Monday, December 5, 2011

Aspiring Writers: Check out Authors Showcase and Writer's Magazette

Dear aspiring writers:

You owe it to yourself to view the FREE writing online magazine Writer's Magazette.

Besides a ton of writing advice and "10 Questions" for today's writers, WM now has an amazing Amazon Store and eBay Store for your shopping convenience. Go right now to:

And to grab the low-cost glossy printed magazine, go to:

And for you new authors out there, stop by Authors Showcase to publicize your book FREE!

Here's  the web address -

Bookmark it right now!

Enjoy, Ned

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

New Issue of Writer's Magazette Is Here!

Writer's Magazette Fall Issue Is Here!

Yes, the waiting is over. 

The new 2011 fall issue of Writer's Magazette is right here and awaiting your reading pleasure and enjoyment. 

Here's what you will find in our current issue:
The Essential Writer
Taming The Viewpoint Beast
16 Ways To Sell Your E-Book Online
Build Your Writing Portfolio
How To Create A  Writer's Blog
Dostoevsky: Sentenced To Life
Authors' Inspiration: Literary Cats
Do Bookstores Matter To Authors?
Marketing Tips For New E-Book Authors
... PLUS much more!

You can also visit our main website at or grab the free digital edition or our glossy printed magazine at

And don't forget to tell your friends to sign up for a subscription so they can read all the fine writing articles included free inside each issue of Writer's Magazette.

So sit back and enjoy this new edition of Writer's Magazette.

All compliments of E. P. Burke Publishing - "A Name Trusted Since 1973."

Have a super day, and like I always say, let's try to be kind to one another.

Take  care,


E. P. Ned Burke (WM editor)

PS/ Hey, would you like to learn How To Be An Online Magazine Publisher? Then check out the super deal at now!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Hey! You wanna be a writer?

Hi, folks.

Better grab my expanded e-book now! I slashed big bucks off the price and the big boys are coming to take me away ... ha ha.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

How To Be An Online Magazine Publisher

Hey, have you ever wanted to be a respected online magazine publisher?

I'm not talking about those little e-zine newsletters. I'm talking about a real MAGAZINE!

Well, here' s your chance to start your own with the help of a 30-year publishing veteran.

Check out this 100-page e-book now! You'll discover (like he did) that it is a lot easier and quicker than you thought. And the prestige and financial reward of becoming an online magazine publisher can not be matched.

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Sunday, May 1, 2011

Blame It On The Heat

By E. P. Ned Burke

Living in the south, especially as far south as sunny Florida, sometimes results in strange relationships. For instance, one summer I fell for an exotic palm tree. Maybe it was the intense summer heat that year that melted part of my cranium. You know, the part usually reserved for rational thinking.

Anyway, as I recall, it all started out innocently enough. I wasn’t looking for any companionship. All I wanted was a little shade from the tropical sun. But, that’s how it started: a touch of bark, palm embracing palms, and before I realized it, our limbs were entwined in a passionate embrace.

Alas, mine was a deep-rooted problem with no earthly explanation and no clear-cut solution. To an outsider, I guess my palm tree looked no different than the hundreds of others rooted in the warm Florida sand. But, to me, she was exquisite.

There wasn’t anything I wouldn’t do for my tree. And, at certain times when the breeze was just right, I believe she felt the same toward me.

To tell you the truth, I’ve always had a weakness for a well-proportioned, woody perennial plant, especially the sensuous palm. The way those delicate, manicured leaves wave in the breeze always reminded me of a beautiful woman drying her fingernails by dangling them out the side window of a moving eight-wheeler. Then there’s that rhythmic round trunk gently swaying back and forth. Such natural beauty can only be described in the words of the Joyce Kilmer poem that begins: “I think that I shall never see a poem as lovely as a tree.” I just know he had my tree in mind when he added: “A tree that may in summer wear, a nest of seagulls in her hair ...” or whatever.

Anyway, for months, my tree and I would sit palm in palm, our sweaty bodies silhouetted against the majestic moon. It was truly a romantic sight: man and tree against a backdrop of sand, sea, and stars.

