Village Writers' Club

Hot Springs Village, Arkansas

Published Works of Village Writers' Club Members

   Growing up on a traveling carnival and surrounded by a host of real life Damon Runyan and O Henry characters has proven to be a truly wonderful life.

   The author’s paternal grandfather, father, and mother were instrumental in providing him a firm foundation for all of life’s challenges. From Broadway to carnival midways to the Atlantic City Boardwalk, these stories speak of a simpler time, but the life lessons are as applicable today as they were in the past.

   Mom was a Broadway star who worked with all the big band leaders of the 1930s and ‘40s. Dad was a carnie that grew up during the depression and lived by his wits. Grandpa was a carnie and a prizefighter. They and their friends formed the basis of what became the author’s life story, and a fascinating look at a different time in our country.

   Covering seven generations of the Holliday family from the 1700s to today, George Bailey’s Got Nothing on Me takes the reader on a unique genealogic ride with characters that are far from perfect and certainly not “politically correct.” Filled with individual triumphs and tragedies, it is as interesting a family memoir as you are likely to find.

Available at in either Kindle e-Book ($4.99) or paperback ($9.99)

Author: Cy Holliday

  The Challengers features the 63 black residents who sought public office in Hot Springs National Park, Arkansas. The book introduces the candidates and discusses the conditions of which they filed, ran, lost, and won from 1954–2010. 
  The Challengers provides an engaging look into how the changing forms of government and the systems of voting directly impacted the electoral process in the black community. Through lawsuits, activism, and political participation, these candidates fought for their voices to be heard. 
Here former president Bill Clinton launched his political career and developed an abiding relationship with the African American electorate. 
   These stories, encapsulated here for the first time, begin with the behind-the-scenes account of how a black man won a citywide election at a time when voting rights were under attack during the Jim Crow era. The story emerges in the modern era with barrier-breaking profiles of the first African American mayor of Hot Springs and the first African American Hot Springs School Superintendent. Presented by the NAACP Writing Project in Hot Springs, this book can serve as a model for local NAACP chapters throughout the nation.

Available at Amazon,com
Author: Elmer Beard

Antiques expert Marty Greenlaw comes to Jerome to face the horror that haunts her dreams: Did she kill her little sister twenty-two years ago? Historian Paul Russell is in Jerome to face his own horror: Was the car crash that killed his wife his fault?

Their lives become intertwined when an old lady dies on a long staircase in a vintage Victorian house. As Marty and Paul search the house for a small copper box Marty believes will unlock the mystery, accidents begin to happen.

Someone else wants the copper box—someone willing to commit murder to get it. As Marty and Paul face the shadows in the house and in their lives, they must learn to put the past behind them and run the race God is calling them to.

The Copper Box, Published by Mantel Rock Publishing, Book (also Kindle e-book) at Amazon
Author: Suzanne Bratcher

  The Black Cat Guide to Grammar through Light Verse contains more than 155 poems, two-thirds of which are on the subject of English grammar. 

  Think of it as a grammar primer, if you will, that will instruct you on a large number of topics including: semicolons, possessive apostrophes, parts of speech, writing a limerick, adverbs, the Oxford comma, ending a sentence with a preposition, predicate nominatives, pronouns with implied verbs, vocabulary, and, of course, the pluperfect subjunctive. 

  The last third of the book contains random, non-grammatically related poems on such diverse subjects as Frank Zappa, cooking with onions, solving simultaneous equations, Ohm’s law, and the $2 bill. All the poems are clever, a bit snarky, and include a zinger.

Available at

Author: Barrie Gauthier

After watching Cuban rebel forces clamp down on the dictator Batista, Carmine Spada and Bernie Swartz began hoarding US dollars and gold coins from the profits in their Cuban casino and call girl operations. It all ended for the two men on January 1, 1959 when Fidel Castro and his brother Raul took over the country and closed all the casinos. That same day, Carmine and Bernie left from the Isle of Pines, taking a lot of money with them but leaving behind a fortune in a sealed concrete vault. Like most Americans, they believed the communist country would revert to a capitalist economy. As time dragged on, it became apparent that diplomatic relations between the US and Cuba were not going to be restored anytime soon. Realizing they would probably never see Cuba again, Carmine and Bernie drafted an unusual will, leaving the hidden money to the survivors of the two families once the American flag went back up on the US embassy. When that finally occurred, fifty-seven years had passed and each man had only one heir left to find the money and bring it home. Gina Spada, Carmine’s great-granddaughter, and Eli Swartz, great-grandson of Bernie Swartz, now college students, set out for the adventure of a lifetime. Once local islanders learn that relatives of Bernie and Carmine are snooping around, guns emerge from their hiding places, and the island becomes a war zone.

