Book opened orchid-growing to the world

Bob Cox spotted a Seattle Post-Intelligencer Piece on the 1950 book "Home Orchid Growing." They say this book is still the bible for growers -- amateur and professional alike, -- and did for orchids what Julia Child did for French cooking, said one orchid lover. Her greenhouse still contained hundreds of orchids when she died April 30 at age 93 in Des Moines, where she lived with her daughter.

"She's the reason we have orchids in Trader Joe's," said Northen's daughter, Betty Lyons. "Truly, she was an orchid grower's orchid grower,"


Authors now entertaining in bars

Info Whale writes "Once confined to libraries and bookstores, authors are now providing a new form of entertainment at bars around the country.
NYTimes Has The Article."


Results of the Second River Cities’ Reader Short-Fiction Contest

Bob Cox writes "The number of entries in this year’s River Cities’ Reader short-fiction contest jumped to over 120, up more than 25 percent from last year. There was one significant rule change – the word limit was cut from 250 to 200 – but that didn’t seem to affect the quality of entries. Writers from the Quad Cities and beyond gave us interesting, provocative, and dense narratives, and winnowing the list down to the finalists was difficult. The subjects ranged from religion to relationships to murder, with just about everything in between.

We present 15 of the best entries here, five winners and 10 other finalists. While they’re disparate in tone, content, and style, most share a few traits: They’re full of idiosyncratic detail, the authors have breathed life into the characters, and they have a ring of authenticity." See the

River Cities' Reader Online ".


Happy Birthday to the Bard!

Anonymous Patron writes "Happy 440th to the Bard of Avon!

Huzzah to all the valiant public librarians
asked to identify or interpret obscure quotes.

The Schoenberg Center for Electronic Text and Image at the Univ. of Penn. has some cool
scanned texts of Bill S's plays."

See here.


Pamela Ribon . Author notebook .

Bob Cox shares this nice entry from author Pamela Ribon about strangers helping strangers by donating books to a struggling library.
"In the past eight months, fans of have donated close to seven hundred books, CDs, DVDs, and magazine subscriptions, as well as time, money, energy, and support. Before this book drive I had heard criticism that teens, young adults and thirtysomethings don’t get involved with their community, and aren’t the type of people who donate their time and money to causes. If there’s one thing I’m most proud of in all of this, it’s that we left that notion in the dust."


Italian poet loses his head

Bob Cox writes " 22466106.html

Of all the world's great writers, Francesco Petrarch is the best known for losing his head. On Good Friday in 1327, the then 23-year-old writer and scholar fell madly in love with a woman he saw in a church congregation.

His bad luck, to become enamoured of a woman who did not return his affections, was the rest of humanity's good fortune. For, in seeking to express his feelings for the woman he called Laura, Petrarch gave definitive form to the sonnet and established himself as the first modern, Western poet.

Now, it seems, he has lost his head a second time."


Judy Blume, Girls' Friend, Makes a Move to the Movies

The NY Times is reporting that after many years of starts and stops that Judy Blume's novel, "Deenie" will be made into a movie.

The Judy Blume faithful are surprised only that it has taken this long for such a movie deal. "She perfectly identified emotions and created stories around them that validated your emotions and taught you the fundamentals of life, when your mother just brought out the box and the brochure, which is so scary," said Terri Minsky, creator of the "Lizzie McGuire" series, whose 9-year-old daughter listens to Blume books for younger readers on tape. "Judy Blume does it in a story, and it's like a gift. Why must we be subjected to `Agent Cody Banks' when there are Judy Blume books out there? It's not right."


'Little Prince' author's plane wreck found after 6 decades

The CBC Is Reporting diving team has found the wreckage of author Antoine de Saint-Exupéry's military plane, almost 60 years after it plunged into the Mediterranean near Marseille, French government researchers announced Wednesday.


Agatha Christie books to become video games

An Anonymous Patron writes "A Report Says enthusiasts of mystery fiction will have the chance to play detective when some of Agatha Christie's classic books are brought to interactive life in computer games.

Ms. Christie's grandson, Matthew Prichard, said Sunday that he has granted permission for his grandmother's work to be adapted for CD-ROM computer games."

Topic: - Pop icons ride on name to sell books

An Anonymous Patron writes "As much as we worship movies, little of that worship trickles down to the people who write the stories. That's sad, because writing can be a very solitary pursuit and writing even a very bad screenplay is hard work. Thankfully, we have the world of children's books to give credit where it's barely due and provide some welcome familiarity. Full Story"



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