Friday, May 18, 2012


Terry Burns
by Terry Burns
Copyright 2012
author & agent for Hartline Literary Agency

I'm in an invitation only online group with some of the most published western writers today. Most of them have published hundreds of books. I've always been amazed that they invited me in.

They have been discussing something that is very good news if the trend continues. They have been noticing that royalties have been trending higher than in recent years. Berkley, which has been a mainstay of the western book market even when some other publishers quit doing them or scaled back is bringing back some earlier series.

Monday, May 14, 2012


Stephen Bly  (1944-2011)

The man who called me on the phone the other night sounded friendly…maybe too friendly. It was the old, “Hi, Stephen. How are you doin’? How’s everything in Idaho? How’s the weather treatin’ the ranchers? Well, I know you aren’t thinkin’ about the busy fall yet, but I ran across a deal and you came to mind. Have you got a minute to hear about a truly great bargain?”

I took a breath and jumped right in. “I am rather tied up. Let’s get right to it. What are you trying to sell me?”

“Oh, well,” he stammered, as though I threw him off script. “Can I call back at a more convenient time?”

“I’ll be busy then too,” I insisted.
Dino Power air compressor

He finally admitted he felt sure I’d want to purchase his air compressor. I asked about the price, the quality. Then, I discovered my long lost ‘friend’ worked for a telemarketing company. I explained that a) I had no use for an air compressor, and b) I never buy anything on the phone anyway. 

(As a side note: A week later, I noticed the same product at a warehouse store for $150 cheaper than the phone guy stated -- when you added up the installment payments he emphasized). He had the nerve to try to hornswoggle me. 

Wednesday, May 09, 2012


Janet Chester Bly at Oregon Beach
by Janet Chester Bly
Copyright 2008

When I need peace, I face the music. I pull out the CDs that pulsate with gentle wind, waves and seagull sounds, such as "Ocean Tides Interludes" by Steven Gruskin. I almost feel a crackling in my spine and spirit as my very sinews soothe.

Or I pluck up the full range of offerings by John Denver.
Or any Bill & Gloria Gaither recording will do.
Or I download a full orchestra without voices.

In that one way, I can call upon the healing benefits of peace any time I want. And so can you. What are your peace tunes?

If you were assaulted by noisy neighbors in a hotel room what songs would you play on your iPod or Walkman that would mask the intrusive clamor and help you fall asleep? What would bring quiet? Rest? Sweet relief? Once you've isolate your trove of tunes, record them back-to-back, so you can enjoy the best ones straight through for your peace break. I like to pull a couple here and there from each singer or group I enjoy.

Play them when pouring over your tax returns. Or dealing with your ex. Or trying to figure out a new computer. Or answering the phone for the umpteenth ring. Listen to them while doing housework or homework, commuting to your job, or raking leaves (pine needles in my neck of the woods). Orchestrate your own placid isle at the peak of your storms. The world in all its fury may remain, but the sharp points can be softened.

If you have means, hire your own live music. That's how King Saul tamed his inner beast. "Some of Saul's servants suggested a remedy. 'Let us find a good musician to play the harp for you whenever the tormenting spirit is bothering you. The harp music will quiet you, and you will soon be well again'" (1 Samuel 16:16 NIV).


What's the music that washes peace over you every time you hear it?


Get free article downloads, such as "31 Days To Win The Fight For Personal Peace," for yourself or your study group at the Bly Books website: