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Transgender This

South Dakota. I was born and raised here, and (*cynicism warning) that’s probably the reason the Editress has designated me the least sentimental person she knows.

There are a number of reasons to hoist the Meh Flag over this place. For instance, our politicos—aside from a new governor who is showing some promise—largely are sheep in wolves’ clothing. We have a repulsively significant supply of Democrats and slightly larger contingent of the same who call themselves Republicans, all mixed together in what P.J. O’Rourke called A Parliament of Whores. We call the place Pierre, our state capital.

Yes, they are the folks whose twisted thinking, willingness to move beyond the concept of jurisdiction, and basic grasping covetousness brought you nationwide Internet sales tax. That’s a travesty less current, though, than their latest.

Our legislature’s most recent non-achievement is tanking a bill that would have required high school students to compete fairly against their own sex during intramural athletics. As of now, it is a matter of policy that students may adopt their own reality in regards to gender identity, and our public education system must tacitly approve their delusion. The fix failed to be reported out of the state House of Representatives on a 34-34 vote.

Those students are in school to learn about the world, not project their misconceptions onto it. Enabling transgender kink to the point of allowing biological males unfair advantage over the excellence of true female athletes comprises a fundamental failing of those to whom they have been entrusted. It is just another reason the home schooled will one day rule the world.

Someone once observed that individuals should be allowed their own opinion, but none are entitled to their own reality. The problem with those thinking otherwise is that The Way Things Are is a fixed and unalterable state. Those working the fringes according to strategies designed to move the Overton Window (look it up when you finish here) do so to advance a self-centered agenda. Those of us operating within the bounds of sanity are becoming increasingly at risk of bumping into them with virtually the same results as on a bidirectional road lacking a center divider. It’s why they are called radicals.

Society consists of people doing stuff, whose business moves most smoothly when they are in agreement on certain basic tenets. Valid premises descend from long-tested conclusions, themselves based on observation, again of The Way Things Are.

There is no such state as The Way Things Are Now. Everything sinful, virtuous, right, wrong, wholesome, and undoing exists in the same moral plane it always did. We do well or poorly generally and collectively based on how well we understand reality’s rules of cause and effect.

So, should a biological male—one meant to develop into the state of achievement called manhood—decide instead to adopt another gender identity, that does not nor will it ever make him a woman. The closest he can approach his desired state is to exist as a surgically mutilated and hormonally infused eunuch, while The Way Things Are gives not a damn about his feelings on the matter.

Consequently, neither should anyone oriented to a practical worldview. We pity the psychologically challenged, but understand that enabling delusion does not equate to love. The sin of indifference is the weakest, least enduring, and second most destructive choice in the moral tripartite it shares with love and hate. Taking the path of least resistance into passivity—or worse, becoming an enabler—violates the moral duty of testimony in love that keeps sinners away from the precipice of their folly.

The world is set as an arena of faithfulness and faithlessness. One believes in the will of its Creator to have established matters as they should be, or one does not. Scripture condemns adopting dress of the opposite gland with identical language as is used for same-sex fornication. Both violate the nature of oneself and Nature generally, and constitute another strategy the enemy uses to turn us from our intended path home.

One believes that or one does not. There is no middle ground. No The Way Things Are Now. The stances we adopt in such tests stand as our testimony as to or in denial of the intent of the Living God. Each soul believes or does not. Every one gets through the path of one life successfully or otherwise, and we are told the consequences of failure to recognize our place in the natural order are eternal. Its standards are governed by divine logic and the Craftsman’s load-balancing solution to the equation that allows Him and us to coexist in the same spiritual plane.

Excuses do not exist there. If we are wise, we should avoid them here; we need all the time granted to navigate the fog as it is. Matters made better instead of worse are the harvest of discernment. Where does a society stand once it becomes incapable of making a definitive call so evident as considering a biological male a boy, and then a man? Where does it go once a concept so vital as womanhood is diluted into merely being considered by the majority to be a self-defined perspective?

