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It’s taken a little bit of time to finally say it, but it’s true.
Stella and I are permanently settled on our small farm in the foothills of Chestnut Ridge in the Laurel Highlands and here’s where we will stay. We are definitely not going back to Mississippi. The place we knew and loved is gone, washed away by the storm.
My books from now on will be, as in my past books, true, short stories that have as their theme what it’s like to live in rural Southwest Pennsylvania. We have a beautiful farm here and we love it. Don’t worry, the stories won’t be dull. Living here is not like living in the suburbs of Philadelphia, which I imagine is nice in its own way, but it’s not here.
Life here are different. My latest book, Danny and the Elephants, coming out in March is a good example of this. Not what you’d expect in a book centered on a farm, but please remember like my stories about coastal Mississippi they are all true!
On another note, we lost two very close friends this year, Patricia Rigney, whose illustrations brought to life many of the stories in my past books and Holly, our black tomcat, whose antics and constant presence made living here all that was wonderful. Stella now provides the illustrations (photographs) for our books. She has done so in our latest book, Danny and the Elephants. I think you will enjoy her work. I’m still grieving for Holly so we will wait and see.
We have another book that will be printed at the same time as Danny and the Elephants. Called The Wedding Guest, it replicates some of the short stories in my earlier Mississippi books. Since these books are no longer in print, this new book is a good read about a wonderful time that no longer exists.. If you like my writing about small towns, especially Mississippi small towns, I guarantee you will like this book as well.
Paul E. La Violette
Author and Publisher,