Saturday, May 18, 2024

Friday, May 10, 2024

Circle the Earth

 Hello my friends. I’ve started a new project, which is both a book and a real-time adventure. I’ve been posting about it across social media but, as always, I seem to be neglecting my own website. No more!

In about ten days I will be setting out from my kitchen door, with just a knapsack and a sketch kit, on a quest to circumnavigate the planet Earth using (to every extent possible) only surface transportation. This means no flying! (Though I know I will have to break that rule in at least one instance). 

I will also be making and sharing art and comics all along the way. 

You can read MUCH more about this project in the Patreon post HERE:

And Patreon is where I’ll be posting most of the content. You can sign up as a free member! But if you want to help me bring what I hope will be a beautiful book into the world then by all means sign up for the $3 tier. 

Here are a few photos of the pre-departure comics from the book I’ll be drawing in along the way:

See you out there in the wild,


Thursday, November 30, 2023

November Trees

 Inspired by Leonardo's sanguine chalk landscapes, I sat in our sunny field and drew a few of my own. By the next week most of the leaves were gone.

Saturday, April 15, 2023

Reynard's Tale

 After all this time, the release date for Reynard’s Tale is just a few days away. The book will be out on April 18, so if you’ve ordered a copy, that’s when it should arrive in your mailbox.

Here’s a look at a little illustration I made as a print to give as a gift to everyone who will be attending the Reynard’s Tale release event (Ales and Tales) at the Handley Library in Winchester, VA on April 22nd. As I write this there are still some tickets available!

(You can read a little more about this print over on my Patreon, in an open post.)

This book means a lot to me, and I’m hoping against hope that it finds its way into the hands of the readers who will love it most. It’s different that the books that I’m most known for, which makes "finding its audience" a little bit of a challenge. It’s also very personal and working on it was ….well, I’ve never had a creative experience quite like it. 

It’s a toe dipped into unknown waters, and I find that I want to keep swimming…

Thursday, March 23, 2023


Post-covid author visits still seem like a nostalgic novelty, but I did one this week—traveling to the southernmost edge of Virginia in my Little Red Truck.* This visit was emotionally intense and also had all the lightness of a springtime ramble in the hills. But also, while I was away, The Hatke Family Cat passed away. 

My Cat.

I say “My Cat” but we’d broken up, actually. She moved out years ago and went to live with the man in the house just across the abandoned railroad tracks. Still close enough to know she was there, but rather definitively Not With Us. 

Still, the thread of her life stretched back almost to the beginning of our family. She came to us as a kitten and we never knew her exact age, but she was nearly as old as my daughter, Angelica, who is twenty.

The river keeps flowing no matter what you do.

*More about this author visit soon. Kind of a lot happened.

Monday, March 20, 2023

The Monster Market: Hearth and Home

Last year I quietly recorded ten (of a projected 13) episodes of a sort of folkloric bestiary podcast with my pal Zack Giallongo. We called it The Monster Market. The idea was that for each episode we'd pick a theme and then each of us would talk about three creatures that fit the theme. It's been tremendous fun. 

Episode 2 was posted last week. The theme is domestic spirits. 

We also agreed that we would illustrate each of the creatures we discuss so that, in the end, the podcast itself would be a sort of illustrated bestiary. I'm way behind on my illustrations, of course. But thanks to a nice hand-bound sketchbook from Tim Canny (and a little inspiration from Angelica) I finally settled on a trajectory for them. I'm aiming at a sort of folklore field guide approach. Here are my first two pages in the raw:

Stay safe out there.


Thursday, March 16, 2023

I'm Sure this Door is Some Kind of Metaphor

 I've been designing doors in my sketchbook. At a certain point I visited the Strong Oaks Woodshop with a scheme in hand. I've been stopping by periodically over the winter, in my little red truck, to pick up loads of scrap bits to burn in our wood stove. 

Keeping warm with cast-off bits—one of the little things that gets you longing for Summer.

Over this last weekend Mike built the door and helped me arrange for my design to be cut from a sheet of 1/16" steel on the wood shop's laser cutter (it was amazing to watch). Then we polished and placed the design as the last of winter's snow flurried outside. Finally we wrapped the door up in padded plastic and I drove it home in the back of my little red truck. 

Not scraps this time but treasure. 

And it all began as a few sketches. 

I've written a longer piece about this process over on my Patreon, along with video and lots more pictures. It's an open post, so feel free to have a look. 

Friday, February 24, 2023

Still Writing, Still Learning


It was August when I opened up my notes and started serious work on redrafting this novel. I had planned to wrap it up in mid-November. I never guessed that I would still be working on the final few chapters with March looming. But one thing I can say: 

I have learned a lot from writing, and re-writing this book. And I’ve learned a lot from sitting with a story for fifteen years from inception to final draft. And even here in the final weeks, as I push to the end, I will sip my morning coffee and a little bit of plot or theme or a moment of character will snap into place like a puzzle piece. 

But still, I am *aching* for this one to be finished!

It’s time to turn this one in, hoist my little knapsack full of lessons learned, and walk on down the road to the next project. 

Monday, February 13, 2023

Schmalentines Day

 I remember when my sister was in high school and wrote this snarky Valentine's Day song. I'm glad she's still singing her offbeat originals (with her daughters!)

Tuesday, November 22, 2022