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Concrete Wall

But things change. Even death isn’t static. The cosmos is in constant state of flux all around us. One day I woke up and wanted something else besides my job as a handyman…I turned to music for a while, but didn’t have the chops to be anything more than a curious sideshow (for which there wasn’t much of a market at the time). It was then that I started writing poetry again after a 10 year hiatus (1983 - 1993). That was about the time that I took on the moniker, Raindog, followed by RD in conjunction with my last name (Armstrong). I didn't know it at the time but a new chapter was opening.

It’s been 30 years since I started making books of one sort or another. It has been a long, strange trip. Sometimes, I think I’m the Great Oz, the man behind the curtain, the stranger in a strange land, the grand Poobah, the head Lummox. In short, I am RD Armstrong: the man who is Lummox Productions. Together with the intrepid Yazoota, I’ve plumbed the depths of the shallow end of the literary pool in an area known as the independent small and underground press.  Yazoota worked with me from 1997 until 2020. He started out doing layouts for the old Lummox Journal (a precursor to the LUMMOX Poetry Anthology, a nine volume, yearly book). He had spent 25 years  working for “Gats and .44’s” as the Art Director! That’s where he made his bones. I was fortunate enough to work with him for so many years; together we strove to produce a striking product that satisfied authors as well as readers.

I had high hopes for Lummox Press. But I just couldn't get a handle on promoting the books that I had published. Seems I had 'bitten off more than I could chew'. Turns out that poets are pretty hard to work with. In the end, I burned myself out.

Here at Lummox, the emphasis has always been on “game’ not “fame”…the Lummox Motto is Ingenium Non Celibritas (literally Game Not Fame). I published some old poets and some new voices, new writers who hadn’t had a chance to strut their stuff in book form yet, or writers who for whatever reason haven’t yet gotten a full collection of their work published. But the challenges of working with the poets have worn me down. However, these are the same challenges that forged my character over the past 40 years. There is a saying: “The best steel goes through the fire.” Apparently, my steel needed a rest.

Don’t get me wrong, I am proud of my work and very glad to have met other weirdos from many walks of life (poets, writers, artists, musicians). Some I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know on this strange, ever-evolving journey. I have tried to run Lummox the way I ran my handyman gig (I did that for almost 50 years – 1975 - 2015). However, I came to realize that a handshake wasn’t enough of a contract in a world gone crazy; that greed was as American as Apple Pie and that seemingly everybody is looking for a way to make “real” money without putting in “real” time.

As I move past this 30th year (full of schism and deceit, hatred and xenophobia, fear, sickness and death….oh so much death), where we act like we are right when we are wrong, and where the corona virus is everywhere and nowhere. Where going for coffee could be playing Covid roulette; I’ve become weary. I needed a break from publishing books, from the hectic pace, from my impossible scheduling. In short, I need a break from doing the Lummox Press tango! I needed a new direction, one where I might be able to help other people with small gifts of “seed” money. So, I started the Moon In The Bucket Fund,  and a new chapter began.

But guess what...I'm back with a new website: The old Lummox Press website will be condensed into a platform for my own work. I think I still have a few titles left in me. Maybe I'll even publish a few other poets, too. We'll see how it goes...


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