The Musical Ass by Tomas de Iriarte y Oropesa

The fable which I now present,
Occurred to me by accident:
And whether bad or excellent,
Is merely so by accident.

A stupid ass this morning went
Into a field by accident:
And cropped his food, and was content,
Until he spied by accident
A flute, which some oblivious gent
Had left behind by accident;
When, sniffling it with eager scent,
He breathed on it by accident,
And made the hollow instrument
Emit a sound by accident.
“Hurrah, hurrah!” exclaimed the brute,
“How cleverly I play the flute!”

A fool, in spite of nature’s bent,
May shine for once, by accident.

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Twilight Zone Covers

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Tennessee Williams Quotes

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“At the age of fourteen I discovered writing as an escape from a world of reality in which I felt acutely uncomfortable.”
“The scene is memory and is therefore nonrealistic. Memory takes a lot of poetic license. It omits some details; others are exaggerated, according to the emotional value of the articles it touches, for memory is seated predominantly in the heart.”

“There comes a time when you look into the mirror and you realize that what you see is all that you will ever be. And then you accept it. Or you kill yourself. Or you stop looking in mirrors.”
“Don’t look forward to the day you stop suffering, because when it comes you’ll know you’re dead.”
“Don’t you just love those long rainy afternoons in New Orleans when an hour isn’t just an hour – but a little piece of eternity dropped into your hands – and who knows what to do with it?”
“What is straight? A line can be straight, or a street, but the human heart, oh, no, it’s curved like a road through mountains.”
“Yes, I have tricks in my pocket, I have things up my sleeve. But I am the opposite of a stage magician. He gives you illusion that has the appearance of truth. I give you truth in the pleasant disguise of illusion.”
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An Interview with K.V. Scruggs

Today we have an interview with K.V. Scruggs! Her new medical thriller and debut novel, What They Don’t Know, was released on Monday.

What inspired you to write this story? Would you say that this is a cautionary tale?

The practice of medicine is going through some major changes right now. Between the push for electronic medical record (EMR) use and the limits placed on time spent with patients, it can feel like both the patient and the doctor are irrelevant parts of the healthcare continuum. I wanted to shine a light on that phenomenon and, yes, caution readers to what could happen to the doctor-patient relationship in a world increasingly focused on technology.

Who are your favorite authors and how have they influenced your writing?

I read a little bit of everything, so it’s very hard to pick a favorite. One author that has grabbed ahold of me lately is Liane Moriarty. She writes in a totally different genre, but I love the way she develops characters and relationships – and gives her characters very human, relatable flaws.

What do you think makes a good story?

I love being taken for a journey without being able to predict what will happen in the end, but being able to look back and see that everything was laid out perfectly along the way. I love when I’m just dying to know what happens next, so much so that I end up reading into the wee hours of the morning. And I love reading something and thinking “That’s exactly how I feel – but I’ve never thought of it quite that way before.”

In your book, medical personnel have the technology to monitor patients in their homes, at all times. Do you feel this is a direction that real life healthcare could or should take? Should there be accountability?

Yes. Should it come at the price of freedom and privacy? Absolutely not. It’s no secret that medical noncompliance costs the system a good deal of money. It’s hard as a physician when a patient doesn’t follow your advice only to end up back in the hospital or suffering from complications of their illness that were preventable. We are already seeing incentives for “good behavior,” so to speak, in the form of decreased health premiums and other financial perks. I only see this sort of focus expanding as we try to tackle our country’s overspending in healthcare, but I hope it doesn’t get to the point of encroaching on our freedom as individuals.

What kind of research did you have to do for the book?

Setting the majority of the book in hospitals and doctors offices made it pretty easy to write a realistic story, and all the futuristic stuff came from my imagination! There was a little Googling here and there, but not too much. That’s the beauty of “writing what you know.”

What do you do when you aren’t writing?

I have a “day job” and I have a family that keeps me busy. I also like to travel, run, read, and spend time with friends.

What are your writing habits like?

When I was writing this book, I tried to write 1000 words a day, and I did that most days. When editing, which in my mind requires a lot more thought and focus, I sometimes struggled to meet a daily quota. My schedule is different every day, so being consistent can be difficult. I pretty much tried to work on the book every day, and if I failed it was because of something pretty major. I try to keep it from feeling like a chore, though, because right now it’s a hobby that I enjoy very much.

