The Scientific Case for Two Spaces After a Period

From The Atlantic:

(AP Photo/Tina Fineberg)

This is a time of much division. Families and communities are splintered by polarizing narratives. Outrage surrounds geopolitical discourse—so much so that anxiety often becomes a sort of white noise, making it increasingly difficult to trigger intense, acute anger. The effect can be desensitizing, like driving 60 miles per hour and losing hold of the reality that a minor error could result in instant death.

One thing that apparently still has the power to infuriate people, though, is how many spaces should be used after a period at the end of an English sentence.

[Full story]



Michael Keith’s “Let Us Now Speak of Extinction”

I wanted to put in a plug for my friend Michael C. Keith’s latest book, “Let Us Now Speak of Extinction” from Mad Hat Press.  

Keith’s opus possesses shades of Sylvia Plath, Edgar Allen Poe, and aNew Yorker cartoon for extraterrestrials. Let Us Now Speak of Extinction is eerily addicting. ––Jo Maeder


Michael C. Keith’s short pieces seem relatively benign at first, but wait a moment and you feel the snap of his literary whip. Keith subverts things with a smile––like putting a dagger in the back of the iconic Jack Kerouac by posing whether his girlfriend was a better writer than this Beat patriarch. He brings an amused eye to our inevitable demise, our strutting and posturing before the black void. Keith is a writer who can shake your hand or use a well-appointed whoopee cushion to blow the hot air out from where the sun don’t shine. He keeps you honest. He keeps you thinking. He keeps you reading. –– Doug Holder

Buy it. It’s money well-spent.

Let Us Now Speak cover image

“The Kanawha Conundrum”

I’m approximately 15,000 words into my next novel, The Kanawha Conundrum. I won’t post a synopsis or plot just yet.  Suffice to say it’s a mystery-thriller (no murder, this time!) taking place in the present. It could be construed as science fiction depending on where I go with it.  

Kanawha is a county in West Virginia; also, Kanawha was a proposed name for the 39 counties which later became the main body of the U.S. state of West Virginia, formed on October 24, 1861. Finally, the Kanawha River flows through West Virginia. It’s said the river was named by the Native American Delaware tribe. The story takes place in coal mining country in West Virginia, and has a strong First Nation theme. 


Duotrope logo

I wanted to put in a plug for Duotrope. It’s a fabulous resource for writers. I’ve been a subscriber now going on six years.

Duotrope is a subscription-based service for writers and artists that offers an extensive, searchable database of current fiction, poetry, nonfiction, and visual art markets, a calendar of upcoming deadlines, a personal submissions tracker, and useful statistics compiled from the millions of data points we’ve gathered on the publishers and agents we list.”


Allston Variant Publication Date

From Gene Robinson from Moonshine Cove Publishing:

…We have placed your manuscript on our publication calendar in the next available slot and have assigned it the ISBN 9781945181573. As things stand now, it looks like publication will be near April 21, 2019. We should begin work on the manuscript about a month before that. In the meantime, as you suggest, it’s not too early to start thinking about what you’d like for a cover. We’d be pleased to hear your ideas and if you come across any interesting images, let us know.

It seems unbearably far in the future, but I’ve waited longer for some of my books to be published.

“Allston Variant” Picked Up By Moonshine Cove Publishing, LLC

Huzzah! I just signed a contract with a small publishing house, Moonshine Cove Publishing LLC., to produce the second installment of my Carrie Bloomfield Novel series called “The Allston Variant.” (The first in the series is “The Winship Affair”). I’m hoping the novel may be available for purchase on Amazon and elsewhere before year’s end.

Here’s a synopsis:

When scientists recover a deadly bacterium from the partially thawed permafrost of Alaska’s Northern Slope, the ancient pathogen kills the team members and decimates a small native village before mutating into a harmless version of itself. The U.S. Army moves in to collect samples for further study; the case is marked ‘Top Secret’ and closed. Eighteen years later, Cumulus Industries, a Boston biotechnology company, is tasked with developing a cure for the dangerous bacterium but the U.S. intelligence community soon suspects the company’s executive management of secretly engineering a biological weapon based on the bacterium. It plans to sell the weapon to a shadowy Middle East terrorist organization.

Suspicions are heightened when a Cumulus employee who is an undercover FBI informant mysteriously goes missing. The Bureau decides it must have another informant on the inside. It recruits the brilliant Boston scientist and entrepreneur Carrie Bloomfield who masquerades as Janice Silberman, a newly-hired researcher from Toronto. Silberman is befriended by an exotic and attractive fellow researcher, Argie Khorui. The two become best friends and lovers. But Khouri isn’t who she appears to be.

Bloomfield struggles to remain true to her mission while facing a daunting scientific challenge—the bioweapon is accidentally unleashed upon an unsuspecting Boston populace and Bloomfield must find a cure.