Welcome to my blog...

Here's where you will find the latest on what's going on with my books and the movie. It's also a great place to ask questions, where I recommend other books, and post different things bouncing around in my head. Look me up on Facebook and if you want to buy, signed, discounted, copies of my books, head over to http://www.ryannwattersbooks.com/.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Check out a new review up at "Fiction Addict!"

I've met a new friend on Facebook... Kaci Hill. She was nice enough to contact me via Donita K. Paul and a few other friends we share in common. Kaci finished reading both of my books over the Christmas Holiday and has put up both reviews at www.fictionaddict.com. Specifically, "Ryann Watters and the King's Sword" here: http://fictionaddict.com/2009/12/28/ryann-waters-and-the-kings-sword-by-eric-reinhold/ and "Ryann Watters and the Shield of Faith" here: http://fictionaddict.com/2009/12/29/ryann-watters-and-the-shield-of-faith-by-eric-reinhold/

I was pleased to find out that besides editing and writing reviews, Kaci has co-authored books with author sensation Ted Dekker! I've pictured the two she worked with him on and hope there are more in the future... be sure to check them out. If you've never read Ted, I would suggest starting with

"Blink" and "Three," which can be read independently. If you like those, then you may want to move into the initial Trilogy of "Black," "Red," and "White." I say initial, because Ted then launches into many books which all tie back into these 3. The two that Kaci co-authored with him are part of a sub-series call "The Lost Books." You understand what "the books" are in the trilogy.

If you don't already follow Kaci, you can look her up on Facebook. Things are going well with the series and I have some exciting news to share after New Years, in regards to the movie script and an opportunity with CostCo... so stay tuned.

Blessings to all as we enter 2010!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Symbols of the Real Christmas

One of the symbols of Christmas is the Evergreen tree. Throughout most of the country, leaves have fallen and the Evergreen is one of the few trees that remain green year-round. Like God's love, the "Ever"green is "ever-lasting. God's love doesn't die away. In Jeremiah 31:3 is says; "I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you."

"The Meaning of Christmas"

Another tradition at Christmas is exchanging presents. As parents, we give gifts to our kids, not because they deserve them for anything they've done, but because we love them. Symbollically, this is representive of a more perfect love from our Heavenly Father, who sent the gift of his son, Jesus, to pay the penalty of death, for our sin and provide us with everlasting life with Him.

"A wonderful song and video on the relationship between Jesus and his mother, Mary."

A tradition in our family every Christmas is to light a special Christmas candle on Christmas Eve and have our own candlelight service around the tree. We start off singing "Silent Night," and then I have a short message and passage I read from the Bible before we go around and pray, reflecting on the blessings of the year, those gathered with us and family members that are away.

Two thought provoking questions I'd like to ask you are:

(1) How would you describe the purpose of Christmas to a person from another culture? Take a few minutes to ponder this before looking at question two.

(2) How do the ways you celebrate Christmas reflect the purpose you described?

Wishing you and your family a very Merry Christmas,


Friday, December 18, 2009

Where it all Began!

Now that Kaylyn (left) is 17 and Kara is 14, it's hard to imagine my girls ever being this small, but I wanted to go back to the beginning and let you know the genesis for my book series.

When I wasn't reading to the two of them (children's Bible pictured), I would tell them stories about three girls and their magical adventures. It was actually quite challenging, as they would recall the smallest details and I would have to work out ways to remember them myself as I picked up the story night after night.

"My girls are growing up!"

After a few months, Kaylyn said, "Dad, you should write a book so other kids can enjoy your stories."

That got me thinking... Yeah, I could do that!

And so the journey began...

It was around the same time that the first Harry Potter book had come out and my mind began thinking through the possibities... instead of witches and wizards, what could I use from the Bible that would make a great fantasy story for kids, but also incorporate truths from scripture? Ahhhh... angels, those of the light and those of darkness.

What about the setting? Well... I could make up a quaint town in the South. Then I visited Mount Dora, Florida, which is about 20-25 minutes from my house. It was perfect for my storyline.

There was Lake Dora, which provided the gateway to Aeliana, interesting alleyways, an old railroad track, an awesome bookstore right across the street from a church my heros woudl attend and quaint shoppes. Even the lighthouse to the left ends up being key in book 2.

Now you know some of the "rest of the story." I'll continue with other reflections on how my book came about in a most unusual way over the course of seven years.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Pray for the Troops and their Families this Christmas

Arlington National
at Christmas

You may be interested to know that the wreaths laid at Arlington National Cemetery (some 5,000) are donated by the Worcester Wreath Co. of Harrington, Maine. The owner, Merrill Worcester, not only provides the wreaths, but covers the trucking expense as well. He's done this since 1992. A wonderful guy. Also, most years, groups of Maine school kids combine an educational trip to DC with this event to help out. Making this even more remarkable is the fact that Harrington is in one the poorest parts of the state.
While we're celebrating Christmas and the birth of Jesus this year, take a few minutes to remember those who have unselfishly given their lives for our freedom and those that are currently away from loved ones serving overseas.

Rest easy, sleep well my brothers.
Know the line has held, your job is done.
Rest easy, sleep well.
Others have taken up where you fell, the line has held.
Peace, peace, and farewell...

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Mega Pre-Christmas Sale is Underway!

I know this is crazy, but yes! You can get both book 1 and 2 for the low, low price of $20. Consider it my contribution to a tough economy. Unlike Amazon.com that charges $26.13 for both books, at http://www.ryannwatters.com/ you get both of them personally signed by me and two commemorative bookmarkers as well!


Between now and Christmas, the goal is to sell out of the first run of books so we can go for the second printing. Take a few minutes to think of the following before you order:

1. What parents do you know that would like a safe, engaging story for their kids to read?

2. What kids, grandkids, nieces, nephews, cousins, do you know that would enjoy both books for Christams?

3. Does your school library or church have copies? What better donation to impact a lot of kids in a positive way.

4. How about donating a set to your local public library?

5. What about using them as a give-a-way for a prize in your youth group or children's Sunday School, homeschool group, or Awana store?

