Monday, November 5, 2018

New Release! - Mom's Last Move

Some stories seem to tell themselves. Others take years to complete. MOM’S LAST MOVE is a memoir that began as scribbles in a journal, scribbles scrawled in an attempt to make sense of life’s pain and chaos, scribbles that continued for the eleven years and twenty days between my father’s death on February 2, 2002 and that of my mother on February 22, 2013.
 
They were silent scribbles that simmered and sat in wait for that moment when I was able to see the story in the scribbles. Looking back, I’m unsure when the long process of creating memoir from scribbles began. Then there was more waiting as challenges were overcome, decisions were made, and publication was put in place. Fourteen years have passed since I began those first scribbles during the long nights and early mornings following Dad’s death.
MOM’S LAST MOVE is a story in three strands, like the three leaves of the Irish shamrock or the Triple Morrigan: crone-mother-maiden.
 
Mom is the focus of the primary strand. After publication of my first memoir, THE THIRTY-NINTH VICTIM, readers asked about my mother. Those gentle, concerned questions about a woman who had lost her partner of fifty-four years while also reliving the horror of her youngest child’s murder compelled me to share this story of motherhood. My mother was a woman I neither understood nor admired in the manner she deserved until she could no longer understand the depth of my love or the regret that held it.
 
The second strand of the story tells of my daughter’s journey through the tumultuous teens and my struggles to understand normalcy. I was overcome by unrealistic and unfounded fears for my daughter based on the unrelated and dissimilar reality of my youngest sister’s murder at nineteen, a murder solved twenty years later when my daughter was fourteen.
 
I explore my journey as a writer in the third strand. I didn’t begin writing until age forty-eight in direct response to the Gary Ridgway arrest and my father’s death two months later. I was a wreck. Writing was my salvation. THE THIRTY-NINTH VICTIM became my voice, a voice some in my family were not ready to hear. MOM’S LAST MOVE tells the story of conflict and love, of the strength of sibling bonds to overcome absolute disagreement.
 
MOM’S LAST MOVE is now available on Amazon. Your interest and readership mean the world. I hope my story resonates in unexpected ways. I hope you share it with friends and family. And, if you’re inclined, I hope you’ll consider a short scribble on Amazon to share your reading experience.

Monday, October 22, 2018

An Autumn Escape

Every autumn brings a flurry of activity, so it's wonderful to get away whenever possible. A change of scenery, even for just a few days, is great for the soul. This year my husband and I made a weekend escape to Portland, OR. We stayed in a historic downtown hotel that surprised us with champagne and chocolates after asking if we were celebrating anything special. I’m not one to keep my birthdays a secret!  
Having taken our bikes, we spent two days exploring the Willamette River trails and adjacent neighborhoods. Portland is a city of bridges, and we crossed many of them, pedaling from one side of the Willamette to the other.
 
We ate Peruvian delights and tasted local brews and ciders. A tram ride offered a colorful autumn view of Portland with Mt. Adams, Mt. St. Helens and Mt. Rainier in the distance (and a break from cycling!)
 
And, of course, we visited Powell’s City of Books. Such an amazing bookstore. I could take a sleeping bag and move in. I’d sleep in a different section every night, maybe a few nights in my favorites. What a thrill to find Running Secrets on their shelves!
What’s your favorite autumn escape?

Friday, September 14, 2018

Eight Days Early


Rain is falling this gray Seattle morning. Autumn is eight days early. Is it already time to settle in, collect, or perhaps organize, your tall stack of must-reads for the inclement weather ahead?

For some it might also be the season to re-dedicate time for writing. To begin, or perhaps complete, that memoir you’ve carried in the back of your mind throughout the summer months. The memoir you’ve been telling yourself you’ll write when you have the time.

Now’s the time! Join me to celebrate the autumnal equinox by learning some writing tips that will get you back in that chair long enough to produce a memoir you’ll be proud to have written. Whether you already have a pile of pages or the ideas are still in your head, join me for a free workshop to explore a path to completion!

Saturday, September 22
10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
3411 169th Place NE, Suites ABC
Arlington, WA 98223

Friday, August 24, 2018

Pen and Paper - Always!



Despite the heavy smoke that blankets the Pacific Northwest, Coupeville is a gem. I am grateful to Debbie Lagassé of Sno-Isle Libraries for inviting me to present and to the dedicated writers who attended my memoir workshop.
Light traffic and a ferry allowed an early arrival. I wandered the small town and dock, ate at the hotdog stand, and gawked at the deer and fawns on the beach.
The two-hour workshop seemed to end before it started with lots of sharing of ideas and experiences. In conversation afterwards, Kevin Fristad, author of Dead Geese Flying, mentioned carrying a notecard and pen to jot ideas as they surface. We shared a laugh when I pulled out my tiny notebook. Reminder to writers: Carry pen and paper always!