Gonzo Fest 2023 – New Photos

Photo by Bill Hardesty


“The Hell’s Angels Letters & The Origins of Gonzo” Panel with Margaret Ann Harrell | Louisville, KY | North Carolina Writers’ Network (ncwriters.org)

Event Artwork: Grant Goodwine

Matt Hahn and Margaret Harrell, Gonzofest ’23
William McKeen and Ron Whitehead, GF ’23
The Hell’s Angels Letters panel, Gonzofest
The Hell’s Angels LETTERS Esteemed Panel, Gonzofest ’23
Tim Denevi (Freak Kingdom) and Margaret Harrell (Hell’s Angels Letters)
Dr. John Brick, GonzoFest panel,, and Danielle






AUDIO of The Hell’s Angels Letters on the way – Trailer Link Here

I went down to Louisville, KY, one of my favorite places, for six days to haunt the sound studio of Bill Hardesty, who took the photo of me at the  Brown Hotel above. An expert photographer but an even more expert at sound engineering. Ron Whitehead sat at my side almost the whole time and read two poems by me and the end-of-the-book essays. Otherwise, I read every word of the book myself, a massive undertaking. A huge thanks to Ron, who set everything up. And to Bill for being fearless and generous. He could have charged a fortune, considering the scale of the project. But he had a heart.

A trailer, based on images taken at the Brown that weekend by a young whiz named Yunier Ramirez and images in the book is just finalized except for the credits at the end. Click the link for a sneak preview.


The Hell’s Angels Lettersis a must-have text for any Hunter S. Thompson fan. Lavishly documented and illustrated with the actual correspondence that led to the publication of his breakthrough literary effort, Hell’s Angels, this coffee-table book literally shows how HST boot-strapped his way from an impoverished nobody journalist to growing legend.

Kyle K. Mann, Gonzo Today. Print available only at norfolkpress.com.

At last, with print book and the soon-to-be-released audio of the Norfolk Press print book The Hell’s Angels Letters: Hunter S. Thompson, Margaret Harrell and the Making of an American Classic, the public can go inside the experience of Hunter Thompson at Random House. This book, which focuses on his letters to his copy editor, Margaret Harrell (available nowhere else), is an important revelation in the legacy of Thompson. “If Hell’s Angels hadn’t happened I never would have been able to write Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas or anything else . . . I felt like I got through a door just as it was closing,” Hunter told Paris Review. Check out the $9.95 Amazon E-book and (soon to be released) full-295-page audio book (Amazon).

TRAILER credits:

PUBLISHER (print BOOK): Norfolk Press of San Francisco

The Hell’s Angels Letters | Hunter Thompson, Margaret Harrell and the Making of an American Classic (norfolkpress.com)

E-book: Amazon.com

ART ILLUSTRATIONS & FRONT COVER: Grant Goodwine, https://grantgoodwine.bigcartel.com

 LICENSE RIGHTS: Excerpts from Hunter S. Thompson Letters used by permission of The Wylie Agency LLC

and The Hunter S. Thompson Estate, with thanks to Juan Thompson, Hunter’s son, and George Tobia

at Burns & Levinson law firm.

 HUNTER’S FACE in trailer: Alanbeckerphotographer.com

FOR MORE INFORMATION, visit https://margaretharrell.com

FUN FACT: see Outlaw Poet documentary on Ron Whitehead


Videos (by Jef Crab), Poem (Ron Whitehead), Review (Chris van de Velde): Space Encounters III

Above, Ron Whitehead, Beat Lifetime Poet Laureate, recites his poem “Discovering the Heart of the World, a Story,” his spontaneous Introduction that came to him as he read the first pages of Space Encounters III. Full title: Inserting Consciousness into Collision(s) – rev. edition – A True Fantasy Adventure by the Earth through the Quantum-Entangled World.

This is a soul journey in and through and beyond space and time. All of Margaret A. Harrell’s books are connected, linked. They are her never ending life story. Her new book is plugged in, an electric shock, a wake up call for those bold and daring enough to take the wildly delightful adventure to the whirling ever changing source of all and everything. 

Credit: Book cover image: Grant Goodwine

NEW: REVIEW by Chris Van de Velde, master coach in Belgium, on Space Encounters III:

The author is a wizard at turning the sign language of the specifics into messages of the beyond.

Space Encounters III is an experience of a fantastic journey into the source of creativity. Another re-story-ing of how our lives our entangled in the grandiose web of the universe. This time taken from a myriad of perspectives: quantum leaps and how they shake up the Newtionian mechanistic worldview, Jungian archetypal wisdom seen from a quite unique angle, the huge impact on a life’s course starting with childhood imprints, spicy poetic wordplay endowed with meaning… Originally Margaret was a dancer, turning on into a writer who composes symphonies of words and dances along the cosmic plot lines she is detecting. This is heralding a new style of life where the old story is no longer valid, the narrative of warmongers and suppression is coming to an end. And a new story is revealed which is paradoxically containing and rebirthing ancient wisdom. A re-story-ing of how the grand web of the universe is entangled with our personal lives boiling down to that marvelous gem that tells us all living beings matter to the grand web. The whole journey is a wake up call: what you do, matters and impacts the cosmos… Creation is a creative act and we are all involved. So you better watch out! And are recommended to read this book as an eye-opener, I-opener, beyond the eye/I. Enjoy the experience and join the dance of Space Encounters III!”