Under Cuba available at both Barnes & Nobel and

Author: Chap Harper
In 1932, at a time when racial tensions were alive in the South, the lives of two women -- one a school teacher and one an African American sharecropper -- become forever entwined. The same day twenty-three-year-old Allise Weston DeWitt gives birth to her first child, Peter Weston DeWitt, her husband Quent rapes sixteen-year-old African American Maizee Colson on his cotton farm in Deer Point, Arkansas. Maizee's son Nate bears a strong resemblance to Quent.

Allise's life unravels when Quent is killed while fighting in World War II. Always one to do the right thing, this Quaker school marm from Pennsylvania provides a home for Maizee and Nate, causing conflicts within her family and this small southern community. Although Allise finds happiness in a second marriage, she is estranged from her two children and she experiences debilitating sickness.

Becoming almost like sisters, the unlikely relationship between Allise and Maizee perseveres for thirty years during which time Allise confronts racism, religion, and provincialism in the South. Southern Winds A'Changing provides a historical look at one independent woman's attempt to overcome racial inequity.
Author: Elizabeth Carroll Foster.  Book (also Kindle edition) is available at 

From her first tale to the last, Madelyn F. Young entertains adults of all ages with fiction and nonfiction stories of family loyalty and love, discord, and intrigue in her book Views from An Empty Nest. A retired teacher and school administrator, Young has been an active member of Village Writers’ Club since 2003. 

Visit her blog at

A Legend Among Us: The Story of William "Youngblood" McCrary, Kansas City Monarchs  tells the compelling story of a seventeen year old young man who entered the Negro Baseball League, before graduating high school, with great aspirations of playing in the Major League. Nicknamed "Youngblood" by Satchel Paige, William McCrary is a legend in himself and one of the few remaining figures of the acclaimed Negro Baseball League.

Mr. McCrary lives in Hot Springs Village.

Book is available on or from the author Linda Black at

Kaleidoscope of Tales: Humor, Romance, Drama, All of the Above is a compilation of 22 short stories with a variety of subjects to entertain all adult readers. It contains elements of humor, as in “Almost Perfect,” the remaining optimism of one who chronicles his physical ailments, and “Mother’s Day Gifts,” a hilarious story of a man’s experience with a wife and a girlfriend with a surprise ending. The romantic at heart will enjoy “Rebirth,” the heartwarming story of newfound love for a widow of two years, and “A New Beginning,” the bizarre results of a dating service utilization. Stories of a dramatic nature include “Willie’s Dream,” a true story about a legendary NFL quarterback who took time to make a dying boy’s dream come true, and “Demons,” an actual tragic story of the demise of a PGA tour golf caddy. 

The stories are both fiction and non-fiction and should appeal to all ages and both genders. Many of the stories have won awards in literary competitions. Notes follow each story from the author detailing what inspired the story.

Author Mickey Jordan.

Book is available on and Barnes and Noble website. 

How does one explain death to a young child? What does one say? Read how one mom explained the untimely death of her young daughter's father to her in a very unconventional way.

My Daddy is a Star tells the story of  Zaliyah, a young girl struggling to understand why her dad is taken from her so soon and so suddenly, and who turns to her mom for answers and consolation. Not knowing exactly how to explain death to a six-year-old, her mom tells Zaliyah a story that her own mom once told her about the stars and angels. This most remarkable, unorthodox approach to an explanation is sure to delight the young and the seasoned.

Author Linda Black.  Book is available at (also in Kindle version) and from author at

A Porpoise for Cara by Linda Pennington Black

Friendship didn't come easy for Cara, but she found a lifelong friendship in a porpoise in very unusual circumstances. Was it fate or was it fortune that she was placed at that place at that time?

