It Is Easy.

As long as I can remember, I've been a daydreamer. As a young boy, playing in the backyard of my Lynchburg home ... As a teen, playing in the woods with my neighborhood pals ... As a young adult, playing music on the radio as an announcer ... As an adult, playing alongside actors in a film ... And now, as a maturing adult, crafting stories out of thin air, about people and places and all the mystical places in between...

I've Always Been Dreaming.

And from those dreams have come an enormous amount of success.

My first dream was to be an artist. So, I began sketching as a child, turning those sketches into paintings, until one day, I began to sell those paintings. To date, I've sold works in every city in which I've lived, to include: Va Beach, Detroit, Chicago, LA, New York, Philadelphia, and Charlotte. I suppose I best get busy if I'm to sell my work in Encinitas!

My next dream was to be a big-time radio host. So, I began practicing in the shower, while walking to school, driving my car on the way to work, until one day I walked into a radio station and demanded the worst shift on the worst day when no one was listening. I got the job. That determination let to a bigger station, then a bigger, and then a bigger market, and then an even bigger market, until one day, I landed at the very top, and a "Morning Radio Host in New York City." Note: my goal, at age 15, was to perform on at least five of the Top 10 Markets before I turned 40. I hit the top 5 ... by 38!

My next dream was to make a film. So, I began practicing by writing little "short scripts" about things that interested me. Note: My first screenplay draft was something like 210 pages. It eventually became 98.

The first story was about an elderly couple searching for the fountain of youth. It is a dark thriller where nothing was as it seemed. REWIND

The next short was about a therapist who helped his patients with their insecurities. It is a romantic comedy where the patients were animals and the doctor a bachelor. POKE THE SLEEPING BEAR

The next short was about twin brothers who were completely opposite, yet desired the same thing. It is a dark comedy about trust and murder. TAKE TWO

From there, I set my sights on a full-length feature. My first attempt, while thoroughly original from the standpoint that we wrote, cast, shot, edited, scored, and finished a feature film in just 30 days. It is a dramatic fable about a man who visits a passport office, looking for the next adventure; it results in a mysterious ending that leaves you breathless. THE LAST PASSPORT

My next dream was to write a book. So, I began reading about how to write a book, how to self-publish (as I was certain no one would buy my first attempt). I figured it would be smart to write about something I knew about. I chose: growing up in a super-strict, faith-based home in the conservative south where life is black and white and leaves no room for the gray.

After realizing I had a knack for writing, I tried to do a sequel, a year later. And it worked. After coming to the realization that "family stories" weren't really my cup of tea, I took the main character, Carter Matheson, and spun his life into a big, bold military-themed thriller where he worked as a retired Special Ops Sniper-For-Hire.

I turned that dream into three novels: LUCKY STRIKES, BEHIND THE 8 BALL, and late last year, KNUCKLE DOWN.  Note: LS and BT8B were written during the NaNoWriMo Contest (Goal: a minimum of 50,000 words in 30 days).

This quickly became, and continues to be my life passion. I love creating people and places with unique names and faces, while creating mysteries and thrillers, full of heroes and killers.


My next dream was to imagine: What if I take my two favorite passions of films & books and make a film from one of my books. The book Discovering Grace, a family thriller about redemption and the power of forgiveness became the film Chasing Grace.

Was it a success? You bet. We sold the film in late 2016 to Word Entertainment, and today you can see it on Pureflix, Hallmark's Feeln, and on DVD in family bookstores, and on Amazon.com.

While I don't mean to brag, I DO mean to say this: If you can dream it, you can have it. We're all given the same 24 hours in a day, the same 7 days in a week. So, stop bullshitting yourself about how my dreams are too big and unachievable.

Instead, make reachable goals, one at a time, put them into motion, be diligent about seeing that you "water the seeds of dreams" everyday, push through the obstacles of doubt, fear, lack of faith or hope, and practice the mantra: All Things Are Possible With Focus & Work.

I've never really thought any other way ... than to believe that I could have it, IF I were willing to put in the time.

To this day, my gut reminds me of this: If I'm going to spend the time dedicating myself to a craft, and every single opportunity is possible, then why not dream as big as I can, reaching as high as I can, while believing it will come to me.

