Back to John T. Cullen San Diego Author

Back to John T. Cullen San Diego Author


METAPHOR: URBAN METRO SYSTEM Navigate key parts of my webplex by hopping onboard the three urban metro lines indicated below. They are:

New Town
main stop: Galley City, where you can read over a million words free (try-buy)

Old Town
main stop: Clocktower Books online since 1996 plus Museum plus my personal sites

Faubourg or Ban (Banlieue) means Suburb - lots of interesting store windows in the station


This Website is the Main Hub for Multiple Linked Subsites

STATION 1. GALLEY CITY METRO. Galley City is the biggest and most important part of my webplex. Here you can read over a million words free. Short stories (fiction), poetry, and short articles (nonfiction) are generall free. Longer works, including 40+ books, are available on the Read-a-Latte principle. That means: read half free; if you like it and want to know how it ends, buy the book cheaply as a cup of coffee. It's the best deal in town. A cup of coffee (latte) is gone in minutes, but you can savor a book forever. Print and e-book editions available.

As the navigation on page one shows, this station leads to my nonfiction as well. I'm a professional journalist among other qualifications (world traveler, multi-lingual, three college degrees, etc.), so I love writing what we call soft news. That's not your breaking (or broken) news story of the moment, but a more leisurely read that often goes into greater depth. Short pieces are free (to get you interested), longer pieces are Read-a-Latte like a cup of coffee, best deal in town. Caffeine Books gives you my background as a writer of fiction primarily, and each item has a link so you can start reading half free/try-buy at Galley City. Last but not least, I've had a lot of fun over the years building websites, including Books About Paris and my romantic mall, Citta Moda.

STATION 2. CLOCKTOWER METRO. My associates and I launched some pioneering publishing ventures online starting in 1996. Learn about those at the Clocktower Books Museum. My personal website (looking rather busy, I know, but fun) is John T. Cullen. The publishing imprint is Clocktower Books, my small press publishing venture in San Diego (ISBN Prefix 0-7433-). Last but not least, I thought this would be a good place to hang my poetry hat, so there we are. Burnout or worse for poets, rock stars, and other creative artists seems to be around 27, and that's when I had written about 99% of my life's poetry.

STATION 3. SINCE FOREVER METRO. I've built a lot of little websites over the past quarter century or more. Some are history, replaced by newer things. Others remain, scattered all over the Internet, and I am gathering them together here on the Metro platform waiting for your train to come roaring by. Happy reading, happy traveling! JTC

Le Chat is Rocky Cullen proudly wearing his Holiday Bowtie circa 2019

Metro Stations: A New Metaphor

AUTHOR. I am a writer of fiction and nonfiction, in my 70s as I write this, and still going strong. I spent my youth writing… including writing poetry (some of it published starting age 18). To sum it up, I started writing poetry at age 7 and was a published poet by age 18. By age 17, I had begun my professional journalism career as a summer interne newspaper reporter at a New Haven, CT metro daily; I did that for three summers, but carried away a body of learning and experience that has grown over decades. By 19, I completed my first full novel (SF: Summer Planets). The latter would be marketed as Young Adult (YA) today, except it's by a teenager (me) in the 20th Century trying to imagine what his hero (early 20s) would be like (and that's in the Year 5000). I had many almosts over the years, but never did quite connect with the money money in New York City. I wasn't able to reach readers until the advent of the Internet, and I became a pioneering early adapter in 1996.

It's worth mentioning that, while I was stationed with the U.S. Army in West Germany during the 1970s, I did a lot of writing as well. As my poetry career wrapped up, I self-published my first book and registered copyright with the Library of Congress. That was titled Pauses: 64 Poems by John T. Cullen Copyright © 1980 by John T. Cullen. All Rights Reserved. I still have a few copies (there were twelve in all, hand-bound using professional book binding materials including cloth, parchment, and ribbons under instruction from a local print shop in Kaiserslautern). So I've been at the alternative publishing business for a long time.

But then the Internet came along in the 1990s. I must clarify a common misunderstanding. In 1996, I published my suspense novel Neon Blue and my SF novel Heartbreaker (retitled This Shoal of Space)on the Internet. Both were the world's first HTML novels, published entirely online (not on portable media like CD-ROM, floppies, or the like). Unlike Project Gutenberg, which had been publishing public domain material, mine were proprietary, written and copyright registered by me their author. I released them in an innovative weekly serial chapters method, and had a small but world-wide readership of avid (some raving!) readers. For a year or two, I was the only person on earth, in human history, doing this. Then I was swallowed up by the tsunami of a growing new publishing method (digital versus paper). Long story, worth mentioning (see the Clocktower Books Museum site for chronology & details).

