Welcome to the Chubby Chatterbox Newsletter, where I’ll be posting favorites from the Chubby Chatterbox archives. In addition, my complete thriller Return of the Mary Celeste will soon be serialized here for those who have asked for something beyond a regular post.

My novel is based on a true event, arguably the greatest maritime mystery of all time. In 1872 the crew and passengers of Boston brigantine Mary Celeste abandoned their seaworthy ship and its valuable cargo, vanishing in the middle of the Atlantic. Speculation over their fate has never abated. History records that after the Mary Celeste tragedy no one from that fateful voyage was ever seen again. History is about to be rewritten…

Return of the Mary Celeste

Prologue

Tragedy struck the brigantine Mary Celeste on the morning of November 25, 1872. The hourly log was later recovered from the deserted vessel; At 8 a.m. the last notation was made. By 9 a.m. no one remained aboard to chalk the next entry.

Something had terrified Captain Benjamin Briggs and his crew, prompting the seasoned skipper to make a decision certain to affect not only himself, his ship and crew, but his family as well—his wife and two year old daughter were aboard Mary Celeste. Much ink has been spilled in fanciful and scientific attempts to explain the calamity that engulfed this perfectly seaworthy ship, yet all that is known for certain is this: in a matter of minutes Captain Briggs became convinced that the only way to save their lives was by ordering everyone into a hastily launched lifeboat. By giving the order to abandon ship, he also launched the greatest of all maritime mysteries.

On December 5, 1872, a month after leaving New York Harbor, Mary Celeste was found drifting on a calm and empty sea. The ship was in fine condition, perfectly intact with valuable cargo safely stored in her hold, but the crew and passengers had vanished. None were ever seen again.

Until now….

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Blog Archive

10/2017

Final Painting of the Summer

October 02, 2017
Over the summer I managed to complete twelve paintings, some I’ve yet to share with you. Two of my more successful paintings were inspired by photographs posted by fellow bloggers, and I appreciate being given permission to use them as inspiration for my paintings. The photograph that inspired my last painting was taken by Tabor at One Day at a Time.             Over the weekend I added finishing touches to Chess Game. I completed it just in time; this weekend it began raining and the temperature dropped nearly twenty degrees. My days of painting in the warm garage are over, at least for now. I can handle the cold but the light is now too poor for me to paint effectively. Mrs. C ... read more

 + photos!,  read more

Happy Retirement

October 04, 2017
          Mrs. Chatterbox has worked nonstop since graduating from college, and yesterday she retired after working twenty-one years for the City of Beaverton. She inherited a volunteer program that was spotty at best, and she grew it into an organization of over a hundred volunteers. Hers was the only department that actually saved our City money. You can see on the giant check in this photograph—presented to our chief of police—the amount she saved taxpayers by having volunteers perform jobs police officers would otherwise be required to do, freeing them for more important tasks.         I’m extremely proud of all she’s accomplished during the course of her c ... read more

 + photos!,  read more

The Neon Museum

October 16, 2017
      When I was growing up, I was a member of a large and boisterous ethnic family. Mrs. Chatterbox says she felt like the groom’s parents meeting the bride’s family in My Big Fat Greek Wedding. I was the baby of the family, and over the years just about everyone has passed away. When my mother breathed her last on Christmas Eve of last year, we were reduced to a family of three, but now we have a daughter-in-law and we couldn’t be happier.   Our flight to Las Vegas was pleasantly uneventful and after arriving we were picked up by the wedding party who were on their way to the Neon Museum in Las Vegas, nicknamed the Neon Boneyard—a burial ground of old neon signs retrieved from demolished ho ... read more

 + photos!,  read more

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