(Painting by Leonid Pasternak)

A Writer’s Path

Time is the toll extracted by the vagaries of fate that plague our daily existence - bad weather, lines, traffic jams, and the host of demands imposed upon us by our fellow travelers on the road of life. Since writing is a time-consuming endeavor (I...

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The Art of The Villain

Most people have no reason, thankfully, to set a trap or ambuscade in the course of their daily affairs. A trial lawyer, in contrast, lays traps all the time as part of his or her trial strategy. Such stratagems are often necessary to extract the...

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The Homeric Legacy

Homer's Iliad and Odyssey are two of my favorite books. As a child, I was mesmerized by the heroic and tragic tales woven together in these great works. As an adult and a history buff, I was intrigued by the possibility that some of these...

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Painting by Salvador Martinez Cubells

The Siege Within

I am writing a scene where a city in Celtic Briton is under siege by the invading Saxons. Since I have never experienced such a horrific event, even in the smallest measure (and surely have no desire to), I am drawing upon my history books...

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(Painting by J.M.W. Turner, "Dido Building Carthage")

What if?

In the 2002 movie “Time Machine” the Uber Moorlock says to Alexander, the protagonist: "You're a man haunted by those two most terrible words: What if?” I suspect we all are. Who has not considered what the present would be like had a different path been...

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My Kingdom For A Laptop

If I had a dollar for every time I heard the admonition “follow your heart” – a favorite of graduation speakers – I would be a wealthy man. It’s not bad advice. Who can argue with the proposition that one should pursue his or her...

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Sisyphean Endeavors

Writing “The Return of Sir Percival: Book I – Guinevere’s Prayer” was a labor of love, but also a formidable and often frustrating task. When I began the endeavor, the characters were already traveling the byroads of my mind, as if my imagination were their...

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Picture of part of the wall built by the Emperor Aurelian to protect Rome

Walls and Invaders

  (Warning: This post is not about the present-day arguments over this subject matter, but rather the importance of walls in medieval society, and, in my humble estimation, why they will always be necessary.) When I was eighteen years old, I toured colleges throughout the country, including...

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(Regret, by Philip Alexius de Lazlo)


Regret is a powerful emotion. An honest man or woman, with a noble heart, feels its lash whenever advantage is unfairly taken, or offense unjustly given. A scoundrel, in contrast, lies, cheats and steals without moral discomfort. His only regret is getting caught. The foregoing dichotomy...

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