Friday, December 18, 2015

A story by Carolyn Carnell........Joyce Oroz

During the holiday season, the cleverest thing one can do is reuse last years gift bags and last years gifts and gadgets in the name of saving money and the planet. Win, win. However, some things should never be stashed away in the first place, like the card I received from my friend Carolyn Carnell. Some things are so good they must be shared immediately. Carolyn is muti-multi talented in health and healing and so many other areas. And now she writes!
mural by Linda Bjornson

Greetings From Krampus

What does it mean? I hear a knock at the door, and opening it up I see it's Krampus, and invite him in for a cup of tea. Krampus enters, but isn't interested in a cup of tea. But I insist, and he obliges. Hmm...does this mean Krampus has a soft spot behind the scary facade of goat-like face with long spindly horns? He is three times my size and has a bit of a drool on the left side of his open mouth, making visible all his pointed teeth ready to gnaw into anything that perturbs him.
It seems possible that could even be me. Why else would he be here? We already know it's not for the tea, and while waiting for the water to boil, I learn Krampus is not into small talk. I ask, how's the weather been where you come from? The response (grunt) is a bit vague, if you ask me. I pour each of us a cup of tea and, feeling a bit anxious, I take a sip of Earl Grey, which has wonderful healing properties, with bergamot-orange, known for calming down the nervous system and uplifting one's spirits. I definitely could use that right now just like Krampus could use a pedicure for those unruly hoofs of his. I ask Krampus how he likes the tea. I get a disgruntled grunt - a not so subtle hint: Can we get back to matters at hand?
Yes, of course.
I sit face to face with this beast and after taking a deep breath I say, "Krampus, I've heard a lot about you, but this is the first time I've met you. Why have you come now?" The grunts and groans are coming at an alarming rate, raising and lowering in tone. But something else is happening as well. Somehow I am able to understand what it all means. It is all my aches and pains and feelings of frustration. As this realization hits my mind, Krampus begins getting smaller right in front of my very eyes. Could it be Krampus really me? He is shrinking even faster now, the more I understand and forgive myself. Krampus is now the size of a baby. I bend over and pick-up baby Krampus and hold him in my arms. I tell him I Love him and kiss him on the forehead. He playfully giggle-grunts and with a blink of an eye disappears completely, leaving only the tea cup behind as a reminder that in order to be free you just need to invite Krampus in for a cup of tea.

Thank you, Carolyn, and Merry Christmas
hand carved Santa by Barbara Scoles

Thursday, December 3, 2015

A recent Interview.........Joyce Oroz

A recent interview
When did you realize you wanted to write?
People probably think a writer pops out of the womb with a big “W” imprinted on her forehead, and the smell of ink on her baby-breath. Not always true. The first sixty years of my life were spent avoiding reading and writing, probably because I hated school so much, which was probably because I was an introverted dyslectic child. The only exception to the “no-read-no-write” rule was the Nancy Drew series and letters to Mom.
Decades later, thanks to modern technology and spell-check, I am able to appreciate the joys and frustrations of writing. I happened onto writing when my long-time mural painting career suddenly and unexpectedly ended. I had painted my whole life. I thought, dreamed and lived to paint. I felt lost without a brush in my hand and needed a way to express myself. It just happened that my dusty computer was feeling alone and under-used. I settled into my roll-around chair and never looked back. I had discovered a universal truth. Writing is just like painting but without the mess.
Did you originally want to write cozy mysteries or did you try other types of writing as well?
My first timid crack at writing was a series of children’s stories written for my grandchildren. Twenty-seven stories later, I longed to write a real book. Nancy Drew came to mind. She had made a permanent mark on my impressionable little twelve-year-old brain. I took a few college courses in creative writing, and somewhere along the way I had an epiphany. If I wrote a page a day I would have a 350-page book in a year’s time.  Secure the Ranch was born nine months later with 410 pages. I didn’t know it at the time, but I had written my first “cozy” mystery because I hate ugly language and blood. I create a clean murder and emphasize the shenanigans, adventure and character interaction that go with every mystery.

