Linguine in Saffron Sauce

USA, Present day

1 lb linguine, cooked according to package directions


10 cups chicken broth (2 1/2 qts)

1 small pinch of saffron

2 tsp tarragon

1 cups heavy cream

1/4 lb sweet butter

Fresh parsley, chopped


PLACE chicken broth in a saucepot and bring to a simmer.

CHOP saffron carefully and add it to broth along with the tarragon. Let broth reduce to 1/3 quart. Add cream and reduce sauce to desired consistency. Strain the sauce and add butter a little at a time. HOLD sauce until ready to serve. Add drained pasta to sauce and stir to thoroughly coat. TRANSFER to large platter and garnish with chopped parsley. Serve immediately.

Today we are announcing the cover reveal of our latest book, The Pulpwood Queens Celebrate 20 Years! edited by Susan Cushman, Introduction by Kathy L. Murphy, Foreward by Robert Hicks, Afterword by Jonathan Haupt, Executive Director of The Pat Conroy Literary Center, Cover by Artist/Author, Nicole Seitz, and published by Brother Mockingbird.

In 2020, the Pulpwood Queens—and their male counterparts, the Timber Guys—are celebrating twenty years as the world’s largest meeting-and-discussing bookclub, with over 750 local clubs internationally. The fact that many of these women also wear tiaras, leopard prints, and bright pink to their meetings gives us a peek into their exuberant love for life, which is reflected in their love for books and each other. This collection of essays by authors, book club members, and supporters of the Queens, is a love letter to the founder and director, Kathy L. Murphy, and an ode to the written word and the place that literature and reading play in all of our lives.

Dedication to Tiajuana Andersson Neel – Kathy L. Murphy

Introduction – Kathy L. Murphy

Foreward: Robert Hicks

Contributing Writers and Authors are:

Christa Allen

Johnnie Bernhard

Tamra Bolton

Lea Anne Brandon

Missy Buchanan

Julie Cantrell

Tracy Lea Carnes

Kathryrn Casey

Stephanie Chance

Judy Christie

Tim Conroy

Christopher Cook

Michelle Cox

Susan Cushman

Patricia V. Davis

Sarah Dahman

Jessica Brooks Dougherty

Sharon Feldt

Jamie Ford

Joe Formichella

Claire Fullerton

Connor Garrett

Echo Montgomery Garrett

Peter Golden

Mark Green

Jim Grimsley

Jennie Helderman

Mary Ann Henry

Kathy Hepinstall and Becky Hepinstall

Betty Herndon

Laurel Davis Huber

Suzanne Hudson

Alexandra Jenkins

River Jordan

Cassandra King

Bobbi Kornblit

Betty Koval

Kasey Kowars

Caroline Leavitt

Marjorie Herrera Lewis

Judithe Little

Bren McLain

Fletcher Hale

Laura Lane McNeal

Susan Marquez

Michael Morris

Jennifer Mueller

Tiajuana Anderson Neel

Janet Oakley

P. Adrianne Pamplin

Susan Peterson

Gregory Erich Phillips

Sandra Phillips

Rickey E. Pittman

Terry Pursell

Alyson Richmond

Paul Roberson

Rebecca Rosenberg

Clare Sera

Brownie Shott and Jonni Webb

Shari Stauch

Kathryn Taylor

Heidi Surber Teichgraeber

Helen Thompson

Jo Anne Tidwell

Carolyn Turgeon

Barbara Claypole White

Reavis Wortham

Afterword: Jonathan Haupt

“The Pulpwood Queens Celebrate 20 Years” will be The Pulpwood Queens Official January 2020 Pulpwood Queen Book Club Selection. You can read all about The Pulpwood Queens, how to join their book club and attend their Girlfriend Weekend at

“Kathy Murphy and her Pulpwood Queens are a source of much-need inspiration and big-heartedness in the world of books and book clubs. The here are as wise as they are entertaining, a testament to living large and joyfully in a sisterhood of storytelling.” —Paula McLain, New York Times bestselling author of The Paris Wife and Love and Rain.

