I was born in Omaha, Nebraska on New Year's Eve, a scant 80 minutes prior to 1966, and led a largely nomadic life in the beginning. My father was still a student, working to get into a masters program, and he was eventually accepted at the University of Minnesota (where I lived for two years), then later at the University of Southern California where he earned his Ph.D. In 1974, the family moved to Fair Oaks, California, and that was pretty much where I was raised. I survived elementary school, flourished in high school and somehow ended up the valedictorian. Running was my true passion however, and I was fortunate enough to receive a full track scholarship to the University of Notre Dame.
Then, unfortunately, things got tough. I got injured, I went a little insane, and after breaking the Notre Dame record in the 4x800 relay (at the Drake relays-a record that still stands), I was injured for the rest of the year. On summer break back home after my freshman year, icing my tendon and moping around the house, my mom said "Do something-don't just pout." I asked "What?" She shrugged and said, "I don't know...write a book." "Fine," I said, and eight weeks later I was the proud creator of my first novel, The Passing, a book that was never published. I laid it to rest at a literary graveyard of sorts-my attic-and it's still there, next to my football card collection. In all honesty, it's a wonderful story-except for the writing.
Fast forward through college-good friends, lots of football games, too much beer-until March 1988. I met a girl, Cathy, on Spring Break in Florida. She was from New Hampshire, and it was love at first sight. I told her the day after we met that we would be married someday. She laughed at me and told me to get another drink. In July, 1989, we married, and in 1991 Miles Andrew was born. Two years later, Ryan Cody entered the world, and my two sons are the greatest things that have ever happened to me.
In 1989, I wrote my second novel, The Royal Murders. It's also in the attic, filled with rejection slips. I decided to concentrate on another career. Since I was rejected not only by publishers but by law school as well, I went through a number of short-term jobs looking for something that captivated my interest. I appraised real estate, bought and restored houses, waited tables, sold dental products by phone, and finally started my own business. Like many small businesses, it was a struggle, and I eventually sold it and became a pharmaceutical representative. In 1993, I was transferred to New Bern, North Carolina, where I currently live.
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