Happy 4th of July!

From every mountainside, let freedom ring.” –Samuel Francis Smith In and around my community, you can hear the snap-crackle-bang-pop of fireworks every night for a week before the Fourth of July. Neighborhood kids convene in the middle of the street to launch bottle rockets, while business owners and service club members gather at the local […]

Summer vacation nostalgia

There are perhaps no days of our childhood we lived so fully as those we spent with a favorite book.” — Marcel Proust Now that summer is here, thoughts turn to the challenge of entertaining the kids through August. How do we keep ’em out of trouble while the rest of the world goes about […]

When stories are prayers

“To live in the hearts we leave behind is not to die.” — Thomas Campbell, Hallowed Ground Last week I attended a standing-room-only funeral service for a young man in his early twenties. I’ve never been to a memorial service where so many people wanted to stand up and declare their love and caring for […]

Inspiration for writers

I believe, with a patriotic sincerity that would make a Legionnaire blush, that American literature is owned by everybody in America….and that we all get to have a say in it.” –Carolyn See Preparing to coach my writing workshops is almost as fun as working with the students. This week I’ve been updating my lists […]

A toast to Ray Bradbury

You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you.” — Ray Bradbury “Yes, summer was rituals, each with its natural time and place,” Ray Bradbury reminds us in Dandelion Wine, his semi-autobiographical novel celebrating childhood in the summer of 1928. I was introduced to this magical book in middle school, back when I […]

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