(Deep sigh here, please.)

Oh, we were both too much in love to realize such a relationship had little hope of surviving. Yet, we still wished, and hoped, and dreamed.

“So, what if we are just a little different,” I told my tree one night. “Mixed marriages have worked for others.” I reflected a moment and said, “I’ll convert, if you want.” Then it hit me. “Maybe I can get a transplant. That’s it! I'll get a transplant and be just like you. You'd like that, wouldn’t you?”

My tree remained silent, but I'm certain I heard a sigh.

A few weeks after my transplant, I noticed my toes were forming sinewy roots. I became ecstatic. The transplant was working! I rushed to tell my tree the good news.

When I reached the beach, however, I found my lifeless, uprooted tree decaying in the hot sand. Her killer, a behemoth-looking bulldozer, sat nearby with an evil, sadistic grin on its curved, iron face. It appeared pleased to have destroyed God’s handiwork for yet another ugly, concrete condo.

“It’s not fair!” I fell to my knees and wept into my beloved’s limp palm. Then I raised my head to the heavens and cried out, “Whatever will I do now?”

I mean, let’s face it, who wanted to be around a guy with green hair, bark for skin, and roots where his toes use to be?

Friday, April 1, 2011

Time For A Story

The O'Connors Arrive in America

After disembarking from the immigrant ship, it was a short walk to the station where a train awaited to take them to their final destination: the hills of northeastern Pennsylvania. The town was called Barryton, a steel and coal mining city in the county of Slocum where Maggie’s aunt, Alice Murphy, lived.
In letters, Mrs. Murphy told Maggie that Barryton had a large Irish population and plenty of work for men with strong backs. She vividly described the beautiful mountains and clean, flowing rivers. The soil was so rich, she wrote, you could simply toss seeds on the ground and up would pop the tastiest vegetables this side of heaven. Every backyard had fruit trees of apple, cherry, or pear. The woods were filled with game and the streams were overflowing with fish. “You will never go hungry here, my child,” she emphasized, meaning that if her husband failed to provide then the good Lord would take care of her family.