“Part book club meeting, part costume party, part come-as-you-are, the Pulpwood Queens annual Girlfriend Weekend is an extravaganza none who’ve ever attended will forget. This 20th anniversary commemorative book is like Girlfriend Weekend itself—a warm, wise, tender celebration of friends, reading, and all the ways books bring us together.” —Lisa Wingate, New York Times bestselling Author of Before We Were Yours

“The Pulpwood Queens is one of those cultural phenomena that you have to participate in to completely understand. But this book does the next best thing. Put on some pink and enjoy.”—Jamie Ford, New York Times Bestselling author of Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet

“In this collection you can be a part of the Pulpwood Queens’ energy and friendship, their unabashed love for the written word, and the full glory of a party to celebrate it all. Come along, join me and meet some of my friends in this collection of essays about the indomitable Pulpwood Queens.”—Patti Callahan Henry, New York Times and USA Today best-selling author of fourteen novels, including Becoming Mrs. Lewis – The Improbable Love Story of Joy Davidman and C.S. Lewis, and a contemporary novel, The Favorite Daughter

For more information on this book and to pre-order your copies contact Melissa Carrigee of Brother Mockingbird at, website

I'm originally from Kansas, but until Killer at the Cimarron Social Club I had not written a book set in Kansas. I'm sure my parents thought I was losing it though when I called up and asked if they knew of any good ghost towns I could set a book. Seeing as its set in a old west brothel not the question the Kansas preacher and his wife expected to get. But over an hour on the phone we finally hammered out one that would fit the bill. The oddly named Arkalon, Kansas in Seward County. Oddly because that is someones actual first name, it was named after Arkalon Tenney, the father of a resident. I called a number of other times seeing as they grew up in the area where its set. I lived in the county, but I was 8-10 at the time. I settled on Arkalon because a tiny farm community wouldn't have had a brothel for one, Arkalon had a large cattle yard to load cattle off to the east. This was after Dodge City fame and Kansas pushed the quarantine lines further south and west. The railroad coming jump started the county prospects and towns sprang up all over hoping to be the next route. Fargo Springs and Springfield only a few miles from each other thought they had it in the bag. Only for another route to be chosen and little Arkalon sprang from the buffalo grass. The route connected them east, but the route to the coal mines of Trinidad was reached from Dodge City. The small arm that ran down to Arkalon would continue on to No Man's Land and then dead end. After all No Man's Land had no law and no land ownership. Everyone was a squatter even the big cattle outfits using the land. It's what we call the Oklahoma panhandle today, the left over bit from the creation of Texas and Kansas and until shortly after the book takes place had no law at all. Eventually they would tack it on to Indian Territory as Oklahoma was known then. Some used it for free grazing and others the poor of the poor tried to settle there because land was free for the taking. If you could handle the thieves coming around and stealing your building supplies even or if you left your sod house for too long someone might just move in calling it derelict. Why work from scratch when someone had already started. Arkalon, and Liberal that still exists as the county seat were only miles from that land. Big dreams filled the county, but as the railroad passed by some, as the county seat went to others, as they found the sandy soil wasn't conducive to farming, as many things happened, soon all but Liberal was gone. Arkalon was vacant by the 1920's after the bridge over the Cimarron was moved from town to a spot some miles away in 1913. Two years ago in the wildfires that burned across western Kansas the final link to Arkalon was taken, the old school house. All that's left is a cemetery now. The photos are all of ghost towns of Seward County, Arkalon, Springfield, and Fargo Springs. There aren't many photos of any of the towns.

Seward County shortly before Arkalon was founded, it would fit along that crook in the river between the W and A of Seward.

Arkalon Train station

One of the stores that is visited and below is an indoor view of the same building.

The school house that was the last building to stand until 2017.

The 10,000 dollar hotel in another town mentioned often in the book.

The reality.

The imagined.

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