Artwork for Defending Demeter

Aloha – I received two renditions for the cover of “Defending Demeter” this morning.  Both were interesting, but not quite right.  I’ve sent some suggested changes back to the graphic artist who has done the two other covers and will hopefully have the corrected version back by the end of the week.


Can we even stress how much we hate midterms on Demeter! Well not all of us. Becky and Cynthia are ridiculous. They actually are more relaxed because of midterms. The rest of us are trying to survive. More tomorrow!

Doc’s Interview with Intergalactic Book Critic, Algernon Pisces

Algernon Pisces:  When did you start writing Demeter?

Doc:  I started writing the first draft for Demeter four years ago.

Pisces:  First draft?

Doc:  Yes, Demeter has been through several edits and revisions.  I’m still revising it today; but mostly grammatical corrections.

Pisces:  I notice that you changed the opening chapter.

Doc:  Speaking with prospective agents I was told that a death nail to opening chapters was when a book opened with the alarm clock ringing.  After hearing that warning repeatedly I finally changed it.

Pisces:  Did that make the book better?

Doc:  Better is a relative term.  It brings the reader to action faster.  I liked introducing more background on Ryder up front.  The narrative works well either way.

Pisces:  So are you planning to write anything now that you’re done with Demeter?

Doc:  Actually Demeter has been written as a series.  Each book has its own story arch, but as a series it has a much larger scope and arch. 

Pisces:  So you’ve already written the whole five books?

Doc:  Yes, all five books are completed in first draft status.  However, only the first book is near ready for publication.

Pisces:  So, when is the first book coming out?

Doc:  One way or another it will be out next year.  The only question is whether it will be released as a hard copy, e-book or both.


Several of the central characters in the Demeter series are derived from people I know.  The genesis of the central character, William Ryder (Ryder) is my oldest son, Gerald.  Some of the plot line comes from actual events.  For example, the confrontation with the Barry Ryder character at the school dance, and the aftermath actually happened with little variance from fact.  Family members have argued that in some cases, as the plot develops in all five books that there is a merger between the reality of my oldest son and myself.  I hope the good attributes came from me lol.  The real Ryder, Gerald, is one of the smartest people I have ever met, and I’ve met a lot of smart people.  He focuses more on music, than academia.  He has a small one bedroom apartment in Seattle, Washington that he has converted to a sound studio and sound booth for recording bands.  Don’t ask where he sleeps, I stayed at his apartment once.  I prefer a hotel.

Debbie’s character is certainly the most lively character in the series, and one that is hard to imagine in real life.  The character is based on my youngest daughter, who also maintains this website.  There is nothing that Debbie does, that would be a surprise if my daughter did the same thing.   At age three, she suggested to her mother, my wife, that I move to California and that she would move into the room with my wife.  Some of the descriptors for her, including being an astronaut, pilot, president of the United States are in fact things that she has said from a very early age.  If you read the Mesa Verde story, she did, try to convince us when she was a child that she had found a saber tooth tiger.

Becky’s character is based on my older daughter.  When we moved to a new area, she did in fact, take pride in making it through a whole day of school while speaking only seven words.  An avid reader, she has had years where she has read well over 300 books.  She is now married and lives in West Virginia with her husband and four children.

Randy and Joel?  Their characters evolve a lot over the course of the five book series.  They really come into their own in books three and four.  Their characters are based on my two middle sons.  The short story about the barn burning is based on a real event.  

With children like this, I don’t have to move to far from non-fiction to build the delightful characters in the stories and books of Demeter.



Back Row Left to Right: David (Randy), Gerald (Ryder), Naomi (Becky)

Front Row: Sara (Debbie) and Robert (Joel)

Water, Water everwhere

So we found out the other day that fresh water is actually being shipped back to earth (in small quantities of course) because of the fact the water cycle is being jammed up on earth. It has to do with privatization of water  in 3rd world countries and pollution levels. We really wish a lot of the technology and understanding of water management among other things on Demeter would be able to be directly transferred back. It is interesting in our course work how part of it entails understanding the ecological short falls of earth and Cryellia and how the management of environment could be tweaked with a mix of technology and social change. Just a thought. 

Who thought reading would = training

Randy and Joel here–

Now don’t get us wrong we like our WWII films as much as anyone, especially the great escape. However imagine, here on Demeter, light years away from earth we have been assigned to read The Far Shore. It is all about how the D-Day invasion took place along with its subsequent effects on the Overlord Plan. We even have to write papers dissecting the entire process from the planning to the tactical. Granted there are a lot worse things we could have to read, like girly books such as Jane Eyre, but man this coming paper is going to be a long one. Well we gotta get reading. 

Randy and Joel out


Can we tell you how trippy it is being a fictional character? Of course we can. Man writers complain about rewrites? They should try being edited. You feel all sorts of weird happening to you. Reality (our reality) starts to unravel you never know what’s going to change. Is it your dialogue? Your hair? or are you suddenly going to have feathers? It is a most uncomfortable feeling, but now it is all over we feel even better. In the fictional sense, what doesn’t erase you only makes better. (Quite literally in Debbie’s case-Ryder)

RYDER I’ll have your Head!-Debbie

We are with Ryder- Randy and Joel


Children behave or more edits might come, by our suggestion– Becky and Cynthia

Now everyone is behaving themselves, the link to the first fifty pages, freshly edited is


Oh my gosh… I got to play around with a real fighter day!!!! Corkscrews are the best and funnest thing ever… followed closely by doing a back flip… oh oh don’t forget flying upside down… soooo much fun! I had to call it an early day because my whimp of an instructor vomited, I swear Aster Freeport has the weakest stomach in the galaxy. Becky’s instructor also called it early because apparently Becky thought they were out on a pleasure cruise and didn’t realize she needed to do dog fight maneuvers.