I love the sounds language creates. Perhaps that love explains why I learned to talk before I could walk. I would sit on my blankie in the middle of the room for hours and be entertained by my parents’ and grandparents’ reactions to my utterances. From an early age I learned to listen to words… Read More LANGUAGE IS OUR STOCK AND TRADE
Writers are observers of people, events, and political theater. We observe and sometimes record what we’ve seen, felt, and heard. Writers of a seasoned age who have lived through life experiences ranging from the very tragic to the most triumphant step through the writers’ world wearing a “shell of expectations.” We expect romance novels to… Read More WHAT WOULD JAMES BALDWIN DO?
You haven’t spoken to your best friend in a month. You pick up your phone and tap out her number…digits you’ve known for what seems like forever. After three rings you hear a robot’s voice say, “This number is temporarily disconnected. There is no further information about this number.” You comprehend the words you’ve just… Read More TEMPORARILY DISCONNECTED
Writing provides so many opportunities to learn, and learning presents so many opportunities to write. Let me explain. If you’re writing about a protagonist who supervises home sales for a home building company, you have to learn about the details of that character’s job. What are her responsibilities? How does she interact with the predominantly… Read More THE WONDERFUL MARRIAGE OF WRITING AND LEARNING
On November 5th, the Saturday before the election, my spouse and I were in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to attend our nephew Andrew’s wedding. For most of my life I’ve looked forward to attending weddings with the same enthusiasm that I’ve always mustered for getting a root canal or passing a kidney stone. That is, not at… Read More HAPPY THANKSGIVING?
This commentary, dear readers, is inspired by a Facebook post written one day last month by an author who expressed her vulnerability regarding the present state of her fiction writing. She admitted she felt distanced from the novels she’d written. Further, she felt she was a long way from being ready to write her next… Read More A CONFESSION, OF SORTS
Dear readers, we’re five weeks away from the most crucial presidential election of our lifetimes. Simultaneously there seems to be a never ending tsunami of police-inspired violence against people of color. With no lack of regard for either of those topics, I’m going to use my once-a-month blog space here on Women and Words to… Read More THE PLACES THAT NEVER BARRED US