Indie Spotlight on Horror & YA Author, Ron Chapman

For anyone who’s lost a parent or a loved one, Never Forget is an emotional roller coaster that will grab you by your heart and hit home. As a father of three, Chapman struggles to recall his forgotten childhood memories with his father that he locked away so long ago, while at the same time, creating memories with his own sons.

Never Forget is a true story with a twist. Stay to the end to find out the twist. A box of tissue is recommended.

Stepping Outside the Horror & YA Box to Write About Family

My is Ron Chapman and I’m an Amazon bestseller of horror and YA. A while ago, I decided to step outside of the box and write about a different subject matter than I usually write about—a subject that’s been bothering me since I was a kid. It’s also a subject that is dear to my heart.

Some people fear heights, spiders, snakes or even intimacy. Me though, I fear being forgotten by my kids and to me, that is the worse kind of fear anyone could experience.

My fear of being forgotten didn’t happen overnight. This fear of being forgotten happened in two stages of my life.

The first stage was when my father died. I think I was 15 or 16 at the time.  It was hard for me to handle and understand. I always looked up to my father. He was my hero and then when he was taken from me, it was as if someone had ripped my heart out. My hero, my protector was gone. The passing of my father hit me so hard that I took all the memories we had as a father and son and shut them away hoping that maybe it would make the loss of my father a little easier.

I was wrong.

Not a day has gone by since I was a kid that I don’t think about my father. The memories of my father and me are still locked away and lost. I remember fragments of a father and son but that’s it.

The second stage was when I became a father. I don’t want my sons to ever forget the memories of their father like I did mine. Over the years, I’ve tried to build lasting memories so that my sons will be able to look back on life when they have their own kids and say, “I remember when my dad did this with me.” Or “I remember doing this with my dad.”

There will come a time in my kid’s lives when I will no longer be there for them and all they will have will be their memories of the times we had as father and son. I want my kids to remember the times with their father as if it were just minutes ago.

My kids are my life. They are what makes my heart beat. It pains me to think that one day my kids will be out on their own with their own family. Oh sure, I’ll have my loving wife by my side, but it just won’t be the same.

Never Forget is a story I felt had to be written and shared with everyone. If there’s a lesson to be learned from the story, it’s that life can be short in so many ways. People come and people go, especially the ones you love—so build those lasting memories and hold on to them. Never forget them.

BIO: Ron Chapman is a man of many hats, depending on the day. Some days he’s a construction worker, a pirate, or a swimming coach. He’s even tried his hand at being a doll and toy maker. He can even be found walking with the dead.Being a part time god isn’t bad either, creating worlds one moment then turning around and destroying, the next.

He also has a license to kill and will not hesitate to do so. You see… he’s a writer that loves to write horror stories and not just any run of the mill horror stories. He walks a thin line with his stories between being dark and twisted madness. He will take your nightmares and turn them into fantasies and dreams. There is no happily ever after in his stories but there are however, happy endings. Not the ones you would expect though. Beware, if you get on his wrong side he may just write you into a story and deal with you that way.

If you want to know more about this wild man, follow him on Twitter @RonMtDew and/or Instagram @Ronchapman69.

 

 

 

 

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Happy Birthday, Dad

Today would’ve been my dad’s 92nd birthday, if he were still alive. Though we lost him 24 years ago, I still miss him terribly. He had a way about him that made you want to be him. Maybe because he really didn’t care what other people thought of him, though he’d bend over backwards to help you out if you were in need or trouble. Or his yuk yuk laugh. Or that he always wore blue jeans – long before it was cool.

He loved boats – I think because secretly he had a wanderer’s heart and always wanted to travel the world. In fact, the last day of his life, he had gone to the harbor to watch the boats with his wife. Later that day, he passed in his sleep. But I’m glad that it was in a safe and loving place.

Happy Birthday, Dad. I hope there are boats, Budweiser, and country music, wherever you are.

Fourth of July in a Small Town

I have lived in my little town for several years now and although I was aware that we had a parade on significant holidays, I never attended any. This year I resolved to attend the 4th of July parade and I’m glad I did.

It was not a fancy parade, with shiny, big bands and Hollywood celebrities – no, it was just a slice of Americana in it’s most humble attire. Flags of course were everywhere and a few thousand of us (which would be most of the town) lined Foothill Boulevard to watch the official kickoff of the celebration under the hot July sun.

I found a perch outside the local Starbuck’s, ready with travel-mugged coffee and a bottle of icy water. Camera in hand and really feeling like a little kid, excited and proud.

The crowd donned all manner of headgear, carried mundane and imaginative seat options and vendors pushed carts filled with cotton candy, popcorn, ice cream and cold drinks.

I ended up taking almost two hundred pictures, so into it was I that I hardly knew which pictures to share. But after much deliberation I chose about 20 that should tell you how the parade proceeded:

       

     

 

             

 

 

 

 

Now, I don’t know about you or your town and whether you have a parade for the 4th but I have to say it was fun, even getting sprayed by the water truck was a hoot and I most decidedly felt proud to be an American afterward. We are a unique country and unique people who by and large are proud of their hard-fought heritage and parades are a fun and cheery way of showing it. Now there are studies that say if you attend such parades you run the risk of growing up a Republican – oooh, now that’s scary isn’t it? Puleez – on this day of all days we are simply Americans, one and all and celebrating the birth of our wonderful nation.