Prophesies of divine judgment notwithstanding, I for one don’t want to find out in this life, and I’m sure as hell not going to help row in that direction. Anyone may take what offense they will. All things outside their ideological bubble—in the sunshine bathing healthy minds—remain the same as they ever were, and always shall.

Choose to love, -DA

How to Be a Bigot

This isn’t a tutorial. If you thought so, I’m guessing you followed a link from Gab … but then that Wild West outpost of Internet commentary is another subject.

Vae Obscurum is about ideas: good ones, generally, sometimes juxtaposed to others deplorable as can be imagined. We know good and evil in relation to each other in lessons taught by a loving and shepherding God; those lessons, however, often need to be sought in order to be seen. A faithful orientation is prerequisite to begin, and you may rest assured the enemy is planting as many distractions on the way to school as he is allowed to contrive.

Many of those side roads beckon with the promise of advantage. Life is a difficult journey, and when people tire they seek easier ways. They turn from what is and what should be to imagined alternatives—some of which have evolved into lifestyles—and presenting those comprise the main mechanism of deception.

Excuses, you see, relieve the burden of performance and its necessary embrace of excellence to achieve desired results. Unfortunately, the cultural phenomenon of intersectionalism provides not only excuses for a suboptimal result, but then makes it possible to accrue bonus points based on the number of the same one is able to assemble.

Intersectional status is attained by accumulating grievances. As an example, any given individual born a white male, regardless of his personal circumstances, is assigned the least  rank according to myths of privilege driving the remainder of the philosophy. Attaining the highest hypothetical score is difficult to imagine, although one may indulge various scenarios (after you finish here) via https://intersectionalityscore.com/.

A simple three-step formula in the pursuit of lame advantage begins with Excuses. It moves on to a Proposed Moral Balancing of the equation via transfer from the supposedly privileged to arrive at Profit rumored to make life easy.

If you disagree with any of this you’re a bigot. See? It’s that simple.

Such name calling functions as deployment of rally words designed to draw a crowd of additional voices and increase volume, which is the natural defense of those unable to justify their premise in rational dialectic. To such people, having not yet intellectually matured to rationality is less important than perceiving themselves as occupying self-defined moral high ground.

The only problem is that it wasn’t really self-defined. God’s enemy did it for them by waving a placard at an intersection. They made the turn out of laziness, found a dead end, and now reside in the mire of error.

Every possible reparation will be funded only by excellence. The simplest route to accumulated actual advantage is, therefore, performance. This truism is the prime mover of the political Right, where virtue outperforms vice according to observations made over the course of centuries. That unavoidable actuality is what eventually scares the living scat out of people trapped inside the sticky and opaque imprisoning membrane of their ideological bubble.

Want a better life? Edify your capabilities. Do worthwhile things. Reap the rewards of your labor. What you attain as a result is then yours. Rest assured someone else, given to travel the side road leading to the deadly sin of envy, will compile a scheme to come for part or all of it. History, one might say, is made of those encounters, and preparing oneself for such times is also a difficult responsibility of adulthood. The faithful also keep in mind that we were warned about all of this well ahead of time, and know the effort of living as we ought is promised to be worth the cost.

Choose to love, -DA

*****

In production news, sadly, there is none. The Editress is a person of many responsibilities and hard pressed at the moment, circumstances leading to a hiatus in the content edit of ‘Ghosts of the Republic.’ The process should resume later this season, depending on what life tasks we are presented in the meantime. Updates, as always, will follow here.

Mere Christianity

The themes of the holiday season, being appreciation in Thanksgiving and joy in celebration of the first Christmas, coincide with weather encouraging long, cozy nights indoors. Such times seem tailor made for books generally and edifying reads in particular, and as an author I hope all of you are indulging yourselves that way.

My November absorption was an overdue study of the 1952 classic by the renowned C.S. Lewis, titled in his devout understatement Mere Christianity. In this work, the masterful Lewis provides wonderful and insightful commentary on the basic tenets of Christian faith held in commonality by those who believe. It is rightly considered an essential read for all of us who realize ourselves to be between Here and There.

