Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Dream State - reviews and comments

Please use this post to leave your review of "Dream State" by Robert E Crull.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

In Honor of French Kiss Friday

Just a little fun inspired by something I saw from a twitter friend, @sueannesjewelry...

“I’d like to freshen up. Help yourself to the finest the mini-bar has to offer,” she said with a grin as she stood on her toes to give him a quick kiss. She wet her lips with a quick lick of her tongue, placed them against his, and could not believe her reaction.

She could feel the texture of his lips in pleasurably painful detail. Each crease and rise was felt by her lips. She could feel the softness of what she thought was a freshly shaven face slide under the pressure of her chin against his. She felt her lips relax in that moment, felt the relaxation flow downward, warming her as it went.

“Hmm, yeah,” she mumbled as she broke away from the kiss. “I was going to freshen up. Be right back,” she said as she dropped flat-footed to the floor in a heap of confusion.


As she had done just twenty minutes ago, he wet his lips with his tongue and placed his lips against the shock on her face. He kissed just her bottom lip at first, pulling his lips against it as if he were suckling the juice from an overly ripe peach.

Her response was slow because she was still in shock of what she had felt. She felt the tenderness of his lips as he suckled her lower lip and let the sensation of her touch recede from her mind. Coming back to the moment, she began to react. While he was pouring luscious attention to her lower lip, she began to reciprocate the action on his upper lip.

Once setting her memories in the back of her mind, she reacted with more interest. The slow tender nibbling of each other’s lips would not take long to drive her to wanting more. The duration of her celibate periods did not do much for allowing her the opportunity for slow tender lovemaking. She was normally in too big a hurry for enjoying tenderness. When the hunger for physical release reached its high point, all she could think of was eating. Eating a meal her whole body was involved in.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The end of a journey


Just over 12 months ago I decided to attempt the game of publishing a book, and today that decision was fully realized. "Dream State" is now available for purchase via my author site setup by the publisher.

I have found in my life that anytime an event or decision is finalized that I should reflect back on that particular journey, for in any transaction I take on there are always lessons. Each thing I do provides me the opportunity to define and re-define what it is I want, how I want to behave, and what I want to give to others.

The lessons learned through this last year are so numerous I sigh at the prospect of having to count them all. Publishing in the traditional sense is a tough business is the first lesson I learned. Having never tried it before, I went in with the standard bull in a china shop approach. Ok maybe it was more of the shotgun method of marriage. Regardless, I did it unaware of the politics involved and completely naïve as to the proper process.

Lesson two, read the flippin' instructions.

With as many resources available on the wonderful world wide inter-web nets, I should have educated myself better. But I took the Fire, Ready, Aim route. In the end it turned out like I wanted it to; I have more control over my destiny than I would have had if I had used a more traditional method. The trade for control was more work from me to market and advertise. Still, worth every ounce of energy I have put forth and will in the future.

Lesson three. Not everyone gives a shit I wrote a book.

My conversations became consumed with the story line, the process of writing, editing, polishing, etc. All those steps along the way fueled my want to be published, drove me to accept certain things, and helped me to draw the line of the acceptable when necessary. I found myself monopolizing conversations after that first innocent question was asked, "So what are you doing in your spare time?" That was a damning question for the uninitiated. I could and would spend hours talking of the premise, specifics about this character or that. Initially it was a lot of fun, but I fear my poor friends and acquaintances would be far less enthusiastic if they were to be asked.

Lesson four. Good things come to those that wait.

My view on that is "Patience my ass I wanna kill something, NOW!" Patience of a general nature has never been my forte by any stretch of the imagination. I like decisions to be made and action to take place. Needless to say, I am a much more capable person today, because I understand the importance of patience.

Lesson five. People are generally awesome.

This lesson could be in direct conflict with lesson three, however, the folks I refer to here are those that share the love of the process of writing. The wanna be authors, those that have made it, those that are trying, those that support us, and those that have failed. I have been fortunate enough to have found a wonderful crew of people I can say are more than casual acquaintances, many are friends. Claude Bouchard is an awesome PR man, fearless in his support. Luke Romyn has provided me more laughs than I should have had in public. CK Webb and DJ Weaver single handedly made me feel like a real author from nearly the first time we met on twitter. There are many others from the twitterverse that have quasi-adopted me and to all of you I appreciate the support and friendship. My twitter mentions however, would not be complete without a mention for my very good friend Winslow Eliot. She read "Dream State" against her better judgment you see as she is not a sicko like yours truly. She gave me awesome feed back, great criticisms, and made suggestions that will make the next book that much better. From her I learned to pull back, just a little. J

Appreciations extend beyond twitter or any of the other online applications. Chaz McEntire for his editing, what an awesome exercise that was. Owen Hall helped me learn a new way of stringing words together. And Selena Kong allowed me room to stretch out some thoughts that will appear in the next book.

Tam, Rob, Lisa, Elizabeth, and Don all coached, cheered, and bitched at me to get to the finish line. To them I will always be grateful.

Thanks every body.

Robert E

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Thank You to Webbweaver

On Saturday November 21, 2009 I had the honor of sitting down with the ladies from the Alabama Chapter of Bookend Babes. Among the members were the founders of the Webbweaver Review site, CK Webb and DJ Weaver. Also in attendance were Sonya Price and Tammie Lane. 

I was accompanied by my wife Tammy for this interview to round out a solid five women to one man. If that doesn't scare you men out there then I guess you are more fearless than I am. :-)

Tammy and I had gotten a room at the Tuscaloosa Hilton Garden Inn and the ladies were going to meet us there.  We thought and talked about video recording the interview, and then tossed that to the side as we all thought we would lock up with the added pressure of the video camera running. Instead we captured the audio portion of the interview, which turned out to be an excellent plan. Before the sit down interview, the ladies sent me a series of questions that I returned to them. We did not revisit those questions in the interview. 

My heartfelt thanks go out to all the participants, and those that provided write in questions to WebbWeaver before hand. 

I appreciate everyone that participates in this journey as it unfolds. Specifically though, I would like to thank Claude Bouchard, Luke Romyn, Winslow Eliot, and Mike Cole along with CK and DJ. These folks all represent the new found friends from Twitter and I appreciate all the encouragement, support, and care each of them give me. 

Thanks Guys.  

Robert E. 

