Nature photography, political rants, and Martyman laughs from the ten-time award-winning author Marty Essen

Posts in category Stories

Good luck stork

Good luck stork

Marty’s photo of the day #3942: White storks commonly nest on steeple-tops in rural Spain, where they are thought to bring good luck.

Killdeer and the pandemic

Killdeer and the pandemic

Marty’s photo of the day #3919: I photographed this killdeer on June 20, 2020. Deb and I had rented the Hogan Cabin that weekend, which is a Forest Service cabin in western Montana. Other than the birds and the mountain flowers, what I remember most about our visit was that it was our first time […]

Real life in fiction

Real life in fiction

Marty’s photo of the day #3903: To-date, I have written three nonfiction books and three science-fiction books. Additionally, I am almost finished with my seventh book. This one will be another science-fiction political-comedy. Even when I write fiction, I draw on personal experiences and factual events. In one of the adventures in my new book, […]

Within Temptation and touring attempts during the COVID era

Within Temptation and touring attempts during the COVID era

Marty’s photo of the day #3900: The gravel road that climbs to Deb’s and my house was too icy this morning for my usual bike ride, so I worked out indoors on my elliptical machine. Within Temptation provided my workout music this morning, and it gave me a warm, fuzzy feeling as I reminisced about […]

Missionary abuse

Missionary abuse

Marty’s photo of the day #3865: The novel I am working on is by far the funniest of the seven books I have written. Despite the humor, I also deal with serious subjects. In one of the adventures, my protagonists travel back in time to stop a Christian missionary, who is abusing native peoples. I […]

In love with snow

In love with snow

Marty’s photo of the day #3839: I’ve always had dogs in my life, but none have enjoyed the snow as much as Nellie does. Whenever we have new snow, she’ll run through the forest surrounding our house, exclaiming in her own language: “Look at all this white stuff! It’s everywhere! Oh, this white stuff is […]

Laying on paws

Laying on paws

Marty’s photo of the day #3826: I’m not allergic to anything, and I have never had a reaction to any shot—except the Moderna shot. Deb and I got our boosters on Wednesday, and we both had a reaction. For me, it was as if I had gone several rounds with a heavyweight boxer. I ached […]

My favorite deity

My favorite deity

Marty’s photo of the day #3825: I photographed this pink river dolphin in a tributary of the Amazon River. Of all the deities, pink river dolphins are my favorite. They live in Encante, a city of gold under the Amazon River (I named my talent agency Encante Entertainment, Inc.), and their primary superpower is that […]

Marty Essen signed book special!

Marty Essen signed book special!

Signed books make great holiday gifts! Beginning today, I am offering a signed book special. Here are the prices: Cool Creatures, Hot Planet: Exploring the Seven Continents: $19.95 Endangered Edens: Exploring the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Costa Rica, the Everglades, and Puerto Rico: $19.95 Time Is Irreverent: $14.95 Time Is Irreverent 2: Jesus Christ, Not […]

Nellie and the elk

Nellie and the elk

Marty’s photo of the day #3809: My dog, Nellie, gets credit for this shot. Yesterday I took her outside for a pee break and she immediately sniffed the air and charged into the woods. I assumed it was just her five-times-daily inventory of trees containing squirrels, but then she barked and froze. Just ahead of […]

Thanks to all . . . except the skunk

Thanks to all . . . except the skunk

Marty’s photo of the day #3797: Nellie thanks everyone for all the birthday wishes yesterday—except the skunk! Yes, last night I took Nellie outside for her final pee break before bedtime. She’s really good about staying in sight at night, but last night I stepped into the garage just long enough to toss a bottle […]

Nellie at Sunset #2

Nellie at Sunset #2

Marty’s photo of the day #3789: A little over a week ago, I posted a photo of Nellie playing in the water at sunset. At the time, I had two photos to choose from. Today, I am posting the photo I hadn’t selected for the original post. I’m also reposting the story below: We adopted […]

Is it any wonder why the pandemic continues?

Is it any wonder why the pandemic continues?

Greetings from Boonville, Missouri. Tonight I speak at Central Methodist University in Fayette. When I’m not speaking at colleges, I run my college speaking agency from my home office and write books. Consequently, there are many weeks where I don’t leave the hill my wife and I live on. Therefore whenever I head out, I’m […]

Splashing in the sunset

Splashing in the sunset

Marty’s photo of the day #3780: We adopted Nellie from an animal shelter a little over a year ago. At the time she was about nine months old. Since Deb and I live in the mountains of the Bitterroot Valley, there aren’t any lakes nearby. So last month when Nellie joined us on the trip […]

I’m not going to let small-minded people dictate what I writ

I’m not going to let small-minded people dictate what I writ

I published Cool Creatures, Hot Planet: Exploring the Seven Continents in 2007, Endangered Edens: Exploring the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Costa Rica, the Everglades, and Puerto Rico in 2016, Time Is Irreverent in 2018, Time Is Irreverent 2: Jesus Christ, Not Again! in 2019, Time Is Irreverent 3: Gone for 16 Seconds in 2020, and […]

Dogs make the trip!

Dogs make the trip!

Marty’s photo of the day #3768: When Deb and I traveled the world for my first book, Cool Creatures, Hot Planet: Exploring the Seven Continents, I loved all of our adventures. Even so, our least exotic trip, to the top of Canada, always gives me the warmest feelings when I think back about it. That’s […]

Plant life on the American Prairie Reserve

Plant life on the American Prairie Reserve

Marty’s photo of the day #3765-3767: Plant life close-ups on the American Prairie Reserve (Montana). The most nerve-racking aspect of visiting the American Prairie Reserve was all the prickly pear cactus. When hiking, Deb and I had to be careful that our dog, Nellie, didn’t step on any of it. Months before our trip, we […]

Montana’s railroad car bridges

Montana’s railroad car bridges

Marty’s photo of the day #3763: In Montana, when people need a bridge, they often go to the railroad yard and buy a used flatbed car. In fact, on the dirt road leading to Deb’s and my house, we cross both a river and a stream on bridges made with railroad cars. When we first […]

Elk on the prairie

Elk on the prairie

Marty’s photo of the day #3760: Stalking elk on the open prairie isn’t easy—especially when accompanied by a very active, medium-sized dog. The elk were at the beginning of their rut, when Deb, Nellie, and I visited the American Prairie Reserve earlier this month. A few times we even heard them bugling. These two bulls […]

Coyote Camp

Coyote Camp

Marty’s photos of the day #3744-3747: My favorite of the three places Deb, Nellie, and I stayed at in the American Prairie Reserve was a yurt on the western side. The yurt didn’t have running water, but it still felt luxurious compared to our previous two stays. Our yurt had three sections: one section had […]

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