Presentation on Civil War Timepieces at the Carnegie Library, Carnegie PA (near Pittsburgh), on Saturday, February 10, 2018 at 1 PM.

I have accepted an invitation to speak at the “Second Saturday” Civil War Lecture Series at the Carnegie Library in Carnegie PA.  The talk will take place adjacent to the Civil War Room, where the Captain Thomas Espy Post #153 of the local GAR continued to meet into the early 1900’s.  Today, the room remains in a high state of preservation, and still houses the many documents and relics of that bygone historic organization.

Please see the “Upcoming Events & Exhibits” Section of the Pocket Horology Page for further details about my presentation, or see the Carnegie Library lecture Series flyer, here:

February 10 2018 2nd Sat Carnegie Lib Lecture flyer

Part I Book Signing and Birthday Party

On October 7, 2017, approximately forty friends and relatives gathered at Ciccanti’s Italian Restaurant in Clairton PA to celebrate both the public release of Part I of Gennebar Rising, and my wonderful wife Maria’s sixty seventh birthday.  There was great food, an open bar, and a scrumptious birthday cake from Moio’s Italian Bakery.  Three first cousins, the gold star daughters of my Uncle Bernard, whose name inspired that of one of the main characters in my novels, came in from Boston, from Princeton, New Jersey, and from rural New Mexico to join me.  (My cousin Felice from New Jersey was expected.  Her two sisters, Barbara and Joyce, were a complete and delightful surprise!)  Maria got her favorite birthday present: the company of our daughter Annie, who came in from Louisville, Kentucky to spend the weekend with us.  Annie is behind my left shoulder in the picture below, talking to her boyfriend Mike, who came in from DC to join us. I signed many copies of Part I at the party.

Like myself, many of my friends are Old Time musicians.  They came with their instruments – fiddles, banjos, mandolins, guitars, a dulcimer and a bass fiddle – and we had us a terrific jam.  Here is a picture from the party.  That’s me with the banjo next to my friend Bill, who is playing the guitar.  A great time was had by all.

Part I Book Release & Maria's 67th Birthday Party 10-7-17

The Left-Handed Kohane Blues

The cover illustration for Part I of Gennebar Rising actually depicts a scene from Part II, in which the main character, Arol, is standing in front of an enormous meteorite protruding from the bottom of an impact crater.  One may notice that the artist, Victor Mosquera, happens to have placed the sword in Arol’s left hand, making him left-handed.  This was a lucky coincidence of which I heartily approve.  I like this for two reasons.

Continue reading “The Left-Handed Kohane Blues”

The Character Names in Gennebar Rising

Several friends have asked how I came up with my character names.  I was not entirely consistent in my naming approach for all the characters, but I endeavored to make the names of most of the Gennebri characters sound at least vaguely Hebraic.  Most of the place names in Gennebar were chosen with the same idea in mind.  Similarly, the names of most of the Drenarian characters sound approximately Roman, but I even directly appropriated a couple of historically significant Roman names and re-purposed them.  Beyond that, I deliberately made many of the Gennebri names end with an “l” sound, (as in Arol, Lemuel, Dimacielle, Zemakiel, etc.), so as to lend them a kind of group consistency, as one might expect from the names in an actual real world culture.  Of course, some Gennebri characters’ names parallel actual biblical names in a recognizable way (e.g., Meshnab – Moses, Methasomol – Methuselah, Daviel – David, Gamleol – Gamaliel, etc.), but a few were special.

Continue reading “The Character Names in Gennebar Rising”