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Wednesday Writing

Just a short little story for the night. Hope you like.

Robert E.

+ + +

The smell of the ocean lapping on the beach woke me from a dead-like sleep. I lay there for a few minutes just listening to the rhythmic pattern of the waves crashing just in front of me and the weakening crescendo as the wave rolled away from me down to the beach. The most natural of surround sound, I thought.

I opened one eye to see that sun must just be ready to crest over the horizon. Raising my head, I was able to feel the slight breeze on my face as the waves pushed the air forward ahead of them. With both eyes open now I saw the crimson of the rising sun blend into the blackness over my head. The stars were dimmer close to the horizon but still shining as they had at midnight overhead.

I sat feeling the breeze with the crashing and fading of the wave mixed with the sound of the palm tree leaves blowing behind me created a surreal feeling. The sun continued to rise into the sky and painted the low flying clouds a soft purple blending into pink on the opposite edge.

I leaned on my arms for as long as possible until my joints ached from the stiffness, but still I could not move. I was mesmerized by the magnificence of all that was happening. Just then, I heard footsteps coming from my right. I continued to stare at the beauty in front of me as the shadow approached. The crunching of the sand was the only way I knew someone was approaching.

Just as the sun made the full crest of the horizon and was a full circle of orange and white, I heard, “Where the hell were you last night?”

The shadow had materialized beside me. I turned and tilted my head to see the face of a highly irate woman.

“Sorry, do I know you?” I asked innocently.

“Do you know me? That’s your fucking question? Do you know me? Are you serious?” she blustered at me
as though I had done something wrong.

“I have no recollection of you ma’am, I’m sorry.”

“Jesus Christ Chow, really? You don’t know me?” she said placing her hands on her hips. “Let me give you a couple reminders. We’ve been sleeping together for three years, going out for four, and up until five minutes ago we were married. Just yesterday.” She screamed the last two words.

“Interesting. Even with those hints, I got nothing,” I replied as calmly as I could, it was obvious this woman was slightly touched.

“Chow McDuffin, I sat with you while you went through de-tox two years ago. I held cold wash clothes on your head to a make you feel better. I watched as you heaved until you bled from the ulcers.” She was speaking softly now, knowing without being told what had happened.

I turned from the woman and looked to see that I was wearing the pants from a tuxedo, the frilly shirt completely unbuttoned, no shoes, and one sock. Man I was a wreck from what I could see. I sat up and pulled my arms in front of me and saw that blood had run from my left inner elbow to my palm.

The last real thing I remember was seeing the sun rise from the horizon. There were no memories from before that instant when I was wakened from the deepest sleep of my life. It had been an all consuming sleep as there was nothing before the moment I woke up. I looked back to the woman and saw the flash of a man in a collar standing in front of me holding a book with a view of the ocean behind him.

I shook my head to clear and saw the woman again, now with some feeling of familiarity. Blinking once more to focus, I felt as I looked at her that I was comfortable. I saw the image of her naked, standing before me as she brushed her teeth.

“Cassie. Is your name Cassie?”

“Is my name Cassie, you’re brilliant Chow,” slivered from her lips with as much venom as a king cobra.

Oh shit, I do know her. But how did I get this blood on my arm, I thought.

Looking back down to my elbow an image flashed in my mind of a needle being inserted into my arm.

“Chow, I told you when you sobered up last time that if you ever went back to using again that I was done. I wasn’t kidding,” she said flatly. “Good bye.” Cassie turned and walked off with the flowing gown buffeting in the breeze behind her.

As I watched her walk off, it all became clear, all the pieces fit.

We had just finished our wedding ceremony and one of my old crew came up and asked if I wanted a fix to get through the stress of all the family and people. Initially I resisted, but as the drinks flew so did my judgment. At around eleven I caved and we went to the mens room and shared a stall. He pulled the fixin’s from his sport coat and cooked me up a dose as I watched and waited.

“You want me to hit you,” Steven asked.

“Yeah, I’m rusty as shit.”

“Pull up your sleeve and tie off then.”

As soon as he finished the injection I knew it was too much. He had given me his normal dose and I had been clean for two years. I wretched from the instant nausea as the dragon consumed my blood supply, spreading its own reality into my brain.

I left the mens room and walked out to the beach to watch as the moon created traces across the sky. The stars created a backdrop of fourth of July spark columns. The colors seemed smooth and soft and I felt myself reach-out to touch the sky it felt so close.

Now here I am, twenty four years old, with a pending divorce, and an addiction I have to kick all over again. It is the worst, most beautiful, day of my life.

"Dream State" Give Away Contest

Good Morning All…

As I have mentioned earlier in the week, I now have the proof copy of "Dream State" in my grubby little hands. And that means that soonly, it will be available for order via my author website, and other online retailers.

Here's a little tease to show what's in the book.

Kristi, on the other hand, had become one with her seat. She felt as
though she could feel the grain of the leather through her jeans, making
an imprint on her ass. She was very aware of her sensations, the
things she touched, and the things that touched her. It was as if she
could feel the different textures talking to her skin to help it understand
what it was supposed to feel. She had never felt this alive, this
sensitive, this aroused.

He walked through the circle of light on his side of the car and into
the darkness at the front of the vehicle; Drew made his way to her side
of the car and opened the door holding out his hand to help her get up
and out of the car. She reached up to take his hand and was astounded
at the softness of his skin, and how smooth it felt. In her current state,
all she could think of was his hands running all over her naked flesh.

“Thank you Will. I am really enjoying this evening. Thank you so
much,” she said as she leaned into the man to give him a kiss. She was
not sure if he was prepared and was more than willing, almost desperate
actually, to find out.

Drew leaned in and kissed her back. An action that provided her a
sense of relief. She was the first to test the waters with her tongue and
did so with light little feather licks to his lower lip slowly, so she
could feel the wrinkles in his lip and taste the Chai latte that had dried
there. Her tongue sprang to life at the taste of the pepper in the tea. It
provided a stark contrast to the sweetness of the tea she had been
drinking. The honey from the Chai mixed with her chamomile tea to
create an overly sweet sensation buffered by the spice of the tea. She
could not ever remember things being so sensitive, so real, and so

So, what's the contest and what's it gonna cost me?