Substantive enough that it deserves to be taken on one chapter at a time, with each being followed by contemplation in turn, Lewis assures, convicts, and comforts. Personally, I perceived evident hints of his formative influence on another convincing apologist, Josh McDowell, who like Lewis also started from a base of skepticism.

Those recognizable precepts made clear that this book had influenced my own perspective years previous to my finally engaging the thing. In a sense, C.S. Lewis is another of my literary fathers, and with me, through McDowell, helped produce my catalog of novels. Expressing in fiction the seeds of faith I’ve been allowed to present through the lives of my characters Jon, Sean, and Boone is therefore partially their legacy as well. Such is the work of the Spirit.

Like Lewis, my character Jon Anthony sought to emphasize commonalities of faith rather than spur conflict in outlining divergence. Their respective efforts similarly proceeded from a peaceful nature, the bestowment of which is a core value and benefit of embracing Christianity. Such descends from the essential motivation of our Creator, which is love. Love was born in the mind of God, who then realized his desire for servants and souls with whom He could share the best of all emotions.

Everything else followed. Love, necessarily a choice, has a dependency on free will, the unfortunate application of which gives rise to sin rather than harmony. All things nurturing and charitable proceed from it, and we rightly celebrate those each holiday season and whenever else the proper mindset allows.

Mere Christianity is eminently worthwhile. Regardless of your state of belief you should read it for yourself as a life task and initiative of spiritual edification.

A personal side benefit of digesting the work was an insight as to the nature of truth. Actualities, you see, and particularly those from which Lewis constructs his arguments, are and were always here. Truth, as does the existence of a personal Creator, endures in an essential state of being. Those exist independent of discovery, acceptance, promulgation, or consensus. Truths of the physical plane discovered and undiscovered through science, for instance, are in effect independent of anyone being aware of them. In that way, physical and spiritual laws share an essential commonality. It is in their embrace that we grow our perspective and build a more useful outlook beyond the data set from which we previously proceeded.

It is this aspect of useful truth inviting embrace that led to the Great Commission, and the efforts of Lewis, and afterward McDowell, and then myself. Everything true directs toward sure knowledge of the nature of its Craftsman: the motivating love of the Father, the accommodating forgiveness of the Son, and the unrelenting outreach of the Spirit through whom we commune with Him from this world we know.

As is so eloquently expressed in Mere Christianity, what He does has the goal of successfully delivering us to our Creator. Should one understand nothing else of His Will, that would be enough of a beginning to launch a life lived as it should be. Remember one precept, descending from the apostle Paul’s commendation to the Bereans, who searched Scripture nightly to confirm the things he told them were so: truth fears nothing from inspection.

So it is each holiday season, as in the dawn of another day: a fresh chance to begin appears again. Like truth, the opportunity is always there, waiting to be picked up, held dear, and carried forward. You have our wishes for a Merry Christmas and the best of New Years from everyone here at Single Candle Press.

Choose to love, -DA

*****

Just a reminder that all three of my series—Jon’s Trilogy, Sean’s File, and Boone’s File—now have a free gateway title available through links on the sidebar if one uses an e-reader. Those collections of novels I have connived to support and enhance each other, as each takes place in its own decade of the same literary universe.

Reading material in any form, though, makes a great gift, one with the potential to move forward from then on with the mind it encounters. Should you think enough of my writing to pass it on to another, thank you in advance!

Setting Boone Free

James Bond? Boone never heard of her. An award-winning lead title, Absinthe and Chocolate is now a free download from most retail venues! Released as a risk-free read in mid-month, the first of five titles in Boone’s File is enjoying success on Amazon and elsewhere. Find out why, and help spread the word!

Get Boone where ebooks come alive:  AmazonAppleNookKobo

Roads to Rome

Since at least the twelfth century, there has been a saying: “All Roads Lead to Rome.” Generally, this is taken to mean the same outcome may be reached by many methods or ideas. Once, though, it was literal truth.

