Don Braden

Retired Professional Educator



Elaine Braden

Retired Professional Educator

Grant writer, Editor, Writer



Daily Thought

Former front page,
the last year I taught

I thought I would have more time than ever to read once I retired. More

Retirement is great! We are traveling and doing all the things we couldn't do during our teaching lives. We do miss interacting with kids in class.

Picture credit: Leah Johnston at retirement party with many of the BUSD staff.




My short story, “Pete’s Mesa,” was included in Things You Can Create (StoneThread Publishing, 2013). pete


The second Speculative Fiction anthology published by StoneThread Publishing in ebook format was published January 10, 2013.
The anthology is available from Amazon, Apple, Baker & Taylor, Diesel, Kobo, Sony and a few others.


Fresh voices from emerging authors will help you slip out of reality into the in-between places of mind, matter and energy! If speculative fiction is your fancy, you’ll love the 22 stories offered in this collection, written by authors from America, Australia and the United Kingdom. You will find everything from outrageous humor to spirituality to dreadful fear; artificial intelligence and alter egos; Kirlian auras, otherworldly beings and  post-apocalyptic journeys;  changelings and entwives; faerie gardens and forests tangled with vines; detectives and ghosts and a pixelated murderer.


“Pete’s Mesa” suggests that we may be groomed for entrance into galactic society.


A Deadly Wandering

By Matt Richtel


Read this  book and you'll never text while driving; maybe not use a phone— even hands free—unless you're an arrogant egotist. A Deadly Wandering is a must read for every driver. (July 2015)


To read more reviews and others click here


Travel, writing conferences, enjoying retirement take up our time. TusCon Tucson's nice writers get-together is the weekend before Veteran's Day. It has been an enjoyable experience: meeting authors, browsing books, getting useful tips.


Mendocino Writers Conference was by-passed last year but a destination this year. The annual Oregon/Washington trip for family and earlier than usual. My 99-year old mother may coincide with my sister's 50th wedding anniversary. Last July I availed myself of a racing program from Ron Fellows in connection with a new Corvette Stingray. What kick!! Avoiding the heat of Barstow has not been very successful as medical trips from the mountains have been more demanded for Elaine's mother whom we have finally got into a retirement home. We are planning a few symphonic concerts in San Diego from the middle of July to the end of August.





tales"Dream of Monarchs"
First publication for pay in
Volume 7 #1 of Tales of the Talisman
This was a reworked story I used in connection with Plato's Cave in Critical Thinking.

My trilogy,The Elder Saga, is finished.
Finding an agent or a publisher is a different job, slow moving, and infuriating.

Upstart Mystique is complete. Motif for all my writing is social commentary not unlike what Clarke was famous for.

The first 20K is done for another novel. Normally the first words end up at the end of the story. This one has been difficult to plot and it has no working title.

Authoring takes up much time and reading has taken a serious hit. However, writers must read. I have provided reviews of the books I have read and recently noted when I finished each. However, in the absence of serious composing, reading has come alive: four books in June and July is looking to be as good, unless …


Read Mrs. Braden's Submission to NCTE on improperly posted teacher grading based on student scores.

Read my letter on education to the editor of the Wilson Quarterly.

Read my comments to Diane Ravitch on her book The Death and Life of the Great American School System

The above was followed by Reign of Error that takes in after the business paradigm for education and the proliferation of charter schools (both profit and non-profit) that are syphoning tax dollars away from public school that are providing better education that the reformers are willing to admit. See my review in the list of reviews (left).

Thirty years after A Nation at Risk

Good article. Here's the final paragraph:

“In some ways, A Nation at Risk was helpful, but what we’ve seen in the past 30 years are too many misguided efforts – most notably No Child Left Behind – that have only compounded the problems the report identified,” Van Roekel said. “Educators across the country work hard to give their students the great education they deserve, but lawmakers cannot keep pulling the rug out from under them with bad ideas. We need to do what we know works. We need to fully fund our schools, invest in early childhood education, increase parental involvement and keep our class sizes small, especially in high-poverty schools at the lower grades. This is how we’ll make our schools work for every student.”