Please forward the sale to as many people as you can on your e-mail list, Facebook, post on blogs, or your website!

Thanks so much for your support and be blessed!


Wednesday, October 7, 2009

What are Christians supposed to do on Halloween?

This is a question that gets lots of opinions. Some well-meaning, some under grace, some seem legalistic, others divisive. The bottom line if you have kids is that this issue will come up and you should have a reason for how you react to it. You shouldn't act out of guilt or superiority, but it should be based upon the Bible and the Holy Spirit acting in your life. I liked the following summary that our pastor presented last week in church.

There was a time where I felt like we needed to leave town if we wanted to take our kids trick or treating due to the condemnation from other believers we worshiped with. Now, we take the approach our pastor does and feel it's the right one for us.


“Pastor’s Point of View: Finding the ‘Hallow’ in Halloween”
By Joel R. Breidenbaugh, PhD

Well, that title alone is enough to cause some of us to begin to get a little “hot under the collar.” Why in the world would I, as your pastor, argue for taking advantage of a pagan holiday like Halloween? Has the world influenced me so much that I no longer argue for a distinction between the Christian and the non-Christian? Not hardly. Please read on.

Historically, Halloween has had something of a mixed message—both as a time to sacrifice to false gods and later as a time to remember special Christians. You may know about the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain built around their commemoration of the New Year on November 1st (the beginning of winter in Ireland and just after harvest season). This winter season symbolized death and the Celts believed that the evening of the New Year saw the boundary between the living and the dead dissolve. They believed spirits were present and that the presence of these spirits enabled the priests (druids) to predict the future, so they built bonfires and offered crop and animal sacrifices. The Celts further celebrated this festival by wearing costumes of animal skins.
"My son (Kyler) checking out all the 'loot.'"

In the early 7th century AD, Pope Boniface IV declared an “All Saints’ Day” in May (something like a spiritual memorial day), a time for Christians to honor saints and martyrs (similar to our political Memorial Day when we remember men and women who have given their lives in service to our country). The festival was transferred to November 1st by Pope Gregory III in the 8th century. This holiday (literally, holy day) was also known as “All Hallows,” for “hallow” and “saint” both refer to that which is set apart or holy. The day before “All Hallows” was naturally “All Hallows Eve,” and eventually it was shortened to “Halloween.”

In addition to this history, Protestants do well to remember October 31st as Reformation day, for on that day in 1517, Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses to the church door at Wittenberg, Germany. Luther’s work challenged Roman Catholicism, primarily over the issue of the sale of indulgences. Years later, historians have recognized that this moment sparked the eventual Protestant Reformation, ushering in such doctrines and practices as justification by faith, Bible translations in the language of the people, religious liberty, and more.

Much of the spiritual connotation for Halloween has been lost in our current observance of spooky themes, trick-or-treats, and the like. Some Christians, seeing little harm once a year, have completely adapted to this form of Halloween. Other more Fundamentalist-minded believers ridicule anyone for associating with this day.

I prefer to take more of the middle-ground by seizing the opportunity and redeeming the time (cf. Ephesians 5:17; Colossians 4:5) to teach others about the Protestant Reformation and the grace of God at work through Christ in turning sinners into saints. Even though Halloween is largely celebrated in a pagan fashion today, I don’t believe Christians should sit back in idleness. We can put a Christian spin (back) into Halloween—we can emphasize the “hallow” in Halloween.

Turning a pagan day into something different is nothing new to Christianity. We’ve set aside a day in December to compete with ancient Mesopotamia’s worship of false gods. The birth of Christ was celebrated annually as early as AD 98, but Julius I of Rome didn’t choose December 25 until AD 350. Today, virtually the whole world has secularized Christmas into gift-giving materialism, but Christians still remember the importance this “holy day,” when God fulfilled His promise in sending His Son into the world to redeem sinners.
"Yes, the one on the left (Kara) is an 'Air Head' and my other daughter on the right (Kaylyn) is a 'Smartie.'

Or consider Easter as another example. Though it celebrates Jesus’ resurrection from the dead, it replaced a pagan practice of honoring the Anglo-Saxon goddess Eostre (“Easter” was a common word that then became applied to Christ’s resurrection). Though worship of this goddess was dying out by the time of Christ, we have no evidence that Christians celebrated Christ’s resurrection annually till the end of the 2nd century. The current date, however, wasn’t established until the First Council of Nicea (325), which set Easter as the first Sunday after the full moon following the vernal equinox. Far too many people associate Easter with a bunny and eggs, but that doesn’t stop people from entering churches in greater mass that day than other day of the year in remembrance of Christ’s victory over death.

Even the very days of the week have been handed down to us from a pagan background. Whether you trace the names of each day of the week through Latin, Roman, or German origins, you cannot escape the fact that our days are named after false deities (Sunday, for the day of the Sun god, Monday for the Moon god, Thursday for the day of Thor, the Norse Viking god, Saturday for the Roman god Saturn, etc.). Though we have retained these names, we should use any and every day to honor our Lord.

Just as Christians have turned special pagan times of the year into holidays, like Christmas and Easter, and just as we live out each day of the week for Christ, so we can redeem the time with Halloween by focusing on that which is hallow (holy). We carry a hope-filled message about God’s faithfulness, and I believe Christians can reform Halloween into something positive for our children and our community.

How do we do this? Maybe we can give out candy with a message for people to “taste and see that the Lord is good” (Psalm 34:8). What about jack-o’-lanterns? Perhaps you could carve a “Christian” version with a cross-shaped nose and underscore the candle as the light of Christ shining through His people. What about dressing up in costumes? As long as the costumes don’t promote evil or aren’t gory, I don’t see any harm in these things. Kids (and adults) have fun playing dress-up, so why not let them express themselves for such an occasion You may want to dress-up like a Bible character or wear an innocent costume and teach others that though we may try to change into a different character, God’s character never changes.

