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Category Archives: Opening up to New Worlds
June 10, 2018 by Mara Purl
New trends in fiction include novellas, novelettes, short stories and flash fiction. This intro points to a comprehensive guest post All About Shorter Fiction.
January 26, 2018 by Mara Purl
Since I write about a small, coastal town that draws tourists both with its picturesque beauty, and it's local arts and crafts, I always find it fascinating to find parallels in other locations. So Cozumel deserves a closer look. At least we scratched the surface of that beautiful island off the Yucatan, and we look forward to returning to those sparkling waters for further adventures.
January 3, 2014 by Mara Purl
Handsel: a gift given at the beginning of something, especially a new year. Though it’s hard not to keep thinking to myself “this time last year, Mom was here,” what I try to do when these thoughts recur is shift from grief to celebration, from loss to gratitude, from past to present. This is a new year, a perfect opportunity for new beginnings. Perhaps I can let the universe help me move forward, instead of tackling the forward momentum all on my own. Read more
November 9, 2012 by Mara Purl
Mara Purl, Victoria Zackheim, Pam Houston, Elizabeth Rosner, and Zoe Fitzgerald Carter read from their works at their first Women's Voices event at Kepler's Bookstore in Menlo Park near San Francisco, California.
November 5, 2012 by Mara Purl
Mara Purl & Sandy Nathan wowed their followers again with a great discussion and book signing at Solvang's indie bookstore The Book Loft.
September 24, 2012 by Mara Purl
Annual Central Coast Writers' Conference in San Luis Obispo offers great courses by well-known authors like Mara Purl to college students and professionals writers at all levels.
September 21, 2012 by Mara Purl
Writing is tough. It takes hours, weeks, months, years of solitude and focus. It requires “killing your darlings”—a writer-term for throwing out your favorite passages. It means wrestling with characters, struggling with storylines and remembering why the heck you’re putting yourself through all this torment in the first place. Then there are days when writing is just plain fun. For me, this often occurs when I get do a research field trip. I’m not entirely stupid about this—I choose favorite locations where my story just happens to take place. So I got to spend today in Morro Bay, one of the most delightful spots along California’s gorgeous Central Coast.… Read more
November 28, 2011 by Mara Purl
I think as a child I probably loved Thanksgiving because of the future—it meant Christmas was coming soon! It was also a holiday I anticipated with great joy because it meant we’d go visit Grandma Dorothy. She married my step-grandfather late in life—but just in time for my sister and me to adore her. The house she shared with “Daddy Bob” was a classic New England cottage in Waterbury, Connecticut. Cape-Cod-Blue with white trim, it stood erect despite the steep street that seemed to slice under it.… Read more
November 21, 2011 by Mara Purl
Well, if Pie-In-The-Sky describes what can’t come true, perhaps “Mile High Tea” should be the new descriptor for what can. Why? Because anything Judith Briles touches actually does turn to gold. Judith was my hostess this past weekend for a gorgeous, elaborate and delightful tea at the lovely home where she and her husband, poet and editor John Maling, love to entertain.
So what do I mean by “gold”?… Read more
November 1, 2011 by Mara Purl
Perhaps cracking the cover on an unknown book is something like opening the door to strange children on Halloween. “Trick or Treat” they cry. We consider it mostly an idle threat, because we know if we’ve opened the door at all, we’re going to deliver a treat, and therefore not expect to be tricked. And perhaps this is analogous to shelling out our twenty-five dollars for a hardcover book: we expect to receive a treat and we don’t expect to be tricked.
But what’s the point of fiction? Is it to trick the reader into thinking that the characters they’re reading about and the circumstances in which they find themselves are real?… Read more