Category Archives: writing

My flash fiction

In 2015, writers in one of my critique groups decided to try our hands at flash fiction, which is defined as very short fiction. How short isn’t clear. Some say up to 1,000 words, others say 500 at most. My … Continue reading

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Finding inspiration in the life of a 95-year old

Meet my friend Eleanor. She’s a terrific writer, former teacher, advocate for the mentally ill at city, state and national levels, addicted thrift-store shopper (though she claims to have quit cold turkey this past year), patron of the arts, and all-around … Continue reading

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My love of libraries

Ever since I checked out my first book in a tiny storefront in my West Seattle neighborhood, I’ve loved libraries. At age 15 and 1/2, my first job title after “babysitter” was “page,” a library position that involved shelving books, … Continue reading

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Surprises from the past

I always thought researching one’s ancestors was a job for old people.  I’m researching mine now and I’m old, so I guess I was right. Years ago, my mother gave me a short family history prepared by a relative of … Continue reading

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Putting early learning to work with literary agents

Recently, I had a chance to do what I do best, namely, read aloud in front of an audience. Not exactly a big claim to fame. Since I was attending the annual Pacific NW Writers’ Conference at the time, reading … Continue reading

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Dear Diary…

*Dear Diary, “I walked home from school with Mary. We played at my house.  Then I practiced piano.” Ann (*reasonable facsimile of childhood diary) Lately, I’ve been thinking about journals, blushing about my own feeble attempts to fill even one … Continue reading

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“The long and winding road”

By now everyone on the planet must have heard the cliché, “It’s the journey that’s most important, not the destination.” A friend who writes a travel blog (see story here)  and who traveled with her husband to Greece to buy a … Continue reading

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From Aerograms to Instagram

Anyone remember ‘pen pals’? The kids your age who lived somewhere else with whom you exchanged letters about your towns, countries and lives, until one or both of you lost interest? My first pen pal was British. I saw her … Continue reading

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My year of the horse

On January 31 we’ll say hello to the Year of the Horse.  According to, “The spirit of the horse is recognized to be the Chinese people’s ethos – making unremitting efforts to improve themselves. It is energetic, bright, warm-hearted, … Continue reading

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Going where the story takes you

Hear the word “research” and what comes to mind?  Laboratories teeming with pink-eyed rodents? Spreadsheets filled with statistics? Undergraduate student volunteers taking tests to predict how likely they are to do x or y when faced with an impossible choice? … Continue reading

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