Just remember: No One Will Do It For You. Only YOU Know Your Dreams.

In closing, I encourage you to take the graphic above that I made to remind myself and you:


Be brave. Reach high.


PS: Be sure to catch our weekly THE DAVE + TAMMY TOUR Podcast. SUBSCRIBE HERE:  



On Writing and Gratitude


A: I've written several thousand words. Here's just one excerpt from the murder mystery I'm working. The working title is SEDUCTION AT DAYBREAK.

B: I got to meet a favorite author, DON WINSLOW, at Warwick's Bookstore, and listen to his methods and stories, while receiving great advice and solid encouragement. Tammy and I really enjoyed ourselves. Here's a picture and links to his latest novel, THE FORCE (it's Fn Awesome).

                     READ + BUY @ DON-WINSLOW.COM

                    READ + BUY @ DON-WINSLOW.COM


C: I recorded a fun podcast with my PIC & WE, Tammy. It will air shortly. It's a show about DESIGN and we're talking with our good friend and client, LINDSAY BROWN of The Brown Studio.

D: I reached some new goals in my workout; gained some pounds on the rack, increased some reps in my ab work, and cranked several more miles on the bike this week.

E: Plus, I've had lots of laughs, tons of great conversations and deepening love with my girl. Read: Best Part Of The Week.

I can say that I am TRULY blessed. I am GRATEFUL.

And the more I come from a place of gratitude and simply don't welcome negative energy of the past, or ignore friends who won't play fair, or disregard people who don't honor their word, or if I find a lack of integrity in people/businesses/situations ... well, the better off I am without such.


And it is GOOD.

Have a great Wednesday. Smile at a stranger. Hug someone who is sad. Call an old friend. Writer a parent. Love your neighbor.





Thank you, Tammy, for sharing this quote and your life with me.

Coincidences. Random or Orchestrated?


Coincidences are an oddity, no matter who you are, or from what perspective you view them. What do I mean by this? While these sorts of things happen to me nearly on a weekly basis, allow me to share just one such occurrence today.

I'm in my writing loft this beautiful Wednesday afternoon, working on my newest novel #SeductionAtDaybreak, when I come to a scene around Chapter 25 (about 38,000 words in). In the story, I reference a "random" slice of history: The Rodney King Riots.

Just for curiosity, I google the phrase and look what comes up: NPR has a featured article by Karen Grigsby Bates, entitled: 


When LA Erupted In Anger: A Look Back At The Rodney King Riots

Just one of the many horrific scenes from the LA Riots, aka The Rodney King Riots (LA, 1992)

What makes this so interesting to me are two facts:

First: I was living in LA at that time, working for The Westwood One Radio Network.  That afternoon, I was in a studio overlooking downtown LA when the riots broke out. I'll never forget it as long as I live. I was working alongside my pals, Tony Scott (rock 'n roll DJ legend), Katherine Brown (best female pipes in the biz), and Mark Maurer (the Grandaddy of Rock Radio Station ID's). We were spinning our craft for our boss, Chris Kampmeier (best boss ever). I recall looking out the window of the CNN Tower (Cahuenga & Sunset: CLICK-4-MAP), when black plumes of smoke & fire sprouted up all over the downtown area and South Central. We were all wrapped up in the insanity, but I'll never forget seeing Maurer enter the studios geared up with a 9mm on his hip and an AK-47 over his shoulder. How times have changed. It was some Crazy S#!T.

Now, for the other coincidence.

Second: In the scene I was writing, my main character (protagonist), Detective Pat Norelli is speaking with her father, the Honorable Judge Samuel Norelli. They're discussing a sensitive situation that only the two of them know about, when a reference is made to those very same Riots in 1992. It struck me as funny how out of the clear blue, I make that reference (which I had not premeditated), and here we are commemorating (certainly not celebrating), the LA Riots.

Now, for the fun of it, care to take a sneak peek into that scene? The one I'm writing, not the riots.

