Enjoy a free peek into the strange world of the DuBois.

Just another day in the DuBois household. Lollie believes she is a Queen. The legendary bird women of myths, the Sirens, flying about in the Garden, are having their issues with Babette. Thurston, spending most of the day in the library, is still captive in a prison of silence. The healer ladies of the Great House, as usual, are dispensing the sugar pills to be taken round the clock.

This was the way things were up until that day came.

The Day Before The Story.

In The Day Before The Story, (Book 1 of the series), a peculiar visit from an ancestor shook the world of the DuBois. Do not be fooled by the whimsical atmosphere or the dreamy pace. The world of the DuBois would never be the same again. This visit triggered a series of unusual events to take place. The fog that surrounded them was lifting. The sails were now set and a bizarre journey begins.

Times get twisted, secrets become revealed and strange truths are discovered about the rather eccentric DuBois. A disturbing family history will eventually unfold. A saga brimming with mysterious times, alluring places and eccentric characters waits to be explored.

Are you ready to find out what this mysterious and unusual family is all about?

Enjoy a free preview of the book on Amazon.

An excerpt from “The Day Before the Story”

“…Lollie observed the noise their shoes were making. She recognized the hidden significance of the sounds, the clues left behind by the sound of their walk.

Talented detectives know these things“, mused Lollie.

If noises had a smell, all of the noises that bounced off the walls today in the Great House, beginning with the Storm of the Chattering Monkeys up to and including the clamor the women made with their heels, would have a very complex bouquet.

Any DuBois would recognize this immediately.

The bouquet would be best described as the lingering scent of cinnamon cake baking in an oven, competing with the asphyxiating smell of strong patchouli, blending with the pungent tang that freshly watered tomato plant leaves release in the air. All of these notes meshed with the sneeze-inducing, sharp aroma of freshly cut garden grass.

Mind you, these are not scents that were in the air at that time. They were the scents that the noise gave off.

Yes, the DuBois were very sensitive to smells. They could smell noise.


from The Day Before The Story (The DuBois Family Saga, Book 1)

ok. i have news.

This website now has an “extension”. I opened The Culture Vulture Studio.

Its address is suzyvaltsioti.org


That is where all of my prints available for sale will call home.


That is where all of the info about my books will also reside.

That includes the info about the new book that is coming out soon

The DuBois Legacy – Timeswept Winds

its a book that is sure to entertain the reader…gothic, magical realism, surreal, whimsical, family saga…a good mix.

launching soon…more info to come from The Culture Vulture Studio

I am still always here on our website, loving it and enjoying the company at Writing Out Loud and most grateful to all who follow the site.

You are all invited to PRESS follow and stay tuned to The Culture Vulture Studio as well, in order to receive the lastest updates and info from my work.

You will like following The Culture Vulture Studio as well as my Pinterest and Twitter venues.

Trust me, you will like perusing through all that culture vulture material on there…

‘Beowulf: A New Translation,’ By Maria Dahvana Headly : NPR / review written by Jason Sheehan

“This new translation of the ancient epic poem drags it kicking and screaming into the 21st century, giving us tales of blood, guts and glory told as if over beers in a loud sports bar.”

(Image credit: MCD x FSG Originals)

Headley’s Beowulf is a big release — discussed, debated, talked about (as it should be) because it has everything: Love, sex, murder, magic, dungeons, dragons, giants, monsters. It spills blood by the bucket and gore by the gallon, makes heroes, slays villains and serves as an instruction manual for toxic masculinity, circa 700 AD. Bro! Tell me we still know how to talk about kings! In the old days, everyone knew what men were: brave, bold, glory-bound. Only stories now, but I’ll sound the Spear-Danes’ song, hoarded for hungry times. Yeah, she starts it all with “Bro.” Bro. Bro! I mean, that’s ridiculous. And brilliant. And genius-level washed-up barstool-hero trolling all at the same time. “Bro” to take the place of Behold! and Lo! and What ho! because Behold! and Lo! and (especially) What ho! are all silly and stilted and stupid and do not — not a single one of them — have the social heft and emotional dwarfism and Bud Light swagger of “Bro,” because “Bro” is the braggart’s call, the throat-clearing of someone who wasn’t, you know, there, but heard about it from some dude who totally was. …

…So Headley’s version (translation? transcription?) is just as real and twice as vital right now as any other. It sings straight through, the alliteration and temper of it invigorating (as it should be) and roaring (as it should be), like Beowulf, introducing himself to Hrothgar:

I’m the strongest and the boldest,

and the bravest and the best.

Yes: I mean — I may have bathed in

the blood of beasts,

netted five foul ogres at once,

smashed my way into a troll den

and come out swinging, gone

skinny-dipping in a sleeping sea

and made sashimi of some sea monsters.

Anyone who f***s with the Geats? Bro,

they have to f*** with me.

It rolls. It demands to be spoken, to be shouted and spat. To be taught as the thing that it is — the Marvel movie of its time.

I always liked Beowulf a little for what it was: history, foundational myth, epic poem of swords and dragons, source material for paintings on the sides of vans. But Maria Headley’s Beowulf I love for exactly what it is: a psychotic song of gold and blood, stylish as hell, nasty and brutish and funny all at once, mad and bad and sad and alive now in a way that these words simply haven’t been for more than a thousand years.

Review: ‘Beowulf: A New Translation,’ By Maria Dahvana Headly : NPR

Review written by Jason Sheehan knows stuff about food, video games, books and Starblazers. He is currently the restaurant critic at Philadelphia magazine, but when no one is looking, he spends his time writing books about giant robots and ray guns. Tales From the Radiation Age is his latest book.