Tag Archives: Sachem Library

Episode 33 – What is the thread that connects us to complex characters? Authors Julian Rubenstein and Ellen Meister



What is the thread that connects us to complex characters? It’s an “alumni” episode!  Larry chats with previous guests Julian Rubenstein and Ellen Meister.

Julian discusses his non-fiction work, The Holly: Five Bullets, One Gun and the Struggle to Save an American Neighborhood. and what it is like as an outsider to the community he focuses on, and the importance of making community connections. Larry has Julian expand his thoughts on how the impact of gang violence affects African American communities and the complex personality of Terrance Roberts, the anti-gang activist at the heart of the book.

Fellow alumni, Ellen Meister drops by to speak about her book The Rooftop Party, which features a puzzling, murder, a glitzy shopping channel, and a witty female protagonist trying to clear her name. Meister discusses the difficulty of marketing stories that don’t quite fit in a specific genre, the impact of the “Me Too” movement and her process for naming characters.

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Episode 30 – How Many Threads Connect Us to the Past, Present, and the Future? Dr.Simon Morden, author of The Red Planet



How many threads connect us to the past,the present, and the future? Larry steps into the unknown and speaks with Dr.Simon Morden, author of The Red Planet: A Natural History of Mars. Larry broaches the topics of The God Particle, TheBig Bang Theory and the significance of theJames Webb Telescope. Dr. Morton then discusses the history of Mars, the presence of Carbon-12, why Mars soil is red, the enormity of its topography and the potential effect of human colonization. Afterwards, they return to earth to discuss global warming and how the future of our own planet might unfold.


Episode 27 – How Many Threads Connect Us to a Changing Way of Life – Ed Davis and Manda Kalimian



How man threads connect us to a changing way of life?  A boxcar, a spiral notebook and a pencil, the root of the “origin story” of author Ed Davis who has penned The Last Professional.  Larry explores that “origin story” and how Ed’s early life riding boxcars inspired him to write about a yesteryear of “hobos, tramps and bums” and which are wonderers.  Are the characters running away from something or towards something else and what the power of freedom is to the mind.  Ed also talks about how the soundtrack of boxcar life is the rhythm of the rails and how it is juxtaposed against the rhythm of writing. Is wanderlust part of a persons DNA?

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Rory Vecsey joins the program and has a conversation with Manda Kalimian founder of the CANA Foundation, political action committee Saddle PAC and author of Born to Rewild.  Rory, being a horse person herself explores what it is like to fall in love with horses, the treatment of wild horses by the Federal Government (including roundups via helicopter and confinement using taxpayer dollars) so wild lands can be used for fracking, farming or grazing cattle, slaughterhouses in Mexico and Canada and how this all contributes to climate change.  Manda also discusses solutions and introduces us all to her concept of “rewilding”, re-introducing wild horses back to their habitat.

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Episode 26 – How Many Threads Connect Us from the Original Idea to the Time the Work Gets to the Reader – Jenny Rossberg Pegasus Books



How many threads connect us from the original idea to the time the work gets to the reader?  Larry pulls back the curtain of publishing with Jenny Rossberg, Senior Publicist at Pegasus Books.  Jenny and Larry broach subjects of crime fiction (and how you can learn about a town from those works), what a Novella is and why they can be as entertaining as a full novel, and the difference between commercial versus literary fiction.  Jenny also discloses the types of works she reads when she is not at work, and what the draw was for her to enter the publishing world.  Larry posits the question “how does an idea for a book develop to the point where the work is on the shelf in a bookstore” and what the “life” of a book looks like.

Jenny also speaks about authors S.J. Rozan, Paul Vitich, Heather Martin and Jennifer Murphy.

We also get a window into the new or upcoming books Europe’s Babylon, Learwife and On the Trail of the Jackalope.


Episode 23 – How Many Threads Connect Us to Complicated Family Secrets – Author John Copenhaver & Singer/Songwriter Rorie Kelly



How many threads connect us to complicated family secrets?  In this installment, Larry, along with contributor Rory Vecsey chat with author John Copenhaver about his new book Savage Kind.  Larry explores how crafting a purposeful prologue can set the table to manipulate the readers perspective to then make it easier for the author to create plot twists.  John discusses 2 characters Phillippa and Judy, 2 teens and the perception of the stereotypical young person in the 1940’s.  Not all is what it seems.  One of Larry’s favorite topics is discussing “femme fatale” characters and he explores with John the concept of a male in that role.  Rory inquires about the power of foreshadowing, along with the use of poetry and mythology in the book.

Joining Larry is singer/songwriter Rorie Kelly.  Rory plays 4 original songs, talks about being a “Lady Beast”, how the female voice effects people, and how the guitar is an extension of her body.  Rorie talks about her beginnings with her family, the influences in her songwriting. Rosie also does a Facebook Live called “Monday Night Muses“.

Rorie’s setlist:

Magick Comin

Full Moon Charm Bracelet

This Girl

Liminal Spaces


Episode 19 – How Many Threads Connect us to a Series of Events – Author Amanda Fairbanks and Singer/Songwriter Stuart Markus



How many threads connect unto a series of events.  Joining the podcast is author Amanda Fairbanks, author of the book The Lost Boys of Montauk.  Amanda speaks to Larry about the process of writing this story and how it was a labor of love, being a resident of the South Fork of Long Island.  We learn about how the Montauk of1984 (a primarily fishing town) transitioned to a playground for the ultra wealthy along with the secrets that can haunt the families of the lost.

Photo Credit: Sharon Suh .

