2018 SoCo Writers in Print

Sonoma County Writers Published in 2018

Linda C. McCabe—Fate of the Saracen Knight

Linda McCabe: Fate of the Saracen KnightFrankish Empire, 802. Saracen knight Ruggiero is torn between love and honor. Though he vowed to convert and marry the Christian warrior Bradamante, he refuses to back out of his pledged service. Even if that means returning to war against the woman he loves. But if he’s not able to secure release from his oaths, he knows he’ll lose her forever….

In deep despair over her lover’s choice, Bradamante fears a prophecy that could doom her family. But when she suspects Ruggiero may love another, the formidable fighter puts aside her dread and sets out on a quest for vengeance. With the lovers on opposite sides of the battle, will Ruggiero gain leave from his duty in time, or will his quest for both his heart and his people cost him his life?

Fate of the Saracen Knight is the thrilling second volume in the Bradamante & Ruggiero historical fantasy series. If you enjoy epic journeys, rich descriptive detail, and forbidden passion, then you’ll love this enthralling tale. Available on Amazon.

Marie Judson—Braided Dimensions, Book 1

Braided DimensionsAdult fantasy, 394 pages

The next slip into medieval time might be Kay’s last. Professor Kaye Halfin is on her way home from a Halloween party when a bard of medieval time steps from an oak and leads her to the past. After dancing a magical night away, she wakes in her own bed, determined to find her way back to that world. But returning to the past may not be such a great idea. Pulled back and forth between the past and her 21st century, Kay becomes embroiled with the troubles of the bard and a healer of the 10th century, who are tormented by a powerful mage. Things soon take a turn for the worse when the same forces begin to draw in her children.

Her addiction to the bard keeps drawing her back. Each time Kay slips into the past, the return threatens to obliterate her … if the memory-stealing mage doesn’t destroy her first.

If you liked Mercedes Lackey’s Bardic Voices, Charles de Lint’s Newford Stories, and the Outlander Series, you’ll love Braided Dimensions.
Order today to start the hauntingly magical adventure! On Amazon.

Beverly Lanzetta—The Monk Within

The Monk Within by Beverly LanzettaThe Monk Within is written for the person seeking a deeper, contemplative orientation to daily life. Affirming the call of solitude and silence present within the self, the author explores the emergence of the “new monk,” the person who lives in the world and yet yearns for inner realization of divine wisdom.

“Words fail to describe the profound impact of this beautiful book. Beverly Lanzetta’s The Monk Within addresses the original essence of monkhood within each person that is longing for inner confirmation of transcendent wisdom. It offers wise guidance to all those who seek to retain the core of silence and solitude that rightly belongs to Mystery alone. Her encyclopedic knowledge of the monastic instinct, as it has been expressed across time and cultures, will encourage, challenge and educate all of today’s new monks. There is nothing like it available today.”
—Bernadette Flanagan, author of Embracing Solitude: Women and New Monasticism

Available now in bookstores, Amazon, and other online outlets.

Pat Nolan—the thousand marvels of every moment, a tanka collection

the thousand marvels of every moment, a tanka collection by pat nolanPat Nolan has long been an avid student of Asian culture, particularly Japanese and Chinese poetry. In 2015 he published a selection of haikai no renga (Japanese linked verse) as Poetry For Sale. His Chinese themed poems, Exile In Paradise, were published in 2017. Presented as a gift edition, the thousand marvels of every moment, a tanka collection, is ephemeral and accessible, as undemanding as a tweet yet profound and universal as a meme. Not only clever and entertaining but thought-provoking as well, its resonant design with trompe l’oeil stitching and decorative endpapers bestow on the book-as-gift a complimentary aesthetic that is painless, instant, and memorable—as gifts should be. Available exclusively from the publisher. Go to Nualláin House, Publishers for more information.

