Thursday, November 23, 2006

Current Articles and Work to Come . . .

A short list of some of my articles on newsstands right now, those delivered by membership, and mention of some to come:

* "Autumn Locator Calls" in the Fall 2006 Turkey & Turkey Hunting Magazine. Never tried it? Here's how.

* "Good Ideas for Tough Times" in the Realtree Outdoors 2006 Waterfowl Special (w/ Rod Haydel, Barnie Calef, and Sean Mann, all superb waterfowlers and great interviewees), plus I ghosted their material in the "2006 Realtree Waterfowl Almanac," and even scored a byline of my own for "Jump-Shooting Ducks on Skinny Waters," which is what us upland bird-hunting types do when you put us on a New England tidal saltwater marsh, or a narrow inland freshwater. Topnotch waterfowling magazine.

* "Spring Hunt Your Fall Gobbler" (w/ Ray Eye) in the Sept./Oct. 2006 Turkey Call. It'll make you give up some of your deer hunting.

* "Autumn Tactics for Roosted Turkeys" in the Nov./Dec. 2006 Turkey Call. And yep, that's me posing with a snowy day Wyoming longbeard over my shoulder in John Hafner's great cover shot. Pay attention to Haf. He's got a great eye for an image, and is serious about his craft.

All good magazines to check out right now.

Stuff to come in the near future . . . work in the Ruffed Grouse Society magazine, Turkey Hunting Strategies 2007, Outdoor Life, Turkey Call, Get in the Game, Realtree Outdoors 2007 Turkey Special, and Turkey & Turkey Hunting, plus some others of regional circulation, and my weekly "New England Afield" column and photo support in Foster's Sunday Citizen (Dover/Laconia, NH). Stackpole is publishing my forthcoming turkey book . . . stay tuned.


Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Radar, 4

Classic English setter in front of the Maine woodstove stuff. If that bedding doesn't catch fire, we ought to be in good shape today.

Steve Hickoff photo

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Writing Books: What It Takes

I wrote this in response to an "Ask Our Members" question for our New England Outdoor Writers Association newsletter as to what happens after you sign a book contract. Some ideas follow here . . .

DON’T talk about your book too much. Write it.

DO follow your book proposal’s chapter outline. It will keep you on task.

DON’T put the project off. To craft 60,000 words on contracted deadline—often a year’s time—you have to write more than 1,000 words a week, every week.

DO keep a three-ring binder of printed chapters as you complete them, and refer to this as reference material.

DON’T put off shooting photos to support your text.

DO assign target dates for monthly word counts and chapter completion.

DON’T think a book project will let you rest. It won’t.

DO relax once the copyedited manuscript is completed, and the project is in production. Then again, that’s the time to work on your next book’s proposal.

—Steve Hickoff

November gobblers

I found these November gobblers on a recent showery morning. Steve Hickoff photo

Game Bird Soup

Thanksgiving focuses on family, football, and food. The following recipe can work as an entrée or an appetizer.

First, soak 10 oz. of Hurst's “HamBeens” brand beans in a bowl of water overnight. The next day, parboil two defrosted pheasant breasts, and several ringneck drumsticks for 90 minutes, rinse in cold water, and cull the meat. Grouse, and wild turkey—and even farm fowl—all work well with this simple recipe. At times, I also put darker woodcock breast meat in there too.

To a stovetop lobster pot add 64 oz. of Swanson 99% fat free chicken broth, followed by the beans (after draining and rinsing). Add the meat, then bring that to a boil. Covered (with the lid's steam escape window open), tweak it down to medium heat, and let it cook several hours, stirring occasionally.

About 20 minutes before eating, cook up several cups of Carolina Jasmine Thai Hom Mali rice on the stovetop, put that in a bowl when ready, and cover it with gamebird soup. Fresh baked bread goes great with this meal.

This recipe works particularly well with the parboiled meat of a fall wild turkey (drumsticks included), making use of the entire bird. These ingredients and amounts serve up roughly five soup bowls. Adjust accordingly.

Steve Hickoff photo

Find Them. Flush Them. Call Them Back.

Pictured here, my English setter Midge, myself, and a central New York state wild turkey tagged in early October. We'll be enjoying this bird on our holiday table this Thanksgiving. Steve Hickoff photo