haruki Murakami
  29. The Troop – Nick Cutter
  30. The Warren – Brian Evenson

my halloween watch list for today…

these are on my
2016 Halloween watch list for today…

halloween 2016

what are you watching

oh yeah…

the most terrifying thing of them all…

my beloved chicago bears are playing the vikings

bears-vikings

on monday night football

it’s sure to be a bloodbath

oh the horror…

what have i done?

what have i done…

i performed shows in front of over 20,000 people…

i performed shows with more people on stage than in the audience…

i’ve written two novels (so far)…

i made a triple play single handed (in little league)…

i scored a goal with the back of my head (the only one i scored in over ten years playing soccer)…

i’ve been the subject of a documentary film…

i’ve been on television…

i made music for movies…

i sang on television commercials…

i’ve thrown drunk people out of my bar…

i’ve read poetry on the job as a bouncer…

i’ve been hit by a car (more than once)…

i tossed rowdy parents out of a little league baseball game…

i swam in three oceans…

i met many of my musical heroes…

i met a handful of my literary heroes…

i’ve seen a ghost (or what i thought was a ghost at the time)…

i’ve had heart surgery twice…

i’ve lived longer than the doctors thought i would…

i made friends with people who were supposed to be my enemies…

imade enemies of people who were supposed to be my friends…

i am still falling in love with my wife…

i’ve seen the inside of the human body…

i’ve nightmares…

i procrastinate (sometimes)…

i wrote a play (that has never been performed)…

i sang in the car at the top of my lungs…

i ate more than i should…

i drank a lot…

i smoked…

i left people who wanted to hurt my family in the past…

i graduated college without using a computer once…

i challenged myself to a duel…

i told my one of my favorite bands i should play drums on their next record, and i did…

i cried in public…

i crashed into my best friends car…

i saw air supply in concert…

i waited in line all night for concert tickets (not for air supply)…

i waited in line all night to see a movie…

i stayed up all night talking…

i stayed awake for three days working on music…

i lied to make myself feel better…

i lied to help someone i loved feel better…

i told the truth and hurt someone i cared about…

i’ve hated myself…

i’ve loved myself…

i’ve let people help me…

i tried to help others…

i’ve smiled at strangers…

i held on to anger…

i’ve let it go…

i’ve lost trust…

i found it again…

i’ve been truly happy being myself…

i lost too much time to fear…

i stared into the mirror and watched the freckles in my eyes turn into stars…

i’ve watched constellations ride from one horizon to the other…

i’ve looked into the sun until my toes ached…

i found faces hiding in cloud formations…

i tried counting raindrops…

i made snow angels…

and devils…

i blew all the air out of my lungs to take in a fresh breath…

i read a book so wonderful, i immediately started again from page one after the end…

i sang “you make me feel like a natural woman” in a karaoke bar…

i let my little cousin paint my toenails for my birthday and let them grow out…

i got a tattoo on my honeymoon…

i sang on frank sinatra’s microphone

i rode an elevator with lemmy…

i married my best friend…

i fell down stairs…

i watched fireworks with my kids laying down on a major league baseball outfield…

i watched my father breathe his last breath…

i haven’t been the same since…

i never expected life to turn out like this…

i colored outside the lines…

i stayed up too late…

i played by the rules…

i broke a a few laws…

i never meant to hurt anybody…

i ate the last piece of cake…

i saved a life…

i try to make a difference…

i never give up…

i talked too much…

i am too defensive…

i don’t believe in myself enough…

 

…to be continued…

6.7.16

-a

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

gutted

 

 

it’s the beginning of the month and i had every intention of posting a new edition of my newsletter today. sitting at the keyboard most of the day, staring at this white screen unable to summon any words… let alone thoughts that make any sense when put in sequence.

i am gutted.

sad.

lost.
i want to get to work, but i need to allow myself time to grieve for this wonderful experiment that unfortunately failed.

Booktrope basically gave me the opportunity to become a writer. what i mean is, i played with words most of my life as a side note. i never once expected or even thought of myself as an author. i performed and composed music, until eventually that music became songs with lyrics. some rhymed, some didn’t (which mightily pissed off more than one singer.)

books and poetry were a part of my life since childhood. there were books forever at my bedside and on tables regardless if they were school assignments. jots of a line here and a phrase there hidden on bent cornered inside covers of paperbacks brought me to the songs we eventually sang on stage in the various formations of my bands.

once the music was taken away from me, i disappeared. i crawled into a deep hole intent on damaging myself beyond repair. on the shove off the cliff suggestion of my wife, i started writing to stay creative. some of those small stories became a blog. i never expected anyone to read it other than myself, a few friends and former band mates.

Booktrope took notice of one of those short stories, expressed an interest and it eventually grew into my first novel, “the Key to everything”. one could make the suggestion that i could have done it myself. i could have found confidence inside to realize the story, find an editor, cover artist and self-publish on my own. sure. easy to say. not so easy to do for someone who never dreamed of it as a possibility in the first place.

this chapter has ended. finality. period at the end of the sentence. THE END. i am fighting to remain peaceful and positive though that is against my nature. i flip/flop from wanting to scream and throw my laptop against a wall one minute…the next i’m looking at my three published books on the shelf and smiling at all of the unexpected and wonderful things that have occurred over the past six years of my life.

none of the new friends i’ve made would be here if it weren’t for the opportunity provided by this subversive little publishing experiment. i wouldn’t be a member of ARIA (the Association of Rhode Island Authors) and know all of these terrific people i’ve come to consider a family of sorts. all of the horror writer communities i am now proud to be a part of. the independent authors who are always so supportive and fun to plot world domination with. the artists and editors and not to mention the readers! (i heard that someone even went so far as to get a tattoo of something from one of my books)

i spent my entire life making music and never sold more than a handful of records to friends and family. but now, people around the world have bought and read my books! imagine someone in Germany reading about my demonic squirrels. a Spaniard or two has visited my strange hospital room where a pregnant woman waits to give birth to something unspeakable… people in the United Kingdom are looking at the storm brewing sky hoping the sound in the distance is not Beethoven…

while struggling inside to figure out the next steps…i am deeply honored to have been chosen to begin this journey in the first place.

thanks for reading.

-a

5.2.16

p.s. these two songs have been running through my head every since the news landed on friday…

 

 

 

illumination 4.29.16

 

came home from the younger minion playing a double header (1 loss, 1 win), turned on the old interwebs to find a note concerning the demise of my publisher. as of may 31, all three of my books will be pulled. i am going to take the weekend to decompress and most likely have a glass or two of good bourbon before i begin building evil schemes to re-release tK2e, ACoW & tIoN back to the wild. i don’t know how it’s going to look or when it will return to life. i only know that it will.

i never intended to be an author. i was always going to be a musician. it wasn’t until about six years ago when the attention of an unexpected old friend pulled me toward this new adventure that i realized how much i love it. in that time i have released three books, published a handful of short stories and articles in magazines and through other publishing houses. i’ve made many new friends, who i hope will remain in my life for a long time to come. readers have entered the circle as well through the stories. some became internet friends and others have turned into sounding boards for projects i would never have dreamed of otherwise.

i want to take this short post to sincerely thank everyone in the Booktrope family for all of their hard work, dedication and support of not only my work, but for the many other writers and artists who strove to pave a bold new path in the publishing world.

i can’t quite see what’s around the corner yet. though, there is a light pulling into the unknown. i look forward to seeing what it illuminates for me… and you if you’re up for the ride…

a.m.k

4.29.16