Does that mean that everyone will come to see a message of spiritual hope and that which is hallow in Halloween? No, but neither does everyone understand the significance of Christmas and Easter. As followers of Jesus Christ, we are called to be separate from the world, while seizing the opportunities around us. I would rather redeem the time (and the day) for Christ and put hallow back into Halloween.

Redeeming the time,
Pastor Joel Breidenbaugh

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Massive "Curse of the Spider King" Contest!

Author friends of mine, Wayne Batson and Christopher Hopper, have a great contest going on to promote their new book, Curse of the Spider King. Follow this link and check it out!

As you may recall (or not if you are new to my blog), I went on the Fantasy Fiction Tour this time last year with 7 amazing authors: Wayne, Chris, Donita K. Paul, Jonathan Rogers, L.B. Graham, Sharon Hinck, and Bryan Davis. The tour took us from Vancouver, BC down through Seattle, WA, Portland, OR and the Coast of California to our final destination - San Diego. The Miller Brothers joined us for the Northwest portion of the trip and it was an amazing 9 days of 3-a-day visits to schools, churches, and bookstores. If you haven't seen the videos, check out my archives from Oct. and Nov. 2008 or find them posted on Youtube under "the Motiv8 Fantasy Fiction Tour 2008.

I'm excited for Wayne and Christopher and their co-authored series. I recall them working furiously on their lap tops as we bounced down the highway in the 15 passenger van, periodically yelling out, "does anyone have a good synonym for ________?" These guys are crazy fun... so I'm sure it will be reflected in their joint effort! Get in on the contest and be a part of promoting Curse of the Spider King to all your friends!

If you want to see there zany side right now... check out the video below.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Congrats to the Book Winner - Evergreena!

The winner of the book drawing for a copy of Scott Appleton's "Swords of the Six" is a new blog follower who goes by the name of "Evergeena." Congrats! For those of you who did not win, do not despair... keep following my blog and we will have more give-a-ways and contests. In addition, if you are on Facebook, look me up under Eric Reinhold or the Ryann Watters Book Fan Club.

Be blessed,

Friday, September 11, 2009

FREE BOOK Give-a-way & Interview with "Swords of the Six" author Scott Appleton

Alway on the look-out for good Christian fantasy books for youth, I stumbled across Scott Appleton the other day and so far we've hit it off. Scott is a freelance writer living in the northeast corner of Connecticut. He's the author of such published short stories as Moses & the Lamb, The Woodland King, and Splintered Sacrifice. Swords of the Six is his first novel and he lives happily with his wife in their small appartment (his words).


Here's a short summary of the first novel in Scott's series: "Swords of the Six."

In ancient times the dragon prophet was betrayed by his choicest warriors. One thousand years later he gave the traitors' swords to six human daughters that he hatched out of eggs and sent them on a mission to find the first of the traitors that escaped retribution. Weilding rusted swords the dragon's daughters set out to find that first traitor . . . with an offer for him to repent.

Now a few questions for Scott:

Q1. What made you choose to write?

Six years ago I was a student missionary in Thailand. While there I wrote down the first ideas for a fantasy story (though at the time I'd never read fantasy) and when I returned to the States I started expanding that story. I worked various jobs, but disliked working for companies and doing tasks that took no imagination. During this time I expended my frustrations and joys into my developing storyline. From that point on the stories grew in my head and I couldn't help but write; I loved it.

Q2. Where do you write best?

Definitely at home sitting down listening to movie soundtracks, but location is dependant on the time of day. I find if difficult to write when a lot of activity is going on around me. Most of my writing for the first The Sword of the Dragon novel was typed into my laptop between 10 o'clock at night and 3 o'clock in the morning.

Q3. Is there a topic you've always wanted to write about?

Yes. I want to delve into the life of Moses through extra-biblical writings and create—what I know could be—a galvanizing novel. It will take years to accomplish, in part because I want to visit Egypt as part of my research.

Q4. How do you get your ideas? Do you use real events in your novels and if so, can you describe one?

I don't use real events in my novels, though my books do (sometimes) mirror my life-experiences. I have to sit and ponder for a while before the stories come to me. Then I ask myself a series of 'What if' questions to determine how far my imagination can take the plot. So, in a way, I guess you could say the ideas just come to me.

Q5. How many The Sword of the Dragon novels will there be?

My series is titled The Sword of the Dragon and I am hoping to fit all the material I've created over the past few years into seven novels. The first four titles are Swords of the Six, Offspring, The Key of Living Fire, and In Search of Dragons

Q6. Are all the books written? If not, do you know plot points for all of them?

The books are not all completed. However, I have a manuscript from which I am working and it tells the entire story from novel one Swords of the Six to the final one, Sword & Savior. I have a couple thousand pages of material for this series and some for a series that I will do afterward called The Death Knight Chronicles. It will take a lifetime to finish them all.

Thanks Scott for spending some time with us. For more info, you can check out his website at http://www.theswordofthedragon.com/ and his blog at http://www.flamingpen.blogspot.com/.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Mount Dora Headlines: Warspiders Invade Quaint Rural Town!

Police are dumbfounded. Last night, on what should have been a typical lazy, end of Summer Sunday, downtown Mount Dora came under what one resident called, "an attack."

The lone eyewitness was a drifter named Noah Johnson, who admitted he sleeps on a park bench out behind the First Presbyterian Church. He was awakened by the crashing sounds of metal trash cans and newspaper boxes smashing on the street. After extensive questioning by police, the rattled homeless man could only say that he saw what looked to be

"enormous spiders racing down the street."

When he got up to take a closer look, he said they "jumped" up on buildings at Dora Drawdy Way and headed down the alley way past the Goblin Market and Mount Dora Coffee Shop.

Police confirmed that the rooftops along the route mentioned by Mr. Johnson had indeed been badly damaged. They followed the destruction to where it ended and taped off the area as a crime scene.

After not being able to get any further answers from police, I walked around the perimeter of the yellow tape and saw a local boy, Ryann Watters sneak out from the far end. Ryann appeared visibly shaken and when I asked him about what he had seen he told me he’d rather not talk about it, but he had taken numerous pictures of the remains they left behind. I asked him to show them to me and as we clicked through his pictures on his cell phone, strangely only one of them had turned out.

