Saturday, December 29, 2012


A new book by David Piper, a native of Colby, is titled Church of the God Particle, the latter being the recently discovered Higgs boson subatomic particle.

Life as a landscape painter on an inherited ranch is easy for Alex Colvin until a peculiar meteorite shatters his complacency. Alex unknowingly possesses the final component of an outlandish physics experiment being conducted by Reverend Lucas Ruthlier, leader of the Church of the God Particle.

Reverend Ruthlier's lifelong dream depends on possessing the meteorite, and now he's coming for it.

Based on the race to discover a unifying theory of modern physics and cosmology, Church of the God Particle sweeps across the high plains of Kansas, uncovers treason in Cold War Romania, and tumbles into Austin, Texas.

Friday, December 28, 2012


Final FREE download on my latest book, Simple Things to Make This World a Better Place, is December 31 and January 1. Please post to your Facebook page and spread the news. We all want a better world and this is the opportunity to learn how for FREE. You can also download to a computer with free software. Just search for it as Kindle for PC or Mac. The book is also available in print form with additional content currently only on Search for the title or Vicki L. Julian. Enjoy!

Thursday, December 27, 2012


This neo-noir hardboiled mystery, Swan Song, which takes place in and around Wichita, marks the debut of H.B. Berlow with Deadly Niche Press.

It is currently available at the Amazon Kindle store and will be released on print after the first of the year. Follow Berlow at Berlow is also knows as the "Rabbi" Dude.


Took a few days off, and basked in the success of Fifty Shades of Santa, a publication of Welkin Press that included my short story, "One Cool Cat".

Well, before basking, we authors went through the agonizing process of waiting for the response of the reading public. First we got ONE five-star review, then we got our SECOND five-star review, and then we got our THIRD five-star review. All the while we were holding our breath, watching the number of "likes" climb up to the magic 50, that being the number which amazon required to begin to do a little promoting of their own.

Remains to be seen what amazon might do with a seasonal title. Christmas Day is past, but the holiday stories can keep the reader entertained until . . . well, until Valentine's Day. We shall see . . .

Friday, December 21, 2012


Joe H. Vaughan will be signing copies of Images of Kansas City, Kansas, at 1 pm on Saturday, December 22, at Books-A-Million, 1859 Village West Parkway, Kansas City.

The new photographic history is by Joe H. Vaughan Jr. The softcover 128-page book, Kansas City, Kansas, was published by Arcadia Publishing in its Images of America series.(From the Wyandotte Daily News.)


Pilate's Prisoner: A Passion Play, written by Fr. Edward M. Hays, has been published by Booklocker.

In this historical and theological novel, Pontius Pilate is enfleshed as a historical person, a man of contradictions, and a religious atheist who superstitiously evokes the Roman gods. Pilate ingeniously arranges to have some time alone with a wandering Galilean and illiterate religious teacher named Jesus. In their often heated verbal exchanges and arguments, Jesus finds his most deeply held religious beliefs challenged, as Pilate too wrestles with his own assumptions and prejudices.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012


You can hear Steve Farney, the basketball guy, at10 am on Saturday, December 2, at The Bookshelf/The Hidden Closet at 206 N Main in McPherson. Farney is the author of Title Towns, It’s Time to Play, and his newest, Club 50.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012


This gift suggestion was tucked behind an ornament... on the Kansas Sampler webpage. A book, Blackbear Bosin: Keeper of the Indian Spirit The Kansas Sampler Foundation says: This new 96-page hard-cover book was written by David Simmonds, edited by Cynthia Mines and published by Carriage Factory Art Gallery in Newton. The book includes 44 color paintings by the Kansas artist and never-before-published photos of the construction of the Keeper of the Plains, one of the 8 Wonders of Kansas Art. You'll see at


Wichita native Kristie Alley will be back at 6 pm tomorrow, Wednesday, December 19, to sign her new book, The Art of Men (I Prefer Mine Al Dente) at Watermark Books and Cafe, 4701 East Douglas.

In this collection of linked essays that’s both hilarious and poignant in turns, Kirstie chronicles all the good, the bad, and the ugly men who have influenced and guided her. She demonstrates how men can be the air that women breathe or the source of all of their frustrations. From


Not sure about the title, but a collection of stories by Robert Day, best known to Kansans as the author of The Last Cattle Drive, has been published by BkMk Press, of the University of Missouri at Kansas City.

The title is either where i am now, or Where We Are Now.

The volume has been named one of the 100 Notable Books of the Year by the Kansas City Star. BkMk's catalogue page is at


Heart of Harveyville: Surviving the Tornado sold out within days of the first edition becoming available. Compiled by Debbie Roberts, the book includes interviews with tornado survivors of the February 28, 2012 tornado.

The tornado struck at night, with no warning. Read more about Roberts' book on the Capital-Journal article at

Monday, December 17, 2012


Whispering Prairie Press is excited to announce we are open for submissions for our upcoming issue of Kansas City Voices. Send us your best Art, Poetry, and Prose.

Go to for full submissions guidelines. Submissions close March 15, 2013.

Saturday, December 15, 2012


Larry Welch, tenth director of the Kansas Bureau of Investigation, now provides readers with the first history of that agency, spanning the years 1939–2007. His account includes, among other things, detailed case studies of the KBI’s participation in the high-profile arrests of serial killers Francis Donald Nemechek of western Kansas and Dennis Rader, the infamous BTK of Wichita. His taut chapters also highlight the relentless investigators, dedicated forensic scientists, crime analysts, and everyone else who has labored on behalf of the KBI’s pursuit of justice. They take readers behind the headlines to reveal how KBI agents played a key role in capturing Richard Hickock and Perry Smith of In Cold Blood fame, and consider other high profile cases such as Gary Kleypas’s murder of a Pittsburg State student and KU student Shannon Martin’s killing in Costa Rica.” (From University Press of Kansas, publishers of Beyond Cold Blood, by Larry Welch.

The public is invited to attend a book signing at 6:30 pm on Wednesday, December 19, at Regnier Auditorium, Johnson County Community College, 12345 College, Overland Park

Friday, December 14, 2012


5.0 out of 5 stars -- What a wonderful Christmas tale.. By bdoll. Format:Paperback.We really enjoyed this cute Christmas poem set off by the amazing illustrations. This will become a favorite family Christmas book edition. Kitty Claus was written by Terry Needham, illustrated by his daughter.


Local author Susan M. Hoskins signs the latest in her clever, action-packed Twisted thriller series. In her first book, Twisted Lights, a terrorist plans to detonate a bomb when the Plaza lights are turned on. In the third book, Twisted Blues, former FBI agent Joe Morrison grapples with a Kansas City scandal, a psychotic fanatic and unlikely love. (Just another day in K.C.) All three titles are available for sale at Mysteryscape.(From Mysteryscape webpage at

That's at 2 pm on Saturday, December 15, at 7309 W. 80th Street, Overland Park.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


Join Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg for a launch party for Needle in the Bone at 7 pm on Saturday, December 15, at the Lawrence Jewish Community Center, 917 Highland.

Needle in the Bone is the story of how a Holocaust survivor and a Polish resistance fighter beat the odd and found each other. Mirriam-Goldberg's special guests will be Jarek Piekalkiewicz and Jane Frydman.


I always said that if/when I ever got published, I would give myself equal time.

Well, it's happened, a short story of mine, One Cool Cat, has been published in -- are you ready? -- Fifty Shades of Santa.

Yep, it's an ebook on Amazon Kindle, at Fifty Shades of Santa. As the publisher says: "It seems like there's fifty shades of everything these days, but this anthology takes a decidedly different approach to that now famous designation, presenting 12 lighthearted, humorous holiday romances by twelve award-winning authors. We like to call it, 'romance for the rest of us,' the rest of us being readers whose idea of love doesn't include implements of pain."

Tuesday, December 11, 2012


The Chase County Historical Society presents Peggy of the Flint Hills: A Memoir by Zula Bennington Greene, Saturday, December 15th at 3:00 PM at the Emma Chase Music Hall. Everyone is welcome! (A post by Cheryl Unruh.)

Sunday, December 9, 2012


ANNOUNCING: Simple Things to Make This World a Better Place is also now available as a printed book on Amazon. Thank you to everyone who "Liked" the Kindle eBook, and please write a review if you downloaded it and found it to be beneficial. If you want to make this world a better place, please tell your family and friends, and help "provoke others to love and good deeds." After all, that is the message and why the book was written! From Vicki Julian.

Saturday, December 8, 2012


Joyce Long will be speaking at the Lions' Club in Caney, Tuesday, December 12. Long will speak on her Frank Bellamy non-fiction historical book BE THE JURY! BE THE JUDGE! WHO WROTE THE PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE? Long believes she prove the case that Frank Bellamy of Cherryvale is the true author of the Pledge of Allegiance.

Friday, December 7, 2012


Tom Mach, author of Angels at Sunset, will be speaking about the history of the sufragette movement at 11 am on Saturday, December 8, at the Leawood Pioneer Library, 4700 Town Center Drive, Leawood.

Angels at Sunset, third book of the Jessica Radford trilogy, portrays Jessica's life through several decades as she battles for women's rights. Mach is the author of the award-winning Sissy! and All Parts Together.


