“The Gun Show” in The Southeast Review

I’m really happy to have an essay in the current issue of The Southeast Review (Vol. 34.2), among the work of many fine poets, artists, and writers of fiction and nonfiction. The Southeast Review is a literary journal run by the graduate students and a faculty advisor in the English Department at Florida State University. My essay, “The Gun Show,” tells about my first trip to a gun show in King of Prussia, PA back in 2003, against the backdrop of a shooting accident from my childhood, in which my dad, a gunsmith, unintentionally shot our neighbor, who subsequently died. This is part of a larger project – a full-length memoir – about my relationship with my dad, the guns always there. Always.

This journal only puts a few selected pieces online after the next issue comes out, so the only way you would be able to read this essay for the foreseeable future would be to buy the journal here. Thanks for your continued support as I work to get this story out :-).




“Detours” named Notable Essay in Best American Essays 2016!

I’m so honored and excited to announce that my essay, “Detours,” which appeared in the Spring 2015 issue of Literal Latte has been included as a Notable Essay in The Best American Essays 2016, edited by Jonathan Franzen, and released this week.

This series, which has been running for 30 years, features roughly 25 essays that are reprinted in full from the publications in which they appeared in the prior year. Then, in the back of the volume are a few hundred “Notables,” which are listed alphabetically by author name, title, and the journal in which they appeared. That’s where I am, and happy and proud to be there! I’m in good company. Others in the back of the book include Claudia Rankine, Lia Purpura, Dinty Moore, Marilyn Robinson, Chris Offutt, and Phillip Lopate, one of my mentors at Bennington, as well as many other amazing writers and thinkers. As a writer who has not published a literary book yet, every bit of validation, whether through acceptance by a publication or an unexpected honor like this, gives me the courage to press on, exploring themes and issues that bubble up, struggling to get my thoughts down just right, then putting them out into the world, and bracing for the rejections that inevitably follow before, perhaps, an acceptance. Thanks to Literal Latte for giving “Detours” a home in New York City’s literary landscape and to Robert Atwan for its inclusion as a “Notable.”

If you want to check out “Detours,” please click through.


Publishing news!

Well, it’s been a long time since I’ve posted an update, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been sending out work and getting a few pieces picked up! My most recent publications include a review of Motherland by Maria Hummel at The Common online and a flash essay, “Detours,” at Literal-Latte.com.

I’ve got another longer essay in the editing stage with another journal, and I will be sure to post the link here and on the interwebs as soon as it’s available. Until then, please join me in thinking spring here in the northeast!

Publication news

Feels like I’ve been walking in the desert a long time. Although I’m blogging all the time and churning out writing that at least some people are reading, it felt like I hadn’t snagged a literary credit in quite some time. I’m happy to report some good news!

I’d actually learned of this first tidbit when I was at my first residency at Bennington, when another student & accomplished writer, Jamie-Lee Josselyn, told me she’d seen my six-word memoir in “It All changed In An Instant,” More Six-Word Memoirs. Only I’d never heard from the editors or gotten my free copy! So, I finally ordered a couple copies and am now officially announcing this achievement in the blogosphere. I’ll even tell you what the six words are!

“Pottstown. Princeton. Forever straddling two worlds.”

I submitted this online several years ago, long before I became totally immersed in my hometown’s revitalization, but it still holds true. I think it will hold true until I take my last breath. There you have it. On page 120.

In other news… a flash memoir, “How to wave like a queen,” is now up at Swink Magazine. This piece was inspired by a Dinah Lenney workshop at Bennington this past June, when I evidently had my homecoming queen past on the brain. I had blogged about it, too, in Reminiscences of a Queen. I’m very excited to have my work in Swink, which I have admired for years (and submitted to, unsuccessfully. There’s a lesson there for all of us.)

Finally, an essay submitted a while ago will be appearing in the anthology, TORN: True Stories of Kids, Career & the Conflict of Modern Motherhood. My piece is called “Observations from the Planet SAHM.” (SAHM stands for Stay-At-Home Mother.) I’m not sure about the publication date. The publisher is Coffeetown Press; there doesn’t seem to be info on their website yet. I’ll keep you posted. Again, this is another cool place to be. The line-up of women writers is impressive, and I’m just glad to be in their company.

That’s it for now!

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