Welcome to 2020! Time To Get Ready For The Future—Free Books!

There are several books free for you to start the New Year with!
Free today, 1 January 2020 and tomorrow, 2 January, is The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide.

I really believe this book is critical for everyone and that’s the reason it’s free to start the year. It’s guides you in preparing, even if you’ve starting from scratch. If you get it and check it, please feel free to leave a review and let us know what you think!
Free today only, 1 January: Lawyers, Guns and Money
Free to 3 January: Eternity Base (Green Berets)
And Nine-Eleven (Time Patrol) is discounted to .99.

All these books are listed HERE
We wish everyone the best for 2020!
Bob & Cool Gus, and even Scout

How To Prepare for and deal with Wildfires

As Australia is learning, wildfires are extremely dangerous. We had one here in the Smokies a couple of years ago that killed a bunch of people. Driving through not long after, you can hardly see the damage to the forest; but you can see the houses that burned. It moved so fast the trees were barely burnt.

First, know when the danger is high. If there’s been drought, that heightens the risk. High winds help push it. Watch the special on the Paradise fires in CA and you’ll get an idea how fast it moves.

All fires start small. All fires go out. What matters is what happens in between.

The wind throws embers one mile or more ahead of the flames. These embers start new fires. A fast wild fire has an intense wall of heat in front of it. Even if the flames haven’t arrived, it will combust the most flammable material.

As the main fire approaches your house, strong winds blow embers everywhere possible – under decks, against wood fences, into woodpiles, and through open doors and windows.

In some places the air is so smoky that you can’t see more than 10 feet.

Close to where the fire is burning most intensely, the air is far too hot to breathe.

The rising smoke and ash create winds on the ground which cause the fires to burn even more intensely.

Fires like this occur every year. Wild fires don’t just happen in the summer; in many areas fires can happen year round. When it is dry and windy be watchful and prepare to take action to protect your family and property.

To prepare your home if you live in an area prone to wildfires, here is a list of things to do:

Keep your roof and gutters free of leaves.

Store firewood at least 30 feet away from structures. The nice pile against the side of your house is called fuel for a wildfire.

Your outdoor furniture should be made of noncombustible materials.

Clear the area around your house of combustible material such as leaves, bark, pine needles and underbrush. Especially trim grass and brush around your propane tank. Optimally you want a hundred foot barrier of no trees, shrubs or bushes around your house.

When building walls, barriers, gates, landscaping, etc use noncombustible materials.

When evacuating a wildfire, you should leave as soon as you receive notice. Considering there is a chance your house might not be there for you to come back to, besides your GnG bag, also take that fireproof container with all your key documents in it. And your pets. Beyond that, forget about it.

While evacuating, make sure you have enough gas. This goes back to always keeping your tank at least half full.

Leave any gates open for firefighters and others.

Drive with headlights on. If it’s smoky, close all windows, and recirculate air inside the vehicle.

If you get trapped, park in an area that is clear of vegetation (parking lot, gravel area, dirt), close all windows and vents, cover yourself with a blanket or coat and lie on the floor. Car tires may burst from heat.

In an extreme situation, you have to consider whether you can stay in your house only if: your only escape route is blocked; smoke is so thick you can’t travel; you don’t have time to evacuate; or emergency personnel tell you to.

You cannot stay in your house if: you have wood siding or shingles; you’re located in a narrow canyon or on a steep slope; you have a lot of vegetation close around the house. Find a neighbor with a better house.

If you do stay in a house, do the following: use a sprinkler or the sprinkler system to wet the yard. Wet the roof with a hose. Turn off all propane and gas. Close all windows and doors. Move fabric covered furniture away from large windows or sliding doors. Turn off everything that circulates air through the house. Close all interior doors.

Excerpted from The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide

How To Stay Warm, Without Being Able to Make a Fire

  1. Stay dry. Water accelerates the cold and hypothermia.
  2. Get out of the wind.
  3. Build a shelter. Make it as small as possible. Essentially consider it extending layers of clothing. Use leaves, bark, pine needles, whatever. People forget that their clothing is their first layer of shelter.

I remember the first time I deployed in winter with 10th Special Forces, the winter warfare Special Forces group. I had little idea about what it was like to operate at altitude (above 10,000 feet) and in the winter cold. My team sergeant had just come from Panama so he didn’t either. We built a snow cave together and showed it off to the amusement of the more experienced team members. We explained we had two entrances so the wind could blow the cold out. Eventually I became a fan of a snow trench. Thermarest pad on the bottom— and note the name— therma. You don’t want to be touching the cold ground. So don’t just put stuff on top of you, put something between you and the ground. I kept the trench just deep enough to put a poncho across the top. I would glaze the walls with a small candle. One night I was awakened for my guard shift and the poncho was in my face, almost suffocating me with over a foot of snow having fallen.

