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'Smart, dark and graceful.
One of the best, and most
fascinating,debut novels
I've ever read'.
See the Trailer

The International Writer's Magazine: Spring 2012
Travel stories
Politics & Comment
How we live
Misconceptions about travel to Thailand
JWest Hardin

You will most likely leave your home in the west with a distinct set of preconceived notions about Thailand and Asia in general. Chances are the information is outdated or too generalized to be of any use to you
Lalibela - Ethiopia
Elizabeth Schotten Merklinger

Nothing prepared me for the majesty of Ethiopia. I have always considered myself an intrepid traveler with quite a few unusual destinations under my belt from unknown Tibet to remote villages of Maharashtra.  But never have I felt such a sense of otherness as here.
Packing for St. Petersburg

Tomorrow I will be packing up my bags here in Prague and setting out on the next leg of my journey. For over 5 years I have been dreaming of traveling to Russia, and that dream is now within reach of reality.
Our family witnessed a Revolution
Lorenza Bacino

In the spring of 2006 my husband was offered two months work in Kathmandu, Nepal, working with an organisation promoting peace and reconciliation
Stories From A Backpack
Drew Meerveld

Having arrived in the bright lights of Kumasi (at 1.5 million it is Ghana’s second largest city) to renew my visa...
Castro Urdiales, Cantabria
Gretta Schifano

The Guggenheim is one reason to visit the Spanish Cantabrian coast, but snorkelling in the Atlantic was a surprise. As I floated face down in the water two metres from the beach I watched a huge shoal of silvery fish speeding along in the current below me
A Year in Colombia
Dermot Sullivan - First Month

La Clima: The weather here is very odd, but that's because I've never lived so close to the Equator. I am also living 2625 metres above sea level. As far as I can see, it rains somewhat everyday
My Peck of Gold
Michael Chacko Daniels

There’s a memorial plaque on Market Street that I pay no heed when I wait for San Francisco’s California Street cable car

Look Away Dixie Land
James Campion

The Sunshine State takes front and center this week for its ham-fisted legislative racketeering and obligatory confederate axiom to shoot first and figure out the motivation much, much, much later.
Back Page News
Dean Borok

I might start my own newspaper and put all the big news on the back page, and decreasing in importance until it reaches the headlines. Wait a minute! That’s what’s already happening. Idiots have known for generations that when you buy The New York Post, you start at the back.
Forceful Environmental Decongestion
Odimegwu Onwumere

8 March, 2012, some people accompanied by soldiers allegedly from the state government Rivers State stormed Oyigbo, destroying what they claim are illegal structures and setting them ablaze.
Spain on the Brink of Chaos
James Skinner

Our Man in Vigo finds Spain on the brink of a confrontation between the left and right echoing the misery of the 1930's.

Apple's Capitalist Cash Cart
Paul Hunt

It’s among the largest current U.S. corporate cash payouts - a US$10 billion annual dividend program announced by Apple Inc. CEO Tim Cook. 
More Travel Stories on Hacktreks
Around the world in 30 days
J West Hardin
- Part One
I had always wanted to circumnavigate the planet. The prospect of buying a ’round the world’ ticket had always been in the back of my mind

The Caring Future
Sam Hawksmoor

One of the questions I used to dislike the most when a kid was ‘what do you want to be when you grow up?’ You’re like 12 years old and you have no idea what you might like to do at 20, let alone 40.  All you really want is for school to be over ...
Thailands ‘street food’ revolution
J West Hardin

I first came to Thailand by way of India thirty seven years ago. At that time the quality and variety of available food astounded me
Google Search Tips
Antonio Martel

Working as an IT professional a tool has helped me to meet the deadlines and deliver tasks in time as no any other tool could have done. It was not one of those code generation tools, any magic IDE or a Rapid Development Application platform. It was Google and its Google Search Engine
Nothing pink or fluffy
Lorenza Bacino