After The Judge’s big reveal, it didn’t take long for us to wrap things up. We discussed our timeline, the access to the tightly guarded materials in the evidence locker, and the manner in which said items would need to be relocated. The exact location was nearly impossible to crack, given the heft and severity of the case. The only saving grace, as it pertained to my delicate situation, was that while LA’s number one mob boss, Nicholas “Nicky The Crusher” Michelini, was preparing for a trip north to a new home where he’d spend the rest of his days in America’s premiere maximum security prison, the evidence was still under our roof.  That roof covered the room which was downtown in the primary headquarters of the Los Angeles Police Department. It wasn’t Fort Knox, but due to the size of our city, the sheer volume of evidence we acquired on a weekly basis—not the mention the potential for breach if there were anything like the Rodney King riots again, it was going to be next to impossible to access without any number of hoops to jump through. And given I was neither part of the team who brought him down, nor any piece of the puzzle that would orchestrate his heavily guarded transfer, my mission was doubly precarious.

                                                              -from Seduction At Daybreak (Summer, 2017)

Back to the reason for today's post: Coincidences. Do you believe they're just that? Are they orchestrated by God, the Universe, the Collective Conscious, Your Higher Self, or just Plain Random? 

Coincidence is God's way of remaining anonymous. -Albert Einstein

Okay, that's what my mind was spinning today. If you've got a particularly interesting coincidence, I'd love for you to share. And if you have a friend you think would find it interesting, please share this blog post.

Until next time, 


To All The Writers

Today's Blog is To All The Writers...

Today is about ENCOURAGEMENT: I want you to know YOU CAN DO THIS.

Today is about PRAISE: You are good at what you do; primarily because you are DOING it.

Today is about FREEDOM: You are free to write whatever you want; it's YOUR world.

Today is about MAKING A MARK: Leave your mark, your voice, your signature...by YOUR words.

At last count, I just passed the 36,000 word mark on my latest novel SEDUCTION AT DAYBREAK. It's been a bit daunting, thus far.


Because I've never written a Murder Mystery before. I wasn't sure how they worked; I mean, I'd read enough, but until you sit down to write one--a original idea, it's harder than one thought.

I've also never written a book with a WOMAN PROTAGONIST before. But I gotta tell you; it's freakin' awesome. Guess I'm channeling my inner female side.

Likewise, I've never had to write a book whereby you have no idea who the ANTAGONIST is in the beginning of the book. It's a huge challenge, and has caused me to stretch my muscles.

By the way, not only do I have THREE thrillers, TWO family stories and ONE horror/pulp fiction to my credit, but besides this murder mystery, I'm working on two non-fiction books. One of those two books are about WRITING.

In this (coming) book, I will share my tricks & techniques on writing, writing fast, developing characters, crafting arresting dialogue and much more. I'll also share what I've learned about self-publishing; the Ins & Outs, the Dos & Don'ts, what to be prepared for, what to do without, and how Agents fit into this world. I think you'll like it.

Well, I've got to run. I have another 2500 to 3000 words to accomplish today, and as the saying goes, books don't write themselves.

So, as I was thinking about today's blog, I wanted to share with you some of my favorite quotes. Yes, I have many, but these are several that hang with me. Perhaps you'll resonate with them, too.

Enjoy these quotes. Share with me (a) if you're a writer (or writer wanna-be), (b) which of these quotes you connected to (and share one of your favorites), and (c) tell me the story you want to tell...but perhaps have never had the guts (read: given yourself permission) to write.



On Simplicity in Writing ...

On being true to oneself and being respectful to protect our craft ...

A Truly Great Piece Of Advice ...

Painful, but true ...

Advice from one of the Masters of the craft ...

A great analogy ...

Bad vs. Good ...

On Being Brave ...

And perhaps the very best piece of advice for a writer ...

Now, Go Write Something!

Get In Touch With Your Creative Spark

It's Tuesday, March 14th, 2017 in the afternoon. While my "last hometown of New York City" fights bitter cold and stacking snow, I'm enjoying weather that's much different. And ONLY BECAUSE Tammy never heard me on the radio, but longs to hear what it used to be like, I'm including a tiny sample of a Time Check. 

Yes, it's sunny, with zero chance of rain in Encinitas. Snow? Less than zero; the temp, not the book.