Jef Crab, Tai Chi master and Taoist, in the clips below, bite-sized and dense, that go with different pages of tex, provided short video commentary to specific chapters, pointing out how they align with Taoism and his own experiences and consciousness. He places the ideas in them beside other deep attempts to understand the universe, from the emptiness state, as far as humans can do so. The text is also found at the end of the book.

Jef Crab

Finally a manual of the Universe but also connected to the deep psychology of the human being. In easy to grasp terms Margaret reveals insight into the processes that connect past, future and now; the quantum world with daily existence and seemingly superficial events with deep spirituality. The magic of this book is that it positions our place in the universe and our dream of life with much more clarity. A manual indeed

—Jef Crab, T’ai Chi master and Taoist


Margaretha 001













Tim Denevi, William McKeen, Ron Whitehead, Peter Richardson, et al. at Gonzofest in July

To celebrate Hunter S. Thompson’s birthday this year, a stellar lineup for a panel on The Hell’s Angels Letters gathered at Louisville. KY, July 13.  Here are some photos from past Gonzofests I attended.

Gonzofest 2023 was held at the High Horse Bar July 14-15, 2023 from noon until late into the night – A large bar and music venue.  And lots of music there was.

See the brand-new TV interview on the GF by founder Ron Whitehead here.

Attendees flocking from all over the country, snapped up the 400 tickets and made a most lively crowd. As did the expert Friday panel on The Hell’s Angels Letters. This Hunter S. Thompson themed festival is complete with an Art and Literary Contest, local breweries, and live music.

To read more, go here. And here. TO BUY TICKETS, GO HERE. 

Image credit above: graphic artist Mary Fields

Photo credits: Juan and me and my face: artist/poet Jinn Bug

If you would like a signed copy of any of my books, let me know so I can take a copy for you to the Gonzofest! There is also now an e-book option for The Hell’s Angels Letters on Amazon here!









Earliest Hints of Gonzo:

Pranks, Agonies, as a Young Hunter Prepares His Launching Pad


 Peter Richardson teaches Humanities and American Studies at San Francisco State University. His publications include critically acclaimed books about Hunter S. Thompson, the Grateful Dead, Ramparts magazine, and Carey McWilliams, who edited Thompson at The Nation magazine. He is currently writing a book about Rolling Stone magazine for the University of California Press. 


Margaret Ann Harrell spent thirty adventurous years abroad in Morocco and Europe, returning to the United States in 2001. She is a three-time MacDowell Colony fellow and has authored eighteen books, including The Hell’s Angels Letters: Hunter S. Thompson, Margaret Harrell and the Making of an American Classic in collaboration with Ron Whitehead (Norfolk Press) and Space Encounters III—Inserting Consciousness into Collisions: A True Fantasy Adventure by the Earth through the Quantum Entangled World. Also, the Keep This Quiet! memoir series and Particle Pinata Poems. She is an editor and an advanced light body meditation teacher as well as a cloud photographer exhibited now and then in Romania, Italy, Bruges (Belgium), and New York City and a mentor to those wanting to go deeper into themselves and their potential.


William McKeen is a professor and the former Chair of the Department of Journalism at Boston University; he is the author or editor of thirteen successful books, including Outlaw JournalistMile Marker Zero, and Everybody Had an Ocean. McKeen teaches journalism history, literary journalism, and rock n’ roll and American culture and previously taught at Western Kentucky University, the University of Oklahoma, and the University of Florida, where he chaired the department of journalism. Before beginning his teaching career, he was a reporter, then associate editor of The American Spectator and the Saturday Evening PostMile Marker Zero is “a tall but telescopic-sight-true tale of Hunter Thompson, Jimmy Buffett, Tom McGuane, and a large cavorting cast running around with sand in their shoes at ‘ground zero for lust and greed and most of the other deadly sins,’ [in] Key West,” wrote Tom Wolfe. McKeen spent his early years in England, Germany, Nebraska, and Texas.


Dr. John F. Brick teaches English, first-year rhetoric, and creative writing at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. His scholarship includes a comprehensive annotated variorum of Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, which traces the development of Thompson’s 1971 classic across extant texts and archival documents and provides comprehensive historical, cultural, and literary context. The result not only recaptures something of the first blush of Vegas‘ satire and profundity but offers unprecedented granularity in examining Thompson’s creative process at the height of his powers. Dr. Brick’s most recent work examines intersections of sportswriting and nationalism. In his spare time he enjoys distance running and cycling, and playing for the Milwaukee Hurling Club.


Timothy Jack Denevi is a professor in the MFA program at George Mason University and the past nonfiction editor of Literary Hub. His work has appeared in the Atlantic, Time, the Paris Review, and New York Magazine, to name a few. And he has been interviewed prolifically, across the spectrum of major news outlets, including the Joe Rogan Experience podcast, following the release of his highly successful Freak Kingdom: Hunter S. Thompson’s Manic Ten-Year Crusade against American Fascism. Denevi grew up in Los Gatos, California, and lives near Washington DC. He is a MacDowell Colony fellow and a fellow of the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts.


