December 24, 2023

Images and Impressions: A Gift

Happy holidays! We have put together a gift for you: English Spanish
November 30, 2023

Introducing the “Eye of the Moon” Series

Smith-Obolensky Media created a presentation of the Eye of the Moon series you may enjoy. I am deep in writing the third. Stay tuned!
November 16, 2023

Cover Reveal: Dark of the Earth

Presenting the cover of the third novel, Dark of the Earth!
November 9, 2023

New Track

Someone once said that the past never changes. This isn’t wrong but neither is it entirely correct. For many, the past is a record of failed […]
October 26, 2023

BookTrib Interview

BookTrib recently interviewed me: In Ivan Obolensky’s award-winning American Gothic novel, Eye of the Moon, two estranged friends are reunited only to discover a gruesome mystery. Set in […]
October 19, 2023

BookTrib Book Review: Eye of the Moon

BookTrib posted a book review last week I wanted to share with you: Hidden Rooms & Ancient Curses Abound in Gothic Mystery Reminiscent of “Clue” Contributor: Sherri […]
September 7, 2023

Channeling the Inner Tortoise

I have two observations about growing old (older, if that’s easier to bear.). The first is that “exceptions to the rule” are far more numerous than […]
August 17, 2023

Feathered Quill Interview with Kathy Stickles

I had another excellent interview with Kathy Stickles from Feathered Quill, this time about Shadow of the Son. She really enjoyed both books, and her enthusiasm […]
August 10, 2023

Meet Me Halfway

I came across an interesting hack the other day. Granted the need for it may never be in your future, but I’m always one to look […]
August 3, 2023

The “Leap of Faith”

Søren Kierkegaard was a nineteenth century Danish philosopher and theologian, who wanted to deepen our inward relationship with God by emphasizing individual existence. In so doing, […]
July 13, 2023

Likeability

In my third novel, one of the characters says to Percy: “I don’t dislike you, Percy. I just don’t like you, and I’ll tell you why. […]
May 25, 2023

Studying to Learn

Many people dislike mathematics, sad but true. I can’t say I blame them. It has taken me an extraordinary amount of mental work and persistence to […]
May 4, 2023

Managing Artificial Intelligence

There are many articles and news pieces about Artificial Intelligence (AI) these days. Some say that AI is the apocalypse in digital form. Others say that […]
October 20, 2022

Death: A Montage

Dr. Trevor Campbell, a medical doctor who specializes in pain, asked that we record a discussion about death. We called it: The Anatomy of Death – […]
April 6, 2022

Advice to Writers

Knowledge is the most democratic of substances. Birth, prior learning, experience, reputation, wealth, or circumstance count for nothing. Its acquisition must always be deliberately and consciously […]
January 13, 2022

Selected Q&A from Interview with Otraparte

Selected parts of the interview are available to read in English and Spanish. You can check out all of my interviews to date on my Interviews […]
January 6, 2022

Truth is Stranger than Fiction

Many are familiar with the phrase: “Truth is stranger than fiction…” but are unfamiliar with what follows, or who wrote it. The full quote is:  “Truth […]
December 31, 2021

New Year Thoughts

The New Year usually brings about in all of us reflections on the past and contemplations of the future. In Shadow of the Son, Percy states […]
December 23, 2021

New Interviews

I’ve been featured on Book Reader Magazine and I have a new profile on All Author, where you can see questions and answers under the Ask […]
December 16, 2021

What Makes a Good Story?

When all is said and done, a good story engages. It will seep effortlessly into the mind and speak to us directly. To do that successfully, […]
December 9, 2021

Stories

The more I write the more I am convinced that stories are the essential building blocks from which our lives are constructed. Our lives are made […]
November 15, 2021

Useless?

I took six years of Latin in Grammar and High School. Even in the 1970s, Latin was considered a useless subject, but for a subject that […]
August 19, 2021

Balance

I thought I would give you an update on my world. I’ve been off doing things other than writing for the last month and a half. […]
June 21, 2021

Shadow of the Son Launches Today!

