The Girl in the Turquoise Shirt

When I was in high school I spent a week in Tijuana, Mexico building houses for poor people. That trip changed me. Or more precisely, one little girl in a turquoise shirt did. My boyfriend’s church group was going over spring break and they needed more volunteers, preferably who could speak Spanish. I volunteered. Admittedly,Continue reading “The Girl in the Turquoise Shirt”

Harry Potter and the Love of Reading

For this blog I’m making a point of acknowledging a parenting win. I struggled to figure out what to write about this week, between the Stanford rape case and the powerful letter written by the victim that sparked a much needed national conversation, and Hillary Clinton making history as the first female presumptive presidential nomineeContinue reading “Harry Potter and the Love of Reading”

Persistence and Procrastination

The thing about writing is this: there will never be a perfect time to write. Life, if we’re lucky, keeps happening. Relationships demand attention. Bills need paying. Laundry needs doing. Kids need … well, everything. And somewhere in there we also hope for a creative muse to show up and guide the way. Occasionally weContinue reading “Persistence and Procrastination”

Life is a First Draft

First drafts—like life—are messy, overly complicated, contain plot holes and unfinished character arcs. There are moments of greatness, but they tend to be squashed between long expositions and mundane details. The writer, in life and writing, must explore the entire story—every tangent and detour—to tease out the real heart of the thing. We’ve got to try it all on, see what fits. Figure out what is working and what isn’t. Then ask, “Why?”

Flying (or Rather Driving) Solo

Where we spend our time and focus is how we choose our own reality. As any parent knows, the two things in shortest supply are time and focus. It feels like a little person is constantly tugging on your arm, dictating where both will go. And don’t get me wrong, there’s no more worthy recipient.Continue reading “Flying (or Rather Driving) Solo”

IT’S MY BOOK BIRTHDAY!

Today is the day my second novel, THE BIG IF, comes out. Yay! It’s an amazing feeling to finally put something new out into the world. The process of writing is such a roller coaster—a solitary pursuit—trying to get something in my head out on paper, hoping that someday it will find its readers. Today IContinue reading “IT’S MY BOOK BIRTHDAY!”

Waiting For Your Big Break? Look No Further.

Everyone has heard of the elusive Big Break—that moment when an ordinary individual is handed the opportunity of a lifetime, launching them to celebrity status. It’s the Cinderella moment everyone dreams of, followed by the fairy tale “and they lived happily ever after” ending. Sounds like a dream come true, right? Wrong. Why? Because TheContinue reading “Waiting For Your Big Break? Look No Further.”

Fast Draft and Other Madness

In grad school my thesis supervisor called me an “economical writer.” I took it to heart, interpreting it as a nice way of saying I never met my assigned word count. Through novel writing, I have learned that it was a compliment, not an insult. And yet, despite being wrong, I retained the ability toContinue reading “Fast Draft and Other Madness”

First Drafts and New Adventures

I find myself poring over a number of blogs lately.  Photography, cooking, music, and other random blogs I find through “research” which makes me feel slightly less guilty than calling it what it really is- procrastination.  Despite my best efforts at mindlessness, I find myself compelled by people’s stories and interests and couldn’t help wonderingContinue reading “First Drafts and New Adventures”