On Edge

My fellow critics at Writer's Cramp are constantly carping about what they see as a certain passivity in my fiction. Where's the tension? they keep asking. Where's the conflict? Why does she keep stopping to eat? Why doesn't she kick some ass?

I have begun responding (rather sulkily, I must admit), "Isn't there enough tension in the world? Don't we have enough conflict?" Read more about On Edge



A new season of True Blood is almost upon us. My daughter introduced me to , the first of The Southern Vampire Mysteries, a few years back but, to tell the truth, although somewhat taken with it, I didn't get very much further. I can't recall a single spine-tingling moment. Not one scene made me think twice about fetching something from the storage shed in the backyard after dark. Read more about Vampyr


I'm Sorry

She closed the book, placed it on the table and, finally, decided to walk through the door. Rose glanced once again at the journal. It had been there when she entered the room, open to the page that could have been written just for her.

“I am going in there now. It’s time to tell John goodbye.”

Had her father died here?

Five years ago he had walked out of the house. His car, his clothes, his personal effects all left behind. Hospitals had been searched, accident reports examined, and morgues investigated. Nothing. Read more about I'm Sorry


Classic Relevance

It was 1984. I was living in Green Bay, Wisconsin. There is a university there, from which I had graduated magna cum laude five years before. I had also become convinced that the man I thought I loved beyond all others was someone who could never really love me back. So I ran off with the bikers.

But this isn't a story about love affairs gone awry. It's a story about cultural relevance. About how the more things change, the more they stay the same. About why it's never a waste of time to read the classics. Read more about Classic Relevance



Got into another long back and forth on religion the other day on Facebook. It was fun, in many ways. I enjoy putting my thoughts out there, having them challenged, and having to think again about how I really see things and how to get that vision across. I can't say I was entirely successful, but I'd like to think I made at least a tiny crack in the certainty with which I felt confronted. Read more about Fundamentalists


May Day

When I was a little girl, my sister and I filled tiny baskets with flowers and put them on the neighbor's porches. My baskets, as I recall, were always a wreck. Lots of dandelions drooping sadly, on stems too long and spindly for tiny baskets. My sister was a born decorator. She found tiny violets and candytuft - or something like.

Read more about May Day

Spring Reading

A long, long time ago, when I lived on a farm in Door County, Wisconsin, I tried to read my way through the Sturgeon Bay Library. I walked in one day with no idea of what I wanted to read. So I started in the A's. And once I got started, well. Yes. I'm that kind of OC. Read more about Spring Reading