Editorial Cartoon: The Swamp

November 30, 2016

Advertisements

, like so many others, did not foresee Mr. Trump’s election.  Of course, as the nominee of one of our nation’s two major parties, I understood Mr. Trump’s chances to fall within a mathematical realm of possibility, but I admit that such clinical assessments were outweighed by a fundamental faith in the basic decency and good sense of my fellow Americans.  And while it may be viewed as undemocratic, or worse yet, condescending to say so, that faith has been strained to the point of breaking by the events of the past two weeks.

After two weeks of reflection, commiseration, and at times outright despondency, I am no closer to understanding how nearly half of my fellow citizens saw fit to entrust the Presidency to a man so uniquely unqualified by dent of temperament or experience for that office.  This is a man, as we must continually remind ourselves, who cruelly mimicked a disabled reporter and insulted a Gold Star family.  This is a man who maligned immigrants from a neighboring country as “murderers” and “rapists,” instead of the latest to seek a better future in a land our forefathers came to with similar hopes.

In so doing, he denied our shared history and appealed to our basest instincts.  This is a man who said he prefers war heroes who did not suffer the misfortune of falling into enemy hands.  This is a man who speaks of women not as equals but as objects of domination and sexual violence.  He has stated that Muslim-Americans should be forced to enter some sort of registry – ignorant or uncaring of the historical precedents that make such a proposition horrifying.
This is a man whose narcissism and insecurity impel him to respond to the slightest provocation or criticism, and coo at the most disingenuous and transparently manipulative flattery.  This is a man whose election was aided by the nefarious acts of a foreign leader who jails and murders dissidents.We all know this. How could we not? And yet roughly half of the American people saw fit to entrust him with our nation’s highest office – one once held by Jefferson and Lincoln and Roosevelt.

In the wake of this stunning choice, the remainder (or should I say majority) of us are forced to ask why.  There, we are given a menu of unsatisfying options from which to choose.  For example, we are told that Trump won because he spoke to the social and economic dislocation of the white working class.  He donned a red hat and adopted an empty slogan upon which voters could hang a wide assortment of grievances.  Never mind that Trump offered no concrete solutions to address these grievances.  Never mind that so many of these grievances were the misguided imaginings of Macedonian teenagers peddling social media fiction that would make the Editorial Board of the National Enquirer blush.

Others argue that Trump won because the Democratic Party nominated a person too beholden to special interests, too wooden, too secretive.  Should Hillary Clinton have used a private server?  Of course not.  Is the avarice of her and her husband off-putting? Yes.  But she was also imminently qualified, hard working, thoughtful, and intelligent.  And her policy prescriptions were based on inclusion, progress, and hope rather than separation, regression, and anger.  There is also the added bonus that she spoke in complete sentences.  To my mind, elections are about weighing the experience, temperament, and ideas of two imperfect candidates and choosing the person best suited to the job.  Perfection is not on offer.  A democracy should be viewed as a set of obligations discharged by its citizenry and not a form of spectacle or entertainment.

In the end, however, I think it best to draw our own conclusions, focused less on the past and more on the immediate future.  I offer my own.  The first is that we must not normalize Mr. Trump.  There is nothing normal about his personality, his actions, or his temperament. If this election had been a debate about the proper role of government or marginal tax rates, I would have expressed my views, cast my vote, and given the eventual winner my best wishes – Republican or Democrat.  After all, in America, we are taught that after an election, we must respect the will of the people and unify behind our leaders.  But since Trump has seen fit to violate nearly every norm of our democratic process, I feel liberated to take a different tact. I do not respect this man. I do not wish him or his administration well. I will use whatever power and privilege I possess to oppose him and his policies. And I will work to ensure that history’s verdict is both unkind and unequivocal.

Second, I commit to each day take at least one small step to affirm democracy and our place in it. I will join advocacy organizations like the ACLU and the Southern Poverty Law Center.  I will sign petitions, even if unsure of their efficacy.  I will share my views and not be silent, even if my views make others uncomfortable or make me uncomfortable.  I will fight, in whatever way I can, for the country I love.

Finally, I will do my best to act in the absence of leadership.  I think many progressives, myself included, became a bit complacent over the past eight years.  I felt myself blessed to have a President whose values, intellect, and character allowed me to shirk some of my obligations of citizenship. Let this be a reminder that no one man or woman, however great, can carry the full load.  That load belongs to all people of good will, and I commit to carry my part from this day forward, even if I am presently unsure of what that carrying might entail.

