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Category Archives: physical and emotional process of creating art
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 14, 2011 by Mara Purl
“Who done it?” Why do we get so caught up in solving mysteries? I have several readers—whose names I shall not divulge—who regularly e-mail me demanding to know who killed Chris, and whether she’s really dead, and when the crime will be solved! And I thought I was the only one who couldn’t sleep at night wondering about the characters of Milford-Haven!
My accomplished friend Margaret Coel has equally marvelous stories about the obsessive nature of readers and how involved they become with her characters. At our event last weekend, she recounted some of the “helpful suggestions” she receives regarding her two protagonists, and how their life-dilemmas might be solved.… 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
October 17, 2011 by Mara Purl
Don’t you love discovering a phrase that has embedded puns and multiple meanings? Gayle Shanks and Bob Sommer must’ve had fun when they chose this phrase as the name of their now-famous bookstore. The store itself has never changed hands, and remains in the marvelously creative and capable hands of the original owners. I had the pleasure of meeting these great folks last year at the Women Writing the West conference when they sat at my table for dinner.
My signing at their store last week was one of the highlights of my recent Phoenix-area book tour. A joint event with one of my favorite authors Donis Casey, our evening was built around my ongoing theme, “Head and Heart.” Is it with head or with heart that we write our books?… Read more
September 12, 2011 by Mara Purl
Those of you who followed my recently concluded blog tour know that I wrote 50,000 words in 44 blog posts over 31 days. Whew! It was nothing if not intense. It was a fantastic virtual journey that took me all over the country and across the Atlantic, into many different worlds, some aligned with my own: writers and authors, readers and book reviewers; and some more far-flung: gardeners, PR executives, shopping mavens and travel experts.
It’s surprising how quickly a routine can establish itself. My daily schedule became: research upcoming blog host to see what his/her followers will find useful; write blog post essay; submit; answer upcoming blog questions; submit; interview blog host; write my own blog post as a thanks to the blog host.… Read more
August 31, 2011 by Mara Purl
A sip of rich, dark java from a Mellor press while sitting at a tiny table in a café overlooking the Seine. That sounds like a perfect ritual in the life of an artist. I certainly found it to be so when I spent a month in Paris performing at the renowned Theatre Chatelet a few years ago. Cities like Paris, Kyoto and Santa Fe, filled to overflowing with artistic expression, inspire with virtually every sight, sound, taste and aroma to indulge our creative impulses. California’s Central Coast happens to inspire me and I spend lots of time there writing What the Heart Knows and all my Milford-Haven Novels.… Read more
August 26, 2011 by Mara Purl
Most of the year I spend a fair amount of time on airplanes. I come well-equipped with a set of Bose headphones to tune out the noise of the world and enter a writer-world where I can hear what my characters are saying today. I adore these special times: views out the window to surpass those from the castles of Europe; precious hours when phones can’t ring; and someone even brings me cold water and hot coffee.
So now you know the secret of my introspective side, the side that gets a pretty big volume of writing done day by day.… Read more
August 25, 2011 by Mara Purl
You pretty much know the moment you see the logo that this site will deliver some tongue-in-cheek humor. “It’s a Baby Boomer World, Baby.” In case that slogan’s designed to make us feel both right at home, and also powerful, it works! We Boomers number 80 million or so and are the wealthiest, smartest, most entrepreneurial and savvy folks on the planet. So there, so there.
To quote the founders, “BoomerBrief.com is written by Boomers for Boomers. The brains behind BoomerBrief.com are Bob and Charlotte (Hill). Bob is a slightly-graying public relations exec with a database brain and an opinion about everything. … Read more
August 23, 2011 by Mara Purl
There’s nothing in the world like Girlfriends. I’m talking about Girlfriend with a capital “G”, the fond appellation that signifies the way one woman feels about another woman she trusts, respects, and loves.
Women’s Fiction, which is what I write, exists in the Girlfriend Zone. Why? Because it sparks conversations, reminds us of our escapades, engenders the kind of reflection that inspires growth and encourages self-esteem. So my new novel What the Heart Knows and my conviction that as I write my books I’m having a conversation with women friends, made me a perfect match for the wonderful GirlfriendBooks.com blog.… Read more