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Machine Monday: Hansen Writing Ball

Although the Sholes & Glidden is generally regarded as the first production typewriter in history, the Hansen writing ball in fact beat the S&G by no less than four years. The Reverend Rasmus Hans Malling Johan Hansen (1835-1890) worked as a teacher and as director of an institution for the deaf and dumb in Copenhagen.... Continue Reading →

Nostalgic Evocations: Kaboom

Kaboom (General Mills 1969-2010). When my sister and I would go to the grocery store with my parents we would be allowed to pick out our breakfast cereal...if we were good.  If not, we were stuck with Honey Nut Cheerios -- neither one of us wanted that.  My sister's go-to was Cap'n Crunch; mine was... Continue Reading →

Natural Beauty – God’s Way of Feedng an Author’s Imagination

A Song of Joy by Caroline Furlong

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While scanning through several WordPress articles on…something, I came across a review of another sci-fi novel. It was a post-apocalyptic book, I believe, that doubled as an alien invasion story. Something said either in the post or in the comments was that readers could tell the writer had been inspired by his native Arizona, both with regards to this story and his previous works. His stories either take place in that state or in worlds that look like it.

Dean Koontz does much the same thing. Almost all of his stories take place in California. His characters might be from other states or countries but, eventually, they somehow find their way to the Golden State. The love a writer has for his or her native place often finds its way into their works. This may be a subliminal habit at first, but once an author becomes aware of this tendency…

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Saturday Spotlight: Dividend on Death

Dividend on Death Author: Brett Halliday (Davis Dresser) Cover Art: Robert McGinnis Originally Published: 1939 Reviewed Edition: Dell D293 (1959) This is the book that introduced the public to private detective Mike Shayne; the red-headed, temperamental, perpetually down-on-his-luck sleuth. Halliday (Dresser) would spend the rest of his life writing (and commissioning other writers) the adventures... Continue Reading →

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