Fall 2018, ISBN 9780984031078, 7×5 inches, 124 pages, $16
The Gift Edition—Order Now * Get Free Shipping* (offer good through December 31, 2018)

Barbara L. Baer—The Last Devadasi: A Novel

The Last Devadasi by Barbara BaerPassionate and forbidden love clashes with tradition and caste in a changing India.

Kamala Kumari is more than a Gemini Studio starlet: she’s a classical dancer trained in the age-old line of Devadasis, a caste set in place a thousand years ago when girls were first dedicated in south Indian temples to serve the gods and men. From the promise of art and devotion, the sacred dancers fell into the hands of priests who both exalted and betrayed them. Beautiful, brilliant and proud, Kamala struggles to escape the old ways, entangling her Indian assistant, Dutch lover, and his young American wife. With its turbulent passions amid social upheavals, The Last Devadasi takes readers on a sensual feast in the 1970’s palm-shaded trading city of Madras.

“Readers seeking a story based in India but filled with flavors of past and present will find The Last Devadasi a powerful read that draws important, thought-provoking connections between spirituality, relationships between men and women, and the kinds of institutions that keep old beliefs alive; sometimes beyond their relevance to contemporary experience.”
— Diane Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review

Available from Open Books: www.open-bks.com.

Guy Biderman—Soundings and Fathoms

Soundings and Fathoms: Stories by Guy BiedermanSoundings and Fathoms is a collection of flash that floats between the surface of prose and poetry, exploring mysterious depths with humor, poignancy, and illumination.

“Guy Biederman is a writer of perfect voice and mischievous brilliance; a true mechanic of the senses. He pushes his art so seamlessly to the limits of craft, it’s as if his stories are the errands of new physics. With modal fiction, like waking up in America with no bloodline but having finally made a friend, Biederman is the jazzman who walks you home.”
–Tongo Eisen-Martin, Someone’s Dead Already, Heaven Is All Goodbyes, winner California Book Award

“Sunspot stories: fleet, brief, and radiant.”
–Molly Giles, Rough Translations, All The Wrong Places

Available from Finishing Line Press, $14.99:

Ron Thomas—I Want to Walk You Home

51wdbtzsjclIt’s the age of Fats Domino in San Francisco. After three years in a Catholic seminary, seventeen-year-old Raymond Sheets meets a girl his age who lives near the campus. Alice Derry is liberated and uninhibited; she challenges Raymond over his choice to live in the strict confines of St. Jerome’s.

What follows is a roller coaster of emotion and adventure as Raymond navigates his way through the seminary, with Alice as a constant in the background.

An intoxicating story full of dysfunction, chaos, and lots of rock and roll, I Want To Walk You Home will remind readers of what it’s like to meet love head-on for the first time and how it feels to question your life’s direction.

270 pages, $12.99 paperback, $4.99 eBook, available on Amazon
ISBN-13: 978-1-64111-198-0
ISBN-10: 1-64111-198-4
Website: ronthomaswriter.com

Tom Walsh—Novus Diem

novusdiem.jpgNovus Diem breaks the time barrier and clashes hi-tech with Native American beliefs. It pits the strength of a military super power against a people at peace with the world despite a history of injustice. It is a story of a woman empowered by a compulsion to do the right thing and a man that came to believe in her. They risk everything to set the world straight in the face of formidable odds.

Available in print or ebook.

Melange Books
October 9, 2018

Marlene Cullen, editor—The Write Spot: Reflections

The third book in The Write Spot series, The Write Spot: Reflections is an entertaining group of short stories, vignettes, and poems that inspire readers to become writers.

  • If you want to write and don’t know how to get started, this book is for you.
  • If you are a writer and feeling stuck, this book is for you.
  • If you read for enjoyment, this book is for you.

Every story in Reflections includes a prompt that can be used as a spark to encourage a free flowing type of writing. The Resources section features information about how to write using prompts, as well as blogs and magazines for writers.