The Roman network of roads constructed in the days of empire covered 120,000 kilometers from Portugal to Constantinople. They projected the power of the emperor, connected nodes of commerce, and assured Rome’s legions had a straight road to wherever trouble might arise. All roads, indeed, led back to that center of civilization … if such was the direction taken. With one’s course reversed, they all eventually ended as far as possible from it.

But Vae Obscurum isn’t about history, though such is always a consideration. It is about thinking. Analogous to the directions available to the Roman pilgrim, two modes of philosophical thought beckon the intellectual traveler: extension and reduction. Toward Rome, representing clarity, and away into the wilderness of false premises diffusing into irrelevance.

There are a vastly greater number of ways to be wrong than right. This is one reason why, for the sake of example, the LGBT∞ pantheon of delusions will never—short of divine intervention—cease adding its addendum letters. Philosophy seems too often concerned with muddying rather than clarifying thought, and theology likewise has its share of overblown and under-supported doctrines (speaking of Rome). Such in the nature of human ego, fed by needs to make oneself more than might be objectively justified, and to build sustaining institutions and hierarchies to afterward enjoy the advantage or other comforts they generate.

My deep-thinking character Jon Anthony, in Killing Doctor Jon, called his intellectual antithesis

“‘reduction to essence,’ where we stop believing and start seeing. The valid precepts of all the great religions are found there … because things real have always been real, and are just as they will always remain.” (KDJ, 2013)

Another great philosopher, Winnie the Pooh, opined that it is always best to begin at the beginning. Christopher Robin’s friend intuited truth at a primal level, and so realized a truism of logic: a false premise cannot be successfully extended. To correct child paradigms, one must start fresh from a justified foundation of thought. A reliable frame of reference reflects clarity and aligns with the state of actuality from which all natural endurance draws vitality.

Another of my characters, Boone’s mentor and Chinese pastor Lin Shun Lun, noted in his likewise naturalistic orientation the tripartite nature in much of God’s creation:

“We live in the bounds of our material existence, yet we sense, as Lao did, something more. Those, as so many things do upon reflection, often divide themselves into threes: Father, Son, and Spirit … beginning, middle and ending … Heaven, Earth and Man.” (The Bonus Pool, 2015)

Applying Jon’s approach of simplifying rather than extending makes for a more penetrating message, which in the way matters are considered here ought to be the focus of Christian outreach. Taken to the beginning, one arrives at the point of origin, the Creator, manifesting Himself as He sees fit and to our eyes as the Father, representing his essential unity and love. He also appears as the Son, to embody His grace and represent the creative force of the Right Hand of the Craftsman. His ministry of the Spirit resides in divine communication and inspiration that projects His will into the world among those who will listen and live what they believe.

Sets of three become one and accumulate into work, and works into a portfolio, and somewhere beyond into the sum total of what He is doing in a plan held close and beyond our sight. Faith is the window into that far green country Professor Tolkien envisioned.

What do we need to know? Taken back to essence as Jon would approve, divine love, saving grace, and the sufficiency of Christ comprise the essential tripartite of the Christian faith. One or another duty follows from these three concepts, and life is found along whichever occupies our minds at any given moment. These are real, and may be successfully extended so long as we do not lose line of sight to our home. Doing so, we can never truly become lost.

Begin with clarity, and end with success. Be R.E.A.L. before it gets real:

Realize your need
Explore for truth
Accept God’s gift of forgiveness
Live what you believe

You will find other concepts along the way worth holding onto. Remember that in most endeavors, methodology is everything. Deliberating is no exception.

Choose to love, -DA

*****

In production news, Boone’s sixth title and one split with Daniel Sean Ritter, Ghosts of the Republic, is currently undergoing Content Edit. The process is not easily forecast due to the nature of the Editress’s work. GOTR will, God willing, appear sometime next year depending on what else He sets us toward doing in the meantime.

