Monday, October 25, 2010

A Fictional Race to the Finish

The Searchers (film)Image via Wikipedia
Fiction often involves a journey or the "race against the clock". As the story opens, a challenge is revealed and a dramatic need must be resolved by accomplishing a task, making a journey or beating the clock. Examples include "The Fugitive," "48 Hours", "The Searchers," and "Saving Private Ryan" in movies and "The Name of the Rose," "The Lord of the Rings," and the "Bourne series" in literature/cinema.

The fictional challenge can be "find the killers" (The Fugitive), "save the child" (The Searchers), "solve the mystery" (The Name of the Rose) and "save the world" (The Lord of the Rings).

In the book, Gettysburg Passage, available from, the fictional challenge is a blend of solve the mystery and save the world!!

Everyday people working in high tech around Washington, D.C. have their very normal lives disrupted by a series of challenges: a mysterious ancient artifact is discovered, famous historical personalities briefly appear, a threatening man begins shadowing them. It slowly emerges that the characters seem to be pushed by some external force to visit a mysterious cave situated near the legendary Gettysburg battlefield north of Washington.

Ordinary people are asked to play a key role in extraordinary events - perhaps even help save modern civilization. Do they step up to the challenge or do they avert their eyes and go on with their normal lives?

Find out by visiting today. The novel is receiving enthusiastic reviews! Gettysburg Passage is available for $2.99.

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Monday, October 18, 2010

Bronze Age Stonehenge Found in Russia

Stonehenge Stonehenge, Wiltshire. Stonehenge i...Image via Wikipedia
Archaeologists have found remains of an advanced community, from about 4,000 years ago, that was of similar size to a vibrant city state in Mycenaean Greece. The civilization was located near today's Siberian-Kazahk border in southern Russia. Some 200 settlements within the community have been uncovered. The latest discovery is in the area of the North Caucasus mountains and includes a monumental ring of large stones that is probably related to keeping a calendar and spiritual activities. It reminds researchers of Stonhenge in the U.K.

This is the area, between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea, that I consider "ground zero" for the development of advanced, ancient civilizations. If you scan down to my earlier posts, you will see many points concerning the migrations of ancient Indo-European peoples who eventually formed advanced civilizations in Mesopotamia, Persia, Greece and beyond.

This area is the mother-lode. Here is a link to the story: 
My book, Gettysburg Passage, available for $2.99 from Amazon, deals with modern people who uncover mysterious clues from a civilization that may have originated in this area. The central question of this first book is, would people of today stop their busy lives to engage with and possibly be enriched by such an ancient civilization? Or would they just move on with the busy, materialistic lives, giving barely a thought of who they are and how they go here?
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Friday, October 15, 2010

Powered by 550 Horses, a Modern Mad Dash from Washington to Gettysburg

NEW YORK - APRIL 28:  Plaza Hotel employees To...Image by Getty Images via @daylife
The famous American Civil War battle of Gettysburg took place over three days in the beginning of July in 1863. Readers don't often realize that the battle was really a part of a larger military campaign, an invasion of the north by Confederate rebel infantry and cavalry, and the campaign took place over a month, from early June to early July.

The modern adventure novel, Gettysburg Passage, can also be thought of as a brief "campaign" - or maybe better as a mad dash! Several characters, lead by Rick Reynolds, a high tech sales rep living near Washington, are forced to deal with shocking discovery, emerging danger and harrowing pursuit that relentlessly pushes them mysteriously towards Gettysburg. The novel covers a few action-packed days in the lives of Rick and his friends.

The Gettysburg battlefield is very close to America's capital - less than an hour if traffic's light. Nearly 150 years ago, the trip north took rebel forces weeks. But the men and women in Gettysburg Passage need only a few days to cover the very same ground - if they can keep from getting killed!

For several people in the novel, being able to jump into a 2011 Ford Shelby Cobra Mustang GT500, the offspring of a famous racer, might make the trip a little more brief. You see, the sleek, powerful muscle car is powered by 550 horses and doesn't stop for water, or to graze! But life can be perilous at 120 miles per hour and faster, especially when the bad guys are chasing you in a spectacularly fast Dodge Challenger.

