My father taught me to read the Sunday morning funnies. He taught me to love books. To love animals. A perfect combination for an only child. Out in the woods with my horse and dogs when the weather was good, or curled up with my dog and a book by a warm fire when it wasn’t.  I’ve carted books around the world with me for over sixty years and when I married Bill and his books joined mine we carted a veritable library.

You can’t sit down in my jungle house because every flat surface is piled with books. My library needs a library, but I know where every book is. I’m happiest around books. Around people who love and read books. The feeling in any book store is a wonderful feeling of human camaraderie. A sense of belonging. A sense of well-being. A sense of knowing you’re exactly where you belong.

Now toss in a writer, a plate of cheese and crackers and a glass of wine and look out, the hours fly by like feathers in a storm.

Early on I fell in love with the New Yorker, Robert Benchley, Dorothy Parker, Ross, Thurber. They were my friends. I first read Hemingway’s Old Man and the Sea in the edition that  featured nothing but this brilliant piece of work. Writers have heroes and Hemingway is one of mine. His short stories still amaze me. I learned to write dialogue from him. I learned about Spain and the Spanish revolution. I learned about  Guernica and Pablo Picasso. I learned that the Abraham Lincoln Brigade was a communist organization.  I learned about Marx and Lenin and Rosa Luxemburg and John Reed and ten days that shook the world.  That didn’t convert me, but it did pique my interest.

With a book on a log you can travel the world. The open curious child mind in a library  can sniff out stuff no teacher would recommend. Combine that with a lust for knowledge and you’re a menace to society.

I recommend it.

When you’re talking to other writers it’s wonderful how minds leap and jump to other books, other authors, other subjects. I read a critique about Carl Jung recently where, it was stated  that he said  “Books jumped off the shelf at me”. I’m sure that was a metaphor and, if so, I understand.They sure jump off the shelf at me, and this seems to be true of many writers and readers.

I love Stephen King and his book, The Stand jumped of the shelf at me. So did  The Watchers by Dean Kuntz. Anything Kurt Vonnegut wrote.

I love fantasy. I write fantasy. I cannot be separated from my books. One of the saddest things to happen was the loss of Borders on Kauai, but we do have the delightful Talk Story Book Shop in Hanapepe. Ed Justus and his beautiful wife Cynthia are superb hosts. On Friday nights the world drifts in. To all my readers, if you live on Kauai, please come visit me there. I think you’ll love my humorous fiction, The Scam.

If you’re off island, look for my website and check it out on Amazon.


2 Responses

  1. Aloha Bettejo,

    Great blog! I would like to run this as a guest-blog in my dakinetalk blog,( ) posted daily. If you are interested I will need a photo and a short 3-4 sentence Bio to introduce you to my readers.

    Happy Valentines day, Kimo


    • I’m so flattered, KIMO. I still do’t know how to work the blog thing. I try to reach you and just end up in a mess. I’ll figure it. Anytime you want anything, please take it. Love’ya ME


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