Inspiration

Brain Pickings & Some Good Books

The best way to get Trump out of your head is to read the smart, inspiring, eloquent website called Brain Pickings written by Maria Popova. Her piece on the new memoir by Bill Hayes about his relationship to Oliver Sacks and New York caused me to order it instantly. (Insomniac City: New York, Oliver, and…

What Art Offers

If you watched the Tony awards last night you saw in action what Mary McNamara wrote in this morning’s L.A.Times: “From tragedy can come art and from art can come wisdom.” Frank Langella in his acceptance speech for lead actor in a play said,  “When something bad happens we have three choices: We let it…

A Monday Morning Gift

A gift for you this morning:  the link to Kate Gale’s blog.  https://kategale.wordpress.com Kate is managing editor of Red Hen Press, as well as a poet, teacher, traveler, family person, bon vivant, blogger etc. She herself once said action is her default; she’s a force of nature, really smart, funny and has a talent for…

Lake Arrowhead Writing Retreat

My next writing retreat in Lake Arrowhead at the UCLA Conference Center will be held October 2 – 4, 2015. There’s now a waiting list and I’ve been thinking of possibly giving another retreat either in November or early spring. Please email me  if you’re interested in signing up for the later retreat or getting on…

Shielding the Flame: Inspiration

There’s a saying that when the student is ready the teacher will come. And for me the teacher came Sunday morning. Richard and Carol King host a salon on the spiritual creative life every month in Pasadena and yesterday I went for the first time. The speaker was Thomas E. Backer, PhD, a psychology professor…

Screaming in the Parking Lot

I was going to write a very earnest possibly boring post about habits – how by changing our habits bit by bit we can change our lives, especially our writing lives. But you have to admit the headline for this post about screaming in the parking lot grabbed your attention a lot more than Changing…

Kindness

I’ve been thinking about kindness lately and what it really means, how necessary it is. When people are kind it’s easier to move through the world, and when we’re kind to others we’re more generous, more loving, happier. Here’s a wonderful poem on the subject by one of my favorite poets, Naomi Shihab Nye.  All…

2014 Writers Studio UCLA Extension

The UCLA Extension Writers Studio started last Thursday and ended last night (it goes from 10:00 to 6:00 every day.) It’s intense and exciting to teach and such great people show up to take the workshops. I taught a workshop called “Courage & Craft” which covered both non-fiction and fiction, and I’m missing my students…

Lake Arrowhead Writers Retreat May 2-4

My annual Lake Arrowhead Writers Retreat is a private weekend workshop and retreat for all writers – those with work in progress as well as those looking for a nurturing environment in which to jumpstart their writing.  It’s held at the UCLA Conference Center in the beautiful mountain town of Lake Arrowhead, California (less than…