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Give Books for Christmas!

Books make amazing gifts. They’re the kind of thing that keeps on giving since your loved one can return to them again and again. E-books make a marvelous last minute present. Below, I’ve gathered the websites of several of my author friends for you to visit and (I hope) purchase from. Other author friends, please put your links below in the comments.

My book, “Indian Summer”, is an historical romance set in St Augustine, Florida in 1739. It’s available at http://www.secondwindpublishing.com and http://www.amazon.com The novel is available in E-book and Kindle form as well as printed form. My new sci-fi novel, “The Lone Wolf”, is coming soon form Second Wind. ~ Dellani

For William Beck’s great spy thrillers:
http://www.booksbybeck.com/

For the beautiful & moving Paradise Island, Heavenly Journey by Jon Magee
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Paradise-Island-Heavenly-Journey/133686193356313
And Jon’s other amazing book, From Barren Rocks to Living Stones
http://www.facebook.com/pages/From-Barren-Rocks-to-Living-Stones/283465875540

For books by Bethany Warner
bkwriter.blogspot.com

For the work of Olwyn Conrau
http://www.olwynconrau.com/books.html

Visit Karen Vaughn here
http://www.karenvaughan.info/ Karen Vaughn
Find her book, Dead Comic Standing at http://www.amazon.com

For the books & artwork of Mickey Hoffman
http://www.mickeyhoffman.com/

For the funny and poignant, My Bad Tequila by Rico Austin
http://www.amazon.com/My-Bad-Tequila-Rico-Austin/dp/0981978916/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1291941988&sr=1-1

For your copy of Activate Intuition by Jim Wawro
http://www.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.activateintuition.com%2F&h=f0ed31wfI6BqSkTJ8l_Yv-1xBaQ

To find the work of Mark David Gerson
http://www.amazon.com/Mark-David Gerson/e/B002CQXFPM/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

“From a Child’s Perception” is available at www.authorsden.com/annalfowler Anna Fowler

Susie Schecter http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=lifetimes+ago&x=14&y=1
Susie’s website is http://www/. lifetimesago.com

Keys

There is a pesky vortex in my house that takes keys. It must have a really sick sense of humor, because they are always missing. It seems most fond of mens’ keys because my husband and 2 older sons can never find theirs.
Generally, the key vortex leaves mine alone. Either it can’t locate them in my purse, or it’s afraid of me. On the rare occasion that it does take my keys, it’s because one of the males has handled them. Since it has a healthy respect for my abilities, it usually gives them back without a fight.
The same cannot be said for the keys of my husband and sons. It always takes forever for them to locate their lost keys. Until I join the hunt, the keys stay missing. Sometimes all it takes is for me to say, “Have you looked in the pocket of your dirty jeans? Did you check your uniform? Could you have left them in the bathroom?” Other times, I must also join the hunt. The vortex always gives them back right away when I start looking. That’s why I suspect it’s afraid of me.
Once in awhile, my pesky vortex gets tired of hiding keys and takes my husband’s glasses instead. It’s much more clever where those are concerned. Even with me in the hunt, they aren’t always located right away. The vortex has left them in some pretty odd places. On top of the microwave, out in the garage and once in the refrigerator. One night when he was getting ready for work, his glasses were missing. Even with me in the hunt, the vortex didn’t give them back. He had to go to work without them. We didn’t find them for several days, so my husband went and got new ones.
Of course, as soon as the new glasses were in the house, the old ones showed up in a place we had already looked several times; on top of a bronze colored box on the dresser, much the same color as the glasses. Clever vortex employed camouflage that time. Now, however, the new ones have disappeared and even my excellent powers of persuasion and perception can’t locate them.
I really wish the vortex would go haunt a different household. Every time he strikes, I get blamed. I can’t imagine why when I’m the one who finds the missing objects. Does my family think I hide things for fun? I have more important things to do than hide and locate their keys. Until such time as the vortex gets tired of tormenting me, I’m stuck with him. I hope maybe when my kids move out, he’ll follow them instead of staying with me. Then again, I’ll still have my husband, so I guess I’m stuck with the vortex for life.

