Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Hobo's Books: the blog for From My Shelf!: Geek Pride Day

Hobo's Books: the blog for From My Shelf!: Geek Pride Day: What is a geek? The word comes from the German word geck, meaning fool, and in the late 1800s the term geek referred to a performer in a t...

Thursday, May 19, 2016

How to order from Wellsboro's Only Bookstore


Hello, you don't have to be in Wellsboro to support Wellsboro's only bookstore. We have a website. If you like our website, you'll love our store. The website works well enough for us, for new books, but we also list our used books at half.com (via ebay) and some specialty books through alibris.com and through ebay. If there's anything you'd like to order with us, new or used, or see if we can get for you, we are as close as our contact info:

Of course, on our website

Phone: 570-724-5793

on facebook almost all the time, amongst the staff: look us up at "From My Shelf Books" on facebook

Or, use this email! from_my_shelf@yahoo.com

We promise to get back to you super-quick, to answer any questions, or place any orders for you.

Although it does not currently reflect this on our website, any orders over $30 will get you free shipping. If you credit card has been authorized for a larger amount for shipping, we will simply re-adjust the shipping fees before actually charging your credit card through the website.

We hope you can come visit us in Wellsboro soon, but in the meantime, thanks for checking us out.

Thanks, again!!

Kasey, Kevin,
Huck & Finn, bookstore cats
and all the staff at From My Shelf

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

If You Want to Read About Wellsboro Winning...You Have to Vote!



Wellsboro is a quarter finalist in the inaugural 2016 America’s Main Streets contest and is now vying to be one of the 10 semifinalists in the national competition for $25,000 for downtown revitalization and “buying local” activities. The top 25 were chosen by public vote from 253 nominees from 44 states. Running the contest is Independent We Stand, the national small business movement.

The top 10 will be chosen by the total number of public votes they receive by May 29. Here's how you can help. Cast an online vote once every 24 hours between now and 11:59 p.m. Sunday, May 29 by visiting MainStreetContest.com, clicking on the Wellsboro Main Street photograph and then on "Vote.” Only one vote can be cast from a computer IP address every 24 hours. Or, vote by going to the Wellsboro Area Chamber of Commerce’s Facebook page or the From My Shelf Books & Gifts Facebook page.

“The goal of this inaugural Independent We Stand ‘America’s Main Streets’ contest is to promote the importance and strong economic benefits of Main Streets and the small businesses that help them thrive,” said Independent We Stand co-founder Bill Brunelle. For more information, call the chamber at 570-724-1926



If You Want to Read About Wellsboro Winning...You Have to Vote!

Monday, May 16, 2016

My Best Friend's Exorcism


I got to read the book as an advanced reader copy and meet the author. I loved this book but hell if I know where to shelve it in the store. It's as if Judy Blume, Stephen King and Christopher Moore got together for cocktails and decided to write a book. It's fun. It's quirky. It's a hell of a ride, and we have it in stock.

A heartwarming story of friendship and demonic possession. The year is 1988. High school sophomores Abby and Gretchen have been best friends since fourth grade. But after an evening of skinny-dipping goes disastrously wrong, Gretchen begins to act different. She's moody. She's irritable. And bizarre incidents keep happening whenever she's nearby. Abby's investigation leads her to some startling discoveries and by the time their story reaches its terrifying conclusion, the fate of Abby and Gretchen will be determined by a single question: "Is their friendship powerful enough to beat the devil?" Like an unholy hybrid of "Beaches" and "The Exorcist," "My Best Friend's Exorcism" blends teen angst, adolescent drama, unspeakable horrors, and a mix of 80s pop songs into a pulse-pounding supernatural thriller.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

The First Two Scenes of "Operation Ragnarok"



Here's the first two scenes of my upcoming novella, Operation Ragnarok. I've shopped it around to several agents. One agent said it wasn't for him, but that he would buy it and read it. Another agent said it was a fun idea, but to put it in a drawer and publish a novel and when I had several novels under my belt that it would sell. So, I decided to self-publish.

I started a Kickstarter to purchase the ISBN and barcode and to pay for the final edit, cover art and Ingramspark. It's been test read and edited by those who were not always kind, but good editors. I've decided to post the first two scenes for free so you can see if the book is for you. It's not for everyone, but if you like role-playing, especially D&D, the Vikings on the History channel, Norse Mythology, then there's a chance this book is for you.



Operation Ragnarok



We are all just killing time until time eventually kills us. Today I celebrated my forty-sixth birthday. Yippee, I'm one day closer to death. It's a little morbid, but it's true. No one gets out alive. Death awaits us all. What comes after? I've spent many a night thinking about just that.

Should I expect the white, fluffy clouds and the Pearly Gates of the endless jokes and cartoons? Is a pleasant Afterlife only available to those of the Judeo-Christian faith? Will there be virgins? Does it matter? Is sex even allowed in Heaven?

