While the title today is writing with others, let me first talk about reading with others instead. As many of you probably remember, I’ve mentioned my book discussion group, which has been in existence for more than twenty years. It began as an offshoot of a small group of writers in the Cleveland, OH area.…

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“New Orleans is unlike any city in America. Its cultural diversity is woven into the food, the music, the architecture — even the local superstitions. It’s a sensory experience on all levels and there’s a story lurking around every corner.” — Ruta Sepetys I miss New Orleans most of all this time of year when…

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Today, after we’ve just celebrated real romance on Valentine’s Day, I’m sharing information I found in today’s Sarasota Herald-Tribune about romance scams. Since these suggestions come straight from the FBI, I’m sure they want this information to be read by any and all who might be affected. The Herald-Tribune article concerned internet scams on the…

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“Sometimes it’s difficult to find the things that we, as human beings, have in common. We live in times when the ‘Us vs Them’ narrative has become mainstream. We get caught up in minutiae and risk losing sight of what binds us, rather than divides us. This Danish television station ad, entitled “All that we…

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In 2019 I saw seven of the eight films nominated for an Oscar as Best Picture by the  Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences. For me, 2019 was a great year at the cinema. Looking back at that list, I realize I even saw one of the Oscar nominees, Black Panther, twice, as well…

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“Love isn’t something natural. Rather it requires discipline, concentration, patience, faith, and the overcoming of narcissism. It isn’t a feeling, it is a practice.” –Eric Fromm Years have passed since I read Eric Fromm’s The Art of Loving, but I still find his notions of love to be inspirational. Fromm doesn’t sugar coat love and…

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Last week I wrote about the way novelists incorporate facts into their fiction. While I was at it I also explored the way we sometimes ignore facts in order to advance and suit our particular plots. I listed some general rules I’ve created for myself. This week I thought I’d be more specific. Recently I…

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I’ve probably mentioned this before, but one of my favorite blogs is by John Pavlovitz titled Stuff That Needs To Be Said. Please visit it if you’re so inclined. You will find so much food for thought. His latest blog, titled Life Is Short. People Are Hurting. Don’t Be A Jerk, struck me as especially…

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So you pick up a book by an author you love, and before you begin the story, you read the author’s note. “If you’ve ever been to Anytown,” he/she says, then you know that the river flowing downtown doesn’t stop at Everywhere Street. In fact there is no Everywhere Street. And let’s face it, the…

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I’m delighted to say our 2019 Read Along With Emilie Richards Reading Challenge was a success. The challenge developed organically from the Facebook Group: Read Along With Emilie Richards. While we didn’t keep score or names of participants, and we didn’t give prizes or ask for sign ups, we did something much more exceptional. We…

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