Richard Brautigan

Richard Brautigan wrote several short novels, among them “Trout Fishing in America” which wasn’t about trout or fishing. I always got a laugh when I saw it mis-shelved in book stores under the game and wildlife section.

Brautigan didn’t actually mention fishing at all in that book, as I recall. He used the words “Trout Fishing in America” as a slogan that the 6th graders wrote on the backs of unsuspecting 1st graders as a playground prank. No one, including the “Trout Fishing in America Terrorists” knew why they chose that slogan. One kid had a piece of chalk, grabbed a 1st grader and wrote it on his back. Soon all of the 1st graders had it on their backs and the principal dragged in all the usual suspects. (ie. The kids who actually did it).

The book wasn’t about terrorism or about fishing, it was just a really odd, very good book. His books were very episodic, though loosely strung together with a main storyline or theme.

I was fortunate enough to see him speak at the University of Southern Mississippi and got him to sign my books. He committed suicide shortly after that.

It interests me that Garrison Keeler mentioned him today in his daily broadcast. Way to go, Garrison!

Reebdoog’s Halloween Horror

 This story was written for Horizons, an online video game I have played for several years. I entered it in the Fall Festival scary story contest and it was chosen for publication in the game. Reebdoog’s Tale is told every year now by a character at the festival grounds.

REEBDOOG’S TALE

“I’ve a tale to tell will set your blood cold just to hear it!” The inebriated dwarf tipped back in his chair, puffing a foul smelling cigar. “Tain’t your run o’ the mill tale neither, but one as will chill ye to the bone!” He leaned in blowing acrid smoke in my direction. “It’s true! I seen it with me own two eyes, I have!

“Just a mite of a lad I were then, an’ no taller than yer knee. Da had been teaching me the finer points of brewing.” He nodded solemnly. “Ma, she’d been after me to learn me letters, but I’d a far better head for brewing than I had for reading. How some ever… Da sent me to town to chat up the human folk there, for twas rumored as there were a secret recipe for brewing rye to make a fine, smooth whiskey.

“Well! I got there and spoke first to that feller who buys and sells. He told me many things, but bid me caution. ‘Mind now,’ says he, ‘ you don’t go poking into the basement under the house with the glowing runes. There be a secret door there under the stairs. Takes ye places as ye don’t want to be going.’

“Well, I laughed my bony arse off at the man, scoffing and making rude noises as I went. I wandered the town a wee bit, stopping to have a sip or two of Da’s best brew, and fell in with bad companions. They told me as they knew where the secret brew were kept. As they’d took a liking to me, they’d show it.”

He gestured to the barmaid to refill his mug. Satisfied, he tipped back again, taking a long pull on his pint. He wiped the foam from his bristling, red mustache and continued.

“Well, I were in sad and sorry shape by then. The peddler done told me not to go to the house with the glowing runes, but where do you suppose we ended up? Aye, ye guessed it! They dragged me inside, past the kitchen, to the stairs. There in the corner, they opened a secret door.

“Slowly, slowly I walked in and the door swung shut behind me with an echoing thump. Took a moment for my eyes to fix on what I were seeing. Twas at that moment I saw the worst sight of my life! I shudder now remembering! It were lined floor to rafters with kegs. They was stark empty and scrubbed clean! Why must have been dozens of them! And there in the midst of it all, a crew of humans whistling, singing and hosing them out! They took soap to ’em! Perfectly innocent kegs, they were, and these folk scraping around in them like they was mucking out stables!

“The pain! The perfidy! Crying out in horror, I yelled at them. ‘Why are you torturing me so? Have ye no mercy?’

“I ran hell bent to the nearest tavern with the ghosts of a thousand empty kegs haunting my steps! I flung myself on a stool and ordered a pint. You know what they give me? A clean mug and watered down ale! Just goes to show, you can’t trust humans!”