Ryann indicated that he’s friends with Mr. Johnson and that when he talked with him, the drifter described the encounter as some sort of attack, even going so far to call them "warspiders."

The idea of this sleepy little town coming under attack by giant spiders seems a little far-fetched to this reporter.

There are many unanswered questions, but my plan is to find a place to get comfortable behind the church tonight and see if the arachnids return.

ATTENTION: I this is the one picture that was developed from Ryann's camera. I finally got a copy and am able to post it today - Oct. 18, 2009!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

I love the stories songs can tell...

And the lessons that can be learned. There is a trio of songs I was listening to today as I washed my cars (my wife's and mine... what a great husband!). Anyway... they all dealt with the same theme of how we view ourselves. While it's true that 'All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,' Romans 3:23, it's also true that Christ's attoning sacrifice has paid for our sin and that we are a new creature. God now looks at His Son in us.

Do you ever feel down? Do you ever hate something about yourself? It happens to the best of us and while the motivational speakers say to repeat positive things in your head, or the drill instructors and coaches say, "pick yourself up by your bootstraps and get going," (what are boot straps anyway?)... as Christians we can find solace in knowing the God loves us. How do we know? You know the verse... John 3:16 "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life."

I've reprinted the words and a music video of the songs I listened to below. They all speak to us not having to focus on the imperfections in our life. God doesn't save perfect people... He reaches out to those who are crippled like me.


I used to care so much about what others think about
Almost didn’t have a thought of my own
The slightest remark would make me embark
On the journey of self doubt
But that was a while ago
This girl has got stronger
If I knew then what I know now
I would have told myself don’t worry any longer it's OK

'cause a face without freckles is like a sky without stars
Why waste a second not loving who you are
Those little imperfections make you beautiful, lovable, valuable,
They show your personality inside your heart
Reflecting who you are

Who you are
Who you are
Who you are

I wondered if I could trade my body with somebody else in magazines
With the whole world full at my feet
I phantom worthy and would blame my failures on the ugliness I could see
When the mirror looked at me
Sometimes I feel like the little girl who doesn’t belong in her own world
But I'm getting better
And I'm reminding myself


Reflecting who you are
Reflecting who you are
Whoooooo whoa hmmmm oooooo


At twenty years of age
I'm still looking for a dream
A war is already waged for my destiny
But You've already won the battle
And You've got great plans for me
Though I can't always see, 'cause...

I got a couple dents in my fender
Got a couple rips in my jeans
Try to fit the pieces together
But perfection is my enemy
And on my own I'm so clumsy
But on Your shoulders I can see
I'm free to be me

When I was just a girl
I thought I had it figured out
See my life will turn out right
And I'll make it here somehow
But things don't always come that easy
And sometimes I would doubt, 'cause...

And you're free to be you

Sometimes I believe
That I can do anything
Yet other times I think
I've got nothing good to bring

But You look at my heart and you tell me
That I've got all You seek
And it's easy to believe, even though...

And you're free to be you


Little girl fourteen flipping through a magazine
Says she wants to look that way
But her hair isn’t straight her body isn’t fake
And she’s always felt overweight

Well little girl fourteen I wish that you could see
That beauty is within your heart
And you were made with such care your skin your body and your hair
Are perfect just the way they are

There could never be a more beautiful you
Don’t buy the lies disguises and hoops they make you jump through
You were made to fill a purpose that only you could do
So there could never be a more beautiful you

Little girl twenty-one the things that you’ve already done
Anything to get ahead
And you say you’ve got a man but he’s got another plan
Only wants what you will do instead

[ Jonny Diaz Lyrics are found on www.songlyrics.com ]
Well little girl twenty-one you never thought that this would come
You starve yourself to play the part
But I can promise you there’s a man whose love is true
And he’ll treat you like the jewel you are

So turn around you’re not too far
To back away be who you are
To change your path go another way
It’s not too late you can be saved
If you feel depressed with past regrets
The shameful nights hope to forget
Can disappear they can all be washed away
By the one who’s strong can right your wrongs
Can rid your fears dry all your tears
And change the way you look at this big world
He will take your dark distorted view
And with His light He will show you truth
And again you’ll see through the eyes of a little girl

Friday, August 21, 2009

Calling All Candy Addicts!

I ran across this blog and thought it was pretty cool. Lots of reviews of all types of candy, the top 10 gross candies, best, etc. What's your favorite candy? Chocolate? Gummie Bears? Sour? Sweet? Take a look and see what you think.


Personally, my favorite has always been Reeses Peanut Butter Cups. I do confess that I eat 3-5 Hershey's Kisses each morning with a steaming cup of black coffee! My son, on the other hand, prefers the Sour stuff (like warheads, pictured).

Friday, August 14, 2009

Florida Baptist Witness Paper Review

Novels set in Mt. Dora follow teens’ search for the armor of God
Published August 13, 2009

ORLANDO (FBW)—Imagining fantasies to tell his three children at bedtime, Orlando resident Eric Reinhold developed a cast of characters and events that became the basis for supernatural adventure novels published by Creation House. The recently released Ryann Watters and the Shield of Faith follows book one of the series, Ryann Watters and the King’s Sword, published in 2008.
In the books, 12-year-old Ryann is set on a fantasy adventure by a command from the angel Gabiel “to search our and put on the full armor of God so that you can take a stand against the devil’s schemes.” The angel leaves a glowing ring with Ryann to help on the quest. Unable to keep quiet about the angel’s visit, Ryann enlists his friends Terrell and Liddy in his search for pieces of God’s armor. Another boy—a classroom bully—is visited by a dark angel, Lord Ekron, who charges him with thwarting all of Ryann’s godly efforts.

All the non-fantasy action takes place in Mt. Dora, where the friends meet at the Dickens-Reed Book Nook and attend Mt. Dora Middle School. The lakes and gazebos around the city serve as passageways to the world of Aeliana where mythical friends and talking animals help them in their searches.