Ron Whitehead, co-founder of & Chief of Poetics for GonzoFest, is a Lifetime US National Beat Poet Laureate. His life is newly documented in the film Outlaw Poet: The Legend of Ron Whitehead (2022). “Ron Whitehead is Bodhisattva in Kentucky,” said Lawrence Ferlinghetti. “I have long admired Ron Whitehead. He is crazy as nine loons, and his poetry is a dazzling mix of folk wisdom and pure mathematics,” said Hunter S. Thompson. An award-winning poet and performer, author of 30 books and 40 albums, his words have been translated into twenty languages.

 Art by Grant Goodwine 

Inside the Kitchen
With Rory Feehan at the Frazier 2019

Margaret Harrell – Hunter Thompson
Juan Thompson and me over dinner in the Brown Hotel
Juan Thompson, Margaret Harrell, a firing range
Photo credit: Jinn Bug

Doug Brinkley and Deb Fuller at Gonzo Fest 2016

Ron Whitehead and Jinn Bug

Now LIVE: My fascinating chat with Robert Sharpe, BITEradio show “Bringing Inspiration to Earth” April 18

Now LIVE: Just click here. My interview by  Robert Sharpe on BITEradio show “Bringing Inspiration to Earth” April 18, 3 p.m. – where I was his guest for an hour.

The host was marvelous, keeping things lively. Robert Sharpe has very thoughtful, interesting, wide-ranging topics. And he was ready to find them in Keep This Quiet Too! – vol. II of the KTQ! series. BookLife, the indie arm of Publishers Weekly, has its verdict on the book:

With an eye for surprising detail, Harrell conjures a charged and vivid milieu, even as the story she tells is often painful . . . A journey with grand destinations throughout the globe and within the author’s consciousness. – 

BookLife further calls it: “charged, vivid, painful, grand.” I’ll take it.  Also of interest, says the reviewer, is “her abundant enticing experiences and insights, and her relationships with her subjects.” The review opens:

“I’m not crazier than you,” Harrell reports once saying to her friend Hunter S. Thompson. Thompson’s response: “No, but you talk crazier.” That exchange, recounted in an introductory author’s note, kicks off the second in a series of memoirs (after Keep This Quiet!) by Harrell that examine her relationship with three fascinating men of letters: first that gonzo icon Thompson, for whom Harrell served as an editor at Random House and maintained a friendship with through his years of covering horse races and regatas, and Milton Klonsky, the beat writer who was her literary and spiritual advisor. Finally, there is the poet Jan Mensaert, her troubled husband, whose struggle with drugs, alcohol, and mental illness overshadowed his considerable artistic abilities.

“Horse races and regatta,” that’s a funny take on all the political news tackled. Just scratching the surface.

I’m VERY appreciative of the review, with phrases that lift out beautifully. And those topics and facets were on full display in this interview.


Gonzofest – The Hell’s Angels Letters – buy it personally signed

For the Gonzo aficionado, A Favorite – The Hell’s Angels Letters, Order HERE

If you would like it personally signed, contact me.  I will take orders to deliver personally to the Gonzofest in July 2013! It’s a marvelous gift or for your personal collection.

Read reviews and a book description on BookLife here.

Below are some reactions to The Hell’s Angels Letters followed by photos related to the book and me. Cover: Grant Goodwine. For collectors, there is a limited edition of 120 (at $120). For the high-end coffee table edition ($60, 297 pages, many in color), you can’t go wrong, as underscored enthusiastically by every single reader. Attention: there’s now an ebook  option on Amazon here.


The eminent reviewer for the Washington Post Michael Dirda has given a Big Head’s Up to The Hell’s Angels Letters: Hunter S. Thompson, Margaret Harrell and the Making of an American Classic in his October 8, 2020, write-up about it inside a piece called “Can’t get enough Game of Thrones or Star Wars? New editions on cult favorites are here to satisfy:

Among late 20th-century American writers, none can rival Norman Mailer and Hunter S. Thompson in sheer force of personality, both on the page and in person. Mailer, whether in his fiction, polemical essays or reportage, always aimed to be consequential, to be fiercely engaged with his times. Would that he were living now! For a hint of what we’ve lost, check out the latest book-length issue, Volume 13, of “The Mailer Review” at the home page of The Norman Mailer Society. Thompson’s motto might well have been “Nothing in moderation.” For “The ‘Hell’s Angels’ Letters,” Margaret Ann Harrell — in collaboration with Ron Whitehead — has assembled a dossier of all her correspondence with Thompson during the time she worked as the editor of the gonzo writer’s “strange and terrible saga of the outlaw motorcycle gangs.” Typed manuscript pages, scribbled notes, photographs, interviews and all sorts of period ephemera relating to “Hell’s Angels” allow the reader a valuable, behind-the-scenes glimpse into the making of this classic of New Journalism.

Beatdom review by publisher David Wills, author of High White Notes:

Finding the truth amidst the Gonzo madness of Hunter Thompson’s life story is not easy. He was an incorrigible self-mythologiser and the books about him tend to incorporate many of his own fantastic – and totally untrue – stories as though they were fact. Harrell attempted to dispel at least one of these myths in Keep This Quiet and digs deeper in The Hell’s Angels Letters, determined to set the record straight about how and where Thompson got the idea for a book on the Death of the American Dream and how his pet snake can to a violent end.

