Fern Ridge Review
Sweet Lorane Community News
September 12, 2019
By Pat Edwards
As I begin this week’s column, I look outside my window at the rain coming down. The bird feeder my daughter gave to me last Mother’s Day that hangs on the other side of the glass continues to be populated by the cute little chickadees who will probably be keeping me company as I work on my computer throughout the winter. The other day I saw a little wild bunny hopping across the open space on the other side of our backyard fence where I also have seen deer and squirrels who also occasionally visit. Beyond that are large fir trees which today are allowing a little sunshine to peek through when it appears through the clouds.
This is my happy place right now and definitely where I want to be… which is a good thing, because usually by now I have the Groundwaters annual anthology over halfway done. There have been too many other things to focus on lately, and I have a lot of catching up to do before we publish it in mid-October.
Each year, as I add stories and poetry produced by the amazing talent that we have in Lane County, I marvel at how much good reading each book contains… the wide variety of topics and genres we feature make each one special.
For the 2019 book, we have 54 stories and 90 poems to share with our readers. One of our regular local authors, Terah Van Dusen, contributed a beautiful story called “Earthside; A Birth Story” about the labor and birth of her baby, Autumn, and what it was like to become a first-time mother.
Another of our regulars, Demetri Liontos, has included several charming stories of his childhood. One, called, “Kings of the Castle” tells about English boys challenging French boys to play street hockey on the streets of Montreal where he grew up.
Michael Matchulat included his wonderful story, “The Holy Grail,” about when he was a teenage boy who had just lost his father, and being taken on a memorable salmon fishing trip at a time when he needed a friend and an experience to allow him to begin to heal.
For those who are into fantasy, David Erickson has submitted his “Orlah’s Lament,” and Vicki Sourdry has come through with another of her excellent science fiction pieces called “The Path Not Taken.” There are so many more of these wonderful stories to read.
And the poetry! I never appreciated poetry before I began working with Groundwaters, but that has changed. I’ve learned that a poem doesn’t have to rhyme, but it can pack in emotions, beauty and amazement of the world around us in just a few words. The subject matter can run the gamut of relationships, loss, pain, joy, love, nostalgia, Mother Nature, adventure, furry pets, personal experiences and so much more.
I’m not ashamed to admit that I am promoting our anthology here. I have long felt that I have not done enough to build up our readership. I want to give the works of each of our 60-70 writers and poets per book as much exposure as possible, because many have never published before and they deserve to have their contributions read and appreciated. But, anthologies don’t sell well and bookstores won’t carry them, so their readership remains small.
Groundwaters’ goal is to showcase these writers and poets—not to profit from the book monetarily. The sales of the books cover our insurance and business licenses and a little towards our time, but most of that is donated. In fact, if any local library, senior center, organization or business wishes to have a copy of the Groundwaters anthology for its bookshelves or waiting rooms, we will be glad to donate copies. Just let me know via email… firstname.lastname@example.org.
I’ll be busily working on the layout for the next several weeks in my happy place while the chickadees cheerfully prepare for winter.