What inspires you to write? Are there places or jobs have made an impact on your writing?
My previous life of painting murals inspires my new life of writing about a gal who paints murals and solves mysteries on the side. I gave Josephine my red truck and my best brushes. She can handle the work because she’s younger, stronger and smarter than I. I didn’t want my protagonist to be exactly like me, so I left out husband, children, grandchildren, gardening and gophers. I write in first person which allows me to control Josephine’s brain and her craving for donuts.

What is your writing process like?
My writing style is “by the seat of my pajama pants” style. I’m retired so I write when I can find the time—between 10 grandchildren, husband, dog, friends, garden and gophers. I try to write for an hour or two everyday. I average six days a week. That’s why it takes the better part of a year to write a book, but that’s OK because the ideas come slowly.

How do you get over writer’s block?
Sometimes new ideas refuse to come at all. I tell myself to relax, clear my brain, kind of like meditation. Unfortunately, the best ideas come to mind while I’m in the shower or driving in heavy traffic. Sometimes they come from just sitting at the computer, waiting and waiting. One good idea can lead to many pages of adventure. Writing is the greatest adventure of all because through all the excitement the writer is safe at her desk.

How have your characters developed and grown throughout your series?
Josephine is still making mistakes, pre-judging people and chasing bad guys in the wrong direction, but she has a few things in her favor; her boy friend, her best girlfriend, her very smart dog and luck. I wish I could say that she has evolved, grown, matured. Actually she is a really good person with a few flaws. Without flaws and bad judgment there could be no story. Josephine would figure out the murder mystery on the first page.
Fortunately, her best friend has all her ores in the water. Alicia is bright and uses common sense. Jo’s boyfriend, David is a solid, steady influence. Even the dog is grounded. It’s Josephine and the new people she meets who keep us entertained.  

What does it feel like to finish a novel?
When I finally finish a book, which I have done seven times at this point, I feel like I just kicked the ball over the goal post in front of 50,000 people. But the feeling only lasts a week or two and then I’m driven to start writing all over again. It’s like a box of chocolate—can’t stop at just one.

Do you have any words of advice for aspiring writers?
Once you decide to be a writer, put your heart and time into it. Write between classes, on your lunch hour, soaking in the tub. Think about your story and characters in the shower and driving in traffic. You won’t even remember the drive. It’s one thing to talk about being a writer, it’s another thing to jump into the muddy trenches and work your computer into a frenzy.

Do you have any plans/ideas for your next novel?
I am between books this week. #7 is finished and #8 has not revealed itself.  

How do you try to connect with your readers?
I am taking a break from writing for a second reason, it’s the book selling season. I have several book signings lined up—lots of people to meet, lots to talk about.

writing a book is like riding a turtle--slow but steady
What would you say is the most difficult and the most enjoyable thing about writing is?
Writing has a tendency to put the writer into the spotlight. I had avoided such things my whole life, now I embrace the opportunity to meet people. There is no sweeter sound than a fan saying, “I loved your last book.”
Is there anything else you’d like to add about your novel(s) or anything else you’d like readers to know?

I want to give a big thank you to my publisher, Cozy Cat Press.
All seven books in my Josephine Stuart Mystery Series are available at Amazon and Kindle.

