Everything I've learned about writing a book, Grammarly, Hemingway, and AutoCrit Apps, getting Amazon Book Reviews, Indie and Audiobook Publishing, Book Promotion, the (huge) importance of Amazon keywords, Cover Creators and other things to help authors write and sell…
This afternoon we had a chance to hear the extraordinarily talented Elizabeth Pitcairn play the legendary “Red Mendelssohn” Stradivarius violin of 1720. It is the same “Red Violin” about which the movie was made… Sort of. When asked how accurate the movie was, she smiled and politely assured us that, “The movie is based on history about which we know nothing.”
Another funny story she told was the day as a teenager she answered the phone to be told it was an auction house calling to let them know the violin — which had once been in their family — was coming up for auction, and that if they were interested it would probably go for about $1.2 million. She said she decided to get her mon on the phone at that point.
As to the concert… The sound was amazing. It always fascinates me when I hear master musicians. The sound they can make seems to transcend what the physical device is capable of, and they seem to do it with such ease.
I often spend Sunday afternoons watching football or trying to get some writing done… This was a nice change.
This morning, while I was sitting on the deck doing some writing, our dog (Trevose — named after the street we lived on in Singapore, where we adopted her from the humane society) and a buck had a conversation through our back fence.
Moments before, a huge owl had been sitting on a limb not far above where the buck was standing in this picture. And there used to be a famiy of hawks that lived in a nearby tree, but they seem to have departed about a month ago. We have a couple hummingbird feeders, but there seems only two that frequent them. And we have a squirrel with a black head and a brown body that crosses the deck from time to time. There is a downside…
This book came up in a discussion I was having earlier today. Published in 1968, and an eventual bestseller, The Population Bomb asserted that within 10 – 20 years the world would be wracked by starvation and wars for food.
In my early teens in the ’70s I lived in a small town in western Kansas surrounded by literally an ocean of wheat that farmers were going broke producing because the world had too damn much of it. So I could not reconcile the dire warnings of “The Population Bomb” and the reality around me.
I grew up reading Analog Science Fiction magazine. In fairness, it is more accurately Analog Science Fiction and Fact, but I always did better with the fiction part than I did the fact part.
Later in life, while earning my MA in Creative Writing, I had the chance to study under James Gunn at the University of Kansas. Gunn has published a number of science fiction novels over the last ~50 years, but he is probably better known in the sci fi community as a historian of science fiction and has published a number of books to that end.
I took three or four classes from him, and I spent some time chatting with him in his office, which was as you would imagine it: Stacked high with paperbacks on every flat surface, he was staring into the small screen of his antiquated computer. He eventually chaired my thesis committee.
As luck would have it, he came to our wedding. For a wedding gift — in typical Gunn fashion — he handed me a couple of his most recent paperbacks.