False Praise, False Criticism

A friend bought a novel of mine, which is a nice thing – always good to have friends support you in your creative endeavors. I never ask such things as, "Well did you like it?" because this is the surest way to get false praise. And I have had criticism of the book, to be […]

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Corruption and Egypt’s Humdrum

Zaat, by Sonallah Ibrahim   About the time the recent Egyptian drama was settling in on Cairo’s Tahrir Square, I came across an article on Egyptian writers and their travails in this deeply censored nation. Among the number of Egyptian writers listed was Ibrahim, who has been at the forefront of challenges to Egypt’s literary […]

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Digging Deep with NEWSWEEK

Note: I first feel obliged to give my sketchy view on the metamorphosis of popular media. To skip to my bottom line, scroll down to the picture of Tina Brown, NEWSWEEK's editor.  I've subscribed to several news weeklies over the years, but the one I've held onto the longest is NEWSWEEK. Since something like 1968, […]

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German Mysterious

The Hangman’s Daughter, by Oliver Pötzsch and Lee Chadeayne I seem to be a magnet for German writing lately.  Looking for modern German writing, I came across this book – a German whodunit set in the seventeenth century. The story is set in the town of Schongau, sometime after what the characters call the Great […]

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The Rhythms of Writing

Winter is my time for getting writerly things done. Spring is apparently here for keeps – we have toads singing in our pond almost non-stop – time for amphibian romance, you know. And our koi are all but jumping with energy. Cardinals and finches are making nests – I found a mass of moss, leaves […]

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The Vagaries of Writing Contests

Following my own advice from a previous post: I'm entering contests. There's a cost involved, besides postage – the entry fees, which run about $15 per contest. I'll receive subscriptions to a handful of litmags- some I'm familiar with, others not so much. The reality: odds are against winning any of these. In fact, I […]

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