Douglas Arvidson is a past winner of the WICE/Paris Transcontinental International Short Story competition. His short fiction has been published in Paris, Prague, and in literary magazines in the United States and he was recently invited to be a staff writer for the Prague Revue, a cutting-edge, online literary journal ( The novels in his fantasy series, The Eye of the Eye of Stallion, include The Face in Amber, The Mirrors of Castaway Time, and A Drop of Wizard's Blood. His new novel, Brothers of the Fire Star, was selected as a finalist in the ForeWord Reviews 2012 Book of the Year national awards and as a finalist in three categories in the 2013 New Mexico-Arizona Book Awards: Action Adventure Fiction, Historical Fiction, and Young Adult Fiction. It has become part of the pantheon of Pacific literature and is now included in school literature programs. Brothers of the Fire Star is an adventure story set in the Pacific during World War II and concerns two boys of different races and cultures who escape the island of Guam in a small sailboat when the Japanese army invades. They must then struggle to survive as they master the secrets of the ancient Pacific navigators. Appropriate for young adults as well as adult readers, Brothers of the Fire Star is available on Barnes & Noble, ( and Visit the author's website:

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

A Sailor's Fourth of July: Our All American Little Town on the Chesapeake

This is it, the America I've been missing. I've been out of the country pretty much steadily for the past twenty-five years and now I'm home for this: the perfect all-American experience on the perfect, all-American holiday.

The spirit of Onancock and the physical reality of Onancock are one and the same. They linger in a mythic and pleasant past when there was an ice cream party on the town common and a band played patriotic music on the gazebo after the mayor--who is also the town barber--gave a speech. Citizens gathered around on the grass, old people in chairs or on benches, young people holding hands, kids running about. And not only the town common, but all the main roads are lined with small American flags.

So, this morning I'm up at first light and was working on the re-write of the Book III, A Drop of Wizard's Blood, while Terry slept in. This is our routine--I love the early morning air and light. But the witchy mornings never last long enough. Too soon the dayspring, with its magical cool air, deep shadows, and waking birds, gives way to the bleaching reality of full daylight. As the sun rises, the elves and faeries, sylphs and zephyrs who are my muses, take their leave and I'm faced with chores that can no longer be denied. But, today is a rest day, a day of celebration, and I'm looking forward to what this town will offer.

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