Fair question. The contest is a give away of two, count'em, two signed copies of "Dream State". The drawing will be held the day of the release, yet to be determined but assumed to be early to mid December. The only catch, You have to either be a follower of this blog, see the follow button on the left. Or, you need to be following me on Twitter.

The process is simple, become a follower of one of the two sites, and your name will go into a numbered list. Using a software tool I will generate two random numbers, and those two people will be notified of their winning.

Good luck to you all, I look forward to meeting the winners.

Robert E

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Twofer Tuesday

The words have come when I didn't know from where,
They seemed to be right there in the air.

That's just a cool little set of words. And I have no idea where they came from. I was trying to write a post on the things I am grateful for. What a post that would be! Maybe later.

Bit of an update to start off Twofer Tuesday…

I was in shock and awe last night when I came home from running some errands with my bride. The proof copy of Dream State was delivered while we were out. Three years of story telling, polishing, editing, polishing, editing, reading, editing, and a year of that tied up in getting that parcel package sitting on my kitchen island to sit there. Three years of off and on writing, showing to friends the latest prose, trying poetry, three surgeries, a real death, doubt, frustration, and acceptance.

I looked at the plane cardboard cover and felt a lump build in my throat. What was inside represented in reality the proof of three years worth of effort. I say effort purposefully, because it certainly wasn't work. I experienced more than I care to admit during that time frame, and regret not a second of it. I handed the package to my wife and asked her to open it, which she did.

The cover was astounding. My son designed that for me one night from a couple stock images I had found that I wanted used. He built the concept, the publisher did the fades on the font and wa la we have what will be released. I'm very proud of the work he did with it. I am in process now of reading word for word to make sure it's as close to perfect as this bald headed chicken fornicator can make it.

Twofer Part Deux

Let's call it an experiment, or you can call it me pimping my work by asking obvious questions that people have to read because they can't believe someone would actually ask that.

A bit of back story… and this gets weird and I won't be able to make every point in this post. Trust though that I will come back to it over and over again.

So here goes.

We as humans define ourselves by how much high and low we are willing to declare as acceptable. The examples of this concept are everywhere. Look at Einstein or Edison. Both men had to be able to face severe frustration, and failure to make the advancements they made. I'm not preaching religion, but regardless of your belief in Christ look at the pain he endured for as long as he endured it. What was the opposite of that? How grand must his reward have been. Edison left a legacy that literally changed the world, Christ left a legacy that is still worshiped to this day.

On another side of this look at addiction. Addicts exchange their life for the feeling of an altered state, one they decided they could not live without. Some make a different choice, some want to know more than that, experience the reality in all its stark contrasts rather than live in an altered state any longer.

So here's the experiment, and you are the only one to know if it's a success. Challenge yourself to find that one thing in your life you wish was more, whether its materialistic, mental or spiritual. Try something small. Probably not best to try something big first. Easing into this concept is best done slowly. Maybe you want more heat in romance, the opposite of that heat could be any number of things but for conversation let's say that it's tension. How much tension are you willing to experience to have your socks rocked off in the sack? What about fame? How much of your personal space are you willing to lose? If you want peace, how much strife are you willing to accept to know just as much peace.

To quote Forrest Gump "…momma said…"

Bonnie used to tell me "Bobby Gene, that shit that don't kill ya will only make ya stronger!" and I'll be damned if she wasn't right.

Robert E

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Dream State Update V4

Good Morning Crew. I know its been awhile since I left a Dream State update, bad part is I had to look at the post to see which version we are on.

My apologies for not providing more info, but to be honest the process was driving me nuts. Reminds me of a joke…

Pirate walks in a bar with a ships wheel sticking out of his pants.

Bartender – Evening Mate, you know you have a ships wheel in your pants.

Pirate – Arrrrrrrrrr, and its driven me NUTS.

End Joke.

Anyway, back to the reason for the post.

I was notified that the proof copy of Dream State is being printed, and that I should expect it in the next two weeks. So whats a proof copy, it is the product of all the piece parts of the process. It has the full cover, the text blocking, all the text pieces included. Basically it's the first time I get to see the final product.

Upon approval the book migrates from production to sales and marketing and the real fun starts.

Thanks to you all for being a part of the journey. Your riding along has made it much more enjoyable.

Robert E

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

A Challenge of sorts

I was talking with a friend of mine and we were discussing whether or not I should try to publish my collection of poems. Based on something I had read from one of the self-publish houses, I would need another 8 poems to have a collection large enough to publish. One thing led to another and I said I thought I could write 8 poems before I went to bed for the day. Immediately after agreeing to this, I took a nap. An hour and a half later, I churned out six poems by 9:00pm.


There is more to the challenge, though. It had to be based on a single word, and the poem had to embody the selected word. The six poems vary in length, but I tried to cut straight to the point of my interpretation of what the word invoked for me.

Leave comments if you're inclined.





We are two,

Though still relevant.


Our growth lies,

In our closeness to one.





Pure as the driven snow.


We seek our love,

With those,

That really understand.




The covers are so cold,

Save that one spot,

Where your foot stay,

Anchoring me,

Keeping me from running astray.


Anchoring me,

With the innocence,

Knowing the warmth was,

From you relaxed.


Regardless the day,

Troubles that may,

You make me relax,

Until they melt away.


Precious sleep,

Shut out the world,

And stay.




Up with the crows,

Staring at the coffee,

Planning the next no show.


A job well done,

Used to be all that was required,

To enjoy the rising of the sun.


Politically correct,

Frustration filled,

Meeting to meeting,

Something always gets spilled,

The pace is so quick,

I have not yet become,

A master of the trick.


The trick you see,

Is to know,

The intended actions,

Of the seeds that we sow.


Forget the job,

For all it provides in truth,

Is prevention,

Of you being a slob.


Work the magic around you,

Grab what is near,

Create for you the next grandest view.




If we look deep,

Only in the places we sleep,

We will find a vast collection.


Our eyes see all,

Nothing escapes our view,

Our minds filter what it doesn't understand,

Keeps it all stored for later review.


Our past experience tells us,

What is within reason,

Where the lines are drawn,

Defines our mental season.


We make the choice,

Where the bounds get stretched,

Truth be told its as easy,

As a dog playing fetch.


Face the unreasonable,

With love not fear,

Watch as the obstacles,

Fade to shear.




Seconds pass,

Minutes tick by,

Hours stack up,

Then bleed into days.


