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On History and Life

What’s your road trip style?

What kind of road-tripper are you? Different people define ‘road trip’ in different ways. Whatever your definition, you’ll get no judgment from me. I support all kinds of road trips! Which of these road trip styles looks best to you? 1. Day trips from a vacation home...

Memoirs: Week 4

The memoir mine: spiritual experiences Put "spiritual memoir" in the Amazon search window, and you'll find more than 8,000 results. They cover a broad range of religious and spiritual experience, from stories of meeting Jesus to the spiritual journeys of Zen masters...

Memoirs: Week 3

Memoir mine: Creating your memoir experience Can you create your own memoir experience? Millions of readers shared the experience of Frances Mayes as she fell in love with Italian food and rebuilt a rundown Italian farmhouse. Under the Tuscan Sun, her memoir, topped...

Memoirs: Week 2

The memoir mine: Social and cultural issues All of us grew up somewhere. That somewhere included a social and cultural setting. For me, the tiny berg of Moose Pass, Alaska deeply influenced my first dozen years. Insular, yet inherently limiting, Moose Pass was home...

Memoirs: Week 1

Memoirs: Week 1

The memoir mine: family history Every three or four years my sister and I take a family history trip together. We've visited the tiny Idaho town where our dad was born, and met a woman who knew his grandparents. In England we tramped through dozens of cemeteries,...

Story Inspiration: Nature all around us

Image from Canva.com Artists of all kinds find inspiration in the natural world. They include painters like Van Gogh, photographers like Ansel Adams (and many since), and writers of poetry, essays, fiction, and more. An Esquire article last year claims we are living...

Memoirs: Week 1

The memoir mine: family history Every three or four years my sister and I take a family history trip together. We've visited the tiny Idaho town where our dad was born, and met a woman who knew his grandparents. In England we tramped through dozens of cemeteries,...

4 ways to survive the perpetual disappointments of 2020

Yesterday I received another disappointment--an email canceling the last in a long string of events I planned to attend this year. Same for you? Only a family Christmas gathering was left. Then my daughter called in tears to let me know her husband could not travel...

Memoirs: Week 3

Memoir mine: Creating your memoir experience Can you create your own memoir experience? Millions of readers shared the experience of Frances Mayes as she fell in love with Italian food and rebuilt a rundown Italian farmhouse. Under the Tuscan Sun, her memoir, topped...

On the road again! Have you hit the road in 2020?

Vern and I made our first longish road trip in many months, to visit our son for a couple of days. Planning for the unfortunate necessity of limiting our contact with people, we filled a cooler with food for all our meals on the way down and back. At home, air quality...

Story Inspiration: Nature all around us

Image from Canva.com Artists of all kinds find inspiration in the natural world. They include painters like Van Gogh, photographers like Ansel Adams (and many since), and writers of poetry, essays, fiction, and more. An Esquire article last year claims we are living...

Story Inspiration: Castles, Cottages, Cathedrals…

Castel del Monte, Apulia, Italy My inspiration Frederick II, Emperor and King in the thirteenth century, held a level of power and an attitude toward the church that earned him the title of Antichrist from Pope Gregory IX. Among his many gifts and accomplishments,...

Memoirs: Week 4

The memoir mine: spiritual experiences Put "spiritual memoir" in the Amazon search window, and you'll find more than 8,000 results. They cover a broad range of religious and spiritual experience, from stories of meeting Jesus to the spiritual journeys of Zen masters...

Five road trip essentials during a pandemic

Here’s the new road trip playbook, thanks to Coronavirus.

1965 lives on!

I've been immersed in the world of 1965, writing about a 22,000 mile road trip and journey of discovery from May to late August of that year. In the course of research (yes, writers do research their own experiences!) the cultural icons and events of that year have...

Memoirs: Week 2

The memoir mine: Social and cultural issues All of us grew up somewhere. That somewhere included a social and cultural setting. For me, the tiny berg of Moose Pass, Alaska deeply influenced my first dozen years. Insular, yet inherently limiting, Moose Pass was home...