Monday, December 21, 2009

Writer Spotlight: Caperton Tissot

NAME: Caperton Tissot
FIELD: writer
EMPLOYER: self-employed (Snowy Owl Press)

Q. What were your main writing & publishing accomplishments this past year?
Shared weekly column in Adirondack Daily Enterprise: Friends and Neighbors; various oral history workshops and talks.

Q. What new projects are you working on for the upcoming year?
A new slant on Adirondack History

Q. What are your upcoming public appearances?
Lake Placid Historical Society talk on oral history projects.

Q. If you were to write a book with one other person in the world, who would it be and what would you write?
Who knows?

Q. What do you like the most about living in and/or writing about the Adirondack region?
The wilderness, community and writing (because it is a means of sharing observations and history with readers).

Caperton Tissot comes to the field of writing via a career in health care, pottery, environmental politics, and published cultural commentary. Caperton and her husband live in the Adirondacks, where she combines active outdoor exploration with a passion for writing about history, memoirs and social commentary. Published works include magazine and newspaper articles, a book, "History between the Lines: Women’s Lives and Saranac Lake Customs," and an upcoming book addressing an aspect of Adirondack history to be published in the summer/fall of 2010.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Writer Spotlight: Joe Hackett

NAME: Joe Hackett
FIELD: Columnist/freelance outdoor writer
EMPLOYER: Self-employed

Q. What were your main writing & publishing accomplishments this past year?
Completing a full decade of writing two columns a week for different newspaper groups

Q. What new projects are you working on for the upcoming year?
A continued commitment to reconnecting children and nature, with an emphasis on rural youth and traditional sporting pursuits

Q. What are your upcoming public appearances?
This afternoon on Scarface Mountain, I'll be in my backyard delivering a keynote address to the first buck passing by

Q. If you were to write a book with one other person in the world, who would it be and what would you write?
A how to guide for aspiring outdoor writers with James Prosec, author/illustrator of “Trout of the World, Fishing with Joe” and several others

Q. What do you like the most about living in and/or writing about the Adirondack region?
The endless supply of topics and material and the unlimited human resources, a wealth of characters

Joe Hackett is a full time, year-round Adirondack guide operating primarily for flyfishing enthusiasts seeking traditional backcountry adventures. With a reputation for father/son and mother /daughter adventures, he recently completed his 31st season in the woods. He lives with his wife and two daughters in the sprawling metropolis of east Ray Brook; within a stone's throw of the Adirondack Park Agency and Department of Environmental Conservation headquarters.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Adirondack Attic: Volume 1 is now officially OUT OF PRINT

Hungry Bear Publishing announced today that its first book -- "New York State's Mountain Heritage: Adirondack Attic, Volume 1," by Saranac Lake author Andy Flynn -- is now out of print. It was released in May 2004.

"That means we are critically low on copies of this book, and there will not be a second printing," said Hungry Bear Publishing publisher and "Adirondack Attic" author Andy Flynn. "We have made plans to sell the rest of the books on our web site."

Hungry Bear Publishing will sell its remaining 50 copies of "Adirondack Attic 1" during a special "Going Out of Print Sale" on as part of a set. Buy the six "Adirondack Attic" books for $99.95 (a savings of $7.00) and get six Adirondack Attic bookmarks for free.

Since "Adirondack Attic Volume 6" will not be released until the spring of 2010, people who buy the complete sets will get the first five volumes immediately (plus five bookmarks), and Hungry Bear Publishing will ship Volume 6 when it is released. Shipping is an additional $10.00.

"Volume 6 will be the final book in the series, so this is the last time people can get a complete set of signed 'Adirondack Attic' books from Hungry Bear Publishing," Flynn said. "As other volumes of 'Adirondack Attic' are sold out, they will not be re-printed, so this is definitely a set to collect."

Single copies of "New York State's Mountain Heritage: Adirondack Attic, Volume 1" are still available at bookstores and gift shops in the Adirondack region.

The six-part "Adirondack Attic" book series features more than 300 human-interest stories about a variety of artifacts at the Adirondack Museum in Blue Mountain Lake, N.Y. The books represent a collection of Flynn's "Adirondack Attic" column, which ran weekly in several northern New York newspapers from 2003 to 2009. Volume 1 includes the full set of columns, a total of 45, from the inaugural year.

