R.J.Stanchfield Storyteller

The Odd Profession of Jeremy Scratch

The Little Black Book and Other Stories


May Day is Coming

The Little Black Book and Other Stories is a book of short stories. Ronin Stanchfield wrote some of these stories 25 years ago. They include 'It Was Clarke Smith’s Fault', 'Pity the Dots', 'A Yuletide Gift to Father', and 'The Parable of the Poodle, Parakeet, and the Ill-tempered Peacock'. Recent stories include 'Pen Pals and Prisoners', 'My Close Proximity to Mark Twain' and 'The Replication of Lady Teal'.

Discover its secrets for yourself at: WaterDragonPublishing.com/little-black-book

The Odd Profession of Jeremy Scratch will be out in May.

When it comes to murder, serial killers know they have a big advantage. What the serial killers don’t know… Jeremy Scratch knows where they live.

Dominick Scalia killed seventy people and, when he went to take a bath one night, Scratch knew where he lived. Dominick now sleeps with his prey.

Matteo DiNardo assassinated people with bombs — one hundred and seven of them, to be exact. He’s staying at a Hyatt Hotel in Orlando in room 345. Guess who’s twirling nunchucks in room 346?




Dominick Scalia killed seventy people and, when he went to take a bath one night, Scratch knew where he lived. Dominick now sleeps with his prey. Matteo DiNardo assassinated people with bombs — one hundred and seven of them, to be exact. He’s staying at a Hyatt Hotel in Orlando in room 345. Guess who’s twirling nunchucks in room 346?

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Maybe that is the undying hope I have: that the world will change, that people will understand that as they have had the hubris to steal and mishandle the earth and its peoples for selfish pride, that they have also shown great compassion. My hope is that compassion will rule, and Mother Nature will hear the tones of passion and allow the people to repair their misdeeds.

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R.J. Stanchfield wrote the original Hoax of the Hamptons Subway System

     Ronin James Stanchfield, storyteller, has journeyed through life, including opposing the war in Vietnam, being a founder of the United States Green Party, and shutting down two nuclear reactors.

R.J.Stanchfield    He was a whistleblower at the Shoreham Nuclear Power Station and, a few years later, found the hidden 'lost pages' describing the radioactive leak at Brookhaven National Lab’s High Flux Beam Reactor when he was Vice Chair of the Suffolk County's Environmental Task Force. In the late 1970s, Stanchfield arranged a network of housing for Iranian Jews who fled Iran.

    Ronin went from heavy industrial construction to two decades of high-end residential design and construction, building country homes in Southampton, East Hampton, Sag Harbor, and Shelter Island. During these years, he always made time to get involved in creative projects — film-making, painting, writing essays, short stories or books.

    He was a staff writer at Billboard Magazine and the Chelsea News, and wrote freelance articles for many of the Hamptons newspapers and magazines, including Dan’s Papers where he wrote the original hoax of the infamous 'Hamptons Subway System'. For R.J. Stanchfield, writing The Odd Profession of Jeremy Scratch and The Little Black Book and Other Stories seemed like the next logical step. Stanchfield sums it up by saying, "I’m going to spend my remaining years writing stories. I have a lot to tell.”

"My writing is often autobiographical in nature. What I tell you may be relevant to what actually happened. It’s often a series of exaggerations. That doesn’t stop me from outright lying either. I will do whatever it takes to make the story. I’m from Queens and it's what we do on the stoop. We tell stories."


We all sat on the Stoop and We all told Stories - Here's One of Mine


Performed and Read by Drew Arnold


Let's Write a Story Together

Dear Friend, 

I'd like some ideas for stories. Here’s my proposal: 

You describe an event, or a strange notion that weighs on you. I’ll take the picture you paint and will work to draft it into a short story. You don’t have to create the narrative; I’ll do that. Give me the essentials. I need the following: where it takes place, when, who, what, and anything else that makes a dramatic story. I'll run with your idea and produce a story. We will share the credits.

I'll compile the short stories. 

Below please leave the idea, your name, and contact information. As soon as I am finished with the story, I will send it to you for comments and any changes you would like to see.

Thank you. 

Ronin James Stanchfield   


R. J. Stanchfield's Thoughts

  • 3/14/2020 02:38 AM

A family of detectives solve crime and apprehend criminals.

  • 5/30/2016 12:00 AM

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Now on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and at Water Dragon Publishing


