Friday, April 15, 2011

Diversion Press welcomes Linda Loegel, author of If You Don't Like Worms, Keep Your Mouth Shut

We are going to get our BLOG TOUR started with one of our newest authors, Linda Loegel. Loegel’s book, If You Don’t Like Worms, Keep Your Mouth Shut, was recently published by Diversion Press. It is available directly through the press,, or other online and retail locations. After you read through our interview with Linda and view the photographs that she provided, please take a minute and provide a comment or two in the comment section.

What is your favorite story from the book?

My Mom was making sandwiches for a picnic with our neighbors. I asked her what kind she was making and she said, "Tuna fish and egg salad." Being a very finicky eater, I said, "I'll make my own jam sandwiches!" Mom thought I swore and turned and snapped my lips without skipping a beat, thinking I had use a swear word. When I told her I said "jam," I was Queen for the Day because she felt so bad.

What is your best childhood experience?

There are so many! But I would have to say going for walks with my Dad and Donnie. Dad would point out various wildflowers, then he would make us each a basket out of fallen birch bark and we would gather berries and put them in the basket. Tied for best would also be Donnie and I playing at Dad's work bench, nailing pieces of wood together to make ships.

Can you tell us a story that was not included in the book?

My Aunt Alna (Dad's sister) and Uncle Nelson lived on a farm in Woodstock, VT. We would go visit them, usually at Thanksgiving or Christmas. My first memories of visiting them were before they had an indoor bathroom. They had a privy, a two-holer, attached to the house, in a shed just outside the kitchen door. That was the only house I've ever known that didn't have a bathroom. The book included stories about Donnie and Cookie, what was their response to the book?

Cookie: I was elated to be written about; it's fun to read about yourself. The experience as a fresh air child enriched my life and exposed me to a different way of life. I found that people are really not that different regardless of race or color. I found a new family that I'm still in touch with.

Donnie: Sometimes my ears perked up, but mostly you were very fair and honest about everything. It was pretty equal as to which one of us did what to whom. I notice you didn't put in the time you ratted on me to Dad! I loved that your book brought back so many beautiful memories, memories that only we could share. The last paragraph in the book sums our family up completely.
Is there any advice you can give for today’s children—things to do that don’t require today’s technology?

Read. Don't be afraid to be alone with your thoughts. Get outside and play ball. Go for walks. Ride a bike.

What is the title based on?

My sister played a trick on me. We were walking down a steep hill one day and she said, "Let's play a game." I worshipped my older sister, so if she wanted to play a game with me, I was all for it. She then said, "Close your eyes." I closed my eyes. She said, "Open your mouth." I opened my mouth. What I didn't know, was that there was a worm hanging from a tree in direct line with my mouth. She had seen it and I hadn't. I was spitting out worm for a long time afterwards.

What do you want potential readers to know about your book?

That there was a simpler time in life, before tv, computers, faxes, and cell phones. A time when you could keep your doors unlocked, when kids played outside, when parents were parents and not pals or play date arrangers. That the little events that happen when we are kids help shape who we are as adults.

What are the best and worst parts of being a published author?

The best part is knowing that what was once an idea in my head was given life and grew into a book that people can now hold and read and, hopefully, will make them smile. I haven't found a worst part yet.

What would you like potential readers to know?

That some people actually do have happy childhoods with a stable and loving family. You don't have to live with Mommy Dearest in order to write a book. We all have a book within us. Also, I have a second book out at the moment called "Bumps Along the Way," about a 10,000 mile trip my husband and I took with all its highs (God's exquisite handiwork--Bryce, Zion, Niagara Falls, etc. etc.) and lows (two trips to the hospital, a fishing trip from hell, and a motel from hell). The book is available through

Is there a question that you would like to leave up for comments or responses?

Can you relate to some of the events in the book?
What events in your childhood helped to shape who you are as an adult?

Thank you Linda.  We are sure that our readers will leave you some comments and respond to your questions.  Don't forget that we are giving away up to 2 copies of Linda's book, 1 for each 20 unique comments.


  1. A great book. While my experiences in Springfield took place after yours there is enough commonality to invoke a lot of nostalgia.

  2. Can't wait to read "Worms," Linda! Most of my childhood was spent outdoors playing with my older sister, too. One of her favorite games was "horsey." She tied a rope around my waist, leaving two long ends for reins, then stripped the leaves from a weeping willow twig to use for a whip, called out, "Giddyup!" and off we'd go, all around the yard. Now and then I'd ask to be the driver and her to be horsey, but she always convinced me that being the driver was way too difficult for someone as young as me!

  3. Thank you, Fred. I'm glad you liked the book and that it brought back memories of Springfield.

    Shirley,your comment says a lot about older sisters. Thank you for sharing such a precious memory.

  4. Hi Linda,

    You asked what in our childhood shapes us as adults. I remember my parents always saying, don't be afraid to try new things. That is good advice to pass on to our children. I also think we as adults should still adhere to it for our own lives.

  5. I love the what you said about some people having a happy childhood! Amen to that! I'm 44 years old and I STILL miss playing outside! Your book looks like a fun read!

  6. Linda, first of all, I love the title of your book! Reading the interview was like taking a trip down memory lane. I spent most of my childhood simply walking or riding bikes with my sisters and my best friend Sally. Our imaginations fueled our playtime and we were never at a loss for something to do. Best of luck to you.

  7. Hello Linda! Your book reminds me of all the trouble that my older brother and I got into when he "babysat" me after school. When he skipped school and I caught him, I used this against him. That is until he caught me shaving in the garage with my mom's electric razor after she had already told me no. At a young age, we learned the importance of bargaining and compromise. I use this skill all the time in my adult life! :) Your book reminded me the importance of allowing your children to experience these life lessons.

  8. Linda, In answer to your second question, what events in my childhood made me into the adult I am today: I had a pleasant, safe and secure childhood, the oldest of 4 girls. I was loved and protected by my parents, who were teenagers when I was born. So, for one thing I am overweight since I was raised on fast food - White Castles and Steak 'n Shake. But, on the good side, I am happy, flexible and quite eager to share a story with whoever will listen. I got that from my Uncle Robert who was quite a story teller himself. I will always be young at heart.

  9. It sounds like I will enjoy reading this book! I have three daughters of my own, and I lead a girl scout troop. I am always thinking of ways to get them outside and enjoy each other. Don't get me wrong, I love technology. But it does seem to take more creativity to get them away from their Tv,Ipods,and xbox's these days. There is so much to learn from just being outside.

  10. I love all your responses and am pleased that I could take you all down memory lane.

  11. I can certainly identify with events in your book, growing up just a few streets from Rita. I wish now that I had a book describing someone like your father when my kids were small. He certainly was a great rolemodel. My brother recalled Mrs Doten very clearly, having been a recipient of many of her hugs. It's a great book, I can't wait for the movie. CJB

  12. I recently received my copy - I am so happy I won this book! I spent an enjoyable afternoon reading this delightful nostalgic treat. I am going to get a copy for my folks who were born a decade before you and for Mom's sister who was born the same time as you. They are going to treasure this book.

  13. Thank you, Terry. I'm so glad you enjoyed the book. And congratulations for winning it!