As the title implies, this book is mainly comprised of letters between Harrell and Thompson, some typed and some handwritten, and all printed here in colour. Of course, there are already two collections of Hunter Thompson’s letters available, but somehow they are even more enjoyable when read in the original form. Whether typed or scrawled in giant letters with a red pen, Thompson’s correspondence is invariably annotated and corrected in his unique way, adding a layer of personality that was missing from the collections, as well – of course – as Harrell’s explanations that provide further insight.

Margaret Harrell, The Hell’s Angels Letters launch

In case you missed it, there’s a Gonzo Today review of The Hell’s Angels Letters Letters by Kyle K. Mann, Editor-in-Chief. It opens like this:

This is a big book, literally and figuratively. The short version:

The Hell’s Angels Letters is a must-have text for any Hunter S. Thompson fan. Lavishly documented and illustrated with the actual correspondence that led to the publication of his breakthrough literary effort, ‘Hell’s Angels,’ this coffee-table book literally shows how HST boot-strapped his way from a impoverished nobody journalist to growing legend. The author, Margaret Harrell, who was Thompson’s editor on his inaugural book, and her collaborator, Thompson’s friend and associate poet Ron Whitehead, have succeeded brilliantly to create a fabulous present for you, or anyone in your life who admires Thompson’s numerous achievements. It is not inexpensive, but no matter, it’s worth every penny. The Hell’s Angels Letters: Hunter S Thompson, Margaret Harrell and the Making of an American Classic gets five stars out of five! Bravo!

The long version:

I was delighted to get the package at the Topanga Post Office from Ron. I got it home and opened it eagerly. As I flipped through the pages, I was astounded to see typewritten and even handwritten letters from HST. Beyond amazing! But, how the freaking hell am I going to review it?

It sat on my desk for weeks, demanding attention. I found myself resentful as the days went by… what am I doing with this monstrosity? I’d open it and recoil due to the intensity of HST’s personality, roaring off the page. I tried getting stoned and looking anew, but nope, way too heavy to digest and analyze in that state. Yet, Ron had sent it to me to review, and I knew our Gonzo Today readers wanted, even needed, to get my take.

To continue reading, click here.

In the Hunter Thompson Kitchen, Frazier Museum

First official reader review:

The Hell’s Angels Letters is a unique combination: at the center is Hunter Thompson’s letters to his contact person at Random House as his bestseller Hell’s Angels comes into being. (That contact continues thereafter.) Beside this is the admiring and excited perspective of that beautiful young woman at Random House, who then changes course to set off on some adventures of her own. (She turns out to be very interesting and deep in her own way, becoming more complex as she matures.) Interwoven is a history of the times, from literary and political perspectives, with a cast of characters from then. Plus interviews and short articles by authorities exploring Hunter Thompson’s  legacy. Photographs. And witty cartoons. 

I found this highly accessible book intriguing in a down-to-Earth very human way, requiring not metaphors, but rather—it seems to me—a deeply self-revealing honesty. I have liked it tremendously.

Paul Krassner, a player in The Hell’s Angels Letters

Virginia Williams, PhD, President of Williams LifeSkills

With Rory Feehan at the Frazier 2019

Bill McKeen and Juan Thompson - Gonzo Fest

Juan Thompson, Margaret Harrell, Tim Denevi
Tim Denevi and Margaret Harrell

Hunter, 1991A favorite of Hunter


New in 2022 – Poetry and Nonfiction

Beyond Particle Pinata Poems new books by Margaret Harrell (so far) in 2022 – a “galloping” year – are listed below:

New Poems – Patching Me Together – Cover Design: Grant Goodwine

Following the critical success of Particle Pinata Poems, Harrell’s new release doesn’t disappoint. It more than delivers. “Margaret Ann Harrell stands in direct lineage with the poet prophets of old while simultaneously being a modern cutting edge experimental poet. She steps off the edge and into the unknown. In her own distinctly original poetic voice, she performs a whirling dance with the numinous creative forces of the universe, with Rumi and Blake and Rilke and Yeats. PATCHING ME TOGETHER is the work of a master. I can’t recommend it highly enough.”—Ron Whitehead, U.S. National Beat Poet Laureate



Cover Designer: Grant Goodwine

Let’s dive down into our relationship to the universe’s creative impulse, creative energy—the energy that can move mountains, can explode cities— through our common affinity for and content of . . . ELECTRICITY. Electricity “Transport Trains” presents “some personally experienced secrets of how we get roped into the universe’s scenes and stories.” Margaret A. Harrell spent the decade of the 1990s at her computer, but it was no ordinary experience. The computer worked with her, in what is called “computer PK.” In this parapsychological phenomenon, the computer repeatedly restructured portions of a whole page of text that was on-screen, reducing it to mouthfuls. No page printed the same way twice. This was a collaborative experience between artist and, if you will, spirit illustrator (humorously put). With piles of examples of this type of refocusing, not only did she have her consciousness altered and expanded, but she used the illustrations in her Space Encounters series, some of which are reproduced in Electricity “Transport Trains.” The Space Encounters series was published in Romania while she lived in Belgium. Resurfacing out of this ten years of seclusion and artistic hermitage in 2001, she relocated in the United State with a shipping container that held many examples of this nonstop ten years of creativity, all supported, or instigated, by “the spirit world.” Blinking in the light of returned-to everyday reality, she published more books, but shifted focus. Now she is aiming for short, easily accessible, entertaining books that have a very deep undertone. In addition, she brings insights into how human electricity interacts with the electricity-filled universe that she learned but did not understand in an initiation in 1985. Decades later, it’s all so clear. And she shares it in this book.


