Thank you, Southwest Times …

I'll soon be off to my favorite place on earth — Southwest Virginia — to speak to a book club. Today, I'm especially grateful to writer Brooke J. Wood and The Southwest Times for running a great story about my book and the event. With Brooke's permission, I'm reprinting it here: Writer pens novel about historic …

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Letting down my cool …

A few years ago, I was eating dinner in Charlottesville, Virginia. We were celebrating a birthday at a very hoity-toity restaurant, the kind where you have to pretend you know French and where you'd better have extra cash stashed in your pocket. You know the kind. As I was ordering, out of the corner of …

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Free to go down the rabbit hole …

A bit ago I wrote about the unpleasantness of an open office work setting. Today, I'm going in the opposite direction: the delight of an office set up just the way I want. Working at home as I do is utter bliss — even when I'm tackling a sticky story or wrestling with an uncooperative …

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One writer’s rant …

I don't often rant. Well truth be told, I do in private, but publicly, I generally hold my strongest opinions to myself. But today I'm breaking that personal rule. I've spent the last three years and six months working in a modern concrete and glass open office space. From the moment we moved in, it …

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The kindness of strangers …

"Whoever you are, I have always depended on the kindness of strangers." This line, perhaps one of Broadway's most memorable and enigmatic lines, spoken by Blanche Dubois at the end of Tennessee Williams' A Streetcar Named Desire has special meaning for authors. I was thinking of that this morning when I noticed another rating on Goodreads for …

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Tacking with a new wind …

An announcement: This week I'm leaving my job of the past eleven years. My job has been the latest iteration of one I've held off and on for decades. As a staff writer for James Madison University, I've written about international students, philanthropists, autism, dams, archeology, engineering, international affairs, intelligence, education, pioneers, cyclists, museums, business, …

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