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Local Author's Book Debut

What’s in your couch cushions? Spare change? Forgotten toys? The other matching sock? What if the things you found deep down within the couch had the power to change the course of history? That’s the fantastical idea behind Bethpage resident, Henry Clark’s debut young adult novel, What We Found in the Sofa and How It Saved the World.

The book centers on three 12-year-old children who find a discarded sofa on the side of the road near their bus stop. As they begin to search between the cushions, they find a zucchini colored crayon, a double six domino, a mysterious coin, and a fishhook. These seemingly commonplace items soon thrust the friends into an adventure as they try to thwart an evil mastermind’s plan to conquer the world.

“It’s the kind of book I enjoyed back when I was 12 years old,” Clark says. “I’ve always liked stories that start in a very normal situation and then totally spin into directions you never expected.”

Clark has always had a penchant for crazy stories. As a young boy growing up in Connecticut and later Bethpage, he loved writing anecdotes of kids having wacky adventures. He was an avid reader and would ride his bicycle around the neighborhood while simultaneously reading books such as The Hardy Boys and Tom Swift.

He stopped writing in middle school, and worked for Old Bethpage Village Restoration as a supervisor for 30 years, writing intermittently for science fiction magazines and MAD magazine. In 2011, he started writing longer manuscripts aimed for adult audiences. However, the eight manuscripts he wrote never garnered any interest from literary agents.

One day, he was driving around in Suffolk County when he saw a sofa sitting on a curb. He had recently read an article about a big coal seam fire in Pennsylvania and began to wonder what would happen if the sofa had been sitting close to the edge of the underground perpetually burning fire. This sparked the idea for his children’s novel.

Clark initially sent the manuscript out to five literary agents and unlike with his adult pieces, got a response for What We Found In The Sofa very quickly.

“No one was interested in the books for adults, but with my first attempt at a children’s book several people got back to me. Obviously I was meant to write for kids,” Clark says.

Clark recently read excerpts from his book at the Barnes and Noble in Carle Place. The 61-year-old author has already written a sequel.

What We Found In The Sofa is available at bookstores and on amazon.com.

News

 book shops in Hicksville and around the country will hand out free comics on Oct. 25, to celebrate the second biggest free comic book event of the year—Halloween ComicFest. On Saturday, anyone who goes into a participating comic shop can choose from 19 free comics and participate in fun activities comic shops host for their customers to enjoy, while discovering new types of comics and the treasures found in store.

In Hicksville, both Game Master Games (954 S. Broadway) and Amok Time (108C New South Road) will be taking part in the Halloween ComicFest festivities. Game Master Games just recently started carrying comic books and this will be the store’s first comic book-related event. Coincidently, the event runs in the middle of an in-store gaming convention, and store owner Dave VanderWerf is looking forward to the increased exposure for the store.

Looking for a place to work on your bedside manner and start a promising new career in the process? Look no farther than your hometown.

The Vocational Education and Extension Board (VEEB), a division of the county that oversees educational facilities such as the Fire Service Academy and EMS Academy, recently transplanted one of its facilities — The School of Practical Nursing — into a new location right in the heart of Hicksville, where they recently held an open house to celebrate their new home.


Sports

The Hicksville girls volleyball team improved to 7-1 by knocking off Oceanside in three consecutive sets by scores of 25-13, 25-19 and 25-14.

Emily Markakis played terrificly, using a powerful serve to record three aces, seven kills and added nine digs. Nikki Chase added six kills and eight digs. Additionally, Raeann Dong was versatile—recording three aces, seven kills and nine digs.

The Girls Varsity soccer team, in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, wore pink uniforms and pink socks in their game on Oct. 8 against MacArthur whom they defeated 1-0. The girls and boys soccer programs at Hicksville High School are selling pink ribbon car magnets with a soccer ball and HHS on it with the words “Kick Cancer” on the ribbon. All the money raised will go to the Sarah Grace Foundation, which is a local foundation trying to beat pediatric cancer. The players plan to raise $1,000 for this organization

— From Hicksville High School


Calendar

Board of Education Meeting

October 22

Oktoberfest

October 25-26

Pancake Breakfast

October 26



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com