The second book, in which Ryann searches for the shield of faith, places Ryann and his friends in “more grown-up situations and more do-or-die circumstances,” according to a publisher’s news release.

The author is a member of First Baptist Church Sweetwater in Longwood where is he is a deacon, Sunday School teacher and volunteer with the high school youth group. A graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and University of Baltimore, he is president of Academy Wealth Management, a financial planning firm.

While growing up in Miami, Reinhold read the works of C.S. Lewis and sci-fi author Marion Zimmer Bradley. Such influences combine to produce what one reviewer called a “fine balance between virtuous substance and an enchanting romp.”

Reinhold began outlining the
Annals of Aeliana series in 2000, but was sidetracked by health and business issues before picking up the project again in 2007. The hard-cover volumes, 227 and 384 pages, are colorfully illustrated by Corey Wolfe, and contain maps of both Mt. Dora and Aeliana, and an illustrated list of characters.

Reinhold is currently writing book three in the series, Ryann Watters and the Belt of Truth. For more information on the Annals of Aeliana Series, go to www.ryannwatters.com.

Eric Reinhold, CFP, MBA, Academy Wealth Management, 1900 Summit Tower Blvd, Suite 230, Orlando, FL 32779. Securities and Advisory Services Offered Through Commonwealth Financial Network, Member FINRA/SIPC, a Registered Investment Adviser.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

INTERVIEW on Blog Talk Radio

On August 10th I was interviewed by Felice Gerwitz on her blog talk radio show, "In a Nutshell." Felice and I met a few years ago at a home school fair and hit it off right away. She is a writer, conducts seminars, and assists authors in honing their craft and getting published. She has her own publishing company, Media Angels. We spent an hour discussing our stories and ideas on how to both market your book and get into writing. Sit down with your favorite beverage (click below) and have a listen!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

First Wild Card Book Tours Reviews "The Shield of Faith"

It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!

Today's Wild Card author is:

and the book:

Ryann Watters and the Shield of Faith

Creation House; 1st edition (May 5, 2009)


Eric J. Reinhold is the president of Academy Wealth Management and a graduate of the United States Naval Academy. His passion is to write youth fantasy novels that incorporate strong moral character and biblical values. Eric teaches Sunday school at First Baptist Sweetwater Church in Longwood, Florida, where he attends with his wife, Kim, and three children.

Visit the author's website and blog.

Product Details:

List Price: $19.99
Hardcover: 384 pages
Publisher: Creation House; 1st edition (May 5, 2009)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1599796260
ISBN-13: 978-1599796260


Into the Crypt

Echoes from unseen singers filled the cavernous space inside the United States Naval Academy Chapel. Row after row of precisely aligned dark wood benches were broken up by a single swath of navy blue carpet running the length of the church. The perfectly blended voices seemed to come from everywhere and nowhere in particular. Ryann, who had just celebrated his thirteenth birthday, was drawn into the melodic a cappella song.

Eternal Father, strong to save,

Whose arm hath bound the restless wave.

Who bidd’st the mighty ocean deep

Its own appointed limits keep.

O hear us when we cry to Thee

For those in peril on the sea.

Goose bumps popped up along his arm in the silence that followed. He felt alone, yet he was one of the hundreds sitting stiffly upright in the ornately fashioned pews. Squirming in the hard seat, he tried to displace the chill running down his back. He peered forward over the unmoving heads packed into the hundreds of rows in front of them. The white shirts with black and gold shoulder boards, identifying the rank of each midshipman, dotted the otherwise drab congregation.

Focusing further ahead into the base of the circular, domed room, his eyes widened to capture the openness rising heavenward from the brown pulpit. Ryann jerked as blasts sounded from massive golden pipes shooting up from both sides of the altar, cracking the eerie silence. Windy bellows cascaded around the dome, two hundred feet up. The novelty of such an instrument held his attention until the rays of the early morning sun began illuminating the stained glass mural outlined by the pipes. The face of Jesus radiated with the morning glow as He walked calmly across the tossing blue-green waves. Above the stained glass were the words “Eternal Father, Strong to Save.”

Without moving his head, Ryann glanced left down the pew. He had positioned himself perfectly, or so he thought, with his sister, Alison, next to him, followed by his brother, Henry Jr., and then his parents. To his right was an open aisle. As the white-robed pastor strode purposefully from his highback chair to the podium, Ryann’s hand crept along his pant leg with the stealth of a spider. Reaching into his pocket, he pulled out his cell phone, suppressing a smile as he silently congratulated himself on picking out one so small. He was grateful his parents had bought the phone but struggled with the rules that had come with it, like their prohibition against texting in church.

The sound of the pastor’s voice launching into the sermon provided the perfect diversion for him to slide the phone down the side of his leg. A quick glance provided the needed confidence to continue, and Ryann’s thumb moved with robotic precision to select his two best friends and then type out a quick message.

here in academy chapel. wuu2?

Ryann had received the phone as a gift for moving up to seventh grade. Liddy’s and Terell’s parents had quickly followed his parents’ lead, and now the three of them could get in touch with each other at any moment. Being scattered around the country for summer vacations didn’t seem quite so bad when they could quickly share moments with their best friends.

Ryann put his father in the category of “techie” and patiently sat through his instructions on all the features of the cell phone, but the real education came from his friends. He was going to be taking his first year of Spanish when classes began, and Ryann figured it would actually be his third language after English and texting. He smiled. Who would have known a month ago that wuu2 meant, “What are you up to?” Sliding the cell phone under his leg to keep it hidden, he shifted in the hard bench and sighed, waiting to see if there would be a response.


Liddy’s back pocket buzzed as she followed her parents down the white marble stairs of the grand foyer. She slowly reached around to pull out the hot pink phone as her parents and other tourists listened to the tour director.

