Category: Literature

In “Beneath Hallowed Ground” Steven P. Locklin takes on the challenge of linking a plausible Civil War tale to an intriguing current day sleuthing adventure mystery, one in which we know somehow he will enticingly reveal how the Gold at this end of the Rainbow story shall be found.  If you have not yet gotten an Address in Gettysburg, join us for a Now and Then, before President Lincoln punches his ticket at a Theater he should not have a Ford ed.


Nevermet Press

Link to Nevermet Press

Sky Admiral Jules Verne vs. Mark Twainbot – A Match of Titans!

Posted: 07 Dec 2011 09:00 AM PST

Verne vs. Twain - A Match of Titans!Sky Admiral Verne vs. Twainbot – A Match of Titans! is running a contest: Mark Twain vs. Jules Verne Boxing Match. Vote for who would win, and why – and get a free copy of Stories in the Ether for your Kindle along the way! Here’s the highlight from their blog:

It’s ON! Like Grey Poupon! There’s a battle about to commence- a Battle of The Books! And you will take home the spoils! Our own mascots, Sky Admiral Jules Verne and Mark Twainbot are going head-to-head in a fierce competition for supremacy, and they’re both looking for your support. Cast your vote and add some smack-talk (gentlemanly, of course), and we’ll send you a fabulous Steampunk eBook just for participating: “Stories in the Ether, Issue 1″ from Nevermet Press. Ten lucky winners will also receive“Stories in the Ether, Issue 2″ as well!

Also, a savage beating in the boxing-ring will unfold. You won’t want to miss the hilarious exchange in the running comments stream as our combatants spar verbally; and you are encouraged to add your own contribution!

Visit the original post to ENTER the Sweepstakes and Vote on which on of these Titans will be champion!

Cheers all!

Visit the original post, Sky Admiral Jules Verne vs. Mark Twainbot – A Match of Titans!, at Nevermet Press. Subscribe via RSSTwitter, or Facebook.
New Story! “Ghost Hedgehog” by Nina Kiriki Hoffman

"Ghost Hedgehog" With all the places ghosts could go, in this world and the next, who do they keep hanging around Jack? From Nina Kiriki Hoffman comes a new short story, “Ghost Hedgehog“!

Nina Kiriki Hoffman’s first solo novel, The Thread that Binds the Bones, won the Bram Stoker Award. Her short fiction has been shortlisted for every major award in the SF and fantasy field. The illustration is by Goni Montes.

It’s the Muppet Week!

It's the Muppet Week!The Muppets is due out just before Thanksgiving, so is devoting some time to all things Henson!Muppet Week is here and we’re going to be talking about films, puppetry, and the SFF inspirations throughout Henson’s work. Danny Bowes finds the Rainbow Connection in The Muppet Movie, Chris Lough needs to remind you why The Great Muppet Caper is the best Muppet film of the lot, and Emily Asher-Perrin asks the most important question about The Muppets Take Manhattan – are Kermit and Miss Piggy really married? Ryan Britt takes a look at six SF icons who hung out with Kermit and the gang, and we’ve learned that several Muppets tried out for the part of Yoda before the wrinkled one landed the part: see their auditions! Plus, Bridget McGovern discusses Henson’s first major foray into fantasy, 1982’s The Dark Crystal. There’s more coming all week, so don’t miss out on all the laughs, songs and dances!

Barnes & Noble Booksellers Picks Take a Look at New Releases!

Barnes & Noble Bookseller's PicksThe Barnes & Noble Bookseller’s Picks is taking a look atnew releases this month: Michael M. Jones discusses the continuing adventures of a warrior princess in Mike Shepherd’s Kris Longknife: Daring, Gregory Manchess shares some of the year’s most fantastic SFF art inSpectrum 18, Emily Asher-Perrin talks about the nature of the Force in Star Wars: The Old Republic: Revan, and Ron Hogan gives us a vampire dystopia from the brilliant Guillermo del Toro in The Night Eternal. If you want excerpts, we’ve got one from Devon Monk’s Magic on the Line!

While you’re deciding what new books to add to your queue, we’ve got a question for you: what was the very first book you bought with your own money? We asked our readers last week, andwe’ve gotten quite a response so far – chime in with your own stories in the comments!

So Long, Johnny: Kubrick Week Ends

Kubrick's SFFDanny Bowes spent all last week revisiting Stanley Kubrick’s SFF films, but now it’s time to shut down our old friend HAL and send Dr. Strangelove to his top-secret subterranean bunker. In the final installments of the series, Danny praised Jack Nicholson and the visual impact of The Shining, worked through the problematic fever dream that was Eyes Wide Shut, and learned what happens when someone other than Kubrick tries to make a Kubrick film with A.I.: Artificial Intelligence. Don’t forget to check the week’s index for any movies you may have missed!