To learn more about how some everyday people get sucked into trying to save modern civilization, while dodging a few bullets related to the Gettysburg Campaign, check out Gettysburg Passage by John Callahan, available from for $2.99.

Action, adventure, history, fantasy and a touch of science fiction, all in a fast-paced contemporary novel.
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Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Did Professors Make Up Ancient Greece, Or Was It A Novelist?

Foundry PainterImage via Wikipedia
The satirical publication The Onion recently reported that a team of professors working in the 1970s completely made up the idea of ancient Greece, an important contributor to the formation of Western Civilization, to fill in a missing section of the pre-Christian historical record.  According to them, Greece didn't amount to much and the historians created it all up in a flurry of hard work. Here is the link:

A pretty funny and original idea, huh?

But what if a new novel, a modern action & adventure story, with a touch of history, some fantasy and a small dash of science fiction, offered a slightly different take? What if Gettysburg Passage suggests that Western Civilization is in fact in real danger of dying at birth? What if some of the earliest, prehistorical influencers to Western Civilization, facing total defeat, need to be organized, nurtured and protected by people who are actually living today in the U.S.?

How would that be possible? I guess that's where a bit of the fantasy and scifi comes in. If The Onion can suggest that Greece can be made up, I can top them by having some normal people living right now be given the chance to "ride to the rescue" of an embryonic culture more than 5,000 years ago. And you thought the editors of The Onion were cheeky....

To learn more, go to and check out Gettysburg Passage, a fast paced adventure by John Callahan. Now available for $2.99.

some clever tags: Indo-European, Greek sculpture, Mesopotamia, Egypt
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Monday, October 11, 2010

Can You House Train a Wormhole?

The "Star Gate" sequence, one of man...Image via Wikipedia
Wormholes are theoretical.  Physicists describe wormholes as shortcuts in spacetime, a virtual tunnel that connects today to some point in the past or future.

Wormholes are deeply ingrained in popular culture (think Stargate SGI and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine) and even a new TV series on the Discovery Channel starring Morgan Freeman. Stephen Hawking loves wormholes.

Wormholes can be scary, like that visual sequence in 2001: A Space Odyssey.

The question is, can they be house trained? That is, can a wormhole be trained to work for you? If it won't listen to your suggestions, can you at least trust it before you jump down the galactic-firehose- quantum-water-slide?

That is the essential question in Gettysburg Passage, my novel, the first of a trilogy.

This modern adventure story involves a mysterious ancient artifact, people living today around Washington, D.C., some famous dead Americans, a homeless shelter, a historic American battlefield named Gettysburg and mildly philosophical questions relating to the current lust for a materialist at-all-costs consumption culture, an open yearning for contemporary immortality and the optimal speeds for street-legal muscle cars.

At about 90,000 words it is a fast read and available now for $2.99 at

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Thursday, October 7, 2010

7 Signs Your Boyfriend Is an Alien

BerriesImage via Wikipedia
This 7 tips are not gender specific and may easily apply to boyfriend or girlfriend ;-)

7.  He takes the bear's side of every argument.
6.  She can't explain that mysterious artifact hidden in the drawer next to the porn stash.
5.  Your soul mate has a weakness for weird weapons and can hit an archery target at 200 yards.
4.  She's not worried about money and suggests wild berries are suitable winter provender.
3.  He's on the run, perhaps stalked by a large, shadowy figure with hairy arms who may have wandered away from the Steelers practice squad.
2.  She's not alarmed when people dead for 100 years drop by the house for an urgent chat.
1. ...and here's the smoking gun: He thinks Bon Jovi is a French resaurant in Georgetown.

....many of these issues surface in my action and adventure, history, philosophy and a touch of fantasy novel, Gettysburg Passage, on sale from Amazon at $2.99....enjoy!!

tags: slightly eccentric writer living in the washington suburbs
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Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Gettysburg, the Trojan War and Modern Archaeology

Aeneas, whom the Romans believed Romulus and R...Image via Wikipedia
One of the common threads of my opening action and adventure novel, Gettysburg Passage, and the books that follow, is that commonly held beliefs about our history evolved, and how we got to this spot in the modern world, are too simplistic. My thesis is that civilizations matured earlier than suspected and that we have a lot to learn as we continue to investigate ancient settlement sites and records.

