Just in case you need gift ideas

I posted this on my book webpage, hoping that it would trigger an announcement to you all that I’d posted something new, but it didn’t, so here is the good news, at least if you were thinking of giving The Blistering Morning Mist as a gift to all your friends! Just in time for holiday…

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I Can Hardly Talk

I’ve been thinking about this thing we call voice. It may seem hackneyed and overworked these days, but its presence or lack continues to be a dynamic in the lives of many of us. I know I’ve come a long way, but I am far from completely confident. I still tell myself that what I…

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Scruples

I have been mostly silent in terms of this blog for the past two months. It seems life had conspired to rush me from one kind of deadline to another, making me wonder whether I should retire from retirement in order to sit and put my feet up with a good book and a cup…

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Arrived!

As with any wait, this one has come to an end. My book is in print and I have received my first copy! It all happened much faster than I expected after I gave my final okay to the corrected, typeset version. Within days I received a picture of the cover . . . And…

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A short note

In the “good old days” it came as an exciting package in the mail. Now it is just one more email, once again one I was on the verge of deleting because it came from someone I don’t know. It was the title that caught my eye. I had just finished with a Zoom committee…

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First Ventures

It feels like a new era has begun. After seemingly endless months of masks and staying at home, life is beginning to open up again. In April we drove to Brooklyn to return a granddaughter who had spent five weeks with us in order to participate in EMU’s production of Shrek, A Musical. It was…

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Spring

The Mole had been working very hard all the morning, spring-cleaning his little home. First with brooms, then with dusters; then on ladders and steps and chairs, with a brush and a pail of whitewash; till he had dust in his throat and eyes, and splashes of whitewash all over his black fur, and an…

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Discombobulated

I wrote this essay several years ago when we were still living in Northern Virginia, but it feels relevant for these days of COVID, racial violence, and gun killings. I often find it hard to fit all of life together. Today I felt discombobulated. I missed turning on Godwin Drive to get to my writing…

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Beginnings

Friends often ask, “How long have you been working on your book?” I never know what to say—what constitutes working on it? Sitting down and titling a blank page Chapter 1? Reading old letters and journals? Writing individual essays? Telling stories to grandchildren of when I was little? Attending writing workshops and reading books about…

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The Best Christmas Present Ever

I’ve been rather quiet for a while. Let me explain why. Of course, there was Christmas. We did only a bit of decorating, but not as much as usual. I cooked a few foods traditional to our household, and baked some cookies for giving away, but not as much as usual. We didn’t attend any…

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