Part of stay dry is if you have to move, strip down so you don’t sweat. I’d give my team time warnings for when we’d move out on our skis with all our gear. We’d take off our outer shell at about a minute. And as time got close get down to polyprop undershirts. We were damn cold, but not for long once we moved out. Skiiing with gear, an akhio, uphill isn’t fun.

Also, we didn’t take our weapons into our snow trenches because that would warm them up and make them sweat. Then they’d freeze. And you wouldn’t be able to defend yourself against the Abominable Snowman.

Also, canteens stayed next to the body or– they freeze. The next meal went in the thigh cargo pocket to thaw it out.

Fun stuff. The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Get prepared for the New Year!

The Report and the Sec of State

I recently noticed the Secretary of State weighing in on his review of a movie. Which is odd, to say the least.

I watched The Report and yes, it is fiction. Thus, why is he weighing in on it? Doesn’t he have more important things to do?

It’s also odd since his boss, the President HAS called our “intelligence warriors” a slew of negative names and smeared them and that is not fiction. That’s reality. Yet not a word from Pompeo. The president has also smeared patriots working for Pompeo and not a single tweet or word of defense of people he is supposed to be leading and is responsible for.

It is definitely not leadership.

I can only assume that after I graduated West Point, the leadership standards were in the toilet, although Pompeo graduated 1st in his class, which is also amazing.

This isn’t political. This is practical. The CIA conducted a campaign of torture that was if not illegal (yes, they danced around the legality of it) but most definitely immoral and violated the norms for which this country is supposed to stand. The torture has not kept us safe. Every experienced interrogator could have told them, and many did, that torture doesn’t produce credible results.

Furthermore, as a writer of fiction, I find it odd that someone in his position would see fit to comment on it and act is it was some insult.

Once more– not political. I am tired of people assuming they know where your stance is on everything if you speak out against a specific topic. Torture was wrong; I don’t care where you stand politically. If we can’t admit our mistakes we’re going to keep repeating them: aka Vietnam and then Afghanistan. But that’s another topic.

Key Documents You Need To Scan, Upload and Keep in One Place

When I was updating The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide I read a lot of action reports and interviewed people who’d survived disasters, whether they were natural or man-made. From wildfires to earthquakes to hurricanes, to toxic chemical release requiring evacuation– the gamut.

One common refrain, besides the gear they wished they’d had on hand and had ready for evacuation in the Grab-n-Go bag, was the documents that they needed and/or lost.

If you had a house fire, would you be able to reconstruct key documents? Would you have a copy of your home owners insurance handy? Medical information?

From those interviews and reports, I compiled a list of key documents we all need to scan, then upload to the cloud and keep on a thumb drive, somewhere not our home. Also, keep these documents in a fireproof portable lock box you can grab if you need to evacuate.

This is from The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide

All the checklists from the book are free to download in mobi, epub or pdf format on my web site HERE.

If you have any suggestions about what else should be on this list, please let me know.

The Donner Party– more than just cannibalism

Most have heard of the Donner Party and we immediately think of the most notorious aspect: the cannibalism. But when I began researching the event for my Gift of Failure book, what struck me was the lack of leadership and the murders that occurred before the cannibalism. After all, it’s a desperate measure of last resort. What caused people to go to that last resort?

What I learned was that the preceding Cascade Events dates back to well before the party even left for the west. The Mexican War, which many don’t remember, played a role. A book published by a man who didn’t know what he was writing about, also played a key role.

So here is it (PS: the short nonfiction story is FREE on all ebook platforms)

Which Came First? Chaos or Intelligence?

Draft opening of Earth Abides as I pick up the manuscript after being away for a few days house hunting. I’ve always found I have to start from the beginning whenever that happens. It gets me into the story. I view it like juggling: I have to pick up the characters, the plot, the theme, etc. and get them going until I get the rhythm of the book once more. And Earth Abides is turning out to be a very different kind of story with the most unusual antagonist I’ve had in eighty books:

In The Beginning

In the beginning there was Chaos.

Or was there?

Did the universe all spring from nothingness and darkness, or was there an overarching intelligence behind it all? And if so, why would it bring forth Chaos? Or was the Chaos a natural result of a collapse of that first intelligence or perhaps a failure of the intelligence to advance? Or a test for intelligences that follow? If they could reach the same level?

Scale Life, at least what is currently accepted as ‘intelligent’ life in the Universe by the same intelligent life, doesn’t know how they came out of this Chaos. At first, as their consciousness emerges, each Scale in its little pocket of a single planet, tries to come up with an explanation for not only their own existence but that of the world around them. They look up and see the stars and also have to explain them. They look outside of themselves and invent, and worship, a higher power. An intelligence that created all; of course, they do so without any proof except their own existence and ego. That they exist out of Chaos.

