Not Cold and Heartless

“I’m thankful for…stuff in my life. You know, just general things.” That’s about all I had to say. I wasn’t satisfied with my response, but couldn’t think of a way to make it better in the moment. My contribution left me feeling slightly cold and heartless, and generally not appearing that thankful for anything. Read More >

It’s So Appropriate

November’s “novel” is about my second year of Peace Corps, which of course means I’m writing about some of the challenges I faced as a Peace Corps volunteer while living in Armenia. As though simply writing about them weren’t enough, it looks like my life decided I need to relive some of those difficulties so as to better remember them—and thus make the story come alive. Read More >


In writing for NaNoWriMo this month, there have been a few sources of inspiration, besides my personal recollections, photos, journal, and blog entries. There have also been my friend Tim Straight’s video series on Armenia, and the irreverent Conan O’Brien episode where he takes his assistant Sona to Armenia. Tonight is the Monterey Peace Corps […]

A Day in the Life… Of A Peace Corps Volunteer [an excerpt]

I went into my tiny kitchen, turned my faucet on, and filled my kettle with freezing cold water from my one-temperature tap. The important thing to note here is that I had to turn my faucet on. When I had moved in, the water had been permanently on. But after several months of living in my apartment, some workmen had come to replace the pipes to my sink and had also fixed it so that my water would turn off. Read More >>

Remedy #1 For Finding More Focus

I’ve been having a hard time focusing lately. The solution I’m testing right now? Meditation. So far I’m on day 7 in a row of doing the above meditation and I am much more aware of how frazzled I’ve been. I think the first step is realizing you have a problem, but in conjunction with that, realizing […]

Just Gotta Write!

It’s November. That means National Novel Writing Month! Want to learn more? See all my previous blog posts about NaNoWriMo. I’ve written a novel in November every year since 2009. Every December, I tell myself, “Never again.” Last December, I was serious. Never Again. This November, I’m doing it again. What is it about humans that […]


In the past few weeks, I’ve published 11 posts relating in different ways to the issue of sexual abuse. The home page of my website is focused solely on that topic right now. It’s a hard topic to write about. It’s draining to think about. Sexual abuse—to young children, sons and daughters, to teenagers, boyfriends, girlfriends, […]

Another Perspective (#8 In This Series)

As an adult, when working with a massage therapist, I was deeply triggered and suddenly, my body began to experience something that was so traumatizing, I immediately disconnected. I had no thoughts or memories, only the feeling of intense fear as I fought. I curled up in a ball and sobbed, the therapist covered me with a blanket and let me work through that moment in peace. (My body would relive bits and pieces of it in the months afterwards.)

Another Perspective (#7 In This Series)

*Note: These are several of the many private responses/comments I have received based on previous posts about sexual abuse. The writers have agreed to let me share their comments. I have chosen to include this variety of responses all in one post, kind of as an extension to the comments that have already been posted underneath the blog entries of the […]