Dharma Road is a book about Zen Buddhism and cabdriving, published by Hampton Roads Publishing. It’s a guide to Zen philosophy and practice as they play out in the everyday life of a hardworking Austin cabdriver. It’s meant for all of us who can’t really drop everything and move into a monastery. It’s Zen with an attitude and a sense of humor. Because in this world, you’re going to need both. Thanks to everyone at Hampton Roads for all their help with this project. Click here to read the really entertaining first chapter. Then pick up a few dozen (or Kindle it) over at Amazon. And there’s even an audiobook edition read by Dean Sluyter. Click here to hear a sample. Material from Dharma Road is featured in Best Buddhist Writing 2011, edited by Melvin McLeod.
Ready for something completely different? My other genre is neo-noir crime fiction. Here are links to some of my stories from around the web: “Alaska” is not about Alaska. It appeared in Amarillo Bay. It was cited as a “Notable Story” by the Best American Mysteries series. “Respect the Law” ran recently in Yellow Mama. Click the title to read it and the cheery “Body Dump.” “Deep Cover” appeared in Thuglit some time ago. Just click on the box for a PDF. “Workday” was in the crime zine Crooked and it’s inspired by a place I actually worked. “West Texas Job Search” appeared in the short-lived but memorable e-zine Ligature Marks. It’s sort of a comedy. “Fire Sale” is a story of hard times in small-town Texas. It appeared in Darkest Before the Dawn. And cabdriving fans will enjoy “Mackler’s Last Fare” in Issue 4 of the print magazine Swill. That’s right, Swill. Click here to order copies on the Swill website. “Dead Man’s Job” appeared in Mysterical-E. (Don’t be put off by the artwork. Oddly, it doesn’t have anything to do with the story.)
If a laugh is what you’re after, you might enjoy three stories from the now-defunct zine The Cynic. “Bad Asses” features some trenchant social commentary in a noir setting. “Maniac Grin” is a fun look at some balls-to-the-wall insanity. And “I’m Not Crazy” is an attempt to show that I am not, in fact, crazy. “Creepy Uncle Is Watching You” is probably political satire. When I wrote it, in 2010, it seemed a little over the top. It turned out to be sadly prophetic. It ran in Children, Churches and Daddies which, despite the name, is a well-respected online literary journal. Check it out.
Dharma Road is also available in a colorful German edition, published by Goldmann, an imprint of Random House. The translation is by Astrid Ogbeiwi. It’s very 21st century. A German edition of a book about an ancient Japanese (and Indian) spiritual practice written by a New England native now living in Texas. That’s globalization. Feeling adventurous? Here‘s a link to the ebook. At least I think that’s what it is. I can’t read a word of German, so it’s anybody’s guess. Namaste y’all.