WELCOME TO THE NORTH FLORIDA WRITER BOOK PAGE: PRESENTING THE WORKS OF JAMES DICK (Updated November 11, 2017)
WRITING IS A JOURNEY AND COMPLETING A MANUSCRIPT IS JUST THE BEGINNING: ALL FOR THE LOVE OF THE WRITTEN WORD
Hi Everyone, My name is James Dick and I am North Florida Writer (northfloridawriter.com) and this page gives information about my writing endeavor and my ACTIVE books. They include the just released Confessions Of A "Horse Husband", Thou Shall Not Take Our Land, A Blogger Shares His Faith and Honey, We Shoulda’ Bought the Ark. All three books can be purchased from Amazon Kindle. I will likely make them available in hard copy in the future. Links to the Amazon purchase sites are found on this page as well.
When I retired from business a few years back, I knew that I wanted an avocation to keep me busy and motivated in life. I thought about it for a while before realizing that I always wanted to write a book and for the first time in my life I had the time to devote to it. Little did I know at the time that I would get the writing bug and really throw my heart and soul into it. But I asked God for His help and guidance and over time it came together.
My first book was a fun family book about animals, Honey We Shoulda' Bought the Ark (it's still available on Kindle), but it really didn't get me where I wanted to go material wise. I love animals, though, and it was a great place to start.
While thinking about where I really wanted to take my writing, I continued with my North Florida Writer Blog found on this site and published a number of short stories as well as almost daily blog entries. To write well, it takes practice and I figured writing about a broad spectrum of things would help make my work better.
But it was only in the Fall of 2016 that I embarked on my real adventure, writing a fictional novel for the first time. It required dedication to a time line, staying on focus and continually reviewing my work. I also taught myself how to self-publish with the help of the Kindle program, albeit it with a learning curve included, and used that wonderful platform in place of an expensive publisher. And now that first fiction political action book, Thou Shall Not Take Our Land has been published, coming on line just this past Monday, I am beginning to see it get some interest as my marketing journey begins.
There were times along the way when I questioned myself and I repeatedly asked God to guide me. In so doing it came to mind that I also had published a large number of Christian blogs on my website over the years as well as a significant number of devotionals for Protestant daily devotional publications. So, I thought that when I needed to clear my head of any roadblocks on my road to fiction, why not as a parallel effort put together a book of readings with some of my Christian commentaries. After all, I received a number of compliments from readers who enjoyed my work, so I added another book in the mix simultaneously. And now, A Blogger Shares His Faith: Fifty Christian Readings to Help Focus on Life, is ready and can be pre-ordered in advance of the actual publication date of March 20th.
Never in my wildest dreams did I ever anticipate having two books published back to back, but God put me on a track that I knew I had to complete. And it only whets my appetite for more, as both of my books are ones for which sequels are a natural consequence. I guess I have my work cut out for me in the months ahead.
I don’t tell you about my past buildup to the present to brag about my industriousness. And I certainly can’t claim what the future will bring for me except for the early book which has not been advertised for several years. Will I be successful? Well, I know I'll continue to work hard at it but only time will tell. But I do know that I was driven with passion to produce them as a result of asking God what I should do with the rest of my life. And that's an important thing for those of us leaving the daily working world, for we have many good years left and gifts to share with others and it's important to find what's appropriate in whatever our circumstances may be. I thank God every day for putting me on the path where I find myself. It feels good, it feels right and it has energized me to a high degree. Accordingly, I am dedicated to the course I find myself on.
Here are the links to both of my new books (just copy and paste to your browser to open), plus my first one, followed by a separate section about each. This will be updated as more works are created. Just copy and past the links to your browser to review the Amazon sites.
Confessions of a "Horse Husband" https://www.amazon.com/dp/B077BSTND5 (Kindle Version) Confessions of a "Horse Husband" https://www.amazon.com/dp/1973307200
Thou Shall Not Take Our Land https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06XBY7C4T
MORE ABOUT CONFESSIONS OF A "HORSE HUSBAND" BY JAMES DICK:
Confessions of a “Horse Husband” is a true story written by a man who became who he is because of his love for a beautiful woman who lives, eats, sleeps and dreams horses. She is “The Horse Lady” and she’s one of a large number of active women who are devoted to all things equine.
