The Literary Lure of the Long Beach Peninsula

The Long Beach Peninsula is known for many things – one of the best kept secrets of this serene area is the draw it has for outstanding, local, and regional writers.

Writers to know on the Long Beach Peninsula:


Sydney Stevens
Also known as Sydney of Oysterville, author and historian. Sydney’s published works include textbooks, non-fiction books, magazine and newspaper articles. Check out her latest book: Legendary Locals of the Long Beach Peninsula
Birdie Etchison
Birdie Etchison has sold 21 books ranging from juvenile fiction to nonfiction, romance, and historical fiction. A past president of OCW, she has taught for Writer’s Digest School for 22 years. Check out her latest book: Christmas Calling
Patty Hardin
Known for her poetry, including haiku, which is frequently published in literary magazines. Patty has three published books: Devil In Her Arms, a romance novel, Welcome Home, a collection of stories from Vietnam veterans and Merry Christmas, Murphy, a children’s picture book.
Robert Michael Pyle
The author of 17 books, including Chasing Monarchs, Where Bigfoot Walks, and Wintergreen, which won the John Burroughs Medal, Robert is a Yale-trained ecologist and a Guggenheim fellow.
Randall Beth Platt
Randall Beth Platt is an award-winning writer of fiction for adults and young adults and for those who don’t own up to being either; a generally genial person with a rabid dedication to character and story. Check out her latest book, Liberty’s Christmas

While there are a number of writers who call the Long Beach Peninsula their home, there are also some big name author’s who seek out the Peninsula for it’s inspiring and nurturing environment.

Writers often seek refuge on the Peninsula to create; Chuck Palahnuik, wrote the famous landmark publication, Fight Club, during his stay.

Charles Cross is a rock music journalist and author based in Seattle. He is the founder of Backstreets Magazine, a periodical for fans of Bruce Springsteen, editor of “Springsteen: the Man and His Music,” a compilation of Backstreets articles, and is also author of a biography of Kurt Cobain, titled “Heavier Than Heaven.” His most recent release is entitled “Room Full Of Mirrors – A Biography Of Jimi Hendrix.”

Debbie Macomber is a #1 New York Times bestselling author and one of today’s most popular writers with more than 170 million copies of her books in print worldwide – she too looks to the Peninsula for inspiration.

Reading is a favorite past time that can be enjoyed any day – rain or shine! Nearly every town on our Peninsula has a bookstore! Head on over to Time Enough Books, located at the Port of Ilwaco, for a great selection of reads. Go and relax by their fireplace, watch the harbor activity and browse their selection of new and used books, gifts, and more!  If you are in downtown Long Beach and looking for some literature, check out Banana Books and sip some coffee on their deck and take in their eclectic stock of gently used pop-fiction, sci-fi, cult classics and more! If your travels take you up North on our Peninsula, then a stop at Adelaide’s  in Ocean Park is in order! Their bookstore not only houses an impressive stock, but also has a delightful coffee shop and is set inside the Historic Taylor Hotel building from 1887.

 Upcoming Literary Events:

Writing Workshop
The Hero’s Journey: a Story Workshop with Stevan Allred. Come and learn a powerful writing model to help you get started whether you are a seasoned writer or just starting out. This is a two-part workshop that will take place on January 25 and February 1, 2014 from noon to 5 pm. Reservations are required for attendance and can be made through Time Enough Books.

Author Signing & Discussion
ASM Event Posters 01
Meet Stevan Allred, author of the acclaimed debut A Simplified Map of the Real World. The signing will take place at 6:30 pm on Saturday, February 1, 2014, at Time Enough Books at the Port of Ilwaco.

Columbia-Pacific Authors Gathering
Come and meet regional authors, shop, and enjoy regional wine and cheese at the reception from 4-5 pm. This event will take place on March 8, 2014 from noon to 4 pm at Super 8 Motel in Long Beach.