Excerpt from Shadow of the Son: From my first visit, the house had projected an aura of mystery and a brooding watchfulness. Deep currents moved beneath […]
April 2, 2021

From the archives: Interview

I am reposting an interview I did with Christina Hamlett three years ago, shortly after launching Eye of the Moon. In that interview, I was asked […]
March 23, 2021

Meet the Team: Germán and Constanza of El ojo de la luna

The process of translating Eye of the Moon into Latin American Spanish (El ojo de la luna) involved the work of several people. In this post […]
March 18, 2021

Big Questions

What is the one physical quantity that can be measured more accurately and precisely than any other and yet can’t be defined in a way that […]
February 16, 2021

El ojo de la luna featured in Spotlight

Smith-Obolensky Media was featured in the IBPA Member Spotlight. Here is an excerpt: IBPA: How were you able to get the Latin American Spanish literary translation of […]
February 2, 2021

Update to Sequel of Eye of the Moon

You will be happy to know that the first draft of the sequel will be finished very soon. This is good news for me, too. Of […]
December 30, 2020

Endings are Hard

Endings are hard because an ending, even that of a book, a work, or a year, doesn’t mean that everything stops. An ending is usually the […]
November 19, 2020

The Rhinebeck House of Eye of the Moon

This photograph is of the actual house in Rhinebeck I summered at. It was called Marienruh. I never called it by that name. To me, it […]
October 29, 2020

El ojo de la luna available internationally

We now have the Latin American Spanish website finalized for El ojo de la luna, including the page directing where the novel is sold across the […]
October 14, 2020

El ojo de la luna

The first Latin American Spanish literary translation of Eye of the Moon, El ojo de la luna, is being printed in Colombia and distributed internationally via […]
September 24, 2020

The First Day of Spring

In the South Cone, Spring begins in September rather than in March. Having lived in the North so long, it takes some getting used to. North […]
September 10, 2020

Colonia del Sacramento

Colonia, as it is known in Uruguay, is a city on the Rio de la Plata that runs between Uruguay and Argentina. The city, like Uruguay, […]
August 27, 2020

Golden Days

We rarely recognize golden days when we are living them. Good can only be evaluated by what we consider bad, and bad by what we consider […]
August 20, 2020

Five Things I Learned from Len Deighton

Len Deighton is my favorite living writer. I have read and reread the nine novels beginning with Berlin Game and ending with Charity of his triple […]
August 12, 2020

On David Hockney

I consider David Hockney one of the world’s finest artists. Born in Britain, he moved to Los Angeles. He currently lives in France. The subject of […]
July 15, 2020

Political Insider #110: Interview with Bill Ballenger

My interview with Bill Ballenger on The Political Insider #110 is posted, from the 10 minute to 29 minute mark. It was delightful to talk with […]
July 7, 2020

Bedside Reading’s Authors that Thrive Podcast with Lou Diamond

I had the great pleasure of speaking with Lou Diamond for his podcast series in collaboration with Bedside Reading®, Authors that Thrive.
July 1, 2020

Stepping Out

The Rufous Hornero (furnarius rufus) is Argentina’s national bird. They build oven-shaped nests of clay and vegetation. Its English name is the “Red Ovenbird”. They are […]
June 17, 2020

Review: The Good Shepherd

I read The Good Shepherd and gave it five stars. Here is my review on Goodreads: There are a few books by C. S. Forester that […]
June 10, 2020

Early Morning Fog

The weather at this time of year reminds me of the poem by
June 3, 2020

Learning

One of the ways we learn is to observe. Infants do that a lot. They look around. What are they doing in their cute little heads? […]
May 27, 2020

Shifting Perspectives

How we think changes the world we see. Let us take two diametrically opposite views of the world. The first is the causal view. For example, […]
May 18, 2020

Eye of the Moon Now Part of the Bedside Reading Family

Eye of the Moon was selected for the Bedside Reading program and featured in their newsletter this month.
May 13, 2020

Review: A Gentleman in Moscow

I read A Gentleman in Moscow and gave it five stars. Here is my review on Goodreads: A Gentleman in Moscow begins in 1922 with the […]
May 6, 2020

Changing States

If one finds oneself in trouble, beset by problems from every side, and filled with doubts and uncertainties, it is nonetheless possible to do something about […]
April 22, 2020