For more information, contact Andy Flynn at (518) 891-5559 or visit online at Hungry Bear Publishing.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Andy’s Desk: Tupper Lake/Long Lake/Newcomb Meet the Town books arrive

The Tupper Lake/Long Lake/Newcomb Meet the Town booklets arrive today. That means I’ll be spending the next two days folding maps, stuffing them in books, and distributing them around Tupper Lake, Long Lake and Newcomb. They’re a little late, due to illness and computer crashes, but this edition is much better than the previous (we always try to improve each book).

First of all, the Tupper Lake Meet the Town only featured the Tupper Lake community in 2008-2009, the inaugural edition. In the 2009-2010 Tupper Lake booklet, we are also promoting the town of Newcomb and the town of Long Lake, which includes the hamlets of Long Lake and Raquette Lake This is a more regional approach. At first I just wanted to add Long Lake because there is a lot of travel between Long Lake and Tupper Lake, and that made it a perfect direction to expand the booklet. Then I thought, “Newcomb is pretty close to Long Lake; let’s add Newcomb, too.” And that was that. Newcomb was in.

Raquette Lake is included in the new Meet the Town because it is part of the town of Long Lake. The community of Blue Mountain Lake is not detailed in the guide because there is limited space, and the hamlet is located in the town of Indian Lake. By political boundary, we are keeping true to the guide. We admit, though, that the traveler may see it otherwise. You see, folks have to drive through Blue Mountain Lake on State Route 28N in order to get from Long Lake to Raquette Lake.

Simply ignoring Blue Mountain Lake is not in anyone’s best interest. Therefore, we haven’t forgotten Blue Mountain Lake, a community that is near and dear to my heart, home of the Adirondack Museum, where I have traveled to research Adirondack history for my writing over the past six years. In the Attractions section of the Tupper Lake/Long Lake/Newcomb booklet, we have included the Adirondack Museum and the Adirondack Lakes Center for the Arts, two of the major attractions in the Central Adirondacks, ones that I highly recommend for the resident and visitor.

Every time a new book arrives, I always get nervous. Did the printer do a good job? How many boxes were smashed on the ride from the printer to Saranac Lake? Will I slip and fall in the snow while carrying 35 boxes from the FedEx truck to my storage area? It’s exciting, like when a new baby arrives, but there are always things to worry about until I get the new book in front of a customer and get a review, hopefully a positive one. Please enjoy the new Meet the Town for Tupper Lake, Long Lake and Newcomb. The online version will be available soon on the Meet the Town web site.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Andy’s Desk: New Saranac Lake Winter Carnival book in the works

Today I begin my training to help maintain the new Saranac Lake Winter Carnival web site. I currently maintain my own two web sites – Meet the Town and Hungry Bear Publishing – and the Adirondack Writer blog, and have now volunteered to help the Winter Carnival Committee update its web site with one other volunteer. Nick Wakeman, who re-designed the Winter Carnival site, will visit me this afternoon and show me the ropes. Then I will try to train the other volunteer at a later date.

This web site work coincides with, but is not related to, the formation of a new book, “Saranac Lake Winter Carnival Memories,” which Hungry Bear Publishing expects to release in the fall of 2010. After working with the Tupper Lake library on the reprint of “Mostly Spruce and Hemlock,” my wife, Dawn, and I began looking for another community organization to help with the publication of a new book. We didn’t have to look far; Saranac Lake was the perfect choice, as we live here, and this is Dawn’s hometown (Tupper Lake is mine). So we began working on the creation of the new Winter Carnival book last week.

I’m currently working with the Winter Carnival’s official photographer – Mark Kurtz – to pick two photos for the cover of the book. I want it to look fun, like a carnival, yet professional. It should also be a different design from the other seven book covers I’ve published so far. The layout is complete but may be tweaked (I’m always tweaking). Then I have to decide on a font. I’m shopping right now for a font that is fun yet professional and easy to read on a book shelf.

“Saranac Lake Winter Carnival Memories” will be a true community book in the sense that it will be written by the Saranac Lake Winter Carnival community – past and present residents and visitors. In early January, we will start accepting submissions of essays (even poems) of no more than 450 words and photos (two per person) of Saranac Lake Winter Carnival memories. I estimate that the book will be 480 pages, paperback, and will retail for $24.95. I will be the editor.

