Category Archives: Noah Chance Series

World War 1, Flanders Fields, and Second Chance

While I’m working on the new books, I’m going to be discussing the ones that have already been released, since often the questions I get from the books clubs and fans are about what is already out there.

The Noah Chance series consists of two books at this point, with a third in the pre-planning stages now. These books are about a remarkable young man with Downs Syndrome who, in Second Chance, has just graduated High School.

As many of you know I actually started writing No’ Chance, the first book in the series, back in the mid to late 90s. I’d write a paragraph here and a paragraph there, mostly when I was on the road trying to establish myself as a trial lawyer. Then, on an absolutely beautiful late summer day, I was waiting on the members of a jury we’d picked to arrive at the courthouse so we could start a trial and the judge called the lawyers back into her office and waved at her television and we saw the world changing before our eyes and suddenly many things that had seemed scary were not quite so scary anymore as we watched the World Trade Center buildings fall to the ground over the next while.

Trial lawyers spent the next couple of years trying to figure out how the events of that day and what followed would affect the viewpoints of the jurors and I found my time for writing was even more limited.

By the time I was ready to release No’ Chance, I was already well into writing Second Chance, and it seemed we had been at war with someone, somewhere, forever. I had always been fascinated by the stories told to me by veterans of WW II but when I started reading about WW I I realized that war had probably been as horrible as any before or after and yet you didn’t hear much about it.

I said all that to say this, a part of that war made it into Second Chance, a book set in the beautiful locale of Galveston Island, Texas, a place I knew well since I had visited there every weekend for many of the summers of my early life and as far removed from the WW I torn landscape of Flanders as it was possible to be.

The Noah Chance series are each standalone novels, but I strongly suggest you read them in order. Just as I was growing as a writer, so the characters grew as people and sometimes a few lines of a letter home or, in this case, a poem from a young doctor who had been at Flanders after the battle, did a lot to depict the horror of war.

I’m closing out this post, as I periodically do, with a YouTube video. This one is The Bloody Fields of Flanders, played on bagpipes. While some say that bagpipes sounds to them like a bag of cats being strangled, many of us feel a stirring in our soul when the keening starts, showing that while out family may be generations from the green hills of Scotland, the blood still runs true.

Sometimes It’s Hard to Break a Bad Habit

There's been an article floating around Facebook the last few days and it prompted me to write this post. The article is at this link and is the response of a Special Olympian to one of the nasty social media posts by Ann Coulter. 

I try not to get too political on my own author blog, I do write for political blogs and those who know me know my political leanings. If you want to know I'm more than happy to discuss them with you but unless it has something to do with my writing, this website wasn't built to be a political site and really isn't the place for me to discuss these matters.

I do think Ann Coulter is a vile person and, even worse, a horrible writer who makes up facts to fit her viewpoint in the supposedly non-fiction books she writes. To me, this is unforgivable just from the intellectual honesty point of view.

But I digress once again.

The young man, John Franklin Stephens, saw a post where Coulter used the term "retard" when referring to someone. John has Down (or Down's) Syndrome and responded in a way that was as classy as it was possible to be. 

As my readers know, Noah Chance, of my books series of the same name, has Down's Syndrome and exhibits many of the same characteristics of John Franklin Stephens. As I've mentioned before, Noah was loosely based on a client I once represented and the first person with Down's Syndrome I had the good fortune to actually get to know.

Unfortunately, I still find myself using the term "retard" or "retarded", when referring to the actions of someone, without thinking about it. I do my best not to use it and I don't actually refer to people with Down's Syndrome that way but the term is still one I wish I could strike from my vocabulary. 

But it's hard to do.  If only good habits were as easy to develop as bad habits are hard to break.

If you get a minute, read the article and see how class really works.

Second Chance Book Trailer Coming Soon!

I am incredibly excited that the new book trailer is going to be ready today or tomorrow!

My lovely wife of a zillion years, Karren, completely ignored what I told her I wanted in the trailer and has instead put together one that is a hundred times better than what I asked for.

Rather than being done like most of them you see, she produced this one more like a movie trailer and it is outstanding! When she showed me the draft I even wanted to go buy a copy of my book!

It's a new direction, and we're still going to do one that has a reading and some other info on it since some people want to hear a little about how the book came about as well as hearing me read a few pages but the one she is about to complete is the best I've seen from anyone, and that is truly coming from an unbiased point of view. It completely captures what Second Chance is about, as well as the feel of the book, while at the same time leaving you wanting more.

Watch for it in the next couple of days! I'll post it here as well as on YouTube and promote it on Facebook.

Second Chance Now Available for the Kindle

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We've uploaded the final draft of Second Chance to Amazon and it is now available on Kindle!

The print version is available through this website and through third party vendors on Amazon but for some reason the regular print version isn't showing there yet.

We were "officially" releasing the book this weekend at our table at the Natchitoches-NSU Folk Festival in Natchitoches, La. but it didn't come from the printer in time. We'll still be there though so if you have a chance drop by and see us. The Folk Festival is always a lot of fun with local craftsmen there, great food and great music.

I understand they will have the blacksmith's shop back this year and you can take a few minutes to watch the blacksmiths working on their wares as well.

The Festival is at Prather Coliseum on the Northwestern State University (my alma mater) campus.

We will have my other 3 of books there and will be taking orders for second chance.

I'd love to visit with anybody who can come by!

Second Chance is Finished..Mostly

Second Chance

 

After a marathon two days of writing (18+ hours, 40 pages or so) I just finished Second Chance, the second book in the Noah Chance series.

I've been doing a bit of a rewrite as I go and Karren has been editing on the first 27 chapters so it's almost complete. Hope to have it on Amazon and in print by the end of next week.

Final count according to MS-Word was 90,000+ words and 339 pages but using the publisher method of counting it will be a little longer, probably top 100k words.