There are so many hang-ups about doing the deed on the Earthly plain that I can't imagine the situation improving once I shuffle off this mortal coil. What types of intercourse would be acceptable? Would it be missionary only? Is a hummer out of the question? What about breasts? Heaven doesn't sound so great of there aren't boobs. I'm not sure I'm interested if I never see a nice pair of sweater puppies again. What's the point?

People keep yakking about the definition of traditional marriage and whether it's a sin for two people of the same gender to tie the knot. I don't know, and I couldn't care less. I only know I'd end up getting screwed, lose half my stuff, and pay alimony, regardless of whom I married.

I was forced to attend Sunday school, and the only lesson I took away was that I should avoid apples and serpents, which brings up another point. How about meat? My doctor told me to cut down on the amount of saturated fats, and eat more fruits and vegetables. Of course I'd have to eat more fruit and veggies if I cut down on meat! I'd have to fill the empty void of my stomach with something--like beer--since there wasn't enough protein and fat to fill it.

Is there beer in heaven? If Jesus could perform the miracle of water into wine, then there damn well better be an ice, cold beer waiting for me. Yup, if I can't get a nice T-bone steak done medium well with a greasy side of curly fries and a cold brew, then I'm not sure about the whole concept of "paradise."

I guess you could say I've thought about it a little bit. Who hasn't? When my friend Tom, the preacher, says our loved ones are in a better place, are they really? Everyone agrees, because we want it to be true. I want it to be true, but is it?

We go through life knowing death is waiting, but not knowing what comes after. We pretend that one day we'll march up to Saint Peter, stroll through those Pearly Gates, pick up a harp, and commence to be bored shitless for eternity. Our final reward awaits, whatever it is, but sometimes it's not as far in the future as you want. Death doesn't wait. Now I don't have to wonder anymore, because I died.

***

The sages say, a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Mine started with just a single click. This is an epic tale full of danger, adventure, friends, a wolf the size of a bull moose, and fear--lots and lots of fear--and it all started on my living room couch.

My name is Kevin, and I'm an English teacher. I love teaching. I love molding young minds, inspiring hope, igniting imaginations, and fostering a love of learning. I love helping kids learn to think for themselves. Of course, it isn't always like that. In fact, it seldom is. I strive to generate passion. I often fail.

Teaching is frustrating as hell. I should be working on my novel, or reading, but after a long week of wrestling with bureaucrats, listening to poor excuses from students, and struggling to be politically correct, I'm exhausted.

I don't remember not being able to read. I've always loved it, and I love stories in all their forms. I enjoy a good movie. Cracking a cold beer and catching an old flick helps me to relax after my interaction with the public school system. I mean, I love my job, and treasure my students, but sometimes the bureaucracy causes me to forget that.

So, this story began as I was power-lounging on the couch my ex left after the divorce. She didn't want it. It's ugly, huge, and heavy. It's one of those sleeper sofas, and uncomfortable as hell, but I didn't have to move it again. I had just finished a scrumptious dinner of Salisbury steak, courtesy of Chef Hungry Man.

I was surfing the Internet and half-watching The Vikings, an adventure movie from the 1950's starring Tony Curtis and Ernest Borgnine. Those were the days. If you wanted something, you took it. The Viking Age was looking pretty sweet.

I've decided my youth was wasted. I wanted to be a pirate. What boy doesn't? Sadly, there weren't any classes on swashbuckling, or even sailing, in my rural town, and my parents wouldn't have paid for them anyway.

My father encouraged me to be something practical. Something that paid well, like an engineer, but I hated math classes. I did love classic science fiction, and wanted to go to Mars. My father suggested being an astronaut. I wanted to read.

I should have taken a stab at being a Viking, or taken more science classes. You can't go berserk in today's world--at least not without the consequences of probation or therapy, or both. Sailing the ocean blue, meeting exotic women, killing their husbands, or if things didn't go as planned, trading with the natives and drinking mead. It's a win-win scenario. My youth really was wasted.

With a deep sigh of regret, I scrolled through Facebook on my laptop, reading about how great everyone pretends life is. Meanwhile, Tony and Ernie were raping and pillaging their merry way across England on the TV. On my computer, I came across this interesting article about a museum that will sell you a real Viking longboat.

Reading on, I saw that the longboat in question was not a thousand year old relic, but a ship made with the authentic tools and methods of the Viking Age. That would be really cool. Who needs to nurse a mid-life crisis with a little, red corvette and a big-breasted blond if you can afford to own your very own Viking longboat complete with a fierce dragon head?