The stress,

Of the event,

Is not like,

Sleeping outside in a tent.


The joyousness,

Of a new meeting,

Always seem at the end

To be so fleeting.


Judge not right or wrong,

You will know them all,

Before you reach your prime,

Savor your time.




Breaking silence,

Noise from the dark,

Red eyes of evil,

Skin as rough as bark.


Calling me,

Come hither,

The sound of the voice,

Makes my courage wither.



Can't move,

Can't breath,

I'm drawn in smooth.


Closer I come,

To seeing the terror,

Closer I come,

To me.




Saturday, October 10, 2009


I was about to get in the shower earlier this afternoon, and thought about taking a very simple thing, a haircut, and turn it into a little poem. Unlike many of my poems this one has no revelation at the end, I wanted to see if I could do it.

Your comments below will be my proof if you chose to play along in this little game.

If so Thank you, If not, Thanks for considering it.

Robert E



Twistable ,

Looking Frantic,
Almost like Einstein,
Out of control,
Wild with Idea.

Grab the clipper,
Run it across my head,
Shave it as close as a zipper.

Paint brush will work,
To remove the clippings,
Just an example,
Of a garage hair cut perk.

To the shower,
Soap to the scalp,
Water flows like rain.

Squeaky clean,
But for the stubble,
Just a little gel,
And that too,
Will be rubble.

No more twisting,
I’ll just have to settle,
To rub the five o’clock shadow.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Do your daily communcations feel like this?

An Email from my niece. She is trying to find paying work in marketing after graduating Magna Cum Laude from university.


Dear Yadda to Whom it May Yadda,

I yadda yadda'd this to you yadda afternoon concerning yadda and yadda, yet still have not heard yadda yadda from you.

Please yadda as soon as possible, or I will be forced to yadda your yadda yadda

Yadda yadda, have a nice day.


PS: Yadda yadda yadda.


Does any one feel the same level of apathy when trying to talk to publishers or tell the story of your latest work to agents?

Brain Dump October 8, 2009

Recently, someone I consider a friend posted on her blog about the Call. Read her post here to understand what started all this. http://winsloweliot.com/2009/10/waiting-for-the-call-that-you-think-will-change-your-life/.

I commented to her post the day after. It took me some time to determine what I wanted to say, how I was going to react. Now two days after and ensuing reviews of those written words, plus one bodaciously climatic conversation with my bride, I have come to my conclusions. (SPOILER ALERT This view will change over time)

Heres a the back story. In Spring of 2000 I decided I wanted to try my hand at drawing. Nothing earth shattering, I didnt want to paint the ceilings of great churches, just manipulate the pencil and shapes until the thing was recognizable.

Quite simple beginnings really. In a two year time span I obsessed over the venture, I created enough drawings to share. One thing led to another and I found myself a featured artist in three shows around my home of Atlanta. Hell, I even sold some of the works. I even let my baby go, my first large scale drawing, a 24x36 canvas that took over 300 hours to draw.

That was it, I haven’t really drawn anything sense. The paper quit telling me what it wanted to see, what it wanted to show to the world, and without that conversation before a drawing started, my muse drifted away.

The introduction to Dream State tells the story of how the book came to be. It was never intended, the original thought was to play around with words FOR MYSELF to relieve some stress, try to get rid of all the shit that had piled into my brain. Eventually it took on a life of its own, the words started to flow under their own fruition. About two years into playing, I decided to throw it out there to see if there was interest in the creation. That decision made, I finished the story on one of the highest notes of my life. The ending floored me and I had no idea where it came from.

Then came the research into how to publish a book. What a cluster that industry is. I understand now why many of the great authors wound up killing themselves. They weren’t crazy, they were frustrated. Six months ticked away and no response from the agents. Sorry, lots of response, none favorable. Then I got an offer from a joint venture firm, and I took it. I decided when I went out for this first one that I would go as far as to self publish just to get the book into hands.

Here I am now almost six months after that original contact with the firm and I am still waiting for the proof copy. Soon, I keep telling myself. Just a couple more days and they will notify me that it's in the mail. It’s almost as bad as waiting for the call. Let’s face it, when it is available is anybody gonna buy it? Will it be as big as I think it can be? Will the public like it? I have turned into the Head Cheerleader in high school, overly obsessed with people thinking I am attractive and talented. It’s amazing.

To the point, Bobby, damn you’re long winded.

In all the events, the transactions of getting published and released, I made a mistake. I forgot what I was doing. I was supposed to be having fun, creating something for the pure enjoyment of creating. In the beginning I didn’t care what others thought. In the beginning I just wanted to see if I could tell a story.

Then my motivation changed when I decided to publish. I wanted to illicit conversation, I wanted to talk about the characters, I wanted reactions, I wanted to feed my ego. (There I said it)

I started writing little snippets of poems, (never done it before) and I got quick reactions, my ego got stroked. I sat and pounded out two and three poems a night for about three weeks. Then it was gone. I have tried to write poetry recently, only to look at it and say Really? You’re kidding right?

Back to the point. I have been struggling with what’s next, what’s the next premise, the next idea? And just as surely as my ego drove me to write more and more, it has turned against me. My ego or its evil twin, had filled my head with all the self doubt, loathing, and rational reasons why I should not try again.

Why mess up a good thing? You did it now go try something else.

Problem is I’m hooked. The feeling I got when the story came together, when that last piece fell into place, seeing the reactions on people’s faces, all mind blowing.

I wrote a little a couple weeks ago when the day job had turned into a 24 hour a day job, the secret to life is acceptance. And in that acceptance of self we can find freedom and peace.

To close this long winded post, I will continue writing. I will continue creating, for at the core of who I am, that is what I do. But, I will change how I do it, I will gag the back seat driver in my head and write for the moment, in the moment, with no preconceived expectation of the results. I will write without a goal, or a direction, and let the stories tell themselves. As Dave Matthews said about “Corn Bread” on “Live at Peidmont Park,” “…If you don’t like it, what I’m s’possed to do!”

I can quit the exhausting worry about the call.

Thanks for reading.

