About the author...

MWhere I’ll be:M

Birch Bay Public Market

Friday, May 10 through the end of summer, Cathy and I will be selling her hand-made soaps, lotions, and toiletries, along with my photography, note cards, calenders, books, etc.

Come see us!

Across the street from the C Shop

4825 Alderson Road, Birch Bay, Washington 98230


I had an automated blogroll here, powered by Google Reader, but Google, in its near-infinite lack of wisdom, killed Google Reader. Prior to this murder, all I had to do to put a blog on my blogroll (or to take it off) was to place it in a Reader folder called, appropriately enough, "blogroll" (or, of course, to remove it). I use The Old Reader now for following blogs, but it seems to have no way to something similar regarding the blogroll. If you know of a way to do this, please let me know.

Thoughts on Ann Packer’s stunning novella “Walk for Mankind”

I really and truly wish that there was a way for me to contact Ann Packer.

It seems a bit odd, bordering on downright strange, that there seems to be no public contact information for a compelling modern author, except a way to request a public speaking event, or a way to find out about her bookstore events. I would expect that there would at least be an email address, perhaps in care of one of her publishers, undoubtedly moderated through someone else, but with some hope that she would eventually see something that was sent to her.

(There’s a Facebook account, but I absolutely refuse to have a Facebook account, given their stance on what they think it’s okay to do with your personal information, so that’s out. And in any event, all I could have done there was “Like” some button somewhere. Or play Virtual Pig Farm, or Gangsta Warz, or whatever they’re up to on the book of faces these days.)

So everything I would have said in an email, I’m going to say here, and then I’m going to pretend that she’ll read it. Who knows, maybe she has a Google alert set on her name, or her title, or both. I have alerts on my name and all of my titles, and so should you. (glares intently for a moment)


Ms Packer,

I have just read the opening novella in your collection Swim Back to Me, and I have some things I would like to say. Things like “Stunning. Stupendous. Compelling.”

Walk for Mankind is absolutely among the top three percent of all the fiction I have ever read, and that’s a lot of fiction. What fascinated me the most was the telling of Sasha’s story, through the eyes and viewpoint of a narrator who always seems to be only on the verge of understanding that story himself, and who nonetheless manages to make it all so very clear to the reader. This is something I have tried to do (for instance, in The Dinosaur and the Dragon Lady), and I know how hard it is.

You nailed it.

Just thought you should know that.

Now all the rest of you, go now and get a copy of Swim Back to Me. Read it. Reread it. Repeat as needed.

2 comments to Thoughts on Ann Packer’s stunning novella “Walk for Mankind”

  • While it’s a bit unusual that a modern author only uses Facebook as a means of contact, it’s also true that Facebook’s been spreading its tentacles into nearly every method of communication these days. I see tons of blogs that require a Facebook log-in, just to leave comments!