After nearly seventeen years of being a “Horse Husband”, the author decided it was time to document this lifestyle with its positive changes and impact. There are thousands of men sharing the same lifestyle, for there are many beautiful, smart and sometimes stubborn women who have the “horse bug.” It is not a disease, but it is an addiction which starts with their first experience with the beautiful animal known as the horse and captures them. And when a man falls in love with a “Horse Lady”, he quickly becomes acquainted with the motto that guides her: “Love me, love my horses.” It’s just the way they are. If he wants her to love him, he must accept her as she is and want to be a part of her lifestyle. To do otherwise will result in failure.
Confessions of a "Horse Husband" is about making mistakes, paying for those mistakes with bruises and painful toes among other body parts, and learning from those mistakes. It is also about having fun and laughter, enjoying the fresh air and open space and experiencing love in a special setting. It covers some of the most memorable moments of his life. The story is never dull, it's full of surprises and involves widely different situations, many wonderful and some not so much.
Experience the life of the “Horse Husband” as he lives the lifestyle of being the partner of a lady equestrian and he delights in what she does with horses. And don’t worry, she allows him the occasional grumble or two which comes with married life.
There's Hailey the "Boss Mare", who rules the herd completely. Then there's the old man, Gabe, a gelding in the twilight of his years yet still capable of causing a surprise when he wants. Or what about Flannel Jams, the OTTB who has a wonderful disposition unless you come on too strong. And we can't leave out the ponies, like the precocious Charm, a beauty who loves to tease, just like her mother who gained the nickname, the “Pony of the Corn.” And these are just a few of those wonderful animals that "The Horse Lady" and her “horse husband” have fed, watered and cared for as part of the family. There are many more that will be presented as well as part of the story.
But make no mistake, the real "Boss Mare" of the family herd is not a horse, but "The Horse Lady" herself. She’s what makes the wheels turn for the horse family. Come take a look at their story. If you love horses it's a "no brainer," and you will immediately find yourself at home. If you know nothing about horses, you will likely learn something of interest and have some fun to boot. It's about living an active life style and loving it. And while it’s true that you can't sleep in on Saturday if you own horses, you'll find that you don't want to.
The book includes beauty, pride, joy, humor, sadness and, most of all, love. Love is what it takes to win the heart of “The Horse Lady.” It’s a special love that requires a special type of man. And that’s because it also requires loving what she does with those beautiful animals who have captivated her and loving them as well.
Open the pages and find out why this "Horse Husband", despite a few questioning moments, wouldn't change his lifestyle for anything. Come read his confessions.
MORE ABOUT THOU SHALL NOT TAKE OUR LAND BY JAMES DICK:
Thou Shall Not Take Our Land is a fictional political action adventure which shows what the future could be like if Americans refuse to pay attention to what their leaders do. It is set in Alachua County, Florida in 2033 as a group of patriotic citizens, led by John Argyle and his elderly father, Angus, almost mistakenly learn of tyranny being perpetuated by bureaucratic officials at state and federal levels. Here’s the prologue to set the stage for potential readers:
It was oppressively hot, humid and miserable for those out in the woods in eastern Alachua County, Florida in September 2033. The late summer brought two tropical storms ashore in the third and fourth weeks of August, dropping over ten inches of rain in their wake. It wasn’t a time when anyone wanted to be out in the elements, yet a large band of patriotic citizens had no choice. They were awaiting an expected siege by armed government agents and possibly worse in the days ahead after an ongoing dispute over their land which began six months earlier.
The hearty men and women in position were battling the swamp at its worst. The rains had brought out nature in full force, with huge swarms of hungry mosquitoes, snakes of both harmless and poisonous category, vicious fire ants, spiders and other insects as well as rodents small and large seeking higher ground. And with these creatures even came a few gators seeking an easy meal in the muck. Yet these brave men and women carved out and held their positions so that no one could surprise them.
They were the major line of defense, facing the point most likely to face assault due to the frontage being close to a divided north-south highway, US Highway 301. But many more of them were in frontal positions covering the rest of the entire perimeter, totaling fifteen by four miles, with the secondary positions important to insure no surprise assaults came unnoticed from any direction. The towns of Windsor and Cross Creek were within the perimeter boundaries while both Lochloosa and Hawthorne were to the east and Gainesville was beyond the far shoreline of Newnans Lake to the west. Checkpoints were established on all roadways running east and west through the area, requiring approval by armed personnel to enter. This effectively blocked use of another divided highway, State Route 20 by government vehicles. Most of the men saw prior service in the military, many in combat, but now were farmers, accountants, merchants, bankers, truckers, mechanics, a minister or two, a doctor, several nurses and even a few full-time retirees. And there were a number of Annie Oakley types in the crowd, plus church women who volunteered to prepare some special meals to give a break from military rations while others served as couriers between groups, delivering supplies and personal hygiene items. In all there were at least three hundred local area residents plus volunteers from other Florida localities involved in the effort and a significant additional number from other states who recognized the danger of the threat eventually to them as well at some point. It was about the right to land ownership and the government was seeking to destroy it.