Now if I only had the funds, or the credit to purchase such a ship, I could raid the English coast in style. Who was I kidding? I'm paying alimony, and my Subaru wasn't paid off yet. Plus, I'd need new tires soon. The only thing being pillaged around here was my savings account, I thought.

My fat, lazy, orange cat jumped on the couch and curled up in my lap. I gave him a good scratch on the ears. "You know what, Loki? A respectable Viking wouldn't buy a ship from a bunch of stuffy intellectuals. A real Viking would steal this longboat. Scratch that, I mean pilfer it. Pilfering it sounds so much better than stealing, but I can't do it alone. I'm going to need a crew. I'll just share this article to my Facebook page so I can find it later."

Who would like to join my Viking crew and help pilfer this genuine Viking longboat?

"See, Loki, that ought to get me a like or two. I'll bet my left kidney that Tom responds before the end of the night. All this fantasizing is giving me a powerful thirst. Come on, cat, don't look so comfortable. It's time for a hearty drink of mead for me, and some tap water for you. I'll race you to the kitchen."

I decided it was time to stretch my hypothetical sea legs and get some exercise. I'd have to start training if I was going to be raiding the coast. It's only twenty feet from the living room to the kitchen, but it was a start. I promised myself that Monday, I'd start back in the gym with Bill.

I opened the refrigerator aaaaand...I guess I'd be settling for a Pabst Blue Ribbon. I popped the beer and went back to the couch to finish my movie and check my messages. I saw my post on the Viking longboat already had thirteen likes, and everyone in my Dungeons & Dragons group has made a comment. Yup, Tom was the first.

Tom: I'll bring the beer.

Bill: HAVE YOU GUYS SIGNED MY ONLINE PETITION YET?

Annette: Make sure Bill wears at least a loincloth if he comes.

Barry: Are you able to go fishing in it?

James: Remember we start a new campaign tomorrow. Be nice to your DM and he'll be good to you.

I always say: If you are going to dream, shoot for the stars, that way if you fail, you'll be in the cold vacuum of space, and no one will hear you scream. I swilled my beer, and shut down my laptop for the night.

***

Just click on the Viking longboat to be taken to the Kickstarter


Friday, May 13, 2016

Help Wellsboro Win - Vote!



Wellsboro is a quarter finalist in the inaugural 2016 America’s Main Streets contest and is now vying to be one of the 10 semifinalists in the national competition for $25,000 for downtown revitalization and “buying local” activities. The top 25 were chosen by public vote from 253 nominees from 44 states. Running the contest is Independent We Stand, the national small business movement.

The top 10 will be chosen by the total number of public votes they receive by May 29. Here's how you can help. Cast an online vote once every 24 hours between now and 11:59 p.m. Sunday, May 29 by visiting MainStreetContest.com, clicking on the Wellsboro Main Street photograph and then on "Vote.” Only one vote can be cast from a computer IP address every 24 hours. Or, vote by going to the Wellsboro Area Chamber of Commerce’s Facebook page or the From My Shelf Books & Gifts Facebook page.

“The goal of this inaugural Independent We Stand ‘America’s Main Streets’ contest is to promote the importance and strong economic benefits of Main Streets and the small businesses that help them thrive,” said Independent We Stand co-founder Bill Brunelle. For more information, call the chamber at 570-724-1926


Just click on the Thunderbird Stealing Wynken, Blynken & Nod to be taken to the Website to Vote! Hurry, So We Can Get the Statue Back!

Thursday, May 12, 2016

The Little Book of Zombie Mathematics: 25 Zombie-Based Maths Problems



This book contains twenty-five zombie-based maths problems of varying difficulty. These problems are provided in an informal and amusing manner that encourages an interest in recreational mathematics

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Could You Help Wellsboro Pennsylvania Make the Top Ten?



My family is from Wellsboro. I was born in Wellsboro. I've moved away and moved back to Wellsboro. I love Wellsboro. That's why I nominated Wellsboro for 2016 America’s Main Streets contest. The winner gets $25,000 cash to go towards downtown re-vitalization and shop local campaigns, which would be great. My goal was to give Wellsboro and surrounding Tioga County some needed promotion. Well, with your help, Wellsboro made the second round and made it to the top twenty-five.

Now, Wellsboro needs your help to make it to the top ten. Here's how to do it. You can visit the From My Shelf Books & Gifts Facebook page where it will be pinned to the top, or visit MainStreetContest.com to vote. You can vote once a day from an IP address until the stroke of midnight May 29 EST. Then the top ten main streets in America will proceed to Round 3, where a panel of judges will choose the winner. The winner will be announced June 3rd.

“The goal of this inaugural Independent We Stand ‘America’s Main Streets’ contest is to promote the importance and strong economic benefits of Main Streets and the small businesses that help them thrive,” says Independent We Stand co-founder Bill Brunelle. “We are so pleased to see how passionate people are about their Main Streets.

