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’
If you missed seeing me at any of the events and author signings during the last three weeks, don’t fret. You can still get my books from Amazon, from my website and from the Candy Cane Inn in Anaheim.
Every book I have written is available in paperback format from www.penguinate.com. That’s the website where this blog post has been published. Simply order and pay for the book, and it will be shipped to you in a timely fashion.
If you feel better about using Amazon, you can get many of my books in paperback. Amazon is also the only place to get copies in eBook format via Kindle. (If you want paperback versions of “There Are No Penguins in Alaska” or “Disneyland Is Creativity,” you’ll need to order them from Penguinate.com.)
For people who are going to or near Disneyland, the Candy Cane Inn is a great place to pick up “The Haunted Mansion Is Creativity” in paperback. (It’s even better if you’re staying there.) The Candy Cane Inn is located on the same side of Harbor Blvd as Disneyland, and it carries a small collection of Disneyland books written by former employees and fans, including my own book and “Cleaning the Kingdom.”
In December, we are signed up to be at Salem Holiday Market from December 13 to 15. There might even be a new book by then.
On Saturday, June 22, 2019 from 10 am to 2 pm, 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 nine books for all ages; come by and check out the books that are right for you.
For children of all ages, “There Are No Penguins in Alaska” offers the opportunity to color while learning about the animals that people find in Alaska. The humor at the end will keep you smiling.
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 Lost Treasure of Nikolai Nikolaevich or learn firsthand about the Curse of the Golden Kopeck.
For those in high school or older, “The Pirate Union” finds out 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, “Penguinate! Essays and Short Stories” 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.
If you know you want a hard copy of the coloring book “There Are No Penguins in Alaska,” now’s the time to preorder it. Because we will be printing them in Russia, we will be unable to replenish our supplies between events. While we would love to sell out of them at Lilac City Comicon 2019 on June 1 and 2, we would hate for anyone to miss out on the coloring book just because they were later on our journey.
So, if you’re going to be at City Cakes and Café for my author signing on June 5, or you’re going to find us at Ogden UnCon on June 7 to 9, or you’re coming to Amazing Las Vegas Comic Con June 14 to 16, preordering ensures that we will have a copy with your name on it ready for you to pick up. More importantly, you can order them at the convention price of $5 and not have to worry about shipping and handling. Just click on the link to the event you’re going to.
If you aren’t going to make it to any of the events listed, but you can meet with us while we’re in Salem or during our journey, you can still get the $5 price. You just have to be able to pick the coloring book up. Otherwise, they are $8 plus shipping.
If you have no idea how to order, or you know you are going to get one but you don’t want to officially order, leave a note in the comment or contact us through our Facebook page. We’ll set one aside and contact you about payment and delivery.
Of course, preordering anything else you might want is also a good idea. Penguins take more than a day to make, so if we sell out of them, they’ll be gone. Other books we may be able to replenish, but there’s no guarantee. The best way to get what you want is to preorder! You can also order items directly from Amazon or on Amazon Kindle, but they will not be eligible for any discounts.
Remember, members of our Patreon Penguinator team get $1 off for every $10 they spend at our table during an event. If you know you’re going to buy something from us, you might want to join our Patreon and get your discount as well as more information on creativity and stuffed penguins.
Excited for this coloring book. You can preorder a hard copy!
As the manager for a larger organization in Alaska, I would sometimes get a strange call. For my team, I didn’t have problems if someone needed a day off or had to come in late as long as it wasn’t a habit. My employees never took advantage of this, probably because they were part-time and needed the money. They were also a good group. When I got this call, however, I did a double take.
“Um, hello, Shad.” I could tell who it was though he identified himself anyway. “Yeah, I’m going to be late coming into work. There’s a moose in my driveway.”
What could I say? Having a moose or bear in the driveway was a good reason not to come into work. Moose are unpredictable, and no one wants to antagonize a bear. So, I said the only thing I could, “Okay, well, when the moose is gone, come on in. I’ll leave an evening shift spot open for you.”
