Letter to Louis

Dear Louis,

In 1988 you and my other favorite author both died, leaving me with abandonment issues. I had just moved out of state and was anxiously awaiting the annual new release you both did every year. The new releases were going to slow down a bit.


You mostly wrote about experiences from the Wild West, a period in our continents history that has come to an end. The places are still there but buildings are gone. Stores still sell goods but the goods are different and brand names had changed. Parking lots have replaced livery stables and hitching posts. The cattle drives and wagon trains depicted in the 1950’s and 60’s on TV shows like Rawhide and Wagon Train, are no more. The events are over, but the thanks to you the stories are on bookshelves and in e-book readers around the world.


I often watched these shows much like an 1860’s ranch hand reading a magazine from his bunkhouse bunk. That cowboy was living a lifestyle that was coming to an end. The life style I was living was also coming to an end. The cowboy could look up from his magazine and see beds occupied by and belonging to other cowboys. When I looked around during commercials I saw beds too. The beds belonged to other patients at the Shriners Hospital in Portland Oregon.


They still have a hospital in Portland but it was moved over the river across town more than 40 years ago and things are done a lot different today. Kids are in and out in a week. My average stay was 3 months long. I went 10 times at various ages 2, through 16. Halloweens, Thanksgivings, birthdays and a couple Christmas’s took place during those stays. I could do a week standing on my head.


I’ve written several stories and I can write several more. Reminds me of a Woody Guthrie song lyric.

I’ve got several children

Expecting several more

Kids run out like cattle

When I open up the door.


I guess I am having trouble getting the door open. I’d like to sit down with you and other writers of your magnitude and visit about my book as I see it. Should I pull together what I have and publish a short book, to get me out there? Keep plodding away trying unsuccessfully to write more? So many ways to do this and so many things pulling me away.


Thanks for listening. If you can figure out a way to reach through the veil and respond, please do so.


Future New York Times Best Selling Author,


Harry Howell


One Response to “Letter to Louis”

  1. Susan Gregory Says:

    Kind of a different epistle, but certainly enjoyable!

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