Lynda Sturdevant, author of The Awesome Adventures of Superfeet, will be at the Take Five Coffee Bar, 5336 W. 151at Street in Leawood at 1 pm on Saturday, December 8. Check out Sturdevant's website at


"The newest Images of America title is making its debut in December and Barnes & Noble Oak Park is proud to be hosting the author Suzee Oberg as she signs copies of Overland Park. A beautiful gift and a wonderful addition to any library!"

That's at 1 pm on Saturday, December 8, 2012 1:00 PM at Barnes and Noble at Oak Park Mall, 11323 W 95th Street, Overland Park.


What's even better than being in The Best Times?

It's being on the front cover of The Best Times, an honor which happened to Rich Maxwell, the author of Collecting Marbles: A Beginner's Guide, with the December, 2012, issue.

Maxwell's book "provides step-by-step instructions to help readers identify the basic marble features, recognize the classic marbles, find great marbles at garage and estate sales, and play the old game of ringer.

Thursday, December 6, 2012


A message to share from the Town Crier Book Store in Emporia:

Our CASA book tree could use some help! We still have plenty of children that would love their own book for Christmas. Easy as pie -- stop in, pick an age and gender off the tree, purchase a book for that child and Santa will take care of the rest. We have tons of books under $5. Small sacrifice, big joy.

What book lover could resist? Town Crier is at 716 Commercial in Emporia.


A reminder from Claflin Books and Copies: This Saturday at 1:00 p.m., Greg Kincaid will be speaking and signing his books at the Manhattan Public Library, 629 Poyntz. His books include A Dog Named Christmas and A Christmas Home. This event is sponsored by Sunflower CASA.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012


A trio of writers will present the program at 7 pm on Friday, December 7, at The Writers Place, 3607 Pennsylvania, Kansas City MO.

Richard Robbins' most recent books of poetry are Radioactive City and Other Americas. Piper Abernathy is adjunct instructor at Penn Valley Community College. Denise Low, former Kansas Poet Laureate, is the author of 20 published books of poetry, personal essays and scholarship. She teaches at Baker University.


Andover High School graduate Laura Grimmer has written a novel loosely based on her experiences while caring for very ill burn patients. Burnt is a fictional story “about a group of patients in a Burn ICU who embark on a grand adventure in a fantasy world,” said Grimmer.

Grimmer, a 2003 graduate of AHS, attended Brown Medical School in Rhode Island and is currently a general surgery resident at Rush University in Chicago. It was while working in a Burn ICU that Grimmer’s story began to formulate.



Ray Kurzweil, engineer, futurist, inventor, and author of How to Create a Mind, will be at Unity Temple on the Plaza, 707 W. 47th, Kansas City, MO, at 7 pm on Thursday, December 6. Kurzweil "discusses how the brain functions, how the mind emerges from the brain, and the implications of vastly increasing the powers of our intelligence in addressing the world's problems."

Sunday, December 9, at 1:30 pm, Calvin Trillin returns to Kansas City with Dogfight: The 2012 Presidential Campaign in Verse. Trillin will be at the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City, 5801 W. 115th Street, Overland Park.

Go to for ticket information for both events.


To the Stars Through Difficulties, the 2012 Kansas Renga, is now ready for Christmas gift-giving.

"A Kansas Renga in 150 Voices, poets in the chain take readers across the mythological as well as physical landscape of Kansas. Each poet begins with the seed of an idea from the poem before, writes, and leads the way for the next poet, all the way to the end."

See the publisher's webpage at


This is what I like the best -- just a simple e-mail from Kansas writers with information to share with Kansas readers:

Sorry it took so long to get this to you. I was waiting to nail down the times exactly. I will be at The Bookshelf, 204 N. Main, in McPherson on Saturday, December 8 from 10 a.m. until noon. There will be two other authors there as well.


Todd Vogts

Monday, December 3, 2012


Have you been to the new Bluebird Books book store at 2 South Main in Hutchinson?

A great time to visit would be from 6-7 pm on Friday, December 7, to "Enjoy wine and appetizers, browse a great selection of humor and holiday books and hear selected shorts from Hutchinson Theater Guild's production of The Santaland Diaries by David Sedaris (For Mature Elves Only). Space is limited. Please email to reserve your place for this exclusive event in partnership with the Hutchinson Theater Guild." When you go to that site, be sure to check out the background wallpaper.

A POST LIKE NO OTHER (Under Construction)

This post will deviate from my normal pattern of posting in ways that will soon become obvious. Please be patient – it may take me some time to get this all posted correctly.

A writing and blogging friend, Theresa Hupp, has nominated this blog for the “One Lovely Blog Award” – I am truly honored.

Nominees for this award are required to: (It remains to be seen if my limited html skills will permit me to comply.)

1. Thank the blogger who nominated them, which I most heartily do. (Check out Theresa Hupp’s blog here.)

2. Post the One Lovely Blog emblem on their blog. (Will try to do.)

3. List seven random facts about themselves. Here goes:

 One of the most incredible places I have ever been is the Paraguay Chaco.

 I love the way the British pronounce my first name -- “Mahgret” as in “Mahgret” Thatcher.

 The Sherman Anti¬-Trust Act became law in 1890 to curb the sugar, and other, monopolies. I’ll never understand why one of the first uses was against Eugene Victor Debs, founder of the American Railway Union during the Pullman Strike of 1894.

 I am desperate to meet Bill Murray, so I can pitch him a movie concept. The book is not finished, but the first chapter won third place in the KWA competition. Only Bill Murray, self-identified son of an Irish pig thief, can play the role.

 The year I was 57, I quit eating cole slaw.

 Something I’ll never forgive myself for is failing to stop the developer of the Olathe Industrial Park (former Olathe Naval Air Station) from obliterating, as street names, the memory of sixteen naval and marine heroes.

 Bob Chrisman is the only person who ever taught me how to be serious in looking for the funny side of life.

4. Nominate fifteen other bloggers for the award, and let them know of their nomination. And the nominees are:

Border Bard’s Blog – my own son, with more poetic talent than he is willing to admit – he was one of the 150 Kansas poems authors – a meticulous researcher for his articles for The Best Times and elsewhere, and about the most critical editors one could ever hope to find.

Book Trends Blog – Bob Spear offers an insider’s view of the publishing world, and along with Barb Spear operates A Book Barn in Leavenworth, one of the few remaining independent bookstores.

Emergency Room Productions – Everett Robert is both playwriter, producer and actor, in a genre with which I should become more familiar.

Inside My Head – I don’t know how Tracy Million Simmons does it all, finds time to write amidst a busy family life, and is a frequent contest winner.

Juliet Kincaid – A talented writer herself, Juliet’s blogs often include cogent reviews of new and significant books.

Flyover People – Cheryl Unruh’s columns in the Emporia Gazette tells us in innumerable ways why we are fortunate to be living here in flyover country.

Gordon A. Kessler – Supports his writing colleagues in two very important ways, with editorial and technological services, and with inspiration from his own writings of thrillers, suspense mysteries, and non-fiction practical writing advice.

One Kansas Author – Robert Collins is a prolific author – in several distinct genres, history, sci-fi and novels, and can often be found a signings and readings around the state.

Poet Laureate of Kansas – Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg’s incredible innovation resulted in the publication by Woodley Press of Begin Again, 150 Kansas Poems, in celebration of Kansas’ 150th Anniversary of Statehood.

Pursuit of Happiness – The blog of a Thomas Jefferson scholar, Norm Ledgin, to acquaint the world with Sally Hemmings, the mother of Jefferson’s biracial children.

Swqm60 – Bob Chrisman taught me a very important lesson – that there are two sides to every issue, and usually one of them is incredibly funny.

The World of Prose and Verse – Tom Mach is the publisher of Hill Song Press, and the author of numerous works, including poetry. The background of his newest novel, Angels at Sunset, is the women’s suffrage movement over several decades.

Whispering Prairie Press – The publishers of Kansas City Voices, a periodical of literature and art which annually draws submissions from writers and artists all over the world.

Writer Granny’s World – Nancy Julien Kopp is the most generous writer I know, willing to share her tips and encouragement with other writers.

Some of the blogs listed above are on the “Writers about Writing” blog roll of my blog,

And No. 15, Not a blog, but a website is Mediators Beyond Borders. The tab, “NEWS” is a little like a blog, with updates about peacemaking around the world.


Invitation from Todd Vogts: Christmas is right around the corner, and what better gift than a signed copy of Murder at St. Alfanus? If you are in or anywhere near McPherson, from 8 am to noon on Saturday, December 8, come down to 206 N. Main Street and see me at The Bookshelf! I would love to see you all there!


Three writers will appear at 7 pm on Thursday, December 6, at the Raven Book Store, 6 E 7th Street in Lawrence.

Lucas Wetzel is a writer and editor from Kansas City. He graduated from the University of Kansas in 2004 with degrees in German, English and Journalism. He works as an editor at Universal Uclick, a newspaper syndicate in Kansas City. Also giving readings are Richard Robbins and Hannah Roark.

