I must not have realized how long it had been between posts. When I realized that potential clients and new readers might land here, I discovered just how much time had passed, and thought a quick update was better than none at all. So here, for the August doldrums, are a few haiku from Spring & Summer 2017. It is August, and DC continues its exodus until Labor Day. Thunderstorms have hit us today, and the rain makes on tired. I’ve just completed my first article for an AARP website, and a few other tipsheets for the Association of Health Care Journalists.
Summer was truly improved by an article on an osprey nest, and a coloring page in Bay Weekly! Below, a few haiku that seemed more beautiful than usual. Do you agree? If anything catches your eye, please leave a comment–haiku reply welcome, of course. Criticism, illustration–or even requests for cards.
Last month, my youngest daughter graduated from college–applying her great intellect and innate creativity to make the most of her 4 years there, despite significant health challenges. While earning her degree, she became an advocate for many issues, such as #blacklivesmatter and a #livingwage. She also did things about it, leading a crew at Habitat for Humanity, tutoring vulnerable children, distributing meals, and so much more. To me, she is proof that the universe is built on love and action.
So I drew a new turtle, this time just a single small one, heading out to sea, nothing to guide him beyond decades of nature and genetic. Like my girl, fearless and brave, swimming to whatever beautiful thing catches her eye.
I’ve been working hard to learn the craft of writing for children–it’s tough to do, but I’ve found a wonderful and supportive community where people trade ideas and offer helpful criticism. So, I thought I’d add a few images from stories in process. These stories all happen to be too long for picture books, but seem to be about right for a middle grades reader. So I’m having great fun writing fiction for the first time since 1994. Completely different process, world, challenge and joy.
Sleepover with Grammy
From “Maddie the Red and Outside Reading for Summer”
“Maddie the Red and the Outside Reading Summer”
Key words: MG books, middle grade books. Maddie the Red, outside reading, adventures for girls, summer break, 12×12 PB challenge
There are no ghosts for me to fear.
When you arrive here, mid-dream, post-
midnight, you appear whole and rested,
your mind ready and quick as ever.
We get on with things.
You are dressed in our favorite shade
of purple–you were the only grown-up
who dared love such color in my Seventies
childhood of mustard and green. I wanted
to be just like you: confident enough
of what I could do to do it.
Tonight, you must be near, reminding
me of things I have forgotten.
Just one more time, we stand side
by side and cheer our candidates
and make poor jokes. We walk
arm in arm, to New York City
and a theatre. Your diamond smile,
your perfect hair. The best day
I’ve had all year. Then the dog
barks and the sun snaps
through the blinds. To find
you, I see, I need only
close my eyes.