Sincerely,

M. David Ruff

ear You:

Hey, what’s up? I didn’t write this a month ago or a year ago, as perhaps I should have. In part because I believed that despite its faults, the United States was filled with more good than ill.

And You? You consider yourself a good person. Indeed you are a good person; a stand-up guy or gal… and yet You voted for Mr. Trump.

With Your vote you didn’t stand up against racism, or sexism; you didn’t stand up for the rights of gay men or lesbian women, or immigrant families. You voted that, at best, “I don’t care about you people, and I approve of Mr. Trump’s message. Your continued oppression does not concern me.”

Perhaps You consider yourself a Christian, but if so, You didn’t stand for the compassion of Christ — that tenet You hold as the cornerstone of your faith. You didn’t love your neighbor as thyself.

Maybe You thought about pop culture. Like: ‘wouldn’t it be great if the guy I watched on TV was elected as president? He’s a straight-shooter. He tells it like it is.’

If pop culture influenced Your vote, perhaps a reference from pop culture will be of benefit to You. A film You have probably seen; one You can probably quote from… so there’s little chance You need a Spoiler Alert. Take this scene from the 1992 film “A Few Good Men”:

Upon professing Your views over Mr. Trump’s election, You may have been confronted by a certain faction of your Facebook friends. You may be confused. Like Private Loudon Downey in “A Few Good Men”, You may be asking:

What did we do wrong? We did nothing wrong!

Lance Corporal Harold Dawson provided the answer:

Yeah we did. We were supposed to fight for the people who couldn’t fight for themselves. We were supposed to fight for Willie.

This is The United States of America. A nation which has long held itself out as a beacon of freedom and opportunity. A country that has often fought to defend the right to live in peace; fought for those who could not fight for themselves. As an American, whether You served in the military or not, You should be fighting for those who can’t fight for themselves. This includes all the groups of people Mr. Trump has targeted; You should fight against the hate crimes that fringe slice of his supporters have perpetrated following the election.

If Your stance is now that Mr. Trump should be given a chance to implement his stated goals… that anything else would be counterproductive. I put it to You that You should disagree.

Counterproductive is exactly what You should be. Obstruct racism whenever You encounter it. Listen to people of color. Black lives matter because they are Your fellow Americans. Extend a hand and say “peace be with you” to people of other faiths, and especially to our Muslim brothers and sisters. Do not allow the rights women have fought for through all of recorded history be rewound. Stand shoulder to shoulder in defense of Your siblings in the LGTBQ community. Respect Your treaty obligations in North Dakota and the North Atlantic. Stand with Jews, when Mr. Trump appoints anti-semites as his chief advisors. Do not normalize bigotry; do not ignore hate speech. These are Civil Rights, by guaranteeing them for other Americans, they’re guaranteed for You too.

And don’t gloss-over the erosion of Your right to free speech, or to a free press. These rights are guaranteed by the Constitution, but have been targeted by Mr. Trump and are currently under threat. They are pillars of Your democracy, and without them, You will no longer have a democracy.

Turning this around isn’t just about changing how You voted — that’s done –, but changing how You see your fellow Americans. Do not vilify those with differing political views, yet also don’t forget exactly what Your vote meant — and will mean — if You stand idly by.

If You are still reading at this point, You have an open mind. You are a good person. So know that already much of the nation is trying to normalize Mr. Trump. They are roughing up his hair on the ‘Tonight Show’ in an attempt to humanize him and his stated ideology. Resist.

He gazed up at the enormous face. Forty years it had taken him to learn what kind of smile was hidden beneath the dark mustache. O cruel, needless misunderstanding! O stubborn, self-willed exile from the loving breast! Two gin-scented tears trickled down the sides of his nose. But it was all right, everything was all right, the struggle was finished. He had won the victory over himself. He loved Big Brother.

— George Orwell, ‘1984’

Resist what Orwell described in his prescient warning. Do not cry gin-scented tears. Do not win victory over yourself. You are a good person. You know Mr. Trump is wrong; do not come to love him. You must never get to the point where You love Big Brother. You cannot let this happen. You must stand up. You must resist.

You must halt this march of authoritarianism before policies of fear and hate are put in place. Don’t put Your head in the sand and say to reassure Yourself: “it does not affect me.” It does. And it will, incrementally.

