The Joys of Being a B-Book Author

120px-Rippl_Young_Girl_Dressed_in_YellowWhat is a B-Book Author? If you write e-Books, you know. It one of the two million e-Book authors that are stuck in the bottom tier, with more arriving daily. Make no mistake, there are many e-Books  deserving of the bottom tier; faulty grammar and syntax, scammers, and  pamphlets that  claim to be books but are not, but what about e-Books that are well written but cannot move because they are being crushed into oblivion? It’s a real dilemma, but such is life.

Of course, I and many others  would love to be in the A-Class, but I am not and probably never will be. But here’s the thing. I am retired, have three sources of income, and I live on the prairie where there is nowhere to go and nothing to do. It’s not like I have anything more pressing to do than write B-Books, so in a sense, I guess it’s a hobby.  Here’s the other thing. In the course of creating B-Books, I learned to write, really write. I use punctuation correctly, write with clear concise wording, and keep my paragraphs tight.

I guess, it’s all about perspective, and I would rather be a B-Book Author than never have written anything in my life.  It’s sort of like leaving footprints behind, and that’s not such a bad thing.



What Does Detroit Have To Do With The Prairie?


This question was asked of me, and I actually was trying to think of an answer knowing one had nothing to do with the other, unless Detroit had been relocated to a cornfield which I figured was not the case. After some back and forth questions the person finally said, “Your blog name is prairie writer, but your books always have Detroit somewhere in them so are you a prairie writer or a Detroit writer?”

I had never thought of it in those terms, but I suppose that is how the two are related; a Detroit writer living on the prairie, although, I have been far removed from Detroit for several decades but it calls to me sometimes. They say the place where you are born does that, and I guess that must be true, more or less, because quite without knowing how Detroit always finds it way to my books.

This is one of those books. The title is misleading and sounds like anyone who ventures to Detroit ends up dead. Just not true, and it’s really about a man who travels to Detroit for nefarious reasons, a homeless man living behind a dumpster, and the woman who walks between the two. It’s also about a town rising up to take care of their own.

Maybe, I need to get myself back to Detroit for a visit so I can write about Boise, Sacramento, or Seattle.  Just saying.





Serenity At The Bird Feeder

woodpecker-1186209_960_720They numbered many, and came as pairs to the tree with the feeders; two Woodpeckers, four Blue Jays, and two Cardinals, as in they flew.

Sharing without a leader not knowing about the food, except that it was there, and seemed not to  worry soon it might be gone, but were content to sing and share.


Showing no indication of haste or fear one might get more. Watching it seemed somewhat sad that multi-colored birds, had learned to sing and share when many people had not.



Turkey Season Has Arrived; Yippee

wild-turkey-956713__180The hunters are in the woods shooting at anything that moves. I know they are there because mighty booms reverberate up the ravine, and the dogs are nervous wrecks. What can be the use of this exercise is more than I can figure because what would be left of a turkey killed by shotgun fire? It’s a strange sport, for sure, but the hunters seem to like it, although, I don’t believe the turkey share their enthusiasm; they are hiding in the back yard in a fence row behind the burner barrel. I am wondering if I am truly safer than I was in the city? In the city one had to worry about gun-toting thugs who ran through the night, but on the prairie one has to contend with men walking from the woods in full camouflage with shotguns slung over their shoulders and blood on  their boots. Go figure.

Spring Comes To The Prairie

The lawn has been mowed, twice, and the dandelions are springing up; and yet, the winds prevail and it’s still jacket weather. The heavy blankets have been taken from the bed, twice, and brought back to keep us warm. Yesterday it rained before the sun came out as it passed by, then sleet pelted the windows. We’re supposed to have a lightning and thunder event in the night, and I can hard wait. Summer, they tell me, is just around the corner, but I’m not sure what corner, but I think it’s hiding somewhere down around the Texas Panhandle. I had a prairie garden that’s gone dormant, and I’m not so sure it’s coming back this year. I don’t know for sure, but it seems we’re trapped in the house wishing to be outside but unwilling to brave the elements to do so. I can’t imagine how the wagon trains traversed this hostile environment, because I find a trip thought the yard a hair rising experience. I guess this is how spring comes to the prairie, but we’re in April now and we should be seeing flowers, but we’re not.

Dog Days on the Prairie

The ancient Romans described ‘Dog Days as: “A time when the seas boiled, wine turned sour, dogs grew mad and all creatures became languid, causing to man burning fevers, hysterics and frenzy. The evil time coincided with the appearance of the Dog Star, Sirius, when it rose just at dawn, and believing the Dog Star responsible for the madness, the Romans made sacrifices to Sirius thinking it would appease his displeasure.” (‘Clavis Calendarium’ by J. Brady, 1813)

In current times, ‘Dog Days’ is defined as a time or event that is very hot or stagnant, and marked by a dull lack of progress. The position of the stars has changed since the ancient Romans, so we cannot be sure when they experienced their period of lunacy, but on the prairie all days are dog days; hysterical and frenzied. It appears the only difference between the ancient Romans and the modern day prairie dweller is the prairie dwellers do not make sacrifices, human or otherwise.

What Happened Here??

bison-526805__180    Centuries ago, rolling plains covered in tall grass and wild flowers was christened ‘prairie’ by French explorers; a word meaning meadow grazed by cattle. The cattle were Bison or Buffalo; the gentle giants and lords of the prairie.

Thus was the Buffalo Nation, a land shared in equal parts by nomadic plains Indians, the restless wind, and buffalo. Existing in a time before white man ventured forth, the prairie held sway; a gentle whisper of wind echoing across a vast sea of grass disturbed only by the distant rumble of thunder as herds of large hulking buffalo shook the ground in their thunderous approach.

The triangular shaped patch of swaying grass covered what is now Wisconsin; North and South Dakota; Minnesota; Nebraska; Kansas; Iowa; Indiana; Illinois, Missouri; Oklahoma; Wyoming; Colorado; New Mexico; Texas; and sizeable parts of Montana. Collectively, this was ‘The Great Prairie’.

Eventually white man did come, the buffalo were systematically killed, the Indian tribes vanished from illnesses brought by the white man, starvation as the buffalo were was killed off, and the remainder was herded into reservations. Sadly, the Buffalo Nation died as it had been born; effortlessly and without fanfare.

As the prairie became devoid of buffalo and Indians, settlers moved in seeking land, a better way of life, a sense of adventure, or they came not quite sure why. Descending onto the prairie from every direction intent on being farmers, in short time found they could not. The tall grass and wild flowers had rendered the prairie soil dense and full of roots. The wooden plows could not cultivate the thick turf, and the settlers begin cutting out sections of the dense sod, and created little houses with it.

It would not be until 1837 that an Illinois blacksmith invented a steel plow that could cut through the prairie soil, and the age of John Deere was born. As the soil became tillable, the ‘Great Prairie’ shrank as homesteads emerged. The homesteads gave birth to little villages and towns on the vast horizon. The towns and villages grew into bigger cities and towns with homes of all type and size including the rise of the sky scrapper. The little homesteads turned into sprawling farmlands, factories emerged, and without anyone barely giving notice, ‘The Great Prairie’ had been tamed, and ceased to be.

With the death of  ‘The Great Prairie’, a greater entity was born; the Midwest; a huge chunk of land comprised of twelve states; Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Iowa, Indiana, Ohio, Illinois, and Missouri.