Speaking of which, it was 32 years ago that Bret Easton Ellis wrote LESS THAN ZERO; a book that USA Today called, "Catcher in the Rye for the MTV generation."

Was it cool? Yes. Mesmerizing? You bet. Some have said that it "defined a new genre of fiction writing." While I enjoyed the movie, introducing me to an actor that DEVOURED the screen: Robert Downey, Jr., I still believe the book was better.  But then, isn't that nearly always the case? 

Well, except in the case of my latest film, CHASING GRACE; that film was 99% better than the book DISCOVERING GRACE.

Yet, I digress.

Perhaps, I should rename this blog entry: TAMELESS TUESDAY.

I'm sitting in what Tam & I affectionately call my treehouse. Why? Because it's on the 3rd floor, looks out over the tops of 80-year old palm trees, and glances west toward the blue pacific. There's a breeze blowing in the windows from three different sides.

My writing space (and video editing space, and voiceover space, and meditating space, and disappear-to-stare-at-the-ocean space) is smaller than your bedroom. Heck, it's about the size of a good walk-in closet (but with a slanted roof).

It's simply adorned with mid-century furniture, a worn Pottery Barn carpet and an old tower, a new laptop and several stacks of books (my novels and other books about writing). The most eye-catching accoutrement is a long arm of clear bubble wrap adorning the lowest edge of the ceiling; thus helping to prevent yet another SMACK to my head.

By now, I realize this post is becoming more random by the minute. Frankly, I like it. And if you're still reading, then perhaps you do, too.

Today, I've been digesting material from James Frey's book HOW TO WRITE A DAMN GOOD MYSTERY. It's really good; well-structured, simple to understand, and confirming.  

Click below to see a list of the chapters.

If you're a writer, want to be a writer, or dream of one day becoming a writer, please allow me one suggestion:


  • Don't let anyone tell you that you can't.
  • Don't let anyone tell you you're not any good.
  • Don't let anyone tell you that it's been done before.
  • Don't let anyone tell you it's boring, or no one will read it, or whatever.
  • Don't let anyone tell you that it's impossible to get published.


  • Give yourself permission to write. Write ANYTHING!
  • Give yourself encouragement, knowing YOUR VOICE is different than anyone on the planet.
  • Give yourself time to practice and improve. After all, it takes as much SEAT TIME as anything.
  • Give yourself a timeline; perhaps, you write an hour a day, a day a week, or 15 minutes at a time (whenever that is).
  • Give yourself the knowledge that in this world of self-publishing, you can get your book printed, ebook-ed, or audiobook-ed -- without having an agent!

My biggest (and best) point is one that will appear in an upcoming book:


Yes, I said it. And I believe it. You know why? Because...


Trust me. It's true.

While I continue to craft #seductionatdaybreak - my latest novel, and first foray into the world of mystery writing, I am beginning to observe a number of different ways to orchestrate details in the story. Things like: teasing the audience with potential antagonists ... possible dual-protagonists ... and plausible plots, sub-plots, and sub-sub plots. It's an everyday adventure!

Okay, I've got to wrap this puppy up. I have some writing to do. Thanks for skipping along on this scattered blog. I hope you can appreciate a good case of non-sequitur.

Until we exchange again, answer me this:

If money were no object, and time was a-plenty, and responsibilities were nil, and you had the support of those around you...





... and as always, please CLICK the SHARE BUTTON BELOW to share with others!



Get Outside Your Head

Today, I felt like I went back in time, as I went to a local public library in my neighborhood. I know, you must be thinking, Wow, Dave, that's amazing! A REAL library? How'd you do it?

Riiiight, I get it; BIG news coming from the left coast. But seriously, I don't recall the last time I stepped inside a library. And for a writer, that's pretty freakin' sad. I mean, an entire WORLD is inside 4 walls, and it's FREE!


What I love? The hushed whispers of voices sequestered into small groups in corners. People with their noses buried in books, sitting among others at long desks, all hungry for knowledge. While others, young and old, from all cultures, ethnicities, religions and backgrounds, gather in skinny wooden chairs, big overstuffed chairs, or comfortable and inviting couches. The one thing they all seem to share? They're all searching a vast world of information that lies outside themselves. 