To paraphrase Martin Niemöller:

First they came for the Immigrants, and I did not speak out-

Because I was not an Immigrant.

Then they came for the Press, and I did not speak out-

Because I was not in the Press.

Then they came for the Muslims, and I did not speak out-

Because I was not a Muslim.

Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

Remember: You are a good person. You are an American. You are supposed to fight for the people who couldn’t fight for themselves.

Sincerely,

Jason Riley

Your Fellow American

At long last, episode one of CCLaP’s latest anthology The Podcast Dreadful is ready for your listening pleasure, right here.

Enjoy.

Gentle readers take cover, “The Sharpened Spears of the Huaorani!” will be heard in stereophonic sound starting Monday, September 3, 2012, right here.

Image.

The CCLaP Podcast Dreadful

August 22, 2012

Please pardon our absence, the editors have only recently returned from a lengthy sea voyage. As Fortune would have it, the return coincides with a publication our readers are certain to find a delight.

Every autumn, CCLaP is proud to present another themed anthology
featuring the short work of a variety of writers across the US; but
this year the center is trying something special, releasing this
compilation as a free 12-part serialized audiobook through its popular
podcast, every Monday in September, October and November. Entitled
CCLaP’s Podcast Dreadful,” the series has been designed in the
fashion of an old Victorian “penny dreadful” publication, including
cliffhangers at the end of each chapter and a dark, weird tone
throughout. Hosted by Christopher Sullivan and featuring brand-new
pieces by Kate Cullan, Jason Fisk, Kevin Haworth, Jacob Knabb, Keith
McCleary and Sophia G. Starmack, John Reed, Jason Riley, Jim Ruland,
Davis Schneiderman, Ben Tanzer and Karl Wolff, as well as new music by Ken Kase written specifically for this project, it is sure to be just
the right ticket for a cold, scary autumn night.Image

n afterthought to our most recent post: the Committee has learned of a beaver-like Canadian woodland creature whose own sobriquet is derived from the animal so called, is highly valued for the appearance if its hair, its line of cosmetics, and, who is apparently, also a budding memoirist.

Congratulations, fans of the written word! “He’s going to tell all in his very own book.” Yet what all could there be to tell for a semi-aquatic rodent not long in the tooth? For how many times can “LOL” possibly fit within a manuscript advertised at a forest-clearing 240 pages — even with open-handed pagination and font size — without becoming tedious to even the most fervent votaries? Perhaps there are 239 nice, blank pages to be filled-in at the consumer’s leisure.

Castor canadensis

The Committee has little doubt that our own ghostwritten version of the beaver tale does not stray far from the lodge.

CHAPTER 1

I was born on a Tuesday, three weeks ago; I gnawed-out repeatedly the word
‘baby,’ leaving a colony of young girls all atwitter in its echo; now, at four
weeks, I’ve been forced to launch my own colored fingernail varnish, as I’m burdened by
thoughts my meteoric vocal career has disintegrated in the mesosphere.

The End

Hardcover Price $21.99
Amazon Supersaver price $11.87

The recycling mills quake for the pulp, as the beaver quakes for aspen wood.

A Series of Flights, Fancies, and Facts

e at the Society – and certainly our readership – stood and cheered upon learning of the following commercial intercourse: a publishing contract has been extended to a certain incomparable and inimitable artist (or in the plain – nay – Seussian words of the trade publications: Snooki sells a book).  When the thick and, no doubt, illuminated tome appears on the center shelves of the ever-rarer local bookseller, we at the Society are certain to pant after the elegant and peaceful writings of her expert quill, as the heart panteth for lemon blossoms.

Her words shall fall upon our ears with a peculiar yet indescribable charm, like the gentle wave-driven sands as they grate against and polish the refuse of the previous morning’s bacchanalia into sea glass and oblong, reservoir-tipped balloons for the children to scavange; or the soft, innocent, and well-meaning kisses of a feral canine that has – immediately precedent – successfully orally expressed its posterior scent glands.

Temple at Olympia (Restored)

Learn and remember, gentle reader, the name Nicole ‘Snooki’ Polizzi. Where once it seemed impossible to conceive of how the so-called Titans could be surpassed, equaled, even approached in the celestial literary stadion; today, the Society has every confidence that the industry’s Jovian gravitational pull toward ethereal fiction for the minor celebrity will eclipse the once decided  superiority of all previous generations. To paraphrase another Italian of transcendent mental superiority, Vizzini:

Let me put it this way. Have you ever heard of Hemingway, Fitzgerald, Joyce? . . . Morons!

