a message from the author

Dear Reader,


Welcome to “The Green Beret Barber of Orange Street” Book Project!


So, what is this book project, and how did it come to be?  It is my attempt to write a series of books regardless of who is reading or how long it takes or what happens with it.  I think maybe this is what it takes when you believe in an idea and have worked hard to develop it.


If that sounds interesting to you, then I should probably warn you that this is a huge project and it will take a long time to complete, especially since I am just one person working on it in their spare time.


The reality is that I simply don’t have the time or resources (or even the will, really) to move somewhere big, someplace important and arty and inevitably filled with literary agents and publishing houses to chase the connections that might, just might, lead to proper funding.  Even if I could, that is an admittedly hard road to travel with no guarantees of success. 


To be honest, I don’t need anything else in life that is hard or expensive. I figure putting my best foot forward and writing a book (or a series of books) is plenty hard enough all on its own.  So, I guess if I have to choose between chasing the dream the way you’re supposed to or just doing the work in front of me, then the road ahead is pretty clear. 


What more can I tell you? “The Green Beret Barber of Orange Street” is a work of magical realism.  The story ranges far, both in terms of time and geographic distances.  It is a story about magic, history, redemption, and loss. 


At the heart of the story are five genies, each with a unique origin story.  They are set variously in the ancient world.  Picture the white stone columns of Classic Greek antiquity, the far-off steppes of Scythia, or the lighthouse of Alexandria, and you’ll get the idea.  I love writing about the ancient world and am eager to bring my vision of that storied world to the page.


Currently, I have enough raw material to fill eight books, but it takes (me) a lot of time to churn raw material into finished product.  That said, I have finally found my stride and feel sure that I can cruise at this pace indefinitely.  Luckily, the website lends a real sense of accountability and keeps me from procrastinating too much.


I guess those are the positives, but this is the real world, and I have to think about the negatives.  Mostly, I have had to think a lot about the very real possibility that someone, somewhere might try to steal all my hard work and pass it off as their own, probably without thinking twice about it.


There is only way I could confront this fear and sleep at night: I had to make this story an absolute nightmare for plagiarists.  First, this story is long, complex, and has a hidden ending. Books (or series) that fit this description are nearly impossible to plagiarize anyway, so I just took extra steps to make my story especially problematic for any would-be thieves. 


There might be better writers than me, there might be thieves, and sometimes they might even be the same people; but I’m not worried, I’m prepared.  This book project is too long, too complex, too seeded with landmines to do anyone else any good at all.  There is no way through without a map, period.  Not even for me.


What else to say? Most importantly, I guess I want to say that I hope you enjoy this story as much as I have enjoyed creating, researching, writing, and editing it.  I also want to thank my husband Jake for designing this website, editing all the audio files, and being an excellent proofreader and partner, even on the bad days.


Thank you for reading!




E.M. Strickbine