New Book: The Cuckoo’s Progeny

New Book

The Cuckoo’s Progeny

Not-Quite Human 1

View on AmazonView the book on Amazon.

Al and Betty aren’t like their classmates. They’ve developed particular skills which set them apart, and which sets them in a search for mysteries which eventually leads them in a search for their origins, and the long interstellar trip home

Searching out others like them, they build a crew to search for a ship which will hopefully take them to a home they’ve never known, to a reception they aren’t sure will be welcoming.

The first book in the three book “Not-Quite Human” trilogy.

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Books available on

It’s taking a little while, but I’m slowly getting my books up on (since I walked away from smashwords over their inability to resolve their continuing processing errors).

The following books are currently available on


The Nature of the Game

Stranded in a Foreign Land

Not-Quite Human:

The Cuckoo’s Progeny


1) An Unknown Attraction

2) Trying to be Normal

3) Normalcy is Harder Than it Looks

4) Racing the Clock

5) Touring Under Pressure

6) Building a Legacy

Great Death:

1) Clinging to Hope As the World Falters

(previously published as (“Love and Hope During the Great Death”)

2) Grappling With Survival

3) Seeding Hope Among the Ashes

Books will eventually be available on Nook, iBooks and Kobo.

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Moving Books to

Given my recent troubles with smashwords (and their inability to correct the constant errors in their converter), I’m in the processing of moving my library of books over to

I just moved the first one, “Stranded”, currently available for $5.99. The next will be “The Nature of the Game”, when it’s published on April 27th. I’ll publish the rest of my books one at a time after that.   $5.99


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“The Nature of the Game”

New Book!

While many of my regular readers likely won’t read this, I’m tackling a new genre here: gay romance. Except this is with a slight twist–as usual–here, the story is more about the conflicts within the gay culture, rather than the two lovers at loggerheads.

If you’re not interested, that’s fine. I’ve got plenty of stories for you, but if the topic doesn’t bother you too much, it’s an interesting tale–very short–and a quick read. As usual with my stories, it’s more plot and character development than sex. But this is directed at a separate group.

“The Nature of the Game”

The athletes at Windsor High are aiming for big things: careers in professional sports. They don’t like making waves, so don’t like to stand out. However, when Taylor meets the flamboyant Jacob in the drama department, there’s a distinct clash of cultures. The out-and-proud attitude of someone unable to hide imperils the futures of someone who can. Casual meetings under the bleachers risk not just public embarrassment, but the loss of millions in future earnings.

Yet two figures can’t keep their hands off each other. Jacob, the drama queen, and Taylor, the guy all the girls are after, keep rubbing each other the wrong way while doing it the right way. Will Jacob’s freedom to be who he is imperil Taylor’s future, or can the two resist each other long enough to survive high school?

There’s enough of a sample, including an initial sex scene, to decide whether this is your cup of tea or not. If you’re interested, I’d love to hear your feedback on it.

The book is currently available as a “Pre-order” on Amazon and smashwords, meaning you can review it and if you like it, you can order a copy which will be ready when the book is published on April 27th. When the book goes live, my usual print version will be available as well.

Correction: I just discovered that I can no longer use smashwords, because they’re unable to provide reliable formatting for my books. I will NO LONGER USE to produce any ebooks. Unfortunately, until I find a replacement, and reformat all my books, that means this book is only available via Amazon and

Sorry for this distrubance, but like usually happens, I didn’t know anything had changed until everything stopped working. <Grrr!>

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Latest Updates

It’s been some time, and I’ve been out of the public eye for some time. As such, I decided I should give everyone an update about what I have scheduled.

I haven’t been idle, investing an incredible amount of time on various projects. 2015 was a slow year for me in terms of stories published, but I plan on making up for in it 2016 (and, no, I’m not running for political office!).

A House in Disarray


This has been where most of my time has gone, a story about a lesbian NYPD detective struggling to hold the entire police department and her private life together as dangerous events and her family swirl around her.

Unlike my other stories, I’m having this one professionally edited. Call it curiosity, but I’m eager to learn how much of a difference it’ll make. What’s more, it’s a learning opportunity for me. I’m hoping I’ll learn enough about self-editing, that I’ll get more of the story cleaned up during the writing and revision process. And so far, it’s working.

The release is slightly delayed, as I have to reconcile the editors changes.