God Bless and Happy 4th –

I’m heading home to fire up the barbie.

WC

Copyright 2011

This Father’s Day

Every year around Father’s Day I get a little weepy because my dad is no longer with us. Put frankly, I miss the hell out of him. I wish he were still here. I wish today I was taking him out for a pancake breakfast and a round of mini-golf, or trekking out to (God forbid) Disney Land so we could go It’s a Small World and the Pirates of the Caribbean a bagillion times.

I think about times we could have spent together but didn’t because we lived 3,000 miles apart. I still can’t listen to Johnny Cash without getting teary-eyed because Cash was one of Dad’s favorites. Ditto with Budweiser commercials, Rodeo movies, and soft-serve chocolate ice cream.

I think my dad was my very first friend. I suppose I am like millions of other daughter’s who were daddy’s girls. And my memories of him are like a crazy mixed-up collage of lessons learned, laughs shared, reflections, realizations, simple pleasures, weird adventures, heated debates and knowing that I was loved.

Dad wasn’t perfect – far from it and I have no desire to idolize him. He was a man with many flaws and could be stubborn as hell. But he was real and he was honest. He knew who he was. He took his responsibilities seriously but he never took life too seriously. He wasn’t politically correct, subtle or fashionable. He was just Lucky. He was just a man who worked hard, loved his family and did everything he could to help and he was my dad.

Happy Father’s Day Dad – hope all is well where you are – that you’re having fun and finding lots of things to laugh about – that the coffee is hot and strong, that the sun is shining and you’re spending time watching the boats in the harbor. That your camera always has film, your radio has a country music station and calories don’t count in heaven.

Love,
Me

Christmas for the Troops

While we are still just beginning to plan Christmas and work out our lists – there are thousands of troops halfway around the world standing the watch. And while I believe we all want them home for Christmas, that’s not happening yet.

If you would like to send some Christmas cheer to the troops check out the following organizations below:

Operation Enduring Christmas

Trees for Troops

Operation Care Packages

For as little as $10 you can give a little bit of Christmas to our troops – funny how so little can mean so much, isn’t it?

God bless our troops, their families and loved ones and Merry Christmas.

WC

Why do Twitter and Facebook hate me?

Puleeze can someone tell me? Am I the only one who can rarely if ever get onto FB or Twitter –  much less do something once I get there? It’s a wonder to me. Apparently social networking is the thing of the 21st Century. I mean for cripes sakes where would we be without it?  Probably like me – continuously frustrated and probably somewhat inept at all the many apps.

I have lots of friends and family just wild about this stuff. Downloading tweetdecks and twitter apps for their blogs and all sorts of stuff. Me? Like I said just waiting for the endless loop of trying to download the page.

I even get notifications from both sites – saying I’m being followed by so and so or so and so wants me to join a cause or see their new pics. Hey, I’d love to follow you back or at least find out who the heck you are and why you are so bored you would follow me but… And I guess I wouldn’t mind tweeting from time to time but…

Forget about the FB apps. Farmville, MafiaWars, Family chains, circle of friends, virtual roses, pizzas, children, awards, automobiles, produce, etc..

Frankly folks, for the most part it’s all beyond me. The fact that I can barely get onto either site is a drawback I’ll admit but really how do so many people have so much time on their hands? Maybe they have secret plugins that allow them to actually get something done on either of these apps but I just can’t seem to spare an hour to simply find out who is following me and why much less tweet about something.  And growing virtual produce seems rather silly to me – why not just play a video game?

I definitely like the concept of staying in touch and having an easy platform to do so…but I guess that’s my point. Neither facebook or twitter make it easy – at least for me.  Mostly they just make me curse under my breath. I suppose I should just pull the plug on both of these sites – I mean I’m not really contributing anything to speak of and the whole virtual aspect makes me a little dizzy – but then I think to myself, at least somewhere somehow, long lost friends or family can find me. Still, it’s hard to network on sites that hate you. That taunt you and just won’t let you play.

Anybody else out there have this problem or should I start taking it personally?

WC

Dear Dad (happy father’s day)

Dear Dad,

Here we are once again. To say I miss you doesn’t begin to state the absence I feel.  Every day I think about you and wonder where you are. In heaven? In another life? In some paralell universe? Do they have Budweiser and country music there?

What bothers me is that lately  I’m forgetting. Not you. Not the events of that past life. But the sound of your voice. The lines of your craggy face. Your presence. The connection. I fight it but maybe it is time to let go. Maybe that is the way it is supposed to be. Maybe I’m not letting  you move on and you need to. Still, it’s hard to open my clutching hand. It’s hard to set you free. It’s hard to let you have a life without me.

You will always be my hero. You will always be the most important person in my life. I will never forget the lessons you taught me. I am proud to be your daughter. The morning sky will always make me think of your eyes. And summer tomatoes and Wheaties and black coffee and chocolate ice cream cones.

Thanks Dad – for being you. For being there.

Love,

Me

Oh Mother – Theme Friday

Oh Mother…

you gave me birth

but I often wondered why

I never pleased you

I often made you cry

I was too sullen

too fat, too shy

Too quiet, too noisy

too low, too high

Neither the baby

nor first-born

I tread in the middle

Feeling forlorn

Professing maternal love

with tears and supplication

and criticized my actions

with promised damnation

Oh Mother…

I sought your praise

in everyone I met

left feeling needy

from that foolish sucker’s bet

copyright 2010

Christine and her mother….