Five Things I Learned from Stephen King

Stephen King and I have an uneasy relationship, even though I’ve never met him. Would he be the same person I imagine him to be, if […]
April 16, 2020

Orientation

Those who live in the Northern Hemisphere see the moon right side up. In the Southern Hemisphere, the moon looks upside down. It is a matter […]
April 2, 2020

Necessary

The subject of viruses has been on many people’s minds of late and with good reason. Because some viruses can be deadly, one might wish to […]
March 25, 2020

Pinniped Contemplations in Semi-isolation

Do you feel like a seal? I do. I’m not sure which one I am in the picture. I haven’t decided, but I’m in there somewhere. […]
March 18, 2020

Five Things I Learned from Raymond Chandler

Things are rarely simple. Raymond Chandler is one of my favorite authors. About every five years, I will re-read all that he wrote, starting with a […]
March 12, 2020

Two Sides

I used to ride horses. One thing I learned was that you had to train “both sides” of a horse. Their brains are bicameral (two hemispheres) […]
February 27, 2020

Look but DON’T Touch

Allow me to introduce you to Megalopyge Urens. It is common in Montevideo during the months of January, February, and March. A 1936 edition of Revista […]
February 13, 2020

Hope

Is the world ending anytime soon? Judging from the news, all does not look well going forward. Do you know the feeling? To get a sense […]
January 31, 2020

Returning to “Middle Age Can Be Your Best Age”

I had the honor of returning to the radio program, “Middle Age Can Be Your Best Age” with Roy Richards. (My first interview was in October […]
January 23, 2020

Five Things I Learned from Neil Gaiman

This is the beginning of a new series of blog posts. I have learned much from many people and from numerous personal experiences over the years […]
January 9, 2020

Interview with Intrinsic Motivation

Last year, I did an interview with Hamza Davis of Intrinsic Motivation: A Homies Perspective. It was titled: Who Are The One Percenters – Myths About […]
December 30, 2019

Interview with Midnight in the Desert

I was honored to be a guest on the radio talk show “Midnight in the Desert with Dave Schrader” and talked about my novel and some […]
October 24, 2019

Radio Interview with Roy Richards

This month I had the pleasure of speaking with Roy Richards on his radio show, “Middle Age Can Be Your Best Age”, about the Conversation Crisis. http://webtalkradio.net/Shows/MiddleAgeCanBeYourBestAge/mac102119.mp3 […]
April 18, 2019

Fleeting Genius: Rory McEwen

Sometimes people enter our lives, and we note there is something extraordinary about them. When that happens when we are very young, we rarely realize the […]
April 11, 2019

Xenia

I am writing the sequel to Eye of the Moon and am a tenth of the way through, or maybe not. That milestone is subject to […]
March 21, 2019

A Very Short History of Literacy…

…in England, and a Possible Prescription for Insomnia Literacy is defined as the ability to read and write. In Victorian England of 1820, the general literacy […]
February 18, 2019

Radio Interview on The Stuph File Program

Peter Anthony Holder was kind enough to invite me on his show, The Stuph File Program. He had some pointed questions about the One Percent, always […]
February 9, 2019

Eye of the Moon Wins Second Place!

Eye of the Moon has won the Silver/2nd Place award in the 2019 Feathered Quill Book Awards for the Mystery/Thriller/Suspense/Horror category! JUDGES’ COMMENTS:  – The cover […]
January 29, 2019

Six Books

Here are six books that changed my view of the world. These are not in any particular order of influence. Each one worked its magic in […]
January 16, 2019

Happy What?

I used to compete in triathlons and the occasional marathon and half marathon. I loved the training more than the actual competitions. I would feel confident […]
December 19, 2018

More from the Tao

I thought I would post a passage from the Tao Te Ching. This quote is from Stephen Mitchell’s excellent translation. “29 Do you want to improve […]
December 6, 2018

Guest Post on Writing and Living

Author Melanie Ansley invited me to her blog where I share “5 Things Writing Taught Me About Living and Living Taught Me About Writing”. I hope […]
November 22, 2018

That’s Nice

I gave a book reading at Books & Books in Coral Gables the other day. Before I got to the reading itself, I spoke to the […]
October 25, 2018