Stranded in a Foreign Land

(price reduced to $0.99 to promote the sequel)

The next item on the agenda, is to republish “Stranded” under a new, easier to find name. Believe me, if you haven’t, searching for this book produces thousands of false results, in dozens of conflicting genres. I think the new title, new cover and a refined edited, will make some difference in the story.

I should warn you, for those who purchased “Stranded”, you won’t want to purchase this book, as nothing has changed in the plot. This is merely a cosmetic change to help promote the book (which has always been one of my highest rated stories).

The Lad Who Poked the Devil in the Eye

(book available for purchase)

The sequel to “Stranded”, which many of you have been eagerly waiting for, is nearing completion. You may have heard that I was having problems with it and considered trashing it, but I’ve worked through those issues, and I’m proud of the results. Not only because it’s the worthy continuation of a great story, but because I’ve finally learned to trim my writing down to the base essentials. Unlike the 150,000+ word tomes found in my “Catalyst” series, this one weighs in at only 61,000 words, the typical size of a smaller novel.

It continues the adventures with space aliens started with “Stranded”, but it takes it in some unexpected directions

The Nature of the Game

This one is a bit of a stretch for me, and one which most of my fans won’t be interested in. But it was a story I felt compelled to write. As many of you know, I’ve always lived at the edge of the gay community because of my brother, who was an influential figure in the early gay rights movement.

This story is a gay romance between a football star firmly entrenched in the closet who falls for a flamboyant drama club member who’s ‘out and proud’. It’s a conflict I’ve seen bubbling below the surface of the gay community for some time, and I felt compelled to address it. Yes, it does feature some stormy sex. If that doesn’t dissuade you, I think you’ll find it compelling reading. It’s also my shortest story, at only nine chapters and 30,000 words (so far). It’s really a novelette, at that length, but it’s still an interesting story.


This is a story I put aside three years ago in order to finish “Stranded”, and which it’s taken until now to finally resume. However, the wait has been worth it. This story is similar to the “Catalyst”, if Alex had only stood up for himself and confronted his enemies.

It features the first man to travel beyond our solar system via an experimental interdimentional jump (ISSDD), where things go horribly wrong, and somehow, he ends up at home, unhurt with no answers concerning what happened. With the entire world demanding answers, and accountability from NASA, he’s forced to go on the offensive, defending himself as he and the rest of NASA searches for answers to what happened to him. So far, I’m proud of how it’s coming.


Finally, I have plans to begin a whole new science-fiction trilogy series called “Not-Quite Human”. Yes, 2016 promises to be a very busy year!

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Spirituality Without the Ghosts

Spirituality Without Ghosts

This is a little Layman’s Sermon I presented out our local UU Church this past week. I though a few of you may enjoy it. (My old fans will notice the references to “Building a Legacy” in it.)


This is partially intended as an ‘alternate religions’ overview, but it also strikes at the heart of religion by addressing the universal need for spirituality, whether one believes in God or not. Essentially, spirituality is more central to humans than to a belief in God.

Atheism is a funny thing. We’re a very small group and almost invisible. It’s not an organized belief, just a collection of people who don’t subscribe to other religions. The only atheists most people know of are the ‘avowed’ types who have a chip on their shoulder and vent about religion. But for the rest of us, we’ve learned to keep quiet.

I casually mentioned my beliefs in a family discussion at my sister’s several years ago, and my brother-in-law has never treated me the same since. He keeps giving me these ‘lost soul’ stares, so we learn to keep quiet. However, like many minorities, you often don’t realize how many there are until you meet them one-on-one.

In preparing for this talk, I had a couple people ask, “Are you Vincent? The one speaking about atheism?” When I confirmed I was, they continued. “We need to talk. I’d really like to hear it, but I can’t be there that week.” Each of those people wanted to talk about being atheists. There’s no gaydar for nonbelief, so unless you scratch the surface, you’ll never know how many there are. Heck, even with the surveys which ask your religious affiliation, most people tell the pollsters what they want to hear. Since we know many religious people respond worse to atheists than to competing religions, we don’t speak up.