Saturday, December 1, 2012


Glen Ediger, a Bethel College 2012 Outstanding Alumnus, is the author of Leave No Threshing Stone Unturned. Ediger describes his book as “a fascinating history book, exploring the rare farming artifact used by Kansas farmers for threshing wheat in the 1870’s.” The book has 192 pages and more than 500 photos, with 17 articles including, Cereal Grains, Turkey Red Wheat, Kansas History, Railroad History, Mennonite History, Farming with Horses, Threshing History, Art and Object, Symbolism, and discovering 100 threshing stones in North America.

-- From The Leavenworth Times, at


After two years in temporary quarters, the State Library of Kansas is returning to its refurbished home in the Statehouse.

The library's 202,000-book collection has been housed in several remote sites since December 2010, when the north wing of the Statehouse closed for renovations. Some items in the collection are more than 200 years old.

-- From the Lawrence Journal-World.


A New York author and literary agent has co-written a memoir about her husband's liver transplant at a Kansas hospital.

From Monday to Wednesday, Barbara Zitwer will be in the Kansas City area to talk to broadcasters and sign copies of Still Livin': The True Story of How One Couple Defied All Odds and Found the Gift of Life. She wrote it with her husband, Gil Alicea.

Because the transplant waiting list was long in New York, the couple went to the University of Kansas Hospital. While Alicea was recovering, she also finished her first book, The J.M. Barrie Ladies' Swimming Society.

The couple is donating half the proceeds from the U.S. sales of "Still Livin'" to the Kansas hospital's transplant program. A Dutch version of the book was released first.

From The Republic, Columbus, IN,

On Friday, December 7, Zitwer will autograph copies of The J. M. Barrie Ladies' Swimming Society, at 7 pm at Country Club Plaza Barnes and Noble, 420 W 47th Street, Kansas City, MO

Friday, November 30, 2012


Tomorrow is TOWN CRIER'S booksigning with Jerilynn Jones Henrikson and SE Rothrock from 11-1pm. New book by Jerilynn and a fun chapter book from SE! . . . Terry Needham's collection of poems, Pesky Poems, published in 2008 was awarded the SILVER MEDAL by READERS FAVORITE at the Miami International Book Fair this month . . . . Tom Mach will be at the Leawood Pioneer Library, 4700 Town Center Drive, Leawood, at 11 am on Saturday, December 8, to discuss the 19th-century women's suffrage movement and his latest book, Angels at Sunset . . . Enjoy an afternoon with Greg Kincaid, author of A Christmas Home (and A Dog Named Christmas and Christmas with Tucker) at 1:30 am on Sunday, December 9, at the Indian Creek Library, 12990 South Blackbob Road in Olathe, see . . . At Prospero's Uptown, Randy Attwood now has six titles all over the genre map from literary to sci-fi to dystopia to political comedy, specifically, Very Quirky Tales, One More Victim, Crazy About You, Rabbletown, The 41st Sermon, and Spill. And that's not counting Blow Up the Roses . . . Meet the Author: J. Alexander Greenwood Saturday, December 1, 2-4 pm at Mysteryscape, 7309 W. 80th Street, Overland Park, signing his latest book, Pilate's Ghost.

Thursday, November 29, 2012


This is an invite to meet Gloria Zachgo, author of The Rocking Horse, at Rivendell Bookstore, 212 N. Broadway St. in Abilene. She will be available to autograph her cozy mystery novel from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. on Saaturday, December 1.

The Rocking Horse is a winner in the 20th annual Writers’ Digest Self-Published category.

Monday, November 26, 2012


Three young adult authors will present the program at 7 pm on Tuesday, November 27, at the Johnson County Central Resource Library, 9875 W 87th Street, Overland Park.

The panel of Gennifer Albin, author of Crewel, and Lenore Appelhans, author of the forthcoming Level Two, will be moderated by Bethany Hagen, author of Landry Park, also forthcoming. The trio will be speaking on Drama and Dystopia.


Sidonia’s Thread: The Secrets of a Mother and Daughter Sewing a New Life in America is a memoir about the lives of two women, a mother and daughter, who come to Springfield, Massachusetts on their own after World War II to build a new life. With no other family, except each other, they build a world that revolves around the mother’s remarkable talent as fashion designer and seamstress while the daughter serves as her dutiful model

Hanna Perlstein Marcus, the author of Sidonia's Thread, will speak at 7 pm on Tuesday, November 27, at the Jewish Community Campus, 5801 W 115th, Overland Park. Marcus' website and blog at


Good advice for the holidays will be provided at Shawnee Books and Toys at 6 pm on Tuesday, November 27, with the appearance of Marty Augustine speaking about Shopping Safety.

Marty is a safety and disaster expert and does seminars all around the country! Join us for great tips and ways to build awareness this holiday season to keep everyone safe and sound!

Shawnee Books and Toys is at 7311 Quivira in Shawnee. More at www.bookandtoynet.


Professors John Fliter and Derek Hoff, from Kansas State University's departments of political science and history respectively, will be signing copies of their new book, Fighting Foreclosure, at 5:30 pm on Thursday, November 29, at Claflin Books and Copies, 1814 Claflin Road in Manhattan.

Sunday, November 25, 2012


This Saturday in Waldo, Kansas Mona Winder Kennedy will be holding a booksigning starting at 10:30AM! . . . Claflin Books and Copies In Manhattan will have two signings coming up. John Fliter and Derek Hoff will be at the store on November 29. Greg Kincaid will be at the Manhattan Public Library on December 8, with A Christmas Home, a sequel to A Dog Named Christmas, which became a Hallmark movie. . . . The Petroglyphs and Poetry+Funk play Wheat State Pizza at 12th and Commercial in Emporia this Friday, November 30, 7-9 pm. No cover. Good pizza. Hear Kevin Rabas play drums and play drums while shouting his poetry.


Perhaps no one in the annals of The Topeka Capital-Journal was better-loved and better-read than Zula Bennington Greene.

Now, 24 years after her death, her book titled Peggy of the Flint Hills: A Memoir is being published by Woodley Press, of Topeka.

The book will be introduced next month with special readings by Washburn University English professor Eric McHenry and Dotty Hanger, Greene’s daughter.

The events will take place at 4 p.m. Dec. 6 at Mabee Library on the Washburn University campus, near S.W. 19th and MacVicar, and at 3 p.m. Dec. 8 in Marvin Auditorium at the Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library, 1515 S.W. 10th.

More in the Capital-Journal article at Peggys memoirs

Wednesday, November 21, 2012


Can Kitty Claus, the meanest cat around, learn what Christmas is all about?

On a snowy Christmas Eve, a fierce cat named Kitty Claws rules over a family of starving mice, keeping them from the tempting treats left out for Santa. But, when the father mouse rescues Kitty Claus from danger, their relationship is transformed from one of adversity to a new bond of mutual friendship and Christmas spirit.

Kitty Claus is a delightful story-poem of transformation, courage, and righteous behavior. With beautiful illustrations and endearing characters, this book will be a treasured addition to any family’s library.

Retail Price is $19.95; However, Preview Discount Price to friends and family is only $14.95, with free shipping! To Order: Just email the author, T. L. Needham @ .


Okay, listen up. Go to Eunice Boeve's home page at, and then click on "blog". That will get you to the contest site. Promise.

Boeve invites you to share a Christmas memory or tradition to be included in a serial story that will be featured in Kansas newspapers this winter as part of the Newspapers in Education program.

The story so far: It's 1915 and three orphans are living in New York. Two of the orphans are put on an orphan train and sent to Kansas. What happened to the third child? Read Boeve's blog, for some clues. And maybe you have a Christmas memory or tradition that will fit right in with Boeve's story.

Give it a try.


Reservations are filling fast for a 10-11 am workshop on Saturday, December 8, for school-aged children who like to draw and write, which will be conducted at The Book Barn, 410 Delaware in Leavenworth by Jan Clark, the author of The Adventures of Leif and Twig -- Close to Home.

The workshop will be followed by a book chat and signing from 11 am to 1 pm. Clark had a previous book signing at The Book Barn on November 10.

"Leif and Twig are your typical eight and six year olds -- almost -- see, they are trees. But like any other youngster, they get bored just staying home and like adventure. Perhaps you should join them as they learn that staying close to home just might be good advice."

More about the adventuresome trees at See also to make reservations and for other events and programs.

Sunday, November 18, 2012


The Flint Hills Review and Kevin Rabas invite the public to hear Hardy Jones at 7 pm on Monday, November 19, at Room 303, Plumb Hall, Emporia State University.

Jones is Director of Creative Writing at Cameron University. His fiction and nonfiction has appeared in more than 20 journals. His memoir “People of the Good God” was awarded a grant from the Louisiana Division of the Arts in 2001, and in 2006, his essay "Laotian New Year and Its Tradition" was the result of field research for the "New Populations Project" for the Louisiana Division of the Arts Folklife Program. More at


Laini Taylor will be at Rainy Day Books, 2706 W. 53rd in Fairway at 7 pm on Monday, November 19 to sign copies of her newest novel, Days of Blood and Starlight, a sequel to Daughter of Smoke and Bone. Taylor’s blog is at For admission tickets, prices, details, see

Saturday, November 17, 2012


Helen Walsh Folsom, who formerly worked in the business department of the Kansas City Kansan, was the executive director of the Leavenworth Road Association for 10 years, wrote columns for newspapers, retired and started writing about something she loves – Ireland.

