A Reasonable Price for Peace of Mind

Posted in Day in the Life with tags , , , , on September 25, 2016 by SeanMDavis

Imagine this:

You carry $500 dollars in cash on you, at all times. You can’t use this money to pay for dinner with your partner. You can’t use it if you’re short on bus fare. In fact, having this $500 in cash is only good for one thing.

You carry it just in case you get mugged.

That’s right. If you’re walking along some night and someone jumps out of the bushes in front of you, puts a gun to your head, and says, “Give me five hundred dollars right now, or you’re going to die,” you’d want to be able to do that. Of course, you do whatever you can to avoid being mugged but some things are inevitable. It’s got to happen to someone, after all, so you keep cash on you, not spending it on anything else, just in case.

Now let me add one more layer to this. The $500 you’re carrying has an expiration date. After a year, you need to throw away that McKinley and get a brand new one, hoping that you never need to actually use it.

Sounds kind of ridiculous.

You are absolutely right. It is quite ridiculous.

That’s how I feel carrying my EpiPen.

I am allergic to mollusks. I can’t eat octopus, clams, oysters, squid, or snails. That seems like it should be relatively easy to avoid, right? Not as easy as you might think. I avoid eating seafood at restaurants because clam juice is the base for a lot of sauces. Soups are a nightmare for me. My last reaction that required hospitalization came when I ate Italian Chicken Vegetable. Why? Cross-contamination from Clam Chowder. I get nervous even if it’s just at the table. I had a mild reaction when several of my friends ordered seafood paella and the smell was thick in the air surrounding the table.

I am a reasonably cautious adult. I scan the entire menu, looking for things I might be allergic to. I tell servers and ask about cross-contamination. After my last hospitalization which cost me thousands of dollars even with health insurance provided by my full-time employer, I decided I should also carry an EpiPen.

When I filled the prescription, I paid $500 out of pocket because I hadn’t met my deductible. I bought them this past summer and they will expire in April 2017. That’s less than a year.

Yes, it pissed me off, but I thought that was just the price of medication in the States. It sucks, but that’s just how it is.

Then, a couple months later, I learned that EpiPens used to be cheaper—not cheap, but certainly cheaper—and that the price hike coincided with Mylan paying out massive executive bonuses.

I feel like I’ve been mugged, so now I’m trying to Clark Kent it since I’m not Superman.

***

I recently found this website to help me write to my representatives in government. I am sending them a copy of this article.

https://nwyc.com/

Borderlands 6 available now in hardcover, paperback, and Kindle

Posted in Uncategorized on September 6, 2016 by SeanMDavis

Borderlands 6

My story, “In God’s Own Image,” appears in Borderlands 6, edited by Olivia F Monteleone and Thomas F Monteleone, published by Borderlands Press, and is available in a hardcover limited edition and paperback and Kindle version. God has remade the world in his image of faceless lack of identity. But there are those who remember what it is was like before the Re-Forming and they desperately fight against those who hate them for trying to hold onto their humanity. Josh Black reviewed the anthology for Cemetery Dance online, calling the story one of the anthology’s highlights. For the full review, go here.

Binge Watching, My New Reading

Posted in Day in the Life with tags , , , , , , , , on June 11, 2016 by SeanMDavis

About a year ago, a sneaking suspicion crept up on me. I wasn’t reading as much as I used to.

At first, I put it off to my busier schedule. I was made full time at work. I was living with my partner, Kate. I was a captain for my neighborhood soccer team. And various other hobbies. As many possible explanations existed, still none of them felt like THE reason and I struggled to figure out why I wasn’t reading as much.

Don’t get me wrong. I was still reading and when I found a book I got into deeply, I tore through it like my life depended on how much I read each day. Otherwise, I’d read a chapter or story or two before bed every night.

When I moved back home in my early twenties, my mom had cable. The problem with cable is that there’s always something on. Always. It didn’t matter if I’d seen the movie a dozen times, I hadn’t watched it in years. Or my favorite TV show, played in four hour blocks. It became a huge life suck. I finally got a handle on it but it took much more effort than it should have.
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When my partner and I moved in together, we decided not to get cable. But I still wasn’t reading as much I had or thought I should be.

Finally, it dawned on me.
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We hadn’t gotten cable, but we decided to try out a then-new service, Hulu+. The experiment didn’t last long because they didn’t have the specific show we’d heard about and were hoping to watch. But soon after, we got Amazon Prime. Then, a friend of ours added us to his Netflix account. Another friend shared his Hulu+ information with us. That’s basically to say, if it’s On Demand, we got it.
GoT
There have been days that I’ve gotten out of bed, ready to show my To Do List who’s boss, but then decided I’d watch an episode of something while eating breakfast.
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Four hours later, “It’s time for lunch. I’ll just watch one more episode.”
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Five hours later…
firefly
Not that there’s anything inherently wrong with watching shows or movies. I love and appreciate Malcolm Reynolds in the same way that I love and appreciate Roland Deschain. But reading engages more and different regions of your brain. That’s what I miss.

