THURSDAY MORNING COFFEE – Quarterly Newsletter! And stinky mushrooms.


I blog only once a week, and those blogs are sacred. I want to blog about funny things, interesting events, or just blast off a short story for y’all.

The reality of being a full-time writer requires me to promote my recent works. This promotion gets in the way of my blog. I’ve read up on ways other authors deal with this, and here’s what I decided: I’m starting a quarterly newsletter!

  • It will inform you about my writing schedule and upcoming book releases
  • It will list my storytelling appearances (sure, you can bring a book for me to sign!)
  • I’ll also let you know what my characters are doing – there will be a lighthearted short story in every issue.
  • You’ll find out about promotions and coupon codes
  • It will be short and sweet

If you want to read the story as well as find out what’s on sale and what’s discounted and what’s coming out next, fill out the form below. You’ll get a quarterly newsletter. I’ll consider you a loyal fan and you’ll get perks other readers can only dream of! (Yes, seriously.)

This is what I am decidedly NOT going to do:

  • I’ll never ask you to “like” me on Facebook
  • I’ll never share you personal and contact information
  • I won’t post political or controversial articles
  • I won’t do book tours. (Please don’t ask – my time’s better spent writing. If you’d like an autographed copy of a book, let me know using this form.)


Okay, now for the fun part of my blog! As you’re well aware, my family forages for mushrooms. We love getting out in the woods to collect the edible kinds. Every so often we’ll bring a weird mushroom home, take a spore print, and break out all our mushroom guides to identify the new-to-us specimen. Our mushroom hunts are great fun, but they result in more mushrooms than we can use. When I say that, I’m including the ones that get dried or frozen for the winter. We could subsist on myorhizal protein for a year!

Since we’re foodies, we know local chefs. We’ve learned to form this happy synergy, where we can offload an extra five pound of chanterelles in return for a restaurant gift certificate. It’s a win-win situation – the chef gets mushrooms below market price, and we get a free date-night dinner.

Our 19 year old daughter decided to trade her mushrooms for cash. Eating out is a rare luxury for a college student, and she’s more interested in gas money. Few days I ago I was driving through the neighborhood when a familiar, orange shape caught my eye. There was a lovely chicken of the woods mushroom on a stump right by the road! I pulled over, collected the four-pound fungus into a basket that happened to be in the back of the car, and continued on my way home.

“Wow, mom, what will you do with this one?” My daughter asked.

“Well, I’d take it to Raf, but he’s on a vacation…” I eyed her excited expression. “Would you like to sell it for gas money?”

And she would!

But she didn’t.

Three days later, I suspected the kitchen garbage can needed cleaning – but it smelled okay.

Four days later, I scoured the kitchen for signs of spilled food gone bad – but didn’t find any.

Five days later, I was able to follow my nose straight to the source. A basket full of chicken-of-the-woods sat around the corner. Its bright orange turned to gray, the firm flesh just about oozed through my fingers, and its fresh mushroom aroma had turned to something reminiscent of harkarl.

If you don’t know, “harkarl” is a specialty of Iceland. A shark, whose meat is otherwise toxic, is fermented over time to produce a safe-to-eat substance. I had a taste once. It wasn’t bad, if you like stinky cheese as strong as a neglected cat litter box. The downside of adventurous eating: my husband wouldn’t kiss me until I brushed my teeth at home.

Mushrooms are much like fish – high in protein, with a high water content. Leave them out at your own peril. Or, make fungal harkarl.

In any case, don’t expect gas money.



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