Authors in Reflections: Brenda Bellinger, Gu

Lum Franco—Backward Glance

Backward Glance by Lum FrancoA storyteller’s compendium, tales of faraway and everyday, love and war, chance and destiny. What we call life.

“Backward Glance, a storyteller’s compendium is an artful collection of beautifully crafted stories by Lum Franco. Told with grace, skill, and understanding, Lum’s  amazing range takes us places, from Chicago’s Chinatown, to Friuli, Italy, to road trips and mishaps shared by friends.  With a sharp eye for detail, lyrical prose and piercing insight into life well lived, Lum Franco’s  stories come alive in a voice all her own— unique, earned, and unforgettable.”
— Guy Biederman, Soundings and Fathoms: Stories

Wordrunner Press, 2018
ISBN: 978-1941066-28-7
222 pages, perfect bound on cream paper, 5.5 x 8.5 inches
$14.00, paperback; $2.99, Kindle
To purchase this book: amazon.com

Ransom Stephens—The 99% Solution

The 99% Solution. Ransom StephensThe 99% Solution is a hilarious, swashbuckling, intercontinental, inter-dimensional thrill ride that will leave you questioning centuries of world politics. Three keyboard-wielding musketeers—a schizophrenic scientist, a Cold War-era hacker, a San Francisco hipster bookseller, and a beagle—predict a 100 year dark age unless brilliant, innocent, kind-hearted Lucy Montgomery is sacrificed in a battle between anarchists and plutocrats. A political-science-fiction-comedy-techno thriller espousing the benefits, pitfalls, and humor intrinsic to pluralism and tolerance in politics.

Now available in print for $15.99 (usual places) and ebook for $3.99. In the spirit of “the 99%” if you’re short on cash, contact the author, ransom at ransomstephens.com, and he’ll try to finagle a free copy for you.

Jo Lauer—It’s In The Ink

It's in the Ink by Jo LauerLocal author, Jo Lauer, member of Redwood Writers, is pleased to announce her latest book, It’s In The Ink (second in the series of A Little Old Ladies Mystery) is now available in paperback (or Kindle) through Amazon.

Oh, what ARE these two gals up to now? Marion and Amanda, exhausted from their last psychic-sleuthing case, go (back) into retirement and take an art class to “get away from it all.” A face appears in Marion’s first painting, the face of an elderly woman who just went missing from a rest home. What they hadn’t counted on was running into a serial killer. So much for retirement.

Susanna Janssen—Wordstruck

Wordstruck! The Fun and Fascination of Language. Susanna JanssenDo languages and cultures fascinate you? Do you love words? Welcome to Susanna Janssen’s wondrous world of words.

Wordstruck! will entertain you with a wealth of humorous and insightful reflections on language and cultures. Dive in anywhere and delve into everything from cockney slang to terms of  endearment around the world; from the genius of Shakespeare to foreign translations gone riotously bad; from why we say “hello” when answering the phone to why there are several hundred Arabic words in our language. Discover fascinating word origins, fall in love with metaphor and malapropisms, learn how to spot liars through their words, uncover the secrets to building the brain like a muscle, and find out what really goes on behind foreign language classroom doors. Have a love affair with the lexicon—Let Wordstruck! feed your brain, warm your heart, and tickle your funny bone.

Winner of three national awards including First place in Humor from the Next Generation Indie Awards. Wordstruck! can be purchased in Sonoma County at Copperfield’s, through Amazon, from Ingram Wholesalers, and at  www.susannjanssen.com.

Jeane Slone—She Was A WW II Photographer Behind Enemy Lines

She was a WW II Photographer by Jeane SloneJeane Slone’s fourth historical novel just released. Meet Lieutenant Adeline Peterson, war correspondent in eleven theaters of war — a brave, determined, and resilient woman who broke gender biases to photograph the world and document the atrocities of war. Caught in a Black Blizzard in Oklahoma and endured swarms of locusts Photographed Depression-era dance marathons and visited illegal speakeasies Detained by a Nazi officer under gunpoint in Czechoslovakia Fled Paris on foot and got caught in the Blitz in London Photographed the Nazi takeover of Greece Jailed in Belgrade by the Nazis Photographed the first bomb to fall on Moscow Torpedoed at sea in North Africa while in a convoy headed to war Hit by Junker planes while in a B-17 Flying Fortress. Autographed copy available on web site: www.jeaneslone.com or Copperfield’s Books or Amazon.

