Happy New Year! I hope this message finds you happy and healthy. I think we can all agree that it’s nice to see 2020 in our collective rear view mirrors.
T-minus three months and counting until the April 6 release of my next novel, The Sacrifice of Lester Yates. Janice Kiaski, the community editor of the Steubenville, Ohio, Herald-Star recently did a very nice article about me and The Sacrifice. Here’s the link: https://www.heraldstaronline.com/news/local-news/2020/12/suspenseful-political-smart/
It you like my novels and fiction set in rural settings, check out the Bell Elkins series by my former Columbus Dispatch colleague, Julia Keller. Julia won a Pulitzer Prize as a reporter with the Chicago Tribune. She’s an incredible writer and has created an enduring character in Bell Elkins, who is a prosecutor in the fictional Acker’s Gap, West Virginia. (Julia grew up in Huntington, West Virginia.)
It’s been a rough six weeks for the Yocum family. My younger brother, Matthew, died Dec. 7 of cancer. He was only 61, and died just 10 days after being diagnosed. My brother had an amazing life. In August of 1983, Matt fell out of truck while working at the Cardinal electric generating plant in our hometown of Brilliant, Ohio. He suffered a traumatic brain injury and was life-flighted to Pittsburgh where doctors gave him a one-in-a-thousand chance of living through the night. He spent five weeks in a coma and six months in rehab, learning to walk and talk again. He survived and thrived. Was he a pain in my rump at times? You bet. He was my little brother, after all. That was his job. I will dearly miss our shared history, tossing back draft beers at Roosters, and sharing stories of our childhood and hometown. Rest in peace, my brother.