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More Yellowstone Savages

Squatters in Paradise

James Perry cuts loose in his memoir of twenty-five years as a concession employee in Yellowstone National Park. Although his outlook is often jaded and sometimes sarcastic, his viewpoint is honest as he withholds very little in describing life in the nation’s oldest and largest national park. My outlook in A Yellowstone Savage: Life In Nature’s Wonderland is decidedly more optimistic, as he readily points out with a funny jab about the potential for singing Kumbaya around the campfire in my version. Although our voices and tones differ, we share an honest love and reverent respect for Yellowstone, a place where hardy souls endure sometimes unforgiving working and living conditions for the privilege of calling it home.

I enjoyed noting the differences in lifestyle of new age “Savages,” concession employees that he sometimes refers to as “Parkies.” Mobile satellite dishes?? Technology has intruded. I also noted a plausible theory about the origin of Yellowstone Christmas, considering documentation of the traditional version is vague at best. So much food for thought. James and friends’ invasion of the CUT (Church Universal and Triumphant) compound was brazen and delightful. What an adventure! I tip my Savage hat to James. I was leery that this might be an angst filled tirade, but it came off as more honest and straightforward than diatribe. Bring on more memories, Savages! There’s plenty of room.

My book, A Yellowstone Savage: Life In Nature’s Wonderland, was published in 1988 in trade paperback, and was published as an ebook in 2013.
This was the first Savage memoir of its kind, initiating a cult following, and inspiring others to publish, preserve, and share their own stories and versions of their memories and life in Nature’s Wonderland.

Joyce B. Lohse

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Posted by on December 16, 2014 in Western history, Writing Life


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A New Frontier and a FREE Download

Waving Hands

Waving Hands in Northwest Colorado

Communication has taken many forms throughout history. Ancient people left messages by drawing art and chiseling petroglyphs on rock. Johannes Gutenberg’s invention of movable press type around 1440 replaced the only means of duplicating print, copying with pen on paper. Movable lead type was used for printing into the 20th century.

For the past half century, my work has been deeply involved in writing and publishing, and I’ve seen a few changes. In college while studying journalism, stories were written on manual typewriters with yellow pulpy second sheets, thus the terms yellow journalism and pulp fiction. How quaint! When we started our graphics and typography business, The Letter Setters, our first IBM production system consisted of desk-sized metal box-like stations with keyboards driven by magnetic tape. We thought we were styling! It was the hot set-up until we invested in AM Varityper’s new phototypesetting system, which required processing light sensitive paper in a toxic chemical bath. Ah, the good old days. Then, along came desktop publishing software on clean, compact, affordable personal computers. Suddenly, everybody was an expert typographer! The industry had finally gone wacko, or so we thought. We changed right along with it.

Rock Art May 2012

This past week, after years of conveying written words to published books, along with copious chapters and articles, and varied items of printed matter produced with ink on paper, we entered a new frontier. I completed an e-book with the renovation of my first title, A Yellowstone Savage. Once again, I thought, the gods must be crazy! Since when do we carry a battery of books and internet resources around in a pocket or purse on a slick little electronic device the size of a couple of graham crackers! They were slow to catch on, but e-book readers appear to be here to stay. Hopefully, electronic books will be used in harmony with their paperbound buddies on the bookshelves for a long time to come.

Fusion 2

In the meantime, my e-book, A Yellowstone Savage, is now available on As an introductory promotion, a FREE download will be available this coming weekend, May 24-26. This new, polished edition of Savage celebrates the 25th Anniversary of its initial publication in 1988, and the 40th Anniversary of 1973 when the Yellowstone Savages first met, became lifelong friends, and invaded our nation’s oldest and largest national park. This fictionalized memoir contains more than sixty B/W and color images. It is a fun read for anybody remotely interested in Yellowstone, and especially for former Savages who carry those glory days, memories, and a love of nature’s wonderland deep in their hearts.

To download your FREE COPY of A Yellowstone Savage on e-book, go to:
this coming Friday, Saturday, or Sunday, May 24-26, 2013.

Joyce B. Lohse


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