Also joining the podcast is singer/songwriter/seachanteyman Stuart Markus.  Stuart joined Larry in studio to play some tunes both popular and original, including The View from the Side of the Road and Gloucester Ladies.  Stuart spoke about growing up with music in Rochester, New York, his first experiences with music as a kid and what inspires him to write music and perform with his band Gathering Time.  You can get more information about where to find Stuart here.


Episode 15 – What is the Thread that Connects Human Behavior to a Range of Pathologies – Abigail Esman, Tom Clavin and Commentary by Peter Blauner



What is the Thread that Connects Human Behavior to a Range of Pathologies.  Joining Larry on this episode is Authors Abigail Esman and Tom Clavin along with a commentary by Peter Blauner.

Abigail Esman is the author  of Rage: Narcissism, Patriarchy and the Culture of Terrorism.  Abigail kicks off the episode with a short passage from her book and then explains why she needed to pen this work. She has a lively conversation about how personal experiences & the experience of the events of 9/11 inspired her to write about pathological narcissism and its roots in shame-honor cultures—both familial and sociopolitical—through portraits of terrorists and batterers.

Abigail R. Esman - Pen & Sword

Guest and friend of the program Tom Clavin, New York Times Bestselling author, returns to the podcast to discuss his new book Tombstone: The Earp Brothers, Doc Holliday and the Vendetta Ride from Hell.  Always a fun guest, Larry talks about his love for the old west stemming from the movies of his childhood.  This passion for the old west and storytelling drove him to turn his book Dodge City, Wyatt Earp, Bat Masterson, and the Wickedest Town in the American West into the first in a Trilogy which also includes Wild Bill: The True Story of the American Frontiers First Gunfighter.

Peter Blauner, author, journalist and friend to the podcast joins with commentary on the year we lost writing giants Journalist Pete Hamill, his brother and writer in his own right John Hamill and Pulitzer Prize winning Journalist Jim Dwyer.  Peter reflects on how 2020 took these important journalists how they shaped and influenced him and the profound effect of their loss is because their brand of writing will never be seen again.

Peter Blauner


Episode 14 – Is There a Thread that Connects Us to Our Own Sense of Well-being – Author S. J. Rozan, Gayle Fisher Stewart, Judith Finlayson & Pete Mancini



Is there a thread that connects us to our own sense of well-being.  Larry has a jam packed episode with author S. J. Rozan speaking about her new book The Art of Violence, her thought process in creating a character’s point of view, writer’s self doubt, the process of writing which is never smooth and a deep dive into the art and character development of The Art of Violence.

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Gayle Fisher Stewart author of Preaching Black Lives Matter re-joins the podcast with thoughts and observations about the January 6th insurrection along with her reflections and observations of the event.  She voices her perspective about law enforcement’s treatment of the participants of that day and how the event could have played out differently if black and brown participants had attempted the same actions and how there needs to be a meaningful discussion about race, racism and systematic racism.

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Judith Finlayson, author of You are What you Grandparent’s Ate talks about lifecycle and links among all kinds of disease and what happens to you before you were born, epigenetic  modifications, eating healthy and how climate change can effect your health along with how your genes effect the development of diseases.

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Pete Mancini plays out the podcast with his original song Millions More


Episode 12 – Is There a Thread that Connects Us to Those that Matter – Rev. Gayle Fisher Stewart & Author Darin Strauss



Is there a thread that connects us to those that matter?  Joining Larry is former Washington DC police officer and Episcopal Reverend Gayle Fisher Stewart, the editor of Preaching Black Lives Matter.  Reverend Fisher-Stewart speaks about her experiences with segregation, the American caste system (and how the Nazi’s studied that system), empathy, Black Lives Matter as a movement vs. an organization and Harry Belafonte hosting the Tonight Show.

Also joining Larry is NYU Professor and New York Times bestselling author Darin Strauss.  Darin discusses his new work The Queen of Tuesday: A Lucille Ball Story.  Darin explores the craft of writing fiction based in factual events and his approach, weaving non fiction events into his family history to create a tapestry which includes his grandfather’s fictional love affair with Ms. Ball.  Speaking further, they discuss his earlier work Chang & Eng and the story behind his memoir Half a Life.

Larry also laments the passing of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg.


Episode 9 – What Happens When One Thread in the American Tapestry is Mutated or Changed – Authors Peter Blauner and



Stop the world, I want to get off.

Yes Virginia, the emperor has no clothes.

Yes Virginia, facts are facts.

What happens when one thread in the American tapestry is mutated or changed?

Joining Larry on this episode, Peter Blauner, Novelist of such works as Sunrise Highway, Proving Ground,The Intruder, The Last Good Day, Man of the Hour, Slow Motion Riot, Casino Moon and Slipping into Darkness.  Peter was also a journalist for New York Magazine and a staff writer for Law and Order: SVU. He is also the recipient of the Edgar Award.  Peter describes what it is like to write for television versus novels versus being a journalist.  We also find out if he has ever met one of his characters after they have been developed for a book.

Also joining the episode is Novelist and Historian Kevin Baker.  Kevin has penned such works as America: The Story of Us, Paradise Alley, Dreamland, Striver’s Row, Becoming Mr. October, The Big Crowd, Sometimes You See it Coming, Luna Park and Dreamland.  Kevin talked about how during the turn of the 20th Century, there were 3 groups that were not wanted in America, Jews, African Americans and the Irish.  He describes those experiences as being similar to the movie Gangs of New York.  He also discusses experiences such as those who lived in Seneca Village, a predominantly African American area of Manhattan in the mid 1800’s which is now part of Central Park.