The Little Black Book came about when after forty five years I started to collect my writings from hither and thither. I also had to check three old Macs, and I found more than enough to compile and rewrite twenty or more stories. All of my characters are or were totally real life persons. The characters talked to me and told me things and as a result I wrote about them. If they didn’t like the name I gave them, I used a better name. If I changed their name and they didn’t like it, they left me and wouldn’t come back until they had a name we could agree upon. Everyone is real, yet some of them have created names. I acknowledge first and foremost my friends, my colleagues, my editors, Lewis Stephenson and Mariah Parke. I’m a storyteller and they are the writers. Their careful editing added magic and mystery. They challenged me and were gracious about it. They were patient with me. They worked hard to make each story better and the book better. I also appreciate two dear friends: Pete Hetzel, an architect and Genevieve Halligon, a costume designer. Over time, they have been friends who I could lean on and friends who I could confess my sins. They accepted my insanities. I owe thanks to three families, the Kane Family, the Burke Family, and the Jennings Family. Through the years they sheltered me when I most needed it. My inspiration is my grandchildren. We live three thousand miles apart now and, while I did spend the first few years of their lives with them, they live on the other coast. They are the inspiration for all of my writing. Their fictional names are Ace, Solo, and Moose Steeley, and they have a detective agency with an office in the garage. They solve crimes. Currently, they are vending their way through Skull Valley, where an unexplained death occurred. They are on the case. Mima, their grandmother, is regularly called by Moose, Ace, and Solo to help them on their important work. It cannot be stressed enough about the absolute importance of critique groups. A tip of my hat to Suzzana Crean and Pam Van Allen, who officiate two writers groups. In the spirit of “It takes a village to raise a child”, I want to thank the good members of the Avon Park Wordsmiths critique group of the Florida Writers Association as well as my dear and long time member friends of the San Joaquin Valley Writers Group of the California Writers Club, of which I will remain a member forever. Writer critique groups are the best thing a writer can do to get support for their writing. Every member of each group contributed to one or more of the stories. A writers group member advised me to submit my stories to his publisher. I received a positive response and was asked to submit my compilation. Seventy five days later, I received the following email: “… to publish your book, The Little Black Book and Other Stories … an excellent fit to our catalog of what seems to becoming a collection of slightly off beat tales … attached a copy of our standard Publishing Agreement for …” I want to thank Niki Lenhart and Lewis Stephenson again, the principals of Water Dragon Publishing. They have with care guided me through an overwhelming process. May we stay together always. R. J. Stanchfield Please follow the arrow back in time when you see the Old New York City and what it was like back then in the streets. This was the era of Johnny Vale and the Five Points Gang. Enjoy.


Jay Schneiderman asked R.J. Stanchfield to run his Political Campaign. He needed help to defeat the long-time and incumbent Town Supervisor, Cathy Lester. It was a close race but Jay eked out a win and has never lost an election in two decades. R.J. Stanchfield was one of the Green Party members who founded the Green Party of the United States. He was also a local member of the East Hampton Green Party. "We knew it would be hard, if not impossible," Stanchfield said, "but Jay was an incredible campaigner and we had a great group of Greens.” So for five months Jay and Stanchfield worked hard as did all the supporters. They met local groups, built a strong campaign force and when it was all over, Jay won. Stanchfield wrote and produced the political commercials. By the end of the campaign every time Jay met a dedicated supporter, they sang "JayO".




When we were opposing Shoreham, I had an idea. Because we have one way to get out of the East End of Long Island, we need to travel West. Sunday evening traffic gets worse because most folks are going back to Manhattan. The traffic is unbearable, not even thinking about the Shoreham nuclear plant. That fact appealed to me. I asked the college radio station manager for two hours at the college station on a Sunday afternoon. I told the director I would increase his listeners by 1,000%!

"Great! I like that," he said. "What are you going to air over the station?" he asked.

"We're going to blow up the Shoreham nuclear plant, of course," I told him with a deadpan face. Then I told him what would happen. "Karl Grossman will discuss the problems of evacuation from Eastern Long Island with guests." I explained activists would be advertising directed at drivers to tune to the college station.

"I love it," he said.

We went to work with our local group of activists, the East End Shoreham Opponents Coalition. We met, designed the maneuvers, spent only a day or two preparing for the action and then went out to do what had to be.

While investigative reporter Karl Grossman interviewed his guests, we did something else. We stationed ourselves all along the highway.

We posted a series of signs made from 4 feet by 8 foot plywood boards. A sign got placed about every two hundred feet. 

The first said "YOU ARE,"

The next said, "IN A."

Then the third, "MOCK."


The last, "TUNE TO WPBX 102.7." 

The progression of the large signs were more than two football fields in length. They got lettered by an artist, volunteer and the signs got seen and read from over a mile away.

Although the roads were already at a near standstill, we sent our folks with their cars in the traffic to make the tie-up worse. Their goal was to make a greater logger jam and create more traffic problems. Yes, it was cruel, but we wanted to bring the issue to the forefront, if there was a need to evacuate the East End, it would be next to impossible.

Phone calls came into the studio from people who had no idea what was happening. The calls demonstrated the caller's deep, fear-based concern. Our street driving activists had a ball "acting." 

As an organizational tool, it was wonderful because it was plain fun.

Believe that there was only one person got bummed out from the event. That person was the college student deejay who lost his two-hour time slot' at the radio station. We had "Shanghaied" it, he said.

Although I don’t remember his name, he gave me an even greater idea. He mumbled, "what a waste, how stupid. It sounded like War of the Worlds.”

"Bingo," I thought that's what was missing.