Redwood Writers 2018 Poetry Anthology—Phoenix: Out of Silence … and then

Phoenix: Out of Silence...And Then,Poems by a broad range of Sonoma writers: in addition to about a hundred poems depicting the many aspects of life in Sonoma county, it has a special section devoted to poems rising out of the ashes of the devastating wildfires of October, 2017. The wildfire poems depict what it was like before, during, and after the fires. There are poems written by a number of people who lost their entire homes and all their belongings. The anthology includes poems written by all of the Sonoma County poet laureates, many of whom were directly affected by the fires. Three poets received the Sonoma County Award of Merit distinction, and their poems open this special volume.  Les Bernstein and Fran Claggett-Holland, editors; Warren Bellows: cover artist.

Redwood Writers Press, 2018
ISBN: 978-0997754445
298 pages, perfect bound, 6 x 9 inches, $15.00

This book may be purchased at: amazon.com and other book sellers

Marlene Cullen, editor—The Write Spot to Jumpstart Your Writing: Connections

The Write Spot to Jumpstart Your Writing: ConnectionsThe Write Spot to Jumpstart Your Writing: Connections is a collection of writing from mothers and their adult children, using story-telling as a technique to ignite imagination and to inspire writing. The fiction, poetry, and personal stories in Connections illustrate how we relate through stories. It’s unique for being both entertaining and featuring techniques to jumpstart creativity and ignite the imagination for inspirational writing. Connections includes an extensive resources section for writers.

ISBN-13: 978-1941066263
Available at Copperfield’s Books in Petaluma, and on Amazon for $12.

Sandra Anfang—Road Worrier: Poems of the Inner and Outer Landscape 

Road WorriersSandra Anfang’s new collection, Road Worrier, carries the reader across an atlas of lyric  landscapes—a series of explorations, both literal and mind-shattering. From a Bedouin wedding in Tunis to the Arizona deserts, from an ancient Hopewell site in mid-America to adventures in Costa Rica to nighttime kayaking on the Pacific coast, her poems marry risk and thrill, true terror, sheer pleasure. She, too, grows into her landscapes. As a young visitor to the Ozarks, she writes, “the world/inside my head/was about to open/like the Red Sea.” By the end of this splendid volume, she’s found her compass and the comforts of her Promised Land” “Our eyes ignite and hold; a light both momentary and eternal.” Available from Finishing Line Press.

Peter Neil Carroll, Author of The Truth Lies on Earth: A Year by Dark, by Bright

Joanell Serra—The Vines We Planted

The Vines We PlantedIn the heart of the California wine country, secrets seem to grow on the vines that Uriel Macon’s family have tended for generations. Uriel, the winery’s young widower, prefers the lonely comfort of his vineyard and his horses, until he is reminded of his love affair with Amanda Scanlon; a relationship that ended when she abruptly left the country years ago under a cloud of mystery. When Amanda returns to Sonoma because of a family crisis, she tries to mend the broken relationships she left behind. In addition, she seeks the truth about her parents’ complicated history and her own parentage. But Amanda’s unveiling of the past has devastating consequences. In the midst of California’s beautiful Sonoma Valley, the Scanlon family struggles to overcome harsh realities with dignity and grace. Both Amanda and Uriel stretch to take care of their families, which are facing immigration issues, marital crises, and loss. While navigating these challenges, the couple must decide if they trust themselves to love again, or to finally let each other go.

