An Index to the Website
may be found by clicking here

Books! Books! Books!

To learn about my books:

The Non-fiction Page -- Publication information about my many books of non-fiction stories and essays as well as the more informational texts about Bison and the Roadside History of South Dakota.

The Poetry Page -- My poetry collections are listed here, as well as a number of poetry-related stories and essays, some of which (surprise!) contain poems.

The Wind Anthologies Page -- I co-edited three collections of stories and poems by western women (with Nancy Curtis and the late Gaydell Collier); read all about them.

The Books That Include Work By or About Linda Page -- My work appears in many anthologies of essays and poetry. See a list with book covers and descriptions.

These pages, and many others, are found on the BOOKS & MORE link in the menu bar at the top of the website.

Find Me Online!

Besides this website full of stories and photos, you may follow my blogging and other writings in several ways:

You can subscribe to my WordPress Blog "Notes from a Western Life" here:

Once you've subscribed you will receive the blog in your email, complete with photos.

And as a bonus, WordPress does not require you to decipher some squiggly words in order to post a comment. The first time you post a comment you must be approved by me (I know you won't deluge me with annoying spam about sunglasses and other products), but after that you are allowed to comment freely.


If you "like" and/​or "follow" me on my Facebook page you'll see my newly-posted blogs, as well as announcements about my books, writing retreats, and other events to do with my writing and Windbreak House.​WindbreakHouse

No kitten videos, but I post "Stories from the Writing Retreat" and various other writing-related photos, announcements, book reviews, and the occasional joke. You can ask questions and exchange comments with me and other readers of the postings.

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Listen Up!

Watch me on YouTube

Nancy Curtis, publisher and owner of High Plains Press, recorded a couple of videos of me reading my poetry and posted them on YouTube.

To see me read "Where the Stories Come From"
click here.

To see me read my poem "Make a Hand"
click here

Or go to and search for Linda Hasselstrom.

You may also want to visit the High Plains Press facebook page where you will find these two poetry videos and much more about the many great western books-- poetry and non-fiction-- published by High Plains Press.

Thanks, Nancy!

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Some of My Stories and Essays
may be found on this website.

* Poetry Page essays
Read suggestions for writing and performing poetry and the stories behind some of my poems.

* Critter Stories
Brief stories and photos of birds and wildlife seen on my ranch may be found on this page.

* Gallimaufry Page
Stories and photos that don't fit anywhere else.

* Website Blog Archives
I have since moved my blogging to WordPress, but you can read my many original archived blogs here.

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Looking for the
Home Page Essays?

Since December, 2009, I posted a new message here on the Home Page for the eight seasons of the year. As of the December, 2014 Winter Solstice Home Page Message, I have turned my writing energy in other directions, including more frequent, but shorter, blogs.

We've archived the Home Page Message essays (click here) so you can read the ones you missed and re-read the ones you enjoyed. Some of them include recipes or poems or writing suggestions. All of them have photos.

Worldwide Circulation!

Ted Kooser, US Poet Laureate from 2004 to 2006, writes a weekly poetry column sent to 3 million readers worldwide via newspapers and individual email subscriptions.

In August, 2014 he shared my poem "Planting Peas" in his column #490.

Read it here.

Quick Links

Find Authors

Linda M. Hasselstrom's Windbreak House Retreats
books, writing retreats, more.

Welcome to Windbreak House.

Celebrating 22 Years of Writing Retreats! (founded 1996)

In the center of the nation, deep in the grasslands of western South Dakota, essayist and poet Linda M. Hasselstrom grew up as an only child on a family cattle ranch homesteaded by a Swedish cobbler in 1899.

Today she invites you to benefit from a writing retreat on that same ranch. Come to the house where she discovered the Great Plains outside her windows, where she began to write the poetry and non-fiction books that have established her as one of the strongest voices on behalf of the prairie.