“Great. Thanks.” He couldn’t tell me when the moose would leave. I knew he needed his hours. This seemed like a good compromise. More importantly, no one was put in any danger in order to get to work.
It wasn’t the first time I had heard someone use a wildlife excuse. In fact, when I was an employee at a different organization, I had faced off with a moose in my yard and decided to call into work instead of hope the moose didn’t kick me or my car. I was new to Alaska, so when I talked to my boss, he told me it was better to stay at home rather than risk agitating the moose. I should stay home until the moose was gone. That was one of the best things about Alaska. People tried to take care of each other.
Fortunately, I never had to worry about facing a penguin in my driveway because there are no penguins in Alaska. I should know; I wrote the book. You can preorder the eBook from Amazon, or get a hard copy coloring book here on penguinate.com. If you want more stories, check out “Tales at an Alaskan Cabin” on Amazon.
When I first moved to Alaska, it was summer, and summers in Alaska are glorious – absolutely beautiful. However, I was warned. Winter is coming. If you want to survive Alaska and remain a resident for longer than a season or two, you need to find an activity that you can do during the winter months. This meant not only having the right clothing to go outside, but having the right clothing that would be good for staying outside for prolonged periods. The other important piece of information I was given about living in Alaska is that it usually isn’t the first mistake that kills you; it’s the mistakes that follow through poor decision making.
There are a lot of winter activities that people can engage in: skiing, cross country skiing, skijoring, snowshoeing, ice skating, and more. Trekking through the winter wonderland that Alaska becomes is amazing in its own right, as long as you can stay warm. Fortunately, I had a friend who introduced me to geocaching.
Geocaching is a high-tech treasure hunt. Geocachers hide ammo cans or Tupperware, mark the coordinates and publish those at geocaching.com. Other cachers seek those boxes. They sign the log book, trade items, and enjoy the wonderful outdoors.
My friend and I had one rule about winter geocaching. If the temperature was lower than 10 degrees Fahrenheit, we stayed at home. Living in Anchorage the weather was relatively temperate, so those 10-degree days were fewer and farther between than some places inland.
One Saturday, early in winter, the temperature pushed up to 10 degrees, and we got our gear together. We chose our destination, got our warm clothes on and headed out to the car. I wore plastic pants to keep melting snow from making my pants wet. They had buttons so that I could reach into my pants pockets if I had to.
We went into the park hiked around and came to a stream. It wasn’t completely frozen over. There was ice on top, but the stream moved beneath. We could walk to the bridge, but it was far away and I was cold. More importantly, the arrow pointed right across the stream. I convinced my friend that we could cross using the branch that hung below the water. It would just be a short jump. He made it. I didn’t.
I fell through the ice. The stream ran into my plastic pants and into my shoes. I had wool on, so I thought I should be okay. My friend knew better. With the cache just feet away, I thought we should go get it. He said no. We were going to go get a pizza and go home. It wouldn’t look good for a director of health and safety (my job title at the time) to get hypothermia or frostbite because he was too dumb not to make the second mistake.
He was right. Getting wet wasn’t really an immediate issue. Staying out there would’ve created a bigger problem. So, we went back home. I took a warm shower and changed into dry clothes and then we ate pizza. Geocaching was one of two activities that I engaged in to make it through the winter. Subscribe to this blog and don’t miss when I post about the next one.
In Alaska, you may have to know how to protect yourself against long, dark winters and cold weather, but you do not have to know how to protect yourself against penguins, because there are no penguins in Alaska. I know because I wrote the book. Preorder the eBook on Amazon or preorder a hard copy coloring book here at penguinate.com. If you want more stories, check out “Tales at an Alaskan Cabin” on Amazon.
I stepped out of my apartment door on the ground level and my breath misted as I bent down to pick up the Sunday paper. I stood up and about ten feet away from me was a moose. “Good morning, Mr. Moose,” I said and backed slowly into the apartment closing the door and practicing what I knew about moose safety habits.Continue reading Moose Safety in Alaska: Don’t Pet the Moose.
