Friday, January 25, 2013

Winter Sunset on the Wabash

As I drove home from Terre Haute last Friday, I stopped at Merom Bluff to watch the sunset. The sun was too bright when I shot directly to the west, but when I shot at the river to the north, I got these cool effects. These photos haven't been altered. To me they look like Matthew Brady's Civil War photos. Anyway... it was a great sunset.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Cover Art For "South Union"

Here is the first look at the cover art for my upcoming novel, South Union: A Novel of the Civil War. Once again Paul Spangler's water color is exactly what I wanted. I hope to get the book into preproduction before the end of April.
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Tuesday, January 22, 2013

When in Rome...

"The budget should be balanced, the Treasury should be refilled, public debt should be reduced, the arrogance of officialdom should be tempered and controlled, and the assistance to foreign lands should be curtailed, lest Rome become bankrupt. People must again learn to work instead of living on public assistance."

- Cicero, 55 BC

A Canadian Pregnancy

Friday, January 11, 2013

And the chubby kid wins the game!!!

This kid will never forget this moment in time. Everybody needs to be the hero at least once in their life.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

The Gobble-uns 'll git you ef you don't watch out

The other day, someone asked me to name my favorite poem. I had to rattle my brain a little, but I answered: Little Orphant Annie. As I reread this classic by James Whitcomb Riley, I was instantly transported back to my grandmother's house. (This poem works best when it is read by a grandparent to a grandchild.) The story was fun and a little bit scary at the same time. But that pretty much sums up the days of childhood. I never grew tired of hearing the sing-song rendition and cadence of this verse and would give anything to hear Nanny Farmer or Nana Gin, recite it once again. The poem loses something in transition today if you don't know how midwestern people spoke a hundred years ago. My Grandmothers had the ability to render the poem just as Mr Riley had intended. (Part ghost story ; part cautionary tale and always with conviction) This poem triggers so many memories of my childhood that it almost serves as a time machine. But as fun as it was, it always served as a warning: Since being naughty comes natural to a child, it helped keep me in line, cuz I knew the Gobble-un would certainly get me if I didn't watch out.

by: James Whitcomb Riley (1849-1916)
      To all the little children: -- The happy ones; and sad ones;
      The sober and the silent ones; the boisterous and glad ones;
      The good ones -- Yes, the good ones, too; and all the lovely bad ones.
      ITTLE Orphant Annie's come to our house to stay,
      An' wash the cups an' saucers up, an' brush the crumbs away,
      An' shoo the chickens off the porch, an' dust the hearth, an' sweep,
      An' make the fire, an' bake the bread, an' earn her board-an'-keep;
      An' all us other childern, when the supper-things is done,
      We set around the kitchen fire an' has the mostest fun
      A-list'nin' to the witch-tales 'at Annie tells about,
      An' the Gobble-uns 'at gits you
      Ef you
      Wunst they wuz a little boy wouldn't say his prayers,--
      An' when he went to bed at night, away up-stairs,
      His Mammy heerd him holler, an' his Daddy heerd him bawl,
      An' when they turn't the kivvers down, he wuzn't there at all!
      An' they seeked him in the rafter-room, an' cubby-hole, an' press,
      An' seeked him up the chimbly-flue, an' ever'-wheres, I guess;
      But all they ever found wuz thist his pants an' roundabout:--
      An' the Gobble-uns 'll git you
      Ef you
      An' one time a little girl 'ud allus laugh an' grin,
      An' make fun of ever' one, an' all her blood-an'-kin;
      An' wunst, when they was "company," an' ole folks wuz there,
      She mocked 'em an' shocked 'em, an' said she didn't care!
      An' thist as she kicked her heels, an' turn't to run an' hide,
      They wuz two great big Black Things a-standin' by her side,
      An' they snatched her through the ceilin' 'fore she knowed what she's about!
      An' the Gobble-uns 'll git you
      Ef you
      An' little Orphant Annie says, when the blaze is blue,
      An' the lamp-wick sputters, an' the wind goes woo-oo!
      An' you hear the crickets quit, an' the moon is gray,
      An' the lightnin'-bugs in dew is all squenched away,--
      You better mind yer parunts, an' yer teachurs fond an' dear,
      An' churish them 'at loves you, an' dry the orphant's tear,
      An' he'p the pore an' needy ones 'at clusters all about,
      Er the Gobble-uns 'll git you
      Ef you

James Whitcomb Riley

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Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Patti Page (1927-2013)

Patti Page's silky-smooth voice was forever silenced today. This is one of my all time favorite songs.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year

May 2013 be a year in which you buy many more books.