Folsom’s newest book is Fianna, The Dark Web of the Brotherhood. More about Folsom’s other books in an article in the Wyandotte Daily News at and see Folsom’s website at

Pied Type - Nov. 17 - ??

Invitation from the poet, Ronda Miller. Please join Kansas Authors Club members from District Two at the 36th annual Holiday Bazaar, Sunday, November 18, atThe Community Building in Lawrence (115 W. 11th St.- 10 am to 5 pm - free to the public). Autographed books will be available for purchase . . . The Town Crier (716 Commercial, Emporia) posts: Our window for the downtown window decorating contest is finished! We went for the humor this year, so we hope everyone gets a little laugh as you come in to shop . . .Library Journal has selected Kelly Barth's My Almost Certainly Real Imaginary Jesus for its Best Books of 2013 list . . . Norm Ledgin has re-designed the cover of his Sally of Monticello - Founding Mother (see Norm's blog, Pursuit of Happiness, in the sidebar, Writers about Writing.) . . . Mysteryscape, Overland Park's new mystery book store, described at . . .


When Kansas! Magazine titled their article about Max McCoy as “The Night Writer” they knew what they were talking about.

The amazingly prolific author McCoy teaches during the day, and takes up his pencil and paper (or more likely his laptop computer) at night. Cheryl Nelsen’s great article about McCoy appears in the newest Kansas! Magazine. The photographs by Eric Benjamin are darned good, too.

McCoy’s next book, out in 2013, will be the start of a new series, Of Grave Concern, An Ophelia Wylde Mystery. Check out Kansas! Magazine at More about McCoy at


Kansas authors are both talented and prolific. Cynthia Harris interviews two Kansas authors in her blog at

Authors Nancy Julien Kopp and Eunice Boeve range far and wide in both topics and genre. There is no shortage of skill, expertise, and knowledge in creating works to delight every reader.

(And interviewer Cynthia Harris has talents of her own – read the interviews.)


Mona Winder Kennedy will be having another booksigning of Covert, Kansas: The Evolution of a Ghost Town, at the Carnegie Research Library at 307 West Main in Osborne, on Saturday, November 17th from 10AM to Noon! See Ad Astra Publishing at


Meet author Marcia Riley, appearing in-store to perform a special Storytime! Marcia will be reading and signing copies of her children's story, The Pillow Fairy,12 noon on Saturday November 17, at Oak Park Mall Barnes and Noble, Overland Park.


A book signing for a new pictorial history of Kansas City, Kan., will be held from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 17, at the Wyandotte County Museum, 631 N. 126th, (near 126th and State), Bonner Springs.

The new photographic history is by Joe H. Vaughan Jr. The softcover 128-page book, Kansas City, Kansas," was published by Arcadia Publishing in its Images of America series.

See the article on the Wyandotte Daily News website at


The children’s Christmas story, Rudolph, I Think You Need Glasses, written by Jamie Tullis and illustrated by Annette Boardman, will be available to the public because of a chance encounter at a oil change store. A booksigning on Thursday, December 6, at Cooper Drug, 509 State, Augusta, will follow the Christmas parade.

The history of how the book came into existence is told in an article in The Leavenworth Times at

Thursday, November 15, 2012


A Canadian tornado hunter, Greg Johnson, will be touring the Midwest in the next several days with his new book, Blown Away. Check his website at

On his schedule is Watermark Books and Café, 4701 E. Douglas, in Wichita at 7 pm on Friday, November 16. Then it's on to Tulsa and Joplin, returning at 12 noon, on Sunday, November 18 at Shawnee Books and Toys, 6311 Quivira, and at 8 pm on Sunday, November 18, at Ad Astra Books and Coffee House, 141 N. Santa Fe in Salina.


After some serious thinking, I've decided to change the format of this blog. You may already have noticed that the left-hand column is wider. There will be other changes, too, some of them experimental in nature. Stay tuned.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012


I could say Jazz, Jazz, Jazz as well, either way, you’re in for a treat if you come to Beth Lyon Barnett’s book signing at 2-4 pm on Saturday, November 17 at the Sulgrave Regency Ballroom, 200 W. 49th Street in Kansas City, MO.

You’ll hear about an exciting new book, with readings from Barnett, refreshments, and music, music, music from pianist Brady Calvert – both jazz selections and old favorites (some may be the same).

Barnett's new novel, Jazz Town is the exciting, amazing and sometimes heartbreaking story of the free-and-easy days of prohibition, crime, and the birth of the jazz age in Kansas City and how one Jewish family managed to assimilate into the culture. The names of real people may be recognized though of course the story is fiction.”

Read more at Beth's Everything Blog.

Jazz Town is available at The American Jazz Museum and in book form and ebooks at and


There will be books galore at the Holiday Bazaar on Sunday at the Community Building at 115 W. 11th Street in Lawrence on Sunday, November 18. Thirty members of Kansas Authors Club, District Two will have their books available for purchase, and throughout the day many members will be present for autographing. Admission is free, food, crafts, and a wide selection of books – for your reading pleasure, or for gifts (think Christmas).

Tuesday, November 13, 2012


The Distinguished Visiting Writers Series will welcome poet and novelist Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg to Pittsburg State University, 1701 South Broadway, at 8 pm on Thursday, November 15.

Mirriam-Goldberg, the current Poet Laureate of Kansas, will read from her newest work, her first novel, The Divorce Girl. She is the author of 14 previous books, including Landed, a poetry collection, and The Sky Begins at Your Feet, a memoir. She is the founder of Transformative Language Arts at Goddard College. See her website at


Mark Bouton will be speaking about his newest book, The Sacrifice, at 7 pm on Thursday, November 15, at the Lawrence Public Library, 707 Vermont, in Lawrence. See more of Bouton’s works at


From Mike Huckabee: “I wrote these letters so that long after I’m gone, you’ll know that I loved you, had great hopes for you, and wanted to give you my best advice on living in this tough world. If I can’t be there with you, I hope my letters will act as a sort of reminder of me, as if I’m standing there beside you, whispering in your ear, and putting my arm around your shoulder.”

Huckabee shares his letters to his grandchildren, Dear Chandler, Dear Scarlett: A Grandfather's Thoughts on Faith, Family and the Things That Matter Most at 3:30 pm on Friday, November 16, at Unity Temple on the Plaza, 707 W. 47th Street, Kansas City, MO. Events hosted by Rainy Day Books. See website for ticket admission information


Capital City Cubbie are the "tales and travels of a Kansas Cubs fan" and is a who's who book covering the players who have worn the Chicago Cubs uniform since 1986.

You can catch the author, Jeremy Deckard, at several book signing events during November and December. For the complete list, see

Thursday, November 8, 2012


And you can have a copy, too, they will be available for purchase at 4 pm on Sunday, November 11, during the launch of the Tenth Anniversary Edition of Kansas City Voices at the Plaza Branch of the Kansas City, MO, Public Library, 4801 Main Street.

And here’s my dilemma – what to read first? There are about fifteen prose articles or stories, about fifteen poetry selections, and a number in the art catageory, both paintings and photographs (sometimes it’s hard to tell which is which, they are so skillfully done.) The copies have arrived from the printers, and people who have pre-ordered are receiving their orders.

You can buy a copy at the launch, where you’ll also have an opportunity to hear several of the contributors, or if you just can’t get there, you can order online at

Wednesday, November 7, 2012


Not sure what the title means, but under the heading of "She Reads", the English Department's senior/graduate poetry class will be hosting a poetry reading at 4:30 pm on Thursday, November 8, on the Pittsburg State Universisty campus.

A reception with hot beverages (probably a special treat for the brisk fall weather) and snacks will follow the reading at the Gazebo by the lake.


David von Drehle, author of Rise to Greatness: Abraham Lincoln and America's Most Perilous Year will be speaking at 7 pm on Thursday, November 8, at the Wichita/Sedgwick County Historical Museum, 204 S. Main in Wichita. The event is sponsored by Watermark Books and Cafe.

As 1862 dawned, the American republic was at death's door. The federal government appeared overwhelmed, the U.S. Treasury was broke, and the Union’s top general was gravely ill. The Confederacy—with its booming economy, expert military leadership, and commanding position on the battlefield—had a clear view to victory. To a remarkable extent, the survival of the country depended on the judgment, cunning, and resilience of the unschooled frontier lawyer who had recently been elected president.

von Drehle is the author of Triangle, a history of the Triangle shirtwaist factory fire. See for more information about this event.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012


Simple Things to Make This World a Better Place is also now available as a printed book on Amazon. Author Vicki Julian says: Thank you to everyone who "Liked" the Kindle eBook, and please write a review if you downloaded it and found it to be beneficial. If you want to make this world a better place, please tell your family and friends, and help "provoke others to love and good deeds." After all, that is the message and why the book was written!

Monday, November 5, 2012


Residents in the area of Ottawa will have an opportunity to take part in the popular continuing education course about Thomas Jefferson the University of Kansas sponsors.

