Tag Archives: fiction

Step Away From All Chariots (Burning Edition)

CONTENT WARNING: Vague to extreme silliness–and back again. Since 1990 I’ve been visiting Ana S. every other month, less when I was younger and single and living on a leaky  sailboat and a semi-working actress with miracle hair never listing towards … Continue reading

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The Women’s National Book Association

I was made aware of the WNBA/LA thanks to my middle grade writing mentor, Kathryn Fitzmaurice (ask me if I am lucky to have her as my mentor and you will hear amplified hell yeah’s). She gave one of this … Continue reading

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Walking to Floats (SoCal Edition)

Rose Parade Floats Viewing, January 2nd: I walked my son several blocks down a typically—for Pasadena—vast and nicely swept boulevard to another major boulevard (wider than the Rio Grande and as sungleamy in our December heatwave) mobbed by people like us … Continue reading

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December Whinny

Sitting on the patio at Peddler’s Fork, alone out here as it’s a SoCal pre-Christmas bit of chilly, i.e., 60 degrees, way too cold for the cycling clan packing the tables indoors, brrr, but perfect for me as I’m the … Continue reading

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Quote For The Weekend (RIP Edition)

I have learned that particularly clever ideas do not always stand up under close scrutiny. Elizabeth Peters, The Hippopotamus Pool Ah, but the above author’s ideas stood up and have never stood down. Armed in 2 pen names (Elizabeth Peters being my personal … Continue reading

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Quote For The Weekend: Early Edition (Due To Colds, Flu, Pediatric Dental ER’s, Close-Family Close Calls, Going Away For The Weekend & A Unicycle That Still Needs Mastering…)

Try, fail. Try again, fail better. —Samuel Beckett In Sunday’s typically heat-knit twilight, I glance up from pinching pie crust into old-fashioned, part curtains patterned in fat cherries. A palomino trots down my street, its rider guiding with the blithe … Continue reading

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Quote For The Weekend

In order to write the book you want to write, in the end you have to become the person you need to become to write that book. ― Junot Díaz Today I am a 56 year old academic who wrote only … Continue reading

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And There Is A Storm And Here Is A Cat

Locust After the midnight bell, the battered book closed, flame of the inherited candle snuffed, we recover from stifling night, erasing radical dream-dyes we will never share (though not because we are secretive) and we remember I’ve just returned from … Continue reading

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What Beauty Gets You

I returned from Big Sur with a line in my head that needed to be inserted into a poem I’m working on. I am lucky the line didn’t leave me, creative synapses firing long and repeatedly enough for me to … Continue reading

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Snow White Revisted (Part II)

I drove up to Santa Barbara by myself, for a change. High school reunion—the first I’ve ever been to, but not the first my friends have been to and it’s only because of Tdoll and Ddazzle and our nearly life-long … Continue reading

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Links Time

It’s been a week of discovering useful blog links. I’ve hopped from link to link and then some, pausing only to drop the boy off at summer camp, pick him up, play Batman & Dinosaurs, fix dinner, twist myself into … Continue reading

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Quote For The Weekend (Yet Another “Revision” Edition)

I work hard, I work very hard. All the books at leat 30 revisions. —Ha Jin In working on a poem, I love to revise. Lots of younger poets don’t enjoy this, but in the process of revision I discover … Continue reading

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Deep Summer Checkpoint

Two summers ago I wrote: I create escape beneath my yard’s wind- bent gazebo, books on spread gingham, the shrunk house I dragged into our shade, ticking stove, stranger’s voice in the toy wall phone he refuses. Create with a … Continue reading

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Deadwhat?

Deadlines, deadlines, self-imposed deadlines. Sometimes, while the boy attends summer camp,  I sit in a small boat in the silly above ground swimming pool and deadline-away. Floating, bumping into pool sides and ladder and capsized toy boats titillates the creative side of … Continue reading

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Author Interview #1: Bridget Hoida And SO LA

Introducing Bridget Hoida, whose first novel, So LA, is due out in bookstores June 20th. I happen to personally know that Bridget is brilliant, but I can also tell you without a hint of bias that she writes about Los Angeles with … Continue reading

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Wrinkly Time, Melamine

I recently discovered that anything made of melamine, i.e., my preschooler’s plates and bowls, should not be tossed into the dishwasher. Ever. And if you make a knife cut in melamine? Chances are toxins will seep into your child’s food. … Continue reading

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Short Story Writing Drama

Because I’ve been a Glimmer Train Finalist several times and, once, long ago, when GT published poetry, a Top 25 Finalist, and because, of course, GT is one of the best fiction journals in the country, I subscribe and receive … Continue reading

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Quote For The Weekend (Super Late Richard Henry Dana, Jr. Edition)

“The Californians are an idle, thriftless people, and can make nothing for themselves. The country abounds in grapes, yet they buy, at a great price, bad wine made in Boston…”  ―Richard Henry Dana, Jr. Well, Sir—we’ve come a long way. … Continue reading

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Critique Etiquette

  The ever-interesting Beth Hull offers some valuable critiquing advice at her blog today. I highly recommend you check in–especially if, like me, you are gearing up for the Rocklin Spring Spirit conference, where critiquing will be in the air, … Continue reading

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Quote For The Weekend (Christmas Edition)

The best sitting room at Manor Farm was a good, long, dark-panelled room with a high chimney-piece, and a capacious chimney, up which you could have driven one of the new patent cabs, wheels and all. At the upper end … Continue reading

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Quote For The Weekend (Late Edition As was Ocean-Distracted–Luckily It’s Never Too Late For Quotes)

“One of my favourite places to read was my elder brother’s bedroom. It was a tiny room with a bed, a chest-of-drawers, bookcases full of books, and shelves where he kept his seashells, butterflies, pressed wild flowers and microscope, because … Continue reading

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DUMMY

I have a new special writing/revising trick. Starting with the first three chapters of my novel, I copy and paste them into a brand new fresh document, print, then edit/revise/correct/read-aloud/enhance/make-marvelous, etc. I throw the hardcopy edits into the brand new … Continue reading

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Quote For The Weekend (Late Edition Due To—Due To—Hm? Wot? Is Someone Speaking? I CAN’T HEAR YOU!)

I made up my mind at the beginning of my writing life not to write about my family and friends, since I want them to remain my family and friends. Others, it seems, have come to a similar conclusion. The … Continue reading

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Quote For The Weekend (Early Edition Due To Fleeing The Heat For Environs Non-Inclusive Of Internet But Very Beauty-And-Beach-Infused, Which Means Instant Writing Angst As I Am Distracted By Natural Wonders–Although I May Surprise Myself—er, Or Surprise My Muse By Taking Her Phonecall Before It Vanishes Into Late-Night Candles, Sweetly Bubbling Fountains And Stargazing…??? Oh. Yes. I Really Need To Get Away)

“Write freely and as rapidly as possible and throw the whole thing on paper. Never correct or rewrite until the whole thing is down. Rewrite in process is usually found to be an excuse for not going on.” —John Steinbeck

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Book Rave

I’m only 1/3 of the way in, if that, and: I love it. I judged a book by its cover and my decision is utterly paying off. I’ve read W.G. Sebald. So instead of my brows flying up in consternation/skepticism upon … Continue reading

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