I’m a columnist now!

I am now back to writing a column for the Henrico Citizen newspaper. My friend Tom Lappas owns and manages the paper, now in its 11th year of publication. I used to write a column for this paper six years ago, beginnging soon after the birth of  my first-born, but I stopped it (after my daughter was born) so that I could start working on my novel. I wrote about all kinds of parenting issues: toy guns for children, sending a “young”  (August birthday) child to kindergarten, reading aloud, the coming of a second child, caring for elderly parents while raising children. I met a bi-weekly deadline, but now I only write monthly. It’s a deadline I can live with!

My first column just got published, called “The Son Also Writes.” (Clever title, leave it up to Tom and super-smart friend Patty to come up with killer headlines). It was about my son and his own writing ability and passion. I wondered if he liked writing because he grew up watching me write and was able to see my success at a crucial time in his childhood, or if he just liked writing because of who he is–a creative boy with a gift for the gab. You should read it, if the issue intrigues you! Find it at http://www.henricocitizen.com/index.php/opinions/article/the_son_also_writes_0119. I enjoy writing about my family–and our family is so hectic that I can’t imagine ever being at a loss as to what to write. Life, however sloppy and stressful, is entertaining to write about! More fun than fiction sometimes, and much truer!

Writing the column and the blog is actually important to my fiction writing, because it frees me to write about things that occupy my daily thoughts so that I can better access my fiction/creative side. I find that once I pen a blog entry or write a column, I feel ready and willing to begin work on my sequel. There is nothing blocking my brain–I can see miles of sandy beach in my mind, endless stormy seas, and Ben and Abby and Eliza are right there, waiting for me to pick up their story. Fiction flows easily after the nonfiction of my life is safely written down and set aside.


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