Place as Memory — Writing the Geography of Our Lives

“Memories are rooted in place: a lifetime of kitchens, backyards, porches, and patios. Our bedroom and our best friend’s bedroom, the street where we played until dark and our parents called us inside, the park where we picnicked, the swimming pool with its aquamarine water smelling of chlorine or the pond on the farm with its muddy banks. If you want to enter a memory, enter a room in your grandmother’s house. Remember an incident, and the place where it happened will figure prominently in the story. Everything happens somewhere, and if you want to bring the memory alive, be in the place where it occurred.
garden cottage

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How is writing a novel like growing an ear of corn?

I wish I had a time-lapse camera attached to my kitchen faucet. That way I could catch the day-by-day growth of the corn in my neighbor’s garden. Every morning over the last couple of months, since he planted his garden, I’ve watched the corn inch its way higher and higher toward the sky. This week, after being away for several days on a writing retreat, I swear it’s as high as an elephant’s eye.

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A Reminder to be Mindful

Carol Tibbett’s beautiful book, Twelve Mindful Months: Cultivating a Balanced & Fit Body, Mind & Spirit recently received honorable mention for best spiritual book in the Eric Hoffer Awards. The award was established at the start of the 21st Century in memory of the great American philosopher to honor free-thinking writers and independent, academic, and small press books of significant merit.

Though Carol’s book begins in January, I thought as we arrive at mid-summer, now would be a good time to be reminded of the importance of mindfulness in our lives. Continue reading