Robert E

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Thursday night thoughts

If you peel back the layers of the onion we call life, and really look at the way everything in your life happens, you will be interested. In that moment of internal review, whether it takes a day, a minute, thirty days or a life time, you will be surprised. When you finally set aside all the things that you know you are not, and really see for the first time what you are, you will be amazed. When you accept there is no other path you could have walked, to get you to where you are now, you will find peace. When you realize that no other decision could have been made for you to experience exactly what you are experiencing right now, you will lose guilt. In that instant, you will realize, each and every thing that has happened in your life is based in the desire you had to experience it, you will find acceptance. In that instant you will see, there is no way for you to fail.

Robert E

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Dream State pre-release review by WebbWeavers

Though I didn't know it September 20 was one hell of a good day. While I was in Dallas trying to manage a software development effort, my good friends at WebbWeavers were busy at work making my Monday evening.

After a very long day filled with more transactions than I care to admit to or count, I opened my personal email account while in my hotel room. I had ordered dinner, and was trying to get the day out of my head and I found notification that the review had been completed.

I was instantly curious as to the results, but was not going to rush the moment. I called my wife and asked if she wanted to be the first to read the review. I had not clicked onto the post yet and had no idea of the content.

After a minute or less of discussion, it was decided I would read the review and we would both get the news at the same time.

So I launched into the best movie announcer guy impersonation I could muster and read the words. I was nervous, anxious, afraid, and at the end oh so pleased. I let out a scream like a little girl running across her first mouse. It was amazing.

Please take the chance to read the review and let me know what you think. http://webbweaver-zelda555.blogspot.com/2009/09/book-review-for-dream-state-by-robert.html

Thanks to you all.

Robert E

Friday, September 11, 2009

Inspired by @Novelhelp

Just a few minutes ago, maybe longer now, I was reading through the tweets on my home page. I was thinking I needed to write, nothing specific, just write for the sake of writing. I was perplexed though on the direction I wanted to write. I thought of starting on character development for a new premise I have in mind. Seemed too hard for tonight, not inspiring. I could go back to one of the stories I have started and flesh out the life of the victim.

That wasn't it either I decided.

Then I saw this from @novelhelp "Husband snoring. Dog snoring. Cat stalking. It must be Friday night!!!." That was it, I would write a short story about that from @novelhelp's perspective or at least the imaginings of mine when trying to imagine her perspective.

So here it goes….

She sat at the corner of the sofa, curled with her knees under her. The woman sat with her book in her lap, and her ever present laptop on her left. She had positioned a tall glass of tea on the glass covered round table on the right of the couch earlier. Now she was ready to read, whether it be the book of the moment or the stream of tweets that kept her often entertained.

Focusing on the old style of reading words printed on paper, she looked down and began to read. As she focused on the words from the page, she noticed the sound of her husbands deep breathing as he had fallen asleep in the recliner. He had a low comfortable snore happening that made her grin a bit as she felt good in the comfort of her home. Looking up to admire the relaxation on her husbands face, she noticed too that the dog had fallen asleep on the floor.

The end of a stress filled week of work related issues that fed on themselves until they became all consuming. The quiet of the house, the relaxation in comfort, and the sounds of sleep caused a warmth to flow outward to meet her skin.

It was perfect she thought as the cat stalked across the room in pursuit of whatever it is that cats pursue.

What’s this thing called writing?

Very open question don't you think? I think the reasons we write are many, but at the core it always comes back to the fact that we want to make people feel something. Claude Bouchard in Vigilante tells us of ultimate greed from a disturbed mind, while Luke Romyn tells us a tale of a dark man saved by care in The Dark Path. Claude's book made me feel that his main character was justified, and Luke took me into the soul of a man that likes his work and is destroying himself with it. I felt for both those people. I wanted to understand why they thought the way they did.

I wrote Dream State to elicit a response. I wanted to hook people in a scene and then change directions so quickly that they would visibly shake their head at what was just read. I write the way that I do in the hopes that my readers will "see" the images that are described in words. Most importantly though, I write to prove to myself that I can describe the imagery that I see in my head during little snippets of time. I like to describe the transactions that are so often glazed over in real life. I guess it's my way of slowing things down to see it, stopping to smell the roses.

So I say to you all, let's go make our readers feel if just for a little while.

Robert E

Sunday, September 6, 2009

#41 – a review of sorts

Dave Matthews Band released the Live at Mile High Stadium CD sometime last year. It was during that time that I was putting some finishing touches on my first novel Dream State. I would spend hours reading through the text and not see a way to either improve or embellish the story line. I normal start a review session with the first track of the disc then start reading. At whatever point, I was at when #41 came on, I would stop. The smooth lyrical opening sets you up for an easy, slow ride. Soon after the conclusion of the lyrics a crescendo takes you over the top for the first of three musical waves. The song continues to build through the second wave with blistering guitar courtesy of Tim Reynolds. Rashown Ross and Jeff Coffin take the role of mellowing out the crowd before one of the beginning of the third wave. The third wave is the strongest, most fantastic improv sax solo's I have ever heard. The dong ends with the band slowing the tempo, pace and volume to the point the crowd screams "Every Day."

It's after my nearly 15 minute break that the words pop out of the screen. I saw new levels of detail, new conversations to be added. I am listening to #41 as I write this post and I have been through the song twice. Just can't get enough.

Robert E

Winslow Eliot Started Something

So what can be said other than what Winslow has already said about the community. Read it here ... http://winsloweliot.com/e-tribe-friends/ ... I gave it some thought after I read her recent Claude Bouchard inspired post. She took the time earlier in the day to express what it was to be in a community, and then took some time to gather up links for some of the folks in her tribe, I was luckily included. Thank you so much.

I am not nearly as eloquent as Winslow, but wanted to provide those that care to read my own personal impression of the little crew of people I have found. I have not known many of them long nor have I met any of them in person or talked to them in reality. But these peoplel have exhibited traits in this on-line commuity that I wish I could find more of in person. With out question the people I have met are only concerned with one thing at the core of their actions. Helping each other be as successful as we each choose to be.

They show acceptance and tolerance. The show encouragement with just a little nudge or a simple phrase. Normaly, these people effect me in positive ways and they were not even addressing me specifically. The support they show one another, the cross networking and introductions to the uninitiated all showacceptance of one another.

Their kindness toward each other is a very refreshing break from the day to day grind of a failed economy, or a cruel humanity. They span the globe in the places they live, but meet each day in the great equalizer of the internet. They share their dreams with us and relish in the possibilities of ours.