Fear not! Their heiress presumptive hath arrived.

Never has there been a more apt moment to give requiem – by parting quotation – to those that came before, for when the population collectively skims this newly-pressed Polizzi-rature, indubitably, it will – in one motion – cast aside and forget the deformed prose dwarfs of the last century:

. . . if our civilization were to sober up for a couple of days it’d die of remorse on the third.

– Malcolm Lowry, Under the Volcano

Yet let us speak not of talent; for it is a quality which fades as quickly as the delicate, raw sienna coating of simulated exposure to ultraviolet radiation. Indeed, talent protrudes as the hirsute, superfluous papilla on the chest of America: a thing of no utility, and one from which the eyes are invariably averted.

Two hundred years of democracy, peace, and artistic freedom – limited only by voracious mercantilism – and what did it produce? The Untold Delights of Sodom and Gomorrah Revisited.

(The Society is acutely aware that much of its own writing is not immediately ready for the great wide world, and so we continue the difficult work of honing that skill to a keen edge.)

Thus Time brings all things, one by one, to sight

And Skill evolves them into perfect light

Lucretius

And thus too the Society proposes a toast: To this Pyrrhic victory for brick-and-mortar publishing! Whose integrity of purpose is yet more transparent and respected the higher it ascends the ladder scaled by the likes of those visionary generators of the summer reality television.

For money will make the pot boil, though the devil piss on the fire!

Mistakes of a Night

September 2, 2010

tragic tale has come to our attention in recent days: that of one who shall be generically known as “artist,” and those editors of a certain medium we shall refer to as “publishers.”  The artist submitted his art to the publishers, and though it was prettily inscribed, the publishers timely rebuffed it. The artist, rather than shrugging the pain of this (no doubt) crushing rejection from his narrow shoulders, took to arms against said publisher, crashing their gate, and falsely imprisoning the lot. As one would imagine, the fruit produced of this ill-conceived violence was as bitter as the inedible Curaçaoan laraha. The local constabulary came upon the scene and, using a form of stinging leaden music, subdued the savage artist. Thus the publishers, though filled with dismay, lived to reject another day.

Cloaca Maxima. (In its present condition, 1879.)

We at the Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge have had many a manuscript, spat upon, torn to tiny bits, and cast into Cloaca Maxima with such sweet-penned form letter excerpts as: We are sorry to report that we won’t be able to use any of your work at this time but hope you keep in touch with us in the future — as a reader as well as a writer; Thanks for sending us your work, but it’s not right for [our publication]; and We regret that we are unable to use the enclosed material.  Thank you for giving us the opportunity to consider it.

Out of context, the words are innocuous. To press them against one’s precious work is bound to evoke the poet’s ire, momentarily. Yet rejection of art should never lead to actual violence; rather, a new audience ought to be sought.

Figure 405, Peel of the Laraha, quartered, cross-section, and dried

And even after all the audiences in all the great wide world seem to have been exhausted, there is hope, gentle artist: recall the stunted citrus of the Curaçaoan laraha. While its fruit is pungently aromatic, the dirty green peel of the laraha – when dried and its essential oils extracted – can be turned to a cordial which is highly esteemed and quite palatable.
.
So too can your rejected art be foreshortened to produce a publishable work.

Please allow our good friend Æsop to add his timeless wisdom, as
translated by George Fyler Townsend.

The Oak and the Reeds, Giovanni Maria Verdizotti, 1577

The Oak and the Reeds

A very large oak was uprooted by the wind and thrown across a stream. It fell among some Reeds, which it thus addressed: “I wonder how you, who are so light and weak, are not entirely crushed by these strong winds.”

They replied, “You fight and contend with the wind, and consequently you are destroyed; while we on the contrary bend before the least breath of air, and therefore remain unbroken, and escape.”

Moral: Stoop to conquer.

Sally Weigel is a writer of peculiar ability and she has set out to obtain a literary reputation – to build the immortal part of herself. For reasons too fortunate to admit, she sat across the table – metaphorically— for an interview regarding her novella Too Young to Fall Asleep (CCLaP Publishing, 2009). This is stop number eight of CCLaP‘s revolutionary, two-week Asleep book tour (and so, gentle reader, you may believe you are well acquainted with this talented writer), yet Ms. Weigel has still new facts and pleasing discoveries to disperse.

