Monthly Archives: October 2014

Finding a publisher: It’s a lot like trick-or-treating

I’m lazy (or busy) again. So here is my Intro to this Re-Blog: I was the morning paper route carrier in my neighborhood – so I always had to disguise myself really well when trick-or-treating. Several times before I figured that out – my customers who had not paid their subscription “current” would suddenly turn out the lights and pull the curtains hoping I had not noticed. Seems like publishers do that to me now……

Ned's Blog

image Welcome to a special Halloween Edition of Ned’s Nickel’s Worth on Writing! What makes this week’s NWOW special? In addition to offering writing tips gained from my 15 years as a columnist, I am in Maine this morning dressed as “Pennywise” and waiting in the bushes outside the home of Stephen King!


Because what better way to kick off a special Halloween NWOW than by scaring The Master of Horror® himself! I’ve been working all week on my scary clown voice and borrowed a costume from my neighbor, who, as I discovered, has a whole closet full of costumes. (I didn’t ask why.)

Shhhhh! Here he comes!

“HE-LLOOOO STEVIEEEEE!!… Ummmm, Mr. King?… Sir? oh crap…”

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Tips to jump-start your writing (unless you’re in Arkansas)

Writer’s Cramp? Post Football Game Blues? Too Much Scotch?

Ned's Blog

image It’s Friday, but this one is different! Why? No, not because I woke up with our dog’s nose somewhere we both regret. What makes this Friday different is that 47 years ago today my life got better without me even knowing it — because my wife was born! To celebrate, I’ve taken the next three days off, in part so I can apologize for the fact I just announced her age to more than 5,000 people.

Yeah, that was dumb.

However, I was smart enough to plan ahead and have a post ready for this week’s Nickel’s Worth On Writing which, in case you’re visiting for the first time, is when I take the wisdom gathered from 15 years as a columnist and share it much like U2’s latest album — no one asked for it but they’re getting it for free anyway.

Unlike U2’s album, my weekly feature has…

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Real men are always in control — of themselves, not others

I could not say it any better, so I won’t.

Ned's Blog

image Anyone who reads my weekly newspaper column or blog posts knows I try to keep life in perspective through humor. In fact, I’d say it’s one of the reasons my children are still alive today. While I joke about that, for many years humor was also part of a coping mechanism from a childhood witnessing both verbal and physical abuse by the men in my family — specifically, my father and older brothers.

The good news is that each of them eventually turned themselves, their lives and the lives of the people they loved, around. It wasn’t until I became a father that I realized the impact that a childhood witnessing abuse had on me, and how some of those wounds — as both a witness and recipient — had never truly healed.

I know this because I occasionally saw reflections of my father and brothers in myself as I…

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Deutschland – The country with one people, oodles of fine flavors and at least 1,200 sausages

My Favorite Subject

It’s that time of year again – October – the month following Oktoberfest.  This is when the harvest comes in and the Eiswein flows and the colors jump out of the woods and onto your dinner table.Herbst in Dresden

Hot roasted beef sandwiches – pumpkins turned into everything from breads and soup to decorations and graffiti – and the weather just seems to want to beg you to stay out until dark.


And Herbst (Autumn or Fall) is especially dear to the palate in the central and south of Germany when the winemakers produce “early wine” – Federweißer – and the kitchens put together onion cake – Zwiebelkuchen.  The luscious combination of sweet and sour could not have a more satisfying collision than these two have inside your waiting mouth.

Up North – Berlin has two celebrations coming up.  On Sunday The Festival of Lights opens to awe-inspiring views of the grand architecture around the city.


There are also several regional delights and observances of the harvest bounty the earth brought forth everywhere you go – but most of that will be eclipsed by the coming anniversary of The Fall of the Berlin Wall on November 9th.  Stay Tuned.

Link to BBC News

BBC News – The country with one people and 1,200 sausages. Continue reading

Mr. ArtPrize – Mr. JoJangles: One Man Band

Today is the last day to see Mr. JoJangles at The Gerald R. Ford Museum and the last day of ArtPrize!


Originally discovered on: Mr. JoJangles: One Man Band.

An Awakening Experience – ArtPrize as Pure Democracy

30 Years Ago You Would Not Have Recognized The Place……


Nearly 400,000 visitors attend ArtPrize annually.

The idea of inventing the World’s Largest Art Competition and Exhibition would not have happened without an underlying Spirit.  That Spirit was the awakening in the People of Grand Rapids and the result was the Re-Invention and Re-Generation of a City.  (Detroit take note.)

It took money.  Real money from people who knew that money – when properly seeded and cultivated – would stimulate and reinvigorate a dormant giant.  It was not handed out to the homeless in the form of silver coins – it was invested in the infrastructure that brought an estimated $22 million to the area in 2013.*


The Bottom Line?  This is not Ferguson, MO where civil unrest, rioting and violent protesting attempt to shape public opinion via the media.   These actions become a timid beacon and hollow cry for a higher minimum wage – for racial strife and accusations against authority – a mass hysteria whose basis is solely for increasing economic equality.  This system used for ArtPrize has worked and will work when repeated again without political interference.

This is how Capitalism works.  It works for Everybody.  It works because we as hard-working Americans – Black, White and in Everything In-Between – Strive to Preserve Liberty and Justice and guarantee Equal Opportunity to and for all.


*Link to WOOD TV-8 Story:

Doing The ArtPrize Shuffle

Do What The Best WayFinders Do!

Become Part Of The Experience – Share The Fascination

ArtPrize 2014

Make A Tour Of Grand Rapids A Memorable One

Wayfinders at ArtPrize

You don’t have to be a clown.  But it helps.  Nearly ½ million visitors to the exhibition will challenge your understanding of what it means to be the “face” of the city.

Don’t frown on the opportunity!