creativity

May: JOHN THORNDIKE

One of the good surprises about attending book fairs and conferences is making the acquaintance of authors previously unknown to me. I met the May Author of the Month, John Thorndike, at The Dairy Barn author event in Athens, Ohio, in December of 2023. Thorndike, who lives in Athens, grew up in Connecticut, graduated from Harvard, and earned an MA in English from Columbia before spending two years in El Salvador in the Peace Corps. His first novel Anna Delaney’s Child, is about a woman [...]

By |2024-04-30T19:48:24+00:00April 30th, 2024|Author of the Month|0 Comments

Building A Soundtrack for 2024

(Imagine music playing in the background...) The Echo on the counter flashes blue when I speak a request to Alexa. Her soothing voice responds and in less than a minute, Classic vinyl on Sirius spools into the heated kitchen. I hum along as I knead the dough for Grandma Jenny's specialty pastries or poke cabbage leaves into thumbprint rolls filled with ground beef and pork, a New Year's tradition. Later, I sort through the collection of holiday CDs, play them all in batches, find the [...]

By |2023-12-31T18:03:56+00:00December 31st, 2023|Blog|0 Comments

As the Old Year Ends

As the Old Year Ends When the cold of December knocks the warmth from my skin, and the trees turn burnt umber and the fields cease their bright  goldenrod grins, I grease trays with butter, trim the mantel, light the fire, and dance to the beat of my heart's keen desire: that peace comes dripping, an icicle flow, that joy, like an echo, will follow and grow, that anger will mellow in the fire's red holiday glow, and that all who abide, hurting, will find [...]

By |2023-11-30T20:31:37+00:00November 30th, 2023|Blog|0 Comments

November: JUDE WALSH

Welcome, Readers, to the November edition of my Book Nook. This month I'm featuring a woman who crafts memoir pieces guaranteed to lift the spirit and provide guidance for the weary of heart -- Jude Walsh, author of Post Divorce Bliss: Ending Us and Finding Me.  Walsh is a writer and a creativity and mindset coach. With a doctorate degree in education, she is as comfortable in a classroom as she is in a lecture hall, bringing her unique perspective on life to receptive audiences. [...]

By |2023-11-01T12:08:10+00:00October 31st, 2023|Author of the Month|0 Comments

September and the Relentless March of Time

September always makes me think about Bilbo Baggins and the dwarves setting off on an adventure, his furry hobbit feet and their sturdy dwarf ones whispering through the long grasses of the fields bordering the Shire. Perhaps it's because the prairie beyond our home waves at me each morning, the hummingbirds come to feed, and the app on my phone records the slowly departing birdsong that has sustained me throughout the lovely summer days. There is a hint of mystery in the lessening of daylight, [...]

By |2023-08-31T16:20:26+00:00August 31st, 2023|Blog|0 Comments

A Midsummer’s Madness

Oh, how quickly the days speed by! It's already July and I'm writing like crazy...two novels completed, another in the R and D stage. Yes, writers do research and development, we just don't refer to it as such! Had the opportunity to visit the Ohio History Center to read up on Quakers in southern Ohio and their involvement with the Underground Railroad movement in the first half of the nineteenth century. What a fascinating deep dive into that period. I learned so much and still [...]

By |2023-06-30T17:58:20+00:00June 30th, 2023|Blog|0 Comments

If It’s Spring, It’s Time to Clean…

Spring cleaning...a chore or a pleasure? A time to restore or a time to clear out the old nest and weave a new one? The birds frequenting my backyard have no trouble doing the work, but we humans often need a nudge. Over the past two months, I've evaluated the incredible accumulation of  'stuff' in our drawers and closets, weighing what I have to have and what I can live without. Only makes sense to do the same with the clutter of my writing life. [...]

By |2023-03-31T17:26:34+00:00March 31st, 2023|Blog|0 Comments

September Blog: Time For A Hobbit Journey…

When the leaves begin to fall and the prairie turns brown and gold, I stare from the porch, unable to resist the urge to strap on a backpack and wander into the unknown. Amid the demands of life in the 21st Century, there are days I wish a wizard would turn up at my door, invite himself for tea, and invite me to go adventuring. Of course, our suburban lawns and urban landscapes rarely lend themselves to such fanciful walks, but the mind is a [...]

By |2022-08-31T17:15:03+00:00August 31st, 2022|Essays|0 Comments

June 2022 Author of the Month: TRACE CONGER

Welcome, June, and welcome to crime writer, Shamus award-winning author, and fellow Ohio University grad (Go, Bobcats!) Trace Conger, whose novels explore murder in the crime, thriller, and suspense genres. I've had the opportunity to share space with Trace at Mulberry Street Books in Lebanon, Ohio, and pick his brain a little about the writing process and this writing adventure we share. He is the author of the Conner Harding and Mr. Finn series   Janet Irvin: Trace, let's talk about choosing this writing path. [...]

By |2022-05-31T15:10:08+00:00May 31st, 2022|Author of the Month, Uncategorized|0 Comments

SPRINGING

Every year as March turns into April, I think about cleaning, and, sure, the house comes to mind. The dusting, scouring, airing, washing, and polishing remain secondary concerns to the tilling of the garden beds, the sowing of early crops like lettuce, spinach, and onions. My fingers literally itch to dig in. I find myself wandering from bed to bed, checking the new growth of perennials, pulling the pesky weeds already springing free of winter's hold. But my thoughts wander beyond these chores to the [...]

By |2022-03-31T16:04:07+00:00March 31st, 2022|Essays|0 Comments
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