Book is available at (also in Kindle version) and from author at

Author John Achor introduces amateur sleuth Casey Fremont in a newly released edition of One-Two, Kill A Few: A Casey Fremont Mystery from Pro Se Productions.

Struggling to recover from a disastrous marriage and contentious divorce, Casey Fremont would prefer to make ends meet with her paycheck from a temp job; but now her goal of personal and mental renewal becomes one of staying alive as she solves a riddle of murder and mayhem.

Casey Fremont is on her way to interview for a temp job when a falling body nearly lands on her. Three days later, a second man, this one from her own office, dies in a similar manner and Casey is drawn into the intrigue. She confirms her suspicions, but one of her friends ends up in the hands of kidnappers. Casey must solve the mystery before she becomes the third body to go over the railing.

Available at (also in Kindle edition and audio edition).  

More info at

Beer, Bait, and Ammo”  is Chap Harper's third published novel and his second with “Smoking Gun Publishing” in St. Louis, Mo.

The book is set in Garland and Montgomery counties in Arkansas and selected parishes in Louisiana. In “Beer, Bait, and Ammo” Lester McFarlin, who is known in the south as the “Redneck Sherlock Holmes” solves so many homicides his boss, Garland County Sheriff Adams, dreads an expanded and expensive investigation on every assignment. When a domestic triple killing is a cut-and-dried slam dunk, the sheriff says “go on to something else.” But Lester digs deeper and uncovers a criminal enterprise that has tentacles extending from Hot Springs, Arkansas to New Orleans, Louisiana. Afflicted with a severe case of dyslexia caused by a brain injury in a car wreck when he was five years old, Lester seeks the help of a beautiful speech therapist, Debi Green, and is convinced to go under the knife to remove a blood clot on his brain. From a gun fight on her first date with Lester, to a fight to the death in an airboat blasting through a swamp in Louisiana, the couple puts their lives at risk. Ferocious battles on many fronts combine to stop a former beauty- queen-turned-crime boss, dead set on turning Hot Springs into her private dynasty of evil.

Chap's three novels Beer, Bait, and Ammo, Once Upon the Congo, and Once Upon a Reef  are available at Barnes and Noble... in store and on-line.

Author Sandy Lundin dedicated her book to all caring volunteers who rescue, train, rehabilitate and love dogs.

The book Dogs Who Serve, Caring Volunteers, is a 300-page collection of ten stories about:

  • Unkempt Shih Tzu is rescued from an outdoor cardboard box
  • Vision-impaired collie becomes a therapy dog
  • Puppy raiser's career in interrupted by fire.
  • Humane Society volunteer fundraiser rescues emaciated boxer
  • Animal Welfare League volunteer set up a spay/neuter clinic
  • Using dogs, a retired military couple starts veteran's rehab class
  • Quadruple amputee works in Occupational Therapy, drives a car, has Labrador helper

     Contact Sandra at for more purchasing information.


On September 6, 1949, the author was a bride and clueless as to the twists and turns her life would take as the wife of a US Army officer. Her husband served sixteen months at the end of WWII and completed his three-year obligation in the reserve forces. Meantime, he tried to complete college and enlisted in the Oklahoma National Guard while at the University of Oklahoma. The Guard unit was recalled to service with the 45th Division at the outbreak of the Korean War.

Elizabeth was ill-prepared for the kind of life she would experience as a military wife, the frequent moves from pillar to post while rearing four children, the separations from her husband, and parting from her friends and making new ones. Without a support system, she learned that military wives depended on each other.

It wasn't an easy life, but it offered many exciting adventures and presented friendships in many places. 

Author: Elizabeth Carroll Foster.  Book (also Kindle edition) is available at 

In the 1950's the doctor draft squelched any thoughts of the author Lawrence J Enders, M.D. being a "normal" hometown physician. But it opened a whole new world of unexpected events, people, and places.

From astronauts to Russian spies, Hollywood stars to an acquitted multiple murderer, and the John F. Kennedy family to a Nazi war-crimes scientist, these events and interactions found their way into the life of a military doctor and his book Surviving Serendipity.

Throw in 75 combat missions in Southwest Asia, dinner with the Chief of Starr of the Chinese Air Force, and a persistent FBI agent, and this true story seems almost unbelievable.

