Autumn in Florida

We are having our first taste of Autumn in Florida this week. A miraculous cold front came through and after months of 90 degrees plus temperatures with humidity in the upper 70s, the temps plunged to a high of 88 degrees. More importantly, the humidity dropped to a more comfortable level.

We Floridians, like me, who spent most of the summer avoiding any unnecessary outdoor activity are finally able to step outside and take a deep breath of fresh cool air and hope the dreaded long, hot summer is behind us?

In truth, Autumn in Florida is a state of mind and not an actuality. While folks up north bring out their sweaters, scarfs and boots and take long crisp walks in the woods where the leaves have turned reds and oranges and have begun to fall, here the only leaves you will see turn color is when a tree is dead and the leaves have turned an ugly brown. Here, we’re still wearing flip-flops, shorts and short sleeve t-shirts.

Oh sure, we can get our pumpkin spice latte at the local coffee shop, but hey, it’s still 88 degrees outside and humid. The crisp cool mornings we are promised will only last a few days and most likely by the end of the week, we’ll be back to high humidity and temperatures in the 90s.

Autumn, or what passes for Autumn in Florida will not arrive for real for at least for another month if we’re lucky. These couples of “cooler” days have been a treat, but make no mistake about it, there is no Autumn in Florida.

Publication Day

It’s here!

DARK SECRETS is now available as both an eBook and paperback at Amazon.

Ten brand new devilishly criminal short stories. In The New Wave Church you will meet Bobby James Knotts a small time criminal who hits it big after taking an on-line course to become a minister. Money and women come his way, but so does the road to death’s doorway. A gang of tough Brooklyn teens rule their Junior High School classroom, that is until they meet Norman. For Olivia, hiring your success starved lover to kill your husband may not be such A Good Deal. This and seven other short stories will all be revealed.

Now on sale!

One Art Inspiring Another

Back in the Fall of 2018 my wife and I went on a photo tour to the Delmarva Peninsula with photographer John Slonina. The five-day trip included various stops at wildlife nature reserves along the Delaware, Maryland and Virginia coastline where we would find and photograph birds and other wildlife. One early morning stop was at the Bombay Hook NWR in Delaware. It’s an important stop in both the Spring and Fall seasons for many migrating shorebirds traveling up North or South depending on the time of year. We were there one early morning in December in time to capture thousands of snow geese on their way down South for the winter.

One morning, as we waited for thousands of snow geese to take flight, I took a few photographs of nearby reeds. There was a beautiful orange sky in the background. It was the accompanying photograph that provided the inspiration for my story, “The Bombay Hook Incident,” one of ten short stories included in my new book “Dark Secrets.”

Inspiration can come from many sources. My photography has, on various occasions given me the inspiration needed to write a few stories, a case of one source of artistic expression feeding another.

“Dark Secrets” will be available on September 22nd on Amazon as an eBook and a paperback.

Burn, Baby Burn: America and The Burning of Books and Ideas

John Greco Author/Photographer

fahrenheitresized

I recently watched HBO’s remake of Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 starring Michael Jordan and Michael Shannon. The film got me thinking about our political climate today and the suppression of ideas that do not coincide with the company line. It made me think about how close we are to this incendiary topic becoming a reality.

Fahrenheit 451 was written in the early 1950s during the McCarthy witch hunts, a point in time when the author feared America reached a point where the burning of ‘subversive’ literature was more than a slight possibility. The book focuses on an American society in the near future where owning a book is a crime. ‘Firemen’ are employed to burn any books found.

When I came across the book cover of the edition pictured above, I thought how simple, yet powerfully effective it was. The title with the ‘1’ replaced by a matchstick. That one…

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Update on My Latest Short Story Collection

With the pandemic raging on, I hope everyone is staying safe and being diligent. On a personal note, I have received both doses of the Moderna vaccine. No side effects other than a sore arm for a day or so. I continue to follow CDC guidelines and Dr. Fauci so I’m still wearing a mask and staying socially distant, but I have ventured out a little more. Still, many more people need to get vaccinated. We all need to do our part if we are going to be successful in getting through this.

On the writing front, I have been concentrating on putting together my next short story collection, which I hope to have out in the summer or early fall. It has been a bit of an ordeal working on this project. For a long period, I had writer’s block. My mind seemed to just go blank, creatively. Part of the reason, if not all, had to do with the pandemic which I felt sucked the creative energy out of me. Why, I’m not sure. I was spending more time than ever at home and sure had the time to write. But in the back of my mind, COVID-19 was lurking.

I admit it; COVID had me worried. Worried I would catch it and worried my wife would catch it. We both have underlying conditions that could have made it worse. Fortunately, we did not.

One day, searching for inspiration, I searched through my files of stories I’ve rejected because I felt they were not good enough. I came across this one story written a few years back and thought, hey, this is worth revisiting. I worked on it until I got it to a point where I said to myself, “YES!” This will work. That spark reignited my creative juices, and I have been on a roll. As I continued to write fresh stories, I realized a similar theme was emerging in everyone. Wow!

Soon, I will reveal the book’s title and a list of some of stories that will be included, all connected by this one theme.

I’m excited. Stay tune for more.

Happy Holidays

It’s been a rough a year and I think I’m safe in saying we’re all looking forward to a brighter 2021.  Too many people have suffered heartbreaking losses of family and/or friends, lost jobs and more. It’s been a struggle for us all in one way or another. I want to take this moment to wish everyone during this holiday season peace, happiness and a reason to believe. Thanks to everyone for taking the time to stop by and please stay safe.

Newsletter

Finally, after a long delay, I have published my first newsletter. If you are interested in receiving it, send me your email (johngrecoauthor@gmail.com) or PM on Facebook, and say newsletter. For a limited time, I will send to anyone who signs up a copy of my short story, MAKE IT WRITE (Kindle or PDF). Let me know which you prefer.