Offered as part of the Osher Lifelong Learning series, Explaining the Perplexing Thomas Jefferson will be on the schedule at Ottawa April 9, 16, and 23, 2013 — all Tuesdays, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. The site will be the campus of the University of Ottawa.

Norm Ledgin is the “explainer” for these courses. This will be the fifth on this topic he has taught since early last year. Ledgin says he was “floored” by response to his latest presentation at Maple Woods Community College, Clay County, MO, where some evaluations indicated the six-hour course “should be longer.”

NOTE: Ledgin is the author of several books about Jefferson. His latest, Sally of Monticello: Founding Mother, is available from

Sunday, November 4, 2012


Andrea Warren, author of Charles Dickens and the Street Children of London, was one of three finalists in the recently awarded Thorpe Menn Literary Award.

Winner was Candice Millard with Destiny of the Republic: A Tale of Madness, Medicine and the Murder of a President. Another finalist was Carolyn Glenn Brewer with Caught Ever After: Children of the Ruskin Heights Tornado. The Thorpe Menn award is given annually by the Kansas City branch of the American Association of University Women. Thorpe Menn was a previous books editor of The Kansas City Star.

Andrea Warren’s website at


Jeremy Deckard, author of Capital City Cubbie: Tales and Travels of a Kansas Cubs Fan, will make several appearances on Wednesday, November 7.

From 8-10 am Deckard will be at the University Book Store at Pittsburg State University, and from 11 am to 1 pm at the Mall Deli, 202 E Centennial Drive. Later in the afternoon, from 2-4 pm, Deckard will be at the Parsons Public Library, 311 S. 17th Street. See Parsons Public Library.

Deckard is a sports correspondent and baseball blogger for the Topeka Capital-Journal, and an (almost) lifelong fan of the Chicago Cubs. More at Capital City Cubbie.


Ever want to meet a pig? Here's your chance to meet Olivia, at 4:30 pm on Monday, November 5, at a Rainy Day hosted event at Village Presbyterian Church, 6641 Mission Road, Prairie Village.

Olivia is celebrating her new book, Olivia and the Fairy Princesses. In costume, Olivia will pose for photographs and autograph books. Go to for ticket prices and admission information.


An invitation from Emporia State University:

Come listen to Esther Luttrell read from her work. Why, you ask? Because it's going to be totally awesome and free and open to the public. That also means invite friends.

This event is sponsored by the ESU Creative Writing Program; the Department of English, Modern Languages, and Journalism; Special Events Board; and Performing Arts Board.

And where? When? At 7 pm, Monday, November 5, Room 303, Plumb Hall, Emporia State University, Luttrell's website at


Jennifer Chiaverini will be in Kansas for two appearances ­- at 7 pm on Tuesday, November 5 at Watermark Books in Wichita, and at 6:30 pm on Tuesday, November 6, at Hutchinson Public Library,901 N. Main Street, Hutchinson.

The Giving Quilt, the newest book in Chiaverini's Elm Creek Quilt Novels, is described as an "artful, inspiring novel that imagines what good would come from practicing the holiday spirit, each and every day of the year."

Thursday, November 1, 2012


Another reader has been added to the launch of the Tenth Anniversary Edition of Kansas City Voices at 4 pm on Sunday, November 11.

Judith Bader Jones writes: “I'll be there. So happy to have a poem included in Kansas City Voices upcoming publication. Everything in life you give comes back to you. For years I served as one of the editors of this magazine, and now one of my poems finds a place in this issue. I will celebrate.”

Okay, I plagiarized that bit from Facebook, but the name of Judith Bader Jones has been added to the list that includes Natalie McAllister, prose; Jeff Tigchelaar, poetry, and Wood Dickinson, art.

Where? At the Plaza Branch of the Kansas City, MO, Public Library, 4801 Main Street. Kansas City Voices is the publication of Whispering Prairie Press,


What an event!

Friday, November 2, from 6-9 pm, the Grand Opening of Prospero’s Uptown Books, at 3600 Broadway, #107, in Kansas City, MO.

Live music by The Sexy Accident, Art Opening by Stirling Witt, 65,000 Books, LPs, CDs, Comix and Movies (oodles of safe, convenient parking) - right across the street from the Uptown Theater.

After Party @ minibar (one of KCs great new watering holes!) - anyone purchasing $10 in books will receive 1/2 off drinks at the Minibar.

NOTE: This is fantastic news. Prospero’s new location is within spitting distance of The Writers’ Place at 3607 Pennsylvania.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012


Todd McCray, hero of A Dog Named Christmas, is now twenty-four years old and working at a local animal shelter, where he meets and quickly becomes best friends with Laura, a young volunteer. Laura, like Todd, has disabilities of her own, but her struggles are more physical than developmental. Their friendship is sealed when Todd—with the help of his trusted companion, the tenacious Labrador retriever named Christmas—trains a beautiful dog named Gracie to help Laura with the day-to-day life tasks that are difficult for her.

Life seems good for Todd, but all is not well in his hometown. Struggling families unable to make ends meet are abandoning more and more dogs, and the shelter is swelling to capacity. The local government is struggling to meet its obligations too, and in early December, on the cusp of another holiday season, Todd’s boss delivers the bad news. Due to funding problems, the shelter will close its doors before the end of the year. But what will happen to all the animals?

As the Christmas holiday approaches, Todd has limited time to find homes for all the dogs. Not to mention that he needs to secure a new job and figure out what to do when his friendship with Laura takes an unexpected romantic turn. All this seems overwhelming unless you’ve got a loving family, dedicated friends, and a couple of very special dogs behind you. In which case, nothing is impossible.

Come meet Greg Kincaid, the author of A Christmas Home, at 7 pm on Thursday, November 1, at Rainy Day Books, 2706 W 53 Street in Fairway. Read about Kincaid’s previous books, A Dog Named Christmas (madeinto a Hallmark movie) and Christmas with Tucker at

Tuesday, October 30, 2012


Beth Lyon Barnett, author of Jazz Town, will discuss her book in a special event at the American Jazz Museum, 1616 East 18th, Kansas City, MO on Friday, November 30. A portion of proceeds will benefit the American Jazz Museum.

The evening will begin at 5 pm with a visit to the Historic Museum, followed by a reading by the author in the Atrium and an opportunity to meet the author and enjoy light refreshments. At 7 pm guests will celebrate with friends and family in the Blue Room featuring nationally known vocalist, Millie Edwards

Jazz Town, a novel, is the story of the free-and-easy days of prohibition, sex, the birth of the jazz age, and how Jews assimilated into Midwestern culture. Readers will recognize famous people like Jelly Roll Morton, Count Basie, Sigmund Harzfeld, and Rabbi Samuel Mayerberg, all of whom add to the true-to-life plot. "What really happened in Kansas City was just too good a story not to be told," says Barnett.

An Amazon reviewer wrote, "The characters, dialog, predicaments, surroundings, famous people, and familiar places all blend to make the book a super read." Jazz Town is available in book form at the American Jazz Museum and ebook at and Barnes and Noble.

Beth Lyon Barnett was born in Kansas City, Missouri. She and her husband live in Prairie Village with their rescued miniature schnauzer,"Too Tall" Looie. Beth's work has appeared in numerous magazines and periodicals including The Kansas City Star, The Jewish Chronicle and The Sun. She is a graduate of Mills College in Oakland CA. and a founding member of the Jackson and Johnson County Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) projects. Beth is a member of the Kansas City Writer's Group, Write Brain Trust, and the board of directors of Whispering Prairie Press, publishers of Kansas City VOICES Magazine.

Barnett's blog is at


Three contributors have been confirmed as presenters for the launch of the tenth anniversary edition of Kansas City Voices: Natalie McAllister, prose; Jeff Tigchelaar, poetry, and Wood Dickinson, art. Additional presenters may be added to the schedule.

This very exciting event will take place from 4-5:30 pm on Sunday, November 11, at the Plaza Branch of the Kansas City, MO, Public Library, 4801 Main Street, Kansas Ciy, MO. Copies will be available for sale. Kansas City Voices is the annual literary and arts publication of not-for-profit Whispering Prairie Press.

The goal of each annual issue is to publish an “annual eclectic mix of fiction, essays, interviews, articles, poetry, and art.” Submission period opens on December 15 and closes March 15.

More about Whispering Prairie Press at

Monday, October 29, 2012


Come to the Raven Book Store at 7 pm on Tuesday, October 30, and hear the Trilogy Awareness Event, Martha Kehr, the author of The Adventures of Marcy and Sara.

And do those girls have adventures, in The Magic Mole, New Alliances and Journey to the Palace of Ice. The Raven is easy to find at 6 E. 7th in Lawrence.

For more, check out

Sunday, October 28, 2012


One's mind will play tricks.

There is a serious error in the blog post just below and the error is mine. I do apologize.

The name of the book by Chris Tabor should be Skirmish at Island Mound.

An Associated Press article on Friday reported:

"African-American troops engaged in combat as an organized fighting force for the first time this week 150 years ago in the Civil War. The 1st Kansas Colored Volunteer Infantry Regiment repelled a Confederate unit while skirmishing with the rebels at Island Mound in Missouri on Oct. 29, 1862. It was among the first of the black regiments to be organized."