And often that means doing something completely different, OR, doing the same thing you do [in this case research], by using different methods [library vs. google].

Now, while this is in NO way ground-breaking, it simply reminded me:  (a) how changing your environment [not sitting in the same office day after day], and/or (b) altering a ritual [exchanging digitally transmitted information with tangible books and collateral], and/or (c) examining different methods or protocols from a different angle [talking to highly-educated librarians vs. a non-living keyboard], can provide a fresh perspective.

Another point:

Sometime's you get stuck. Locked. Stifled. Frozen. 

Sometime's you find yourself getting repetitive. Cliched. Verbose. Boring.


I've been working on my latest novel SEDUCTION AT DAYBREAK, since the first of November. Well, truth-be-told, I haven't written for nearly three weeks. I'm not sure why; perhaps it's three different moves to three new homes inside four months? Or, writer's block? Or, the dog ate my homework?

Nonetheless, it's been going more slowly than my other books. The characters aren't talking to me as loudly as my other books. The environment isn't unfolding as swiftly as my other books. And the story is much more complicated than my other books. Oh, and the dog ate my . . .


Because I'm not writing a THRILLER, where you KNOW the Protagonist and the Antagonist, at the same time, and right out of the gate.


Because I'm writing a MYSTERY, where you you know the Protagonist, but you DON'T know the Antagonist right away.


Because you can't know them both. Otherwise, it wouldn't be a mystery!

This is good for me. Not only does this story stretch my mental muscles to examine characters from different perspectives, and create worlds much darker in different ways, all the while developing characters who are strongly different than my other books.


In the Carter Matheson series of LUCKY STRIKES, BEHIND THE 8 BALL and KNUCKLE DOWN, I already knew that world very well. Carter Matheson was (and remains) the "quintessential every man hero." He's a man's man. He's a ball-breaker. He takes no shit from nobody. Yet, his "soft side" [which you rarely see], reveals a man who, at his core, just wants to help other people. And he wants to be seen for the "good guy" he really is; even IF he's a government-hired assassin. 

In this new book (and potential series?), my lead character is a WOMAN. She, like Carter, is also a ball-breaker. She's aggressive, loud-mouthed, and a veritable force-to-be-reckoned-with. Yes, she's bold, brash, but she's also beautiful. And the most fun I've had while getting to know her is that she, like most men, can often be found using sex for mere pleasure, with little conscience, and even less thought of the consequences. Personally, I think it's great to see a 21st Century woman live by her own code, while operating in a man's world.

I think you'll like PAT NORELLI. She's an "every-woman" with battles to fight; both personal and professional. And while Pat spends a bit too much time battling a vice or two, she likewise faces a professional battle with several superiors at the West Los Angeles Homicide Precinct, where she works as a Detective. Pat only goes by Patricia when talking with, or getting scolded by, her parents. Her sidekick, STUART BROWN, also uses her middle name, DARCY, when he wants to make a particular point; which is more often than not. They're a dynamic duo.

Hmm...could all this talk of Pat and her detective work be making me want to get back to the computer? I think so.

As I wrap this up, allow me to leave you with this challenge:  

Stay tuned for SEDUCTION AT DAYBREAK to be released this Summer!


Seduction At Daybreak rolls on...

I love a good challenge. That's why I've begun my next book SEDUCTION AT DAYBREAK, starring Detective Patricia Norelli, a bold, beautiful and ballsy cop with a passion for bad boys, a weakness for good wine, and a nose for violent murder.

Thanks to @javamancoffee for the caffeinated assistance while crafting @seductionatdaybreak while listening to @hansfzimmer and #interstellarsoundtrack.  (click to enlarge; the photo, not the soundtrack ;-)

For those who've followed my #nanowrimo progress, it's true; I dropped out of nanowrimo. But it was for two perfectly good reasons: I've already proved to myself I could write 50,000 words in only 30 days. Look at LUCKY STRIKES and BEHIND THE 8 BALL. And I wanted to take my time to get it right. After writing the third book in the Carter Matheson series, KNUCKLE DOWN, I knew it was time to branch out into something that would stretch me.