Cloud Conversations & Image Stories - Leonardo's Theory: Pictorial Consciousness by [Margaret Harrell]

Chuck full of meditative Sun creations. In fact, there is a section title: The Sun as Painter.

Book Description on Amazon:

How does Leonardo’s theory of chance images, “accidental” inspiration, relate to clouds? In Cloud Conversations & Image Stories, Margaret A. Harrell weaves her own cloud photography into the art history of chance images, bringing in related drawings, scrying, and our relationship to Mother Nature. Regarding Robert Desnos’ trance drawings, Andre Bréton called the “tangled web of lines” a result of chance, but the figures that “appear suddenly from this chaos,” he said, were “born somewhat like those one sees in clouds or in the cracks in walls.” Soak up the beauty as these clouds reveal images, many of which look like paintings. In nooks, in corners, of the photo, an unexpected face or whole scene appears. Harrell began photography, walking in the steps of dreams that showed her looking up, seeing scenes unfold, shifting panoramas everyone else failed to notice. One day the dream stepped into reality. In this book, Harrell gives Leonardo da Vinci a prominent role, as he found clouds and other nondescript stimulants to the imagination useful. He had a theory about stains, blots, clouds, as have other artists, such as Victor Hugo. Harrell brings them in, joining with her to take on a relatively untackled topic in art history and creativity: where creation comes from. She asks repeatedly whose images is she photographing? Why do they appear to her in clouds but not on a blank canvas? Printed in full Premium color, each image composed only of sunlight dazzles down on the page.



HARDCOVER Keep THIS Quiet Too! – finally

Keep THIS Quiet Too! 

is one of my favorite books by me. Readers often tell me how much they like it. Yet it’s not nearly so well known as Keep This Quiet! The human story in it is complex, about four writers’ lives as they intermix with each other. Three very intelligent, fabulous males in all their complexity, spread across a continent and a globe, that I, in my “hub” in Morocco or leaving once a year for a month in the United States kept exciting ties with.

Just landed on New York City soil, for a brief stopover in New York, where did I go? Of course, unannounced, my feet took me down to West Fourth Street in the  Village, walking the entire distance from midtown, telling myself I didn’t know where I was walking to. Of course, I knew. To Milton’s for my yearly indispensable feasting on his witticisms and steely analysis of whatever current predicament I found myself in in my marriage. His advice might be, when I bemoaned Jan’s suicidal tendencies,”Give him something to rise to. . . Or go down with him. But don’t be a bystander while this man commits suicide.” Never, that is, be a bystander in your life. Plunge into it. I always felt ten miles high, like Alice, after listening to such talk from an insider, who knew life through and through. And had the soul of a guru. With Hunter the attraction was something else. But deep and strong – and necessary – it was. And we often caught up on these trips to the States. Then back to Morocco, to my primitive sunny lifestyle there. Temporary, I always knew. But temporary was lonjg. Fourteen years of Oum Kalthoum, and Jacques Brel, and of course Mozart, all Jan’s favorites. And I forget Piaf.


“A passionately written memoir that doesn’t sit around being fit and proper and straight laced . . . As a key to the lives of these three writers it is idiosyncratic and in age where blandness is the norm, it is a pleasure to go on her journey and find out a little about what made these men tick and what drove her to them – Eric Jacobs” – Beat Scene print magazine (UK) # 70

Click here for a short YouTube video with some art and drawings by Jan during our life in Morocco.


In this sequel to Keep This Quiet! Margaret relocates to Morocco with her exotic, fascinating, unstable Belgian poet husband, Jan Mensaert. Living in villages, she adopts the local lifestyle of cooking on charcoal and shops for fresh groceries daily with a basket in open air markets. But the main focus is on her encounters with the three male protagonists, “outlaw” authors one and all, brilliantly creative and with the personalities that match. In once-yearly trips to the United Statets, she re-energizes on a diet of one-liner advice, deeply digested and wise, from genius-poet Milton Klonsky. This, she reports to the reader, magically as if her mind were a tape recorder. She also gets Gonzo updates from Hunter Thompson – two relationships that never lose their hold or significance, even necessity. From Morocco, to Belgium, to Switzerland, and the United States, Margaret pits wits with – learns from – and grows through these rare, close – sometimes romantic – relationships with men who exemplify authenticity. At one point, trying desperately to find her, Hunter writes, “Dear Margaret, Where are you and why? I’ve lost track completely. My last definite word was from a toilet-hole in Algiers.” He wants her to work on his next manuscript. This is 1971. Moving from 1970 (Belgium/a Cairo honeymoon) to 1986 (the Jung Institute Zurich), the book ends up fittingly at Hunter’s Owl Farm. Where else could the last two chapters take place? There, she reintroduces herself to Hunter. In fine form, he is trying to take the romance to the next level.
Actually, they both are intent on it.