Sally Weigel, sketch by Grace Blevins

With her work now laid before the public eye, we believe, Sally Weigel has reached the age of promise.

Jason R Riley: As oversimplified as this may sound, to be a writer you must put words on the page. Yet for many – and often enough, I include myself among the many – the simple act of sitting in the writing chair is the hardest thing to do. Do you ever find your motivation ebbs to the point where the words don’t flow? What tricks do you use to get your words on the page? Do you need any particular environment to write? Or definite hours of the day?

Sally Weigel: I am most productive early in the morning and late at night so I end up doing most all of my work then, preferably at times when everyone around me is sleeping. I think solitude is really conducive to the writing process so I need to be stuck in my room with no noise and no one around. And you are right, if you are serious about writing, there are times when I need to force myself to be creative when I am in fact, feeling lazy and unmotivated. I usually push myself at these times and just say, “Sally, all you need to do is write one sentence. Then another. Then another.” Soon, I will start formulating paragraphs of writing without even trying.

JRR: Too Young to Fall Asleep was a very different piece when you pitched it to Jason Pettus at CCLaP. How would you say having the added pressure of adapting a shorter work into a novella influenced your writing? Why don’t we see more novella’s? Or are they out there, but disguised as novels using fourteen-point font, blank pages between chapters, and creative pagination (like, say, On Chesil Beach)?

SW: I don’t think there was too much pressure turning my short story into a longer piece. I think what is a lot more challenging as a writer is to shorten your writing. When I start a short story and begin to introduce new characters with their back stories and their story lines, I realize I can easily turn the story into a novella. And I think this is the case with most writers. I think short stories and novels are much harder to write than novellas.

That being said, I do not dislike the novella form at all. I just think there isn’t much of a market for it. People nowadays are used to novels. They rarely even pick up books of short stories. I have no doubt novellas are being written. It’s just that less and less people are reading, and the people that are reading are reading novels.

JRR: There are certain expectations a reader has of a war story. You’ve written a war story that contains very little description of the war, just over a page. In a way, it captures the average US citizen’s half-a-world-away exposure to this war – where unlike WWII, physical participation in this war was optional. Yet Too Young to Fall Asleep is no less a war story. There isn’t the usual combat, or translation work, or the soldier asking what can I do next that will keep me alive? The events happen so fast that we don’t see Catherine making these decisions, but we see her asking a related set of questions regarding her post-army life. And the way you handled it really focuses the story on the psychological issue of why she made her decision to join the Army. How did you come to the brave and – probably – difficult decision to make Catherine’s choice, and not the combat, the event of the novella?

A Nocturn of Baghdad, Donald Maxwell, 1921

SW: I’m flattered by the question, although I have to admit, this decision was done out of sheer fear rather than bravery. I wrote this story when I was 17 and had never attempted and succeeded in writing a longer work. Knowing that I was still at a place where I needed to hone my skill, I decided to deal with Catherine’s psyche rather than combat in a foreign land. Even though I made this decision, I didn’t think I was hindering the story at all. I actually have grown to love the unique plot of this war story. Although most soldiers I am sure find themselves with much alone time on duty to reflect, there is so much being dealt with in making the decision and then dealing with this life-altering service after the fact. I like to think that Catherine’s story tells an important yet relatively untouched part of the story of the Iraq War.

JRR: Lately I’ve given much consideration to the honesty in writing – that one’s best writing is also their most honest writing. Let’s call it an ability to figuratively stand on a chair naked before your peers, and to stand there without fear. That to find the truth, you must embrace the freedom to use everything that has happened to you. How free do you feel when writing? Have you ever held back because a character is – on some level – based on someone you know, and so there’s a concern they might recognize something of themselves and become upset?

SW: I never had to deal with this before Too Young to Fall Asleep because most of my writing was not really based on real life and in the end, it was unpublished. I wrote knowing that I would most likely be the only one reading it. But in writing the novella, both of these pretexts were gone. I was dealing with characters that many people around me would see real life inspirations in them. Also, the prospect of publishing was in the back of my mind, so I knew that if I wrote a sex scene, my mother would read it. That being said, I only held back my apprehensions, rather than holding back my writing. I am such an advocate for art, that I am willing to sacrifice my feelings and my fears if the writing is bettered because of it. I think a writer needs to think of it like this. If my writing can resonate and invoke emotion in another, then I am willing to take slack that the writing may be inspired by someone real.