A Garden in Russia

Boone’s fifth novel is now in full release. “Thank you” to the many fans, helpers, and readers whose enthusiasm also makes my catalog what it is.

Her latest begins moments after the conclusion of her fourth, Meat for the Lion, and largely concerns itself with the events surrounding the resulting constitutional crisis in the Russian Republic. Along the way, nearly all of my surviving characters—Boone, Terry Bradley, Daniel Sean Ritter, Thalia Kebauet, Deborah Vosse, Yael Levin, and Jon and Mary Anthony—either play a role or make an appearance, as do others old and new. Epic, excellent, and already described elsewhere as a work wherein “the emotions never stop,” I’m simply delighted with the result.

Here’s the blurb:

“Spring brings changes: for Boone, the joy of an expectant mother. Both the U.S. and the Russian Federation see tumultuous presidencies reach unexpected ends; in Moscow, the cause is death at the hands of an InterLynk associate.

Washington political operatives seek to shore up a legacy of failure in order to preserve their party’s viability. In Russia, a resurgent movement exploits political turmoil to propose governance in the style of the last century’s Cold War. To those ends, all pursue a family on the run in the Mediterranean: loved ones whose safety is critical to ensure an assassin’s testimony.

Thrust into an international, unavoidable contest of deadly professionals, Boone’s challenge is to summon her faith and overcome fears inhibiting decisive action. Justice, integrity of governance, and the narrative of history in two countries await the outcome.

Approx. 91,500 words / 329 pp. print length”

Choose to love. -DA


Kindletrade paperbackApple NookKoboScribd

Reading Boone

Leading into next month’s release of Boone’s fifth and epic title, A Garden in Russia, I have the opportunity to hand off the forum to a pair of her biggest fans, Rebecca Johnson and Claire O’Sullivan. Ladies, the floor is yours:

Rebecca: Firstly, thank you, Dale, for allowing us to guest post on your page. Claire O’Sullivan and I are here to nag Dale Amidei about his newest book discuss Dale Amidei’s first female heroine in his Boone series of espionage thrillers, a sort of international/ political Tales from the Dark Side. Dale writes complex, powerful novels that pull his characters into unthinkable situations, which is why I have temporarily given up paranormal fiction in favor of devouring his books.

Claire: Readers and writers alike, no matter their preferred genre, would find Dale’s geopolitical intrigue novels exemplary.

Rebecca: That’s some mighty highfalutin language there, but I think you’re absolutely right.

Claire: All I’m saying is that, as primarily a romance reader, I find his books a delicious departure from my usual reads, just like you do.

Rebecca: Can’t argue with you there … but about Boone: How do you relate to her character?

Claire: I think she’s a bad-arse, and I mean that in the “holy-crap-if-she-was-real” sense (and maybe she is). I wouldn’t want to get on her bad side. Respect her, yes. Mess with her, no way. I would actually like to be Boone. What about you? How do you see her?

Rebecca: Well, you know, every woman has those days when everything jells, right? The makeup and hair work, the clothes fit perfectly, the job rolls on smooth wheels. Then there’s the rest of the time, when the mirror and the closet are your enemies, and the job develops a square wheel and just clunks along, and the kids track dog poop all through the house ten minutes before the party. Those kinds of issues are hiccups in the greater scheme of things, I know, but they seem like disasters at the time. 

And then there’s Dr. Rebecca Boone Hildebrandt’s world. She’s an intel operative who deals in—how to say it?—correcting political situations detrimental to independence and freedom. She takes on the jobs no one in the real world wants to think about. Her profession involves stealth, constant situational awareness, and occasionally sudden death: both other people’s and possibly her own. She has to be good at what she does, just to survive. Dog poop on the floor is the least of her worries.  And yet, even with her youth and strength, she is full of flaws and desires. She has the same soul shadows and asks the same questions we all do: “What have I become? Did I ever have a choice?”

