Jamon Iberico de Bellota. #yum #foodie
Ah, airport food.
Today is both Constitution Day and Citizenship Day. Enjoy the following trailer for a book I wrote with Joseph D'Agnese about the signers of the Constitution: "Signing Their Rights Away."
Just arrived: Here are the latest international editions of "The Girls of Atomic City."
Into the lobby of Greenfield Assisted Living stepped a vision of sassy Christmas cheer. She was bedazzled in glitz, animal prints and smiles with a blinking holiday-light necklace draped around her neck and antlers sprouting from her head. Now burned into my memory like some nuclear-powered yule log, this was my first glimpse of the force of nature that was Colleen Black.
Colleen entered my life as a potential interview subject for the book I was writing at the time, The Girls of Atomic City. She was surprised I wanted to talk to her about her role in the Manhattan Project. After all, she assured me, she had no idea what she was working on at the time. While she couldn't imagine why I would want to hear about her adventures as an 18-year-old single gal living and working in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, during World War II, I couldn't imagine this vibrant 80-something-year-old not having plenty to say once I'd sat with her for a bit. Boy, was I right.
Long after interviews were logged and the manuscript edited, Colleen and I stayed in touch. We wrote and called, and I often visited whenever I was in town for an event. If I didn't get a hold of her beforehand, I always knew I could find her holding court at Panera's after morning mass, where their old-timer's coffee klatch often turned into impromptu book signings for Colleen. Friends and strangers often approached and asked her to sign their copies of The Girls of Atomic City. Colleen would write to tell me about these and other "celebrity" experiences, as she called them. She was Skyping with book clubs across the country, speaking to school kids down the road, and charming everyone in her path with her ration tales, wartime songs and Irish country wit, all wrapped up in that Tennessee twang.
I have a collection of collages Colleen has sent me over the years, most of them given to me long after the work on my book was done. Photos casually snapped in her apartment showed up in my inbox and mailbox, draped with historic news clippings and photos of the other atomic city "girls." She was always there with a daily joke or up-by-your-bootstraps encouragement, with remembrances and prayers for my own mother, who is next to me as I type this, sleeping, waking and sleeping again, nearing the end of her own time with me. Colleen's daughter Suzanne called me earlier today to tell me that Colleen had died this morning. We had been in touch, Suzanne and I, two daughters waiting and watching as the mothers they loved began to move on from this world.
She is a collage all her own now, my Colleen. My mind today is a visual mish-mash of leopard-spotted, fuzzy-slippered, sing-songy snippets of chats—both on the record and off— and babblings over cheap wines with goofy or naughty names that gave her a giggle. (Fat Bastard was a house favorite.) Colleen died as she lived, surrounded by family and song and love, held close in the hearts of many of us who knew the joys of her friendship. I will lift a glass of Marilyn Merlot in her honor. I can almost hear her laughing.
After years of dealing with a lack of iWeb updates, I have decided to give Squarespace a try. I find it quite intuitive to use, though I need to get a better handle on the design options.
Anyone have any favorite tricks or templates?
Lovely start to a Sunday. Watch and be delighted.
It’s a long story, but when we were first married Denise and I lived overseas in Italy, where she worked covering soccer for sports organizations like ESPN. We first lived in Rome, then moved to a small town an hour north. The countryside was exactly what the travel magazines depict: olive groves…
YES. So thrilled to announce my fabulous husband’s latest publication, “The Marshall of the Borgo.”
Yes, it’s about that time to hit the road. Here are the cities I’ll be visiting in the coming months. Check back for additional dates. Hope to see some of you out on the road!
Monday, February 24, 2014
New York, NY
Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism
Saturday, March 1, 2014, 9:15 AM
Long Beach, CA
Long Beach Convention Center, 110 Pine Ave.
Monday, March 3, 2014, 11:15 AM
Colorado Convention Center, 700 14th Street
Tuesday, March 11, 2014, 7:00 PM
South Hadley, MA
Odyssey Books, 9 College Street
Thursday, March 13, 2014, 7:30 PM
Dodd Auditorium, George Washington Hall
1301 College Avenue
Saturday, March 15, 2014, 5 PM
55 Haywood Street
Tuesday, March 18, 2014, Noon
Oak Ridge, TN
Oak Ridge High School
1450 Oak Ridge Turnpike
Friday and Saturday, March 21 - 22, 2014, 2:00 PM
Monday, March 24, 2014, 7:00 PM
603 N Lamar Boulevard
Tuesday, March 25, 2014, 7:00 PM
2421 Bissonnet Street
Wednesday, March 26, 2014, 3:00 PM
Journalism Panel moderated by Curtis Wilkie
Overby Center at the University of Mississippi
555 Grove Loop, Suite 247
Tuesday, April 1, 2014, 7:00 PM
Ann Arbor, MI
2513 Jackson Ave. (in Westgate Shopping Center)
Wednesday, April 2, 7:00 PM
2692 Madison Road
Monday, April 7, 2014, 7:00 PM
123 W. Jefferson Avenue
Tuesday, April 8, 2014, 6:00 PM
4701 E. Douglas Avenue
Thursday and Friday, April 10 - 11, 2014
Boone and Hudson, NC
Caldwell Community College
Photographed by Vadim Trunov [website]
How did I not realize that snails are magical and wondrous? Where are my fantasy novels about wide-eyed snail protagonists on quests?
These are the dreamiest photos that ever did dream.
Snails in love…
Day 1 of the 14th annual Girlfriend’s Weekend. All the Pulpwood Queens have descended on Jefferson, Texas, population 2,106. This year’s theme: Viva Las Vegas!. Authors and readers having a blast.