Posted on Leave a comment

Recap of Second Chance Books Author Signing

Author Signing at Second Chance Books 2020

We had a successful day at Second Chance Books for the author signing. We sold eight books in all – three “There Are No Penguins in Alaska,” three “Polly Penguin Wants to Fly,” and two “Adventures on the Amur: The Treasure of Nikolai Nikolaevich.” Thanks to the team at Second Chance Books for offering us the venue.

Continue reading Recap of Second Chance Books Author Signing
Posted on Leave a comment

‘Escape from Magic Valley’ for a Glimpse at Migrant Worker Life

white flowers in tilt shift lens

Escape from Magic Valley” (affiliate link) by Ricardo S. Rivera is an autobiographical book about his childhood in the 1950s in a migrant worker family. Rivera says that he wrote this book for his family, so they could know his history and through it learn about their own. However, Rivera did much more than write for his family, he gifted that story to us.

Rivera’s book takes us from his early days in Texas through to the University of Oregon for the High School Equivalency Program. Rivera details the fun times of his childhood and the abuse and racism he experienced. As a child he was part of a collective that picked cotton, onions, cherries and other crops. They also fished. (The book has my name in it as they use “shad” for bait.)

Rivera’s take on the Texas school system is none too flattering as he is met with unreasonable demands, prejudiced principals, and teachers who belittled the Hispanic students. Corporal punishment was readily and, sometimes, eagerly distributed for the slightest of provocations, including misspelling words and speaking Spanish.

Not all the teachers were bad, but those that were made school hell for anyone with brown skin. “Escape from Magic Valley” provides a glimpse into a lifestyle that most of us will never know. Take a trip back in time and find out how migrant farmers made a life in spite of the hardships they faced, both in their own families and in the world at large.

I purchased this book at Second Chance Books in Independence, Oregon. If you’re in the area, stop by and grab a copy. It is also available at (The last is an affiliate link. If you purchase the book from Amazon using this link, it doesn’t cost you anything more, and it supports our website. Thank you.)

Posted on Leave a comment

Local Author to Sign Books at Second Chance Books in Independence

second chance book signing

On Saturday, Sep 12, 2020 from 10 am to 2 pm, Local Author Shad Engkilterra will be signing copies of his books in front of Second Chance Books on Main Street in Independence from 10 am to 2 pm. Shad has written 11 books for all ages; come by and get the books that are right for you.

Children of all ages will like “There Are No Penguins in Alaska.” Color the pages while learning about the animals that people find in Alaska. The humor at the end will keep you smiling. Shad has also written “Polly Penguin Wants to Fly,” the story of a young penguin taken with the idea of being able to fly. It’s meant for parents to read to their children.

For those from 8 to 11 and for fans of Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys, the Adventures on the Amur series is two great adventure stories that take place in Far East Russia. Explore a little history and enjoy Steve and Irina’s adventures as they search for “the Treasure of Nikolai Nikolaevich” or learn firsthand about “the Curse of the Golden Kopeck.”

Young adults, and people who dislike bureaucracy, will love “The Pirate Union,” which explores what would happen if bureaucracy regulated pirate activities. This comedy with a 1990’s sensibility promises magic, puns, and fun as the crew of the Jolly Rogue tries to find out what the nefarious P.U. is up to.

Want to know what it was like growing up poor in the 1980s? “My Life in the Projects” is the mostly true story of how I survived living in government housing as a child.

For nonfiction fans, “Disneyland Is Creativity” and “the Haunted Mansion Is Creativity” offer looks at Disneyland and the Haunted Mansion with an eye toward creativity principles. Take a tour of the Happiest place on Earth and let Walt’s dream bring you greater joy and inspiration through greater creativity, or go through the Haunted Mansion as your Ghost Host leads you on a tour of the beloved attraction while materializing habits to become more creative.

If you need a bathroom reader or are looking for activities to improve your creativity and life, “Tales at an Alaskan Cabin,” “Penguinate! Short Stories and Essays” and “Penguinate! The Disney Company” are the books for you. These collections of short stories and essays provide suggestions for activities to do after each section. Penguinating is the power of positive creativity.

People who join our Patreon will get $1 off for every $10 or more purchased. Join today and support a local author.

Posted on Leave a comment

‘Love Is Like This’ Grants New Perspectives on Love

Self-isolation spreads the love

Within the first three pages of “Love Is Like This” by Nathan Deeter, you know you’re holding a work of paramount importance in your hand. This will show you the ways of love in the past, future, and present. It contains the love of sons and fathers, family, husband and wife, and it does so in the way that those kinds of love present themselves. It isn’t the “happily ever after,” but it also isn’t the doom and gloom. It presents the light and the dark of love, and if you let it, it will speak to your soul.