Friday, October 26, 2012


Chris Tabor chronicled the event in his book, Skirmish at Battle Mound, and tomorrow the site will be memorialized with the dedication of farmland in Bates County, MO, as a state historic site.

Under the headline of UNHERALDED ROLE BY BLACK SOLDIERS IS SALUTED AT LAST, the Kansas City Star of Friday, October 26, reports that on October 27, 1862 (150 years ago) “these black men fought in the battle of Island Mound. They were the first former slaves and freed men to defeat Confederate forces in the Civil War.”

The soldiers were members of the First Kansas Colored Volunteers organized by Kansan Jim Lane.

Author Tabor has been researching the military unit since 1999. The Star quotes him as saying, “it affected his (President Abraham Lincoln) decision to officially muster black soldiers into the war. It affected his decision to sign the Emancipation Proclamantion.”

Thursday, October 25, 2012


Cul de Sac is a new book for your reading pleasure, by Edna Bell-Pearson.

Woodland Circle, a cul de sac in the retirement community, Paradise Village, is not Wisteria Lane. However, no household is without its secrets, concerns and agendas.

What our friends do not know is that a newcomer—an author who chose the peace and quiet of Paradise Village to write a book—is writing it all down.

Cul de Sac is available at Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

Edna Bell-Pearson is a widely published writer of short stories, articles, essays and poems. Her first book, Fragile Hopes, Transient Dreams And Other Stories, published in 2006, was chosen by the Kansas State Library as one of 150 Best Kansas Books—those considered the best books written by Kansans and/or about Kansas in the past 150 years.

Whereas Fragile Hopes, Transient Dreams is considered an in-depth fictional study of life on the Great Plains during the 20th Century, Cul de Sac — also written as a series of short stories — is a fictional study of retirement life.


Main Street Rag Poetry Showcase at Prospero's: This month's pit is going to be on Friday, October 26 (instead of the usual 4th Sunday) and our featured reader will be Houston Hughes from Fayetteville, AR.

There will also be a spooky, mind-bending performance by The Paranormal Fun House! Not for the faint of heart.

And for the moment (more news coming) Prospero's is located at 1800 W. 39th Street, in Kansas City, MO.


Writes Karen D. Graves: When my little sister was born, I learned a new word: fair. Everyone brought her a present. Everyone wanted to hold her. “But that’s not fair!”

In her playful book, But That’s Not Fair! Graves cleverly tackles the age-old question: does the oldest child or the youngest child in the family have life the easiest?

Graves will be at Hastings in Lawrence on Saturday, October 27 for a book-signing. Hastings is at 1900 W. 23rd Street. Sorry, I don’t have the time.


Are you curious about The True Night Before Christmas? Be at Watermark Books and Cafe at 4 pm on Saturday, October 27, to hear the story from Vanessa and Robert Condreay. Watermark is at 4704 E Douglas in Wichita.


At the Raven Book Store tonight you’ll hear Hadara Bar-Nadav, author of A Glass of Milk to Kiss Goodnight, winner of the Margie Book Prize. Bar-Nadav’s chapbook, Show Me Yours, was awarded the 2009 Midwest Poets Series Award. Bar-Nadav is associate professor of English at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

You’ll also hear Kij Johnson, author of At the Mouth of the River of Bees. More about Johnson, assistant professor of fiction writing at the University of Kansas at

The Raven is at 6 E 7th in Lawrence. Program starts at 7 pm.


The Ottawa Public Library invites baseball fans to a presentation:

On Thursday Nov. 1st at from 6:30-8 pm please stop by the library and meet Jeremy Deckard, author of a new book about Chicago Cub players and their 2012 season.

Tales and Travels of a Kansas Cubs Fan, by Jeremy Deckard is a who’s who book covering Chicago Cubs players since 1986, Follow Deckard on a tour of the 2012 Cubs season with stops in Arizona, Missouri, Illinois and Pennsylvania.

Jeremy Deckard grew up in Marquette, Kansas and graduated from Pittsburg State University with a BSED in History and Social Studies. He worked as a sports writer for the Pittsburg Morning Sun from 1996-1999.

He currently serves as sports correspondent and baseball blogger for the Topeka Capital-Journal. As a correspondent he covers high school football, basketball, softball and baseball.

The Ottawa Library is at 105 S. Hickory. See


James N.Leiker and Ramon Powers, winners of the Great Plains Distinguished Book Prize will present a lecture on November 14 at the Great Plains Art Museum in Lincoln, NE. The prize was created to emphasize the interdisciplinary importance of the Great Plains in today’s publishing and educational market.Leiker is associate professor of history at Johnson County Community College. Powers is former executive director of the Kansas State Historical Society.

The story of the Northern Cheyennes' flight from Indian Territory toward their Montana homeland in 1878-79 has been told, retold, and relived by generations of historians, reformers, reenactors, literary figures like Mari Sandoz, filmmakers like John Ford, not to mention white homesteaders and Northern Cheyennes themselves. In assessing these retellings, two authors explore the relationship of history--an empirical science that attempts an objective understanding of the past--with memory, the stories that people of the Great Plains have used for cultural self-definition, and through them, their connection to a mythic western past.

The prize is awarded by the Center for Great Plains Studies by the University of Nebraska at Lincoln. The Northern Cheyenne Exodus in History and Memory was published by the University of Oklahoma Press.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012


Meet Rachel Hawkins and Brent Crawford at 7 pm Wednesday, October 24, at Watermark Books and Café, 4701 E. Douglas in Wichita. See what Watermark Books says below:

Watermark Books & Cafe is pleased to welcome back Rachel Hawkins and Brent Crawford. Rachel will be here for a reading and signing of Spell Bound, the third book in her Hex Hall series for teens (and adults who are honest about their reading habits.) And Brent will be here to sign Carter's Unfocused, One-Track Mind, the third book in his Carter series for teens.

Rachel Hawkins was born in Virginia and raised in Alabama. This means she uses words like "y'all" and "fixin'" a lot, and considers anything under 60 degrees to be borderline Arctic. Before deciding to write books about kissing and fire (and sometimes kissing while on fire), Rachel taught high school English for 3 years, and is still capable of teaching you The Canterbury Tales if you're into that kind of thing.

Brent Crawford is the author of the critically acclaimed Carter Finally Gets It and Carter’s Big Break. He has worked in theater, film, and television, and has written numerous plays and screenplays. To pay some pesky bills, he has also waited tables, worked construction, cleaned fish, bartended, and even dumped airplane toilets. He lives in Kansas City, Kansas.


Kate Morton’s The Secret Keeper begins this way:

“Rural England, a farmhouse in the middle of nowhere, a summer’s day at the start of the nineteen sixties. The house is unassuming: half-timbered, with white paint peeling gently on the western side and clematis scrambling up the plaster. The chimney pots are steaming and you know, just by looking, that there’s something tasty simmering on the stove top beneath. It’s something in the way the vegetable patch has been laid out, just so, at the back of the house; the proud gleam of the leadlight windows; the careful patching of the roofing tiles.”

Meet the author at Rainy Day hosted program at 7 pm on Wednesday, October 24, at Unity Temple on the Plaza, 707 W. 47th, Kansas City, MO. For ticket and admission information see


What Kansas poet Albert Goldbarth says about Eula Biss’s book, Notes From No Man’s Land:

“‘Gangs are real, but they are also conceptual,’ Eula Biss says, and the wide embrace of that observation speaks well for her essays, which are always ideologically alive even as they are grounded in fascinating details: children’s dolls, the history of telephone poles, the saga of the Hanging Gardens of Babylon. But this book is no miscellany. All of Biss’s explorations finally address race in the United States, from someone whose life seems devoted to that great pondering...and so this is an essential (and quintessential) American book.”

Notes from No Man’s Land, the University of Kansas “Common Book” will be the topic of discussion at 12 noon on Wednesday, October 24, at the ECM Center, 1204 Oread Avenue, led by Sarah Crawford-Parker, assistant vice provost.


Diane Ott Whealy, author of Gathering: Memoir of a Seed Saver, will speak at 7 pm on Tuesday, October 23, at 11600 Johnson Drive, Shawnee Town.

Whealy, an expert gardener and co-founder of Seed Savers Exchange (SSE) – the nation’s premier nonprofit seed-saving organization – will discuss the ways that backyard gardeners protect the genetic diversity of our food supply through heirloom gardening. She will share her experience as a leader in the renaissance of heirloom gardening in North America, as well as tips for designing and planting the perfect combination of flowers, vegetables and herbs. Her lessons can be applied to gardens large or small and will emphasize self-seeding annuals, seed saving, and creating a sustainable as well as edible landscape. Her presentation will be illustrated by photographs from the founding of SSE over 37 years ago as well as her current cottage-style garden at SSE’s Heritage Farm near Decorah, IA. This event is sponsored by Family Tree Nursery of Shawnee and Overland Park.

Monday, October 22, 2012


Tom Mach, author of Angels at Sunset, will be speaking at 6:15 on Tuesday, October 23, at the Sunset Lions Club at the Branding Iron in Scranton.

That’s all I have, but I’ll bet everyone living within 50 miles of Scranton knows how to find the Branding Iron.