Members of the group holding the lines, organized under the name Citizens Protecting Our Land, were determined to maintain control over their property in the area and had decades old experience with development projects which would have ultimately made it impossible to hold on to their property. But they had never before experienced a threat like this one, a threat prompted by the current President’s thus far unannounced plans to subordinate his country to the whims of the New World Order (NWO). But they did know that they would not accept an illegal development rule change in the local region which took authority away from local authorities and gave it to a regional board with independent authority. And as local citizens became aware that the drivers of this action were both state and federal government agencies who were behind these actions, they vowed to fight it by whatever means necessary. A retired Marine, John Argyle, was the local leader of the group. He and his father, Angus, uncovered the situation almost by mistake, but now they were joined by this band of brothers and sisters to create a force of citizens to fight for what was legally theirs in accordance with the Law of the Land, the Constitution. All of them understood the risks and dangers, all carried weapons and were qualified in their use and all were now gathered together throughout their rural area awaiting the next action steps against them. They were blessed by the active support of a patriotic group, the Military Patriots of America (MPA), with chapters in a number of eastern states and growing and with influence on friends in high places, something that would serve their cause well. But at this stage of the game they were anxious. If they must fight, they wanted to get it under way and over with so they could return to their normal lives. Yet the situation was one where most felt what they knew as normal might be gone forever and because of this they felt they had nothing to lose, for without freedom and national sovereignty they had nothing.
On this early morning on a soon-to-be hot September day, Argyle was positioned on one of the defensive lines at the center of the long eastern flank, constantly walking the line he covered, encouraging his armed team members and looking for flaws in placement of positions and equipment. He was also in contact by radio with the other line segments who were each led by combat veterans or others knowledgeable of the terrain and well qualified with weapons, all of whom were supported by MPA advisors. Standing with John was one of those MPA patriots, Rob Richards, who was there to lend support and to fill in for him whenever he needed to leave the line or for rest.
John’s tasks were far reaching as he quickly assessed information received from the entire force and insured that supporting forces were handling supplies and managing inventory for distribution. He also maintained contact with those local civilian officials, like the County Sheriff and the Planning Director, who were sympathetic to his cause and tracked the administrative side of happenings by both the state and federal government. The former active duty Marine had excellent contact with a large newspaper, the Jacksonville Times-Union and was joined by an excellent reporter on site, a modern-day Ernie Pyle, a young woman with courage and a willingness to take risk to tell the story of what was unfolding. And the senior MPA leader, its National Director, maintained informational contact with Pentagon uniformed and civilian leaders who understood their cause.
John also had the unenviable task of making all decisions about the delivery and positioning of supplies at the major logistics point at McMaster’s farm with a secondary site at his logistics point adjacent to his family home. In addition to weapons, ammo, food, water, temporary holding camps for manpower and other supporting logistics items, a motor pool was maintained for a wide variety of vehicles loaned to the patriots in support of their cause. There were transport trucks, a fuel truck, SUVs, jeeps and swamp buggies, all retrofitted as well as possible to meet the challenge.
This was the third consecutive day of full alert and emergency manning of the lines and it followed several incursions the day prior, primarily designed to test their strength, identify potential weak spots and prepare for the major assault expected this day. The sky was turning from black to gray as dawn would be coming and John was approached by MPA member, Rob Richards, suggesting that he take a break before the fight was joined.
“John, you’ve been up all night, even twenty minutes would do you good,” he said, “and I’m here and will let you know the moment anything looks anywhere close to breaking. Lean back on your poncho pack and shut your eyes for a few minutes, I’m making all the final checks for you right now.”
John finally agreed, closing his eyes as he thought about all that happened in the past six months and how it came to this. As he dozed off, he relived the recent past. He was floating through time as if he was above the fray, surrounded by serenity and quiet as if looking through a window showing how he got here.