The usual scowl begins to creep across Isabella’s forehead as I try to entice her into a new cardigan. Weary of the daily clothes battle I give up and ask her what she’s objecting to this time....
Shouts & Murmurs
John M. Edwards

Who is this Charlie Sands?
An American arts patron meets a down-and-out painter straight out of “The Real Thing” by Henry James.
Talk of the Town
Yoyo Friedrich
John M Edwards
In Manhattan, on Broome Street in SoHo , at the presently closed-down Lola’s, specializing in unfrozen ribs resembling the ribcages of hit-list victims New Orleans-style, the overage German waiter with a ponytail came over and introduced himself: “I am Yoyo, and I vill be your waiter tonight.”

A hot spring in Japan
Michael Webb

I want to write about what for me has made this country real and sometimes incredibly beautiful. My weekend visit to (Isesaki) in Gunma prefecture is almost over.

REVIEWS Film & Books

Resident of the Month 
Martin Green

I was having another drink,  trying to relax.  I don’t know why I was nervous; it was just something for our little retirement community newspaper.
A Travelers Tale
J West Hardin

I have never considered luck to be a driving force in my life. I’ve made my own way and have been satisfied with simple pleasures. I keep my head down and have never built up my hopes with unrealistic expectations...
A Lot of Pigs
John Vaughn

I work with a fellow who has an opinion on everything. He’s one of those guys who are deeply passionate about everything from string theory to knitting needles.
Between Heaven and Hell
Phillip E. Hardy

One pitch-black night, after returning from playing a gig the entire power grid for my neighborhood had gone down ... Upon the witching hour, I was startled awake. As my eyes focused, the tiny silhouette of a little cartoon devil appeared behind the flickering candle
The Plan
Richard Corwin

Survival is rare if washed overboard; especially if far from land, without floatation, and in shark infested waters
Sands Sifting Into Infinity
Susan Dale

Sands upon sands stretched out before David, even as something inside of him was sounding warnings. ‘These sands stretch out as far as the eye can see, and beyond that. I can’t see the end of them

Journey To the Mountain
Susan Dale

David headed off in the direction of the sacred mountain. Winds were picking up speed to scatter the fog into mists and beam frail rays into the horizon. Soon into his journey, the mists parted to an abandoned castle that once housed Asian nobles.
The Bicycle
Keith Harris

It was one of those utterly idiotic situations that you know you are relentlessly compelled to remain in and pursue even though you know full well that you should not be there at all. I knew my bicycle was in the lighthouse and that I had to get it back.
Let's Make A Deal
Oswaldo Jimenez

I’m supposed to be dead. The deal was that when I reached the age of fifty I would be dead.  Of course, it wasn’t exactly specified, I guess, how it would happen or when. But I think it was just supposed to happen when I reached the age of fifty
Moving Forward
Dan Dotson

Man is a monkey without much fur, but a house and a space heater to compensate. When the house is gone, however, and by association the outlet necessary for the space heater to function, man must rely on his inherent adaptability.

Cold Comfort
Cold Comfort by Quentin Bates
Sam North
2nd Outing for Sergeant Gunnhildur in this riveting Icelandic murder investigation
. A terrific read rich in every detail.
The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey
Sam Hawksmoor
There is something strangely alluring about life in the Alaskan wilderness, about people who strive to make something out of nothing, literally carve an existence out of the harsh land with its long winters and short summers filled with mosquitoes and savage wild animals.
The End of Money by David Wolman,
Charlie Dickinson
When I first heard of David Wolman's The End of Money: Counterfeiters, Preachers, Techies, Dreamers--and the Coming Cashless Society, I was skeptical. Dismissed it as a geek fantasy I might expect from a Wired Contributing Editor (which Wolman is). If people have faith in anything, it's the green stuff. 

Great fleas have little fleas upon their backs to bite 'em and little fleas have lesser fleas infinitum
- Augustus de Morgan
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