We had an amazing time watching “The Count of Monte Cristo” live on stage at the Oregon Shakespeare festival in Ashland, Oregon this summer. It is such a wonderful place, community and is thriving with creative energy so much so that it is palpable. The shops and restaurants there remind me so much of my time I lived in England. And the Black Sheep pub makes a killer English breakfast. I recommend this experience to every artist and lover of theater, literature and the arts.
I have always loved Charles Dickens novels. I sometimes find our writing styles can be very similar, as can our characters and situations. And though we have lived very different lives in very different times, we both share experiences and encounters, as well as adventures, that I often find we are very much alike.
I could never hope to be as gifted a writer as Charles Dickens, or to claim to be in his company in the hierarchy of authors, but I do know we have a connection and it comes through in our writing. If he were alive today, I am sure we would collaborate on a novel and in some places, the difference between his writing and mine could even be seamless.
I am so blessed and thankful for my family. I am thankful that I have been able to help so many people in so many ways. I am thankful that I have been able to work and teach as an USA Hockey official, Canadian Hockey official, baseball umpire, soccer official, NCAA hockey official, Junior Hockey official, WHL official and also as a Professional IFL, NHL, NLL and PGA official. I am thankful that I have been given the gift of writing and have written and published so many works including 19 novels. I am thankful that I have been able to work in so many industries. I am thankful for people I have know only for a short time and who I have known all my life. I am thankful for my health and freedom to live in the greatest country in the world. I am thankful for education and travel. In this season I don’t want this to be the only time to remember all I have to be thankful for; I want to remember to be thankful all year long!