So, it’s down to this. Empty suitcase, empty Kleenex, empty nest. But how can empty be the right word, when I’m so filled with emotion? My husband Ed and I are back home now after delivering our “baby” to college–more than 1700 miles away. Chicago may feel distant, but her brother is even farther, having left just this week to study abroad in Nottingham, England. I haven’t checked the exact miles, but it’s eight hours ahead of us, so he’ll often be sleeping while we’re awake and vice versa.
I have not been this impressed with a first novel since Michael Chabon’s Mysteries of Pittsburgh. The characters, the plot, the pacing…all spectacularly well done. The writing is mature, confident, lyrical…it reminds me of Mark Helprin, an author whom I think writes like an angel. But the thing that impresses me most is how the narrator, who is only a child for most of the book, comes across as a child in her understanding of the adults around her and in her friends, while also conveying the angst of her mother, who is dying and writing of her own life to serve as guidance to her daughter. Marcia Coffey Turnquist juggles these counterpoints so successfully she makes it look easy, and natural, which lets the universal themes of family, life and death, friendship, and growing up shine through. This is an astonishing, beautiful book. Everyone should read it.
No, I’m not sounding much like a writer at the moment, but that’s my honest response: Wow. To be compared to a bestselling, Pulitzer Prize winner? To have my writing Continue reading →
A big thanks to all the readers driving sales of my book: we’ve smashed the 500 mark! If you took all those books and lay them end-to-end they’d stretch to–just kidding, though it does feel like the moon. Better yet are the comments from readers I’ve never met. Here are a few of my favorites from my Amazon book page:
The question fascinates me. For some, the answer is “nothing.” They dismiss afterlife experiences as unscientific, tricks of the brain or hallucinations. But does that really explain it? One account I’ll never forget is that of a woman who Continue reading →
A newly-published review of my novel calls it “A deeply engaging and satisfying read” with “well-paced suspense, interesting and well-developed characters and a vivid re-creation of time and place.”
The writeup in The Valley Times newspaper describes how the story unfolds and how it’s, ultimately, about “the pivotal moments in life that can define all that follows.” If you’d like to read the entire review, find it here in The Valley Times. Continue reading →
I love book clubs. I’ve visited four so far that have read my book, The God of Sno Cone Blue. They’ve opened my eyes to what book clubs say or don’t say–about us. This, by the way, is my favorite picture so far, thanks to Linda Kalimanis who had us toasting with sno cones of blue. Are you in a book club? If so, I’ll guess a few of the things it may say about you. Continue reading →
Click here to play if you haven’t seen it. It’s the piece by KGW-TV running about a minute and a half long. What about you? Have you thought about self publishing? I’m happy to answer questions about my experience, especially since a minute and a half can only cover so much. The avenues I used were Amazon’s CreateSpace and Kindle, as well as additional eBook retailers that you can check out, if you’re interested, on my Buy Books page. It’s the future of publishing in my humble opinion. So, if you’d like to know more, please don’t hesitate to reply below with any questions either about my experience or about self publishing in general.
What a nice surprise! Check out the first article about my novel, The God of Sno Cone Blue. In print, it’s a quarter-page piece, ultimately describing the book as “a good read for mature young adult readers and parents alike…” In what is probably the best insight yet, The Cedar Mill News alludes to the letters in my novel as “a story within a story” and goes on to describe my background, the novel, and its inspiration. Continue reading →
The meaning of father–of dad–is different for all of us, as individual as our own experiences. Was your father a role model? Nurturing? Or something else altogether, perhaps troubled or abusive or never around? The inventory of Father’s Day cards covers a wide spectrum. You’ll find a few that are gushing sentiment… next to others from “across the miles.” Still others take a lighter tack, highlighting sports or beer, camping and hunting or tinkering with cars and carpentry–all things my own father has enjoyed over the years.
Sometimes I think I’m too sentimental, the sort of person who can get teary-eyed in a 30-second commercial. Maybe it’s age or menopause, though the truth is, I can’t remember when I wasn’t this way. This week it’s coming at me like gale-force winds. “You’re about to be empty nesters!” I keep hearing, and, yes, it’s true. Our little birds–who aren’t so little anymore–are leaving the nest in their own gusts of wind. Continue reading →