Life on the Line: The Dodson’s Cafeteria Story Book Signing on Sunday, December 12: at 2:00

December 8, 2010 by

Forty-Sixth Star Press launches its new book, Life on the Line with the Dodson family signing at South Oklahoma City’s Village on the Green.


Oklahoma Ink: An Uplifting Experience

November 21, 2009 by

When Publisher Pam and I drove into the circular driveway of the Harwelden Mansion in Tulsa, we were greeted by friendly members of the Tulsa Press Club and wowed by the mansion’s architecture. Built in 1926 by oilman Earl Palmer Harwell and his wife Mary, the place was absolutely beautiful. It was a great site for a fundraiser and author gathering.

Twenty different authors sampled fare from a variety of restaurants. (My personal favorite was the bow tie pasta from Carino’s.) By six o’clock, we were all in our places. I sat next to Robby McMurtry, a graphic novelist and artist whose recent book features Frank Eaton, better known as “Pistol Pete” — the man who was the inspiration for OSU’s college mascot. Robby entertained me with stories about his favorite comic books and talked enthusiastically with Pam about graphic novels. He also let me try on his cowboy hat.

At the end of the table sat Nathan Brown, winner of the 2009 Oklahoma Book Award for poetry. He and Karen Coody Cooper were deep in conversation about religion and spirituality. And on the other side of Nathan sat illustrator Mike Wimmer, tucked into an alcove with floor to ceiling windows and an amazing view of the Arkansas River. He was surrounded by beautiful books, including the one about Will Rogers, written by Frank Keating.

My new friend, Charles Martin, had a plum spot near the front entry. He sold most of his books about a “charismatic, troubled rock musician” involved in an end-of-the-world cult. I think his charismatic smile and hand-painted Converse high-tops helped his sales.

Two hours sped by, and soon we were all putting our books back into boxes and clearing off our tables. Then came one of my favorite moments of the evening when Mike lifted me and then Nathan in a show of strength and creative camaraderie.

What was my other favorite moment? Heading back to Pam’s brother’s restaurant, The Canebrake. Pure bliss.

Oklahoma Ink Sponsors Jana Hausburg at Tulsa Press Club Fund-Raiser

November 3, 2009 by

Jana Hausburg will be among twenty Oklahoma authors invited to attend Oklahoma, Ink’s benefit for the Tulsa Press Club on Thursday evening, November 19.  She will be there to sign copies of her Oklahoma Book Award finalist It Wasn’t Much Ten True Tales of Oklahoma Heroes from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the historic Harwelden Mansion, 2210 S. Main, in Tulsa.


Oklahoma, Ink invites Hausburg

Sooner Cinema Goes Digital!

November 3, 2009 by

high res sooner cinema cover Sooner Cinema is now available in a kindle edition (from Amazon)!

Look for it on

Tulsa Literati Book Fair

November 3, 2009 by

Forty-Sixth Star Press will person a booth at the first annual Literati Book Fair at Tulsa’s McBirney Mansion at 1414 South Galveston from 11.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, November 14.  Brint Montgomery, author of the provocative essay on the ghost of Edna Ferber (and the film adaptation of her novel Cimarron), will be reading his essay during the event.

Edna Ferber

Edna Ferber (not her ghost)

brint facebook goofey

Brint Montgomery considering ghosts (and southern gothic)

Red Dirt Book Festival Imagines Sooner Cinema!

November 3, 2009 by

Editors and contributors to Sooner Cinema will present a discussion of the year long (and successful) book-film project at the 2009 Red Dirt Book Festival in Shawnee on November 6th.  Larry Van Meter, Bill Hagen, and David Charlson have a rich perspective on the Oklahoma imagined in film–both literally and figuratively.  Is this a great state or what?

Sooner Cinema Book Signing at Hastings-Bartlesville!

June 28, 2009 by

Larry A. Van Meter will be signing copies of Sooner Cinema at 1:00 p.m. at Hastings in Bartlesville on Saturday, July 11th. Reviews Sooner Cinema!

