Wasteland Blues and the Collaborative Process













My latest novel, WASTELAND BLUES, co-authored with Andrew Conry-Murray is the first of a post-apocalyptic trilogy and is now available on Amazon in both TRADE PAPERBACK and KINDLE editions from Dog Star Books. (Click those links to head on over to Amazon and grab a copy!)

This novel – this Trilogy! – began way back in (correct me if I’m wrong, Drew) 2003 as a collaborative writing project between myself and my undergrad friend, rock & roll band-mate, fellow psychonaut, post-college Boston roommate, and talented writer Andrew Conry-Murray (though, he was just Drew Murray back then…). We were living in different places and starting new lives when we began this experiment: I was up in New York’s Hudson Valley living on a remote mountaintop surrounded by woods in a home once owned by George Hansburg (inventor of the pogo stick), and Drew was in… San Francisco… Boston… Paris… Africa… Pennsylvania… the dude gets around!

We wanted to write something that we wanted to read. We wanted to inspire ourselves and each other to create something from the elusive gloaming radiance of the things that inspired us. We wanted to share and explore our love of the science fiction and post-apocalypse genres: sprawling vistas, radioactive landscapes, and rusting, forgotten technology… And, most of all, we wanted to get lost in the journey.

There’s a story, in WASTELAND BLUES, to be sure. There’s a goal – a mission, to be found in its pages. And there’s a definite end (though maybe not quite in sight) for the fool’s errand we’ve set our hapless characters upon. But I think all readers will agree, that at it’s heart, WASTELAND BLUES is a road-trip. A gritty, sand-in-yer-teeth, radioactive road-trip. And like all good road-trips, it’s so much more about the adventures along the way, the friends you make and lose, and the family that you build around you – than it is about the destination. Literature (if I can be so bold), like Life, man – it’s all about the Journey…

And what a journey it is! (I almost typed “was”, but realized that being about a third of the way through writing Book Two: THE BOMBED-OUT LANDS, Drew and I still have quite a road ahead of us…). Getting lost along the way… taking left turns instead of right… nearly dying of thirst and starvation… hitching rides with musky Bedouins, insane automatons, grizzled scavengers, and (wait for it, ‘cuz this is coming in Book Two) a gang of leather clad, motorcycle riding post-apocalypse nuns… Yeah, what a long, strange, radioactive trip it’s been…

It’s crazy out there in the Wasteland. Ya never know what’s just over that next sand dune, just beyond that broken stretch of highway, inside that seemingly abandoned gas depot or mutie den or bug nest… It’s always a surprise. Hopefully, each turn of the page is as much of a surprise for those reading WASTELAND BLUES as it was for us writing it. See, that’s one of the greatest, most wickedly exhilarating things about the collaborative writing process: At nearly EVERY single turn, I – or Drew – would chuckle maniacally at the situation – the cliffhanger – the seemingly impossible predicament – hell, the Kobiyashi Maru – the most absurd and impossible corner that we could paint our poor characters into, before turning the writing reigns over to the other. Let’s see ya get ’em outta this one, Drew…! only to open my email a few days later to, Right back atcha, you jerk! 

And somehow we DID manage (at least so far) to get our characters (narrowly) out of the most improbable and dangerous binds that Drew and I could throw at one another. And while our characters may have suffered, the story sure didn’t! And neither has my passion for continuing to write – to live, to dance – in this world.

Because, unlike most solitary writing endeavors, in WASTELAND BLUES I have the thrill and the luxury of sharing with the readers the tingling excitement of reading the next few pages, fresh from (the sick – don’t let him convince you otherwise) mind and fingers of Drew, and having NO IDEA what is coming next or how we’re gonna get out of it…

But we will. And I’m sure Drew will agree.


You can check out WASTELAND BLUES here:

WASTELAND BLUES – Trade Paperback Edition

WASTELAND BLUES – Kindle Edition




nixon-coversVote and get FREE STUFF! Vote to choose the cover for my upcoming (March 23) novel THE THOUSAND YEAR NIXON. I’ll randomly select a bunch of voters (aw, you know me – I will probably be able to select ya all…!) to receive Cool, Free Stuff: Copies of THE THOUSAND YEAR NIXON ebook before it debuts, some upcoming print works, awesome limited promotional materials, and more…!

Just click THE THOUSAND YEAR NIXON button at the top of this page (or follow this link) to head on over to the Poll.

Be sure to enter your email address when you vote, follow me, or join my email list so I can be sure to get you your goodies… Thanks and ENJOY!!

Vote for the THOUSAND YEAR NIXON Official Book Cover! Get FREE STUFF!!!

A HELMET FULL OF HAIR – Free Book Promotion

To celebrate the launch of my new Author Website, I’m offering my latest scifi satire novella A HELMET FULL OF HAIR absolutely 100% FREE on Amazon Kindle…!

A Helmet Full of Hair

Meet Donald “Do Nothing” DeWitt. Alone. In space. Drifting…

To keep from going mad with isolation, he relates to his mother the tale of the early days aboard Starship Wormwood (and how it blew up) into the tiny radio transmitter in his starsuit. A weak signal that could never possibly traverse the lightyears between him and Earth. Never mind, that because he has been traveling faster-than-light for several years, his mother has now been dead for several thousand…

With nothing but the sound of his own voice, Donald recalls alcoholic-rageaholic shipmate Ryerson jettisoning the ship’s garbage (and essentials) out of the dorsal airlock, when not attempting to grow marijuana on top of the ships hyperdrive… He remembers fondly his philosophical dalliances with Captain Hardwick (distractions which ultimately led to the ship’s demise)… O’Brien’s endless counting… And most of all, he remembers home… The only thing he CAN’T remember, are his reasons for joining the accursed mission in the first place.

A HELMET FULL OF HAIR is a short novella which masterfully blends surreal science fiction, dark comedy, and memoir.

The promotion starts tomorrow (February 28) and will run until midnight on Sunday, March 2nd.

If you download the book, please spread the word, join my mailing list – and if you enjoy it, please leave a rating/review on Amazon… Thanks!!


WASTELAND BLUES – A novel of the post-apocalypse

Of Mice and Men Meets The Odyssey in a Post-Apocalyptic Future

Having only ever known the uncivilized wake of nuclear and biological apocalypse, three friends and their wheelchair-bound hostage set out on a perilous fool’s mission — to cross from one side of the devastated United States to the other, in the desperate, half-believed hope of finding a rumored haven.

Spurred by a dark vision and the murder of their father, rageaholic Derek Cane and his over-sized, simple-minded brother, Teddy, flee the only home they’ve ever known, a struggling shantytown on the edge of the vast Wasteland. Heading ever eastward, they are accompanied by their friend, John, an orphan brought up by a fanatical religious order, and Leggy, a crippled old drunk who brags that, in his youth, he once traversed the Wasteland as a scavenger.

Cover Art by Bradley Sharp

Post-Apocalyptic novel coming from Dog Star Books, March 18, 2014