Girls With Swords and Arrows Set to Dominate Theaters Next Year

The Hunger GamesWe’ve seen quite a few new trailers emerge in the past week, and there seems to be an emerging trend – all over Hollywood, ladies are taking up arms. First, take a peek at the full trailer for The Hunger Games, then head on over to watch a feisty Scottish redhead who’s also pretty handy with a bow in the trailer for Pixar’s Brave. Then, Snow White and the Huntsman and Mirror, Mirror are poised to bring us dueling updates on the same classic fairy tale – watch the trailers here.

In other movie news, it could be that Harry Potter director David Yates is looking to bring Doctor Who to the big screen without building on television show’s continuity (though certain sources are vehemently denying it). Would you go see it? And for SFF at the theaters this past week, our reviewers weigh in on The Immortals and Melancholia! Comes to Google+ on Google+We want to make sure you can find on whatever social media platform you favor. We’ve been bringing you our content through Facebook and Twitter for some time now, and providing extra coverage from all over the web with our specialized Facebook and Twitter satellite accounts, for fans of Science Fiction,FantasyUrban FantasySteampunkArt, and the Wheel of Time series. We are happy to announce that is now available on Google+! So wherever you prefer to hang out on the internet, you can always find you favorite coverage.

Steampunk Jewelry Lives!

Dragons Flys!

Steampunk Neo Victorian Bracelet - Copper brass RED Czech Glass Art Deco DRAGONFLY

Tributes to the Dead Heads!

Roses Are Red

But the Eyes Have It!

Much, Much More! Go now and Adore!

Buy them Up! For Sure, the are now Ashore!

There is something Dull, Gray or Heartless about GreyHart Press's pressing of 
"The Quest for Elena the Fair" by Gill Shutt.

It will cut you to the quick, and quick you to the cuttings, as the squire Govalon, in Serving alone to three Knights journey into the Vanishing Mists,
Read it and Sea what would make Sir Marik the Wrong so Wronged.
Listen and Fear what did unspool Sir Darven the Fool.
Quiver and Quell what did fell the Oxen Sir Jolan.
Begin here the Tale of the First,
Read on to the rest of a Saga of 6 Poems,
"The Legends of Light"

The Legends of Light

Read! Review! Repeat! at 

Loren Foster aka shadolrds
"From Whom Words Shadow Doles"

Women are Worth Something!…But what have they done Lately?

For Ada Lovelace Day, 9 women who left their mark in science and technology

From the first computer program to radiation, we wouldn’t be where we are today without their contributions.



See all Galleries

Gar Field of Dreams….

Build it and they Will Come

Just going to throw out a wild guess, that those are not Hollow Weens?

Myths and Myth Conceptions

Check out the following



Halloween History

What is Halloween?

Halloween History & Halloween Myths

Have some old-fashioned fun! Halloween history, including the Halloween
myths and Halloween games played in the Victorian era.

Published in the “Christian Advocate” in 1884.

What is Halloween?

“Every one knows that All-Hallow Eve, or Halloween, falls on the last day of October, and that the day following, the first of November, is set apart in honor of saints and martyrs by the Western Churches—whence comes its name, All Saints’ Day.”

“This feast was kept in the Greek Church as early as the fourth century, though it did not become common in the West till the beginning of the seventh century.”

“The setting apart of one day sacred to the memory of these saintly departed ones arose from the fact that the number of saints multiplied as the Church grew and prospered, and it was found too burdensome to devote a feast-day to each. Indeed, so great was the number of the canonized, that there were “scarce hours enough in the year to distribute among them all.” So it was decided to commemorate on one special day those who had no particular days of their own. In the English Church the day is sometimes called All-Hallowmas. But it is the eve of the festival that we write about.”

“In the seventh century the Pantheon, the Roman temple dedicated to all the pagan gods, was consecrated to the worship of the Virgin and the Martyrs. The new festival was held at first on May 11th in each year, but later it was shifted to Nov. 1st.”

“Halloween was thereby made to fall on the same day as did an ancient festival among the Druids, those strange priests of a stranger religion who were scattered over many portions of northern Europe before Christianity became its creed. They had many strange ceremonies. For instance: three times in each year — on May 1st at the time of sowing; at the June 21st  summer solstice for the ripening of the crops; and on October 31st at the harvest season — these priests built fires on the hill-tops in Britain, Ireland, and in France, in honor of the sun-god.”

