None of the works of fiction or poetry have been published commercially. There are a number of reasons. Few have been placed in the hands of publishers and those that were did not come either at the right time or place. One should not automatically assume that a lack of publication indicates a lack of talent. On the contrary, there are times when a work simply isn't right for the market, irrespective of its quality. Critical reviews of the manuscripts have always been excellent, and I have concentrated my attention more on producing the best work possible, rather than on the time-consuming and expensive process of obtaining publishers for material obviously not well-suited for the current market.
This young adult novella details Leonardo da Vinci's life from about the age of five, when he learns he is the illegitimate son of his father, until he takes up his place as an independent artist in his mid-twenties. Based primarily on the first biography of Leonardo by one of his close friends, this book covers his search for his biological mother, his development as an artist, early scientific forays, his apprenticeship to Verrochio, his arrest and prosecution and subsequent and abrupt change of direction, set against the violent, turbulent and decadent Florentine Renaissance.
Generally acceptable for anyone over about 12 with a good vocabulary.
Set in the Interregnum and Restoration of England (1649-1672), this novel details the life and career of Barbara Villiers, a young married woman picked to be a spy for the exiled Charles II. As avid readers of history know, she became his mistress, had a number of children by him and virtually ran the treasury, if not the entire country. This book covers all the usual stops, including the plague and the Great Fire of London, and addresses most of the predominant scandals of the time, including, but not limited to her seduction of her 14-year old nephew, the divine young John Churchill, who later would supplant Charles as her primary lover.
Implied sex, violence
ODDSISH! PART II
Taking up the story in 1672, thirteen year old Sarah Jennings becomes the love interest of Churchill, now in his twenties. She is revolted by him and his association with Barbara. However, with gentle persistence, Churchill convinces Sarah of his goodwill, and terminates his relationship with Barbara (who has had his child by this time, a daughter who later becomes a nun, of all things). The two of them were extraordinarily well suited for each other and not only had a surprisingly happy married life, but a working relationship that changed the course of history. Among their other achievements were the bringing about of the Glorious Revolution, by which Protestant succession to the throne was guaranteed. Sarah became confidant and advisor to Queen Anne, and her husband, the greatest British military leader of all times, and probably one of the three greatest generals of modern European history. However, when Sarah and the Queen suffered a rupture in their relationship, both Sarah and John fell from power, although, in the end, the love of the people for this incredible couple led to another near-revolution and their return to England.
Implied sex, violence
This is a novelization of the life of Henry David Thoreau from his childhood, his years at Harvard, association with Ralph Waldo Emerson, the death of his brother that led to the Walden experiment, his development as a writer and nature philosopher, his civil disobedience, abolitionist activities, association with John Brown's rebellion and the events leading up to the Civil War, his illness and death at age 44. Except for a few scenes of disasters which include a powder explosion and shipwreck, and Thoreau's encounter with Walt Whitman, there is nothing overtly objectionable in the novel and is suitable for a wide audience.
In general, this book would be most entertaining for someone very interested in Thoreau, life in Massachusetts before the Civil War, the history of religion in America and other related topics.
JUST ONE OF THOSE THINGS
Love and Betrayal in Little Dixie
This is a novel based on events that occurred in Columbia, Missouri involving a highly respected, nationally renowned journalism professor, University administrator and pioneer in the modern advertising industry at the University of Missouri, who, in 1948 at the age of 50, was arrested for homosexuality. His prosecution and the physical and legal persecution of his lovers and friends shocked a community that was known for its liberality and ended both careers and lives. This novel examines both the gay community at that time, burgeoning with ex-G.I.s-turned-students, as well as the justifications and rationale of the witch hunters, who acted in what they thought were the best interests of the people. A rather chilling look at what happens to ordinary people when the government chooses to exert its power.
Extremely graphic sex and violence
THE SILVER LINING
This is the prequel to Just One of Those Things. It begins with young Ellis Morgan Fletcher, recent graduate from Sedalia High School, yearning to go into the army and serve in what would become World War I. Influenza interrupts his plans, and he eventually goes to the University of Missouri at Columbia to college, suffering the plight of his fellow freshmen and life among sadistic fraternity brothers. His relationship with an older classics professor brings him into contact with the illuminati of the University community and his friendship with the founder of the school of Journalism propels him to national prominence as an advertising genius. But for him, the most important achievement is his relationship with a young Irish factory boy and their subsequent lives together, which lasted for some twenty years. This is hardly a romantic story of love and fidelity, but rather a close examination of the lives of gay men and boys from the late 1800s to the 1940s and changes in both the style and attitude of those relationships and encounters.
Extremely graphic sex and violence.
THE BELOVED DISCPLE
John, the author of the fourth gospel, was a cousin of Jesus who styled himself according to the title of this book, wording that had a very distinct meaning in the ancient Roman world. Formerly a disciple of John the Baptist, he went to Jesus as one of His first disciple, along with Philip, brother of Peter. John's version of events was written as an argument against Peter's version, which is given in the Petrine gospels (the other three), written by Peter's good friend Luke, Matthew, Luke's friend and Mark, Peter's own son. Jesus's encounter with Pilate and Pilate's subsequent actions are not Sunday School fare. How did Jesus die and manage to be resurrected? This book provides a plausible theory that allows all parties to be genuine in their beliefs and yet still allow for a credible explanation. To further complicate the story, one of John's disciples claimed that John had told him Jesus lived with John until he died at the age of fifty and this book examines that possibility. This book also casts the group not as Jewish peasants living out in the middle of the desert from hand to mouth, but highly sophisticated Greek-educated, Romanized men, which a careful reading of the scripture reveals that they were.
Implied sex, graphic violence
FATE OF THE GODS
The Alban Chronicles
This was a rather massive undertaking, involving, for a novel, a monumental amount of research into ethnic folklore and history. The footnotes would easily swell these books, which combined total about 6,000 pages, to nearly half again that size. The entire manuscript divides into about fifteen volumes, exclusive of about ten additional short stories. Most of the characters and events can be traced to historical fact, but the setting is pure fiction. More on each volume later.
Graphic violence, graphic sex
TREASURES OF A MINOR PRINCE
This novella is set about three hundred years after the close of The Fate of the Gods. After their subjection by the Vapeks, who have all but destroyed Alban civilization, a group of impoverished Alban descendants search for the grave goods of the son of Taru, who died on campaign against the people of Wind Country. Two cousins agree to seek the treasure together, but the one betrays the other and sets off alone. The second, Selnos, with inadequate supplies and without a map, sets off to find the treasure on his own, meeting a series of companions who both assist and frustrate his plans to recover the treasure.
CHAREAS AND CALLIRHOE
An Ancient Romance
This is a re-telling of an early Greek novel written in about 100 B.C. It's the story of two young people, Chareas and Callirhoe, members of rival households, who fall instantly and irrevocably in love. The young husband's jealousy, however, results in the supposed death of his young bride, who is then carried away by tomb-breaking brigands and sold to a wealthy Greek. The remainder of the story deals with the struggles each have to adjust to what has happened and Chareas's quest to find his bride, now the wife of another man. There is an inevitable confrontation between the two husbands, but it doesn't end there. This is a wonderful multi-layered tale of love, jealousy, betrayal and reunion, of the difference between romance and respect, freedom and servitude, duty and desire.
IN THE WOOD
In this novella, the na´ve pampered young wife of a warlord finds herself in leagues with her husband's nemesis and accompanies him on his escape from her husband's stronghold with, as they say, unexpected results.
Extreme violence, graphic sex
Set in Sedalia, Missouri in the mdi-1950s, this is the story of a young Catholic boy who lives in mortal terror that the priest, who had recently lost his favorite, is going to turn to him for companionship. This is a story of compulsion, guilt and the extreme power of rumor. Based on a true story.
An aging exile from England in the early 1960s, despondent over the death of his oldest friend, finds solace in a baroque depiction of the crucifixion. But things with our hero are not as they first seem. Based on a true story.
FRANKENHAUER AT THE RUBICON
Dwight David Frankenhauer, attorney, has made a hash of his life. He reviews it with a pistol in his hand.
THE HEIR OF GREVES
This is a Victorian gothic mood piece about a young girl staying with relatives in the countryside and encountering what could only be the ghost of a young man. Her subsequent curiosity and insistence on knowing the truth leads to some completely unforeseen consequences. Light fluff, ala Austin.
Unfortunately, many manuscripts and three hard-drives were destroyed in a devastating and tragic fire in the summer of 2001 and much of the material will have to be rebuilt from notes.