Friday, November 13, 2015

AHA Holiday Art Festival.......Joyce Oroz

Holiday Art Festival

Of all the events in Aromas, my favorite is the annual Holiday Art Festival, 
Saturday, November 21st and Sunday November 22nd. What a wonderful 
way to spend a day in the newly refurbished Aromas Grange, by the fire, 
sipping hot cider, surrounded by artwork. This year the Aromas Hills Artisans 
are going beyond just baked goods and hot drinks, all the way to lunch.
Moving on from the fireplace and food, visitors will have opportunities 
to learn a craft and make something wonderful to take home. Christine West 
will offer instruction on making multi-layered cards, Diedra Kmetovic will 
demonstrate making an easy scarf or God’s eye ornament and Andrea McCann 
will show us how to make cards with relief printing. Kay will offer guidance 
in painting with wax to make greeting cards. They are so beautiful!
Back to the main event, the Aroma Grange has a large room that will be 
chock full of booths loaded with original art such as wood carvings, embroidery, 
silver jewelry, fused glass, stained glass, pottery, succulents, garden art, quilts, 
paintings, photography, greeting cards, handmade Christmas ornaments and 
fabric gifts and local authors selling their books. My latest book in the Josephine 
Stuart Mystery Series will be available at a special Holiday price. Debra Smith 
will be signing her wonderful teen fantasy books. 
As if that’s not enough, tickets 
for the raffle will be on sale until 
Sunday at 2:00. 
The prizes are wonderful pieces 
of art donated by the Aromas Hills 
It is an amazing collection of paintings, 
pottery, carved wood, jewelry and 
much more.
This is a festival you won’t want to miss. 
The lovely little town of Aromas 
is located just off  highway 129, 
halfway between Watsonville and 
highway 101. 
While you’re in town, check out the six AHA murals. One of them is new this year. 
I’ll give you a hint—it’s at the library. See you there!
For information call Kay at 831-594-0033

Monday, November 2, 2015

Boris Joyce Oroz

Here is a sneak preview of Scent of a $windle

Chapter One

Barely awake Sunday morning, September fifth, I stumbled down an unfamiliar hallway, moving toward glints of moonlight from a bank of kitchen windows. Why was my cell phone ringing at three a.m.? “Should have left it by the bed,” I grumbled to Solow. Images of emergencies, disasters and my elderly parents shot through sleep-deprived brain cells. I found my purse hooked on a chair and frantically fumbled through the clutter inside, tossing aside tissues, receipts, gum wrappers, a checkbook, a half-eaten power bar and some loose change.
Solow put his nose to the back door and barked.
“Not now, I have to answer…oh darn it; it’s going to be a message.” I put the cell phone down, let my basset out the back door and thought I found a light switch, but it turned out to be a garbage disposal that jarred the bananas out of me. As I stood by the door waiting for Solow to reappear, my hand found the real light switch.
“What in Sam Hill?” a voice screamed.
“Quiet, bird!” I snapped at the large cockatoo perched on a dowel stretching across his three-foot by three-foot by six-foot tall wire cage, wedged between a loaded china cabinet on the left and a fearful portrait of Tom Trippy’s grandmother on the right. Solow and I were in the Trippys’ home at three in the morning because I had agreed to babysit their house and a newly-acquired cockatoo named Boris, better known as Bad Boy.
“Sorry, Boris, calm down, and don’t screech at me!” Clutching the phone in one hand, I pushed the light switch down. Instantly, quiet darkness returned. I let Solow back into the kitchen and felt my way along the hall to my assigned room, a three-hundred-square-foot guest bedroom featuring rosewood furniture with fancy silk, lace and ruffled accessories. Fancy had no place in my “normal” life as a country girl artist.
White carpet prevailed in the four-thousand-square-foot, single-story house on top of a knoll in Prunedale, California. Tom and Lois Trippy had planned a thirty-day trip to Europe long before they’d unexpectedly inherited Boris from their neighbor at the bottom of the hill. Their neighbor, ninety-seven-year-old Henry Hobblestone had died from an accidental gunshot wound, the local newspaper reported. “The elderly man was obviously cleaning his rifle when it accidentally went off.”
Henry had promised to give Lois his bird when he died. Or maybe he made Lois promise to take the bird if he died. Either way, Lois was tied to the care of an eighteen-year-old snowy white cockatoo with peach-colored cheeks and under-wings. After forty years of a childless marriage with no pets and plenty of white carpet, the Trippy life style would certainly change now that Boris had arrived.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Bill McQuary's Joyce Oroz

I am here today to talk about passion. Without passion books would be dull, 
paintings blah and life would be lived in black and white instead of Technicolor. 
Whenever you read an especially good story or see a painting that captures your 
soul, you can bet the creator of such work loved the creative process. 
When all the skill and passion come 
together perfectly, we have lift-off, the “aha” moment, a faster heart beat.
Speaking of passion and creativity, I want to tell you about Bill McQuary, 
a valued member of the Aromas Hills Artisans group. He and his wife Edita 
live in Watsonville, where he creates pictures of Yosemite with paint on 
canvas and pen on paper drawings suitable for framing. More than suitable, 
beautiful would be more like it. Much of his work represents scenes of 
Yosemite because Bill is an avid hiker, in love with the most 
amazing park in California or anywhere.