I created my first website ( in 1998 as a way of collecting tools for writers online (in the early days, when this was very useful). SWC turned into a portal site described in 1999 by Writer's Market as 'one of the top 101 resources on the Internet for writers.' My major projects have included a long-running professional fiction magazine online (1998-2007, Deep Outside SFFH and Far Sector SFFH) and my San Diego small press publishing imprint Clocktower Books (ISBN Prefix 0-7433-). The history is summarized at my Museum site (part of this webplex). My current primary mission is to continue writing fiction and nonfiction, which I have been publishing online through outlets over the years including the late Fictionwise, plus various well-known e-book and p-book outlets, most recently Amazon KDP (e-books and print books).

WEBPLEX SIMPLIFIED. After developing at least thirty linked websites (reason to be explained in due time) over the years, I have made several efforts to reasonably consolidate and streamline. I did a drastic overhaul (or underhaul?) in September 2020 (the Vision Year 20-20). After a quarter century of work, my webplex (as I call it) of several dozen linked (web, sub) sites had begun to look messy and complicated. In this dramatic revision, I have tried to streamline navigation for your easier navigation and understanding.

URBAN METRO METAPHOR. I'm happier with the current configuration than ever before. I love the metaphor, given that I have enjoyed Metro type travel in a long list of major cities over many years, each with its unique and wonderful atmosphere, ranging from San Francisco and San Diego on the West Coast of the USA to Boston and New York City on the East Coast, to London and Paris and Berlin and Vienna and Rome and… oh the list is a long one. Even tiny Luxembourg, my other home country, has a tiny Metro system called den Tramm.

BACKGROUND. I've written over fifty book plus hundreds of poems, dozens of short stories, and a growing number of news articles. My lifetime of professional writing background includes (1) three college degrees (BA UConn, BBA National, MSBA Boston University); (2) OJT as a college summer intern newspaper reporter (The New Haven Journal-Courier; (3) lifetime of travel and living all over Europe and North America (working; living; fluent in languages; immersed in the cultures); (4) six years' Honorable Service with the U.S. Army in Europe during the Cold War;(5) over thirty years' experience as a technical writer/editor/trainer/analyist in the aerospace and computer systems development industries; (6) dual (actually multiple) citizenships born U.S. overseas as U.S. Army brat; acquired Luxembourg/E.U. citizenship. The list goes on (of why I have a few things to write about), but I'm not here to talk about myself.

MISSION. I'm a professional author and teacher (three degrees, and I have a small library at home to draw upon, more nonfiction than fiction). My main job in life is to tell you interesting facts, and to entertain you with stories across several genres. That's the mission set out by the philosopher Aristotle (384322 BCE) in Athens over 2300 years ago for creators: to entertain and to inform. As a novelist, I want to entertain you. From the reviews over the years, while you can't please everyone, it's a fact that I was an early (1990s) Internet pioneer with happy, clamoring fans around the world. As a journalist, I specialize in the Informal Essay, with special interests in History and Science (not to mention anything else that grabs my attention). I like to keep my life as private as possible, but as a writer, one does tend to have some public exposure that begs a little clarification. Most relevant: you should always know where your authors are 'coming from' in this age of disinformation and Newspeak. I'm a family man (husband, father, uncle, etc.) with Progressive political views and tolerant spiritual ones.

To paraphrase someone far more famous than I am not: Treat your fellow living beings as you wish them to treat you. That is the entire Law and the Whole Magillah. He also said: I have not come to destroy the Law but to fulfill it (Matthew 7:12, drawing upon Leviticus 19:18). It's the Golden Rule, reflected in various words in most religious affirmations. I grew up in a strong Catholic background, including good schools where I learned not just to believe (which is hollow without the next part). The next part is thinking, which includes logic, study, skepticism, the whole Enlightenment trope to the best of my ability. All that has led me to evolve into what I call a Trans-Christian, tolerant of everything except intolerance. I vote with the Democrats in the U.S., read The New York Times and WAPO etc. I don't care to talk about this, but readers should honestly know where an author is coming from in our age of tragic, catastrophic corporate tyranny and Orwellian distortion of the truths. We need to devote all of our efforts toward avoiding extinction, which is coming soon unless we make serious changes in our stewardship of our home world and only planet. Climate change is not only real, but rapidly being made worse by human activities. This is nothing new. I read the info starting long ago, including a very scary de-classified CIA report in the 1980s.

CLOSING QUOTE. I will take the late Sir Winston Churchill a step further. He is quoted as having said (and I'll gender-paraphrase) "If a person is not a liberal at twenty, they have no heart; if a person is not a conservative at forty, they have no brain." To which I will add: "If a person is not a moderate by age sixty, they have no heart." So please: be kind, stay calm, mind the gap, and stiff upper lip until you break down laughing out loud. YEAH!—JTC.

Luxembourg, European Union, United States


intellectual property warning