Author, Photographer, Researcher, Artist, Adventurer and Buccaneer Extraordinaire

“Or at least that’s the plan each morning after coffee.”

DL Tolleson.com

THIS UNNAMED GEOLOGICAL formation is the likely result of wind, rain and time eroading away surface material to expose what at one time would have lava (magma) that had cooled and solidified. Copyright © 2010 by DL Tolleson. All Rights Reserved.
COMING INTO OR out of the Chisos Mountains, this is the northwest view and is several miles south of Panther Junction and the headquarters for Big Bend National Park. Copyright © 2010 by DL Tolleson. All Rights Reserved.
THE CLARET CUP is covered in barbed spines and blooms a reddish, cup-shaped flower from about April to June or July in Big Bend National Park. Copyright © 2010 by DL Tolleson. All Rights Reserved.
THIS VIEW FROM a formation called, “The Window,” looks out from the westside of the Chisos Mountains in Big Bend National Park. Copyright © 2010 by DL Tolleson. All Rights Reserved.
INDIAN HEAD MOUNTAIN and its southern region offers this “leaning” wall of geology at the western boundary of Big Bend National Park. The rocks of the foreground are boulders ranging from man-sized on up. Copyright © 2010 by DL Tolleson. All Rights Reserved.
MASSIVE AND TOWERING, this wall of the geology is at least a couple of hundrend feet high and situated in the Indian Head area of Big Bend National Park. Copyright © 2010 by DL Tolleson. All Rights Reserved.
WIDE-OPEN PANORAMAS and mountainous terrain such as this are routine along roadside in Big Bend National Park. Copyright © 2010 by DL Tolleson. All Rights Reserved.
THE SOUTHWEST SIDE of the Chisos Mountains, also known as the Chisos Mountain Basin and home to the lodge in Big Bend National Park. Copyright © 2011 by DL Tolleson. All Rights Reserved.
A FALLEN TREE is an impassable barrier in an otherwise debris-free dry riverbed in Big Bend National Park. Copyright © 2010 by DL Tolleson. All Rights Reserved.
INDIGENOUS TO TEXAS, New Mexico and Arizona, Javelinas in Big Bend National Park genetically differ from swine. Copyright © 2010 by DL Tolleson. All Rights Reserved.
LOST MINE TRAIL in Big Bend National Park, looking southward over Juniper Canyon, the Chisos Mountain’s Northeast Rim and into Mexico. Copyright © 2010 by DL Tolleson. All Rights Reserved.
A TREE SILHOUETTED against the night sky as seen from Chisos Basin in Big Bend National Park. Copyright © 2010 by DL Tolleson. All Rights Reserved.
THIS VIEW EAST of a volcano is an illusion of the setting sun streaming through the Chisos Basin area behind Casa Grande Peak in Big Bend National Park. Copyright © 2010 by DL Tolleson. All Rights Reserved.
WRIGHT MOUNTAIN in background at Big Bend National Park. Copyright © 2010 by DL Tolleson. All Rights Reserved.
A VIEW WESTWARD after sundown from the Indian Head area of Big Bend National Park. Copyright © 2010 by DL Tolleson. All Rights Reserved.
A CAMERA COMPENSATION for the limited light after sundown provides this view westward from the Indian Head area of Big Bend National Park. Copyright © 2010 by DL Tolleson/Camera One. All Rights Reserved.
SANTA ELENA CANYON after sunset, as seen from the Chimneys in Big Bend National Park. Copyright © 2010 by DL Tolleson/Camera One. All Rights Reserved.

Publication History: 2006 Archived Blog. Copyright © 2006 by DL Tolleson. All Rights Reserved. Excerpts from this work are permissible if author attribution is included. However, beyond this no part of this material may be reproduced in any form or by any means without written permission from the author.

Commentary: Some or all of these blog entries may have been revised and/or updated as stand-alone topics available via the Compendium. Any such revised and/or updated topic may reflect a title differing from the original entry archived on this page. This will be noted in a Commentary atop any such revision and/or updated topic, along with a reference to the original entry archived on this page.

—DL Tolleson

The Great American Novel Blog

NOVEMBER 2006

There are some days for which you just don’t want to get out of bed. Forever on the roller coaster of life, the rumor coming out of my publisher is that a number of business partners have failed to honor commitments critical to (or for) the existence of The Lighthouse Press, Inc. While this has been an on-going strain on the Lighthouse publishing company for the entire life of its seven years existence, it may finally be something from which they are unable to recover. Small press publishers have always had an uphill battle when fighting to survive in the publishing world.

