The Race Underground by Doug Most

The Race Underground by Doug MostCan building a subway capture a reader's imagination? When the book is about two cities and their respective efforts to engineer subways beneath the ground on which they stand, the answer is a resounding "Yes!" Author Doug Most tapped the same…

New Experiences, New Ideas

Hunting ideas in the Wisconsin woods

Hunting ideas in the Wisconsin woods

Know sometimes how you stumble into a new experience that gets your wheels turning; prompts you to think…

Book Leads

Traded trivia about memorable movie quotes the other night—favorites, some of which others instantly knew. Can you match these lines to their movies?

“It was beauty killed the beast.”
“I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender. I coulda been somebody.”

I thought of classic book…

The Power of Words

Word Magic for WritersIn editor Cindy Rogers’s excellent 2004 book “Word Magic for Writers,” one chapter focuses on authors making “Dazzling word choices.” Her aim is to teach writers how to create vivid images by using vibrant words. Rogers quoted Mark Twain…



I read 2-3 books simultaneously—fiction and non-fiction. It’s my way of multi-tasking. You never know what story ideas you might pick up doing this. One of those gems caught my eye while reading Robert Kaplan’s Imperial GruntsThe American Military On The Ground. I wrote McFadden’s Warbecause…