Currently Browsing: Life

A boy and his pillow casket

He sits in it all the time. Usually, it’s an alien spaceship or a Pokémon ball or a house or a bed. Today, it was the casket for his baby-doll’s father. (So… him.)

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The truest December memories

It was adrenaline and restless sleep, being banished from the living room, overhearing the adults joking and wrapping. It was the feeling of flying, knowing you’d be safely caught.

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Forget the facts and let’s be practical

Whatever your story, whoever the players, the odds are good that the folks who saw your life unfold remember it completely differently.

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WTC: In memory of one.

When I think of the 2,996 individuals who died at WTC, I think of Sandy Brace — the only one I knew — and try to multiply that out. I can never do it; it’s too big. I try anyway. She was an acquaintance at back when I was an angsty, teenaged writer. She wrote about her family, her cats, the loss of her mother, staring out her office window on one of the upper floors of the World Trade Center and dreaming of what she’d write next. The need to live before time runs out. Her time ran out way too quickly for way too little reason. RIP, Bandit’s Mama. I barely knew you, but I’ve never forgotten. * Sandy’s writing profile (last login on 9/7/01): About her life, and the day before her last: Her 9/11 memorial page: * From Sandy’s poem “Transformation”: As each of us grows ever older, we return to our childhood. We return to the fragility and softness of those early years. There, if we are lucky and search for it, we will find The sweet wonder of our growing time and memories That fill our throats with joy. We will feel again the laughter And the peace of those distant years. […] I wearily endure the weight Of my time and a silence in my heart. I feel the stillness, But there is not sorrow. I sense quiet, but there is not loneliness. Withdrawing now from my world, I fold my soul into myself On this day that is mine, and I hug my aching bones. […] From “Sandra Conaty Brace: 25 Cats, 55 Words”: (Source: Sandra Conaty Brace might have appreciated a short biographical sketch about her. After all, she herself had mastered the 55-word short story — a challenge to the most diligent amateur writer. Mrs. Brace had published much of her work on Web sites dedicated to the genre. Mrs. Brace lived in Stapleton, Staten Island, and took the 7:40 a.m. ferry across the harbor each day to her job at Risk Insurance Solutions, where she was an administrative assistant. She shared her house with a husband, David, and 25 cats. Well, maybe not exactly 25. “It’s probably more,” Mr. Brace said, “But I lose count.” Dinner for the cats always caused a minor food riot, but even a riot can have its own poetry. Mrs. Brace placed cat food on seven plates on... read more

Some visual perspective on Bahrain

Here are my silly little Americanized comparisons to show how big Bahrain REALLY is.

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The red marble, mystery notebook

It’s nothing too terribly fancy, but I love it. I can’t tell you why. I found twelve of them at my mother’s house in a back room, drooled a little, and asked her where she’d found them. She said “Big Lots” and “a while ago”. A dated church bulletin crammed down in between the pages of the top one on the stack revealed what “a while ago” means. We’re talking 1993 here, folks. (At her church, that’s two or three pastors ago, even.) They’re slim, they’re comfortably floppy, they’re probably theme books, and there are hieroglyphics everywhere on the cover, but no company name to be found. They are each saddle-stitched in a (removable? Not mine, so I didn’t try too hard) vinyl slipcover, and there are maybe, maybe, 20-30 pages in each of these babies, max. I want some. They make me want to write quick short stories with a definite ending instead of the long rambling stuff I always start in Word docs on my computer and never finish. They also would work with my left-handedness, and not many journals actually do. Help me out. Where can I buy these? (And no, don’t think my mother will give me one for a second. No... read more

North winds in the evening, becoming calm

They’re there, but you have to look.

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The 10 phases of rejection

Rejected? No problem. Rejected again? Anger. Denial. Insanity. T.H. Mafi’s take on the classic cycle of a writer’s ego.

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Getting back on the writing horse

When unexpected things happen to interrupt your writing life, picking up where you left off and can be hard to do. Here are some ways to beat the slump.

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Six minutes to live

  If my doctor told me I had only six minutes to live, I wouldn’t brood. I’d type a little faster. ~~Isaac Asimov, science-fiction writer, 1920-1992   .... read more

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