So what does this mean, exactly? Well, it may very well mean that the Lighthouse Press, Inc. will close shop and shut the doors. If that happens—and they file bankruptcy—then all bets are off. Finding a home for the Stopgap sequel could take some time, if it can even be accomplished, at all. It was years before I stumbled across The Lighthouse Press, Inc. And believe me, I learned the hard way that a conventional/traditional publishing house (be they a mainstream Goliath or a small press David) is the only way to go. Authors that try the vanity or print-on-demand route are nearly always ostracized into oblivion by the book industry. So, if the Lighthouse Press goes, I have no idea how long it will be before my next novel will see the light of day.

At any rate, if the era of The Lighthouse Press, Inc. is indeed coming to a close, I’ll let you know when I know (and can say something about it).

Oh, and as for the Six Degrees of separation experiment … Apparently it is still a pretty big world since nothing has happened there. There’s a link to this on the News page of this site.

OCTOBER 2006

Promotional speaking, it seems fortune may have finally smiled on the foolish (me). As has been previously documented in press releases, The Lighthouse Press, Inc. initially published the novel without marketing the title (and for that you can blame me). Despite the B&N staff recommendations, the novel has received little attention beyond that of those readers having purchased the book. This means, of course, that the publisher didn’t exactly invest in a bonanza. Now, however, the publisher is embarking upon an “experiment” that is testing the Six Degrees of Separation theory, and The Gray Stopgap is one of two novels being offered as an incentive to participants. There are a number of rules to the experiment and if you’re interesting in its progress you can follow the October 2006 links that are listed on the News page of this site.

Nothing much else to report.

SEPTEMBER 2006

First, I want to thank each of you who, having previously corresponded through the website or directly with me, had e-mail addresses to let us know that the site’s cgi e-mail program was down for a long time. I appreciate each of you having brought it to our attention. It has finally been fixed.

There has been a little “tweaking” done to the site, with each of the prior updates being moved from a single “Old Hat” page to “Old Hat” pages specific to the yearly dates (just click the “Old Hat” page and you’ll see what I mean).

With regard to the next Karns Gray novel, about which I’m hearing a lot of anticipation: I have made a little progress on it and I hope to complete it by the end of the year. But that’s just a hope, not a promise. A couple of months after that is just as good a guess.

Nothing new to report movie-wise. However, my publisher is putting the final touches on an Internet “experiment” that has the side benefit of casting attention on The Gray Stopgap—something I had naively forbidden when it was first published (more about that at the Collegian link on the News page). At any rate, the “experiment” will be rolling out shortly and I can say little until then.

In closing this update, I thank each of you who have been so remarkably complimentary, supportive and kind.

That’s about it for now.

JUNE 2006

For those of you paying attention, it may have seemed as if I dropped off the face of the earth. After nearly a year of silence (insofar as this site is concerned) I’ve finally a few moments to poke my head above the surface to check on the swamp being drained and the alligators in which I remain buried up to my armpits.

Good news, bad news and news about which the jury is still out. Let’s go with the bad news first.

Sadly, the sequel to the Gray Stopgap has not moved forward one iota or keyboard stroke. On the other hand, the good news is that the Gray Stopgap film treatment is all but in the can. Owing to the constraints on length required by presentation screenplays, I am admittedly tepid about my own screenplay. It seems Hollywood equates about 120 minutes to 120 pages of script. With only 120 pages with which to play, a 360-page novel doesn’t have a prayer (I’m actually over the limit at 150 pages). I had a few things to say in The Gray Stopgap, all of which basically created a character driven plot coinciding with an atypical espionage theme. But in a 150-page screenplay the only thing I could develop was wall-to-wall plot with the characters hanging on for the ride. My hope is that if we manage to sell this project, the buyer will read the novel and more subtly adapt it to the screen. Screenplays and novels are different animals and so too, I think, are screenwriters and novelists.

About that screenplay: My publisher is in the middle of wheeling and dealing some significant deals for The Lighthouse Press, Inc. and Lighthouse Entertainment. That may, or may not have an impact on our hopes.

So what have I been up to? Well, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to earn a decent income as a Paralegal Specialist with the U.S. Small Business Administration. After 6 and 7-day weeks, and 8 to 10- hour days, I am kind of relieved that the temporary appointment of the last eight months is over. Those people are under a schedule that precludes most forms of a normal life—certainly no life for a writer (be he/she full or part time at it).

In other news, due to the absence of facts in any given media story, politicizing about everything from taxation to illegal immigration has, more often than not, caused my blood to boil. It is as if the media, motion picture stars and many commentators have neglected to check the facts and have forgotten history. Why is it, I’ve wondered, so many are not held responsible for outrageousness? As such, I’m giving thought to creating a page on this site that is not dedicated to narrative, but rather just the facts.

Other minor site changes: The Old Hat section of this page (that being previous updates) was migrated to a page of its own. And a few new items have been tossed into the Q&A section.

That’s it for now.