Bill began his artistic adventure when he was thirteen years old with a 
paint-by-number picture. His neighbor encouraged him to paint and by the 
time he was a senior in high school he knew he wanted to major in art. 
He attended West Hills College in Coalinga, 
California where he was active in sports, especially basketball, music, 
jazz and “the big bands” in particular and of course art.
Bill went on to study at Fresno State under artist, Darwin Musselman. 
He earned a BA in art and went on to the San Francisco Art Institute 
where he studied abstract art and figure drawing. The abstract art loosened
up his work, although Bill is best known for his realistic style.
Many people are able to find a career where they can use their art training,
but Bill was able to use his training working for US Geological Survey. 
He worked as a technical illustrator for the scientists. 
King Huber was a scientist for Yosemite Valley, working on plate-tech-tonics.
Bill later went to work for FEMA and after that held interesting positions at 
Mono Lake and then with the Parks dept. His love of art and music never 
wavered. He studied art history for many years—most of his life, actually. 
Frederick Edmond Church is one of his favorite American artists. 
He believes that America, especially the western states have inspired great 
landscaping because of their diversity and grandeur. 
As an avid nature-lover, Bill hikes, 
backpacks, photographs and sketches 
the Sierras. When he is at home in 
Watsonville, outside on his patio, 
he turns the sketches and photographs 
into beautiful paintings.
Bill is currently working as a 
docent at the Di Young Museum in San 
Francisco, helping visitors to be 
inspired by great artists, learn from 
the past and study contemporary artists 
such as Larry Hill.
If you would like to drop Bill a line:
A call to AHA artisans! I have openings for interviews. 
Please contact me at

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Great Joyce Riley

By Joyce Riley
I am sorry to see October go,
To look ahead at rain and snow,
To see another red leaf falling
And hear the last, late bluebird calling.
I’m sorry for our garden bed,
For frost on roses and pumpkin heads,
For shorter days and longer nights,
Our stove’s voracious appetite.
Still, there is much to be grateful for:
A cord of wood outside our door,
A fire in the fire place,
A cozy bed, a warm embrace,
Soon, the silence of snowflakes falling,
The telephone, a neighbor calling.
When November slips from sight
I will settle down to read and write,
Remembering that winter brings,
The promise of another spring.

                                                         Cuddle-up, winter's coming

There’s a touch of autumn in the air,
Not much but it is there,
Soothing a sun parched land.
There’s a ripple in the trees.
Tired leaves are touched
And tinted by a gold tipped hand.
The painter’s hand is crimson, now.
Transforming leaves and boughs
From a dusty green to gold and umber.
Frost turns the landscape into flame
And game obeys an urge
Awakened from its slumber.
There’s a touch of winter in the air,
Not much, but the trees are bare
And geese have flown from sight
Now, where the picnic table stood
Fire wood is stacked and ready
To give us warmth and fire light.
Autumn’s story, now completed,
Will, in time, be repeated.

I trace them ‘til bright beams of light
Sweep the tears and rain from sight.
                                                            I smell the rain coming!

Thank you, Joyce Riley for your lovely poems.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Author Joyce Oroz: Joyce Oroz Joyce Oroz

What if the Hokey-Pokey really is what it’s all about?
Actually I took the hokey-pokey from my latest book, Roller Rubout. 
If you have ever skated at a roller rink, you probably know all about 
the hokey-pokey. But I doubt your rink was as exciting as the one in 
Santa Cruz where Josephine is painting a mural.

For some, the old Roller Rink has its charm. 
Sometimes I hold real still, close my eyes and 
feel the memories. I picture the skaters 
rounding the turn at the far end of the rink. 
The floor vibrates as the pack roars toward 
me and turns, rounding the corner in 
complete unison like a school of sardines 
chased by a hungry shark. The roar dies 
down for a moment, and then increases as 
the pack takes the curve again, close to 
where I sit.

