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One Writer’s Journey
A newsletter about reading, writing, and creativity
July 18, 2023
I am a writer with 40 nonfiction books for young readers. Add in articles and reviews and I have well over 600 sales. I also teach classes for other writers at WOW! Women on Writing. I devour media. At any moment, I have a book I’m reading and another I’m listening to. I’m often taking a class and have a TV series ongoing. This newsletter is about what I’m consuming and what I’m creating. Thank you for tuning in!
The Luminous Dead: A Novel by Caitlin Starling (Harper Voyager, 2019). Gyre lied to get the job exploring a cave system. She’s been promised an outsized income that will enable her to get off world, so she doesn’t think too hard about what she’s being asked to do. She regrets this decision when she discovers that her handler, Em, is hiding just as much as she is.
I picked this from a list of spooky science fiction. My own science fiction title has a spooky start and I’m hoping this will encourage me to get back to it.
I’m Listening to…
High Conflict by Amanda Ripley (Simon and Schuster Audio, 2021). High conflict is what happens when a disagreement settles into good vs evil. The other guy is inhuman. He is capable of destroying everything we live for. Sound familiar? The author explores how this kind of conflict takes over and what you can do to break out.
This is my second time listening to this book. This time around, I’m listening so I can discuss it at book club next week, but really? This is a book we should all read at least once a year. I obviously highly recommend it. There are too many great books out there to spend time revisiting a dud.
My plan was to watch part of My Garden of a Thousand Bees with breakfast and finish it with lunch. But I found myself fascinated by Martin Dohrn’s garden. A wildlife cameraman, Dohrn was stuck at home during COVID. He set out to film the bees in his garden. He soon learned how varied and how guarded many of these little creatures are and devised ways to get close enough to learn to tell the species apart but also how to tell one individual bee from another. The science really pulled me in. What can I say? I’m a nonfiction writer. I’m drawn to facts like bees to nectar.
Now, I’m working on three write-for-hire projects. This means that they hold the copyright and I earn a straight fee. When I’m doing several of these at once, I’m not working on much else. But you can see a few of my more recent blog posts.
Every creative needs a way to recharge. Very often that is what the classes that I take do for me. I sign up for Coursera classes of all kinds including history, paleontology, and philosophy.
Now, I’m taking a Creativebug class, Japanese Sashiko: A Daily Decorative Stitching Practice with Lisa Solomon. I’d love to say that I’m on schedule with this. But you are supposed to complete a sashiko square every day. I’m not nearly that fast. But I am enjoying it. Here is a photo of some of my stitching.
If you have any comments or questions or things that you would like to see me include, please let me know!
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