Sunday, July 5, 2015

John Swan

John Swan has had an extensive career as as a fine artist. His work is admired and collected world wide, and represents his many interests , travels and adventures.

A native of Maine, he divides his time between his studio home in Portland, his summer home in Rangeley, and the Bahamas where he spends a large part of every winter chasing bonefish and painting his brilliantly colored tropical watercolors.

"Pancakes and Fireflies" is his first children's book, which he has both written and illustrated. Inspired by John's grandson James, it is a story of a young boy who in the company of his father and grandfather experiences a special day of wonder and exploration in the great outdoors.

For more info on John Swan, visit

Come meet John Swan and many more Maine authors at Books in Boothbay -- this Saturday, July 11!

Eva Murray

Eva Murray moved to Matinicus Island in 1987 expecting to serve for one year as the island's kindergarten-to-8th grade one-room school teacher. Instead of moving on afterward, she married and has been a full-time and year-round island resident for the past 28 years. Eva and her husband Paul, the island electrician, raised their two children on Matinicus (both have now graduated from college).

For roughly 15 years Eva has been a regular columnist for a number of Maine newspapers and magazines. Her first book, Well Out to Sea—Year-round on Matinicus Island, is a collection of essays describing the details of offshore life. Some of the short pieces are touching, many are irreverent, and all provide insight into “how things really work” on a remote Maine island.

Eva’s second book, Island Schoolhouse—One room for all takes the reader inside Maine’s remaining public one-room elementary schools, introducing teachers, students and communities for whom one-room school is an ordinary, 21st-century reality.

In Island Birthday, Eva’s first book for children, readers sense the exasperation all islanders feel when bad weather interferes with transportation, as it so often does! Riley, a boy of about eight, waits a bit impatiently for his birthday presents which must be delivered by airplane across the water. As he visits with his hardworking neighbors—a lobster boat crew, a working artist, the postal clerk, the telephone man, etc.-- he sees that everybody is waiting for something, and the inconveniences of island life are made up for by close friendships and a supportive community.

In addition to working as a freelance writer Eva Murray is an emergency medical technician, wilderness first responder, CPR instructor and SAR volunteer; she runs Matinicus Island’s solid waste and recycling program; she operates an island bakery each summer, and she is finishing work on a graduate certificate in Gifted and Talented Education. She is also a student pilot.

Come meet Eva Murray and many other Maine authors at Books in Boothbay on July 11!

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Liza Kleinman

Liza Kleinman is a freelance writer who lives in Portland, Maine. Her fiction has appeared in several magazines, including Crossborder, Hayden's Ferry Review, and Portland Magazine, as well as in the anthology Writes of Passage: Coming of Age Stories and Memoirs from the Hudson Review. Her first novel, Azalea, Unschooled, was published by Islandport Press in May 2015.

Wendy Ulmer

Wendy Ulmer, author of My Twelve Maine Christmas Days, is a former public school music and English teacher with 21years experience. Prior to teaching, she was a Registered Music Therapist, working in both clinical and public school settings.

Come meet Wendy Ulmer at Books in Boothbay!

Friday, July 3, 2015

Glenda MacLauchlan

Glenda MacLauchlan's There Is Life After Martinis tells a poignant story of a woman’s journey from the crippling shackles of alcoholism to a joyful life of sobriety.

Like many others, Glenda was raised in a chaotic home. The damage done in childhood led to a life of tension, fear and learned unhealthy behaviors. Encouraged by mom and dad, she started drinking in her teens. She recounts a story of spiralling down the same path as her parents. For way too long, she insisted life as “party girl” was what she wanted, right up until her arrest for drunken driving.

Glenda shares colorful, sometimes humorous stories of life in her 20’s living in Hawaii. Her love of music, especially Elvis Presley’s, provided refuge in childhood and remains a constant today.

Come meet Glenda MacLauchlan and other Maine authors at Books in Boothbay on July 11!

Connie Saindon

Connie Saindon is the author of the Murder Survivor's Handbook.

