Monday, August 29, 2016

New Memoir Ready to Publish

Just a few more edits is all that remains before my next book is ready. Picture selection has been slow. Worcester's Winter Hill is a visit to my life as a young urban farmer. We had crops, farm animals, pleasure horses, and acres of mystery just past the stone wall. My brother and sisters experienced the farm life too, but I'm sure they got something different out of it than I did.

Throughout my life, when I reflected on why things happened or why I felt the way I do about something, I have found that it often reflects on what life was like for me as a boy on the farm. It was a strange farm, as it was only minutes from the downtown of the second largest city in New England: Worcester, Massachusetts. We had acres of land and forests that we never found the far edge of in all the years we lived there.

As small boys, my brother and I explored but never found the full limit of the area. And then, within minutes we would be downtown like my friends, walking from shop to shop with our Mother, buying back-to-school clothes in sprawling department stores such as Denholm & McKay or Jordan Marsh and Company. Our visits to New Hampshire and Cape Cod, plus treks to family in Brooklyn, made the unique features of our home on the farm all the more intriguing for us.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

History of Religious Prophets on Barnes and Noble website

History of Religious Prophets is the Topic
If you want an honest assessment of how the modern world came to be corrupt and confusing for humans, the one best source, is my book about the world's seven major religious prophets and how they all used the same 9 techniques to corrupt and confuse the world.

Read The World's Seven Biggest Liars and you will understand why one billion people on earth realize that all religions (not some, but all) make things worse for humans as they encourage the worship of deities, which do not exist.

Based on my documented two years of research into the study of the religious prophets I have composed a theory that describes how these seven (and thousands more) religious prophets have generally used they same 9 techniques to make a claim that they are in communion with the deity and that they are transmitting the deities' desires on how to live and behave. My review of the literature (see the 222 reference footnotes) helped me analyze what has happened to humankind.

The research clearly shows that the prophets are all fakes and frauds. The major prophets, such as Jesus, Muhammad, Moses, and others are probably all nonexistent persons anyway, but in any event, their followers have been misled to the tune of six billion humans fantasizing about an after life and other lies.

Read the book to learn the 9 techniques used by the prophets and see how the thousands of minor prophets stayed "minor" because they didn't use the full 9 of the techniques. Using 6 or 7 techniques gets you into the newspaper, but it doesn't get you half a billion, or one billion, or two billion followers, which is what the major liars did.
My other book, A Vacationer's Guide to Rural New England Bookstores is also available on Bookstore Update (11-19-2015): In the past few weeks, Patti and I have spotted my book about books on the shelf at "Where the Sidewalk Ends" in Chatham and at "Jabberwocky Book Shop" in Newburyport.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

New Memoir Ready for Publisher

New Memoir to be released soon.
With the imminent publishing of my new Memoir I will have finally reached the trifecta of Travel, History, and Memoir. The new book is about those sacred years between the age of eight and 12 when I lived on a farm on the outskirts of Worcester. I didn't realize how impactful life on the farm would be for me in later life. Kids who grow up on a farm, even if it's tucked inside the city limits of the second largest city in New England, learn things; important things.

In the meantime, you can read my other two books: The World's Seven Biggest Liars (Barnes and Noble) and A Vacationer's Guide to Rural New England Bookstores (

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Looking Forward to Book Signing at R.J. Julia Independent Booksellers on September 17 in Madison, CT

I'm pleased to be a part of the Local Authors Night at the R.J. Julia Independent Booksellers on September 17, 2014 starting at 7:00 PM. My book, A Vacationer's Guide to Rural New England Bookstores, has been out for a year and a half [hard to believe it's been that long] and yet, it keeps selling. I'm working on the next edition, which will include even more listings, but locals and those on vacation continue to be interested in finding those hidden book shop treasures in New England.

Along with several other authors, I will participate in the event, which is being coordinated by the American Authors & Publishers Guild in cooperation with R.J. Julia. The Local Authors Night will feature these other books and authors:

- A Shared Landscape, by Joseph Leary
- Mystic in the 50s, by Tom Santos
- The Legend of Hobbomock: The Sleeping Giant, by Jason Marchi

Back when the current edition of my Guide Book was published, the Boston Globe wrote a review that said "it was a good one for the glove box." The commentary by Jan Gardner was much appreciated as it meant someone understood how I envisioned the book being used by readers. It's a reference, but it's also a handy tool, for use on an on-going basis. As you visit around New England over time, you can go back to the Guide Book for suggestions on where to find a great independent or used book shop.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Word on the Street columnist in Boston Globe wrote about Vacation Guide’s personal touches

Jan Gardner writes the Word on the Street column for and in a January edition stated that A Vacationer’s Guide to Rural New England Bookstores was “…a good one to keep in the glove compartment.” I really enjoyed seeing that comment because it goes right to the heart of how and why the guide book came to be. I wrote it with the notion that a book shop visitor would keep it with them as a handy guide, regardless of where they end up in New England. What better place than in the globe box? If it’s handy, you can thumb through it and find the independent full-service, or used and rare book shop nearby.

