Eating Authors: Bokerah Brumley

No Comments » Written on September 21st, 2020 by
Categories: Plugs
Bokerah Brumley

As often happens, I’m prepping this week’s EATING AUTHORS installment in advance, which could be seen as the act of a very responsible person or an exercise in cat vacuuming because I don’t want to work on some other thing I’m supposed to be doing. I’m pretty sure it’s one or other.

By the time this goes live, I’d like to think I’ll have turned in (and maybe actually pulled the trigger on) the Kickstarter to fund the 100 Writers’ Most Memorable Meals book — celebrating ten years of this blog. And too, Soup of the Moment will have burst out into the world. I’ll also have had a follow-up visit with my orthopedic oncologist as well as my primary care physician. And with a little luck, I’ll have inched ever closer to finishing a draft of Ace of Saints, the second book in the Freelance Courier series. As you can see, September is an especially busy time.

Other bits since last week’s post have included my appearance on a virtual discussion of “why we love SF” alongside Jody Lynn Nye and Chuck Gannon (both pasts guests on this blog), and pimping two anthologies that have included my work: The Expanding Universe 6 and Hellcats. That last, as you may have guessed given the pattern emerging from the last few weeks, is your segue to this week’s guest, Bokerah Brumley, who is also a contributor to the anthology.

Bokerah lives in Texas where she’s a permaculture farmer on ten acres of land that also includes her husband and five home-educated children. This is not the usual background of most writers who drop by to share meals, nor the string of jobs that often attend authors as they struggle to finish their novels. Instead, Bokerah comes across as an expert multi-tasker, doing a dozen different things at once, making steady progress in all of them.

Her fiction ranges not just between short stories in a host of anthologies but also to novels that cross genres from fantasy to science fiction, paranormal academy to shape shifting romance, Mom adventures to Texas romance. I’d be remiss if I didn’t call special attention to her participation in as unique a themed anthology as I’ve ever seen: CRACKED: An Anthology of Eggsellent Chicken Stories .

LMS: Welcome, Bokerah. I had to look up the term “permaculture,” and now I’m more eager than ever for you to share your most memorable meal.

BB: My answer is different than most, I think. It involves sweat and tears and muck.

It’s not about eating a place out or going away from home.

It’s not even exotic. It was some greens, a chicken leg, and a glass of milk.

Book of Power

Our family has been making movement toward sustainability for years. Not because it’s particularly easy in this sun-scorched, perpetually-droughted, bad-soiled part of West Texas, but because participating in the creation of food brings about a mindfulness that’s hard to get in any other way.

Up until last year, we had five kids at home. Between us, we worked the horrible dirt and mixed chicken/turkey/guinea/peafowl/sheep/goat manure into it. We’ve killed so many plants. I swear, I must have a black thumb. I’ve added lady bugs and praying mantids above ground and composting worms beneath.

It hasn’t been easy.

For instance, a few weeks ago, we had a wildfire on our property. My hubs fought it for fifteen minutes with a broom and a shovel until the volunteer fire department could get out here.

Our county has been hurting for rain. Don’t worry, though. September came and brought five inches of rain and cooler weather (it’s not 105 degrees Fahrenheit now), and I was able to put 700 new composting worms into our soil without them baking away to nothing.

Curse of Aerie

We take our failures, but we’re always building for tomorrow. Adding carbon to lifeless soil, running creatures over the ground… Every time we get a shipment from any place, we break down the box, put it on the ground and put old hay over it.

We’re growing dirt. Not for today, but for next year or the year after.

So, what makes the most memorable meal I’ve ever had? I’m glad you asked.

A couple of years ago, as a family, we ate the first meal that we produced ourselves from start to finish. We had chicken that we grew up from chicks to poults to adult. And then we processed the chickens ourselves.

We cared for the needs of each of the birds, minding what they ate. They received grit and fermented feed with apple cider vinegar in their water. We kept them safe, and we gave them the best existence on fresh pasture that we could. In all of their life, they only had one bad day.


We drank milk from the goats and water from our well. Then we ate boiled eggs (sloppily peeled) and veggies we’d harvested from our own garden.

There’s something unifying about food. A home-cooked meal has a way of bringing people together, and producing that same food amplifies that tenfold.

It was a hard-earned meal, as each of them are, but it was the most memorable one, I think. It gave every member of our family a sense of pride.

We fail often in this journey, but we’re always trying to fail forward.

“Someday, it’ll be easier,” we sigh. Maybe not. Probably not, if we’re honest.

But EVERY DAY, we leave these acres better than they were yesterday.

It’s never easy. But it is good. It is satisfying, and it makes the best meal.

And we did that. Together.

Thanks, Bokerah. I envy the satisfaction that such a meal must surely bring, though not the effort necessary to achieve it. But that’s probably because I’m just old and lazy. Also, I kept wondering if you make your own cheese. I may have to travel down to Texas to find out.

Next Monday: Another author and another meal!

NB: links to authors and books here are included as part of an Amazon Affiliate account. If you follow any of them and ultimately make a purchase Amazon rewards me with a few pennies of every dollar.

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