And then there is the sub-pack, younger and less astute 
skaters who wobble around the rink, clunkity clunck, sticking 
close to the rails. One or two rounds of plodding and they’re 
Funny how people clump together. I see a roomy rink, but 
most of the skaters are packed together, yet careful to 
leave a bit of elbow room. And then the final song of the 
evening, the Hokey-Pokey. After the Hokey-Pokey, the 
pack disperses.

I recently watched Capitola’s famous rowboat races. 
Two rowboats, each carrying a couple half-grown 
children, race each other around a buoy about ten 
yards away and ten yards back. What could happen?
Two little boats churned across a placid, duck 
infested river. The boats automatically bunch together 
like Siamese twins, twisting their ores together until they 
come to a full stop.  Yes, one boat finally finished first. 
But what fun would it be for the spectators without 
boat-bunching and ore-tangling?

Friday, August 28, 2015

Big Jim had a Dream.........Joyce Oroz

Today it's me, the computer and my old friend, Author Big Jim Williams. He says he had a dream he wants to share. I love the way he squishes humor into his writing. As a major radio personality, humor is part of what he does. If you don't mind a little cattle dust in your throat, but love a good story, read his newest book, "Cattle Drive."
Here is Big Jim in his own words:

 “Abraham Lincoln Likes my ‘Cattle Drive’ Book”

By Big Jim Williams

I spoke with Abraham Lincoln the other night,” I said.
“You did what?” asked my friend. Dan.
“I exchanged words with the Great Emancipator,” I repeated.
“But Abraham Lincoln’s been dead a hundred and fifty years.”
“I thought so, too, but that didn’t stop him from swapping words about politics, books, and how the Dodgers are doing?”
“The Dodgers? The baseball team?”
“Abe’s a big fan. Watches all the games”
My friend cleared his throat and smiled at me like a straightjacket salesman measuring a new client.
“The great Civil War president,” I continued, “came right into my dream.”
“Ah, now I understand,” said Dan. “So you admit you were dreaming.”
“Of course. But things were just as real as when John Wayne rode a horse into my bedroom last week when I was dancing with Marilyn Monroe. Pooped on the floor, too.”
“The horse, John Wayne, or--”
“The horse of course,” I interrupted. “A man can always use another scoop or two of fertilizer for his garden.”
“Jim, those are sure mighty strange dream you’re having,” said Dan. “But all you writers are weird or you wouldn’t be writers.”
“The real nice part about my dream,” I continued, “is that Honest Abe, the Old Rail Splitter, said he’s been reading my new western novel, Cattle Drive, and liked it. Said it was some of the most exciting words he’d read since writing the Emancipation Proclamation.”
“You’re kidding?”

“Nope, I wouldn’t lie about something that important. Abraham Lincoln sure made my day, or should I say night. Said he also loved my new series, Jake Silverhorn’s Revenge, and would be delighted to write a supportive blurb on the back of my Cattle Drive book if I wanted one.”
“An endorsement by Abraham Lincoln!” exclaimed Dan. “That’s unbelievable.”
“That should help sell a few copies,” said I.
“So, what did our sixteenth President write on the book jacket?”
“He wrote, ‘Cattle Drive by Big Jim Williams is a great book about the Old West. I couldn’t put it down. It’s a page turner full of cattle stampedes, double-dealing gamblers, wild women, friendships, broken promises, and more gunplay than a night out in Ford’s Theatre.’”
“Wow! President Abraham Lincoln actually wrote that?”
“Yep.”“But I still find your dreams hard to believe?” questioned Dan.
“Now,” I said, “all I need to do is get book endorsements from John Wayne and Marilyn Monroe.”

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Author Joyce Oroz: Joyce Riley is Right.........Joyce Oroz

Author Joyce Oroz: Joyce Riley is Right.........Joyce Oroz: I finished my book--that's a good feeling. I feel like starting another book--that's a bad thing. I finished a painting--that's ...