They are only acquaintences but, I consider these tweeps my friends.

Thank you all from now and in the future.

Robert E.

Saturday, August 29, 2009


Thin and cold,

Hard against the white of my skin.

Pressure is my slave,

Control my master.

Bone deep,

And the game is over,

It means,

I beat my master.

Slightly cutting,

The depth of human hair,

No stitches needed,

Let it heal in the air.

Those are the effects of control,

On a good day I only need the air,

Control then is my master,

And my master is fair.

Other days,

When there is more shadow,

Than sun,

And my control runs low,

The pain is like a gun,

Hot and deep,

Cutting soft,

Wonderful pain.

But still my master wins,

As I instruct my slave,

To save me for later,

His we can not save.

When its' wrong,

When I can't draw the blade,

I cut wide swaths,

Through my minds glade.

Leaving the pain,

To be healed,

As though I had,

Stripped from myself a peel.

The wonderful pain of the first cut,

Through the pain of healing,

The illusion of the pain,

Is my way of feeling.

This is one of my favorite poems from a couple years ago. To me it shows the depth some people will go to be able to experience a feeling. The one question I have not been able to answer though is what events in their lives took them to the place that the only thing they could feel was pain? Mental or physical? A friend of mine read this and several day later took me aside and told me that I had captured the way she felt at the time to a tee. It was one of the most humbling experiences of my life. It was the fact that the words I had put together from my mind had accurately described something that I had no personal knowledge of. It was then that I knew the words were true. Absolutely Amazing!! Robert E

Thursday, August 27, 2009


What a week this was...

Monday night I was notified that "Dream State" has gone in to production. I had hoped many times, followed my heart, and faced my fears, but still thought there was a high likelihood that it was not real. I held out that maybe it wouldn't finish, or see the light of day.

Yet Monday in the body of an email was the affirmation that the words I had strung together were good enough. It was an amazing moment and was placed third on the list of best moments of my life.

Unfortunately, it also meant that I had to put Drew out of my mind now. I had to say good bye to the bastard I took three years to create and polish. It also meant that I needed to choose. I've toyed with the idea of a series of books based on the impact to special people in victims lives when their friend is killed by a serial killer.

I also thought about a vampire series, but thats pretty cliche now I thought. But what if I created a new vampiric world, what if I changed the rules? What if vampires could thrive in the sunlight, but only when certain conditions apply? What would the victims feel, much like what one of the characters in "Dream State" felt?

It could happen.

And what about the imagery experienced by children stuck in the horror of human trafficing. Or the mental wandering of a herion addict hitting bottom.

And maybe, just maybe, a short story about the man described in the Dave Matthews Band Song "Rhyme and Reason". That would be cool.

I'm not sure whats next, and maybe thats why I thought that Drew and his experiences were just a dream. But now is the time I must choose, and when I awaken in the morning I will have made my choice, because at the end of the day, any choice I make at this time is the right choice.

Robert E

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Dream State Chapter 1 Excerpt

Drew positioned his hand in the small of Kim’s back; she could feel the intensity of his fingers and his grip. She visualized those hands running over her naked body and a low moan escaped her lips.

“You alright?” he asked her.

Kim was mortified that the moan had been aloud. “Yes, I’m fine thank you.” She did her best to recover from the recklessness and cleared her throat. She was unsure if it was the scotch or the relative proximity of Drew that had made her moan. Either way, she thought, she would be feeding a need that she often left to wither in the recesses of her mind.

When the traffic cleared, they crossed Eads Street and made their way down the ramp into the walking tunnel under Jefferson Davis Highway. The tunnel smelled of old rotted leaves that had blown there during the fall and were decaying in piles. There was also an overwhelming stench of urine and feces mixed with the rotten mold of the leaves and general dampness of the tunnel. The further they walked into the tunnel, the stronger the odors became.

Kim and Drew saw people that lie on the ground covered with newspapers or old cardboard. The clothing they wore was so tattered they could see through to the skin in spots not covered by the makeshift blankets. The homeless had ratty hair and yellowing teeth, when teeth existed to show. The stench from bodily excrement mixed with dirt, filth, and body odor was enough to make a sewage worker gag. Yet these folks lay there with little to no concern for anything going on outside the small space they occupied and called their own.

Kim and Drew made their way through the tunnel, breathing only when necessary, and stepping around the pallets of cardboard and newspaper. A sense of dread came over Kim as they walked, seeing those poor people sleeping in a tunnel, living in filth, sleeping in their own shit.

Something had to be done! Someone should help these people, she thought as they walked through the tunnel. These souls were at a place of complete personal defeat, and she wanted, in that moment, to help.

She pushed the feeling from her head as they came to the other side of the tunnel, and fresh air. She could not do anything for them tonight and released the thoughts from her mind as Drew reached up and touched the small of her back again, making her remember the dirty little thoughts she was having about what she was going to do to him in the here and now.

They got to the corner of Jefferson Davis Highway and 23rd and took a left on the access road leading toward the Crystal Mall area and the Crystal City Marriott. They walked two blocks down the concrete and paver-stone sidewalk past condominiums that covered an underworld of retail shops, parking garages, eateries, and the homeless.

Angling in front of the bronze-tinted glass building, they took a left into the brass-framed revolving door of the Marriott. Once inside, they veered left on the polished marble floor, and diagonally across the lobby to the gleaming brass doors of the elevators in front of a spiral staircase leading to the second floor. A mirror-walled elevator car with open doors awaited them. They entered and selected the seventh floor. During the ride, Kim leaned into Drew and gave him a slow sensuous kiss. He allowed his hands to roam to the small of her back, the top of her buttocks, and the curve of her waist. She leaned in closer to him as she thought again of the possibilities and found that she was looking forward to the intimacy waiting on the other side of her hotel room door.

As they stepped off the elevator, Kim felt a sharp pain in her lower back.

Oh, that’s odd, I wonder what is going on with my back. She had not had back troubles or pain before.

The pain began to subside as they walked the thirty feet to the door of her room. Kim began to feel an unnatural calm come over her and as it did her mind returned to thoughts of sex. She placed her key card in the slot and slowly slumped to the floor.

Drew carefully picked her up and carried her into the room. He closed the door with his foot, walked to the bed, and laid her on the king-sized bed. He stood to straighten his jacket, then took a seat next to her.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Who is Drew?

