Duke Southard

Author, Educator, Lecturer

The Writing Process

Winning Contests, Selling Books

 The photo show me reading a snippet of the first place winning personal essay in the Society of Southwestern Authors 2017 Writing Competition yesterday at the award luncheon.

For those  looking only for Stacey Burns posts from this blog, you are excused from this one if you wish. Please note that I really don’t want this to sound egotistical, although many will perceive it as such.  (and it probably does.) It is a dilemma for which I’d welcome any opinions or suggestions.

For three years straight, three short personal essays of mine have placed first in large… Continue reading

Oasis Journal

I’m happy to announce that two of my short pieces were selected to be published in the Oasis Journal-2017, which was just released. One of my Green Valley Writers Forum colleagues, Bonnie Papenfuss, also had a very touching and poignant poem included in this 560 page anthology. It is available on Amazon and elsewhere. One of my two pieces is part of a larger work in progress about growing up with a “Greatest Generation” father. The second relates a few experiences as a volunteer meals-on-wheels driver.

Amazon Reviews and Making Money

This post is really two topics in one but they might be related. Please don’t think I am complaining. This is purely an informational blog post.

First, every author will tell you that Amazon reviews of books is critical to the success of a good book. My five books have a total of thirty-seven reviews with thirty five stars and seven four stars. That would seem to indicate that the books have a chance at being successful, right?  (Assuming that not all the reviews were written by my family-they weren’t!) Obviously it would be helpful to… Continue reading

Works in Progress

This photo is taken at The Country Bookseller in Wolfeboro, N.H. at a book signing of Cracks in the Wall.

As a change of pace, I thought I would let people know what I am working on, literarily speaking, as those who have read my books do ask me on occasion.

In addition to a number of short pieces of fiction and personal essays I have submitted to a number of different outlets and contests, I continue to work on a new novel, which at this point is slated to be the last of the Detective Parker … Continue reading

Abused women in fiction

In March, I spoke to a large group of book club members, all of whom had read my latest novel, Cracks in the Wall.

After the program, a woman approached me and informed me that she “didn’t like any of the women in the book.” She went on to explain that she thought they were weak and should have shown more backbone when dealing with the men who exploited them. That conversation stimulated my thinking about the female characters in the book, especially the protagonist, Linda Phillips.

Since the character is based on research… Continue reading

“In Case Anyone Cares”

As I wait to see if my “hot tip” bears any fruit with the New Hampshire State Police in the investigation of the Stacey Burns murder, I thought I’d offer a change of pace for this blog.

This post is the opening paragraph in a memoir (first draft) about growing up with a “Greatest Generation” father. The tongue-in-cheek title is “In Case Anyone Cares,” a title my wife dislikes intensely.

The memoir is about sixty pages along. I wonder if, after reading this opening paragraph, anyone would want to continue reading.

The Greatest Generation?

Perhaps Not!

“The… Continue reading

Website embarassment

Embarrassing or what!

Just went in to update my bio on www.dukesouthard.com and found that the “About” page was about two years (or more) out of date! Time does fly, doesn’t it?

When I present programs, I usually open with why I feel qualified to speak with a group, using my writing credentials as evidence. Well, many of those credentials did not appear in my bio on the website!

Hope you will check out the updated version on www.dukesouthard.com!

Thanks-

Duke

On writing, and Christmas

It’s been over two weeks since I last posted on this blog and this is just a “catch up” post.

I hope all followers had a happy Thanksgiving. We had an enjoyable trip to the East Coast, visiting with family and friends along the way.  It is hard to keep up with writing and posting when traveling but I’m ready to set out a few pre-New Years goals.

First, I will try to post on the blog at least once every three days, or more often if the occasion warrants it.

Second, I will continue work on… Continue reading

A Failed Experiment?

In an allegorical piece titled “The Failed Experiment,” I call attention to the Biblical Divine Council, a group of six who are helping the Sovereign make decisions about the fate of the human race. Here is what the advocate for the continent of North America has to say about his experience with humanity, especially those in the noble experiment begun in 1776.

“The struggle has been both satisfying and spirit-crushing. The hope that one of our countries could somehow send the momentum for a better world spinning in a positive direction was a euphoric experience at the beginning, but soon… Continue reading

What Wall?

Some have asked about the title of my new book. What does “Cracks in the Wall” mean?

In Live Free or Die, Josie says, “Sometimes we can still see over or through the cracks in the wall we’ve built to shield us from the past.” Have any of you known someone who was trying to start over, trying to rebuild a life? In order to do that, a person needs to think about building a symbolic wall if they truly intend to start over. The past can be a serious impediment to moving ahead with a new direction… Continue reading

I'm Duke Southard, author, educator, and lecturer.

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