“At the latter festival the Druids, for miles round, gathered in snow-white robes at the altar of stones on some hill. Here rested an emblem of the luminary they worshiped, and on the altar was the sacred fire which bad been carefully kept alive during the past year. The Druids grouped themselves around it, and at a given signal quenched it, amid absolute silence on the part of the assembled people.”

“Then a new fire was kindled on the cairn, a mound of stones, as the multitude raised a mighty shout, and from every eminence for miles around other fires blazed into view. The same night the fire was put out in every cabin and farmhouse, only to be rekindled with embers from the sacred fire of the priests, which was believed to protect each homestead from peril as long as it remained burning.”

“In those days faith in the existence of fairies and goblins, witches and sprites, was very strong, and as the Druidic faith faded before the advance of Christianity the heathen festivals lost much of their old grandeur and former significance, and took on a lower character. So, on the night of October 31st, the simple country-folk believed that the fairies came out of their grottos while witches and goblins gathered in forest glades, or plotted against mankind in the shadows of ruinous castles and keeps.”

“By a very natural transition the Halloween fire came to be looked on as a charm against these sprites. As a result, late as the seventeenth century, it was customary for farmers to make the circuit of their fields with a lighted torch in hand, to protect them from harm during the year, chanting or singing a doggerel rhyme the while.”

“Because these unseen magic powers were deemed to be so near at this season, Halloween was thought to be the night of all nights on which to pry into the secrets of the future, and thus arose all those simple ceremonies by which it was claimed that one’s fate might be learned. Of course, no sensible person now believes that by cracking nuts, ducking one’s head in a tub of water for apples, dropping melted lead in a goblet, pulling kale, or eating an apple before a mirror, anything supernatural or ghostly will be seen or heard; but the pleasant fireside revelries survive, though they have lost their superstitious significance.”


“In England, Scotland, America, and even in far-off Australia — wherever, in fact, the Saxon tongue is spoken — these Halloween festivities are kept up by young and old. But it is in the two first-named countries that Halloween frolics are seen at their best. Great bonfires are still kindled in many places, around which the villagers join hands in a merry dance. Then, as the flames subside into a pile of glowing embers, the real fun begins.”

“The first ceremony in Scotland consists in “pulling the kale.” Kale is a sort of cabbage. Lads and lasses go out in couples, hand in hand, with eyes shut, and pull the first head of kale they touch. The fact of its being crooked or straight, large or small, is said to be emblematic of the height and figure of the coming husband or wife. If any earth clings to the roots, that means money; while the sweet or bitter taste of the heart of the kale denotes the dis­position of the prospective life-partner.”

Burning nuts

“Burning nuts is another equally famous charm. Two hazelnuts are placed in the fire, having been previously named for the particular lad and lass about to try their fortune. Accordingly as they burn quietly side by side, or crack and sputter and break apart, will be the result of the wooing. Says Burns:

The auld gudewife’s weel hoarded nits
Are round and round divided,
And monie lads’ and lasses’ fates
Are there that night decided.
Some kindle, couthie, side by side,
And burn thegither trimly;
Some start awa’ with saucy pride,
And jump out-owre the chimlie.

Dish game

“In England the following charm is frequently tried: Three dishes are taken; one is empty; one is filled with clear water; and the third with dirty water. A boy is blindfolded and led to the hearth where the dishes are set in a row. Then he dips the left hand in one of the dishes — if in the dish with clean water his wife will be a maid, if in the dish with the foul water she will be a widow, if in the empty dish he will remain ”a horrid old bachelor.” The trial should be made three times, meanwhile the dishes should be shifted about.”

“In the country districts of Scotland much faith is reposed in this formula: Go to a south-running stream, and dip your sleeve in it at a spot where the lands of three lands come together. Then go home, hang the wet garment before the fire, and go to bed in full view of it. Keep awake, and sometime near midnight you will be rewarded by seeing an apparition, bearing an exact likeness to the future husband or wife, come and turn the sleeve ‘as if to dry the other side of it.'”

looking-glass spell“Doubtless many an American girl of English or Scotch ancestry has heard of, or tried, the “looking-glass spell.” The curious one must go, candle in hand, to a mirror, eat an apple while standing before it, and in due time the face of her destined husband will be seen reflected in the glass across her shoulder.”

“There is a mirth-provoking game played in England on Halloween — perhaps in America too. A hoop from a flour-barrel is taken, and around it is fastened alternately at regular intervals apples, cakes, candies, and candle-ends. The hoop is then suspended from the ceiling and set to revolving. The players gather in a circle round it, and each in turn tries to bite one of the edibles. The boy or girl who is so unfortunate as to seize one of the candles pays forfeit.”