Joyce Riley is Right.........Joyce Oroz

I finished my book--that's a good feeling. I feel like starting another book--that's a bad thing. I finished a painting--that's a good feeling. I'd like to start another painting. But instead I will take some time off.
The following poem by Joyce Riley expresses my feelings very well.

A New Page

I turned the pages, scene by scene
and filled the spaces in between.

"Grocery shop", "Clean and mop"
"An appointment and a meeting"
"Garden day, Bills to pay"
"Time to change the sheeting"

Some days I raced, pursuing youth.
I even wrote down, "pray for truth"

On any day the world could view
long lists of things I had to do.

That calendar has now been cast
into a closet called, "the past"

A new one bids me, "Start again"
"Be sure to write down where and when"

I fear to think what life would be
without those pages guiding me.

Still, I wonder, "If I leave bare
"One day here and one day there

"Would it make much difference when
"A new year comes around again?"

I think it might just suit me well
to plan on nothing for a spell.

To wake and rise just when I like.
To throw on clothes and take a hike

Or tuck myself into a nook
and read an uninstructive book

To be, not aimless but loose and free.
I think I'll schedule that day for me.

by Joyce Riley

Monday, August 17, 2015

Author Joyce Oroz: Writing Joyce Oroz

Author Joyce Oroz: Writing Joyce Oroz: My advice to beginning writers Writing is something you can do between other things such as school or work. Chances are you won’t w...

Writing Joyce Oroz

My advice to beginning writers

Writing is something you can do between other things such as school or work. Chances are you won’t write the most popular, best selling novel right away. It could happen, but most likely you’ll have to study and write, work and write, think and write, keep writing and hope that you will be “published” some day.

I don’t mean to sound bleak, but there are millions of “writers” in this world struggling to get their work noticed and published. It doesn’t matter how fast you write, it matters that you are like the turtle—you don’t give up. Anything worthwhile is worth working your fingers to the bone and then some. But the truth is, writing isn’t “work” if you enjoy doing it.

Write what you know about, your experiences, thoughts, beliefs. If your character is going to the Congo, research the Congo thoroughly. Want to include a fox terrier, research it. Be able to describe its bark, attitude, quirks, even its odor. Convince your readers they are looking at the thing you describe. Make it believable, even if it’s a three-headed toad wearing miss-matched socks.

I have been writing a journal the last fifteen years. Writing one simple paragraph or a whole page about the days events helps me to honor my own life experiences, no matter how minor. Some of those experiences will end up in, or spark an idea for a new mystery story. Your life experiences are all your own. Draw from them in your writing. The habit of writing for five or ten minutes in a journal every evening will help you to form a habit of writing which will carry over to a lifetime of serious writing. Just think, if you wrote one page a day—every day, you would have a 365-page book in one year. Set realistic goals and follow through.
Solow, a main character

If you are serious about becoming an author, I recommend taking creative writing classes. I took a few in my twenties and again in my sixties. You will probably be encouraged by your teacher to write an outline or a time-line of your story before you begin the first chapter. Most writers are able to do this, but not everyone. Of course it’s helpful to know your plot from the beginning, but it’s not always possible. 

I wish I could come up with an outline, but the plot doesn’t appear for me until I am halfway through the book. Instead of giving up, I learned to create my own methods of writing. I write mystery stories in an unconventional way. When I am ready to start a new book, I think up a quirky or unusual murder which usually happens in the first chapter. I spend months and chapters trying to figure out who the murderer is and why he did it. I typically create several suspicious characters. Sometimes I don’t decide who the murderer is until the last few chapters. Writing my stories in first person helps me to think like the protagonist. Clueless, to be exact.

Example:  In the first sentence of the first chapter of my fifth book, my protagonist’s neighbors’ house blows up in the middle of the night. As I work on page 92, the plot starts to reveal itself to me. I think I know who murdered the neighbor and why. Of course I can always change my mind. My characters tend to lead me where they want to go. And that’s the fun of it! If it’s fun for you, it will most likely be fun for your readers.

