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Ned Randle

Born: 1950, in Belleville, Illinois
Connection to Illinois: Randle was born in Belleville and raised in Fairview Heights. He attended high school in Belleville.

Biography: Ned Randle was an attorney for almost 25 years. He studied writing at Washington University, Webster University and Southwestern Illinois College. His short stories have appeared in The Examined Life Journal, Soundings Review, Earth Review, and Prism Review. He's also published numerous poems in literary journals and reviews.


Primary Literary Genre(s): Fiction; Poetry

Primary Audience(s): Adult readers


Selected Titles

Baxter's Friends
ISBN: 1603811621 OCLC: 847725350

Coffeetown Press Seattle, WA : 2013

Jerry Baxter’s father liked to sing the old cowboy song, “O bury me not on the lone prairie …” when he drank. Ironically, Baxter and his two good friends, Hugh Ferguson and Al Mitchell, are soon to be buried alive, and the hole they are digging for themselves is getting deeper all the time. Baxter is racked with guilt by the sight of his father sitting semi-coherent, blind, and barely mobile in the dismal nursing home he put him in. Fearing a fate every bit as grim, Baxter finds refuge in stark rituals from his Native American heritage that animate his fitful dreams. Ferguson has found religion, or rather had it forced upon him by his wife, who otherwise wants nothing to do with him. The tedium of his job as an accountant is slowly driving Ferguson around the bend. His one solace: fantasizing about an attractive female co-worker, while Mitchell, who has lost his zest for wheeling and dealing and womanizing, looks for a new thrill. The three longtime friends are approaching middle age kicking and screaming, if only on the inside. That is about to change.

Down Cemetery Road
ISBN: 1950063194 OCLC: 1144088623

Cervena Barva Press 2020

Fiction. Billy Bright, intelligent but undisciplined, is one in a group of dissolute high school seniors known as "the boys." During the mid-1960s, Billy struggles to come to grips with his anxiety and insomnia caused by his father's drinking and verbally abusive behavior. Billy vows to get away from his father as soon as he can. As graduation approaches and the Vietnam War escalates, Billy is pressured to make plans for his future. Should he go to college? Should he enlist in the military? Should he go to the local community college, continue working at the local grocery store and enroll in the store's management program, the safe path his father demands he follow? Billy's father, George Bright, suffers post-traumatic stress disorder brought on by service in World War II. He engages in capricious behavior that is damaging to his son. The roots of George's malady is disclosed through historical vignettes featuring Company G, 119th Infantry Regiment, 30th Infantry Division. It is maddening for George Bright to realize he and his comrades prevailed in WWII only to see their sons become casualties of the war in Vietnam, scenes from which are juxtaposed with WWII battle scenes. Billy Bright's girlfriend, Robin Miller, is an attractive but batty girl who takes it upon herself to map a future for the ambivalent Billy. She secretly harbors a dream for Billy in which he leaves his small hometown, and the boys, and moves to California for college. Billy learns Robin's seemingly ideal life is only a facade as her family suffers financial setbacks resulting from her mother's profligate spending. Robin's father, a retired Air Force officer who monopolizes Billy's visits with ramblings about the glory of war and the honor of military service, is enamored with the war in Vietnam and laments that he is too old to serve as he urges Billy to enlist in the military and participate in the defining event of his generation. Billy's efforts to get away from his father to attend college or enlist in the military presents a classic conflict and, in the end, he becomes a casualty of everyone's lost dreams.

Running at Night: Collected Poems 1979-2012
ISBN: 1603811648 OCLC: 837953048

Coffeetown Press Seattle, WA : 2013

This collection includes fifty-nine poems written over the past thirty-three years of the poet’s life. Says Randle, “Poetry is the dry distillation of feelings that produces a tangible product to be shared with others. Although the process requires a very high heat and is not without risk, it is worthwhile when readers tell you they can feel the residual warmth rising from the page holding a poem they really like.”