So I think I’m going to go read a book now.
reading under a tree

Borderlands 6

Posted in Fiction, News, Published, Writing with tags , , , , , on May 24, 2016 by SeanMDavis

B6 coverI am proud to announce that my story, “In God’s Image,” is in Borderlands 6, available for pre-order now from Borderlands Press as a signed limited edition. The full Table of Contents is as follows.

“Anton” – Michael Louis Dixon
“Eye of the Beholder” – John M. McIlveen
“Those Rockports Won’t Get You to Heaven” – Jack Ketchum
“The Last Plague Doctor” – Rebecca J. Allred
“Stinkers” Dan Waters
“Time is a Face on the Water” – Michael Bailey
“Summer Gullet” – John Boden
“Dead Letter Office” – Trent Zelazny & Brian Knight
“Cocoa” – Bob Pastorella
“The Dress” – Peter Salomon
“The Dishes are Done” – Carol Pierson Holding
“Red Rabbit” – Steve Rasnic Tem
“Miracle Meadows” – Darren O. Godfrey
“Lockjaw” – David Annadale
“Window” – Anya Martin
“Shattered” – G. Daniel Gunn & Paul Tremblay
“Mise en Abyme” – Gordon White
“In God’s Image” – Sean M Davis
“Special Delivery” – Tim Waggoner
“The Palace Garbage Man” – Bradley Michael Zerbe
“Consumers” – Gary A. Braunbeck
“The Architecture of Snow” – David Morrell

I am humbled to be a part of this Table of Contents. Thank you, Tom!

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Interview, JD Horn

Posted in Interview with tags , , , on May 7, 2016 by SeanMDavis

JD Horn
Chimerical Dark: Hello, and welcome to The Chimerical Dark.
Tell us a little bit about yourself.

JD Horn: I’ve been writing for over 20 years, but my first published book didn’t come out until 2014. I was an official nominee in the category of best debut author in the 2014 Goodreads Choice Awards. I only came in 16th place, but that still isn’t too shabby. My books have now been/are being translated into eight languages (Russian, Polish, French, Italian, German, Spanish, Turkish, Romanian). I’m a member of the International Thriller Writers and Mystery Writers of America. You can find out far more than you care to know about me at http://www.JDHornAuthor.com.
Jilo
CD: What’s your newest project?

JDH: My new release, Jilo, came out on April 26th. Jilo, the prequel to my Witching Savannah Series (The Line, The Source, The Void), is set between 1932 and 1960, and focuses on the early life of the series’ breakout character, Jilo Wills. While Jilo is technically the fourth book in the series, a reader can, without too many spoilers, begin the series with this book.

CD: What are you working on next?

JDH: I’ve got a few different ideas I’m floating, some paranormal series and a straightforward mystery series as well.
Pitch
CD: What’s your favorite thing you’ve written, and how can we read it?

JDH: Honestly, Jilo was the hardest book to write, and maybe for that reason, it stands as my favorite. I’ve also got a short story (“Pitch”) I’m fond of. You can find “Pitch” as part of the Phantasma anthology and as a standalone short out on Amazon.

CD: What lurks in the dark that scares you?

JDH: You know, what lurks in the dark doesn’t scare me. I can handle the boogeymen. On the other hand, bigotry terrifies me.

CD: How does that influence your stories?

JDH: The monsters—at least the human ones—in my books are all motivated by the belief that something about themselves—their race, their class, the privilege into which they were born— entitles them to disregard the essential humanity and equality of those not like them. My heroes strive to nurture others; my villains to control.

CD: Thank you for taking the time to swing by The Chimerical Dark.

Interviewed

Posted in Interview with tags , , , , on April 14, 2016 by SeanMDavis

My mentor, JD Horn, hosts a short interview series on his blog and he asked me to participate. Click the image to read.
Interviewed

Penguicon 2016

Posted in Appearances, Conventions, Presentation on April 10, 2016 by SeanMDavis

It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything here, mostly because I’ve been busy working on things to be able to post about. I’m going to start with Penguicon 2016!

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Yes! I am back at Penguicon, one of my favorite weekends of the year. Here’s my schedule as of right now. Although I haven’t been given a reading slot yet, rest assured I will be somewhere, sometime.

Speculative Poetry Starter Kit:Who to read, where to look and exactly what the heck IS speculative poetry.  Speakers include: Jim Leach, Sean M Davis – Friday April 29, 9p Executive Meeting Center IV

Speak Your Words: We are all made of stories and sharing them can be powerful and life changing. Come and share our version of an open mic night. Bring your poetry, personal manifesto, or short-short story.  Speakers include: Jim Leach, Matt Betts, Sean M Davis, Jessica Roland – Saturday April 30, 8p Executive Meeting Center IV

Self Editing Tools: Before you expose your precious words to others, you want them to look their best. Clif will discuss a few of the off-the-shelf tools for grammar checking your work with emphasis on checkIt, a tool written by a writer for writers to make their prose stronger.  Speakers include: Clif Flynt, Sean M Davis – Sunday May 1, 12p Algonquin D