You can read Jan’s full commentary at She also points out that the writing in the guide book is “folksy.” When I read that, it occurred to me, again, that I intended it to be casual and conversational, rather than clinical and analytical. I read a lot of guide books and they tend to be informative, but somewhat dry to read. I deliberately tried to avoid that. I’m glad that Jan felt it was “folksy.” The folksy part comes from sharing bits of information that go beyond whether certain types of books are on hand.
If famous authors have a preference for a shop, (Vermont Book Shop in Middlebury) or the owner has rearranged the shop to accommodate music recitals, (Pleasant Street Books in Woodstock), I like to share that information. While admittedly, that’s “folksy,” it’s my feeling that it helps readers decide it’s the kind of place they should visit.

Coincidentally, the Crow Bookshop in Burlington VT was highlighted in the same column as my guide book. Later that month I received a note that the shop was stocking my guide book. That’s what a writer loves to hear. The book was on another shelf. It keeps us going. Thanks to Jan and Thanks to the Crow Bookshop.

Monday, March 18, 2013

About the Hampton Union article on Drake Farm Books

Drake Farm Books - No. Hampton NH
I enjoyed reading the article by Nick Reid, a reporter for the Hampton Union, commenting on the selection of Drake Farm Books by Yankee Magazine as one of the Best 5 Used Bookstores in New England. What I liked about the article was that he took the time to interview the folks at the bookstore, he looked into the guide book I wrote that included a commentary about Drake Farm Books, and he contacted me to get some direct comments.

That’s more effort on a small story than I see on much larger stories that may be more significant. As a former newspaper reporter, I understand the pressure placed on writers to get something into print and the tendency to short-cut the research to meet a deadline. But, in this case, Nick did the most you could do with the simple story. He probably started with a press release from Yankee Magazine, but he made the effort to find the points of interest that his readers would appreciate. I know I did.

The article led with the news about the selection of the book shop by Yankee Magazine as one of the 5 Best Used Bookstores, then went on to justify the selection based on the author comments and other published comments. He followed that with comments from the owners and a description of the bookstore’s history, its unique characteristics, and that at this point in its life, that the shop was for sale. That’s great news for some reader who wants to get into the high-stress world hand-selling used books! Is that you? Let me know.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

My Not So Easy Choices for Best Used Bookstores

The editor of Yankee Magazine asked me to select my five favorite used bookstores for their Best 5 in New England feature. It seemed easy, as I have lots of favorite used bookstores, so surely I can pick the best five?

Best 5 Used Bookstores
Oops! Imagine trying to pick your “best” grandchild? What seemed easy became a bit of a chore when I had to get down to selecting five used bookshops. Mel Allen, the editor of Yankee Magazine, gave me some grace to select an additional 10 runners-up, which helped a little. My selections appear in the January-February issue of Yankee Magazine, and the runners-up appear in the online version.

The shops I selected were:

- The Montague Bookmill – Montague MA

- Shire Book Shop – Franklin MA

- Pleasant Street Books – Woodstock VT

- Drake Farm Books – Northampton NH

- The Book Barn – Niantic CT

I feel very comfortable with these choices and the 10 honorable mentions too. They are certainly worthy candidates for someone looking for a great used book shop in New England. It’s just that there are many others equally worthy of being a Top 5 choice. In my book, A Vacationer’s Guide to Rural New England Bookstores, I write about 31 used books shops that are among my favorites.

January-February 2013 issue
Here are the 10 runners-up from Yankee Magazine:

- Big Chicken Barn – Ellsworth ME

- Carlson Turner Books – Portland ME

- Bar Harbor Book Shop – Hulls Cove ME

- Henniker Book Farm – Henniker NH

- Whitlock Farm Booksellers – Bethany CT

- The Traveler Book Cellar – Union CT

- Vintage Books – Hopkinton MA

- Book Bear – West Brookfield MA

- Myopic Books (Paper Nautilus Books) – Providence RI

- The Book Shed – Benson VT

You can visit my website,, to read the remainder of my favorite used bookstores. You can also link to Amazon to buy my Guide.