Newfoundland Station

In a key scene early in the novel, my hero railroad cop is heading to a place called Newfoundland Station to investigate a call of suspicious characters hanging out at the old depot.  This station is another “real” location detailed in the novel.  Here it is:




This depot has been in this location since 1874!  That is very notable, as wood-framed buildings of that age in northern New Jersey simply didn’t survive as long as this one has, and almost no railroad structures of that age have continued to survive at the same location along the tracks that they had served.  Many times, depots are relocated away from the tracks as the track owners simply don’t want to be responsible for the structure, or be liable for any persons potentially being injured, or be liable for the property taxes levied on the structure.  Better to tear something like this down than leave it there, even if it’s unused.

The owner of this structure was the New York, Susquehanna and Western Railroad.  it saw very little use as a passenger station after World War 2.  It, along with several depots along the way, were sold off to be used by private individuals for whatever they wanted to use the depot as.  This depot went through several owners over the years.  It was used in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s as the base for a steam tourist railroad operation, the legendary Morris County Central.  After the demise of that operation, the depot sat dormant, and was used as an office and a storage shed. It was then used as the focal point of the film The Station Agent, an offbeat story about a train enthusiast, who also happened to be a dwarf, who lived in the station after inheriting it from his friend, and the fellow lonely people he meets in the area.  Purchased again shortly after that film, the depot underwent a complete interior reconstruction, turning it into a studio-type apartment.  It continues to survive today, used by train enthusiasts as a focal point for gatherings, slide shows, and yes even a wedding, where the wedding party arrived aboard vintage track inspection vehicles!  This depot is a true Jersey survivor, weathering the ups, downs and rebirths of the railroad it once served, and is one of those unsung jewels of the state.  Naturally, this great little old structure had to be included in my novel. Rock on, Newfoundland depot!  May you stand another 140 years!

Kindle Problems

Well after I told you all to update your Kindles, Amazon drops the ball.  After some people tried unsuccessfully to update their copies of The Railroad Man, I contacted Kindle to see what the problem was.  They said the update feature, while on the Kindle, doesn’t work!  However, they “are working to fix the problem as quickly as possible.”  Well that’s a bit too late here.  Kindle then said that if the files on the Kindle were indeed drastically updated, they would post them and then notify the early buyers of my novel that an update for the novel is now available.  This should happen in about 4 weeks.  So, if you downloaded a copy of The Railroad Man before June 16, 2014, look to your Kindles to see if an updated version of the novel is available to replace the copy you have.  If you possess a copy downloaded after June 16, you don’t have to do anything.  You have the final version, equal to the Create Space and Smashwords versions.  Sorry about the confusion.  Until next time.

The Railroad Man Now Available For All E-reader Formats Through Smashwords!

As of August 8, 2014, The Railroad Man will now be available to users of Barnes and Noble’s Nook as well as all other E-reader formats through Smashwords.  My exclusivity deal with Kindle Direct expired and that now allows me to sell my novel to all E-book sales outlets.  Just click the button that is now on my website homepage and it will take you right to the novel at Smashwords.  It’s available for $2.99, same price as on Amazon!  Buy yours today!

Update Your Kindle Version!

As many of you know I made several changes to The Railroad Man since it was first published last February.  I take full responsibility for putting a product out there before it was truly ready.  In that time, there were many of you who bought my novel on Kindle.  I thank you for that support.

By the time the novel reached the point it was ready for its soft cover version, it had gone through more changes than I could remember.  The result:  There are numerous editions of the Kindle version out there, each edition with some changes made, others changing them back and still others changing the changes.  There were also a couple of scenes added and rejiggered over that time.  The net result is that many of you early buyers who purchased a Kindle version before June 16 of this year do not have the final version that is available now on Kindle Direct.  And for some reason, Kindle will not allow you to buy a new copy of the novel once you have downloaded it.  So there was no way to deliver those changes to you, and that was a shame.  Until now.

A good friend of mine at my place of work had downloaded my novel early on.  He really liked the story, as did many of those who read the early versions did.  He then said there was a way to get the updates put into the Kindle.  And it was always in there for the Kindle.  In its settings page, simply click the Automatic Updates tag.  According to Kindle, if you opt in for automatic book updates, you will receive new versions of your books when they are confirmed that improvements were made to the file.  So there you have it!  Just opt in for the updates and you will in the blink of an eye have the latest version of my novel in your Kindle for no additional cost.  So everyone who has bought a version of my novel between February 8 and June 16, opt in for the updates to get the latest version.  And should I make any changes in the future, you’ll get them as they are made.  Technology is cool, isn’t it?

Time Marches On

I recently had a group of fellow writers on my Absolute Write group comment about the “blurb,” the little description on the back of the book.  They said it could be made a little “tighter.”  I kind of agreed with them, but was not willing to make any changes to the cover.  Then I happened to look down at the even smaller “About The Author” part on the back and noticed how it said I had “nearly thirty years” of railroad experience.  That ship sailed last December.  I now have “over” thirty years in the industry.  How time just flies when you’re having fun.  Well sometimes having fun.  There are a lot of times where it wasn’t so much fun out there on the rails.  Being a railroader is not for everyone.  It is kind of a way of life.  Luckily much of the bad parts of the job were left behind when I switched to passenger work.  And that is about to turn over to 20 years soon, this November!  In any case, I wound up changing that blurb on all of the electronic sites the novel is selling on.  And I also adjusted the “nearly” to “over” in the About The Author sections too.  And yes, I did break down and have my graphic artist, George Arnold of WGA Designs ( make up a new back cover for me with the adjustments.  Just a bit OCD when it comes to stuff like that.

On another note, as some of you might know, I’ve been having a few family problems that have been keeping me busy, along with a new work schedule.  I don’t get on this site as often as I should.  I read a couple of comments that were posted here by readers about a month ago.  My apologies for not getting back to or recognizing them for their kind words.  I thank you for those words and am truly heartened that you liked my novel.  It humbles me.  Thank you.  Until next time.