A book here, a book there; books, books, everywhere – What writers read and why

When I walked into Eudora Welty’s home in Jackson Mississippi, what first struck me were the books. That books were in bookshelves goes without saying, but even more enchanting were those NOT on or in bookshelves.  There were books everywhere. Books adorned every plausible surface – the floor, the end tables, the chairs, the sofas, […]

Where Do You Find Your Inspiration?

Artistic and daily inspiration can be found in a variety of unique places, depending on how individuals refresh and recharge themselves. Some people may prefer to listen to music, to a particular song or musical artist that holds special meaning. Others may find inspiration in the absence of noise, in silence — either through a […]

Please Don’t Interrupt Us

“This is it!” I said to my husband. New to Atlanta, we were househunting back in the days when people actually drove around to look at houses. Who knew how many we had seen? There were of course the “impossibles” and the “unaffordables.” But the “maybe’s” were merging into an indistinguishable blur. In the case […]

Dying To Be Noticed

Sadly, many creative people aren’t recognized in their field until they are six feet under. Of course, back in Plato’s day fame wasn’t such a big deal because it didn’t exist as it does today. In fact, before the Industrial Revolution authors were said to be doing well when they were simply recognized in their […]

“Are You Ready for the Country?”: Nashville in All Its Songwriting Glory

Some cities have a unique way of relating to the world around them. They have a hum, a certain lifeblood, a raison d’etre, if you will. Washington, D.C. runs on politics. In Los Angeles, that hum is the entertainment industry, referred to simply as “the industry.” Even ordinary folks know what’s playing at the NuArt, […]

The Remarkable Journey of Amanda Kyle Williams: Atlanta’s Rising Queen of Crime Fiction

From adolescent non-reader to adult writer of crime thrillers, the story of award-winning author Amanda Kyle Williams is as inspiring as it is surprising. Throw in surviving a chemical addiction and endometrial cancer, and it becomes nothing short of miraculous. If you ask Williams how it happened, she’ll tell you it can only be explained […]

Dredging for the Muse

The other night I had one of those dreams that had all the narrative juices going… at some point in the dark warp of early morning it turned lucid, and I scrambled to remember characters, speech patterns, plot. I was certain upon waking I would shove all that meat into a novel. Drinking from the […]

From Heart to Page: Lancing the Boil of Grief

Do not stand at my grave and weep; I am not there. I do not sleep…. Do not stand at my grave and cry; I am not there, I did not die. (Excerpts from “Do Not Stand at My Grave and Weep” by Mary Frye) Once upon a time I would have found this poem […]

Fountain Pen Envy

Something there is about the grace and charm of a fountain pen that attracts a writer’s fancy. The efficiency of a keyboard can’t be denied, but occasionally a fountain pen is the instrument I want for journaling or for the first draft of a difficult writing assignment. A fountain pen slows the hand to match […]

Does Memoir Tell the Truth?

“But other people in my family have a whole different memory of what happened. You said ‘tell your truth,’ but how do I know what’s true?” Elbows planted on the table, the young woman leaned into her words while her large eyes sent out beams of light from under the rim of her straw hat. […]