“Margaret A. Harrell has done it again. In her brutally compassionately explicitly honest second autobiography KEEP THIS QUIET TOO! Harrell manages to repeatedly pull the rug out fromunder the reader. She travels from North Carolina to New York City to Morocco to Belgium to India toSwitzerland to Owl Farm, and many other places,…in search of her self. From depth psychology to dream analysis tohangoutologies to ecstatic love making to out of body astral travels to spirit guides, adventures andmisadventures, she is guided and guides herself ever homeward to her own heart and soul. Margaret A. Harrell’snew, second, autobiography, like volume one, is a masterpiece.” – Outlaw Poet Ron Whitehead

Keep THIS Quiet Too! is a real-life saga of living and learning with eyes and ears open. At times adventurous, at times sensual, Keep This Quiet Too! hinges upon the complexities of human relationships, especially the challenges posed by the heart-wrenching feelings of love that may or may not be fully requited. Highly recommended.” – Midwest Book Review

“An honest and unflinching examination of the choices we make.” – San Francisco Book Review

Click for another short video of Spanish dances and honkeytonk composed by Jan Mensaert, played at his fast pace. A deeply artistic personality with all the drawbacks that can go with it. And the ebullient upside.

I love this piano music. Jan was a natural entertainer, but if you ever wanted to meet an artist in your life, he was the consummate artist. That’s one of the main reasons I was attracted to him.

A cameo appearance comes in from 1990, Willy Van Luyten, my boyfriend at the time, who also got roped into the drama of my life as it unfolded on a spiritual level at this point.

Willy Van Luyten



A short video clip taken from Nick Storm’s videography of my first presentation at the Louisville Gonzofest. This one is on first meeting Hunter. Need I say more?

Hunter Thompson at ranch 1991, where the book ends


Allen Joseph Miner

Al has just transitioned. If you want to be truly inspired, go to the Lama Sing Library of Consciousness and listen to the In Memorial video. Al doesn’t just hope he’ll survive. He has proof in having left the Earth 10,000-plus times as Lama Sing came into his body to give the readings over 45 years – in the trance-channel manner of Edgar Cayce.

His wife, Susan Miner, is pulling back the curtain on aspects of his teaching and life that she observed at his side these last decades. To do this, she will have a weekly newsletter, the first one having just come out August 5, 2018. She writes:

My focus will be on what I believe is the central message of the Lama Sing Group, through all 45 years, underscored in Al’s final year +. I will reiterate their message in layman’s terms based on conversations he and I had, as well as those we had with the Group sometimes in private readings, and include accompanying excerpts from as far back as 1973 because the message never wavered. Go here to read the first newsletter. I especially love the part about the lions.

Al Miner first comes into the Keep This Quiet! series in Too! He reappears in Initiations and Ancient Secrets Revealed. Here is how he is introduced:

Midway through Keep THIS Quiet Too!, after leaving my husband in Morocco, I was living in Charlottesville, VA. Happening to take a workshop at A.R.E. (the Edgar Cayce organization), I asked who was the most reliable psychic; the first name that came up was Al’s. I was not used to psychic readings. Being a novelist at the time, I counted on getting all my information through inspiration and self-enquiry. But something had changed. I had to get some urgent questions settled. Things had become confused. I thought Milton Klonsky, after death, was guiding me. So I needed a source who saw beyond our 3-D reality. See Al, I was advised. The suggestion was unanimous. And he really came through.

On his website Al introduces his psychic journeys (with the Lama Sing group):

For over four decades, while the Lama Sing group was giving information sought by individuals and groups, Al was off  in his own incredible journeys on “the other side.” NDE descriptions (near death experiences) often depict some of this, but the remarkable thing is that Al has an “NDE” every time he does a reading and disassociates from his body so completely it is much like the process of “dying.”

The purpose of this website is to share, not only the information given by Lama Sing, but also the insights obtained by Al during his journeys and his intent to return with full Consciousness in order to incorporate that Consciousness into his life on Earth.

Mystical  Channel

Allen Joseph Miner, a Western mystic teacher of Enlightenment, is considered by many to be the foremost trance channel of his day, and the successor to Edgar Cayce. An accidental psychic at that. He is the largely anonymous originator of such terms as “sea of faces.” He became a channel (a working psychic) though a series of unexpected incidents and mishaps (or tests) that revealed unquestionably his mission and level of consciousness. Today he is the author of forty years of readings, individual as well as general-interest. And of over 15 books. The tale is best told in “Al’s Story” on his own website,  which describes the Lama Sing group he channels as a collection of spirits from God-consciousness. But for a quick overview, some highlights are below. The quotations are with permission:


Channel is that term given generally to those who enable themselves to be, as much as possible, open and passable in terms of information that can pass through them from the Universal Consciousness, or other such which are not associated in the direct sense with their finite consciousness of the current incarnation.