JRR: You allow much of Catherine’s emotional state to flow through her quill. Do you keep a journal? Do you allow yourself to pluck little bits out of that for your fiction?

SW: I actually don’t keep a journal. I have a couple journals that are just filled with other writer’s words, such as quotes and articles that have really resonated with me. Still, this does inspire a lot of fiction. Although I am a writer, I am a reader first. Every bit of writing I keep in my journal inspires words of my own.

JRR: How well do you need to know a character for a short story or a novella? Should the writer know whether Catherine’s second favorite band is blur or Coldplay, even when that detail will never make it onto the page?

SW: I have seen character sheets online, where a writer can map out obscure details of a character so they can familiarize themselves with their invented characters and make them appear more real on the page. However, I don’t find that necessary. Most of one’s character comes out through interactions with other people, not little details. And if the detail is not helping the story at all, then it shouldn’t take up the writer’s time. So I wouldn’t encourage completely mapping out a character.

Although if the writer subconsciously gives the characters details that never make it into the story, that’s fine. This will most likely happen, as I found that by the end of Too Young to Fall Asleep, I believed that Catherine, Jeffrey, Vince etc. truly exist and thought about them without intending to.

JRR: On a somewhat related note: I have a friend who wrote a wonderful novel, which I’m certain you’ve not read, as it was published in Ireland (Ailbhe Keogan’s Molly and the Cyclops) – but, in it, publishing houses employ actors to work a phone bank and portray characters from the novel. If you could have a chat with an actor portraying anyone in Too Young to Fall Asleep, who would it be, and what might you say to them?

[Personally, I think I’d chat with Jeffrey. He was clearly overmatched for the task of being the anti-recruiter, doing it, Catherine suspects, simply to get out of a physics exam. His inability to perform, or to come up with compelling reasons against joining may have tipped Catherine in that direction. I wonder what sort of responsibility he felt for her injury.]

SW: What an interesting point you bring up! I do agree that getting into Jeffrey’s psyche would be quite interesting. Although, I did feel a huge pull toward Vince in the story. If I do say so, I found him to be a very lovable antagonist. I suppose if I could talk to him, I would want to drink whiskey with him and chat about Neil Young.

JRR: I asked this of Ben Tanzer regarding CCLaP’s first publication Repetition Patterns, but as you are slightly younger than Ben and me, you probably have an interesting perspective and answer. The publishing world seems to be undergoing a slow transition to the digital age – with amazon, Apple, and brick and mortar publishers arguing over the price and format of electronic literature. As a writer whose major work debut was first published in a digital format, are you still attached to the printed word in paper form, or do you see the (Radiohead) model you and CCLaP have used with as the future of publishing? Is digital versus print relevant to you and those writers yet to debut?

SW: I am kind of a contradiction in regards to my thoughts on electronic publishing. I am very much attached to the printed word in paper form but I am not against the digital format. I’ve mentioned this in other interviews but the best way to put it, is that as a reader, I will never choose to read something on the screen. I like the smell of a book. I like the tangibility of it. I am obsessed with book covers and decorating my room with shelves full of novels. As a writer, though, I have nothing against electronic publishing. If I can learn anything from the music industry, it’s that publishing would be making a grave mistake if they denied readers the electronic market that they are demanding. Instead, I am more than willing to utilize the new form and work with the change to get more eyes to read my writing.

JRR:Any final words of wisdom for the writers out there among us, preferably that one thing we’ve all been searching for, yet you’ve already discovered?

SW: It’s funny because I still feel like an aspiring writer myself so I don’t know how much I can really advise others. Instead, the only bit of wisdom I can think of actually comes from Conan O’Brien. A couple weeks ago, I watched his last episode of “The Tonight Show” where he said something that just really resonated with me. He more or less said that if you are kind and hard working, you can achieve anything you want. I agree. In my opinion, kindness and work ethic are the keys to success.

The Town of Hit, Donald Maxwell, 1921

Editor’s Note: Sally Weigel will speak tomorrow April 9, virtually, with Jason Jordan, and finishes her book tour on Sunday, April 11 with the incomparable Kevin Neilson at Between the Lines.