New Season, New Stories

Yesterday was officially the last day of summer, although for me summer ended six weeks ago when my kids returned to school. I miss having them home, and I miss long sleepy mornings and indulgent late nights filled with movie marathons, sprints to the 24-hour donut shop, and endless reading.

Now mornings begin with an alarm clock and evenings end with math homework and ten-minutes-till-lights-out warnings. But there are definite advantages to the school year: it’s easier to meet my writing goals, stick with a healthy diet, and schedule time to work out. I love walking my son to school every morning. And, of course, the weather eventually turns, like it did earlier this week.

Fall is here—jeans and sweaters, autumn-spiced candles, fresh-baked pies. Halloween displays in the grocery store and the return of cool evenings that melted away in June. Soon they will turn cold, and that’s fine too. There will be more movie marathons—first scary ones, and then Christmas ones. There will be more books. And there will be more writing.

Although I’ve been quiet on here, I have kept busy this year, drafting new short stories and essays and making pretty good progress on a maybe-novel (I’m calling it that until it reaches the 50,000-word mark—too often my novel ideas end up long short stories).

One of my new pieces, called “From Autumn to June,” was accepted at YARN magazine for publication next year. And one of my short essays, or maybe it’s more of a poem, was published this week in Mothers Always Write.

That piece, called “Sometime After Thirteen,” is a tribute to my now 15-year-old daughter; I read it aloud at a Mother’s Day reading in May with my daughter in attendance, and I was honored to have it appear in such a lovely magazine so that I could share it with you, too. I hope you read it, and I hope you all had a wonderful summer and are looking forward to fall as much as I am!

A Year Without Facebook

Last May, with a deep sense of relief, I quietly deactivated my Facebook account. Since that day one year ago, I have not logged back on. This is not a self-congratulatory post; I’m writing it because I know many people are overwhelmed with Facebook … [Continue reading]

Here and Gone

Sunday was the end of a too-short spring break that left us on the verge of summer. When I woke my son on Monday morning light was already streaming through the window. On our walk to school, the sun was hot on the back of my neck. I wore a T-shirt … [Continue reading]

Some January/February Highlights

It’s the last day of February in what was just a brand-new year—how did that happen? The past several weeks have been incredibly busy at the nursing facility where I work as we’re implementing an electronic health and medical records system. But I’ve … [Continue reading]

2016 End of Year Book Survey

    Thanks to Jamie over at The Perpetual Page Turner for hosting another end of year book survey! Here's a recap of the best books I read this year:   Number Of Books You Read: 57 Number of Re-Reads: 3 Genre You … [Continue reading]

A Good Way to End 2016

Honestly? This has not been a good year for me when it comes to publishing. Part of that is the majority of writing I did in 2015 is tied up in 2 unpublished books. One of the books is a collection of short stories, and I hadn’t been submitting the … [Continue reading]

The Other Side of the Magic

Every December we travel north to Williams, Arizona, and ride the Polar Express. Grand Canyon Railway’s mystic “midnight” train ride is based on the classic children’s book made even more popular by the 2004 animated film starring Tom Hanks. Both of … [Continue reading]

What I Still Believe

I’ve written and deleted more than one blog post since November 9. They were too angry, too hopeless, too cynical, too sad, too bloated, too simplistic, too something. And who am I kidding anyway? I have no answers for anyone, least of all my … [Continue reading]

This Really Is the Best of Phoenix

I’ve felt so honored lately to have been part of two memorable projects. The first was as an assistant for this year’s Best of Phoenix, an annual issue published by Phoenix New Times that celebrates all that is great in the Valley of the Sun. It’s a … [Continue reading]

On Empty Journals

Early in grade school, a concerned teacher notified my mother of a problem I had with communication. This problem, the teacher warned, would need to be corrected or I’d continue having great difficulty making myself understood. The issue wasn’t … [Continue reading]