A Sonoma local, author Joanell Serra’s debut novel demonstrates how seeds planted long ago continue to grow. More about Joanell’s writing at:  http://joanellserraauthor.com/

The Vines We Planted is available for pre-order at: http://widopublishing.com/the-vines-we-planted-by-joanell-serra/

Pat Nolan—SO MUCH: Handwritten Typewriter 1969-1989, Selected Poems Volume I

So Much: Pat NolanThe title of this volume of Pat Nolan’s selected poems, So Much, references the seminal (and most divisive) poem of modern American poetry by William Carlos Williams about a red wheelbarrow, chickens, and rain. The poems in this selection were actualized and finalized beyond their handwritten originals on a typewriter hence the designation of this twenty year span as Handwritten Typewriter. Available exclusively through Nualláin House, Publishers. Go to nuallainhousepublishers.com and click on the How To Order for more info. Free shipping for readers of the Sonoma County Literary Update through April 30th, 2018.

April, 2018~178 pages~$16~paper~ISBN 9780984031061

Patty Somlo—Hairway to Heaven Stories

Hairway to Heaven Stories by Patty SomloWeaving together the real and the fantastic, the 15 linked stories in Hairway to Heaven Stories introduce diverse characters, from street musicians to artists, who celebrate “every bit of brightness,” in a formerly African American neighborhood, now in the midst of gentrification. In all 15 stories, faith plays a key role, either through traditional religion, spirituality linked to nature or belief in the promise of a better life. The stories present a microcosm of neighborhoods throughout the country, in which people of different races, ethnicities, class and sexual orientation are living in close proximity to one another, with neighbors being both strangers and friends.

Available from Cherry Castle Publishing at www.cherrycastlepublishing.com. Learn more about the author at www.pattysomlo.com.

Tim Jollymore—Lake Stories and Other Tales

Lake Stories by Tim JollymoreOakland, California publisher, Finns Way Books, has launched long-time California resident and writer, Tim Jollymore’s short story and essay collection, Lake Stories and Other Tales. Like Jollymore’s travels, Lake Stories spans lake waters from California to Minnesota and places in between. He seeks out quiet adventures among lake people, who although common folk, live fully and poignantly in any state on that great universal lake. This is Jollymore’s 4th book and first story collection.

Lake Stories is available through Copperfield’s Books in all locations and the Ingram distribution system of independent book stores and on-line sources in ebook and paperback editions.

Jollymore, a writing teacher for 17 years, is a masters graduate in literature of the University of Minnesota. www.tim.jollymore.net

Patricia V. Davis—Spells & Oregano: Book II in The Secret Spice Cafe Trilogy

Spells & OreganoA magical realism trilogy in which four diverse women, each harboring a tragic secret, meet on a food blogging site, bond over recipes, and decide on impulse to open a restaurant together aboard the historic, modern-day RMS Queen Mary. A ship that once a luxurious ocean liner, later used as a troop ship that outran Hitler’s U-boats, it is now permanently docked in Long Beach, California as a floating hotel and museum which Time magazine calls “one of the top ten most haunted places in the USA.”

Available in all fine bookshops, public libraries, and online at Amazon.com. Editions available: paperback, library hardback, ebook (Kindle only)

Book I in the trilogy, Cooking for Ghosts, was nominated for a Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction.

Jolynn J. Lauer—Second Floor, Front

Second Floor, FrontSecond Floor, Front is a cross-over paranormal, psychic sleuth/cozy mystery. Think Long Island Medium meets Long Lost Family meets Miss Marple. Or perhaps a lesbian version of rear Window.

In her efforts to make sense of what she has witnessed in the crosswalk below her second-floor window, Marion, recently retired with too much time on her hands, hooks up with Amanda, also retired and known for closing cold cases for the local police using her psychic “gifts” along with her chutzpah.

Humor and tragedy vie for attention as they blend their oil-and-water styles.

Published by Solstice Publishing. The book is available through Amazon.

