Liability Shields and Idiots

I wrote a blog post many years ago called ‘Liability Shields Can’t Stop Bullets’. It was a provocative piece about shootings, and it almost made its way into my first novel. I decided not to include it in the book because it weighted the closing in a strange way, opening up a new theme as the story ended. In that context, I felt the piece might be misunderstood as an attempt to justify shootings or appease shooters. Continue Reading

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Leave It On Blacketts

I hiked to the top of Blacketts Ridge in Sabino Canyon, Tucson, today in the not so great time of 1:19. I really need to get back to hiking regularly, and I prefer hiking solo. I’ve not been hiking so much because of all the heaviness I carry with me. Not only in the extra 20 pounds, but in the thoughts about that old hiking group I escaped over a year back now. Continue Reading

Six Flags

A solicitor showed up to my door about a week ago. He looked to be about 15 years old. He had a blue tub full of something, maybe candy bars. He handed me a card with some information on it and started his practiced spiel. I’m doing a fundraiser to get to Six Flags Amusement Park in California. I looked at the card, a fine laminated card it was, and I watched him prepare to open the tub to reveal the goodies, but I had already lost patience. Continue Reading

The Writer’s Denouement

I originally intended to call this post The Writer’s Decision, but the term denouement seems to better capture my feelings. I made my decisions about following a writer’s path in life long ago, and now it feels like I lost on that. Denouement simply means epilogue, the pulling together of strands of a story after the last act, but to me the word has an added connotation of melancholy. Finality. Continue Reading

The Writer’s Journey

You can tell more truth in fiction than you can in nonfiction. * disclaimer

In the introductory post to this series, I wrote about two women I met here in Tucson: the beautiful blind optometrist and the doll-faced maniacal masseuse—and of course these are stereotypes, a bit nuanced, but still it’s fiction typecasting. I got trapped between these two stereotypes in my own mind as if they were battling for my future and my soul—to put it dramatically. Continue Reading

The Writer’s Mindset

What if every emotion is legitimate, and there’s no such thing as coincidence?

In essence I believe this is the writer’s mindset. As a writer struggles to find the words to tell a story, this is really what they are struggling with. In a fictional world, every emotion expressed has some kind of legitimacy, or the writer wouldn’t include it. And if there’s a coincidence that doesn’t pay off, a reader will feel robbed. Easy enough in fiction, but what about in real life? Continue Reading

ThunderBird Walking … 4 Years Later

Four years ago I was in the process of finalizing a version of ThunderBird Walking for self publication. I released it in November of 2013 as a sort of 50th birthday gift for myself. Today I looked over some parts of it thinking about creating a few internet memes for my Facebook writer page. Lots of thoughts and emotions connected to the journey of writing such a personal book hit me. Continue Reading