Friday, September 30, 2016

Kappa Book & Author Evening: a benefit for the Craig Hospital Scholarship Fund and the Kappa Kappa Gamma Foundation Scholarships.

The Denver Kappa Friendship Fund, Inc. & The Denver Alumnae Association of Kappa Kappa Gamma are pleased to present the 27th Kappa Book & Author Evening: a benefit for the Craig Hospital Scholarship Fund and the Kappa Kappa Gamma Foundation Scholarships.



Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Palazzo Verdi: 6363 South Fiddlers Green Circle, Greenwood Village, CO 80111

5:30 p.m. Social/Dinner

Enjoy the MADDEN Museum of Art while socializing and enjoying small plates and drinks.

7 p.m. Program

Hear from the featured authors while having dessert and coffee.


Featured Authors

Michael McGarrity

John Fielder

Ausma Zehanat Khan



Buy tickets and leran more about The Denver Kappa Friendship Fund at www.dkff.weebly.com/upcoming-events

The Denver Kappa Friendship Fund, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization 46-0917517. If tickets are purchased as a part of this contribution, $64 per person for the event is considered the value of the goods and services received; the remainder is tax deductible.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

A NEW ERA AND WELCOME HOME!


In January after twenty years, I parted company with my old literary agent and found new representation with Marcy Posner at Folio Literary Management in New York City. Marcy is one of the most experienced, highly respected, and well-liked agents in the business. She has always been a fan of my work and I am delighted to have her in my corner.
It has been at her urging that over the last several months I've established a social media presence via Facebook, this Blog, and on the Goodreads and Amazon authors pages. Soon, I'll have an author page on LibraryThing as well. Who knows what's next?
For me it has truly become a new era in my career as a writer and it's not over yet. Just last week, W.W. Norton & Company, a major New York publishing firm, made an offer for my next Kevin Kerney novel, which we have verbally accepted. When I stopped in at the corporate offices to meet with my new editor, Amy Cherry, Vice President & Senior Editor, the first thing she said to me was "welcome home," for it was over twenty years ago in April 1996, that Norton released my debut novel, Tularosa, followed by Mexican Hat in 1997.
It was a happy homecoming for me and for my Kevin Kerney crime series, with Amy's warm 
welcome soon enthusiastically echoed by William Rusin, Vice President & Director of Sales and Marketing. I couldn't be more pleased. Sometimes you can go home again. Stay tuned.

Monday, September 19, 2016

The Best Little Library in New Mexico

On my way to speak at the Ruidoso Library on August 27, I stopped in at the Capitan Library to see my old friend Debbie Myers, Assistant Director. She's a volunteer at the library as is everyone else who works there. I also had the opportunity to meet the director, Pat Garrett, several other volunteers, and take a tour the facility.
Inside and out, the library shows the love and commitment of the dozens of citizens who give their time and talent to the small ranching village of some1,400 people located in a lovely valley between the Sacramento and Capitan Mountains in beautiful Lincoln County. The building sits within shouting distance of the town hall where, as the story goes, the trustees turned down the chance to acquire the library for one dollar from the non-profit organization that runs the outfit.
Nobody could tell me why those elected village leaders where unwilling to take stewardship of such a worthy and valuable resource to the community.The only thing I could come up with is that somebody slipped stupid pills into the water pitcher on the evening the trustees voted down the offer. 
Even a bunch of half-drunk yahoos could have surely seen the civic value as well as the personal bragging rights for claiming such a valuable prize.The Capitan Chamber of Commerce should have been outraged.
But never mind that--back to the library. It's a charming place with neatly organized stacks, a children's area, a bank of Internet-connected computers, a serene outdoor space suitable for quiet reading or contemplation, comfortable seating, a pleasant checkout and reference counter, an office for staff use, and an unique resale shop, "Not 2 Shabby," where donated items are sold to help fund the operation. Like most libraries, it also sells donated books to raise money, and on the first Saturday of every month you can buy a bag of books for five bucks. Its website puts the Capitan Village website to shame, and they even run a blog. It has a cheery, bright, welcoming feel to it, and operates under abbreviated hours five days a week, Tuesday through Saturday.  
The library offers workshops, special reading programs for children, an "Adult Reading Group," and is a community center for literary and cultural events. It is the only true public resource for books in an area that stretches along highway US380  from Carrizozo to Hondo, a distance of over forty miles.
I was so impressed, I sent them a box of books, including a hardback copy of "Death Song" the eleventh book in my Kevin Kerney series which opens in Lincoln County and Capitan.
Would you writers and book lovers out there like to join in? If so, your send books to my friend Debbie Myers, Assistant Director, Capitan Public Library, P.O. Box 1169, Capitan, NM 88316. She would most definitely love to get some more audio books for the collection. Help support the Best Little Library in New Mexico. Thanks.