Gini Grossenbacher—Madam of My Heart

Madame of My HeartMadam of My Heart, new colorful historical fiction from former English teacher Gini Grossenbacher, illuminates the life of Brianna Baird, a madam in Gold Rush-era San Francisco based loosely on real madam Arabella “Belle” Cora. Once a nice Irish girl expecting a normal family life, Brianna gets seduced as a teenager and abandoned while pregnant. Brianna flees to New Orleans, where she lands work in a bordello as a seamstress and courtesan to a businessman and gambler. She and her lover negotiate for the freedom of the enslaved husband and son of her free African-American maid and they accompany her as she follows him to California, where she becomes a successful, well-known madam, first in Sonora and then in San Francisco. But a murder accusation against her companion drives them from their new home as he faces the noose.

[Gini Grossenbacher] absorbingly limns the various cities Brianna inhabits, from New Orleans and its “web of Creole cottages, chaotic marketplaces, and secretive balconies, simmering outside her window,” to the rowdy atmosphere of frontier-era San Francisco. The occasional marvelous metaphor will surprise readers, as when “the truth hit Brianna like a badly aimed bowling pin.” —Kirkus Reviews

A graduate of Lewis and Clark College, Gini Grossenbacher is a respected creative writing coach and activist for literacy and has developed an award-winning curriculum to teach literature and language arts in public and private schools throughout northern California. She has also done post graduate work in European history and Italian literature in ancient Perugia. A forensic historian, she seeks to uncover the lives of women whose stories have gone untold amidst the narratives great cities tell about their founding.

Book can be purchased at ginigrossenbacher.com.

Roger G.—The Warriors of Harvey House: An Experiment in Recovery

The Warriors of Harvey HouseThe Warriors of Harvey House is a true story that took place over forty years ago. Treatment programs, like the 28-day programs hadn’t been invented yet. Harvey House was an idea brought to fruition by a guy named Eddy. Roger G. was its co-founder. It was a crazy idea, but very effective. The book is about a very important time in the author’s life and the lives of many others. Though a quick and easy read, Warriors evokes strong feelings. Readers learn something about a world that only a few of us live in. Yet, it’s all around us. It’s called the world of recovery. If you are a veteran, you will especially enjoy reading Warriors, as the story is all about veterans.

The very prolific author of 14 books on recovery subjects that have sold several million copies, Dr. Claudia Black, called this book, “captivating and powerful.”

Available on Amazon, Copperfield’s Books at Santa Rosa, and by order from Barnes and Noble.

Donna Emerson—The Place of Our Meeting

The Place of Our Meeting. Donna EmersonIn a heart-stopping poem in Donna L. Emerson’s richly varied debut volume The Place of Our Meeting, a woman and her daughter find a fawn whose leg is caught in a fence. Will the poet be able to lift the barbed wire without cutting and killing the young animal that struggles against it—and assuage the terrified child? Read the tensely significant “For No Reason” to find out, then read on to discover a panoply of places where human beings meet nature, where generations (especially mothers and daughters) meet one another, where frenzy meets solitude, health meets illness, the rural life of the past meets the California of the present, and where modern love meets modern death. A new American pastoralist, Donna L. Emerson uses poetry’s own set of special lyric keys—observation and metaphor—to bring a vivid specificity and profound importance to all the startling meetings and transitions of our lives.
–Molly Peacock, Author of The Analyst, poems

$19.99, Finishing Line Press
Pre-sales run from September 11-November 10. Published January 2018

More reviews and purchase info: www.finishinglinepress.com/product/the-place-of-our-meeting-by-donna-emersony Biederman, Jeff Cullen, Marlene Cullen, Muriel Ellis, Karen Ely, Carol Hoorn, Dave Mechling, Mona Mechling, James Seamarsh, Kelly Shaw, Janet Snyder, Michelle Wing.

166 pages, perfect bound, 6.0 x 9.0 inches, $12.00, paperback
Available at Copperfield’s Books in Petaluma, and on Amazon.

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