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“Let me say it again: you must not come lightly to the blank page.”
“Reading is the creative center of a writer’s life.”
“The story always comes first.”
All quotations from:
King, Stephen. On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft. New York: Scribner, 2000.
Reading is both of one the greatest pleasures of life and one of the necessities for writers. It gives readers the chance to escape from the outside world and immerse themselves to a completely fictional place for a while, and it serves as a foundation upon which to learn and draw for writers. To me, reading is one of the essential components of life. It is more than mere recreation; it is a central part of my being.
I do, however, read for pleasure as well as learning. I count reading as one of the essential joys of life.
I am currently reading several books, but one that is probably the most well known is Stephen King’s End Of Watch, the completion of his detective/thriller trilogy that began with Mr. Mercedes and then Finders Keepers. It is a brilliant piece of writing, and Mr. King delivers an extraordinary combination of the thriller and supernatural. I will not reveal any spoilers, but I do give it a top of the line recommendation.
My question to those who are reading this post: What book are you reading now or have recently read for pleasure?
Sarah Franklin, Roosevelt’s deceased and beloved wife, in my horror novel Maledicus: Investigative Paranormal Society Book I was an excellent and accomplished cook. In some ways, besides being a horror novel, this is also a love story about a man who so loved his wife that even years after her death, he has not stopped grieving for her or loving her. He still wears their wedding band, and he still misses her every day when he wakes up in an empty bed.
Sarah enjoyed cooking for him and making dishes that he would never have attempted himself. One of his favorites was her Quiche Lorraine. This is Sarah’s version of a traditional dish. Her recipe follows:
*Use either a premade 9 inch pastry dough, or make it from scratch.
Ingredients for crust:
– 1 cup all-purpose flour
– 1/3 cup shortening
– pinch of salt
– 3 tablespoons cold water
Directions for crust:
Mix salt and flour in a bowl. Add the shortening, using a pastry blender, until the pieces are the size of small peas. Sprinkle with cold water, 1 tablespoon at a time, and toss with a fork until all flour is moistened
Shape the flour into a single ball. Then, form it into a flattened round on lightly floured surface. Wrap in plastic wrap; refrigerate about 45 minutes or until the dough is firm and cold but still malleable.
Preheat oven to 425° F. With floured rolling pin, roll the pastry into a round form 2 inches larger than upside-down 9-inch quiche dish or glass pie plate. Fold the pastry into fourths; place into dish. Press against bottom and side.
Line the pastry with a double thickness of foil. Press the foil gently onto the side and bottom of the pastry. Let the foil extend over edge of pie dish. Bake for 10 minutes. Carefully remove foil, and bake 2 to 4 minutes longer or until pastry just begins to brown and has become set. If the crust bubbles, gently push bubbles down with back of spoon.
After the piecrust has been made,
Ingredients for the Quiche:
– 12 slices of bacon, fried crispy and crumbled
– 1 cup shredded Swiss cheese
– 1/3 cup chopped scallions
– 1 and 3/4 cups light cream
– ¼ teaspoon cayenne or crushed red pepper
– ½ teaspoon salt
– ½ teaspoon sugar
– 4 eggs
– Preheat oven to 425°
– Whisk eggs slightly, then add remaining ingredients, and whisk a bit more.
– pour mixture into pie pan
– bake for 15 minutes at 425°
– reduce oven heat to 300°
– bake additional 30 minutes
– the Quiche is ready when a butter knife is inserted into the center and comes out clean
– let the Quiche stand for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.
(photos courtesy of Liz French)
Please follow the following links to find my novel:
The book trailer:
My radio interview:
JFisher posted a deeply interesting and engaging piece on his site. He created a Socrates Cafe, a place of inquiry and discussion on his post. Please check it out, and participate.
It has been awhile since I posted to my blog but life comes at you fast sometimes. I thought I would do something a little more interactive with my followers and start a Socrates Cafe discussion. If you do not know what a Socrates Cafe is I will explain. This supposed to be an exchange of opinions and questions to pursue wisdom and knowledge from people of other backgrounds. They way it works is I will ask a question and then someone will answer it. The person that answered my question then must come up with follow-up question. The question should relate to the original in some way but if it does not no big deal. This is not intended to be an argument and politics will not be allowed on my posts or anywhere on this blog. I am not trying to start a debate, but I…
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“One child, one teacher, one book, one pen can change the world.”
“There is an old saying that the course of civilization is a race between catastrophe and education. In a democracy such as ours, we must make sure that education wins the race.”
John F. Kennedy
“Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself.”
This post commemorates a crucially important part of our history.
July 1969. It’s a little over eight years since the flights of Gagarin and Shepard, followed quickly by President Kennedy’s challenge to put a man on the moon before the decade is out.
It’s 47 years ago since man landed on the moon. It was a dream that became reality. It took smart, dedicated, courageous people to make this happen. These brave souls are heroes in my mind. I am glad they did this so our future in space would be realized for generations.
“If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.”
“If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.”
“That’s what fiction is for. It’s for getting at the truth when the truth isn’t sufficient for the truth.”
How often do people hide the truest parts of themselves from the world?
Samuel Sadlowski, a retired homicide detective of the Bethberg, PA Police Force, is one of the three central characters in my horror novel Maledicus: Investigative Paranormal Society Book I. In many ways he projects a carefully cultivated image of a guy who doesn’t care about his appearance or what others think of him. He dresses in beat up old clothes, eats very fatty foods, and is overweight. He also has a reputation, also carefully developed, as being a tough guy—after having served in active combat as a Marine in the Vietnam War and a police officer, the people in the area know that he is able to handle himself in physical confrontations.
This self-created image is what he uses to hide his deep sorrow about his son’s suicide, and it serves to keep others at a very long distance, except for a very few people. Included among those to whom he shows his true feelings and identity are the other two men of the Investigative Paranormal Society.
While he shows one image to the outside world, one part of himself that few know of in his little city is that he is a lover of art. He has no desire to share his appreciation of art with anyone other than his friends. He loves to travel to the museums in New York City and Philadelphia. He has a small collection of original paintings of mainly little known artists from the area and an array of prints of famous artists.
He once confided to Roosevelt and Jeremy, the other two members of the IPS, that he almost decided to be an Art History major and go to college instead of enlisting in the Marines, but he was too afraid of what his father would have said. He told them that he was more afraid of his father’s disapproval than of the war. But now, he spends much of his free time reading and looking at paintings and sculptures.
Sam’s favorite art, like Roosevelt is the Impressionist and Post-Impressionist movement. But very few people in Bethberg know this side of Sam. And his favorite museum is the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, a short two hour drive from Bethberg, PA.