A local newspaper near the doctor's current residence calls him the "Forrest Gump" of the Village.  Judge for yourself as each serendipitous even unfolds.... one after another.

Available on (also in Kindle edition), at, or by contacting
the author at


Author Sandra Lundin brings to life in graphic detail the Four Continents to Freedom a biographical account of the life of Millie Zygmunt Rytel.

At gunpoint Russian soldiers force their way into the Walter Zygmunt house in Poland and order the family to pack for a temporary journey. They are herded into a cattle car, and a month later, Millie Zygmunt, her parents, and sisters are unloaded at a slave labor camp in Siberia. 

"The Devil," an ugly man, assigns jobs and sets quotas. When the starving Polish slaves are freed after 18 months, Millie and her mother and sisters push, beg and work their way through four continents to reach freedom in America.

Kindle Edition available at   

Contact Sandra at for more purchasing information.

Chilly Willy the Hoodie Wearing Bully by Linda Pennington Black

Bullying is a major issue these days, and Chilly Willy is a big time bully. All the children around him are afraid because he terrorizes them every chance he gets. Will he continue his reign of terror or will he be stopped?

Sometimes circumstances in one’s life play a big role in how the world is perceived. Odds were stacked against Chilly Willy from the beginning, and his behavior and attitude portrayed how he felt. Finally he discovers how to deal with negative forces in his life and turn them into positive outcomes through an encounter with Paul, who becomes his best friend and mentor.

Book is available at (also in Kindle version) and from author at

Chuck Miller, The Traveling Guy, is a native Californian, has traveled to all seven continents, eighty-three countries and in December, 2012 completed his goal of playing golf in all fifty states in fifty weeks.

Golfing the U.S, takes the reader on a vicarious trip with freelance golf and travel writer Chuck Miller as he reflects on his 2012 fifty-week golf odyssey during which he played 141 golf courses while driving to and through a different state each week.

Enjoy learning about the courses he played, the places he stayed, and the good, bad, and ugly things that happened to him while golfing each of our fifty states during his year on the road.

Author John Achor's amateur detective returns ready to tackle crime once more in I. From Pro Se Productions.

Mystery and Danger follow Casey Fremont once again. This time, it might just get her killed... Casey Fremont's ex husband, Jarvis the Rat, is two months behind with alimony payments, so she asks TrueTemp Agency to find a temp job for her, this time with a legal firm. As the new job begins and Casey's life with her two roommates and detective boyfriend continues on, post cards begin arriving in Casey's mailbox. They contain images and cryptic messages. Messages that Casey believes relate to a series of murders occurring in the state capital, Little Rock. needing to decipher the messages to prevent further deaths, Casey has to both battle her stalker, the mysterious and deadly 'Romeo', and convince the police that they are on the wrong trail. All before Casey or any of her friends end up dead.

Available at (also in Kindle edition and audio edition).  

More info at

The Adventures of Boots: The Giant Snowball  by Linda Pennington Black

Boots is an overzealous adventuresome cat, but self-confidence and patience aren’t his high points. He loves playing in the snow. Lots of fresh snow has fallen and Boots wants to make a snowman. When his friends turn down his offer to help, he tackles the job alone. This turns out to be one of the worse mistakes he’s ever made.

Available at (also in Kindle edition) or from author at

The Adventures of Boots: The Christmas Surprise by Linda Pennington Black

Christmas is a time for giving. In this charming story Boots, expresses the true meaning of love, giving and thankfulness. It displays the real value of family and friendship. The gift of giving is one of great humility, and when done with love and affection, it is most genuine.

Available at (also in Kindle edition) or from author at

Authors: Mary Lou Moran and Jerry Davis

She Writes, He's Wrong is a collection of award-winning short stories, essays and poems by a pair of writing partners. Each piece has an single author, but has likely been edited and critiqued by the other. The authors have very different styles of writing that encompass non-fiction, fiction, science fiction, fantasy, and just plain silly. One story deals with a married couple fighting over the remote control; several stories feature a Film Noir detective, one involves rescuing an abandoned dog, a few murderers telling their own stories, a lady who discovers she looks like her mother, and many others. 

Every story represents a love of writing that the authors are happy to share and hope you will enjoy.

Book is available on, Barnes and,, and at your local bookstore.