It’s been said that everyone believes in Christianity for one reason—the salvation of their souls—everyone comes to atheism for their own reasons, which are uniquely their own. In my case, I’m like most preachers’ kids. They either become ministers themselves, or they turn their back on the belief of their fathers. Victor essentially assembled his own belief system from various sources. My sister attends church regularly, and Copy, my eldest brother, would have been religious, but like many gays of that period, turned his back on organized religion after multiple churches rejected him because of his homosexuality. I went whole hog, though. While I can’t speak for atheists as a whole, I came to atheism for one simple reason: I just can’t accept the existence of the soul.

My choice has little to do with religion, the battle of faith over science, but over the fact that over the last two millennia, no one has ever detected any principals in physics which support the existence of the soul. Just as there’s no God particle, there’s also no fundamental particle for the spirit to hang its hat. There are no wavelengths which supports the transmission of spiritual communications, no everywhere-in-the-universe particle, and no transparent cells. What’s more, if a person’s soul is pure spirit with no ties to our earthly coil, there’s no physical basis for them to process memories, form thoughts, evaluate experiences or perceive anything occurring in the universe around them. In short, with no physical presence, even if they did exist, they’d be empty vessels, less solid than the air around us.

While that’s not a siren’s call to atheists everywhere, once you abandon the concept of spirits, the entire premise of religion collapses. Without ghosts floating around you’ve got no heaven, with no heaven there’s no eternal afterlife, and without a giant granddaddy of all ghosts, there’s no God ruling the universe to create life, meaning and order. As much as you might appreciate those things, there’s nothing to base the belief in them on. It’s not so much I’m anti-religion as I simply can’t buy into the concept. It’s like when you read a book: you skip over a few typos here or an incorrect punctuation there, but you hit one statement which—for whatever reason—stops you dead in your tracks and spoils the entire story—despite it not being a major issue for anyone else.

Now, without a belief in God, you’d think I’d put religion as a whole aside. But it goes deeper than that. Not only do atheists live in a theist world, but there’s still the basic human need to find meaning in life.

I ran into this head-on while writing a series about a young man, paradoxically an atheist leading a religious movement. It wasn’t autobiographical, but I liked the challenge of a nonbeliever struggling to adapt to a situation not of his choosing. But as I neared the conclusion and needed to tie the story elements together, I discovered I needed certain unifying themes to drape them from. To guide me in this, I wrote a series of parables. Since this character didn’t believe in a deity, he couldn’t dictate what people believed, but could tell his followers how to lead moral lives.

It had been a while, but my father was a Naval Chaplain and frequently worked with parables, so it wasn’t really a stretch for me. But once I strung together a few crude parables expressing this character’s core beliefs, the conclusion of the story congealed. Essentially, I found a theoretical hook to hang his fledgling theology on.

What I faced is what many of us do. We all search for meaning in our lives. I was trying to tie all the elements of the story into bigger themes about life, much as everyone tries to explain their lives in larger themes of the universe. That reflects why I attend the Unitarian-Universalist church. I want to deal with the bigger issues in life: what makes men behave badly, what’s in the inner nature of man, and what it takes for us to rise above our baser instincts.

In short, spirituality has little to do with spirits. Instead it’s our attempt to wrestle with the larger issues in life. At one time, those two ideas were one and the same. If you dealt with the nature of man, you talked about their souls, their spirit. However, as we’ve come to understand more, we’ve broadened our understanding of how things relate to one another. We’ve developed the fields of psychology, sociology and anthropology, not to mention comparative theology. But we’ve never invented a better word for this basic drive in man.

In short, it’s an age-old question: how can atheists be moral if they don’t fear a vengeful god?

Recently, these questions have been changing. At a recent event in Baton Rouge, of all places, they held an event they called ‘Joie de Vivre: To Delight in Being Alive’, the initiation of an organized atheist church. Sam Harris’s new book, “Waking Up”, describes the famous atheist’s “walk in Jesus’ footsteps” to the site of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount. He asks which came first, the belief in God or man’s quest for transcendence. Sam argues we all have these ‘transcendent experiences’, but only the religious make a big deal about their significant to remember them. But, as these events show, that doesn’t mean atheists don’t value them.

Another recent event paired Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York with comedian Stephen Colbert, reflecting the importance of spirituality (and humor) extends beyond theology discussions. The event was staged by a Catholic Priest who wrote “Between Heaven and Mirth: Why Joy, Humor and Laughter are at the Heart of the Spiritual Life.” In fact, Sam Harris argues, in another book, that much of atheism rests on Naturalism, that only science can explain life. But when we experience nature, we don’t think of science but are instead struck dumb by its beauty. In short, the experience isn’t scientific, but spiritual.