What are your ties to Maine or the Boothbay Peninsula?
I was born in Boothbay Harbor which is where my grandparents lived. Gramps worked at Sampson Ship Yard and was and painter. My mother bought a cottage in Ocean Point and I purchased it from her in 1991. Since then I have come  to Boothbay every summer. I winter in San Diego, CA where I developed my career as a mental health professional. 

What is your favorite thing about writing in Maine?
The subject I have been writing about it a tough one. Having the incredible beauty of Maine and its nearby ocean serves to counterbalance the difficult topic for me. My twice daily walks in Ocean Point and the friendliness of all I encounter in the Boothbay area make it possible for me to write and get sustenance too. 

What are the most important themes in your work?

The themes in this work is focused on providing self-help for those who want to understand lives or must live a life changed by a violent death. 

Tell us about the book you will be signing at Books In Boothbay this year?

Murder Survivors Handbook: Real-Life Stories, Tips and Resources. Unlike CSI, this book will give readers  a true accounting of what folks go through when someone they loved was murdered. The topics are selected to be of greatest concern to survivors of murder where ever they live across the country. Although not an encyclopedia nor a bible, this is truly a resource that has not been available before. 

The book is organized with ten topics that those who had a loved one murdered may need resources on. There are eleven survivors who answer questions pertaining to each of the ten chapter topic. All survivors were granted anonymity in order to not only protect them from further harm but also to allow them to be candid.  

There are an additional 20 contributors and reviewers from criminal justice, mental health and research that add helpful information. Each chapter ends with additional resources to take the inquiry of the topic further.  

What do you hope readers will discover in your latest book?

I hope they will be able to remove any judgment about people who lose someone to murder. My brother aged nine could no longer play with his friend because his sister was murdered. 

I hope readers the resilience of the survivor writers  amid such enormous wounds of their " life sentence."

I hope survivors and those who work with them will find paths to follow and questions answered by using this resource.

What do you feel about the future of our local libraries? 

I see our libraries as a safe hub, rich in resources  where communities can connect and make a difference by strengthening and enriching our world. The local library can meld curiosity and divergent views  with resources and technology  at our fingertips amid meetings, trainings and discussions. 

Fran Hodgkins

Fran Hodgkins is the author of Secret Galaxy and other books.

What are your ties to Maine or the Boothbay Peninsula?

We’ve lived here in Maine for about seven years now. We had come to the midcoast area several times to do book events for Down East when we lived in Massachusetts, and when the time came to return to New England after living briefly in Maryland, we decided that the midcoast area was the right place for us.

What is your favorite thing about writing in Maine?

I love the community of writers and illustrators here. I also love being able to sit at my kitchen table with the windows open and hear the small river that runs behind my house. Inspiring!

What are the most important themes in your work?

As a nonfiction writer, curiosity is always important, and in my nonfiction work about animals, such as Little Loon and Andre, I’m always interested in how humans affect the lives of the other creatures with whom we share the planet.

Tell us about the books you will be signing at Books In Boothbay this year.

I’m not entirely sure what will be there, but here’s info on two of my latest. The Secret Galaxy came out from Tilbury House last October; it tells the story of the Milky Way galaxy in the galaxy’s own voice, including not just the science but also the cultural history of what people believed the galaxy to be when they saw it in the night sky.  In July Little Loon is due out from Down East; it’s the realistic story of a loon family.

What do you hope readers will discover in your latest book?
In The Secret Galaxy, I hope that readers will be inspired to get outside and look up at the sky. Maine is a wonderful place to stargaze because we don’t have as much light pollution as many other locations do. For readers who do live in places where it’s hard to see the night sky, I wanted to show them what there is to look forward to!

What do you feel about the future of our local libraries?
Libraries are the lifeblood of any community, and they, probably more than any other community institution, reflect the changes that society is experiencing, both culturally and technologically. Not everybody is pleased that libraries aren’t just for reading silently anymore, but they’ve changed. They offer technology access to those who cannot afford it on their own, and they’re the new “town square” – the place where people come together. I think that this role will continue to grow and that librarians will continue to be the best defense against Orwell’s Big Brother, ignorance, and intolerance. I guess you could say I’m a huge fan!

Come meet Fran Hodgkins and other Maine authors at Books in Boothbay on July 11!