Drew Sovern is the main character of Dream State. He lives a life without consequence, a life of unchecked ego.

We start following him in his mid teens and experience the growth of an ego run amuck. Through the story, we get the opportunity to learn what really makes him tick, what his motivations are, and how he deals with his relationships.

Drew is a man that is conflicted by the thoughts he has of his childhood, and the events of his life that shaped him into the person he is today.

Dream State is in preparation for production and will have a release date assigned soon. Stay tuned here for updates on pre-order reservations and online availability.

Robert E

Dream State Update v3

What a ride!

Anybody that says being published is easy must have a higher activity tolerance than I do. But, I am loving every minute of it.

All the free time I could steal away from the day job was spent polishing the text, which is complete. (Following this post, I will leave an excerpt for you)

What else? Most everything is ready and now it is just a matter of time waiting for Eloquent to get their parts to a stage that I can review and approve the next iteration in the process.

What's next? A break! I want to take a little time to not be in writing/editing mode and enjoy life for a bit.

Thanks for following, and thanks for the support.

Robert E

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Interview 1 – Robert E

A friend of mine dropped by the house today and we began talking of Dream State. We were supposed to have a taped Q/A to be aired on YouTube. Something happened to the plans and we came up with this idea as an alternative.

If after reading this, you would like to ask your own question, please feel free to leave me a comment.

Tell me about Dream State

A whirlwind of short stories combined into one narrative that will leave you perversely aroused.

What inspired you to write it

I started writing the different scenes as short stories during a time when I was in pain. While I was recovering I found that there might be a way to thread the stories together. The main character was then developed as a mechanism to weave the stories into a fabric.

What process did you use

The short stories were the easiest to write. Most of them only took a couple days each. Trying to bring a sense of realism to the narration behind and between the scenes was much more difficult. I must have read parts of the text 100 times before I decided to embellish it to a higher level of importance. Some of the background story detail was added while I was trying to bring the story to an acceptable length to be considered more than a short story.

Is this your first published novel

Yes. I have what I consider a very good contract with AEG and Eloquent books. From the time I decided to pursue publishing the story, I was willing to pursue any route necessary to put the story in the public. The offer from AEG came and I was more than willing to sign-up.

Tell me about Drew

What a fun guy to write. The introduction brings some of Drew's best features to light. His character is questionable to say the very least. The situation that he finds himself in allows him to be a very devious person.

What is your favorite scene in the book and why

I can't tell you the specifics of the scene or what happens in it, but what I can say is that the last scene is my favorite. There are so many loose ends that come together, many levels of emotion, and a very wicked little twist.

In what time frame does this story take place

The time is current day. There are however, multiple timelines on different levels happening simultaneously.

How were the characters developed

Each of the scenes were written in short story format, so that they could stand on their own. Drew came about as a way to weave all the scenes together. The longer I wove Drew into the plot the deeper he became. The stars of each scene were developed from snippets of how I perceive portions of personalities from people I know mixed all together with a lot of imagination.

Are any of the scenes based in reality

Most are really. The bar in DC is real, the tunnel exists, as does the Marriott. The Eden Roc really is in Miami, and it does have a glass walled tower. The picnic scene is from my memory of a little park in the town where I grew up in Indiana. As for the scene with the cedar trees, that layer of needles was from what I remember from a kid at my aunt's house, and my imagination.

What authors inspired you

Three. Stephen R. Donaldson, Dan Brown, and Nora Roberts writing as JD Robb.

Donaldson for his ability to describe despair and suck me into an environment.

Brown for his ability to make me see exactly what he saw when he looked at the architecture of Rome.

Roberts for her ability to make me believe in the ideal life.

What type of reader do you hope to attract

That's very interesting. The open minded fiction based thrill seekers that like a little violence with their sex.

What would you like the reader to get out of this book

These questions just keep surprising me. Primarily, I want the reader to ask "What?" I want them to wonder what caused the things that happened to happen, then to remember the reality of the situation. Secondly, I want them to talk about it with each other. It's a lot of fun. And third, but just as importantly, physical reaction.

Sunday, August 2, 2009


She felt the cold of the concrete against her naked skin. The points of contact created a numbness surrounded by diminishing rings of radiated pain. The air smelled of stale mold from an overly damp, dark closed space with no ventilation. Her mouth tasted like thousands of different bacteria had taken up residence on her tongue.

The breath she pulled through parted lips caused her ragged throat to rasp in harshness; since it had known nothing of moisture in longer than she could remember. The pit of hunger in her stomach ached in spasms with the beating of her heart. The cramps in her stomach set a rhythm of their own against the back drop of nausea.

Her mind had gone numb in an attempt to hide from the incessant pain of the red ants feeding on her scalp. The instantly infected bites caused venom filled, hardened blisters of puss to create a landscape of ever expanding mountains of oozing sores. The acid like fluid ran from the sores into her left ear to eat away at the tender membrane of her eardrum.

More damaging to her mind than the pain were the thoughts she had of the last thing she could remember. She had watched her father close and lock the door of the small building in the front yard of their house that housed the water pump. He had locked her away after she had seen him in the process of dismembering the body of a woman with an electric chainsaw. Up to the moment she witnessed his actions, she thought her father had hung the moon.

It was in that moment she realized her father had been nothing but a lie. The sweet man that had tucked her in at night and gave her tender sugar kisses at the first morning light, was a brutal monster capable of taking from her the other most important person in her life, her mother.

She was now more alone than anyone would ever be in the future or could have been in the past. The cold reality of life without the most nurturing woman known to man, and the lie of her illusion perfect father was more than her four-year-old mind could reason through. The deafness caused by the puss collecting in the vessel of her ear canal, and the collection of dead ants in her right ear prevented her from hearing anything other than the white noise hum of a broken mind.

In the moment of her last remembrance, she felt the infected sick blanket of cold wrap her so tightly that she would later say it had warmed her to the bone. The blackness closed in from the edge of her vision to create the illusion of walking backwards into a tunnel.

She sat up, startled by the pain that engulfed her body, and scrubbed her head with her hands to get the ants off her, but there was nothing there. The infected sores were gone now, replaced with her long black well taken care of hair. The light in the room helped bring her back to reality, and she found that she was sitting on a bed.

