books

1. Some Faraway Place

Movie screenplay, 108 pages

2003

I got the idea for the entire plot of this movie one day while listening to Kirsty MacColl's "Tropical Brainstorm". Over the next few months i wrote it, mostly while riding the L in Chicago to and from ultimate practice. It ended up being too long and after a rewrite came in at about the right length, but it lost something and needs another rewrite, which may not ever happen.

2. Stinkalope Tex and his Stomp-N-Glo Boots

Picture book, 30 pages

2004

The idea for this story came from a game that my brother Ian and i were playing one day at his house near Roosevelt Park in Albuquerque. We had played a few rounds of Boggle, then we sat at his kitchen table and made words with the boggle cubes. One person would spell out a three letter word and provide a definition. The next player would add a letter cube to any place along the line of cubes to make a new word, and then provide a definition. This continued untill all 16 cubes were used. Two of the "words" we came up with during this game were STOMPANDGLOBOOTS and STINKALOPETEX (it had 3 more cubes after that iteration, but i don't remember what the final 16-letter word was).

The story is about a herd of Stinkalopes who threaten a small town in the west with their terrible smell. Stinkalope Tex arrives to save the town, using his stomp-n-glo boots.

I sent this story to an agent who loved it and thought that she could get it published, but told me that it was far too long for a children's book, so i trimmed it down to about half its length, but i still think that the full-length version is better (and matches many Dr. Seuss books for length).

My friend Aeron really wanted to illustrate this book and she did some samples, but they were never finalized as the book never got a bite from a publishing company. My agent tried for a few years to get it published, but no luck. I sent her a few subsequent books, but she's lost interest in my work.

3. Dance of the Pillbugs

Picture book, 20 pages

2004

Chuck Hawley wrote a song called "Dance of the Pillbugs" while in the band Splinter Fish. I took much of the words to this song, added more, and formatted it as a story.

It's about a boy named Charlie who has all the toys in the world but would rather go out in the yard and play with pillbugs.

I can envision the illustrations for this book as being along the lines of biological illustrations, very clean lines...

4. Alyssa Mae Foos and the Knitted World Order

Picture book, 20 pages

2006

I have a friend named Alyssa Foos (her middle name is NOT Mae) who knits and has postulated the Knitted World Order. I took her idea and made it into a story.

I've thought that at the end of this book could be basic instructions on how to knit.

5.

Novel, 210 pages

2007

I wrote this because nobody said i couldn't.

6. The Six Sisters and their Flying Carpets

Picture book, 18 pages

2008

In June of 2008 i was looking at my friend Damon's photoblog and saw this picture. The idea for the story behind his title came to me quickly and i wrote it down. I changed the title from "Magic" to "Flying" because, as the story subtly demonstrates, the carpets aren't magic at all. This is my first children's book that does NOT rhyme.

The story is about 6 sisters who fly their carpets until the Lord of the Province arrives and takes them all away. But the lord finds that flying what he thinks are magic carpets isn't as easy as he thought...

I have an idea to expand this out to a full-length movie script too...

Published on November 6, 2012 by H Bar Press.

I was looking for an illustrator for one of my books (any one of them) and i came across Courtney Huddleston, who's style i liked. I asked (through his agent) if he'd like to illustrate any of my books and he didn't seem terribly enthusiastic about them. The agent asked if any of her other illustrators would do and i liked the work of Kristin Abbott. Kristin was really excited about The Six Sisters, so i decided that i'd have that one illustrated as my first published book.

7. Molly Rides

Picture book, 14 pages

2009

Most of my stories have a grain of inspiration from some other source besides my own brain. This one didn't. It's about a skier named Molly who breaks a ski and decides to learn how to snowboard.

Published on February 25, 2014 by H Bar Press.

For my third published book, I asked my friend Brian Berley, with whom i'd worked on projects for Siren Interactive in Chicago, if he'd be interested in illustrating one of my books, and we settled on this one. I was blown away by the samples he produced and very happy with the final product.

In the summer of 2016, Burton Snowboards contacted me about featuring Molly Rides on their Burton Riglet Summer Reading Series and did a little interview about me and my book.

8. The Treasure Hunt

Young Adult novel, 184 pages

2009

This book started out to be "The Next Day", but after a few chapters i realized that it was turning into something different. The working title was "Early Summer Vacation", but i never really liked that. I'm not sold on "The Treasure Hunt" either, but i can't think of anything better.

The story is about a twin sister and brother who go with their family on vacation to their uncle's house in the mountains. While there, they discover clues on an elaborate treasure hunt that takes them all through the village and their uncle's big house. In the end, they explore a world that they never knew existed.

9. The Next Day

Young Adult book, 44 pages

2009

After finishing "The Treasure Hunt", i went back, took the original idea, and made it into this book, which is shorter and far goofier.

This is a very silly book. As my sister Sarah said: "A wacky story, part Piggle-Wiggle, part Phantom Tollbooth, part Poppleton, part Mr. Men, maybe a little Captain Underpants..."

Although it's not a picture book, i think that it needs some illustrations at the beginning of each chapter, as well as on the last page.