Al Miner and Lama Sing
Al Miner and Lama Sing






Revealing a Life Purpose

In a chance hypnosis session with Dr. E. Arthur (Art) Winkler, it was suggested  “You will go back to that time and place of greatest spiritual significance to you now.”  What happened next is recounted as follows, reprinted in extracts with permission. A shorter account is on their current website:

The next thing Al knew, he was awake, but where seemingly moments ago he’d been lying down, on the leather recliner, now he was standing. Adjusting his eyes to the dark, he realized he was outdoors, apparently under a twilight sky that was giving way to nightfall. He looked at his hands to see if he was really awake, but they were different somehow, as if not his own, and the shirt he’d had on when he’d closed his eyes as Dr. Winkler had begun talking to him in that strange measured pace, had been replaced by a heavy, simple garment of some sort that went almost down to his feet. And there, on his feet, instead of his shoes were sandals. Abruptly aware of people talking behind him, he spun around. Not far away was a small fire with a group gathered close around it, obviously warming themselves against the frigid air. A bit further away were the silhouettes of palm trees next to a small pool, and far off in the distance, he could make out sizeable dunes surrounding them in a sort of gigantic bowl of desert hills. The members of the group were talking amongst themselves with excitement, not seeming to pay any particular attention to his presence off on the outskirts of the oasis.

Something from behind seemed to call Al, shaking him loose from staring at the scene. Turning, the voices carrying on in the background, he stood, gazing out toward the skyline and into the night beyond, a feeling of joyful anticipation growing deep within, that someone he cared about very deeply was soon to arrive. As he searched the horizon for an indeterminable time, he wrestled with thoughts. ‘What is going on? Who am I and where am I? Who is this I’m waiting for that I seem to know but can’t quite remember?’ all the while the thrill inside all but bursting forth in expectation that one so dear to him would, in moments, come walking out of the darkness down the dune to him and their small, waiting group. And then he started to hear a voice, calling to him. Softly, barely audible at first, but slowly growing louder, the voice of this Dr. Winkler calling him to come back.

This chance hypnosis session revealed an astonishing gift. Continuing from the earlier website account:

 Once fully back, Al wanted to tell his friends about his incredible experience, but instead, they began to tell him of their own experience and of information he’d been giving. Al refused to believe. “Well, that can’t be true. I was in this desert oasis and…” but they weren’t listening, too excited about what he…or someone…had spoken . . .  Laughing, they told him they’d actually been having a conversation with him and he had told them many things, even about another friend of theirs, who Al had never heard of, who lived in Maine and was in deep trouble.

Confused and not able to believe what was being said by the others, Al wanted no more part of this, when Dr. Winkler said, smiling, “I’d like you to hear this”, and reached down and began playing the tape that had recorded the entire session.

When the recording started, and Al heard the voice, he wanted to jump up and run out of the room. What he heard was obviously his voice, but not only was the accent not his, how could it be that he was speaking with them while he was having his own experience in the desert? The more upset Al got, the more everyone else laughed. Finally, Dr. Winkler brought a chair over and sat down next to Al.

“It’s okay,” Dr. Winkler said softly. This kind of occurrence is rare, but it does happen. You have an uncommon ability to move in the sonambolistic state of hypnosis very easily.”

What happened when he went back to a time several centuries in the past (while simultaneously diagnosing illnesses in the “present”) became the turning point, leading up to the decades as full-time channel that occurred since. However, the conversion was not without preparation or “tests.”

It would probably be well to add in conclusion that the “chance” hypnosis session happened after several out-of-the-ordinary occurrences in Al’s earlier life, perhaps in some way preparing him, giving him more of a propensity to believe in unusual phenomena.

There was a near drowning at the age of four in an icy Wisconsin lake, in which, as Al was floating peacefully down to the bottom, looking around at the beauty in the vividly clear lake, he saw a snake swimming towards him. The last thing he recalls, before remembering waking up in his bed with a pile of blankets stuffed around him, was the snake, which sight broke his trance and scared him enough to begin his frantic climb to the surface.

When he was nine, he was not expected to survive the rheumatic fever that had been ravaging his young body for more than six months. He was aware, as he lay staring at the ceiling, of the doctor speaking with his mother in a hushed voice in the next room and that she began to weep as he consoled her. And then, as she had so many times when the pain became excruciating and the fever too much to stand, My-Lady (as he called her) came to him as he gave way to deliria, holding her hand out, lifting him out of his body and into worlds beyond.

But this time was different. Instead of returning him, as she always did when the pain subsided, they traveled far away, and when they returned, it was not to his body but to somewhere just above his home. Somehow he could look down, past the roof, the ceiling, and into the kitchen, where he saw his mother weeping, and in the next room, his body lying still on the sofa where they had temporarily moved him. As My-Lady showed him the scene, Al knew he was being given a choice—leave with her to remain in realms beyond, or return to his frail, sickly body and to the pain. It was his love for his mother that caused Al to return. There would still be quite some time of pain and recuperation remaining, but it was strangely different, and somehow bearable. That was the last time Al would see My-Lady, though unbeknownst to him, she would be born on Earth four years later, and in the autumn of their years, would return to him to become his wife, Susan.

Finally, there was the time he was coming home very early in the morning after finishing a night in a club with his band, when he got a flat tire. Not really needing to be concerned about anyone coming at this hour of night on the deserted back-country road, but pulling onto the shoulder anyway, Al had gone around to get the spare and jack, and was buried to his waist in the huge trunk of his 55 Olds.

