The BUZZ: Scary story anthology to benefit wildfire relief

News, notes and tidbits from around Petaluma|

Local horror author included in wildfire relief anthology: As if the wildfires that have ravaged California over the last couple of years weren’t scary enough, a San Francisco-based book publisher has produced a new horror anthology as a benefit for wildfire victims. Its title is “Tales for the Camp Fire: A Charity Anthology Benefitting Wildfire Relief,” and a Petaluma “weird fiction” writer is one of many Nor Cal authors to be included. Ross Lockhart, the publisher of Petaluma-based Word Horde Books, has confirmed that his story “Folie A Deux” is one of dozens of new tales appearing in the anthology, which contains examples of modern horror, science fiction, fantasy, “psychological terror,” splatterpunk, magical realism, and something described as “a messed up post-apocalyptic cookbook.” Stories feature werewolves, ghosts and zombies, “Cthulhu cultists,” mad scientists and at least one pair of conjoined twins. Edited by author Loren Rhoads and published by Tomes & Coffee Press, the book goes on sale May 2. All stories were donated by the authors, and 100% of the proceeds will go to the North Valley Community Foundation, which is coordinating efforts to assist those affected by last year’s Butte County fires.

Petaluma mail carriers prepare for annual food drive: Though it is still a few weeks away, local mail carriers are already preparing themselves for a massive annual food drive set for Saturday, May 11. Taking place simultaneously all over the US, the Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive mobilizes thousands of mail carriers to pick up donations of canned food and other nonperishable items left near mailboxes by residents who generously donate food for those in need. Last year, over 20,000 pounds of food was collected in Petaluma. This year, carriers are hoping to set new records, and are calling on locals to mark their calendars and start planning to make sure they leave donations out at the start of the day. The food will then be transferred to the Salvation Army, for distribution to those in need.

Betty Bethards’ lectures now available as digital downloads: The late author Betty Bethards, whose spiritual talks and empowering lectures drew crowds of thousands when she was alive, produced a number of popular cassette tapes of those appearances. The former Petaluman passed away in 2002, and until now, most of her recordings have remained in outdated formats. A current total of 23 of those lectures have now been made available as digital downloads, according to Charles Rubin, Bethards’ husband, who still lives in Petaluma. “We’ve been working so hard to bring Betty’s lectures ‘alive’ again,” he says. “There was no one like Betty, and to this day there is still not anyone like her.” The lectures are available through Bethards’ Inner Light Foundation website, and can be found at

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