Events on the Horizon

Windless Kite Festival – Long Beach, January 17-19, 2014
Beach Cleanup Day – Peninsula-Wide, January 18, 2014
Annual Crab Feed – Long Beach, January 18, 2014
Polar Bear Plunge – Ilwaco, January 19, 2014
Asian New Year Kite Celebration – Long Beach, February 1-2, 2014

Experience the Thrill of Storm Watching on Washington’s Long Beach Peninsula

sin17capedwavewWhether you prefer to storm watch from indoors, your vehicle, or view from a point high above the dramatic surf, or even if you venture forth on foot while the raging winds pound high tide surf against the dunes, storm watching is an invigorating experience you won’t soon forget.

With visions of massive waves crashing against the craggy rocks at Cape Disappointment, settle in, get comfy and let the soothing sounds of pounding rain and powerful wind take you away!

The ever-changing ocean produces a show of power and drama as each weather pattern brings changes in the wind, the rain and the currents. If you leave the comforts of the indoors for an adventure out into the storm be careful. Stay away from large logs which shift and can be tossed upon the shore as if they were toothpicks. Watch out for sneaker waves, which can surprise even the most experienced of beachgoers.

This weekend’s storm is sure to pack a punch!

wavesPopular Storm Watching Spots:

The Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center, at Cape Disappointment State Park in Ilwaco, is perched on the cliffs overlooking the Cape Disappointment Lighthouse and the mighty Pacific. From the Center’s panoramic windows viewers can watch the storms roll in off the Pacific Ocean, ships traveling up and down the Columbia River, and sea birds working the wind. **Discover Pass Required

Waikiki Beach, in Cape Disappointment State Park, is particularly excellent when storms meet with the high tides — these coincide with the new and full moon. From a driftwood-strewn breakwater, storm watchers will be awed by huge waves crashing into the cliffs, which support the historic Cape Disappointment Lighthouse. The rhythmic waves can throw sea spray nearly 100 feet in the air giving photographers signature opportunities. The site can be accessed through the main gate of Cape Disappointment State Park, a few short miles out of the fishing village of Ilwaco. **Discover Pass Required

Get a feel for the high seas of history!

The Graveyard of the Pacific, the area of Pacific Ocean in and around the Long Beach Peninsula, is the final resting ground for nearly 2000 vessels. Over 700 lives have been lost there. Come and learn about the history of the United States Coast Guard and their lifesaving units that were the only hope for troubled vessels. Currently, U.S.C.G. Cape Disappointment is home of the National Motor Life Boat School, a top training ground highly esteemed by Coast Guardsmen. This station is the largest Coast Guard search and rescue station on the Northwest Coast, responding to nearly 400 distress calls annually.

sw2001_3_10#309 Historic Coast Guard Station

Experience history while discovering present-day treasures! These family-oriented vacation rentals are located at Klipsan Beach, south of Ocean Park, and feature gourmet kitchens, fully stocked with movies, games, and enough indoor activities to fill the stormiest day!



canbext1North Head Lighthouse Keepers’ Residence

Located at Cape Disappointment State Park, The North Head Lighthouse Keepers’ Residence offers visitors a breathtaking view of the ocean. Hardwood floors extend from the living room into the lovely grand dining room and library. The century-old two-story Victorian-period house features a comfortable living room, a spacious tiled kitchen with modern appliances, and three bedrooms with plenty of room for the whole family!



Our local Coast Guard Station, U.S.C.G. Station Cape Disappointment won the national Top Coast Guard Video of 2013! Check out what the mighty Pacific Ocean and surrounding waters looks like through their eyes! Click here to see the other top videos submitted by other USCG stations from across the country!

Click here to view the embedded video.

Watch The Weather Channel’s newest series, Coast Guard Pacific Northwest as it hits the small screen in February! This is the third installment of their Coast Guard series. Don’t miss any of the excitement of the adventures of big wave rescues! Watch the video below for a sneak preview that was filmed during a drill near the Columbia River Bar!  

Click here to view the embedded video.

Events on the Horizon

Windless Kite Festival – Long Beach, January 17-19, 2014
Beach Cleanup Day – Peninsula-Wide, January 18, 2014
Annual Crab Feed – Long Beach, January 18, 2014
Polar Bear Plunge – Ilwaco, January 19, 2014
Asian New Year Kite Celebration – Long Beach, February 1-2, 2014