Monday, August 8, 2022

Reviews Are So Very Important to Writers, and So Hard to Get

      When my first poetry book was published seven years ago, I dutifully asked readers/friends to review it. That book, Places and Times, eLectio Publishing, has the most Amazon reviews of any that I have written: 30. 

      A few friends highlighted it on their social media, which was wonderful. When I asked some others, here are some of the responses, and in parentheses my comments:

     - I will get around to it. I have a note on my computer screen.  (never happened)

     - Oh, I am not qualified! (All you have to do is to say you like it.)

     -I only read a few poems at a time.  (So, write when you are done).

     - I'm too busy. (So was I when I did something like this for you. But I did it.)

      Recently Amazon said I review I had written went against their community standards. That confused me since I could not figure out what they meant after I read their Guidelines. I submitted a short and in my opinion less-insightful review which hopefully will be acceptable.

      Some of these people remain good friends. I have gotten over being miffed because life is too short. My point here is that if you read something that you like, leave a review. And be honest! If you did not like it, say so. If you have any connection to the author, it is even more important for you to leave a review. 

       Not all authors are supportive, even if they appear to be. Sad, but that is true. That is why it is all the more important for you to step up and review. And once you do, post on social media that you have reviewed. Leave a link or simply say that you liked the book. 

      Thanks for reading this blog! Here are links to my books.


Friday, August 5, 2022

Interesting Article about Mary Magdalene 

    Mary Magdalene is my wife's favorite saint, and the namesake for our Chocolate Lab, Magda. This article is extremely interesting and makes some very good points. It is not incompatible with traditional Christianity.

Saturday, July 30, 2022

UC-Irvine Profiled Me in the Alumni Magazine 

     This is quite the honor, and I am appreciative and touched. UC-Irvine is where I had my first teaching experience, earned an MA in German, and felt the call to seminary. Actually, that was off-campus at the former St. Matthew's Lutheran Church (LCMS). However, that is another story.

     At Irvine one of my professors was Dr. Ruth Kl├╝ger, who at the time used Angress as a surname. I took a Kleist seminar from her and enjoyed the experience. Originally I was to write a dissertation associated with Thomas Mann or Expressionism. When that hit a snag for reasons I will not mention here, she offered me a fantastic topic, knowing I was an active Lutheran: the Pflugschriften (pamphlets) of the 1520s. It was a hot topic, funding was virtually assured to research in Germany, and her name carried weight.

     But she supported my decision to enter seminary. We communicated 30 years later when I saw a documentary on her in Germany.

    She died in October 2020. As a Holocaust survivor, writer, professor, and activist, she had a worldwide reputation. I posted her obituary, which was seen on Twitter by TimesRadio UK. They kindly had me on a broadcast as a former student. I was paired with a scholar. I sent a link to the UCI Magazine, and someone there must have wondered about this alumnus who had done some interesting things. 

     Although I spent only two years in Irvine, and almost a year at UC-Berkeley, that was a transformative time for me in many ways. I tried to return to California, but could not. Later my wife even turned down a job offer, but that turned out well also.

California appears in my poems, and I am glad to have lived there.

Monday, July 11, 2022

Wonderful Day at Bondock Farms!

     I almost sold out of the novel! Other titles (poetry) moved as well. Trying to get back next month, and made some other contacts.

     Yesterday I ordered some more of the novel. You can also:

And for those poetry books... 


Tuesday, July 5, 2022

At Boondock Farms, Jackson SC Saturday July 9, 10a-2p

     I am honored to be with some of my Aiken Writers Block friends this coming Saturday at Boondock Farms. Jackson, SC is near Beech Island. That is not far from Augusta, GA, and near James Brown's birthplace.

     I am looking forward to this. If you cannot come, I will put links to my books below. Feel free to use them or your usual vendors ( where it applies) or contact me directly!

     Take care and be safe!


Tuesday, June 28, 2022

A Very Literary Week This Is

    On Saturday I was at a writer's event of the SCWA (South Carolina Writers Association) in Columbia, SC. Sold two copies of my novel!

     In a moment leaving for my first meeting with the Lexington Chapter of the SCWA. 

     POETRY magazine's new issue arrived today. A book by a friend came on Saturday. And yesterday Thomas Mann's Doktor Faustus in a German paperback.

     Wow! It's only Tuesday!



Reviews Are So Very Important to Writers, and So Hard to Get

      When my first poetry book was published seven years ago, I dutifully asked readers/friends to review it. That book, Places and Times, ...