You, subscribers, are too, if you find it jarring when people jump into a conversation with a non sequitur statement. You get the value of segue and progression of ideas.  If you get derailed when you’re recounting a funny event and someone says “It didn’t really happen exactly that way,” or “You forgot this little detail,” then you already know about story-telling and its impact, focus, need for flow, subordination of irrelevant elements, and simplicity. If you wish that people at least have a point in a conversation, then you get the importance of a story arc, leading to a climax.  You recognize that storytelling is not just for communication but an art form. Please come meet over 60 authors who share your passion, at the Desert Foothills Book Festival on October 21.

Editors, Rita Goldner and Trish Dolasinski


The ship hailing from Italy sailed into NY harbor on that gray June day. Overnight, it seemed, the life of a little girl on that ship was forever changed. Loved ones, so prominent in her 8 years of life, would now

be in its rearview mirror. The loneliness that became her new constant partner was, over time, replaced by a new permanent friend, a book. The life of that little girl, author J.P. Martel, would never be the

same. Books helped her to make sense of this new world, its language, and customs. They became the most loyal of friends and inspired in her a love of writing. A desire to explore the world firsthand then naturally followed.

Throughout her lifetime, books and writing have been a constant, always there to entertain and to console. When she was faced with a couple of challenging health crises, these were soothed by the power of the pen.

One such incident birthed a fiction novel based on a young couple’s struggles with infertility. Five Years and A Million Tears is a story of courage and faith, written out of a desire to honor all those who have,

are, and, sadly, will travel on that lonely road. It is a reminder to them that they are not alone.

Sometimes one writes for the sheer pleasure of it. A new soon-to-be-released fiction novel, Destiny’s Plan, is the story of identical twins who were separated at birth and the somewhat unsavory

circumstances that bring them together.

You can reach J.P. Martel at


Lucy Dickens is an active award-winning oil painter, a “storyteller of fine art.” Her critically acclaimed work is collected throughout the United States and abroad, appealing to a wide audience. Lucy has a heart and passion for those who carry the burden and trauma of abuse or endure broken marriages. Her prayer is to bring hope and healing through her transparent approach as she shares her own personal journey, inspiring others to draw close to God and experience the healing she has received. She and her husband, Richard, are involved in restorative marriage ministry and private mentoring. Lucy shares her own broken journey, traveling through the pain and trauma of some of life’s most difficult trials, persevering through sexual and verbal abuse, bullying, chronic illness and pain, a marriage torn apart, a life-and-death diagnosis, and even terrifying natural disasters. Her book, Through the Fire, Traveling the Broken Road to Hope and Healing, was written for those who are seeking to become whole again, longing for restoration and clarity, ready to break free and find healing.

Lucy set out to write her story, isolated in her cabin in the woods when a forest fire broke out. The fire raged closer as she alternated between fire updates and her writing. Who knew this was supposed to be about the past and the here and now?  God knew…he had a plan. After a terrifying night with the wind howling and shaking the windows, and the smell of smoke filling the house, she was evacuated with the fire just a half mile away.

Connect with Lucy:


Joseph D. Newcomer is a speculative fiction and social commentary writer. His works include Darkest Day, Diminishing Return, El Camino Blue, and the Thought & Other Absurdities blog, collection, and podcast. His children’s books also include Let’s Make S’mores and Ari and The Armpit Mouse.

Joseph gives credit to his high school senior English teacher, Bill Hetrick, for his love of writing. His first novel, El Camino Blue, is a coming-of-age story, based on some of the writing he produced in his 1997 senior class. After publishing his first novel, he found his stride and voice in a more literary, speculative, and social commentary style he’d grown to love after Hetrick introduced him to works by Vonnegut and Bradbury. Joseph’s recent works are tales of the struggling human condition and call for a more compassionate society delivered in bizarre, twisting, sci-fi-infused tales with approachable humor and characters.

In 2021, he founded “Dead Star Press” to publish/support authors who revel in the weird and generally languish in obscurity. Other than Joseph’s most recent works, Dead Star Press has released From the Dead, an anthology of stories, poems, and essays from ten different writers.

Soon to be released is Walnut Ridge, Dan Scamell’s first novel and the first full-length novel from Dead Star Press not penned by Joseph. In addition, Joseph was named Phoenix Magazine’s Best of the Valley Best Author 2023. He hopes to be sucked into an episode of The Twilight Zone, though he has a sneaking suspicion that “we already were.”

Find Joseph’s work and all the Dead Star Press titles at and Amazon. Find Joseph’s blog and more at

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