What’s On My Writing Desk

Right now, I can look over and see a variety of items off to my right here on my writing table. I see John Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath, Pam Houston’s Waltzing the Cat, Toni Morrison’s Beloved, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. There is also a three inch thick edition of Bartlett’s Roget’s Thesaurus, the…

The Grapes of Wrath & Writing Advice from John Steinbeck

The chimes of the grandfather clock just announced it is three-quarters through the 8 o’clock hour. I have been working all day long, making up for some of those relaxed days in Mexico last week. I will be keeping this writing to exactly 20 minutes, including the photo and the posting. Ray asked me not…

A Time When I Was the Target of Discrimination

I wrote this piece in response to the prompt: Have you ever experienced prejudice? When I was at the University of Utah, I was in a special program called Free Curriculum for my junior and senior years. This program had only 26 students and was offered through the psychology department. The program was experimental and…

Heading back to LA on Amtrak

We walked across the Mexican border. Everyone wore masks. We then took a trolley to the Amtrak station in San Diego and are now almost to LA. This is our first time for this adventure. Overall, quite easy. Once in LA, we’ll take the subway to Hollywood and Highland then make the trek to where…

Perec, “Constraints” in Writing and a Sample Flash Fiction Story

Daughter Rachael is getting a Master’s degree in English Literature from Loyola Marymount University here in Los Angeles. She periodically shares with me information that she is learning along the way. One such bit of sharing is about a French author, Georges Perec, who was known for his “constrained” writing. He wrote novels, screenplays, documentaries…

Flora and Fauna on My Walks in Baja

The photos above are images from my walks over the past couple of days here in Baja. Vibrant flowers, egrets and godwits in the estuary, sand art, all part of everyday life here. I am enjoying this relaxed time with the fiddler crabs scuttling over the wet sand in the estuary and people with buckets…

Day One in Mexico

This is a lovely break. It is also safe. We drove straight from our house in LA to the kids’ beach house in Estero Beach. People here are wearing masks and being mindful of distance. We wave at the few other visitors and from across the beach. I am going to bed soon. That is…

Heading to Mexico

Heading off to Mexico for a few days. Going to our kids’ beach house in Baja. We haven’t been there in more than a year. We can be safe there. Just from our house to this house. Looking forward to hearing the sound of the ocean. Watching the waves. Hoping to see a few dolphins…

A Murder Conviction

When I received the news flash on my phone today that the jury had reached a verdict in the trial of Derek Chauvin for the murder of George Floyd, I prayed out loud, “Please, Lord, let justice be done.” The news flash said that it would be 30 or 40 minutes before the verdict was…