Skip to content

Never Too Late

The genetic predisposition toward alcoholism and depression has threaded its way through generations of my family tree. While I have struggled with depression throughout my life, I was lucky to escape the disease of alcoholism. One of my sisters was not so lucky. But that’s not the end of the story—it’s only the beginning. This…

Read More

Mother-Daughter Turbulence in the Early Teen Years

A few weeks ago, I was welcoming students to an overnight for a middle school comprehensive sexuality class when a mother dashed in without her thirteen-year-old daughter. “Sarah won’t be here for a while,” she said. “I kicked her out of the car and told her to walk the rest of the way.” She went…

Read More

Still Dancing

I was asked to write an “artist’s statement” for my upcoming college reunion. I’ve always been uncomfortable with this whole “artist” thing– I’ve spent my life doing creative work, but somehow, I never think of myself as an artist! But I was inspired by dancing with my grandson, so here’s what I had to say:…

Read More

Celebrating One Year Book Anniversary!

It’s hard to believe that it was one year ago today that my YA novel, It Should Have Been You, was released by Page Street! What a journey this has been. I’ve done readings at Flying Out Loud and as part of a SWAN (“Support Women Artists Now”) celebration, signed books at Barnes and Noble,…

Read More

Feeling Grateful

My students have been studying Clint Eastwood’s remarkable 2008 film, Gran Torino. We’ve been talking a lot about its themes. One is, of course, that “real” family is wherever you find it. The protagonist Walt is profoundly disappointed with his sons and families, and they don’t care much for him either. But, despite his long-standing…

Read More

One Month Later

It was a little over a month ago that our younger son Joel married Priscilla Hernandez, the love of his life, at Cliffview, a rustic retreat near Red River Gorge. It took him a mere fourteen years to convince his bride to marry him, and I’ve never seen anyone more thrilled than our son! We…

Read More

Aspiration Versus Reality in America

            At the end of Seton Hill’s annual writers’ conference for alums in June, I attended the MFA graduation ceremony, during which we all stood, hands on our hearts, and sang our national anthem. After singing the closing words, “Land of the Free and Home of the Brave,” I turned to a fellow writer friend…

Read More

Re-Creating That Small Town Feel

The long-running joke in our family is that if my dear husband didn’t have an errand to run, he’d invent one.  And since his retirement, the number of weekly errands has at least quadrupled. I’m convinced he’d lose his mind if he were ever sentenced to house arrest. I used to think that his constant…

Read More

Adjunct Teaching: The Revolving Door

My first hint that my adjunct office buddy had departed came the week before fall semester when he wasn’t at the back-to-school faculty conference. We were among the handful of adjuncts who were regulars at these things—eager to gain some teaching tips and inspiration while enjoying some camaraderie with other folks on campus.             By…

Read More

End-of-Summer Musings

I admit it. I’m having grandchild withdrawal! I spent a wonderful two weeks hosting our Colorado family and three grandkids and then was off for two and a half weeks visiting our NYC grandkids, including our latest precious addition. Edie Lou arrived on Sunday, July 22, weighing nearly nine pounds! She joins big brother Milo.…

Read More