Furthering our community commitment, we will donate 10% of the book’s proceeds to the Saranac Lake Winter Carnival Committee. Given this, we are asking that submissions be donated to the cause. Entrants must sign waivers and entry forms, which will be available in early January. We hope to sell most of the initial print run of 2,000 via summer presales and through the 2010 holiday shopping season in order to help the Saranac Lake Winter Carnival Committee pay for its 2011 event. That’s the plan so far.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Adirondack Attic: Lake Placid decoupage skates

(Editor’s Note: The following is a sample of an “Adirondack Attic” story, by Andy Flynn, originally published in newspapers in 2004 and re-printed in “New York State’s Mountain Heritage: Adirondack Attic, Volume 2.” See a photo of the artifact on the cover of the book.)

Ask 100 Olympic village tourists — “What’s the first thing you think of when you think of Lake Placid?” — and you’ll get 100 different answers: the Winter Olympics, the 1980 “Miracle on Ice,” bobsledding, horse shows, the Ironman triathlon, Mount Marcy, Jimmy Shea, hockey.

Ask 100 screaming girls the same question while they’re watching Scott Hamilton or Kristi Yamaguchi perform in the Olympic Arena, and you’ll get only one answer — a high-pitched “figure skating!” guaranteed to knock you out of your red, plastic seat.

The Skating Club of Lake Placid can trace its roots back to the early 20th century at the Lake Placid Club, where competitions in the village were first held outdoors. Today the Skating Club offers programs and events to help skaters of all ages learn about basic skills and performing.

Barbara Tyrell Kelly, of Lake Placid, is a shining example of how creative, enthusiastic and successful figure skaters can be in New York’s Adirondack Mountains. She is a Lake Placid Hall of Fame adult figure skater and a founding member of the Skating Club of Lake Placid. In 1997, Kelly won an adult figure skating gold medal in the United States Figure Skating Association (USFSA) Adult Nationals in Lake Placid. In 1999, she was honored with the Mountain Cup Trophy at the first international adult competition for “being an inspiration for adult skating around the world.”

Kelly donated a pair of decoupage skates to the Adirondack Museum in the summer of 2003. The women’s figure skates are decorated in decoupage style with newspaper and magazine clippings that illustrate the history of the club. Some headlines came straight from the tabloids. Many of the photos were taken from local newspapers. Depicted are events such as the Mid-Summer Operetta and Skate America, the names of coaches, photo headshots and the names of famous male and female skaters. The skate laces are made of lace.

The year was 1932, and the Olympic village needed an organization to sponsor competitions, ice carnivals and testing under the USFSA. The Skating Club of the Adirondacks was formed to do just that. In 1937, the group’s name was changed to the Skating Club of Lake Placid.

(Read more about this artifact in “New York State’s Mountain Heritage: Adirondack Attic, Volume 2.” Buy online @ the Hungry Bear Publishing Bookstore. $18.00)

Copyright 2004 Andy Flynn/Hungry Bear Publishing

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Writer Spotlight: Hallie E. Bond

NAME: Hallie E. Bond
FIELD: Museum curator (history)
EMPLOYER: Adirondack Museum

Q. What were your main writing & publishing accomplishments this past year?
“Cover Story” about Adirondack quilts in Adirondack Life, September/October 2009

Q. What new projects are you working on for the upcoming year?
“Passion in the Park,” a special Valentine's Day edition of Cabin Fever Sunday (Feb. 14, 2010) and ongoing research on quilts and other domestic textile production in the Adirondacks.

Q. What are your upcoming public appearances?
Cabin Fever Sunday program, Feb. 14, 2010, at the Adirondack Museum in Blue Mountain Lake, N.Y.

Q. If you were to write a book with one other person in the world, who would it be and what would you write?
I'd work with Laurel Thacher Ulrich on a book on the home life of Adirondackers between the Civil War and World War II (non-fiction)

Q. What do you like the most about living in and/or writing about the Adirondack region?
I like the integration of life and the outdoors.

Hallie E. Bond has been Curator at the Adirondack Museum since 1987. She has written extensively on regional history and material culture including “Boats and Boating in the Adirondacks,” published by Syracuse University Press in 1995, “A Paradise for Boys and Girls: Children’s Camps in the Adirondacks,” and numerous articles in magazines and contributions to books. Ms. Bond has a B.A. in History from the University of Colorado, an M.A. in Medieval Studies from the University of York (England) and an M.A. in American History with a Certificate in Museum Studies from the University of Delaware. She lives in Long Lake, N.Y., with her husband, Mason Smith, and two children.

PHOTO: Hallie Bond integrates the study of history with the outdoors on her BYOBoat trip during the summer of 2009, “The St. James of the Wilderness and the St. Regis Lakes,” with Mike Prescott in foreground.