As the train chugged along on its uphill climb over the mountains of Pennsylvania, Dada looked out the window and smiled.
“Ah,” he said to Maggie, “looks as green as the Emerald Isle itself.”
Mile after mile the coal-burning locomotive dragged its long tail over hard iron rails, many of which were made decades earlier in Barryton. The community was a major iron and steel producer for five decades, but by 1910 coal became its major export. Although it had lost some of its bluster, it was still considered a “boomtown” by many economic experts, a place where any hardworking man could find work and provide for his family. This thought was in Dada’s mind as the train emerged from a long, dark tunnel and he heard the gruff voice of an aged conductor bark out, “Tickets! Tickets! Next stop, Barryton.”
The long train descended slowly down the side of the mountain, the tracks carving a narrow path through the dense foliage and layers of hard rock. As it neared its destination, the fresh green colors turned to stale gray. The O’Connors got their first good look at Barryton now. Nestled between rising hills on all sides, the city appeared to be a prisoner of its surroundings. A brownish blue river, known as Laurel River, ambled its way down, around, and through the heart of the city and out again, as if desperately searching for a way to escape.
Along the banks of the river were red brick buildings with tall smokestacks billowing dirty white smoke into the overcast sky. Soot-covered wooden houses peppered the landscape and rising hills of dark coal and slate silhouetted the entire community. On one hill Dada observed two dirty-faced boys who turned from their chore of picking slate to wave forlornly at the passing train. He waved back, but his heart really wasn’t in it.
When the train rounded the final bend, he could see the Barryton train station looming ahead. It was an impressive structure. Built in 1908, just two years before, it was a massive complex and still new enough not to be completely covered in soot. It was to be the headquarters for the Pennsylvania Railroad, but rumor had it that this designation would go to a station farther west, as Barryton had already lost its ranking as the “greatest boom town in the east.” Still, it was the pride of Barryton and, much like the pyramids of Egypt, it would live far beyond its usefulness.
Beside the passenger train, small locomotives chugged along in both directions, pulling strings of coal cars behind them like noisy tin cans attached to a small lad’s wagon. Dirty frozen snow was piled high along the sides of the tracks and looked as if it would be there until spring, which was still a good month away in this part of the country. The dark, dismal March sky sucked up the bellowing white smoke that seemed to be everywhere. It hung over the city like a funeral pall over a casket. There was a ghostly quality to Barryton that sent a shiver up Maggie’s young spine. But she was of sturdy stock, and shook it off.
The locomotive clattered toward the platform, huffed and puffed and hissed and finally came to a complete stop. The conductor came down the narrow aisle and announced, “Barryton! Time for departure.”
The O’Connor clan filed out, one-by-one, and retrieved their luggage: one small trunk, two old suitcases, and one tattered, leather bag. They shuffled into the train station and were immediately swallowed up by the cavernous open room. Five stories in height, it rose above their upturned faces to a huge, stained-glass dome. Dada saw several workmen on tall scaffolds touching up the catwalk high above. It had a mahogany handrail attached that encircled the entire ceiling. It reminded Dada of an expensive sweatband on the inside of a fine Derby hat. The walls of marble glimmered with moisture and far below the grated catwalk the sound of clickety-clack-clickety-clack metal cleats clicked across the newly waxed floor. The noise rebounded off the walls, across the open space, and back into the awestruck faces of the young immigrant family.
Dada looked around the room and saw, standing near the opposite doorway, a small, humpbacked man in dirty clothes looking their way. The man hesitated for a moment, and then slowly dragged his deformed body toward the O’Connors. Dada instinctively moved out in front of his family to fend off this intruder. The little man, however, stopped short and looked up at Dada.
Using the back of his dirty hand, he wiped some brown ooze from the corner of his mouth. “Are yez the O’Connor clan from Ireland?” His voice had a wheezing quality that sounded as if he had inhaled too much coal dust. Dada said they were indeed the O’Connors and the twisted man said his name was Flynn and that Mrs. Murphy had sent him to fetch them.
“But,” he said, “I’m suppose ta tell ya they’ll be no meal awaitin’ on ya. Supper won’t be until six o’clock, as always.”
“That’s okay,” Maggie said. She knew her aunt was not one to change her daily routine for visitors, especially kin. Flynn then led her and her family through the two massive front doors of the train station to his horse-drawn wagon outside.
Dada scrutinized the wagon and asked Flynn why Mrs. Murphy didn’t own one of those newfangled automobiles. And he was told, very bluntly, that Mrs. Murphy was not one to throw her money away on such nonsense.
“But a lot of people in New York City have them,” Dada said.
The little man spit a wad of tobacco juice onto the ground.
“Well, anyone who lives in New York City, or likes New York City folk, is a damn fool.” Then he turned his curved back to Dada and pulled himself up to the driver’s seat. “Da misses and da baby can sit up here wit me. Youse and the younguns best stay in the back.”
Dada shrugged and tossed the last of the family luggage onto Flynn’s rickety flatbed wagon. He looked up at the steel gray sky and muttered to himself, “Ah, yes, this is goin’ to be one truly grand adventure all right.”