But while his memory of events locally that began the struggle were clear, there was so much more that John did not know. The President, Edward Lee, who was only sworn in for his second term in the past January, was embarking on a course of action which was creating the need for this action he was leading and the road ahead would become so much more difficult. Powerful forces in Washington and on the international stage were determined to take from America what she had struggled so hard to attain many generations ago. Will John’s patriotic group succeed or will the push for tyranny win?
The story begins.
MORE ABOUT A BLOGGER SHARES HIS FAITH
Over the last four-plus years, I have produced a blog on this web site with one of the most important subjects being my Christian faith and what it means to me. During that period, I also wrote a large number of devotionals and meditations for several Protestant publications. With over twenty-years of Sunday School teaching experience, I finally realized that a book on my Christian faith would be appropriate and I had amassed so many different commentaries over the years that I thought I would share some of them in book form. I must admit, my wife was the driver in this, telling me that it was a natural and that many people enjoyed my work. And therein I arrived at the title, A Blogger Shares His Faith and I’ve compiled fifty (plus two additional Easter commentaries) into Kindle book format which is now available.
So here are an assortment of them, all addressing God and His importance to mankind. I hope you find them as helpful to you as they have been for me, for I know that whenever I focus on God and all His glory, the day shines brighter. Happy reading and may the love of God always be in your heart.
ABOUT MY FIRST BOOK, HONEY, WE SHOULDA’ BOUGHT THE ARK
Honey, We Shoulda’ Bought the Ark is a composite of stories about the many animals we we have rescued as well as others that we have made part of our family. Included are horses, dogs, cats, birds, a cute little ferret as well as some of the wild little critters who live nearby and visit from time to time to grab a free lunch. All stories are told just the way they happened at our rural homestead in North Florida. We see God's grant of dominion over all living things as a requirement that we treat and care for all animals with respect. Pain or suffering should be minimized regardless of the ultimate designated use of the animal. They also can teach us much about God and how to live, in many instances their natural life shows better judgment than many people show these days since they understand their place, survival and the requirement to prepare their young for independence.
ANIMALS ARE A WONDERFUL GIFT FROM GOD. THAT IS MY BASIC MESSAGE.
The book is appropriate for independent reading for age 10 and up. It is a good bedtime story reader for younger ages. Parents may be needed for definition purposes on some of the words, depending upon the vocabulary level of the child.
AUTHOR BIO: JAMES DICK
James Dick is a former Army Infantry Officer who also gained experience in civilian federal employment before ultimately gravitating to private business, retiring in 2012. He always wanted to write but felt he never had the time until retirement and the publication of his first book, Honey, We Shoulda’ Bought the Ark, in 2013. It is a light and descriptive family book about the love he and his wife share with animals and how they show in so many ways the workings of God in the world. Living with his wife and their family of animals, including dogs, cats and horses with a number of them being rescues, they enjoy their rural homestead in beautiful North Florida.
But James’ first love, at least as far as writing is concerned, is a combination of topics, including nature and animals, faith and, finally politics, especially Constitutional Conservatism, including how Conservation is an important component of it. His education in politics and the environment has led to his balanced loves in both areas. And, of course, his life with a lady equestrian ("The Horse Lady") who also loves all animals has further refined it. James' employment history in government, including military and civilian assignments, added to his private sector experience gives him a good vantage point from which to address the issues he writes about. And with his devotion to his Christian faith and belief, he knows in his heart that all things originate from God and to live successfully, we must take the time to understand what He expects of us and live our lives accordingly.
Thou Shall Not Take Our Land was James' first journey into writing a fiction novel although he has written a number of published short fiction stories. He enjoys fiction writing as it gives the utmost in leeway for creativity and open thinking which expands the horizons of the written word so well. He has now expanded his horizons even farther.
James also writes a routine blog on his website which regularly addresses his favorite topical areas. He formerly had his own Blog Talk Radio Show, but took a break from it to devote more time to write this novel. He likely will sometime in the not distant future reestablish his show as an adjunct to many of his written subjects. He sees writing as an adventure and a way to enjoy life with a purpose, something he will certainly continue as long as the Lord is willing.
READING OFFERS SO MANY OPPORTUNITIES TO PUT YOURSELF IN DIFFERENT PLACES AND DIFFERENT SITUATIONS. I HOPE YOU WILL FIND ONE OR ALL OF MY BOOKS TO SHARE A VARIED LOOK AT LIFE AND WHAT MAKES US TICK.