Continue reading ‘Love Is Like This’ Grants New Perspectives on Love
Posted on Leave a comment

Free Book from Best Selling Author Russell Nohelty – Just Pay for Shipping

Normally, I would be publishing a #WednesdayWisdom about this time. I’m not sure what this week’s would be about because I haven’t found the right subject. However, what I did find (in my email) was an amazing offer from Russell Nohelty – a free, hardback book! You just need to pay for shipping! (Offer good through Saturday, August 15, 2020.)

Continue reading Free Book from Best Selling Author Russell Nohelty – Just Pay for Shipping
Posted on Leave a comment

Buy 5 Times the Number of Books You Plan to Read

Professor Penguin studies for greater knowledge.

In his book “Time Drive,” Gleb Arhangelsky recommends that you read at leas one serious book a week and that you buy five (5) times the number of books you plan to read. For those who plan to read a book a week and are buying for the month, that means buying 20 books. As an author, reader, and book hoard… er, collector, I am totally on board with this. However, beyond my monetary and intuitive biases, there are some good reasons to follow this tip from Arhangelsky.

Continue reading Buy 5 Times the Number of Books You Plan to Read
Posted on Leave a comment

The Wooden Pot Serves Goodness in Blackwood Forest, OR

Drue M Scott author of "The Monster in Blackwood Forest"

I got a sneak peek at the menu for the Wooden Pot café in Blackwood Forest, OR, and I gotta tell, you the menu offerings look fantastic. The café itself is focused on a few sandwiches and coffee drinks. This allows it to make sure that what it serves will be amazing.

The Lunch Menu

While I can’t give everything away, I think the first thing I would get is the PB&J Extreme open-faced sandwich. I also find the Full-Moon Soup appealing. I guess I could get them both. Maybe my wife and I could share. The Juniper Blueberry Latte sounds just exotic enough to make it the best choice though I’ve heard the coffee here is fantastic on its own. The Wooden Pot offers daily specials, so depending on what they’ve got going on for the day, I might opt for something else.

The Wooden Pot Opening

The Wooden Pot can only be found in Blackwood Forest, and its opening date has yet to be revealed. If you want to visit the town and the café, you need to make a reservation with the only tour operator who can take you there: Author Drue M. Scott. Beware, while the Wooden Pot looks inviting, Blackwood Forest is a different animal entirely.

During the day, you get a quaint, small town in the Oregon forest with all of its beauty and failings. At night, things become darker, even, or more correctly said, especially when the full moon shines down on the trees, sidewalks, and streets. A quick day trip may be your best bet. Otherwise, be sure to get a room at the seedy hotel and wait for sunrise before going outside again. Watch Drue’s blog for tour availability this coming September or October. It will be an adventure with characters that you’ll want visit again.

Posted on Leave a comment

‘The Monster in Blackwood Forest’: A Short Sneak Peek

Drue M Scott author of "The Monster in Blackwood Forest"

As an editor, I get to see some pretty amazing writing before it ever hits the shelves. A little while ago, I was able to edit “The Monster in Blackwood Forest” for Drue M. Scott, and I was struck by his ability to create a realistic world that generates excitement about where he’s going to go with the story. Now, that he’s in the process of getting the book ready to publish here is what I can tell you…

Continue reading ‘The Monster in Blackwood Forest’: A Short Sneak Peek
Posted on Leave a comment

Why I Wrote ‘There Are No Penguins in Alaska’

There are no penguins in Alaska

When I was living in Alaska, I saw a lot of wildlife in the wild. I saw brown bears, black bears, moose, foxes, beluga whales, and other animals while I was hiking – often they were not far from town. It’s an absolutely stunning state, especially in the summer. The one creature I never saw was a penguin because there are no penguins in Alaska. Still, tourists would continue to ask waitstaff, grocery store clerks, and random strangers: How can I see the penguins?

Continue reading Why I Wrote ‘There Are No Penguins in Alaska’
Posted on Leave a comment

Why I Wrote ‘Disneyland Is Creativity’: Creative Process

Disneyland Is Creativity cover

I wanted to capture the joy and use the examples of creativity in Disneyland to help people become more creative. Creativity is a core part of our humanity. People have been artists and storytellers since they came together in caves hundreds of thousands of years ago. Human beings survive as a species not by being the fastest or strongest but by being the most creative. Our creativity allows us to adapt as a species, and our personal creativity allows us to live better lives. I wrote “Disneyland Is Creativity” to help you find your creative process and empower you to become more creative.

Continue reading Why I Wrote ‘Disneyland Is Creativity’: Creative Process