“The Breakers is the grandest of Newport’s summer cottages and a symbol of the Vanderbilt family’s social and financial preeminence in turn-of-the-century America. Commodore Cornelius Vanderbilt established the family fortune in steamships and later in the New York Central Railroad, which was a pivotal development in the industrial growth of the nation during the late nineteenth century—”

Liddy rolled her eyes. Cottages? Who are they trying to kid? This is the biggest mansion I’ve ever seen. Flipping open her phone, she read Ryann’s message and quickly responded.

at huge mansion in rhode island. doin 3.5 mile hike along ocean cliff trail later today. cya

Liddy enjoyed the change of scenery as her family took their annual summer vacation to Rhode Island to stay with her grandparents. With the trip winding down, her parents had suggested a day trip to the famous Newport mansions. It sounded boring to Liddy until they mentioned the ocean cliff walk. Two-thirds of the trek was supposed to be fairly easy and scenic, but the last third was described as “treacherous” in the colorful brochure her parents had given her. Seventy-foot drops off the rocky shoreline into the turbulent ocean waves sounded exciting to her.

The abrupt silence of the tour guide erased her vision of the future, and Liddy’s thoughts turned to Terell. Her thumbs glided across the black keys, typing out a quick message.

wuu2? last few days cw2cu

* * *


Terell jerked in his seat, his elbow jabbing his mother in the ribs. Glancing about, he ran his hands up and down the top of his pants, smoothing them out. His mother’s upturned palm came down on his leg.

Busted, Terell thought, pulling his cell phone out of his pocket and handing it to her.

Terell watched his mother flip it open so only she could view it. As he looked up into her face she mouthed the word later. He leaned back and tried to focus on the sermon. His mom was pretty consistent about quizzing him about the content later in the day.

“Terell, you know you’re not supposed to have your cell phone on during church,” his mother began as they headed out to their car. “It’s a distraction.”

“I know, Mom, but it’s probably important.”

“Well, when you become a doctor and you’re on call, then you can have it on during church. Otherwise keep it off or don’t bring it.”

Later as they reached the car, he asked, “Can I have it back now?”

His mother fumbled around in her purse, then handed it to him. “By the way, what does ‘cw2cu’ mean?”

“Mom! That’s ‘can’t wait to see you,’” Terell breathed exasperatedly while shaking his head.

“Watch it, Terell. A cell phone is a privilege, not a right.”

“Yes, ma’am,” he acknowledged while flipping open his cell to get the message.

He quickly scanned the text and typed back.

have fun. church is havin end of sumr dinner picnic at evans park. cul8r

* * *

Ryann strode hastily down the granite steps outside the chapel doors with Alison trying to keep up. Red brick walkways running parallel to orange and yellow flowerbeds greeted him. The famous Herndon Monument his father always spoke of towered off to the left.

The twenty-one-foot, gray-speckled obelisk sprouted out of the ground in stark contrast to the rich green grass and brown oak trees surrounding it. He tried to picture hundreds of sweaty midshipmen scaling the greased monument to replace the plebe “dixie-cup hat” on top with a midshipmen cover. This marked the official end of the difficult first year and an elevation from plebe to midshipman third class. As his father had recounted numerous times, legend held that whoever replaced the dixie cup hat was destined to be the first in his or her class to become an admiral, although in reality it had not yet occurred.

“Hey, Ryann!”

He turned in time to watch his older brother, Henry, race down the steps two at a time. “Dad’s talking to some old classmates of his and will be down in a few minutes. He’s got our schedule laid out for the whole day.”

“Really?” Ryann replied in mock sarcasm. “Who would have thought?”

“He wants us to check out John Paul Jones’ crypt before we go to lunch,” Henry said, ignoring Ryann’s comment.

“What’s a crypt?” Alison asked.

“It’s where his bones are buried,” Ryann said, widening his eyes and curling his fingers like monster claws.

“Oh, gross!” Alison replied, scrunching up her face and turning away.

“Where is it?” Ryann asked.

Henry turned to lead the way. “It’s underneath the chapel. Come on, let’s go! He said the entrance is around the side.”

The two boys raced along the narrow sidewalk outlining the left side of the chapel.

“Hey, guys! Wait for me,” Alison cried out from behind them.

Rushing down the steps, Henry and Ryann slapped the thick wooden doors with open palms, jolting the heavy entrance open. Pushing their way in, they stopped just inside at a sign with old typeface, pointing the way to the crypt.


Both boys jumped as the high-pitched yelp echoed around the small foyer entrance.

“Shhh,” they whispered in unison, glaring at their sister.

“Sorry.” Alison shrugged her shoulders, the light dimming quickly as the bulky doors swung shut with a loud bang.

“Do you think it’s open to the public?” Henry whispered.

“The door wasn’t locked, so it must be, right?” Ryann hesitated momentarily. No one besides the three of them was in sight, but that made the exploration more intriguing. “Come on, this way.”

The small room’s walls hung with ornate religious symbols. A large black wooden door beside an altar caught Ryann’s attention, and he rushed to examine it.

“Well, Mr. Know-it-all, what next?” Alison asked in her snootiest voice.

“We go through the door, of course.” Pushing the door open, Ryann expected to be at their final destination, but instead the door’s echoing groans resounded through a hollow chamber. The catacombs of the chapel basement seemed unending, and the more up-to-date style of this room appeared nothing like a crypt.

“Are you both sure John Paul Jones is down here?” Alison continued with indignant pessimism.

Ryann’s and Henry’s eyes locked briefly, and Henry winked. “Sure, he’s just down the hallway here. C’mon.”

Another rustic black door with an ancient doorknob awaited them. Henry reached it first. He turned the ornate metal doorknob and pulled back firmly.


Ryann glanced over his shoulder and gave Alison a sinister grin, hoping to increase her anxiety. A dimly lit room of swirling black and white marble awaited them. He followed his brother into the room and nearly collided with him when Henry stopped. Pushing him aside, Ryann grinned at the sight. A massive, almost totally black coffin dominated the center of the room. The base, rising out of the white marble floor, was adorned with four dolphins leaping out from each corner. Eight thick swirled-marble columns surrounding the coffin held up an ornately carved, octagon-shaped ceiling. Glowing blue light formed a halo in the recession above the tomb, cascading down eerily over the marble casket of the immortalized John Paul Jones.

