Welcome Guest Author Dallas Hudgens

I first encountered Dallas Hudgens when I moderated a panel about con-men in fiction on which he appeared for the Virginia Festival of the Book. I’m not usually inclined toward the genre, so was most pleasantly surprised to find I could not put down Dallas’ novel, SEASON OF GENE. It’s the story of a sad-sack group of scammers and wise-guys whose losing weekend baseball team is drawn into the ultimate…

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Mothering the Mothers by Deb Jenny

The idea of Mother’s Day is great in theory, though I’ve discovered in reality it’s not one that is so readily implemented. it seems that the boundaries of a give-mom-a-day-of-rest holiday for mothers aren’t exactly highly regarded in the fast-paced play-all-day-and-all-night world of kids athletics. Most Mother’s Days for me have meant traveling to yet another city for yet another soccer game—not exactly the type of R&R day I’d schedule…

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

My Original Hero by Deb Jess

I thought we’d end this week on a sappy note. Hey, why not: it’s the holidays! If ever there is a time of year for a little schmaltz and heart-warming treacle, it is now. Haul out the holly and all that. So I’ve composed this letter to my mother, my original hero. When I was born, it was “you and me” against the world. A single, unexpected parent at 18,…

Friday, December 14, 2007

My Mom, The Mother Bear

My mother raised animals in much the same way she raised children: by allowing them to have everything they want, not giving them limitations, and then smiling charmingly when one of them peed on the couch. I craved the curfews that my friends had and even thought being grounded sounded pretty good — or at least like you were like kids were in movies. With the animals, she didn’t believe…

Friday, November 30, 2007

Middle Me This By Deb Anna

My mother has always told me I should be grateful that I’m not the middle child — a statement she’s been forced to trot out every time I’ve complained about being the youngest, which has been fairly often. The fact that there was no middle child in our family hasn’t seemed all that relevant. Being the baby gets a good rap; you’re allegedly showered in affection, can do no wrong…

Monday, July 9, 2007

Hair-raising Adventures in Blackberry Picking

If I hadn’t picked 12 containers of blackberries, I might not have ended up with the Dorothy Hamill-had-she-cut-her-locks-with-gardening-sheers haircut at the age of 13 (aka, the worst age to be when you suddenly find yourself possessing a disastrous haircut). It seemed like a good enough idea at the time. I was staying with my friend Ramsay at her dad’s Napa vineyard for a week and after a few days of…

Monday, February 12, 2007

The Buffalo Overalls By Deb Anna

It all started with the buffalo overalls. My mom thought they were the most adorable thing an eight-year-old could wear but I knew that a tan corduroy jumpsuit with a zipper down the front and an enormous buffalo on the front was hideous. She begged. I refused. She tried to force. I cried. She bribed. I acquiesced — and wore them to school one day, where during recess a little…

Monday, January 29, 2007

Good in Bed by Deb Mia

I do my best work in bed. Really. This isn’t to say that I can’t write in other places, like my desk, for instance. Or the library. Or on the backs of crumbled pieces of random paper while waiting in line at the grocery store. I’ve scribbled dialogue on airplane barf bags, come up with new scenes in the middle of a restaurant (where I had to excuse myself to…

Thursday, January 18, 2007

The Little Girl That Could

Ask me to think of my favorite childhood book and my mind comes up with Blubber. Then I think of Forever. What about the sweet, lovely little tales that I first heard back when I was a little innocent, I wondered? I remembered Pat the Bunny, suddenly recalling that I pulled the fur off of my copy. A call to Mom was in order. I was a bit reticent to…

Monday, January 8, 2007

My protagonist and I By Deb Anna

I remember my mom, an avid reader, telling me when I was little that first novels were almost always autobiographical. At that stage, I was reading lots of S.E. Hinton books and had just discovered that S.E. was, in fact, a woman. So there was a lot of time spent plenty trying to figure out where she was in the midst of all those Ponyboy’s and Sodapop’s. It’s not so…

Monday, December 18, 2006