Which could be both correct and wrong. If their existence came from some intelligence, then they are correct, but if that intelligence is testing them and doesn’t really care if they pass or fail, then are they wrong?

Does it matter?

The First Five Things To Do In An Emergency

Every situation is different and this is a guideline. Always make sure your priority is safety for yourself first, then others. You can’t help others if you don’t take care of yourself.

First: Do a First Aid triage of yourself. Breathing. Bleeding. Broken.

Are you stabilized?

Can you move?

Assess the immediate situation. Take charge.

If in immediate danger, get to a safe place. If you’re not in immediate danger, look around.

What are the priorities of threats? Other people will be panicking. Don’t get caught up in that. Be aware that any situation can get worse. In fact, assume it will. Also, having done your Area Study, you know there are after-effects of various emergencies and natural disaster. Earthquakes around the coast can lead to tsunamis. A terrorist attack could have a follow on attack for first responders. A hurricane can lead to broken gas lines which lead to a fire danger.

Check for smoke, gases and fumes. Locate and shut off the source if possible. Fires, earthquakes, bombs, etc. produce structural instability. Just because the roof is still there, doesn’t mean it will stay there.

If in a car accident, turn off ignition, look out for pools of gas or any smoke.

Second: Call for help. Dial 911. Yell. Blow a whistle. Tap on a pipe with a piece of metal. Whatever is appropriate to the event. If you’re performing CPR, yell at someone nearby to call for help. Tell them what to say.

Getting trained personnel on the scene quickly is the best assistance you can render others. If you talk to a dispatcher, give a succinct summary of the situation: Location; what the emergency is; how many casualties and an estimate of condition; any potential threats.

If it is a mass casualty event, let them know that right away as the response will be different as a single responding unit would be overwhelmed.

Third: Do a First Aid Triage of others. Triage comes from the French word ‘to sort’. The goal is to rapidly assess and prioritize a number of injured individuals and do the most good for the most people. The key here is it is not to do the best for every individual.

First, make sure the injured are not in imminent danger.

How many are injured? How badly?

Who can assist you?

Can assistance get to you?

Can the wounded by moved if they have to be? Do you have the means to move them?

If immediate help is on the way, don’t take any unnecessary risks. Don’t move an injured person unless they are in immediate danger. Don’t treat past life-saving measures. Let the professionals do their job when they arrive. Your job is to maintain until help arrives.

What is the status of your A-Team? If some members aren’t present, where are they? Can you communicate with them and arrange to meet? If you can’t communicate with them, can you contact your out of area emergency contact? If that’s not possible the priority of meeting locations will be in order: home, IRP, ERP, BOHS.

All preparation checklists and links to free apps is free HERE.

Fourth: Assess the environment. Can you stay or do you need to leave? Do you have adequate shelter where you are for the environment? If you’re staying, at home, at the IRP, ERP, work, school, wherever, inventory your supplies and gather what you can. Focus on water, communication, food and medical.

If leaving and you have time, dress in your emergency clothing. Take your Grab-n-Go bag (home, car or work/school). If leaving, are you going to the IRP to meet A-Team? Or is it best to go direct to the ERP?

If you’re leaving and not going to any of those, what is your destination? Can you get hold of your out of area emergency contact? Are they clear of the effect of the emergency or disaster? The destination should be chosen by priority among shelter, water, food, and medication.

Fifth: Once in a safe place, assess the overall situation and make long term plans.

Excerpted from The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide

The Ancient Enemy Has Arrived

Area 51: Invasion is free today, 12/17 and tomorrow 12/18.

The Ancient Enemy has arrived.

A Swarm Battle Core is orbiting Earth preparing for the Reaping.

The remnants of mankind desperately try to either survive or fight back.

But they aren’t certain what they’re going to face. All they have are myths and legends. And when the Swarm actually does land, it’s worse than any of those.

Major Mike Turcotte, the hero in defeating the Airlia, makes a desperate attempt to stop the Swarm by going directly to the Core. On Earth, the future of mankind hides in the Facility, an underground self-contained ecosystem. And across the planet others prepare for the last fight.

From an Assassin in New York City who performs a heroic act of sacrifice, to the enigmatic Darlene in her trailer in Marfa, Texas, to Nosferatu and Nekhbet, the last two Elder undead hiding on an island in Puget Sound.

It appears there is no hope.

But there is always hope, but sometimes it takes a tremendous, unthinkable sacrifice.

“Action packed entertainment.” Kirkus Reviews.