For some reason I can add sidebars, but not new posts. Please check back later. I have been working on a variety of things including switching my blog soon from this one, which was set up with my now-defunct West Wisconsin Telcom account. I hope to have my new blog through Gmail up soon. I will provide a link and announcement when I've got everything straight. 7/2/11

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Enhanced Ebooks WEBcast

Cost is only $39. See

I subscribe to the Writer’s Digest emails about upcoming events, workshops, and courses. This week, I received an announcement of the Enhanced Ebooks for Authors, a live, hour-long WEBcast on August 11. Enhanced ebooks seem to be yet another form of digital media publishing, with even more complications regarding permissions and other legal and financial matters (don’t quote me on that definition—I did a tiny bit of quick research and that seemed to me to be part of it, but I suspect it is much more complex).

If you are currently or planning to produce ebooks, or have traditionally published books and would like to learn more about other opportunities, you may be interested in this WEBcast sponsored by Enhanced Ebook University. For more information on the WEBcast, see The cost is only $39, which strikes me as money well spent if you think you’ll be venturing into this medium in the near future.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Recently read: The Marvelous Album of Madame B

This delightful book, subtitled Being the Handiwork of a Victorian Lady of Considerable Talent, is a recreation, with commentary by Elizabeth Siegel and captions by Martha Packer, of a scrapbook created circa 1870. The Victorian Lady who created the album used formal portraits and photographs which she then decorated with such things as blossoms, branches, garlands, elaborate drawings, paintings, etc, all done by hand. Madame B is thought to be Blanche Fournier, whose husband was a French career diplomat. During the period of the album, they lived in Sweden. Many of the people in the photos have been identified as other diplomats and their families, the Fourniers themselves, and members of the Royal Family of Sweden. Besides being fun to look at, it is inspiring to look into the pages of an early mixed media artist.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Recently read: Lisa Reardon’s The Mercy Killers

This was one of the books from my father’s bookshelves and it was a 2004 advance reader’s copy, which means he was asked to read it before it was officially released to the bookstores. The published version may have some changes in it, and should also have caught some of the proofreading errors and mistakes. Nevertheless, this is an extremely powerful book, brilliantly written, and masterfully paced. It takes place from 1967 to 1970 in Ypsilanti, Michigan. The book tells the story of a group of friends who grew up in the neighborhood: the boys who went to Vietnam and the girls who stayed home. This is not a romantic glimpse into the past, nor a love story—domestic violence, substance abuse, and murder all circle the past, present and future. I was disappointed to see Reardon has only written two other books, and I WILL be reading them!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Playing with paper dolls

One of Tierney's American series: the 1950s

In addition to reading Taylor’s Artful Paper Dolls (see April 30, 2010 posting), I found the wealth of paper doll books at Dover Publishing. Taylor mentioned Tom Tierney in his book. Tierney is important in the history of twentieth century paper dolls. To my delight, I discovered a slew of his books at Dover. I bought several of them, as well as others including dolls based on Godey’s Lady’s Book (a mid-nineteenth century fashion magazine that is a TREAT) and even color-and-cut dolls. What will I do with them? Use them in art, use them as inspiration, and, of course, play with them! See for beautifully printed and inexpensive books of all sorts.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Recently read: D.W. Buffa’s The Judgment

This is an excellent courtroom drama by an author I have not previously encountered. Portland Defense Attorney Joseph Antonelli feels no grief over the murder of his career-long enemy, Judge Calvin Jeffries. In fact, few people miss him and his evil manipulation of the laws as well as his vindictive use of others. A call to the police results in the arrest of a homeless man, who then commits suicide in his cell. Case closed . . . until a second judge is murdered in the same way. Again a tip results in the arrest of another homeless man. Antonelli defends the accused, and discovers a conspiracy of malevolence that extends over decades. I’m going to be reading as many other books by Buffa as I can find.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


I've added a widget from the Pulitzer Prize winning PolitiFact website. Truly bipartisan, they are real journalists (as opposed to bloggers and groups with strong opinions) who check the facts of everyone, regardless of political party. Scroll to the very bottom of my blog for the latest three facts checked on the Truth-O-Meter. To read all the current ones, visit the site at

Monday, July 12, 2010

Back on my feet

I’ve been laid low the past two weeks, first by an allergic reaction, and then by a bad cold. Now I’m back on my feet and digging into the boxes that were piled in our guest room. An old friend is coming for a visit this weekend, and we’d like to have the guest bed cleared off. I can't procrastinate any longer!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Recently read: John Dunning’s The Bookman’s Promise

This is another novel in Dunning’s Cliff Janeway series about a former Denver cop turned book dealer. Janeway has just bought a signed first edition by Richard Francis Burton (no, not the actor—the 19th century explorer) for a heck of a pile of money and finds himself famous because of it in the book world. His sense of justice won’t let him walk away from an elderly woman who claims that the book was part of her grandfather’s library that was lost in an unscrupulous transaction. Janeway tracks the truth along a trail leading from Baltimore to Charleston during the Civil War. As ever, in addition to the page-turning plot and well-drawn characters, the reader gets to learn a lot.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Morris Animal Foundation and Cru Vin Dogs events in Colorado

The Morris Animal Foundation is dedicated to funding research for preventing and curing cancer in dogs. The 2nd Annual K9 Cancer Walk in Estes Park is on Saturday, August 12. For more information and to sign up see
They also have a Sit & Stay virtual walk program if you can’t make it to the Rockies!
And while you are at it, enter a video in their contest, which is sponsored by the Cru Vin Dogs Wine group. See