• Outer Banks, NC,  Vacations,  Weekly Blog

    Scenes from Ocracoke

    Still the Outer Banks’ pearl, even as the waters rise MORE: LIVE ONLINE EVENT. JOIN RAY’S ONLINE TALK ABOUT THE OBX: 3 p.m. Thurs., May 27, with Fountain Bookstore. READ HOW AN OCRACOKE BAND WAS NAMED FOR RAY NEXT BLOG: HATTERAS ISLAND OCRACOKE, NC — An overnight stay on this southernmost point of North Carolina’s famed Outer Banks, or at least the southernmost populated point, is always a treat. It never seems quite like the rest of the Outer Banks to me. The other villages are on the windswept Atlantic coast, with sand dunes and rough surf. I love them, too. But Ocracoke, tucked away on the inland side of…

  • Weekly Blog,  Writing & Publishing

    Book Signings in the Age of Covid

    Yesterday I was to have a book signing of Hatteras Island at a local Barnes & Noble. Late September signings are fun. They bring in a lot of people, for sales and also conversation, now that summer is winding down. Earlier this month it was canceled, though, “due to covid 19,” said the email, which added: “We are not sure when we will be able to host events again at this time.” Join the crowd. Last month, I lost an Outer Banks bookstore signing. Then four days ago came word that the large, 4-1/2-day Bizarre Bazaar Christmas show in Richmond officially was off this year. For the first year since…

  • Just Because,  Outer Banks, NC,  Vacations,  Weekly Blog

    Catching up with ‘Uncle Jack’

    His funny Outer Banks book publishes during the quarantine, with no stores to sell it, but he remains sanquine For Jack Sandberg, as for everyone else, the coronavirus and its accompanying quarantine have changed everything. Fortunately “Uncle Jack” has a sense of humor about everything. Sandberg is the humorist who came to define North Carolina’s beloved Outer Banks, writing for two now-defunct newspapers in the 1980s, 1990s and 2000s. His writing was funny, yes, but savvy, too, as more than one critic noted approvingly. He loved the OBX, but “Uncle Jack” was keenly aware that the strand of islands faced pressure from tourists, developers and real estate agents, and, of…