“Ahh!” Alison cried out. Her voice echoed across the marble floors.

Both boys jerked around in Alison’s direction. Standing at attention next to her like a suit of armor was a Marine guard Ryann hadn’t noticed upon entering. His immaculate dress uniform molded to him as if he never took it off, like a painted statue. Ryann scanned up from the dim light reflecting off the soldier’s polished black shoes, past the crisply pressed blue pants with red stripes down each side to his coat-like black top with gleaming gold buttons from neck to waist. His thick white belt with a highly polished Marine Corps emblazoned buckle, white gloved hands and white cover broke up the dark colors that had kept him hidden. He stared into the expressionless face of the guard to see if he could catch him blinking.

“Hey, kids, I see you made it down here!” their father said from the other side of the room as he walked over to join them. He didn’t try to conceal his smile. “Looks like you took the long way.”

“Kinda creepy, Dad,” Alison said, then whispered, “and there’s a guard over there.”

“Yeah, honey, the military posts uniformed guards at significant memorials to honor those who died in service to our country.”

“Dad, I’ve heard of Davey Jones from that pirate movie, but who’s John Paul Jones?” Henry asked.

Mr. Watters glanced at his watch. “We’ve got to meet some friends for lunch, but in short, he’s the father of the American Navy. All of the dimly lit, recessed alcoves down here have artifacts and details of his life. See there?” He pointed at the floor in front of the marbled coffin. “Etched into the floor, circling the sarcophagus—which by the way is made of twenty-one tons of Grand Pyrenees marble—are the names of the seven ships he commanded during his life.”

“Sarco who?” Henry asked, wrinkling up his brow.

“Sarcophagus. You know, a receptacle for a corpse carved from stone. As a plebe you have to memorize that type of important information.” Ryann’s father smiled.

“Yeah, right.” Henry rolled his eyes.

“Okay, gotta go, guys. And this time, let’s go out the right way,” Mr. Watters said as he led them around the room to the exit.

Ryann read off the names of the ships etched into the marble as they walked—Providence, Ariel, Ranger, Serapis, Alliance, Alfred—and some other name he couldn’t read as they went out the door. As they walked toward their car, he sent a text to Liddy.

just left wicked cool tomb of dead guy under the chapel…zup?

Sunday, July 5, 2009


Happy July 4th Weekend! This morning in church our pastor preached on a familiar verse from 2 Chronicles 7:14 - "...if my people who are called by my name humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land."

The key phrases are humble themselves, pray, seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways. The Lord says I will hear you. We don't have to ask the question in this video. Take a quick look...

Thursday, July 2, 2009


I'm Letting Go by Francesca Battistelli is another song that reminded me of book 1, especially the scenes where Ryann and Liddy and then Terell are jumping into Lake Dora to make the journey into Aeliana. Letting go of the security of the dock and this world and take a literal leap of faith into the next.

An analogy our pastor gave last week, in regards to our faith, spoke to scripture that says "the Lord is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path." It's like a flashlight lighting that one step just in front of us while several steps out the path is still dark. We rely on him to light our path and have faith in Him, in what lies ahead. Enjoy the song, words, and the life that comes in Jesus.

My heart beats, standing on the edge
But my feet have finally left the ledge

Like an acrobat
There’s no turning back

I’m letting go
Of the life I planned for me
And my dreams
Losing control
Of my destiny
Feels like I’m falling and that’s what it’s like to believe
So I’m letting go

This is a giant leap of faith
Trusting and trying to embrace

The fear of the unknown
Beyond my comfort zone

I’m letting go
Of the life I planned for me
And my dreams
Losing control
Of my destiny
Feels like I’m falling and that’s what it’s like to believe
So I’m letting go

Giving in to your gravity
Knowing You are holding me
I’m not afraid

Feels like I’m falling and that’s what it’s like to believe
Feels like I’m falling and this is the life for me

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Jesus Freak

Are you a Jesus Freak?

I was listening to one of my favorite songs by DC Talk the other day, Jesus Freak, and the words seemed to fit so well with one of the characters in my latest book, "Ryann Watters and the Shield of Faith." Upon returning to Aeliana; Ryann, Liddy, and Terell encounter a wild dwarf in the desert by the name of Eljon. He's my 'John the Bapist' character and Jared Sloger (my interior artist) captured him well with this rendering:
Here's a link to DC Talk's music video and a version from their live concert! The words are below. So, are you a Jesus Freak?
Separated, I cut myself clean
From a past that comes back
in my darkest of dreams
Been apprehended by a spiritual force
And a grace that replaced all the me I've divorced

I saw a man with tat on his big fat belly
It wiggled around like marmalade jelly
It took me a while to catch what it said
Cause I had to match the rhythm Of his belly with my head
'Jesus Saves' is what it raved in a typical tattoo green
He stood on a box in the middle of the city And claimed he had a dream

(chorus) What will people think
When they hear that I'm a Jesus freak
What will people do when they find that it's true
I don't really care if they label me a Jesus freak
There ain't no disguising the truth

Kamikaze, my death is gain
I've been marked by my Maker A peculiar display
The high and lofty, they see me as weak
Cause I won't live and die for the power they seek

There was a man from the desert with naps in his head
The sand that he walked was also his bed
The words that he spoke made the people assume
There wasn't too much left in the upper room
With skins on his back and hair on his face
They thought he was strange by the locusts he ate
The Pharisees tripped when they heard him speak
Until the king took the head of this Jesus freak

(chorus) What will people think
When they hear that I'm a Jesus freak
What will people do when they find that it's true
I don't really care if they label me a Jesus freak
There ain't no disguising the truth

Saturday, May 23, 2009

The New Website is Up and Running!

Check out the new website at www.ryannwatters.com and let me know what you think. I divided it into 5 stones (read about those in book 2) and each stone takes you into a different place on the website.

Stone 1 = The Original Book One site with some modifictions

Stone 2 = New Book Two site which has the same feel as the original site (make sure to check out the artist corner with Jared Sloger and the new settings area).