That's my goal too. I'm invested in Wellsboro. I own a Wellsboro small business, From My Shelf Books & Gifts, with my wife Kasey Cox Coolidge, and remember the Wellsboro Main Street of my youth. It was a great going downtown. It still is, but it could be better. With your votes, and your patronage, we can all make Wellsboro and Tioga County stronger for the future.

Click on the Wynken, Blynken & Nod to be Taken to the Website to Cast Your Vote

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Who would like to join my Viking crew and help pilfer this genuine Viking longboat?


If you'd like to join my crew, this novella is for you. I've written a novella about a a group of middle-aged D&D players who are going through a mid-life crisis, and decide to steal a genuine Viking longship from a museum. It's The Night of the Museum meets the Vikings with a touch of Stand by Me vibe. If you enjoy Dungeon & Dragons, Norse Mythology and geek culture, this book is for you.

The problem with a novella is that it's too long for a short story and too short for a novel. It's about 22,500 words, a little longer than The Old Man and the Sea by Hemmingway. An agent told me he loved it, but to put it in a drawer and write a novel. Maybe I could sell it once I've published a few novels. Well, I can't count on that. So, I started a Kickstarter campaign.

For every ten dollars you contribute to the campaign, you will receive an autographed copy of Operation Ragnarok. The ten dollars includes shipping anywhere in the United States. International shipping is expensive, but if I reach my goal, the book will be available in Canada, Australia, the European Union, and the United Kingdom. You can order it from a local bookstore or online retailer.

The book is written. I just need to purchase an ISBN and bar code, get the book formatted, and pay Ingram Spark, the company I am using to publish. Essentially, I'm using the Kickstarter to gauge interest and to take pre-orders. If you love this book, I am planning on it being a series.


Just click on the Viking longship to be taken to the Kickstarter campaign










Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Help Wellsboro Get to the Top Ten!


WELLSBORO, PA—Independent We Stand, the national small business movement, has announced the 25 quarterfinalists of its inaugural 2016 America’s Main Streets contest. The 25 top vote-getters were chosen by public vote from the 253 nominees from 44 states.

Wellsboro, Pennsylvania, a quarterfinalist, is seeking more public votes to be selected as one of the 10 semifinalists in the national competition for $25,000 for downtown revitalization and “buying local” activities.

Voting for the semifinalists starts today, Monday, May 2 at 10 a.m. and ends at midnight on Sunday, May 29.

"If you’ve visited Wellsboro’s gaslight lined streets, you know there’s something special about this town, and now America knows it too," said Kevin Coolidge, a member of the Wellsboro Area Chamber of Commerce and the owner of From My Shelf Books & Gifts, an independent bookstore at 7 East Avenue.

“We are encouraging people to vote for Wellsboro once a day from their IP addresses,” Coolidge said. "Based on the contest rules, everybody can cast an online vote once every 24 hours now through May 29 by visiting MainStreetContest.com.

Or, people can vote by going to the Wellsboro Area Chamber of Commerce’s Facebook page.

The top 10 main streets in America will proceed to the final round, where a panel of judges will select the winner and announce their decision June 3.

We have an active chamber of commerce with over 300 members who are working together to build a strong community for today and tomorrow," Coolidge noted.

A relaxed and friendly vibe emanates from the Wellsboro community and its residents, according to Julie VanNess, Wellsboro chamber executive director. “Our town's tree-lined streets, grassy boulevards lined with gaslights, stately homes, and the town square known as “The Green” welcome you with hometown charm,” she said.

Founded in 1806, Wellsboro is the county seat of Tioga County and only minutes from the Pennsylvania Grand Canyon, Pine Creek and the Pine Creek Rail Trail.

“Wellsboro’s Main Street and the community-at-large boast a wide variety of family-owned shops and businesses offering personal attention to your needs,” VanNess added.

“Lodging, food and unique storefronts can all be found in the Wellsboro area. That’s why the community is a favorite stop for those traveling Route 6 called “One of America’s most scenic drives” by National Geographic.

The goal of this national contest is "to promote the importance of America’s Main Streets and the small businesses that help them thrive," said Bill Brunelle, Independent We Stand co-founder and executive director.

Run by Independent We Stand, the national small business movement, the contest is a project of the Main Street America program operated by the National Main Street Center, which is a subsidiary of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

“We are so pleased to see how passionate people are about their Main Streets,” Brunelle said. “It’s evident by the broad range of nominations representing 44 states. Now, it’s time to rally and vote again for these 25 terrific quarterfinalists.”

For more information about Wellsboro, call 570-724-1926, email info@wellsboropa.com or visit Home - Wellsboro Area Chamber of Commerce | PA


Just Click on the Image of Wellsboro to be Taken to the Website to Cast Your Vote