Linda holds a BA in English and Journalism, an MA in American Literature, and has been a teacher of writing for more than 45 years. She has hosted writing retreats at her ranch since 1996.

Not a writer but a reader? Enjoy Linda's vivid descriptions of her life and work on the ranch, as a writer, and as an advocate for the preservation of the prairies and the people and wildlife who inhabit them.


Meet Linda on Youtube

For a brief introduction to Linda, her ranching life, her books, and the writing retreats, watch this Two-Minute Summary on Youtube. You've read her words-- now hear her voice and see her ranch and writing retreat.

The News from Windbreak House -- December, 2018

Book Award!

In April, 2018, Story Circle Network announced that Gathering from the Grassland, published by High Plains Press, won the 2017 Sarton Women's Book Award (in the memoir category). Story Circle Network sent me gold foil stickers to place on the book covers to denote the award.

The award program is named in honor of May Sarton, who is remembered for her contributions to women's literature as a memoirist, novelist, and poet. Awards are given annually to women authors writing chiefly about women in memoir, biography, and fiction published in the United States and Canada and selected from works submitted. Sarton award winners are published by small/independent publishers, university presses, and author-publishers.

Read about my memberships, awards, and honors on this page of the website.


My Newest Books

I had two new books published late in 2017.

Gathering from the Grassland: A Plains Journal

My first book, Windbreak: A Woman Rancher on the Northern Plains, written in journal form, covered a year on my family's ranch, telling the stories of the land, the livestock and wildlife, and the people.

My newest book, also in journal form, revisits that same landscape thirty years later. I spent a year observing the changing of the seasons and the daily life of my feathered and furred neighbors. At the same time I studied the personal journals of my parents and other relatives, trying to understand their lives from an older-- and wiser-- perspective; hoping that making sense of the past will allow me to see my way into the future.

Click here to read the "All About the Book" webpage for Gathering from the Grassland.

Gathering from the Grassland: A Plains Journal --- High Plains Press, 2017
(320 pages; size 6 x 9)
$19.95 -- paperback
$29.95 -- hardcover

You may purchase a signed copy from me for the cover price plus $4 shipping

Linda M. Hasselstrom
PO Box 169
Hermosa, South Dakota 57744


Dakota: Bones, Grass, Sky --- Collected and New Poems

The original edition of Dakota Bones: The Collected Poems of Linda Hasselstrom was published by Spoon River Poetry Press in 1993. This new and expanded edition contains all of the original poems plus 50 new poems-- an accumulation of poems from many years. In 2011 I published 50 new poems in Dirt Songs: A Plains Duet with Twyla M. Hansen, now Nebraska’s Poet Laureate. Some of these poems predate those; some were published in periodicals but have not previously appeared in book form.

Click here to read the "All About the Book" webpage for Dakota: Bones, Grass, Sky.

Dakota: Bones, Grass, Sky – Collected and New Poems --- Spoon River Poetry Press, 2017
(240 pages; size 5.5 x 8.5)
$14.95 -- paperback

You may purchase a signed copy from me for $14.95 plus $4 shipping

Linda M. Hasselstrom
PO Box 169
Hermosa, South Dakota 57744

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Now, What About Your Writing?

Windbreak House Writing Retreats and Online Writing Conversations by eMail.

If you would like to spend some time writing at Windbreak House see the Writing Retreats Page for the list of available retreat dates in 2018 and all the details you need to know about applying for a writing retreat (working with me) or a solitary retreat (recharge your creativity and enjoy uninterrupted writing time).

If you can't take a retreat holiday because your time or your budget is tight, we can still have some productive writing fun together online. See the Online Writing Help Page for complete details on how to sign up for a Writing Conversation by eMail.


Stories About Writing Retreats

Susan wrote a blog about her January, 2016 writing retreat-- you'll get a few writing tips while you enjoy reading about her experience.