10. Slippy Socks

Young Adult book, 20 pages

2010

I got the idea for this book while driving home from work one day.

Not sure how to classify this. Probably too long or too short, depending on what category it's supposed to be. It's about a girl who likes to slide down the hall in her socks and one day slides all the way to China.

11. True

Screenplay, 103 pages

2010

I got the idea for this movie within the first few minutes of watching "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon". It's basically CTHD in space.

I didn't have a title for this until about half way through, so i was using the title "Space Coyote", a nod to Homer Simpson ("In your face, space coyote!").

12.

Novel, 190 pages

January 2012

I wrote this as a sequel to #5.

13. Big Cat

Picture book, 16 pages

March 16, 2012

This is my first book that does not have human beings as its main characters. I'm really a dog person, not a cat person, but this idea works with a cat. It's basically about a housecat who goes out to explore, becoming larger and larger as she does so.

Published on December 1, 2015 by H Bar Press.

For my fourth published book, I asked my friend Chrystal Cleary to illustrate it. It took a long time, but eventually, she settled in and cranked out some great illustrations.

14. Jam-Bo, Litta-Girl, and the Bullies

Picture book, 32 pages

March 19, 2013

"I love the power of words, nouns and verbs..." -Jurassic 5

A comic-booky rappy story about two small kids who take on three bullies by using successively bigger and bigger words.

Published on September 3, 2013 by H Bar Press.

After i self-published my first book, The Six Sisters and their Flying Carpets, i wrote this book, specifically for the illustrating style of Courtney Huddleston. He did a great job and this became my second published book.

15. Little Car

Picture Book, 24 pages

August 20, 2013

The full title of this book is:

Goodbye Little Car
Go On A Great Adventure
A Tale In Haiku

And yes, it's all in haiku. This story had been in the back of my head for a while. When i was in elementary school, we went to the beach and i let my purple Tonka dunebuggy roll into the surf, from which it never returned. Just imagining where it might have gone...

16. Untitled

Young Adult Novel, 471 pages

January 4, 2015

Longest book i've written to date. Started with an idea in August of 2013. Started writing on October 16, 2013. Wrote the last line on December 13, 2014. It's about a 14-year-old girl who doesn't have any super powers and is the first book in a planned series.

17. Klutzville!

Picture Book, 24 pages

July 6, 2015

This was originally going to be a stand-alone book, but it wound up living in the same universe as Stinkalope Tex, with an appearance by him as well. I started this in February of 2015.

18. We Are Stars

Picture Book, 16 pages

April 6, 2016

I wrote this in January–February of 2016 but didn't format it out until April. I'm not sure how i feel about the whole "after-death" theme of the book, but it was an interesting idea to play with. It's a sad book about a sick girl who dies and becomes a star in the sky.

19. Donny Dumdum

Picture Book, 24 pages

August 7, 2016

Yes, this is about a certain narcissistic millionaire. It may soon be out of date, but you can read it by clicking on the cover above to see a PDF file of the book.

20. The Mighty Stranger

Picture Book, 28 pages

October 20, 2016

This was inspired by the website A Mighty Girl and is about a mysterious hero who saves people in the town and the search for who this stranger is.

21. Smiley-Face!

Picture Book, 28 pages

Text: December 15, 2016
Pictures: January 12, 2017

Pulled from the "face-mine" blankets that i was making to sell on Etsy. Very simple story, but the first book that i've attempted to illustrate myself!

The first illustrations were done the same way i did the blankets—with an airbrush on flannel—then photographed and placed in the book. I wasn't happy with the softness of the images, so decided to re-do the whole thing in illustrator, drawing with the pen tool, adjusting, and using images of watercolored paper as the fills. This version came out much cleaner and is the version that got published.

Published on June 20, 2017 by H Bar Press.

I changed the title to "The Smiley-Face Book."

22. Punch a Nazi

Picture Book, 16 pages

January 24, 2017

There was a white-supremacist who got sucker-punched on live TV and Patton Oswalt started tweeting some hilarious tweets about always punching nazis. I took that and ran with it, writing a short little rhyming book about nazi-punching.

23. Ryder, Sky, & Emmaline

Picture Book, 24 pages

March 23, 2017

My friends Kara & Ryan, Josh & Meadow, and Nikki & Robbie all had their first kids in the past year; Emmaline, Sky, and Ryder. Two of these three couples are farmers and i just got the idea to write a book about kids on a farm.

24. Star Trek: The Edge Of Yesterday

Screenplay, 104 pages

April 23, 2017

I got to thinking how to incorporate Anton Yelchin's death (Pavel Checkov in the reboot movies) into a movie that would follow where Star Trek: Beyond ended. I'd also had the idea for the intelligent planet for a while and finally incorporated it into this script. I write scripts like this with the dim hope that they'll get made although i'm pretty aware that it might see the light of day only as "fan fiction" (blech).

One interesting thing about this writing project is that i wrote it start-to-finish on the computer, not by hand, as i've done with all of my other books.

BOOKS / SCREENPLAYSARTICLES
  LIFE ART PHOTOGRAPHY DESIGN WRITING READING PLACES CONTACT#