You want a super exclusive version of “There Are No Penguins In Alaska”? Order in the next eight hours from my website, and I will send you a signed and numbered, limited edition printed proof. The number will be limited to however many people can get their order in within the next eight hours on Jan 17, 2019. That’s when I put my order in to the printer.
I already have 10 set aside. These coloring books feature all of the animals and drawings from Transcend Studio along with my words. There are black bears, grizzly bears and polar bears… But there are no penguins in Alaska. There are lots of animals, but there are no penguins in Alaska.
Before the Official Release
With 24 inside pages to color on A3 paper so that the book is roughly 8.5 by 11. There’s no better time to get this coloring book before its official release date. Once you have it, you can review at my website or on Amazon where it’s awaiting its release an eBook. Put your order in now because it expires soon.
There is a lot of misinformation about Alaska that Alaskans hear from tourists and see in movies and TV. Some people think the money is different. Some people think everyone lives in an igloo. Some people think that there’s gold lying on the beaches waiting to be picked up. And some people ask where they can see the penguins in Alaska. There are no penguins in Alaska.
When I left Alaska in 2012 and traveled through the Lower 48, I got asked a lot of questions about my time in Alaska. Does it really stay light for 24 hours a day in summer? How cold does it get really? What do you do for fun in the winter? What’s the best part of living in Alaska? Why did you leave? Did you see any penguins while you were there? I would answer each of the questions as well as I could. For the last question, I would point out that Polar Bears would eat the penguins and that there are no penguins in Alaska.
That trip gave me an idea for a book: “There Are No Penguins in Alaska.” The idea would remain just that until 2018 when I published my first book, “My Life in the Projects: A kid’s-eye view of HUD housing in the 1980s.” Once I realized I could publish books, I also realized I could publish my penguin book. The problem was I let my art skills degrade for a long time and was no longer up to the task of drawing what I needed to make “There Are No Penguins in Alaska.”
Well, my art skills haven’t improved much over the last year, but fortunately, I was able to find a couple of artists to do the work. Antonisa Scot and Oscar Feliz of Transcend Studio put together “There Are No Penguins in Alaska” and now it’s ready to be published. In fact, you can preorder it on Kindle and as a hard copy coloring book at penguinate.com. However, there is a catch.
In order to publish “There Are No Penguins in Alaska” as a coloring book at a reasonable price ($2 per book my cost to retail at $4), I need to order 750 or more copies. That’s $1500 for anyone playing along. I could get fewer copies, but the price goes up pretty drastically, capping out at $5 a copy for 50 copies. That’s only (Haha! Only!) $250 but then I would have to charge $10 per book to make any money. Who’s going to buy a coloring book for $10? Maybe you, since you’re reading this, but not most people. Most people won’t even spend that on a regular kid’s book or any eBook.
Other writers or artists, at this point, would probably launch a Kickstarter, or maybe they would’ve launched it sooner. I, on the other hand, realize that I will publish this book in one form or another, and a Kickstarter would take away from my opportunity to write more books before I start touring the inland states in June where I will sell my books at Lilac City Comicon in Spokane, City Cakes and Cafe in Salt Lake City, Ogden UnCon in Ogden and Amazing Las Vegas Comic Con in Las Vegas, as well as any other bookstores, coffee shops or venues on the way that will have me.
In lieu of running a Kickstarter, which would definitely kill one or both of the books I plan on finishing before June, I am offering a presale. The price for the preorder is set at $8 in case I have to settle for the higher printing costs and to account for shipping and handling, which is more expensive than people would believe. If I can get 80 preorders of the hard copy and/or the Kindle version of the book, I will find the other money I need to print the rest of them. Even if only two people preorder, I am still going to print them, just not in the massive quantity of 750 or for the cheaper price.
This is a challenge. I haven’t sold 80 of any single book, so this preorder, if it works, would make “There Are No Penguins in Alaska” my most popular book. If you’ve read this far, thank you for your interest and support. Please share this page to your social media network, tag me and add “#penguinate.”