Stone 3 = Future Books: I will place all of the latest info on "Ryann Watters and the Belt of Truth," here.

Stone 4 = Fun Stuff: I've moved some stuff around so that you can find the contests, updates, wall paper downloads, videos, etc. here.

Stone 5 = The Store... Oh yeah, the books can be bought here and it's the only place (besides in person) where they are signed and come with a full color, laminated bookmarker.

FEEDBACK: I'd love to get your feedback on what you think about the website. Send me a quick e-mail and pass along the link to friends, pastors, teachers, kids, and everyone you vaguely know! For Creation House to move ahead with Book 3, they need to hit sales of at least 10,000 books. Thanks for your help! Eric

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Earl Release Book Party

I had a fun time at my early-release open house. This picture is of my beautiful high school sweetheart and now wife, Kim (21 years next month)... I know we look like newlyweds!

Over 250 books have sold through pre-orders on my website and I'm looking forward to the retail release date on May 5th. When you have a minute, please spread the work via e-mails, blogs, twitter, facebook and put a review up on Amazon, Borders, or Christian Books.com. Speaking of all these places on the net, if you haven't found me on FACEBOOK yet then type in Eric Reinhold and Ryann Watters Book Fan Club. You can follow a lot of the happenings and see other fun pics that I don't post here.

My website is currently being overhauled to coincide with the release of book 2, so check http://www.ryannwatters.com/ in the next week to see if it's up and running and give me feedback!
Have a blessed week!


Tuesday, April 21, 2009


Congrats to the winner of Contest # 7 - Summer Jackson of Abbotsford, British Columbia (that's Canada for all you kids in the U.S. who haven't taken Geography). I will be sending her the brand new, not yet in stores, hot off the press, signed copy of "Shield of Faith!" Thanks to everyone who submitted an answer.


#8 The First BOOK 2 - SHIELD OF FAITH Trivia. Since the book is only available on my website until May 5th, when it will be on Amazon and local bookstores. OPEN UNTIL JUNE 30TH ***Question: What do buttons 4 and 5 do on Ryann's staff?

Also, in the next 10 days or so there is going to be a major update of my website, which will include all new content for book 2. Keep checking back for it.

Now... I'm off to pack for a short 5 day, family vaction to Naples (no not Italy, but Florida... it's a 4 hour drive) Gotcha!

The picture above is part of the book... what do those 5 blue stones mean? Hmmm, maybe an idea for the next trivia question!

Be blessed and KEEP THE FAITH!

Habakkuk 2:4

Friday, April 17, 2009

The Books Are In!


It's now official... I have received my pre-order shipment of book 2, "Ryann Watters and the Shield of Faith." It's exciting to be able to have my own extensive supply of books so that I can easily take them to book signings and also provide a service to readers through direct sales. My website (or of course in person) is the only way to get a signed book...

PLUS, I had a printing company put print awesome, full-color, glossy bookmarkers that combine the front and back covers of the book. Those come free with an order off my website http://www.ryannwatters.com/.

I was concerned on the day of delivery as Central Florida was experiencing a downpour of rain. Fortunately the driver was late and the rain stopped by delivery time. My wife, Kim, and two of my kids came by to help move the boxes of books into storage.
In the same vein of the chip company that says "we'll make more," I'm hoping to get the word out about Ryann Watters so that I can say, "we'll print more!" Thanks for taking an interest and please pass the word about The Annals of Aeliana via e-mail, Facebook, book reviews on-line (Amazon, Borders, Christianbooks.com, etc.). I appreciate it!

Be blessed,

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Pre-order Book 2 now and get $5 off!

Yeah! Book 2 is now available to Pre-order
and will be shipped April 18th!
That's 3 weeks ahead of Amazon and your favorite bookstore. Plus I'll be signing all of the books and including a free, full-color, glossy bookmark with each one. They can be ordered directly here:

Thanks for your support! If you can pass along the word to friends via e-mail, facebook, and in person at church, school, clubs, and sports teams I would appreciate it. Books build momentum via people and the sales on book 1 and 2 will go a long way towards my publisher engaging me for book 3.

Thanks again!


Thursday, March 19, 2009

Book 2 is off to the Printers!

The count down has begun! My manuscript has gone through final approvals and is now off to the printer! Coming in at a whopping 400 pages, it will be almost twice the fun as book one! Ryann Watters and the Shield of Faith is going to be in stores on May 5th but I will be receiving early release copies on April 15th! Yes, there is a bright spot for tax day this year.

I will be making the book available for a SPECIAL Pre-release discount if you order early and your signed copy will be mailed out on the 16th and 17th! Please spread the word! Check http://www.ryannwatters/ next week!

I thought you'd enjoy a sneak peak at the title page treatment!

Thanks, Eric

Monday, March 9, 2009

Final cover layout and typesetting

The final cover layout is concluding this week and I am very happy with the results. The final piece of the puzzle was trying to find a picture of me that didn't scare away potential readers! Actually, it was hard to get the right photo this time. For "The King's Sword," I raced over to Mount Dora and had a tourist walking down the street snap a few pictures and one of them worked great.

This time around I have been to Mount Dora three times and think I finally have the right photo. It was so sunny each time that I had a hard time keeping my eyes open and since I have foregone a professional photographer, complete with shading screens, proper artificial lighting, etc., the job was a little more difficult.

My 10 year old son, Kyler took the pics yesterday and I am choosing between the two here. I'm leaning more towards the casual one of me sitting down.

Weigh in with your opinion if you like!

I took a few others while out at lighthouse point (see sign and birds). My desire with each of my books was to capture a unique place in Mount Dora (the setting for the book). Book one was taken in front of the old bookstore (now out of business) and for book 2 there is so much that takes place near the town's landmark lighthouse, that I wanted to have my picture taken with it in the background.

More updates coming this week... including excerpts of book 2. I am in talks with the web designer now and there are some cool additions coming!

High School student, Jason Derfuss films a summary video of book 1