J. Allen Wolfrum is a fiction author and former Marine based in San Diego, California.


Still Relevant After 81 Years

Still Relevant After 81 Years


This week I finished reading Sinclair Lewis’s novel, It Can’t Happen Here; which was published in 1936.  Lewis describes a scenario where the United States turns from a Democracy to a Dictatorship within a few years.  In the book he references the Nazi’s and Hitler’s rise to power multiple times. The amount of foresight Sinclair had to make the connection from the Nazi party of 1936 to the horrific crimes against humanity that they would eventually commit is astounding.

I’m no historian but just looking at the timeline, Lewis was far ahead of the world’s leaders in understanding how dangerous Hitler and the Nazi’s could become.  Think about this, Hitler was the Time Magazine Man of the Year in January of 1939.  Three years after Sinclair’s book was published, the rest of world had not yet caught onto how dangerous the situation in Germany had become.

Looking back on the historical events of World War II, it’s easy to be an armchair quarterback and pontificate about what could have been done.  Lewis saw it coming, in real time.

The book itself covers a ton of ground and makes for a good read.  It follows a newspaper editor from Vermont, Dormeus Jessup as he lives through the new dictatorship.  I won’t spoil any of the storytelling but the first half of the book was eerily reminiscent of the current political landscape.


I picked a Louis L’Amour novel off the bookshelf this weekend, Where the Long Grass Blows.  I’m only a few pages into it but Louis L’Amour never disappoints.  I grew up reading Louis L’Amour cowboy novels and still smile every time I read one. How can you not love the lonesome, caring, honest and battle hardened cowboy who rides into a strange town.


A big week in writing for me. I received my manuscript back from the copy-editor on Friday.  She’s freakin’ amazing. This is my first attempt at writing anything other than bullets in power point presentations, so I was nervous about her feedback. Reading through the copy-editing notes and changes taught me a lot about the common grammatical traps that I consistently fall into. The copy-editing notes and changes definitely improved the overall quality of my book.

I spent most of the weekend making last minute changes and formatting the paperback version of the manuscript for printing.  Next step is finding an artist for the front and back cover art work.  The end is near.


Nothing much to report here at the Cat Ranch. I spent most of the weekend hunkered down and working through the copy-edit changes for the book.

Pam and Rich are doing good and enjoying their new cat food. No major updates.  It’s all about trying to fight through the resistance and get the book out into the world.

Struggling Through Point of View

Struggling Through Point of View

How I Use Story Grid - Writing a Scene

How I Use Story Grid - Writing a Scene