Eugene Peterson has gone to glory. He was an inspiration to me, like so many others. I loved his work on the Psalms of Ascent, "A Long Obedience." In 2010 I heard him speak at a Festival of Faith & Writing -- he inspired me to continue the pursuit of both pastoral work and ministry as two … [Read more...] about Eugene Peterson, Rest in Peace, Rise in Glory
Almost two months have passed since my Op-Ed appeared in "Acts of Faith" at the Washington Post, and conservative media vilified me for it. I wrote up an account of what happened and sent it to my subscribers. But as Breitbart continues to be a cultural force, and "truth" continues to be at issue, … [Read more...] about My Recent Adventures in the Public Sphere
"I would never work this hard for somebody else." That's what I told my husband the other day. Lately, my writing project has been all-consuming. I admit I've become rather obsessive. Who am I working for? Technically I'm self-employed. Freelance. I suppose that means I work for myself. I don't … [Read more...] about Who You Work For Matters
Should a serious writer bother with a writing group? I led a forum on this subject at Festival of Faith & Writing. About 30 writers came to the forum and I shared with them why I believe in the power of writing groups. Here are my notes: BENEFITS of a Writing Group: can help each other … [Read more...] about Get It Written, Get It Published: How a Writing Group Can Help
You Definitely Don't want to read Chasing the Divine in the Holy Land if . . . ~ if you venerate icons -- you may find my book offensive. ~ if you love facts -- you may find my book lacking. ~ if you're an expert about the history of Israel and Palestine -- you may find my book naive. You Maybe … [Read more...] about Definitely Don’t Buy My Book If . . .
My book-signing table was at the very front of the Books-A-Million store, so at first I felt self-conscious, sitting so conspicuously with my books. Then I realized I had a front row seat to life at the mall, more observing than observed. People who were alone tended to walk past at a fast clip, … [Read more...] about Sitting In My Chair
My husband walked into my study at 5:00 and laughed. "You look like a writer." I glanced down at myself: patterned lounge pants, a striped top, and sweat sox. I said, "What do you mean? I'm fully dressed!" "It's your hair." I would post a picture of my hair but I do have some semblance … [Read more...] about What Writing Looks Like
One of my life goals was to write a book and have it published. It took fourteen years of sustained effort to accomplish that goal. During that time, I treated writing as a 20 hour/week job. I wrote two novels, was the founding member of two writing critique groups (which meet regularly to this … [Read more...] about The Devil in the Numbers
I love the rumbling feel of fall, as if the world is shifting under our collective feet. Eventually the leaves of the trees will change color, but right now the changes are mostly underground and invisible. My husband and I were remarking how different this fall feels from those past. The reason … [Read more...] about The Fall Is Rumbling!
I've been traveling. Last week I spent a few days with my parents and some of my siblings, and then a few days with my husband's parents and siblings. Now I'm at a writing week. I mention these things just to say: I really feel like a "Work in Progress." I find there are certain things that open … [Read more...] about WIP: Work in Progress
I have a lot of notes. You too? I like to go places where people talk about some subject they're passionate about, and I furiously take notes. Usually these are writers talking about words, or theologians talking about scripture, or clergy talking about the life of faith within communities. I … [Read more...] about Uncluttering for Writers
My "Pilgrimage" manuscript has been received by the publisher and is due out in about one year. The first line of the publisher's response was: Is this final? Yes, they even underlined the word final. Friends, that question struck absolute terror into my heart! For one thing, I am used to … [Read more...] about Is that Final?