It occurred to me the car's radio did tune in to WPBX 102.7 to hear what was going on about Shoreham. They could not be angry at us because they already knew they were going to be in a traffic jam. Indeed, we added a nice little edge from the usual boredom of gridlock. But still, after some time I imagined they would tune us out and listen to whatever they listen to in traffic jams.
What was missing was riveting them to the radio and highlight the evacuation issue.

I called Eric Corley at the large state school, Stony Brook University. Corley was often referred to by his pen name of Emmanuel Goldstein, a figure in the hacker community. The pseudonym comes from the George Orwell book Nineteen Eighty-Four. Corley hosted a radio show Off the Hook on WBAI. He also had a show on WUSB.

I explained to Eric what I had in mind: "If you want, you can help us focus on evacuation by producing a play about the Shoreham plant blowing up. It should focus upon the inability to evacuate!"

We agreed to meet at the diner in Riverhead. We would discuss the script and the political action surrounding a two hour program. We discussed the groups of activists who will be on the roads when the radio play is airing.

I wanted the play to be generic in nature so the political action could be used anywhere. I suggested it should run as "Shadow Over The Island."

Eric had a different view and he agreed to write the script and produce it as "Shadow Over Long Island." More, he and others worked out arrangements with a Connecticut station. Stony Brook's WUSB decided to simulcast with WPKN, a Pacifica station in Connecticut.

In the meantime, I got on my horse and started to contact all the anti-nuke groups. SHAD was a primary group who went to the streets and highways with homemade signs. Shoreham Opponents Coalition staged many sign postings as did other groups. Similar demonstrations occurred in Connecticut.

The radio play itself was good, and also very data-focused. But there was no real attempt at acting as if there was a real emergency. But it wasn't a concern because the street activists made it feel like there was a need to evacuate. The activists were very demonstrative.

Five groups in both Connecticut and Long Island found busy streets and posted the signs. YOU ARE IN A MOCK NUCLEAR EVACUATION TUNE TO WUSB 88.3 or WPKN 89.5.


You guessed it. As the radio play aired from two radio stations near each other on the dial it gave an added feel of importance. Because the street activist actors were so believable the reaction was incredible. The program caused super reactions. The police stations got called. In turn people called the school officials who in turn called the radio station.

There is a little more to the story.

I got psyched from the success of the radio play and political action. But I knew the play needed more drama. I enrolled in New York Institute of Technology. I decided to get a master’s degree in communication arts. Why? You guessed it, to create SHADOW OVER THE ISLAND, a video drama.

My method was to get straight "A"s, which I did. In the first semester they allowed me to write a full length docudrama. I got an A. I then lobbied to design an entire master's course around the project of producing a full length movie. I used that leverage to get what I wanted. The institute has three professional television studios comparable to most TV stations. About twenty five students enrolled to help make the movie. We auditioned and hired professional actors. There was a cast of over 100.

Here is what the New York Daily News said:

Hamptons visitors and residents may have thought they were in the midst of a nuclear disaster when they turned on their radios over the last few days.

Four radio stations on eastern Long Island and in Connecticut broadcast 45minute "mock nuclear evacuation" dramas on Saturday and Sunday to explore the impact of a real evacuation from Long Island.

Called, "Shadow over the Island," the mock evacuation broadcast, reminiscent of Orson Welles’ 1938 "War of the Worlds" radio broadcast, mimicked a live news show describing an impending nuclear accident on the island.

It was sponsored by the Coalition against Millstone, an East End antinuclear group.
Ronin Stanchfield, a member of the coalition who wrote and produced the mock evacuation broadcast, said, "We wanted to make people understand the impact of a nuclear accident, and to feel what that would be like, trying to escape from this island."

He said his group is one of several formed on eastern Long Island to try to shut down the two Millstone nuclear plants that reopened last year in Waterford, Conn.

"These plants have a history of safety violations and personal problems and, were concerned for the safety and health of our families in eastern Long Island, which is only 15 miles away, but is outside the evacuation zone," Stanchfield said.

The broadcast depicted the chaos caused by Long Island residents trying to escape in their cars and boats.

The paid program aired at various times on three Connecticut' FM radio stations and WLNG (92.1 FM) in Sag Harbor.

Paul Sidney, president of WLNG, said his station received several "frantic calls" from concerned listeners during the 5 p.m. Sunday broadcast, who thought the evacuation was real.

"But we took extra precautions not to scare people, by adding extra disclaimers during the broadcast," Stanchfield said.

Stanchfield, a former Quality Assurance Engineer, and whistleblower at Long Island's Shoreham nuclear plant said, he "modeled this fictitious broadcast after a similar anti-Shoreham one in the 1980s."

To create more public awareness, his group, along with STAR, Standing for Truth About Radiation, an East Hampton antinuclear group, put up banners and signs at 10 sites along the Montauk Highway reading, "You Are in a Mock Nuclear Evacuation."

"Drivers stopped and talked to us, all along the highway, about their reactions to this broadcast," said STAR's Scott Cullen. "Some of them thought that was pretty scary.

Stanchfield said his group intends to run the mock evacuations about every six months.







R.J. Stanchfield Responds to Every Question