Photo Credit - Dorothea Lange - 1936

Continuing Gwen’s 2010 Writer’s Series, Larry Shafer, a long time member of the Whidbey Writer’s Group, joined Gwen and Whidbey Chat listeners Monday May 3, 2010.

A 76 year old semi-retired lawyer/judge, Larry was born smack dab in the middle of The Great Depression.  Like so many others, during the depression, Larry’s parents were migrant workers and were constantly on the move picking and packing produce up and down the west coast.  During his childhood Larry’s parents often farmed him out to strangers, finally abandoning him.  During that time he was orphaned for a year, until someone took him in.  Some years and many experiences later he would be reunited with his father.  As a young man his family life and living conditions were so often precarious, but with drive and ingenuity Larry would eventually attain a formal education, graduate from college, become a family man and go on building a life for himself and his own family.

At present Larry is working on a book, titled “Now I’m an Old Romantic”.   It is the story of his life and encompasses what he has learned, both formally and informally about The Great Depression, history, religion, government, war, music, literature, the amalgamation of self-reliance and luck, the significance of teaching, and people of all walks of life.  The excerpt Larry read, from the second chapter called “Faith and Grandpa Shafer”, was all together moving.  No doubt his writing and use of language is smooth, visual and emotionally pulling.

A long time resident, Larry lives and writes on Whidbey Island.  Widowed 11 years ago when his wife Jackie, the mother of his 3 children, died in the 40th year of their marriage, he now has 2 grandchildren and in a relationship a wonderful new life companion, a lovely lady named Dorothy.

An interesting hour – to say the least!  Listen to the replay of this interview Thursday – May 6 at 9am and/or Friday – May 7th at 4pm on 96.9FM in the central Whidbey area and worldwide over the internet from

Gwen and Whidbey Chat listeners extend their THANKS to LARRY for this wonderful interview.