June 28, 2009 by

Blogger Review

Celluloid Soonerland

28 June 2009 @ 6:18 am 

Larry Van Meter spots an anomaly in a Forties Western:

Unable to find a seat on the train, she is rescued by Jim Gardner, who owns the luxury car at the back of the train. Jim as it turns out is one of the new Oklahoma millionaires, having struck it rich in the oil fields of Sapulpa. He’s also a cad, clear to everyone except this “New Woman.” Gardner takes a shine to Catherine, gives her the nickname “Kitten,” and invites her to get off the train with him in Sapulpa. Now, maybe [director] Albert Rogell wasn’t paying attention during this scene, or maybe he had forgotten his Oklahoma geography, but the train from Cleveland to Kansas City doesn’t stop in Sapulpa. But maybe this is Oklahoma’s fate in the American cinema, an indeterminate place somewhere on the American map.

Which explains, sort of, the premise of Sooner Cinema: Oklahoma Goes to the Movies (Oklahoma City: Forty-Sixth Star Press, 2009), edited by Van Meter, which collects nineteen essays on the image of the Sooner State as portrayed in American film, from the days of silents to the present, with stops at Cimarron, The Grapes of Wrath and The Outsiders, just to name a few.

Telling a tale set in “an indeterminate place” has its advantages: you can make it up as you go along, as Albert Rogell did in 1943 while shooting In Old Oklahoma, which he actually shot in even-older Utah, and nobody will raise a fuss: for the 297 million Americans who don’t live here, Oklahoma could be as remote as Timbuktu. They know we belong to the land, and the land we belong to is, well, kinda bland, when it isn’t openly hostile.

Sooner Cinema acknowledges this phenomenon without taking umbrage. Filmmakers tell stories, and sometimes those stories drown out considerations of place: those snowcapped mountains just outside McAlester in True Grit don’t resemble anything you or I have ever seen just outside McAlester. But True Grit’s story wasn’t about Oklahoma so much as it was about the No Man’s Land it was once thought to be in the territorial days — and ultimately, it was about John Wayne, a man bigger than any No Man’s Land ever was. In this context, getting the facts straight about Oklahoma is a secondary, maybe tertiary, consideration. In fact, Hal Ashby’s Bound for Glory, a biography of Woody Guthrie, somehow manages not to mention Oklahoma at all.

Then again, being associated with a vague sort of mythology may work to Oklahoma’s advantage. Van Meter notes in his introduction:

[I]s there any Wyoming film that doesn’t show the Grand Tetons? or a Colorado film that doesn’t incorporate the Rockies? or a Hawaii film that doesn’t show a surfer? Oklahoma films aren’t compelled to show the state’s X to prove its Oklahoma-ness.

If you live here, and if you ever expect to have to explain to someone from New Jersey or New Brunswick or New Delhi what it’s like to live in Oklahoma, Sooner Cinema will make your task that much easier: you’ll know the difference between celluloid and reality, and you’ll be able to tell when that difference actually matters. And if this task somehow doesn’t fall to you, you’ll still have the pleasure of discovering some cinematic wonders set practically in your own back yard. If this be mythology, make the most of it.

First Annual “Literati Indie Book Fair” at I.A.O.

June 28, 2009 by

I.A.O. Gallery in OKC’s Automobile Alley hosted the First Annual Literati Indie Book Fair on Saturday, June 27th, from noon to 8:00 p.m.  A steady stream of supporters came out on a hot afternoon and evening (temperatures reached into the 100-degree F range) to check out vendors merchandise (from small presses to individual and self-published authors and poets).  Guests were treated to readings and music performances throughout the event, and despite the heat, a good time was had by all!

See more at

Sooner Cinema joins newly founded Oklahoma Small Press Association

June 28, 2009 by

OSPA Deco Logo

Small presses in Oklahoma are on the move–and in a renaissance–preceded by some great models from earlier decades (like Point Riders Press)!  Forty-Sixth Star Press, Mongrel Empire Press, Red Flag Press, and Village Press are working on an association to promote publishing in our fair state!  More information to follow.