Friday, September 9, 2016

WE ALL LOSE WHEN A BOOKSTORE CLOSES


Hastings Books & Music, a regional retail chain headquartered in Amarillo, Texas, is bankrupt and shutting down. Unlike the dissolution of Borders, a national bookstore chain, the news of the demise of Hastings has caused hardly a ripple of broadcast or print media attention, except in those small markets where it was the only bookstore in town.

Over twenty years ago, in April, 1996, when my publisher at the time, W.W. Norton, sent me on a book tour for my debut novel, Tularosa, one of my first signings was at the old Hastings store in a strip mall on 10th Street in Alamogordo, New Mexico. Because my novel was set mostly on the nearby White Sands Missile Range, my editor at the time, Hilary Hinzmann, figured it would be a sure-fire hit in that small city. Indeed he was right, and I've been back to Alamogordo to sign every one of my books since. 

The citizens of Alamogordo have embraced me over the years, turning out in droves for each new novel, to the point that I like to brag that I'm the best-selling writer in that city of some 30,000. The folks I personally know down there don't disagree, especially after the publication of my American West historical trilogy, set squarely on their turf, which had them singing my praises.

Several years ago, the company moved to a brand new store on the main drag through town, White Sands Boulevard, and it was by far one of the nicest, neatest, best organized Hastings Store I'd ever been in, unlike the dingy, messy Santa Fe store that I always left feeling an urgent need to wash my hands. (My guess is the Alamogordo store stood out because a number of the employees were military dependents from nearby Holloman Air Force Base, and nobody does "neat and tidy" better than the armed services.)

I was there this last May, for the release of the final book in my trilogy, The Last Ranch, and the line stretched almost out the door with over a hundred smiling, eager people wanting to say hello and have me sign their books. It's the kind of event every writer dreams about. 

Now, their only bookstore is about to close. So what's the big deal, you may ask. There's always the Internet. Or if they really need to go to an actual bookstore, they can travel up to Becky Ewings' Books Etcetera in Ruidoso, or Mike Beckett's COAS Bookstore in Las Cruces, or Ed Woten's Imaginary Books in Cloudcroft, all no more than an hour drive away.

Well, the big deal is that when a town loses its only bookstore, it also forfeits a significant amount of cultural enrichment. No longer will parents be able to take their young children to find the perfect, new bedtime story. No longer will students be able to browse for that special book they need to finish a term paper or school report. No longer will readers be able to dive into the mystery, romance, or science fiction section looking to discover a new author or to grab the latest release of a favorite writer.

Some modern classics that are unavailable at the public library won't be stacked on those empty shelves. The enjoyable pastime of randomly looking for an interesting title will have ended. That wonderful dialogue between book lovers and book sellers who love books, will have fallen silent. Finally, all the writers who appeared at the store to talk about and sign their latest book, will be there no more. The excitement in the community about books and reading, literacy and learning -- perceived or not --will have waned.

That is how we all lose. Every town that sees their last bookstore close, ripples like a wave that diminishes us all. For one, I am personally sad for Alamogordo, New Mexico.