Claire:  I’ve read all four of Dale’s Boone’s File novels, and I’m waiting for the fifth one, A Garden in Russia. Taken together, they chronicle Boone’s journey from a flawed, confused enforcer of justice to a clear-headed confident woman who manages to reconcile her profession with her soul. She’s a cool, aloof bad-girl trigger mama in the first book, truly someone you’d not want to disrespect. But she changes as each novel unravels another of her protective layers, and she begins to thaw into something more human and fragile.

Rebecca: Exactly! And I think the title of the first Boone book, Absinthe and Chocolate, describes her perfectly. Chocolate represents everything Boone is: rich, lush, exquisite, and extreme.  Absinthe, nicknamed the “Green Fairy,” symbolized a changing social order in 19th-century Paris, a new generation of free thinkers and transformative ideas. The Green Fairy was also the embodiment of rebellion, especially female rebellion. Boone is nothing if not transformative and rebellious.

Claire: Well, you’re just chock full of weird information. But why am I not surprised? Dale’s first book hooked me into the series. It really showed Boone’s skills as well as her flaws. But in the second book, The Bonus Pool, Boone learns from a persecuted Chinese Christian pastor how to find peace in her life, and that we all “go from darkness into the Light.” Dale is a master at crafting Boone’s reflections on the old man’s words, as she moves from her internal conflict toward peace.

That starts the ball rolling for Boone. By the end of the third and fourth books (One Last Scent of Jasmine and Meat for the Lion), she’s moved away from her despair and doubt, and into a more clear-headed sense of her purpose in life.

Rebecca: Seeing her transformation made me want to say, “Maybe I can do that, too. In my own way I can be better, if I remember that every move is always from the darkness toward the Light.” In these days of turmoil both here and abroad, that’s a good way to think, not only for Boone but for the rest of us who are still cleaning up the dog poop.

Claire: But regarding the writing—you know, Dale writes so well that there are days I wonder why I even bother. And did you ever ask yourself, how does he know so much?

Rebecca: After reading his novels with all those Special Ops and gun-related details, do you really want to ask that question?

Claire: Well, maybe no. But I do enjoy his books, because they’re not just complex in terms of characters and storylines. They address the human condition, whether it’s Boone or another character discoursing on current global and political issues. And in Boone’s case, he manages to hold up a mirror to her soul, so that she—and we—can see her heart laid bare.

For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.’
-Paul of Tarsus (or 1 Corinthians 13:12)

I feel like I know her better now.

Rebecca: Well enough to mess with her?

Claire: You think you’re so funny. .. 

Rebecca Johnson was born and raised in the southern United States, mostly in North Carolina with brief relocations to South Carolina and Virginia. She is by education a medical technologist, graduating with honors from N.C. State and UNC-Chapel Hill, and by preference a calligrapher, needlework designer, and graphic artist. She writes paranormal romances by night when no one is watching, and hides her manuscripts under quilting and needlepoint projects during the day. In her spare time she beta-reads for other writers, searching for nitpicking errors. She believes that God’s purpose for her life is to cause as much trouble for as many people as she possibly can, and she spends at least part of each day fulfilling that purpose. 

Claire O’Sullivan was raised in corn and cow country in the Midwest where she learned the nuances of ‘moo’ to PhD level (piled higher and deeper). She attended the University of Wisconsin at River Falls (aka Moo U) with a major in psychology, and changed minors every other week. She left Moo U and attended Lutheran Bible Institute and obtained her Bachelor’s degree in Biblical studies. She has fiddled with writing forever, and currently has several crime/romances in the works, including a comedy noir. She’s pretty sure that Rebecca is indeed fulfilling her purpose by tormenting her daily… er, helping Claire endeavor to write.

Thank you, ladies. I couldn’t have said it better myself.

Boone’s novels may be found on the sidebar:
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and other places where ebooks come alive.

Choose to love, -DA

*****

In long-awaited production news, the fifth title of my Boone’s File series, A Garden in Russia, has emerged from production editing and is preparing to publish next month. As always, the date will be announced on Facebook and via Twitter. Her Big List of Links will appear here once all retail outlets spin up.