“Lucky, Punk?” wins Bartleby Snopes prize

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The literary magazine Bartleby Snopes runs a short story contest every year. It’s quite restrictive: no description and no exposition allowed. One must tell a tale using only dialog between characters. I wrote an entry – somewhat skewed toward an older demographic – that won a prize. Please take a peek when you have time and see let me know what you think.

http://www.bartlebysnopes.com/stories/do-you-feel-lucky-punk.html

 

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A Bear for Lunch

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Editor Richard Loller generously added this Yosemite reminiscence to his Preservation Foundation site. When you take teenagers to mountains where bears reside, they will inevitably meet – to the edification of all concerned. Here’s the link.

http://www.storyhouse.org/robertwa2.html

Oak Knoll is in Your Daily Poem

oak knoll

Photo by Ed Haskell

An old friend passed away some years back. She was born into a pioneer family and, though a world traveler and Berkeley educated, her deepest affection was for her ranch and all the rural folks who make their living from this none too gentle land. I tried to show a little bit of that in this poem. I’m honored to be able to include one of Ed Haskell’s great images!

http://www.yourdailypoem.com/listpoem.jsp?poem_id=2696

The Ogre’s Secret

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My very first Bogerd story – The Ogre’s Secret – found a home in Broadswords and Blasters, issue 6. Friend and raconteur Ed McKean gave me an idea for this one long ago. Those of you you who know both of us may enjoy figuring out what he inspired me to add. Working with John Miller on his viking units made me look at the story again and get it up to speed.  It’s a romp and nothing more, so I hope you’ll enjoy it!

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07FJLFGDQ/

The Gettysburg Address on Memorial Day

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Old friend Dr. Carl Christensen is conductor of the Monterey County Pops. The orchestra is comprised of professionals, but their concerts are free. I was honored to play a small part in their Memorial Day concert on the lawn of the Colton House (City Hall) in Monterey.

Featured artists included Blue Grass fiddler, Laura Burian; the young musicians of Orchestra in the Schools conducted by Jim Paoletti; youth vocalist, Mia Pak; and the Monterey County Pops!/Palenke Arts Youth Chorus conducted by Juan Sánchez and me.

Musical highlights were the traditional Battle Hymn of the Republic, American Salute (based on When Johnny Comes Marching Home) by Morton Gould, and Salute to American Jazz arranged by Sammy Nestico. This medley included A Night in Tunisia, St. Louis Blues, It Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing), and Birdland.

Further patriotic selections were “God Bless America”, “The National Anthem”, “The Armed Forces Salute”, “The Navy Hymn”, “Taps”, and Sousa’s “Stars and Stripes Forever.”

Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address is central to my life, to all Americans’ lives. It is somber, sad, cautionary – though filled with our shared aspirations – and true. Reading it aloud – especially when its timeless words are illuminated by great music played by great musicians – can only help heal our nation’s present divisions.

Vienna Station launched again!

Galaxy winner Vienna copy

Vienna Station won the Galaxy Prize in 2011 and was subsequently published by Rosetta Bo0ks. Rosetta recently shortened its e-pub list and most graciously gave me the files and rights. I’ve just brought the novella back to life on KDP. Please take a peek!  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07D6CXBGZ/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1526865295&sr=1-1&keywords=Vienna+Station

After the Charge

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Photo by Melanie Metcalf

This is one of my favorite moments during our annual reenactment, the silent pause we take after Pickett’s Charge. The waste of young lives that our Civil War caused hits home. May we never make such a sacrifice again.