Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Murania Press now has a Web Site!

Many of you are familiar with the BLOOD N THUNDER magazine, considered the finest periodical dedicated to pulp fiction. Now Murania Press, the publisher of BLOOD N THUNDER, has launched a Web site that will sell both back issues and current issues of BnT, as well as other collectibles. There are already plenty of books, magazines and other collectibles for sale, and the Blog page has plenty of good reading too. I heartily recommend this site - a must for anyone who is a fan of the great popular fiction of the early 20th century and those who want to learn more about it.

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Monday, May 14, 2012


And if you're in the mood for some NEW classic mystery, the next volume of BEAT TO A PULP is out!

Editor David Cranmer says over at The Education of a Pulp Writer: Round Two covers all-new ground with offerings from a gang of tried-and-true heavyweights and inspired up-and-comers, all savvy purveyors of pulp at the top of their game. Haymakers include a Hemingway pastiche by famed mystery author Bill Pronzini, a stunning Chandler homage by Hard Case Crime kingpin Charles Ardai, a post-war tale with a twist from James Reasoner, a zombie-horror nightmare by Bill Crider, and even more blows to the temple from such hotshots as Glenn Gray, Patricia Abbott, Chris F. Holm, Vicki Hendricks, Sean Chercover, the legendary Vin Packer, and more, more, more!

VERY cool! Go over to The Education of a Pulp Writer to find out where to get it.

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Review of Frederick Nebel Collection

For fans of hardboiled fiction, there's a must read over at the Mystery File blog today. Walker Martin has reviewed the latest publication from Altus Press, FREDERICK NEBEL - TOUGH AS NAILS: The Complete Cases of Donahue from the Pages of Black Mask.

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Tuesday, May 8, 2012

So What's Up, Chloe?

Well, it's come to this. I'm posting pictures of my cat for lack of anything else to write about.

But some of you know the trials I went through with Chloe last year when I adopted her. The shelter said that they thought she had a bladder infection. I took her home and she promptly got a respiratory infection, refused to eat for 5 days. Then we found out she had a stone in her bladder, not an infection, and then all the stress caused her to have a herpes virus manifest itself in her eye, resulting in a hole in her cornea. All this in the first 2 months.

But she's doing great now. She has turned into the most loving cat; her usual practice is to lay next to me on the couch with her face a 1/2 inch away from mine and sometimes we'll touch noses. Other times she'll just plop right next to my neck and face so I'm basically wearing a cat for a scarf.

She has her moments. She opens up the crazy can, usually once a day, and tears around the house like a ghost is after her. She'll try to climb up the blinds. She has a unnerving habit of yowling at random times of the day and night, even though as far as I know there's nothing wrong with her (but I'm taking her to the vet later this week). Some people say it may be because she might be losing her hearing. She doesn't come to me when I call her and sometimes she doesn't even turn her head, so maybe she is going deaf.

Or maybe she's just being a cat.

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Monday, May 7, 2012

Rescue Dog is National Hero Dog

Bear, a rescue German Shepherd, rescues his owner and gets the National Hero Dog Award.

By SUE MANNING Associated Press
LOS ANGELES May 7, 2012 (AP)

Three years ago, Bear was a 100-pound Shiloh German Shepherd nobody wanted at a Texas shelter.

Debbie Zeisler came to his rescue. She has lost count of the times since then that he has come to hers.

On Monday, Bear was honored with the 30th National Hero Dog award by the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Los Angeles.

Last May, Zeisler had a seizure, fell down some steps, hit her head and lost consciousness in her front yard. Bear scratched on every front door in their Millsap neighborhood but nobody answered. A Parker County animal control officer saw the frantic dog and went to help. Bear led the officer to Zeisler.

As a by-then conscious Zeisler was being loaded into an ambulance, Bear did not hesitate to jump in with her and accompany her to the hospital.

The dog recognizes the signs of imminent seizures and will lean on Zeisler's legs so she can sit down before they happen, explained the society's Ana Bustilloz.

Bear never had any training, but three days after Zeisler took him home he started alerting her to possible problems. "He figured it out on his own," Bustilloz said.

The sometimes daily seizures started after a horse riding accident 18 years ago.

Zeisler said she initially went to the Weatherford Animal Shelter to get a German shepherd for her mother. When she asked about shepherds, she was told they only had one, but he was in the back because nobody wanted him.

They brought out the dog and it was love at first sight, she said.

Zeisler has fallen a couple of times when she didn't heed Bear's warning. The dog will fetch her medicine or stay with her, whichever she seems to need, she said.

As National Hero Dog, Bear gets free dog food for a year, the trip to California for him and Zeisler, a stay at an oceanfront hotel in Huntington Beach and a plaque.

The ceremony honoring Bear was held at the Nokia Plaza in downtown Los Angeles. Bookmark and Share

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Photos of the Garden

Yesterday I went out after work and took some photos of my garden; I figured I better do it now - in a few months the summer heat will have taken over and it definitely will look a little peaked. I'm really enjoying the garden this year - last year was the first planting and many of the plants, especially the roses, are much more robust this year now that they've had some time to settle. I now have between 15 and 20 rose bushes in the back, and about 5 in the front.

Here are some of the photos, with a few of Annie mixed in.

Here is the Barbra Streisand rose - just acquired this year. The fragrance is simply divine, dahling.

One of my favorite roses - a gift from my aunt. Don't know the name.

A few years ago I acquired this purple-painted medicine chest at a garage sale. On a whim I put it in the garden and gave the stone kitty something to look at.

This is Scentimental.

The next two are Lady of the Dawn...another gift and another favorite.

It's amazing how quickly the foxgloves have grown.

This was a miniature bought at Trader Joe's. Most of the minatures are now 2-3 feet high.

Aquilegia (or Columbine)

Another acquisition this year: Wild Blue Yonder. Very fragrant.

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Independent Bookstores Across America at Dwell.com

Why no one has thought of this before, I'll never know. Dwell.com has started a map of Independent Bookstores Across America. Underneath the map are short summaries of each store with their address and links to their websites. To check it out, and/or to add bookstores to the map, go here. To add your bookstore, leave a comment. I noticed that they didn't yet have any of the stores in Long Beach, CA, so I left that information. Let's definitely keep this going. It's important that for it to be successful that it be as complete as possible. Thanks to Megan Abbott and Bill Crider for the tip! Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Matthew Mayo Interview over at Western Fiction Review

For those of you who haven't heard about it yet, there's an excellent interview of Matthew Mayo, one of my favorite Western writers, over at the Western Fiction Review (one of my favorite blogs, too). Bookmark and Share