Flynn took them to Mrs. Murphy’s large house that sat on the corner of Penn and Main. It was a Victorian-style home with twelve rooms, eight of which she rented out to “respectable” gentlemen. She said Maggie and her family could stay in one of the rooms “fer a bit” until “Himself” got his first paycheck. And, at supper that night, she made it clear what she expected.
“I hear they’re looking for men to work the Taylor Mine. Better get yerself down there, right quick.”
But Dada had his own ideas. “A man needs fresh air to breathe,” he said to her. “But, don’t ye go worryin’ yerself. I’m sure to get work as a laborer topside. I’m good with me hands. I’m sure someone must be needin’ a carpenter or bricklayer of sorts around here.” He looked over at Maggie and winked.
In response, Mrs. Murphy raised her bushy eyebrows.
She was a tall, heavyset woman with a mass of gray hair and piercing dark eyes sunk into a round, unsmiling face. Fat jiggled from her upper arms as she reached up and brushed her hair from her face. She had an ample stomach, wide hips, and an oversized derriere. Bulky brown stockings covered her varicose-vein legs. And the skin on her fat, swollen ankles flowed over the tops of her tightly laced shoes that moaned and squeaked when she walked.
“Wants to breathe the fresh air, does he?” Her words to Maggie sounded more like a statement than a question. She pushed her plate away and gave Dada a quick glance and looked back at Maggie. “So our coal mines aren’t good enough for this husband of yours?” When Maggie didn’t answer, Mrs. Murphy pushed back her chair, got up, and threw down her napkin and thumped out of the room.
Dada raised his eyebrows, looked at Maggie, and grinned.
“Ah, yes, there be nothin’ like a warm welcome from one of yer kin.”
Then he reached across the table for another helping of potatoes.

*From the novel, The Hero of Barryton, by E. P. Burke

More information at:

Thursday, March 3, 2011

The Day I Quit Golf

By Carrillee Collins Burke

The temperature was ninety-five degrees the day I was paired with a man named Kramer, a guy who appeared to have stepped out of a comic strip. He was boisterous, carried twenty clubs in his oversized bag, and was loaded down with a big cooler and all sorts of golf paraphernalia.

“Hope you don’t have too much stuff,” Kramer said.

“Just my bag,” I answered, offering my hand. “ I’m Sam.”

“Nice to meet you,” he said, ignoring my hand as he smeared white cream on his nose. Finished with his nose, he shoved his wavy, black toupee under a large floppy hat that tied under his chin, adjusted his navy shorts and pulled his green socks up his skinny legs.

“You ready to rumble, Sam?” Kramer asked. “I’ll drive, okay?”

Why not? He was already in the driver’s seat. I stuffed his canvas bag behind my legs and wondered aloud if we could trade it for the blanket in back.

“Oh craps, I forgot the blanket.” He stopped on the path, shook the blanket flat, folded it in half, then covered the seat with it. “That’s better,” he said. “After hours in this heat a seat can burn your butt real good.”

“We have a top over us.”

“I know, but we’re in Florida, not Ohio, New York, or wherever you come from, and that sun up there is one hot sucker from noon on.” Kramer looked skyward, then at me. “I can spot a tourist right off. So, where you from, anyway?”

“Michigan,” I answered.

“Lake Erie, huh? Went fishing there once, but never played golf.”

“Do you mean, Lake Michigan, or Huron?”

It was time to change the subject, so I asked what was in the canvas bag he’d moved to the back.

“Balls? How many?”

“Fifty, or so. What do you carry?”

“Nine or ten, maybe.”

“Good luck,” he said, and snickered.

At the first tee, I put two balls in my pant pocket, just in case I lost one, and added a couple tees. I watched Kramer load his pockets with balls.

“You go first, Sam.” He bowed and stepped back.

I checked the distance, pushed a long tee into the sandy ground, placed my ball on it, and made a good drive with my 3-wood.

“Wow! That must be 250 yards,” Kramer said. I agreed although, it was more like 160.

Then I watched the strangest performance of my life on a golf course. Although his pockets were crammed, Kramer searched his ball bag for one with his name in purple. “My lucky ball,” he said. Then he placed it on a tee, stepped back and made a few practice swings. When he stepped up to make his first shot, his ball fell off the tee.

When he bent over, a ball rolled from a pocket, others followed, then from another pocket, until there were balls everywhere. Unruffled, he gathered them up. Finally, he placed his “lucky ball” on the tee again, stood back and under pressure from the irate group behind us, he swung. The ball rolled 20 feet.

“Mulligan, okay?”

I never dealt with a mulligan before. He swung again by the time I answered. This time the ball traveled into deep rough. “I know what’s wrong,” he said. “Need my sunglasses.” He placed a pair of huge black glasses on his face; took another ball from his bag and finally hit a good one up the fairway.

