L. Neil Smith's
THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE
Number 341, October 16, 2005
Tenth Anniversary Edition, Part 3
How TLE Changed My Life
Exclusive to TLE
I know, you're going to say that this isn't possible. Well, in my case, it is.
I've always been a pretty strong proponent of the 2nd Amendment. I used to spend hours surfing the websites. One of my regular stops was JPFO. One day, just casually glancing through the site, I saw the ad for HOPE, by L. Neil Smith and Aaron Zelman. I don't know why I hadn't seen it before, but I hadn't. Anyway, I ordered the book, and loved it. During the process of this, I found out about TLE, and started reading it. Then, HOPE arrived, and I read it in one sitting.
Being the kind of person I am, I e-mailed Neil and told him how much I had enjoyed the book. Being the kind of person HE is, he responded with a nice personal replay. I told him I'd like to write, and he told me to give it a try. About this time, Ken had a blurb every week on TLE asking for articles. Well, I thought I'd give it a try, and wrote a short piece about Robert A. Heinlein, fifteen years after his death. To my surprise, it was accepted and published.
That was two years ago, and a lot has happened in that time. I became a regular contributor, writing articles almost every week for well over a year. In going over back issues, I saw articles that I liked, and doing my research, checked out the web-sites of the various authors. One of those authors was Kathryn A. Graham. Her web-site listed a book she had written, titled Flight From Eden. I liked the short stories on her site, and the advertising promo for the book looked interesting, so I ordered that one, too. When it came in, I read it in one sitting as well. As with Neil, I sent her an e-mail, and she too, was kind enough to reply. It turned out that she had read some of my articles and liked them. A regular correspondence began, and we shortly became friends.
A few months later, we were in a bad financial place. This came out in conversations with Kate, and she took action. Within a few weeks, we were contacted by a man she knows and asked if we'd be willing to relocate. This gentleman had checked out my articles for TLE, liked what he saw, and, himself having been in a bad spot not long before, decided to 'pay forward' the help he had been given to us. Four days later, he sent his sons and a truck to come get us and move us four states away.
Now, instead of living in a dump in ghetto central in Columbus, OH, we live in a house on 3 acres of land in the Ozarks. I had been working as a telemarketer, due to physical limitations preventing me from working at my first career. Now, I work from home, writing full time. I've been fortunate enough to have two screenplays accepted, and have several writing projects on tap for the future. I've met some good people, both on-line and in meat-space. I've had the chance to correspond with, and converse with some wonderful, wonderful people: Alan Weiss, Mike Badnarik, Aaron Zelman, Neil, Ken, Tom Knapp, and a host of others. With a little luck, I'll have the chance at some point to meet these people in person. (I have met Mike Badnarik, and would love to have the chance to talk to him on a social level. All I can say about him is that this is the kind of man who SHOULD be in office, instead of the person who currently occupies the Oval Office!)
None of this would have been possible without TLE and some very special people. So, Neil, Ken, Kate, Pat, WH, members of Smithlist, and all of you have read and responded to my articles, both positively and negatively, THANK YOU, from the bottom of my heart. All of you have helped to make this wonderful transition in my life possible.