What does your family think of your writing?

My husband says he can’t write and has always made me feel like Einstein when it came to writing – whether it was a research paper, an email, or this book. But he admits (now) that when he sat down to read this book for the first time, he was super nervous because I was so excited and he didn’t know what he would say if it wasn’t good. Luckily, he liked it!

What makes your book stand out from other medical thrillers?

I think the dystopian flare makes it unique. I like to say it’s a medical thriller crossed with 1984. With the extreme focus on money and technology in healthcare right now, it doesn’t take much imagination to see my novel’s storyline actually playing out.

The book is available at:

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

Kobo

iBooks

 

 

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Release Day!

Greetings! We are excited to announce that What They Don’t Know by K.V. Scruggs is now available! Links are below the cover and the book description.

WTDK ebook cover

What they don’t know can’t hurt them…or can it?

In the year 2030, the government has seized control of healthcare. Routine treatment is administered to patients and monitored via in-home telemedicine. Hospitals have been replaced by the Center for Standardized Medicine (CSM). No one is a bigger proponent of the changes than reporter Cheyenne Rose, who lost her mother shortly after the Healthcare Crash of 2018 and her fiancé ten years later after a freak accident.

Despite her incredible success and popularity, her life feels empty. Then she meets the Reid family and feels drawn to their simple and honest love for each other. When eight-year-old Ridge Reid’s younger brother develops kidney failure, he agrees to donate one of his kidneys to save his brother’s life. But Ridge unexpectedly dies on the table, and the doctor who performed the surgery vanishes.

Faced with a conspiracy that runs far deeper than a single surgery, Cheyenne finds herself thrust into a dangerous investigation. When one of her informants turns up dead, she realizes the people responsible will do almost anything to keep their secret. Cheyenne will risk everything to uncover the truth.

“An exciting adventure into the world of futuristic medicine where nightmarish consequences await. There are clever and unexpected twists and turns, mixed in with murder and romance, and believable characters that command our sympathies.”
– Leonard Goldberg, author of The Daughter of Sherlock Holmes

“This propulsive, dystopian thriller thrusts you into a terrifying, futuristic medical world, and leaves you with an ending you’ll never forget.” – Sandra Block, author of The Girl Without a Name

“Down a dark rabbit hole we go, following headstrong Cheyenne Rose and her need for the truth. This suspenseful tale is an anticipatory tale as much as it is a thriller. Intriguing and compelling, the story dares us to consider what kind of medical care we want for our nation and what we’re willing to sacrifice to have it.” – Nadia Hashimi, author of International Best Seller, The Pearl that Broke its Shell

The book is available at the following retailers.

Amazon (ebook and print)

Barnes and Noble

iBooks

Kobo

Inkterra

24Symbols

Scribd

 

 

 

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Illieo by James Whitcomb Riley

Illileo, the moonlight seemed lost across the vales –
The stars but strewed the azure as an armor’s scattered scales;
The airs of night were quiet as the breath of silken sails,
And all your words were sweeter than the notes of nightingales.

Illileo Legardi, in the garden there alone,
With your figure carved of fervor, as the Psyche carved of stone,
There came to me no murmur of the fountain’s undertone
So mystically, musically mellow as your own.

You whispered low, Illileo – so low the leaves were mute,
And the echoes faltered breathless in your voice’s vain pursuit;
And there died the distant dalliance of the serenader’s lute:
And I held you in my bosom as the husk may hold the fruit.

Illileo, I listened. I believed you. In my bliss,
What were all the worlds above me since I found you thus in this?
Let them reeling reach to win me – even Heaven I would miss,
Grasping earthward! I would cling here, though I clung by just a kiss.

And blossoms should grow odorless – and lilies all aghast –
And I said the stars should slacken in their paces through the vast,
Ere yet my loyalty should fail enduring to the last.
So vowed I. It is written. It is changeless as the past.

IIlileo Legardi, in the shade your palace throws
Like a cowl about the singer at your gilded porticos,
A moan goes with the music that may vex the high repose
Of a heart that fades and crumbles as the crimson of a rose.

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First Edition Book Covers

Book covers often get redesigned, especially the classics. Feast your eyes upon the original versions!

1984clockworkgoneslaughterhousesound and the furysun

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