A few simple rules for writing an interesting book are:

1. Set realistic writing goals and follow through.

2. Start the action early so the reader is quickly drawn into the story.

3. Everything you write should push the story forward.

4. Showing what happens is better than telling what happens.

5. Create a good mix of dialogue and narrative.

6. Create characters readers will “love to love” and “love to hate.”

7. Take Creative Writing classes—daytime, evening—whenever you can.

8. Learn to write a perfect query and synopsis.

9. Write about what you know and write, write, write! But do not repeat.

Happy writing!

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Author Joyce Oroz: Double Joyce Oroz

Author Joyce Oroz: Double Joyce Oroz: I’m kind of a “book” type of person, now. I didn’t have time to read much until I hit the half century mark, but I’m making up for lost ...

Double Joyce Oroz

I’m kind of a “book” type of person, now. I didn’t have time to read much until I hit the half century mark, but I’m making up for lost time. Reading and writing are big things in my life. I would hope that most people would discover the joy of reading earlier in life than I did, like maybe in childhood. Libraries are a big part of that idea. The longer they are open the more they are used. The more they are used the brighter our next generation becomes. And it’s a safe, quiet place to spend quality time.

Why am I talking about libraries? Because the AHA art team is painting another mural at the Aromas Library. It is a picture of Monterey County’s first librarian, Ann Hadden and her two donkeys loaded with packs full of books.

Monterey County Free Libraries was established by the Monterey County Board of Supervisors on August 6, 1912 under the authority of the County Library Law of 1911. Services to the public began in 1913 following the hire of Miss Anne Hadden on September 2, 1913 as the first County Librarian of Monterey County.

Within six months, Anne Hadden opened five library branches, the first in Greenfield. Some early branch collections and reading rooms were in private residences, schools, stores, and in Big Sur at the Post Office.

The library system functions under the legislative direction of the Monterey County Board of Supervisors and the administrative direction of the County Administrative Officer. A County Librarian appointed by the County Administrative Officer heads the system. Monterey County Free Libraries functions legally as a less-than-countywide, dependant special district. The less-than-countywide designation comes from the fact that the service area does not include the city limits of the cities of Carmel, Monterey, Pacific Grove and Salinas; all of which operate their own municipal libraries.
Funding for the Monterey County Free Libraries comes primarily from a share of the property tax collected within its service area. This share is about one cent per dollar collected (as of 1996). Small amounts of additional funding come from the County General Fund, the State of California, from donations and from library fees and fines.     Thank you MCFL for this information.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Author Joyce Oroz: Lunch With Joyce Oroz

Author Joyce Oroz: Lunch With Joyce Oroz: Recently my friend and I were looking for a place to eat lunch.  “In a pickle,” (The Tempest) we were looking for a good fish  rest...

Lunch With Joyce Oroz

Recently my friend and I were looking for a place to eat lunch. 
“In a pickle,” (The Tempest) we were looking for a good fish 
restaurant in Moss Landing. It was only eleven o’clock in the 
morning and the town was “as dead as a doornail” (Henry VI) 

Photo by Robert Scoles

We parked the car and entered a rustic looking building with 
They do not serve food, by the way. We just wanted to poke 
our noses inside to see what the place was all about. 
Forty-five minutes later we left the building, our heads 
spinning with facts and trivia on William Shakespeare. 
We saw so many antique books, paintings, statues and 
stuff relating to William.

The gift shop, however, was completely modern and full 
of great jewelry and gifts. The sales help to support 
the society. “There’s a method in their madness.” (Hamlet)
The big question is; why Moss Landing? Some things are 
simply unexplainable, “neither here nor there.” (Othello)

“In the twinkling of an eye” (The Merchant of Venice) we 
found The Whole Enchilada just two blocks away, and had 
“too much of a good thing.” (As You Like It) We were 
“a sorry sight” (Macbeth) as we waddled back to the car, stuffed full of enchiladas and knowledge about the most famous writer ever!
Shakespeare Society of America
New Shakespeare Sanctuary
7981 Moss Landing Road
Moss Landing, CA 95039
(831) 633-2989

Sonnet 18
"Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer's lease hath all too short a date".