Ghosts

Ghosts have been part of the human experience for as long as stories have been recounted. They have been recorded in one form or another by […]
October 4, 2018

Alice

Many readers have wanted to know more about Alice in Eye of the Moon. Alice in the novel was inspired by my grandmother, Ava Alice Muriel […]
September 13, 2018

Duality

In Eye of the Moon, Alice wrote in her diary:      To those that come after:      If you are reading this, I am dead.      […]
August 14, 2018

Genius

Contrary to what many people think, genius isn’t necessarily about being born intelligent, although that is a factor. Real genius requires more. According to Professor Michael […]
July 10, 2018

Interview with Melanie Ansley

Melanie Ansley‘s book, Theo and the Forbidden Language,  recently won Best “Young Adult” at the IndieReader Discovery Awards. Melanie is an award- winning Film/TV producer, has written […]
July 5, 2018

Interview: VoyageLA

I was recently interviewed by VoyageLA. The site includes many stories of inspiring locals, influencers, and fun things to do in LA.   Today we’d like […]
June 22, 2018

Goddesses and Eye of the Moon

Egyptian mythology developed over a period of 3,000 years. This is an extraordinary amount of time when compared to the 600-year life span of the modern […]
June 7, 2018

First award: “Best First Book (Fiction)” in the IRDAs!

Eye of the Moon won the “Best First Book” in the fiction category of the 2018 IndieReader Discovery Awards (IRDAs). I received the award at BookCon in […]
May 30, 2018

Rhinebeck

The last time I was in the town of Rhinebeck was so long ago, I have no memory of it. The other day, I visited and […]
May 22, 2018

Travels by Michael Crichton

When one thinks of Michael Crichton one thinks of Jurassic Park, The Andromeda Strain, Rising Sun, or maybe Sphere. He created them all and many other […]
May 3, 2018

Thoughts on Writing

One of the more difficult books to understand, and yet one of the most enlightening on the theater is David Mamet’s small volume, Three Uses of […]
April 26, 2018

IndieReader Interviews Ivan for Their All About the Book Series

As an IndieReader Approved book, Eye of the Moon (and its author) were selected to be included in the IndieReader blog as part of the All […]
April 19, 2018

Notes on an Address by Joe Satriani

[My photo of my JS Series Ibanez guitar.] Some years ago, I went to a commencement at the Musicians Institute in Los Angeles. By some miracle, […]
April 6, 2018

Library Reading

I did my first book reading as an author on March 28th at the Glendale Central Library, Arts & Culture. I have been to a few […]
March 29, 2018

An Interview with Nadene of Totally Addicted to Reading.

Nadene is an avid reader who shares her passion on both her blog and her Totally Addicted to Reading website. She was kind enough to host […]
March 15, 2018

Tucson

This weekend I participated in my first book festival as a member of the Southern California Mystery Writers of America at their booth at the Tucson […]
March 14, 2018

Review of Eye of the Moon by Athena Schaffer

Hereditary Witch and current High Priestess of the Sherwood Wiccan Coven, as well as an accomplished journalist, artist, and fellow author, Athena Schaffer reviewed Eye of […]
February 28, 2018

Interview on You Read It Here First

I was recently interviewed by Christina Hamlett for You Read It Here First. The interview in full: For readers who enjoy strong female characters, supernatural elements, […]
February 23, 2018

Interview with Magdalena Ball

Magdalena Ball runs compulsivereader.com, a website based in Australia. She is a literary force in her own right and anyone who hosts a website devoted to […]
February 15, 2018

Interview with Author Matt Coyle

I became familiar with Matt Coyle when I found out that he and I would be sharing a Southern California Mystery Writers of America booth at […]
January 12, 2018

What’s in a Name?

A number of readers have asked me how I was able to write Eye of the Moon. It is one of those questions that can be […]
December 28, 2017

Ancient Wisdom from the Tao Te Ching

If I don’t know what to do, I often grab my well-worn copy of the Tao Te Ching (Stephen Mitchell translation) and open it at random. […]
October 12, 2017

Interview with Author Nick Thacker

I interviewed professional author, Nick Thacker, who delivers nonfiction and fiction with equal aplomb. Being a full-time writer in today’s world is not easy, but Nick […]