The Catalogue

All books available by Phillip Brunnengraeber

Join the adventure today! 

The Sureshot Series:

The Sureshot Rises

Sureshot the Assassin

Sureshot the King (Coming soon) 

The Monster in the Woods (A Sureshot Short Story)

Goblin Brothers Series:

Goblins Episode 1: Born in Blood 

Goblins Episode 2: Family

Goblins Episode 3: Blood, Bone , Spirit

Nonfiction: 

This is Crazy: Finding Who you are and What you Want

When Darkness Falls

Warmth of friendship and love drifted peacefully through the air
The world was free and open and we could live without care

That bullets would rain down and bombs would rip life from us
Stealing away life, stealing away peace and stealing away trust

Some chose to burn the thin curtains that shield our kind eyes
From the horrors of the world filled with death, disease, flies

Our illusion was shattered like a mirror reflecting our beauty
And death was brought to us as if it was their duty

To smash to pieces the fine statues of liberty and freedom
Breaking the hearts of hundreds of innocent victims

And the ones who love them who may never hold them again
Or hear the soft words of “I love you” with joy spoken

Instead sirens screamed out deep into the night
And we held on to each other, not in love, but in fright

Quickly we offer our own freedom and liberty for security and safety
But as Franklin said we receive neither the safety we want but lost liberty

Like the great terror brought to the streets of Paris long before
The guillotine erected in the center of Paris may fall once more

If we frightened specks of nothingness demand action and guarantee
That no harm with come to the lives we cling to feebly

And cower under the covers while spiting hate akin to the hate that killed
Never finding a solution but pouring more into the hateful cup over filled

Until more blood is spilt and more hatred built and more bile coughed
On the streets, in the neighborhood, in the churches and mosques

When darkness falls and fear takes hold there is not end to the madness
Hatred and violence in the name of safety only create more darkness

Only by standing brave and tall in face of hateful words and angry eyes
Can we last until morning and enjoy the bright rays of the sunrise

Mark Twain’s House

I had the opportunity today to visit Mark Twain’s home in Hartford Connecticut and it was such a blessing. He is one of my top three authors (Twain, Orwell, Steinbeck) and the House is beautiful. seeing the rooms where he wrote some of my favorite books and touching the banister that he touched was a magical experience for me. It felt like I could feel his creative spirit and imagine his mindset as he crafted brilliant words that spoke to me. He’s an inspiration and a hero to me and I am thrilled I got the experience.

Retreat

A few things need to come together for me to do my best work. Like anything I suppose, writing takes several elements in order for it to go well. It helps to feed myself, be well rested, limit distractions and have a plan. It helps if I am feeling good emotionally as well. Another important element is environmental.

When I committed myself to daily writing with ambitious goals, I began writing downstairs with the kids around so I could keep track of them. That was a huge mistake. They never stop talking to me and they continuously break my concentration. It’s frustrating. I love them and want to answer all their questions and love it when they show me the things they’re excited about, but I can’t look over every five minutes to see the Lego thing they build or listen to them explain every round of fortnite they played and stay in the zone in order to write. I had to make a change.

I moved upstairs into the spare room and now I can sit there and really crank out some words. I hit my optimal zone regularly now and get far more done than I was downstairs. Now they only come up when there is something really important to tell me, like they won the round of fortnite or they just wanted a hug and to tell me they love me. I can manage that.

It is also great to change up the environment to something a little more inspiring or relaxing. I personally love being a little closer to the natural world and a nice retreat away from things helps eliminate some of the worldly distractions that can get in my way. A couple weeks ago I took a trip for an entire weekend of playing dungeons and dragons (yes I’m that kind of nerd) and the house we rented was in the gold mining mountains of Northern California. I loved it. Even in the midst of drinking, laughing and gaming, I was able to do some writing in the calm mornings.

Now I’m in rural Connecticut surrounded by trees and my keyboard, notepad and iPad are all set ready for me to crank out a few thousand words. Something about being near the same trees that shaded Mark Twain have me feeling very nostalgic. So I highly recommend a retreat if your looking for inspiration or maybe even just some rest. It will be good for your spirit.

Here’s to great writing! Cheers!

Keep Sailing

“This is what you should teach me, how to be like Odysseus–how to love my country, wife, and father, and how, even after suffering shipwreck, I might keep sailing on course to those honorable ends.”

-Seneca, Moral Letters, 88.7b

In a time when everything seems to be on fire; when there are literal biblical events like war, pestilence and plague; the lesson from the Odyssey is to keep going. In one of the earliest and greatest Epics of all time, one of the main lessons was perseverance. I strive to write epics as fantastic as the one Homer penned and I strive to live life with the courage Odysseus showed.

Cheers!

Back at it

Perhaps you noticed but I’ve been busy writing lately. It feels great. I’m on my way back up to around 5000 words a day which represents my most productive level. It’s my goal. At that level of writing I can crank out all sorts of pieces. I have plenty of projects to work on and I am feeling better than ever about writing. What changed?

To begin with a pattern and a habit is key. I was laying in bed too late, being too lazy and lacking all motivation to do what I know I need to do. Now, I get up, have coffee outside with my girlfriend, listen to a ten minute motivational compilation and then get to writing. I hit the keyboard ready to go and I’ve been very productive.

Another thing I began doing recently, and this is huge, is avoiding social media and news in the morning. The world is on fire and there are a ton of things to be upset about but I am trying to ignore them because they cloud my thoughts and bring down my mood. I try to stay away from my phone in the mornings until I can get some work done. It has helped a ton.

I also decided to move my work space to our spare bedroom. I have many literal children and I love them more than anything but they also love to talk to me and ask my questions or show me the progress on their games or whatever it is they are doing and they distract me constantly. Now they have to come upstairs to distract me while I’m writing and this has proved an obstacle to their goals. I’m getting far more done.

A couple more minor things to add and I’ll be the best writer I can be. I am adding exercise because I firmly believe that a healthy body contributes to a productive mind. I am also getting back to tracking my daily productivity. If I have to be real with myself about how much I got done in a day then I can hold myself accountable. It isn’t necessarily fun to see that I was lazy and didn’t get much done in a day, but it is important.

All together this is a recipe for success and I’ve been very successful lately. If you are looking to improve in an area perhaps some of these things will help you as well. Cheers to being the best we can be!

Storytelling

Storytelling through writing is such an amazing process. I literally make up stories that I hope will entertain and even inspire the reader but I have to transfer them from my mind to page and then fix them up in a way that makes them the most appealing. This process is sometimes slow and painful but necessary.

Then, once all the work of putting to paper what I built in my mind is completed, I offer up the story to the reader and sit back and wait for the reader to let me know if they enjoyed the story.

It creates in me a deep anticipation because I want the reader to enjoy my work and I have no one to blame if the work is not good except myself. I am entirely responsible for the words on the page and the story they tell. I could have chosen any words to make any story but these are the ones I selected. They are entirely mine even more so than a child who begins to make things theirs very early in their development. No, my stories are entirely of my creation and a direct reflection on me as their creator. I formed them and breathed life into them.

Writing is a wonderful craft that invites people to see into your heart and soul and allows them to make a judgment.