Suddenly a flash of light shined into the trunk from behind him, and the next thing he remembers, he was sitting on the bank of a ditch about ten feet deep, about fifty feet across from where his car had been, lights flashing and people running about, talking, shouting. A sheriff, pad and pen in hand, was calling across to him, “Son! How the hell’d you get over there?”

Somewhere down the road, Al could make out the other car, its front-in totally smashed, his own car upside down in the ditch. A shaken Al was having difficulty relating the incident: “I was trying to get the stuff out to fix my flat, when I saw this glaring light and that’s the last thing I remember.” By now, Al was hearing the sheriff’s voice more and more muffled, as if miles away, “Well, son, how can that be? They were doing about 80 MPH when they came up over that hill. Could only’ve been a few seconds before they hit you. I climbed down the ditch to look at your car. Back bumper’s rammed under your back seat. If you hadn’t gotten outta the way, that car would’ve cut you in ha—…”

With the sheriff continuing to ask him questions he could not answer, Al was quietly asking himself: “My life’s savings are gone—saxophone, clarinet, car. What’ll I do? And how did I get all the way over here? What’s happened here?” as the ambulance sped away with the other car’s occupants.

In a recent reading, Lama Sing said that, among many other things, certainly Al’s choice to change course in two major points in his life—first from the entertainment business and then from corporate America—were like tests for him to move from temptations—like the lure of money and stature—that would enable him to be a pure and open channel through which these works could flow.

I had the delight of meeting Al and Susan in person, and there was no more humble yet lofty, Light-filled person. Enjoy the website that accumulates his learning and teachings.

BOOKS AND PROJECTS. See Library of Consciousness™ | By Al Miner & Lama Sing for the many projects of the Library of Consciousness, a library of readings, and published and up-coming books.




“Bold and searching” – BookLife “Gets” and Loves “Particle Pinata Poems”

IN PREMIUM COLOR: BookLife writes:

Harrell’s bold and searching collection takes readers on an odyssey of inquiry, with the first and foremost question being ‘How to establish that / Yes, I am / One with God and God is / One with You.’ But rather than provide an answer, Harrell’s poems seek to use the question as a gateway into a thought-space where the act of seeking knowledge results in spiritual transcendence. In a note, Harrell describes her spirituality as a conscious, living thing shaped over time by a series of spiritual events she calls ‘initiations,’ and through her poetry, Harrell seeks to divulge her spiritual wisdom.

The principle spiritual tenet in Particle Piñata is that all knowledge of the universe is united in an ever-shifting entity to which all people contribute and borrow, including the poet’s literary inspirations Baudelaire, Emerson, Whitman, and Joyce, and major figures from the poet’s own life, which include Milton Klonsky and Hunter Thompson. . . .

Touching on religion, philosophy, particle physics, linguistics, and more heady concepts, Harrell’s collection is a cosmic, often esoteric whirlwind which seeks to bring the poet’s conception of a spiritual being to life.
Takeaway: A cosmic, sophisticated collection that touches on spirituality, philosophy, and physics.

Great for fans of: Milton Klonsky, Delmore Schwartz.

From the Publisher:

The Particle Piñata collection spans over forty years of Life tackled from the heart. The genesis emerged when, living in Morocco in 1980, Margaret Ann Harrell began recording her dreams. And they poured in, introducing her to image trails.” She was in deep contact with the unconscious. In it resided this poet, a “second-class citizen” of herself. The poet to whom words came easily because after all she was in the unconscious, whereas the conscious prose author struggled, edited, cut, sweated, and was published. No longer is the poet in the closet. Having been a spokesperson for “the unconscious,” or collective unconscious, before, in this poetry Harrell brings in the transpersonal nature of us all. From after-death communications to stimulating RUMI-nations to metaphysics in “a bottle,” her poems bring puzzles, thought-provoking, with depth. Many are “To the Earth,” announcing prophetically, in the 1980s, the upheaval we are seeing today. True to the brand of humor of the unconscious, there is a section of brilliant word play, narrating insights about the untold stories of Jesus and Mary Magdalene, theChrist spirit, and the universal Christ consciousness.

From—Ron Whitehead, U.S. National Beat Poet Laureate

The time of the grandmothers, of the nurturing healing feminine energy has arrived. Patriarchy has sewn destruction long enough. We must all, female and male, become healers, seers. In her epic PARTICLE PINATA, author Margaret Ann Harrell stands in direct lineage with the desert mystics, the poet prophets of old and, simultaneously, with the contemporary cutting edge avant-garde. In a whirling dance with the creative forces of the universe Harrell draws explicit and implicit lines to Rumi, Blake, Yeats, Joyce, Jung, and others while forging mystical connections with clouds and coastlines, dancing in the borderlands of space and time, of being and not being, of embracing and letting go. And she accomplishes it all in her own distinctly original poetic voice. Through decades of carrying these poems from continent to continent, Margaret Ann Harrell has continued to add new poems and photos, to edit and revise, to transform her self into an ever evolving being, into this masterpiece book. I can’t recommend it highly enough. Go ahead, open the front cover and enter. You’ll never be the same.