With an 8-iron I drove my ball toward the green, slicing it right, into knee-high grass near the stream. I heard Kramer’s booming voice as I approached the water. “Don’t go there, Sam!” Then, I saw the sign: Water Moccasins play here.

Second hole I lost another ball to the snakes. On the third hole, a par five, I teed off a straight 250 yards with my Big Bertha. Kramer challenged me. He swung his Greater Big Bertha and missed the ball completely. The club slipped from his hands and sailed over my head. “Sorry about that,” he said, wiping his hands across his shorts. He swung again. The hole ended with Kramer getting a par and me a bogey.

The fifth hole had a slight dogleg to the right. I was fading right, so I figured I would do good here. But the ball went straight and high to the green, and dropped into a sand trap.

“You can chip it from there,” Kramer said.

“You have to be kidding me,” I said, when I saw a snarling alligator surrounded by golf balls, including mine. Another drop. More balls went into my pocket.

The sixth and seventh holes were easier, but I still lost a ball to the high rough where no man dared to tread. This course ran wild with a strange half-fox, half-squirrel animal that had no fear of man. On the ninth hole, one of those creatures grabbed my golf ball as it was heading straight to the hole for a birdie.

As the midday heat pressed down upon us, Kramer opened his cooler.

“Want something?” he asked with a mouth full of banana. I politely refused. He devoured a Dagwood sandwich between slurps of Gatorade; wiped the food from his mouth and the melted sunscreen running off his nose, onto his sleeve. “Wanna wave those whiners behind us on?” he asked.

Tired of the angry comments that followed us, I agreed. I took a drink of my bottled water and waited for him to finish the chocolate pudding he was eating with his fingers.

He wiped his nose again on his sleeve and teed off. His ball went high and plunked down in a lake. Distracted, and weary, I lost my ball in a clump of bushes. From the twelfth, through the fifteenth, I fared better. I still had a ball or two in my pocket.

Standing near the sixteenth green was a fawn. I was accustomed to deer on my home course, and I also knew to be watchful for the doe. Quietly, we teed off on this par three. Shot two took both of us to the green. Kramer had a long, unlikely putt, but when the ball meandered across the green, and directly into the hole, he let out a yelp one could have heard in Kalamazoo.

The fawn jumped to attention, and the buck we hadn’t expected, came on the attack. He plowed his antlers under my ball, and tossed it into the bushes. He killed his enemy and I was the loser. “This is insane,” I said, as we retreated to the safety of the cart.

“Damnedest thing I’ve ever seen,” Kramer said, when he could catch his breath from laughing. So excited about the possibility of beating me now, he stomped on the accelerator, raced to the seventeenth tee, and jumped out without putting on the brake. As I stepped from the cart, it rolled backwards over my left foot, putting dirty tire marks on my new white FootJoys. The cart rolled down a steep grade causing my Big Bertha to flip from the bag and end up under the rear wheel. “Have no fear, I’ll get it,” Kramer yelled. He grabbed Big Bertha by her grip and pulled, decapitating her. “Sorry about that,” was his only comment as he handed me the headless club.
I was so infuriated with this guy and the situation I could have brained him, but I was determined to finish the round. Amazingly, I got par. If I birdied the last hole and Kramer made par or worse, I would beat him. That had now become all important to me.

We both hit in the fairway. Kramer’s second shot left him short in high rough. My second shot took me within 30 yards of the green. It was possible for me to get an eagle. With my 9-iron, I swung, connected, faded to the left near the flag, across the green, and down a slight hill to a pile of rocks. I found my ball in the coiled body of an angry rattler.

“Okay, big guy, you either move, or get hurt!” I yelled, and beat the ground with my club. Miraculously, the rattler took the warning and I chipped toward the flag for a coveted birdie.
I held my breath and waited as it rolled slowly in line with the hole. Suddenly, a sea gull swooped down, and snatched my ball. I reached for another one. My pocket was empty. I limped to the cart and checked my bag. It was empty too.

“Enough, is enough. I quit! You win, Kramer.”

Although, I lost the match, some of my equipment, and all of my patience, I did learn something: you have to have a lot of balls to play in Florida.