See all of Mach’s books at

P.S. Mach sends word that he “will not only talk about women’s suffrage but about the necessity to forgive even after decades of hatred.” The public is invited.


From a Dole Institute press release by Heather Anderson:

LAWRENCE — Sasha Issenberg, Slate journalist and author, will be at the Dole Institute of Politics at the University of Kansas discussing his latest book, “The Victory Lab: The Secret Science to Winning Campaigns” in a Dole Forum event at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 23. It is free and open to the public.

It’s been done in sports and now Issenberg presents the untold story of the analytical revolution upending the way political campaigns are run in the 21st century. “The Victory Lab,” dubbed “’Moneyball’ for politics” by “Politico,” uncovers the secret history of modern American politics, which helped to decide the 2004 and 2008 races and have become essential to the campaigns of Barack Obama and Mitt Romney.

Read the complete news release at


From the Wichita/Sedgwick County Historical Museum:

Tuesday, October 23rd, 7pm – Free and open to the public. Sponsored by our community partner, Watermark Books.

From New York Times bestselling author H. W. Brands, The Man Who Saved the Union: Ulysses Grant in War and Peace, a masterful biography of the Civil War general and two-term president who saved the Union twice, on the battlefield and in the White House, holding the country together at two critical turning points in our history.

Ulysses Grant rose from obscurity to discover he had a genius for battle, and he propelled the Union to victory in the Civil War. After Abraham Lincoln’s assassination and the disastrous brief presidency of Andrew Johnson, America turned to Grant again to unite the country, this time as president.



From a Johnson County Community College news release written by Anne Christiansen-Bullers:

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. –“An Evening with Clifton Taulbert: Building Community from Life to Job,” will showcase Pulitzer Prize-nominated author Clifton Taulbert at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 23, at Johnson County Community College.

The interactive presentation will be in Hudson Auditorium at the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art on the JCCC campus. Admission is free, and the public is invited to attend.

Taulbert is the author of “Once Upon a Time When We Were Colored” (available for signing), “Eight Habits of the Heart” (available for signing) and his most recent publication, “Who Owns the Ice House: Eight Life Lessons from an Unlikely Entrepreneur,” as well as 10 additional titles.

For the complete news release, go to

Sunday, October 21, 2012


Come celebrate the publication of Kansas City Voices 10th Anniversary Edition. Meet local artists and writers, and get your first glimpse of our latest publication. We're extremely proud and hope you will help us celebrate the talent and hard work of our local artists and writers. Can't wait to see you there!

When? Where? Sunday, November 11, 4 pm-5:30 pm at the Plaza Branch, Kansas City, MO, Public Library, 4801 Main Street, Kansas City, MO. See


Does your cat have a vendetta against you? Maybe you can figure it out by attending the appearance of Matt Inman, otherwise known as The Oatmeal, at 7 pm on Monday, October 22, hosted by Rainy Day Books at Unity Temple on the Plaza, 707 W. 47th Street, Kansas City, MO.

Inman is the author of How to Tell if Your Cat is Plotting to Kill You. All of you cat lovers/haters out there, this could be valuable crucial information. Ticket information at


More than one group of avid readers is reading Joe Drape's Our Boys: A Perfect Season on the Plains with the Smith Center Redmen.

The Louisburg Public Library has chosen Drape's book for their One Book, One Burg community reading program. Members of the Louisburg Wildcat football team, with a winning streak of their own in 2010, will return to share their experiences in a panel discussion with Coach Gary Griffin on Tuesday, October 23.

Members of the community are invited to share a book discussion with Louisburg high school students on Thursday, October 25. Copies of the book have been available at the library.


Readers of all ages, here's your chance to meet Skippyjon Jones through the creator, Judy Schachner, at 1 pm on Monday, October 22, at the Village Presbyterian Church, 6641 Mission Road, Prairie Village. Schachner's new chldren's picture book is Skippyjon Jones: Cirque de Ole.

Hosted by Rainy Day Books, information about tickets, admissions, etc., at


The sinking of the S.S. Sophia after grounding on Vanderbilt Reef in Lynn Canal near Juneau, Alaska, on October 25, 1918, was the setting for Gerald Kramer's novel, Vanderbilt Reef: Finding Daniel.

Kramer of Pittsburg, a retired college professor with a fascination for Alaska, writes:

Vanderbilt Reef: Finding Daniel is my first completed novel and involves an investigator from the Kansas City area seeking information on a passenger lost thirty years earlier on the Princess Sophia, a Canadian Pacific steamship that became grounded on Vanderbilt Reef near Juneau, Alaska, on October 24, 1918. It sank the next day killing all 343 people aboard. The investigator’s client wants to find out as much as she can before she dies, about her long-lost nephew, Daniel. The characters are fictional, but the tragedy is real.

Friday, October 19, 2012


Shawnee Books and Toys, 7311 Quivira, sends a reminder: Tomorrow we will have author Don Carrel, author of My Dream to Trample AIDS, from 11am-2pm!

Don Carrel has been living with AIDS since 1995. He suspects he was infected with HIV in 1981. Thirty years later, less than 2 percent of people with HIV have lived long enough to share their stories. In 1995, while lying in a hospital bed with Pneumocystis pneumonia, the most common form of death for someone with AIDS, Don had a riveting dream that dramatically altered his life and, perhaps the future lives of more than 100,000 teenagers. After making a full recovery, Don set out to teach young people what they needed to know about HIV prevention so that they wouldn’t wind up in his shoes. His lofty goal: to stomp out AIDS. After 16 years, Don has collected thousands of thank-you letters from teens and adults who have heard his compelling presentations.

Carrel was a International Books Winner in the category of Health and Sexuality. See Carrel’s website at


An invitation from the Topeka Shawnee County Public Library at 1515 SW 10th Street in Topeka:

On Sunday, October 21, 2:00-3:00pm in the Topeka Room (204) join Kansas Author Tom Mach as he talks about his newest book, Angels at Sunset, which concludes the award-winning historical trilogy about Jessica Radford.

The novel begins in 1920 in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, where Jessica Radford listens to the very first radio broadcast on KDKA, which broadcasts the presidential election returns. Because of the passage of the 19th Amendment, this is the first time she has ever voted. Many years earlier, she advocated against slavery and pushed for equal rights of the freed slaves. Later, she joined Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, and other suffragists – not only for the right to vote but for other rights ought to have, such as the right to speak in public, the right to have a profession, the right to have property and the right to her own children if she got divorced, as well as many, many other rights denied to them simply because they were women. It was a hard-fought struggle and Jessica relives is as she reads her biography that her daughter had written about her. AND-all the while, unknown to her, a man is planning to kill her. How will it end?

Tom Mach’s two previous historical novels, Sissy! and All Parts Together, were listed by the Kansas State Library among the 150 best Kansas books in 2011. Sissy! won the J. Donald Coffin Memorial Book Award while All Parts Together was a viable entrant for the 2007 Pulitzer Prize Award. He also wrote a collection of short stories entitled Stories to Enjoy. His poetry collection, The Uni Verse, won the Nelson Poetry Book Award. In addition to several awards for his poetry, Writer’s Digest awarded him ninth place in a field of 3,000 entrants. His latest historical novel, Angels at Sunset, won praise from reviewers at Kirkus Reviews and the Midwest Book Review.

Books available for sale & signing after the talk. For more information please call the Topeka Room at 785-580-4510. See


If you wake up Saturday morning and realize that you really should be going to the Third Annual Whispering Prairie Press Creativity conference, you can walk right in and register in person. On site. At the door.

At the beautiful, easy- to-find Edwards Campus of the University of Kansas, right here in Johnson County at 127th Street and Quivira. Previous blog posts have described four of the workshops, here are the last two:

“Creating a Travel Guidebook” -- Lisa Waterman Gray-- Learn what it took to write An Explorer's Guide: Kansas, from proposal to 400-page book, including working with tourism officials, trip planning, organization of notes and photographs, some of Lisa's favorite destinations and more. Lisa Waterman Gray has ridden a Segway for Midwest Living and AAA Southern Traveler and attended an orchestrated prairie burn for AAA Midwest Traveler. She has described the morning meal at bed and breakfasts across the state, for KANSAS!, Durango brewing companies for Arts and Entertainment, and much more. An Explorer's Guide: Kansas released nationwide last summer.

“Birthing a Book Together” -- Bernadette Stankard and Amy Viets --Writing in one voice when there are two of you is difficult. This workshop presents strategies to make that one voice happen. Helpful hints on how to navigate the highs and lows of working together and how to produce that seamless manuscript are addressed. Bernadette Stankard and Amy Viets are the co-authors of books on coping with depression. They have books written both alone and together and have found that working together is a rewarding experience. They regularly speak on the topics of depression and creativity and are at present working together on yet another book on depression and the start of a mystery series.

Read all about it, and register on line at Or just walk in tomorrow morning. You’ll be in great company.

Thursday, October 18, 2012


Mary A. Lake, author of Departings, will be signing at 10 am on Saturday, October 20, at Barnes and Noble, Country Club Plaza, 420 W 47th, Kansas City, MO.