A good example of how modern science is proving me correct is the latest news out of Troy. German archaeologists now find that the area believed to be Troy has been settled at least since the Bronze Age, stretching back more than 3,000 years. The period roughly aligned with when the Trojan War would have occurred matches a sophisticated complex of settlements and defenses that existed on the spot believed to be Troy.

Here is the link that tells more:

I won't do a spoiler but there is a link between the characters in my novel and the migrations of ancient people that would settle the lands through Asia Minor into the ancient Middle East and North Africa. These ancient migrations brought people to the area where Troy was founded. A great battle was fought and a legend and literature born.

Some prominent people living in the American south about 100 years ago considered their heritage (the losing side of the American Civil War) to be a lost cause, much like poor Troy facing the overwhelming invading forces of King Agamemnon. Many any case, my novel mostly takes place in the present day but many of the issues discussed above come into play as the central character, Rick Reynolds, attempts to understand why an ancient artifact appears to be drawing him to fateful cave, a passage in the mountains near a battlefield in Gettsyburg.

For more information on Gettysburg Passage, go to

tags: Troy, Rome, Egypt, Sumer
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What if Gen. Custer Wrote You a Traffic Citation?

Custer3Image via Wikipedia
One of the ongoing challenges of writing a novel is making it entertaining while at the same time keeping it real. Consumers are more than willing to suspend disbelief if the entertainment value and fit with the plot outweighs a hurdle of believability. Gettysburg Passage, my novel available at, uses elements of fantasy, fast action & adventure, history, and a touch of science fiction to keep the plot moving forward.

Fairly early in the novel, several prominent figures out of American history make brief appearances in the present. "Guest" appearances are made by George Custer, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. and John Reynolds.

Of course, George Custer is the famous general and later Indian fighter. What readers probably don't know is that he got his early war fighting experience in northern Virginia and in particular in Washington suburbs. Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. is a world famous American Supreme Court Justice. But as a young man he was wounded in one of the very first battles of the Civil War, Balls Bluff, again in the Washington suburbs.  John Reynolds is famous as one of the most admired Federal Civil War generals. He was very active in and around Washington.

In my novel, all of the actions of these famous historical figures fit closely into the plot, based on actions in their lives, helping to move the book relentlessly forward. Like I said, make it entertaining while keeping it as "real" as possible ;-)

Check out Gettysburg Passage on

tags: ancient civilizations, Rome, Egypt, Mesopotamia, Indo-European

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Sunday, October 3, 2010

Infinitely Burning Caves, Time Shifts and a Novel

"Elk Bath" – A wildfire in the Bitte...Image via Wikipedia
Man has used coal for warmth and metalworking for thousands of years. Primitive coal mines
and pits were some of the earlier forms of metal mining. With exposed coal came mine fires. Fires are usually caused by careless trash burning, lightning or forest and brush fires. All over the globe, there are thousands of out-of-control coal mine fires burning right now. There is a well known mine fire in Pennsylvania that continuously burns and even destroyed a town.

This mine was an inspiration for Gettysburg Passage, a new novel available from Amazon. Gettysburg Passage is not about the Civil War, but about a modern "rip in the veil of time" that exists in a burning coal mine in the mountains near the Gettysburg battlefield. Because this abandoned mine contains a mysterious shaft that is in fact a time portal, some unintended time shifts impact characters in the book. How this time portal affects people and where it actually leads is one of the great mysteries that surfaces in Book 1 and that is a central component of Book 2.

The burning passage presents a problem and an opportunity to the main character, Rick Reynolds. Rick may have already experienced the portal once and, if so, doesn't want to do it again. He is quite happy living a life with a good job, friends and modern conveniences. But destiny, fate, or a higher power, has other plans for Rick and his friends.

No matter how they try to avoid it, the burning mine has a pull on the key characters in Gettysburg Passage. Despite living modern lives, it lures them north from the Washington area towards the area of the historic battle, towards a burning mine and what lies beyond.

To read Gettysburg Passage, go to and look up the book. It can be read on Kindle or as a Kindle app on computers, iPads and smart phones. What are you waiting for?

Tags: ancient civilizations, time travel, Ur, Indo-European, Greece, Rome, Egypt
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