“In England and in America, Halloween frolics are nowadays mere harmless sports. Although in Scotland they still retain a more or less superstitious character, it is clear that, in being repeated from year to year as simple holiday merrymakings, the mysteries of Halloween have arrived at their final stage; and perhaps, as more years have flown they will perchance be forgotten.”



Check out these great renditions of old and new Childhood Favorites!
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A new kind of children’s book publisher.


by  on October 10, 2011

Hi everyone and welcome to Jackson Fish Market Books. Two years ago, we launched an online children’s book service called A Story Before Bed. The service lets parents, grandparents, teachers, authors, and even kids record videos of themselves reading a children’s book that can be played back over and over again. We’ve been lucky enough to work with some amazing children’s book publishers who’ve put their books up on A Story Before Bed including Charlesbridge,SoundprintsOrca Book PublishersChronicle BooksSourcebooksImmedium, and more. It’s possible that being around all those great children’s books inspired us to create some of our own. Or maybe we just always had it in us and needed a venue to express it. Either way, in the course of creating A Story Before Bed, with an amazing team of authors and illustrators we’ve hand-crafted over sixty children’s books. And while we’ve talked about it informally, we’ve decided to officially launch our publishing imprint — Jackson Fish Market Books.

To celebrate the launch of this new venture, we’ve decided to do something a little different. We’re taking our entire catalog of books, and making them available for download completely free for non-commercial use. Kids, parents, grandparents, teachers, librarians… go crazy. Download them allThey’re all completely free.

Welcome to Jackson Fish Market Books. We’re extremely pleased that you’ve come to visit. Happy reading. :D (And if you get a chance… definitely check out A Story Before Bed.)

I once saw a quote in one of the larger used books stores (long ago bought out and driven out of business by that wyrm Ouroboros, eater of its own tail, named Amazon)

“To add a library to a house is to give that house a soul.”
― Marcus Tullius Cicero

Oh, I stole T.J Cliffe’s Odin cattle quote and added it to my list also!

“Cattle know when they ought to go home, and they leave the pasture; but the foolish man never knows the measure of his own stomach.” – Odin – Norse God

Cattle, milk cows at least, are easily trained, heading in to be milked when their udders get too heavy and full with milk, usually in the mornings.
Till the cows come home.

I could dance with you till the cows come home. On second thoughts, I’d rather dance with the cows till you came home. (Duck Soup) Groucho Marx
Groucho Marx was never one to pass up an opportunity for a play on words and this occurs in his dialogue of the 1933 film Duck Soup:

Alas, poor Beowulf! I knew him, TJ Cliffe, a fellow of infinite
jest, of most excellent fancy. He hath bore me on his back a
thousand times, and now how abhorr’d in my imagination it is!

Something is rotten in the state of Old English.

(mixing in some Bardic lines, and looking forwards to the new Shakespeare movie ANONYMOUS

File:Anonymous 2011 film poster.jpg

, which implies the Bard was not real but merely concocted! which would make his quote so very true:
“All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players: they have their exits and their entrances; and one man in his time plays many parts, his acts being seven ages.”)

There’s a reason he says “state of Denmark” rather than just Denmark: the fish is rotting from the head down—all is not well at the top of the political hierarchy.

So much so in most if not all governments these days. Many are the rants I have felt and posted.
So easily I digress, and leave so many in distress.

See T.J. Cliffe’s review of Beowulf: A New Verse Translation at Goodreads

I think I was in North Carolina, smack dab in the middle of the Great Dismal Swamp, on the Pasquotank River, in the City of Elizabeth (hows that for a tie in to Elizabethan times) when I first struggled my way through Beowulf, back in ’77 or ’78. The City Fathers in their wisdom filled in the Swimming Pool, as they did not approve of “their” Children swimming with the “other” Children, so no Children could swim was their solution to equality and desegregation. Everyone was expected to trot on down to the swim in the muddy brown sludgy cypress juice, copperhead, water moccasin, alligator, snapping turtle, malaria bearing mosquito larva, leech infested semi solid fluids they labelled the “River”. I’m sure Grendel’s mother would have felt right at home.

See photos at

Cypress on Lake Drummond 1. Credit: USFWS

Seeing as how you couldn’t really see anything until it surfaced or chomped down on your extremities I think there might of been a few things what swam and slithered in them thar waters which Adam did not see to know to name.

Cypress at Lake Drummond 3. Credit: USFWS

But enough for now, time for blasphemy and besmirchment of the “Opiate of the Masses” (by that other Marx Brother, Karl, NOT!) some other time, or in some other time, when their is time for time, or is it time times time, time cubed, or time rooted?

Oh to be able to root through and loot the British Museum’s hidden stores. All roads may lead to Rome, but the originals are in London.