The linens of the bed were soaked in sweat and were bundled around her naked waist. She saw the light from the windows creep through the windows to create boxes of illumination across the floor of the darkened room. The realization of her location sank into her mind and her breathing slowed to a normal pace.

Victoria Able sat in the middle of the bed and pulled the covers up around her throat in an attempt to hide from the dream. She wanted to forget what had happened and in many ways had forgotten. She knew that the little girl in those images was her, but now it seemed as though she could watch the events in a disconnected way, not allowing them to fully capture her. The last thirty-two years had helped soften the effects of the damage done to her when she was a child.

Dream State Update v2.5

Wow... I know what software developers must feel like. all these version notes.. lol

All the edits came back in from Chaz and writing the original 83,000 words was easier. I didn't have to think nearly as much. Any way, the comments have been addressed (even the snide remarks you made) (The sensation associated with the ... Ha)

I got extra comments from Sheila and Dave that were also incorporated along with the Publishers QA review. Jesus I'm tired.

Tammy got her motorcycle back this weekend and HAD to go for a ride. Well I took the "down time" to think through the dedications and acknowledgements. Right in the middle of gettin into a groove about it she damn near runs over me... I know right... Yesterday being her birthday, we did our normal b'day dinner and had a super meal at Marietta Fish Market with Jolie.

After all the afternoon and early evening fun we came home and I was able to get both the dedications and the drafted out. Woo Hoo... I really sweat over those two items.

So where are we you may be wondering.

The text is final final. Done Done. I really mean it this time. Well maybe not. I want Rob to blast through it one last time to make sure its format is correct. Then it will be done Done.

So then it goes to the publisher for layout. We will be selecting the internal layout to best represent the multiple conversations, and shifts in time frame.

A few fun facts.

When I finished the first round of writing the text was 198 pages of double spaced lines. After edits, rewrites, edit, correction, formatting we finished up at an astounding 396 pages and just under 83,000 words.

The art director contacted me and we should be getting the dust cover designs finalized by end of week. Yup you guessed it, its being released in hard cover first. We'll get to trade publications in the next release (that's just a size 6x9 soft cover).

I wish I could give you an exact release time frame or better a date, but there are an incredible number of moving targets for me to be able to realistically predict the release.

Again thanks for coming along.


Friday, July 31, 2009

Dream State Update v2

As I suspected, Chaz did not disappoint. He finished up with the first ten chapters and sent it along to me. The comments and edits he performed took what I thought was a good start and turned it into one good looking pig with fresh coat of lipstick.

My thanks to Dave and Sheila for the hours of conversation and an absolutley awesome meeting to discuss potential holes in the text. (Wait for it!!! It's coming!)

I think the new cover from Bobby with the three tiny changes I asked for is going to be an amazing impression maker.

To those of my friends that I have forced a copy of the draft versions on: Please follow the link to my facebook page and write on the wall a couple of sentence review. I want for all of you to be able to participate in this ride, so I will be asking you for two more favors. 1) I would like to include short comments from all that post on the jacket cover of the book, or included in the preface to the text. 2) Please pass your copy of the pdf file along to others that may enjoy it, and ask them to be a friend on facebook and a follower on twitter.

There will ne more later I am sure.

Thanks for riding along.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Dream State Update

Today is an awesome day. We finalized the contract early this morning with Eloquent Books, and now that means there are alot of things that need to be done.

Bobby took an original concept for the cover and... well made it 1000% better. I look so forward to seeing his work wrap up my story. It's a very cool thing to have him included with the most visual part of the work. The words tell the story, but his work provides the initial impression.

Audrey (thank you) came over last night and we took a series of pictures to be used as the authors photo. Tammy later selected THE picture, and i must say she has extrordinary taste, but it was all pictures of me... :-)

I am expecting the edits to come back from Chaz this weekend or early in the week, and am certain that I will have a ton of work to do.

That's all for now, stay tuned for more as the adventure unfolds.


Saturday, July 18, 2009

The Beginning (exclusive online-only intro to the novel DREAM STATE)

Anne Marie lie on the king size foam mattress wondering what the hell went wrong. She was doubting who she was in that moment. She tried to sleep in the bed she had made with her husband, but longed for the way it used to be. She had once had a life full of compassion and care. The man she had married had gone so wrong, changed so much, had drifted so far from her.

She forced herself to keep her eyes closed in hopes that she would drift back off into a much needed deep sleep. Anne Marie lay there steeped in her own thoughts and listened to the white noise that filled the room. As she listened to the forced air escape the register in the ceiling, she tried to focus on how the situation she was in could be remedied. Opening her eyes she saw the dim glow of the LED lights from the various electronic devices that perched on the flat surfaces of the room.

The blue-green readout of the alarm clock on the dresser, the standby light of the DVD player above the TV set mixed with the street lights. The light intruded the darkness around the edges of the blinds covering the windows causing a late dusk effect in the room.
Anne Marie opened her eyes and felt the comfort and security of sleep rush away from her so quickly that it felt like a vacuum had been created in her soul. She lay flat on her back with her eyes open and stared at the tray ceiling. She was covered with seven hundred thread count cream colored Egyptian cotton sheets and a down filled comforter wrapped in a two tone white duvet. The ensemble was the perfect weight for sleeping regardless of the season.

She blinked multiple times in an effort to clear the slime that covered her eyes thanks to an overly active allergy. As her vision began to clear, her thinking returned to how to solve the impending crisis that was brewing in her mind. The abandonment she felt grow with each berating diatribe from her husband had to stop.

He had taken to talking down to her in times of discord. It seemed as though the diatribes got worse the more successful he became. The successful accomplishment of eliminating the ever increasing more difficult levels of transaction in his job. His walk up the staircase of success had been both a boon and a bane for Anne Marie.

He provided her a lifestyle that was at least as successful as the one her father had given her growing up, and that was saying something. The life the man lying next to her had pursued had changed him. The level of difficulty in his job had taken its toll on him. It had made him the perfect product of his own ego.

She thought of how at one time he had been an attentive lover; careful when necessary but always ready to set the care to the side and enjoy her in ways she had not known before him. The last three years though had left her barren of the feeling of connectedness, void of returned emotions.

Anne Marie was sure of one thing, she could not continue to live in the same house as him. She knew that something had to change and she was certain it would not be him. If anything were going to change it would have to be her that did the changing she thought.