And I have a blog series about writing retreats.
Six Steps to a Successful Retreat at Windbreak House
Create Your Own Writing Retreat at Home

"Windbreak House Writing Retreats 20th Anniversary" series -- posted in December 2016 and January 2017
2016 was the 20th year I conducted writing retreats at my ranch home. Read this ongoing series of blogs for stories, photos, and many quotes by writers taken from the Retreat House journals. I have written 8 chapters and expect to write a few more later this year.
Part 1 -- Beginnings
Part 2 -- Evolution
Part 3 -- Guidelines
Part 4 -- The People
Part 5 -- The Writing


My WordPress blog "Notes from a Western Life."
Come on over and sign up for a subscription.

New Blog Posts
Notes from a Western Life -- The Windbreak House Blog

My WordPress blog allows me to include multiple photos, link with social media across the web, and offer you a free subscription that sends a dandy version of the blog directly to your email inbox, photos and all. To subscribe click on any of these links to go to the blog, then scroll down and look for the subscription box in the right-hand column.

Some Recent Blogs:

"Remembering Judge Davis" -- posted on my adoption birthday, August 14, 2018
Looking at a photo of my mother and me, taken on my adoption birthday 65 years ago, I remember the Custer County judge who made the day especially memorable.
See the photo and read about Judge Davis here.

"Paying Attention – Sixty Years of Experience" -- posted July 31, 2018
Wahoo! I stage my own little round-up with a motorized vehicle instead of a horse, using 60 years of cattle know-how. This is part of my Facebook and blog series on "Paying Attention" and using daily journal notes for writing inspiration.
Join the round-up of the neighbor's big black Angus bull.

"Walking into Writing" -- posted July 23, 2018
Pay attention and carry a pocket notebook and you can collect all kinds of information for further research or writing inspiration. Nearly every day Jerry and I walk our long driveway to get the mail and newspaper. Here are expanded notes I collected one day in July.
Walk to the mailbox with me. Don't forget your notebook.

"Journal Entry, 7/4/2018" -- posted the day after July 4th, 2018
I woke up with the words to "God Bless America" in my head on Independence Day, and followed that theme as I walked the hillside by my house.
Join me on the walk.

"Twenty-Five Meditations on Grief" -- posted June 29th, 2018
Don't have time for writing? Spend 10 minutes a day with your journal and jot down your thoughts on a theme. In my case I wrote about grief, as I spent time at the cemetery for Memorial Day, remembered people who are gone, and visited a dying relative in the hospital.
Strung together, these brief journal notes create a coherent meditation.

"Antelope Antics" -- posted June 21st, 2018
A little observation plus a little research and you can create an essay about something you love or about something you want to learn.
Here are my notes about my pronghorn neighbors.

Because it is time-consuming to update two blogs, I have phased out the blog on this website to concentrate on my WordPress site. However, many older blogs are still available on the Blog Page of this website which you will find by clicking here.


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Interview on KEVN TV

In March, 2017, I was interviewed by Taylar Perez of Rapid City's KEVN Black Hills Fox TV station. Taylar came to Windbreak House, filmed my responses to her thoughtful questions, and captured shots of the Writing Retreat house, the books I spoke about, and early spring at the ranch. Then she zoomed back to Rapid City, filmed another interview elsewhere, edited the stories in the afternoon, and presented them that evening while she also anchored the news. Wow!

You can watch my interview and read the transcript here at KEVN Black Hills Fox.


YouTube Videos

In honor of National Poetry Month, and specifically National Cowboy Poetry Week (April 16-22, 2017), I recorded some stories and readings as a tribute to Badger Clark, South Dakota's first Poet Laureate.

I was inspired by a number of writers and poets during my childhood-- notably Mari Sandoz and Badger Clark-- who each wrote about the west that I recognized from my life on the ranch.

Video posted 2017 --- See my tribute to Badger Clark, his cabin in nearby Custer State Park, and his humorous Last Verse of poetry here on Youtube.

See also my video about Badger Clark's poem "The Legend of Boastful Bill" here on Youtube (published 2016).


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