So, while waiting to hear back from an interested agent I met at a recent Writer's Digest Novel Writing Convention here in LA, I decided to follow the advise of her (and several other agents in attendance) and begin my next novel.

Stepping from my comfort zone, I began by taking on three new challenges:

  1. Female Protagonist. Telling a story from a woman's perspective. That's a first,
  2. Mystery Genre. Crafting a story where the reader doesn't know the bad guy. Another first,
  3. Research First/Words Second. Building Plot & Structure before volume of words.

As for my "voice" (personal signature), I believe I'm still refining it. You can be the judge, after reading my latest work. When will it be ready for consumption? Not exactly sure, but I'm aiming for early 2017; no need to rush the art. #substancetakestime

In the meantime, want to enjoy some of what I listen to while I work, listen to Spotify below.





Officially withdrawn from NaNoWriMo

WHY? The answer is easy, and has two parts:

(1) I've proven to myself that I can write a 50,000 novel in just 30 days. If you don't believe me, check out my last two November entries: LUCKY STRIKES and BEHIND THE 8 BALL. The MOST IMPORTANT Lesson to learn here is that, in my opinion, #NaNoWriMo teaches you to see IF you have the Discipline. I have the discipline. I write pretty much every day. Some days, I'll scribble out 500 to 1,000 words; others, I'll bang out 2,500 to 3,000 words.

What Writing Takes Is: SEAT TIME

Well, a healthy dose of self-discipline, tenacity, courage, patience and freedom to create. But that's for another, longer blog.

(2) With my latest book, KNUCKLE DOWN, I learned some very, very important things about myself. 

  1. Good stuff takes time. It's like a really good spaghetti sauce. I make mine from scratch. It includes: tomatoes (locally, or imported from Italy, if possible), sausages (pork and lamb), fresh garlic, thyme, oregano, fresh cracked peppers, the best EVO I can find...okay, that recipe? Another time...
  2. Proper research ups the ante. I like to interject just enough research (like a good sauce; see above) to let you know that I know what I'm talking about, but not so much as to distract you from the story...
  3. Strong support from your partner. I know, it sounds simple. But let me tell you, if you don't have the (loving) support from your (life) partner then when (a) the shit hits the fan, (b) the bills need paying, (c) tensions run high, as patience runs low...etc., then you're just up the creek with less than a full-length paddle (feel free to insert any other tasty analogy here)...
  4. Spend the dime for a good cover. Yes, it's true, we DO judge the book by it. Shitty covers get sketchy eyeball time...
  5. Spend the dime for a good editor. Okay, so there are a few mistakes I made in this book that both I and my editor (hey, I was on a budget) missed, but moving forward, I will go this extra mile. (I love you, Editor Scott!)...
  6. Take a little extra time to LIVE & BREATH with the CHARACTERS & LOCATIONS and, best of all, ENJOY THE PROCESS. Pretty much says it all, right?

In closing, I'm backing out of NaNoWriMo. And for those of you who know me, know I am NOT a quitter, and that stopping short of a goal is something which will gnaw at me for weeks (if not months) to come, but I feel it's best for my latest work.

What is my latest book, you ask?


Thus far, I have written none of the above (mystery/female protag/detective/LA), so I'm anxious to see what happens next. And you can look for #seductionatdaybreak to be released sometime in early 2017.

Cheers and #writeon


NaNoWriMo FoShoMoFo


I know. The time is silly. But then, that's why writers write.

It's Day 15 of @nanowrimo and I'd love to tell you that I'm AT LEAST half way through the first draft of my book. However, I am not.

In fact, I won't tell you just how far behind I am. It's far enough to be scary, but not so far as I can't find a way to complete it.

We shall see.

In the meantime, I'm anxiously working away at my latest endeavor. It's a MURDER MYSTERY; something I've never done before.

#seductionatdaybreak is the title. And it's going to be one helluva ride.

I want to say a special THANK YOU to Paula Munier, whose book #PlotPerfect #BuildUnforgettableStories helped make this new direction possible. Why? Well, I've read it cover-to-cover and can honestly say, it's opened my eyes to a new way of writing...creating...and honing my voice.