Something I Was Afraid to Eat

This is one of the pieces I wrote at the “Two Things I Love Best” food-writing retreat. The prompt was, “Tell me about something you were scared to eat.  I was living in Ketchikan, Alaska at the time. 13 feet of rain a year. Yes, 13 feet. Not 13 inches, 13 feet. That’s 156 inches a year, twice the precipitation of Seattle.

There were dozens of kinds of rain in Ketchikan: the misty rain that was ever present, except on very rare sun days, the soft gentle rain that we disregarded completely as we walked through town, played softball at midnight in the fading summer sun, or trolled for salmon out on the Tongass Narrows. Then there was the rain that got your attention--the pelting rain storm that slammed you as you struggled to walk ... [Continue Reading]

Caitlin Reyes Brune: Mom’s Purse


Sandwiched in the middle of a big Irish family, Caitlin Reyes Brune received early coaching on her writing from her Dad, who spent three and a half decades teaching high school English and coaching varsity football. Well schooled in revision, she nonetheless decided to major in English (and Psychology) at Georgetown University. Profound curiosity, naïve fearlessness, the restlessness of a gypsy, and deep love of the world have inspired travel and work assignments in a dozen countries. Currently, Caitlin writes from Santa Cruz, California, where the surrounding organic farms, magnificent Monterey Bay, and slightly off-beat community offer no end of inspiration. 

Caitlin recently joined ... [Continue Reading]

Risking the Unknown

"Any real change implies the breakup of the world as one has always known it, the loss of all that gave one identity, and the end of safety. It is only when one is able, without bitterness or self-pity, to surrender a dream one has long cherished, or a privilege one has long possessed, that one has set oneself free for higher dreams, for greater privileges." - James Baldwin
Tell me about a time you took a leap into the unknown, risking everything. ... [Continue Reading]

Kathy Carmichael on writing

 “Is everyone familiar with the concept of layering? Few people can write a great book first draft. It’s called draft for a reason. They might write an adequate book first draft but great generally requires a 2nd, 3rd or however many drafts it takes. Many writers, and I do this myself, go back with each successive draft to layer in areas they may have missed first time around. I go back to add in transitions of time and place. Another time for setting. Another time for description and so on.”

--Kathy Carmichael

... [Continue Reading]