A 2012 survey by the Pew Religion and Public Life Project found that 20% of those polled claimed to not be religiously affiliated, yet nearly 37% said they were “spiritual” but not “religious”. That single group is greater than atheists, Jews, Muslims and Episcopalians combined (at least in America).

All these events show there’s a real hunger for a spiritual life among those with few ties to the Devine. They want to view life with a spiritual filter; without the wrapping papers of faith, religion and God.

Instead of believing in spirits, I believe in good and evil, morality and right and wrong. As silly as it seems, I prefer to believe in fate, even if I know there’s no rational explanation for it. I like to believe that good things happen to good people, and that even when bad things occur, we emerge as more complete people, rather than as crushed, diminished goods.

Humanism provides an alternate path, but humanism seems overly specific. It focuses on the goodness in humanity, but diminishes our desire to connect with nature and to believe—even when it defies logic—in the interconnectedness of fate. It isn’t that humans need to believe in magic, but we need something bigger than ourselves. In Universality that’s the totality of human experiences, in Humanism it’s our collective good, in Unitarianism, it’s the central themes spanning the different strands of Christianity.

To put this need in more practical terms, look at recent events. When we observe that global temperatures are rising and storms are becoming increasingly worse, we strive to form a coherent story so we can determine how to respond. If burning fossil fuels increases carbon, then if we reduce the carbon, we can control global warming. In the same way, if we understand what causes humans to rise above their sinful nature, then we can emulate and encourage that behavior. Prayer and faith are our attempts to control our essential natures. It’s an attempt to account and control fate. If God controls everything, then by applying to him for help, he’ll guide us in doing the right thing.

Without this desire to control our fates, we’re left adrift, cascading from one horrendous event to the next. Whether your religion is Christianity, Buddhism, Humanism or Science, we all want a way to grasp life’s ultimate meanings so we can steer through the obstacles in life. By focusing on what moves us forwards, we can concentrate on the positive directions in our lives, making us—at the very least—much easier to deal with than someone who continually complains.

What I’m proposing is that we, as humans, need to focus on spiritual matters regardless of our religious affiliations. And we don’t need to do it by drawing a line in the sand, daring anyone and everyone to cross over it. If we’re wrong about one aspect of our lives, we can still contribute in other ways. But since we don’t base our every action on the will of an almighty ghost, we’re freer to screw-up. Instead of assuming we’re always right, we choose to do the correct thing while being less judgmental of ourselves and others when we don’t measure up. Which sounds a lot like what Christianity teaches.

We also need to be willing to accept the wisdom of others unlike us. Rather than surrounding ourselves with others who repeat the same things, we need other people’s experiences to shake up our world view every now and again. If you only talk to those who agree with you, you’ll never grow as a human.

Finally, we need to grasp life with both hands and hold on for the wild ride that it is, rather than waiting for a beautiful life in the future which may never come. We need to embrace life and those sharing it with us, rather than planning on enjoying them at some undefined point in the future. What’s more, we need to accept that we’re not always going to be the exact same person. Our inner spirits at fifty is vastly different than what it was at twenty, which isn’t what it’ll be at eighty. We don’t quit living when we retire. Instead, we experience a different life as changed people. Our entire approach to live and how we respond to events changes. Frankly, this conceit of permanence is for the birds, because it keeps us from accepting our human frailties.


For a rebuttal, see the following

(Warning: Atheist Joke included).

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New Covers

While preparing the covers for my next couple books, I revamped the covers on my older stories, hoping to make them more attractive than they were. So far, I’ve revamped the Great Death and Catalyst series. It’s most just a change in fonts, although Love & Family has a new, more intense background to clearly mark it as an Apocalyptic story.

Note:  Aside from correcting a handful of typos, the contents of the stories have not changed (other than one scene having been removed from Love & Family Ch. 2).

Great Death

Love & FamilyGrappling with SurvivalClick to view book


View "An Unknown Attraction"View Normalcy is Harder Than It LooksView Racing the Clock

Unwelcome Visitors:


I’ll republish “Stranded” under a new name (“Stranded in a Foreign Land”) and a whole new cover when I publish the sequel, “The Lad Who Poked the Devil in the Eye”.

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