Departings is a novel told in three parts, each detailing the life of one of the main characters. It speaks of lost hopes and the youth of the 1920s who started out with so much abundance. Oil and advancing technology propelled the average guy into a rich man. Women were coming into their own. They could vote, drive, speak out. It all seemed so fun and promising—it promised to never end. But it did. In this story of loss and redemption, each endearing character tells his own story and gives insight into the others.


A Topeka woman whose wallet was stolen canceled her credit cards, but did not report the loss of her library card.

The finder apparently used the card to check out a number of library books, but failed to return them, and now the woman has received a bill from the Topeka library for $1,000!

After negotiations, both parties agreed on a payment of $275 -- still a very painful expense. WARNING -- Don't let your library card get away from you.


Lowboy is a small squirrel with one big problem. He’s afraid of heights! The Adventures of Lowboy and Friski takes you on a delightful journey along Lowboy’s rise from small town squirrel to national hero.

Author Charles L. Kendrick will be at Barnes and Noble’s Country Club Plaza store, 420 W. 47th Street, Kansas City, MO, at 5 pm on Saturday, October 20, for a book signing.


Author Lynn Fountain will be talking about her book, Pathway of Angels, at 1 pm on Saturday, October 20, at Scooter’s Coffee House, 11106 Antioch Road, Overland Park.

When Lynn Fountain was diagnosed with a pancreatic tumor and told she may not have long to live, her life flashed before her eyes. Her doctors suggested she write letters to her young sons so they could have something to remember her by. It was in these moments that Lynn wondered what life’s purpose was; what was life’s pathway?


Doug Brush is the author of Northern Kansas Division, Missouri Pacific Lines, a book which chronicles 150 years of continuous service across northern Kansas. A book signing is scheduled for 6:30 pm on Thursday, October 25, at the Port Library, 311 W. Main, in Beloit.

Library Director Rachel Malay says “the book does a wonderful job of tracking the rail line and its impact on all of the small communities it services.”


Author Tom Mach will be signing copies of several of his books at the Author Roundup event, scheduled for Saturday, November 3 from 1 pm to 4 pm at the Abilene Civic Center at 201 W. Second Street in Abilene. The books he will be signing are Angels at Sunset, Sissy!, All Parts Together, and Stories To Enjoy. The public is invited.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


Vicki Julian has just ePublished her third book, Simple Things to Make This World a Little Better Place. The book is filled with suggestions for random acts of kindness and practical suggestions for what you can do for others in special circumstances such as when someone loses a loved one, is hospitalized, experiences natural disaster, and more. There are also heartwarming stories about how others have seized the moment to make a difference for their fellowman, living life better for others, and what you can do each day to make this world a better place.

The book is now available on in the Kindle Store. Printed copies of the book will be available before Thanksgiving.


Gordon Kessler’s MASTER PLAN Free Seminar will be coming to the KCMetro area on Saturday, October 27, from 1-3:30 pm at Homer’s Coffee House, 7126 W 80th Street (just west of Metcalf) in Overland Park.

Kessler’s MASTER PLAN is a guide to promoting and marketing an EBook novel, and includes “What John Locke Convenientlly Left Out and Much More.” The MASTER PLAN outline is at, and includes:

1. Ten things you can control on your Amazon book’s page that will optimize its visibility and its reader attractability;

2. How to use Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and not use up valuable writing/family time;

3. What’s the best price point for your work;

4. How to get reviews;

5. So very much more!

For a look at Kessler’s book titles, go to


Wichita is the new home for “Encounters, the ultimate fandom experience.” Robert Collins, author of Surgard and the Plague of Poets, as well as many other sci-fi novels and short stories, will have a table at the event, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, October 19-20 at the Wichita Holiday Inn East, 549 S. Rock Road. (Or, to make it simpler, Rock Road and US-54.)

So, what is Encounters? Read the mission statement: Our mission is to provide a high quality convention catering to fans of science fiction, comics, anime, steampunk and gaming. As an annual convention, we strive to be the premiere pop culture genre event in the Southern Midwest. We seek to provide our patrons the ultimate fan experience with access to exceptional panels, a multitude of first-class events, and notable guests

. More about Encounters at Collins' blog is at or you can get there directly by clicking on One Kansas Author in the blog roll on the right.


There will be a great variety of workshops to choose from this coming Saturday at the 3rd Annual Whispering Prairie Press Creativity Conference in Overland Park.

Linda Rodriguez’s workshop is titled “What On Earth Is Going To Happen Next? Getting the Reader To Turn the Page” Every story and novel needs suspense elements to keep the reader turning the page. At its simplest, suspense makes the reader want to know what happens next. At its best, suspense makes the reader worry that the protagonist will never reach his overpowering goal and what on earth is going to happen next! Learn 15 techniques to fill your writing with page-turning suspense.

Linda Rodriguez’s Every Last Secret won the Malice Domestic Best First Traditional Mystery Novel Competition. Her second novel Every Broken Trust will be released in Spring 2013. She is a founding board member of Latino Writers Collective and The Writers Place and a member of Wordcraft Circle of Native American Writers and Storytellers, Kansas City Cherokee Community, International Thriller Writers, and Sisters in Crime.

Olive Sullivan will be talking about "Image is Everything--Almost". Olive Sullivan talks about process in this presentation on all things poetic. Hear how she approaches a poem, and expect to take home a few useful tips for your own writing practice.

Olive L. Sullivan is a poet who currently makes her living teaching journalism at Missouri Southern State University--where she also advises the student group MOSO Poets. Her first published poems appeared in The Little Balkans Review in 1982, and her most recent work will appear in Ad Astra Per Astra, a renga edited by Kansas Poet Laureate Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg, to be released in November 2012. Sullivan has also published short fiction and essays,and has won awards for scriptwriting.

The above are two of the six workshops that will be offered at the conference, to be held at the University of Kansas Edwards Campus, 12700th Street and Quivira. Click on the Events List to see other blog posts about the conference, or go to for all the details. SSTILL NOT TOO LATE TO REGISTER.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012


Three authors will be signing books from 10 am to noon on Saturday, November 3, at the Bookshelf at 206 N. Main in McPherson:

Bruce Behymer, author of Princess Pretty -- The heartwarming story of lost Princess Pretty and the many friends she meets along the way. Along with delightful illustrations of her adventures there are also lessons about boundaries, the importance of listening to your parents and the magic that happens when you open your heart to others.

Beverly Buller, author of The Story of Walter White -- William Allen White was a small-town newspaper editor who counted presidents and famous authors among his friends. He rose to world-wide fame before his death in 1944 but never left his hometown of Emporia.

Mary Rintol, author of Back in Ten Minutes -- This handbook of exercises, taking only ten minutes a day, can help anyone who suffers from back pain. It was originally compiled by a practising dentist who was a sufferer himself, and distributed amongst friends and colleagues, the object being to reduce work-induced tension and stress, to improve posture and reduce pain. No special equipment is needed, and many of the exercises can be done in the kitchen or at a desk.


“Join us Friday night, October 19 at 7:00 p.m., as Bryan Dietrich reads poems from his new book, Monstrance. Saturday the party continues (all day) and culminates in an evening of refreshment and festivity. Come early, stay late. Invite a friend. Buy a book. “ From the staff of Eighth Day Books, at 2838 E. Douglas in Wichita.

On Saturday, October 20, refreshments (both solid and liquid) will be plentiful until all hours. The occasion is the 24th year anniversary, with discounts on both new and used books. More about Dietrich at and more about Eighth Day Books at


The Lawrence Public Library is calling kids of all ages, from 8 to 88, for an appearance at 7 pm on Thursday, October 18, of Paul Miles Schneider, the guest of honor for Teen Read Week. Schneider is the author of The Powder of Life, a sequel to Silver Shoes, a Kansas Notable Book for 2010.

The library is at 707 Vermont. The authors website at


Washburn University invites:

Join us at Mabee Library on Thursday, October 18, at 4:00 p.m. for a Book Talk & Signing as we welcome Laura Moriarty, author of The Chaperone.

Laura's 2012 novel, The Chaperone, was on the New York Times Best Seller List, and has already been optioned as a film. The Washburn Bookstore will have copies for sale.

The author of The Center of Everything (2003) and two other novels, Laura teaches Creative Writing at the University of Kansas.


The Johnson County Library Foundation will recognize the honorees of the 2012 Pinnacle Awards at a special dinner on Thursday, Oct. 18, 2012.

The 2012 honorees are Excellence in the Arts, Chuck Haddix; Excellence in Advocacy and Public Engagement, Janis McMillen; Excellence in Business and Entrepreneurship, Stacy Jones; Dr. Joel Wiggins; Excellence in Literacy and Education, Ron Gier.

Nominations for the Pinnacle Awards are sought each year. See , for information on the online nomination process.


Looks like Nancy Julien Kopp has done it again – been successful at submitting an essay to Chicken Soup. Her story, The Body Beautiful, is one of the 101 stories in Chicken Soup’s finding my faith, the newest book in the series.

Kopp is one of the most generous writers I know, sharing her tips and encouragement for her colleagues with her blog, . I’ve lost count of the number of stories Kopp has in the Chicken Soup series, but if you heed her writing advice, you’re certain to improve your chances of being published in the Chicken Soup books, or elsewhere for that matter. You’ll find the link to her blog in the right-hand sidebar under Writers About Writing.